Tradition And The Union

Kenny S guest writes for us again with his take on the past momentous week…
I woke up this morning absolutely exhausted; the culmination of a weeks hard graft, a few drinks on a Saturday night and the emotional roller coaster of the most momentous week in our nation’s history.
The No’s won – by quite a significant margin it has to be said . I personally am delighted, relieved even, but found myself extremely fatigued by the drama that unfolded on Friday morning. I survived on three hours sleep at work on Friday, feeling that our country had done the right thing  but in the knowledge that nearly half the nation had voted to break up the Union.

The country has to try and move on, which, going by the way the vote went will be no easy task. I’ve been surprised and dismayed by some of the conclusions of this referendum, Glasgow voting Yes being the biggest letdown and eye opener.

Why did Glasgow vote Yes? How did it reach that stage where a majority of its citizens decided to destroy The Union? Well, one of the conclusions must be that a serious number of Rangers supporters voted for it. How times have change! I’ve lost count of the number of Rangers fans I’ve spoken to that did so. Each to their own I suppose but I’ll never understand the terrible negligence if truth be known.

But if a week is a long time in politics, it’s an eternity in football, especially if you discuss Rangers Football Club. Last week we destroyed Raith Rovers then went on to beat Inverness Caley Thistle in the cup, another well deserved result which had me crowing in the comments pages of this blog.

I actually said that if Ally keeps this up he won’t get any complaints from me on the football front. Then yesterday happened. In a week where we’ve had share issues, talks of boycotts, cup tie wins against top league opposition and also quite possibly the most complete performance from an Ally McCoist Rangers team, we go and blow it by turning up and failing to beat Alloa Athletic.

We had our manager saying he couldn’t put his finger on why we were so flat, complaining of time wasting, the artificial surface and a number of other things we don’t want to hear. Then our club captain comes out and says all the same things but adds “a lesson learnt and it’ll no happen again.”  Well, how many times do we have to hear the same tired old excuses? How many times have we to just accept it was an off day “for the boys”? Same old shit, different day if you ask me.

I’ll be honest, I wasn’t at the game so can’t overly comment on the ineptitude of the team’s performance yesterday, other than from what I’ve heard from friends who were at the Recreation Ground and from listening to  radio and journalists , also on Rangers forums. But from what I’ve heard it’s just the same garbage we’ve had to endure for coming on four years now. How long is a managers shelf life at a major football club these days?

Tactics were non existent, resorting to type and pumping high balls all day long and there was the now customary inability to hold onto the ball as well as the usual scraping about trying to pick up scraps. It’s a sad indictment of Ally McCoist’s Rangers that you can tell early doors if we are going to get a result or not – and the problem is that we all know performances and results like this are always just round the corner.

This season it’s absolutely imperative that we get promotion –  no if buts maybes or excuses. If we don’t reach the Premiership at the first time of asking then the implications don’t bear thinking about. Results like yesterday’s at Alloa don’t help, particularly when it appears that Hearts have hit the ground running and are on fire. They are four points ahead of us already. Hibs at Ibrox next Monday is shaping up as a huge must win game already, this early in the season.

We have to go on a run of wins just to keep up with the early pacesetters; worryingly, there’s not many of us see Rangers as capable of doing so. We are far too inconsistent and always have been under the current management team.

Ally and his coaching staff have been at the club for seven years. I can’t think of too many clubs that keep the coaching staff for that length of time. Even Sir Alex changed his staff on a regular basis.

We look stale all too often. There is a reason for that. With the size of our squad we should be able to change or rotate when players are not performing but it appears that the manager has his favourites who he will play week in week out,regardless of how they perform.

Then there is the embarrassing situation where our CEO had to address the players and staff to assure everyone that their wages would be paid on time. We are still meandering along week to week, both at board level and on the park, an inconsistent giant with no plan or purpose. The lack of leadership at Ibrox is staring us all in the face  and needs sorted once and for all.

The crowd at Ibrox for the cup tie against Inverness CT has got to be a major concern to all of us, from the current owners, their board, the manager himself and each and every one of us in the Rangers universe. The financial implications of this boycott has far reaching ramifications. The possibility of another administration fills me with dread. Not so some other Rangers supporters, it would seem.

That’s another thing I can’t get my head round. On top of some voting Yes on Thursday (which they are perfectly entitled to do of course)  and others that are advocating this boycott of their own club, I can’t help but look back to when I started going to Ibrox as a kid in the mid to late seventies.

At the present time we couldn’t be further away from the days of the late great Jock Wallace. Now there was a leader of men, the proudest of all Rangers. I wonder what he’d make of our current predicament. What would Willie Waddell and Jock Wallace make of our football club these days – its supposed leaders and even its own supporters?

We’re a shadow of what we used to be, a sleeping giant that some of our ain folk don’t want woken from our slumber. But this is no golden slumber – this is apathy and denial of our traditions. In effect, Rangers has changed. The old lady has supporters that don’t want to support her and give our traditions a nonchalant glance when they should be defying her detractors.

We are different now and many of those differences are to our detriment. I’d expect that Wallace would’ve kicked certain fan groups up and down Edmiston Drive till they saw sense. That might not have been perceived by some as the right way to go about dealing with a threat to our club but you know what? It would’ve been The Rangers Way!

It’s up to our CEO, our shareholders, our manager and ourselves to sort out our own mess and to get us back to where we belong  – at our rightful place at the pinnacle of the Scottish game. The opportunities are limitless; there’s nothing to stop us, but a timely reminder of who we are and what we stand for is required. In other words, we need leadership.

It’s up to the board of directors to sort out the financial crisis It’s up to the shareholders to help them and if they can’t then it’s best for all concerned that they move on because we are losing sight of who we are. It has to stop – and now.

We were/are supposed to be the quintessential British Club. Times change and people move with those times. Our demographic is different from when I was a young lad but even then Rangers skimpimg by from week to week was wholly unacceptable … along with being lucky to scrape a draw with Alloa Athletic and hearing excuse after excuse as to why it happened.

Rangers fans voting against The Union and being made to accept a team that can’t beat Alloa ?Not in my day but maybe I’m just a dinosaur who’s living in the past.  However, I’m sure I can recall outrage at certain results only a few years ago so why do we accept them now?

The simple answer to that is that we don’t have to accept it – we are Rangers and it should be demanded from each and every employee of our great club that 100% is given, at all times.

The stories I’m hearing about certain people barely doing enough to earn their salary sickens me. The board has to find a way to get those thousands upon thousands of people who are fed up with the running of the club back into Ibrox. Our very future depends on it. If they can’t then they and the largest shareholders should move on and quickly. Sitting and arguing with each other or not talking isn’t the answer.

Can you imagine great leaders of our club such as the great John Lawrence hanging about and doing nothing? Or Bill Struth? Not a chance in hell! It’s time for all parties concerned to bang heads together for a solution to our problems; doing nothing or waiting for another insolvency isn’t the answer. We are broken and we need fixed.

The people of Scotland have spoken  – we stay an integral part of The United Kingdom. A Great Britain without Rangers in it would just be Britain to me  and there’s a very real danger of it happening if we don’t get every single character who’s been involved in this charade to come clean and lay their cards on the table . OUR Club’s very being depends not it, for as I see it the status quo shouldn’t remain. It simply can’t …

Rangers must move on and realise the destiny awaiting the club.

A bit like the Union itself…

 

Maintaining The Union

After sowing seeds of rebellion and sedition, almost destabilising the western world  by trying to splitting up the greatest Union in history, turning brother against brother and friend against friend, Alex Salmond has slunk out the back door to a cosy wee retirement.

His legacy is a bitterly divided Scotland where the losing minority are poisoned with malice and vitriol towards the winning side and our English neighbours.

If we are being brutally honest, Alex Salmond is a spectacular failure. He has twice led a party which was created to bring about a separate Scotland and, despite a massively funded campaign of mass saturation and naked intimidation, the people of Scotland said a resounding NO to the concept.

His life’s work in tatters, wee Eck has sloped off but it is left to others to pick up the pieces.

Don’t get me wrong. The way we have been governed from Westminster is in bad need of a revamp. The Scottish Referendum can be looked at in two ways, either as  a good or a bad thing. That it has engaged a whole bunch of people in politics is, depending on your point of view, either a good or terrible thing. The last thing we need is more gobby meddlers sticking their nose in. Democracy is a double-edged sword in some respects.

What IS good is that the Referendum will be a catalyst for change. Hopefully, real change that makes a positive difference. I have my own radical ideas about what is necessary and you can find them here. One thing that is required is that we move from a confrontational style of politics to a transformational one, where politicians stop promoting their own party interests but seek the best interests of the nation and people.

The Better Together campaign showed this can be done. Bitter political rivals came together as one to fight a common threat in a way we can only hope was more than a convenient “enemy of my enemy is my friend” short-term alliance.

On this blog I have attacked Labour and its politicians – even during the Referendum – but I have to hold my hands up and say that Labour stepped up to the plate and championed the Union. People like Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling played a massive role and, despite my slagging him off, Jim Murphy went way beyond the call of duty and took the fight to the enemy. An enemy which showed itself to be nasty and violent.

Even Dr John Reid, Baron Frankenstein himself, put in a very decent shift defending the United Kingdom

Strange times when these people become heroes to us but it cannot be escaped or denied – when others couldn’t, wouldn’t or shouldn’t, these Labour politicians and activists fought tooth and nail for Scotland to remain British. A special mention for Douglas Alexander, who was always unflappable but passionate and devastatingly precise in puncturing the web of lies he encountered from separatists.

The political map of Scotland has changed and it will now be about separatism versus Unionism far more than it ever was. In a sense, this is a good and healthy thing. A polarised political landscape is easier to understand and navigate.

The reality is that, unless Ruth Davidson finds the backbone to be a Unionist Joan of Arc, the only plausible vote for Unionists is to vote Labour and crush the SNP. Davidson was also outstanding in the Referendum campaign but her party is hampered by both snobbery and fear from appealing directly to heart and soul Unionists.

So for now, it’s very clear: Vote Labour to maintain the Union.

The separatists are already calling themselves “The 45″ which shows they are thinking collectively. Well, the last 45 Rebellion didn’t do so well.

Maybe in Alex Salmond’s Scotland, 45% would be greater than 55% but the people of the real Scotland kicked that into touch.

We Unionists are the 55. We won. But we must stick together and keep voting for the Union.

Better Together must be our manta going forward.

Silent Unionist Majority Sends Proud Eck’s Army Homeward To Think Again

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The people of Scotland  woke up this morning more British than ever, having voted decisively to stay in the Union.

Despite all the hype and hoopla from the separatism campaign, Scotland has rejected the uncertain path of independence for the security of being part of the United Kingdom.

Scotland has managed to shrug off its latest encounter with Brigadoon Fever. Sadly, Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon haven’t disappeared into the mists with the mythical Scottish utopia but their spin and bluster has evaporated into the ether.

Over the last few days we have seen the Yes campaign descend into “See you, Jimmy” levels of jakeyness and yobdom. The true face of Scottish independence has been revealed – and it isn’t pretty. The spotlight of the world’s media has been put on the natz and the cracks started to appear.

The brutal reality is not that Scots are afraid of radical change but that Salmond and his devotees were woefully short on the hard facts and arguments necessary to convince people to change. Sneering at skeptics and shouting over opponents might work occasionally in the odd debate but a watching public needs much more than bully-boy bluster and swagger to be convinced.

The referendum results show Scotland is not convinced. Salmond couldn’t find enough mugs to get him over the finish line first.

I suspect there will be a lot of hurting people this morning in the nationalist camp. Many of them will continue their pointless rage at Westminster and wallow in their futile anti-English prejudice. However, I suspect the more discerning will realise after a while that they were sold shares in another Darien venture by Salmond and co. Their embarrassment in falling for it will be tempered by relief that the boat was cancelled.

I have no doubt many Yes voters were people who just wanted change, not necessarily because they are deeply unhappy with the way things are but simply because a Yes vote looked like a route to something different. These folks might be disappointed but will shrug their shoulders and get on with things again. It may very well be that their legacy is that their vote s will become a catalyst for change across the whole political spectrum, something that is not unwelcome even to ardent Unionists.

However, there are a great many in the Yes camp who are not motivated by any sentimental longings for a better Scotland but by an ugly hatred of the British State. The referendum victory for the Union is all the more pleasing in that it consigns these people to living under the Union Jack for longer.

We Unionists are entitled to a bit of crowing, particularly those of us who have been vilified for our pro-Union stand.

I have a simple message for these people who are motivated by spite and hatred of all things British:

The referendum result is clear. The people of Scotland have spoken and declared for the Union.

It is OUR Scotland you are living in and it is OUR Saltire you are flying.

We are taking both back as of now.

Scotland Forever!

Rule Britannia!

And God save and bless Her Britannic Majesty, Queen Elizabeth.