"Let the others come after us. We welcome the chase. It is healthy for us.
We will never hide from it. Never fear."
- William Struth

Independence Transcends

Written by: D'Artagnan
Thursday, 1st June 2017

'The case for full self-government ultimately transcends the issues of Brexit, of oil, of national wealth and balance sheets and of passing political fads and trends'  (Nicola Sturgeon)

I very much doubt the late Stephen Maxwell, one of the SNP's favoured think tank members in the 1980's would agree with Ms Sturgeon. In 1981 Mr Maxwell urged the party to abandon romantic notions of nationhood and embark on an unsentimental appeal to the social and economic interests of the Scottish people.

So why the change?

The answer is simple - the economic and social interest arguments proposed by the Scottish National Party over the last few years are absolutely in tatters, shredded beyond repair or recovery by both political opponents and political commentators over a course of several years. Furthermore, the SNP propaganda machine, once so well oiled, has shown that even the greatest propaganda machine cannot function effectively in the face of incompetent government.

If, as claimed, education is the SNP's priority then their ability to govern and manage makes for frightening reading. In the last 4 years under SNP rule literacy rates for Scottish pupils have shown a steady decline.


The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) has shown a rapid decline for Scottish pupils in maths reading and science, so much so that this new record low means Scottish pupils no longer perform above the international average in these 3 cores subjects, prompting leading educationalist Keir Bloomer, to suggest that it was no longer credible to describe Scotland's education system as 'world-leading' and that it required urgent attention.

The SNP have a curious interpretation of 'urgent attention'. Since the SNP came to power in 2007 Scotland has lost 4000 teachers whilst local government budgets have been slashed by £1.5 billion since 2011.

'The rocks will melt with the sun before I allow tuition fees to be imposed on Scotland's students.'  (Alex Salmond)

Salmond's symbolic stone unveiled at Heriot-Watt University to herald the above declaration is looking a bit weather worn these days. Disadvantaged Scots students appear to be the collateral damage in Salmond's grandstanding. The most affluent Scottish students are 3.53 times more likely to enter university aged 18 (or younger) via UCAS than the poorest ones, compared with 2.58 in Northern Ireland, 2.56 in Wales and 2.52 in England. Fewer than one in ten young people from Scotland's most disadvantaged areas begin to study towards a degree by the age of 20. Alarmingly, the problems are actually getting worse - just 8.4 per cent of entrants to Scotland's elite universities came from the poorest communities in 2014/15, down from 8.8 per cent the previous year.

Alas, such a political malaise is not confined to education with our Health Service also suffering at the hands of SNP incompetence. This report from Audit Scotland highlights staggering levels of mismanagement with key failings being identified as follows:

* Only one of the eight key performance targets for the NHS was met in the last year 
* Funding is not keeping pace with increasing demand and patient needs
* Health boards facing hundreds of millions of pounds of cuts especially in acute services 
* Some health boards underfunded through the SNP Government's own formula to the tune of tens of millions of 

The full indictment of incompetence can be read here:


So when your children ask in years to come, why they are not deemed competitive in the employment sector and why we cannot adequately care for the sick and vulnerable within our society, look them in the eye, thrust a Saltire in their hand and remind them of the golden mantra:-

'Independence transcends everything'


by The Colour Blue
by 1972


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