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Scotland’s Zeitgeist

Scotland Unhinged

By Stephen Bowman

The Proclaimers have a pro-independence song called ‘Cap in Hand’, one small part of which neatly sums up what it is to be Scottish. The line ‘We boast – then we cower’ captures the essence of a nation that spends half its time bragging about its distinctiveness and its achievements, and the rest of the time suffering from a crippling lack of self-confidence. “Sure I’ve got ‘Scotland Forever’ tattooed on my backside, but we’re too wee and too stupid to become independent. Can’t I just listen to the bagpipes and wax lyrical about how pretty the mountains are? All this self-government stuff…”

It’s the kind of mindset that sees us apologise for our accents and sees one of our national football managers play with no strikers against a mediocre Czech Republic team. It’s also an attitude that results in too many of us meekly laughing when…

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