Friday, 6 May 2011
Ich Bin Ein Schotte
When he meant, of course, was that their struggle for freedom was his struggle too, that their aspirations were his aspirations. Is was an assertion of their common humanity and of the belief they shared in freedom and democracy.
Some of those in the crowd actually found his declaration slightly amusing. It was not that they didn't share his passion for freedom. More the fact that what he had actually said to the assembled throng, literally translated, had been "I am a jelly doughnut".
A "Berliner", you see, was and is actually a term given to a particular German pastry with a jelly filling. What he should have said, apparently, was "Ich bin Berliner", which is how a German-speaker who was actually from Berlin would have put it.
I hope that by proudly reminding the world of my distant Scottish ancestry, albeit only recently discovered, I have not inadvertently revealed myself to be some Caledonian delicacy. I mention it only because of the fierce sense of pride I have in the fact that, in contrast to the inane to-ing and fro-ing between equally discredited political options provided to the English people by the English establishment, the Scots would appear finally to have decided that enough is enough and have given the Scottish National Party (SNP) a clear overall majority in the Scottish Parliament and thereby a platform from which to launch a serious bid for Scottish independence.
Why should I, a resident of English Isleworth, be so enthusiastic about Scottish independence? I'm not, really, except for one thing. As with the AV debate (which it would appear has been lost, for the time being at least), an opportunity has been provided to wake people from their deep slumber, rooted in the belief that nothing will change because nothing can change and that, therefore, nothing should change. It is a deadly and debilitating mentality that allows the establishment to walk all over its subjects, and to lie to them and to deceive them with impunity without so much as a thank you for their tame and frankly embarrassing acquiescence.
The SNP now can, indeed will be expected to, press for the complete independence of Scotland from an English-dominated United Kingdom. English people have nothing to fear from this, and nothing to be defensive about. We should wish our Scottish cousins well, and help them to realise their aspirations in a spirit of goodwill and kind neighbourliness.
In the meantime, for the UK, nothing will quite be the same. Which is a good thing, because the "same" means the same lies, the same deceit, the same spin and the same coming together of squalid vested interests, even where those interests may on the surface of it appear to be antagonistic, just as we witnessed from the "No" campaign during the referendum.
So fundamentally corrupt and wicked is our present establishment that almost anything that shakes it up, knocks it down and generally gives it a good kicking has to be a good thing.
It had never occurred to me that English political life might have been done such a service by the Scottish National Party but politics can be a funny thing, and full of surprises.