Thursday, January 26, 2012

Robbie Burns and the Progressive Beacon

Well today was Robbie Burns Day, the most sacred day of the Old Scottish calendar. But I wasn't planning to write anything about it, until I saw this.

And then I felt I had no choice eh?

So I'll just repeat what I've said before.

I'm not one for the horrible haggis.

The offal in question is what was bobbing in the cauldron. It's organ meat – lamb kidneys, liver, hearts and lungs. Once they were darkly red, glistening specimens of varying texture: firm hearts; resilient, elastic kidneys; puffy, yielding lungs; glutinous liver. Soon, they would be simmered down and ground up.

Or the awful offal. 

But I'm extremely proud of my Scottish heritage. And the Scottish in so many Canadians. 

Proud of a country where some, in a reactionary world, are trying to create a progressive beacon. 

An independent Scotland would champion the welfare state and health service, helping the centre-left in England revitalise itself and eventually topple the Tories and Liberal Democrats from power.

A country that believes in medicare, social services, and free university education.

Unlike Canada where medicare and social services are under assault, university education is becoming more and more expensive. And any glimmer of hope has long since turned to despair.

And since I hail from the rebel highlands, I'm quite sure Robbie Burns would agree with all of the above.

Because he was always sticking his finger up the nose of the establishment, he was an early supporter of the French Revolution.

And in this, his greatest poem, he calls for a new and better world.

Verse Five is a prayer that Sense and Worth shall eventually agree with all mankind. Burns imagines a future world in which all people will live as brothers, in mutual trust and respect. "It's coming yet, for a' that".

Dan Shields you sassenach coof...or Canadian goof. 

May Paolo Nutini, the pride of Paisley and New Scotland, set you upon your way...

Here's to Robbie Burns.

Down with the offal Cons.

Up with rebels. And the Great Canadian Coalition.

Long live the Scottish Nation !!!

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