by Rab Bruce’s Spider

It’s like 2014 all over again, with a British Prime Minister scurrying to Scotland to save the Union, and with Labour and the Tories, in the shapes of Gordon Brown and Michael Gove, joining forces to produce yet another Vow because the last one worked so well, and they didn’t even need to honour the promises made. They seem to think the same thing will happen again because nobody in Scotland noticed how we’ve been shafted since the 2014 IndyRef result.

As for the claims that Scotland has benefitted from the strength of the Union because of the supply of vaccines and the assistance of the British Army, where do you even begin with that? Of course, the media will promote this line for all it is worth, and no doubt some people will lap it up, but a few moments of critical thinking reveals it for little more than spin.

Other countries are getting hold of vaccine supplies without the aid of the UK, so it seems more than likely that an independent Scotland could have done the same. As for the British Army, which Army would we expect? Under the current constitutional arrangements, it is our Army too, although the way the Tories are talking about it, you could be forgiven for thinking it is the Army of a foreign country come to save us. They seem to think an independent Scotland would be incapable of having an Army of its own, which is plainly ludicrous since the current British Army has had Scottish regiments since the early days of the Union, primarily because they provided useful cannon fodder for the commanders who were at the forefront of the military conquest of much of the rest of the world.

So an independent Scotland could have obtained its own vaccines, and could have deployed its own Army. But the big thing the Tories won’t point out is that an independent Scotland would not have needed to goa long with the UK pandemic responses at the outset, and could have closed its borders to reduce the impact of the virus. It is not much of a boast that we have a lower infection and death rate than England, but things in Scotland could have been much better if we had the power to close our borders, and implement our own relief packages instead of relying on HM Treasury.

Let’s hope not too many Scots fall for the propaganda. Fortunately, just about everyone must know by now that if Boris Johnson is talking, he’s probably lying.

And yet, as a recent poll confirms, over 40% of voters in England still intend to vote Tory in future elections. That possibly tells us more about the quality of the Westminster Opposition than it does about the attitudes of English voters, but we cannot ignore the fact that they keep voting Tory. For Scotland, there can only be one route out of here. And, despite all the squabbling over tactics, at least we can be sure that everyone on the Yes side will vote with one mind if and when IndyRef2 comes along. Let’s hope it’s soon.