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rik2304

Yes Or Naw?

  

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Whatever the currency arrangements are (it's all a big red herring to keep people confused), I don't think there's any doubt the economic argument is there, Scotland is wealthy.  I'm stuck up in here in Finland and anybody coming here would accept without question that it's a prosperous place with a good quality of life.

 

Finnish GDP per capita was just under $38000 last year, compared to just shy of $46000 for Scotland (in other words even without oil and gas revenues Scotland would still have greater income than Finland).  That is a lot of bawbees, unicorns, wee ecks, groats, or pounds.  Biggest difference from here to Scotland/UK is wealth distribution, so average people here are better off in Scotland, as they have done more to deal with wealth inequality.

 

That's not something you can tackle overnight, but I'd like to believe iScotland would at least try, there's no chance in the neo-conservative nightmare of the UK.

Edited by HelsinkiSaintee

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The currency arrangements are not about what Scotland uses but the consequences of how it is used. In that sense it is far from a red herring but central to the knock on economic argument.

The whole of the Scottish economy will be weakened by the proposals in place and so my feeling is the whole Scottish economy will be undermined by going independent. Scotland is wealthy now as part of the UK, but by weakening the very thing which makes it wealthy I don't see how it will be anything other than less prosperous (which is not the same as being a basket case, just less successful compared to now) which then undermines any effort to redistribute wealth.

In all honesty it's different conclusions to the same assessment, each to their own. By far the worst part of this referendum has been the vitriol aimed at anyone who disagrees. I have argued my point vigourously but I haven't yet fallen out with anyone over it because it has never got personal and I hope it stays that way both before and after the 18th September whatever the result. 

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If there is a yes vote surely that means, come election time, the SNP will romp home. Is there another party? You will be safe though in Finland as I will be south of the divide.

When we get independence there will be elections & Labour will win as they dominate the political landscape in Scotland. You could put a monkey up for election for Labour in the central belt & Fife & it would win

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Long post, need to get dinner going so not too detailed points.  I assume you're writing about what GG has said?  If yes, trade war, heard him banging on about this before, it's a nonsense.  He's on about the so-called "race-to-the-bottom" where Scotland cuts taxes to get business, then rUK cuts taxes, and so on and so on.  If there were any validity to this claim the UK would have been in a "trade war" with Ireland for the last 30 years or so.  This race-to-the-bottom is a theory that emerged in the 80s and can be shown not to have happened, discredited theory.  The rest of his economic points follow from this point so are not valid.

 

UK progressive forces, there is little/no space in UK politics for progressives, the system is simply broken, unfit for purpose.  If it were a parrot it would be nailed to it's perch.  It's locked into a 2 choice option, Tory and Labour, would anybody describe either party as progressive?  Nobody would describe Tories as so, Labour's record in the last 20 years doesn't suggest a progressive party.  In fact, the only race-to-the-bottom is Labour and Tories race to see who's hardest in cutting support for the most vulnerable in society.  Lib Dems, irrelevant, they've done nothing to moderate the Tories in the coalition, they will be lucky to have 10 MPs in next Cessminster election.  There's no other options out there, UKIP won't get a significant vote outside of EU election protests.  Boris terrifies me much more than Farage.  Scotland in or out of the Union, he will lead Tories into government, and be PM for at least 2 terms, I won't detail how much that thought makes my balls shrink.

 

At least in an "iScotland", we already have a political structure in place, i.e. a form of proportional representation as opposed to first-past-the-post, that should allow a little more variety in our politics.  In reality, you are much more likely to see coalition governments, that creates a space for the progressives to consistently influence government.  I can see that up here in Finland, and I'm sure others can confirm for other Nordic countries.  The right has a voice up here, but they will never have power.  The main Finnish party of the right would be considered to be the left of Labour at the moment.  Consensus politics rule the day, that should be the goal in Scotland.  We have a party called Perus Suomalaiset (translated as True Finns), who range at their extremes far into BNP territory and beyond.  They had an EU election result similar to UKIP's a few years ago, but it hasn't translated into parliamentary seats.

 

Sorry, kids are screaming and I need to cook, post has rambled but I didn't want to simply write George is wrong after you obviously spent time on your post :)

 

Race to the bottom theory is far from discredited....if you gave a Tory the political excuse to slash corporation tax he will do as his corporate masters tell him/her.  It is also a bit more than just tax rates, our largest market is rUK, some 70% of our goods and services rely upon this trade, consumers and procurement agencies at every level and will no longer feel compelled to purchase from iScotland, for example renewable energy is cheaper from France, and it will be considerably cheaper when the UK subsidy is hooked.   rUK will be free from any notion to 'buy British' so to speak as Scottish products will now be from foreign, rival nation.  This of course can be overstated, but equally it can, and is, being understated by the Yessers who think everything good about the union can be preserved whilst anything not in our interests can be jettisoned....dangerously insular thinking, especially with right wing populists seeking to exploit any fragment of ill feeling that may arise from the unravelling of the union.

 

In a sense HS, IMO, you have illustrated one of the many ideological inconsistencies in the Yes argument.  Even Salmond will not trumpet the Irish model they way he did for 10 years and more....the much lauded Celtic Tiger became a helpless kitten within a generation. ( http://aregan.wordpress.com/2011/10/19/the-collapse-of-irelands-liberal-market-economy/ ), yet the flagship policy of the White Paper is to replicate the same trickle down theory which has been so disastrous for Ireland.....if you want to see austerity in action look no further than the deep hole Ireland currently finds itself in, with little prospect of a route out any time soon.  This is a result of reckless economic planning, the same recklessness the YesNP display in spades. (http://www.theguardian.com/science/head-quarters/2014/jul/24/the-fightin-irish-not-when-it-comes-to-recession-and-austerity).

 

Rooted deeply into the discourse of Yes is a constant comparison and conflation between the 'Irish model' and the 'Nordic model'. Where we are invited to cast beguiling glances towards what are very different societies. (to be fair you did not go too far down this route but bear with me) The nordic nations are a world away from the Scottish economy, there are major differences in politics, culture and economics.  Scotland has 25% of the population living in and around the poverty line the nordic nations simply do not have to deal with this post-industrial mess, this alone makes comparisons highly problematic.  Further, the nordic nations are high salary, high tax economies....Scotland is not.  The nordic nations have a vastly different work ethic and attitude toward class and public services.  (http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/57664dc2-8bf8-11e3-bcf2-00144feab7de.html#axzz3BbvoS1Nj)

 

On the one hand 'look at Ireland...low taxes and thriving corporations providing employment' on the other 'look at Norway, high taxes excellent social cohesion and creditable levels of equality'  the question for Yes is which one is being advocated? because it simply cannot be both! IMO they will go for the Irish model, much to the fury of the socialists et al who are flocking to the nationalist banner........but bear in mind the Nats have 40% of the vote the socialists have 2%.  Salmond and Strugeon will not give a **** when they dismiss the aspirations of the comrades with a 'thanks...suckers!'

 

I suspect we share a lot of political views and I certainly share your frustration with the current set up in Westminster, but I would stop short of 'lets give it a go it can't be any worse' reasoning.....it could get worse, a lot worse.....take a look at the junior partners in the European currency union (Salmond's favoured option) public sector workers being made redundant by the thousand, 20% pay cuts to teachers police officers and the rest.....austerity way deeper than even Osbourne would dare to cut. 

 

One final point PR has its advantages as a voting system, but equally there are disadvantages....UKIP had 28% of the vote at the Euros, in Scotland UKIP and the Tories combined gained as many votes the SNP, I'd like to think this is a protest restricted to Euros, but who knows without the 'blame Westminster' default maybe Scottish protest votes will end up in a right wing party only too willing to exploit the same xenophobic and intolerant attutudes north of the border as UKIP do in the south.

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Your posts are too long Smarmy, I may come back to this tomorrow, it's pretty much bedtime for me, and economics is dead boring :)  We can go around in circles but even the so-called experts all disagree on the economics, agreed?  So we can pretty much say there may or may not be risks, there may or may not be opportunities.  We'll end up agreeing with the ones that reinforce our worldview.  I have nothing more clever than that to say at this time of night :)

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On your head be it. You say it is not a vote for Salmond but he will be the first President or Dictator when the day dawns.

 

If the Scottish people decide to elect Alex Salmond as the first leader of iScotland is that not democracy? I would always trust ourselves to make the correct decisions for Scotland rather than going cap in hand to WM.

 

People south of the border seem to be only be joining the debate and tbh some of the arrogance and ignorance that is being directed north of the border only increases the desire for independence.

 

I actually think the rUK are in for a shock after indy. 

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I'm in no way politically inclined at all but the fact a government which you do not vote for governs... Does that not defeat the point?

 

Why are we not better together now? I work in a job where im involved with one of the uks biggest banks. This notion that things are going to change with them as the government are sorting them out are complete nonsense, I see the same encouragement of old behaviors.

 

I was originally a no vote. For many reasons I'm pretty sure i no longer am.These are a few simple thjngs I see.

 

I'm younger than many of you and as i say I'm not politically inclined but that's where I am seeing things.

Edited by PerthSeany

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On your head be it. You say it is not a vote for Salmond but he will be the first President or Dictator when the day dawns.

 

I'm sorry, but that's just a load of nonsense. He's the democratically elected leader of the majority party in the country. In what way is he a 'dictator?'. I'm far from a fan of Alex Salmond or the SNP, but honestly, what a daft statement.

 

I'm voting Yes. I was a definite no, taking the word of the MSM and the BBC, but that quickly changed when I did my own research. The idea of a Government who are looking out for (and are actually interested in) your views, being able to rid ourselves of nuclear weapons and not being lead into illegal wars when our MPs actually vote AGAINST it are my main motivations. The fact that the Tories only have one seat in Scotland and represent our views internationally is just ridiculous. Scotland (in my opinion anyway) shouldn't be lead by such a right wing Government (their competition is hardly much better) as it doesn't even come close to representing the majority view.

 

The campaigns on both sides have been absolutely pathetic. Both sides have resorted to petty niggles and have focussed themselves far too much on the negatives of the other side, rather than the positives of their own campaign. I must be honest - I'm yet to see a positive argument put forward by 'better together' campaigner for staying in the Union. The most recent advert telling women to vote no without thinking about it is just offensive and ridiculous. I genuinely thought that was a parody by a Yes supporter when I watched it.

 

I suspect it will be a no vote come September 18. I just hope that doesn't negatively effect our prospects going forward as I can only see Scotland being shunted well down the agenda. It would be absolutely ridiculous also for a country to vote against its own independence - probably the first time in history.

 

As an aside, if Devo-max had've been an option, that is likely what I would have voted for. It isn't and is only being tacked on now to pacify a restless crowd.

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Actually Montenegro voted against Independence in 1992.Nothing ridiculous in voting against independence if that is what the majority choose to do, it would seem to be the democratic thing, even if you as an individual disagree with it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montenegrin_independence_referendum,_1992

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Actually Montenegro voted against Independence in 1992.Nothing ridiculous in voting against independence if that is what the majority choose to do, it would seem to be the democratic thing, even if you as an individual disagree with it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montenegrin_independence_referendum,_1992

 

Fair enough. The very idea of democracy is that the people decide. If we vote in a similar manner, then that's fine. I'll be disappointed at what I believe to be a chance wasted, but I'm not going to get my pitchfork out or anything.

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On your head be it. You say it is not a vote for Salmond but he will be the first President or Dictator when the day dawns.

If we vote Yes then it's true that Salmond will still be in control on 19 September and for the 18 months of negotiations. But in 2016 there will be a general election to see who will form the first Independent Scottish Government. IF Salmond is in control after that, then it will be because the majority of Scots want him there.

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Sorry, a bit rambling again, busy all over at the moment.

 

Race to the bottom theory is far from discredited....if you gave a Tory the political excuse to slash corporation tax he will do as his corporate masters tell him/her.  It is also a bit more than just tax rates, our largest market is rUK, some 70% of our goods and services rely upon this trade, consumers and procurement agencies at every level and will no longer feel compelled to purchase from iScotland, for example renewable energy is cheaper from France, and it will be considerably cheaper when the UK subsidy is hooked.   rUK will be free from any notion to 'buy British' so to speak as Scottish products will now be from foreign, rival nation.  This of course can be overstated, but equally it can, and is, being understated by the Yessers who think everything good about the union can be preserved whilst anything not in our interests can be jettisoned....dangerously insular thinking, especially with right wing populists seeking to exploit any fragment of ill feeling that may arise from the unravelling of the union.

 
We'll just have to disagree on race-to-the-bottom, if it was going to lead to a trade war, UK would already have had one with Ireland.  UK doesn't need to compete with a comparatively small economy like Ireland, or Scotland, by decreasing corporate tax, when there are much more interesting ways for corporations to avoid it completely!  The rest is a bit glass half empty if you don't mind me saying, which is a pretty consistent feature of thinking leading to a decision to remain in the Union :)  You're only looking at threats and not considering opportunities.  I'd agree that 70% exports to rest of UK is too high, but there's surely a better opportunity as an independent country to diversify exports?  Given that Scottish government would have control over Scotland's economic policy.  At the moment it's locked in to providing to rUK, that's UK's policy.
 
French renewable energy?  Non!  France has tiny renewables, something upward of 80% of French electricity production is nuclear.  The infrastructure to import French electricity is pretty much saturated so bringing more in requires infrastructure investment, that'll obviously increase the cost, so perhaps Scottish renewables won't seem so expensive after all.  In mainland Europe, demand is increasing for renewable electricity, people are voting with their wallets to buy electricity that is produced by renewables only companies.  That's an opportunity, obviously requires spending on infrastructure as well.  In fact, I think in Scotland, the potential of renewables is massively underestimated, if the production potential is developed it'll be a much bigger earner than oil & gas have ever been.  Electricity needs aren't going to decrease any time soon.  Renewable technology must also create a huge opportunity for some reindustrialisation.
 

In a sense HS, IMO, you have illustrated one of the many ideological inconsistencies in the Yes argument.  Even Salmond will not trumpet the Irish model they way he did for 10 years and more....the much lauded Celtic Tiger became a helpless kitten within a generation. ( http://aregan.wordpress.com/2011/10/19/the-collapse-of-irelands-liberal-market-economy/ ), yet the flagship policy of the White Paper is to replicate the same trickle down theory which has been so disastrous for Ireland.....if you want to see austerity in action look no further than the deep hole Ireland currently finds itself in, with little prospect of a route out any time soon.  This is a result of reckless economic planning, the same recklessness the YesNP display in spades. (http://www.theguardian.com/science/head-quarters/2014/jul/24/the-fightin-irish-not-when-it-comes-to-recession-and-austerity).

 

I don't trumpet either Irish or UK models.  UK is as helpless, if not more, than Ireland now though.  I don't agree with everything the SNP propose by a long shot but you can't have everything, and there's still no guarantee that SNP will be in government to implement those policies. You link to a Guardian article but I boycott the Guardian so not reading it.

 

 

Rooted deeply into the discourse of Yes is a constant comparison and conflation between the 'Irish model' and the 'Nordic model'. Where we are invited to cast beguiling glances towards what are very different societies. (to be fair you did not go too far down this route but bear with me) The nordic nations are a world away from the Scottish economy, there are major differences in politics, culture and economics.  Scotland has 25% of the population living in and around the poverty line the nordic nations simply do not have to deal with this post-industrial mess, this alone makes comparisons highly problematic.  Further, the nordic nations are high salary, high tax economies....Scotland is not.  The nordic nations have a vastly different work ethic and attitude toward class and public services.  (http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/57664dc2-8bf8-11e3-bcf2-00144feab7de.html#axzz3BbvoS1Nj)

 

On the one hand 'look at Ireland...low taxes and thriving corporations providing employment' on the other 'look at Norway, high taxes excellent social cohesion and creditable levels of equality'  the question for Yes is which one is being advocated? because it simply cannot be both! IMO they will go for the Irish model, much to the fury of the socialists et al who are flocking to the nationalist banner........but bear in mind the Nats have 40% of the vote the socialists have 2%.  Salmond and Strugeon will not give a **** when they dismiss the aspirations of the comrades with a 'thanks...suckers!'

 

I don't think the aim is to copy root and branch a model from another country, there isn't a Nordic model as such, although there are key features that you see replicated in all the Nordics.  For me, and I would suggest most, the Nordics are the ones to aspire to, adapt as needed.  I probably said this an another post, Finland was ruined after WW2, and even considering lower economic output than Scotland, you see far lower levels of poverty here, life expentancy is higher, education is better, transparency of government is high and corruption is low.  Given that the referendum will be won because of the progressive left, and not the SNP, there is no chance in my mind that the SNP will **** them off.  You have 18 months give or take to negotiate the terms of separation, making preparations for independence, if SNP don't involve the progressive left heavily in that, they will not be elected without needing to form coalition, and most likely with a party of the left.

 

I suspect we share a lot of political views and I certainly share your frustration with the current set up in Westminster, but I would stop short of 'lets give it a go it can't be any worse' reasoning.....it could get worse, a lot worse.....take a look at the junior partners in the European currency union (Salmond's favoured option) public sector workers being made redundant by the thousand, 20% pay cuts to teachers police officers and the rest.....austerity way deeper than even Osbourne would dare to cut. 

 

We probably do, and you should just vote Yes, you know it makes sense :)  My reasoning isn't that it can't be any worse, my reasoning is that it will definitely get worse with the status quo, financially and socially.  Westminster is unreformable and completely corrupt.  I agree with what Craig Murray says in the video I posted previously, because I've said the exact same thing, the UK is a rogue state, and it will do anything to advance the wealth and influence of a very few people.  I don't think I can condemn it any worse than rogue state.  
 

One final point PR has its advantages as a voting system, but equally there are disadvantages....UKIP had 28% of the vote at the Euros, in Scotland UKIP and the Tories combined gained as many votes the SNP, I'd like to think this is a protest restricted to Euros, but who knows without the 'blame Westminster' default maybe Scottish protest votes will end up in a right wing party only too willing to exploit the same xenophobic and intolerant attutudes north of the border as UKIP do in the south.

 

Glass half empty Smarmy.

 

In conclusion, vote yes.  I won't respond to any more economic posts, they're boring :)

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Me too!  I'd like to move back but my wife refuses to move to right-wing UK, but an independent social democratic iScotland might fly :)  Out of interest, did you watch the video of Craig Murray I'd posted before?  If not, please watch it, I thought it was powerful stuff, only about 4 or 5 minutes long?  Much more convincing than Gorgeous George.  I don't joke when I question George's sanity, I think he's a total headcase.

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Me too!  I'd like to move back but my wife refuses to move to right-wing UK, but an independent social democratic iScotland might fly :)  Out of interest, did you watch the video of Craig Murray I'd posted before?  If not, please watch it, I thought it was powerful stuff, only about 4 or 5 minutes long?  Much more convincing than Gorgeous George.  I don't joke when I question George's sanity, I think he's a total headcase.

 

Yes I did watch it, and Murray is certainly someone I respect.  I would take issue with his line of argument in this instance.  It is perfectly reasonable to argue and vote for Scotland remaining within a larger polity without being being held responsible for the past and future crimes of the UK, such a position is absurd and insulting in equal measure.  Having spent decades on the left I am all too aware of the shameful history of the UK.....it is 'my' history, to an extent, and independence does not bleach it clean.  I would argue passionately against , empire, war, the military industrial complex, rendition and the rest, rather than retreat to a position of hiding behind the skirts of NATO whilst lecturing others about the morality or (real)politikal choices they make.  IMO none of this would have happened had the Labour Party not withdrawn from its core constituency under Blair and drowned it own soul in an acrid smelling bucket of neo-liberal pyss!  As I said earlier, iScotland would put the Labour Party in exile for a decade or more.....on both sides of the border.  I see whole swathes of the UK united against neo-liberalism and desperate for investment and an alternative political landscape.  I would like to think a narrow No victory will bring about substantial devolution across these islands and the movement who constructed free education and healthcare, slum clearance, and the rest during post WW2 austerity can once again organise a society where the public good can trump private greed.   I also believe that it is important someone on the left explore these possibilities rather than everyone flocking to the nationalist position.  Much of this debate has been bitter and twisted, and fanned feelings of 'phck them! Its our oil, etc lets grab for ourselves' and that could spread to England, Wales and NI, or even London in the advent of an unraveling union.....such an acrimonious split would do enormous damage to those most vulnerable.

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To argue a NO voter is responsible for all past and future mistakes by the UK is like arguing that a YES voter has no right to be proud of success like the NHS of the creation of welfare. It's the same logic and both are utter nonsense. The idea that the UK has lurched wholesale to the right is also nonsense, a lurch so colossal and sweeping they couldn't even command a majority! It's simple swing voting, it happens in every election and will happen in Scotland too.

While no one could confuse me for a card carrying trade unionist I find the left wing argument for independence odd at best. I always understood that the central premise of left wing political thought was for unity and solidarity with their fellow man regardless of creed, nationality or any other superficial distinction of a person. By that understanding a YES vote is a colossal step away from such beliefs. I also find the argument of "never getting a Tory govt again" undemocratic actually. It doesn't seem like a fully functioning democracy to me if you can absolutely guarantee a party with actually fairly significant support in Scotland (412,000 votes at the last Gen Election, admittedly not a majority but at around 10% of the population hardly the Christian Party either) will NEVER be in government. Scottish coalition govt anyone? Consensus politics? 

Anyway, left or right is neither here nor there, I just don't see Independence as some sort of "cure all" to every woe, it will just shift the same issues 400 miles north. I would rather work together to fix the existing system that recreate them at great expense in a different location while weakening every advantage the UK gives us in the process.

Edited by LondonSuperJ

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Just one last point about GG, I've always considered George to be often inarticulate with his mouth not his mind, he remains a formidable presence in UK politics and when it comes to crimes of the UK outlined by Craig Murray, Galloway is second to no-one in exposing the disgraceful conduct of UK on these issues.  His sanity?  I'm not qualified to make such a judgment, I would say he often takes populism to an unhealthy degree, but few, if any contemporary politicians would better him in a debate.  Have you ever watched his performance in the Senate committee in Washington? Masterful!  

 

 

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