John McAllion MP, MSP for Dundee East (1987 – 2003) and Gordon Wilson MP for Dundee East (1974 -1987) have united to launch an article commissioned by Options for Scotland from John setting out his vision for an independent Scotland from the left: Sae come aa ye at hame wi freedom – Never heed whit the houdies croak for Doom.
Commented John McAllion:
As a supporter of the Campaign for a Scottish Assembly, a member of the Scottish Constitutional convention and as a Labour MP and MSP identified with the nationalist wing of the party, I was a long-time supporter of devolution. I bought into the late Donald Dewar’s one-time vision of devolution as independence within the UK.
Unfortunately, the reality of devolved Holyrood proved to be much closer to Enoch Powell’s infamous remark that power devolved is power retained. Yet the struggles around devolution did ignite a debate across Scottish politics that saw the emergence of a nationalist left inside but mostly outside of the Labour party.
That debate led me to the Scottish Socialist Party and other ex-Labour socialists to the SNP. More importantly it revived memories of a lost nationalist left in Scotland that included the likes of John Maclean and James Connolly. It also reminded us that another Scotland is possible – a fairer, more just and more egalitarian nation freed from the dead hand of the British state and liberated to challenge the free market orthodoxies that hold that ancient regime in their icy grip.
Commented Gordon Wilson, Director of Options for Scotland:
John beat me fair and square for Labour in 1987. There are no hard feelings! We have united to advance the cause of independence. Neither of us wants any part of “Food bank Britain” nor the persistent economic disasters visited on Scotland from London.
Options for Scotland believe that the independence referendum is not solely the property of the SNP or the Scottish Government. It belongs to the people of Scotland – to those on the left and the right who want to break the outdated British mould.
In particular I welcome John McAllion’s view that the working class peoples of England, Wales and Northern Ireland stand to benefit from the changes in governance which Scottish independence will force.