CAMPAIGNING FOR SCOTLAND
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Nationalism and all that is best in Scotland."
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Issue 755 - 21st November
Compiled by Fraser Hudghton
UP TO THE TASK
Watching SNP conference this time from my living room instead of the
auditorium offered a fascinating perspective on just how transformational
the movement chasing Scotlandís independence has become.
Alex Salmond appreciation party seemed like a spontaneous eruption of
goodwill, and it must have seemed remarkable to our opponents watching. I am
not so certain had the result of the referendum been the other way round
congratulations would have been dished out to their own campaign leaders.
In many ways of course it brings the SNP to a crossroads. In a space of a
few short weeks the party - which could have faced a very stark future
indeed - finds itself with almost 90,000 members, a new leader and First
Minister, and having to convince what were a cynical media but now must be a
perplexed one - what its long term strategy is.
Of course the causes of social justice, freezing the council tax, and
preserving the small business rates relief scheme for the foreseeable are
the right and proper aims of the national governing party as we look
With a real hunger amongst the new membership to do something - and do
something now - on the question of securing full autonomy for Scotland, and
the party leadership which knows that question must be parked, at least for
a wee while, Nicola Sturgeon has challenges ahead which would make those of
a fainter disposition balk, if not run for the hills.
her speaking tour is bringing people in their thousands to what are
essentially motivational rallies, in a period immediately after a very
arduous and very long campaign, shows how we are living in a remarkable new
age of political activism in Scotland.
Any future referendum in a similar format will need to be a certain win -
and will need a campaign behind it which doesn't let down those people who
voted Yes, desperate for change, and desperate now to engage and change
things themselves if they have to.
Our outgoing First Minister was right when he stated Scotland has changed
utterly. The baton now passed on to Nicola Sturgeon is that much more
complex and yet I have the sneaking suspicion our first ever female First
Minister is more than up to the task.
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Read Christina McKelvie MSP's Weekly Diary