00:44 GMT06 July 2020
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    The Government have been forced to make a U-turn on their mean and heartless school meals policy by a young black professional football player, Marcus Rashford, who himself was a recipient of free school meals as he grew up in a poor one-parent household.

    The Tories were determined to turn down his appeal to extend free school meal provision during school term holidays until the social media spotlight grew so intense that their shameful opposition to the move crumbled.

    This embarrassing but welcome U-turn was also undoubtedly encouraged by the knowledge that Scotland’s First Minister was set to announce at noon the Scottish Government’s intention to fund free school meals during the holiday period.

    The overnight and morning stubbornness to change their mind collapsed when it became clear Rashford’s appeal was gaining more support and the Scottish Government were going to implement the policy anyway.

    The Tories don’t mind stabbing people in the dark but they hate being exposed while committing their moral crimes thus the late morning U-turn. The moral vacuum at the heart of the Tory party is summed up by the fact that this U-turn of free school meal provision for children from poor families has nothing to do with principle and everything to do with publicity.

    They couldn’t give a damn about hungry children, but they do care if people get to know that they couldn’t give a damn.

    The Marcus Rashford intervention does highlight another sad reality and that is the pathetic state of the Labour opposition at Westminster. It should have been an issue that Keir Starmer championed from the outset rather than being left to a talented young black footballer with a social conscience.

    The fact Starmer is an Establishment lackey unwilling to challenge the status quo and upset the powers that be is becoming more obvious by the day. Jeremy Corbyn is a huge loss to the cause of social justice.

    Opinion Polls are Imperfect Barometers but They Forecast Foul Weather Ahead

    Opinion polls are imperfect barometers of public opinion that are wide open to manipulation by millionaire owners, primarily Tory ones, who often construct certain questions and target certain groups of people to deliver the outcomes they seek.

    That is an essential health warning prior to any discussion of opinion polls but the latest set are enough to reduce this grown man to tears and convince me more than ever of the need and urgency for Scottish independence.

    Of the five recognised polling companies who posed the Westminster voting intention ‘if there was a general election tomorrow?’ question over the last few days all of them record the Tories under Boris Johnson ahead.

    In two of the polls, the Tories have increased support over the last month, in another two they have retained their support and in only one poll has their support fallen by 2%. Redfield & Wilton have them on 41%, down from 43%, with Labour on 39%. That 41% support is the lowest of all the polls.

    Survation have them on 42%, Ipsos have them on 43%, Opinium has them on 44% and YouGov has them on 45%. At the actual general election only six months ago they won 43.6% of the votes cast so these polling indications are in and around the figure they actually received at the real election.

    ​Since mid-March and the outbreak of the Covid19 pandemic the Tories and Boris Johnson have racked up failure after failure. Their decade of deep and brutal cuts to NHS and social care services left the UK in danger of being unable to cope with the expected Covid19 tidal wave of victims so millions of routine but important operations and medical procedures, including cancer screenings and care, were postponed and many suffered reduced quality of life as a result.

    The health and social care professionals worked assiduously to treat and care for the thousands of Covid19 victims and their efforts have rightly been described as heroic but they did so without proper protective equipment and an acute shortage of intensive care beds, equipment and trained staff which necessitated the cancellation of so many other important procedures and treatments.

    Johnson Responsible For At Least 20,000 Excess Deaths but Still Ahead

    Boris Johnson failed to lockdown the UK soon enough and even his own scientific advisor has been compelled to admit that the delay has caused in excess of 20,000 lives.

    Literally hundreds of frontline health and care workers have died due to the failure of the government to provide enough and proper personal protective equipment. Remember nurses and porters were forced to use plastic bin bags to try and protect themselves in on of the richest societies in the planet.

    The official death toll from Covid19 is over 40,000 but the more reliable and realistic figure is in excess of 60,000 and the UK is in the unenviable position of topping the Covid19 death rate across the world.

    Johnson failed to properly protect care homes and the elderly residents and staff within them. Johnson failed to implement Covid19 testing quickly enough meaning hundreds of thousands in the health, care and transport systems were endangering their families every day they went to work and returned home possibly infected.

    Johnson failed to introduce a proper test, track and trace system to get on top of the virus the way countries like New Zealand, Germany, South Korea and others were so effectively able to do.

    Johnson failed to sack his chief adviser Dominic Cummings when he was outed for the flagrant flaunting of the lockdown and social distancing rules that they had devised and imposed on everyone else.

    Even after over a million people signed a petition calling for Cummings to go and in excess of forty Tory MPs and senior health and science professionals joined the chorus looking for justice and even-handedness in dealing with the difficult and painful restrictions on the ordinary folk Johnson did more to protect his policy guru than he did for hundreds of thousands in the health service and millions working and living in care homes.

    England Blind to Johnson’s Wretched Record of Failure – Scotland Is Not

    Despite this wretched record of failure after failure, the Tories are still ahead in voting intention opinion polls in England. Johnson’s well-trailed history of lies, misogyny, racism and anti-working class diatribes alongside his privileged snobbery did not prevent him winning the general election in England six months ago and his woeful record in office since then has hardly dented his lead. Anyone who continues to deny the fact Scotland is a fundamentally different country is either willfully blind or engaged in deceit.

    Scotland overwhelmingly rejected Johnson in December. We rejected his party in 2017, 2015 and 2010. In fact, Scotland has rejected the Tories in every general election since 1955. That is sixty-five years of Tory rejection.

    Scotland specific opinion polls are rare. The data from all the ones aforementioned show not an iota of Tory recovery in Scotland while a Scotland only Panelbase.com poll commissioned by ‘Scot Goes Pop’ less than two weeks ago indicates the Tories languish on only 18% support while the SNP sit on 45%, a figure that increases to 51% when the undecided are excluded.

    Scotland is indeed a different country with different values and a much more communitarian outlook.

    Tories Are Party of People before Profits and Money before Morality

    The Tories represent people before profits, money before morality, dividends before decency and bombs before bairns. They can set aside £205 billion to renew immoral weapons of mass destruction but scrape a hundred million to provide necessary school meals for poor children during the summer holidays.

    Fanaticism is more important to them than fairness. They embody the nasty narrow chauvinism of the English Defence League thugs who polluted the city centre of London on Saturday with their repertoire of ‘Engerland’ chants, Nazi salutes and monkey noise abuses of any black citizens within site.

    ​Johnson and the Tories are the party of the white elites and although he looks down with disdain on the working-class types who gathered in London to vent their racist bile, he also considers them his base.

    With daily diets of lies, distortions and anti-foreigner poison fed to them by the rabid Tory red tops and former fascist supporting Mail group newspapers Johnson can keep enough people ignorant of the reality of his deceit and anti-working class prejudices to cling to power. But only in England.

    The Tories are a busted flush in Scotland and their privatising, anti-NHS and pro-nuclear weapon agenda is not a vote winner. Every respectable poll shows support for independence within Scotland is now higher than six years ago and the Panelbase.com poll indicated a 52% to 48% majority if another referendum were to be held today.

    While he has his English base Johnson will never grant Scotland the right to hold a second independence referendum. It is embarrassing and demeaning to keep asking for permission to hold a vote to decide the future of Scotland.

    The EU Referendum is a material change in circumstance and although I am no fan of the EU the vast majority of Scotland voted to stay. After December 31st, the UK will no longer be in the EU. Neither will Scotland. The 2021 Scottish Parliament elections, therefore, assume even more important than ever.

    A Vote for Independence Next May Must Be a Vote for Independence

    The SNP and every other Indy supporting party must place in their manifestos not a meek commitment to seek another Section 30 Order permission to hold a referendum from London but a cast-iron promise that if a majority of independence supporting MSPs are elected that represents the beginning of the normality negotiations.

    A vote for an independence supporting party in Scotland next May must be the green light for the drawing up of an independence settlement that will be presented to Westminster, negotiated over a limited time period and presented as a package to the Scottish people 12 months after the election.

    No more meek and mild requests for permission to do what is our inalienable right to do, decide on our very future.

    The SNP must step up to the plate next May and present the Scottish people with a clear and unequivocal choice. A vote for independence must mean a vote for independence.

    Scotland can, must and will do better once we cut ourselves loose from the morally degenerate and emotionally retarded Tories with their alien political priorities. We will build a new and better society and country with a written constitution that guarantees human rights and promotes love over hate and hope over fear. Welfare not warfare, compassion not cruelty will be our political compass.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    Tags:
    Boris Johnson, coronavirus, COVID-19, Scotland, England, U.K
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