Thunberg : Sturgeon Square

Beware the likes of Tintin Thunberg and Mrs Murrell

Hamish Gobson’s diary: the view from across the Uisge

          Wednesday 27 September 2023

WHEN Greta Thunberg won the Eurovision Sob Contest in 2019, she was the youngest winner of a major compassion tournie since Mother Teresa took gold at the Nobels in Oslo in 1979. Like the “crinklie of Calcutta”, the tear-jerking Swedelette was taken up the great and the good as if she were a new health recipe.

One of the first politicians to realise she could hope for life eternal in politics if she was photographed with the loopy lip-trembler, was a Scottish nationalist then known as Nicola Sturgeon, but today more familiar to the police-watching community as Mrs Murrell, (53), of “Blue Tents”, Learner Drive, Upper Uddingston, North Britain.

Murrell, who appears to lack a sense of humour almost entirely, was not put off, as many wiser heads were, by the fact that Thunberg’s middle name is “Tintin”. Those heads remembered the murderous, machete-wielding thugs employed by “Papa Doc” Duvalier in Haiti in the 1960-70s, who went by the sinister name of “the Tintin Macoute”. Might there be a connection between them and Tintin Thunberg, with her unofficial army of cancellors?

Murrell ignored the warning signs, possibly because she was incapable of apprehending anything outside her own vision of her own future in her own community of one (plus a driver). It is therefore worth recalling the reality behind the threat. “Tonton Macoute” was the Haitian creole name for the bogeyman who cancelled bad children at Christmas and, in a dark inversion of Father Christmas, put them in his capacious sack and disappeared them from hearth, home, advent calendar and chimney stocking. He was alternatively known as Father Gunnysack. His wife, who cooked the cancellees, self-identified as “the Big Mammy”.

In Haiti in the blood-soaked years of the Duvalier dictatorship, the Tonton Macoute used voodoo to bewitch the public and issue warnings. If they were ignored—the worst insult you can deploy against a narcissist—you were treated to a Caribbean Cancellation which, unlike the Haitian Divorce, featured tears, heartbreak and flashing machetes, but no remorse on the part of the machetisti.

Tintins have a comparable arsenal of voodoo phrases, like “the climate emergency”, “mental health concerns” and “sexual stereotyping”, which they use against the public as a whole, before calling for machete-like measures such as de-banking or the de-platforming of individuals who speak the truth about them as they, not as the Tintins, see it. Turning up late for Royal functions is a more recent innovation, pioneered by the previous Mrs Hosie.

I was put in mind of all of this while sitting out on the rocks below my seaweed laboratory reading an interesting new book about high-end Euro Tintins by Professor Tom Gallagher. It is called Europe’s Leadership Famine: Portraits of defiance and decay 1950-2022. Prof. Gallagher has written short essays on such important figures as Tito, Mitterrand, Berlusconi, Victor Orban, Zelensky and our very own “Nicola Sturgeon”, by which he means Mrs Uddingston-Murrell, the little mammy with the big gunnysack.

The book as a whole seems to me to be a cry of despair about the future of democracy. It is a cry which is rightly raised now we have a party of anti-democrats in government in Scotland who see themselves as aping behaviour in less happy climes across the Channel and into the trees. In their contempt for public opinion and their rage to be obeyed, these people are as narcissistic as Tintin Thunberg and Papa Doc Duvalier. Chapter 19 is entitled “Self-Absorbed Leadership”.

Gallagher has some useful statistics. For example, referring to the UN-sponsored COP26 beano held in Glasgow under the auspices of the United Nations a few years back, he says, “It was an ideal moment for [Sturgeon] to project herself before the visiting media, despite having no formal role in organising or running the event. During the nine-day event, she posted, or retweeted, no less than 65 pictures or videos of herself on Twitter.” (p. 274) One of those pictures was with Tintin herself—two short, smart smirkers out past their bedtime having a wee tear at the taxpayers’ expense.

Was that the highpoint of Mrs Murrell’s political trajectory? I suspect it might have been. COP26 can never be repeated, if for no other reason than that, due to the slashing of police numbers in Scotland in order to facilitate national Thunbergism, Scotland no longer has 26 cops.

Gallagher hits the nail on the head with Murrell’s self-centeredness and her slightly sick obsession with self-advertisement. My own view is that it is evidence of a loveless childhood, a curse which often results in self-hatred. Writing of her resignation speech, he says “Her statement was prolix and self-referential. ‘I’ ‘me’ ‘my’ were mentioned 153 times, but she mentioned Scotland only eleven times.” (p. 281) If hatred be the food of self-love, then Sturgeon’s narcissism is explicable. But where does that hatred come from?

This is a question Gallagher does not address, but it is one which interests me and my fronds. The subject appears to have a damaged psyche which involves an inability to empathise emotionally with anyone except herself. No wonder she wanted to hide under the dining room table and read Enid Blyton during pre-Thunberg parties. That was early practice for “boycotting” events which offer no selfie opportunities. All through her life she seems to have carried the nursery around with her.

Pondering all this, I infused a thoughtful flask of Landlady’s Wig (Ahnfeltia plicata). Examining the pattern of the fronds in my retort flask, I felt a swing of the mental compass in the direction of Loch Harport in Skye, where Talisker whisky is made. The distillery’s motto is “Made by the Sea”, which is odd since, in my experience, the only thing the sea actually makes is noise and dead seaweed. How would any low viscosity fluid be able to open and close the tap on a spirit safe, for example, or nose a cask sample? The answers to such questions will have to remain as mysteries, doing what mysteries do, namely wrapping riddles inside enigmae for the benefit of political epigrammarians.

With a final flicker, the compass readjusted itself slightly, pointing to Talisker House four miles west of the still, on Talisker Bay. This is an elegant eighteenth-century structure, started in 1717 after the Act of Union brought renewed confidence to remote gentry, like Rory MacLeod. He was a cadet of the MacLeod Clan which had fought the English in Ireland in Elizabethan times and the King of Scotland in Jacobean ones.

The early seventeenth century chief came within a hair’s breadth of losing all he owned after James decided to check the title deeds of those Highland chiefs he wanted to cancel on public order grounds. The uncertainty of Scottish government from the mid-fourteenth century until smashing of the Stuarts made it risky to build a decent house until the power of the vindictive, authoritarian and acquisitive aristocracy in Edinburgh had been broken in 1707.

Today, Talisker House accommodates Scotland’s most prominent philosopher, Dr Iain McGilchrist (both pictured left). He is one of the few contemporary commentators to have taken the measure of the world we are making for ourselves in the twenty-first century. He finds it severely wanting in a way which fronds of all species tell me is accurate.

Seaweed is an excellent barometer of the health of our environment, both naturally and politically. Being without ears, it is incapable of listening to the Murrell-Yousavian gutwash which underpins the developing tyranny in trans-Channel Scotland today. Its ignorant pharisaism extends to trumpeting natural biodiversity while enforcing human conformity by law.

McGilchrist is both older and much wiser than Tintin Murrellberg. He believes in diversity generally, especially of ideas. He also seems more likeable, and less self-righteous. He wears his spectacles with panache, and that gives his words the ring of truth. I will go into this further next time. Before then, might I encourage readers to listen to McGilchrist’s profoundly perceptive analysis of the attack being mounted by the Tintins of big government generally on freedom of speech? He starts with the dangers of censorship, including self-censorship.

Unwarranted control of private and public speech is the legal machete which Tonton Macousaf wielded while Minister of Justice [sic] in 2021. My own impression was that the Hate Crime Bill was a covert celebration of the saucer-eyed voodoo cult by means of which rogue elements in government aim to impose false consciousness on all sentient life in Scotland for the benefit of those doing the imposing. The Act, it now transpires, is due to come into force in early 2024.

An important part of McGilchrist’s argument is that without freedom of speech we have no freedom at all. This is the real emergency which we face—not the so-called climate wobble that Tintin made her name sobbing about. I will go into more detail next post since democracy without freedom of speech will end up like dead kelp washed up at high tide after a storm—limp, black, hoaching with midgies and, after a while, extremely smelly.


Hamish Gobson lives on the Hebridean isle of Great Todday (Todaidh Mór) and features in Nicola Sturgeon: the Years of Ascent (1970-2007) – A Citizen’s Biography of a Driven Woman in a Drifting Parliament (Ian Mitchell, 2022) – available on Amazon and also reviewed here by Tom Gallagher.

Also written by Ian Mitchell is The Justice Factory (second edition): Can the Rule of Law Survive in Twenty-First Century Scotland? which considers the future of liberal democracy, taking Scotland as an example.

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