Kezia Dugdale has to be one of the most tragic political characters in Scottish politics, and most likely will be looked back on with only the sympathy of historians.
To call herself a socialist and internationalist, yet is proud of Labour’s planning and starting the privatisation of the royal mail, NHS, education and air traffic control, taking billions of pounds away from the NHS using PFIs, introducing ATOS (which the Tories use to target those who are disabled with discrimination and create physiological torture), the introduction of workfare schemes (pushing those who are unemployed who work for no wage and give up their labour rights), attacking civil liberties (resulting in thousands of new crimes, putting people in prison without trial and complicit when it came to torture)…is far fetched to say the least.
But now with her most recent article on Labour List, she shows incredible ignorance to the current situation facing Scotland.
So without further ado, let’s see what she has to say.
In Holyrood, we have an SNP government interested only in division – recklessly pursuing a second independence referendum that would threaten even more jobs, harm even more businesses, and cause a deeper economic crisis.”
I would happily agree with the first two lines, although the third line not so much (shocker right? Who would have thought a pro-independence page would disagree?). Nevertheless, if Kezia Dugdale would rather risk the Scottish economy losing between £1.7 billion to £11.2 billion a year, costing £2,000 per head and 80,000 jobs, then so be it. This isn’t a political union like the UK, the EU is primarily a trading market, which is why such a risk is far more likely with a Hard Tory Brexit than independence. We could defend independence with more detail, but she hasn’t exactly offered that yet, so moving on.
That’s right kids, if the Tories in Westminster began slaughtering orphans all across Scotland and started burning down civilisation itself, Kezia Dugdale would still not support independence.
“Unlike the Tories and the SNP, we will stand up for the choices made by the majority of Scots in two referendums – choices to protect jobs and the economy, positive choices for our future prosperity.”
That’s right folks, Labour is gonna stop the Tories from letting Brexit happen and actually allow both futures to hap-
So we can’t have both (and the Tories have a majority anyway to trigger Article 50), so it’s either one or the other. What the heck is Kezia Dugdale talking about?
“The Supreme Court has rightly made it clear that Westminster should get a vote on the triggering of article 50 and Labour MPs will seek to amend the bill to prevent the Conservatives using Brexit to turn Britain into a bargain basement tax haven”
That’s right folks, Kezia Dugdale knows for sure this time that Labour’s amendments will work and has the power, trust me I’m sure of-
So, if Labour don’t have the power to actually push through their amendments and still support triggering Article 50, what’s actually going to stop a Hard Tory Brexit?
WHAT?! How can you say you represent the choices made by the majority of Scots in both referendums if you admit that we’re leaving the EU despite Scotland voting 62% to remain? That does not make any sense whatsoever. Like seriously, it’s baring stupidity.
Eh, I don’t think anyone votes to be poorer Kez, unless that was on the ballot box in the last election?
“While the bill to leave the EU is still progressing through the House of Commons, Labour in Holyrood will send a clear message that we do not support a hard Brexit. The UK is leaving the European Union, but there is no reason why Scottish Labour and the Scottish Parliament should not give a voice to the wishes of the vast majority of Scottish people.”
But why is this an issue? Didn’t voting No back in 2014 solve this issue since we’re a partnership of equals?
It’s incredibly obvious that we’re not an equal partnership, but Kezia Dugdale is draped so deep within unionism she cannot open her eyes to such a reality, yet alone see the spin of her own lies from Better Together.
“Tomorrow there will be a non-binding vote in the Scottish Parliament on article 50, and we will vote to send a clear message to Theresa May. So Scottish Labour MSPs will vote against the triggering of article 50.”
You know what would be great? Having the actual option to stay in the EU and not a symbolic vote on it, which…oh I dunno, could be achieved with independence?
Yup, and you’d rather they were in government than you controlling government policy. Obeying your masters much?
“But the only thing more damaging for our economy than a Tory Brexit is the SNP’s reckless plan for independence. We will never support something that brings greater hardship to working families. Unlike the SNP and the Tories, we will always stand up for Scotland and the best interests of people who live and work here.”
The people you wish to stand up for rejected you and put you in third place back in 2016 whilst you’re still polling at 15%. Maybe you’re missing something Kez? And it would be great to see some context with why independence would be so damaging, just saying it will means nothing.
“The reality is there is a £15bn difference between what Scotland raises in tax and what we spend on public services. That’s a black hole that would cause further austerity in an independent Scotland.”
Ah, I stand corrected! Kezia Dugdale has offered a nonsensical figure from GERS! But if we look at GERS, what is the identifiable subsidy?
So in terms of total spending that’s actually in Scotland, the total amount is about £55.5 billion. When it comes to revenue that we raise, that figure is about £53.5 billion. So that’s a £2-2.5 billion identified deficit, with the rest very much spent on our behalf. However, that doesn’t mean that our deficit is only £2-2.5 billion, there will be factors on what is spent on our behalf that are in Scotland’s interests. A lot of non-identified PEO is spent on EU membership, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, national projects which are more focused on London, debt servicing (which you can read more about here) and paying for the UK trade deficit cost. Let’s also remember that in 2010 the UK’s deficit share of GDP was 11.2%, and no one claimed that the UK could no longer rely upon itself to be a nation. Although funny enough, George Osborne and David Cameron accidentally gave the game away as to why Scotland could be extremely wealthy like many Nordic countries…
All of that, and yet we can’t forget that GERS was designed to make Scotland’s economy look bad. But hey, not like Kezia Dugdale is actually going to suddenly listen to the truth.
If you wish to read more about GERS in much greater detail, I suggest you read Doctor Craig Dalzell’s “Beyond GERS” report, to which shows that Scotland’s deficit can be £5.6bn (3.5% of GDP) with independence, but also offers alternative conclusions as to the worst and best case scenario. Anyway, back to Dugdale.
Yup, and those same workers must really support you when you’re polling at 15%.
No, it’s four times bigger, not important. And the use of “UK single market” really needs to stop, because there really is no such thing (why was it never mentioned in the first referendum?). If it does exist, I’d love to see a detailed source about the market itself. And we should remind Kezia Dugdale…
But even in the scenario where there are trading barriers, think logically which side you want to be on. The rUK would face tariffs trade deals with their trading partners, which could then lead to the pound sterling falling even further than it has already. If the pound sterling continues to fall to disastrous levels, it would mean the rUK’s purchasing power would also fall. Despite this, it would only encourage businesses from down south to move to Scotland, being part of a more exclusive trade market in the EU (in the event of independence within the EU). And when we stay in the real single market, the EU will already be negotiating a better deal for themselves and us, which will hurt the UK more.
Let’s also think of the impact. The UK economy has moved away from a labour intensive economy since the 80s, now far more focused on services. If the UK faces tariffs from the EU, imports will fall or a greater amount will be paid to maintain the same levels we take in. These imports are the very sources we need to actually export back to the rest of the world. As a result, prices from across the board rises and so does inflation, leading to “inflation tax” for those holding money.
With inflation businesses will need to update their prices, this being a resource-consuming process that takes away from other productive activities and pushes consumers to have less confidence in the market due to distorted relative prices. From this, businesses see net profit fall and either need to cut wages, supply or jobs, but overall an increase in unemployment.
With unemployment and inflation on the rise, the service sector in the UK is far more likely to leave, which means there is a fall in tax revenues. Companies that have supported infrastructure and manufacturing bases do not benefit from trade tariffs with the EU.
There’s far greater detail we could dive into, but that can be analysed for another day. The fact the UK would be willing to go through so much damage would only show their narrow minded ignorance. What side of the deal would you rather be on, one that benefits trade or one that’ll only get the worst end of the stick?
We’ve just gone over that, next!
Yet sticking with the UK government through Brexit and not considering independence “under any circumstances” isn’t reckless and blind itself? That, ladies and gentlemen, is arrogant British Nationalism.
That’s not true.
(EDIT: When you put it down to the three real options facing Scotland, most voters actually back independence)
They’re not proposing independence, they’ve offering more devolution and staying in the EU single market, which such a report can be read here. This is based on the advice by the following…
It’s unionists who are screaming and shouting about independence, maybe Scottish Labour should write a document with real details and stop whining like the useless opposition they currently are.
50% of Scots want another referendum within the next two years, not “no-one” as Kezia Dugdale sites, plus…
Call me crazy, but I think Scottish Labour’s leader may be absolutely hopeless ¯\_(ツ)_/¯