Daily Archives: September 15, 2014

Neither Queen nor queasier

This sticker was on the corner of the Royal Mile and Bank Street (and a very appropriate location, too).


Edinburgh, 13 Sep 2014

I’m still calculating the number of ironies that lie hidden in this message, at this time.

One cannot fairly quote Connolly on independence without also citing his views on capitalism:

If you remove the English army to-morrow and hoist the green flag over Dublin Castle, unless you set about the organisation of the Socialist Republic your efforts would be in vain.

England would still rule you. She would rule you through her capitalists, through her landlords, through her financiers, through the whole array of commercial and individualist institutions she has planted in this country and watered with the tears of our mothers and the blood of our martyrs.

England would still rule you to your ruin, even while your lips offered hypocritical homage at the shrine of that Freedom whose cause you had betrayed.

Nationalism without Socialism – without a reorganisation of society on the basis of a broader and more developed form of that common property which underlay the social structure of Ancient Erin – is only national recreancy.

Not England, perhaps, but Il Presidente Salmond’s friends: Rupert Murdoch, Donald Trump, Russian plutocrats buying enough real estate to earn a passport, Asian millionaires renting by the week the Highland deer-stalking experience, Texan oilmen …

Until we are rid of those parasites, the Union is a marginally better bet.

Until then … well, G.K.Chesterton was a (very) right old Tory, but he doesn’t need too much emendation. And the scansion works just the same:

We hear men speaking for us of new laws strong and sweet,
Yet is there no man speaketh as we speak in the street.
It may be we shall rise the last as Frenchmen rose the first,
Our wrath come after Russia’s wrath and our wrath be the worst.
It may be we are meant to mark with our riot and our rest
God’s scorn for all men governing. It may be beer is best.
But we are the people of Scotland; and we have not spoken yet.
Smile at us, pay us, pass us. But do not quite forget.

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