THERE’S a lot going on in the Anglo-Britosphere this week – as usual, none of it good.

The British Government is pressing on with its plans to send asylum seekers on a one-way ticket to Rwanda despite having been told by the UN's refugee agency that the scheme is illegal. The scheme is so egregiously immoral that even Prince Charles has condemned it as "appalling" and we are talking here about a man who is so far removed from common decency that he continues to protect a man accused of involvement in the abuse of a sex-trafficked minor. 

Meanwhile, in a "We hold all the cards update", today the Johnson regime announced that the British Government intends to make unilateral changes to the Northern Irish Protocol which was a key part of the Brexit deal that Johnson himself negotiated and which he sold to the public as an "oven-ready" deal in order to secure a victory in the 2019 General Election.

The fact that he is now making changes to a fundamental part of that deal exposes the lies that he told to the public in order to win that election, just as everything about Brexit has exposed the lies of the Leave campaign and the Brexiters of the Conservative Party which won them the referendum in 2016. 

As the President of the EU Commission Ursula von der Leyen acidly pointed out, "the Brexit Agreement was written in English so they could understand it". But that rather presupposes that Johnson and his cronies bothered to read it.

Johnson insists that the changes he wants to make to the protocol are "trivial" and told LBC radio this morning that they are not a big deal. Yet if that was really the case, then why is the British Government risking setting off a trade war with the EU and trashing what little is left of Britain's international reputation as a responsible and trustworthy partner? Breaking international law "isn't a big deal" says Johnson. Well, he would say that, wouldn't he? He doesn't think breaking domestic law is such a big deal either.

The reckless move comes as people are struggling to cope with the worst cost of living crisis for decades and as the UK is predicted to have the lowest economic growth of any of the G20 economies with the exception of Russia, which is under the most severe economic sanctions in the world.

Essentially what Johnson wants to do is to rip up an international agreement and to use the threat of political instability in the north of Ireland as a bargaining chip in negotiations with the EU. It is cynical, desperate, and reveals just how little this Conservative government cares about the welfare of ordinary British citizens or about the peace in the north of Ireland.

The rabble-rousing over Brexit and the cruel and callous Rwanda policy as well as a fresh attack on the trade unions are all part of a lurch to the right designed to shore up support for a weakened prime minister.   

We also heard this weekend that in an effort to "rehabilitate" Prince Andrew's reputation, the royal family is considering sending him off to Scotland to live, possibly because not even Rwanda would have him. Scotland doesn't want the royal reject, but then Scotland didn't want Brexit or a Conservative government either and yet we still got lumbered with those, so we can be quite sure that Scotland's opinion will not be taken into consideration when the Windsors decide what to do with their embarrassing relative. As part of the UK, Scotland's place is to put up and shut up, do what it's told and be grateful for it. 

This piece is an extract from today’s REAL Scottish Politics newsletter, which is emailed out at 7pm every weekday with a round-up of the day's top stories and exclusive analysis from the Wee Ginger Dug.

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