Well, I did not think I would be able to do another Flag, but here I am again.
Since the last Flag I did, 3 Jan, my life has changed quite a bit; on 20th January I fell at a pedestrian crossing in Corstorphine. I was picked up by a lady, Karen O’Shaughnessy, and the Pedestrian Crossing attendant. Mrs O’Shaughnessy kindly brought me home.
My son took me to the Western General Hospital who found I had a broken arm; we also went to Edinburgh Royal and got a brain scan which was OK. The next day I was taken in to the Western General. It is all very blurred, because I think I got home, but then I fell at home, and was taken in again. I know I was in the Western three times, because I kept falling at home. I was in 3 different wards, but I found it a very pleasant experience – it eventually coincided with the lockdown, so no visitors.
When I first went in to hospital my wife brought me the Herald and the National, but I could not handle the broadsheet so she just brought The National. Then when lockdown came in, no visitors, no newspapers!
Latterly I was in a room of my own and there was a TV, however I need sub-titles and they were generally too small.
When we looked after our youngest granddaughter, I used to say to her “Tell me your sad story” – so that is my sad story!
In the last couple of years I tried to have letters in the Herald and the National but during my
time in hospital finally I could not do any at all.
I have now resumed my letters to the National and generally manage at least one a week.
How do I feel things are going on the political front? Well in the first instance I think Nicola Sturgeon is doing a magnificent job. I read about people trying to progress Independence and critical of the SNP in general and Nicola in particular for not doing more. For Heaven’s sake, with Brexit underway and the coronavirus Nicola and the SNP are doing the day job. Contrast that with Slogan Johnston and his mishmash of seeking votes. The people of the United Kingdom, which still includes ourselves, are really concerned about staying at home and not catching the virus – only under Westminster rules do dead people get a vote (1979 Referendum anyone?)
We are also seeing new parties being set up, wanting to run “List only” votes in the 2021
Scottish Election. It has not yet dawned on them that a vote for a “List party” is a vote against the SNP. The D’Hondt voting system was set up to stop the SNP ever getting a majority. Circumstances proved that wrong.
Last year one of my friends said he had stopped writing to The National as it was preaching to the converted. I disagreed as we get a lot of strange views, and we need clear statements as to what we should be saying. This may seem like arrogance, but I and many other SNP members have been through the heat and burden of the day, and we should be using our experiences to help people.
To put it simply, I never accepted that Scotland was subsidised by England, and the discovery of oil in Scottish waters killed that argument stone dead. Westminster denied how much oil there was and only when the McCrone report was made public a few years ago were we given any proof. By that time we were unaware just how many billions had been squandered by Westminster, and just where it went. To put in some perspective, Norway found oil at the same time, roughly the same amounts as Scotland had; they put the money aside and now have the largest oil fund in the world- Tsk tsk – what might have been.
However oil had not been discovered when I joined the Party, so although the oil money will only be a fraction of what it could have been, it did not affect the growth of the SNP.
We must remain one Party, no supposed Independence challengers. After Independence has been won the SNP should run the next two or three Parliaments, to get bedded in and stop the Unionists from repossessing us. After that Scotland will decide its own future.
Right, a sketchy Flag, but my modest effort after a difficult time. Hopefully I’ll still be here for the next one ?