Thursday 30 March 2023

Does Yousaf think the Scottish flag is idolatrous?


What is the most important symbol of Scotland? It is without doubt the saltire. Other flags and symbols such as the Royal Standard, (the yellow flag with the red lion) or the unicorn or the thistle are important, but the blue and white cross of St Andrew is more important than any other. It is for this reason that Scottish nationalism uses the saltire more than any other symbol to express its desire for Scottish independence. But what if the new leader of the SNP thought that the saltire was forbidden? That would be rather awkward, wouldn’t it?

Some people may think that my continued exploration of Humza Yousaf’s connection with Islam is Islamophobic. It isn’t. I am treating his beliefs as being as worthy of study as Christianity. There is much that a non-Muslim can find admirable in Islam. It is very interesting as a subject, and I urge everyone to study it in a fair way and with an open mind. But there are certain areas of Islam which are problematic for a society like Scotland. We have to be honest and open about these. Otherwise, how are we to live in an attitude of tolerance to each other.

The biggest problem for the leader of the SNP is that the symbol of the cross is forbidden in Islam. How do we know this? We know it because the Prophet Muḥammad said it.

Islamic doctrine comes to us primarily via the Quran, but also by the sayings and actions of Muḥammad recorded in the Hadith and Sunnah. These were passed down from the time when Muḥammad was living by people who knew him in a verifiable and reliable way to the time when they were finally written down.

The fundamental reason why the cross is forbidden as a symbol in Islam is that Islam rejects the idea that Jesus died on the cross and was resurrected. The reason why it rejects this is that Islam is strictly monotheistic and rejects the idea that Jesus was divine on the grounds that this would be a form of polytheism.

The cross in Christianity is not about the death of Jesus. No one would wear a cross today if Jesus had merely been executed. It is worn and used as a symbol because Christians believe in the resurrection and divinity of Jesus. It is about this that Muslims disagree.

The following Hadith shows Muḥammad’s attitude to the cross.

Al-Ḥusayn ibn Yazīd al-Kūfī reported from ʿAbd al-Salām ibn Ḥarb, on the authority of Ghuṭayf ibn Aʿyan, on the authority of Muṣʿab ibn Saʿd, who reported from ʿAdī ibn Ḥātim, who said: “I came to the prophet, peace and blessing be upon him, wearing a cross of gold around my neck. He said to me: ‘ʿAdī, remove this idol from you [i.e., from your neck]’.

 The cross is idolatrous because it represents the polytheism that Muḥammad thought was at the heart of the Christian faith. It symbolises the idea that God became man, died and was resurrected, which is shirk (the deification or worship of anyone or anything besides God).

The following Hadith also shows how Muḥammad treated the cross in his own home. It comes from his wife Āʾisha.

Mūsā ibn Ismāʿīl reported from Abbān, on the authority of Yaḥyā, on the authority of ʿImrān ibn Ḥaṭṭān, that ʿĀʾisha, may God be pleased with her, related to him, that the prophet, peace and blessing be upon him, never left anything in his house which had [images of] the Cross upon it, but that he broke it.

Muḥammad didn’t merely consider any physical depiction of the cross to be forbidden, i.e., shirk he even thought that any gesture was forbidden.

Hannād ibn al-Sirrī reported on the authority of Wakīʿ, on the authority of Saʿīd ibn Ziyād, on the authority of Ziyād ibn Ṣubayḥ al-Ḥanafī, who said: “I was praying by the side of Ibn ʿUmar, and put my hand on my waist. When he finished praying, he said [to me]: ‘This [gesture] is a cross in prayer; the messenger of God, peace and blessing be upon him, used to forbid [doing] it’.”

Now why do devout Muslims at the moment refrain from eating and drinking during the day. They do so in honour of Muḥammad’s first revelation and because Ramadan is one of the five pillars of Islam.

But everything of importance in Islam is derived either from what was revealed to Muḥammad or to what he is reported to have said or did.

But this means logically that the leader of the SNP must think that the Scottish flag is shirk, or idolatrous. The only way he could not think this is to reject those Hadith where Muḥammad says that the cross is idolatrous. But this would require him to prove that the Hadith was unreliable and Muḥammad did not say what he was reported as saying.

But it gets worse for Mr Yousaf. If he does not believe that Jesus died on the cross, why would he believe that Saint Andrew died on a cross? Why indeed would he think that Andrew was a Saint at all? Why would he think that the relics of St Andrew arrived in St Andrews? Even if they did, he would think that such bones were just the bones of an ordinary person who happened to follow a prophet called Jesus who was just a person like the rest of us, albeit an important and revered prophet.

Mr Yousaf must also think that the unicorn is idolatrous because it stands for the incarnation, i.e., God becoming man, which Islam thinks is not merely false but polytheistic. Mr Yousaf must therefore think also that the Kirk and Presbyterianism which defines Scottish culture is also idolatrous and that the Declaration of Arbroath (which was a letter to the Pope) was from one idolator to another. This doesn’t leave Mr Yousaf with much else that symbolises Scotland except perhaps the thistle.

So, although I’m sure Mr Yousaf will continue to fly the Scottish flag on Bute House, I wonder if he knows that he ought to think it idolatrous. When he finds out will he tell his supporters? Perhaps he would prefer one with a blue background and a crescent moon. But even to suggest such a thing would no doubt be considered Islamophobic.

Wednesday 29 March 2023

No room in Humza's inn


So, a certain character from King Lear gets exiled for telling the truth. There is no room at the inn for Kate Forbes or else she was offered such a rotten room she chose the stable instead.  

There are some oddities about the election of Humza Yousaf to First Minister and leader of the SNP. The surprise is not that he did so well, but that he did so badly. The whole SNP establishment backed him. It was obvious that Sturgeon wanted him to win. And so it came to pass that he did win. But by 52% to 48%. That’s so near to the margin of error that he might have not won. A couple of thousand votes here or there and Sturgeon might not have got her successor. Can even the SNP control the results of elections to that extent?

What would have happened if Kate Forbes had been a little bit more political about questions on gay marriage, abortion and premarital sex. She might have refused to answer on the grounds that Yousaf wasn’t questioned on his private religious views. I will tell you whether I think gay sex is sinful when you first find out what Humza thinks. Would this have got Forbes over the line?

But actually, I think Forbes won more votes than she lost by being the most honest and truthful politician in living memory. It was this that was the dividing line between her and Yousaf.

There’s also the issue of the SNP members that didn’t bark. How many couldn’t be bothered to vote for a contest that had put the SNP on the TV more than at any time since the pandemic? Was that 20,000 people who despite paying their subscription had no opinion whatsoever about their next leader. Or were these like the dead foreign legion soldiers in Beau Geste who were put between the battlements of the fort to deceive the enemy that it was still guarded? Serving France even if they were no longer in the land of the living. Controlled by whoever was still fighting to defend the fort and its secrets.

There is also this difference between Forbes and Yousaf. Whatever we may think of her views on Scottish independence, there is little doubt that Forbes is a nice, kind decent person. If I were her neighbour, I would count myself fortunate. I imagine it would be possible to discuss politics without rancour. This is the kind of person who marries a widower with three children. She goes to church and follows its teaching better than most of us and was brought up in India helping people there. This is a good person.

Compare and contrast with Humza Yousaf. When we saw him trip over himself while riding a scooter, the thing that always struck me was not the unfortunate accident, but the lackey running along beside him holding his sticks. Tsar Humza tsar of all the grotty ferries.

Yousaf while Transport Secretary didn’t think the laws that he made for everyone else applied to him. When he married his first wife, he made her convert to Islam and then after having an affair he blamed his former wife for not being a good enough Muslim. When he wanted to put his daughter in a nursery and discovered there was no place for her, he arranged a sting operation that attempted to prove that the nursery had been racist. What sort of person does this? When the rest of us are turned down for anything, whether it’s a job, renting a flat or a place at university we don’t cry foul, we just accept the decision and move on.

I wouldn’t like to live next door to Mr Yousaf. He might put a stethoscope to the wall in case I said anything that might be a hate crime. I have no problem with Rishi Sunak being PM. I would have no problem if Anas Sarwar became First Minister, but I don’t trust Mr Yousaf. I don’t understand his motives. It is purely accidental that his parents chose to live in Glasgow rather than Bradford. Why is he quite so dedicated to breaking up the UK? Dig around in Mr Yousaf’s past and there are some unsavoury rumours about his associations with Islamist organisations, charities and friends. I have no idea if these rumours are true, but someone should investigate.

The SNP depends on two things for its success. One is that it is the party that will lead Scotland to independence. The second is that it is the anti-Tory party in Scotland. Hatred of Tories motivates Scottish nationalists at least if not more than their desire for independence.

But we have learned two things during the leadership campaign. Nearly half perhaps more supported Kate Forbes despite her being socially conservative, fiscally conservative and in favour of a financial model for Scottish independence that could almost be described as Thatcherite.

She is right of course. The best argument for Scottish independence is conservative. Balance the books, cease to dependent on UK money, undercut the UK by making Scotland more efficient and business friendly. Lower taxes in Scotland compared to the other parts of the UK in order to attract investment and entrepreneurs. Do that for twenty or thirty years and you might well be able to make a sound economic case for Scottish independence.

But if you do that you can hardly call yourself an anti-Tory party. You would be much more Tory than the present Scottish Conservatives, who are largely wets.

Alternatively, you can go down the route that Humza Yousaf proposes. Spend more. Tax more. Rely more on UK money while telling everyone how much you dislike those Tories who subsidise you. But how does this model that failed under Sturgeon succeed under Yousaf? If Yousaf like Forbes is truly going to wait until support for independence reaches 60%, he may as well give up now, because if Sturgeon couldn’t get anywhere near that figure with socialism how will Yousaf?

The only way to get to the magic 60% is to ditch all the anti-Tory nonsense and show Scots that they really would be better off after independence, by making them better off before independence, but that Tory approach favoured by Forbes would cut her off from the Central Belt and would drive the Central Belt into arms of Scottish Labour.

Despite pretending to put the SNP car into eleventh gear, Humza Yousaf needs driving lessons just as much as Sturgeon, because he is going nowhere. His party is no longer likely to take Scotland towards independence anytime soon, because Yousaf will make it more dependent on the UK not less. Worse he has no method which could foreseeably bring about independence either by means of a referendum or anything else. He can no longer plausibly claim that his party his anti-Tory because nearly half of its members voted for a Tory in all but name.

So, what is left is merely innkeeper Humza Yousaf spitefully keeping the brightest mind in the SNP out of the inn, leaving him with the cows, the donkeys and the asses eating from the SNP manger, but without the brains to see that the stable needs a thorough clean out because something smells rather badly of rotten fish.

Run Kate run. Look after your children. Have more. In time find a better job more worthy of your talent.


Monday 27 March 2023

Keeping a lid on it


I dread the damage that Humza Yousaf may do in the time that he will be First Minister. It will be more of the same that we have had from Nicola Sturgeon for the past years. We can expect the coalition with the Scottish Greens to continue. Scotland will stagnate. Worst of all there will the same fundamental dishonesty.

The SNP is corrupt. It has been run like a secret society without transparency with a small inner circle controlling everything and everyone else being told what to do.

There is I think a giant festering secret right at the heart the SNP. It has brought down Sturgeon. It has brought down Murrell. It has brought down Liz Lloyd and John Swinney. It has brought down Murray Foote. But we don’t really know what it is. It may be Alex Salmond bringing down the heads of the five families. But we don’t know.

Humza Yousaf has been elected to keep a lid on the whole thing. This is part of his dishonesty. The other part I strongly suspect is the fundamental contradiction of the man. He is a devout Muslim who campaigns for things that are contrary to mainstream Islam. He could tell us that he is a liberal Muslim, or that there are parts of the Quran that he finds problematic, but he doesn’t. Instead, we are left to wonder what he really believes.

This was the contrast with Kate Forbes. She was the first politician I can remember who told the truth about what she believes. Here I stand, I can do no other said Forbes as she nailed her manifesto to the Church door. Whether you agree with her or not it was heroic, just as it was heroic when Martin Luther told the truth no matter the consequences.

As a Pro UK writer, I was overjoyed when I heard that Yousaf had won the leadership. Not merely because I thought he would do a poor job as First Minister, but because I thought Kate Forbes just might do a great job. She might just reach out to people like me who have always opposed the SNP and independence.

If she had succeeded in making Scotland more prosperous by ditching the Greens, lowering taxes where possible and encouraging business, I might have been tempted to support what she was trying to do.

If she had said independence is a long-term project that needs Scotland to cease being dependent on the UK prior to leaving it, I would have thought that is the way to do it if you are going to do it at all.

I’m Pro UK but I’m not a dogmatist. If Forbes could have provided a route to independence that showed we would be more prosperous, she would have done what neither Salmond nor Sturgeon could do. I probably would still prefer staying in the UK, but I would respect her argument.

But this is where my joy at Humza Yousaf’s victory is tinged with regret. He won’t make Scotland better and less divided. He won’t do anything to solve the problems we have with unemployment, health and education. Support for the SNP and Scottish independence will doubtless fall under Yousaf. That is a prize worth having. But we live here. A bigger prize still is a Scotland that is gradually improving.

Perhaps there is a chance of that. If support for the SNP and Scottish independence falls far enough, we might get a chance to vote on Left Right issues rather than the constitution.

In a year or so there will be a General Election if the SNP does very badly. That might be the last of Yousaf, but it might also make it obvious to everyone that independence won’t be happening for at least twenty or thirty years. At this point people like Kate Forbes, Anas Sarwar and Douglas Ross might just begin to cooperate with each other to make Scotland more prosperous without particularly thinking whether it makes independence more or less likely.

But I really don’t think we are going to get anywhere until someone gets to the bottom of the cesspit and finds whatever is rotting there. Only then can we move forward.

The British Government should appoint a Public Inquiry to investigate everything that has gone on since the SNP came to power in 2007. It should have the power to compel testimony under oath and should punish perjury with contempt of court and jail time.

We need to know how it is that the Scottish Civil Servants paid for by the British state became allies of the SNP in its attempt to destroy the British state.

We need a detailed investigation of Alex Salmond’s behaviour while he was First Minister in Bute House. Witnesses can be anonymous if necessary. We need to know what other members of the SNP including Sturgeon and Murrell knew about this behaviour in 2014.

We need to know why allegations against Alex Salmond relating to 2014 were investigated and eventually went to court in 2020. Who authorized the investigation of these allegations so many years after the events.

We need to know about the SNP’s financial affairs by means of a forensic accountant with full access to all SNP accounts. We need to know whether foreign powers hostile to the UK have had contact with the SNP and if they have funded the SNP.

Because this won’t do. We have no sensible explanation for the sudden departure of Sturgeon, Lloyd, Foote, Swinney and Murrell. It was unimaginable that these five would go even one day prior to Sturgeon telling us that she was going.

We then have a campaign for a successor, which has frankly smelled of the rotting thing at the bottom of the cesspit. No one knew how many SNP members there were who could vote and the whole process has been less than transparent. There are already whispers that the result might have been rigged.

Britain is not some sort of third world dictatorship that runs on corruption. But the Northern half or what used to be called North Britain is being hindered because SNP voters don’t care how corrupt or useless the SNP is only that we should be free from South Britain.

I have been mocking the SNP in a series of articles ever more outlandish than the last, but the pity of it is that each piece of outlandishness is easily identified and sometimes even seems plausible.

We are offered more of the same with Humza Yousaf. Keep a lid on it all. Don’t tell anyone anything. Forbes just might have tried to uncover some it, might even have tried to clean some of it up.

But we still need a cleaner. We haven’t even begun to look at the dirt swept under the carpet. Find a police force that is not controlled by the SNP. Find a judge with the power to investigate who cannot be threatened by the SNP. Build enough jails to punish all those who made Scotland dirty and corrupt. Do it. Do it now.

A fairytale that has nothing to do with Scotland. Part 5

Part 4

Once upon a time the day of the gender reveal party finally arrived. Would Prince Hārūn ibn ʿImrān reach the promised land despite some evidence of his worshiping golden calves especially if they led up to golden thighs. Alternatively, would Princess Regan or Princess Cordelia be the choice of the Kingdom. Pink said that the successor to Queen Nancy would be a Queen, Blue said that it would be a King.

But immediately there was a dispute about the colours. Surely yellow was the colour of the kingdom even if it suggested how both Queen Nancy and King Paul had spent money even if they had shouted garde l’eau before chucking it out of the window onto the heads of their subjects. More importantly said Prince Hārūn there was really no such thing as a King, or a Queen and Kings could be revealed by pink balloons just as much as Queens


O sister, I’ll not reach my hand,

               Binnorie, O Binnorie;

And I’ll be heir of all your land

Some wondered in the kingdom whether Hārūn (aka. Goneril, short for Gonorrhoea) had received his nickname through clapping, eyeliner, gender fluidity, golden thighs or somewhere a little higher.

Outgoing King Paul agreed he was a non-binary husband who was just as much a wife to Queen Nancy as she was a King to him. Queen Nancy reflected on all of the super unleaded interim interdicts that she had used to try to keep from the Kingdom that Paul was a less than active husband, which had meant that he tended to play the role of Joseph to her Mary. Nancy’s revelations therefore had the same degree of miraculousness that originally had led Joseph to want to send Mary away, but unlike Joseph Paul had not received an explanation from a visiting angel. Nor had anyone else in the kingdom.

Nancy blamed Paul for the whole fall of the house of Piscium and she longed to ride off into the sunset to meet her Gaulish ambassador Saphotrix. But unfortunately, Nancy had proclaimed that mice could identify as horses and horses could identify as mice and so it came to pass that the horse that she chose to ride to Saphotrix was rather small and anyway she was just learning to drive it.

But how to get rid of Paul/Paula. He had been useful when it had become necessary to cease turning a Nelson’s eye and gather witnesses against Bad King Alan, but he had fatally missed rather than hit. The Padrino as Alan was affectionately known by those he forced to be devoted had survived and everyone had had to go to the mattresses, which had been rather awkward whether Paul had wanted to be Paula or not as she felt rather closer to his/her pene pasta whether he was she or not and whether the mattresses were hard or soft.

Now there was the question of some ducats that had been given to Nancy by some fools who thought she was really interested in splitting the kingdom rather than receiving the ducats, but these ducats had been spent on redecorating the palace and it was a very nice tasteful shade of pale pink and pale blue, which would suit whichever gender was revealed even if the new King pretended to like pink as much as blue, just as Crassus rather crassly liked both snails and oysters, but didn’t like Spartacus.

It was necessary that where the hit on Alan had miscarried it should now succeed on Paul who was the man who knew too much. The palace was filled with explosives, but to make absolutely sure Prince Hārūn was encouraged to help Nancy in treating Paul as if he were really King Duncan. “Is this a string I see before me, it’s loop before my hand” recited Hārūn hoping that his service to Lady MacPiscis would gain him a kingdom. But the whole thing was really overkill as the explosives alone sent King Paul/Queen Paula into the seventh heaven, where he received rather more than a thorn in his flesh as he landed some distance from the Palace in an orchard. Then again perhaps it was a poisoned apple that did for him. Turing and turing in the widening Corryvreckan of a kingdom.   

Queen Nancy left office with more secrets than anyone since another Queen who was named after the wife of Joseph and who eventually had her head chopped off not because anyone could prove she blew up her husband, but rather because she conspired with people Princess Cordelia rather disapproved of because they were not reformed and worshiped at the shrine of Romulus and Remus.

Whether ex Queen Nancy arrived at the same fate at the hands of perfidious Sasainn history as yet has not recorded. Nor has it told us why she turned on King Alan. Was she King Alan’s spurned lover. Did she know about King Alan’s harem where the methods of becoming friends (mating) were quite unlike Mary’s as they required no divine intervention? What made Nancy gather up all those who had been mates with Alan so many years later and how was it that quite so many former mates against him were not enough for the hit to succeed?

But Alan survived and was now pushing forward Princess Regan. Could she spring a surprise at the King or Queen reveal party? Even if she couldn’t, would Alan make a comeback? After all he was still 12 years younger than Joseph who sometimes didn’t know which way, he had to go to get off the stage and always forgot how it was he had gained a son outside the usual methods and indeed whether he had a son at all.

Cordelia thought Mary had something to do with Romulus and Remus and didn’t quite approve even if she loved her son. It was the Mass bit of the 25th that troubled her, but at least she was clear about who was a King and who was a Queen and that Nancys could not marry Nancys as it was bound to be barren.

And so, we waited. Would it be a balloon with pink dust that suggested that Cordelia or Regan had reached a runoff, or would the balloon have blue dust telling us that the King would be Hārūn?

As they waited Cordelia dreamed of the promised land, where everyone would chant psalms without musical accompaniment and no one would be trans, or gay or have sex when they were unmarried. She had a vision of John’s knocks at the door and how it opened on a land where Mary was a sinner for having an illegitimate child before she was married, and Queen Mary was a harlot not least because she worshipped at the shrine of the whore of Babylon, which suckled at a she wolf in a most disgusting and Romulusish way.

Hārūn dreamed of a land free from Sasainn which would allow him to establish the “House of Peace”, would turn Grotty Ferry into Andalucía and would reverse the temporary setbacks at Tours 732 and Wien 1683.

Regan dreamed of King Alan and how unjustly he had been accused when really, he was the undisputed hero of the kingdom and indeed, she would consider it a privilege to be part of his harem, not that there ever had been a harem, just mates mating, friends friending and cuddles cuddling as everyone slept sleepily.

So, the day had arrived. The subjects waited the result.

It turned out to be the best of times and the worst of times. Happy countries are all the same. Unhappy countries are ruled by King Hārūn.

The Secession Normally Possible Movement is less likely to succeed. But the kingdom will continue to be sucked down into the whirlpool. On the one hand half the subjects may rejoice at a useless king who will achieve nothing, but on the other we will suffer the damage of that uselessness.

A simple unlearned teller of tales has tried to tell you all I know. But I don’t know. I wasn’t there. I rely on rumour, on riddles and where possible reason.

Only three people have ever really understood the Piscis dynasty business – the Padrone, who is stricken – a former Breatannach ambassador, who has gone mad – and a defrocked reverend, who has forgotten how to tell us.

Someone needs to plod through it all or else 

we will all live unhappily ever after.

Part 6

Saturday 25 March 2023

Male bodies in women's sport is cheating


I have never heard of a trans man, i.e., a person who was born a girl who later decided she was a boy or a man, trying to compete at even the lowest level in men’s sport. There is a reason for that. Such a person with a female body would not be able to compete against men, even if she thought she was a man. In a hundred metres race she would come last. In a rugby match she would be battered if not maimed or killed.

I have likewise never heard of a trans man wishing to go to a men’s prison or even wanting to go to a men’s sauna where everyone sits in a towel or sometimes completely naked. Trans men do not wish to enter men’s spaces for a very good reason. A trans man in a men’s prison would be vulnerable because she would be smaller and weaker than any of the other inmates and would be subject to physical or sexual assault. It’s tough enough being a man in a man’s prison, it would be still worse if you had a female body. So trans men don’t choose to do this.

It's always the other way round. Trans women want to take part in women’s sport. Trans women want access to women’s spaces. Why the disparity? While there are no trans men trying to play men’s rugby there are lots of trans women. While there are no trans men trying to beat men in swimming races or weightlifting contests, there are lots of trans women trying to do the reverse. While there are no trans men in men’s prisons there are lots of trans women trying to go to women’s prisons and trying to go to rape crisis centres, women’s changing rooms at swimming pools and Marks and Spencer. But why?

I think oddly enough the SNP came closest to giving us the reason. While Nicola Sturgeon and Humza Yousaf struggled to tell us whether the various rapists in women’s prisons were “he” “she” “it” “they” or the “the individual”, they did hint that these rapists might have been less than honest in their claims to be women.

Where would a rapist prefer to be? In a men’s prison where he might be mistreated because he’s a sex offender and where he might himself become a victim of rape, or in a woman’s prison where he is likely to be stronger than any of the guards and all of the other inmates and where if he is lucky, he might be able to continue his raping.

So, all you need to do if you are a rapist in Scotland is to say that you are really a woman, call yourself “she” and insist that everyone else does. To make this more convincing you might wear a wig, add some chest padding and wear a pink outfit.

It doesn’t take a genius to realise that these rapists are not really trans women, they are chancers. They are using deceit to gain an advantage. People are not always honest. Who knew? This is why we have courts to test whether someone is telling the truth or not.

But just as the trans women trying to go to a women’s prison are being deceitful, might it be possible to suggest that some of the people with male bodies who want to take part in women’s sport are also being deceitful?

An American swimmer who is about a foot taller than his fellow competitors wins every race against women by hundreds of yards. He also gets to share a changing room with women even though he has an intact male body and is attracted to women, goes on dates with them and presumably if he gets the chance uses that intact male body in the usual way that has been creating babies since time began.

Now it could be that this American swimmer is completely sincere, but it could be just like the trans woman in the women’s jail that he sees an advantage and takes it. If you are not quite good enough to be an elite men’s swimmer, why not be an elite woman’s swimmer? All you need to do is say that you are a woman, that you want to be called “she” and perhaps take some hormones for a while.  No one is allowed to question your honesty. No one is allowed to say that trans women are not women and that there is a crucial difference between a trans woman (male body) and a woman (female body). But if no one is allowed to question the honesty of these athletes, why are we surprised that some of them might turn out to be dishonest?

But if the Scottish Gender legislation, which would have allowed men to become legally women just by saying so and waiting three months, was brought down because it would put rapists in women’s prison, wouldn’t it be equally subject to being challenged on the grounds that it puts some dishonest athletes into women’s races? The point is the same. It may be more dangerous to a woman to have a trans woman in a rugby scrum than a rapist in a woman’s prison.

It is this that makes the ban on trans women in athletics so devastating for the trans argument. It not merely says that it is unfair for trans women to compete against women. It calls into question the idea that trans women are literally women. For if that were true, there would be no problem in their competing against women. It also calls into question the idea that self-identification is a safe method of determining whether someone is a woman or not.

But if self-identification, i.e., a man saying I am a woman and waiting three months for his certificate, is not a sensible way of determining who is and who is not a woman, then the whole trans argument collapses.

What we are left with is determining that a man is a man, and a woman is a woman by observing their bodies. Female bodies are women, male bodies are men. This leaves us to conclude that trans women are men with gender dysphoria or else dishonesty, so we need doctors to diagnose this to sort out the wheat from chaff.

After diagnosis, the doctor will then decide the best way for the individual to deal with his or her dysphoria. He may choose to accept the sex he was born with or else live like a woman, and he may try to make his body as similar to a woman’s body as possible. The rest of us will treat him as kindly as possible use whatever name and pronouns he wishes, but the truth will be that he will remain male, will still be a man and if he commits a crime he will still go to the men’s prison and if he wants to play sport, he will do it against the men.

And that solves the problem and prevents all cheating

Friday 24 March 2023

An end to interesting times


All through the years when there was a Labour Liberal coalition running Scotland, I was never remotely tempted to write about it. I had opposed devolution, but it didn’t matter very much to me that there was Scottish Executive that was in charge of some things. I paid it no attention whatsoever.

What made me start writing was Alex Salmond gaining a majority in 2011 and it becoming clear soon afterwards that there was going to be an independence referendum. This is what got me started.

Since then, I have written over 850 articles. At the beginning I was hardly read by anyone, but gradually and very slowly I built an audience. Occasionally I had messages of support from politicians or people in the media and I frequently have my work shared by some kind publishers.

I make a very little from some adverts, which is nice. But really, I’m just grateful to people who take the time to read. This is why I have never asked for donations or considered going down the paywall route.

The peak was during the pandemic. I had more time to write and everyone else had more time to read. My audience reached heights that I had never dreamed of before and then as we went back to work it gradually declined. Lately it has picked up again.

But I have been fortunate to have been writing about the most interesting period of Scottish politics perhaps for centuries. Take any ten- or fifteen-year period from 1746 onwards and it cannot remotely compare politically with what we have just gone through.

Of course, there have been wars and other great events, but they were not specifically Scottish events even if we played our full part.

But at no other point was the very existence of Scotland as part of the UK under threat as it has been since 2011.

David Cameron was very foolish indeed and very arrogant too to offer Salmond a referendum. It showed Cameron’s ignorance. Just as Leave won two years later the SNP could well have won in 2014. No country should risk its existence on a 5% swing.

Since then, the SNP has been able with 45% of the vote to destroy Labour as the party of natural power in Scotland. But it has never quite had suffient to turn that 45% support into enough to force a second referendum.

I’ve always thought that the Pro UK side of the argument would have had a good chance if there had been a second referendum. Our arguments are very good. Scotland would certainly be worse off after independence, and this is particularly the case after Brexit. Joining the EU could never compensate for leaving the UK economically unless the former UK allowed Scotland to keep its existing British trade relations and allowed free movement of people as well as goods. But that would be an extraordinarily generous response to Scotland’s leaving and with it the destruction of the UK.

But I also realised that if the SNP could leap from 30% to 45% in one campaign it could certainly leap beyond 50% in another. The campaign would be at best a coin toss. I think every Prime Minister knew this, which is why the SNP will never get permission to hold a legal referendum when there is a chance that it might win one.

There have been ups and downs for the SNP too. Its support fell considerably at the General Election of 2017 only to recover again in 2019. It has had majority support for independence in the Scottish Parliament, but the Supreme Court has now told us that majority support in a devolved parliament on a reserved matter does not give you the right to hold a referendum. Why would it? A majority in Holyrood does not allow Scotland to annex Berwick either.

Now my expectation is that Scottish politics will become boring again. This is why I begin to wonder what I am going to write about. I am not interested in ferries, nor in attempts to improve Scottish education and healthcare. I pay little or no attention to the Scottish Parliament and won’t start now.

What will it take to make Scottish politics boring. It will have to be that independence becomes a long-term issue rather than a short term one. I think both Kate Forbes and Humza Yousaf accept, though not quite publicly, that there will not be a referendum any time soon. Ash Regan’s attempt to turn every election into a plebiscite would I believe damage support for the SNP even more than I expect it to be damaged.

Many Scots want independence in theory, but in practice they look to the UK as the guarantor of our standard of living. Most Scots like that we have a British Army, British pensions and all the things that go with being part of the British state except Tories. Many Scots dream of independence, but they never quite want the dream to come true, not next year anyway. As soon as it becomes clear that your mortgage might end up in Scottish pounds or Euros or there would be no Bank of England to bail us out if things went wrong, like Credit Suisse a week ago, then the adults in the room always think independence can be delayed and we never quite get to the point when we want it now.

It looks from polling that support for the SNP at Westminster is going to fall between 5 and 10%. The loss of Sturgeon is going to hit them hard. If Yousaf wins it may fall still further. Forbes is bright and decent, but she is not Salmond, nor is she Sturgeon.

Labour’s support has increased by around 10% to 29% and it is now may be able to compete with the SNP in much of the Central Belt. The Conservatives have fallen slightly to 22% since 2019, but it will still be able to compete in some rural areas as will the Lib Dems in the seats they already hold.

But this is the prize for us. If support for the SNP falls to 35% and it loses a chunk of seats and if this continues at the next Holyrood election so that there is no longer an independence supporting majority, then we are essentially back to where we were when Labour and the Lib Dems ran Holyrood.

Once independence ceases to be a short-term issue then people begin to care more about drug deaths, schools, hospitals and ferries floating. But then it’s going to be a battle of competence rather than ideology and unless the SNP start running Scotland much better Scottish voters will eventually give someone else, probably Labour a chance. At this point the ten or twelve years we have been worrying about independence will look like an aberration and I will wonder what to write about.

I don’t intend to ever give up writing. I love writing. It gives me more pleasure and fulfilment than anything else I do. I just passed the 6 million mark for readers, which is more than the population of Scotland. I hope to reach 10 million and then 20 million. I would be delighted if Scottish politics becomes boring. It will mean that we have won. But at that point I will have to find something else to write about.

Wednesday 22 March 2023

Is the UK Government a foreign power Mr Yousaf?


For as long as I have been discussing Scottish independence, I have had Scottish nationalists tell me that after independence the people living in the other parts of the UK would not be foreigners. Nor would Scots be foreigners to them. Instead, we would be a family of nations, best friends, good neighbours and as close if not closer than we are now.

But suddenly Humza Yousaf tells me “If we were independent, we would not have a foreign government coming in, for example, and vetoing our legislation.” Yet I wonder if that is true.

Humza Yousaf wants Scotland to join the EU. Well, that would mean Scotland rejoining the Common Fisheries Policy, the Common Agricultural Policy and having to reaccept all EU law and allow that the EU, its courts and parliament could require Scotland to change whatever law the EU wished.

For instance, if Scotland wanted to abolish VAT and made a law that did so, the EU would say sorry President Yousaf you can’t do that. If Scotland wanted to keep eh foreign fishing boats out of Scottish waters, the EU would say sorry President Yousaf you can’t do that?

But Mr Yousaf has no problem with Brussels telling him what to do. Does this mean that he thinks that the people of the EU would not be foreign after Scottish independence, but the people of the former UK would be? Why Brussels good, London bad, Mr Yousaf.

Moreover, Mr Yousaf would I’m sure want Scotland to be part of the United Nations. So, if perchance Mr Yousaf wanted Scotland to invade Iraq and the UN said sorry Mr Yousaf, we think that sort of war is illegal, Mr Yousaf would have to obey the UN. Isn’t that how the argument went when Mr Yousaf was part of the Stop the War Coalition?

But this is the nature of international relations. No country except perhaps China and the USA can afford to ignore international treaties and can make any law that it pleases. The UK now is constrained by membership of the European Court of Human rights. It is constrained with regard to Northern Ireland by its various agreements with the EU. Scotland too would be constrained, perhaps more so if it rejoined the EU.

So why is Mr Yousaf making a big deal about the UK Government vetoing legislation on gender which would affect the other parts of the UK and when the UK is using a part of the Scotland Act, which set up the Scottish Parliament in the first place to do so? Scotland has a devolved parliament. We are not a sovereign independent nation state. That is what Mr Yousaf wants us to become. But even if we were independent, we would still have to follow the various treaties and international rules on things like climate change and human rights, or does Mr Yousaf think the Scottish Government should be allowed to do as it pleases about these after independence. Perhaps we could discourage crime by introducing some methods of punishment currently banned by human rights law, perhaps we should ban recycling and electric cars.

What is most odd however is that it should be Mr Yousaf who uses the F word about the UK Government. After all it was the UK Government which granted Mr Yousaf’s parents the right to come to the UK in the 1960s. They were then one assumes given leave to remain by the UK Home Office and eventually given British passports.

If my parents had arrived in Brittany in the 1960s and had been given permission by France to live there, I don’t think I would describe the Government of France as foreign. After all my parents had been the foreigners until the French were generous enough to let them come to Brittany. It would be rather “Ne mords pas la main qui te nourrit”.

In Britain we rightly have a convention that we are all equally British or Scottish no matter where our parents came from. This is a consequence of mass immigration. We could not have two tiers of people one called Native Britons (rather like Native Americans), and another called foreigners. This would make living together in harmony rather difficult.

But this convention is extraordinarily recent and applies in few other countries except Western Europe and North America.

In much of the world identity is a matter of language, culture and parentage. In Poland someone whose parents arrived from Vietnam in the 1960s is still Vietnamese even if he was born in Poland, speaks perfect Polish and has a Polish passport.

If Mr Yousaf’s parents had gone to Japan, he would not be considered Japanese and he certainly would not be seeking to lead the Hokkaido National Party wanting that island to separate from Japan, which he would then consider to be a foreign power. If he tried, he would be called a Gaijin or something worse and told to mind his own business.

Scotland has been part of the UK for over 300 years which is rather more than Mr Yousaf’s family has been here. Of course, he has the right to campaign for what he likes. He is as Scottish and British as the rest of us even if he doesn’t want to be British.

But most people in the UK have family ties with the other parts of the UK that stretch back to the beginning of time. When the Romans came, we all spoke the same language had the same religion in Great Britain and there were no doubt cultural ties that linked Stone Henge with Scara Brae.

If I lacked those family and cultural ties if my family had arrived only fifty years ago, I would be rather careful who I called a foreigner.

Monday 20 March 2023

Is the SNP finished?


Before we get too excited about the events of the weekend, it is worth remembering that there is still a significant chunk of the Scottish population who want independence. It’s hard to measure this chunk exactly. It is normally less than 50%, but it is normally more than 40%. It may drop a bit due to Sturgeon and Murrell resigning. It may drop a bit more due to the election for the SNP leader descending into chaos and the dishonesty about how many SNP members there are, but it’s still the case that around half the people you meet in Scotland, your colleagues and neighbours want independence.

But this is not to say that the rather shall we say sudden departures of both Sturgeon and Murrell are not significant. But the significance is that the explanations for why they went are not on the surface sufficient. Suddenly we wake up one morning and Sturgeon is going. There is no obvious reason why.

Murrell perhaps went because he had been less than open about the SNP membership figures. This could conceivably have serious implications. After all SNP members pay a certain amount of money into the SNP. If I say that there are 100,000 members but there are really only 70,000 then this will change the SNP’s income. If only Murrell knew the true figure of members, then only he may have known the true figure in the SNP’s bank balance.

But this on its own is not enough to force someone to resign so hastily that apparently, he had an ultimatum to go by 12 o’clock and resigned at 11.56. Which of us after working for 25 years for a company would be forced to resign within a couple of hours if the only thing, we had done was underestimate the membership or the extent of our customers?

There are all sorts of sensible political reasons why Murrell might have wanted to keep secret a drastic fall in SNP membership. The reason is that this is something not merely damaging to the SNP, but to its chances of independence. The SNP needs its members to canvass in elections and to campaign if there were ever to be a second referendum. If SNP members are leaving it implies that they no longer believe that the SNP can deliver its promise of independence.

This is the canary in the coal mine. If members are leaving it is reasonable to suppose that voters will leave the SNP too. If those who are so committed that they wish to pay the SNP every month no longer want to do so why will the less committed get out of bed to vote for the SNP?

But none of this is enough to explain either Sturgeon’s sudden departure or Murrell’s. We keep waiting for more.

The story about Humza Yousaf being the anointed successor to Sturgeon, so much so that nearly the whole of the senior SNP supported him, is that he could be trusted to continue the Sturgeon dynasty and keep a lid on whatever secrets if any were contained in its archives.

But it no longer looks as if Yousaf will win. Kate Forbes is obviously more talented, and Yousaf is now tainted with whatever has caused the SNP to implode this weekend, because both Murrell and Sturgeon desperately wanted Yousaf to be the next First Minister.

Forbes is a nice person and a decent human being. Don’t underestimate this. Any party will benefit from a decent human being leading it. It was Boris Johnson’s moral flaws as much as anything else that destroyed him.

But Forbes has a couple of problems. One she is a young mother with a very young child. What if she were to have another child? Would that mean a First Minister taking maternity leave? But more importantly how can she lead a party whose senior members have made clear that they don’t want her to be leader.

The membership may have wanted Liz Truss, but the MPs didn’t, and she lasted a little over a month.

Forbes if allowed could be a good long term leader of the SNP and could also benefit Scotland. If Scotland wants to be independent, it has to cease being dependent on the UK. So, you first and foremost have to get rid of the dependency culture in Scotland, you have to get people working and you have to start making a profit rather than spending millions on boats that won’t float.

Competence should be at the heart of the independence movement, because without it there is no chance of persuading the majority of Scots that we would be better off leaving the UK than staying a part of it. Run Scotland well for twenty years, focus on that rather than independence and you just might find you have won the argument.

But the SNP’s tragic flaw is impatience it always has to have a referendum next year, so it does nothing to run Scotland well and so is never actually ready for its referendum.

Forbes therefore won’t have the chance to create the prosperous, profitable Scotland, because her own party if it does not split from her will not let her. It will waste its time on virtue signally and demand Forbes does in months what she could only do in decades.

Things could get worse. If honest, decent human being Kate Forbes goes for a forensic investigation into the SNP or even if she doesn’t there is every chance that scandals of which we have yet no idea may be waiting to come out. With Murrell and Sturgeon gone and Yousaf perhaps gone too, who is to stop it all coming out now.

No one knows the level of scandal at the heart of the SNP. Activities in Bute house that the Procurator fiscal thought worthy of a criminal trial came out years after they allegedly happened. Who is to say there are not more such activities. That at least would be a more reasonable explanation for recent events than the ones that we have been told.

The SNP is wounded no matter who leads it from now on. Its best chance is to honestly confront its faults and move forward, but that might be the equivalent of hitting the heads of the five families and might be so scandalous that nothing would remain.

Support for the SNP will fall in the short term. Perhaps as much as ten percent. Support for independence may fall a similar amount, which would put it out of reach for the foreseeable future.

But we still have a battle. Large numbers of Scots especially young Scots still want Scottish independence. The SNP is weakened. It is perhaps even finished if more scandal comes out, but we will still have to persuade our friends, neighbours and colleagues to go back to the time when most of us were quite content to be both British and Scottish.  


Saturday 18 March 2023

A fairytale that has absolutely nothing to do with Scotland. Part 4

Part 3

Once upon a time King Paul was sitting in the Butter Palace counting votes for who was to succeed Queen Nancy. He loved Prince Hārūn ibn ʿImrān best although he playfully called him Goneril this was because Hārūn always clapped the loudest whenever Queen Nancy spoke. So much so that he had been nicknamed in the Secession Normally Possible movement as the Clap. It may also have had something to do with what he gave his first wife after he decided to take a second wife, without actually telling the first one that it was allowed according to the book that she had signed up to. But that was a tightly guarded secret.

Princess Regan was going to get the second half of the kingdom, the bit south of the border because she grew up there, but Princess Regan though wanting to partition the kingdom only wanted north Albion, known also as Albania as this was the bit that former King Alan of Alba wanted, and Princess Regan did what Alan wanted as if he were her father. Some said that he was.

Princess Cordelia had offended both King Paul and Queen Nancy by refusing to flatter them and even described their rule as mediocre. She had been banished and left no part of the kingdom, not even A’ Chuimrigh., which no one wanted because of the excess of daffodils that grew there at this time of year.

But this was King Paul’s problem. Despite everyone in the Secession Normally Possible movement saying that Cordelia should be ignored and ostracised because she told the truth and did not bow down to Queen Nancy. She was more popular in the kingdom than either Gonorrhoea Hārūn or Regan.

Cordelia may have been wee but she was also free in telling Paul that he couldn’t marry Hārūn not just because he might catch something unpleasant, but more importantly because Hārūn had been married twice already and despite sometimes being Paula it didn’t really mean he was a woman.

Cordelia told Paul. Girls who fancy girls should be from Lesbos, they shouldn’t try to be boys. Boys who fancy boys can be Nancy, but it didn’t mean they were girls.

Both Nancy/Nathan and Paul/Paula were furious and every time they saw a vote for Cordelia, they put it in a special pile called recycling after all it was necessary to keep the Green Canadian Moose happy.

But Princess Regan and Princess Cordelia found out that the counting in the counting house was less than fair and demanded Queen Nancy cease eating bread and honey and stop King Paul only counting votes that had the Clap. This was not least a matter of public hygiene. No one wanted the Butter in Butter Palace to become tainted with too much applause.

The Chief Herald of the Secession Normally Possible movement Moray Piedmont called on King Paul and Queen Nancy and told them that they really had to release the result of the census. We all agreed to hold it a year later than the wicked people from Sasainn, but how could we know how many votes were going to each prince or princess if we didn’t know how many voters there were?

Piedmont, who was actually from Elgin rather than Italy demanded he see all of the votes in the counting house, but when he saw that all of those for Regan and Cordelia had been given a barcode that meant that they were returned to the bottle bank, he told both King Paul and Queen Nancy that they were clapped out and resigned.

Later Jan Swineflu, Gussie MacRaibeart, Sapho Dubh, and Ivan àth dubh arrived as the men and woman in tartan suits. They brought with them a bottle of Glenfinished and a pistol. Unfortunately the pistol only fired water, so King Alan chose abdication instead of getting his hair wet to no purpose.

What next for the Secession Normally Possible movement? Could they continue the election after not only Regan and Cordelia had suggested it was fixed, but King Paul had resigned because no one trusted his ability to count rather than recycle.

Where were King Paul and Queen Nancy to go? Could Queen Nancy still expect an important position with the Evangelical Utopia (EU) or the Unverifiable Notions (UN). If ex-King Paul could not be trusted to count and who could imagine it wasn’t because of she who must be obeyed, then could Nancy be trusted have anything more than the dregs of the horn.

Only a few months ago Nancy had been able to heal the sick and cure the lame just by speaking every day to her people. Paul stayed in the Wings and didn’t even have a walk on part, but he pulled all the strings in the Secession Normally Possible puppet theatre.

But anyone who now was close to either Nancy or Paul must be tainted, not merely with Gonorrhoea, but with failure to tell what they knew when they knew it. How could Hārūn lead when he was the continuity prince? But how many others knew about the secrets that now might be open to scrutiny now that neither Paul, nor Nancy nor Hārūn were there to keep them hidden?

Princess Regan was part of the problem rather than a solution because of her close relationship with former King Alan who had lubricated the Butter Palace so copiously that the stench of rancidness could still be smelt when the wind was in certain directions.

But this just left Cordelia, who could hardly lead a party when every single senior courtier did their very best to stop her and could well have suggested that the best way to do so was by means of a returning ballot papers scheme costing 20 p a time.

Secession Normally Possible movement was now finished. Left merely with a free wee against any wall it chose. No one was left untainted by the clapping. No one could stop the secrets so carefully guarded from the time of King Alan to the abdication of King Paul finally coming out.


As flies to wanton boys are we to th' gods.

They kill us for their sport.


Said Nancy to Paul as she remembered the moments when wee lassies had screamed devotion at her as if she were the Bay City Rollers rolled into one. We were so close. I could almost touch it. I felt almost like a god myself. Who could touch me? Who could stop me winning? But now what is left?


I had lived a blessed time; for from this instant,

There 's nothing serious in mortality.

All is but toys; renown and grace is dead.

The wine of life is drawn, and the mere lees

Is left this vault to brag of.


Said Nancy



Part 5

Friday 17 March 2023

A fairytale that has absolutely nothing to do with Scotland. Part 3

 Part 2

Once upon a time there was a secret. Queen Nancy otherwise known as Nathan knew what it was. King Paul otherwise known as Paula knew what it was too. But no one except perhaps ex-King Alan knew just what the secret was.

Queen Nancy had been forced to abdicate rather hurriedly because of the secret. King Paul’s task was to arrange the succession so that the secret would be kept. But the task was proving harder than either had foreseen.

Either their mantles of green or else their maidenhead

Prince Hārūn ibn ʿImrān had been useless at every job he had ever tried. When he had tried to drive a camel, it had been discovered that he neither had a licence for camel driving nor was his camel insured. When he had married his first princess it had turned out that she was a bad princess because Hārūn’s eye had wandered and found that he desired another princess. Worse it was not merely his eyes that had wandered, but his hands and other parts of the body too. But still Hārūn blamed his princess rather than himself.

When Hārūn decided to make private conversations hate crimes, he forgot about all the hateful things he had said to his new princess about the House of David and all those who dwelt beneath its star. But this wasn’t the secret that Queen Nancy was worried about.

Hārūn could be trusted to keep the secret even though he wasn’t actually sure what it really was. There were a number of alternatives.

1 King Alan had groomed Queen Nancy when she was rather too young and certainly much younger than him. Their love child had become either Prince Hārūn (aka Goneril short for Gonorrhea), Princess Regan or Princess Cordelia.

2 When Queen Nancy was still princess Nancy, she had witnessed King Alan creating a harem in the Butter Palace, and this harem was supplied with copious amounts of butter so as to make every entrance and exit as slippery as possible. The Last Tango in the Butter Palace involved so much slipping and sliding that Alan on occasion put his hand where it ought not to have slid and entered and exited without due care and attention. But Nancy kept all of this secret because she hoped that King Alan would lead the Kingdom to be a true kingdom that fought and died for its wee bit curds and whey.

3 When Princess Nancy succeeded King Alan, she worried that King Alan was plotting to overthrow her. So, Queen Nancy gathered all the witnesses from the Butter Palace and while pretending to know nothing about the investigation tried to have former King Alan sent to the dungeon where he would be stretched on the rack until he begged to be allowed an ending like his heroes Wallace and Gromit. But oddly Nancy failed to get Alan sent to the dungeon and its delicious tortures. For the first time she was found fallible. The judges like Robert Mitchum in Out of the Past could see the frame and Alan was out of the picture free to go to Albania.

4 Queen Nancy and King Paul had been very careful that no one knew what went on inside the Treasury of the Kingdom. No one knew how many people lived in the kingdom, how many had died, how many had left. No one knew about the taxes paid by whoever lived in the kingdom. So, no one knew if a little bit might have gone to a different purpose than the one for which it was originally intended. But there was a rather a nasty word that some judges might associate with money going missing and it just might possibly lead former King Alan to take revenge with one of his love children.

But there was nothing to worry about surely. Hārūn was supported by every important person in the kingdom. Princess Cordelia had self-destructed from the beginning by telling the truth about what she thought about Nancy becoming Nathan and Nancy forming a close attachment with the Kingdom of Lesbos, while Paul or Paula forming a close attachment with Gaia sometimes spelled Gaya.

But the people trusted Cordelia and thought her honest and sincere with a deep faith, while they began to see Hārūn as fair and false and unable to be honest even about himself.

Princess Regan openly questioned the honestly of the succession process. Princess Cordelia joined in. Prince Hārūn agreed that it was necessary to know how many voters there were, but even in this he was insincere because he already knew the number because he had been told it by Nancy and Paul.

By now everyone in the Kingdom knew that Queen Nancy and King Paul had created a Kingdom that was at least as corrupt as the slippery sliding ways of King Alan. The Secession Normally Possible ideal that had driven both Queen Nancy and King Paul began to be associated with corruption and secrets that were hidden and the kingdom gradually became dissatisfied with the House of Piscium whether of the Acipenseridae variety or of the Actinopterygii kind.

If Nancy and Paul could not be trusted to fairly create King Hārūn then they obviously could not be trusted with anything.

Princess Regan and Princess Cordelia while being from differing Wings of the Secession Normally Possible Movement found common cause in defeating Prince Hārūn not least because both wished the secret at the heart of Secession Normally Possible to be revealed. What was the nature of Queen Nancy’s relationship with King Alan? What did Nancy cover up and why? How did Nathan and Paula decide each day whether they would be King or Queen and how was this connected with the secrets of the population of the kingdom and how much these plebians had donated to their betters and for what purpose.

All or nothing will be revealed as an expectant nation awaits its new monarch. Depending on the result we will all live happily or unhappily ever after.

Regan, Gonorrhea and Cordelia