“There are, though, exciting ways that monuments could be used to throw light on the events of the past. They hold the possibility of being key objects for understanding the writing of history itself, and of how biased and complex that act can be.
“…the declaration’s authors had little desire to see an Anglo-Scottish union centuries later, nor had a high opinion of popular sovereignty. Democracy too was an alien concept at this time. This was a document written for the elites, by the elites.”
“For the last few years, the British state has at least been able to pretend that a Labour government might come over the horizon, and solve some of the problems created by the Tories and their austerity. If and when that cavalry does arrive, it will likely come in the flaccid form of Keir Starmer, triangulating towards a far-right Tory opposition. A Sinn Féin-run Ireland may not have to work too hard to convince voters that they are better off under its wings.”
“There are some areas where communities have been helped to buy the land they live on. But Scotland still has the most inequitable land ownership in the developed world. This month, the Scottish Government issued a consultation paper suggesting that a public interest principle should be applied when large estates change hands…”
James Mitchell’s survey of Scotland and its centres of power ends with reflections on the glaring need for reforming Holyrood after two decades of devolution. “The Scottish Parliament is not a delicate flower that needs protection but a robust institution that required robust critiques, especially from those who support it.”
“No progress can be made so long as the governments – the centres – remained unreformed. No amount of new machinery of Intergovernmental Relations will work – indeed it could make matters worse – if centres are looking for a fight. Providing a gladiatorial arena for constitutional one-upmanship is counter-productive.”
Kirsty Hughes illustrates in text and images the challenges and hopes associated with rewilding the Highlands: “The rewilding journey is a long and vital one. With places like Dundreggan and Glen Affric showing the way, it can – and must – be a successful one.”
“With neo-autonomism becoming increasingly exhausted, the most likely trajectory is that the ERC and the SNP drift towards becoming parties that are more or less satisfied with seeking to accrue more devolved powers within the hegemonic state. Nationalism without independence.”
The co-editors announce the closure of Sceptical Scot on its seventh anniversary….
‘A speech by the First Minister acknowledging Scotland’s role would be useful; a fund to promote research on Scotland and the empire, including a virtual museum, would be even better….As Scotland struggles with new questions about identity, it is important to confront the reality of what happened in the empire.