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Nordic secret presentation

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snp london

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Nordic secret presentation

  1. 1. The Nordic Secret - and what it can teach Scottish Independence politics patkane.global
  2. 2. Speaking tonight with a Nordic hat on…
  3. 3. What we know about Nordic societies: Societal happiness =“caring, freedom, generosity, honesty, health, income and good governance”
  4. 4. What do we know? Very high-performing
  5. 5. They’re not perfect…
  6. 6. But something is emulatable. What is it? And what can indy movement really learn? From McSmorgasbord: • All seek a strong (but variable) link with EU as a guarantor of markets for goods • All share a commitment to manage maritime resources (fish, gas, oil) • All have histories about negotiating freedom with bigger powers – or being ”in bed with an elephant” This is external, geopolitical… What about internal, cultural?
  7. 7. The Nordic Secret: A European story of beauty and freedom Lene Rachel Andersen Tomas Bjorkman
  8. 8. What is the Nordic Secret? They all had “folk- education” movements, from late 19th to e20th centuries…
  9. 9. …Movements which strengthened the confidence, imagination, sympathy and resilience of their citizens…
  10. 10. …by means of cultivating something called Bildung – the shaping and strengthening of character throughout a life, within a communty
  11. 11. The national “Springs” – of Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland… Reformers (like Grundtvig) & politicians inspired by German Romantic philosophers – Goethe, Schiller, Humboldt… …To develop the capacity of citizens for national democracy & modernity
  12. 12. •meet as equals in their spare time, •are exposed to new knowledge, culture, art, and challenges throughout life, •learn and evolve throughout life, •self-govern under great personal freedom, combined with a high social awareness and sense of responsibility, and •work towards compromises of great legitimacy. In ”folk schools” defined by a spirit of “bildung”, people…
  13. 13. The connection with Bildung is that she attended Highlander Folk School, whose founder Myles Horton had visited Denmark's folk schools, and determined to start them in the US. Rosa Parks attended Highlander Folk School. And as cited by this black history page: Highlander was one of the few places in the South where integrated meetings could take place, and served as a site of leadership training for southern civil rights activists. Rosa Parks attended a 1955 workshop at Highlander four months before refusing to give up her bus seat, an act which ignited the Montgomery bus boycott. Lead by Septima Clark, Esau Jenkins and Bernice Robinson, Highlander developed a citizenship program in the mid-1950s that taught African Americans their rights as citizens while promoting basic literacy skills. Reflecting on his experiences with the Citizenship Schools and the emergence of new leaders from “noncharismatic people” who attended the training, Horton concluded that “educational work during social movement periods provides the best opportunity for multiplying democratic leadership”. What does Rosa Parks have to do with the Nordic Secret? She went to a folk school in Tennessee…
  14. 14. While Nordics were doing “bildung” (and nation-building…) …Scotland was largely the workshop (and barracks) of the British Empire Tom Nairn: Scotland missed out on the great European nationalist “Springs”, and only now catching up… (though industry + labour movement = workers education?)
  15. 15. Modern legacy of folk- education and bildung for Nordic societies? - Ethos of life-long learning (see Denmark’s flexicurity – assumes an agile, capable, confident workforces) (Olaf Palme’s ‘study-circle democracy’) - Strong sense of active citizenship - Psychologically well-founded - play-based kindergarten & creative schooling, parental leave, shorter work week. (Thus the high happiness/trust indexes?)
  16. 16. BILDUNG 3.0 – for our current transition to age of automation/ AI, zero- carbon/climate change, emerging economics, demographics/ longevity, planetary migration… As the times get more complex on the outside – How much more complex do we have to be on the inside? What ”image of character” do we need?
  17. 17. So what does this have to do with gaining Scottish independence?
  18. 18. 1. The indy movement is already doing “Bildung 2.0”… a) A proper indy “public sphere” to discuss nation- developing ideas…
  19. 19. 1. The indy movement is already doing “Bildung 2.0”… b) Some institutions to start generating them…
  20. 20. 1. The indy movement is already doing “Bildung 2.0”… c) a social movement that lets character flourish Commentariat: ”Who are these people? Where have they come from?” Indy movement has been educating, sustaining, “building” people all this time… online, offline…
  21. 21. So what does this have to do with gaining Scottish independence?
  22. 22. 2. But are the ”legislators” tapping into the “Scottish Spring?” How can they use this bildung/building to get to indy? LONG GAME: - Soft Power strategy abroad – act “as if” a nation-state, with full range of powers, complex assets - Steady confidence-building to a new level – a pride in Scottish modernity - Generational turnover
  23. 23. 2. But are the ”legislators” tapping into the “Scottish Spring?” How can they use this bildung/building to get to indy? TOO LONG? QUICK DASH? - Brexit is a continuing car- crash, ScotGov pragmatism exhausted - Tension between using mandate now – losing it at the next Holyrood election - If it breaks to indyref2 through crisis… Do we have the resources, the plan?
  24. 24. The ultimate Bildung lesson for indy movement: How do you be the Scotland you wish to see? What’s the tone - friendly, welcoming, conversational… Or angry, fear-inducing, shaming… patkane.global