• April 27, 2015


A petition was recently launched with the aim of having Ed Miliband apologise to Nicola Sturgeon for Labour support of an alleged smear campaign against the SNP leader initiated by the Daily Telegraph. Although abhorrent in nature, the alleged attempts to defame Nicola Sturgeon are in keeping with the political tactics that have become popular among many right-wing newspapers and both left- and right-wing Westminster parties.

The psychology of these tactics is quite straightforward: a threat is noticed that cannot be dealt with through reasoned argument so an appeal must be made to fear and disgust to garner support. Historically fear tactics have been used by dictators to gain power and to justify morally objectionable behaviour. Today they are the favourite tactics of any political entity lacking credibility or substance.

Current objections being made in England with regard to the SNP echo those made during the Scottish Independence Referendum. The official line of the “Better Together” campaign was that Scotland would collapse into destitution if it were to separate from its English “partners”. The current line argues that should Scottish political representatives be given any influence in Westminster and the running of the United Kingdom the same destitution will befall all UK citizens. The subtext, then, is that Scotland is and should not be equal to England in the United Kingdom and that any form of Scottish leadership is incompetent and requires superior English governance.

The arrogance and offensiveness of such political attitudes and tactics should be obvious to even the most imperceptive of voters, yet still they are accepted as legitimate strategies that go largely unquestioned in English camps. There is an apparent societal syndrome in which underhand behaviour has become so prevalent within English politics it is just accepted as the norm. The problem for Scotland is that for every step forward they take towards genuine political influence, many mainstream media outlets and political figures will attempt to knock them back and down several flights of steps under English control.

So, should Ed Miliband apologise to Nicola Sturgeon? The reality of the situation is – in a region of the world that assumes itself to be just – all of the mainstream English political party leaders should apologise to Scotland for the use of blatantly patronising and unscrupulous political behaviour.

At the time of writing the petition has just over 3,000 signatures and is looking to gain around 1,600 more. You can sign the petition here:


(This article prepared for Celtic News by Peddyr Mac Niallan – Mannin Branch)

J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
Celtic League


(Please note that replies to correspondence received by the League and posted on CL News are usually scanned hard copies. Obviously every effort is made to ensure the scanning process is accurate but sometimes errors do occur.)


The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, monitors all military activity and focuses on socio-economic issues

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