Saturday, May 20, 2023

The final betrayal: Yousaf goes through the motions of holding the special conference, but cynically changes the purpose of the event into the total opposite of the one Sturgeon intended. It's now a mechanism for disempowering SNP members and burying independence for however long Yousaf remains leader.

If The National are reporting this development accurately, the new specified function of the conference is - 

"will be solely focused on how Scotland is able to hold a legally binding independence referendum"

That should be an incredibly short discussion, because the Supreme Court has ruled that Scotland is not able to hold a referendum of any sort, either legally binding or non-binding.  A referendum is entirely in the gift of the UK Government, who have definitely ruled it out.  End of story.

For the avoidance of doubt, the purpose of the special conference is now the total opposite of the one intended by Nicola Sturgeon when she announced it.  It was supposed to be an event at which SNP members thrashed out the details and timings of a vote on independence that would be neither a referendum (because such a thing is no longer possible) nor legally binding, and members were to be given the final say because Ms Sturgeon did not "have a monopoly on wisdom".  Now it's a conference in which you can choose any option you like, just so long as it buries the Sturgeon plan of using a scheduled election as a de facto referendum. That is required of members because apparently Yousaf DOES have a monopoly on wisdom.  The manner in which Yousaf is persevering with the conference is a bit like the leaders of a coup announcing that elections will go ahead as planned, but with the minor difference that there'll only be one legal party and one approved list of candidates that everyone will be required to vote for.

Let me confront Yousaf loyalists with two inconvenient points of reality.  Firstly, there are literally no options for SNP members to choose between at this conference if it has already been predetermined by the leadership that a legally-binding referendum is the only legitimate way of winning independence.  There are no variations or flavours to that method - the only way you can get a referendum is by saying "please, Mr Jack, can we have a Section 30?" and then to go on repeating that question into infinity when the answer is always no.  The conference is therefore by definition a sham and a rubber-stamp of a decision that has already been taken.

Secondly, the SNP's conditions for a process that qualifies as "gold standard" now seem to significantly exceed the ones that applied even under the Edinburgh Agreement in 2014, because the 2014 referendum was categorically NOT legally-binding.  The UK Government made a political declaration that they would accept the outcome of the vote, but that declaration had no legal force or effect.  There would have been no legal automaticity to independence in the event of a Yes majority vote.  The Yousaf leadership seem intent on putting as many barriers in the way of independence as humanly possible, including ones that are self-evidently unnecessary, and it's reasonable to infer that they are doing so because they are a de facto devolutionist leadership.  The SNP have ceased to be a party actively seeking to win independence for the first time since at least 1942, and the purpose of the special conference is now to formally endorse the shelving of independence - a grotesque perversion of the reason Nicola Sturgeon called it.

The fact that the SNP under Yousaf are to all intents and purposes opposed to winning independence in any conditions that might ever exist in the real world does not put the independence movement in an impossible position by any means, but it puts us in a bloody awkward position.  It means independence can only happen if Yousaf is either replaced as leader or forced into reversing course entirely, and the only way in which either of those events will occur is if the SNP are shocked into taking drastic action as a result of voters abandoning them.  That's not something I find myself remotely comfortable wishing for, and indeed I'm not going to wish for it.  I'm sure I'm not alone in that.  The least worst outcome from here would be if poor opinion poll results prove a sufficient shock to bring Yousaf down before the general election, but I have a horrible feeling that only actual seat losses in an actual election would bring enough pressure to bear.

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    Sturgeon The Betrayer
    Brown The Betrayer
    Blackford The Betrayer
    Flynn The Betrayer
    Yousaf The Betrayer
    Robison The Betrayer
    Robertson The Betrayer
    Somerville The Betrayer
    Black The Betrayer
    Oswald The Betrayer
    ............ The Betrayer
    ............. The Betrayer

    The list is long.

    1. And the list includes the easily forgotten John REDACTOR MAN Swinney The Betrayer - Sturgeon's faithful manservant.

  2. Maybe the SNP members are going to be asked to choose a pretty card to submit the next request for a referendum in the hopes that a really pretty card will do the trick.

    1. Or perhaps Sturgeon and her gang can crawl on their hands and knees from Holyrood to Westminster before begging once again for permission to hold a referendum. These people are starting to rival the Parliament of 1707 as the greatest Betrayers of Scotland. They are without doubt the most embarrassing political leaders in Scottish history.

  3. Completely agree James… I just read the article in the National and added a comment that’s pretty much what you have said, then came here to find you had written about it already… and to make things worse the date of this pointless convention is the same day as the AUOB March in Stirling that HY was invited to speak at. This is too much of a coincidence for my liking. I’ve tried to give it time, hoping to hear some sort of strategy but after this I’m fully in the camp that HY has to go… as long as he is still in post, independence is a pipe dream… I am totally pissed off

  4. Watching yesterday Question time, we were able to astatine certain facts we in the Alba Party already knew but the NUSNP weren’t prepared to ever say until now, 1 The SNP policy on Independence is the obtain a section 30 until the UKG grants one even if it takes twenty years. 2 The opinion polls have to say a continuous lead for Independence at 60% 3 Only when the threshold of 60% has been met will the SNP say that democracy is being denied and will only then confront the UKG. For anyone listen to QT yesterday will have noticed that the SNP has no intention of holding a convention or using any form of election to obtain Independence, the party is in the union for a long time to come. So, I’d like to know why was the FM asking the SNP membership to dig deep for Indyref2 when 1 their policy is a section 30 only and 2 until the UKG grants a section 30 their will never be a Referendum on Independence, so why is Humza Yousless asking for money when he already knows this?

    1. Why did Sturgeon ask for money for Indyref2 when she never had any intention of holding it? Yousaf is just doing the same.

  5. There might just be a challenge to his leadership

  6. Too early to say that really. According to Yousaf on twitter:

    "Independence Convention in June where members will discuss range of options on our path to indy"

    It's make or break time for him - is he a leader for Indy or a stooge?

    And it's make or break time for 45 SNP MPs, Will they be 45 or more after GE 2024 - or run away from Indy and revert to pre-1974 levels if they abandon Independence?

    1. From the way The National have been briefed, it's pretty clear that the "range of options" will be restricted to "legally-binding referendums". But don't worry, I'm sure the options will be extensive, and will cover what type of letterhead Section 30 begging letters should use, the thorny question of whether Yousaf should bow or curtsey when making a Section 30 request in person, the dilemma of whether to make seven Section 30 requests per year or merely the traditional six, etc, etc.

    2. It might be. It might be a case of "Can we get a rusk with our gruel pretty please?".

      If the SNP don't get this right they're finished next GE, down to 2 MPs if they're lucky - neither of them Pete Wishart.

      yesindyref2 (same as the previous post)

      On the other hand if they suddenly discover they have some guts and go for a de facto referendum UK GE in 2024, they could get over 50%. They need to find some sphericals and surprise the world, and even the universe as we know it.

      "Progressive" prevarication won't win Indy.

    3. "Is he a leader for Indy..." " discover they have some guts"

      WGD numpties still labouring under the assumption that these SNP people actually want independence. Spoiler alert - they don't.
      Numpty Alex Clark still thinks Sturgeon will have a big role in delivering independence. Another thinks Sturgeon will land a major international job. WGD = delusional idiots r us.

  7. the converntion - even if sturgeon had held hers - is of no consequence. It's a talking shop sticking plaster for SNP failure. To even think that a convention on independence wouyld lead to anything is to fall for another SNP con. It is time for us all to accept that those who control the SNP will never deliver independence - independence doesn't suit them. It doesn't burn inside them, it never did with Sturgeon and it wont with Yousaf or any other SNP controller. I can't vote SNP any more because they have become dangerous, they are no longer democratic, they are delivering policies that are not in tune with the wishes and aspirations of the Scottish people- it's niche stuff and mostly concerned with esoteric fantasy than down to earth experience. Sturgeon created a monster and now that it's head has been chopped off it's writhing body is waiting to die. The sad thing about all of this is that there is nothing we can do about it. We put all our eggs into the one basket and now it turns our that there was a flock of cuckoos in it. Our lifeboat from the UK's madness has been filled with political careerists, and they are sailing it in circles.

    We need to kick the SNP (I never thought I would say that) and we need to kick them hard. I have had to endure the deaths of five elderly people waiting for that freedom, that independence that was just around the corner the one Sturgeon promised us (regularly), that's five YES votes gone and five poor souls left without seeing their country free. That's five people who voted Sturgeon for nought - I'm not doing that again with any of this mob.

    We all know the website that Paul Kavanagh runs, Yes Indyref 2 writes on it and has to deal with some shit occasionally, he feels like a lone voice and that is because he is. I cannot get a comment on that website, no swearing, no threats just similar content to that I pose on here. WGD creates an atmosphere that deludes it's readers into believing that there is limited resistance to SNP crap and thus assists the sickness to continue. I have no doubt Paul wants independence, but the blog he runs now inhibits progress by not allowing free debate. If we want to discuss the way forward all outlets have to take the approach you have on here and allow all voices to speak. I know that Bella Caledonia is a bit on the intellectual side of things but at least Mike Small allows you to speak - he has had to put up with a number of my 'alternative' views but he deals with them sometimes abruptly but more often politely (actually so did Duncan Hothershall on Labour Hame - not known as a hotbed of independence) but I can't even get a post on WGD and I don't think I am the only one. No wonder the duggers think the garden is rosy. We need more discussion not censorship if we want to drive the movement forward. I'm afraid that apart form this blog, Robin McAlpine's and Craig Murray's debate on our side has been closed down. Not good, not healthy.

  8. Let's see if those of us at Stirling anyway can get a chant going:

    Humza Humza Humza
    Out! Out! Out!

    The reactions in the crowd would make a fine bit of field research! So long as no one tries some ad hoc polling with their high-flying Saltire staffs…

  9. The SNP are back to dishing out the carrots and the numpties are munching away saying delicious. However, WGD numpty Golfnut states quite rightly:- " There's no such thing as a legally binding referendum, why do people keep referrring to this."

    Golfnut it is all SNP carrots to keep the numpties happy. Wake up or remain a numpty.

    If the SNP wanted independence they could have a referendum any time they want by calling a Holyrood de facto referendum. They could have one any time this year even on Sturgeon's promised date in October. But they won't because they are devolutionalists (Unionists) posing as independence supporters to keep getting your vote. The SNP leadership are parasites sucking the life blood out of the yes movement.

  10. This may just be a kite-flying exercise.

  11. High time that AUOB started its own political party.

  12. Hepburn, SNP Independence Minister says this on today's Sunday Show:- " The government has a democratic mandate for we of course stood on a platform in 2021 to continue to advance Scotland towards independence ......." he says the same again later in the programme.

    Of course, the SNP stood on getting a mandate for Indyref2 not some woolly stuff about advancing Scotland towards independence. Hepburn just another SNP politician who cannot be trusted to tell the truth.

    He did say he had spoken to Believe in Scotland and no doubt numpties loved the carrots.

    Hepburn also said he would blank the AUOB march in Stirling just as he did the Glasgow march. It's all about the SNP with these people and independence is just a rouse to get votes.

    Remember Yousaf said he would have a series of regional meetings during the leadership campaign. Another broken promise - just like his boss Sturgeon Yousaf is starting as he means to go on - just say anything and break the promise at a later date as the numpties will have forgotten.