|Charles Kennedy, British politician and former leader of the Liberal Democrats. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
I never had much sympathy for Charles Kennedy's politics. But he always struck me as a decent man endowed with great wit, warmth and sincerity. A man who served both his party and his constituents well despite a considerable handicap.
There was an essential genuineness about the man, and a strength of character which helped him deal with his alcohol problems in a way that commanded sympathy and respect.
These qualities may explain why he always seemed so uncomfortable and out of place with the grindingly negative and endlessly nasty anti-independence campaign. It just wasn't Charles Kennedy's kind of politics.
Given his undoubted talents, abilities and personal qualities, not to mention the tragedy of his untimely demise, it is all the more disturbing to find hard-line unionists seizing on the occasion and manner of Kennedy's death as an opportunity to vent their mindless hatred of the Scottish National Party.
This is but one example of the politics of obsessive, vitriolic hate being expressed in a few callous keystrokes and with varying levels of spittle-flecked vehemence by unionists in the wake of Charles Kennedy's death.
There is a great sickness at the heart of the unionist cause. A rancid rottenness at its core. A bitter, bilious, British nationalist fanaticism has arisen which regards any obscenity as fully justified in defence of the British state. They won the referendum, but lost the country and have since been obliged to watch as those they supposed they had defeated were awarded all the prizes by Scotland's voters.
Their resentment is implacable. All intellect is crippled by it. Rationality is abandoned in favour of base emotion. Propriety is forsaken for a revelry of petulant anger.
Some of the decency in British politics died with Charles Kennedy. Whatever remained has been killed by the cretins who have laid claim to his newly deceased body, declaring it the moral high ground while using it as a vantage point from which to spit venom at their political rivals.