You may have noticed something of a hiatus on this blog. I think I owe it to you all to explain myself, to account for my silence. It is with a heavy heart that I must tell you that this is the final post you will ever read here on Lallands Peat Worrier. The referendum moved me in ways I had never expected. As the Yes campaign tugged and tore independence into the mainstream of Scottish political opinion, I found my own emotional and intellectual ties to the independence movement and the idea attenuating, weakening. In my heart, despite the family and the history, the arguments and the reasons, I found that I cherished our sometimes lopsided, sometimes imperfect union.
I remembered the balmy Oxfordshire sunshine. The twinkling eyes of a generous pensioner in York. The words of Shakespeare, and of Tennyson. In the silence of the ballot box, communing with my most inward, secret thoughts, I at first tremblingly, then proudly scored my cross in the "No" box on the 18th of September. I can only apologise for maintaining the hypocrisy in the days and weeks that followed. I have failed you, and failed the country I love also. It is time to efface that dishonour and finally to speak up for what the Prime Minister has rightly described as our family of nations, and our noble traditions of parliamentary democracy.
After some necessarily private talks and negotiation, I have been approached by Ruth Davidson to provide advice to her parliamentary colleagues on justice, law, rights and I have been honoured to accept. This appointment is obviously incompatible with my continued contribution to the public debate here.
So farewell, my friends, farewell.
*ahem* For those of you who have launched hysterical phonecalls, remonstrating emails, appalled comments of your worst political suspicions confirmed ...