“Are you ready for a no-deal Brexit?” asks the guy on Radio Scotland. That’s a subtle and slightly terrifying change of tone – they’ve stopped saying “in the highly unlikely event”. It’s the same with Westminster. Stockpiling fridges for insulin and portaloos for lorry parks is being spun not as a symptom of massive political failure but prudent governance. It feels like impending catastrophe is being normalised. Scotland’s leaders’ continuing efforts try to save England from itself have come to nothing and our failure to walk through the fire door into a future that will be demonstrably better is as baffling as it is self-defeating. What are we waiting for? If we blow this, we might as well shut down the Scottish Parliament and return to direct London rule. Hell mend us. Because by refusing to grasp an open invitation to be self-governing we are effectively begging to be colonised. If we follow up the epic act of selfishness and self harm that was the 2014 No vote with a further confirmation that we are feart, we are saying “we are not a country. Please continue to foist on us governments we don’t want while plundering our resources to pay for your neoliberalism, illegal wars, vanity projects and xenophobic imperialist Brexit fantasies. Will be still be allowed to watch Strictly and the royal wedding?”
We boast then we cower.
Either independence is a good idea or it isn’t. The movement is a cause or it is nothing. Brexit shows the union as a sham and is proof that whatever England wants – even if it’s self-harm – then Scotland is sucked into the Westminster death spiral and gets it too. It has been this way for three hundred and eleven years.
But we have a chance – a duty – to get out and that is, in my opinion, the only thing that the First Minister and others should be talking about. Never mind getting on with the day job. This is the day job. For God’s sake, what on earth are we waiting for? Let’s get out, by whatever means available, while we still can. This really is last-chance saloon stuff.
I believe in the people of Scotland and believe that our best future lies in becoming the modern, progressive Scotland that reflects the best of us in a way that the inward-looking, regressive British establishment doesn’t.
But for any of this to happen we need to do it immediately. There are no reasons why we shouldn’t. Not one. I’ve fought this campaign for nearly six years. You get tired, scunnered, but you keep going because you know you’re on the right side and because you believe that Scotland’s independence can’t be reduced to the the price of a dog license or the colour of the money in your pocket. And you hope that those who actually have the power to deliver independence feel the same. Because I’m a wee bit older now and I’d love to see it and I’d love the boys to prosper in a better country.
I’d love – and we need – our leaders to stop being distracted by events that we can’t stop and which, in a sense, have nothing to do with us. If I have one wish this festive season, it’s that the First Minister simply declares us an independent country. If nothing else, I’d love to know that I having been wasting my time these last six years. In short? I’ve done my bit. High time you did yours.
Merry Christmas good people. I’ll meet you further on up the road.