Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Dilettante on ConHome: Red, White, and Blue 20

My latest ConHome column looks at the recent harassing of Nigel Farage in Edinburgh and the possibility of increased scrutiny on the darker elements of Scottish nationalism. It also asks some questions about the launch of Better Together: London and celebrates the first trades union to officially affiliate to the Scottish unionist campaign. Read it here.

Friday, 17 May 2013

Dilettante on the International Business Times: When nationalisms collide

I've got a short post on the @IBTimesUK reacting to the mob that laid siege to Nigel Farage in an Edinburgh pub. I touch briefly on UKIP's problems with the 'UK' bit before looking at the "anti-fascist" attention UKIP is getting and the potential problems extreme nationalists pose to the broader Scottish separatist movement. Read it here.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Dilettante on ConHome: Red, White, and Blue 19

My latest ConHome column takes a look at a very strange article in the Scotsman wherein a separatist argues that he supports independence "because he is British". It makes about as much sense as you'd expect. I also report on UKIP's prospects of a second MLA in Northern Ireland (not impossible) and relate some of my findings from my week's archiving in Belfast, not least the fact that all the arguments surrounding devolution appear to have been waged, and waged in a recognisable yet superior fashion, more than a century ago. Read it here.

PS. I forgot to post number 18 before, in which I focus on UKIP's prospects of establishing themselves as a national party and extol Belfast as a pleasant surprise to visit. Read it here.

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Dilettante on the International Business Times: Should Cameron fight or 'unite' the Right?

My latest article for @IBTimesUK looks at the strategic problem that UKIP pose to the Conservatives, and how having a viable splinter party on their right is a novelty which jeopardises one of the party's key historical strengths: its freedom of manoeuvre. Instead of reaching out to the Liberal Democrat right and the Blairite remnant as the old Tories would have, the prospect of a pact with UKIP amounts to a core-vote strategy - the province of losers. Read it here.

Monday, 6 May 2013

Dilettante on Open Unionism: Can UKIP become a truly national party?

My latest post for Open Unionism is a brief look at Lord Tebbit's notion that UKIP is a 'truly national party', a definition which explicitly excludes Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. I list some of the key tests coming up in the smaller home nations and urban England that will demonstrate the extent to which UKIP really is a force which can carry the centre-right standard into new territory. Read it here.

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Dilettante on ConHome: Red, White, and Blue 17

My latest ConHome column looks at the Welsh government's new plans to teach 'nationalist history', and the minefield involved in avoiding nationalist history. It also looks at the seizure of medieval weaponry in Edinburgh, the weird division of Northern Ireland's gay marriage vote along constitutional lines, and the odd state of the Anglesey Conservatives. Read it here.

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Dilettante on ConHome: Red, White, and Blue 16

My latest ConservativeHome column looks at the risk of Scottish political independence to Scottish economic independence, the MI5 spying operation on Plaid Cymru, the resurrection of the Red Flag at Labour conferences, and takes the opportunity afforded by Saint George's Day to explain to grumbling Anglo-Nat commenters that the reason my column doesn't mention England much is because it is about Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Read it here.