Saturday 25 February 2017

Sadiq Khan's ill-judged intervention in Scottish politics

The Labour Party in Scotland have suffered one of the most rapid declines in popularity in British political history, but it's absolutely clear that they simply refuse to learn any lessons.

In 2015 Labour lost 40 of their 41 Scottish constituencies in the General Election, and in 2016 they were beaten down to third place in the Scottish parliament elections by the widely reviled Scottish Conservatives.

Anyone would think that a party that had suffered such a rapid and humiliating fall from grace would engage in at least a little reflection about what went so terribly wrong, but no.

The Labour Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has waded into Scottish politics to try to claim that there is no real difference between supporting Scottish independence from the corrupt Westminster establishment, and the extreme-right political elements who try to "divide us on the basis of background, race or religion".

The first thing to note is that the tactic of calling people racists backfired spectacularly twice in 2016 with Brexit and then the election of Donald Trump. Even if these two political campaigns were indeed heavily supported by divisive extreme-right bigots like the Britain First hate group and the alt-right white supremacist movement, labelling all Brexiters and Trump voters as racists just helped to feed into the self-pitying victimhood complexes that the extreme-right absolutely thrive on.

The other thing to note about this absurd claim that Scottish civic nationalism is no different to the racism and bigotry of the extreme-right is that the extreme-right are actually amongst the most vocal opponents of Scottish independence.

The essence of what Sadiq Khan is saying is that in order to not be a nasty divisive racist, Scottish people should campaign alongside Britain First, UKIP and the National Front in opposing Scottish independence from Westminster rule!

This kind of idiotic and deeply insulting nonsense is clearly the product of a Labour Party that absolutely refuses to accept that they've made some absolutely catastrophic strategic errors in Scotland.

It's the attitude of an astoundingly arrogant political party who pin the blame for their electoral hammerings on the stupidity of the Scottish electorate rather than their own obvious failings, and imagine that Scottish voters will eventually come around and see sense if enough Labour bigwigs come up from London to hector them about how wanting to put an end to London rule makes people the kind of bigots and racists who are famed for their opposition to Scottish independence.

As long as out-of-touch Labour politicians continue treating the Scottish electorate as if they're just too stupid to appreciate how great the Labour Party actually is, and using this kind of smeary, bizarrely counter-factual and ridiculously condescending "Scottish nationalism bad, British nationalism good" propaganda, the Labour Party in Scotland is certain to continue its hasty decline towards total political irrelevance.

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