THEY say when you are expecting something bad to happen that the anticipation is always the worst part, but the reality turns out to be more bearable than you had feared. That’s definitely not the case with the long expected accession to the office of Prime Minister by Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson. The reality has turned out to be far worse.

This is a Government of right-wing incompetents who make Theresa May’s lot seem like a beacon of tolerance and moderation, and who would have thought that possible just a week or so ago.

The scale of the cabinet sackings once Johnson took over took most by surprise. This isn’t just a new Conservative leader, this is an entirely new Government of a nasty and intolerant right wing ideological bent that has no popular mandate. We now have a Home Secretary who threatened the Irish with starvation and who supported the death penalty, a Foreign Secretary who didn’t realise that Dover was an important port, and a Chancellor who enriched himself in the casino banking of the naughties. All of them, like our new Prime Minister, are determined to see the UK leave the EU on October 31, come what may. This is a takeover of the British state by far right advocates of intransigent English nationalism.

I must admit to being surprised that Alister Jack was given the job as Scotland Secretary. Mostly because I had forgotten that he existed.

Even amongst the nonentities and low achievers of the miserable squad of Scottish Tory MPs, Alister was distinguished solely by his irrelevance and lack of profile. If Scotland’s Tory MPs were an away team in Star Trek, being beamed down to the surface of an alien planet to make first contact with the Cybernats, Alister would be the one in the red shirt destined to be eaten by a carnivorous plant in the first scene, out-competed by a vegetable.

According to the multimillionaire Alister, the economic devastation of a no-deal Brexit would merely amount to a few bumps in the road. It’s nothing to get too worried about, at least not if you have the financial cushion of a few million in the bank. His appointment was not well received by parts of the Scottish Conservative party, representing as it did a massive slap in the face for Ruth Davidson who had reportedly interceded with the new PM to keep David Mundell in place.

Ruth now knows what it feels like to be Scotland within the UK, ignored, marginalised, and treated with contempt. The difference is that the rest of Scotland won’t meekly roll over and accept it.

In his first public statement as Colonial Secretary, Alister vowed that he would stand up against “those who would try to impose unwanted and divisive constitutional change”. But not those who are trying to impose the unwanted and divisive constitutional change of taking Scotland out of the EU. Only those bits that the Tory party disagree with. That would be the Tory party which is a minority party in Scotland, the one which seeks to impose a kind of politics upon Scotland which this country has resoundingly rejected. It’s hard to imagine what could possibly be more unwanted and divisive than that. Introspection is clearly not Alister’s strong suit.

Alister’s number two in the Scotland Office is an English MP, Robin Walker, who represents Worcester in the Commons. Robin got the gig because like Alister and Boris, he’s a posh boy. He’s qualified for the job because he once went on a walking holiday in the Trossachs. It is highly unusual for an English MP to be given such an important post in the Scotland Office. Yet it’s not like there are no available Scottish Tory MPs or members of the House of Lords. Ross Thomson’s eagerness for a Government post was positively obscene.

This appointment represents the final transformation of the Scotland Office into a quasi-colonial Government, the reduction of Scottish nationhood to British regionalism. It shows that Boris Johnson has no interest in respecting the sensibilities of Scotland, and no desire to accommodate to Scotland’s interests or needs. We’re just another bump in Alister’s Brexit road, one to be steam rollered out of political significance. This appointment is a statement from Boris Johnson that Scotland is a possession and it will do as it’s told. It’s a signal that the devolution settlement is a dead man walking. For all his toe curling gushing about the “awesome foursome”, Boris Johnson’s concept of the Union is one in which Scotland shuts up and does what it’s told.

The appalled amusement and detached disdain with which Scotland greeted the rise to power of Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson are now turning into cold anger. This is a Government which represents all the worst aspects of the Conservative party. Scotland has never felt more alienated from the Westminster Government since the dark years of Thatcherism. Yet what we currently face in the hard men and women of Johnson’s Government are an even bigger threat to Scotland than we faced during the 1980s. Giving Scotland an escape route from this evil is a moral imperative.

This lurch to the intolerant right, with a Government filled with Ayn Rand fans and supporters of capital punishment which is hell bent on a no-deal Brexit means that the Scottish Government must redouble its efforts to bring about an independence referendum as soon as possible. The stakes are now frighteningly high. What is now happening is even worse than the worst case scenarios that haunted our nightmares in 2016.

I still believe that we are not at the end of the Section 30 order road. It is imperative that soft no voters and undecideds see that the Scottish Government has done everything possible to seek agreement with Westminster if we are to take those voters with us in a referendum. However it’s equally vital that there’s an alternative plan for an independence vote given this Conservative government’s blind intransigence. Bullies like the zealots who infest the Westminster Government do not respond to nice, they don’t give in to reasonable. They must be presented with an ultimatum.