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If Scotland leaves the UK, it will be the Tories’ fault. Not that they’ll grieve uncontrollably; hardly any of them live there. A Scottish Tory with political ambition generally heads south. Gove represents Surrey Heath, and Liam Fox found sanctuary in a Somerset hamlet called Little-Bigot-on-the-Necks-of-the-Poor. So some Scots ask, ‘Why should we live under bastards we don’t vote for?’ Labour’s mistake has been to join forces with said bastards, instead of urging Scots to stay in the fight against them.
It is tempting to ask Scottish socialists voting Yes how they feel about a party with National in the title, but they retort that this is not about nationalism but self-determination. It’s always an intellectual fudge for the left, whereby folksy, blood-and-soil nonsense is inspiring up until the moment of independence but no further. We haven’t heard too much of that stuff from the Yes camp, but the ‘we are better governing ourselves’ line is rather tainted by UKIP. Who are ‘ourselves’ and when do we stop drawing lines on maps? And the principle of self-governance offers the moral argument for unregulated markets, private schools, gun ownership and brutal immigration policies.
But the SNP’s appeal is more about its leftish policies than its depiction of other Britons as alien. Salmond may see the English as effete reactionaries, but for most Scots, that idea is no more serious than the English thinking Scots all choke to death on battered sausages aged 30. And left‑wing support for independence goes way beyond the Nats. It’s about the Tories – and New Labour.
But if Scotland goes, the rest of us will have to cope, combating the maudlin, introspection that will follow. Our place in the world will diminish, but that will be good for us.
Connor Devine writes that whilst Brexit might be a car crash, we can't just side with an institution responsible for enforcing austerity.
Michael Coates reviews a new film revealing the shocking state of housing inequality in the UK.
The vicious media campaign against trans people is part bigotry, part strategy, writes Roz Kaveney
Jon Trickett MP reports on 'Dickensian' levels of poverty and hardship felt across the UK.
Natasha King busts some myths around the No Borders debate
He was once a radical icon, but now he's a mouthpiece for racism and nationalism. Time to get off stage, writes Michael Calderbank
Consensus seems to have shifted, but austerity is far from over. The chancellor has committed us to yet more years of misery while the rich get richer, writes Richard Seymour.
Frustrated at the idea of another royal wedding? You're not alone. Joana Ramiro argues we should stop idealising a fundamentally undemocratic institution.
Liberal elites are using Russian interference to minimise their own political failures, writes Matt Turner
Nick Dearden from Global Justice Now argues that after years of colonial domination and dodgy trade deals, the UK must make amends and support Zimbabwe in this uncertain time.
Meet the frontline activists facing down the global mining industry
Activists are defending land, life and water from the global mining industry. Tatiana Garavito, Sebastian Ordoñez and Hannibal Rhoades investigate.
Transition or succession? Zimbabwe’s future looks uncertain
The fall of Mugabe doesn't necessarily spell freedom for the people of Zimbabwe, writes Farai Maguwu
Don’t let Corbyn’s opponents sneak onto the Labour NEC
Labour’s powerful governing body is being targeted by forces that still want to strangle Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, writes Alex Nunns
Labour Party laws are being used to quash dissent
Richard Kuper writes that Labour's authorities are more concerned with suppressing pro-Palestine activism than with actually tackling antisemitism
Catalan independence is not just ‘nationalism’ – it’s a rebellion against nationalism
Ignasi Bernat and David Whyte argue that Catalonia's independence movement is driven by solidarity – and resistance to far-right Spanish nationalists
Tabloids do not represent the working class
The tabloid press claims to be an authentic voice of the working class - but it's run by and for the elites, writes Matt Thompson
As London City Airport turns 30, let’s imagine a world without it
London City Airport has faced resistance for its entire lifetime, writes Ali Tamlit – and some day soon we will win
The first world war sowed the seeds of the Russian revolution
An excerpt from 'October', China Mieville's book revisiting the story of the Russian Revolution
Academies run ‘on the basis of fear’
Wakefield City Academies Trust (WCAT) was described in a damning report as an organisation run 'on the basis of fear'. Jon Trickett MP examines an education system in crisis.
‘There is no turning back to a time when there wasn’t migration to Britain’
David Renton reviews the Migration Museum's latest exhibition
#MeToo is necessary – but I’m sick of having to prove my humanity
Women are expected to reveal personal trauma to be taken seriously, writes Eleanor Penny