Coffee House

Osborne and Alexander deny Scotland could keep the pound

29 March 2014

29 March 2014

After Nick Watt’s stunning scoop this morning on an unnamed minister saying that an independent Scotland could keep the pound after all, George Osborne and Danny Alexander have released this joint statement:

‘A currency union will not work because it would not be in Scotland’s interests and would not be in the UK’s interests. Scotland would have no control over mortgage rates, and would be binding its hands on tax and funding for vital public services. The Scottish Government are proposing to divorce the rest of the UK but want to keep the joint bank account and credit card.

The UK would not put its taxpayers at risk of bailing out a foreign country and its banks. Parliament wouldn’t pass it, and the people wouldn’t accept it. Any suggestion to the contrary is wrong.’

What does this mean for the ‘No’ campaign? It makes it much, much easier for Alex Salmond to claim that all the warnings made by an overwhelmingly negative campaign are simply ‘campaign rhetoric’ which will melt away if Scotland does vote yes. When the model of independence Salmond wants isn’t so different from the devolution that Westminster parties are inching towards agreeing as an alternative offer to independence, warnings about currency union are key to convincing voters that the risk is too great for a relatively small change.

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As for the unnamed minister in Watt’s piece, I’d be surprised if they remain unnamed and in their job after this.

 


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Show comments
  • Andrian Harsono

    Thank you. It frustrates me so much when the SNP keeps arguing that it would be in the best interest of rUK to enter a currency union with Scotland.

    For a currency union to occur, both sides need to agree. Given what Osborne has already said, a currency union can no longer be guaranteed. No matter what Scotland say, rUK will have an impossible time convincing voters that they should let their central bank be lender of last resort for what is effectively a foreign country. All this time, the SNP is refusing to tell the country what the plan B on currency is going to be.

    Oh, and by the way, this article heading needs to be re-phrased. Strictly speaking, Scotland can use the Pound like how Panama use the US Dollar as their official currency, but without a currency union with the UK they will not have a lender of last resort and even if a currency union can be agreed upon, the BoE will still be setting interest rates on their behalf.

    • Peter C

      Andrian

      You said………

      “the SNP is refusing to tell the country what the plan B on currency is going to be.”

      This is not factual………

      Alex Salmond is sticking to his “preferred” currency option, he has on many occasions repeated the fact that their are other currency options in the White Paper the SNP published with …….Plan B, C, D, & E

      Anyone with any concerns as to what the fall back plan B is only needs to read the White Paper!!

  • HJ777

    The whole Guardian story is simply implausible.

    “The minister said: “You simply cannot imagine Westminster abandoning the people of Scotland.”

    After secession, Westminster would not be in any way responsible for Scotland. It’s job would be to do its best for the rest of the UK. It would be Scotland that had abandoned the union of its own volition.

    Unless the Guardian can prove that its story is true there is no reason to believe it.

    A post-secession currency union would never happen. Anyone who believes otherwise is simply a fantasist.

    • Andrian Harsono

      Well said, thank you.

  • swatnan

    There is nothing to stop the Scots from calling their currency’ the Scottish Pound’ even if it has no connection with the Pound Sterling. For example many countries have the ‘….. Dollar’. But there should be a competition to name the new independent currency. Anyway why are they bothering; just call it the Euro.

    • Denis_Cooper

      There was a Scottish pound, which was replaced by the English pound sterling in 1707:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pound_Scots

      “The pound Scots (Modern Scots: Pund Scots, Middle Scots: Pund Scottis) was the unit of currency in the Kingdom of Scotland before the kingdom unified with the Kingdom of England in 1707. It was introduced by David I, in the 12th century, on the model of English and French money, divided into 20 shillings, each of 12 pence. The Scottish currency was later debased relative to sterling and, by the time of James III, the pound sterling was valued at four pounds Scots.

      In addition to the pound Scots, silver coins were issued denominated in merk, worth 13 shillings 4 pence (two-thirds of a pound Scots). When James VI became King James I of England in 1603, the coinage was reformed to closely match that of England, with 12 pounds Scots equal to the pound sterling. In 1707, the pound Scots was replaced by the pound sterling at a rate of 12 to 1, although the pound Scots continued to be used in Scotland as a unit of account for most of the 18th century.”

      There’s no reason at all why an independent Scotland should not revert to the pound Scots, but hopefully worth more than it was before.

      • David Booth.

        Just send your suggestion to Alex Salmond, perhaps he will then stop pestering the rUK to use Sterling.

    • David Booth.

      The problem is not the name but the value and trust we put into a currency. Call it a Scottish Pound if you want but it will not be backed by the BOE therefor people will not trust it, that’s why Alex Salmond is demanding that Scotland use the Pound, he knows a separate currency will not stand. The Euro? forget it, just go to the back of the line.
      If you want to know how currency is valued just ask your employer to pay your salary in the Zimbabwean Dollar.

  • Jambo25

    Incidentally, it appears that the original idea for the no CU wheeze came from Darling and one, Andrew Dunlop. He was one of the Thatcherite fan boys who came up with the Poll Tax idea back in the 80s.

    • Denis_Cooper

      Why do you refer to “the no CU wheeze”?

      The “wheeze” is the SNP notion that Scotland can separate from the rest of the UK and become a foreign country but still have the same currency union as before, and moreover the people in the rest of the UK should have no say on whether or not that happened.

      • Jambo25

        Look at the Nick Watt story and the other surrounding material. This CU story was brought forward as a campaign strategy. That’s what the entire story points to.

        • Michael Mckeown

          According to who? Do you see anyone here, or anywhere else online, from the rest of the UK that supports a currency union?

          • Jambo25

            I don’t think ‘here’ represents any one or place bar ‘here’.

            • Michael Mckeown

              Show me one commentator from the rest of the UK that supports a currency union?

              • Jambo25

                Well the unnamed minister for one but there is a series of people who are academic high flyers who would certainly support a currency union. Professors David Simpson and Mirrlees for a start. Mirrlees has a Nobel Prize in Economics and Simpson was advisor to Standard Life. That’s 3.

                • Wessex Man

                  You can line up all the Professors you like we English want you to win your referendum and don’t want to share our currency with what will be a Scottish Soviet Republic with you as Economics Minister.

                • Jambo25

                  Now you are merely raving.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Well 3 out of 55 million is a start, I suppose.

                • Jambo25

                  I answered your question. You don’t like the answer as it makes you look foolish.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Not really, 3 people out of 55 million is hardly making a point.

        • Denis_Cooper

          Nobody in the rest of the UK ever thought or suggested that an independent Scotland would continue to have the pound sterling as its currency. That stupid idea came from the SNP, and we know why, just as we know why the SNP decided that it would be a good idea to keep the Queen as Head of State. Do you or do you not want to be independent?

          • Jambo25

            That stupid idea came from a council of economic advisors, 2 of whom are Nobel Prize winners in Economics. Your qualifications are what exactly?

            • Denis_Cooper

              Ah, Nobel Prize winners. I recollect that It was a Nobel Prize winner who said the euro was a jolly good idea.

              You haven’t answered my question: do you or do you not want to be independent?

              • Jambo25

                In currency my preference would be to get into the Euro. That limits independence but then rUK wouldn’t be truly independent either as it would have to operate within the limits imposed by the money markets and other external pressures. As for the monarchy: I couldn’t care less, one way or the other. Incidentally, the Euro seems to be doing rather well at present. It appears to be a harder currency than the £.

                • Denis_Cooper

                  Then why are you making such a bloody fuss about being told that you could not have a currency union with the continuing UK? Be honest for a change, get out there and tell the voters in Scotland that they shouldn’t want to keep that “millstone” anyway, they should want a currency union with Germany and Greece and Slovenia etc etc, that would be much better.

                • Jambo25

                  I’m not an SNP politician.

  • Jambo25

    The Sunday Herald, this morning, seems to be suggesting that the source was Tory: not Cable or any other Lib Dem. Apparently SLAB and the Lib Dems are incandescent as they have been made to look complete chumps, in Scotland, by association.

  • ChuckieStane

    Oliver Letwin should have an interesting day at work tomorrow.

  • starfish

    Strange how a statement by the Chancellor and the economic leads of the three major parties is bluster yet unattributed comments by an unknown minister with perhaps no connection to economic policy is treated as gospel

    • Michael Mckeown

      Welcome to the world of the Scottish separatists.

    • Andrian Harsono

      Well said.

  • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

    Must say it is disappointing and troubling to read so many angry, near racist, comments herein, and to witness the ignorance upon which they are borne.

    I despair, for surely this schism has revealed that the current political arrangement is unmanageable and irredeemable .

    Let us then end this moribund union and be done with it.

    • Michael Mckeown

      I haven’t seen one ‘near racist’ comment, when did the ‘Scots’ become a race anyway Chris?

      • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

        Good grief. One more time . . .

        http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/race?q=race

        1.2 A group of people sharing the same culture, history, language, etc.; an ethnic group:we Scots were a bloodthirsty race then

        http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/race
        Definition of RACE
        2
        a : a family, tribe, people, or nation belonging to the same stockb : a class or kind of people unified by shared interests, habits, or characteristics

        http://www.thefreedictionary.com/Race
        2. A group of people united or classified together on the basis of common history, nationality, or geographic distribution: the German race.

        http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/race
        5. any people united by common history, language, cultural traits, etc.: the Dutch race.

        • Michael Mckeown

          OK Chris thanks for clarifying we are all part of the British race so now show some evidence of anyone being racist towards us (obviously you can exclude the SNP wanting to discriminate against English students as thats attempted racism).

          • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

            No, not the British race, the Scots race Micheal. You know, the one you did not know was a race. The one for whom you seem to have only contempt.

            Definition
            “1.2 A group of people sharing the same culture, history, language, etc.; an ethnic group:we Scots were a bloodthirsty race then”

            • Michael Mckeown

              Yes we, the British, share the same language and culture and history.

    • Fergus Pickering

      Disloiking the SNP is not racist. The Scots are not a race.

      • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

        Prime example of the ignorance I reference in the original post.

        Please understand that I do not have the time to educate you in all areas where you are deficient. It is incumbent upon you to have a minimum elementary understanding of the facts before engaging in debate.

        Nevertheless, to help you I will make an exception this one time.

        http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/race?q=race

        1.2 A group of people sharing the same culture, history, language, etc.; an ethnic group:we Scots were a bloodthirsty race then

        http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/race
        Definition of RACE
        2
        a : a family, tribe, people, or nation belonging to the same stockb : a class or kind of people unified by shared interests, habits, or characteristics

        http://www.thefreedictionary.com/Race
        2. A group of people united or classified together on the basis of common history, nationality, or geographic distribution: the German race.

        http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/race
        5. any people united by common history, language, cultural traits, etc.: the Dutch race.

        • Fergus Pickering

          So – the Cornish race, the Orcadian race, the Protestant Irish race.

  • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

    “When the model of independence Salmond wants isn’t so different from the devolution that Westminster parties are inching towards agreeing as an alternative offer to independence, warnings about currency union are key to convincing voters that the risk is too great for a relatively small change.”

    Alright Isabel, how about you back that ludicrous statement with evidence?

    What’s that, you can’t? Well of course you can’t. The statement is either borne of mendacity or ignorance. I will leave it for you to tell us which it is. I suspect it is the latter, the cartoon understanding of an ingenue.

    An independent Scotland would control Excise duty, air passenger duty, VAT, capital gains tax, oil and gas taxation, national insurance, income tax, corporation tax, competition law, consumer protection, industry regulation, employment legislation, the minimum wage, energy markets and regulation, environmental regulations. And of course Scotland would have the power to expel Trident and avoid involvement in illegal wars and the unnecessary deaths of its sons and daughters.

    Now tell us Isabel about this fantasy devolution that the Union parties are “inching toward”?

    The truth is there is no convergence, there is divergence, and even if the parties were joined in common cause, the would not be offering anything remotely like this.

  • Tony Quintus

    The Scots Nats are deluded, why do they think that any rUK government is going to give them a sweetheart deal on seperation? Whatever the Crown, through its institutions of government at Westminster, offers Scotland as a seperation settlement the Scots will have to accept or the Crown will not grant seperation. The Scottish Parliament doesn’t rule Scotland, neither does Westminster, the Crown does, and the Crown decides where and how such matters are to be settled. Any attempt to subvert or circumvent the Crowns decision to reserve all matters of Devolution and Independence to the Parliament of Westmeinster would be a material breech of the 1998 Scotland act, and would be grounds for the dissolution of the Scottish Parliament.
    So All this bluster by the Nats that Scotland can simply walk away from Debt (et al) if it doesn’t like the settlement on offer is hogwash, Scotland simply hasn’t been granted the power to do so by the Crown.
    Oh, and on an associated not, the fact that HM treasury has told the world that all UK debts will remain with rUK doesn’t mean Scotland isn’t going to be liable for its fair share, it will, it would just be created as a single debt to HM Government rUK instead of trying to pick and choose which of the international debts to make the responsibility of an Independent Scotland, ’cause most UK creditors wouldn’t want to be transferred.

    • Alec

      Oh, and on an associated not, the fact that HM treasury has told the world that all UK debts will remain with rUK doesn’t mean Scotland isn’t going to be liable for its fair share, it will, it would just be created as a single debt to HM Government rUK instead of trying to pick and choose which of the international debts to make the responsibility of an Independent Scotland, ’cause most UK creditors wouldn’t want to be transferred.

      That would make sense. D’you have a source for the specifics?

      ~alec

      • Jambo25

        The Treasury did, indeed, guarantee to cover all UK debt. It doesn’t mean that Scotland would take no part of the debt it just means that rUK would have to get an iScotland to accept a share through bilateral negotiations. Negotiations have at least 2 sides and all sides normally want something out of them.
        Incidentally, a number of disinterested academic observers have already noted that by expecting or actually demanding that it keep most of the diplomatic and other assets of the old UK, rUK would be setting itself up as the sole successor or actual continuation state of the old UK and would inherit all the liabilities as well.

        • Alec

          Has the ‘leak’ been found?

          Incidentally, a number of disinterested academic observers have already noted that by expecting or actually demanding that it keep most of the diplomatic and other assets of the old UK, […]

          You say that as if it’s an unfair expectation.

          […] rUK would be setting itself up as the sole successor or actual continuation state of the old UK and would inherit all the liabilities as well.

          No-one serious has disputed that. An independent Scotland could walk away with no debts… and therefore no credit history to compare to her refusal to accept debts. Won’t look good.

          ~alec

          • Jambo25

            1) I’m not claiming fairness or unfairness. I’m simply stating a case. When states dissolve its sometimes the case that one part of the old state demands to be treated as sole successor or continuation state. rUK appears to be preparing to do this in the case of a ‘Yes’ vote. If it does; then coupled with the Treasury acceptance of formal responsibility for all UK debt it takes on responsibility for all liabilities as well. This is what happened when the USSR dissolved.
            2) Don’t be too sure that the money markets would ‘punish’ a debt free iScotland. They could see the Scottish move as being sensible as opposed to an emotional rUK response and judge an entirely debt free state as a much better risk than one owing £1.6 trillion.

            • Alec

              I’m not claiming fairness or unfairness. I’m simply stating a case.

              It looks more like you’re leaving a thought hanging in the air.

              Facts can be used to mean anything that is even remotely true. It’s how they join-up which matters.

              Don’t be too sure that the money markets would ‘punish’ a debt free iScotland.

              I am, because your definition of debt free is emphatically not a good credit rating.

              ~alec

              • Jambo25

                So, you can speak for the international money markets now. Clever boy.

            • Denis_Cooper

              The UK Treasury has not said that it would allow Scotland to walk away from its share of the debt, it has simply said that gilts investors can be sure that they would be paid even if Scotland did try to wriggle out of its share of the debt.

              • Jambo25

                The simple point is that if Scotland votes ‘Yes’ then the rUK Treasury will only get Scotland to take a share of debt repayment through negotiation.

                • Denis_Cooper

                  Of course there would be negotiations, but a continuation of the currency union would not figure in those negotiations and nor would Scotland being allowed to just walk away from its share of the UK’s national debt.

                • Jambo25

                  You know this how?

                • Denis_Cooper

                  How? Because I’ve got a brain.

                • Jambo25

                  Which clearly is not functioning efficiently here.

            • HJ777

              Don’t be so silly.

              The public sector assets – not just the debt – of the current UK would also remain with the UK then if Scotland were to secede. So walk away from any responsibility for debt and Scotland would also be walking away from any asset ownership – it wouldn’t even own the Holyrood parliament building as that would remain the property of the rest of the UK.

              Do you seriously think that the rest of the UK would hand over assets while allowing Scotland to simply avoid any responsibility for debt?

              Who do you think you are kidding? Do you think most Scots are stupid enough to believe the stuff that you come up with?

              • Jambo25

                Then try it. See how many schools and hospitals in Scotland rUK would get.

                • HJ777

                  You twit.

                  The state doesn’t own any schools.

                  It does own a large proportion of infrastructure though and the Scottish Parliament. The idea that a seceded Scotland could just walk away from debt and simultaneously choose to take whatever UK government assets it pleases is pure ScotNat fantasy.

                  If you are going about telling people this you are being totally dishonest. You may fool a few people but most Scots are too sensible to be taken in by such idiocy. But then idiocy seems to be at the heart of the “Yes” campaign. They will tell any lies and stoop to any dishonesty to try to buy votes.

                • Jambo25

                  SAS helicoptering in then to seize them

                • HJ777

                  No need. The UK state can do what it likes with assets it owns.

                  It would need to be the SNP and its ilk that would need to illegally seize them if it didn’t like it. Or it could try nationalisation without compensation legislation – which would make it an international pariah, would certainly scupper any EU membership aspirations and would halt any inward investment as investors could just see that their assets could be arbitrarily seized. The new Argentina is your ambition, I suppose?

                  You really don’t think things through, do you?

        • HJ777

          In which case, the rest of the UK would simply keep all UK-owned assets – such as the Scottish rail and road networks (toll booths on every road, anyone?) and the Holyrood parliament (the rent would be high).

          That is why “walking away from the debt” would simply not happen unless the SNP’s plan is to destroy the Scottish economy.

          • Jambo25

            Unfortunately that’s not how it worked when the USSR was dissolved which is the most recent and similar instance but, hey, go on imagining that.

            • HJ777

              You are a fantasist.

              Russia agreed to take on the debt because it also retained certain assets in other countries of the former USSR.

              Yugoslavia is a better example – the debt was apportioned to the various parts.

              I know that you are keen on forcing economic ruin on Scotland but some of us give the welfare of Scotland and the rest of the UK a higher priority.

    • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

      “The Scottish Parliament doesn’t rule Scotland, neither does Westminster, the Crown does …”

      Now, come on Tony, you don’t really believe that nonsense, do you?

      “… the fact that HM treasury has told the world that all UK debts will remain with rUK doesn’t mean Scotland isn’t going to be liable for its fair share”

      Yes it does, that is exactly what it means. The Treasury only restated the blindingly obvious, that if England was indeed to be the continuator state, that is the entity that would continue to pay its debt.

      If you peruse Part IV of the UK Government’s Legal Opinion of 2013, HMG went to extraordinary lengths to argue England is the continuator state. They assert that Scotland was “extinguished” when it was incorporated into England in 1707, that England continued, and that the titles “UK” and “England” are synonymous, describing the same continuing unitary state.

      They argue that therefore Scotland is part of the territory of the continuator state of England/UK, a part which will secede from the mother country of which it has been a province for the past 307 years. Scotland will then be a newly born state with no past and with no right to the assets of the UK but they insist, liable for it debts.

      Do you really think that’s going to fly in Scotland? Aint gonna happen.

      As for the ridiculous narrative that Scotland would be a pariah in the credit markets, that has been demolished by Standard & Poors which predicts Scotland being the 18th richest country in the world have a higher credit rating that the current UK.

      You are of course entitled to your own opinion. You are not however entitled to your own facts.

      • Tony Quintus

        It doesn’t matter what I believe, it matters what the law states, and until a bill to end the Union passes in Westminster, the organ of government to which the Crown has devolved all powers regarding scottish independence, Scotlan will not become independent, and the contents of that bill will have to be pro rUK or it will not pass.
        Scotland will take the terms it is offered or it will not become independent, it is just that simple.

        • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

          You’ve drunk the Kool-Aid Tony of the myth of the supreme sovereignty of that parliament at Westminster, Tony. Please take the time to read the Articles of Union, and the relevant case law. You might also consider setting aside some time to mull over the relevant international law.

          Lesson One: In Scotland the People are sovereign.

          Should Scots vote for independence in September, the Government of Scotland has all the authority it needs to dissolve the Union. Now we can complete this process the easy way or the hard way, but either way it WILL happen, and there is precisely nothing the parliament in England can do to prevent it.

          Scots law does not recognise the primacy of the London in matters of Scots constitutional law. Again, in case you missed it: In Scotland the People are sovereign – not the Crown, not any parliament, but the PEOPLE.

          It’s called democracy Tony, and it is a principle and practice the people of England might consider adopting.

          • Tony Quintus

            No it doesn’t, The 1998 scotland act, which devolved power from the crown to the Scottish parliament reserved all powers relating to further devolution and independence to westminster, any attempt by the Scottish parliament to take unilateral action on independence, regardless of the outcome of the vote, would violate the limits placed upon it in the act and would lead to the dissolution of the Scottish parliament.
            The Scottish people are not sovreign, they, like all in the UK, are crown subjects, and the Supreme court in london has the final say as regarding the legality of any devolution issue, the Scottish High Court of the Justiciary only trumps the Supreme court in CRIMINAL matters.
            Democracy only counts within the legal framework which provides it, it is the law which is paramount, and the law says Westminster will control any seperation agreement.

            • HJ777

              Not much point trying to reason with him, I’m afraid. He’s one of these CyberNats who believe what they want to believe, regardless of facts.

  • Tony Quintus

    When this “Minister” is found he should join Maria Miller on the reshuffle scrapheap, no matter who it is.

    • Fergus Pickering

      Perhaps he doesn’t exist – a shadow minister, as it were.

    • Wessex Man

      please please let it be Cable!

  • dalai guevara

    It amazes to follow these endless discussions beside the point.
    Scotland’s long term future lies in Frankfurt. That’s how it will end.
    Of course this cannot be asserted now, and frankly why should it? It has nothing to do with the matter of setting up an independent nation state.

  • komment

    I guess you haven’t arrived until you have your comments blocked by the panel.

  • komment

    Is this a real story?

  • Alec

    It makes it much, much easier for Alex Salmond to claim that all the warnings made by an overwhelmingly negative campaign are simply ‘campaign rhetoric’ which will melt away if Scotland does vote yes.

    Easier???

    ~alec

  • Denis_Cooper

    “Parliament wouldn’t pass it, and the people wouldn’t accept it.”

    I guess it is even more certain that the people, ie the people in the rest of the UK, not in Scotland, wouldn’t accept it than that Parliament wouldn’t pass it; so Parliament should pass an Act now saying that even if there was a “yes” vote, and even in the very unlikely event that Parliament did then change its mind on a currency union with Scotland the people of the continuing UK would be allowed the final decision in a referendum.

    • Michael Mckeown

      Its an obvious no, we will not tolerate a currency union with the EU of over half a billion people so its a no brainier we would not tolerate one with a bunch of separatists that attack us at every opportunity.

      • Denis_Cooper

        That’s why to make it absolutely clear to the Scots that it would not happen the UK Parliament should legislate to put any final decision into the hands of the people in the continuing UK. Otherwise there will always be this suspicion that the politicians don’t really mean what they say and they could change their minds.

        • Michael Mckeown

          The government has ruled it out, to me its as clear as can be and the only people having issues with the decision are the Scottish separatists who are in denial and because they are in denial if the government legislated for a no currency union they would still claim its a bluff and the act would be repelled as thats what people in denial do.

          • Denis_Cooper

            Obviously somebody within the government does not accept that the government has really ruled it out.

            That minister must be tracked down and sacked, and if he is an MP then preferably he should also be forced to resign his seat so that he could then look for other employment where a complete idiot can have a successful career.

            But to make it perfectly clear that it would not happen even if untrustworthy politicians did change their minds about it Parliament should legislate to put any final decision in the hands of the people of the continuing UK.

            Not legislate “for a no currency union”, as you put it, but legislate for any such proposal to be put to a final decision in a referendum held in the continuing UK.

            • Guest

              …..

            • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

              Meaningless since no Westminster Parliament can bind its successor to a specific course of action.

              • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                It would not have to because a currency union would represent financial suicide for the UK. That is why we chose not to join the Euro.

              • Denis_Cooper

                At this point I would normally explain how an Act could be entrenched against repeal unless the repeal was approved in a referendum, but in this particular case it wouldn’t be necessary because of the timings. Either the Act would become nugatory when the Scots voted against independence in September, or it would only be relevant during the period after a vote in favour of independence but before the final separation when the terms of that separation were being negotiated. If the Act was passed now with the solid support of all three of the main Westminster parties it is inconceivable that it would be repealed before the next general election and it is barely conceivable that it would be repealed in the months after the general election before the final separation took place. it wouldn’t be like some other Acts which should be entrenched against normal repeal for many years, it would only need to remain on the statute book for a maximum of two years or so.

                • Jambo25

                  Christian Wright is entirely correct and you are wrong. No UK Parliament can bind the hands of its successors. Its a basic rule of the UK’s unwritten but real constitution.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Thanks for confirming The Edinburgh Agreement is worthless.

                • Jambo25

                  In legal terms it is.

                • Denis_Cooper

                  Well, that is not the case because a Parliament could pass an Act stipulating that no later Act of repeal or amendment could come into force unless it had been approved by a referendum, and agreeing that the most trustworthy of the three parts of Parliament, the Queen, would stand guarantor for that, and that would be Parliament binding its own hands and giving the people the right to decide whether they should be unbound.

                  But as I point out that would not be necessary in this case, as the Act guaranteeing that UK citizens in the rest of the UK would have their decisive say on a proposed currency union with an independent Scotland would only have to remain on the statute book for a maximum of two years or so.

                  I can perfectly well understand why you wouldn’t like the idea that people in the UK outside Scotland should have any say on what happens.

                • Jambo25

                  Drivel. No parliament can bind its successors.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  He is pointing out that today’s government can make it so the next government can’t undo a decision without a qualified measure and he is correct.

                • Jambo25

                  No he is not.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Oh yes he is.

                • Jambo25

                  No he’s not. I can keep this up all day.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  I’m sure you could but unlike you I have work to do, it must be an easy life or you on benefits campaigning at taxpayers cost for independence.

                • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

                  Wholly false. No Parliament can bind its successors to any course of action, period.

                  (Shouldn’t you be over at the Herald, Michael, spreading FUD there?)

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Parliament can in fact legislate for a qualified measure for change and that is all he is saying, should you not be over at nat central along with the other deluded sheep?

                • Denis_Cooper

                  Yes it can, if all three parts of Parliament agree that an Act can only be amended or repealed after some external condition has been fulfilled, such as approval in a referendum.

                • Jambo25

                  Nonsense on stilts.

                • Denis_Cooper

                  No, just beyond your imagination.

                  Maybe you are unaware that the House of Lords still retains an absolute veto over certain Bills, and when they passed that Act it was being agreed by all three parts of Parliament that in the future that one part could prevent the other two changing the law in certain ways, not matter what happened in a general election. This would be no different, except that the power of veto would be given to the people. As the sovereign power of Parliament derives from the sovereignty of the people there can be nothing wrong with doing that.

                • Jambo25

                  1) Read some constitutional law and theory. Start with AV Dicey.
                  2) Look at the Parliament Acts of 1911 and 1949.

                • Denis_Cooper

                  I suggest you should look at the Parliament Acts, and then you would see that I am right. Section 2(1) in particular.

                • Jambo25

                  You are simply wrong.

                • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

                  Citation? Precedent? Denis?

                • Denis_Cooper

                  Been through this before, read the comments below, I’ve got better things to do with my time than to repeat it all.

                  But also take in my point that even though entrenchment would certainly be possible in this case there would be no need for it because the Act would only need to remain on the statute book for a maximum of two years or so, not for many years.

                • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

                  So in other words you can provide no citation and nor quote any precedent, Denis. That’s alright, just so we’re clear.

              • Jambo25

                Stop producing common sense and facts. It simply makes some people feel inadequate.

                • Denis_Cooper

                  It’s neither common sense nor fact.

                  Common sense says that people in the rest of the UK should have their say on whether they wanted to join in a currency union with one newly foreign country, Scotland, just as they have been promised a referendum on whether they wanted to join in a currency union with however many foreign countries may have adopted the euro.

                  Fact says that it would be legally possible to entrench an Act of the UK Parliament so that it could never be amended or repealed without the consent of the people in a referendum, just as for example the Irish constitution is entrenched so that it cannot be amended without a referendum.

                • Jambo25

                  “Fact” says nothing of the kind. It is a cardinal principle of the British Constitution that no parliament can bind the hands of its successors.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Meanwhile the referendum is in 2014 and this government is in office till 2015 so it is they that decide, and they have, so accept that they dont want a currency union with Scotland and move on.

                • Jambo25

                  It is also something of a principle of recent UK governments that they don’t always tell the truth and often change their minds.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  But the SNP really do want a currency union instead of fiscal independence and they are not insisting on a currency union to avoid scaring the voters when they really want complete control of the finances?

                • Jambo25

                  I suspect the SNP would bale out of the £ at the quickest opportunity and go for an independent Scottish currency preparatory to joining the Euro. Its what I would do.

                • Denis_Cooper

                  Well, I hope you’ll be telling that to your fellow Scots before they decide how to vote in September.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  The problem is the Scottish economy is not actually big enough to bail out the £ should it need it.

                • Jambo25

                  Verbal comprehension problems again.

                • HJ777

                  So three different currencies within a short period?

                  Good luck with selling that to Scots.

                  Joining the Euro was Salmond’s preference when he was slagging off Sterling. Remind me what happened in the meantime to make him change his mind.

                • HJ777

                  And that’s even more true of Salmon and the “Yes” campaign, of course.

                  Remember his famous legal advice on EU membership? The advice that turned out not to to exist – a fact that he spent £20k of taxpayers money on trying to conceal?

                • Denis_Cooper

                  It has been a cardinal principle that a new government can use its Commons majority to pass a Bill removing anything that they don’t like from the statute book, including a statutory requirement for the people to be consulted in a referendum on some issue, and since 1911 they have been able to use the Parliament Acts to get round opposition in the Lords.

                  However there is no reason why certain Acts should not be entrenched by making their amendment or repeal subject to the fulfilment of some condition beyond “We have now managed to get a majority of MPs elected who are prepared to do this”.

                  In the case of Act guaranteeing that people would have a referendum on some matter the obvious additional condition would be their approval of the amendment or repeal in a referendum.

                  And as we can’t trust the politicians in either House not to cheat us, we have to turn to the Queen as the most trustworthy of the three parts of Parliament to stand guarantor, as in this Bill that was proposed by Bill Cash MP:

                  http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmbills/048/2010048.pdf

                  See Section 4 for the entrenchment against normal repeal.

                • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright
          • Wessex Man

            Whilst agreeing with you, I would want it to be a cast iron no backed by a referendum.

  • Michael Mckeown

    Why are the Scottish separatists who talk down the UK economy at every opportunity so desperate to keep the UK £ and its central bank?

    • Nicholas chuzzlewit

      Exactly. It is the question that you can ask but never receives an answer. Every now and then some idiot says it will enable UK corporates to avoid currency translation risks as if that is not an everyday task for a corporate treasury. The reason that none of them wish to acknowledge is that with no track record as a borrower, Scotland will have to borrow at a huge premium to UK borrowing costs forcing up mortgage and loan rates etc etc. Salmond, being a duplicitous blustering little creep would never admit that this is the case

    • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

      Because the pound sterling belongs to Scotland as much as it does to England.

      Scots paid with their treasure, their ingenuity, and their very lives to sustain it. Similarly, the UK central bank, the Bank of England, nationalised in 1946, is an asset of the UK, owned jointly by Scotland and England.

      Consider eschewing the bigotry and look to the facts for guidance.

      And please ditch this delusion of the UK surviving its own dissolution. There will be no “UK”, there will only be England, incorporating Wales, with the remnant of Empire in Ireland dangling by a sinuous thread.

      Consider the tautology: When the Union is dissolved the Union ceases to be.

      • Richard T

        “an asset of the UK”.

        More accurately, an institution of the UK. A seceeded Scotland is not part of the UK. You may as well demand 8.5% of the national anthem.

        “this delusion of the UK surviving its own dissolution”

        This idiotic canard has been shot innumerable times. The UK will remain the UK, a continuing state in every significant respect.

        • Michael Mckeown

          These nationalists are power crazed totalitarians who really do believe 9% of country that has left another country gets to somehow decide what that other country is called. Best thing to do with the likes of Chris is ask him to explain how he plans on implementing the UK’s name change.

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        Nobody denies the right of the exUK to use Sterling because it is a fully tradable medium of exchange and not an asset and neither is the Bank of England an ‘asset’. What the UK will not accept is a currency union with the exUK whereby its taxpayers would be required to underwrite any newly issued public debt by a foreign country without the ability to limit the amount and term of that debt. That would be economic madness and no such agreement would be passed by the Westminster parliament. Equally, the citizens of the UK will not have its central bank acting as lender of last resort to the banks of a foreign country.

        • Denis_Cooper

          Well, the Bank of England may not itself be an asset but it has assets; however it also has liabilities, and Scotland’s pro rata share of its net assets would be about £280 million:

          http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/publications/Documents/annualreport/2013/2013boeaccounts.pdf

          • HJ777

            But we are not talking about division of assets, we are talking about currency union.

            • Denis_Cooper

              We’re talking about the pound sterling as a currency not being an asset, and the Bank of England which issues it not being an asset, but the Bank holding assets which would have to be divided; however the point is that while it has large assets it also has large liabilities, and the net assets, the “Total equity attributable to shareholder”, which is the UK Treasury, on its balance sheet amount to only £3,352 million, of which the pro rata share for Scotland would be only £280 million.

        • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

          “Nobody denies the right of the exUK to use Sterling because it is a fully tradable medium of exchange and not an asset and neither is the Bank of England an ‘asset’. ”

          Nope, still wrong. You should not confuse your assertions with fact, Nick.

          The BoE was nationalised in 1946 as an asset of the United Kingdom as is the pound sterling.

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            You really are too ignorant to bother with. A currency is not an asset and the BOE is a central bank with regulatory responsibilities and not an asset. The BOE hold assets of which The exUK is entitled to 8.3% assuming of course they are not ‘netted out’ against your share of the National debt. Also assuming that the exUK does not renege on that debt as Salmond has threatened. There will be no currency union because it is not in the interests of the UK taxpayer.

          • HJ777

            “The BoE was nationalised in 1946 as an asset of the United Kingdom as is the pound sterling.”

            Read the Treasury assessment. It specifically debunks the idea that the pound sterling is an asset:

            http://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/279454/CM8815_2901849_SA_SterlingUnion_acc.pdf

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        We will also continue as the UK because that is our choice. You are voting on whether or not The exUK is to become independent not to to dictate the finances, identity and culture of the remaining 91.7% of the population. What we call ourselves is nothing to do with tautology, logic etc it is simply none of your business.

        • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

          Wrong again, it is a matter of international law.

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            8.3% of the population will not dictate to 91.7% of the population however arrogant and stupid that minority may be. The terms of independence for the exUK will be determined at Westminster and you will get whatever we decide to give you and nothing else. We will call ourselves whatever we like and will change nothing at the behest of the exUK. You will not have a currency union because that is contrary to the interests of the UK taxpayer so I suggest you worry about sorting out a regulatory regime and central bank instead of worrying what our country is called.

          • HJ777

            Not wrong:

            Legal position

            A.4 In the event of Scottish independence, the UK (without Scotland) would be the continuing state in international law. A detailed legal opinion from world-leading experts Professor James Crawford and Professor Alan Boyle was published with Scotland analysis: Devolution and the implications of Scottish independence, which set out at length a number of consequences that would arise from this position.

            A.5 As a continuing state the UK’s laws and institutional framework would continue uninterrupted by Scottish independence. National institutions currently serving the people of the UK, such as the Bank of England and central government departments, would continue to carry out functions in the continuing UK and deliver services to the people of the continuing UK as before.

            http://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/279454/CM8815_2901849_SA_SterlingUnion_acc.pdf

      • Michael Mckeown

        Tell me Chris, I have £10 in my hand how does any of that £10 belong to Scotland?

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          According to these cybernat idiots about 83p belongs to them as they represent 8.3% of the population.

          • Michael Mckeown

            They truly are thick.

        • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

          Tell me Micheal, what on earth are you on about with that infantile non sequitur?

          OK, OK. Let’s play. No Micheal, the tenner does not belong to Scotland it belongs to you or perhaps to someone else from whom you purloined it.

          However, the national central bank (AKA the BoE) that underwrites it DOES belong to Scotland and to England since they are the principals and stakeholders of the United Kingdom.

          • Michael Mckeown

            So you freely admit my £10 belongs to me yet you somehow feel that ‘the Scots’ have a right to it anyway based on the central bank? You are truly bonkers and only a fool would think that ‘the Scots’ have a right of claim on future decisions an institution will make and it is future decisions that make the central bank along with the residents of a county underwriting those decisions and clearly independence means the central bank of the UK cant impose guarantees from those in Scotland as they would not be part of the central banks country so for once in your sorry existence stop listing to the crap the SNP spew out daily and just think things through.

      • Denis_Cooper

        As far as I’m concerned Scotland could certainly have its fair share of the net assets of the Bank of England on independence, by which I mean a share pro rata to population, which Scotland could then use to help capitalise its own national central bank.

        That would be about £280 million:

        http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/publications/Documents/annualreport/2013/2013boeaccounts.pdf

      • Damon

        “Because the pound sterling belongs to Scotland as much as it does to England.”
        Perfectly true. But the point your side continually elides is that the SNP’s proposal of a currency union doesn’t merely involve Scotland. It involves the English taxpayer effectively underwriting an untested entity and helping to guarantee its financial institutions.

        An independent Scotland is entitled to do what it wants. It is not entitled to make English taxpayers do what it wants.

      • Alan Ji

        This, is of course, obvious. It is demonstrated by the collapse of the UK as a result of Irish independence.
        The £ sterling belongs to the UK as a whole, not to any part of it. If a part leaves, the remainder continues. That has already happened once and could happen again.

      • HJ777

        What a load of tosh.

        What is being discussed is whether one country (i.e. a seceded Scotland) has the right to force a currency union on another – this is what Salmond and the SNP claim. It has nothing to do with assets.

        Not long ago, Salmond wanted a separate currency and then later he wanted to join the Euro. Imagine his reaction had Osborne told him that a seceded Scotland could not choose to have either because the rest of the UK wanted it to join a currency union. He would have described this as ‘bullying’. Now, when he wants force exactly the same thing in reverse, it is still supposedly ‘bullying’ by the rest of the UK.

        Salmond is a total hypocrite.

        • http://weourselves.com/ Christian Wright

          Once again, Scotland will not secede, the Union will be dissolved yielding two and only two SUCCESSOR states. There can be no continuator state resulting from the dissolution of a voluntary union. It is on its face a daft proposition.

          Meditate upon the tautology: When the Union is dissolved, the Union ceases to be.

          • HJ777

            You are correct about one thing and one thing only. Scotland will not secede – Scots have too much sense to be taken in by Salmond.

            About everything else you are wrong.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              Don’t bother. He is too pig ignorant, arrogant and stupid to waste any further effort upon.

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            Be very clear the population of the exUK will dictate nothing, absolutely nothing, to the UK.

      • HJ777
  • Holby18

    I would disapprove strongly of allowing an independent Scotland retaining sterling. As a taxpayer, I fail to see why I should be the guarantor for Scotlands debts. I do not believe they can retain their many policies regarding free tuition, free care, high percentage of public sector jobs etc etc.

    As to the Minister – lets hope he is named and then promptly sacked. This minister says he will be in the loop should Scotland vote for independence. It must be a Minister from Defence or Business as the Treasury by issuing the statement are distancing themselves from the leak.

    • HJ777

      We don’t know that any minister said anything of the sort.

      All we have is an assertion by The Guardian that one did. Of course, the Guardian is famous for interpreting things incorrectly.

  • anyfool

    Is not a bit strange that Balls is not included in this joint statement by Osborne and Alexander.
    Should we take conspiracy to a new level and muse that Labour are in process of moving away from the Tory position on this, after all if Labour get their no vote to try to keep its chunk of Scottish MPs in Westminster, ( Labours only reason for the union ) it will not help if they become as toxic as the Tories in Scotland.
    You cannot run a negative campaign against your own country and expect to retain the support of the population, whether the yes or no win the whole country will still have at the back of their mind, Labour thinks we are too weak and feeble to manage without the English to hold their hands.

  • Mynydd

    Who would benefit from a Scottish ‘YES’ vote? Mr Cameron for one, Labour would loose 41 seats at Westminster but Conservatives only 1 that’s right only one. This would go a long way in explaining why Mr Cameron has refused a televised debate with Mr Salmond and why Conservative party members have not been active in the ‘NO’ campaign. It has been said many times by English conservative MPs that without Scotland Labour would not be able to form a majority government. Need I say more.

    • Colonel Mustard

      “Labour would loose 41 seats at Westminster” and “without Scotland Labour would not be able to form a majority government”.

      Oh good! Win-win. Go for it SNP!

      • allymax bruce

        Whaaaaaaaeeey !

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        Agreed. Vote yes to independence for the exUK and get yourselves a currency union with anybody but the UK.

      • Mynydd

        From this reply it seems you want to see the break-up of the UK for a narrow political gain for Mr Cameron and his Conservative party. You also have been selective in your quote thereby acting in an unbecoming dishonest manner What I wrote was ” It has been said many times by ENGLISH CONSERVATIVE MPS that without Scotland Labour would not be able to form a majority government” At no time did I write that Labour would not be able to form a majority government.

        • Colonel Mustard

          I don’t want to see the break up of the UK but if it means 41 Labour MPs are consigned to oblivion well every cloud has a silver lining.

          Whether Conservative MPs said it or you said it doesn’t matter. It’s the thought that counts. The less Labour MPs in this country the better.

          • Andy

            All Scottish and Welsh MPs should be excluded from voting on English affairs regardless.

          • Mynydd

            You silly little man it does matter

            • Colonel Mustard

              To you maybe. I just hope its true and that the Welsh soon follow suit.

        • http://www.CaerphillyPreserves.co.uk/ No Good Boyo

          I’m sure Conservative MP’s are quite capable of looking at the numbers. The Labour party would still be quite capable of forming a majority government without Scotland, although they would need rather less than 2 out of every 3 people voting against them to do it, as at present. The idea that the Tories would be unable to make this fairly basic arithmetical calculation is absurd.

          As for English MP’s not participating in the debate, why exactly would they? No Welsh MP’s have participated either — are we to conclude that there’s a secret Welsh conspiracy to let Scotland become independent?

          English politicians lecturing the Scots on why they should stay in the union — can you seriously not see the little logical flaw in that one?

          • Jambo25

            Your First Minister has certainly intervened.

            • Wessex Man

              The Welsh First Minister has every right to state his view that he would not want to share Sterling with the ex Uk Scotland.

              • Jambo25

                I simply stated the fact and made no judgement either way so your comment is pointless.

        • Wessex Man

          I and many more people want you to win the vote and go and have no intention of voting for Call me Dave and his party of fruitcakes and nutjobs.

          We English just want you to go, go in the name of sanity.

  • careering_off

    Key point is in the penultimate sentence. Devo max is almost the same as independence and that’s what Salmond really wants. Win-win for him (unless the Scots actually vote for independence, which doesn’t actually seem likely).

    • HookesLaw

      I’m not sure what devo max is but any iurther devolution should lead to fewer scottish seats in parliament.
      And devo max is all very well but if it leads to economic problems in Scotland then who pays for the clear up?

      • allymax bruce

        You do.

        • telemachus

          No son
          As in 1706/7 you will beg for Union again
          Which we will make indissoluble

          • allymax bruce

            Nah, ye’r dreamin again. We never ‘beg'(ed) for Union in 1706/7, we wiz robbed by a bunch o’ rogues, imposters n’ charlatans enriching thirsels. I would call them the beginnings of The Labour Party.

          • Colonel Mustard

            ‘son’, ‘you will beg’, ‘we will make’.

            There is that intimidatory power thing again. You just have to dominate any dissent. It’s Stalinist.

            Try humility instead of hubris.

            • telemachus

              Humility is a virtue. Pride is not. Humility comes when people are secure. Pride comes when they are insecure.
              *
              Of course I am insecure
              Insecure until our triumph next May

              • allymax bruce

                The six virtues; ‘Righteousness, godliness, Faith, Love, Endurance, Gentleness.’ (Timothy).
                It seems your Labour ‘humility’ is NOT a virtue after-all !
                Why am I not surprised ?

      • Andy

        No. It should lead to an English Parliament with exactly the same powers as the one in Edinburgh. English votes for English Laws.

    • allymax bruce

      Who’s a clever boy!
      (apart from your contradictory last 5 words).

  • allymax bruce

    Isabel, it doesn’t really matter what Ozzy-the-Floozy & Danny-the-Fink say; if Scotland wants a Currency Zone, then Scotland will get one.

    • HookesLaw

      No Scotland would not get one because the rest of the UK would not vote for it. How else do you think any such thing could happen?
      But anyway why are you so wedded to a currency union? I thought you wanted to be in dependent?

      • allymax bruce

        The UK never voted for Bliar’s 3000+ evil laws, but we all got them!
        There’s many many things the Public of the UK has never voted for, but was forced on them. Don’t believe your own rhetoric; money talks louder than idealistic notions. Scotland will be Independent, and iScotland will get her Currency Zone; if she wants it !

        • Jambo25

          I don’t know if Scotland will vote ‘Yes’ but if it does I think a CU is overwhelmingly likely.

          • allymax bruce

            Yes, I agree, Jambo25. A Currency Zone is the best for all concerned. This whole scaremongering ‘project’ is all about displacing Scotland’s greatest politicians of all time; Alex’ Salmond. They know Scotland will vote Yes, and as such, want a doozy in the hot seat, sumbdee like Danny-the-Fink, so they could get control over our resources. Alex’ wouldn’t allow that; that’s why I trust Alex’ Salmond implicitly.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              Why is a currency union good for the UK?

            • Andy

              Problem with people like you is you rub the rest of us up the wrong way. You keep saying ‘We will have a currency union’ with the UK. Have you bothered to ask us ?? You arrogantly tell us what we are going to have – our answer to that is simply to say f*ck off. And tell us how is such a currecny union expected to work, given your current attitude ? What powers exactly are you prepared to give up to make such a currency union to work ??

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            Why when it is absolutely to the detriment of the UK?

            • Jambo25

              Its doubtful that it is. Read today’s lead story in the Sunday Herald.

          • Wessex Man

            ‘I believe in Angels
            in every thing they say.’

            • Jambo25

              I don’t care that you like crap pop songs.

      • Jambo25

        Please remember that the rest of the UK electorate is not represented by the frothy mouthed nonsense that you read on here.

        • Wessex Man

          oh dear.

    • Tywin Lannister

      “if Scotland wants a Currency Zone, then Scotland will get one.”

      sums up the attitude of the ‘Yes’ campaign; a spoiled little brat who is demanding sweeties from the shop but needs mummy’s money to pay for it.

      • allymax bruce

        Scotland has paid more into the Union, than she has got out of the Union for the last 30 years. Seems to me ‘mummy Westminster’ has been spending all the lodgers money on champagne socialism, tax-breaks for the ultra-rich, & holidays in The Sun!

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          Well the quicker you leave then the sooner it will stop. If that is the case why on Earth would you wAnt to join a currency union with such a dreadful country as you purport the UK to be?

          • allymax bruce

            We never called you dreadful; we only want to control our own future; and a Currency Zone will give us that control to the greater degree than what we’ve got now. It’s the right thing, for all the right reasons, for both iScotland, and rUK. Stop complaining, you’re acting like a spoilt brat, (cheers Tywin!), or you’re welcome to come & live in iScotland.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              Fine and many of us will be heartily glad to see the back of you. By all means use Sterling but not as part of a currency zone with the UK, Westminster will not approve such a mad course of action. Join a currency zone with Europe if they will have you. The exUK represents 8.3% of the population and you will not dictate terms to the other 91.7%.

            • Wessex Man

              unbelievable, and your previous rants?, why on earth would anyone want to come and live with you?

        • BigAl

          So Scotland have been receiving money for 90% of the duration of the Union……

          • allymax bruce

            If you say so. What’s your point, caller?

          • Jambo25

            Most historians who have ever bothered to look at the subject think its the other way round.

            • Wessex Man

              listen Billy no mates- probably doesn’t cut it- vote yes!

              • Jambo25

                Do the research work then and produce some kind of overall financial balance for the past 307 years. Then you cvan contradict the limited writings by professional historians that have taken place on this topic.

        • Michael Mckeown

          “Scotland has paid more into the Union, than she has got out of the Union for the last 30 years”

          Thats crap but why the last 30 years anyway why not all 300 odd?

          • Jambo25

            Because we’re being nice to you and the last 307 years has seen Scotland as a net contributor for the vast bulk of that period. We didn’t want you to feel even worse.

            • Michael Mckeown

              Really more like in less than 15 of the 307 years of union Scotland has been a net contributor.

              • Jambo25

                Your proof of this is.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  The fact you deliberately only use figures from when oil was discovered knowing full well there was nearly three centuries prior and for the last 30 years I rely on GERS with the latest being here:

                  http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2014/03/7888

                  A deficit is clearly shown, here is the year prior:

                  http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2013/03/1859

                  and again there is a deficit, one needs to go back about 7 years to find a surplus.

                • Jambo25

                  You seem to be the one claiming that Scotland has been in deficit with the Treasury for the bulk of the last 307 years. I’m not the one talking about the last 30 years: you seem to be. I’m waiting on your proof that Scotland has been in deficit with England for the bulk of 307 years. Where is your proof? Incidentally, rUK has been massively in deficit for at least 7 or 8 years. We all, in the UK, have been.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  The conversation was based on a claim by a separatist that Scotland for the last 30 years has been subsidizing the rest of the UK and it was pointed out that using just the last 30 years is jaded but in any event even the last 30 years only seen Scotland run a surplus in a few.

                  You said ‘Scotland as a net contributor for the vast bulk of that period [307 years]’ now you say ‘rUK has been massively in deficit for at least 7 or 8 years. We all, in the UK, have been’ so pick one as you cant both be in surplice most of the time and in defacite most of the time.

                  GERS are available on the internet for the last 30 years and for those 30 years there is very few years that Scotland has ran a surplice. Accounts prior to the 70’s can be found also so go do your own research to prove your own claims.

                • Jambo25

                  Your reply to allymax bruce of a day ago.
                  “That’s crap but why the last 30 years anyway why not all 300 odd?”
                  Your reply to me of 3 hours ago.
                  “really more like in less than 15 of the 307 years of Union Scotland has been a net contributor.”
                  Not very good at this reading and writing thing: are we?

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Understanding the English language is not your forte.

                • Wessex Man

                  probably better than yours.

            • Wessex Man

              Please explain the Goschen Formula 1888-1968?

              • Jambo25

                The Goschen Formula (Officially named Goschen Proportions) referred to expenditure in a relatively few areas. It didn’t take into account defence, for example. It also didn’t take into account counterbalancing tax revenue. In fact it didn’t take into account any ‘unidentified’ spending as Barnet still doesn’t. It says little or nothing about whether Scotland was a net contributor to or beneficiary from government expenditure from 1707 to 2014.

                • allymax bruce

                  Yes! Jambo25; excellent work !

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        Yes it fascinates me how these cybernat idiots believe that 8.3% of the population is going to dictate to 91.7% of the population.

      • Jambo25

        That appears to be the view of at least one UK minister as well. I suspect that secretly it is the view of most or all of them . Do keep up.

      • Dai Station

        As my Scottish Granny would have said “what’s yours is mine, but what’s mine’s my own”

        • Alan Ji

          I was brought up to believe that was a Yorkshire expression.

    • ButcombeMan

      Delusion.

      • allymax bruce

        Deluded.

        • ButcombeMan

          It would be wise to consider the things that an independent Scotland could control or have influence over and what it could not.

          It could not control or influence the mass of English voters. It could not even control the behaviour of Scots who worried about their future, chose to put some or most of their savings in rUK. It could not control the behaviour of financial institutions who wanted to base most of their resources where their main market would remain.

          Salmond does not talk about these things because they are uncomfortable. He dare not even address them.

          • allymax bruce

            Scotland’s brilliant First Minister Alex’ Salmond doesn’t need to hypothesise about scaremongering rhetoric, from deluded fools. Scotland will vote Yes, Scotland will be Independent, and iScotland will get a Currency Zone; and it will have nothing to do with what anyone, but The City, and Westminster. This is the main reason Scotland wants its own future in its own hands; so that we can control everything we don’t want from Westminster! If I was you mate, I’d be more worried about getting another Labour Gov’ !

            • Michael Mckeown

              “Scotland’s brilliant First Minister”

              Its all about the obsession with the big fat lair isn’t it.

    • Nicholas chuzzlewit

      How can you possibly have a currency union without the cooperation of the UK ? You can use Sterling but not as part of a currency union because the UK will not guarantee the newly issued debt of a foreign country without limitation. How will 8.3% of the population dictate to 91.7% of the population? Why, if he is so desperate to break away from the UK, does Salmond want a currency union with the UK rather than say Europe or Norway?

      • allymax bruce

        Nich’, I’m not going into this with you; you get all ‘worked-up’ mate. it’s really not a big deal anyway. Are you a Man U’ supporter too ? Something is really getting on your wick.

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          None of you cybernats ever answer those questions do you? You just go straight to the name calling and misrepresentation.

          • allymax bruce

            Aww, come-oan; I wiz just pullin yer leg. I’m more inclined tae huv a laugh, than argue.

            • Nicholas chuzzlewit

              Blah! blah! blah! blah! blah blah, blah, blah blah. But, just like Salmond, never an answer to those questions. The reason he wants a currency union with the UK is because he knows that the exUK has no track record as an independent borrower. Therefore, however bright the exUK’s economic prospects, it’s newly issued debt will trade at a premium to that of the UK and thus exUK mortgage costs etc will rise. I for one am desperate to see an independent exUK but it must be totally divorced from the UK.

              • telemachus

                Chuz
                England needs the Union, not least for the “correct balance” of Westminster MP’s

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Oh just get lost you pathetic Stalinist stalker.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  England needs the hope of never having to put up with a Labour government ever again.

    • Michael Mckeown

      “if Scotland wants a Currency Zone, then Scotland will get one.”

      Your arrogance and sense of superiority really does know no bounds.

    • Alan Ji

      Independence-lite doesn’t exist in the real world. Its like being a bit dead or a bit pregnant.
      The Irish precedent is there for all to see. The Republic, and the Free State before it, called their currency the £ and chose to peg it to the UK’s £ until after both (and Denmark) joined the EU. That was Ireland’s decision, at Ireland’s responsibility and Ireland’s risk. The UK wasn’t party to it.
      It’s hard to believe that canny Scots are willing to believe what they’re being fed on this point, but anyone who is daft enough to believe that deserves what they get. Unfortunately, they’ll take others with them.

      • Jambo25

        When anyone of a Unionist bent refers to us as “canny Scots” my b.llsh,t detector switches on automatically.

        • Alan Ji

          That’s expressing your state of mind; its not a response to the points I made.
          “Canny Scots” is just a summary of the [less] widespread [than it used to be] English presumption that Scots are sensible.

          • Jambo25

            My reply to you is perfectly simple. Apart from a few ‘superstates’ such as the USA and PRC all states are now in a state of independence lite even the wonderful UK. Sovereignty and therefore independence are pooled in various multi-national arrangements which may be formal or ad hoc. These range from things such as the Anglo-Irish agreement through to membership of the UN. All members of the Eurozone are in a state of independence lite including France, Germany and Italy.
            Your definition of sensible appears to be agreeing with you politically. Not necessarily true.

            • Wessex Man

              Must of what you say is simple, very simple.

              • Jambo25

                No rational contribution to make then.

    • Wessex Man

      allymax bruce, your education is sadly lacking, or you are a failed propaganda appentice. Without the English money you’d still be eating thistles.

  • ButcombeMan

    Do we believe the so called “scoop” in entirety, or do we think that Watt’s over egged the whole thing?

    Calm heads do not overreact to mischief making like this.

    • Daniel Maris

      Yes – how annoying was Watt being? Was the minister trying to get into a lift…get away for an urgent toilet visit…not be late for dinner with his wife…? Was Watt feeding him the alleged lines? LOL

      Of course the reason the story has resonance is because we all know this is what would happen on a yes vote. It will be in the UK’s strategic interests (at the most basic defence level) to tie Scotland to it as closely as possible.

      As for Scottish mortgage rates, there are ways in which a sovereign Scottish government could ameliorate those if it felt it necessary e.g. by offering tax relief as Mrs Thatcher used to.

      • Daniel Maris

        So how will Osborne weasel his way out of it if there is a yes vote: my prediction is they will use the politician’s favourite expedient of using a different word. So watch for that folks – when “currency union” becomes “currency association”.

        • anyfool

          The same way they weasel their way out any promise, they say the context has changed or say when the facts! change it is only sensible to change your mind.
          With politicians facts are what they state they are at the time they state them, it will not matter, look at the poll position of Labour, destroy the country and tell everyone it was the US and hey presto, the sheep go baa.

      • ButcombeMan

        I do not agree it will happen should there be a Yes vote.

        Any rUK party that tries to do it will be slaughtered at the polls.

        It would not be good for an independent Scotland either, if it was tied around the Faslane base (as it would have to be) it would just cause more long term trouble. A festering sore.

        An independent Scotland should have the guts to do the job properly. Its own currency and central bank, then into the Euro.

        Good luck to them. It will be very expensive, it will lower their living standards, it will cause loss of jobs, particularly in financial services, it will cause house price drops, pension cuts, capital flight and some of the brightest and best Scots will come down to work in England as they always have done.

        Those things, for some, will be a price worth paying. Fair enough.

        • allymax bruce

          Scaremongering rubbish; doom & gloom; doom & gloom; doom & gloom. Change the record.

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            Will do, but you will still not be joining a currency union with the UK so while you are changing your record sort yourself out an alternative currency or use Sterling outside of a currency union with the UK. Sorry, we do not provide unlimited guarantees for newly issued public debt in respect of foreign countries.

            • allymax bruce

              (last sentence); Yes you do; the BoE has already said it would ‘homour’ all Westminster debt, in, or not, of a future iScotland & rUK Currency Zone. You need spectacles that actually work, mate. You’re not seeing clearly what’s right in front of your coupon.

              • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                That is why, you semi-literate, I said newly issued public debt. We are already guaranteeing the exUK’s share of existing debt making Salmond’s threat to renege on the exUks share as duplicitous and laughable as everything else he says.

                • allymax bruce

                  Alex’ Salmond, (for all the scaremongering Press, bs propaganda, and ‘dark noise’ hate being spewed out), is doing fantastic! I think he’s the best thing to happen to Scotland since Haggis. I trust Alex’ Salmond more than I trust my own family.

                • wycombewanderer

                  Hagese(haggis) comes from Lancashire and was a dish of scraps for the poor!

                  That’s all you’ll be getting scraps and poverty good luck

                • 2trueblue

                  Your poor family.

                • HJ777

                  The either your family are all completely dishonest or you are a complete fool.

                  Did you trust Salmond’s claim about the legal advice he supposedly taken on EU membership before he was forced (but not until he had spent £20k of taxpayers money trying to conceal the truth) to admit that he had taken no such advice?
                  I bet you did.

                • Fergus Pickering

                  You must have an unfortunate family life, allymax.

                • allymax bruce

                  Fergus, at least I never got beat-up at school !
                  Besides, Why is it yoos-lot are so gullible? My statement was interpreted as a negative by yoos eejits, but who says I meant it so? I could have 99% trust in my family, but have 100% trust in Scotland’s brilliant First Minister, Alex’ Salmond!

                  “Ye blind guides, which strain out a gnat, and swallow a camel.” (Matthew 23:24; Geneva Bible).

                  Oh-yeh, I’d just like tae thank all my well-wishers here; it was so nice of yoos-lot to take the effort to write such bile; especially The Village Idiot (Wessex Man)!
                  But, thanks anyway everybody.

                • Wessex Man

                  You think Haggis is good? good grief!

            • Daniel Maris

              Which is obviously why the issue will be addressed as part of the agreement on currency association/integration/parity/equalisation (or whatever other word they use so as to be able to claim they have not approved a currency union).

              • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                What is it like being you and knowing that you will never say anything sensible or valid? The reason a currency union has been precluded is that it would be madness to guarantee the newly issued public debt of a foreign country without limitation as to amount or term. If there was limitation as to amount and term it would not be independence would it?

                • telemachus

                  But Chuz it was never about true independence
                  It was about Tub Lard self aggrandisement and the history books
                  The Treasury will rule
                  As it does for the UK just now

                • Colonel Mustard

                  You are just terrified of losing 41 Labour MPs in Westminster.

                • Drabble

                  You Labour folk are terrified of losing your inbuilt Westminster majority

                • 2trueblue

                  It is nearly giving them what they want to get rid of that issue alone.

                • Daniel Maris

                  Yes, it would, it would be an agreement freely entered into. At its simplest, it would provide for Scotland to chip in as required to support banks in the currency area and generally to support the currency where necessary. These are things they would have to do if they had their own currency or were in the Eurozone.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  And the advantages to the UK other than the inestimable privilege of guaranteeing the debt without limit as to amount or term for a foreign country are?……………….none.

                • Daniel Maris

                  A huge amount of England’s production goes north of the border. It would be in the interests of all the companies involved to enjoy the competitive edge of a joint currency.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Breathtakingly fatuous. Managing currency exposures is just another part of a corporate treasurer’s work when a company trades with different countries. One more country makes absolutely no difference. Particularly one with only 5 million or so people. By comparison, guaranteeing their newly issued public debt without any limitation as to amount or term would be suicidally irresponsible. Additionally, we would have to act as lender of last resort to their banks which are fifteen times the size of the entire exUK economy. Only an imbecile would believe that to be a good deal in order to avoid a little currency translation management.

                • Daniel Maris

                  “Additionally, we would have to act as lender of last resort to their
                  banks which are fifteen times the size of the entire exUK economy.” Can you cite your source for this?

                  Anyway, you haven’t been listening. My prediction is that their will be an agreement to cover such eventualities. I think the outcome would be that the rump UK would reach an agreement with an independent Scotland over the extent of any liability.

                  I don’t agree that “one more country” makes no difference. It will just make mainland European countries more competitive against English companies – I can guarantee most companies exporting to Scotland will want currency union to continue.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Oh just stop being fatuous and pontificating on subjects on which you are simply ignorant.

                • Jambo25

                  What is it like being an arrogant Know nothing who cannot seem to write anything without going off into ad hominems? You seem to have an inability to do much else.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Disgusting hypocrite who regards my country as a fascist empire.

                • Jambo25

                  Apart from you, who thoroughly deserves it, due to your utter unpleasantness and arrogance, I rarely indulge in personal abuse.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Hypocrite.

                • Jambo25

                  No: just someone of taste and discrimination.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Amoral hypocrite.

                • Jambo25

                  I should also have stated; less obviously weird than you as well.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Amoral hypocrite.

                • HJ777

                  You do have a high opinion of yourself, don’t you?

                  It’s not justified.

                • Jambo25

                  Generally I’m a strict realist with no particular high opinion of myself but my opinion of myself is certainly higher than it is of you.

                • HJ777

                  Like I said, you have an unjustifiably high opinion of yourself, as your comment demonstrates.

                  I had to laugh at the fantasy that you are a “strict realist”. This from the person who thinks that Scotland could just walk away from debt, could force a currency union on the rest of the UK then establish its own currency then join the Euro, and who fails to acknowledge any transitionary costs of secession.

                  Deluded people do tend to think that their view is reality and everyone else is wrong.

                • HJ777

                  “I rarely indulge in personal abuse.”

                  Says the man who has just indulged in throwing personal abuse.

                • HJ777

                  I don’t know. Why don’t you tell us?

                  You seem not to recognise the hypocrisy of describing someone as an “arrogant know nothing” and then, in the same sentence, attacking them for “going off into ad hominens”

                  By the way, if you know so much, why do you simply ignore relevant questions which are put to you perfectly politely? It ii not an unreasonable suspicion that it is you who “knows nothing” and hence is unable to answer.

                • Jambo25

                  I said “rarely” not never. When I come across things as unpleasant as Chuzzlewit or yourself, all bets are off.

                • HJ777

                  Yes, it is unpleasant to be confronted by people who point out facts and reality, isn’t it? You must feel personally insulted.

                  That’s why you feel entirely justified in responding with ad hominem attacks.

                • Wessex Man

                  Billy no mates!

                • Jambo25

                  And your mum smells of pooh. Let’s see how childish we can both get: shall we?

                • HJ777

                  You’d win that contest easily.

                • Wessex Man

                  I thought you were fully qualified on that one.

                • Jambo25

                  Only in reply to people like yourself and Chuzzlewit. Those who go out of their way to be relentlessly rude to others deserve no consideration.

        • Wessex Man

          It could be the Darien Project all over again, only this time we would not allow our leaders to come to the rescue!

      • Jambo25

        Yes, that’s why the ‘Yes’ side stayed with CU as its preferred option. It’s obvious that a CU would be grabbed with both hands by the rUK Treasury in the event of a ‘Yes’ vote. It simply makes economic sense and as Crawford Beveridge stated “Economics generally trumps politics.”
        Those who think it would be impossible, politically, are kidding themselves on. Most people in rUK, I suspect, couldn’t care less, one way or the other and those who would care and have any semblance of power would back it.

        • Michael Mckeown

          Why is it obvious? give one compelling reason backed up by evidence that will show without doubt why it is in the interests of Westminster to give up financial sovereignty, I await your compelling reason.

          • Jambo25

            1) The large volume of cross border trade is liable to be disrupted by too great a differentiation in currency and fiscal policies either side of the border. 2) Firms will have transaction costs to meet if that CU doesn’t take place. Don’t believe me but see what happens if or when Scotland declares independence.

            • Michael Mckeown

              1) Not a compelling reason, most of the UK’s trade is with the EU yet we are not in the Euro.

              2) Normal occurrence when dealing with foreign countries.

              Your last point ‘declaring independence’ well thats crap as well as it will be legislated for in Westminister ie granted not declared.

              • Jambo25

                Then you might wish to consider the evidence of Professor David Simpson in front of the Economic Affairs Committee of the Holyrood Parlaiment or perhaps the work of Professors Mirrlees, Stiglitz and Hughes Hallet but I suspect you wont as you have your mind made up. and frankly I cannot be bothered carrying on debate with a closed mind.
                As for myself: I’m not a major fan of CU with England anyway. I’d rather go for an independent currency followed by joining the Euro as soon as possible.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Why would I consider the work of anyone paid by the SNP?

                  Can you tell everyone why:

                  A: The UK trades more with the EU than Scotland yet it is not in the Euro?

                  B: The UK trades more with the USA than Scotland yet it does not use the $?

                  The businesses in the rest of the UK are grown up enough to adapt to the normal currency trading that would happen on Scottish separation so it seems it is only the Scottish separatists who are struggling with this independence thing and thats quite ironic.

                  Independence is about respecting other independent countries and the UK would be an independent country to an independent Scotland so why wont you just respect the wishes of the UK government and accept once and for all that they do not want to have a currency union with an independent Scotland and respect once and for all that they need not justify their reasons to anyone but the people of the UK.

                • Jambo25

                  See my previous reply.

                • Daniel Maris

                  (a) Because we have an independent currency and so it is a question of assessing across the board whether we should enter the Euro, but obviously that is one of the stronger arguments put forward by the (now rather small band of) Euro enthusiasts.

                  (b) Does it? The SNP claim otherwise. However, the dollar is an international currency. I suspect a lot of trade is in dollars.

                  This unnamed minister has let the cat out of the bag. The reality is that a rump UK would want to continue in effective currency union with Scotland – no doubt with safeguards.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  “The reality is that a rump UK would want to continue in effective currency union with Scotland”

                  Talk about denial, the reality is you need to remove your head from your ar#@.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Impossible. They are one and the same hence he is always talking out of that particular orifice.

                • Michael Mckeown

                  Indeed.

                • Wessex Man

                  Well then we are agreed so why have you been insulting everyone, oh sorry I forgot you are Jambo25.

                • Jambo25

                  Absolutely priceless.

              • Daniel Maris

                The SNP claim (correctly I think) that Scotland is the rest of the UK’s second biggest trading partner. They also claim not sharing
                sterling would cost businesses south of the border an extra £500million in
                transaction costs. No doubt that may be an exaggeration but it will be a very significant cost and not one English industry will wish to put on to their accounts.

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  And one that corporate treasurers manage every day without batting an eyelid. It is a ludicrous and feeble reason for joining a currency union. What is managing £500 million of additional currency exposure in the private sector( a fatuous estimation in any event ) compared to providing an unlimited taxpayers guarantee for any newly issued public debt of a foreign country without being able to control its term or amount. And no, we will not cobble together some restraint because that duplicitous little weasel Salmond would be forever accusing us of ‘holding my country back’. Vote for independence and do it properly and if it rids The UK of fatuous idiots like yourself, so much the better.

            • HJ777

              Come off it. Everybody knows that because of unequal sizes, the currency risk and transaction costs would be paid by businesses in Scotland.

              The effort that would have to be made to arrange and maintain, and the potential pitfalls of, a currency union make it just not worth the bother to even consider for the rest of the UK. Scotland has less than 10% of the GDP of the UK – it would be too small for any of your arguments to be significant.

              I have never seen a post from you on here that betrays the slightest understanding of economics.

              By the way, what is your assessment of the economic impact of the transition costs of independence? They would be substantial, yet neither you nor the “Yes” campaign ever seems to have made any assessment. Why not?

              • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                Because he has absolutely no idea whatsoever what “transition costs” are and thus can be safely ignored.

                • HJ777

                  Do you think that he really isn’t capable of understanding what transition costs are or is it perhaps that he deliberately refuses to understand?

                • Nicholas chuzzlewit

                  Read his various ‘contributions’. He has absolutely no idea of what you are talking about. Most of these cybernat idiots think using Sterling and a CU are the same thing.

      • 2trueblue

        What we need is a vote in ENGLAND for our MPs and our MPs alone to vote on things that are purely English. This should have happened when Wales got their assembly and the Scots got their parliament. It is not democratic to have any of them voting on what are issues that the English want/need/or that affect England in any way. No one seems to think that we want some autonomy for England.

    • HookesLaw

      I think yoiu might have a point. There is nothing in particular to stop Scotland *using* the pound, but thats not the same – indeed its far from – a currency union.

      • Daniel Maris

        But on Osborne’s line, if they do that, they get many of the benefits of the pound (e.g. support for banks using the pound) without having to pay in. Makes no sense.

        • Andy

          No one can stop Scotland ‘using’ Sterling, which is fully tradable and a convertible currency. What Scotland wont get is the UK taxpayer supporting banks headquartered in Scotland and nor will Scotland get any seats on the Court of the Bank of England.

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            Don’t bother he is just too stupid to understand.

  • Shinsei1967

    Rather unfair to keep describing the pro-Union campaign as negative when all it is doing is correcting inaccurate & misleading Independence claims. The currency union being a classic example. The SNP claim a post-independence Scotland will have a currency union with the UK. The three main Westminster parties, the Bank of England and the Treasury say this won’t happen.

    And what could be more optimistic than the claim that we are “Better Together”.

    • dalai guevara

      Wasn’t that clever? By saying that, the parties you listed merely asserted that when you decide to go, then you go – opening the door to other options on the table.

  • Barakzai

    ‘As for the unnamed minister in Watt’s piece, I’d be surprised if they remain unnamed and in their job after this.’
    Then please let it be Cable . . .

    • telemachus

      Cable is bullet proof

      • Harold Angryperson

        Tagging the top comment YET AGAIN.

        • telemachus

          So what is your take on the Cable question?

    • Shinsei1967

      It has all the mischievous hallmarks of a comment from Cable.

      Why is he allowed to constantly undermine coalition economic policy and now to undermine the union ?

      (apologies to him if it turns out not to be him).

    • Bluesman_1

      Beat me to it.

    • Drabble

      Unnamed.
      However it is not beyond the wit of the Spectator to confirm reports linking the Member for Dumbartonshire to the Watt intelligence.

    • Andy

      Wil be Cable. That man is a complete idiot.

    • Herman_U_Tick

      Do you mean Vince Cable-Stitch?

      The result of the referendum (I can reveal to those privileged to be reading this forum) will be 55% in and 45% out. The result of the result will be that Alex Salmond will claim victory and make more and more demands.
      The correct course for Cameron at that point would be to pass a law forcing him to belt up for the next ten years.

  • telemachus

    So why does the Lard Tub want our currency if we will control their mortgages and to a large extent their taxes and public services funding
    They simply want to rerun the Battle of Sterling Bridge

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