This is the thing about a tough-guy reputation. At some point, somebody's gonna call you on it, and you'd better be able to back it up.
Now is that time.
Thanks to the unforgivably foul actions of your very own little crap-weasel, Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill (hereafter referred to as 'the weasel'), we're calling you out. Not the United States. Not the ObamaNation. Not the DC metrosexuals and serial apologizers. Not the slimy, underhanded little State Department diplomats. Most decidedly not the American press.
No. Uh-uh, baby. I speak for the American people.
Texas. Wyoming. The midwest, what America's elitist coastal wussies call flyover country. Gun-toting, God-and-country, strong family values, thoroughly heterosexual, beer not brie, whiskey not tea and crumpets. People of the land, who can grow and kill their own food. You know, the people YOU used to be. The people we hope you still are.
Now it's gut-check time, and we want to know: are you our ally and friend, a man's-man kind of a people? Or have you become Western Europe?
The Scotland we think we know
The culture we know as Scotland may or may not have ever existed, but here it is. It is a people of the land, a sometimes harsh land that requires much of its people. Scotland is the pool-playing, hard-drinking, hard-fighting but honest, hard-working, family-oriented big brother of shallow, dandy, randy skirt-chaser England.
It's William Wallace, it's self-reliance. It's intensely loyal and duty-bound, it's fierce and fearless in battle, it's death before dishonor. It is, in other words, the Texas of Great Britain. You probably don't know how high praise that is.
England has been great at times, and it remains a strong ally. I can't help that our one-term president sent the Churchill bust back, but that's something we'll remedy in 2013. But there are no more Churchills in England, not in this generation (except maybe that Hannan fellow). Anymore, England reminds us of the character Maxwell Sheffield from The Nanny. When he says "I'd like to wrap my hands around a tall lager", we're not terribly sure whether he said lager or logger.
The Lockerbie affair
On December 21, 1988, Pan Am flight 103 from London to New York City was destroyed by a bomb 31,000 feet over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing 259 people on board and 11 on the ground. 180 of the dead were Americans, 52 British. Many were alive and conscious up to the point of ground impact. The subsequent investigation showed it to be a terrorist act sponsored by Libyan intelligence officers. In 2001, Libyan intelligence officer Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi (hereafter referred to as 'the skunk') was convicted for his primary role in the bombing, and sentenced to life in prison.
We would have executed him here.
'released on compassionate grounds'
Now after serving only 8 years for the murders of 270 people, that skunk has terminal prostate cancer, and is estimated to have 3 months to live. Boo hoo.
In a move that stunned the world, this week the weasel announced that the skunk would be released on compassionate grounds and flown back to Libya a free man, to die in dignity among loved ones. This was carried out in very short order, the way all disreputable decisions are. Details on exactly how this was decided are sketchy at this moment, but it appears First Minister Alex Salmond at least signed off on it and may have actually sponsored it. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has made no public statement, but it seems incredible that he would not know and at least tacitly sign off. Apparently the United States knew and strongly disapproved both publicly and privately. The Scottish ministers seem particularly indignant at the extremely sharp words offered by FBI Director Robert Mueller.
Reaction from the Scottish parliament has been swift and bitter, which gives me hope. Apparently they were not consulted, and the leaders of the Labour, Tory, and Liberal Democrat Parties all strongly condemned the move and the weasel (I take it these are all the major parties?). Parliament was recalled early from their recess and a raucous session was held in which the weasel was called upon to justify himself.
So what are you going to do?
Are you going to just bluster and make some noise, demand explanations, conduct investigations? Or are you going to oust the First Minister and that weasel Justice Secretary, and every other cabinet minister that approved of this sell-out? They are supposed to be your servants, but they have betrayed you and sullied your hard-won reputation. Just rub them out, no questions asked, no explanations required.
Will you show the world that Scotland is a tough, law-and-order, self-reliant, freedom-loving and family-oriented enclave in a world where those values are crumbling? Will you show the world that you are the strong and loyal friend of the United States?
Or will you just show the world that Edinburgh is just a 4-hour train ride from London?