Quite an amazing week. A referendum that gripped two nations, the Scots and the English. A campaign driven by the people, constantly fuelled by all sets of media. Stakes on both sides of the border along with the political parties could have hardly been greater. The most phonetic time of politics since Edward Heath’s Conservative government joined us up with the EEC in 1973.
After last weekend’s Yougov polls put Alex Salmond’s Scottish National Party a couple of points ahead of the Unionists, alarm bells rang all around Westminster. Our party political leaders were stunned into action. David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband who had all been so lethargic, almost to an outsider nurturing the idea of an independent Scotland, in the eleventh hour saw the error of their sluggish like thinking and all made hastily engagements for early week debates in Scotland to try and halt the Scottish uprising.
For a short time the Union was evaporating in front of our very eyes. The most successful union in history was coming to an end. But as the call went out, one man rose like a giant above all others, the name of that man was Gordon Brown. For me, Gordon Brown without any doubt saved the Union. His speeches were almost electrifying, like a mid-19th century stalwart politician, oratory almost equalling the great Winston Churchill, who hammered out his convictions in a most matter of fact, heart felt, respectful, almost humble at times manner. As the curtain was falling on a three hundred year old union, he had the ability to make people pause and think whilst stood on the very brink.
Friday morning when the final results were announced, 45% of Scots wanting independence from England and 55% still wanting the Union I reflected on just how close the whole thing had come to unravelling. The referendum has broken seams in an old coat that has been truly well worn. Seams that has been broken and weakened by an almost self-destruct idea of being able to do better, when in reality, England, Scotland and Wales have always put the Great into Great Britain.
As I sit watching over my Badgers with the full knowledge of the senseless Badger slaughter starting up again in parts of Gloucestershire and Somerset, I thought how nice it would be to have a heavy weight politician of the stature of Gordon Brown speaking up on behalf of the British Badger.
For twenty years he played second fiddle to Tony Blair. When he eventually became Prime Minister the party was over. Tony Blair had slipped out of the back door and left Gordon Brown holding a cake in which he would have to have been the Messiah to satisfy the mouths in which it was to be fed. Our country was broken by a false economic yearly house price rise which could never realistically cope in paying back the debts that had accumulated on the de-regulation of the banks in the mid-eighties under a Thatcher, Tory Government that started up all day Sunday trading and an endless wallet of plastic cards to quench the insatiable, ever wanting, must have more British appetite. An economy of madness that Gordon Brown almost single-handedly carried the can for.
The double act of Gordon Brown and Tony Blair always showed Tony Blair in the limelight and Gordon Brown in the gloom. But if their posts could be reversed and now you had Gordon Brown as peace envoy in the Middle East you would now have a voice of conviction and integrity, but one can never have it all. And I for one will always be grateful for the rousing Union speeches of Gordon Brown. Three cheers for Gordon Brown for saving the Union.
My Badgers came up from deep in the woodland to Daddy Cool’s favourite spot on the Northern boundary. The Throne of Daddy Cool. How very fitting for the most important vote in our Union’s history for over three hundred years.
Please watch my short film of Daddy Cool in the most beloved spot of his woodland.
Daddy Cool checking out his Throne.