Why I Joined Yes and Why I Changed to No – Ewan Morrison

The BBC’s attempt to skew news coverage of the Scottish referendum appears to have succeeded – if only in making Vox Political‘s coverage appear to support the ‘Yes’ camp.

The problem with that is, Vox Political does not support the ‘Yes’ camp. Yr Obdt Srvt would rather the United Kingdom remain – well – united.

Fortunately a quick trawl through today’s blogs has turned up Ewan Morrison’s article on how the ‘Yes’ brigade turned a supporter into an opposer. You can read the whole thing on Wake Up Scotland, but here are a few tasters, to excite your interest:

“Within the Yes camp I attempted to find the revolutionary and inclusive debate that I’d heard was happening. But as soon as I was ‘in’ I was being asked to sign petitions, to help with recruitment, to take part in Yes groups, to come out publicly in the media, to spread the word and add the blue circle Yes logo to my social media photograph – even to come along and sing a ‘Scottish song’ at a Yes event… I noticed that the whenever someone raised a pragmatic question about governance, economics or future projections for oil revenue or the balance of payments in iScotland, they were quickly silenced by comments such as “We’ll sort that out after the referendum, this is not the place or the time for those kinds of questions”. Or the people who asked such questions were indirectly accused of ‘being negative’ or talking the language of the enemy.

“It was within a public meeting that I realised there was no absolutely no debate within the Yes camp. Zero debate – the focus was instead on attacking the enemy and creating an impenetrable shell to protect the unquestionable entity…  Questioning even triggered a self-policing process – The Yes Thought Police – rather like the Calvinist one in which doubters started to hate themselves and became fearful of showing signs of their inner torment.

“The Yes movement started to remind me of the Trotskyists – another movement who believed they were political but were really no more than a recruitment machine… The key is to keep it very simple – offer a one word promise. In the case of the Trotskyists it’s ‘Revolution,’ in the case of the independence campaign it’s the word ‘Yes’. Yes can mean five million things.

“The Yes camp have managed to make it seem like criticism of their politics is an attack on the individual’s right to imagine a better self. To do this, the Yes campaign has had to be emptied of almost all actual political content. It has had to become a form of faith.

“There is no way that the groups under the banner of Yes could actually work together; they’re all fighting for fundamentally different things… You have to ask yourself with so many groups all tugging in so many directions what makes a separate Scotland any different from the rest of the UK with its democratic conflicts, its mess?

“Many people are voting Yes just to express their frustration at not being able to engage with politics as it is. They’re voting Yes because they want their voice to be heard for the first time. That’s understandable and admirable, but Yes is not a debate or a democratic dream, it’s an empty word and an empty political process which means dream of what you want and express it with all the passion in your heart. The dream will die as soon as the singular Yes gets voted and Scotland then turns into a battleground of repressed and competing Yesses. Once the recruitment machine has served it purpose it will collapse and the repressed questions will return with a vengeance… Scotland will be fighting out its internal battles on a world stage after demonstrating it intends to run its new politics on an illusion of unity, a unity that breaks up even as it is observed.”

That was just a taste of this excellent article. For the rest, visit Wake Up Scotland.

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  1. Dai Drinkwater September 16, 2014 at 7:28 pm - Reply

    I think Marx would have argued that the revolution should not be led by those who promise everything people want to hear merely to get them onside. The revolution should occur because people want it to and it’s leaders should not be chasing their own agenda.

  2. jaypot2012 September 16, 2014 at 9:05 pm - Reply

    I’m a firm believer in Yes and nothing will change my mind. I have lived in England and Wales, but I know for a fact that Scotland does not have to suffer the way it does due to Westminster. The country is mainly forgotten about down the South East of England, but when it comes to the Yes vote getting so close, it’s got them (Westminster) begging it to stay.
    Cameron was arrogant enough to think that we would all roll over and listen to him and his cronies, but we didn’t and we won’t.
    I really do hope that Scotland gets it’s Independence – we have 2 years to straighten things out before breaking away and I believe that’s plenty of time to sort things out once and for all.

  3. jaypot2012 September 16, 2014 at 9:08 pm - Reply

    And of course, the No party didn’t do any of the things that Ewan Morrison says happened in the Yes camp…

  4. Florence September 17, 2014 at 11:43 am - Reply

    Real Trotskyists are not mindless thugs for the “revolution”. Those referred to are Stalinists whatever they seem to call themselves, in the far left or the Yes camp. It’s another example of a slur becoming common currency and lazy thinking. If there is an element of political thuggery in the Yes camp, then it should be called that.

    (Trotskyists – the real ones – have a political ideology and philosophy that is nothing to do with the thugs like Healy & co, who I presume Ewan is referring to. The theory of permanent revolution is much misunderstood, and would now adequately encompass the fight against the bedroom tax, the housing crisis, food banks, Trade Unions in the workplaces, etc.)

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