As you don’t agree to an out of court settlement if you are confident that you can win your case in a court of law, you just don’t give a prime minister the power of unaccountability.

First published: February 2022.

Boris Johnson’s big gift to the Scottish independence campaign, his assertion that he is determined to lead the Conservative party into the 2024 General Election, was overshadowed on Tuesday by another big gift to the Scottish independence campaign, the out of court settlement reached by the Andrew formerly known as prince with Virginia Giuffre, who had accused him of sexually abusing her when she was a teenager who was a victim of the sex-trafficking activities of the convicted sex predators Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell.

You don’t reach an out of court settlement if you are both innocent and convinced of your ability to disprove the allegations made against you. So it looks like Andrew was sweating after all. According to the terms of the settlement, the disgraced royal will pay an undisclosed sum of money to Virginia Giuffre and, in addition, will make a “substantial donation” to a charity supporting the victims of sexual abuse. Andrew now “commends Virginia Giuffre’s bravery in standing up for herself and others” after he accused her of lying, vilified her, and dragged her name through the mud. She only ever needed to be brave because the Queen’s favourite son acted like an unmitigated sh*t, and was enabled to do so by his entitled, privileged and self-regarding family, who shielded him and paid for his extremely expensive lawyers.

On the News at Six on BBC1, we had the grotesque sight of Nicholas Witchell suggesting that a route back to public life for Andrew could be campaigning for the victims of sex trafficking. That would be like Harold Shipman campaigning for better protections for vulnerable elderly people.

The money that is being paid in order to make this scandal go away will not come out of Andrew’s pocket personally, not unless he’s going to start doing regular shifts at Pizza Express. Andrew has still not admitted that he has done anything wrong, he has just got his mummy to throw a lot of money at his sins so that he won’t have to answer for them.

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Like the costs of his lawyers, the money for this settlement will come from his mother and from milking the funds that the state pays to the royal family, which means that ultimately it will be ordinary taxpayers in the UK who will pay the bill so that a pampered and unaccountable member of the British establishment can remain pampered and unaccountable. When I paid my taxes I don’t recall seeing that the breakdown of where my taxes went included “covering settlements for royal sex pests so they don’t have to face a court for their misdeeds.” However, I’d like that bit of my taxes back, it can go toward covering the increase in the gas and electric bill.

This settlement merely confirms what we already knew. The British establishment is fundamentally corrupt and will never be held to account for its actions. The Windsors sit at the pinnacle of a mountain of patronage, graft, and duplicity which is rotten to the core. And it is never going to change. Expecting the Westminster system to reform itself so that it is democratic, accountable, and transparent is like expecting a zombie cannibal to embrace veganism.

Meanwhile, Boris Johnson, that other walking example of immoral British establishment entitlement and lack of accountability, has asserted that both he and Douglas Ross will still be in their jobs in 2024 which if it does come to pass would prove conclusively that power cannot be held to account in the UK and that Douglas Ross is indeed a spineless ineffectual lightweight who has zero influence in the British government which he is determined to keep ruling over Scotland.

The Conservatives say that they love Scotland. And in fact, you could say that they do treat Scotland like a god, in that they completely ignore it until they want something.

Opponents of Scottish independence are realising that their chances of winning another independence referendum are growing slimmer with every passing day as evidence of the dysfunction and corruption of the British state continues to mount. The Conservatives have blown up many of the strongest arguments deployed by the Better Together campaign in 2014. It is now British nationalism which stands exposed as reactionary, parochial, and xenophobic. Brexit has stripped the UK of much of the international influence which was touted by opponents of independence in 2014. No one will now give any credence to promises of strengthened devolution, indeed the continuing future of the devolution settlement and the Scottish Parliament is now very much in doubt. Equally the futures of the NHS and the meagre British state pension are now in question.

In their panic, Anglo-British nationalists are scare-mongering about pensions, about the supposed costs of independence and about the supposed threat of violence from independence supporters. We all know that there is only one side in this debate which has form for violence, that would be those who wave union flags and who went on a violent rampage in Glasgow after the 2014 independence referendum, attacking peaceful independence supporters in what the BBC shamefully described as “clashes” between supporters and opponents of independence.

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Likewise, there is only one side in this debate which is openly discussing anti-democratic and authoritarian tactics. That would be those opponents of independence like the fringe Scottish Unionist Party and right-wing journalists like Stephen Daisley who are proposing to shut down all democratic routes to Scottish independence by making it illegal for Holyrood to work on any preparations for another independence referendum without the prior consent of Westminster. They also seek to get the Conservative and Labour parties to pledge that they will never consent to another independence referendum no matter what the people of Scotland desire.

Just as you don’t agree to an out of court settlement if you are confident that you can win your case in a court of law, you don’t try to close down all democratic paths to another independence referendum and give a British Prime minister the power of veto over the right of the people of Scotland to determine their own future if you are confident that you will win your case in the only court that counts, the court of free and democratic choice. That’s where British nationalists are now, they want to write their unaccountability into law. In British nationalism a lack of accountability is not a bug, it’s a feature.

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Wee Ginger Dug, also known as Paul Kavanagh. Blogger. Biting the hand of Project Fear.


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