Wednesday, 18 April 2007

Scottish Elections 7 - Is The Telegraph Serious?

The 2nd leader in today’s Telegraph is simplistic and conceited journalism. The leader is based on the assumption that the Union is good, and independence is disastrous, for both Scotland and England: a bald statement, not of fact, but of unsupported prejudice.

The Telegraph wants the SNP to hold an independence referendum immediately upon their gaining power but only because this is the best way of maintaining the Union.

Why WOULD the SNP want a referendum now when they would lose? They wouldn’t and no politician would willingly hold a referendum at a time when loss is the obvious result.

Why SHOULD the SNP hold a referendum now when they would lose. There is no reason to do so unless, of course, one is looking for a loss?

Any party would hold a referendum at a time and under conditions which best suits them. The SNP are no different here but this is not acceptable to The Telegraph because:

…. once in power, the SNP will possess the ability to frame the debate - to generate friction with London, to shape politics and policy so as to maximise its chances of winning the referendum. This would be a disaster for both countries.

I am sure that the SNP would attempt to generate fiction between Edinburgh and Westminster but, more importantly, after two or three years in power the judgment on the SNP and on Scotland’s ability to be successful as an independent country will be based upon how the SNP performed in power: “poorly” will give a definite loss whereas “well” will give a possible win.

Blaming their (the SNP’s) poor performance, if it were so, on tensions with Westminster wouldn’t have a major impact on the referendum decision. I suspect that there is quite a strong emotional attachment to the idea of independence but, at crunch-time, the decision won’t be emotional but rational. How the SNP have performed in power will be central to that decision. Delaying the referendum for 2 or 3 years is, therefore, entirely reasonable regardless of the outcome one wishes.

Articles such as this leader are unworthy of journalism, being no more than Unionist propaganda.

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