Maybe not so daft

corbyn_leonardIt is important to understand what is going on here. And it really doesn’t have anything to do with zero-hours contracts. Richard Leonard is no more embarrassed by his rank hypocrisy on this matter than by his previous gaffes on subjects such as water and railways and health. That’s because his utterances are not about policy at all.

As Gordon Archer has pointed out on Twitter, Leonard’s strategy is to blur the distinction between British Labour’s Westminster and Holyrood policy lines. As Gordon says,

“This blurring of the lines is about getting Labour’s Westminster vote back from the SNP by confusing what the Scottish Parliament and the Scottish Government can and cannot do, and is and is not responsible for.”

This is perfectly correct, as far as it goes. But the other strand of this strategy is just as worth being aware of. It’s not only about undermining the SNP administration by insinuating that it is failing to do things that it has the power to do. It is also about obscuring the distinctiveness of Scotland’s political culture by creating the impression that progressive policies can emanate from Westminster just as well as from Holyrood.

Leonard’s rhetoric is not simply the dumb partisan politicking it may first appear. It derives from and feeds into the larger propaganda effort on behalf of ‘One Nation’ British Nationalism. It is at least as much about casting aspersions on the legitimacy and effectiveness of the Scottish Parliament as it is about attacking party political rivals.

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About Peter A Bell

Thinker. Listener. Talker. Reader. Writer. No attitude immutable. No conclusion final. No opinion humble. Lifelong campaigner for the restoration of Scotland's independence.
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5 Responses to Maybe not so daft

  1. Alan J. Magnus-Bennett says:

    I don’t believe for one minute that the voting population of Scotland are as dumb as Leonard may or may not be. Whatever he states in Holyrood will be seen as yet another piece of misinformation as transparent as the space around us and will be either ignored or cause the people to break out into hysterical laughter.


  2. Ogilvy Webster says:

    Now that we have social media ,we are not so easy to fool ???.


  3. Alan and Ogilvy are right as far as younger and more politically aware social media users are concerned, but an awful lot of people don’t use much or any FB and Twitter, and a lot of older people read the Daily Mail and listen to the BBC. Nicola Sturgeon can ridicule Richard Leonard in the parliament, but what gets reported in the MSM? — certainly not the ridicule. If we’re not so easy to fool, collectively, what happened in 2014!?


  4. If Peter’s analysis is correct, then Project Fear 2 has started and is a lot more subtle than first time round. They know they won’t get away with crude bare-faced lying so easily this time, so they’ve probably employed a team of psychologists to tell them how to get under people’s skins. (I’m not joking by the way.)


  5. Brawday says:

    The No people speak to the No people and the Yessers speak to the Yessers and thus fool themselves they are stronger than they really are. We need to speak to and inform the Noes and the Maybes not with passion but with calm and balanced reason. Meantime I fear that Apathy Rules and many will be happy with the status quo as long as they can still settle down to their favourite TV.


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