AT those times when you realise you can’t fit a Rizla between the social policies of our main political parties you become prone to fits of paranoia.

In these moments you imagine we are all mere drones in someone else’s generated reality.

A series of devilishly contrived set-pieces are arranged: elections; referendums; Brexit – to maintain the illusion of choice and honest dispute.

Wars and geopolitical dramas are staged at regular intervals which produce patriotism – the chosen narcotic of the shape-shifting elites to keep us doped up.

Occasionally, a careless slip allows us a glimpse of the reality: that nothing much will ever change – north or south of the Border – in BritainCorp.

One of these occurred last month when two SNP MPs, Stewart McDonald and Alyn Smith, “demanded” a “summit” with MI5 to discuss ways of countering “hostile foreign activity”.

Let’s put to one side the unkind thought that anything involving the SNP’s Chuckle Brothers would be at the molehill end of the summit spectrum and deal with what’s actually being proposed here.

Two senior SNP figures who form part of Nicola Sturgeon’s inner circle are seeking an alliance with a shadowy organisation tasked with infiltrating grass-roots movements that might be considered hostile to Britain’s internal security. In recent history this has included striking miners and the anti-war movement.

Mr McDonald spoke of his concern that “hostile foreign actors are spending more money and following more sophisticated methods than ever before when it comes to sowing disinformation”.

For those not familiar with the use of the term “actors” here, we’re not talking about Dolph Lundgren or Klaus Kinski. “Actors” is the latest chi-chi idiom of the political classes. For this grand illusion to fly, several parts are required to move in unison. Political actors have to, well … act.

The Westminster Tories are playing their role admirably. After decades of that One Nation Tory con, they’ve replaced it with something more authentic: Actual Toryism. Nothing epitomises this more than the mafia enterprise that saw a lucrative market in PPE equipment emerge for the enrichment of Conservative donors.

The i newspaper reported on Saturday that more than 60 of David Cameron’s ministers and officials were rewarded with lucrative privatesector positions linked to their previous Government responsibilities.

The SNP seem to have a similar laissez-faire approach to fiscal governance. Hell, they’re even facing questions about planning applications and secret meetings with billionaire developers.

The egregiousness of the Tories’ graft and their success in selling it to English voters by describing it as “taking back control” has been a gift to the SNP.

It has provided them with the classic cover story for maintaining endless power without scaring the horses and doing anything radical. Even last week’s fancy pledge about providing social and affordable housing didn’t make it to the weekend before disintegrating.

The Tories, in becoming a cartoon version of themselves, permitted the SNP to point south and say: “We must free ourselves from this cesspit.” Scottish politics resembles a greyhound meeting where we, the voters, strain every muscle in pursuit of social justice, oblivious that the organisers have gamed it so that this can never be reached. “We’ll take you back into Europe,” say the SNP, despite knowing this won’t happen any time soon. And what’s not to like? We all want to be European, don’t we? All those style cheetahs sitting outside pavement cafes with their shades and being pure continental with the Amstel and Stella. None of your MD 20/20 or Dragon Soop here. No-one checks under the bonnet: the cartelism; the Bundesbank bond profiteering; the procurement delusion that allows massive corporations to move seamlessly across the entire Eurozone, subventing local pay agreements and forcing down wages to maintain the exploitation of cheap foreign labour.

In return, the SNP get to act like Sir Keir Starmer’s Labour project. Any traces of radicalism can only be detected with a microscope. And now, the Salmond party blunders in, propelled by one man’s giant ego.

Alba don’t have a radical agenda either: nothing that speaks of anything specific about improving the life chances of that half of the population who live in a subsistence twilight zone. “We’re going to need a bigger majority,” they tell us in the belief that Boris Johnson will be persuaded to grant a Section 30 order just because of the Salmond factor. Alba have provided another classic distraction from the SNP’s empty promises.

Scotland is in the grip of a single party run by an all-powerful – and very affluent – husband-andwife team who have made themselves virtually untouchable. This couple have constructed a fearsome apparatus in which the police, the judiciary and the entire civil service now dance to their tune.

The SNP Westminster group is now so gentrified as to be suffering from a kind of Stockholm syndrome. So mesmerised by their surroundings have they become, they long to wear its esoteric costumery.

Sturgeon is now apparently queasy about Alba gaming the system. Nothing resembles gaming the system than her MPs picking up £100k packages to sit in the Parliament of a state it wants to dismantle while doing the square root of sod all. This party’s social mission amounts to little more than a loosely assembled group of slogans that insult your intelligence: both votes SNP; I stand with Nicola; Scottish and European. They are declarations of no intent.

Five out of six of the main parties in this election self-identify, by degrees, as left-leaning social democrats. Yet, between them there is nothing that speaks of the redistribution of wealth to liberate working-class communities and nothing to challenge the patterns of ownership of our market-driven economy.

Their radicalism amounts to rejoining a protectionist cartel for rich countries. The death of Toryism in Scotland has been exaggerated. It just goes by another name and every social democratic party of the left is part of it.

If this is what Scottish independence will look like I’m not entirely sure why the Tories fear it.