Being pro-independence

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The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 16:51
Ed wrote:

First off, do you really believe that the Scottish bourgeousie would look after the Scottish working class' interests? Why would they? Because they're both Scottish? If workers and bosses interests are opposed and contradictory, then why would it be in Scottish workers' interests to be ruled by local bosses?

Do all Scottish workers think alike, have the same needs, and the same outlook? I rather suspect not, just as it's true to say that not every Scot has the same thoughts, needs, and outlook

Secondly, do you really think that an independent Scotland would eventually be whittled down to become a free federation of independent and interdependent communes? Do you really think that central Scottish govt would even let local communities take power away from them?

A free federation of self-governing "communities" which met to take decisions affecting all, would be what I wanted to work towards. It may well be a tall order (although not as tall an order as a revolution & subsequent libertarian utopia), but it's my view. To me, it's for the strikingly obvious reason that it's easier to work on a smaller level-Scotland- than an aritifical imperial amalgam (the UK)

Thirdly, do you not think that an increase in Scottish nationalism would be detrimental to world-wide working class militancy as it would channel Scottish working class militancy into bourgeois nationalism rather than internationalist socialism?

That would be the classical Marxist/libertarian socialist position. However I am neither of those things.

Lastly, who are the Scottish people? What makes one person Scottish and someone else not? Also, would someone in Glasgow have more in common with someone from Raenaegidael (sp?) or someone Manchester? Or what about a Scottish landowner and an English landowner? Are they mortal enemies? A Pakistani man born in Scotland, is he Scottish? Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, where are they from? Maybe the English need to split away from Scottish rule!

The defintion for me is that a Scot is whoever chooses to make their life and settle here. Consequently of your examples:

1. the Pakistani man born in Scotland is Scottish. He may of course choose to regard himself as a Pakistani living in Scotland, which is up to him. There's no hard and fast rule- though my assumption would be that anyone born here is Scots, if they want to be, regardless of ethnic background.

2. I'm showing my ignorance here- where is 'Raenaedigael'? When you tell me where it is, I'll answer your question.

3. there's no reason why a Scottish and English landowner should be mortal enemies. What's the relevance of your example?

4. Gordon Brown is Scots.

5. Tony Blair is English, educated at Fettes in Edinburgh.

6. Maybe the English do need to split away from us- it's a move I'd welcome. But ultimately that isn't my decision.

Come on mate, you know all this nationalism stuff is irrational bollocks. Loyalty shouldn't be to some mythical idea of a nation, it should be to our class. Simple really.

Why should 'class' inspire any more loyalty than 'nation'? You'll have to do more than say one is bollocks and the other isn't to convince me. There also seems to be little 'mythical' about Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland, unless you know different.

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Lazy Riser
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Aug 16 2005 17:54

Hi

Quote:
Why should 'class' inspire any more loyalty than 'nation'?

Because one is based on a rational appraisal of your best interests whilst the other is irrational sectarianism for its own sake.

Love

Chris

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Ed
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Aug 16 2005 18:39
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Do all Scottish workers think alike, have the same needs, and the same outlook?

Of course not, but that's not what I'm saying. Scottish workers' interests are that of higher wages, shorter hours, better benefits, better social housing etc etc etc. All of this is NOT in the boss class' interests as it would cost them money and as such are reluctant to give it up. Gains made by the working classes throughout history have been fought for, not kindly handed down i.e. trade unions, the vote, council housing etc.

The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
A free federation of self-governing "communities" which met to take decisions affecting all, would be what I wanted to work towards. It may well be a tall order (although not as tall an order as a revolution & subsequent libertarian utopia), but it's my view.

Yeah, its my view too. However, I don't think that any government will ever just allow it to happen, or kindly hand down direct democracy to us lowley proles. We need to organise from below, creating our own structures within our communities that take power away from central government. Some recent examples of this would be the community survival programmes of the Black Panthers and the People's Clinic in Italy. There's more but I can't think off the top of my head.

The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
The defintion for me is that a Scot is whoever chooses to make their life and settle here.

So if I had a girlfriend who moved to Scotland and I went to live with her, would I become Scottish? And then if we break up after 25 years and I move just over the border to Newcastle, do I become English again? But we had a kid and he stays half the time in Scotland and half the time with me, what's his nationality? I wasn't even born in England, but I've lived here all my life, am I English now? A mate of mine was born in Scotland, but grew up in England, what's he?

The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
where is 'Raenaedigael'?

On the isle of Harris. For a national liberationist you don't know much about your nation! wink

The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Why should 'class' inspire any more loyalty than 'nation'? You'll have to do more than say one is bollocks and the other isn't to convince me. There also seems to be little 'mythical' about Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland, unless you know different.

Re 'mythical': All nations are mythical in that they are based on a mythical past. Why was the Scottish border halted where it was and not 100 miles south? what is it about the Scottish that means they are different from the English? Is it the genetics? Do they look different (of course, if the Pakistani bloke is Scottish then looks obviously don't come into it)? Is it culture? What? Why are Scots so different from the English (or Welsh or Irish for that matter) that they need their own bit of land? 2000 years ago, 'Scotland', 'the Scottish' etc wasn't even a concept. Humans have been around for shitloads longer than that (is hundreds of thousands of years? Or millions even? I'm not sure, science not my thing!). So why the fuck does it matter a shit?

Class loyalty however, is very real in that it comes out of the genuine experiences of workers internationally. Your boss is your boss no matter where they're from and as such their interests are opposite to yours. Your workmate is your workmate no matter where they're from. In fact, a Tesco worker in Hungary is a worker, just the same as an coal miner in South Africe is a worker, just the same as a call centre worker in Slough is a worker. We all have to work for a wage, and that wage is a fraction of the profit WE produced and the boss took. Only by struggling together, as a class, can we get back more of that profit and (in my opinion) take over the running of society completely.

Anyway, gotta eat my dinner. Jacket potatoes. English enoguh for you? grin

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 19:05
Lazy Riser wrote:
Hi
Quote:
Why should 'class' inspire any more loyalty than 'nation'?

Because one is based on a rational appraisal of your best interests whilst the other is irrational sectarianism for its own sake.

Love

Chris

That rather depends on your point of view.

I don't know how many more times I have to say this, but I do not hate any nation or nationality. Nationalism does not automatically entail sectrianism and hatred.

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Volin
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Aug 16 2005 19:30

...just a waste if time that subtracts from the real issues of working people and any true improvement of our lives and society.

“Nationalism was so perfectly suited to its

double task, the domestication of workers and

the despoliation of aliens, that it appealed to

everyone - everyone, that is, who wielded or

aspired to wield a portion of capital.”

I know I've missed a lot of the discussion, but do you recognise the existence of classes and economic inequality? Do you think this should be changed? Why are you on a libertarian discussion site? wink

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 19:32
Ed wrote:
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Do all Scottish workers think alike, have the same needs, and the same outlook?

Of course not, but that's not what I'm saying. Scottish workers' interests are that of higher wages, shorter hours, better benefits, better social housing etc etc etc. All of this is NOT in the boss class' interests as it would cost them money and as such are reluctant to give it up. Gains made by the working classes throughout history have been fought for, not kindly handed down i.e. trade unions, the vote, council housing etc.

who is this 'boss class' and where can I find them?

[b]What about a Scottish working class person who 1. earns a high wage as a plumber in central Edinburgh, coining in a huge wedge from middle/upper class property owners 2. only works the hours he/she wants as a self employed person (as a self employed person running his own small business is he therefore exploiting his own wage-surplus, incidentally?) 3. owns his own house having bought it from Thatcher in the 1980s? How do you make him care about the person on an estate in a shitty houise which the council can;t be arsed to maintain, who deosn;t have a trade and who can;t find a job?

I think he should care about the unlucky person stuck at home, but you'll have an awful tough job convincing mr/ms. plumber of the case, I'd fancy.

The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
A free federation of self-governing "communities" which met to take decisions affecting all, would be what I wanted to work towards. It may well be a tall order (although not as tall an order as a revolution & subsequent libertarian utopia), but it's my view.

Yeah, its my view too. However, I don't think that any government will ever just allow it to happen, or kindly hand down direct democracy to us lowley proles. We need to organise from below, creating our own structures within our communities that take power away from central government. Some recent examples of this would be the community survival programmes of the Black Panthers and the People's Clinic in Italy. There's more but I can't think off the top of my head.

No government does just allow anything to happen, it's true. However most governments- other than those which rely on the military to prop them up- respect the overwhelming majority vote of an electorate. cf. Churchill being turfed out in 1945 paving the way for the creation of the welfare state by Attlee, Bevan & Labour. After independence it would be easier to make the case for further and extensive devolution of power away from the centre- as there would be a debate about possible governemntal systems. At the moment, within a broader UK- there's no debate. Whitehall calls the shots, the Edinburgh parliament and cardiff Assembly is seen as an expensive and wasteful talking shop, and the European instituions are widely hated. people have given up/can't be arsed because they don't think their views count.

The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
The defintion for me is that a Scot is whoever chooses to make their life and settle here.

So if I had a girlfriend who moved to Scotland and I went to live with her, would I become Scottish? And then if we break up after 25 years and I move just over the border to Newcastle, do I become English again? But we had a kid and he stays half the time in Scotland and half the time with me, what's his nationality? I wasn't even born in England, but I've lived here all my life, am I English now? A mate of mine was born in Scotland, but grew up in England, what's he?

Your national identity isn't just a matter of geography and place of birth- it's a matter of cultural background, feelings of belonging to communit(ies) and, increasingly, personal choice. In the scenario you outline, whether you chose to regard yourself as English or Scots would be entirely a matter for you. Why would anyone other than you & your family & friends care- and what has your scenario got to do with the merits or otherwise of an independent Scotland?

The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
where is 'Raenaedigael'?

On the isle of Harris. For a national liberationist you don't know much about your nation! wink

True. smile I don't know the islands at all, a gap I intend to rectify soon.

The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Why should 'class' inspire any more loyalty than 'nation'? You'll have to do more than say one is bollocks and the other isn't to convince me. There also seems to be little 'mythical' about Scotland, England, Wales, and Ireland, unless you know different.

Re 'mythical': All nations are mythical in that they are based on a mythical past. Why was the Scottish border halted where it was and not 100 miles south? what is it about the Scottish that means they are different from the English? Is it the genetics? Do they look different (of course, if the Pakistani bloke is Scottish then looks obviously don't come into it)? Is it culture? What? Why are Scots so different from the English (or Welsh or Irish for that matter) that they need their own bit of land? 2000 years ago, 'Scotland', 'the Scottish' etc wasn't even a concept. Humans have been around for shitloads longer than that (is hundreds of thousands of years? Or millions even? I'm not sure, science not my thing!). So why the fuck does it matter a shit?

Sure- there are elements of 'myth' in the validating narratives that characterise modern day nations. There's the Finnish Kalevala, the Estonian Kalevipoeg, and, here, well....Sir Walter fucking Scott, braveheart, the Bruce, William Wallace, Rob Roy....

As to your point re: the border, well, I imagine it was firmed up as a result of clan skirmishes, the movements of people north and south, patterns of agriculture...you seem to be trying to make a point about the arbitary nature of some borders. That's undoubtedly true again. That fact alone doesn't mean you can wish away the nations that exist now in 2005, or the fact that they are important things to many people.

You're barking up the wrong tree with genetics/appearance, by the way. that's the quack preserve of racial purists which is absolutely nothing to so with my position. In all honesty I doubt I've spent more than five minutes wondering what the differences are between the English and the scots, because I don't care. I lived in England for ten years and there is a strong cultural difference however, in educational experience, language....

...anyway, my case is that Scots would govern Scotland better from Edinburgh than from Whitehall, and the possibility of evolving further improvements to systmes of governemnt is raised by being closer to that seat of power.

In short, 'difference' isn't the basis upon which I would make a case for scots independnece.

Class loyalty however, is very real in that it comes out of the genuine experiences of workers internationally. Your boss is your boss no matter where they're from and as such their interests are opposite to yours. Your workmate is your workmate no matter where they're from. In fact, a Tesco worker in Hungary is a worker, just the same as an coal miner in South Africe is a worker, just the same as a call centre worker in Slough is a worker. We all have to work for a wage, and that wage is a fraction of the profit WE produced and the boss took. Only by struggling together, as a class, can we get back more of that profit and (in my opinion) take over the running of society completely.

What is class loyalty and where do you see it adhered to in large numbers today? I mst admit that I can't for the life of me see a shred of class loyalty in the contemporary UK. That's why i fear it's a bleak outlook from your point of view (not that its much less bleak from mine, either.)

I work at a university. I get on very well with my boss. I don;t 'produce' anything- other than the maximum number of good grades I can squeeze from my students and hopefully passing some interesting things onto them. Strictly speaking I too am a worker...I'm afriad that i don;t feel very exploited, though.

Not that that's to belittle the experiences of those who do, mind. I'm at a loss as to how a strike in sympathy by fishermen in peterhead will improve the conditions of striking Tesco owned farmers in Zambia, though.

Anyway, gotta eat my dinner. Jacket potatoes. English enoguh for you?

grin

lol- creamy Maris Pipers from Suffolk i hope- enjoy....

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Volin
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Aug 16 2005 19:38
Quote:
True. I don't know the islands at all, a gap I intend to rectify soon.

People in the islands tend to make up a distinct cultural entity in many ways, does that constitute a seperate nation?

Quote:
I believe Scots would make a better fist of running Scotland for themselves

How do "Scots" rule themselves?

Quote:
who is this 'boss class' and where can I find them?

roll eyes

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 19:41
Volin wrote:
...just a waste if time that subtracts from the real issues of working people and any true improvement of our lives and society.

“Nationalism was so perfectly suited to its

double task, the domestication of workers and

the despoliation of aliens, that it appealed to

everyone - everyone, that is, who wielded or

aspired to wield a portion of capital.”

I know I've missed a lot of the discussion, but do you recognise the existence of classes and economic inequality? Do you think this should be changed? Why are you on a libertarian discussion site? :wink:

The important word of your first sentence for me was 'if'. I don't think the case proven and I'm not yet convinced by the opinion of various people that class is absolutely central to everything.

I recognise the existence of economic equality, naturally. Whether it's reasonable to herd the global population of x billions into three or four 'classes' (the definitions of which are based partially on Marxist theory and the gazillion interpretations of the development of world history since Marx's time) as a political response to economic equality, and solutions found on that basis, well, I'm not convinced either.

I'm on this site because I got with one or two of the admins on another board which I subsequently left. Other than bodach, I've got on pretty well with everyone here too in my short time posting. Don't worry, I have no intention of trolling discussions I don't know anything about, or intervening in theoretical debates to disrupt them.

In fact I had planned to confine myself to the 'what are you reading' thread on culture, but this is a subject I feel passionately about, and, in my opinion, many people in this debate risk misunderstanding because of their easy acceptance of political cliche and unexamined falsehood.

That's more than enough about me, though. smile

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 19:43
revol68 wrote:
LOL you are a fucking academic?????????????!!!!!!!!

Sorry but if you can get a job in a fucking uni with your intellectual clout, then im definately doing a fucking masters!

I'd spend your money on something else if I were you.

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 19:45
Volin wrote:
Quote:
True. I don't know the islands at all, a gap I intend to rectify soon.

People in the islands tend to make up a distinct cultural entity in many ways, does that constitute a seperate nation?

I'm aware of that. It's a facile point to suggest that the members of the Harrogate Railway Society might constitute themselves as a 'nation'.

Quote:
I believe Scots would make a better fist of running Scotland for themselves

How do "Scots" rule themselves?

err...by leaving the United Kingdom and taking it from there?

Quote:
who is this 'boss class' and where can I find them?

roll eyes

roll eyes

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 19:48

Spelling tends to come before grammar, doesn't it?

With a mind as closed as yours I wonder what you expect you'll gain from a masters. After all, you know it all already, so why waste any further time?

roll eyes

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Bodach gun bhrigh
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Aug 16 2005 19:49
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Quote:
The 'universal nature of nationalism' sounds very nice, but means fuck all in practice. If you can't see, or pig headedly won't acknowledge, the qualitative difference between Nazism and present day Scottish nationalism then it doesn't really matter if you've been 'surrounded by nationalism all your life'- whatever that's supposed to mean.

No it's based on an analysis of the state, all states promote Nationalism to further their own ends, and all states promote, or would promote racism if they could get away with it. I think the difference between Nazism and present day Scottish nationalism is a quantative difference, not qualitative.

Quote:
And the SNP don't represent a boss class?

eh? last time I looked they were a political party. You're now claiming that the SNP represent a new strata in class analysis, alongside proletariat, bourgeoisie, and aristocracy? confused

No they represent a boss class who they rely on to get elected, and who they will aid and abet once they get into power. Ultimately, becoming said boss class.

Quote:
i)Anyone who proclaims Scottish Nationalism has an irrational fetish, a longing for an outdated nation-state that would only repress working people if it were reinstated.

For all your insistent whines that nation states are 'outdated', they seem to have outlasted the USSRs warped interpretation of 'Marxism', and the rather feeble attempts of 'anarchists' to re-order the world. Go figure....

No, I said Scotland is outdated.

Quote:
ii)No politician gives up their power voluntarily. So your claim that it would benefit ordinary people if we became independent is pish.

[b]If this were true then the British Empire would still exist, and power wouldn't have voluntarily been ceded to upwards of a dozen African states, Hong Kong's sovereignty handed to the Chinese, de Klerk wouldn't have sat down with Mandela to end apartheid, etc....

Yes, but the British government terrorised those colonies, so they could maintain a system of economic imperialism on them after independence. Mark Curtis's book, Web of Deceit is very good for this

Because I believe Scots would make a better fist of running Scotland for themselves. That belief doesn't necessitate a hatred of the English, however much you might wish it did.

But they wouldn't, hand anyone a bureaucracy and they'll become corrupt, simple politics, I'm afraid.

Quote:

because you've been talking out your arse for the last ten pages. Forgive me for failing to be wowed and impressed.

No, I've been talking sense for the last ten pages, you just haven't been listening.

No, based on observation of the real world, wherever Nations get seperated from previous larger nation states, then there is an upsurge in Racism. You can deny this and say it's conjecture, just like you denied that wars in the past have been founded on Nationalism, but I think the facts bear me out.

Quote:
so, er, Estonia and Lithuania has witnessed, erm, an upsurge of racism? East Timoreans are racist towards Indonesians? Norwegians were racist towards Swedes in 1905? Icelanders were racist towards danes in 1944? The facts you select may bear part of your case out- unfortunately the facts you omit rather mitigate against it.

I think in all of these cases there was an upsurge of racism.

Quote:
If you can produce the quote where I denied that relapolitik has any effect in Scotland I shall retract it. Regrettably, your difficulty with basic reading comprehension seems to have led to your imagining what I think- yet again.

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pingtiao
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Aug 16 2005 19:49

don't be a prick revol.

And i'm glad you are posting on this thread, Good Soldier, if only to have libertarian arguments against nationalism actually argue against nationalism-as-it-is rather than nationalism-as-it-easier-to-dismiss

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 19:51

You'll have to work a lot longer (and pass your expensive Masters) before you get to that position, sweetheart.

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Bodach gun bhrigh
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Aug 16 2005 20:02
Bodach gun bhrigh wrote:
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Quote:
If you can produce the quote where I denied that relapolitik has any effect in Scotland I shall retract it. Regrettably, your difficulty with basic reading comprehension seems to have led to your imagining what I think- yet again.

Well you did say I was being too cynical, but I prefer to be cynical and have my eyes open than put my faith in toadies

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 20:04
Bodach gun bhrigh wrote:
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Quote:
The 'universal nature of nationalism' sounds very nice, but means fuck all in practice. If you can't see, or pig headedly won't acknowledge, the qualitative difference between Nazism and present day Scottish nationalism then it doesn't really matter if you've been 'surrounded by nationalism all your life'- whatever that's supposed to mean.

No it's based on an analysis of the state, all states promote Nationalism to further their own ends, and all states promote, or would promote racism if they could get away with it. I think the difference between Nazism and present day Scottish nationalism is a quantative difference, not qualitative.

Why would all states 'promote racism if they could get away with it'?

In that case, what's stopping most of the states of western Europe propagating an overt racist policy now? Who would intervene to change it and under what circumstances?

As for states 'promoting nationalism'- has it ever struck you that British nationalism and Scottish self-determination might, just, be different things aiming at fundamentally different political ends?

There are fundamental differences between National Socialism and present day civic, democratic, non-violent nationalisms which I can't be arsed to go into right now. Tom Nairn and Christopher harvie are good on the subject if you can be arsed.

Quote:
And the SNP don't represent a boss class?

eh? last time I looked they were a political party. You're now claiming that the SNP represent a new strata in class analysis, alongside proletariat, bourgeoisie, and aristocracy? confused

No they represent a boss class who they rely on to get elected, and who they will aid and abet once they get into power. Ultimately, becoming said boss class.

Again this is presented with a weary inevitability as though by some weird unwritten law pre-ordained and sanctioned. I don't share your pessimism.

Quote:
i)Anyone who proclaims Scottish Nationalism has an irrational fetish, a longing for an outdated nation-state that would only repress working people if it were reinstated.

For all your insistent whines that nation states are 'outdated', they seem to have outlasted the USSRs warped interpretation of 'Marxism', and the rather feeble attempts of 'anarchists' to re-order the world. Go figure....

No, I said Scotland is outdated.

[b]Ok then. What basis do you have for your claim?

Quote:
ii)No politician gives up their power voluntarily. So your claim that it would benefit ordinary people if we became independent is pish.

If this were true then the British Empire would still exist, and power wouldn't have voluntarily been ceded to upwards of a dozen African states, Hong Kong's sovereignty handed to the Chinese, de Klerk wouldn't have sat down with Mandela to end apartheid, etc....

Yes, but the British government terrorised those colonies, so they could maintain a system of economic imperialism on them after independence. Mark Curtis's book, Web of Deceit is very good for this

I shall have a look at it, thanks. However you did claim that no politician ever gives uop power voluntarily...this book may prove me wrong, but how do you account for the examples of South Africa and Hong Kong?

Because I believe Scots would make a better fist of running Scotland for themselves. That belief doesn't necessitate a hatred of the English, however much you might wish it did.

But they wouldn't, hand anyone a bureaucracy and they'll become corrupt, simple politics, I'm afraid.

we're just not going to agree on this-fair enough.

Quote:

because you've been talking out your arse for the last ten pages. Forgive me for failing to be wowed and impressed.

No, I've been talking sense for the last ten pages, you just haven't been listening.

i could make the same claim in reverse.

No, based on observation of the real world, wherever Nations get seperated from previous larger nation states, then there is an upsurge in Racism. You can deny this and say it's conjecture, just like you denied that wars in the past have been founded on Nationalism, but I think the facts bear me out.

that's a confident claim...to back it up i;d like some proof from three randomly selected examples:

1. Icelandic independence in 1944

2. Lithuanian independence in 1991

3. Evidence of 'anti-Danish racism' currently on the faroes, which is negotiating independece from Denmark.

I shall be genuinely fascinated if you come up with anything verifiable (and not another of your mates who remarkably agrees with everything you say)

By the way, where did I deny that 'wars in the past have been founded in nationalism'? This is yet another example of your tiresome insistence on attributing claims to me which I have never made.

Quote:
so, er, Estonia and Lithuania has witnessed, erm, an upsurge of racism? East Timoreans are racist towards Indonesians? Norwegians were racist towards Swedes in 1905? Icelanders were racist towards danes in 1944? The facts you select may bear part of your case out- unfortunately the facts you omit rather mitigate against it.

I think in all of these cases there was an upsurge of racism.

Evidence? or is this another one of your fact-free hunches?

Quote:
If you can produce the quote where I denied that relapolitik has any effect in Scotland I shall retract it. Regrettably, your difficulty with basic reading comprehension seems to have led to your imagining what I think- yet again.

still waiting for this quote, by the way...I hope you won;t neglect to find it....

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 20:07
revol68 wrote:
where you work, i could do my masters there and not only show you up in class but accuss you of sexual harrasment!

You'll need to learn to spell (or at least use a spellchecker) before you have any chance of getting into where I work. if you can point to where you've 'shown me up' in this discussion, I'll be interested to revisit it. Now grow the fuck up.

Incidentally, where I work is none of your bloody business.

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Lazy Riser
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Aug 16 2005 20:16

Hi

I should save this for "+ insults" really, but seeing as we're all having some fun...

Quote:
who is this 'boss class' and where can I find them?

Rows 2 and 4 of the LRTTC, obviously.

Love

Chris

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Aug 16 2005 20:23
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Bodach gun bhrigh wrote:

Why would all states 'promote racism if they could get away with it'?

Because it divides people and helps the bosses maintain control.

Quote:
In that case, what's stopping most of the states of western Europe propagating an overt racist policy now? Who would intervene to change it and under what circumstances?

Aren't they doing that already? Aren't most countries in Western Europe pursuing racist asylum policies?

Quote:
As for states 'promoting nationalism'- has it ever struck you that British nationalism and Scottish self-determination might, just, be different things aiming at fundamentally different political ends?

No

Quote:
There are fundamental differences between National Socialism and present day civic, democratic, non-violent nationalisms which I can't be arsed to go into right now. Tom Nairn and Christopher harvie are good on the subject if you can be arsed.

No, I can't

Quote:
And the SNP don't represent a boss class?

eh? last time I looked they were a political party. You're now claiming that the SNP represent a new strata in class analysis, alongside proletariat, bourgeoisie, and aristocracy? confused

No they represent a boss class who they rely on to get elected, and who they will aid and abet once they get into power. Ultimately, becoming said boss class.

Again this is presented with a weary inevitability as though by some weird unwritten law pre-ordained and sanctioned. I don't share your pessimism.

Then you're very naive

Quote:
i)Anyone who proclaims Scottish Nationalism has an irrational fetish, a longing for an outdated nation-state that would only repress working people if it were reinstated.

For all your insistent whines that nation states are 'outdated', they seem to have outlasted the USSRs warped interpretation of 'Marxism', and the rather feeble attempts of 'anarchists' to re-order the world. Go figure....

No, I said Scotland is outdated.

[b]Ok then. What basis do you have for your claim?

It's just northern england now, everyone speaks English, watches English telly, buys English music, you can't deny it, we're inseperably linked

Quote:
ii)No politician gives up their power voluntarily. So your claim that it would benefit ordinary people if we became independent is pish.

If this were true then the British Empire would still exist, and power wouldn't have voluntarily been ceded to upwards of a dozen African states, Hong Kong's sovereignty handed to the Chinese, de Klerk wouldn't have sat down with Mandela to end apartheid, etc....

Yes, but the British government terrorised those colonies, so they could maintain a system of economic imperialism on them after independence. Mark Curtis's book, Web of Deceit is very good for this

Quote:
I shall have a look at it, thanks. However you did claim that no politician ever gives uop power voluntarily...this book may prove me wrong, but how do you account for the examples of South Africa and Hong Kong?

South Africa was only turned over to Africans on the basis they maintain neo-liberalism. It's in that book too.

No, based on observation of the real world, wherever Nations get seperated from previous larger nation states, then there is an upsurge in Racism. You can deny this and say it's conjecture, just like you denied that wars in the past have been founded on Nationalism, but I think the facts bear me out.

that's a confident claim...to back it up i;d like some proof from three randomly selected examples:

1. Icelandic independence in 1944

2. Lithuanian independence in 1991

3. Evidence of 'anti-Danish racism' currently on the faroes, which is negotiating independece from Denmark.

I shall be genuinely fascinated if you come up with anything verifiable (and not another of your mates who remarkably agrees with everything you say)

Isn't Lithuania toughening up it's asylum policies, and don't they hate the Russians?

The other two I know nothing about, but I doubt it was done merely for altruistic motives.

Quote:
[b]If you can produce the quote where I denied that relapolitik has any effect in Scotland I shall retract it. Regrettably, your difficulty with basic reading comprehension seems to have led to your imagining what I think- yet again.

still waiting for this quote, by the way...I hope you won;t neglect to find it....

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 20:30

So, if this racist policy would be so effective in helping these nebulous 'bosses maintain control', why isn't it happening?

We're not talking about 'racist asylum policies' yet...you've made the claim that racism is an effective tool to divide 'the workers'. there's a zero evidence pattern re-asserting itself here, sadly.

Your response to the three examples could charitably be described as risible, by the way. On two you 'asuume it wasn;t done for altruistic reasons' and in the third there's some vague wafting nonsense about Lithuanians hating Russians.

But, hey, you can't be arsed reading around the subject or finding out more about it....must be great when you just, er, 'intuitvely' know all your hunches are right.

As to your point about 'Scotland just being northern England now'- that's what you might wish for, but it ain't my experience.

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Volin
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Aug 16 2005 20:31
Quote:
I'm aware of that. It's a facile point to suggest that the members of the Harrogate Railway Society might constitute themselves as a 'nation'.

Isn't the idea of a cultural nation then an absurdity, and that in fact all nation-states are made up of a number of "peoples" and "cultures" united (well, in nearly every example forced) together under a man-made, top-down class institution? I come from the Glasgow area, but have lived for the most part of my life in the Highlands and my sense of cultural identity is mixed and twisted. Like most people where I come from, or in the Shetlands or Orkney more famously, being governed from Edinburgh doesn't seem mean anything to me. Then again neither does being governed anywhere...

Quote:
"How do "Scots" rule themselves?"

err...by leaving the United Kingdom and taking it from there?

But you see, Scots wouldn't be ruling themselves. Britons do not rule themselves in Britain and the Americans do not rule themselves in America. Who does the ruling, economically and politically everywhere?...that is in a capitalist nation-state.

Quote:
I recognise the existence of economic equality, naturally. Whether it's reasonable to herd the global population of x billions into three or four 'classes'

It's existence! You mean its necessity, surely? I'm not Marxist, it's a basic socialist concept that "there is no one humanity, but a humanity of classes". That we're stratified in terms of wealth and power and that there are groupings of people with similar living conditions and needs. That's class. This is an unjust situation because the majority of people are on the bottom of the social pyramid (in our view anyway, because we tend to be part of that). You mentioned the "richer" plumber, sure due to labour scarcity wages are hiked for such tradesmen. But by definition they're an exception and the vast majority of people do not have such fortunate employment (well, better wages isn't everything). Disparities of oppertunity and access to the "fruits of civilisation" are all too real, poverty and powerlessness are the norm for the masses in capitalist society. This system cant be reformed so how does economic equality come into your beliefs?

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Bodach gun bhrigh
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Aug 16 2005 20:32
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Bodach gun bhrigh wrote:
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:

By the way, where did I deny that 'wars in the past have been founded in nationalism'? This is yet another example of your tiresome insistence on attributing claims to me which I have never made.[/b]

Take the entire history of the world, then maybe the 20th century, think of all the wars that have been needlessly fought over property, land and resources, then think of the fact that all those wars required Nationalism to progress. They required Nationalism for all those workers and peasants to follow their power-hungry racist leaders to war. Now think of those who died, mostly workers/peasants. Now look at Scottish History, look at Scottish kings, would you invite any of them to dinner? Let them look after the kids? I may be going out on a limb here, but weren't they all ruthless dictators? I am talking about the fairly distant past, but look at modern kings in all countries, are they not characterised by a desire for power and wealth? Would not the situation be the same in an independent Scotland? With dictators or sleazy politicians instead of kings. Or would it, in your Scotto-Utopia, be a hippy paradise where local swains treat everyone with good grace while tugging their forelocks to their local generalissimo?

This is yet more conjecture and a deeply one eyed reading of history.

I'm sure Scottish Kings were horrors, each in their own way- you'll note I haven't defended them, anywhere. I want a Scottish Republic.

That nationalism has been used as an excuse for many C20th wars does not make it a necessary precondition for those wars.

Quote:
If you can produce the quote where I denied that relapolitik has any effect in Scotland I shall retract it. Regrettably, your difficulty with basic reading comprehension seems to have led to your imagining what I think- yet again.

still waiting for this quote, by the way...I hope you won;t neglect to find it....

Working on it

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Bodach gun bhrigh
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Aug 16 2005 20:38
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
So, if this racist policy would be so effective in helping these nebulous 'bosses maintain control', why isn't it happening?

We're not talking about 'racist asylum policies' yet...you've made the claim that racism is an effective tool to divide 'the workers'. there's a zero evidence pattern re-asserting itself here, sadly.

Don't racist asylum policies count as racism?

Quote:
Your response to the three examples could charitably be described as risible, by the way. On two you 'asuume it wasn;t done for altruistic reasons' and in the third there's some vague wafting nonsense about Lithuanians hating Russians.

So, I'm not the one justifying chauvinism, but please provide evidence that Lithuanians love the Russians and haven't got racist asylum policies and Iceland and the faroes love the Danes, I'll be glad to read it.

Quote:
But, hey, you can't be arsed reading around the subject or finding out more about it....must be great when you just, er, 'intuitvely' know all your hunches are right.

It certainly is

Quote:
As to your point about 'Scotland just being northern England now'- that's what you might wish for, but it ain't my experience.

No, it's the truth.

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Bodach gun bhrigh
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Aug 16 2005 20:40
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:

You'll need to learn to spell (or at least use a spellchecker) before you have any chance of getting into where I work. if you can point to where you've 'shown me up' in this discussion, I'll be interested to revisit it. Now grow the fuck up.

Tad ironic, considering your spelling's so atrocious

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Bodach gun bhrigh
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Aug 16 2005 20:45
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Bodach gun bhrigh wrote:
1. Hmm, because it will, don't you pay attention to the world around you? We're talking realpolitik here, they won't give up their power just because they're Scottish. And if they say they will, you should be really, really sceptical, you'll be saying we should believe everything politicians say next.

1. Well, I prefer a bit of belief in the possibility that things may get better at some point. It seems to me a little more bearable than the default setting of world weary cynicism.

There's the other one.

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 20:46
Volin wrote:
Quote:
I'm aware of that. It's a facile point to suggest that the members of the Harrogate Railway Society might constitute themselves as a 'nation'.

Isn't the idea of a cultural nation then an absurdity, and that in fact all nation-states are made up of a number of "peoples" and "cultures" united (well, in nearly every example forced) together under a man-made, top-down class institution? I come from the Glasgow area, but have lived for the most part of my life in the Highlands and my sense of cultural identity is mixed and twisted. Like most people where I come from, or in the Shetlands or Orkney more famously, being governed from Edinburgh doesn't seem mean anything to me. Then again neither does being governed anywhere...

If I was arguing for a nation of compulsory Burns nights at secondary school and flag waving sessions on the sports field, because i assumed that everyone in Scotland regardless of background would have the same response and interest to it simply because they were Scots, then yes, you're right, a 'cultural nation' would be absurd.

That's not what I'm arguing for.

Like you I've lived all over because of patterns of study and work. Like you my sense of cultural identity is twisted and mixed. I've yet to meet anyone whose sense of cultural identity is fixed and unchanging over the course of their life.

Our difference lies in my not agreeing with your conception of a nation as a'top down class institution'.

Quote:
"How do "Scots" rule themselves?"

err...by leaving the United Kingdom and taking it from there?

But you see, Scots wouldn't be ruling themselves. Britons do not rule themselves in Britain and the Americans do not rule themselves in America. Who does the ruling, economically and politically everywhere?...that is in a capitalist nation-state.

that's a moot point.

Quote:
I recognise the existence of economic equality, naturally. Whether it's reasonable to herd the global population of x billions into three or four 'classes'

It's existence! You mean its necessity, surely? I'm not Marxist, it's a basic socialist concept that "there is no one humanity, but a humanity of classes". That we're stratified in terms of wealth and power and that there are groupings of people with similar living conditions and needs. That's class. This is an unjust situation because the majority of people are on the bottom of the social pyramid (in our view anyway, because we tend to be part of that). You mentioned the "richer" plumber, sure due to labour scarcity wages are hiked for such tradesmen. But by definition they're an exception and the vast majority of people do not have such fortunate employment (well, better wages isn't everything). Disparities of oppertunity and access to the "fruits of civilisation" are all too real, poverty and powerlessness are the norm for the masses in capitalist society. This system cant be reformed so how does economic equality come into your beliefs?

why can't this sytem be reformed? Why is a revolution inevitable if there is to be any meaningful change? There may well be groupings of people with similar economic needs and aspirations- how do you motivate them to engage in solidarity and struggle in a materialist consumer society where people are atomised and set apart from one another?

How do you present a credible set of reasons for the revolution you want to see if none of you can agree on what's going to happen afterwards? moreover, if you're successful after the inevitable civil war, social breakdown and large numbers of deaths, how do you defend what you have if none of you can agree as to what 'it' is in the first place?

In my experience, most people simply want to be left alone to get on with their lives the best they can. My point? You have to give them a great set of reasons for them to want to change things, and overcome the debilitating and corrosive cynicism that there is about all political cultures, including the 'cobweb left' kaleidoscope of 1917 nostalgiacs and the Heinz 57 varieties of anarchism.

Hence in my view an independent Scotland may be a small step towards changing things for the better. Granted it won't be terribly significant in the wider scheme of things- most people in the world have only heard of Scotland because of either whisky or it's stultifyingly atrocious football team- but in my view it would be a small step forward in a small corner of the world to things being marginally better than they are now.

How about that for a rallying cry. :(

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 20:50
Bodach gun bhrigh wrote:
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
So, if this racist policy would be so effective in helping these nebulous 'bosses maintain control', why isn't it happening?

We're not talking about 'racist asylum policies' yet...you've made the claim that racism is an effective tool to divide 'the workers'. there's a zero evidence pattern re-asserting itself here, sadly.

Don't racist asylum policies count as racism?

of course they do. You've introduced the idea of states using racism as an overt policy to control its population. One policy on who is allowed to enter a country does not equal a racist policy designed to keep the entire population of the host country under control.

Quote:
Your response to the three examples could charitably be described as risible, by the way. On two you 'asuume it wasn;t done for altruistic reasons' and in the third there's some vague wafting nonsense about Lithuanians hating Russians.

So, I'm not the one justifying chauvinism, but please provide evidence that Lithuanians love the Russians and haven't got racist asylum policies and Iceland and the faroes love the Danes, I'll be glad to read it.

It doesn't work like that- you've made the claim that all independence movements lead to an upsurge in 'racism', it's up to you to provide the evidence to back it up. I'm still waiting, although I fancy it'll be a long wait.

Quote:
But, hey, you can't be arsed reading around the subject or finding out more about it....must be great when you just, er, 'intuitvely' know all your hunches are right.

It certainly is

Quote:
As to your point about 'Scotland just being northern England now'- that's what you might wish for, but it ain't my experience.

No, it's the truth.

As to your last two 'observations', I'll leave you to nurse your delusions to keep them warm.

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Bodach gun bhrigh
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Aug 16 2005 20:52
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:

How about that for a rallying cry. sad

Pretty wanky

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 20:52
Bodach gun bhrigh wrote:
The Good Soldier Svejk wrote:
Bodach gun bhrigh wrote:
1. Hmm, because it will, don't you pay attention to the world around you? We're talking realpolitik here, they won't give up their power just because they're Scottish. And if they say they will, you should be really, really sceptical, you'll be saying we should believe everything politicians say next.

1. Well, I prefer a bit of belief in the possibility that things may get better at some point. It seems to me a little more bearable than the default setting of world weary cynicism.

There's the other one.

LOL- where do I deny that realpolitik is a factor in contemporary Scottish politics in this quote?

Your much vaunted 'intuitions' must be suffering from a little interference tonight, old boy. smile

The Good Soldie...
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Aug 16 2005 20:59
revol68 wrote:
why would it be better though? What would materially change for people? They would still have to go to workin some god awful call centre? or escape the grinding boredom of life under the rule of the commdoity by drug abuse, or if they're lucky they might get to work for the a new expansive Scottish tourist board. Mean while when the "great" results they hoped to achieve through independence fail, they will be left even morecyncial, atomised and burnt out.

As to material change...

1. policy decision making closer to home

2. policy decision makers better known by having to live in the communities they work in and be subject to instant recall by those communites if they do nothing

3. Focused attack on long term structural and social problems, properly funded, administered by those who've kept going for years on zero Uk govt. investment (locally run addicition programmes, immediate end to pisspoor care in the privatised community schemes, etc)

As to the rest of it- you must have a great crystal ball to be able to predict all those things. Or an over-active imagination. or your evening hubbly-bubbly's disagreed with you.

I must say, for such a boldly self-proclaimed intellectual polymath, I expected more.