After George Osborne triumphantly parked his ministerial posterior on the green leather of the British Government front bench in the immediate afterglow of his ‘brilliant budget’, he must have pinched himself for his apparent political good fortune.
Not only had he smited Labour over its (alleged) economic illiteracy for insisting the country spend its way out of the worst recession in more than 80 years, he also cut a popular dash imposing (modest) (taxpayer-paid) penalties on the UK banking industry for ..eh… causing the UK Banking Crash in the first place.
He silenced political opposition from the young (students ) with ‘save to invest mortgage’ plans, and politely flirted with the older generation with tax-free ISA savings accounts whilst all the time wearing his best ‘Mr Darcy’ –style frock coat and top hat.
So far so very good. But then .. he overdid it. He just couldn’t resist a heavily-politicised Anglo-centric swipe over the ‘rebellious Scots’ so soundly crushed by the victorious English forces in the 1415 battle of Agincourt against…. eh.. the French?
Clearly hoping to kill two political birds with one stone (ie to spike the Scot ‘Nats’ and spike the UKIP-ers) with a fiscal flourish from the heart of the Imperial Parliament over how the Scots would have been ‘too poor, to stupid, to small and to feart’ to manage their own economy in an independent Scotland after the 50% collapse in N. Sea crude oil prices, Osborne made the following proclamation:
“Mr Deputy Speaker, it goes without saying that an independent Scotland would never have been able to afford such a package of support.
“For it is one of the great strengths of our 300 year old union that just as we pool our resources, so too we share our challenges and find solutions together.
“For we are one United Kingdom. And so, Mr Deputy Speaker, we could not let the 600th anniversary of Agincourt pass without commemoration.
The battle of Agincourt is, of course, celebrated by Shakespeare as a victory secured by a “band of brothers” It is also when a strong leader defeated an ill-judged alliance between the champion of a united Europe and a renegade force of Scottish nationalists.
“So it is well worth the £1 million we will provide to celebrate it.”
Surely Sir Humphrey Somebody must have pointed out to the Chancellor that the victory in the 1415 mediaeval battle at Agincourt (or as the BBC would politically-correctly-insist, Azincourt) was won by England (an then independent nation state) over the French (another independent nation state) at a time when;
- There is no historical evidence of any Scottish military involvement in the French order of battle at Agincourt (Phillpotts, The French Plan of Battle during the Agincourt Campaign, The English Historical Review, 99:390, 59-66 (Jan. 1984). However, after Agincourt, there is documented evidence of Scots volunteers and mercenaries allying in subsequently battles to successfully prevent a Henry-V led domination of France, for which Scots were granted an automatic right of dual Scottish-French citizenship which endured until 1903.
- North Sea oil did not exist in 1415- and wouldn’t be ‘invented’ until 560 years later by BP in 1975
- The EU did not exist in 1415 and did not come into existence in its earliest form until 1957 as the European Economic Community (EEC)
- Neither Alex Salmond nor Nicola Sturgeon, were born in the 14th century and did not take part in the 1415 battle at Agincourt between England and France.
- Neither Alex Salmond nor Nicola Sturgeon were born in the 12th century and did not take part in the Sir William Wallace-led victory over English forces at Stirling brig in 1297.
- Neither Alex Salmond nor Nicola Sturgeon took part in the ‘Braveheart’ movie made in 1987 by Australian actor Mel Gibson
- The United Kingdom did not exist in 1415 – and did not come into existence until 1707 after Acts of Union were enacted by the parliaments of two then-independent nation states (England and Scotland)
- In 1415, Scotland was a then independent nation state (which was not at war with England at the time, having secured its independence against England on the battlefield in 1297 (see at Para 4, above)
- That to use UK taxpayers money to celebrate an England-only victory in a pre UK-political union over a third-party independent nation state is not necessarily the most joined-up ‘Better Together Pro-UK / anti Scottish independence’ use of resources in 2015 – 600 years after the football equivalent of a 1-0 England victory over a Ruritanian Reserve-11