Notes From the Northern Colony

borisjohnson

“Fareweel ev'n to the Scottish name”—Burns

Boris Johnson is the Prime Minister of England, and, if you believe in democracy, it is right and fitting that he should be. In England his popularity, and that of his party, is six points ahead of the party led by Keir Starmer that no longer has any connection to its name.

There can be no democratic argument that Johnson does not represent England. The majority of English voters want him, and they have him.

The majority of Scottish voters do not want him, and we have him. And, as he continues to treat Scotland with contempt, he is proving that, until Scotland is independent, our votes do not matter. In May, Scottish people will overwhelmingly vote for Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP — and we will continue to get what England votes for. Anyone in Scotland who opposes independence opposes their own right to vote.

#borisjohnson #scotland #nicolasturgeon #snp #scottishindependence #scottishpolitics #scottishblogs

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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Richard Leonard has resigned as leader of the Scottish Labour Party. Incompetent, conservative and sexist as he is, I am sorry to see him go, because his incompetence, conservatism and sexism were an asset to Scottish Independence supporters, helping make his party a travesty. He is loved by some of us in the SNP for the same reason we love Boris Johnson (whom some of us think is doing more for Scottish Independence than Robert the Bruce and William Wallace combined).

I would have liked Mr Leonard to remain leader until the election in May, so he could help ensure that the SNP wins by the predicted landslide. While it is hard to imagine the Scottish Labour Party finding someone equally hapless to replace him, whoever gets the job (Jackie Baillie? Anas Sarwar?) is unlikely to be able to repair the damage he has caused his party in the next few months.

#richardleonard #borisjohnson #scottishlabourparty #snp #scottishindependence #scottishpolitics #scottishblogs

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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Last year, I remarked to a friend that he has what I consider a sexist habit of referring to female politicians by their first names, but uses last names for their male counterparts. He refers to the Scottish First Minister as “Nicola,” but never referred to her predecessor as “Alex.” I told him I thought this showed he took women less seriously than men, seeing them as closer to children than adults.

He replied he always referred to Boris Johnson by his first name, but admitted he did not do that with any other male politicians. I suggested this supported my point, because Johnson's clownish persona made my friend see him as an overgrown child, giving him the same status he gave women.

And it is a persona; in private life, he is not called Boris. His friends and family call him Al, his actual first name (his name is Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson). In a similar way to the US cult of “Bernie” — Sanders's friends and family call him Bernard — Johnson is selling performance, not policy. But, unlike Sanders, he is dangerous.

In this ungrammatical column in The National, Lesley Riddoch does a good job of normalising him by referring to him with chummy, faux-familiarity.

It is of urgent importance not to trivialise this catastrophe with cute nicknames. Call him what he is: the Prime Minister. And in calling him that, consider the ultra-right-wing populist who now holds that office, and see where we are.

#borisjohnson #nicolasturgeon #populism #lesleyriddoch #scottishpolitics #thenational #scotland #scottishblogs

—GM Stevenson

Email: contact at stevenson dot scot

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