James Kelly makes a very important point. The SNP – and by an association that no sane, sober and sensible person will now deny, Scotland’s independence movement – must win decisively. The British nationalists, on the other hand, need only some small thing which can be spun by the media as a ‘blow to Nicola Sturgeon’.
But there is a possible advantage in this for the SNP and the Yes movement in that the situation is very easy to understand and convey to the public. It should be fairly easy to impress upon voters the absolute and urgent necessity of setting aside other considerations and voting for the SNP.
The corollary of this, of course, is that they alternative must be clearly spelled out. People must be made aware of what lies in store for Scotland should the British political establishment be able to claim victory over the SNP. Or should they be presented with even the tiniest blip in the party’s electoral performance which can be amplified into a crushing defeat and a major setback for the ‘separatists’.
In the first referendum campaign, The Yes movement became obsessed with being ‘positive’. So much so that many opportunities to attack the anti-independence propaganda were missed. We cannot afford to let that happen again.
Independence must be won from within the British state. Which means that it must be won using the methods that are effective in the context of the British political system. A system which over many years has evolved defences against democratic dissent such as might threaten the structures of power, privilege and patronage which define the British state.
Scotland will break free of the British state only when the people decide to deploy the brute force of an unchallengeable mandate.
The good news is that we only have to win once. The forces of British nationalism have to win every minute of every day. And they are weak.
Now is the time!
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