OVER the last wee while I have noticed that there is a small element of Scottish independence supporters who react with indignation over the slightest thing. It’s nothing to do with timing, it’s all to do with the complete lack of pragmatism.

If we are to take our place on the world stage, an element of Yes supporters have a lot of growing up to do. For all its magic and special, Scotland isn’t going to be the saviour of the planet, we aren’t the magic piece which, when we take our seat at the United Nations, a sudden glowing light fills the room and immediately peace and tranquillity spreads around the globe ending poverty and injustice forever.

Are you sitting down?

This is never going to happen, what can happen is that Scotland can use its voice at every opportunity to call for a better world, it can use its vote to better protect people and the planet and highlight the case for people who are in our current situation. We know what it’s like to have an establishment representing us on the world stage which does not reflect our beliefs and values.

What we are going to have to do is a whole lot of compromising, some change is better than no change and with every small step the world will be a better place.

Just one tiny example: I have lost count of the people who demand that on day one of independence they want Trident out the country. I want rid of that monstrosity as much as any person, but in all reality it can’t happen overnight. An alternative site has to be found and constructed which takes time. Only a principled idiot would insist that arguably the most dangerous weapon on the planet should be evicted and forced to be stored in a less-than-secure facility, but still within a distance that should the worst happen it has the potential to affect them.

What has to happen is that the Scottish Government will sit with the rUK Government and discuss a lease of the facility for about five years. That “compromise” will have a financial benefit that will help offset the start-up of a new country.

There will be many other compromises to ensure that English shops, insurers and thousands of other industries still can trade in Scotland and Scottish producers can still sell in rUK. There will probably be a common travel area, exactly like the one Ireland has with the UK just now. Being pragmatic and open to negotiations spikes the guns of any SIU fanatic, being indignant and non-negotiable is exactly why British Nationalist Brexit has totally marched itself into a corner and has the knife at its nose.

I don’t think the independence movement has reached Brexiteer level of indignance, I think however it is suffering from “A huvnae”, as in “A huvnae got that so nobody should”. Case in point: The Lord Provost of Glasgow’s expenses “scandal” that is being manufactured by the Unionist media. The simple fact is that the position comes with an annual expense allowance of £5000 and in over two years the woman in question has spent £8000. This is a job that involves hundreds of civic meetings and functions with dignitaries from across the world. The civic head of Scotland’s largest city is the focal point of thousands of businesses and a million people. A sack cloth, hoodie from Sports Direct or a printed T-shirt from Primark won’t cut it. Even if you insist on a Mao suit like Kim Jong-un, a tailored one of his will set you back more than the annual allowance the position brings.

This easy-to-rise indignation is a weakness that is being exploited by the media day in, day out in Scotland – it amplifies the message that iScotland will not be a place where you can aspire to make life better. The message that comes across is Scotland is still entrenched in the 70s’ Labour socialism where socialism is entrenched in dragging people down and switching off many soft No voters.

I prefer the Scandinavian vision where socialism is about lifting people up, not dragging them down. It’s about creating a level playing field. That is why Scandinavian countries are actually the easiest places in the world to get rich, by head of population they have the most billionaires and high net worth individuals. Their system is designed to give everyone access to the best education, health care and quality of life. This produces a workforce that is smarter, healthier and makes more money for them, their employers and their country. They probably still have “A huvnaes”, but only because they don’t want to!

So, do you still want one wave or two?
Mark Breingan