There couldn't have been an uglier sight. Thousands of members of the anti-Catholic Orange Lodge marching through Edinburgh to show their support for the NO side.
Or one more representative of the NO side's attempt to bully the YES side into submission.
For by now the combined forces of Big Business, the corporate media, and the Westminster political establishment have tried everything to crush this peaceful people's revolt.
The crudest threats, the most absurd predictions of doom like this latest one...
All designed to scare people into voting NO.
And the good news is that at this point at least it isn't working.
The 307-year-old union between Scotland and England hangs by a thread as a fresh Guardian/ICM poll put the yes vote in next week's referendum just two percentage points behind those supporting no. Despite an intense week of campaigning by pro-union politicians and repeated warnings from business, the poll out on Friday found support for the no campaign on 51% and with yes on 49%, once don't knows were excluded.
And while the NO side is still leading by a slightly greater margin in some of the latest polls, the contrast between the two campaigns couldn't be more striking...
For this was a YES side rally in downtown Glasgow yesterday, where hope was still holding its own again fear.
Because despite what you might be reading in our corporate media, which is solidly NO, and still confusing what's happening there with the Quebec referendum.
And where one of its members, Andrew Coyne, is proudly displaying his colonial colours...
Just to complete the 1995 comparisons: @DayOfUnity
— Andrew Coyne (@acoyne) September 12, 2014
As I would expect from the son of a Bank of Canada governor who was born with a silver spoon in his mouth.
The struggle in Scotland is for the right of a small country to determine its own future, be proudly left-wing, resist the brutish neoliberal agenda of the Con regime in London.
And stand up for such basic institutions like medicare, which the Cameron Cons are privatizing, and could eventually kill.
Even in Scotland where it is strongly supported.
If/when the NHS in England were to be fully privatised, its current annual budget of almost £100 billion will cease to trigger a corresponding “Barnett Formula” payment to Scotland, removing approximately £10.2 billion a year from the Scottish block grant. That’s almost all of the annual £11.9bn budget of NHS Scotland. It’s more than a third of the entire Scottish Government budget of £30bn, and vastly more than Holyrood could ever save by cutting other services.
Because that's the kind of truth you won't read in our corporate media, who when push comes to shove is violently opposed to a proudly left-wing society. And will do or say ANYTHING to destroy it.
However, even in that bleak media landscape, and even in The Guardian which has also revealed its true colours by endorsing the NO side, there are signs that the campaign of fear is backfiring.
Thanks to BP, Standard Life, Royal Bank of Scotland, TSB, John Lewis and the mad Gadarene dash to Scotland of the Westminster elite, the final few days of the journey which had once promised to be rocky have been a breeze. I am grateful to all of them. Together they are a microcosm of what the entire no campaign has been all about: money; raw corporate power and a naked sense of absolute entitlement. So I will be voting yes for an independent Scotland on Thursday, with a confidence and certainty that, until last week, I would never have thought possible.
For what I have witnessed are the massed ranks of the British and Westminster establishment roused in fury to stop the first-ever proper challenge to their power base. And their weapons of choice have been intimidation, fear and thinly veiled and sinister threats of reprisal.
Because it has been entirely disgusting and soul destroying, a case of bullying and psychological terror on a mass scale.
And a real horror show...
And while it's no doubt scaring many in that small country, especially the elderly. And it could very well make the difference in a NO victory.
It may also be driving other Scots to join the YES side, and decide that the dream of a kinder, gentler society is a risk worth taking.
If it is the will of the people that Scotland becomes independent, I am not expecting any guarantees that we will become the most rock'n'roll, socially just state on the planet, a successful Cuba. But there are already visible signs of Scotland's social conscience in free care for the elderly, free tuition and free childcare. Independence, with all its risks and uncertainties, may give us the chance to extend that and to reach those among us who die early in unimaginable poverty and deprivation. Even the mere opportunity to do so must justify the economic risks.
Because as I've mentioned before, the Scottish people are not easily bullied.
And even when their dreams of independence are slaughtered as they were on the bloody battlefield of Culloden, not far from my family home...
Where it is said the birds don't sing and the heather doesn't grow over the graves of the highland dead.
And where when I take visitors there I always leave a bunch of wild flowers at the tomb of my clan ancestors who were cutdown by the English cannons that day...
That dream of freedom never dies, it always rises again, as it will even if it is defeated again in this referendum.
Because this too is true...
And Scotland's peaceful struggle is a model for progressives all over the world.
Which is of course why I support the YES side so strongly. Because their dream is the same dream I want for this country. And because I hate bullying more than I hate anything else in the whole wide world, and their Con enemies are mine.
So go forth bravely people of Alba, for the past and the future.
Charge the cannons of Big Business and the brutish Westminster regime.
Don't let fear kill your hopes and your dreams.
Freedom. Freedom. Freedom.
Scotland forever !!!!
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