You ask why I have cancelled my subscription.
In the last few yearsÂ your commentators have progressively lost touch with reality. You wonâ€™t have noticed this because you are part of the problem. You are a local paper and nothing else. Once people looked to London as the capital of a United Kingdom. This is no longer so. It is now not even the capital of England. There is no one there to call out in time of crisis, â€˜Speak for England,â€™ as Richard Amery cried in the Commons in 1940. I loved England then. I still do. But its former capital has become a bloated city state divorced from us all.
You and your readers have no identity. Once you were English, now you donâ€™t know who you are. You claim to be wealthy. All you have is expensive houses bought by wealth produced elsewhere. It is recorded as â€˜earnedâ€™ in London but that means nothing. An example is North Sea oil. Whether it is Scots or English oil doesnâ€™t matter to you. It is not Londonâ€™s oil yet you claim it as your own. So bloated and conscienceless have you become that you are embezzling from the lottery fund charities to help pay for the purely London event of the 2012 Olympics. More UK money is spent on Londoners per capita than is spent anywhere else, yet your Eric Heffer would have it otherwise. To the question, â€˜Why should London have so much spent on it?â€™ the only reply I have ever seen in the Spectator is, â€˜Itâ€™s the capital innit?â€™ I have more complaints.
Once there was the British Empire and we were proud to belong to it. (This is not the place to debate if we should have been proud.) Glasgow was the second city of the Empire. Although it had worse slums than Calcutta the McChattering classes did very well out of it. Now we donâ€™t have an empire and there is no reason to look to you for government. Frankly the English are not very good at Government. Indeed so bad are you that the town of Berwick recently voted to leave England and come back to Scotland. Your politics are tired, and so is your comment.
Your comment is obsessed by the â€˜majorâ€™ political parties. There is no difference in principle between them. Indeed so bankrupt are these parties that there is a suggestion that they should be state funded. The only state funded political parties I remember in a long life are those of mid twentieth century Germany and Russia. The Spectator supports the whole corrupt system that stands for nothing except who shall be in power in an oligarchy. Iâ€™m no longer supporting a magazine that promotes state corruption.
I turn now to the dismal science of economics. Once the Scottish economy may have needed the assistance of London capital. This is fiercely debated but let it stand as a feature of the past. That time has gone forever and you havenâ€™t noticed. We live in a global economy. In such an economy a great city state like London no longer helps us. It competes with us. We are starting to do quite well from inward investment, attracted by our own Scottish Government, and with no help from the numerous UK embassies and consulates throughout the world. We need our own commercial attaches. Now is the time for all UK embassies to be apportioned between Scotland and the rest of the UK. They are a UK asset and we want control of our share of them. Scotland Week in the States and Canada is not enough. We need permanent representation. Would you comment on this? But please not with one of Mr Hefferâ€™s hissy fits.
Have a look at the new self-confident Scotland. We have a Government pledged to independence. We are quite willing to share things with you. A truly joint monarchy appeals to many Scots. If that is to happen we shall want our share of the pageantry. We have revived such things as the Riding of Parliament, an old custom that now brings people from all over Scotland to the opening of our Parliament. The Queen comes too. Your London myopia has so far kept you from joining us.
As for our politics the Opposition comes from three unionist parties. Their only policy is to press for more power for our devolved Parliament. Despite Prime Minister Brownâ€™s frantic, and funny, attempts to make us all British we know that we live in a separate Nation. The constituent parts of the United Kingdom are unbolting themselves. This is the most important happening in three hundred years of English and Scottish history yet you seldom comment coherently on it.
Your paper is a local rag. London has lost its identity. You donâ€™t know who you are. You arenâ€™t English. The English of the Shires would now disown you. It was you Londoners, in a desperate attempt to break the Scottish National Party, who without a vote from England, devolved power to Scotland. Blair insolently said, â€˜Power devolved is power retained.â€™ He was wrong. Your rather silly old constitution has been left with a hole in the middle. The West Lothian Question can never be solved. In any hung Parliament a handful of Scots are going to take over the whole governance of England. And the joke is that these same Scots will have no power in matters affecting their own constituents. You will become our colony. We nearly govern you now, though weâ€™re rather ashamed of the people we have sent you. They would never make it at Holyrood.
Thatâ€™s why I wonâ€™t renew my subscription. I love England dearly, but London isnâ€™t England. For the bloated greedy LondonÂ whose voice you areÂ I will no longerÂ bang a saxpence. Not a bawbee.