Sunday, June 27, 2004

Battle of Bannockburn Commemoration 26-06-04

This, almost inevitably, was pathetic. I had made the mistake of going to the first of the two commemorations which happened on Bannockburn field yesterday. The first was by the various organisations of Knights Templar that claims decendency from the dudes who captured the remains of the Second Temple of Jerusalem (now and then Al Aqsa mosque). In reality (in Scotland at least) they were formed by a deluded alcoholic in the 1970s.

Some two hours later, the SNP rally happened. It involved one obscure SNP MEP (member of the european parliament) saying how much he was proud to be an MEP and thanks for coming and avoiding the storms afflicting this years rally. Pathetic. Why?

I went to this rally first in 1992, where a couple of thousand people watched Alex Salmond try and gee the party up following the win by the Conservative Party under John Major (Mr. Grey in Reservoir Dogs, I think...) Then, way back when, the party inspired it's activists and made us all want to go back, willing, able, wanting to fight them again.

We believed, we marched, we leafleted, we became - in essence at least - pilrims and evangelists for Scottish Independence. For one glorious period we attempted to inspire, even myself aged 18 and niave as hell, our countrymen. And we did, we built up the vote, we got people onside. And then, and then, John Swinney became leader. He brough with him an army of sycophants which would've made Chris Evans blush. An army of accountants, deviants and morons who turned us from being an opposition to a temporary annoyance.

I became disheartened, and buoyed by my socialist principles, and joined the Scottish Socialist Party. They believe in independence, they believe in saving my brothers and sisters from the intolerence and poverty that the westminster government has consigned them to.

And so I went to Bannockburn, an SSP member hoping that I had made a mistake, only to realise by the downturn in the rallies importance (70 YEARS in existance, jesus... Only to be proved, so unfortunately, right.

Depressed, and with friends I went to the Tartan Arms in Bannockburn that stormy, cold, ineffably rainy night to see Gaburlunzie and Cairdeies Brig. It only reinspired my confidence.

No one else has faith in the party anymore except the most dedicated. They've lost their fire and other fires have been built elsewhere for independence and it doesn't matter if we win westminster or the Scottish Parliament with the SNP anymore.

So to hell with the SNP leadership, although NOT the membership. While the leadership are more concerned with position than power, the membership, however loyal, remains dedicated. I'm proud of them, but I wish they could see the truth.

Jack McConnell went to America and wore a pin-striped kilt. If we had a decent, original and honourable Scottish National Party we would've said: "No. That is wrong and you are misrepresenting our people." If we had decent politicians, we would have watched them taking the Oath of Allegiance to Elizabeth of England and said: "No. That is wrong and you are misrepresenting our people."

So be it. We fight on.

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