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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Joan McApline: We all speak with one voice

Joan McApline: We all speak with one voice | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

JOAN says she hates the word "foreign" and insists we all belong to the same human family, regardless of where we stay in the world.

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SNP challenge Unionists on Healey claims as oil-gate threatens to dominate indy debate

SNP challenge Unionists on Healey claims as oil-gate threatens to dominate indy debate | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

The row over whether Scots have been misled by successive UK Governments over the true worth of North Sea Oil has refused to go away with the nationalists today challenging Tory claims that Westminster forecasts were honest.

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The McCrone Report - A Thirty Year Secret

The McCrone Report - A Thirty Year Secret | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

In 1974 the UK Government commissioned a report into the potential of North Sea Oil and how it might influence support for Scottish independence.  The report made clear that an independent Scotland would be far richer than if it remained within the Union.

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Independence or Fax Democracy?

Independence or Fax Democracy? | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Without a doubt, the SNP policy of Independence in Europe has set the agenda. In essence, the whole issue boils down to whether Scotland will have a full and equal say in the European policies which will shape our future, or be a province which, at best, will enhance our lobbying ability and, as is likely to be the case, remain as we are, powerless, lacking real influence.

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McColl poses key questions for No campaign | Scottish National Party

McColl poses key questions for No campaign | Scottish National Party | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

In a major intervention into the independence debate one of Scotland’s leading businessmen has posed a series of key questions for the No campaign.

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Tories deny 1970s oil claims

Tories deny 1970s oil claims | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

North Sea oil projections were not suppressed in the early 1970s to head off the threat of Scottish nationalism, according to the Conservative Party.

 

Former Labour chancellor Lord Healey caused a stir among nationalists last week when he claimed his Treasury “did underplay the value of the oil to the country because of the threat of nationalism”.

 

The Tories have produced an official 1973 UK government estimate - when the Tories were in power - of oil production levels for 1980. This was later shown to be in line with the level of oil extracted that year.

 

The Tories insist this undermines any claim by Lord Healey, who was chancellor from 1974 to 1979, that oil estimates were played down by the Treasury.

 

But the SNP insists the Tory figures do not cover the period Lord Healey was in office and say the actual value of oil was undervalued by £300 million.

 

In 1973, Conservative industry minister Tom Boardman predicted “a most likely range of oil production in 1980 of
70 million to 100 million tons”, in response to a parliamentary question (PQ) by then Labour MP Jim Sillars.

 

Statistics from the UK Department for Energy show UK oil output in 1980 was 80.47 tons, in line with early estimates, according to Scottish Tory deputy leader Jackson Carlaw.

 

“Those claims come from a discredited former Labour chancellor, who was one of the architects of the 1970s economic disaster Margaret Thatcher had to clear up,” he said.

“The figures show very clearly that the UK government made a public estimate, which was gleefully quoted by both the SNP and Labour at the time.”

 

The SNP pointed to predictions that oil would contribute up to £2.4 billion to the economy by 1980 when the actual figure was £2.7bn.

 

SNP backbencher Maureen Watt said: “Denis Healey wasn’t chancellor and the Labour Party were not in office when this PQ was answered.

“It shows an incredible level of panic that the Tories describe the man who was chancellor of the Exchequer for over half the 1970s as an ‘unreliable’ source.

 

“The SNP remember how the Tories attacked an SNP prediction that oil taxation and royalties might be £825m to £2,400m by 1980. In the event the actual figure was £2,700m.”


Via Jeff Duncan
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Ruth Davidson under attack over Holyrood policy

Ruth Davidson under attack over Holyrood policy | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
THE SCOTTISH Conservative leadership is in “disarray” over plans to hand new powers to Holyrood, political opponents said yesterday.
Peter A Bell's insight:

Angus Robertson is correct, of course. Ruth Davidson and her diminishing band of supporters are merely paying lip service to the idea of more powers for Scotland's parliament. Like their British Labour allies, they have belatedly realised that their flat rejection of a devo-whatever option on the referendum ballot was a catastrophic mistake. It has left them the task of trying to sell to the people of Scotland the option that most have already deemed unacceptable - the status quo. An option favoured only by those who keep company with Michael Forsyth on the fanatical fringes of British nationalism.


But Angus Robertson doesn't go far enough. Not only is there no genuine intention to deliver meaningful further devolution, there is no possibility of Ruth Davidson being able to do so even if she wasn't being totally disingenuous - not to say duplicitous - about the whole issue.Because, for all that Michael Forsyth may seem freakishly extreme in the context of Scottish politics this side of the death of Queen Victoria, in the context of British politics he is far closer to the mainstream.


Even supposing Ruth Davidson was true to her new-found enthusiasm for further devolution - a far-fetched notion - there is no way she could deliver on whatever jam tomorrow promises her talking-shop eventually cobbles together absent the support of the Tories at Westminster in the increasingly likely event that they are returned to power by voters in England in 2015. There is no way she is getting that support.


And everything that is said here about Ruth Davidson and the Tories applies equally to her close ally, Johann Lamont, and British Labour. Whatever lies these people tell the people of Scotland in the meantime, a No vote in next year's referendum is a vote to end devolution and endorse the system by which Scotland invariably ends up being governed by people we didn't, and never would, vote for.


A No vote will be represented as an affirmation of support for the union and meek acceptance of Scotland's subordinate status. It will prompt moves to roll back devolution, slash Scotland's budget, and impose on Scotland the kind of economically destructive and socially corrosive policies that are wreaking havoc in the rest of the UK.


Don't say you weren't warned.

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British Council pledges continued support for Scottish show at Biennale

The UK's leading overseas cultural body will continue to support Scotland's show at the world's biggest visual arts festival even if voters back independence in next year's referendum.

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Yes Scotland is doing just fine

Yes Scotland is doing just fine | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

If the mainstream media is to be believed then the Yes Scotland campaign isn't doing too well. On the few occasions when the organisation isn't being ignored altogether in favour of the easier target of the SNP, it is to allow some comment to the effect that they are "on the back foot" or have suffered another "setback" of some kind.

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Would They Healey Lie To Us? | A Cybernat Writes

Would They Healey Lie To Us? | A Cybernat Writes | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

I’m old enough to remember Dennis Healey quite well.  We didn’t go to school together or anything like that, but I remember him practically single-handedly keeping 70′s impressionist Mike Yarwood in a job with sketches featuring the catchphrase “What a silly billy he is.”  I can recall him looking not so much of a silly billy as more of a complete and utter arse one time when being interviewed on the telly, droning on about the evils of private medicine and how wrong it was that preferential treatment should go to anyone based on their ability to pay.  With spectacularly bad timing he chose to do this just when his own wife was undergoing treatment at a private hospital which was naturally pounced on.

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Radical idea to win votes Efficient model

Little noticed in the Scottish Government's booklet on the economic advantages of independence was a tantalising reference to enforced worker representation on company boards, certainly a radical suggestion in current UK terms.

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Borderline madness

Borderline madness | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

This week, as already noted on this site, we’ve seen the unwelcome resurrection of the “you’d need a passport to visit your granny in Carlisle once the border posts go up” argument. It’s a simple argument that tries to play on both the aversion to borders in trade and travel, and also the fear of immigration.

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Yes Scotland - Don’t be fooled by its media critics

Yes Scotland - Don’t be fooled by its media critics | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

But you’re behind in the polls, what can you do about this?
 
It’s the refrain that greets anyone from the Yes campaign, and the question is as meaningless as the polls themselves.

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Yes vote would lead to boom in investment, says SNP research

AN independent Scotland would be on course for an instant boom in foreign inward investment like that enjoyed by Eastern Bloc countries following their split from the former Soviet Union, SNP researchers have claimed.

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Constitutionally Enshrined Labour Rights in an Independent Scotland

The neo-liberal assault on labour unions over the last 30 years has gone hand in hand with an erosion of workers’ rights. 

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Christopher Crawford's curator insight, August 7, 2013 8:03 PM

About time. Having lived in Scotland for all of my 43 years, the deterioration on rights for workers seems to be inexorable within the UK. Sadly though if Scotland stays within the UK there is no main UK party offering anything of note to rectify the situation. Vote YES in 2014.

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Spectator: Scottish Nationalism And Catholicism

Spectator: Scottish Nationalism And Catholicism | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

The level of debate on Scottish independence has gone through various phases over the years and while the Unionists point to SNP assertions and false claims, successive Labour and Tory governments have consistently lied about a whole variety of issues that have affected Scotland. For many years after World War I, it was impossible to get accurate figures for Scottish was losses, which when they were published, showed exactly why. Scottish regiments suffered higher war losses than those of any other part of the UK - bar none. As a member of the economic committee of the SNP which did much work on the oil situation in the 1970s, under the guidance of Donald Bain, I always followed with interest, the government of the day's figures on oil production and the revenues generated. Gavin McCrone, the government economist published his report during the period of the Wilson government, when Denis Healey was Chancellor. McCrone's report was so damaging to the UK government's case against independence, they kept it a secret for over thirty years. Denis Healey has just admitted they "massaged" the figures; in other words they lied. Healey is now a Lord and as one of the "untouchables" he can now admit he was a liar while in office.

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Creating a monetary union between an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK requires preventing capital flight

Angus Armstrong explores the practical difficulties of creating a monetary union between an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK. Importantly, a common financial infrastructure is required to convince savers and investors that their money will always be safe in an independent Scotland.

Peter A Bell's insight:

Presumably capital flight would be problematic regardless of the direction. So it would be in the interests of the rest of the UK (rUK) to cooperate in implementing measures to deal with the risk.

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Business case grows as Jim McColl underlines opportunities of a Yes vote

Business case grows as Jim McColl underlines opportunities of a Yes vote | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Yes Scotland today welcomed leading businessman Jim McColl's strong re-emphasis of his support for independence and his belief that a Yes vote is an opportunity to build a fairer and more prosperous country.

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Moinul Islam's curator insight, August 20, 2013 9:42 AM

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THE NEXT GOVERNMENT YOU DIDN'T VOTE FOR?

THE NEXT GOVERNMENT YOU DIDN'T VOTE FOR? | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

If you don’t like this Government you didn’t vote for, then brace yourself for the possible next one. If you think that the Tories governing Scotland with the Liberals is bad, what about the Tories governing Scotland with UKIP?

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Independence: McColl says ‘No’ vote bad for Scotland

Independence: McColl says ‘No’ vote bad for Scotland | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

JIM McColl, one of the country’s leading business figures, has warned that a No vote in next year’s independence referendum would deal Scotland’s prospects a major blow, making it less likely that he and fellow entrepreneurs would want to locate north of the Border.

Peter A Bell's insight:

About time somebody started looking at the implications of a No vote.


See also: What does no really mean?

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Foreigner Watch

Foreigner Watch | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

It’s not the first time we’ve had to raise this subject. But as the rhetoric ramps up from an increasingly nasty and unhappy No camp, we have to ask again – just what is the Labour Party’s problem with foreigners?

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Margaret Curran: I didn't inhale

Margaret Curran: I didn't inhale | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Below is a short extract from an interview between Margaret Curran and BBC Radio Scotland's Derek Bateman on Good Morning Scotland last week. The whole thing is worth a listen, but this bit jumped ...
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Without frontiers

Without frontiers | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Following our visit to the Netherlands and Belgium a couple of days ago, and today’s examination of the (non-existent) threat of border controls between an independent Scotland and the rUK, we thought it’d be nice to finish the week with a whistlestop tour of some more of our favourite international borders.

Peter A Bell's insight:

Mockery may be our most powerful weapon against the inane scaremongering of unionist propagandists.

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ONE YEAR ON: HOW WAS IT FOR THEM?

IT'S Friday afternoon in Yes Scotland's Glasgow offices, and chief executive Blair Jenkins is feeling under pressure.


See also: Yes success

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Scots forced to waste huge amount on Trident | Scottish National Party

Scots forced to waste huge amount on Trident | Scottish National Party | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Scotland’s taxpayers are being forced waste £170 million every year on Trident weapons of mass destruction, new figures have revealed.

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