IN the 1987 film Wall Street, Michael Douglas’s character Gordon Gekko says “Greed, for lack of a better word, is good.”

“Greed”, he goes on, “ is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit.” Shorn of all the halting, embarrassing, local radio interview claptrap, that is what Liz Truss, Kwasi Kwarteng and their bizarre cast of hangers-on have been telling us this week.

“Greed is good” could be engraved on the front door of 10 Downing Street, so central is the thought to Truss’s government. Greed is how they and their ilk will progress, and rewarding the greedy is the policy that will achieve it.

Greed is infectious too. It beguiles and entices those who believe they deserve and must get a share of the spoils. That is why some in Scotland (egged on by the Unionist press) were saying last weekend that they would have to think about moving unless their taxes were cut. Greed was their motivation, no matter what finer feelings they might quote in their defence.

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In one way, I agree with John Swinney when on Thursday he expressed his bafflement at what has been taking place. Like him, I was in government during the 2008 financial crash, though he had a much harder time as Finance Secretary. I recall the roller coaster week in 1992 when the UK’s withdrawal from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism led, briefly, to a five-point rise in interest rates in a single day. I can even dimly remember Harold Wilson’s infamous “pound in your pocket” devaluation in November 1967.

All of these were seismic shocks but the crucial difference is that were recognised as such by those responsible who accepted – no matter how reluctantly – that a change of policy was essential to start the process of recovery.

The unique and bizarre nature of the current crisis is that it’s been caused by policies that the UK Government has no intention of changing. It is in that sense deliberate. Indeed, Liz Truss spent the entire Tory leadership election saying what she would do and as soon as she could, she did.

Anyone who has lived through the last six years shouldn’t be surprised that it has come to this. The clue lies in Brexit to which Truss now cleaves with the zeal of the convert. Brexit was and remains a corrupt exercise in greedy selfish exceptionalism, most likely partially bought by Russian gold and cheered on by some in politics (and some outwith) because it would give them the power and money they craved.

“Taking back control” of borders, money and laws was and is about a greedy refusal to work with other people. It looks down in contempt on those who are prepared to support and share rather than have and hoard. It despises any system which regulates in order to secure a greater degree of equity and it lauds a Darwinian “survival of the fittest” approach to governance and the economy.

The former Brexit negotiator Lord Frost unwittingly confirmed it when in his Telegraph column on Thursday, he praised the “constant churn and change that comes with dynamic capitalism”, backed Truss and poured scorn on a whole host of imagined villains who are conspiring to do Britain and Brexit down.

That approach is directly from the Steve Bannon playbook of “disaster capitalism”, which was of course bankrolled by billionaires motivated solely by the desire to have even more billions and who have paid, across the globe, to put their henchmen in power to achieve that end.

Two sets of people should be blamed for allowing this to continue, in addition to the systemically corrupt Conservative Party. that is still the UK Government.

One is those Tories who have turned a blind eye for reasons of ambition or merely because their tribalism has made them fearful of alternatives. There are some good people on the Tory benches in Holyrood who are of this number and they should be deeply ashamed of what their silence has aided and abetted.Others like David Gauke south of the Border have been more courageous and have paid the price.

The second is the Labour Party, which is committed to the impossible folly of “making Brexit work” and which at their conference in Liverpool last week spent much of their time attacking the SNP for refusing to do so.

Their rhetoric reminded me of the November 2006 Scottish Labour conference in Oban, which was an orgy of “SNP very bad” vituperation, driven by fear that the nationalists might win power at the following year’s Holyrood election.

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As police jet skis zoomed about Oban Bay, part closed for security reasons, then prime minister Tony Blair addressed the Scottish Labour faithful. building the nationalists up unto a threat not just to Scotland but to world peace.

“It is a shame we still have to debate whether the UK exists or not “ he said, then adding a line that is now dripping with irony. “Personally, I think it is an old debate like ‘Does Britain want to be part of Europe?’, a debate about a fashion that has long since lost its relevance or its sense.”

Tell that to Keir Starmer, who now embraces Brexit – that “old debate” about “ a fashion without relevance and sense” – with enthusiasm, making Labour a little Britain party in hock to a corrupt and corrupting idea rooted in greed. The one bright moment in the week was our First Minister’s steadfast refusal to allow the politics of greed to win out. Her trenchant criticism of tax cuts that boost the wealthy and spending cuts that hurt the poor spoke volumes about what Scotland is and must remain.

Greed is not good. Greed does not work. Greed is the opposite of what we want our evolutionary spirit to be. Independence as part of the EU must be our objective, not wallowing in greedy Brexit isolationism.