A jumble of thoughts about Scottish independence.
Sigh. Salmond plays banker in vital election battle. Labour is probably too cushy, and does need a shakeup, but voting in the SNP sounds like sacking the not-great CEO and replacing them with the grouchy janitor.
I find it strange that the SNP can back more oil and gas drilling while also backing the lowering of pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Does the SNP would support increasing emissions in other countries while enriching Scotland in the short-term? What is the SNP’s plan to phase out dependence on oil? And how would that impact the economy? Since the price of Scotland’s oil and gas is uncompetitive because the industry cannot get enough workers (because they don’t appear to be interested in hiring anyone who doesn’t already work there), how can Scotland’s oil and gas industry BE competitive and deliver all these economic riches?
Tourism leaders slam SNP strategy — “Adam said Alex Salmond’s leadership would be enough to direct the tourism sector, even at one remove from cabinet.” That’s what I call ‘cult of personality’ — marketing tool of dictators the world over.
It’s time for a fairer and lower income tax — “The SNP will abolish the unfair Council Tax and replace it with a local income tax system based on the ability to pay. The local tax will be set at a rate of 3p on income excluding savings income.” And dole bludgers get another free pass while taxpayers get hit harder. Why the fuck should anyone work? I don’t see any SNP policy on how they will tackle benefit fraud and instill a motivation to work.
What will Scotland’s currency be? — “The currency shall continue to be sterling until such times as the Scottish Parliament decides to change that position.” And so Scotland will continue to be beholden to another country’s economy? And when / if it adopts the Euro, will dependence on Europe’s overall economy become the next problem?
Westminister should probably devolve more decision-making on Scottish issues to a Scotland-based legislature, and the current state of that parliament is pretty woeful. All they seem to be interested in is creating news-making soundbites, and not engaging in meaningful debate on matters they can decide.
I have a question. As Scotland is part of the UK at the moment, it’s in the EU. If Scotland becomes independent, will it automatically remain part of the EU? It appears not.
Mr Happold said the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland would remain the nation state, a member of the EU, a member of the United Nations, NATO and other international organisations and Scotland would be seen as seceding from it. Scotland would then have to apply for membership of each international organisation it wanted to join.
Mr Happold warned that Scotland would almost certainly lose its share of the shrinking UK budget rebate, that it would lose anything that remains of the EU’s structural fund money, that it would lose power and influence and would have to compete with other emerging European states from Eastern Europe for attention and resources.
That means that an independent Scotland’s nationals couldn’t just go over the border and work in England like the Eastern Europeans. They’d have to go through the torturous and expensive process of getting a visa, like I did.
All in all, I’m sure Scotland COULD go it alone. But are the Scots ready for all the insecurities that independence brings? Singapore went independent and it’s doing much better economically, but the nation went through a lot, and is still going through a lot finding its feet. Does Scotland want the sort of government Singapore has to bring about economic growth and ‘harmony’?