Ever since the first skirmishes of the independence referendum something has been irking me, nibbling away from the inside, anxious to be enunciated. I’ve been mulling it over, trying to express it in words. It was always just a feeling you see, but now that we are in the thick of the general election campaign the time has come.
Nick Robinson (hope he gets well soon) finally managed to shine a light into the gloom of my mind and illuminate the wee moose that had been bugging me for so long. His post-surgery blog (hope you’re better soon Nick (Enough already, Ed)) expresses his own views on how people decide who to vote for and the reasons that he gives are purely selfish. It’s all about me. Not you, not we, never us, just me.
Thinking back to all those Better Together arguments, they were all about money. It was all currency this and pensions that. Banks and businesses moving away and jobs lost. All of those arguments were focused on the individual, hitting the me and placing the question mark after the I. They were all inherently selfish arguments.
For me, the most tantalising argument for independence was the idea of a better society. One where the people were respected for who they were, not one where their future was mortgaged to bail out corrupt banks. There were no illusions in my mind that the transition to independence would be tough, Any divorce is tough, a divorce after a 308 marriage is bound to be especially so. But the short-term pain would be mitigated by the longer term gain. The arguments for independence were mostly focused on the us, the we not the me. The altruistic not the selfish.
The unionists are still thinking of themselves, as witnessed by the lies being peddled by all of the main unionist parties as part of their pitch for our votes in the general election. It’s arguments like “you’ll be worse off under” whoever and “our plans will save you” how much. These arguments are essentially selfish, focused on the individual. None of them give me any hope that any of these parties will bring about any meaningful change in the UK. A vote for any of the main unionist parties is a vote for the status quo, one with blue bells, the other with red whistles and the other with a little yellow ball. You would struggle to get a silver Rizla between any of them.
I’ll leave you with these questions:
- What kind of UK would you like to see?
- Which party is most likely to deliver that vision?