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by Louise Wilson
29 November 2021
Sketch: Revolution is brewing against Scotland’s Green gods

Credit: Iain Green

Sketch: Revolution is brewing against Scotland’s Green gods

Right-thinking members of the SNP have been “ensnared by the extremist Greens,” according to the Tories. Presumably using humane animal traps.

Liam Kerr accused ministers of being “completely beholden” to the party with a “vendetta against the private car driver” in a Scottish Parliament debate about road building.

Graham Simpson went further, suggesting the Scottish Government has been “taken hostage by the kaftan crusaders”.

Quite a bold statement to make. But there was something a bit fishy about the Bute House briefing with Nicola Sturgeon, Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater back in August.

Maybe it was because there were balaclava-clad (made of ethically sourced hemp, naturally) Green activists standing just behind the camera, pointing fully loaded badge makers at the First Minister and threatening papercuts from their placards and zines.

Or perhaps more likely, given the Greens’ pacifism, they have opted for non-violent measures of ensnarement. They have become snake charmers, playing Flower of Scotland and Caledonia to hypnotise the nationalists into doing their bidding. They are the real overlords of Scotland, the puppet masters pulling Sturgeon’s strings.

Which might go some way to explaining why Scottish Labour has recently relaunched its Green Labour brand. Recycling the name first announced in April (just to highlight the importance of the circular economy, you understand, not because it was largely ignored the first time around), Anas Sarwar said if offered “an optimistic alternative vision of the greener nation that we can build.” In other words, he would like to be the puppet master now, please.

But for now, it appears unlikely the Greens will give up the First Minister’s ear. Not all SNP members are under the spell though.

Fergus Ewing, still bristling from his demotion to the back benches, urged his colleagues not to be “anti-road”. “We should be anti-emissions. I address that reflection in particular to those who have today been dubbed our kaftan-clad colleagues,” he said. A small, one-man revolution is brewing against the Green overlords.

The dualling of the A9 and A96 is “a matter of honour”, Ewing continued, insisting it should go ahead without being subject to environmental tests.

But before you accuse the former rural economy minister of priotising economic growth over the destruction of the entire planet by global warming, he had an answer to that: “The last time I noticed, the buses that colleagues in other parties so frequently, and quite fairly, talk about still need to be driven on roads.”

Gotcha!

This titbit of oratory excellence was roundly supported by the Conservative MSPs to his left. “I’m slightly embarrassed by who’s applauding me. Keep more quiet, please,” Ewing instructed. The Green emperors may find out he is a revolutionary if he continues to cause such outbursts from the Tories.

And who knows what the punishment would be from those ‘eco-zealot Marxists’? A Green gulag would no doubt involve meals only made from lentils and clothes made by hand, with mandatory labour varying between tree planting, bunny hugging and protesting.

But the Conservatives, it seems, might have found their in. They can counter the spell cast on the nationalists by love bombing them. To that end, Simpson described planning minister Tom Arthur as “a likeable chap” and urged ministers to “stand up to the Greens”.

The next day, Stephen Kerr continued with the love bombing, but this time focused on Labour. He praised Richard Leonard’s speech as a “splendid example of where we can set aside party badges and colours”.

His meaning couldn’t be clearer. Set aside the Greens, and indeed anything you may own which is green as a show of strength against the Harvie-Slater regime.

Leonard admitted to being a little surprised by the sudden camaraderie between himself and Kerr. “Ours is an unashamedly ideological clash and an honest and sincere political division, which stretches all the way back to the miners’ strike of 1984-85 and beyond. Given that history, there is a certain irony that it should be, of all places, the village of Airth… that brings us together on the same side of the argument.”

And what was the Airth issue on which they found agreement? Road safety. Having spent the afternoon before talking up roads, calling for more to be built regardless of the climate, the Tories were now worried about car crashes (other than the metaphorical ones caused by their boss down south…)

But perhaps the Greens are onto something here. If we have fewer roads, there will be fewer road accidents. Maybe their end goal is the removal of all roads, thus removing the problem entirely.

The Tories love to talk about how the Scottish Government is soft on justice – the Greens are offering to bring in hard-touch justice on our roads. Tough on roads; tough on the causes of roads.

So, at the end of all of this, what did the SNP minister have to say? “I will not mark our homework,” Graeme Dey said.

No, the marking of homework should be left to his boss/hypnotist, the Scottish Green Party.

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Transport

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