ANOTHER day, another slap in the face from Westminster. We’re still unpacking one example of the UK Government’s utter disdain for Scotland when yet more disrespect inflicts its special brand of pain.

It’s almost as if the Tories are rubbing our faces in our own powerlessness as they make a mockery of their much-lauded “Union dividend”.

That dividend today stands revealed as a fake with the news that the proportion of our own money the UK Treasury allows us to spend has fallen to a new low. In a cruel twist of fate, it came just as Jeremy Hunt unveiled yet another Budget that sacrifices help for the majority on the altar of riches for the elite.

Barely a week ago, Commons Speaker Lindsay Hoyle showed Scotland exactly where it stood in the pecking order by allowing the Labour Party to hijack the SNP’s bid to persuade the Commons to finally support a ceasefire to halt genocide in Gaza.

The National: Sir Lindsay Hoyle’s decision was attacked by the SNP and the Conservatives (Hannah McKay/PA)

That’s the same Labour Party that preferred to debate the semantics of a ceasefire than to send a message that the slaughter of innocent Palestinians was unacceptable.

The worst aspect of Westminster’s recent descent into chaos was that the political bickering generated more coverage in the following day’s British newspapers than the terrible plight of thousands of innocent Palestinians.

The SNP’s Westminster leader Stephen Flynn made exactly that same point in the House, although it didn’t stop him tabling a motion calling for the resignation of Hoyle for his inept handling of the farce.

SNP critics are forever looking for ammunition in their never-ending battle to undermine its moral standing and so it wasn’t long before they were jumping up and down accusing Flynn of indulging in a victim mentality.

To them, Keith Brown’s later suggestion in the Sunday National – that the withdrawal of SNP MPs from Westminster be considered – was yet more fuel to the fire.

However, it’s a fact that more than one thing can be true at the same time. The ongoing inhumanity in Gaza is one of the worst atrocities of modern times. It is also true that Hoyle’s decision to give the Labour amendment precedence over the SNP’s amendment, which had already been tabled, was yet more evidence of Westminster’s refusal to pay even lip service to Scotland’s place in the Union and a signal that action has to be taken.

READ MORE: Lindsay Hoyle: Around 70 MPs sign no confidence motion in Speaker

The sad truth is that Scotland IS a victim and its power within the UK is under attack as never before.

The current situation can be traced back to the one event which continues to define the priorities of the UK 10 years later … the independence referendum.

Its campaign of lies and fear-mongering won the day – narrowly – for Better Together. The pro-Union side wheeled out as many big guns it could muster to promise that Scotland would play a prominent role in a rebooted United Kingdom. It would, they promised, lead if it didn’t leave.

It was a lie. Not a lie that would have to survive future challenges. Not a lie that would have to withstand future scrutiny. It was a lie that would have to seduce Scottish voters just once. They would never have the chance to vote in another referendum again. And so it has proved.

Not a day had passed since the No vote before the Unionist side had revealed its true intentions. David Cameron unveiled his English votes for English laws betrayal to show his heartland south of the Border that he would never give the Scots what they wanted, never turn his back on his English heartland. He and his Tory successors at number 10 have never wavered from that commitment.

Not when Scotland returned SNP MPs in every Scottish seat bar three.

Not when Scotland put a majority of independence-supporting MSPs into power at Holyrood. Not when every single local authority area in Scotland voted to stay in Europe.

And not when the Scottish Parliament found the confidence to be guided by Scottish values and Scottish desires rather than Commons diktats.

That was when the attacks on devolution really ramped up … and they have not stopped since. The Tories seized the power returning from Europe to force through its own levelling up agenda without reference to the democratically elected Scottish Government.

And Labour are no better. So furious at being thrown out and kept out of power in Scotland, Labour would rather dismantle devolution and urge Westminster to take major financial decisions over the head of Holyrood. This is the party which is now seeking to convince us they can be trusted to put Scotland’s interests first.

In the decade since the referendum, we have learned that trying to leave the Union is no small task. I’m not one of those who take issue with tactics employed by the SNP. They have done everything possible to play by the rules established in 2014.

Scotland has shown in repeated election results that there is a demand for another vote. We have shown there has been a material change since the last one. And we have proof that our views are routinely disrespected. The fact we have moved no nearer to independence is evidence not that the SNP’s strategy was wrong but instead shows our opponents will stop at nothing to stop us and will never play by rules. The SNP have tried to show the world it will act responsibly but it has run out of road. It is time to try something new.

The Unionist mindset simply cannot accept Scotland has an identity and priorities of its own The British identity is always given precedence. That’s why Scotland’s global reputation for excellence in the food market is cast aside in favour of new branding in which the Union Jack is prominently slapped over our produce.

That’s why Ofcom can recommend Channel 4 spend just 9% of its production costs on projects made outside of England and just 35% outside of London, a policy that Scottish production companies this week warned will have a “serious impact on hundreds of freelance roles based outside of England”.

And that’s why it cuts the money for the Scottish budget while at the same time portraying us as whingeing scroungers.

No matter the successes Scotland notches up, it is always relegated to also-ran status by a Union in which simple arithmetic continually denies it top priority. A proper examination of the state of the Union would surely highlight this sorry state of affairs.

There is such an investigation being carried out right now and due to be the subject of a report to mark 25 years of the Scottish Parliament. Who is carrying out this investigation? A House of Lords committee, ruling out any real challenge to the status quo.

Even other parties’ outrage at Hoyle’s supine agreement with Keir Starmer’s Gaza amendment faded away in a matter of days.

The Tory Budget’s austerity cuts are still more evidence that nothing will change until we recalibrate our relationship with Westminster. Brown’s plea and the response by others such as Shona Robison, shows there is now an appetite for more radical action.

What’s certain is that something needs to change in the SNP’s attitude to Westminster. The “mother of parliaments” can be a seductive place for MPs. We surely know now there is nothing to be gained by playing its games well. Westminster has forfeited the right to our respect.

There is a good case for withdrawing SNP MPs from Westminster and there are sound arguments against. But it need not be a simple binary choice between those two choices. There are a range of other actions open to MPs to show that there is a limit to what they are prepared to put up with.

Indeed, SNP MPs walked out of the chamber in disgust at Hoyle’s ineptitude and some reports suggest the Westminster group is currently considering a campaign of “disengagement” with day-to-day parliamentary activities. That could mean causing some form of disruption, of refusing to take part in some activities, or a mixture of both.

Flynn, for his part, has promised: “Until we achieve our independence, we will never leave Scotland voiceless in Westminster.”

This debate has some way to run but it’s clear that something must change and change soon.