I) The chief defect of all hitherto existing analysis of the Scottish Nationalist vote in the general election is that the thing, the reality, the sensuousness, is conceived only in the form of negativity, not as a sensuous human activity or practice, not in terms of context, organisational development or even a burgeoning political consciousness. Hence, in contradistinction to real analysis, the active side was developed abstractly by negativity – which, of course, does not know real, sensuous activity as such.
II) The Nationalist vote needs placed in its proper European context; the growing rejection of established mainstream politics seen across Europe. But the Nationalist vote was also, of course, distinctively Scottish.
III) It follows on from the credibility the SNP has established as Scotland’s party of government or at least the lack of any major feck ups since they’ve been in power.
IV) The independence referendum was also a big factor. Positively, it converted a lot of people to nationalism, generating a step change increase in political engagement and debate in the process.
V) It also prompted a significant increase in political activism with this seeing the SNP become the 3rd largest political party in the UK as measured by party membership – this in turn gave the SNP the practical resources needed to campaign across Scotland.
VI) Negatively, voting SNP in the general election gave people embarressed and ashamed about voting no in the referendum a safe means of casting a Scottish vote
VII) Voting SNP was also a response to how Westminster responded to the Scottish referendum result and the bullshit that’s so far entailed.
VIII) Nicola Sturgeon! John Swinney’s time as SNP leader maintained the notion that the SNP was a one trick pony called Alex Salmond. Nicola Sturgeon’s emergence on to the British political stage made clear the SNP was more than one man.
IX) Nicola Sturgeon times 2!! My personal experience of Scottish Nationalism is that it offered and offers a vision that women connect with passionately, put simply folks cheered on Nicola and shouted at Jim Murphy to get tae "f". And with 20 of the 56 SNP MPs female, this has already translated into a new, more representative politics.
X) Speaking of which, the SNP campaigned positively; whereas the Tories offered the chance for us all to put on an even dirtier great big hairshirt. By contrast, the SNP said end austerity now (thank god)
XI) Speaking of positive vision, Scotland is more Social Democratic than England. The SNP has for years positioned itself as being to the left of Labour. By contrast Labour’s UK message was that they were marginally to the left of the Tories – this did not work in Scotland because it was not far enough
XII) This was also because of the mediocrity that was and is Scottish Labour and the complete failure of their leadership to be anything other than time served jokes queuing up to fill out their next expenses claim – Johann Lamont anybody?
XIII) And then there was Labour’s approach to the independence referendum; their focus on a wholly negative campaign and the fact that by doing so they actively alienated themselves from their electoral heartlands, which actually voted for independence (or as Nick Clegg learned – voters have memories).
XIV) To be continued
XV) Also to be continued, ideally with mate chat and debate