Monday, March 20, 2017

The Greens' vote in favour of an independence referendum is fully consistent with their election manifesto

The latest desperate tactic of unionist politicians and journalists is to attempt to deligitimise the Greens' forthcoming vote in favour of an independence referendum by suggesting that it is somehow a betrayal of their own Holyrood manifesto from last year.  A frequently-heard claim is that the manifesto committed the party to only back a referendum if "one million" signatures had been collected demanding one.  That is completely and utterly untrue.  For one thing, you will search that manifesto in vain for the figure "one million", because it's not mentioned anywhere.  There isn't even a commitment that ANY signatures at all have to be collected - all that is said is that the Greens' "preferred way" of triggering a referendum is by an "appropriate number" of people signing a petition.  The phrase "preferred way" was an implicit acknowledgement that the Greens were going to continue to be a minority party within a parliament elected by proportional representation, and that holding a referendum would therefore require listening to the "preferred ways" of other parties, and then reaching an agreement on which one would be adopted.  Absolutely nothing in the manifesto precludes the Greens from backing an option that is not their own first preference.

As far as the one million figure is concerned, it's true that Patrick Harvie was asked what an "appropriate number" might be, and one million is what he came up with.  But the unionists can't have it both ways - if they're going to treat a manifesto like a sacred text and beat a party over the head with it, they actually do have to look at the words that are contained within it, and not at extraneous material.  There is no definition provided in the manifesto for the phrase "appropriate number" - it could be a million signatures, it could be twelve.  It could certainly be a low enough figure to be achieved comfortably within an afternoon or two.

As I understand it, the Greens' own explanation of their current stance rests primarily on the part of the manifesto that stated in general terms that if a referendum is to happen, it must come about by "the will of the people".  The will of the Scottish people as expressed in the referendum last June is to remain within the European Union, which is no longer compatible with their earlier desire to remain within the United Kingdom.  A second independence referendum is therefore the only way of resolving the incompatibility, and determining what the will of the people actually is when faced with a straight choice between the UK and the EU.  That logic looks watertight to me.

I think most of us would agree that it would have been better if the Green manifesto had used stronger wording, and had explicitly referred to the possibility of an early referendum being triggered by Brexit.  Nevertheless, the wording was more than adequate, for the following reasons -

* It acknowledged the prospect of a second independence referendum, and committed the Greens to campaigning for a Yes vote when it takes place.

* It did not exclude the possibility of a referendum taking place within the 2016-21 parliament.

* It imposed no specific pre-conditions on Green support for a referendum within the 2016-21 parliament.

60 comments:

  1. Come Wednesday,all this nonsense will be irrelevant.
    The unionists will have to put up or shut up.
    They will either have to claim that the Scottish parliament has acted illegally and remove themselves from Holyrood or else accept it as the democratic sovereign right of Scots through their elected representatives and get on with it.


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    Replies
    1. Not true nat si. Get with the programme we are out of the corrupt EU gravy train.

      Delete
    2. GWC2 Fitalass ChristinaDMarch 20, 2017 at 7:30 PM

      The troll calls scottish people "jocks", advocates arming Leave campaigners, claimed Jo Cox's husband was a fascist, uses racial and ethnic slurs, pretends to be Labour (badly) while espousing far-right racist Neo-Nazi hate-speech, praises Theresa May and the tories and displays a perverted poisonous obsession with Scotland's First Minister

      Delete
    3. Tory Expenses Scandal - Because they just can't help themselvesMarch 20, 2017 at 7:32 PM

      C4 News @FactCheck

      Senior Tories have been defending the party over #electionexpenses — but their defence doesn’t stack up:

      https://www.channel4.com/news/factcheck/factcheck-tory-election-expenses-defence-doesnt-stand-up

      Delete
    4. Achtung, der GWC2 fuhrer: Zeig heil! Zeig Heil! Zeig Heil!

      Delete
  2. Theresa Trumpette and her revolting kipper toriesMarch 20, 2017 at 7:33 PM

    John Hamill @sparkyhamill

    My wife is 36k worse off as she is a #Waspi with 6 years of her pension gone thanks to the Tories.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Put her out on the game.

      Delete
    2. GWC2 Fitalass ChristinaDMarch 20, 2017 at 7:59 PM

      The troll calls scottish people "jocks", advocates arming Leave campaigners, claimed Jo Cox's husband was a fascist, uses racial and ethnic slurs, pretends to be Labour (badly) while espousing far-right racist Neo-Nazi hate-speech, praises Theresa May and the tories and displays a perverted poisonous obsession with Scotland's First Minister

      Delete
    3. Tory Expenses Scandal - Because they just can't help themselvesMarch 20, 2017 at 8:00 PM

      Richard Murphy @RichardJMurphy

      May's claim that the Tories cooperated with the Electoral Commission is a straightforward lie according to the Electoral Commission

      Delete
  3. Actually, I always thought the Greens would be a weak link. The kind of people who populate the party are the sort who need something "important" to fill their emptier days, not the kind who fight from the gut. They were always likely to bottle it when it came down to battle. If they do, I hope those idiots who insisted on "maximizing the independence vote" by treating the list as though it were an STV system and cost the SNP its majority are duly proud of themselves.

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    1. Red Tory Blue Tory Yoon ToryMarch 20, 2017 at 7:38 PM

      They'll vote for a Scottish Independence Referendum on the day.

      Which is still far more than can be said for the Red Tories Blue tories or the wee Willie Rennie party.

      Delete
  4. Craig Munro‏ @Fankledoose 2h

    Robin knew ... 34 years ago Robin knew. @scottishlabour @theSNP #brexit #ScotRef

    pic.twitter.com/CA644OGFzG

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  5. They don't even need to vote for it. If they abstain then the SNP manifesto commitment can be implemented by the vote in parliament. That is even if them voting for it was a serious issue for anyone.

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  6. The incompetence of the out of touch westminster establishmentMarch 20, 2017 at 7:41 PM

    YouGov‏Verified account @YouGov 3h hours ago

    69% of Brits think it is wrong that a sitting MP can serve as a newspaper editor

    https://yougov.co.uk/opi/surveys/results#/survey/d7ce07e0-0d53-11e7-a8f4-c6af4c483187/question/f6c064e0-0d53-11e7-80fa-d2249ae0b02d/toplines …

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    Replies
    1. So you are a Brit now Nat si. 2 million Scots voted to remain in the Union but you fascists do not accept the result. Tosser.

      Delete
    2. GWC2 Fitalass ChristinaDMarch 20, 2017 at 7:57 PM

      The troll calls scottish people "jocks", advocates arming Leave campaigners, claimed Jo Cox's husband was a fascist, uses racial and ethnic slurs, pretends to be Labour (badly) while espousing far-right racist Neo-Nazi hate-speech, praises Theresa May and the tories and displays a perverted poisonous obsession with Scotland's First Minister

      Delete
    3. The Great Tory Election Expenses Scandal 2017 £££££££March 20, 2017 at 7:58 PM

      Richard Findlay @RichardFindlay

      Election Expenses: New emails show more members of PM's top team involved

      https://www.channel4.com/news/election-expenses-new-emails-show-more-members-of-pms-top-team-involved … via @Channel4News

      Delete
    4. GWC2 IS Mussolini resurrected and minus marks to his previous body after the partisans dealt with his previous existence.

      Delete
  7. The incompetence of the out of touch westminster establishmentMarch 20, 2017 at 7:59 PM

    YouGov‏Verified account @YouGov 3h hours ago

    69% of Brits think it is wrong that a sitting MP can serve as a newspaper editor

    https://yougov.co.uk/opi/surveys/results#/survey/d7ce07e0-0d53-11e7-a8f4-c6af4c483187/question/f6c064e0-0d53-11e7-80fa-d2249ae0b02d/toplines …

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  8. I think they will vote for it if only because they risk losing support in the Local elections if they don't.

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  9. james, genuine question, about stv
    eg, if you vote snp 1&2, green3, tory4, lab 5, indy6, libdem 7&8
    after 4 rounds, the greens have been eliminated and 2 libdems have been elected, if in round 5, an snp candidate is eliminated and enough snp voters have voted tory 4, it might be enough to get the tory over the quota before the snp candidate does?

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    Replies
    1. Nope. Those votes won't budge from the SNP column until both SNP candidates have been elected or eliminated.

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    2. this is correct, thanks james

      Delete
    3. Please no more of giving votes away,we lost our majority with MORE VOTES how is it possible? easy many folk believed they story of give your vote to another independence party it doesn't work that way.

      Delete
  10. Theresa Trumpette and her revolting kipper toriesMarch 20, 2017 at 8:08 PM

    John Hamill @sparkyhamill

    My wife is 36k worse off as she is a #Waspi with 6 years of her pension gone thanks to the Tories.

    ReplyDelete
  11. we are riding the goat tomorrow all fash Nat sis are welcome to join its not very painful

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. GWC2 impersonator. Can you explain this fetish you have with goats. Sheep I can understand.

      Delete
    2. You're a troll, dearie. You're not interested in rational argument. Any time someone tries to engage you in a rational argument, you screech insults in response. Now run along; those green-ink letters to the Dreary Heil won't write themselves.

      Delete
    3. Mmm...goats and not sheep. Mmm...are you an Aleister Crowley neo-Satanist as well as an unreconstructed Nazi boy?

      Delete
  12. I watched the interactions between Gordon Brewer and Patrick Harvie on the Sunday Politics yesterday. Gordon Brewer interrupted repeatedly such that it took ages for Patrick Harvie to be allowed to state that at the last Scottish Greens' Conference, they had decided to ask for a Section 30 - (asking for referendum). I've thought, many times, that Brewer interrupts far too much. He's not a very good interviewer at all. He spends to much time talking and not enough listening. In fact, I might just let the BBC know my views on this.

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    Replies
    1. Gordon Brewer does get on yer goat sometimes.

      Delete
    2. GWC2 Fitalass ChristinaDMarch 20, 2017 at 11:18 PM

      The troll calls scottish people "jocks", advocates arming Leave campaigners, claimed Jo Cox's husband was a fascist, uses racial and ethnic slurs, pretends to be Labour (badly) while espousing far-right racist Neo-Nazi hate-speech, praises Theresa May and the tories and displays a perverted poisonous obsession with Scotland's First Minister

      Delete
    3. Theresa Trumpette and her revolting kipper toriesMarch 20, 2017 at 11:19 PM

      Mark Oosterveen @MarkOosterveen

      My dad. 82. Lived here 20+ years. British wife (dead), two British kids. Can't walk, has Alzheimer's. DUTCH. Been told to prepare to leave.

      Delete
  13. You nat sis have given up on independence and brexit. Just back tae normal routine moanin and hard done tae stories.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. GWC2 Fitalass ChristinaDMarch 20, 2017 at 9:42 PM

      The troll calls scottish people "jocks", advocates arming Leave campaigners, claimed Jo Cox's husband was a fascist, uses racial and ethnic slurs, pretends to be Labour (badly) while espousing far-right racist Neo-Nazi hate-speech, praises Theresa May and the tories and displays a perverted poisonous obsession with Scotland's First Minister

      Delete
    2. Tory Expenses Scandal - Because they just can't help themselvesMarch 20, 2017 at 9:43 PM


      Electoral commission have fined Tory party £70,000 for fiddling expenses #toryelectionfraud now bring on prosecutions

      Delete
  14. Ruths Tory Promise to Stop Free Prescriptions for Scots Families and PensionersMarch 20, 2017 at 9:44 PM

    Tory leader Ruth Davidson was quizzed on policies stating she would introduce a graduate charge of £6,000 for a four-year degree and prescription charges of up to "about £8".

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    Replies
    1. The well aff should pay more intae the system. The Jock Nat sis are like the old Tories who made the wurkin classes pay. The New Scottish Progressive Tories need a chance to govern Scotland.

      Delete
    2. The Nat sis are shitting themselves to go for a referendum.
      All the crap they spouted since September 14 and here we are, Nae referendum.
      Even their English hating racist fascist supporters have gone stumn.

      Delete
    3. GWC2 Fitalass ChristinaDMarch 20, 2017 at 10:23 PM

      The troll calls scottish people "jocks", advocates arming Leave campaigners, claimed Jo Cox's husband was a fascist, uses racial and ethnic slurs, pretends to be Labour (badly) while espousing far-right racist Neo-Nazi hate-speech, praises Theresa May and the tories and displays a perverted poisonous obsession with Scotland's First Minister

      Delete
    4. The Great Tory Election Expenses Scandal 2017 £££££££March 20, 2017 at 10:24 PM

      Dick Mackintosh @DickMackintosh 1 hour ago

      13 things we've learned from the damning probe into Tory election expenses

      http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/13-things-learned-electoral-commissions-10036884#

      Delete
    5. We have won the argument that is why yer erses are nippin. Call the referendum Nat sis.
      We have brexit, we are treating Knickerless with contempt like the frumpy numpty she is and she will still not call it.
      Jock bottle merchants. Up yer lederhosen.

      Delete
    6. Tory Expenses Scandal - Because they just can't help themselvesMarch 20, 2017 at 10:27 PM

      Tim Fenton @zelo_street 3 hours ago

      Tory Expenses, Bullying, And The PM: @theresa_may caught up in two party scandals via disgraced organiser

      http://zelo-street.blogspot.co.uk/2017/03/tory-expenses-bullying-and-pm.html

      Delete
  15. Ruths Tory Promise to Stop Free Prescriptions for Poorest Scots Families and PensionersMarch 20, 2017 at 10:25 PM

    Tory leader Ruth Davidson was quizzed on policies stating she would introduce a graduate charge of £6,000 for a four-year degree and prescription charges of up to "about £8".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tory Expenses Scandal - Because they just can't help themselvesMarch 20, 2017 at 10:26 PM

      .









      Tim Fenton? @zelo_street 3 hours ago

      Tory Expenses, Bullying, And The PM: @theresa_may caught up in two party scandals via disgraced organiser

      http://zelo-street.blogspot.co.uk/2017/03/tory-expenses-bullying-and-pm.html









      .

      Delete
  16. Whitever happened tae the Scots. Why vote in the Tartan Tories who are the disgarded sperm of Old Labour. You were a hard working nation now your politicians are on their knees begging to Germany.Arise Jocks get rid of the joke mafia....

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    1. GWC2 Fitalass ChristinaDMarch 20, 2017 at 11:17 PM

      The troll calls scottish people "jocks", advocates arming Leave campaigners, claimed Jo Cox's husband was a fascist, uses racial and ethnic slurs, pretends to be Labour (badly) while espousing far-right racist Neo-Nazi hate-speech, praises Theresa May and the tories and displays a perverted poisonous obsession with Scotland's First Minister

      Delete
    2. Theresa Trumpette and her revolting kipper toriesMarch 20, 2017 at 11:17 PM

      Frank Zola @mrfrankzola

      Tories confirms pensioner back door bedroom tax of £1500+ per year

      https://speye.wordpress.com/2017/03/14/tories-confirms-pensioner-back-door-bedroom-tax-of-1500-per-year/ …

      Delete
  17. In 2016, there was an 8 per cent increase in the number of British citizens becoming New Zealand residents compared to the previous year, marking the first rise in a decade.

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  18. The top three origin countries of immigrants living in the UK are India (780,000), Poland (700,000) and Pakistan (540,000).

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  19. In 2015, about 4.9 million people born in the UK lived in other countries, the 10th-largest emigrant population in the world

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  20. EU partners charge the NHS for the costs of treating British pensioners. In 2013/14 the UK paid £580 million to other EEA countries for the treatment of British pensioners resident in the EEA while it received just £12 million from other EEA countries in the same year for the treatment of EEA pensioners in the UK[

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  21. Laws which govern citizens in this country are decided by politicians from other nations who we never elected and can’t throw out.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Oh dear, I see GWC2 is having a deluded conversation with itself again.

    That aside, I think the article raises a relevant question. What is sauce for the goose, is sauce for the gander. Neither in word not spirit has the Tory's manifesto a reference to a Hard Brexit, which equally cannot be derived from the referendum. Indeed, on both accounts quite the opposite is true. So the question must go back: Where's May's legitimation for her unrelenting position that has unleashed this whole quagmire?

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  23. I see you're seeking to excuse the Greens' blatant manifesto back-tracking (don't even try to pretend it isn't when it manifestly is) by citing that the game has change by dint of the fact 62% of Scots voted to Remain in the EU.

    The Greens, like the SNP, are appropriating unionist 'Remain' votes as a tool to further a political cause. Did anyone ask unionist Remainers if it was OK to do this? Of course they didn't! Anyone with eyes in their head can see the Greens' opportunism is as bad as the SNP's.

    The logic may look 'watertight' to you, but the reality is that it's leaking like a sieve. Pinching people's votes to further a political agenda is to be expected by the SNP (who would use a volcano errupting in Outer Mongolia as an indyref2 trigger), but people expected more from the Greens, whose manifesto has been reduced to the sum-total of 'bog roll'.

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    1. Oh, and you're right. It *would* have been better if they'd used 'stronger' wording. I'd have settled for *truthful* wording, myself.

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    2. "Did anyone ask unionist Remainers if it was OK to do this?"

      Chortle. Of course people thought about asking No/Remain voters for their views. That process is known as holding an independence referendum. We won't know how those people want to resolve the incompatibility between their 2014 and 2016 votes until we ask them. It's YOU, Jack, who wants to decide for those people that they only meant their 2014 vote and were just joking when they said they wanted to remain in the EU.

      How do you sleep at night?

      Delete
  24. What exactly is green about the greens, apart from their lack of experience?

    Green isn't supporting the snp's push for an oil state and peppering the landscape with wind turbines to export energy abroad, nor 6th-form socialist worker party posturing

    Green is energy efficiency, reducing the need for oil or wind. Green is tidying up after yourself. It's as simple as that, and these gobshites are neither

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    Replies
    1. Admirable qualities, to be sure. In their thirst to appease Sturgeon, though, they've back-tracked on their manifesto pledge. If they can do that here, what else are they prepared to throw on the bonfire to make sure they retain a modicum of relevance and respectability?

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    2. It might help if you quote the manifesto pledge you think they've "back-tracked" on. You may struggle.

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