Category Archives: Scottish National Party

Sturgeon is no ray of sunshine

Screen Shot 2016-06-28 at 07.53.42Physiognomy, writes Dalrymple,

is an inexact science. Suffice it to say that Nicola Sturgeon does not have a kindly face.

Her concept of democracy, he notes, is

odd. To call it self-serving would be a very mild way of putting it. When the referendum, to which she had not objected, produced a result that she did not like, she said that it was ‘democratically unacceptable’. You can have a referendum so long as it produces the result that I want. In this she is at one with the bien pensant signatories of the petition to have another referendum, and another, until the population gets it right.

When in the last general election the Scots nationalists

obtained every single Scottish seat in Westminster bar one, leaving more than half of the Scottish voters completely unrepresented, not a peep about democratic unacceptability was heard from Sturgeon. One can well imagine what she might have said, in her sour and grating way, if the nationalists had polled 40 per cent of the votes and not obtained a single seat.

Like fascists,

she knows all about plebiscitary democracy: she has an instinct for it. When the Scots vote again for independence, you may be sure that the million Scots living in England will not be allowed to vote.

And the Scottish nationalists who want to leave the UK but remain in the EU

accuse people who want to leave of xenophobia!

Cameron, conjurer of terrible political problems out of thin air

Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 07.51.15The re-election of the British prime minister David Cameron, writes Dalrymple,

solves nothing of the crisis of political legitimacy in Britain (constitutional legitimacy is something else).

With turnout of 66 percent

and the British party system balkanised, Cameron won re-election with the suffrage of 24.7 percent of the adult population. A vote for the Scottish National Party weighed nearly 150 times more heavily as far as representation was concerned as did a vote for the United Kingdom Independence Party. (It took 25,974 votes to elect an SNP member of parliament, 3,881,129 to elect a Ukip one.) A vote for the SNP weighed 25 times more than a vote for the Greens. The SNP won 50 percent of the votes in Scotland but 95 percent of the seats.

Screen Shot 2015-05-09 at 23.18.10The British now live, Dalrymple points out,

in an unrepresentative democracy.

Cameron

promised a referendum on membership of the European Union, a promise that would be difficult even for Houdini to escape; and if it goes against membership, the Scots, who are Europhile but anti-English, might declare their independence and try to remain in the European Union.

Screen Shot 2015-05-06 at 08.15.47Nor would independence

be without potential for creating deep divisions, bitterness, and conflict in Scotland itself. The potential for chaos north and south of the border is enormous.

Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 07.58.05One of Britain’s prevailing assets has been its political stability. But that stability

has evaporated, probably for good—with potentially disastrous results for its financial sector, upon which it so strongly (though foolishly) depends.

Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 08.05.05Terrible political problems

have been conjured out of nothing except the ambition of politicians.

And

the country’s deeper problems—its low productivity, its abysmal cultural and educational levels—remain not only unanswered, but unremarked.

Backbone of a mollusc and morals of a jackal

His face is so moistly smooth and characterless that it looks as though it would disappear leaving a trail of slime if caught in the rain

His face is so moistly smooth and characterless that it looks as though it would disappear leaving a trail of slime if caught in the rain

Cameron is not the man for the job

In the Greece of the North Sea, writes Dalrymple,

several things need to be done, among them the reform and even dismantlement of the educational and social-security systems, the liberalisation of the labour laws, and the much firmer repression of crime. David Cameron is not the man for the job.

Cameron, says Dalrymple,

is Focus Group Man made flesh. This is not altogether surprising since his only known employment, other than politician, was in public relations. He appears not to know what to think until he has consulted a variety of gauges of public opinion, and then he announces his own opinion as if from deep conviction.

Blancmange-like, he

Screen Shot 2015-05-12 at 07.24.15

Moulds himself to any shape going

moulds himself to any shape going.

Raised on public relations,

Cameron cannot think back further than yesterday’s focus group or ahead further than tomorrow’s opinion poll. Strategy is alien to him.

He made a commitment to further Scottish devolution,

thus conjuring constitutional problems from thin air. He was panicked into doing so by a single Gallup poll, whose authors must be very proud that a single poll of theirs affected a significant power so profoundly.

This was a typically Cameronian act of foolishness and incompetence. Moreover, the promise

Screen Shot 2015-05-12 at 07.25.38

Acted like a tin-pot dictator

was not Cameron’s to make: he acted more like a tin-pot dictator proposing a change to the constitution to allow himself a seventh term than a democratic politician.

Then came his pledge to protect the funding of the NHS,

because he knows through focus groups, opinion polls, etc., that the British people worship the NHS as the Israelites once worshipped the golden calf.

Cameron

cannot see a bad idea without embracing it with what he imagines is vote-getting fervour.

Screen Shot 2015-05-12 at 07.27.10Nothing for Cameron

is a matter of principle, only of advantage, and short-term advantage at that, his sole discernible goal being that of maintaining himself in power.

What of his physiognomy?

His face is so moistly smooth and characterless that it looks as though it would disappear leaving a trail of slime if caught in the rain.

Screen Shot 2015-05-12 at 07.35.41

Backbone

Morals

Morals

Britain’s election disaster

Lynton Crosby: political engineer

Winner: political engineer Lynton Crosby

The worst possible outcome for the Greece of the North Sea

Examining the results of the 2015 UK general election, Dalrymple notes that now,

to all Britain’s intractable problems — low productivity, abysmal cultural level, addiction to debt — have been added political instability and the prospect of chaos.

The poll, he writes, was both one of the most important, and one of the most boring, for many years.

It was important because

Winner: Nicola Sturgeon resembles an efficient and dedicated but bossy and unpleasant schoolmistress

Winner: Nicola Sturgeon resembles an efficient and dedicated but bossy and unpleasant schoolmistress

it destroyed Britain’s reputation for political stability. This is of enormous significance for a country that is so heavily dependent on financial services, having little else to offer the world, for money doesn’t like political turmoil. Half a trillion dollars has left and might not come back.

It was boring because

all the candidates were boring. Apart from Nicola Sturgeon, who looked like an efficient and dedicated but bossy and unpleasant schoolmistress, all the three main candidates contrived to look the same. They had smooth, characterless faces and often eschewed [neck-] ties for fear of intimidating with smartness the slobs and slatterns who are one of the country’s largest constituencies.

Loser

Loser: conflict and chaos are coming

The candidates looked less like people than

products designed by political engineers.

Neither David Cameron nor Nick Clegg nor Ed Miliband ever cracked a joke,

at least not knowingly. No one in Britain can tell any longer the difference between earnestness and seriousness. A joke will only get you into trouble — someone will take it literally and be offended. It is best not to make one, even if you are capable of it, which in these three cases is doubtful.

Screen Shot 2015-05-08 at 23.59.36Cameron remains prime minister, but that is

not the same thing as political stability.

Britain’s first-past-the-post electoral system

Screen Shot 2015-05-09 at 11.19.59was workable and not grotesquely unfair when there were two overwhelmingly preponderant parties, but with the balkanisation of the political scene, the system is unworkable. The British now live in an unrepresentative democracy which produces gross distortions in parliament.

3.9m votes = 1 seat; 1.4m votes = 56 seats

Screen Shot 2015-05-08 at 23.58.23The biggest swing was to the UK Independence Party. It received 12.6% of the votes and one seat, compared with the Scottish National Party’s 4.7% of the votes and 56 seats. Dalrymple concludes:

No system that produces such a result can retain its legitimacy.

The system has given the SNP a near-monopoly of Scottish seats, so that

Screen Shot 2015-05-09 at 00.04.41the representation of Scotland in parliament would be worthy of the results of a Soviet election.

Moreover, for as long as the threat of Scottish independence remains,

stability cannot return to Britain. Chaos and conflict are just around the corner.

Screen Shot 2015-05-03 at 08.18.12Britain’s one

indisputably successful and world-beating economic activity [apart from binge-drinking], namely financial skulduggery, might contract or collapse, because such skulduggery needs an environment of political stability.

Screen Shot 2015-05-09 at 10.34.06Screen Shot 2015-05-09 at 23.18.10

Die Nationalsozialistische Schottische Partei

From the British magazine Private Eye

From the British magazine Private Eye

The Scottish National Party, writes Dalrymple, are national socialists.

In economics, they are socialist, or at least corporatist; in politics, their rhetoric is nationalist. They are, in fact, national socialists.

Self-determination is not their true goal, of course. Dalrymple observes that the SNP’s real, though unacknowledged, aim is

increased access of the Scottish political class to the European politico-administrative élite.

This explains why, Dalrymple writes, the SNP are

firmly in favour of the European Union, an entity dedicated to extinguishing national sovereignty in Europe, and the formation of a superstate with few effective checks on the politico-administrative élite.

What they really want

What they really want

The SNP’s policies are, naturally, highly statist.

All private companies would operate, in effect, by licence from the government.

The SNP would hold

Welcome to Scotland

Welcome to Scotland

all the levers of political power, including powers of indoctrination.

Even before the last referendum,

an atmosphere of mild intimidation prevailed, such that those who opposed independence felt it better not to voice their opposition too loudly

 

 

The triumph of Scottish Chávismo

Hugo of the North

Hugo of the North

Alex Salmond, writes Dalrymple, offered the Scottish people

larger subventions for more people, distributed by him and his party. He did best in those areas where people had most to gain from the promised subventions and where they believed that they were not getting their fair share of Scotland’s heavenly manna—oil and gas from the North Sea….Salmond said that he would repudiate Scotland’s share of the British national debt, a pronouncement more than sufficient to sound alarm bells among the better-informed.

The nationalists succeeded in panicking prime minister David Cameron into promising more powers to the Scottish government.

This is an excellent result for the Nationalists: Edinburgh will have the powers, London the responsibility, especially when things go wrong. London will be the lender of last resort in the event of Scottish profligacy, so that the Nationalists will probably be able to distribute more subventions after all. And if they can make enough people dependent on them, directly or indirectly, they will have won.

The Nationalists have also achieved

the reversal of the generally favorable view of the Scots in England. For the first time since I can remember, a mild dislike and irritation with them has become if not widespread, at least quite common. This is excellent news for the Scottish nationalists, who speak of hope and rely on antagonism.

The Caledonian Chávez

Screen Shot 2014-09-18 at 14.01.46How Scottish nationalism is an attempt to reproduce — and even deepen — British government idiocies

The leader of the Scottish National Party, writes Dalrymple,

does not so much promise to solve problems as arouse hope, a hope that is vague, general, and unfocused.

Alex Salmond’s arguments and promises, and the hopes he inspires,

are not encouraging for those who value freedom or prosperity….he would increase government interference in and direction of the economy. He is a dirigiste who far outflanks the Labour Party on the Left.

In Salmond’s imagination,

the oil in the North Sea plays the role of the fairy godmother who brings what everyone wishes, namely life at a higher material standard of living than that which is justified by his own efforts and economic activity.

He wants to make himself the Hugo Chávez of the North Sea.

The Venezuelan, recall, managed the feat of producing fuel shortages while sitting on the largest oil reserves in the world. Lost in the debate, too, is that countries that rely entirely on oil revenue to sustain themselves (except where they are so vast in relation to the population that everyone can live as a rentier) are generally destined for a special kind of economic and social woe.

Scotezuela is Salmond’s dream.

And like the Bolívarist revolutionary, he has his supporters. If the voting gives him 50 per cent plus one, he will try to eternalise his power, with a fair chance of bringing all the levers of state power under his control. But even if he falls short, his policies will continue, for Labour’s social attitudes and policies are all but indistinguishable from his. Scotland, then, will not be a one-party state but a one-policy state.

The socialism will not of course be Soviet-style, even though

a not inconsiderable proportion of the population would probably like it in order to punish the rich. (I have never forgotten the reception in the 1970s given to Soviet premier Alexei Kosygin in the Scottish football stadium. The crowd chanted ‘Kosygin! Kosygin!’)

Rather, a corporatist state will emerge,

with large companies, acting more or less as licensed traders, maintaining a cosy and corrupt relationship with the political class, whose standard of living the licensees will happily subsidise.

If Scottish nationalism

were an attempt to escape the successive idiocies of the British government that have had such disastrous consequences, I would be more than sympathetic to it. Alas, it is quite the reverse. It is an attempt to repeat and even magnify those idiocies.