It really is quite something the lengths those who support Nicola Sturgeon will go to defend her. I tweeted yesterday that ‘The Withdrawal Bill’ has been passed by parliament pointing out the First Minister’s lack of response and moreover, the fact that she has yet to respond to anything regarding the Withdrawal Bill. As of now, the tweet has been liked 140 times, retweeted, 63 and replied to 13. That said, not all the replies are positive. But you expect that from people with an opinion. What I do not expect is to be patronised as is the case with Evelyn Walker Smith who took it upon herself to school me on what the First Minister is doing. Well thank god for that because I have no idea.
For the most part, feedback to the tweet has been positive, and agreeable, however there are those who believe that Sturgeon has some sort of master plan that she is going to pull out of the hat at the last minute – like say, when the Bill is finally passed. It is on its THIRD reading and is away to the Lords who will possibly make amendments that the Tory majority will ignore and it WILL pass as they have a whopping majority thanks to the good people of England.
The Withdrawal Bill and in fact what the people of Scotland stand to lose should nothing be done to stop this as summed up yesterday by Mhari Black:
“…Clause 46 of the Bill states that a minister of the crown may provide financial assistance to any person for infrastructure. Section 2 goes on to say, infrastructure includes health, education, transport, … and prison facilities, housing, water, electricity, the provision of heat.
This Bill allows, UK ministers to dictate and spend money wherever they like in whatever devolved area they want as long as it can be justified as they deem it to directly or indirectly benefit any area of the UK and we already know that the reality of that means. Tory governments funnelling millions into marginal Tory seats as opposed to the areas that actually need it. But I thought why specifically include things like heat and electricity and water? And then I remembered the only reason that we are able to have publicly owned fresh water in Scotland is because the Scottish parliament has made it so. This Bill explicitly gives any minister of the crown permission to run riot with the very assets of Scotland that our Scottish parliament has protected and nowhere in the bill; nowhere, does it state that permission must be obtained from the devolved government’s in order to do so.
Now I have watched this parliament hand 40 million pounds for ferries to a company that don’t own any ferries. Are we really supposed to expect and rely on this government to spend money on our behalf? And lets be clear this would not be some benevolent donation to Scotland from Westminster because clause 47, says that financial assistance may be subject to conditions including repayment. We will be expected to pay back money that we never even spent….”
The Tories do not view Scotland as a nation of equals, in fact they view Scotland as their very own cash-cow. Remember “A pound spent in Croydon is worth more than a pound spent in Strathclyde.” That is the belief of the Prime Minister. Johnson’s view of Scotland is such that nothing will be spent in Scotland, if anything, Scotland will once again be stripped of all assets to secure their trade deal.
We are at a crossroads; do we remain faithful to Sturgeon and her cohorts who continue to dangle the carrots to keep us interested enough to walk the path while they kick independence into the long grass. Or do we carve out our own path? It is crunch time for Sturgeon, either put up or shut up. We do not have time to waste, we have wasted enough. It is time for Sturgeon to stop hiding behind the pandemic, it is time for her to lead this nation to independence or get out of the damn road and let us get on with it.