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Alex Salmond writes a cheque – in pounds sterling – he cannot honour

29 January 2014

9:52 AM

29 January 2014

9:52 AM

As I type this, Alex Salmond and Mark Carney are chowing over porridge at Bute House, the First Minister’s official residence in Edinburgh. There is always the risk of exaggerating the importance of these things but this morning’s meeting with the Governor of the Bank of England may be the most important encounter Alex Salmond has this year.

The question is simple: will an independent Scotland be able to forge a currency union with the rump United Kingdom? The answers, for all the First Minister’s bland assurances that such a union is in everyone’s interests, are not so simple. Like poker players, politicians often have a “tell”. When Salmond offers a kind of breezy emollience he’s often holding weaker cards than he wants you to think.

When a Come now, old boy, why don’t we be sensible and just work this out? tone is lacquered on top you know the First Minister is really making a bet he’s no desire to see called.

Politics and economics are uneasy companions at the best of times. It is not always clear who is supposed to be serving who. In the case of the SNP’s hopes of retaining sterling we may safely say that economics must be bent to aid politics.

The pound sterling, after all, is the party’s third different preferred policy in 30 years. True, other parties have changed their minds on the euro but no other British political party has been as promiscuous as the SNP in these matters.

First there was the Scottish pound, proud symbol of an independent Scotland. Then there was the euro, cheerful guarantor of international credibility and symbol of pan-european solidarity. Now we are back to where, actually, we are today: the pound sterling, the common sense arrangement that is in everyone’s best interests. That includes you, England, because of the balance of payments and oil and whisky and all that stuff.

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None of these are terribly attractive options. An independent Scottish pound with interest rates and so on set by an independent Scottish Central Bank at least has the merit of clarity. It’s what other, normal, countries have done. But you can see how it would play in the press: what about the uncertainty First Minister? Business might complain too about the costs of currency exchange in doing business with our largest trading partner. It might, the Scottish pound, be a nice idea but it just wouldn’t work. Too much of a whiff of Jacobite fancy, you know.

So the euro. Independence in Europe was the phrase coined by big Jim Sillars in, if memory serves, 1989. It was certainly a better slogan than Free by 93. Independence in europe. Who could be against that? Could anything contain two better things than independence and europe? Hardly. The best of all possible worlds: independence and safety.

And that was tenable until the eurozone blew up. True, the continent’s crisis has, at least for now, abated (another triumph of politics over economics) but in Scotland, as in England and Wales, the euro is tainted goods and not even Mr Salmond can salvage anything from that. So times change and I change mind too, says th eFirst Minister. You have a problem with that?

Not really. Except for this: the problems of a currency union within the United Kingdom are the same, albeit on a smaller scale, as the problems of a currency union across the european union. Indeed, noting the inadequacies of sterling – and especially the management of sterling – was for a long time a key part of orthodox SNP thinking. It was Alex Salmond who described sterling as an anchor and he didn’t mean by that the idea sterling kept Scotland safe. Rather the reverse in fact.

Awkwardly, the only way to explain this volte face is for Salmond to admit that he was twice wrong back then. Wrong to think of sterling as an anchor dragging Scotland down and wrong to think the euro offered a safe harbour. You can get away with admitting some mistakes; admitting so many on a single question begins to look like something worse than carelessness.

A sterling union it is, with the Bank of England setting Scottish monetary policy and acting as lender of last reserve to Scottish banks. If this seems sub-optimal it may be that, for political rather than economic reasons, all the options available to Salmond are sub-optimal.

Be that as it may, there are other difficulties too. Keeping the pound subtly undermines the entire idea of independence. Sure, it’s an interdependent world and all that but you can take these things just a wee bit too far.

Moreover – and this is a ticklish problem – the First Minister is writing a cheque he cannot honour. Nor, for that matter, can Mark Carney. A currency union of the sort favoured by the First Minister will have to be approved by the Westminster parliament. The very parliament Salmond says cares not a fig for Scottish interests. His whole career has been predicated upon that notion. Now, however, Westminster will see the light and do the decent thing.

Because, of course, it is in Westminster’s own interests to do so. Here again, however, the SNP display a touching faith in the notion that the British state, so hopelessly unreformable and sclerotic in so many other areas, will see the light and act in its own national interest. Even though Salmond thinks British policy misguided and counter-productive most of the time and in most areas. If he’s right about that, why does he think parliament will suddenly see sense and agree with him on this?

Isn’t all this a collection of technicalities that, in terms of the debate, have no impact upon the pound in your pocket? Up to a point. Project Reassurance can go too far. If a continuing currency union is the common sense solution and if, by the Scottish government’s own estimation, something like 30% of existing cross-border entities will remain intact after independence is it not just possible that the common sense solution lies in maintaining the Union too? It would certainly seem simpler.

Perhaps that is not the case but it is rather where the logic of Salmond’s own position and current preferences leads. A currency union might be the best available option but it is a tactical approach that subtly undermines the SNP’s wider strategic interest. It does not smack of confidence, rather it suggests a certain fear that the Scottish people might not actually be up for the kind of change in which the SNP would like them to believe.

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Show comments
  • tomthumb015

    Problem with Salmond and SNP they want their cake and eat it as well, have full Independence and keep sterling? Reality check for the Scots as they come down to earth with a bump over UK currency wars.

  • ciaron_goggins

    Independence would lead to the Scots going bankrupt yet again and the long suffering english tax payers having to bail them out the brown muck yet again.

  • Iain Hill

    Carney told the truth. Any change can be made to work. All that might stall a currency union is spiteful resistance from England. The English seem uniquely unable to handle questions of shared sovereignty which come naturally and comfortably to the rest of the world.

    Sooner or later, they will have to
    move to acceptance, and the development of friendly cooperative arrangements. Why not now? Something to do with loss of face, and seats at NATO and the UN?

    • HJ777

      “The English seem uniquely unable to handle questions of shared sovereignty which come naturally and comfortably to the rest of the world.”

      Of course, the English haven’t shared any sovereignty in the United Kingdom, have they? And is it not the SNP that no longer wants to share sovereignty with England?

      Your comments are not only laughably wrong, they are anti-English. It is clear that the “Yes” campaign is relying on anti-English sentiment.

  • Eddie

    I think one problem is the delusion many Scots have that they already sort of have their own currency, just because they have flimsy Scots bank notes.
    However, Scots bank notes are NOT legal tender – even in Scotland! And the Scottish banks that issue them must have their issue of notes backed up with REAL money (i.e. standard Sterling banknotes from the Bank of England) in storage.
    I think coins are legal up to 20p.
    But really, it’s time Scots stopped getting all aggressive and outraged whenever anyone in England (or Wales) refuses them. Why should a shopkeeper accept notes that are not even legal tender and which he can’t even spend himself – or which cause hassle when putting cash into the bank? Euros are fine though.

  • Perseus Slade

    Countries don`t have friends, they have interests.
    After a divorce, Scotland and England won`t be friends.
    Does Scotland want to have its cake and eat it?

    This independence thing is just borne on a wave of raco-nationalism and does not seem to make much sense.

    • Eddie

      I tend to agree. Having listened to the dewy-eyes Scots nationalism of Alex Salmond on Desert Island Discs, I came to the conclusion that the man is a fantasist who isn’t very good at maths.
      Remember a couple of years ago when he wanted to dump the English he despises and join forces with the mighty Iceland? Now he’s been watching too much Scandi-drama and wants to be Danish. Who’ll be next I wonder? Greenland? The Azores? Or maybe he can make a financial union with Rockall and use shells and pebbles for money. Not so much Rockall then – more Fugg-all!
      And moreover, it seems the SNP IS Alex Salmond – and Alex Salmond is the SNP.
      What is he gets run over by a haggis or something? Or gets strangled by his tangled tartan (or ideas)? What then? Will Sean Connery’s tax return step in to run the country?

  • jacob-crackersvitch

    It should be the English voting whether or not we want to keep subsidising the Scots not them voting, this is morphing from Braveheart into Salmonds worst nightmare since he bragged about the Tiger eccomomies.

  • zhmike

    This is the same strategy followed by Quebec nationalists in 1995 and earlier in 1980 – keep the dollar, your Canadian passport ( and, bizarrely, the Commonwealth) and let Ottawa look after the debt, yet become “sovereign”. Such people cannot be placated with fiscal transfers or never ending incremental power transfers. Best to call their bluff and ignore – this was the Rest of Canada’s eventual and successful approach.

  • Malcolm McCandless

    Alex is this you pretending to be sitting on the referendum fence again?

  • Doggie Roussel

    The imbecilic tub of lard in Holyrood is such a genius that he has only just considered, seven months before the referendum vote, what sort of currency his future, wretched statelet will need…. it utterly beggars belief.

    If you want out, Fatso, you can invent your own new currency… we English will keep ours, thank you very much !

    • dougthedug

      The choice of currency was considered almost exactly a year ago by the Scottish Governments Fiscal Commission Working Group published on 11/02/2013.

      http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2013/02/3017/0

      Do keep up.

      • HookesLaw

        Currency? And the bank to manage that currency? Do you think an indepenent Scotland should have a say in the running of the Bank of England??
        I doubt England does. Could England give up the independence of its own central bank without a referendum?

        This whole issue shows how incertain life would be for an ‘independent’ Scotland.

        • dougthedug

          Could England give up the independence of its own central bank without a referendum?

          It’s not England’s bank it’s the UK’s bank. England won’t be giving independence for its bank as England doesn’t exist as a separate country now. When the UK dissolves each party has a right to its assets.

          • HookesLaw

            If Scotland want their own central bank then they can have it post any independence. What england choose to do with their central bank is up to the english and I would have thought any ceeding of sovereignty would be put to a referendum.
            Mind you if labour are in charge then i would not trust them to look after Englands interests. We can expect them to sabotage England’s interests.

          • HookesLaw

            You are a dimwit.

            Scotland can have its own central bank and England can do what it wants with ITS own central bank which for the sake of argument we will,call the Bank of England.
            And I suggest that it would be right for the people of England to have a say over giving away sovereignty of its currency and its central bank.
            I imagine the question would be – ‘Do you want to form a currency union with Scotland’?
            I would vote ‘No’.

            Scotland is perfectly free to use the pound or some other derivation of it if it wants. Just not have a say in the workings of the English Central Bank

  • BoiledCabbage

    They could have a Scotch Pound pegged to Sterling, independant Bank etc and no backing from rUK in a crisis.

  • The Laughing Cavalier

    The most likely scenario of a Sterling currency union would be Scotland running up huge debts and bond issues in the manner of Greece, that it could not honour, leaving England to pay for the bail out.

  • Tom M

    It seems to me that with the vote on Independence so close that details such as what the currency will an Independent Scotland have should have been established a long time ago.

    It gives me no confidence at all in the SNP to think that matters of strategic importance such as currency have been thought through and upon which hang an awful lot of smaller matters which cannot even begin to be addressed with this uncertainty.

    • saffrin

      Salmond is still selling his dream of an Independent Scotland with a guarantee it will be governed by the unelected technocrats in Brussels, even after one of the unelected Presidents of the European Union has already stated an Independent Scotland would need to apply for membership in the same way any new state would.
      One of the demands of membership of the EU being, any new state must adopt the euro.

      • Zeus

        Sweden has not joined the Euro…it is a process not a set date.

        • HookesLaw

          Sweden was like us already in the EU when the Euro was created. Like us it chose not to join it.
          New entrants to the EU are required to join bothe the Euro and Schengen.

          BTW – one word sums up Salmond – shyster.

          • the viceroy’s gin

            …and just by coincidence, it also sums up your hero Call Me Dave.

          • Zeus

            No!

            Under the Maastricht Treay Sweden is obliged to join the Euro. It refuses to join the ERMII and hence fails to meet Euro criteria.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sweden_and_the_euro

            You really must get your facts right dear boy.

            • HookesLaw

              Sweden joined the EU in 1995 when the Euro did not exist. it never joined ERM2.
              The Euro was introduced in 2002. Sweden had a referendum in 2003 and voted against joining the Euro.
              An independent Scotland wanting to join the EU will have to adopt the Euro.
              If it does not want to then its only leverage is to use the good offices of the UK to help it. Have any new members since 2002 not joined ERM2 or the Euro?
              Under a tory govt this will be the same UK looking to renegotiate its membership and then have a referendum – so all in all that does not look promising.

  • Doggie Roussel

    A currency union of the sort favoured by the First Minister will have
    to be approved by the Westminster parliament. The very parliament
    Salmond says cares not a fig for Scottish interests. His whole career
    has been predicated upon that notion. Now, however, Westminster will see
    the light and do the decent thing.

    Wise words from Alex Massie and in the unlikely event that the Scots vote for independence, Westminster will be shorn of over 50 Labour MPs, with the remainder unlikely to be offering the new Scotland any favours.

    Armed with their new currency… possibly the Neep they can take on the global markets and either sink or swim.

    • allymax bruce

      The Big Story here, is, Westminster are agreeing to function a Currency Zone with an Independent Scotland!
      But none of yoos ‘neeps’ noticed this because Alex Massie chose to ‘frame’ this story in a negative, skewed, & malicious manner. Why am I not surprised? Because all the BBC, STV, ITV, C4, Sky, all the tabloids, and all the ‘broadsheets’ in ‘Britian’ are pumping out all the same retarded brainweashing lying propaganda; Massie is only fitting in with ‘The Westminster Press closed-shop clique!
      Ok, I’ll repeat it for a’ thon greetin-faced whingers here; Westminster IS proposing a Currency Zone with an Independent Scotland!
      And yoos cretins said it would never happen; Ha!

      • Wessex Man

        Now grow up and tune into RT as well, who are also broadcasting the Bank of England Governors statement that Scotland, if Scotland wants to stay in the Sterling zone will have have to cede national Sovereignty and will have no control over interest rates andsign up to tough tax and spending rules. This is this polite Canadian’s way of saying go away you silly peson to the Fat Controller!

        Yoy really are dense sometimes, or rather most times or even all the time!

    • ButcombeMan

      Neep is good. Tattie is better.

  • Lord Edmund Moletrousers

    an Independent Scotland will make a fine base for the Russian Atlantic submarine fleet

    • the viceroy’s gin

      That’s the real problem here. You have a group of immature children in Westminster, who have no understanding of how to deal with that sort of issue, and it is an issue, the most important issue. Geostrategic concerns always trump the rest. The potential for an existential threat arising can’t be just waved away. Only immature children think that way.

      • Lord Edmund Moletrousers

        first the 2 attempts to breach UK airspace by Russian Tupolev bombers in the last 2 years & now the Russian destroyer off of Scottish waters , all to test the UK’s response. Once Scotland becomes independent it will be even more difficult for the already reduced to nothing RAF & RN to respond & my guess is that given Salmond’s past flirtation with Marxism , he could very well use the Russians as leverage to extract concessions from England / rUK

        • Michael Mckeown

          Just a though but if Scotland leaves then the airspace wont be UK airspace so the UK need not defend it.

          • Lord Edmund Moletrousers

            true but the threat remains , does the RAF only respond if a plane only crosses our land border or not?

            • Michael Mckeown

              The RAF only responds now if a plane crosses our land border or sea area as the rest is none of our business. The RAF would need permission to overfly a country to take action.

          • the viceroy’s gin

            There must be a defensive alliance here, an explicitly clear understanding. The fact that the jocks are angling to retain the monarchy indicates that they also see that need, but a responsible government would make all this clear to all. It is not a trivial point, no matter that the Westminster charlatans don’t understand so.

            • Michael Mckeown

              A defensive alliance, Is that code for the RAF paying for and suppling fighter aircraft to fend off the Russians in Scotland?

              At the end of the day in the event of independence it is the job of the Scottish government to defend Scotland.

              • the viceroy’s gin

                No, it can’t be. If the jocks go down, the whole of Great Britain goes down. That’s the geostrategics of it. And the whole of Great Britain can’t be at risk of whichever group of dummies is in control of Jockistan. There has to be some form of explicit understanding here. That is the only thing that must occur, not currency, not crown, not anything else.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  I think Salmond is counting on something like that so he can save on military costs to buy more pies but the responsability of defending Scotland along with the costs would not be the UK’s problem so its difficult to see why the UK would defend Scotland when instead it could simply defend its own borders as it does now.

                  Surely this socialist utopia that according to Salmond is the 6th richest country in the entire world can buy a few Euro-fighters?

                • the viceroy’s gin

                  Yes, they’d have to make those purchases, and properly coordinate with the rest of the isles.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Why would they need to coordinate with the rest of the UK? The Russians are always annoying us so that annoyance would be Scotland’s trouble as Scotland geographically means the Russians cant antagonize the rest of the UK without first going through Scotland or the EU.

                • the viceroy’s gin

                  A threat to Great Britain is a threat to all of Great Britain, not just part of it. If that threat was merely one of being “antagonized”, it wouldn’t matter. It’s not.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  In the event of separation then going with what you propose would mean a combined country effort to defeat the Russian antagonists in other words a panic and that wont do so it would be Scotland’s problem and even though the UK may be concerned they wont show it as they dont need to be involved.

                • the viceroy’s gin

                  I can’t make any sense of your post, sorry.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  You are saying that a Russian incursion in to what would be Scottish territory would require a joint response from Scotland and the UK and that would look like a panic and would give the Russians far more status than they deserve so wont happen.

                • the viceroy’s gin

                  No, I still can’t make any sense of your post, sorry.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Yes you can its just your to suborn to admit the ‘guaranteed EU membership because of oil’ point you made is fundamentally flawed.

                • the viceroy’s gin

                  No, I can’t make any sense of your posts, sorry, and I didn’t make any statements about oil, lad.

                • Rockin Ron

                  Geostrategics. Jockistan. New words – love it!

          • allymax bruce

            The Monarch is head of ‘the armed services’; as The current Monarch, our Good Queen of Scots Elizabeth, is both Monarch of Scotland, and England, then the RAF is ‘owned & controlled’ in ‘collaboration’ of both Countries.

        • Wessex Man

          a new atomic crisis!

        • MichtyMe

          The UK currently does not effectively respond. It’s tiny naval resources is based in the South when not showing the flag or punching above weight in some foreign gulf. In fact, today, it is the Scottish Government that watches the seas with 3 Protection Vessels and two surveillance aircraft.

          • the viceroy’s gin

            Those 3 rustbuckets couldn’t operate during a good sneeze, let alone any real weather. Best not go there, lad.

    • Ringstone

      We could dock them at our rUK sovereign territory naval base at Faslane and charge them rent. Then it really would be Kalinengrad on the Clyde.

    • HookesLaw

      Of course in fact it would not. Far from it. You have the tactical brain of a turnip.

  • IainRMuir

    I want a divorce. I’ll take the house, the car, the electrical appliances, the home cinema and the pets. You can keep the towels, the dustbins, the litter trays and the credit card bills.

    OK?

  • BarkingAtTreehuggers

    The key underlying fact confirmed (again) today appears to be that the Better Together campaign will continue on its scripted path of not making the case for the Union. As recent history has taught us, any issues regarding nationhood can be overcome – be it the restructuring of Yugoslavia or the reunification of Germany. What we need to hear is the case made for the Union. I am assuming that the current set of advisors are looking to maximise the impact of that message, hence we are kept waiting. Is this really a clever strategy?

    Why is it that the Prime Minister of this nation cannot make the case for the Union on Scottish soil? Is that not in itself a premature acknowledgement of defeat?
    DC will enter the history books for losing Scotland – voting UKIP in May will further weaken his position and deliver the anticipated outcome.

    • Rockin Ron

      Why is it that the Prime Minister of this nation cannot make the case for the Union on Scottish soil?

      I suggest because that would be a gift to the Yes campaign. Hence Darling is leading the No campaign. Cameron is a liability, not an asset.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …re your last sentence, a truer dictum has never been issued.

      • BarkingAtTreehuggers

        It exemplifies that a UKIP/Tory split down South is of no consequence to an independent Scotland campaign. Two worlds, two nations, two states.
        DC m u s t make the case for the Union or he will be the PM that lost Scotland.

      • Wessex Man

        er, because we English have no say in the referendum and therefore Cameron (I’m proud of the Scottish blood beating in my veins) is not allowed by your own rules, wheras Darling is a Scot.

  • Squarely Rooted

    As a total outsider to this debate, I must say this all seems very bizarre. One of the best cases in almost any situation for a segment of an existing country severing itself from the larger country is the possibility of floating its own currency. The extreme demand for land and services around London drives up the value of the pound, making Scottish goods and labor more expensive. An independent Scotland would like have a cheaper currency, which would make imports more expensive but probably lead to higher levels of employment due to exports. Additionally, it will likely lead to fewer and more moderate recessions, assuming good governance, because monetary policy can be more responsive to Scotland without having to account for Wales, England, or Northern Ireland. Political independence while keeping the pound would be like moving out of your parent’s house but taking your mother along with you.

    • the viceroy’s gin

      All good points, but independence is not a single act, it’s more of a process. At first, mother may make a few visits to the new apartment, just to make sure things are going well, offering advice, maybe bringing over a meal or 2. This is all inevitable. Eventually, a more productive expression of independence will form, hopefully one that doesn’t absorb too much of mother’s time.

      • ButcombeMan

        But then the poor kids will get overdrawn on their credit card and behind with their mortgage and Mum will need to bail them out, again and again.

        It is written..

    • The Laughing Cavalier

      London house prices have between negligible and zero influence on exchange rates.

      • Squarely Rooted

        Each of the last four years foreign capital equalling 1% of UK GDP has flowed into the London housing markets. That affects exchange rates.

        • HookesLaw

          That’s what…. 150 billion a year ? Buying houses in London?

          Just from overseas buyers?
          Really?

      • Squarely Rooted

        Each of the last four years foreign capital exceeding 1% of UK GDP has flowed into the London property market. That affects exchange rates.

    • ButcombeMan

      Salmond never really got to grips with this intellectually.

      As I have said in these columns before. An independent Scottish currency would cause currency flight.

  • jazz606

    Hedging your bets a bit Mr Massie? Preserving your future in an Independent Scotland perhaps ?

    Go here for a less partial view.

  • dougthedug

    Not changing your policies over 30 years as the world changes would count as stupidity not intelligence. In any case a keeping the pound sterling is not a one-time only decision. If an independent Scotland feels that the pound is not good for Scotland it can then decide to join the Euro or issue its own currency, whichever is the better option.

    It’s an odd article for a unionist. Rather than welcoming the SNP’s plans to have cross border cooperation with the rUK you’re complaining that the SNP’s vision for an independent Scotland doesn’t involve the shutters coming down on the border.

    • HJ777

      “In any case a keeping the pound sterling is not a one-time only decision.”

      The point is that it wouldn’t even be Salmond’s decision. He seems to think that Westminster would agree to anything that he wants.

      He should be honest and say what his plan B would be, given that plan A is not in his gift. Then Scots could judge the credibility of his plans and any likely problems.

      • dougthedug

        Of course it’s not Alex Salmond’s decision.

        No-one in Scotland is stupid enough to believe it is.

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          Read these threads more carefully. There are plenty of cyber nays who believe that they can just walk away from Scotland’s share of the National Debt, every penny of oil revenue will henceforth belong to Scotland, Sterling will be managed to suit Scotland exclusively etc etc. Salmond will be negotiating with a Westminster Parliament that hates his guts and will be on no mood to compromise and his ‘Bonny Prince Bull****’ act will be no use to him then.

          • dougthedug

            Read these threads more carefully.
            Check. Already done that.

            There are plenty of cyber nays who believe that they can just walk away from Scotland’s share of the National Debt
            Check. No asset share, no debt share.

            every penny of oil revenue will henceforth belong to Scotland
            Check. Correct.

            Sterling will be managed to suit Scotland exclusively etc etc
            Check. Not correct.

            Salmond will be negotiating with a Westminster Parliament that hates his guts
            Check. Correct.

            his ‘Bonny Prince Bull****’ act will be no use to him then
            Check. Cannot find said act.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              All oil revenue will automatically belong to Scotland. Well good luck with that. More relevantly, if you had a modicum of sense you would at least consider swapping future oil revenues for a smaller share of the National debt. However, that would be ‘detail’ and if there is one thing all ‘cybernats’ have in common it is that you do not ‘do’ detail.

              • dougthedug

                Why on earth would be start involving the oil. We’ll swap part of the our 8% share of the UK’s current assests (1.2 Trillion) for our 8% share in the UK’s debt (1.26 Trillion).

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  I think you should spend some time at ‘ big school’ before entering this argument. That is just too naive for words.

                • dougthedug

                  I’m a bit puzzled. You’ve never understood that if Scotland takes a share of the UK’s debt it also takes a share of the assets?

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  My sincere apologies. I had not realised That I had engaged with a naive fantasist. Goodbye.

                • dougthedug

                  Goodbye-ee, goodbye-ee, Wipe the tear, baby dear, from your eye-ee.

    • Colonel Mustard

      I object to the somewhat offensive term rUK. When and if Scotland leave the Union it will have no say over what the remaining countries choose to call themselves.

      • dougthedug

        I’m happy to use any term that is acceptable to you as long as it is not “the UK” as that will no longer exist in its current form after Scottish independence and to use it would be confusing.

        • Colonel Mustard

          Since Scottish independence is not a fact the question of whether the UK will exist and in what form is moot and therefore premature. However the use of the term United Kingdom is not dependant only on the Act of Union with Scotland but is related to the 1801 Act of Union with Ireland and the Royal and Parliamentary Titles Act of 1927. Since by the terms of previous acts the word ‘kingdom’ is not dependent upon monarchies there should be absolutely no reason that the kingdoms of England, Wales and Northern Ireland could not still refer to themselves as the United Kingdom of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Ergo still the UK.

          It’s just that Scotland will no longer be part of that .

          • dougthedug

            So you want me tor refer to the UK as the UK after Scotland leaves? That’s a bit confusing.

            How about if I call it “the UK continuing”? It’s a bit long but I’m happy to do that.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              How about we call it whatever we like because it will no longer be any of your ******* business.

              • dougthedug

                You’re entirely right. So what do you want me to call it now?

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  The United Kingdom. You do not for one minute think we are going to change the identity of 52 million people because 2 million or so Scottish voters decide otherwise. Surely you cannot be both that arrogant and that ignorant. Besides we have a legitimate right to call ourselves the UK as explained by Colonel Mustard. That said, be it right, wrong, illogical, logical or confusing it is none of your, or your fellow Scots, stinking business.

                • dougthedug

                  Yes. Scotland has never been part of the UK’s identity.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  And long may that remain so.

                • Zeus

                  Serbia kept the Yugoslavia name going for years till even it gave up on the shame after even Montenegro dumped them. I can see the same thing happening to former UK.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  What a charmingly loathsome, ignorant and tasteless comparison.

                • Zeus

                  ” loathsome, ignorant and tasteless ”

                  Sums up the English really.

                • Wessex Man

                  people like you are why I wish the Cybernat nutjobs all the best in the referendum!

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Ditto.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  And in another thread the ‘Yes’ supporters tried to tell us that there was no anti-English bile.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Cliche alert.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Cliche alert.

            • Colonel Mustard

              Yes please. I think that in effect it still will be the UK for all sorts of reasons.

          • BarkingAtTreehuggers

            A Welsh Kingdom, a Northern Irish Kingdom even? Please elaborate on the use of the plural.

            • Colonel Mustard

              The subsequent 1953 Act specified ‘Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland’. There is no mention of Scotland. Therefore the post-independent issue is not the use of the term Kingdom but the use of Great Britain.

              There is no reason the title could not simply be altered to ‘Queen of the United Kingdom of England, Wales and Northern Ireland’ but the issue of the Scottish Crown will need to be resolved too. For foreign relationship purposes, including the EU, it will remain the UK.

              • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                I see, so no plural. Did I miss out on the definiton of what constitutes Great Britain?

                When Yugoslavia was dissected, at what point did Serbia come to understand that it was no longer sensible to use the old title?

                • Colonel Mustard

                  I don’t think you do see. I think you are just argumentative for the sake of being so. The Acts concerned refer to small ‘k’ kingdoms in the plural. Both Ireland and Wales had their own historical Kings and the evolution of the UK and its titles is not just about Scotland.

                  Serbia is one country. After Scottish independence – if – the UK will still be three countries. So Yugoslavia is not a relevant comparison.

                • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                  Apologies for appearing argumentative. All I care about is getting to the bottom of this.
                  Wales had an ‘own historical King’ who signed up to any of the treaties you listed earlier? Northern Ireland also? That is news to me and perhaps I am not the only one.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  They are not treaties but Acts of Parliament concerned with titles arising from extraneous changes such as Ireland becoming a Republic. Google them and all should be revealed.

                  Once – if – Scotland leaves there will have to be a new Act to determine the correct titles for the UK. The process is not new and there are precedents such as the independence of Ireland.

                • HJ777

                  It would be united and it is a kingdom.

                • Ringstone

                  The Kings of England were Lords of Ireland [Laudabiliter et all] from 1169 to 1542 when the Crown of Ireland Act under Henry V111 was enacted, thereby raising Ireland from a feudal fief into a kingdom…enjoy.

                • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                  Now now now, this is getting ever more cryptic. The German Kaiser was also Kaiser of Bavaria? A Japanese Tennō is Tennō of Osaka?
                  Ireland never was a Kingdom, there is no plural. What you could do is unite a Kingdom of England with Wales and with Northern Ireland, what this will not do is unite kingdomS.

                • Ringstone

                  Obtuse or just plain thick?

                • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                  Northern Ireland is not ‘united’ with anybody. Nor is Wales.
                  The Union is a Union between the Kingdoms of Scotland and England. Curiously that is what you said yourself above when referring to Henry8 (!)

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Excessive pedantry on your part and wrong too. See above.

                • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                  I welcome your pedantry. Your first link explains it perfectly.
                  No GB, hence no UK of GB&I (now UK of GB&NI).
                  When England remains the only Kingdom, then one is inclined to point out that one could unite ‘countries’, ‘nations’ or ‘federal states’ perhaps, but not kingdomS as there simple remains no plural.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Even more argumentative than cryptic I would say!

                • Colonel Mustard

                  “Passed on 2 July 1800 and 1 August 1800 respectively, the twin Acts united the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland to create the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The union came into effect on 1 January 1801. Both Acts, though since amended, remain in force in the United Kingdom.”

                  KingdomS.

                • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                  The Kingdom of Ireland no longer exists.
                  There is no Kingdom of Northern Ireland.
                  Hence, what kingdomS?

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Far Farks Sake. You wrote above:-

                  “Ireland never was a Kingdom”

                  Irish King. Welsh king. Scots King. English King.

                  KingdomS.

                • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                  For Fawke’s ake.
                  There is no Bavarian Kaiser, there might have been a Kaiser ruling Bavaria once but that does not make Bavaria an Empire. Nor does it make Osaka that.

                  There is no Northern Irish Kingdom. Ireland might have had a King once, who cares? It no longer exists (!) That is what I wrote.

                  What kingdomS?

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Er, no. You wrote “Ireland never was a Kingdom”.

                  You were wrong. And Bavaria and Japan have nothing to do with it whatsoever.

                • BarkingAtTreehuggers

                  Er, so? I wrote many things, you choose to focus on this faux pas. I will have to live with that shame till the end of my days…
                  Yet,
                  1) the use of plural is illogical
                  2) the Northern Irish never voted for the Union (I am not talking about the EEC/EU). Dare I point out: see what I’ve done there?
                  3) a Welsh King (?) does not make Wales a kingdom. In that context my comments on Bavaria or Osaka stand.
                  4) Yugoslavia did come to a point when keeping a name no longer made any sense. In that respect my comments still stand.

              • HookesLaw

                There is no reason why we should not keep the Union Jack either. if we do not like the shade of blue we could change it officially to something else.

                • ButcombeMan

                  Exactly, because many of our citizens will continue to be Jocks.

          • telemachus

            And that United Kingdom will within my lifetime morph into a Federal Europe

            • Colonel Mustard

              Why do you feel the need to make provocative comments like that?

          • Michael Mckeown

            These separatists have wet reams about breaking up the UK and are completely oblivious to the fact that a Scotland leaving means only that.

        • ButcombeMan

          No it will still exist in name, what the UK then calls itself is not for Jockistan to dictate.

      • ChuckieStane

        I think you are being a bit precious here. rUK simply differentiates the post indy EWNI from the current UK, otherwise we’d all have to type pre- or post independence UK every time to avoid confusion. EWNI can call themsleves what ever they want post-indy.

        • Colonel Mustard

          I disagree. ‘Rump’ is derogatory and its use is intended as such. See the ridiculous ‘Zeus’ comment above. Such aggressive hostility towards the other constituent countries of the UK will not be helpful to future relationships.

      • Zeus

        Going by the demographics, New Pakistan.

      • Zeus

        rumpUK, redundantUK, reducedUK, redactedUK, ridiculousUK…whatever.

        • Colonel Mustard

          Check your prejudices.

        • the viceroy’s gin

          You may have missed it, but Fat Al wants to retain the monarchy. So apparently he disagrees with you.

        • Wessex Man

          You forgot relieved UK, relevent UK, rejuvenated Uk…whatever!

          • Zeus

            Someone hurt your feelings? The UK is finished, now clean your hands and walk away.

            • Wessex Man

              no, not at all, just giving you some more words to take to your playpen.

              • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                That cyber at is completely barking.

              • Zeus

                Would someone like something to suck on?

            • Colonel Mustard

              Judging by your repulsive avatar someone has hurt yours.

              • Zeus

                Judging by your name it is a surprise that no one has killed you with a candlestick in the library.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Wow, however did you think that one up.

                • Wessex Man

                  This Zeus is a bit of a childish halfwit really and not even funny but then again he is a zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    • ButcombeMan

      The question really is surely, what unit of account will be used for national Jockistan accounting.

      Quite plainly the pound would continue to be used for many transactions, The Jockistan government would have no way of preventing it.

  • weescamp

    Of course, if Westminster refuses to agree to an independent Scotland retaining the £ then it’s tantamount to an admission that it’s failed completely to develop a sustainable economy in Scotland.

    • jazz606

      Hedging your bets a bit Mr Massie. Preserving your future in an Independent Scotland perhaps ?

      Go here for a less partial view.

    • HJ777

      And how did you work that out? Why are Cybernats always denigrating the Scottish economy?

      And if Scotland really doesn’t have a ‘sustainable economy’ then perhaps Salmond should admit that this factor would be a problem after independence, i.e. it would cause considerable short-to-medium term pain even if he argues that independence would bring long term gain.

      It would be nice to see a bit of honesty in this debate from Salmond.

      • Michael Mckeown

        If the economy was as great as they make out Salmond would not be begging the rest of the UK to act as lender of last resort as thats something a decent economy can do itself.

    • jazz606

      Oh yeah..!!
      Of course !!!
      It’s someone else’s fault.

  • RavenRandom

    If Scotland vote for independence then that is what they should have. Either take the Euro or create a Scottish currency. This “we want a divorce but we get to keep the house, the car, the furniture, the jewellery…” is a bit much. Personally I don’t see what Scotland will get that’s new to what they have now except a bit more risk… Ireland, Cyprus, Greece… your face here. How do think Cyprus felt when Germany decided it was time to tell them what to do?

    • Zeus

      The UK government debt is 7 times the economic output of the country. The highest in Europe and more than double that of Greece, Spain, Portugal etc. Interest rates are low to keep the UK government accruing more debt, not to keep all those Londoners in their houses with their interest only mortgages.

      If interest rates go up to 5% then it cannot pay back its loans, it is that simple. Remove Scottish exports from the picture and England/former UK is a basket case: collapse of the housing market, businesses, all those City of London service jobs disappear. Something big will have to go – privatise the NHS, appropriate all pensions, 3 day weeks, another IMF bailout (yes the UK had to get an IMF bailout in the 1970’s). England needs Scotland in the Sterling zone like it or not. Quite frankly I think iScotland should avoid Sterling with a bargepole as it is underpinned with debt.

      • HJ777

        Nonsense.

        UK government debt is about 70% of GDP.

        • Zeus

          UK government debt is closer to 90% – 70% was years ago. Total debt (including no provisioned debts – Pensions for example is 900%)

          http://moneyweek.com/the-end-of-britain-where-we-get-our-figures/

          • HJ777

            No.

            The official level of debt for the end of the last financial year was 74%. The forecast for the end of the current financial year is still below 80%.

            http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/psa/public-sector-finances/july-2013/sty-public-sector-debt.html

            You are confusing liabilities with debt when you look at things like pensions. As they are pay-as-you-go liabilities, they also have income against them. It’s not an ideal situation, but you are exaggerating. You have also included private debt.

            All these things are no different for Scotland, incidentally – arguably worse, since Scotland has a higher proportion of public sector workers and a faster ageing population.

        • Zeus

          Rubbish, UK government debt is closer to 90%. Unprovisioned debt like pensions push it to Greece proportions, then add in personal, Company and other debts (all those zombie companies treading on 2% interest rates…)

          http://moneyweek.com/the-end-of-britain-where-we-get-our-figures/

          • Shinsei1967

            Financial illiteracy of the highest order. You are comparing stock and flow, an Economics 101 error.

            The UK state pension scheme isn’t supposed to be fully funded. It is paid out of current income. And at 2-3% of GDP annually eminently affordable.

            If you intend to gross up the pension liabilities of millions over the next 40 years (to get a scarily large number) then you also have to gross up GDP over the next 40 years. Which gives you a truly scarily large number – 1,500 bn x 40 x 1.025 (for GDP growth).

            • HJ777

              And, of course, Salmond has promised Scots that they will be able to retire earlier after independence (I kid you not) and this will, of course, have public finance implications for an independent Scotland.

              • MichtyMe

                That sounds fair, the Scots die younger and don’t get their fair share back before they go.

                • HJ777

                  I though that the 10% extra spending per head on the NHS in Scotland was supposed to fix that?

                • ButcombeMan

                  The Scots kill themselves earlier, through drink, drugs and diet.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              Don’t suggest that or the idiot will try and present it as an NPV.

          • HJ777

            Rubbish, eh?

            http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/psa/public-sector-finances/july-2013/sty-public-sector-debt.html

            And why would I add in personal and company debts into the government debt figure?

      • RavenRandom

        Blimey what a pile of nonsense, Scotland is a rounding error on the combined English-Scottish economy. That’s just a fact, 53million English, 5 million Scots.
        Now I’m a fan of Scotland, always have been, but you need to get real.

        • Zeus

          WTF?

          • RavenRandom

            Is that meant to be a response? Do you dispute the population sizes?

            • Zeus

              I do not get your point caller…utterly pointless IMHO.

              • RavenRandom

                Then you’re rather foolish. The English economy is more than ten times the size of that of Scotland. You’re dire consequences of Scotland leaving are, like you, simply risible.

                • Zeus

                  “The English economy is more than ten times the size of that of Scotland.”

                  So is the population, so I do not see your point.

                • RavenRandom

                  I’m sorry, here it is again for the hard of understanding. Removing the Scottish economy from the UK economy will have limited impact, making your initial statement vacuous in the extreme.

    • ButcombeMan

      An independent Scotland could only create an independent Scottish currency, that anyone was prepared to hold, by the most horrendous cut backs in government spending, beginning immediately..

      Salmond (just about), now understands this.

      His whole plan unravels on the currency issue and he has not in my view been honest with his population.

      Already it is getting difficult to pass “Scottish” notes in England, it never used to be so.

  • Eddie

    Wales will NEVER agree to Scotland using Sterling. It is not only England which has a say here. The Welsh Assembly can block it. Never gets mentioned in the Anglo-centric London meeja, of course…

    • RavenRandom

      No but it’s a good point. The national papers will always remain Anglo centric as long as there are 53 million English and 3 million Welsh. A good reason in itself for sensible devolution.

      • Eddie

        I disagree. Devolution is a bad idea, though all regions should have more local control. But NOT for income taxes (the demand by some Welsh nationalist maniacs!).

        Of course, England has far more people so thus should dominate really. Scotland arguing gets far too much attention – the Scottish Raj at the BBC for example. I am from the London area and now live in Wales; hence I am not the sort of provincial-minded person my neighbours are.

        As it is, Wales has regulations that England does not have – for example, smoking in the workplace is banned here, including on film sets, but not in England. UTTER madness when a short drive will take you over the border (if you can work out where the F it is!)

    • dougthedug

      The Welsh Assembly has a veto in Westminster on Government policy?

      That’s news to me.

      • Eddie

        The Welsh First Minister has stated that he would block it. A change like this would need the support of the Welsh Assembly, for sure. It’s not only the English who use Sterling.
        Of course, they could probably be bribed to vote the ‘right’ way – as indeed have the Scottish for decades via the Barnett Formula.

        • dougthedug

          The Welsh First Minister has stated that he would block it.
          Delusions of Grandeur. He has no power to do that.

          A change like this would need the support of the Welsh Assembly
          No it wouldn’t. The “UK continuing” side of the bargain will be decided in Westminster.

    • Zeus

      The Welsh – you mean those unemployed coal moles and an economy based on second homes for the M4 English? All they do is sing and can go sing.

      • RavenRandom

        Well not only are you economically illiterate, you’re a racist too. Bravo.

      • Eddie

        I thought that was the blacks?

        • Wessex Man

          made for each other!

          • Zeus

            Wessex – a ruritania invented by that terrible bore Thomas Hardy…

            • George J. Dvorjacques

              In reply to your previous ill founded statement that: England is Serbia…an outdated empire with second class housing, or similar to that. You deleted it I believe.

              >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
              Let me tell you something you cheap sunday rabblerouser. England is not bleeding Serbia! And the UK is not Yugoslavia either!

              I am an Englishman who, due to a private domestic referendum could not vote on growing up in Britain instead of Slovenia.

              And first of all the Kingdom Of Serbs, Croats And Slovenes was founded after the first world war by pan-slavic nationalists- no more than iliterate peasents. That became a communist state after the second world war dubbed The Socialist Federal Republic Of Yugoslavia. It was a dictatorship in it’s purest form no matter what a marxist relic such as yourself would like to blow his pipe dream about. Censorship, political assassinations, labour camps you name it, it had it all. And work for all. If you didn’t want to work you were sent to the ”Naked Island” and worked more than before or got shot. Not even remotely close to anything relating to anything here. The United Kingdom has existed for 307 years with all members being equally treated under the most liberal domestic society in the world AND ALSO commanded three quarters of the world’s seas. What a country, what a nation, what a birth right to have! Yugoslavia didn’t make it past half a century and with good reasons. Belgrade was pulling out all the money, EXCLUSIVELY, to itself and giving all the orders. A TRUE Serbian hegemony that followed after comrade Tito’s death and the entranced masses starting to become dissilusioned with the federation. The Serbian delegation headed by Miloshevic insisted on a policy of one vote per one person and since Serbs made up the largest population they automaticaly got the vote. But to sum up what happened in the end was that the socialist market system, that was doomed from the begining, finally fell into it’s own bowels and the unresolved historical and ethnical differences only helped fuel the conflict even further, aided by Miloshevic’s party and all the other rats sitting fat in power. Serbs in Croatia started to violently rebel. Slovenia, after announcing it’s independence was the only country to walk out with the most bare of minimal damage. The war lasted for only 11 days and about 29 soldiers and 4 civilians died all together. Serbia did not want to continue fighting them, or in this case I can safely say us, because it was too much of a bother wasting countless resources to head all the way by and through the enemies’ whole defences to capture a small country of 2 million people with no noteworthy military threat. There was also the fact that Slovenia lay on the borders of Austria, Italy and Hungary. And the first in particular would call on it’s allies to intervene with full military capabilities as soon as it felt threatened by the Serbian hoards advancing to their outskirts. In the passing of the 8 years, 2 months and 2 weeks, hundreds of thousands died with millions displaced, many still victims to human trafficking until this very day and until the day they are somehow discovered or die. Senseless destruction, mass killings and rapes of men, women and children alike. Pregnant women having their babies ripped out of their stomachs on orders of high command. War camps, deportations, famine. A butcher’s paradise. I still remember waves of refugees passing through having lost it all. And standing at my childhood family summer home with my Croat friends- all kids, observing sweeping fires across the mountains of Velebit a few miles away from the coast. Two of my friends with the most gorgeous of names Kristian and Valentina had to stay with their grandparents in Dalmatia during that whole period. When I asked where their parents are their gran told me that their mother had to work in the capital. And when I inquired about the father she simply said he was away and was not coming back again. I conjured no secure or happy feeling about it.

              And I will be damned, if I accept a retarded lowlife f**k, such as yourself spilling crap over all those people who had to suffer such twisted faiths.

              And the survivors and successors that continue to feel the same wounds today. For most the war will never end, it will always be a part of them, they will never be able to escape it’s presence.

              It must feel really nice, so cheery and lovely, and absolutely dashing to sleep secure on your high horse in the knowledge. That you live on an island that had centuries of the most abundant peace, liberty and prosperity under common rule. And is still a shining beacon for progress, decency and equality amidst a world of rampant poverty and mutilation. For the defence and expansion of which inumerable of our forefathers died for.

              All so that a thicko like you can flap his fat lip and condemn, insult and spit on everything and everyone who built up this extraordinary island homeland, for which you have done nothing, but being a complete burden with your tainted presence.

              Do yourself in right now, I am serious. If you want to improve the life of anyone of us true Brits. Or leave the island and find another

              identity to besmirch.

              As far as I am concerned all my English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish countrymen, you are all equal pieces of the same heart that binds us Brits together through times of woe and joy.

              My land is your land and I plead to you Scotland, that if things could be so bad and it could possibly be true that you no longer want to be part of our saintly matrimonial union of Great Britain, to change your minds and not secceede.

              We need each other to survive on this small strip of land in this opressed world and we are stronger standing together, hand in hand marching against the waves of time.

              If not for king and country, let it be, for kin and country!

              Who needs the queen, or all those other parasites in office! F**k em’. And take no heed of this wolf in sheep’s clothing Salmond.

              He’s a traitor to British heritage and he should be burned at the stake for it. He is not good news. And don’t mind Cameron that wanker, he can barely keep his trousers from falling down to his feet without the rest of the cabinet holding them up.

              These are all uncapable nincompoops who would muck up flogging an oral rehydration therapy to cholera patients. Tasteless apes in fancy dresses.

              ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

              I greet you all with the dearest of regards,

              and deepest of woes.

              I am thinking of flying promptly and without delay to the UK right now with only my feet

              to carry me, if this message does not make it

              to the wisest and dearest of you.

              I am working my way back to London very hard

              at this very moment and I hope you will save me

              a cool glass of gin and a warm piece of haggis

              with a song of Marianne Faithfull playing along,

              until I make my successful safe arrival shortly.

              I never had haggis before and I am really too

              poor right at the moment to afford double prices, I’m afraid /:)

              Yours, most sincerely, faithfull and desperative,

              who grew up a half of a continent away from home,

              ~George Joseph Dvorjacques

              • Moderator

                Far too long and I suspect boring to read. Try to surmise and give headlines. Comments are for headlines and if I wanted an encyclopaedia I would have read one.

                • George J. Dvorjacques

                  Well you’re still here. So I suppose I must be doing something right as an encyclopedia salesman.
                  p.s. I did not think that I was expected to report
                  news to you. But with a name like Moderator
                  you must know what is right and what is wrong.
                  Tell me, is that a title you’ve chosen to give to yourself
                  as you joined up? So as to appear inherently
                  authoritative on issues you do not understand,
                  or are you an actual Moderator on this site
                  who started work as a Moderator on this site
                  only to appear inherently authoritative on issues
                  he does not understand? Because I summed up
                  some of your intelligence in the past seventh
                  month and I must say it did not impress me much.
                  It doesn’t really strike me as anything
                  even glance worthy now.
                  Seems that some people make headlines,
                  but you on the other hand win headlines
                  for being a complete moron.
                  (and i’m out of here)

                • Moderator

                  Still too long and I have not read anything that you have said. I am more than sorry for you that you cannot communicate clearly and concisely.

      • HJ777

        I am Anglo-Welsh-Scots and I find that offensive and racist, as I do those who denigrate England or Scotland.

        • Zeus

          “The Welsh,” … “are the only nation in the world that has
          produced no graphic or plastic art, no architecture, no drama. They
          just sing,” he said with disgust, “sing and blow down wind instruments
          of plated silver….”

          Evelyn Waugh, Decline and Fall.

          • HJ777

            So?

            Are novelists not allowed to have stupid racist characters in their novels?

            Talking of stupid racist fictional characters, are you for real?

            • Zeus

              Say what?

    • Wessex Man

      You get mentioned far too much!

  • Hexhamgeezer

    Lets call it ID. In(decisive)Dependence.

    Or InDependence for short.

  • Radford_NG

    Independent in Europe is like saying `Independent in Carstaires`.

  • Bluesman_1

    Independence in Europe

    Oxymoron alert.

    • Zeus

      The EU is a supranational organisation. The UK is a unitary state.

  • asalord

    Supporters of Scottish independence,especially the First Minister and the SNP,have,for decades now,followed a gradualist approach towards full independence.The question,and eventual answer,of sharing the pound with England will see another step forward.I suspect,deep down,the First Minister isn’t too bothered if England gets into a strop and refuses to play ball with the idea of a shared currency.Okay,it’s back to the Pound Scots,or perhaps,my favourite,the Merk,or,indeed the Euro.I also suspect the majority of people in Scotland see it in a similar way should Scotland regain its independence.
    Ultimately,after future elections are held in an independent Scotland,the people of Scotland will decide on the matter of currency.
    First things first: vote Yes!

    • jazz606

      If you don’t resolve these questions before independence it will be a very bumpy ride and many Scots will be badly hurt. Maybe they are prepared to pay the price, but they should not be lied to.
      Obviously diehards like you don’t care.

      • dougthedug

        “If you don’t resolve these questions before independence…”

        It’s rather difficult to resolve the question of a Sterling currency union because the current Government in Westminster will not say what they will do in the event of Scottish independence.

        There has been no official refusal or acceptance of the currency plan by David Cameron or by Ed Miliband who might be the PM during the negotiations.

        • jazz606

          “..the current Government in Westminster will not say what they will do in the event of Scottish independence..”

          Why should they ?
          However the chancellor and the governor of the BoE have dropped clear hints that currency union is not an option.
          After all why should Scotland benefit from rUK’s fiscal and financial governance if they have no wish to remain in the union ?

          • dougthedug

            All they’ve got to do to stop the SNP’s plan for a Sterling Currency union in its tracks is to say no, officially.

            Surprise, surprise they won’t.

            • HJ777

              Why should they? What advantage would accrue to the rest of the UK from such a statement now?

              Why concede a negotiating position?

              • dougthedug

                So a Sterling currency union is up for negotiation?

                • HJ777

                  Who knows? But if Salmond wants it, it would only be on terms acceptable to (i.e. dictated by) Westminster.

                  I am as Scottish as I am English (as I am Welsh, by the way), but I would not advocate Westminster taking Scotland’s interests into account at all should there be separation. Westminster should and would consider only what is best for the remainder of the UK, not for Scotland. That would be its duty.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Pure genius. Everything is up for negotiation you idiot. But what chips are you holding?

                • dougthedug

                  I thought you’d said goodbye?

            • jazz606

              I think they pretty well have.

              • dougthedug

                Have they? Have you a link?

                • jazz606

                  That wasn’t what I meant.

                  The Independence campaign is entirely an SNP initiative. It has nothing to do with the UK Govt who are under no obligation whatever to promise Scotland anything, their duty being to the UK as a whole. This why they will make no specific undertakings on any aspect of independence.
                  Were they to do so they would become hostages to fortune in any future negotiations.
                  So desperate though the SNP might be for a clear statement, they ain’t going to get one and can stew in their own juice.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              Why on earth would anybody do that and deny themselves a powerful negotiating counter. Should Salmond turn up to do a deal of separation the UK will want as many sticks to beat him with as possible. You have clearly never negotiated a contract in your life. That was the single most naive and stupid comment on this thread. Would you like to buy some swamp land in Florida?

              • ButcombeMan

                Or Somerset?.

    • Eddie

      Not only England that has a say. Wales too – and the Welsh Assembly could block any agreement reached by Scotland and England.

      • dougthedug

        How?

        • Eddie

          http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-25034379h

          ttp://www.theguardian.com/politics/2013/nov/21/welsh-first-minister-scottish-independence

          • dougthedug

            The Guardian link doesn’t work. The BBC link is Carwyn Jones pleading that if Westminster is looking at a currency union someone should listen to him.

            • Eddie

              Like Alex Salmond is pleading that he can use someone else’s stable currency when he casts his one-man party’s fiefdom adrift from the country and the union that made it?
              You cannot just cherry pick the bits you want on independence! There WILL be very many downsides; England will want repaying for the money given to bail out the Royal Bank of Scotland. Jobs and UK state offices will leave Scotland. Your taxes will rise, Businesses will go. Be HONEST with the Scottish people!
              The SNP is like our own version of Islam in its worship of one man. L’estat, c’est moi – should be Salmond’s motto.

              • HJ777

                Salmond has absolutely no intention of being honest with Scots because he is relying on getting away with being dishonest with them.

          • allymax bruce

            BBC, Guardian, etc; all Westminster brainwashing propaganda lying rubbish.
            I nearly fell off my chair laughing when I read your ‘references’.

  • JoeDM

    “…by the Scottish government’s own estimation, something like 30% of
    existing cross-border entities will remain intact after independence”

    Why?

    Surely if they want independence and vote for it then let them have it 100%.

    There should be no UK Government activity noth of the boarder following independence. All government agencies, defence estabishments, offices, etc. should be relocated into England.

    • AtMyDeskToday

      You do realise that there will be no UK after independence and those government entities which are directly related to servicing Scotland will quite properly remain in Scotland. You of course can have returned to you those small bits that relate to England, or rUK as it might be known.

      • telemachus

        I guess that means you are signed up to the tub of lard above

        • AtMyDeskToday

          You’re solid commitment to socialist ideals is well established, so let’s move on.

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          Finally, finally a word of sense.

      • Colonel Mustard

        See below. Your assumption that the UK will no longer exist just because Scotland chooses to leave it is by no means assured.

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        I refer you to Colonel Mustard’s explanation below. Also, we will call ourselves whatever we like, including the United Kingdom, be it logical, illogical or confusing. The point is that it will be absolutely none of your stinking business.

        • Zeus

          I still prefer former UK – as that is what I think of it.

          • Guest

            The former United Kingdom Nation of England? FUKNE?

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            But you are a moron snubbed even by your fellow cybernats.

      • The Laughing Cavalier

        There will be a United Kingdom of England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

    • http://tangentreality.blogspot.com/ tangentreality

      I tend to agree, but that isn’t how Salmond is framing the debate. He’s basically saying, ‘all these bad bits of the Union we’ll get rid of. But those good bits – customs union with England, GBP, financial regulation, Monarchy, the BBC… we’ll keep all them.’

      Scotland has (some) legitimate grievances about the current constitutional settlement. Virtually all of them can be handled through more devolution. Secession is a sledgehammer to crack a nut.

      • HJ777

        Precisely.

        Salmond and the SNP are being fundamentally dishonest and are trying to fool Scots into thinking that there would only be upsides but no downsides. His plan is that they would only get to find out the downsides after independence.

        An honest debate would be for him to argue what he thinks the specific advantages of independence would be, but at the same time to acknowledge and discuss downsides and unknowns/risks. Obviously, he’d argue that the former would exceed the latter. If so, he should argue this case.

        Instead, he is just trying to argue that it is all advantages and to pretend that the risks and downsides simply do not exist or would be guaranteed by the rest of the UK (which is strange, since he argues that Westminster does not act in Scotland’s interests within the union, but that it would do so outside a union).

        • dougthedug

          “…but at the same time to acknowledge and discuss downsides and unknowns/risks.

          Alex doesn’t have to do that because it’s done for him. Downsides, risk and doom and gloom are all Scotland gets from Better Together, the press and the BBC who are Better Together’s cheer leaders in Scotland.

          • HJ777

            So you admit that there are downsides then?

            So why won’t Salmond?

            • dougthedug

              Nothing is risk free and there are always unknowns. However the risk of staying in the UK with its spiraling debt and in/out EU referendum coming is greater than the risk of independence.

              • HJ777

                Independence would not guarantee EU membership.

                For a start, it is not clear that there would be continuity of membership with separation. Secondly, you cannot say what decision a Scottish government/electorate would make after independence – even if in the EU, it may choose to leave at some point.

                Scotland would have to take on its share of UK debt and a separate Scotland would currently have a very similar deficit as a proportion of GDP. Most major EU countries have similar if not higher levels of public debt.

                You are living in the fantasy world encouraged by Salmond – that Scotland would walk away from anything it doesn’t like and that economic facts can simply be wished away by independence.

                • dougthedug

                  Independence would not guarantee EU membership.
                  No but oil and fishing rights will.

                  you cannot say what decision a Scottish government/electorate would make after independence – even if in the EU, it may choose to leave at some point.
                  Entirely correct. Scotland will be making its own decisions.

                  Scotland would have to take on its share of UK debt and a separate Scotland would currently have a very similar deficit as a proportion of GDP. Most major EU countries have similar if not higher levels of public debt.
                  Correct as long as Scotland also gets its share of the assets. However as Scotland is running a smaller deficit than the UK the debt will not grow as fast.

                  You are living in the fantasy world encouraged by Salmond – that Scotland would walk away from anything it doesn’t like and that economic facts can simply be wished away by independence.
                  I suggest you read the Scottish Government Whitepaper. Boring, technical and dry are words I associate with it but fantasy it is not.

                • HJ777

                  The white paper is a hotchpotch which mixes constitutional and policy promises, makes assertions about what will be better, which tells the Westminster government what its position should be and which promises all sorts of commissions to examine questions to issues for which the SNP simply cannot provide answers.

                  It is a political document, not a technical one.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  What a stupid argument, the separatists argue that dependance means control over resources yet here you are offering them up to the EU, a bit of a reality check is needed for you as one cant spend the oil money while simultaneously saving it after already gifting it to the EU.

                • dougthedug

                  “…one cant spend the oil money while simultaneously saving it after already gifting it to the EU”

                  There is a common fisheries policy but no common oil policy. What newspapers have been telling you this? I’d stop buying them.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  If there is no common oil policy then why would the EU care if there is oil or not? Remember you stated clearly that “No but oil and fishing rights will” [get Scotland in the EU], one cant keep the oil while offering it to the EU.

                • dougthedug

                  Because an independent Scotland would produce 66% of the EU’s crude oil. The more resources inside the EU and the wealthier the member country the happier the EU is.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Producing 66% of the EU’s oil is not the same as producing 66% of the oil the EU uses in fact its not even 5% of what the EU uses so your argument that having less than 1% of know global supply’s means the rules for joining the EU that have been made up over some 50 years would somehow be se aside is risible.

                  Norway has ten times the oil the UK does but no ones begging them to join.

                • dougthedug

                  so your argument that having less than 1% of know global supply’s means the rules for joining the EU that have been made up over some 50 years would somehow be set aside is risible.

                  Now when did I say that? Try reading the comments. It’s easier if you stick to what I say rather than get angry about what you think I said.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  You said very clearly that “No but oil and fishing rights will” [guarantee EU entry] but as we have established Scotland’s oil reserves are tiny in global terms and are not more than 5% of EU usage and there is no EU common oil policy therefore your point about oil seems rather trivial.

                  You are saying ‘look all EU countries we have oil but we are keeping it so because we have it and are keeping it that means we get guaranteed entry in to your club’ and that quite frankly is taking buffoonery to a whole new level.

                • dougthedug

                  Where did I say that the EU rules for joining would be set aside? Stop trying distraction from what you said.

                • john campbell

                  Independence would not guarantee EU membership.
                  No but oil and fishing rights will.
                  And this will be policed by a row boat?

                • dougthedug

                  That’ll be better than no naval presence at all. When the Russian aircraft carrier Kuznetsov and her 5 accompanying vessels anchored 30 miles off the Moray Firth on the 19th of December last year the RN had to send a ship from Portsmouth.

        • Alexsandr

          he also needs to think about the GB institutions that need splitting into RUK and Scottish ones. So they will need a Scottish DVLA, a Scottish air accident investigation branch, a Scottish revenue and customs.

          • HJ777

            Yes – he should also explain what he would do about Scottish University research funding. Scottish universities receive a disproportionately large share of UK government research funding, which he would need to replace.

            My daughter is worried about this since she works at a Scottish university.

            He would also need to replace the fee income from English students. He has maintained that he would continue to charge English students (but not other EU students) while remaining in the EU – even though he has been told that this is illegal under EU law.

            He really does pick and choose, doesn’t he?

          • ChuckieStane

            Alexsandr, you list these things are if they are insurmountable obstacles yet all other nations seem to manage ok. Northern Ireland has had it’s own DVLC (although now threatened with closure) within the UK so it’s hardly a deal breaker

            • Shinsei1967

              None of these things are insurmountable. Just expensive to duplicate and will take time to train up the staff.

              Take the recent Glasgow helicopter crash. That is being investigated by an agency down in Hampshire. There will be thousands of similar agencies and organisations that Scotland will either have to replicate or get England to do for them.

              • MichtyMe

                Everything does not need to be replicated, the Scots Gov could contract out stuff, if it thought that was better value, DVLA in Wales would probably glad to do the work on a cheap rate rather than lose it.

                • Eddie

                  Massive assumption there that the DVLA would offer an independent Scotland a cheaper rate for licences than England – something that would be illegal.

                  The DVLA is not a gun for hire – I don’t think they are legally allowed to do the car licence work for foreign countries.

                  Scotland would probably outsource everything to cheapie China, to desperately try to not run out of cash.

                  All industries would have to leave – esp as Scotland would be outside the EU. So all those defence industries, the passport offices, the BBC call centres etc that now employ so many in Scotland all gone south.

                  Maybe Shetland and Orkney could claim independence too eh?

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  I am sure somebody else will point out that offering Scotland a “cheap rate” compared to England would be illegal. Back to square one.

              • ChuckieStane

                Is England going for Indy too or is rUK going to pick up whether the UK left of by confusing England and the UK all the time?

              • DWWolds

                And if England were to do so the Scots would, presumably, have to pay.

            • HJ777

              Quite right, they are not insurmountable, but neither are they cost-free to surmount.

              Curiously, the SNP’s white paper, however, does not assign any costs to these whatsoever.

            • Alexsandr

              no but they cost money. And Scotland should pay the whole cost. Why should everyone else pay? -we don’t have a say.

          • MichtyMe

            There have been many GB institution that have been split in recent decades, British Rail for one, can remember long time ago Unionists claiming you could not conceivably have two systems on the island, we probably have twenty now.

            • Alexsandr

              yes, but who pays for the split?

              • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                Sorry, cybernats do not do ‘detail’.

              • ChuckieStane

                Scotland will pay as necessary. Independence will be an expensive process but necessary for Scotland’s future development. Those of us who support indy realise and accept there will be costs.
                But there will of course be costs for EWNI too. Those who oppose indy generally claim Scotland to be a leech and the UK’s fabulous wealth so whatever the short term costs everyone is a winner 😉

                • HJ777

                  “Those who oppose indy generally claim Scotland to be a leech”

                  Do they? The majority of Scots (if polls are to be believed) oppose independence. Do most Scots think that Scotland is a ‘leech’? I suspect that most Scots would take great offence at your suggestion.

                  The short-to-medium term costs of separation would be very costly for Scotland. You admit this. Why does Salmond’s (very long and supposedly detailed) white paper not admit this and make an estimate of likely costs?

      • Eddie

        ‘Scotland has (some) legitimate grievances about the current constitutional settlement. ‘
        So do England and Wales, whose taxpayers (incl the poorest) pay taxes that go to give Scotland 10% public spending then they get!

        • Wessex Man

          er, no Wales currently get 8% more spent per head of population more than England.

      • http://english-pensioner.blogspot.co.uk/ english_pensioner

        England also has some legitimate grievances, such as Scottish MPs voting at Westminster on purely English matters; matters for which in Scotland they have devolved responsibility. No one seems in a hurry to sort them out.
        If Salmond really wants Scottish Independence, he should have insisted that all the English had a vote!

        • Zeus

          How cares? there are over 10X the amount of English MPs than Scottish ones, so the impact is nothing.

          • HJ777

            Wrong again.

            There are 59 Scottish MPs and 502 English ones.

            So there are only 8.5 times the number of English MPs as Scottish ones.

            But then, as we have so often seen from the CyberNats – they really don’t do numbers.

            • Zeus

              Westminster has 650 MPs, 533 in England, 40 in Wales, 59 in Scotland, and 18 in Northern Ireland. It is physically impossible for Scottish and other ‘non-English’ to outvote English MPs and force anything.

              Westminster is an english talking shop, always has been always will be.

              • HJ777

                So you admit that you got it wrong when you claimed that there are over 10 times the number of English MPs as Scottish?

                As for Westminster simply being “an English talking shop” you appear to have overlooked the fact that our last Prime Minister and our last two Chancellors were Scottish. Or are you going to try to tell me that they had no influence on government?

                Frankly, however absurd your next assertion, it will no longer surprise me.

                • Zeus

                  Did anyone vote for Gordon Brown? Blair sold out his Scottish soul to England long ago…hence his weird estuary english accent.

                • HJ777

                  Obviously they did, since he was elected as an MP, just like other MPs.

                  And I’d say he had quite a lot of influence, contrary to your assertion, as both Chancellor (mostly) and PM.

                  You talk complete rubbish.

                • Zeus

                  Did the British electorate vote for Gordon Brown as PM or not?

                • HJ777

                  Nobody ever gets to vote for the PM.

                  You vote for your local MP. Don’t you know how Parliament works?

                  Everyone knew that Brown would be chancellor if Labour won the 1997 election though. Of course, he didn’t have any influence though, did he, because he was a Scottish MP.

                  You really are a fool. Fortunately, most Scots aren’t.

                • Zeus

                  Duuuhh. No one voted Labour in power with Brown, in fact they voted Cameron in when given the chance.

                • HJ777

                  So Scots weren’t PM or Chancellor or, indeed, any positions of power in the last government because Westminster is simply “an English talking shop”?

                  Is that still your contention?

                  Funny, because I seem to remember both Brown and Darling having quite a lot to say for themselves in Parliament.

                • ItinerantView

                  Tony Blair has a soul ?

          • HJ777

            So you can use the edit button then to change your previous claim. You’re slightly less of an imbecile than I imagined. Still an imbecile, of course, but just slightly less of one (abeit dishonest).

            • Zeus

              I say old boy, is something wrong with you?

              • Colonel Mustard

                I think the words on your avatar mean we can safely ignore anything you might have to ‘contribute’ on this subject.

                • telemachus

                  Ad hominem from the Coffee House DINA

                • Iain Hill

                  DINA? Ah, dere is no alternative!

          • vieuxceps2

            Scottish MPs are mainly Labour. It affects the outcome of any general election and as England votes more Torily it bends things Labour’s way.

        • Iain Hill

          Supporters of independence would largely agree.

        • allymax bruce

          Lord huv mercy; what a load of whinging, cringing, pathetic greetin-faced bairns yoos lot are!
          I’m beginning tae think you-lot are just mean-spirited greetin-faced whingers because us Scots are getting oota yer horrible Westminster ‘charade’, while yoos can’t change your Westminster Neo-Liberal tri-party mafia!

          • anncalba

            Without the votes of the Scottish Labour mp numpties, the whole make up of the Westminster parliament would have been different during the Blair/Brown years. What Scots don’t understand is that they spend far more time talking about the English than the English ever think about them; but the independence debate has changed that a bit, and the English are starting to ask why Scottish mps have been voting on English affairs, for example. Scots really have to get their head’s round the idea, that the result of the Scottish referendum is a matter of indeference to most English people, and the whingeing from folks like you transforms that indeference to “good riddance”.

            • allymax bruce

              ‘the whingeing from people like [me]’, has had enough of impoverished lives, bedroom tax, Poll Tax, illegal wars, Class-separate policies that engender Class-separate society, being handed down from generation to generation of poor Scots, because of (your), Westminster Tri-Partite mafia impoverishing, enslaving, and embattling us; we’ve had enough! So, thanks for your ‘understanding’, and ‘good riddance’ it is!
              Oh, and as for your ‘Scotch Labour mp’s; you can have them; we don’t want them. All the Unionist politicians in Scotland are ugly, cringing, hate-inciting hypocrites; Ruth Davidson tells Lord Lang that she ‘deplores any intemperate language’, but she, Ruth Davidson, highly intemperate & controversial Leader of the Scotch Conservatives, has herself been ordered to ‘withdraw’ many deplorable & intemperate remarks against Scotland’s Democratically elected First Minister! This is the credibility your Unionist politicians have in Scotland; ZERO!

          • HJ777

            Who elected you to speak for Scots?

            You are not representative of Scots. You represent only yourself – and you come out of that with little credit.

            • allymax bruce

              Having ‘no credibility’ from scumbag journos like you is a compliment; not an insult! In-deed, I no-more speak for anybody, than does Paul Kavanagh, Kenneth Roy, Pat Kane, Robin McAlpine, Mike Small; all, of whom are happy to steal or disclaim my work! It must be something about journos/media/tv types; they all have that self-appointed smugness that belies their true faults as human beings. In psychoanalysis, it’s called a ‘false-self’. Again, in-deed, it seems to be a trait of all the media to have a ‘hateful personality’, but they seem to thrive on it; a perverted pleasure of ‘sorts’! I’ve got used to your hate now; it doesn’t bother me anymore. In-deed, God tells me to love my neighbour & fellow Man, so I do; regardless of your riddled & rankoured ugly cringing souls. It’s people like you that have so much worldly hate in your hearts, it diminishes the light of God’s Spirit; patently obvious yours has almost been completely extinguished. I’ve noticed all your comments on this forum are hateful; you must have some repressed anxiety trying to come out, but you are denying it; turning it into a deeply harmful manifested hate; of which, you attempt to disown by ‘projection’. You will soon be another mean-spirited cringing old soul; staring at ‘the Light’, cringing ‘bah-humbug’! When I was a little boy, me & my pals used to play ‘goodies & baddies’; I always wanted to be a goody, and there were more than enough that wanted to be baddies. Seems we are still functioning these childhood fixations!

      • DWWolds

        On fairly simple point, would an independent Scotland require its citizens to pay the BBC TV licence?

        • MichtyMe

          No, but pay a licence for Scottish Broadcasting Corporation and also get BBC on digital like Ireland.

      • allymax bruce

        Not ‘Secession’!
        It’s a ‘Dissolution’ of a political contract that barely exists between two unequal Countries.
        There’s a massive legal difference between the two words!
        Why do you persist with idiotic word-use, that only shows your comments are severely maliciously construed?

        • http://tangentreality.blogspot.com/ tangentreality

          Barely exists? Apart from the fact that they share a legislature, a legal framework, a military, a currency & central bank, a head of state, international legal status & treaty obligations, a language and a culture?

          England and Scotland have been part of the same nation for 300 years, which is the United Kingdom. You might be offended by the connotations of secession, but that doesn’t mean that the term is inaccurate.

          I have absolutely no malicious intent towards Scotland or Scots. It is right and proper that they should have this debate, as any free-thinking people ought. I don’t think their interests would be served by seceding, and I think the SNP are being very disingenuous in how they are framing the debate.

          • allymax bruce

            You are wrong. I think you are being disingenuous in how you are framing your ‘arguments’; are you sincerely disingenuous, or are you ignorant of the ‘vile & disgusting’ hate being pumped out by your Westminster-controlled BBC, STV, ITV, C4, SKY, ‘broadsheets’, tabloids usual propaganda outlets?? Your comment now lacks credibility; but I will accommodate you, regardless. The reason I use the word ‘Dissolution’ is because it is the correct ‘legal instrument’ that will be used to ‘dissolve’ the political contract, (Treaty of Union 1707); where-as, the lazy, vacuous & incorrect instrument in Law is ‘Secession’. Moreover, Dissolution is a stronger ‘instrument in Law’, than Secession; Scotland’s Independence is Guaranteed! As for the institutional bureaucracies you mention, Scotland already had all these said ‘bureaucratic institutions’ pre-Treaty of Union 1707, and as the political contract is dissolved, the same ‘bureaucratic institutions’ will eventually be re-instated under Scotland’s sole auspice & autonomy. The long & short of it is, Westminster is a Tri-Party mafia, that hold the peoples of ‘Britian’ to ransom; constantly bombarding us with lies, scaremongering, wars, and a Class-separate society; the last 300 years has been horrendous for Scots & Scotland. You can weep over your ‘privileged Britain’ position, but I won’t.

            • http://tangentreality.blogspot.com/ tangentreality

              I’ve obviously touched a nerve!

              Vile and disgusting hate? Get a grip – Scots are better represented in the media than the English, relative to the population.

              Of course Scotland had institutions pre-1707 – my point is that since then, they have been one and the same with England’s. And splitting them after 300 years of political union is no easy matter.

              I would hardly describe the last 300 years as horrendous for Scots. Scotland is not a colony that has been exploited, it is a member of a political union.

              I can see that, despite facts, you won’t agree with me. That’s fine – oddly enough, I don’t consider that my opinion requires your validation.

              • allymax bruce

                “Vile and disgusting hate? Get a grip. Scots are better represented in the media than the English”
                May be so, but that still doesn’t make the MSM right to do it! Being impoverished to a Second World degree, is less devasting than to a Third World degree; but it still is wrong in a First World Nation! When the political elite steal the Nations’ resources to trough themselves First World ‘privileges’, but impoverish the people who are ‘forced to elect’ one of the culprit Tri-Party mafia, then you know your Politiics ‘stinks’!

                I believe you are sincere in your ignorance, but, again, that doesn’t make it right. Like I say, the fact you don’t know what’s going on here in Scotland straddles your ‘arguments’ wit a lack of credibility. Anyway, I take it you now concede your incorrect word-use of ‘Secession’ is wrong, and my correct word-use of ‘Dissolution’ is correct!

        • ButcombeMan

          I fail to see why you are quite so opposed to the word “secession”, surely that is the very precise English word describing what you propose and support? Can you please explain why it is not applicable?

          secession
          sɪˈsɛʃ(ə)n/
          noun
          noun: secession; plural noun: secessions
          1.
          the action of withdrawing formally from membership of a federation or body, especially a political state.
          “the republics want secession from the union”

          • allymax bruce

            Hello ButcombeMan, (see, I’m being nice!), the reason I use the word ‘Dissolution’ is because it is the correct ‘legal instrument’ that will be used to ‘dissolve’ the political contract, (Treaty of Union 1707); where-as, the lazy, vaccuous & incorrect instrument in Law is ‘Secession’. Moreover, Dissolution is a stronger ‘instrument in Law’, than Secession; Scotland’s Independence is Guaranteed; no ‘failing’ to understand that?

            • ButcombeMan

              What is proposed is not a dissolution, that implies agreement by both parties or a mutually agreed divorce supervised by an external authority, after a breakdown of a relationship ,

              Since outside Scotland, no one is being consulted and the UK government has not voted for a dissolution, I think secession is actually the correct term for what Scotland is proposing and voting on.

              It does not really matter, but your sensitivity over the word intrigued me.

              • allymax bruce

                The Treaty of Union can be dissolved by either ‘partner’ of the Union contract; there is no pre-requisite for ‘agreement’ by both parties; only that which you ‘invent in your head’! Moreover, seeing as both the Scottish Government & the Westminster Government have already signed The Edinburgh Agreement, it seems even your ‘delusional intrigue’ has faults!

                • ButcombeMan

                  You are missing the obvious. One party is not and will never, ask to dissolve the Union.

                  if it happens it will be secession

                • allymax bruce

                  Your ignorance is now shown to be insincere; your disingenuous! “One should not reveal one’s secrets, since one does not know if and when one may need them again. The essential {Westminster Gov’] Leadership secret does not depend on on particular intelligence. Rather it depends on a remarkebly stupid thick-headedness. The [Westminster Gov’] follow the principle that when one lies, one should lie big, and stick to it. They keep up their lies, even at the risk of looking ridiculous.”(Goebels 1941 Churchil’s Lie Factory). This is you, Sir!

                • ButcombeMan

                  I do not understand your response. It seems that having lost the debating point in grand fashion you seek to confuse. That or you have been on the drammies.

                  Scotland is voting on seceeding, That is just fact.

                  rUK is not having a vote therefore the rUK population is not a willing partner to your leaving.

                  The rUK population is not a party to it at all except through the government of the day

                  If your vote is a yes, rUK government of the time, will allow you to leave in civilised fashion. It will be consenting to your wishes, not requesting dissolution. It is an important point, especially for those who vote NO in Scotland and wish to retain British citizenship even after a Yes vote. My sympathies will be with them. Forced into a Jockistan they do not believe in and which very likely could affect their economic well being.

                  The rUk parliament has not thought it necessary to consult the rest of the UK population.

    • Nicholas chuzzlewit

      Agreed and any tendering for work by the UK government should be thrown open to ‘all bidders’ with Scottish entities applying for any contracts such as mtx of RN ships etc etc in competition with the rest of the World. We can probably get things done more cheaply and to a better standard by opening such contracts up to competition.

      • HJ777

        In fact, in the unlikely event that (i) Scotland does secede and (ii) the UK government does decide not to repatriate RN warship construction, then the UK government would be obliged to put the contract out to open tender under EU rules. It could not simply be awarded without tender to a shipyard in another country.

        • MichtyMe

          No, that is not right, no requirement to tender even if placed outwith the member state. The rUK would want the contr

          • HJ777

            Wrong, as usual.

    • Iain Hill

      The answer is that maintaining some existing cross border arrangements is not about English grace and favour, but because they will continue to benefit both parties.

      Please do not be blinded by noisy Unionist propaganda. The 1707 Union was a short term fix which has run its course, not the Ten Commandments!

      • HJ777

        If you want to secede, kindly do not go around telling England what will be to its benefit afterwards.

        If you want to have a say on what will benefit both parties, then there is clear way to do so – stay in the union, because that is what the union enables.

    • AndrewMelville

      …and all government agencies, defence establishments, offices etc. should be relocated into Scotland.

      What appalling juvenile analysis! It is Inglish nyaffs such as yourself who provide the SNP with its best ammunition.

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