Wednesday, 7 November 2012


Thanks Bob for the link.

Lifted from LandMatters:
     I have an original copy of Tom Johnston‘s Our Scots Noble Families from 1909. It is a treasure. It was reprinted by Argyll Publishing in 1999. Here, reprinted, is the opening chapter entitled A General Indictment. Read it and remember that politics and political writing once had revolutionary potential.

A General Indictment
     Before proceeding to analyse the methods by which each of our Scots noble families rose to fortune, and before I examine in detail the origin of their various divinities, dignities and privileges, it is advisable to take our canvas and lay on in primary colours a general and comprehensive indictment of Scots landlords as a class. The histories of our land have been mostly written to serve the political purposes, and flatter the conceits of our aristocracy. When the historian knew of happenings calculated to cast odium on our landed gentry, he carefully excised the records, and where he did not know, he was careful to assume, and lead others to assume, that the period of which he was ignorant were periods of intense social happiness, wherein a glad and thankful populace spent their days and their nights in devising Hallelujahs in honour of the neighbouring nobleman. And that is why the history of Scots mining is wrapped in darkness: that is why we never hear of the hundred and fifty years slavery, and why the collier of to-day does not know that his ancestor of a century ago was a two legged chattel, bought, sold, and lashed as were the cotton plantation negroes in pre-Civil War times. There are no popular histories of the thefts of the Klaan and Abbey lands. Even the sparse records of neyfship are never dragged out to the popular gaze.
     A democracy ignorant of the past is not qualified either to analyse the present or to shape the future;
Continue reading HERE:

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