DETERMINANTS OF INDEPENDENCE SYNOPSIS AND STRATEGIES

The final paper in the excellent Professor Alf Baird ten paper series.


10. Synopsis & Strategies

Synopsis

Context

In 2014, ‘No’ voters opted for Scotland to be ruled by what to many Scots seems an alien political ideology from another land. They voted for England’s 533 MP’s (i.e. 82 per cent of UK parliamentary ‘sovereignty) to do as they wish with Scotland and its people. Is this really what most Scottish people want? To be ruled over by another people, another culture and language, another identity and nation and political ideology? Crucially, what is stopping more than 45 per cent of Scots from voting for independence?

Meantime the SNP leadership depend on holding another dubious ‘Section 30’ UK sanctioned referendum based on an irregular (i.e. local government) voting franchise in order to secure Scotland’s independence. Is this a sensible strategy? Is there no other valid, constitutional, legal and democratic route to secure independence? The question of independence is about the right of the ‘Scottish people’ to self-determination, the key word here being ‘self’. Must Scotland’s vote on self-determination include a veto being given to ‘peoples’ of other national identities and national allegiances? Must Scotland’s people depend on the grace and favour of England’s MP’s in granting a ‘Section 30’ order in order to even hold a referendum?

The context in which Scottish independence is often discussed therefore raises many questions, and not least what independence actually means or why it is necessary. Arguably the harder questions have still to be answered. That is the knowledge gap my book ‘Doun-Hauden’ has sought – to identify and analyse the real Determinants of Independence?

Methodology

In order to answer these and other relevant questions, the methodological approach developed and applied in the context of Scottish independence has involved ‘grounding out’ a theoretical framework from analysis of data collected. The framework and sub-title of the book is collectively considered to represent ‘The Socio-Political Determinants of Scottish Independence’. 

Behavioural Determinism assumes our actions are reflex reactions developed in us through environmental conditioning. In this, it is necessary to identify and analyse the key aspects relating to environmental conditioning and related factors that determine and hence enable or act to block independence.

The main title of the book, ‘Doun-Hauden’, reflects, in the Scots language, the conclusion of the book based on the evidence presented and analysed: that the Scottish people are oppressed within the UK ‘union’, and; that they and their nation are treated as a colony and will continue to suffer oppression and exploitation until independence (i.e. decolonisation) is secured.

The methodology employed resulted in development of a structured framework which can be applied to investigate, analyse and better understand the phenomenon and dynamics of Scottish independence. Here a framework-based analysis helps to: elucidate the reality of Scotland’s socio-political situation and status; highlight the challenges that the Scottish people need to overcome, and; indicate how these challenges may be overcome in order to secure Scotland’s independence.

Culture 

Culture is our customs and beliefs, transmitted through language. Cultural Imperialism involves promoting the culture and language of one dominant nation in another, which is a common feature in colonialism; in Scotland’s case this involves the imposition and domination of a British Anglophone culture. Cultural Imperialism-creates and reinforces an alien cultural hegemony which results in an Anglophone Establishment that is anti-independence. Here the theory of ‘Enculturation’ reflects the domination and prejudice of a supposedly ‘superior’ Anglophone elite culture that is imposed on Scots, and Scots speakers in particular, the latter rendered subordinate and their Scots language considered invalid

This results in the Scottish Cultural Cringe, a feeling of cultural inadequacy extending to self-hatred, which is closely related to the psychological condition known as‘Internalized Racism’. Here there is an illusion of culture, which is a primary tool elites use to retain power, particularly in a colonial environment. 

Culture and (national) identity are closely connected. The independence of a culturally oppressed people is therefore a fight for a national culture (Fanon). A peoples’ quest for independence is thus dependent on a national culture and hence on national consciousness, the latter a function of culture and language.

Language

Language and culture intersect to form our identity, who we are, and how we think. Language defines and unites a nation. Linguistic Imperialism seeks to marginalize and destroy indigenous language. The aim of Linguistic Imperialism is linguistic genocide or ‘linguicide’, which is the death of a language, and with that the removal of a minority peoples’ identity. Removal of a language is intentional, and inevitable when it is not taught, as is the case with the Scots language. 

Loss of language therefore undermines our sense of identity and sense of belonging. As language and culture give us our national consciousness, without them a peoples’ motivation for nationhood and hence sovereignty is diminished and eventually lost. Language policy in Scotland within a UK Anglophone dominated society therefore aims to deprive Scots of the Scots language, to kill it off, and to diminish the desire for Scottish nationhood. This also explains why language is the most common rationale for self-determination of ‘people.

Culture and language are therefore key factors in the formation of national identity. The divide in the Yes/No independence debate is at root linguistic; that is, it is broadly between Scots speakers who identify as Scottish and who mostly tend to vote ‘Yes’, and the ever-increasing Anglophone population in Scotland who identify as British and who tend mainly to vote ‘No’. Hence the desire for and against Scottish independence is heavily influenced by our culture and language which serve to determine our (ethnic) identity.

Demographics

Between 3 and 4 million Scots have left Scotland since the UK union, which is more than half the present population. This was the largest loss of people in Western Europe for a country of Scotland’s size. Over the same period the largest ethnic migrant group coming into Scotland comprised of people from England. 

Outbound mainly comprised working-class Scots, whilst inbound flows are historically oriented towards a professional and managerial class mostly from England. This has led to an Ethnic and Cultural Division of Labour in Scotland within the ‘UK Internal Colonialism Model’. Hence a very large portion of the Scottish population has effectively been displaced since the UK union began. 

Scotland today has the lowest birth-rate of all nations in Britain, which may in part be due to a lack of affordable housing, limited access to better paid jobs for indigenous Scots, and dubious educational policies. Economic under-development of a people and nation is also known to parallel linguistic underdevelopment in a colonial environment. 

Population displacement has significant consequences for independence primarily because people of rest-UK heritage are the least likely ethnic group to vote for Scottish independence. The colonial nature of ongoing demographic change coupled with ‘national’ voting rights given to an ever-growing population of people now living in Scotland who do not primarily identify as Scots, therefore serves to hinder the prospect of Scottish independence. Uncontrolled demographic change in Scotland and a national voting franchise based on residence prevented independence in 2014 and acts to diminish the likelihood of a ‘Yes’ vote in any future referendum. 

Colonialism

Scotland’s enforced EU exit by the UK Government and the blocking of an electorally mandated Indyref2 demonstrate a colonial status. Colonialism is defined as a people who are subject to: external political control; economic exploitation and plundering, and; settler occupation. Scotland’s present reality reflects all three features. 

Scotland is also subject to what is known as Internal Colonialism which involves: an Ethnic and Cultural Division of Labour favouring the oppressor group, and; continued economic underdevelopment. The rise of an independence movement reflects theethnic solidarity of indigenous Scots speakers and is viewed as a consequence of Internal Colonialism and its oppressions.

Colonial domination involves racism and prejudice and may develop into fascism. The UN regards colonialism as a ‘scourge’ (a form of punishment) on a people, which should be ended through self-determination. Postcolonial theory defines colonialism as a ‘disease of the mind’ which adversely affects both the colonised group (through development of a subordinate ‘colonial mentality’) and the coloniser (racism, prejudice, and fascism). 

Devolution may be viewed as a colonial ‘bone’ thrown to natives to chew on. The UK devolved regime is now administered by a dominant National Party (SNP) which has made its own ‘accommodation with colonialism’; such political stasis represents a common theme in the decolonisation process leading to an unnecessary delay in independence and permitting state oppression and persecution of independence campaigners to intensify. This leads to conflict, and the creation of new National Parties seeking independence with greater urgency. 

In this regard independence may also be defined as decolonisation involving the liberation of a people from colonial oppression.

Nationalism

The motivation for independence depends on a peoples’ national consciousness, which is not nationalism. Many Scots have a confused sense of identity due to the long-term effects of Cultural and Linguistic Imperialism and Colonialism which serves to limit national consciousness or desire for independence. 

The UK/England exerting political control over Scotland involves an oppressiveTrans-national nationalism which: imposes a British ‘One Nation’ political ideology, and; inflicts Cultural and Linguistic Imperialism and an Anglophone CulturalHegemony on Scotland. It is primarily these features of imperialism and colonialism which enable external political control and power over a people and territory in order to facilitate their economic exploitation. 

Scottish independence is therefore arguably less about nationalism per se; rather, it is primarily about self-determination. Self-determination is about liberation, freedom and, for oppressed and colonised peoples’ independence is also about decolonization. 

Conversely, the UK is an Imperial construct and in terms of political ideology represents ‘Trans-national nationalism’ which is an aggressive form of nationalism involving: occupation and assuming political control over neighbouring countries;domination of other peoples through imposing on them another culture and language, and; economic exploitation. The inevitable outcome of Trans-national nationalism is oppression and exploitation of a people through colonialism, which in turn gives rise to the motivation for independence of an oppressed group.

Institutions

As Scotland is controlled by an Anglophone unionist Establishment, the meritocratic elite reflects an Ethnic and Cultural Division of Labour. This depends on and perpetuates sociolinguistic prejudice, reflecting an Anglophone elite Cultural Hegemony. It results in social exclusion primarily of ethnic Scots speakers. In this way ethnic discrimination becomes institutionalised in society. 

Segregation and protection of a Cultural Hegemony (and its values and symbols) is ensured via an educational divide maintained through private/independent (i.e. colonial) schools and elite universities aimed mainly at the privileged (Anglophone) group. Top positions in Scotland’s social institutions and commerce are advertised primarily in the metropolitan centre of the dominant core nation (England) and thus are mainly targeted at (Anglophone) elites there.

A range of negative outcomes reflect this institutionalised Cultural Dislocation. This includes continued economic underdevelopment of the peripheral nation and its people, social inequalities and poverty. Health impacts for the oppressed group include a schizoid personality, mental health issues, depression and anxiety, in addition to various other aspects commonly associated with oppression of indigenous or aborigine peoples.

Oppression also comes in the form of what passes for justice, which is rather a misnomer in a colonial system at least insofar as the indigenous native is concerned. This is reflected in Scotland having the largest prison population per head in Western Europe, in the ongoing state persecution of leading independence campaigners, and in the immunity automatically afforded to those on the colonial side. Meanwhile the ‘theft’ of the territories extensive resources and assets is permitted to continue.

Constitution

The constitutional status of Scotland, taking account of the Brexit related court case outcomes, serves to demonstrate the legal simplicity of a signatory state party withdrawing from a treaty-based union. So, what is stopping Scotland doing likewise? Is Scotland a sovereign people and nation, or not? Who represents this sovereignty? Is it Scotland’s elected national representatives, or is it MPs in Westminster who represent other (i.e. foreign) countries and their peoples outside Scotland?

The 1707 Treaty of Union created the present UK alliance and Scotland is a signatory party to that Treaty. Unilateral withdrawal from a treaty under international law is a matter for each signatory party (ECJ). Treaties are upheld only if they remain in the national interest of a sovereign people. When they are no longer in the national interest they are ended.

The sovereignty of the Scottish people is acknowledged by both UK and Scottish parliaments, as is the Claim of Right. Scotland’s elected national representatives therefore hold Scotland’s political sovereignty and have the right to exercise it on behalf of the people.

A referendum is not required for independence ‘as a matter of law’. As Scotland’s national representatives hold political sovereignty it is they who must exercise this sovereign power in order to secure independence. As the ALBA Party proposed, a majority of Scotland’s elected national representatives may negotiate Scotland’s independence and withdrawal from the UK Treaty-based alliance. This would respect the sovereignty of Scotland’s people and the fact of the Treaty.

Ethnicity

The Scots represent an ethnic minority group in the UK. Within a colonial environment, which involves racism and prejudice, there exists ethnic discrimination of native Scots speakers and culture. Colonialism and Anglophone cultural and linguistic domination has created the Scottish Cultural Cringe which has serious health impacts for the people. Ethnic discrimination has become normalised in Scotland, which limits personal and intellectual freedoms of indigenous Scots, and is the root of inequality in a colonial environment. 

Ethnic discrimination also results in Internalized Racism (or Appropriated Racial Oppression) which involves: the appropriation of negative stereotypes by an oppressed people; their subordination and deprivation is considered (by the oppressed group) to be deserved; the ready devaluation of one’s own group; patterns of thinking that support maintaining the status quo, and; oppressed group members seeking conformity with oppressor group culture, which makes them discard their own culture and language. 

Ethnic culture and language, and hence national identity, is marginalised and ultimately destroyed through colonialism and Cultural and Linguistic Imperialism, which is its intention. Higher levels of Appropriated Racial Oppression explain why many ethnic Scots oppose even their own independence. Ethnic oppression is therefore a significant contributory factor in Scotland’s anti-independence ‘No’ vote. 

Moreover, the blocking of Scottish independence and hence rejection of Scottish citizenship by non-Scottish voters may also be considered as ethnic discrimination, for they are blocking the inalienable right to self-determination of another ethnic people.

The development of ‘Appropriated Racial Oppression’ as a consequence of colonialism therefore explains Scotland’s constitutional dilemma whereby many ethnic Scots vote against their own nationhood and hence reject their own national identity and citizenship, and refuse their own liberty, whilst accepting continued cultural domination and oppression by another ethnic people as somehow deserved.

Self-Determination

Self-determination of ‘a people’ is a cardinal principle of the UN Charter. Here, the definition of ‘a people’ is based on their holding the same specific and identifiable traditions, culture, ethnicity, history and heritage, language, religion, sense of identity, the will to constitute a people, and common suffering. Self-determination independence is regarded as decolonisation by the United Nations. 

In the process of self-determination there should be no external interference: no other countries or peoples should be involved; no external media influence; and the voter franchise should include primarily the ‘people’ seeking self-determination. Few if any of these requirements have been respected by the UK administration in the case of Scottish self-determination.

The self-determination process is mainly considered relevant for colonies. Despite the socio-political reality of Scotland’s colonial subjugation, constitutionally the Scots are a sovereign people and Scotland remains a signatory party to an international treatym -based alliance. A sovereign people must retain the right to withdraw from a treaty-based agreement. Scots therefore have the right to independence and self-governance however this may be determined: either by unilateral withdrawal from the Treaty, or via self-determination decolonisation.

Precis 

Independence of a people and nation is never primarily dependent upon general policy matters far less on any political promise for a people to be better or worse off;rather, the motivation for independence is dependent on national identity and national consciousness. The basis of Scottish national identity and national consciousness is the indigenous (i.e. Scots) language and culture. 

Scotland’s population today retains a mixed and confused identity reflecting a linguistic and cultural divide that is colonially determined; this is no accident given over three centuries of colonial and cultural domination resulting in ‘a moribund culture and a rusted tongue’.

The Scots’ choice here and options for any colonised people is between independence (liberation) and assimilation (oppression). Independence is first and foremost, therefore, a fight for a peoples’ national culture. This realisation forms an essential basis and foundation of any subsequent quest for ‘a peoples’ economic and political independence, and holds regardless of political ideology a people may adopt thereafter. 

The Socio-Political Determinants of Scottish Independence framework outline critical aspects of societal power and control which are presently inhibiting Scottish independence. The ‘grounded theory’ framework criteria reflect a predominantly colonial and hence oppressive and exploitative environment for indigenous Scottish people which forms the main rationale for independence. 

Scots striving to secure national independence should be able to use the framework to their advantage, by focusing on each of the determinants and developing appropriate strategies, and; by truly understanding what independence is about (decolonisation) and why it is essential (liberation). Hence the framework may be used to develop understanding, and as a strategic analytical tool and aid to secure Scotland’s independence and liberation from oppression.

Strategies

Withdrawal Strategy

A majority of Scotland’s national representatives may exercise and assert Scottish sovereignty by revoking the Treaty of Union, as it began. A democratically elected majority of Scotland’s national representatives should initiate Scotland’s withdrawal from the UK union as soon as possible. 

The British State may or may not wish to contest Scotland’s national representatives’ right, as representing a signatory party to the Treaty of Union, to withdraw the sovereign nation and people of Scotland from the UK union. Should this be contested, the courts may be asked to opine on the matter.

If there remains a dispute, then the matter may be taken to the International Court of Justice. The ICJ would then seek to settle the matter in accordance with international law by giving advisory opinion.

Decolonisation Strategy

If the sovereign Scottish people via a majority of the nation’s national representativesare for some reason deemed unable to lawfully (or otherwise) withdraw from the UK union, this would mean that Scotland and its people do not have full sovereign or political control and are therefore considered by law (or otherwise) to be a territory or colony of the British State.

Scotland’s democratically elected representatives may then approach the United Nations (C-24) with a view to having Scotland ‘Listed’ as a colony to be decolonized.With UN support, Scotland may then, if required, undertake to hold a referendum on independence and ending ‘the scourge’ of colonisation.

Any referendum voting franchise would need to first, using established criteria, define the Scottish ‘people seeking self-determination, and to ensure there is no external interference and influence of the process, as was arguably the case in 2014.Similarly, there should be no external interference or influence permitted from any actors or organisations (e.g. MSM, UK government, politicians, agencies, corporations etc.) from outside Scotland in any Scottish self-determination referendum process. In this regard the voter franchise should be adjusted in line with the recent UN-sanctioned referendum in New Caledonia which employed a range of secondary criteria including a required period of residence in the territory before qualifying for a vote.

Scots Language Strategy

A peoples’ naitural language or mither tongue is clearly far more important than a mere means of communication. A peoples’ language defines who they are and gives them their national identity and culture which forms the basis of national consciousness. Scotland’s cultural liberation, the protection of Scottish National identity, and the objective of equality in society, depends on a comprehensive Scots Language strategy. This strategy requires a Scots Language Act as an urgent priority.

The Scots language should be made the national language of Scots and given authority as such. English should be seen as an ‘administrative’ language, not as a ‘superior’ language which facilitates the cultural domination of the Scottish people and enables their economic exploitation. A key requirement is to teach the Scots language in schools at all levels, and at universities, in addition to English. All peoples from other nations seeking to work in Scotland (or apply for citizenship post-independence) should be required to have an acceptable level of knowledge of the Scots language. This is especially important in education, in social institutions, and at higher managerial levels generally.

A national Scots language strategy is therefore fundamental for equality and in lifting up a downtrodden and under-developed people and nation, to prevent their continued or future domination by another culture, and to protect and maintain thesovereignty of the Scottish people.

MY COMMENTS

I am extremely grateful that Alf approached me to publish his excellent Ten part series on the Determinants of Independence on the Yours for Scotland blog. I was delighted and honoured to do so. It is an excellent work, educational, thought provoking and enjoyable. I know that because that is what the readers of this blog have told me. It has been enjoyed and appreciated and many have said it widened their knowledge about the challenges and many aspects of driving the case for Independence forward.

Perhaps however the greatest gift it has delivered is highlighting the enormous dangers of pursuing another referendum without wholesale changes away from the deeply flawed franchise that cost us victory in 2014 and which would form an even greater barrier in the future given the unchecked invasion of incomers from elsewhere in the UK, PRIMARILY from England that has taken place since 2014.

I should have been able to put a specific number to that invasion but the census that should have taken place in Scotland in 2021 was postponed until 2022, because of COVID. Miraculously it did take place as scheduled in England, Wales and NI who also had COVID at the time. It is much more likely neither the Scottish or English Government’s saw any benefit in this information being known prior to the Scottish elections last May. It might have frightened the natives as it surely will when the information is published next year.

This is why the alternatives routes to Independence laid out by Alf assume such importance. Sadly the time may not be now. Like so much else about improving Scotland we need a committed, nationalist Government whose overriding priority is to secure Independence and willing to pull out all the stops to make it happen. We currently have a devolutionist Government who have assumed the role of the colonial administration of Scotland with gender reform and the Hate Crime Bill as their priorities. While they remain in place we are a long, long way from success…and the British State and media know it.

We need to make these papers more widely available throughout Scotland and to that end Alf hopes to be able to produce the papers in booklet form for wider distribution. Costs are being investigated and publishers are being contacted. It is likely a crowdfunder will be organised for this purpose once costs are known. I will certainly support such a move and I hope the many thousands who have read and enjoyed these papers will do likewise.

I am, as always

YOURS FOR SCOTLAND.

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34 thoughts on “DETERMINANTS OF INDEPENDENCE SYNOPSIS AND STRATEGIES

  1. I can’t thank Alf and Iain enough……and especially on the decision to produce a booklet of Alf’s papers – a wonderful idea! Whatever the cost, I’m sure a crowd-funder will cover it in no time. Scots need to be educated in the historical truth. Alf’s the man to shine a light on our dark, colonial past.

    Liked by 10 people

  2. As they say, food for thought. Perhaps more accurate, a feast for thought. I have been alarmed for some time at the ever growing number of immigrants from England settling in our country. I had a lengthy conversation while on holiday on Skye with a young family man, who was running what looked to be a successful business, whose family had to live with his in laws. He simply couldn’t afford to buy his own home. No prizes for guessing the reason why. Every other accent was an English one. Creeping colonialism writ large. Even in the small, semi rural, not particularly attractive South Lanarkshire town that I live in, the number of English people seems to be increasing. I
    I am well aware that there are some English immigrants who support independence, I count my own daughter in law and a friend amongst them. I fear that they are in the minority.
    It is my opinion that people are afraid to voice their concerns for fear of being thought racist, anti-English. Thank goodness Professor Alf Baird has no such fear. He clearly sets out alternative routes to independence. Routes that need to be taken by a Scottish government that truly seeks independence, before it is too late.

    Liked by 12 people

    1. I keep hearing people say, Oh the English have come here are fully behind the idea of an independent Scotland. Rubbish! The majority of them voted against independence in 2014 and would so again. I am shocked to hear about Skye and the mass of English white settlers. The last time I was in Skye was in 1967 on a pushbike with no gears, which I had cycled up from my home in Perthshire. Not an English voice to be heard.
      The argument that these newcomers will be offset by the younger voters also comes undone when you consider that Scotland has the lowest birth rate in the UK. It won’t be long until what happened in all the countries that have been colonized, happens in Scotland. We will be outnumbered at some point.

      As Alf has stated, our own language is so important. F.Fanon says ” A man who has a language, consequently possesses the world expressed and implied by that Language”

      Our knowledge of our own history has also been suppressed and distorted, insidious distortion. Having our own education system has not helped in the slightest and wasn’t meant to.
      Again Fanon says ” Colonialism is not satisfied merely with holding a people in it’s grip and emptying the natives brains of all form and content . By a kind of perverted logic it turns to the past of the oppressed people and distorts, disfigures and destroys it. This work of devaluing pre-colonial history takes on a dialectical significance today”

      We are running out of time. I hope that many will turn up in front of Holyrood on the 31st to voice loudly and clearly our displeasure with these devolutionists.

      Liked by 7 people

      1. Aye, Frantz Fanon explains a great deal about our predicament, including that colonialism ‘is a disease of the mind’ involving ‘economic and psychological degradation’.

        Liked by 4 people

  3. A crowdfunder is a great idea. This needs much wider circulation. Thanks to Alf and Iain.
    I wonder if the geography departments in European high schools recognise Scotland as a nation? Well of course they do. There is no argument there – Scotland is a nation and not a region and so the idea that other countries would not recognise this is simply laughable.

    The question on sovereignty has a binary answer, yet the SNP seem to wish it to be far more complicated. The answer won’t get any closer until action is taken towards leaving the treaty of union. The English registered parties in holyrood stated that they would boycott a ‘wildcat’ referendum. No doubt they would not boycott the interference in the process itself alongside the BBC and the other establishment media. This constitutes colonialism and is exactly why an institution like the UN needs to be involved.

    I believe a possible fly in the ointment is Scotland’s nuclear capability and the U.K. permanent seat on the UN Security Council. Perhaps this is a headache the UN doesn’t need.

    Liked by 8 people

  4. Why is anyone still talking about section 30 orders, that is ancient history – it was never a runner and never will be, the vote in 2014 was too close for comfort, no English parliament will ever consider such foolishness (as far as they are concerned) again. remember the days of Alex Salmond led SNP when they talked about a green revolution, we have the wind, we have the waves, we have the strong tides – we can be the greenest and richest country in the world. What has changed, Alex Salmond felt it was the honourable thing to do when he fell on his sword in 2014. that was foolishness, had he remained in office we would now be an independent – rich and green country, with the money coming into Scotland’s coffers and not foreign investors and hedge fund managers. What Scotland needs is a strong leader that believes in Scotland, not someone like sturgeon who is only interested in the SNP party she leads staying in power. Wake up Scotland, stop talking about how we persuade others or talk about how we gain our independence and just get on with it. Join the AUOB marches, join the Alba party and get a move on – we know how to do this – we did it in 2013-14 let’s get it done.

    Liked by 11 people

    1. Can you explain to me how Alex Salmond (a known Monarchist) the person who accepted the franchise and the Section 30 etc in 2014 as the ‘correct’ legal strategy for gaining Independence would by now ( if he’d retained office) delivered the milk and honey Independence cited here.
      Would he have endorsed Alf Baird’s enlightened critique for Independence success, as the way to go : removed the voting rights from thousands, simply asserted Scottish sovereignty alnd withdrawn from the Treaty all during the Brexit debacle and Covid ??
      Who’s believing in fairy tales now?

      Like

      1. Every other European country operates a franchise like what Alf outlines it is Scotland that is the exception. If you want to know why take a look at your comment that suggests Alf is seeking milk and honey when in fact he is outlining the bread and butter of every other nation in Europe outside the UK. WHY ARE YOU SO WILLING TO ACCEPT A STACKED DECK?

        Liked by 7 people

      2. You must have missed the ALBA commitment to beginning negotiations for independence, no doubt using some of the mechanisms outlined in Professor Baird’s article above, as soon as the May election was over. We would be on the road to independence by now if so many people hadn’t blindly followed advice to vote SNP 1 and 2. Enjoy your continued existence as part of the UK led by devolutionists who are in no hurry to deliver what is supposed to be their main aim.

        Liked by 3 people

      3. And, dear Florence, if you’d been paying attention, you should know that Alex Salmond said that the Scottish Parliament had the legal right to hold a referendum(back before 2014), and it was the British Government that OFFERED a section 30, which he agreed to at the time because it made sense to get a deal struck beforehand with them. He obviously didn’t think ahead that it might set a precedent. A precedent, note, not a bloody gold standard. No one should need to explain any of this to you, if you were in favour of independence.

        Liked by 3 people

  5. Firstly thanks Alf for writing the book and letting Iain bring us these extracts which I’ve enjoyed reading and digesting. The booklets are a very good idea though I wonder if it might be an idea to have an easy read/condensed version of main points for those unfamiliar with academic language or short of time. The crowd funder is a great idea and I think would make its target in a jiffy!

    “in the ongoing state persecution of leading independence campaigners, and in the immunity automatically afforded to those on the colonial side.”

    THIS! It’s quite something to move from thinking Sturgeon would be the one to deliver independence to believing she has been compromised by the British state/long term sleeper. It comes across as a bit tinfoil hattish until you start putting all the pieces together re the lack of progress and planning for indy since 2014 and indeed Brexit, and the focus on divisive vote losing policies leading to Occam’s Razer!

    Thanks again Alf and of course to Iain for publishing.

    Liked by 10 people

  6. A huge thank you to Alf and Iain. Along with Doun Hauden, the projected publication of Alf’s 10 papers has the potential to reconstitute and reignite the independence movement and take us all in a completely different and so much more productive direction. Given the obvious fact that the party of colonial-accommodation and administration will have no use of the analysis, would someone, anyone, kindly explain to me why the leadership of the Alba Party (to the best of my knowledge), doesn’t appear to have taken Alf’s comprehensive thesis on-board as a central plank of its argumentation in the making of its case for Scottish independence? Time, as most of us know, is running out!

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Yes, the SNP and ‘Scottish’ institutional stasis seems to well reflect what Professor Edward Said described, in that:

      “The national bourgeoisies and their specialized elites, of which Fanon speaks so ominously, in effect tended to replace the colonial force with a new class-based and ultimately exploitative one, which replicated the old colonial structures in new terms. There are states all across the former colonized world that have bred pathologies of power, as Eqbal Ahmad has called them. Also, the cultural horizons of nationalism may be fatally limited by the common history it presumes of colonizer and colonized.”

      Again, also with respect to Alba, we come to the need for any National Party to fully comprehend and to convey to the people what independence really means.

      Liked by 6 people

  7. For too long, and certainly since 2014, the Scots have been cowed into accepting that others should decide their future. Whilst I would not with English migrants to think that they are unwelcome in Scotland, I would also make it very clear to them that that welcome will not withstand another NO vote. I am completely opposed to another pre independence referendum of any kind. A plebiscitary election (elections are the democratic source of all political authority between the people and the state/nation) is the obvious solution to the stalemate, and the Treaty is still our most valuable possession, to be used wisely, as would be a ratifying referendum after independence. No other country in the world has ever handed carte blanche to those not born in the country to stymie their independence. It is way past the time when we should be looking at our independence from a very different perspective and work from there to achieve it.

    300+ years of the Union has not cancelled out nearly a thousand years of invasions and conflict with England when we were aliens to each other. We are not one nation; we are two nations, equal before international law. That does not preclude woking together in the future or not making English people welcome in Scotland, but it does preclude the kind of self-harm that seems to be endemic in Scottish public life. If you have come to Scotland from rUK or anywhere else, you come as a guest until such time as you become a citizen. That is the international norm. The conflicts in NI can be traced back to settlement from Scotland and England with little to no thought for the consequences for the native Irish, and that happened well over 300 years ago. If we don’t want Scotland to go the same way, it is time that we started putting our foot down about what we will tolerate as lively interest in, and what we will not tolerate as interference in, our future as an independent nation state.

    We need to be able to work out our own immigration policy as an independent Scotland, our economy as an independent economy, our trade agreements as an independent trading nation, and so on, if we are going to negotiate this century successfully. We can’t do that – we simply can’t do that – as part of the Union because everything is calculated on the basis of its effects on England, and if we want to do something that would be beneficial for us but detrimental to England, we lose out every time.

    Liked by 7 people

  8. I have really enjoyed reading & learning from Alf Bairds “ Doun-hauden” It has left me lost as to why when we in Scotland have been voting for a party that was formed as a part of INDEPENDENCE for the past 14yrs, & only ever been given a chance by that said party once to take our Independence. And to go the route we did of “asking permission” from another Parliament in another country that the world knows as an oppressor. Why did we seek their permission to HOLD a referendum? then allow the referendum to be run by the English Electoral Commission.

    I hold Alex Salmond in the highest of esteem as a politician & the BEST leader & FM Scotland has had since devolution was “granted us by our masters in London” via an assembly with limited power. But there is NO way we should be quoting The Arbroath Declaration, if all we intended to do is ask permission to hold another referendum, which we all know we would never be allowed to win, even if we did actually win..

    I hope Alex has learned that lesson from 2014, & takes at least one of the options offered by Alf in how any other Colonised country in the world TOOK their Independence. Because it will never be given to us, at least not until the English Parliament is well & truly done with us & that will be when with all of our resources including our public owned water, has been drained from this land.. And we have to pay dearly to get water into our own houses just as we do with the electricity we supply to ENGLANDS Grid..

    We can see the SNP Leader seems in no rush to stop any raid on any asset or power happening, so the people must step up, back the other Indy Parties to ensure we remove all UNIONIST Parties from our country. That includes the SNP as she has sold out..

    We as a country NEED the experience & knowledge of Alex Salmond to get the yes movement back on track, & start proceedings to DISSOLVE THIS ONE SIDED UNION.. Sturgeon is NOT a leader just a bully, & we have had enough of Bullies over the last 300+ years..

    Liked by 5 people

  9. The British Establishment have managed to convince Scots that we’re not our own master. The British constitution is political, not legal. This means Westminster can’t force Scotland to do anything, they require our agreement. So we should have told Westminster to do one the minute that Brexit was announced, but no. The NuSNP is determined to force Scots out of the EU, as they are clearly tartan Tories, given their approach to the law.

    I can’t believe anyone can be as politically naive as the NuSNP leadership, who apparently don’t know where babies come from. So I reckon they’re doing it deliberately.

    Liked by 6 people

  10. Chapeau Alf for a thoroughly enlightening and educational piece. I now understand a little better those that deny their own country, culture and people. Doesn’t make me feel any better about them though. Independence for me has always been about making our own decisions suited to our own peoples needs, and fortunately have never suffered form the “Scottish Cringe”. So sick of these Uriah Heep types, “oh we cannae dae it, we’re too wee, whit’ll we dae fur money. Gies peace.

    Iain, thank you also for publishing Professor Alf Baird’s works. Oh, and while I’m here, any fundraiser needed I will gladly contribute to,

    Alba Gu Brath.

    Liked by 6 people

  11. From the perspective of the science of sustainability, the Scottish government’s announcement of a commitment to intersectionality should be warmly welcomed. However, they’ve made a total pigs ear of translating best-practice into policy, as intersectional policy is inescapably centered around biological difference. Which is the root of all human prejudice. So either they’ve not done their homework, or they’re determined to destroy any potential for open democracy and good public health in Scotland.

    Understanding the micro and macro politics of health: Inequalities, intersectionality & institutions – A research agenda
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S027795361830025X

    Liked by 1 person

  12. P.S. The Scottish government’s environmental agenda is similarly bogus, as it simply loads the costs of environmental management onto Scotland, without acknowledging or respecting our “Right to Development”. Which is rather suggestive of English Torydum.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. P.P.S. The “Right to Development” is central to the sustainability agenda, which suggests the NuSNP either haven’t a clue about how to make Scotland fit for the future. Or they have become accustomed to dominating the politics of a rather parochial and vulnerable nation, which is denied a defensible identity and the potential of effective political AGENCY.

    Liked by 5 people

  14. Thanks Alf for all those very enlightening articles, why a fair percentage of Scots would rather be ruled by a foreign government even though it treats them as colonists is a baffling one to me and many others.

    Our biggest problem now is that we have a government in Scotland that isn’t interested in freeing us from the Westminster yoke, I suppose that must be set right before can move forward on. I have a horrible feeling that time isn’t on our side, and that say UDI must be declared or the 2026 elections be used as a plebiscite, if we have that long before Westminster syphons off Holyrood powers, or deals directly with COSLA, gazumping our parliament in that respect

    Could we also use the 2024 General Election results as a plebiscite, again we need a independent minded FM with a backbone which we are lacking.

    Liked by 6 people

  15. Heartfelt thanks to both Iain and Alf for these illuminating and well-argued papers setting out the current deplorable and unfair conditions in which we Scots live at present. These are due to Alf for his insight and work in showing us these (the source of many of the ills we suffer from), plus a clear ‘valid, constitutional, legal and democratic route’ to our freedom.
    Also thanks to Iain for publishing this work which deserves to be widely publicised. Indeed, it is essential that it is publicised as only that way will people realise the damage that has been done over more than three centuries to us by our neighbouring country.
    There are two obstacles in the way of Scottish self-determination; one is the lack of a will to achieve it on the part of our elected representatives both in Holyrood and Westmister and the other is a people who are largely ignorant of the reasons behind the way we are treated as part of the UK. As the scales fell from my eyes over recent years concrning the conduct of the SNP government in Holyrood, I began to think that they had been infiltrated by the English/British Establishment but I now realise, thanks to Alf, that it is more serious in that many of our elected representatives have become part of that establishment from whom they owe their power, positions and wealth. They have accepted colonisation and have become assimilated into the colonisers, while still talking the language of Independence but doing nothing, or even delaying the possibiliy eg by referring to the Covid pandemic ,whichhas not stopped Westminster continuing to pass laws damaging to Scotland
    The only way to change this is to educate and galvanise the people of Scotland, many of whom are feeling powerless to deal with the blows rained on them by a corrupt, venal and self-serving Westminster government which has no consideration for what it is doing to the people of England who voted for them, far less the people of any of the other three UK nations who did not.
    While there will always be those who cannot or will not accept the truth as set out in these 10 articles, there are many who will realise the accuracy of Alf’s arguments so it is essential that we reach out to as many as possible. I will happily contribute to any crowd-funding that can be organised to print and distribute copies of these in a handy leaflet format as we cannot wait to educate our people.
    We need them to demand action from our government in Holyrood a nd our MPs in London who stood on a platform of supporting Scottish Independence. These representatives need to be called out to do what they were elected to do. At every opportunity, when they complain about the powers needed to improve the lot of the people of Scotland, whether it is welfare, housing, health, education or jobs, we must point out that there is a way out and insist that they take it. Time is not on our side and we need to be ready to react to any initiatives from Westminster to curtail our liberty and democracy.

    Liked by 4 people

  16. I recall an example of the Scottish Cringe in a statement from a work-colleague in Stirling in the mid-1970s. He told us that he was taking his family on holiday to “the west coast of Scotland”. In the USA, it would be “the west coast”. In England it might be “the west country”, but in this sad place it’s “the west coast of Scotland”!

    What a pathetic, wimpish attitude. I must look for the Scots word for Wimp.

    Liked by 4 people

  17. I should perhaps have described that “west coast of Scotland” statement as adopting the perspective and attitude of southern England. Colonial all the way.

    Liked by 3 people

  18. Could this synopsis be rewritten in terms that a class 4 reader in primary school could understand, mass produced and delivered to every home in Scotland SOON! A crowd funder has been suggested.

    Liked by 4 people

  19. Extracts from ‘THE LOCKHART PAPERS: MEMOIRS AND COMMENTARIES UPON THE AFFAIRS OF SCOTLAND FROM 1702 TO 1715, by GEORGE LOCKHART Esq of CARNWATH’ (pp 160-165)

    STATE OF AFFAIRS IN SCOTLAND RELATING TO THE UNION
    […] We come now to the Parliament itself on which all men’s eyes were fixed, expecting to learn the fate of the nation; whether it were to remain free and independent, or under the colour and pretext of an Union be altogether at the discretion of another stronger and richer people, its avowed enemies, and be render’d altogether incapable to exert itself and defend its liberties as became a free people. These considerations brought together an unprecedented number of people of all ranks, sexes, ages, and persuasions, from all corners of the land to Edinburgh, and every one now pretended to understand the politicks and give their opinions freely and avowedly of the state of affairs.

    The Parliament met the third of October 1706, to which the Duke of Queensberry was appointed commissioner. The Queen’s letter and the Commissioner’s and Chancellor’s speeches consisted chiefly in setting forth the advantages that would accrue to the nation by being united with England, and therefore recommended the Treaty as agreed to by the commissioners, and crav’d subsidies.

    […] On the fifteenth the Court mov’d, that in the terms of the resolve past the twelfth, the House should proceed to the consideration of the articles of Union. There were many oppos’d this as too hasty a procedure Motion that in so momentous an affair, and crav’d liberty, now they had seen the articles, to consider and advise with their constituents concerning them; from whence arose a hot debate, whether or not the Parliament, without particular instructions from their constituents, could alter the constitution of the government.

    […] every body knew the nation had nothing of the Union in their view at the time this Parliament was chosen; besides, it was so long ago, that it was not strange the barons, freeholders, and burghs expected their representatives should advise with them; and since they were not allow’d to have a new election, that thus their sense of this weighty affair might be known in Parliament, that it would tend much more to the honour of the commissioners of the Treaty, if it was approv’d of in a Parliament called for that purpose, or by members who had receiv’d the fresh instructions and opinions of the nation, than by a Parliament which had continued so long, and thereby so many of its members corrupted by bribes, pensions, places, and preferments.

    PARLIAMENT PROCEEDS TO CONSIDER THE TREATY
    A great deal more to this purpose was urg’d and insisted upon; but at length a vote was stated in these words, “Proceed to consider the articles of the Treaty, or delay.” But it carried in the affirmative by a plurality of sixty-four voices, and all that the Country party could obtain, was that the House should not proceed to vote and approve any of the articles until they were all once read and discours’d on by the members; after which the House proceeded to, and in few days finish’d the reading of them. The Country party, particularly the Dukes of Hamilton and Athol, the Marquis of Annandale, the Lords Belhaven and Balmerino, Mr. Fletcher of Salton, and Sir David Cunningham of Milncraig, took a great deal of pains to expose the unreasonableness of the several articles as they went thro’ them; but the Courtiers very seldom made any reply, having resolv’d to trust to their number of led-horses, and not to trouble themselves with reasoning.

    GENERAL AVERSION OF THE PEOPLE IN EDINBURGH TO THE UNION
    During this time, the nation’s aversion to the Union increased; the Parliament Close, and the outer Parliament House, were crowded every day when the Parliament was met, with an infinite number of people, all exclaiming against the Union, and proceeds to consider the Treaty, and speaking very free language concerning the promoters of it. The Commissioner, as he passed along the street, was cursed and reviled to his face, and the Duke of Hamilton huzza’d and convey’d every night, with a great number of apprentices and younger sort of people, from the Parliament House to the Abbey, exhorting him to stand by the Country, and assuring him of his being supported.

    And upon the twenty-third of October, above three or four hundred of them being thus employ’d, did, as soon as they left His Grace, hasten in a body to the house of Sir Patrick Johnston (their late darling provost, one of the commissioners of the Treaty, a great promoter of the Union, in Parliament, where he sat as one of the representatives of the town of Edinburgh) threw stones at his windows, broke open his doors, and search’d his house for him, but he having narrowly made his escape, prevented his being torn in a thousand pieces.

    From thence the mob, which was increas’d to a great number, went thro’ the streets, threatning destruction to all the promoters of the Union, and continu’d for four or five hours in this temper; till about three next morning, a strong detachment of the Foot-guards was sent to secure the gate call’d the Netherbow Port, and keep guard in the Parliament Close. ‘Tis not to be express’d how great the consternation was that seiz’d the Courtiers on this occasion: formerly they did, or pretended not to believe the disposition of the people against the Union, but now they were throughly convinc’d of it, and terribly affraid of their lives; this passage making it evident that the Union was cramm’d down Scotland’s throat.

    For not only were the inclinations of the elder and wiser known by the actions of the rasher and younger, but even the very soldiers, as they march’d to seize the Port, were overheard saying to one another, ‘Tis hard we should oppose those that are standing up for the Country, ’tis what we can’t help just now, but what we won’t continue at.

    The mob being once dispatch’d, guards of regular forces were placed in the Parliament Close, Weigh-House, and Netherbow Port, and the whole army, both horse and foot, was drawn together near Edinburgh, and continu’d so all the session of Parliament: nay the Commissioner (as if he had been led to the gallows) made his parade every day after this, from the Parliament House to the Cross, (where his coaches waited for him, no coaches, nor no persons that were not members of Parliament being suffer’d to enter the Parliament Close towards the evening of such days as the Parliament was sitting) thro’ two lanes of musqueteers, and went from thence to the Abbey, the Horse-guards surrounding his coach, and if it was dark, for the greater security, a part of the Foot-guards likewise.

    THE COUNCIL EMITS PROCLAMATION AGAINST MOBS: APPOINTS GUARDS
    […] Tho’ it was plain to all unbyass’d people that this mob had its rise very accidentally, yet the Government was not fond of any such amusements, and therefore the next day after it happen’d, the Privy Council met and ordained these guards to be continu’d, and emitted a proclamation against tumultuous meetings, wherein they commanded all persons to retire off the streets whenever the drum should beat and give warning, order’d the guards to fire upon such as would not obey, and granted an indemnity to such as should on that occasion kill any of the leidges; and next day the Chancellor acquainted the Parliament with what had happen’d, and what the Council had done on that occasion, and then the proclamation being read, a motion was made that the Council should have the thanks of the House for providing the safety of the Parliament, and that it be recommended to them to continue their care therein.

    […] Notwithstanding this precaution of the Government, and that several boys were incarcerated, as being accessary to the late mob, and a Committee of Parliament appointed to make enquiry after such as had, or should be guilty of such tumultuous meetings, or of shewing any disrespect towards my Lord Commissioner, yet His Grace was constantly saluted with curses and imprecations, as he pass’d through the streets; and if the Parliament sat till towards evening, then to be sure he and his guards were well pelted with stones, some whereof even enter’d his coach and often wounded his guards and servants ; so that often he and his retinue were oblig’d to go off at a top gallop and in great disorder.

    https://tinyurl.com/fwus4unr

    Liked by 7 people

  20. Professor Baird has done tremendous service in his erudition and expression. It seems clear that there is a particular pressure on the voting franchise now that the Europeans who made Scotland their home are leavitin such large numbers… And that is a great loss to the country.

    But that the country is seeing UK policy of moving people from England to Scotland at a rate of 10s of thousands per year… That’s a particular worry. Particularly if it is 50,000 per year. That’s more than the population of Greenock every year…

    If we do have a referendum, my thinking is that allowing the vote to people resident here from before the last one (2014) might be fairest.

    Thanks, Alf. Respect.

    Liked by 5 people

  21. Today’s National reports on the number of groups taking part in a Day of Action on September 18th.
    Is there time to get out copies of Alf Baird’s 10 part work on Scotland’s future in time to distribute them.as it would seem to be a great opportunity to get the word out. Believe in Scotland will apparently be selling copies of their booklet.
    Where do I send my contribution to the crowd funder?

    Liked by 2 people

  22. Fearghas….thanks for your extract demonstrating the eyewitness account of the political criminality of our pressganging into the ‘Union’. It shows the depth of feeling the ordinary Scots people felt about our country’s abduction of our sovereignty by the crooks in parliament.

    Coincidentally, I was in Edinburgh and East Lothian over the past couple of weeks and the staggering numbers of English visitors was one thing, but the realisation of the actual settlement that is occurring there is actually frightening. I have seen Scotland’s future and it is dissolution into an English playground and retreat. Devolution now means dissolution.

    Owners and staff of so many tourist businesses in the Mid and East Lothians are almost universally English. The reverse is now occurring to what you would expect anywhere else: the indigenous workers and tourists are the exception. As Iain mentions in this week’s ‘Prism’, it has become obvious that the Census has been postponed in Scotland only because the Woke SNP leadership don’t want the supine slumbering Scottish public to realise that their Capital city and surrounding countryside has been bought up by our biggest oppressor.

    There is a troll on WOS who smears many who are aware and have been aware for many years of the nature of colonialism and its usurping of Scotland by calling us ‘nativists’. This slur is a unionist device aimed at undermining Scots who have for centuries been undermined from even asserting themselves as ‘Scots’ without feeling the need to bracket it as ‘British’. The English never had to thole that one, because of the pernicious imperial mindset is not applied to the coloniser.

    An English monarch, Elizabeth the 1st and a Scottish one James the 6th, decided to conquer the most resistant Irish region of Ireland in the 1600s, that of Ulster. They did it by’ planting ‘English and Scottish protestants. Many of the Scots were forced there, but nevertheless, were unfortunately enthusiastic sufficiently to create the ‘British’ counter identity, the imperial colonising identity that we see today. A hundred years ago the British amputated 6 x counties from Ulster and set up the illegal ‘province’ of the farcical protestant dictatorship called ‘Northern Ireland’, A name that ignored the rest of Ulster stretching farther north still. This tinpot state, has representing it the absurdity and insult of an English flag with an English crown on it, atop the illustrious ‘Red Hand’ (Lámh Dhearg Uladh) of the O’Neills Dynasty, a clan that fought the English to the bloody end.

    I would challenge any troll or any gullible person who believes that England is not in the process of finally crushing Scottish identity with increase immigration of its people via economic imperialism. A ‘planting’ process, not of protestant soldier peasants, like Ulster, but of middle class, cash rich British state patriots who see Scotland as an extension of England and will set their collective faces against its attempts at sovereignty. Coupled with the emasculation of the Devolved project, one designed to undermine Scottish Independence; the undemocratic removal of Scotland from the biggest free trade organisation; the usurping of energy resources (water next) and continued economic stripping of our infrastructure to the benefit of its own. demonstrates clearly an imperial colonisng project in practice taking place.

    Liked by 5 people

  23. I suggested before that Scots law has been molested so as to accommodate the political demands of English legal culture. Scots law evolved from Roman law, so was grounded in the principles of Natural law, a.k.a. universal moral and practical reason. However, the principle of Parliamentary sovereignty claims Westminster as the supreme source of legal authority, which positions Westminster above nature and outwith the bounds of human reason and morality. So the internal legal logic of British constitutionalism is simply structurally incapable of supporting pluralist democracy or the science of sustainability, as the principle of Parliamentary sovereignty denies the theory of evolution.

    N.B. The British constitution only remained valid if Westminster conducted it’s business in a manner compatible with the rule of law. Which can’t be separated from scientific theory or international law. Which is where Westminster obtains its’ legal authority to govern Scotland, though Westminster simply does not respect international law.

    The Nature and Sources of UK Constitutional Law
    http://www.cilexlawschool.ac.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/HQ12-Public-Law-Sample-2018(dot)pdf

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Scots law and legal practice has been internally colonised by British nationalism. Which is why the practice of Scotland’s government and justice system is actively hostile towards postcolonial legal theory and practice, and international human rights law.

    Rights from the Other Side of the Line:
    Postcolonial perspectives on human rights
    politikon.iapss.org/index.php/politikon/article/download/136/135

    Liked by 1 person

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