Referendum 2014
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Referendum 2014
The Scottish independence referendum and the debate about Scotland's constitutional future
Curated by Peter A Bell
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Tom Peterkin: Considering the push for more power for the islands

Tom Peterkin: Considering the push for more power for the islands | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
When Tavish Scott stood up at his party’s conference and launched a campaign for Shetland and Orkney home rule earlier this year, it could have been interpreted as a fairly flagrant piece of mischief-making.
Peter A Bell's insight:

I sincerely hope Tom Peterkin is not trying to give credit to Tavish Scott for the sensible and productive dialogue which has been opened between the island councils and the Scottish government. To do so would only be to encourage his ill-thought, irresponsible campaign for partition.

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Tavish Scott: Devolution shouldn’t end in Edinburgh

AT LAST. A leader of Scottish local government telling it as it is. Dave O’Neill, the president of the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities, spoke recently at the annual get-together of Scotland’s elected local councillors.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Tavish Scott is being more than a little disingenuous in seeking to associate himself with remarks made by Dave O’Neill, the president of the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities. O'Neill was talking about devolution of power to local authorities. Scott is advocating nothing short of the partition of Scotland.

Partition is part of the old divide-and-rule strategy so beloved of imperialist powers. It is a strategy with a particularly bloody history and one whose legacy of division and turmoil still afflicts many parts of the world. But Tavish Scott cares nothing for this. Such folly is, to his mind, a small price to pay for the gleeful satisfaction he enjoys imagining he has managed to "annoy" Alex Salmond.

Unbelievable as it may seem, that is the depth of pettiness to which Scott has sunk. Some might argue that he is more to be pitied than condemned. It might be possible to agree were it not for the fact that he is playing such dangerous games. Nobody is suggesting that the partition Scott is agitating for would create another Palestine or Northern Ireland. But a sane, sensible person would at least be mindful of the lessons of history before shooting their mouth off.

And Tavish Scott is dishonest as well as disingenuous. His talk of creating a separate Northern Isles state, or a UK exclave, as part of the referendum process is a constitutional nonsense. The referendum is about independence for ALL of Scotland. It is fallacious to the point of idiocy to assert that the acknowledged right of self-determination in respect of a territory implies a similar right of self-determination for every sub-division of that territory.

The right of self-determination has to be established in respect of any political entity that claims it. It is not simply inherited from the larger entity of which it is a part. Were this so, every town, village and hamlet would have a legitimate claim to become a sovereign state.

Orkney and Shetland are distinctive. But arguably no more so than many other parts of Scotland. All deserve local governance which recognises and addresses this distinctiveness. The question is one of how this might best be achieved.

Who is most likely to deliver true localism? A proportionally representative government of an independent Scotland bound by a written constitution that enshrines the status of local government? Or British politicians like Tavish Scott who are so mired in the past "glories" of British imperialism that they continue to talk of partition as a viable option.

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Lesley Riddoch: Lesson in islands’ bid for autonomy

Lesley Riddoch: Lesson in islands’ bid for autonomy | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
SHOULD Orkney and Shetland be allowed to opt for a large degree of autonomy if Scots vote for independence?
Peter A Bell's insight:

Nobody should mistake the rejection of Tavish Scott's dangerous dalliance with imperialist partition for dismissal of the concept of localism. But those who favour enhanced status and powers for local government had better be realistic enough to understand that this will not happen without a YES vote in next year's referendum.

They should also realise that that the vultures of the British state are circling, waiting to descend on the corpse of devolution should Scotland vote NO.

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Wings Over Scotland | Pity, not hate

Wings Over Scotland | Pity, not hate | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Over time, and particularly since the turn of 2013, this site’s attitude to the Unionist media in Scotland (which is to say, ALL of the media in Scotland) has undergone something of a shift. Previously we held its partisan spin and naked dishonesty in professional contempt, but more recently it’s become increasingly hard not to simply feel sorry for the poor beleaguered hacks on dying publications as they wrestle uncomprehendingly with their bleak future.

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Lib Dems: Shetland and Orkney should loosen ties with Scotland and UK

Lib Dems: Shetland and Orkney should loosen ties with Scotland and UK | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

[Tavish Scott's] Orkney colleague Liam McArthur backed the autonomy plan, conceding it felt good simply to annoy SNP leader Mr Salmond.

"Annoying Alex Salmond is enough to commend any motion," he said.

 

Peter A Bell's insight:

LibDems now have their own version of British Labour's deplorable Bain Principle.

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Jim Arnott's curator insight, March 18, 2013 11:20 AM

This must be the bottom of the barrel. But then I ask myself: "how often have I said that". I don't see any sign of positivity from the Bitter Together folks - just more of the same old negative, negative negative. 

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Tavish Scott: Festivals show we are more than one nation

Tavish Scott: Festivals show we are more than one nation | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Up-Helly-Aa is by any standards a spectacular show. Shetland’s capital reeks with a sense of identity and no little paraffin. A thousand flaming torches parade through the town in the early evening at the end of January.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Is this part of the LibDem's irresponsible agitating for partition. It started of as just a little bit of insanity from Tavish Scott and a handful of ermined eejits. But the LibDems are now looking to adopt partition of Scotland as policy. - http://bit.ly/VwdFzF

What's the weather like out there on the lunatic fringe, Tavish?

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Bill Cruickshank's comment, January 31, 2013 7:10 AM
It is little wonder the Lib Dems are detested almost as much as the Tories in Scotland. To introduce Irish style partition to Scotland is beyond contempt.
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Partition Scotland if majority say ‘Yes’ to independence – UUP Baron Kilclooney

Partition Scotland if majority say ‘Yes’ to independence – UUP Baron Kilclooney | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

SCOTLAND should be partitioned if particular areas reject independence but a majority votes ‘Yes’, says Ulster Unionist Party former deputy leader John Taylor, now Baron Kilclooney.

Peter A Bell's insight:

Brilliant idea! Because partition worked out so well in Ireland.

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Alan Bothwell's comment, January 29, 2013 11:13 AM
Not a chance of happening. Even British nationalism has learned from the disaster that was partition in Ireland.
Alan Bothwell's comment, January 29, 2013 11:16 AM
But here's a thought. When the people of Northern Ireland get around to voting on whether to unite with the republic, perhaps those areas that vote in favour of re-unification can withdraw from the UK and be governed from Dublin. It may leave a bit of a patchwork-province, but what's good for the goose...
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Press Release: SNP Brush Off Desperate Stuff From Lib Dems

The Northern Isles will be better-off in an independent Scotland than under UK Government rule, local SNP MSPs Jean Urquhart and Mike MacKenzie have said.

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Scottish Independence: Islands want more power

Scottish Independence: Islands want more power | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
The prospect of greater home rule for Scotland’s islands took a step forward today as their leaders confirmed they are ready to push for “constitutional reform” as a united group.
Peter A Bell's insight:

The Scotsman still frantically trying to breath life into Tavish Scott's irresponsible nonsense about partition.

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'Home rule' for Shetland? You're on your own, Tavish Scott

'Home rule' for Shetland? You're on your own, Tavish Scott | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Malachy Tallack: The Lib Dem MSP's call for more autonomy for the Northern Isles is outlandish but a debate about decentralisation is needed
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A Scottish Liberal: Are we a party that supports Northern Isles separatism?

A Scottish Liberal: Are we a party that supports Northern Isles separatism? | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Supposedly we are, after yesterday's vote at the Scottish Liberal Democrats' conference.

It's a conference I haven't been able to attend personally, due to work commitments. Unusually, the agenda was more daring, if not ambitious, than has generally been the case in recent years - with significant debates on secret courts (at which the government position was roundly defeated, again) and mental health issues (in which, even as an absentee member, I feel proud that our party had the courage to discuss this matter so openly and even prouder that we appear to understand many of the issues faced by people with mental ill-health). Unfortunately, what excites the membership doesn't necessarily excite the media and - rather than hailing our progressive attitudes on tackling Scotland's mental health problems - today's headlines are focused on what Scotland on Sunday calls a "Northern Isles devolution bid".

Peter A Bell's insight:

The man Scotland's Liberal Democrats should be listening to instead of Tavish Scott.

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Jim Arnott's curator insight, March 18, 2013 11:53 AM

A thoughtful contribution from a young man who shows lots more sense than emenates from Tavish what's his name.

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Scottish independence: Northern Isles devolution bid

Scottish independence: Northern Isles devolution bid | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
ALEX Salmond’s plans for ­independence have suffered a unexpected setback with the emergence of a bid to bring home rule to oil-rich Ork­ney and Shetland.
Peter A Bell's insight:

I'm not sure what sickens me most about this nonsense. The constitutional illiteracy of it all; or the reckless idiocy of a failed politician, Tavish Scott, promoting the dangerous notion of partition for no better reason than a petty and petulant attempt to "annoy" Alex Salmond, as Liam McArthur has admitted.

Orkney and Shetland are part of Scotland. Next year's referendum is about independence for all of Scotland. There is absolutely no way that this referendum can redefine the constitutional status of any part of Scotland. That would be an entirely separate issue to be addressed after Scotland regains its rightful constitutional status.

All the woefully irresponsible Tavish Scott is doing is resorting to the old British imperialist tactic of divide and rule. A tactic that was deployed all over the world in the past. With consequences that spanned the spectrum from calamitous to disastrous.

The history of partition is written in the blood of innocents.

But this is of no concern to Tavish Scott and his fellow British nationalists. There is no course of action so obscene in its foreseeable outcome that these people will not consider fully justified in the name of preserving the British state and the power and privilege of its ruling elites.

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Peter A Bell's curator insight, March 17, 2013 5:46 AM

I'm not sure what sickens me most about this nonsense. The constitutional illiteracy of it all; or the reckless idiocy of a failed politician, Tavish Scott, promoting the dangerous notion of partition for no better reason than a petty and petulant attempt to "annoy" Alex Salmond, as Liam McArthur has admitted.

Orkney and Shetland are part of Scotland. Next year's referendum is about independence for all of Scotland. There is absolutely no way that this referendum can redefine the constitutional status of any part of Scotland. That would be an entirely separate issue to be addressed after Scotland regains its rightful constitutional status.

All the woefully irresponsible Tavish Scott is doing is resorting to the old British imperialist tactic of divide and rule. A tactic that was deployed all over the world in the past. With consequences that spanned the spectrum from calamitous to disastrous.

The history of partition is written in the blood of innocents.

But this is of no concern to Tavish Scott and his fellow British nationalists. There is no course of action so obscene in its foreseeable outcome that these people will not consider fully justified in the name of preserving the British state and the power and privilege of its ruling elites.

Alan Bothwell's comment, March 17, 2013 7:31 AM
Following the 'logic' of Tavish Scott and his fellow partitionists, any of the islands that voted to be part of an independent Scotland would opt out of the crown dependency/overseas territory of the Northern Isles/Shetlands/Orkneys.

Or, taken to its extreme, any single ward could opt to stay with Scotland. The reality is that this is a referendum that will decide the future of Scotland as a whole.
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Call for home rule in Shetland

Call for home rule in Shetland | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Former Scottish Liberal Democrat leader and Shetland MSP Tavish Scott uses his conference speech to call for "home rule" in the Northern Isles.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Tavish Scott is an irresponsible, self-serving fool. Look at the bloody history of partition in the Middle East, the Indian sub-continent and Ireland! That anybody would promote such an idea is deplorable. That a politician would do so for no more worthy reason than petty point-scoring against those for whom he harbours a deep personal resentment is contemptible.

If the Liberal Democrats choose to be led by this cretin then they deserve the electoral drubbing that is coming to them.

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Alan Bothwell's comment, March 16, 2013 7:24 PM
Desperate stuff from the Lib Dems, although I'm not too sure what is liberal or democratic about this latest outburst.

Liberal? What is liberal, in the modern context, about partition? It is an imperialist fantasy that didn't even belong in the first half of the 20th century, never mind today, and just shows how far this party has fallen.

Democratic? The Scottish nation has decided that it will have a referendum on whether it should be an independent state. The result will decide the constitutional status of the whole territory as defined by its internationally recognised boundaries, not that of individual local authorities. A majority in favour of independence? Scotland will be independent. That's democracy!

And the really shocking thing about this story is that the resolution was reportedly passed unanimously. Are there no Scottish Liberal Democrats who have even the most basic grasp of constitutional reality?
Peter A Bell's comment, March 16, 2013 7:33 PM
You are, of course, quite right to point out the constitutional illiteracy of Tavish Scott's dangerous nonsense about partition.
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A sneak peek at a Scottish Conference agenda full of controversy…

A sneak peek at a Scottish Conference agenda full of controversy… | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
The Agenda for this year’s Scottish Conference will be sent to members tomorrow but I’ve had a bit of a sneak peek.
Peter A Bell's insight:

LibDems to discuss partition at Scottish Conference!

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Bill Cruickshank's comment, January 30, 2013 6:58 PM
Typical colonial tactic of divide and rule. Shame on a party who have the bare faced cheek to call themselves Liberal Democrats.
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SNP and Lib Dems clash over constitutional future of Northern Isles - Shetland Times Online

SNP and Lib Dems clash over constitutional future of Northern Isles - Shetland Times Online | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
SNP and Lib Dems clash over constitutional future of Northern IslesShetland Times OnlineThe SNP and Liberal Democrats have clashed over the future of the Northern Isles should they reject independence and the rest of Scotland vote for it in a...
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Isles may demand to remain in UK, LibDem MP warns | Herald Scotland

Isles may demand to remain in UK, LibDem MP warns | Herald Scotland | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

ORKNEY and Shetland islanders will insist on the right to determine their own future in a referendum on whether to be part of an independent Scotland or stick with the UK, their MP has warned.

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