Scottish Self-Determination

How to restore our independence

We need to pick a fight

It’s all very well to say Take Our Independence! but how will it work? We can’t just chant our way to independence. At some point, some people are going to have to do some thing. At some point, we’re going to have to pick a fight with the British State.

But what people? And what something? And what fight?

The people are our MSPs. They are the people to whom we loan the power to govern us. They must restore our independence by picking a fight with the British State. It will be a fight in which the British State will use all their resources to slap us down and put us back in our box. It will deny us our human right to declare our independence. And it will bring the full might of its laws to prevent our liberty.

The fight will coalesce around our parliament’s repeal of the 1707 Act of Union with England.

The Act of Union with England (along with the English parliament’s Act of Union with Scotland), ratified the Treaty of Union – the international treaty that forged the union between the Scotland and England. Repeal means to revoke or annul, so if we repeal the Act of Union it means that the terms of the treaty no longer apply and we will cease to be in a union with England.

If we cease to be part of a union then our statehood is automatically restored. In other words, we will revert to being an independent state, just like we were before we passed the Act back in 1707.

Sounds simple. and it is. But getting to that point won’t be, of course. So let’s look at what it will take to achieve.

We need a liberation movement

The first thing we need is people power. Huge people power. If we ever need to take our case to the United Nations, we need to demonstrate the will of the majority of the Scottish people. We need, in other words, a liberation movement. (And we pretty much need to call ourselves that to gain the attention of the UN.) Our liberation movement needs to know what it wants. It needs to demand the repeal of the Act of the Union with England to restore our independence and statehood.

But, we’re ahead with that bit, surely? We already have a movement: we’re called Yes. But the Yes movement must stop calling for another independence referendum sanctioned by the British State. Instead, we need to ignore the British State and assert our sovereignty. As a sovereign people’s liberation movement, we can instruct our MSPs in the Scottish Parliament to repeal the Act of Union with England. In other words, Yes must mean yes to ‘repeal the Act of Union’.

We need our sovereign parliament back

The usual story that you will hear about the old Scottish parliament of 1707 is that after union with England, it was abolished; that it effectively voted itself out of existence. But that’s not true. it’s another lie from the British State.

Before May 1, 1707, there were two parliaments in the UK to be: one in Scotland and one in England. Upon the day of union (odd how that day isn’t ‘celebrated’, eh?) the English parliament remained and simply called itself the parliament of Great Britain. The Scottish Parliament simply stopped sitting. It was ‘adjourned’. Now ‘adjourn’ means ‘to stop, to break off, with the intention of resuming at some time in the future’.

It wasn’t abolished, just as the English parliament wasn’t abolished. But the parliament we have today in Holyrood (despite what Winnie Ewing said in 1999) isn’t the old Scottish parliament reconvened. The parliament we have today is a creation of the British state, created to allow Scots to run most of their own affairs. But it can’t (according to the Scotland Act that created it) just end the union because ‘the Union of the Kingdoms of Scotland and England’ is a ‘reserved’ matter. So what to do. How do we get it to repeal the Act of Union with England?

Well, and here’s the fight, the Holyrood parliament needs to say that it is now the old Scottish parliament reconvened. In parliamentary language, it needs to ‘assert its competence over all Scottish affairs and legislation’. Whereupon, the British State will say, no way, you can’t do that. We will not allow it. And we’ll say, yes we can, and we will, and we just have. And no one, least of all the British State, is going to stop us.

That’s the fight. And let’s remind ourselves of the minimum we need to do to get to that point, the point where we assert our sovereignty and say to the British State and to the world that Scotland is an independent sovereign state again.

  1. We need a huge liberation movement that’s focussed on a single goal of repealing the Act of Union with England
  2. We need a majority of independence MSPs who agree to pick a fight with Westminster
  3. We need our parliament to assert its competence over all Scottish affairs and legislation, including the Union of the Kingdoms of Scotland and England
  4. The Scottish government needs to introduce a simple bill to repeal the Act of Union with England

Not easy, but doable. For are we or are we not the sons and daughters of Bruce and Wallace?

We need to pick a fight.

The Run Up To The Union

We were an independent nation, one of the oldest in Europe. Older than England, to be sure. But we’re not independent anymore. Why?
Here’s the lead up to the theft of our independence.

We Have Catch’d Scotland

After the passing of the Acts of Union, England was very pleased with itself, as well it might. At a stroke, Scotland had gone from international competitor to a rich new resource, ripe for exploitation.

The Darien Venture

Scotland’s attempt to form a colony in Panama could not be allowed to succeed. Whether they shared a king or not, Scotland would not be allowed to get in the way of England’s empire and Darien was deliberately sabotaged by the East India Company and the Royal Navy.