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Date: 17/10/18

Letter Sent

The abubindependent is, for some curious reason, the regular recipient of letters from three people in Scotland (curious if for no other reason that - even in its print days - the abu's circulation in that land would scarcely have constituted a good Saturday gate at Brechin City).

The authors are: Keith from a village in the Borders, but very handy for Edinburgh; Martin from Edinburgh itself; and Jill, also of that city.

The topic is always the same: about how irredeemably shite everything in Scotland has been since them nasty EssEnPee johnnies got into power in 2007. Whether it's education, crime, the railways or the economy, just about every aspect of life in Scotland in the last decade or so has been like living in a third-world, one-party dictatorship where desperate people have to sell their internal organs to survive. Or something along those lines.

For some reason, these screeds are so warmly welcomed by the ascetic sheikhs at the Saudipendent that they invariably publish them in its letters section. Even the ones from Jill, whose position as Professor Emeritus of History (with particular expertise in the years of Weimar Germany) has not stopped her elsewhere from making odious comparisons between a multiple-times-elected civic nationalist party and the Nazis.

Little or nothing in the way of a counterpoint is ever printed, so I decided - given that I have actually had letters printed there in the past - to provide one. I e-mailed it off a week ago.

Not only have they not published it, a couple of days later they published yet another whinge from Martin about how many times First Minister Sturgeon used the word 'independence' in her speech to the SNP conference as opposed to the number of times she used the word 'education' (a strange metric, but then British Nationalists - in Scotland and elsewhere - always seem to prefer their measurements to be couched in such easy-to-understand units like ells/fortnight²). A wee hint, laddie; she was speaking to a party whose raison d'Ítre is independence.

Anyway, as I had gone to the trouble to write it, I thought that I might as well append it here so that You, The Reader™ can speculate as to what it was about it which so offended the Emirs:


"I read once again on your letters page assertions from some of your readers in Scotland that everything has been irremediably bad in Scotland since 2007 because of those awful SNP people.

"Allowing for a moment (if for no longer than that) that they are correct, and conveniently side-stepping the reality that, for example, Scotrail out-performs most of the rest of the UK rail network; that the NHS in Scotland functions far more effectively and efficiently than in Tory-run England (and orders of magnitude better than in Labour-governed Wales); and that Scottish children are amongst the best educated in the world; allowing, as I say, your correspondents' claims, then how do they account for the fact that the SNP, after eleven-and-a-half-years in government, still has double-digit poll leads over the opposition parties, especially in the face of constant negative coverage from overwhelmingly pro-Westminster media?

"Do Mr Howell and Professor Emeritus Stephenson therefore believe that close on half the electorate of Scotland is, a) easily gulled, b) members of a brainwashed cult, c) preternaturally stupid, or d) any combination of the foregoing? If not, how do they account for it?

"Or could it simply be that the people of Scotland recognise a competent government when they see it (would that we in Wales had one even one-third as able!), and have no desire to put that at risk by handing their country over to the control of people who are - to put it at its kindest - of doubtful ability and probity?

"Yours faithfully"