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Scottish independence referendum: the Better Together campaign needs a decisive win

15 October 2012

2:09 PM

15 October 2012

2:09 PM

There’s a quiet confidence in Unionist circles that Alex Salmond will be defeated in the Scottish independence referendum. But Unionists know that Salmond needs to be defeated decisively. If the ‘Better Together’ campaign wins 55-45, the Nationalists will be back for another go in ten years time.

But, as Alex says, the anti-independence side needs to be careful about what it says. Non-specific talk of more devolution for Scotland if it chooses to stay part of the United Kingdom is dangerous as it enables a future SNP leader to claim that the Scottish people were hoodwinked into rejecting independence. (Already, the ‘Devo-Plus’ campaign are blasting out emails declaring that the choice in 2014 will be ‘a straight question between independence and a form of Devo-Plus’)

One other thing that the pro-unionists forces must bear in mind is sentiment south of the border. Exacerbating the problems caused by the West Lothian question would do real damage to the fabric of the Union.

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Show comments
  • terregles2

    The SNP, The Greens and Labourforindy. Three of the Scottish parties campaigning hard for a YES vote, They seem to be gaining ground with a branch of the Communications Union voting in favour of a YES vote.

  • Alba

    By useing bombs or the ballot box, Scotland will be free. Cant wait to take away the property of all the ugly English that have moved up north over the last 25 years. We will send you all packing back to what is left of your once great empire.


    o Truth, Lies, Oil and Scotland”
    Part 1 : see –
    Part 2 : see –
    Part 3 : see –
    Part 4 : see –
    Part 5 : see –
    Part 6 : see –
    Part 7 : see –
    o New figures reveal Scotland wealthier than rest of UK since 1980
    Scottish News, News Scotland – Politics, Economy, Culture and intelligent opinion | News Net Scotland, uniquely Scottish
    Success of Norwegian Oil fund highlights Westminster failure
    Scottish News, News Scotland – Politics, Economy, Culture and intelligent opinion | News Net Scotland, uniquely Scottish
    We will get into the EU if we want to be part of it, so no problems there
    Tourism,Whiskey, Oil,wind farms and thats just off the top of my head as knackered but there is more the first link with the videos is scary if honest and we wil lpay 10% of the UK debth when we become independent, If you have not read the mcrone report read that and also oil fields only use 10% of the original field as the technoloigy is not there to get the rest out but that is coming North sea oil will run for the next 60 + years, why do you think they dont want us to leave
    o More quality research by Traquair in the Herald comments – surely this area of the paper’s the only bit worth reading these days!

    Speaking of economic we hear continually how well Scotland does out of this benevolent Union all the time and in fact Margaret Thatcher The Ruler of Scotland 1979-1990 stated it clearly herself

    “we English who are marvellous people are really very generous to Scotland”

    I thought it would be interesting to see how well London and the South East are doing out of the Union over the last few years – rather well it would seem from just a sample of the investments :
    £30 billion subway upgrade program
    . £5.9 billion on one London railway station,1518,515753,00.html
    . £16 billion For another London rail line
    . £1 billion to upgrade an existing railway station
    . three quarters of a billion on a Dome !
    . Followed of course by yet another London regeneration project
    £5 billion
    . £6 billion Channel Tunnel Rail Link
    . £3.2 billion For Another Tube line
    . £1 billion improvement to an existing Light Rail Line
    . £20 billion for a Second Thames flood barrier planned
    A £4 billion greenhouse tower over Battersea power station–dwarf–Battersea-Power-Station.html
    . At least £14 billion on the London Olympics
    . £9.3 billion for the Channel Tunnel –
    . £4.3 billion for a 5th Heathrow Terminal
    . £5 billion Upgrade other London airport upgrades
    . £10 billion Plans for Heathrow link to Channel tunnel
    . £13 billion for a third runway Heathrow runway
    . £9 billion for Brown’s plans to transform Thames Gateway's+%C2% A39billion+to+transform+Thames+Gateway/

    Of course the Unionistas will tell use what great value for money Scots get from these investments since we will all benefit from the breadcrumbs. So just how nutritious and effective are these breadcrumbs ? :
    “The average overrun in London was 131.5 per cent, almost four times higher than the national average overrun of 33.7 per cent and making London the worst performing region in the country.”
    As an example what are we going to get from our “investment” in the London Olympics which includes £184 million taken from the Scottish lottery
    Well the Government conducted their own report on the matter so need to guess how well we will do out of it. From the report :
    “The implication of this is that for the rest of the UK (excluding London), London 2012 will have a negative impact on GDP of c.£4 billion caused by the displacement of resources and activities towards London.”
    “implies significant negative effects to the rest of the UK (excluding London).” &

    The Unionist British Government did not spend any significant efforts promoting this latest Union dividend from our collective investments. Interestingly this report was before many of the massive cost overruns so no doubt the losses outside London will be even greater.

    Recent stories from Channel 4 & The Telegraph exposed the truth :
    “London is hugely over-provided for.”
    “London actually gets much more than its fair share.”
    “London gets far more spending than it needs” &
    On top of this we of course have a substantial investment being made in London’s Palace of Westminster, The House Of Lords, Whitehall & The Scotland Office. I wonder how much these are all costing and Scotland and what return we are getting on the investment ?
    So exactly who is subsidizing who in this Union ?
    So clearly London & the South East are doing pretty well out of this Union. So where else is Scotland getting a Union dividend from our collectively pulling of resources for the greater good. I fail to see it from the following sample of recent great British initiatives or great British follies as I like to call them :

    . At least £8 billion on wars
    . Up to £110 billion wasted bailing out Northern Rock.
    Incidentally prior to the purchase £45 billion of the good investments were hived off to a separate investment vehicle based in Jersey called Granite, which is supposedly a charity for Down’s Syndrome sufferers but does not actually raise any money for charity.
    A further £6 billion in nuclear research at England’s Adlermaston
    . £36.9 Billion on Defence
    This includes ( )
    . Being 6th highest military spender in the world
    . Being 4th highest arms exporter including to countries with bad human rights records e.g. China, Saudi Arabia, Columbia
    . Being one of 5 official nuclear weapons States in the World.
    “investment” in chemical weapons at Porton Down, which at one point were tested on a Scottish Island (see )
    Incidentally the Scottish Island was eventually decontaminated by an English Company for £500,000 (see )
    . £1.6 billion on running Embassies and the BBC World Service
    We have already seen how well the BBC is representing Scotland with their proven “Anglocentricity and London-centricity” bias so we can only guess what kind of job the British Embassies are doing in promoting Scottish interests
    . £76 billion on a New Trident system.
    . £72 billion on the Nuclear industry
    . £250 billion squandering the opportunity of North Sea Oil
    . £0 billion Scottish Oil Fund
    . £1.3 billion On MI5/MI6 centered in England
    Particularly insulting since MI5 was (is ? ) used to spy and infiltrate the SNP.
    . £31bn computer bill for new NHS system ( I wonder how much of that is spent in Scotland ? )
    The original budget of £6bn, is now expected to cost taxpayers over £30bn
    How many new Hospitals, new schools, improved social programmes, and real investments for the future such as an Oil Fund etc could have been created instead. Scotland cannot afford to stay in this Union we need to break free at the earliest opportunity.
    o Speech to Young Conservative Conference | Margaret Thatcher Foundation
    You and I are living through a revolution. Over the centuries of European history, revolutionary change has sometimes brought freedom and sometimes servitude. But what we are witnessing now is a revolution of Conservative values, of free enterprise and of fervent, national pride.

    Some more relevant musings from Traquair in the Heral Comments section – this time on the Calman Commission:

    The British Colonial Trading Company (aka The Calman Commission) has started to establish some experts to advise on how best to negotiate with the natives. Here is some background on one of these advisors :

    Iain McLean,
    He has published a paper on the Barnett formula.
    A summary of some of the reporting on it is:
    “Axe Barnett formula – it’s unfair to English”
    “The process which decides the level of cash Scotland gets from the Treasury is perverse”
    “Barnett is unsustainable in the long-run. It is neither efficient nor equitable”
    A reason given for Scotland’s “extra” funding is “Scotland pose credible threats to the Union of the United Kingdom.”
    Other musings from Mr MacLean are :
    “If the Scottish Nationalists (SNP) came to power, they would negotiate secession, which would endanger some projects dear to Unionists of all parties – such as the UK’s seats in the UN Security Council (worrying to Conservative Unionists) and the capacity of Labour to govern the UK, which usually (although not since 1997) depends on the Labour-held seats in Scotland.”

    “Why then is Edinburgh getting trams and Leeds not? Because of the way the Barnett Formula works”
    “The Scottish National Party administration in Edinburgh is, naturally, spending the money it gets in its generous block grant. To be fair, it was a bit reluctant about the Edinburgh trams, but not at all reluctant about free prescriptions, cheap university tuition at Scottish universities (for Scottish and EU students but not for English one) and free social care for elderly Scots.
    It looks to me that Mr Mclean is much more interested in protecting UK and English interests rather than Scottish ones. And this is type of person the Unionists have installed to dictate how Scotland will be governed. It sounds like Scotland better enjoy our “free social care for elderly Scots”, “free prescriptions”, “cheap university”,.. before our “generous” subsidy is removed. Scotland needs to escape from this insulting colonial behaviour as soon as possible.

    What a surprise that The British Colonial Trading Company’s first and foremost interest is the British and not the restless natives. One of the members of the British Colonial Trading Company Lord James Douglas-Hamilton has had some interesting perspectives on the devolution thing :

    “He (Lincoln) not only helped to abolish slavery but also succeeded in saving the Union. Today few would disagree that the United States has been a far stronger and greater country through retaining its unity than it would have been through breaking up into smaller, hostile groupings.”
    So Scots after independence would become a “hostile grouping” – he should have just said hostile natives and be done with it.
    “For the Unionist there must be three principles in any plan of constitutional reform. They are first, the maintenance of the Union; second, the provision of better government; third, the proposals must be acceptable to the United Kingdom as a whole.”

    Clearly Scotland does not come first and foremost in the priorities of Lord Douglas-Hamilton, which is perhaps why he was amongst the 10% of Scottish MPs who did not support the 1989 Claim of Right
    “We, gathered as the Scottish Constitutional Convention, do hereby acknowledge the sovereign right of the Scottish people to determine the form of Government best suited to their needs, and do hereby declare and pledge that in all our actions and deliberations their interests shall be paramount.”

    It is clear where his priorities lie if it is was not abundantly clear already given he was one of the Scottish Office lackies during the Thatcher era when Scotland was well and truly subservient and degraded by the British state.
    “Every Scottish student of history knows that Scotland in 1707 entered into Union voluntarily”
    Hmm, interesting take – I guess there were no bribes, no riots, etc .. Brit-adoon must be truly be the land of milk and honey in minds of the Unionistas.

    o “Scotland has less than 10 per cent. of Britain’s population but because of its different legal system, we need more time than Parliament allots. If Scotland gets all the necessary parliamentary time, it will impinge upon the parliamentary time necessary for the other 90 per cent. of the population. This, in a sentence, is the case for the Scottish Assembly.”

    Hmm, looks like we should be glad that Scottish law is so complex or there would have been no case for devolution at all.

    We Scots should follow the lead of the Boston Tea Party and tip the members of this British Colonial Trading Party into the Clyde.
    Axe Barnett formula – it’s unfair to English, says PM’s aide – News –
    A LEADING political economist close to Gordon Brown has called for the scrapping of the Barnett formula and claimed Scotland gets more than its fair share of UK public spending


  • Eclectic Eel

    What proportion of UK debt will an independent Scotland take with her when she leaves the union? Will the Barnet formula be applied? How will England secure her northern border if an independent eurosocialist Scotland throws her air borders open to all, and further masses of unwanted immigrants enter Scotland and head directly south? Presumably this will necessitate compulsory identity cards. Will Scots dole claimants be able to migrate south when Alec Salmon bankrupts the Scottish economy? Will Scots living in England or further abroad get a vote? And once the West Lothian problem is resolved, what of the rightward political shift in the English parliament? Lots of big questions I don’t hear being discussed.
    The Scots I know are far too intelligent to vote for independence, but with children being allowed a vote, it could be a close run thing-which would leave a sour and nasty taste in the air for decades. Alec Weasel is a nasty vainglorious little communist bigot who wants to be a bigger fish in a smaller pool. I agree this nasty proposal needs to be defeated by a big margin and the best way to do this is make it absolutely clear that an independent Scotland would be compelled to take a fully proportionate share of UK national debt. That is language any sensible Scotsman will understand.

  • Andrew

    I am Northern English and although I am worried that the rest of the UK would move more to the right without Scotland, I also wouldn’t want to hold them back. They are a country with the right ideas about production and building up industry. They have huge mineral reserves which will provide them with more revenue than the City of London can make in financial fraud. I think it’s good for them and I fully support them, infact, if they do get it, I’ll probably move to Scotland.

  • Daniel Maris

    Can Scotland just walk away from Northern Ireland? Half of Northern Ireland’s population are descended from Scots settlers. And half of “Scottish” people are of Irish descent.

    Can’t they take Northern Ireland with them?

    • dalai guevara

      Joke of the day award time! The award goes to Daniel, well done – I nearly wet myself there, good man.

    • Eddie

      Quite right: the term Scots originally referred to Irish who went over to Caledonia; Picts and others were the main tribes. Traffic the other way too.
      What is most hilarious is that most of what people think of as Scottish culture (symbols and imagery) was cobbled together by the Victorians in England and also that old hack Walter Scott: kilts, tartan, bagpipes, castles, the lot!
      Scottish culture should have MADE IN ENGLAND stamped on it!
      And of course, if the English were as nationalist as the average SNP bigot, then they would be called little Englander jingoistic racists. So why not call Salmond and his gang what they are?
      And anyway, without Salmond, IS there any SNP? This independence vote seems a vote to allow one silly, vain, slimeball of a racist English-hater socialist pipe-dreamer to take over a country. Oh how he must want to emulate Mugabe… Maybe he could black up and dance? Aim for that 16-17 year old demographic?

    • Eddie

      Quite right: the term Scots originally referred to Irish who went over to Caledonia; Picts and others were the main tribes. Traffic the other way too.
      What is most hilarious is that most of what people think of as Scottish culture (symbols and imagery) was cobbled together by the Victorians in England and also that old hack Walter Scott: kilts, tartan, bagpipes, castles, the lot!
      Scottish culture should have MADE IN ENGLAND stamped on it!
      And of course, if the English were as nationalist as the average SNP bigot, then they would be called little Englander jingoistic racists. So why not call Salmond and his gang what they are?
      And anyway, without Salmond, IS there any SNP? This independence vote seems a vote to allow one silly, vain, slimeball of a racist English-hater socialist pipe-dreamer to take over a country. Oh how he must want to emulate Mugabe… Maybe he could black up and dance? Aim for that 16-17 year old demographic?

      • Iain Hill

        Do not think for a moment that the Walter Scott rubbish for English tourists represents Scottish culture. Look up te website for Creative Scotland.

        • Eddie

          So do you DENY that most things people see as being Scottish culture – kilts, tartan, castles, misty glens – were anything more than an invention of the Victorian English then? Whether you like it or not mate, what people internationally think of as Scottish was manufactured in Victorian England, and by the borders writer Walter Scott.
          Read some history. Read some novels. Learn about how your culture was cobbled together in the late 18th and 19th centuries. Learn how the DNA evidence shows that Scots are not significantly different to the English too and how the idea of ‘Celtic-ness’ is nonsense.

        • Eddie

          Ian – bearing in mind three quarters of drunks noisily abusing passers-by in London parks are Scots or Irish, I think most English people now see the stereotype of a Scotsman as being a moaning whingeing abusive Rab C Nesbitt drunk who hates the English abd bites the hand that feeds. Shame really: the image used to be of a brave Scots soldier, or possibly Ronnie Corbett.
          How times have changed…
          Is Scotland really going to let the English-haters of Glasgow rip the union apart against the wishes of a majority of Scots who live in the borders, the highland and islands, and the more middel-class areas? Is that really democracy?

    • Eddie

      Quite right: the term Scots originally referred to Irish who went over to Caledonia; Picts and others were the main tribes. Traffic the other way too.
      What is most hilarious is that most of what people think of as Scottish culture (symbols and imagery) was cobbled together by the Victorians in England and also that old hack Walter Scott: kilts, tartan, bagpipes, castles, the lot!
      Scottish culture should have MADE IN ENGLAND stamped on it!
      And of course, if the English were as nationalist as the average SNP bigot, then they would be called little Englander jingoistic racists. So why not call Salmond and his gang what they are?
      And anyway, without Salmond, IS there any SNP? This independence vote seems a vote to allow one silly, vain, slimeball of a racist English-hater socialist pipe-dreamer to take over a country. Oh how he must want to emulate Mugabe… Maybe he could black up and dance? Aim for that 16-17 year old demographic?

    • terregles2

      The Brirish state ie the English created the problem in Ireland. England messed it up England can sort it out.

  • Barbara

    Most of us down South love Scotland and wish her well, however, independance, from what? We in the UK never hold anyone to ransome and certainly not Scotland. I see this man Salmond going for something they already have, freedom. In fact today on the daily politics show the question of self funding was asked to a SNP Mp, who was very misguided in his answers. On the figures presented on the show there would be a short fall of some 10-11 billion pounds. His answer was they could borrow to fill the gap. While being aligned to the British pound, and the B of England its banker this might leave us with the bill to pick up, us being the English taxpayers. I don’t think so.
    When Salmond retires to some glen on a fat pension he will leave the Scots to pick up the bills for his folly. Higher property taxes, higher personal taxes, and cuts in services are inevitable; with 50% unemployed and no prospects the future looks dim. No industry to fall back on and tourism the only real option. Breaking up the union might be the one thing that breaks Scotlands back. Are they prepared for the TRUE COSTS, have they been told the truth, I don’t think so. The SNP are deceiving the Scottish people and its wrong.

    • Iain Hill

      independence from US warmongering, and from a society dedicated to making the rich richer.

      • Eddie

        Ah so what you want is NOT Scottish independence but a chance to create a socialist state? True colours there, mate!
        Perhaps you need reminding that several Labour governments in the UK only existed because of Scottish (and Welsh) Labour votes eh? In democracies, one mucst accept the will of the people – as those in England do with good grace, even if most English people don’t vote Labour.
        Independence for US warmongering? Well, the UK assisted those persecuted by the Serbsm made African societies like Sierra Leone stable, overthrew Saddam a vile dictator and are attempting to save Afghanistan fro implosion. Is that what you mean? So it’s only the POLICY of the Westminster government you object to, not the fact the government is there (if it mirrored your prejudices you’d want to stay in the UK eh?) And you call yourseld a democrat! No wonder you love Chavez and his thugs!

      • Eddie

        Ahem – and Tony Blair went to his private school where exactly then? Ah yes, Fettes College…and then there’s St Andrews university (the most stuck up one outside Oxbridge) and the whole of the rather puritanical, snooty Scottish middle class. Plus the artistocracy of course which own most of your land.
        The welfare state and the health service were created by the English and Welsh, actually.
        Scotland by contrast is known for, ahem, Adam Smith and the promotion of puritanical free market ascetic miserabilism, not to mention religious intolerance (something the English left behind in the 17th century, until recent multiculti vibrant immigrants reintroduced it…)
        But live your pipe dream – why not? If it makes you happy. But it would be good manners to thank the English (and Welsh) for subsidising you and allowing Scotland to be part of the Industrial revolution, the Empire and the modern world.
        Oh and I think it’s time the Scots stopped lying about how Scottish people invented everything. NO THEY DID NOT. For example, Stevenson did NOT invent the train, and Watt did not invent the steam engine. Trevithick did that. Watt and Stevenson just nicked others’ ideas… Thieving has become a habit in Scotland perhaps?

  • Johnjo

    Scotland want the best of all worlds. how they can claim to be independent using Stirling and having interest rates etc set by the Bank of England is beyond most people! they will have to borrow around 150 billion off the bat to start with, their share of the national debt! then we might ask for a contribution to the failed banks, then bang goes all the Royal Navy contracts for the Clyde… saying that they will be a lot of employ,ent coming south with all the public sector work, I think it will be a good thing!

    • Daniel Maris

      Bang go the RN contracts? Are you sure?

      A lot of current UK expenditure goes on things like asylum seekers, infrastructure for the south east, subsidising commuter traffic… They will probably find there are lots of expenditure items that they don’t have to cover.

  • jlf

    In Spain we have the West Lothian question in act and simply stinks. Our crazy budgets of the last socialist years were passed only with support from basque nationalists. Since such budget does not apply in the Basque Contry for them it was all too easy to receive some money transfer, as low as 200 MM in the last one, and approve whatever the minority government fancied. Congratulations on tackling the problem head on. Pity that Cameron was not clear to the electorate about all this, for I think it would give him a true mandate for this gamble. Whatever you do, NEVER go for devo-plus. Our experience in Spain is that it only breeds further demands plus a control over the education that fabricates illiterate independentists

  • Augustus

    One has to wonder to what extent people like Alex Salmond are truly secessionist. They almost seem to be useful idiots advancing the goals of the Brussels Eurocracy to undermine European nation-states. Indeed, if they did not exist, Brussels might have had to invent them. Scotland benefits significantly from European subsidies. How coincidental
    then that the SNP has convinced itself that it can become a viable country if the United Kingdom is dissolved, on condition, naturally, that Scotland remains a member of the EU.
    Oh yes, it must remain firmly entrenched within the beloved Union. But why become independent from London in order to give up one’s sovereignty to Brussels? Why exchange one Leviathan for another even bigger and more dangerous one? Perhaps if Scotland wants so desperately to leave the United Kingdom to become a province of Europe, England can secede from the EU and join Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Iceland and Norway, and become again a truly sovereign nation with EFTA and opt for honest free trade, unhampered by the European superstate.

    • Mike_docherty

      The EU is not the only option. EFTA is one that appeals to quite a lot of people in favour of independence including myself. However, I see no problem remaining in the EU, we are after all already members of it.

  • Eddie

    The vote will not be for ‘independence’ no matter how that word makes all Scotnats paint their faces blue and fart like Mel Gibson.
    The choice is this: ‘Do you want to go from being a parasite on the arse of England to become a parasite leeching off the European Union, which all small country members are?’
    Scotland will be no more independent than it is now if it leaves the United Kingdom – though as has been said, the Union involved the Scots and English (incl the Welsh) so all should have a say really.
    Scotland gets £1200 more funding per head than England or Wales, and STILL they moan! And that’s after the Bank of Scotland was bailed out by British taxes, most of which are not paid by the Scots.
    And what if the pro-independence lot win by 51% to 49%?
    It would be better to say that at least two thirds should vote YES for it to happen, because I know a great many Scots (in the borders, highlands, islands, middle class parts of cities) who would certainly not want to be severed from the security and culture of the UK thanks to leery English-hating buckfest-imbibers in Govan.

    • cherson

      Lol…you need to have a read of the Government Expenditure and Revenue Scotland (GERS – you can find them via Google) reports. Scotland contributes more than it receives back and that includes the additional per capita figures you cite – which are partly due to the fact that Scotland has approx. 10% of the UK population but in one-third the land mass (and as a result it costs more per head to deliver services).

      As for the banks, if you know anything about bank bail outs then you would know that bail outs aren’t based on the country where the Bank is headquartered but on where they operate (check out what happened to Dexia which operated in Belgium, Luxembourg and France).

      • Eddie

        Scotland is NOT a net contributor to the UK, mate.
        The Scots get £1200 more funding per head than those in England and Wales, That is sick, disgusting and unfair – as you yourself might have the guts to admit if you had to suffer healthcare cuts whilst your taxes went straight up the M1 to pay for treatment for some buckfast-bevving Govan obese dwarf blob person whose idea of healthy eating is only having one deep fired mars bar for breakfast instead of two.
        I can assure you that Wales is also sparsely populated with rural areas – but Scotland gets £1200 more subsidy for English and Welsh taxpayers. Why? That is unjust and unfair and you damn well know it, jimmy!
        Regarding north sea oil: well, 70%+ of it is NOT in Scottish Waters at all. You clearly know no maritime law. Also, it was again English taxpayers money which paid the billions and trillions to explore and extract it (will the English get a refund if Scotland becomes an EU satellite – it won’t be independent if it breaks up the UK, it’ll just join another Union as a lackey).
        Face it: this is not a vote for ‘independence’ at all, and your figures just do not add up. All very well for the racist English-haters from the SNP (the BNP of the north) to make England the enemy and portray its people is racist and offensive terms – they’re all rich, all posh, all went to Eton etc etc etc – (and then moan when the English do likewise about them eh?!) – but all this grass-is-greener nonsense will go SPLAT if Scotland does leave the Union. You’ll have to pay your own bills then, and where’s the money going to come from? The fact is, ENGLISH (and WELSH) Taxpayers bailed out Scotland in the financial crisis – you could say thank you, perhaps. Without those English taxes, you’d be in the same pickle as Ireland.
        If the Scots are stupid enough to believe Alex Salmond’s pipe dreams and a lies and dodgy accounting, then they deserve independence – they also deserve to be bombed, just for being so thick.

        • Iain Hill

          Why not look up the facts instead of regurgitating inaccurate newspaper reports? Scotland may get higher than the E and W average, but a number of regions, including London, get more Do you want to have a serious debate or be deluded by propaganda?

          • Hexhamgeezer

            I’d rather not have a debate which is fronted by those two maladorous curmudgeons Salmond and Sturgeon.
            I’m happy to accept your version of the economics. You are net contributors? Great. take your money and go – anything to get those National Socialists off the tv and front pages and into the arms of Brussels.
            I am geniuinely puzzled by Sturgeons unambiguous statement on Newsnight last night that they would keep Sterling. Brussels won’t allow that and why would the new state keep themselves shackled to a state whose currency the Scots apparently had been supporting? QE and our latent risk of (much) higher inflation plus PFI and pension liabilities seem to be a strange corpse to wish to be shackled to (I’m assuming Alex has a cunning plan to extricate his part of the arc of prosperity from the hated Anglos financial failures).

          • Eddie

            It is you mate who are regurgitating SNP propaganda in newspaper reports.
            FACT: each person in Scotland gets £1200 per year MORE PUBLIC FUNDING THAN each person in England.
            Now, whcih part of that FACT do you not understand, eh?
            Your prevarication and use of fantasy masquerading as fact is typical of SNP lies.

    • Daniel Maris

      Denmark and Sweden are parasites? I don’t think so.

      • Eddie

        SNP pixies always cite Sweden and Denmark (and they used to cite Norway before it left the EU). The thing is, Scotland is NO Sweden or Denmark.
        Those Scandinavian countries are the exception and not the rule. They have a communal culture of just obeying what their governments say is good for them, hence the sterilising of the children of undesirables until the late 70s, or the legalisation of child porn until the mid-70s. Scandinavia as a whole has a bad lack of individualism.
        Also worth remembering that Sweden was neutral in the war and so was spared the cost other countries suffered.
        The EU goes like this: Big countries pay money to the EU which is then in a typically French centralised, bureaucratic and corrupt way, gives that money to smaller poorer countries – which is why they all clamoured to join the EU (and why countries like Spain and France were against their joining because they didn’t want to lose their subsidies!).
        The only large country that gets back as much as it puts in is France, because of the disgustingly corrupt system (CAP) designed to keep French farmers in business.
        For every £1 we put in, we lose half; the French get the same back as they put it; Germany loses BUT sells a huge numbers of exports for thick Europeans who have taken out credit.

    • Iain Hill

      irrespective of the referendum result, the campaign is already revealing a vast reservoir of spite, ignorance and bile chez the English. You will find nothing to parallel this in Scotland.

      • Eddie

        Ahem – and what about the CONSTANT anti-English bigotry, abuse, envy-inspired racism from the Scots huh? What about those attacked on the streets for having an English accent in Glasgow and elsewhere? What about your anti-English Scottish school system where SNP leftie teachers brainwash kids with fabricated history and sassenach-hating propraganda like some TARTAN MADRASSA?
        If Scots talked about black people or Jews the way they talked about the English, then they’d be arrested and charged under the race relations act. Mind you, prison would probably be luxury compared to the way some Scots usually live in slums like Govan.

  • Verity

    I wish I hadn’t seen that photo of those two greasers before I even had my first sip of tea. To think our UK may be destroyed by two such low life greasers is a tragedy.

    • HooksLaw

      Feel better now?

    • Robinson Crusoe

      Verity dear, bored with the pious vicars desert island ?

  • HooksLaw

    We need a decisive defeat and the hope that it might lead to an end to devolution. I fail to see what benefit devolution has been for anyone.

    • dalai guevara

      It perhaps highlights the urge of the periphery to counter a one-sided centralist outlook?

      • HooksLaw

        Cobblers. The outlook is not centralist and its not one sided. We are a nation we have a parliament and we have constituencies. As a nation we have regional policies.

        • dalai guevara

          zzz…the United Federation of Britain? I must have slept thru’ that change, when was it ratified?

          • Eddie

            No – France is very centralised, Britain less so. We do NOT have a centralised structure like France, which is ruled from the centre in a micro-managed way to such an extent that, for example, 1ll 14 year olds in France wil be in a maths lesson every Tuesday at 11.30am.
            And anyway, if Scotland does break away from England and Wales it won’t be independent – it’ll just be ruled from Brussels, like Greece, and may well end up in just such a state – seeing as how a lot of Scottish benefits are at present paid for by English taxes. The books won’t balance and the available Scottish taxes won’t pay for the generous socialist state that that slimeball Salmond promises the gormless nationaists who seem to be voting for a pipe dream that will impoverish everyone really.

        • Iain Hill

          You are confusing nations and states. Scotland is a nation!

      • Eddie

        One-sided centalist outlook? Do you mean the European Union, dear? Scotland will be ruled solely by that nation if her misguided people vote for ‘independence’ (which would be nothing of the sort!)
        Wasn’t Salmond wanting to hold hand with Iceland and the Nordic states – until Iceland went bankrupt, that is…

        • Eddie

          ‘If Scotland stays with the British pound or changes to the euro it will in effect be joining a monetary union. It will have no ability to change exchange rates and it will have no central bank. It would have to resort to “internal deflation” to correct imbalances, with all pain that that brings.
          Given Mr Salmond’s stated demands for a independent borrowing facility, even within the UK, we can see where this is heading. We have many examples of over-borrowed countries (such as Greece) that are within a monetary union wishing they weren’t.
          An truly independent Scotland with it’s own currency is the only way. Good luck with that one!’

  • LB

    Why haven’t the English a say on the Union?

    The delight of the Scots saying we want to remain in the Club, and the English kicking them out would be delightful.

    On the independence front, are they going to take RBS with them?

    Will they take a Barnet formula share of the debt?

    Or is it they want to leave the Scottish shit with other people to sort out?

    • dalai guevara

      The day the likes of Ashcroft and Darling began to pull on the same side of a tug o’ war contest is the day we all learnt that the Barnet formula was propaganda.

    • telemachus

      I guess you do not read history

      Much of the seventeenth century was dominated in fact by Scottish attempts to construct some kind of union with England, counterweight to English imperialism’. Make no mistake if they secede we will go back to calling the shots just as we did in the 1600’s without the Scots having any say at Westminster. Our hegemony will cover not just foreign policy and defence but the economy too.

      Just as in the seventeenth century access to England’s trade routes a significant boon, so now access to the City a la RBS will be denied.

    • Iain Hill

      Ignorance and sourness hardly move serious debate forward.

      Can I challenge anyone in the no campaign to put forward any positive benefits for the Scottish people in staying in the union? Not sentimental references back to the world wars or the Empire, or empty slogans about being better together, but robust advantages for us now? They will find it difficult.

      • Eddie

        Not at all: Scottish people get to be part of a union which, over 3 centuries (and 4 really regarding the monarch) has allowed Scottish people have access to great institutions created in England: the BBC, all government departments, the Empire, centres of research and technology. Even the most patriotic Scot recognises that: if Scotland had had the misfortune NOT to be next to England, it could well look like Albania today.
        And the advantage of staying part of the union is this: it will protect all Scottish people from being dragged into some debt-ridden, high-inflation, unworkable, corrupt hellhole, which is ruled from Brussels and too weak to stand up to its masters.
        Look what happens when a country splits: even though the two countries are way more similar in size and population that England (and Wales) and Scotland, the Czech Republic (the dominant splitee) has a far stronger currency than Slovakia, whose currency plummeted and who have extremist politicians too.
        Also, the Scots should not be selfish and have empathy for the Welsh and Northern Irish: they want the union to stay together for everyone’s sake.
        It is a disgrace that only 50% is needed for such a change anyway – if the SNP bigots win the Union Breakup vote (which does NOT offer true independence but just the opportunity for the Scots to be ruled directly by EU bureaucrats in a foreign country) by a small margin, then very many in Scotland will protest.
        Don’t forget, the English and the Scots are genetically almost identical, as DNA testing shows – despite the myth (ie lie) that the Scots are a different race. No they are not. Most people in England and Scotland are descended from residents on this island 10,000 years ago.
        Face it mate: those who want to destroy the union are just old-fashioned English-hating racists, or they are those who want to instal a Chavez-style socialist dictatorship in Scotland (which would of course crash financially and would no longer have England to bail them out, or much oil, 70% of which is not Scottish anyway!)

        • Kieran

          “debt-ridden, high-inflation, unworkable, corrupt hell hole” What do YOU call Britain right now?

    • Kieran

      RBS isn’t a Scottish bank, it is not governmental, it is a private PLC completely separate of the Scottish government. The reason England does not get a say is because them deciding to keep Scotland would be forcing people to stay within a state which is basically what the Nazi’s did to Poland. Furthermore I am not fond of your racist remarks. Are you trying to drive Scotland away you twit, the debt will be split by population size and they only get a tiny piece of the debt as that is all they are legally obliged to do. On top of that over 90% of the British oil reserves are in Scottish territory meaning that they will take the only fuel that Britain can successfully produce. Even worse yet they will also be the head in renewable energy. If they go independent Britain is shafted. Insulting Scottish readers here is thick headed.

      • Kirstie

        I totally agree with what you are saying Kieran. I think many people are taking a pessimistic stance towards the independence of Scotland, because the Government hasn’t effectively Accounted for independence. Privatisation is a major flaw within the current political system, which is furthering inequality in the UK. When comparing SNP’s policies with that of the Tories, the SNP is a much more democratic party that realistically addresses current issues within society. I do believe the SNP need to communicate this through accounting, so that the citizens of Scotland can understand and encourage them to act upon their policies.
        One issue is that RBS is 82% owned by the UK Government, if Scotland had any sense they’d allow England to fight its battle, as it is a very risky venture that I’m afraid an independent Scotland cannot afford.

        • Kieran

          Actually I think that Scotland would afford it but as this bank was created way before any devolution and it is 82% owned by the UK government, they will most likely be responsible for it. The Scottish government is not responsible for it. The conservative party continually say that if we were independent at the time of the RBS crash we we couldn’t afford it. Maybe we couldn’t, maybe we could. But it doesn’t matter as it is a bank of the UK. The Tories think that because it has the name, Scotland, in it they can say that Scotland would be responsible. Well if that is the case then we will just start running Scotland yard.

          • Kirstie

            The UK can barely afford the bail-outs that RBS have required in order to avoid bankruptcy, which is why the public sector has been facing severe cuts since the crisis.

            I agree it was the UK Governments choice to bail out the privately owned RBS, but they could have left it to fail and spent the money on society, like Iceland. However England is much more dependent on its financial sector, so chose to take out extensive debt in order to keep the bank up and running. This is another key reason for supporting Independence: England rely on their financial sector for growth, which is why its economy is struggling. The SNP have made greater efforts to focus on other (REAL) sources of growth such as renewable energy, manufacturing etc.

            I like your argument over the name, its so true and ridiculous that politicians can say such things without any idea of what they are talking about.

            • Kieran

              I completely agree with you. By the way, I am actually Scottish and I’m for independence. The reason my comment to Eddie was written like that was to make him realise that the Tories are lying. However he didn’t reply so I think I’m safe to come clean.

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