Leading article

Alex Salmond's economic policies would drive an independent Scotland into the ground

While the SNP flirts with economic liberalism, it remains a high-spending party of the left that will impoverish the people

23 November 2013

9:00 AM

23 November 2013

9:00 AM

Within the white paper on economic policy in an independent Scotland that was published by Alex Salmond’s government this week there is a liberal economic manifesto trying to get out. The First Minister speaks about using new ‘levers and instruments’ to revive Scotland and that, freed from Westminster control, he might lure businesses by slashing corporation tax, reducing national insurance contributions and cutting air passenger duty.

Unfortunately, none of these ideas is likely to get off the page because the SNP has a much more prominent agenda which could not have been better designed to promote economic stagnation. This one promises more generous welfare, a higher minimum wage, renationalisation of the Royal Mail and possibly setting up workers’ councils whose views on management companies would be obliged to take into account. We can see what a Scottish workers’ council would look like, in the shape of Unite at the Grangemouth oil refinery.

It is difficult to say what kind of party the SNP would be were its uniting policy — the demand for Scottish independence — to be achieved. Salmond’s tactic has been to use the language of the right (enterprise, jobs, tax competition) and offer the policies of the left (nationalisation, massive welfare and state spending). While the SNP flirts with economic liberalism, it remains at heart a high-spending party of the left which has shown no inclination to contemplate what would be necessary to sustain a low-tax policy: namely to cut spending and shrink government.

This week’s white paper is a triumph of wishful thinking over reason. It asserts that after independence, ‘Innovative, high–value firms are more likely to export and to invest in research and development.’ How come? It doesn’t say. We learn that an SNP-led independent Scotland would ‘establish an industrial strategy which rebalances the economy and diversifies Scotland’s industrial base, promoting manufacturing innovation and boosting production’. But how is this to be achieved, given that the Westminster government has been struggling to do the same for the whole of the UK since the banking collapse in 2008? Answer comes there none.


There will be ‘targeted measures to reduce the outflow of labour and attract skilled workers to enhance Scotland’s population growth’. A little reading reveals these measures to stretch little beyond slightly higher subsidies for childcare. Yet Scottish families already enjoy more generous childcare, funded in part by the Barnett formula — which ensures £118 is spent on a Scot for every £100 spent on an Englishman. Scotland’s birth rate is significantly lower than England’s. If bungs-for-bairns is not working now, why should it do so after independence, when Scotland would have to fund them from its own resources?

In any case, when non-Scots do turn up north of the border to take advantage of free and subsidised public services, the SNP doesn’t tend to like it. A few weeks ago the Scottish government committed to closing a loophole whereby Northern Irish students can qualify for free tuition at Scottish universities by exercising their right to take a Republic of Ireland passport. It has also looked at introducing a ‘management fee’ to deter students from elsewhere in the EU taking advantage of free tuition fees.

The university sector is one which the SNP says it would seek to encourage after independence. But there is nothing stopping it boosting the university sector now: higher education is a devolved matter. Instead, it has chosen to starve Scottish universities of cash by insisting that Scottish students pay no tuition fees. For the moment, the funding gap is being plugged by extra money from Holyrood, but over the years lack of an income from Scottish students will become increasingly apparent.

Salmond has a reputation as a formidable late-stage campaigner, and even some of David Cameron’s closest advisers think a victory for him next year is not just possible but probable. It is, of course, true that Scotland is big enough to be independent. So is Andorra, and the other principalities who can be seen popping up to vote in the Eurovision song contest. But Salmond’s great weakness is the pointlessness of his mission. As he starts to publish detailed plans for Scottish independence, his bluff is slowly exposed. Independence solves no Scottish problem. It would give Edinburgh’s politicians more power, but would likely make the Scottish people poorer — and less free.

Big government impoverishes, and that is what Salmond is offering. So if his referendum is to be won, it is unlikely to be thanks to entrepreneurs reading this week’s white paper and holding out the prospect of shifting job-creating businesses to Scotland. What they will read is a fantasy prospectus which proposes to have its mealy pudding and eat it. This cannot last. If Scots are being asked to tear up their country and make foreigners out of their friends and family in England, then it should be for a very good reason. As the SNP’s economic plan has shown, it does not have one.

The debate should be only just beginning. Alex Salmond should be forced to decide whether an independent Scotland would be a low-tax, small-government haven of business — or a high-tax, public-sector-driven economy which clings to its welfare comfort blanket. He cannot get away with telling us that Scots can have both.

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Show comments
  • alexicon

    There are so many wrongs in this article it’s hard to start.
    All I’ll say is that this newspaper based in London knows how much London would miss Scotland’s resources.
    Btw we’re not a principality and Scotland is my country, not Britain.

    • TruthBeatsLies

      Good! Be sure you vote “YES” in September…!!!

    • Eddie

      And how much Scotland would miss London and England’s subsidy too eh?
      If turkeys want to vote for Christmas though, go ahead! I suspect that if the English (and Welsh) could vote too – which they should be able to do to dissolve an act of union – you’d be kicked out anyway.

      • scotcanadien

        You have been given the facts about the Scottish economy for at least a year and yet you still produce guff like that. Has your brain turned to mush? Are you unable to hold facts longer than a few minutes? Are you mentally disabled? It would appear so.

        • terregles2

          The important thing is that all the people living in Scotland know how much wealth our country has. We will have even more when Trident is removed from the Firth of Clyde and we can get on with the oil exploration that was blocked by the MOD due to the close proximity of the nuclear arsenal.
          We have all read the McCrone report and we know that many Scottish exports are counted as English because they leave from English ports. We also know that the if the dreadful discredited Labour and Westminster tories are united in their bid to keep Scotland from voting YES then we must have something they want.
          I laugh at all the Jock benefit scrounger insults posted on here. We know that as successful people we have probably paid more in income tax that many of the intellectual pygmies who take time to write anti Scottish nasty abuse. Best ignored.

          • scotcanadien

            Nah. I like to wind them up. They are so gullible.

          • HJ777

            You’re referring to people who disagree with you as “intellectual pygmies” and abusive?

            After your history of posting childish inane assertions and abuse?

            You really do lack self-awareness, don’t you?

          • terregles2

            I have not called anyone who disagrees with me an intellectual pygmy as you can see from my above post. I called people who refer to Scots as Jocks and benefit scroungers intellectual pygmies. If you do not agree that people who call Scots benefit scroungers and Jocks are intelletual pygmies then that is entirely up to you.

          • HJ777

            You routinely define your opponents as abusive towards Scots. Your sense of victimhood requires it.

            It saves presenting a reasoned argument – that’s why you do it. To describe others as “intellectual pygmies” clearly shows that you are not exactly reluctant to throw abuse yourself. Have you ever described a separatist (even one) as an “intellectual pygmy”? No, I thought not – it’s only the other side that has such people.

          • terregles2

            I have called anyone who abuses Scottish people for being Scottish intellectual pygmies just as I would apply the same term to any Scottish person abusing the English or any other nation on the grounds of their country of birth.
            I do not routinely call my opponents abusive many of them are similar to youself. You speak against Scottish independence and when asked to give a reason why Scotland should not choose self government you have no good reason to put forward. You say that you believe in self determination but when asked if Scotland should have self determination you have no answer.
            I have no sense of victimhood quite the reverse. I have a great sense of optimism and hope for the future of Scotland. Onwards and upwards that is my motto. I am lookig forward so much to Sept 2014 great days ahead.

          • HJ777

            This is complete nonsense.

            Scotland IS in the union. Everybody knows what it is like. You want to change the situation and for Scotland to leave the union – therefore it is incumbent on you to explain why and what advantages it would bring. And to be honest about it and to acknowledge that there must inevitably be a great deal of uncertainty about what would happen thereafter.

            You also repeatedly fail to understand the difference between self determination and separation. I have unequivocally stated that I am in favour of self determination – the problem being that you erroneously equate that with separation. Of course Scotland should have self determination (is that clear enough for you?) but if it determines (as I am confident it will) that it wants to stay in the union, then you should accept that. Otherwise, you refuse to accept self-determination.

            It is noticeable, however, that Salmond isn’t actually in favour of self-determination for Scots. This is why he hasn’t tried to enfranchise those Scots who live in other parts of the UK, but does want 16 and 17 year olds to vote. He’s interested in getting the result he want, regardless of what Scots actually prefer.

          • terregles2

            Really I only have to answer one question in 2014 and I will be happy to do so. Looking forward to it so much.

          • HJ777

            And so am I.

            You will lose because people will see your inability or unwillingness to answer straightforward questions, instead preferring to make groundless assertions.

            Most Scots are not as stupid as you think and you will not get away with insulting their intelligence.

          • terregles2

            I certaainly do not think Scots are stupid that is why I am so optimistic for the future.

          • HJ777

            Then why do you keep repeating the false assertion that everyone else is telling them they are?

            And why will you not address legitimate questions?

            And why do you falsely assert that self-determination means independence?

            You take Scots to be stupid, but most are a great deal brighter than you and do not take kindly to you insulting their intelligence.

        • Fergus Pickering

          What facts are these, pray, and where are they to be found?

          • HJ777

            He made them up in his head – and that’s good enough for him.

      • dalai guevara

        Money money money. Since when are you worried about finance, Eddie? Did you voice those concerns when the banksters took you for a ride?
        This is not about money. This is about identity and representation, you know, that South East England/ EU nonsense going on for ever and ever and ever. I say SE England because that’s where the loons are based.

  • jdmank

    the level of ignorance in this article suggests a sixteen year old who has never left his home town in his life, parochial does not even come close, instead why don’t you enlighten yourself by reading from Business for Scotland
    http://tinyurl.com/k3qd46s so before you purport to speak for the enterpeneurs stop and listen maybe you’ll learn something from the “Principality” of Scotland.

    • BoiledCabbage

      Republic more likely? Why would Eliz 2 want to own that chilly crown, or would the Scots bring someone back from the dead? Bruce perhaps? Though might be a wee bit crumbly by now

      • terregles2

        Think that the Balmoral estate and Holyrood Palace are worth quite a few bob to Elizabeth the 1st of Scotland. The royals also love a bit of grouse shooting.
        If the Windsors are tired of Scotland I am sure we will find a use for the beautiful estates that they leave behind.
        Hope the door does not hit her on the royal bottom as she leaves our country.

    • Fergus Pickering

      Remind me who the Scottish King is. Macbeth?

  • jdmank

    Andorra 181sq miles

    pop 85.000

    sixth smallest nation in Europe

    Andorra is a prosperous country mainly because of its tourism industry which has an estimated 10.2 million visitors a year

    gdp 3.712 billion

    currency Euro (although not in EU) Andorra uses the Euro by choice hmm

    Scotland 30.414 sq miles.

    pop 5.313 million (compared to ) Denmark 5.9m Norway 5.019m million

    gdp 235.000 billion (excluding oil)

    currency Pound Sterling (and shall remain so as long as the Scottish government deems it nessesary)

    See what you mean there the similarities are striking

    • Bonkim

      Andorra is a non-country – a tax-free shopping centre for passing travellers.

      • jdmank

        Why dont you go to Andorra and wear a placard around your neck stating that bonkim or can I call you bonkers?

        • Bonkim

          Have you got hypertension? taken your pills today?

        • Fergus Pickering

          Have you been to Andorra?. What he says is a description and fairly exact.

  • Rev. Stuart Campbell

    ” Instead, it has chosen to starve Scottish universities of cash by insisting that Scottish students pay no tuition fees… the funding gap is being plugged by extra money from Holyrood”

    So it HASN’T chosen to starve Scottish universities of cash at all, then?

    • Hebridean Forager

      However, it has capped the number of Scottish students. Take my son’s IR graduation at St Andrews, we might have been in Harvard #accents

  • Rev. Stuart Campbell

    “Independence solves no Scottish problem.”

    What about the problem that Scotland keeps getting Tory governments it overwhelmingly rejects at the ballot box, and policies that vast majorities of its people and MPs alike oppose?

    I realise that the Spectator doesn’t recognise Tory governments as a problem under any circumstances, but trust me, an awful lot of Scots disagree.

    • justejudexultionis

      And an awful lot of us northern English agree with you too. Culturally and economically, my home town of Newcastle has much more in common with Scotland than with the south-east of England.

  • allymax bruce

    Fraser, oh-dear!
    You said, ‘No’, to the Royal Charter, but there will be one!
    You cry like a spoilt child at Hacked-Off; naughty corner, NOW!
    And, now you throw a stropp about Scotland’s Right to choose Freedom.
    I’ll need to get Andrew to give you a bigger dummy!

  • Tom Tom

    Alex Salmond is a political genius. He has gained Southeast levels of Public Spending on Culture, Infrastructure per Capita and TWICE the levels in Northern England.

    It is brilliant how he has sucked resources away from Northern England and the Tories have put all the effort into Scotland and miring the North in Depression

    • terregles2

      It just makes you wonder what exactly the tories get from Scotland. They are jumping through hoops to keep Scotland in the union. We all know the Westminster tories they don’t believe in the something for nothing culture so I wonder just what it is they get from Scotland if it’s not votes…..then what is it?.

      • HJ777

        It’s clearly difficult for you to understand that others can believe in and support something regardless of personal gain.

        It’s called having principles and a regard for the interests of the people of Scotland and the rest of the UK that you don’t share. Do not denigrate others for not being as unprincipled as you.

    • Fergus Pickering

      All since 2010 eh? Everything was hunky-dory before.

  • scotcanadien

    One statement is all that is needed to classify the above article as shit. The White Paper hasn’t been published and I am absolutely certain you have not seen a copy. You whoever you are, are commenting on the economic paper produced last week. Why no name? Are you afraid to put your name to the above crap? The ARTICLE is the fantasy. Full of rubbish about the Scot’s economy. Whoever you are you haven’t got a clue. Are you Blair McDougal or even Alisdair Darling incognito? Because the article has all the hallmarks of a production by Project Fear, Smear, Intimidation, Lies and Bullsh1t.

    • wycombewanderer

      It was published on line in the guardian and then pulled as there is an ’embargo’ on it until midnight.

      Journalists have seen it!

      • scotcanadien

        Rubbish!

  • scotcanadien

    Recycled pap from 23 November 2013. Whoever wrote this hasn’t got an original thought in his head.

  • BoiledCabbage

    What is to stop Shetland declaring independence and establishing an economic zone which includes several oilfields? Must be tempting eh?

    • scotcanadien

      Where have you been for the last 18 months during which the Northern Isles and oil have been thrashed to death in many, many places? Outcome; Northern Isles would have no oil because being Independent enclaves within Scottish territorial Waters their EEZ would only extend to 10 nm offshore and there is no oil there. Try to keep up.

      • Student. G. Rant

        So, you want independence, but you want to retain sovereignty over the Shetlands & the Orkneys (because they are in Scottish territorial waters) Do you think salmond will give them a referendum on their independence. you hypocrite!!

        • scotcanadien

          I told you to try to keep up. The Scottish Government has produced a paper in only the last few days suggesting greater autonomy for the Northern Isles in the event of YES.

          • Student. G. Rant

            But you said the paper was a load of pap, Looks like you need to keep up & re-evaluate your postings.yah two way hypocrite.
            still, we nailed Montcalm, didn’t we. typical f*og sticking their nose into other peoples business.

          • scotcanadien

            I see you’ve now descended into the gutter with your friend Sanctimony. And you truly are a thick bastard. The “pap” I was referring to was the article, which is just a copy of a piece first published on 23 November 2013. It appears you can’t understand English either.

          • Student. G. Rant

            OUI!! mon beton noir provacateur guttersnipe, user of bad language, sticker in of an unwanted nose, commenting as if your voice is the one true voice of Scotland. most Scots would give you a good hard kiss having to listen to the drivel that you have been spouting.

          • terregles2

            Stop being so silly with your point scoring. There are an increasing number of Scots who do not want to be governed by the Westminster circus.
            Are you seriously suggesting that any sane person living in Scotland would trust the Westminster tories before any Holyrood government. Get real the Westminster government is bad enough then we look at the political deadwood that our hard earned taxes have to support in the House of Lords.
            Is anyone seriously suggesting that we would choose these inadequates to make the best choices for Scotland.
            Who will we choose Cameron..Miliband ..Clegg or Farage ,,, you are having a laugh.
            No thanks …many of us will vote YES then vote from a Scottish political party that we believe will do the best for Scotland.

          • Student. G. Rant

            I don’t trust them either, so you’re not alone on that point.
            Don’t get me wrong, I want to see Scotland get its’ independence as well. BTW THE FROG STARTED IT!!

        • ChuckieStane

          It shows how little you know when you call Shetland “the Shetlands”. Maybe best if you stick to talking about the Englands.

          • Student. G. Rant

            With a bit of luck we can call it England a gain when we get rid of the other England that is north of Hadrians wall.

          • Student. G. Rant

            I notice a lot of true Scots call it the Shetlands as well, so what gives you as a foreigner the right to be a total ‘swipe.

      • jdmank

        sorry scotcanadien for cutting your grass,
        btw nice to see you again you’ll know me better as jdman 🙂

        • scotcanadien

          No problem. We’re on the same side. I’ve been around but more on Twitter these days. The Telegraph is irrelevant now and this lot is going the same way. They are running out of venom.

    • jdmank

      Could it be that an Island inside the exclusive economic zone of a neighboring country would (under UN LAW) only be allowed a 12 mile zone around it which coincidentally contains no oil fields, apart from which no matter how much you wish it, the Shetlands and Orkneys have no desire to be separate from Scotland, so here’s a thought
      wind yer neck in pal

      • Fergus Pickering

        It is not true that the Shetlands have no desire… They have no particular liking for Lowland scots. Why should they have?

        • terregles2

          Why would they like Lowland Scots? Why would they like London political chancers any better…..Good heavens does anyone in the UK have any respect fot the Westmisnster rabble of chancers.

  • Student. G. Rant

    scotscanadien, the name says it all, shouting from afar, just like your fellow expat Sean Connery, who says “as soon as Scotland gets its independence he is going back” Yeah!!, straight back to the Bahamas.

    • Sanctimony

      Connery, when translated from French has a very rude meaning which fully describes this monstrous Scotch ‘fraud’.

      • scotcanadien

        And con when translated from French describes you.

        • Sanctimony

          Merci pour le compliment !

          What a ghastly cocktail… a Scotch Quebecois…

          • scotcanadien

            Far better than an English mongrel. Just remember 1066 when we enslaved you.

          • Fergus Pickering

            Who is this we? Are you Norman French? I thought you were scotscanadien. Or perhaps you don’t know who you are?.

    • scotcanadien

      Shouting???!!! Stating the obvious more like. I am already living in Scotland and will vote YES, and Sean, who lives in Spain, has never said he would return.

  • “Big government impoverishes…” which explains the thousands of poor using food banks in Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Norway, whilst the poor in the UK…

  • Wee Scamp

    Actually, big government tends not to impoverish but if managed properly has a distinctly beneficial effect. For example – that bastion of free market policy the United States invests huge amounts in research, development and demonstration much of which has been responsible for the USA’s dominance in comms technology. As Prof Marianna Mazzucato of Sussex University points out, if the USG hadn’t funded development of the internet, GPS, touch screens, the microprocessor, attitude sensors, wireless cells and a range of other technologies then Apple would never have developed the iPhone.

    Those opposed to big govt fail to recognise that the way to get smaller govt is to pick the right areas of policy for applying big govt policies such as RD&D which lead to greater wealth creating activities.

    Of course in the UK we have one of the smallest RD&D budgets of any of our competitors particularly when it comes to energy technologies. Sadly, we have small govt run by people with small minds.

  • Sanctimony

    Let’s consider the plus points when these 5 million odd parasites go their own way:

    About 30 or so less Scottish Labour MPs in Westminster, sustaining the legacy of Blair & Brown….

    The House of Lords being purged of the presence of reptiles like the
    Lords Foulkes and Martin…. who are in a total panic at the prospect of losing their ill-gained sinecures in Westminster and fiercely promoting the ‘NO’ vote…

    The prospect of never again having to listen to the mangled vowels of the likes of Kirsty Wark, Andrew Neil, Muriel Gray etc etc is a prospect to be relished… just bring it on….

    Jimmy Shand forever…. och aye the noo……

    • scotcanadien

      Typical English noodle head. Hasn’t the brains to debate properly so goes to the level of the gutter to hurl insults. Well you’ll be OK there as the English spend most of their time in the gutter on weekends in their town centres. Anyway when we go we take our oil with us numptie. And as a bonus we won’t have to listen to the hee haw braying of the SE English on TV news, nor the whining voices from Westminster nor the cackling of the thick northern english dialects. Christ I’ve been here 18 months and I still don’t know what any of you are talking about, I’ve got to use sub-titles. And we won’t be subjected to constant re-runs of a football match from 50 years ago. The English have never won anything since. What bliss.
      And you’ll notice we can ALL throw insults about. It isn’t difficult to be a dickhead.

      • Weaver

        It seems we are agreed, North and South of the border. You should leave at once. Good luck.

      • Cumberland

        Seems to me the SNP position is to bore to death all against ditching the union, yawn.

      • Sanctimony

        I believe most of the oil is in international waters… apart from which, it was decided by Westminster to base the exploration in Aberdeen, which was dying on its feet…it could easily have been based on Tyneside.

        Not to mention that it was mainly American money that developed the oilfields.

        I also noticed in Friday’s papers that every Scot receives £ 1600 more from Westminster than anyone in England.

        Take your wretched oil and drown in it.

        We in England can then enjoy all the free perks that are currently enjoyed by the Scots alone.

        PS… you should get your blood pressure checked, mate…

        • scotcanadien

          dickhead rating:- stupid *, very stupid **, absolute clown***

          **I believe most of the oil is in international waters. It is but within the Scottish EEZ (look it up in google)

          *Not to mention that it was mainly American money that developed the oilfields. Totally irrelevant.

          ***I also noticed in Friday’s papers that every Scot receives £ 1600 more from Westminster than anyone in England. Scotland with 8.3% popn, pays in 9.9% tax to UK receives back only 9.3% of UK expenditure. £1600 only repays part of extra that we contribute.

          ***Take your wretched oil and drown in it. Oh so you agree it’s ours.

          **We in England can then enjoy all the free perks that are currently enjoyed by the Scots alone. Not in the banana republic where England is heading after we leave.

          ***PS… you should get your blood pressure checked, mate… I think you are the irate one. Did your ‘funny’ little remarks bounce back and hit you dicky heady?

          • Sanctimony

            Nurse !!!!!…… Quick !!!!!

          • scotcanadien

            Game, Set, Match, to ScotsCanadien. Sanctimonius bastard can’t stand the heat, calling for his nurse, he’s obviously in an Old Folks Home

          • Student. G. Rant

            Who is this “we” mon frog?
            .

      • Fergus Pickering

        And what have the Scots won? I presume you are talking about football. The English have won quite a lot of other things. The Scots – nada..

        • terregles2

          Wish you boys would stop trying to prove who can pee the highest. Football ….winning …meanwhile back in the real world……

  • justejudexultionis

    Scotland can be said to have benefited demonstrably from the Union during the first two centuries of its existence. The same cannot be said, however, for the last one hundred years. Thanks to the increasing, unchallenged, dominance of London and the south-east of England, the once great cities of Glasgow and Edinburgh have been turned into backwaters.

    The sooner the separation takes place, the better for every one of the constituent countries of the United Kingdom.

    • Fergus Pickering

      I have noticed that few of the speccie regulars post on this question. Could it be that they are bored to death with it? I stagger on because I was brought up in Edinburgh and have some residual affection for it. Though it’s gone downhill since the 1960s with some horrible developments, for instance at the top of Leith Walk. And the University is hardly what it was..

      • terregles2

        I love England and always have I always will Scottish independence or not . I was in London last weekend and cannot believe the changes that I now see. I love that city but it is just not the same place that it once was. I always enjoyed the Londoners sense of humour it seemed to connect with the west coast of Scotland chirpy irreverent humour.
        I struggled to connect with anyone there. It just did not seem like London any more. Buildings are one thing people are another.
        I miss the London where there were great characters and a great atmosphere. Wish it could come back.

  • herbert_nothanks

    There will be so many positives for us English to the Scots going their own way. Principally, they’ll have to find someone else to hate. Good luck with that one…

    • terregles2

      The majority of Scots do not hate anybody. A large number of Scots have friends and family in England. Why would we hate our nearest neighbouring country that is nonsense. Many thousands of English live in Scotland. Many Scots want self government. We don’t like being governed from Westminster nothing to do with the English people.

  • Fergus Pickering

    Don’t read any of this drivel, Fraser. It’s all from the usual suspects.

  • Fraziel

    The SNP will say ANYTHING to get a yes vote. There is a real feeling amongst many people up here that they make it up as they go along. What do the voters want to hear? ok, thats what we will say, whether its true or not seems to be the SNP way of doing things. I like salmond as he is a skilled operator but anyone with any intelligence can see through him. I voted SNP in the Scottish elections but i will vote no in the independence election, unless the SNP start being honest.

    • terregles2

      Fraziel there is a real feeling up here that Scotland is not being governed very well from Westminster. After independence people may vote for the SNP or they may vote for another party but whoever they vote for cannot be any worse than the Westminster corrupt club.
      If you choose to vote no then that is your right. Some of us though want so much more and we will move forward and build a better future.

      • Fraziel

        I am informed as to the choice available and feel that independence will not offer more and as i said, the SNP are not telling the truth to people and will say absolutely anything to get people to vote yes. Just at them now telling us we can keep the pound when it was only a year or so ago that Swinney was telling us how the pound would hold us back.There is a 9 billion hole each year in Scotland, the difference between money raised here and money spent, how will that be plugged? There will have to be tax rises or cuts or both. Why wont the SNP say what they will do?

        Do you want to be in the hated and despised EURO? I seriously doubt the people of Scotland do.Thats what will happen and you will swap so called poor government at Westminster from elected persons to government from Brussels from non elected persons. Alex Salmond has plans to lower corporation tax, something that the left strongly oppose in Scotland as they are so short sighted. Great idea as it will create jobs as companies seek to invest here.Only problem of course is the EU wont let him. They are already talking about having a common corporation tax throughout EU member states as France and Germany are very unhappy at Irelands low rates. So that plan wont happen. The idea you can run a country on oil money is also ludicrous.

        I think we have the best of both worlds here so its a no from me. Also, the extremist nutters in the Scottish socialist party support independence. Even if you dont know the arguments for and against that should be a good reason to vote no. If they want it it certainly cant be a good thing.

        • terregles2

          Well if Scotland is too poor to have self government then why does Westminster want to keep managing our revenue. It is clearly making a profit from Scotland or it would want us to leave.
          Westminster government is appalling not fit for purpose. It will be great after independence not having to pay into the discredited Westminster system.
          Will be great also not to waste money on the parasites in the House of Lords.
          We can get rid of Trident and get on with the oil exploration in the Firth of Clyde. Scotland will be much better off managing our own resources,

  • Crumbs

    The cultural case for independence is very strong and emotionally charged. The mass media don’t reflect our history, our culture, or the constitutional facts of our separate institutions (not just since devolution but retained after the Union, especially our distinct legal system). Night after night we listen to news from London and wonder whether it actually applies north of the Border or not. Politically, however, the independence issue is a storm in a teacup. Since UK sovereignty has been signed away to Brussels, Westminster no longer matters. I’ll be voting no, because the SNP is Europhile in principle (so won’t put up an effective struggle against Brussels), and because independence is liable to lead to deeper integration with the EU in practice.

  • Terry Field

    This is a silly article.
    Independence is forever, and should he fail, an independent Scotland would vote, replace him, do what it wishes, and achieve what its self determination would allow it to achieve.
    It should be its own master, and the rest is trivia; but they have not got the balls to do it.
    They will remain the northern parkland of the disinterested English.

  • iain mackie

    This is typical of the one sided nonsense coming out of the London media at the moment. If we cost the UK so much money why are the Tories, Labour and Lib Dems so keen to keep it in the UK ? Ahh its the charitable tories loving us funny wee jocks isn’t it ?

  • Terry Field

    If he fails after independence, the Scotties will vote him out!!!!
    Unless he does a Putin.

  • Guest

    Sound discussion , really enjoyed all your thoughts and comments on this very important issue at stake . Happy St Andrews Day Scotland , with love from England.

    ♫ ♪ Babe, ( Scotland )

    I love you so
    I want you to know
    that I’m going to miss your love
    the minute you walk out that door ♪

    ♪ so please don’t go
    don’t go, don’t go away
    please don’t go
    don’t go, I’m begging you to stay ♪ ♫

    Well done Terregles2 , I feel your passion and that is all that you ever need to get across, you did not deserved to be intellectually bullied by that intellectual pygmy HJ777.

  • Page Read

    Sound discussion , really enjoyed all your thoughts and comments on this very important issue at stake . Happy St Andrews Day Scotland , with love from England.

    ♫ ♪ Babe, ( Scotland )

    I love you so
    I want you to know
    that I’m going to miss your love
    the minute you walk out that door ♪

    ♪ so please don’t go
    don’t go, don’t go away
    please don’t go
    don’t go, I’m begging you to stay ♪ ♫

    Well done Terregles2 , I feel your passion and that is all that you ever need to get across, you did not deserve to be intellectually bullied by that intellectual pygmy HJ777.

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