LetterFromAmerica

A different take on the the Scottish political scene. Perceptive, unusual and controversial.

Sept-1

In the wake of Corbyn

IN THE United States, and in the UK, there’s a race on to replace the leaders of the left-wing parties. In America it’s a contest to determine who will be the Presidential candidate. In the UK it’s for the leadership of the Labour Party.
While the Republican party continues to shift to the right there are signs the US is moving to the left. This is one of the main reasons Bernie Sanders has any hope at all. Sanders is nominally a socialist, though his policies aren’t particularly so.

 

From September 2015 Edition

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August-1

US, Safe – The Greek Crisis

THERE’S a place far to the South facing some extremely difficult choices. A nation state asking the union it is a member of for changes which will allow it to deal with its unpayable debts.

While the population includes some of the hardest working people anywhere on earth they’re accused of being lazy parasites, even though it was the sharp world-wide economic contraction of 2006 which led to much of their present difficulties. Unable to pay all their debts the people have been left in a state of legal limbo, fearful for the future.

I am referring, of course, to Puerto Rico

From August 2015 Edition

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July-1

REFORM AND REGENERATE

AMERICANS have come up with some bad ideas. One of our worst was developed by a guy named Joe McCarthy. McCarthy decided to change the definition of communism from the definition we all know or argue over, to “anything that I (Joe McCarthy) don’t personally like.”

Joe was the star behind the House of Un-American Activities Committee, which terrorised ordinary  Americans during the Red scare of the 1950s.

Unfortunately, his influence still remains, and has gone international, which is most clearly seen when rather innocuous and moderate land reform policies from the SNP are called “Stalinism” by people who don’t want to be held to any kind of account for their misuse of Scottish land.

From July 2015 Edition

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June-1

Rights on the edge

ALL GOVERNMENTS, all societies, and all peoples play pretend. We all have certain myths about ourselves, collectively, that are entirely imagined. They’re sometimes harmless but often harmful.

As long as Americans pretend America is the greatest country in the world we don’t have to do any of the work that would build the country we think we live in. So we have crumbling infrastructure, a police culture that murders our citizens and an economy which has begun to favour only the few, and we think ourselves a land of industry, liberty, and plenty.

From June 2015 Edition

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Declaration_of_arbroath

Time for a New Constitution

WHEN I tell my fellow Americans that people in the UK are taught that a constitution is a set of nebulous undefined principals rather than a written legal document the responses I get range from disbelief and confusion to raucous laughter.

After all, our laws are built on the English, Scottish, and French legal systems. We’re taught about English Common Law and the Magna Carta in school.

From May 2015 Edition

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