Scottish Referendum, 18 Sept 2014

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Spikymike
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Sep 17 2014 10:25

And for the record I agree with plasmatelly and Caiman on this one, past spats aside!

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Serge Forward
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Sep 17 2014 10:57

Is there no depth that Bone and Class War won't plummet?

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Flava O Flav
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Sep 17 2014 10:59
Serge Forward wrote:
Is there no depth that Bone and Class War won't plummet?

That's a rhetorical question, right?

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Gepetto
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Sep 17 2014 11:20
Rob Ray wrote:

I think that if you changed one letter in your nickname it would be ironically appropriate for this thread grin

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Rob Ray
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Sep 17 2014 12:10

The difference is in the circle A

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Serge Forward
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Sep 17 2014 12:37
Flava O Flav wrote:
Serge Forward wrote:
Is there no depth that Bone and Class War won't plummet?

That's a rhetorical question, right?

No! I demand an answer! Better still, someone should do a for/against essay on it grin

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ocelot
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Sep 17 2014 13:03

As an aside, the betting odds at the bookies have been fairly stable over the last while. They're still at 3/1 for Yes and 1/4 for No. Exchanges have it at 4/1 vs 1/5 respectively (why on earth does anyone use bookies these days?).

In the past the betting odds have usually been a more reliable indicator for votation results for regular events (elections) than polling. The counter-argument to the polls from both the Yes camp and the commentators erring on the side of caution, is that there has been a massive surge in voter registration and that this new cohort of people that don't normally vote are possibly/likely a) under-represented in polling methodologies; b) more likely to be in the Yes camp. How true either prop is, is open to question.

It'll be interesting to see if the betting action is basically secondary to the polling or turns out to be an indicator in its own right (i.e. if the result is a No victory with >> 5% margin).

radicalgraffiti
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Sep 17 2014 15:32
Serge Forward wrote:
Is there no depth that Bone and Class War won't plummet?

I'm guessing you haven't seen this

Scallywag
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Sep 17 2014 16:10

Yes Anarchism!

Found that picture from this article by an 'anarchist' in favour of a yes vote

http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2014/09/16/the-anarchist-vote/

:L

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Sep 17 2014 16:43
Scallywag wrote:
Found that picture from this article by an 'anarchist' in favour of a yes vote

http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2014/09/16/the-anarchist-vote/

Ouch! That article (I use the term loosely, structure and coherence is remarkably absent) contains just about every cliche critics of anarchism project onto it. Fabbri had a point - for every strawman projected by bourgeois notions of what anarchism "really is", there's always some one (or more than one) who'll come along and adopt it as their politics. Localism, fetishism of democracy, imputation of spontaneous natural "anarchism" amongst the folk-proletariat, combined (contradictorally) with a patriotism of the label, anarchists-have-always-said essentialism,... and the list goes on.

This

Quote:
While Scotland may be no better off under independence, a vote for YES is yet a positive step towards the sort of localism which anarchists would like to see characterise the coming century.

Just about sums it up. Strewth.

Scallywag
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Sep 17 2014 17:14
ocelot wrote:
Scallywag wrote:
Found that picture from this article by an 'anarchist' in favour of a yes vote

http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2014/09/16/the-anarchist-vote/

Ouch! That article (I use the term loosely, structure and coherence is remarkably absent) contains just about every cliche critics of anarchism project onto it. Fabbri had a point - for every strawman projected by bourgeois notions of what anarchism "really is", there's always some one (or more than one) who'll come along and adopt it as their politics. Localism, fetishism of democracy, imputation of spontaneous natural "anarchism" amongst the folk-proletariat, combined (contradictorally) with a patriotism of the label, anarchists-have-always-said essentialism,... and the list goes on.

Yeah I know lol. Just to be clear though I didn't post it because I agree with it, but because it's just 'wtf I don't even'.

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Sep 17 2014 17:15

Flava O Flav #59

'...Independence even in that limited form, did at least prevent any more young Irish men (from south of the border) becoming part of the British war machine.'

This is only partly true, when working in London, I knew one southern Irishman, who'd joined up to fight in WW2. He gave me to understand he was not alone.

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Devrim
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Sep 17 2014 17:26
Auld-bod wrote:
This is only partly true, when working in London, I knew one southern Irishman, who'd joined up to fight in WW2. He gave me to understand he was not alone.

It was really common, and you can see it in various popular culture things. For example in the massive US war film he longest day, there are a couple of Irish fellas in the landing craft just as it is about to hit the beach. One says to the other "Thank god to Dev for keeping us neutral".

Devrim

Spikymike
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Sep 18 2014 09:07

The 'bellacaledonia' approach alligning a Yes vote for an independent Scottish state with the mixed history of anarchist federalism is sadly reflected elsewhere as for instance with the sectarian 'Northern Voices' notionally anarchist publication and in a similar fashion to the Green Party and other green 'socialist' commitments to decentralisation at any price!

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Sep 18 2014 10:00

There were two cohorts of Southern Irish who volunteered for the British Armed forces in WW2. The first were serving members of the Republic's armed forces who deserted and went to join up in England. They were subject to official discrimination after the war in terms of being refused pensions, barred from govt. jobs, etc. So we have figures for that - 4,983 were officially pardoned in 2013 (ref).

The other cohort were the people who were not serving soldiers but travelled to England eitehr to joined up with the forces, or to work in wartime industries (the other side of the war effort). This is more difficult to get exact numbers for. This from a recent attempt on the History Ireland blog:

Quote:
Total figures on Irish volunteers and war workers remain uncertain, but the number of ‘new travel permits’, identity cards and passports issued to men and women in 1940-1945 was in the region of 200,000. To this should be added the 45,000 which the Department of External Affairs estimated went to the UK between September 1939 and the fall of France in June 1940, after which restrictions were imposed. In other words, out of a total population of approximately 2,968,000 (1936 census), over 8 per cent emigrated during the war. This is all the more significant when it is appreciated that those living in agricultural areas and all those under twenty-two years of age were prohibited from leaving the state, except in exceptional circumstances. If those under fourteen and over sixty-five are excluded, the figure rises to over 13 per cent and if we factor in the restrictions on those under the age of twenty-two, the number who travelled may have been well over 15 per cent of the eligible population.

HI: The Forgotten Volunteers of World War II

NB Ireland declared a state of emergency on 2 Sep 1939 and subsequently passed and emergency powers act, but did not impose an official ban on citizens joining the forces of a belligerent during the war, unlike other neutral European countries.

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Flava O Flav
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Sep 18 2014 11:58
Auld-bod wrote:
Flava O Flav #59

'...Independence even in that limited form, did at least prevent any more young Irish men (from south of the border) becoming part of the British war machine.'

This is only partly true, when working in London, I knew one southern Irishman, who'd joined up to fight in WW2. He gave me to understand he was not alone.

Oh yeah, I know, I suppose I phrased that badly, I meant on anything like the same scale as WW1. Plenty of people did join up for a variety of reasons. My great uncle joined the royal navy. It was the first time he'd been outside of his/my home town. He hitched to Belfast to sign up and forged his birth cert because he was actually a year too young. He did it because he wanted to see the world. I thought that was a pretty extreme length to go to. You still get the odd southern Irish youngster joining the British forces. Usually because they like guns and stuff and the Irish army isn't very well equiped and doesn't see a lot of action. Needless to say, it's generally frowned upon. It probably would have got you shot 20/30 years ago though.

snowflake
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Sep 18 2014 12:52

97% of the population have registered to vote. all but 3% of the population has decided that voting DOES matter. Sure sometimes anarchists might find themselves in the minority and should stand up for their values. There are a lot of unpleasant people in society. and a lot of idiots. but if you find yourself in a minority of only 3% you should probably ask the question 'do we really know better than everyone else or are we the idiots?'. dislodge the fence from your ass-crack and make a choice.

snowflake
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Sep 18 2014 13:13

just reading through the comments some people have a strange idea of what internationalism is. It means 'between nations'. as such it is not opposed to nations but recognises their existence. nationalism sees nations in competition whereas internationalism values all nations equally and wants nations to cooperate. if you think nationhood is something inherently bad then you should call yourself something other than internationalist. sometimes national identity can mask class identity. but in the case of Scotland they happen to align to some extent - the Scots are a lot more left wing than the English. independence for Scotland is a small step in the right direction.

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Serge Forward
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Sep 18 2014 13:30

97% eh? Cheers for that, Snowflake. And as the vast majority see liberal democratic capitalism as the lesser of a host of evils, we should throw in our lot with that too. Y'know, I've never really subscribed to the '100,000,000 flies can't be wrong' school of thought but have generally favoured communist principles instead. You'd do well to grow a couple of principles as well, Snowflake.

As for your definition of internationalism, yes we know what bourgeois internationalism is, thanks. Clearly revolutionary internationalism is a different kettle of fish.

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Awesome Dude
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Sep 18 2014 13:40
snowflake wrote:
just reading through the comments some people have a strange idea of what internationalism is. It means 'between nations'. as such it is not opposed to nations but recognises their existence. nationalism sees nations in competition whereas internationalism values all nations equally and wants nations to cooperate. if you think nationhood is something inherently bad then you should call yourself something other than internationalist. sometimes national identity can mask class identity. but in the case of Scotland they happen to align to some extent - the Scots are a lot more left wing than the English. independence for Scotland is a small step in the right direction.

Your profile shows you've been signed up to libcom for quite a few years. Have you bothered looking at the theory section or any of the numerous debates about nationalism and class?

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Rob Ray
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Sep 18 2014 15:01
Quote:
the Scots are a lot more left wing than the English.

They're broadly similar.

Scotcen Report: Is Scotland more left-wing than England?

Spikymike
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Sep 18 2014 15:39

snowflake is is just plain 'flaky' but the different uses of the term 'internationalism' does lead to problems sometimes and has been debated before, see this text and related discussion threads:

http://libcom.org/library/why-anti-national

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Entdinglichung
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Sep 18 2014 16:05

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ocelot
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Sep 18 2014 16:33
snowflake wrote:
97% of the population have registered to vote. all but 3% of the population has decided that voting DOES matter. Sure sometimes anarchists might find themselves in the minority and should stand up for their values. There are a lot of unpleasant people in society. and a lot of idiots. but if you find yourself in a minority of only 3% you should probably ask the question 'do we really know better than everyone else or are we the idiots?'. dislodge the fence from your ass-crack and make a choice.

This is the strawman that anarchists don't believe in voting again. Anarchists have no objection to voting in referendums per se. For example in countries like Italy or Ireland when there have been referendums on legalising divorce, for e.g, there is no problem with campaigning for social liberalisation of society from the reactionary chokehold of the catholic church. Similarly, one of the demands of the Abortion Rights Campaign in Ireland is the repeal of the 8th Amendment (1983) which put the "rights" of a fetus on a theoretically equal plane to that of the pregnant woman (in practice the rights of the woman are entirely secondary). Whenever we get a referendum on repealing the 8th, anarchists will definitely be campaigning for a yes vote.

Further, arguments could be made for voting in Swiss style referendums to adopting a "living wage" basic income, or setting a maximum multiplier on how many times higher than the lowest wage in a firm the top wage can be - IF particular groups of anarchists decided that this or other reform was a worthwhile gain, not just materially, but compositionally.

The problem is not with the idea of voting for this particular referendum, its the dubious (to say the least) nature of the arguments for the Yes side. The radical independence campaign seem to be arguing that this is a referendum for social-democracy. If that was actually on the ballot paper, then that might be a different argument, but it blatantly isn't.

So the problem is not with the principle of voting per se, but the arguments for a Yes vote actually aiding the recomposition of an antagonist class subject, either locally in Scotland or in a wider context. So far convincing arguments on that question are noticeably absent (we had a 2-3 hour session on this at the Plan C Conference this weekend and the general agreement was that none of the lefty Yes arguments were particularly convincing).

That said, if by some miracle it does turn out to be a Yes vote, I shall be celebrating tomorrow night with the rest of Dublin. But that's purely out of juvenile joy at the resulting dismay of the English ruling classes and their loyal middle class "opinion former" lackeys (at least this referendum has displayed the underlying unity of the UK Fourth Estate - Monbiot is right on that) and traditional hatred for "the evil empire" and the union jack. Serious partying? Yes. Serious politics? Not really.

That said, just because the arguments for yes, so far, appear to be somewhat delusional, that doesn't mean that the unintended consequences might not turn out to be significant in retrospect.

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Steven.
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Sep 18 2014 18:21

omen
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Sep 18 2014 22:02
snowflake wrote:
97% of the population have registered to vote.

Maybe I'm just not paying attention. Which is true. And maybe I've just drunk one too many vodka-cokes. Which is also true. But aren't people legally required to register to vote, even if they don't actually vote? (There was a thread here about this recently, but I'm too hammered to find it right now.) So all that statistic actually tells us is that 3% of Scotland are either children, convicted criminals or hermit crabs.

omen
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Sep 19 2014 00:05

I'm not very good at this sort of thing, but my prediction is as follows:

(Click for biggsies!)

(NB: I will be hailed as a political genius for centuries to come if this is the actual result.)

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Joseph Kay
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Sep 19 2014 05:54

Omen wins nominative determinism.

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ocelot
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Sep 19 2014 08:28

Leading indicators in order of increasing precision: pollsters, betting punters, drunken anarchist cartoonists..

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Sep 19 2014 09:32

Despite my scepticism over whether the lefties in the Yes campaign were making arguments that were building class consciousness rather than undermining it, my overall impression is that the politics of fear have triumphed over the politics of hope. And that is never a good thing. As for all those people who are now crowing triumphantly over the victory of the politics of fear? They are a disgrace.

It will be interesting the see if the Tories can resist their historical tendency to react to a momentary fright with a subsequent reaction of vicious vindictiveness that has a long-term counterproductive effect. Obviously the promises, "vows", "pledges", etc, before yesterday that if the Scots voted no, they'd be given devo-max on a plate, will turn out to be the utter lie that the Yes campaign said it was. The question is whether all the revanchist talk from the Tory right of ditching the Barnett formula, reducing the number of Scots MPs, etc, etc, will bear fruit, or whether party command will have the strategic nous to stifle them.