by Colin Campbell
THE SNP/nationalists in typically triumphalist mode have spent recent months trying to ram down people’s throats the finding that a series of opinion polls have shown majority support for independence.
They managed to rack up 21 in total, peaking out at one showing 58 per cent in support of breaking away from the rest of the UK.
This enabled them to claim ad nauseam that independence is now “the settled will of the Scottish people”, and declare with gravitas that independence is now inevitable, a natural phenomenon as certain as the sun rising in the east.
These polls were reported without comment in much of the Scottish media, as if the results were written on tablets of stone.
But where did all these polls come from? They are costly to conduct and why should so many have appeared in such a short space of time, sometimes two within the space of a week?
The reality is that this was no genuine, objective attempt to gauge the state of public opinion in Scotland.
It was intended to steamroller through a myth that the SNP/nationalists could use to their advantage.
A significant number of these polls came from pro-independence organisations, and just happened to deliver the kind of results they wanted to hear. Frame a question in a certain way and you can be pretty certain that you’ll get the response you’re looking for.
Many of these samples of opinion were junk polls, no more and no less, and not worth the paper they were written on. These should have carried a massive health warning but too often they were reported on in the media without even a hint that they were tainted by bias and had come from pro-indy organisations.
However, this blizzard of opinion polls supposedly showing surging support for independence has now pretty much fizzled out.
In the four weeks since Nicola Sturgeon declared, at the height of the pandemic, that if necessary she would hold an illegal referendum, there has been only one I’m aware of, which had support for independence tumbling down to 47 per cent.
All that frantic polling activity has now dried up. I wonder why.
Could it be because pro-independence organisations, no matter how they and try and frame the question on whether or not people want to break away from the rest of the UK, now know they will be unable to get the polling result they want?
The vicious infighting in the SNP coupled with the obvious fact that Queen Nicola has lied over the Salmond affair is getting through to people. Sturgeon’s willingness to embrace reckless illegality on independence when the virus crisis is far from over hasn’t exactly been universally welcomed either.
Maybe a true assessment of opinion in Scotland at the moment is that more and more people think the SNP have got too arrogantly high and mighty, and in the May elections are intent on giving them a bruised and bloody nose.