Pro tempore – Issue 54


Posted by in July's Magazine

Anyway, I digress. I’ve had enough of people moaning. This is not a sudden revelation as I’ve always known that if there was a World Cup for moaning they would have had to scrap it, as we Scots would have retained the trophy time without number. Scots could moan any other nation on the face of the earth into submission. Take the weather.

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As you all know, there’s been a bit of a heat wave recently but on the east coast of Scotland we have had that well known weather phenomenon known as ‘the haar.’ Haar is actually a coastal fog which forms over the sea and is brought to shore by the wind. Now, rather than seeing it as a mystical and atmospheric natural phenomenon which sets our wee patch of land out as unique, we moan that it’s depressing and even more bizarrely, we go on and on about the rest of the country basking in glorious sunshine, particularly those twats at Wimbledon. I’ve got some news for you about ‘the country’ and it might come as something of a shock, so you better sit down. See that wee map that they show you on the telly when they’re telling you about the weather? It’s a fraud. ‘The country,’ i.e. the UK, isn’t flat, it actually curves from south to north because, and get this, the earth isn’t flat either. We’re further north than London so funnily enough we’re further away from the equator, so it’s colder up here. What’s all this got to do with politics Protempore? I hear you cry.

Well, we also like to moan about politics a lot and we like nothing more than taking a pop at Westminster politicians and how they control our affairs. Since devolution we’ve been taking control of a lot of our own affairs such as education, health, transport etc, and as far as I’m concerned, we’ve been making a pretty decent job of it. And the weather connection? Well there’s a wind blowing up here in Scotland and while it’s nothing more than a stiff breeze at the moment, it’s about time we found out which direction it’s going so that we can move forward without worrying about the haar which envelopes us. What am I talking about? Independence. Or not.

There have been a couple of opinion polls recently on the independence issue and they make interesting reading. One showed that a majority (58%) of Scots wanted a referendum on independence to go ahead within the next year. Now that doesn’t mean that 58% of Scots want independence, they just want the chance to vote on it. This poses a problem for the opposition parties at Holyrood as they have already said that they will block any legislation on such a referendum. Where does this leave the SNP? Well, in a win-win situation really. If they bring forward that legislation and it does get blocked, then they can fight the I’ve had enough. That’s not something you’ll hear me saying very often, particularly when I’m propping up the bar in the Carriers Quarters along with the rest of the dyspeptic Leither crew. I used to think that I was letting our esteemed editor down by spending all my time (and no small amount of money) talking gibberish about football, food, films and well, you get the picture. But that was until I realised that said editor spent all of his time trawling the myriad watering holes in Leith talking gibberish about everything. next Scottish election by saying that the opposition parties refused to give Scots the right to determine their own future. So how many Scots do want independence? Well that depends on which poll you read. One poll suggested that only 28% would vote for independence, while another showed that 46% favoured a break from the union. Some say that support for independence is growing while others say it’s falling. One thing is for sure, the entire issue is shrouded in uncertainty and confusion. Just when the skies seem to be clearing, in rolls the political haar and nobody really knows what they want or when they want it.

So what to do? For everyone’s sake, and to alleviate the whining and moaning, let’s push all of the political parties to at least give everyone living in Scotland, not just Scots, the chance to have their voices heard and to clear the air. If we don’t we’ll be enveloped in that political haar for years to come. As Bob Dylan says, you don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.

And remember, people don’t
notice whether it’s winter or
summer when they’re happy.
– Protempore

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