‘ The story of betrayal is already being constructed. It is a dispiriting prophecy that foretells we will still be arguing about our relationship with Europe, and only that, in four years’ time’.
‘In the continental pre-summit debate, Brexit hardly gets a mention. The June summit is seen as the great test of President Macron’s ability to deliver some form of credible reform plan. The precise details may be less important than a sense of a clear direction of travel – the impression that the EU is willing to look beyond its familiar muddle and fudge and take charge of its own destiny.’
‘This shared commitment is so different in character from the imposition of any neo-liberal ‘structural adjustment programme’ of the past imposed by the international financial institutions, or any diktat of the powerful emerging from the Security Council or from any single power.’
‘The name Immigration Removal Centre sounds harmless enough; just a pragmatic facility for holding people briefly on their way to another place. Don’t be fooled by the name. These places share the most punitive attributes of our prison service with none of the ameliorating facilities for improvement or rehabilitation.’
“With the UK taking Scotland in a direction that most of the public do not support, the alienation of Scotland from the rest of the UK should be of great concern – however it appears that London’s attention would only be secured if there was growing support for Scottish independence.”
‘With hindsight there was a poignant contrast between the generous spirit in the hall and the fearful politics brewing in the real world outside’. Fay Young on positive community activism and a general election result that ushered in Theresa May’s ‘hostile environment’.
‘So perhaps Scotland can respond to world events by providing something that Ponsatí and the legions of others in the world today repressed by their own states so desperately need: a place of sanctuary for the ever greater number of persecuted that only a small neutral state can offer.’
When you come across the Scottish Parliament in the centre of Barcelona…was it just the market designed by Enric Miralles, or a miracle that could change the course of Brexit? Robert Sharp inspired by a tweet embarks on a whimsical adventure.
‘Identities are complex and it appears that Britishness, while slightly related to views on Brexit, was much less important in differentiating between groups than English identity was…’
‘Official Scotland is a relatively small world and many of the key players meet and socialise on a regular basis. Cronyism with a Scottish accent is no more acceptable than the public school/Oxbridge variety…it exhibits many of the worst features of narrative privilege, bureaucratic defensiveness, professional protectionism and the abuse of patronage.’