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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Scots facing ‘hidden tax bombshell’

Scots facing ‘hidden tax bombshell’ | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
SCOTS are facing a hidden tax bombshell of half a billion pounds after the next election because of national insurance measures Conservative Chancellor George Osborne brought into his Budget last month.
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Jim Arnott's curator insight, April 1, 2013 9:29 AM

How many more reasons do Scots need before they are convinced that independence is the way to go.

 

Vote Yes in the 2014 Referendum on independenc for Scotland

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Ipsos MORI - Scottish Independence and Devolution

Ipsos MORI - Scottish Independence and Devolution | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Scottish Independence and Devolution Ipsos MORI previously MORI has been tracking attitudes towards Scottish independence and devolution for over 35 years. With the referendum set to take place in ...
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The Scottish referendum is about popular sovereignty, not identity

The Scottish referendum is about popular sovereignty, not identity | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

A recreation of female Levellers for a Bradford festival. ‘The core of the constitutionalist case – from the Levellers’ Agreement of the People of 1647 to the Scottish Claim of Right of 1989 – is that the people, not parliament, have the final word.’

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Alan Bothwell's comment, March 31, 2013 5:33 PM
I knew the female Levellers of northern England would not let us down when it came to solidarity!

They know, as does Elliot Bulmer, but not, apparently the great constitutional expert, Vernon Bognador, that true sovereignty lies with the people. Enlightened Scots know that; when will the English people discover the fact?
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Scottish Banks and UK Oil

Scottish Banks and UK Oil | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Few could have failed to notice the ‘row’ over oil revenues in an independent Scotland.  The debate has pitched Unionists, the CPPR and the OBR against the Scottish government, academics and the oil and gas industry.

 

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Spectre of 1979 returns to haunt No campaign | Scottish National Party

Spectre of 1979 returns to haunt No campaign | Scottish National Party | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

In a key week in the referendum debate, the Westminster Government’s actions have demonstrated that the only way for Scotland to achieve the powers needed to build a strong economy and fair society is with a Yes vote in next year’s independence referendum.

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Jim Arnott's curator insight, March 31, 2013 3:35 PM

For those who are  too young to remeber 1979 (or those with selective memory) we were cheated. The unionists in so many ways are up to the same tricks they used in the 1979 Referendum. Please make sure we are not cheated again.

 

Vote Yes in the 2014 Referendum on independence for Scotland.

Charles Patrick O'Brien's comment, April 1, 2013 5:06 AM
1973 defence jobs promised to Glasgow,and when the SNP were promised lots of jobs but there was 11 SNP MP,s,a general election was held and the SNP got reduced to 3,and the jobs got reduced 0,cheated time after time why is there still some daft enough to trust Westminster.
Jim Arnott's comment, April 1, 2013 11:23 AM
That's a great question, Charles. Why are there so many daft enough to trust Westminster. I don't think they are daft - just brainwashed by all the Westminster/Better Together scaremongering, lies and misinformation. But that will change. Folk can only take so much negativity till they start looking for the positive vision of a prosperous independent Scotland.
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Ian Davidson is a liar

Ian Davidson is a liar | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
If you click this link, you'll see some footage of the Labour MP for Glasgow South West, Ian Davidson, at today's protest against the bedroom tax. The unnamed person with the camera approaches him ...
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Warning pound could hold back a sovereign Scotland | Herald Scotland

SNP plans to keep the pound if Scotland becomes independent would be in the UK's interests but would limit the economic policies of a future Scottish government, according to a new report.

Peter A Bell's insight:

Is it too early to declare this Unionist Scare Story of the Day?

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Outrage as Labour peer uses shocking rape to attack SNP

Outrage as Labour peer uses shocking rape to attack SNP | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

A Labour peer who once compared nationalists to Holocaust deniers has caused outrage after using the shocking rape of a 14 year old girl in order to attack the SNP.

Peter A Bell's insight:

The ugly face of British nationalism.

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We paid for this

We paid for this | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
The Radio Times was funded by the licence fee until the government sold it in 2011. We don't remember receiving a cheque for our share. The image below is from a feature about William Wallace in th...
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Scottish Government ‘clear’ on legality of banning prisoners from independence referendum

The legal position on banning prisoners from voting in the independence referendum is “perfectly clear”, the Deputy First Minister has said.

 

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The oil debate for busy people

The oil debate for busy people | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
We know you don't have all day. Let's see if we can clear this up in under 600 words. "The oil will run out by 1994." (Labour MP Tony Benn, May 1979) "The oil will run out by 2000." (Labour MP Ioan...
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Scottish Government plan to distribute indyref blueprint in schools is 'taxpayer-funded propaganda'

THE Scottish Government is considering sending copies of its blueprint for independence to every secondary school in the country, it has emerged.

Peter A Bell's insight:

Yet another of the logic-bending contradictions that increasingly characterise the anti-independence propaganda campaign. On the one hand we have the British parties' incessant whining about the need for more information about independence. On the other we have the same dullards working themselves into a lather of faux righteous indignation at the very suggestion that the Scottish Government might provide the very information they are demanding.

It'd fair mak yer heid spin!

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Westminster hypocrisy accusation on oil & gas | Scottish National Party

Westminster hypocrisy accusation on oil & gas | Scottish National Party | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

The anti-independence No campaign are facing accusations of hypocrisy after Westminster Government ministers visited Aberdeen to talk up the growing boom in the North Sea oil & gas industry.

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A warning in the mail

A warning in the mail | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
We've covered the privatisation of the NHS, and how it will impact on the independent Scottish NHS, at length previously on this site. But for those of you who think the extent and pace of privatis...
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Scottish Independence Would Be Good For The English Left

Scottish Independence Would Be Good For The English Left | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

No Labour government has relied on Scottish MPs to get into power. They have, however, relied on Scottish MPs to get right wing policies through.

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Prime Minister David Cameron backs Rangers and Celtic move to Premier League

Old Firm are the Prime Minister's secret weapon in a bid to win the Scottish independence vote
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David Briggs's comment, March 31, 2013 4:09 PM
Utter drivel.
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Blair Jenkins: Scotland’s chance for equal society

Blair Jenkins: Scotland’s chance for equal society | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
PEOPLE who want a more socially just Scotland have to ask themselves which outcome in the independence referendum next year stands the better chance of producing that kind of society.
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Scottish independence: SNP’s radical tax plan

Scottish independence: SNP’s radical tax plan | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
SNP ministers are to use a ­radical review of taxation which recommended a complete overhaul of council tax and the end of fuel duty as its “starting point” for a new post-independence system.
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The process that is devolution | Herald Scotland

The referendum on independence for Scotland next year looms so large that it has obscured any constitutional arrangement other than independence or the status quo.

Peter A Bell's insight:

Independence and the status quo are the only options on offer in the referendum. Other constitutional arrangements have not been obscured. They have been explicitly rejected by the British parties. They now want to pretend that a No vote is a vote for devo-whatever. That is a lie!

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Vincent McDee's comment, March 30, 2013 12:01 PM
The second paragraph beggars belief> "But whatever the outcome of the vote on September 18, 2014, it will be necessary to reconsider the constitutional future of the UK" That would be the case for the Former United Kingdom, but not for the Kingdom of Scotland, wich will be basking on Independence and not really in the mood for old stories that do not concern us anymore.
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Fear and Lothian

Fear and Lothian | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
ON MARCH 25th the McKay commission published its report on the “West Lothian” question, which has plagued Britain’s constitutional scholars since it was first...
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Jim Arnott's curator insight, March 30, 2013 2:47 PM

Scotland will be punished severely if we dare to vote Yes in 2014. We will be punished for daring to have a just and fair society that includes free tuition fees, free prescriptions, free bus passes and free personal care for the elderly. The Unionists dare not show their hand before the Referendum in 2015 - but just wait and see what the Westminster parties have in their manifestos for the 2015 Westminster election. The Scottish Block Grant will be slashed. Scots must be aware that by 2015 it will be too late to do anything about it.

 

The only thing you CAN do is vote Yes in the 2014 Referendum on independence for Scotland.

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Look to wise heads to save the Tories from Devo Max

Despite Ruth Davidson’s U-turn on the issue, canny operators such as Lord Strathclyde and Labour’s Jim Gallagher could slow the rush to hand more powers to Holyrood
Peter A Bell's insight:

I'm sure it was not his intention, but Poor Old Cockers has, nonetheless, laid bare the emptiness of all the talk of "more powers" coming from Ruth Davidson and her British Labour allies. That he also exposes the thinking behind this talk was unavoidable. Because it is the same shallow, petty, hate-inspired mindset that so pitifully distorts his own rancid view of Scotland's politics.

For Poor Old Cockers and the rest of the rabid British nationalists it's all about Alex Salmond. The unhealthy obsession with "Wee Eck" is revealed in a few telling phrases. It is Salmond who must be "bought off". It is Salmond who must not be be allowed the "gift" of devo-whatever. Somewhat surprisingly for a man who make his living out of stringing together gobbets of trite anti-SNP bile, Poor Old Cockers missed the one about not giving Salmond a "consolation prize".

Salmond! Salmond! Salmond! It's like a Two Minutes Hate that never ends.

And not a mention of the voters anywhere.

Preoccupied with their near-pathological detestation of "that man", Poor Old Cockers and his British nationalist ilk cannot spare so much as a moment's thought for the people of Scotland. Blinded by the stinging bitterness of their resentment they cannot even begin to comprehend that it is not Salmond who has been denied by their keeping a devo-whatever option off the ballot. Quite the contrary, Salmond and the SNP never wanted such an option on the ballot in the first place. But they knew that a large section of the electorate DID want more choice. They were not going to be the ones to deny them that choice. They knew they could easily manipulate the British parties into doing that for them.

The really crazy thing is that Britnats like Poor Old Cockers continue to celebrate the slaying of the second question as if it was a great victory even as the British parties work themselves into a frenzy trying to compensate for the gross error of rejecting devo-whatever with a flurry of vacuous rhetoric which they hope will convince a few gullible souls that a No vote is a vote for more powers.

The chances of this project to deceive the people of Scotland being successful were never great. We're rather too canny for that. But the chances of success can hardly be improved when one of Better Together's most assiduous and aggressive propagandists actually goes into print to boast about the deceit.

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No stone uncrawled

No stone uncrawled | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
This is a thing that really happened this afternoon: It's hard to know where to begin. It seems pointless to even try. An unelected trough-swilling convicted violent drunken criminal just used the ...
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Peter A Bell: Referendum debate: A mystery to the media?

Peter A Bell: Referendum debate: A mystery to the media? | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it

Reading the editorial in today's Guardian I was struck by two things. The shallowness of the analysis. And the bitterness of the comments that followed.

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Alex Massie: Forging the fiscal future

Alex Massie: Forging the fiscal future | Referendum 2014 | Scoop.it
Building a sound Scotland in case of independence may require embracing neoliberalism, suggests Alex Massie
Peter A Bell's insight:

Capitalist ideology is rife with pernicious myths. The myth of wealth creation; which holds that inequitable distribution of resources is explained by the magical creation of new resources rather than the transfer of resources from the many to the few. The myth of the "trickle-down effect"; which holds that the rich feed the poor rather than feeding off them.

The myth of the "path to prosperity"; which holds that those at the back of the queue will one day have the things enjoyed by those at the front if only they are patient.

Outside the bubble of the capitalist myth, resources ultimately and inevitably come down to matter/energy which can neither be created nor destroyed but only transformed or transferred. Wealth is not created but acquired. And it cannot be acquired other than at some cost to another part of the system.

Outside the bubble of the capitalist myth, the only time little fish eat big fish, rather than vice versa, is when the big fish is dead. Or when the little fish take collective action.

Outside the bubble of the capitalist myth, the path to prosperity for most leads only to place that has been ravaged and depleted by those who went before. A barren place where all that remains is a sign telling them that their turn will come so long as they don't push. And that they can only hope to make the line move faster by "incentivising" those at the front.

But perhaps the most pernicious and insidious myth of all is the one being peddled here by Alex Massie. The myth of the inevitability of capitalism. A myth which holds that the inequity and injustice of the capitalist economic system is natural. Ordained. The unavoidable outcome of some immutable universal law rather than the consequence of choices made by those with the power to choose in the interest of preserving that power.

It is the myth of the capitalist economic system as a remorseless and undeniable force of nature rather than a contrivance of self-serving, avaricious, fearful and fallible human beings.

It is the dogma of despair. It is a message that mocks hope and aspiration. It is the worm in the ear of the masses that speaks to them of the futility of ambition and urges the relief of resignation and the ease of surrender.

It is a denial of our capacity to choose differently. Worse! It is a denial of our right to dream and to be motivated by that dream rather than by fear.

The first choice we have to make is that we will not be denied. That we will insist on our right to have a dream and to strive towards its realisation. And if that requires that we reject constitutional and political arrangements that are an impediment to our striving, then so be it. We will take our independence. And we will take our chances.

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Scotland and the UK: state of the union

Editorial: The rest of Britain must not ignore devolution until the Scots make up their minds – the consequences affect us all
Peter A Bell's insight:

I'm not sure what troubles me most about this. The shallowness of the analysis, or the bitterness of the comments.

The first of these is evident in the rather quaint notion that Ruth Davidson's speech the other day marked some sort of major shift in Tory thinking on devolution. The reality, of course, is that the Tories are no more offering firm proposals on "more powers" than their British Labour allies. Their interest in enhancing democracy in Scotland is a function of the perceived threat of a Yes vote in next year's referendum. With that threat removed, all the British parties will suddenly lose interest in devolution.

And what of the threat of a Yes vote? Is it, as the analysis offered here suggests, such a remote possibility as to be hardly worth reflecting on? Only if one looks no farther than the headline figures in polls. While these would indicate support for independence at no more than 35% what they do not make clear is just how weak the assumed No vote is.

Polling also shows that, when people are asked about what powers they would like the Scottish Parliament to have, a clear and in some cases substantial majority indicate that they want powers that they cannot have while Scotland remains bound to the anachronistic union..

Most people in Scotland want independence. They just haven't yet realised that the thing they want is called independence.

What they do know is that the Better Together mob offer nothing. A No vote is a vote for the status quo, at best. And, as already noted, with the leverage of a possible Yes vote removed, it is almost certain to result in a rolling back of existing devolution; the "repatriation" of powers to the cesspit of Westminster; slashing of Scotland's budget; punitive welfare "reforms" beyond anything we've seen so far; rigging of the electoral system to ensure British parties will always hold power at Holyrood; and much else besides.

The polling is deceptive. Most of those counted as No voters have actually already rejected the status quo. They are more like Yes voters in waiting. As increasing numbers of them realise the dire implications of a No vote, they will move - first to the undecided category, and then to committed supporters of independence.

What Ruth Davidson's speech indicates is some sort of low-level awareness in the British parties that they are losing. That they chose the wrong strategy when they rejected devo-whatever. That the disinformation, distortions and downright lies are not being effective. That the ever more inane scare stories aren't working. They are now desperately trying to deceive voters into thinking that a No vote means enhanced devolution. They are setting up "commissions" to provide them with a pretext to <b>talk about</b> "more powers" because they have belatedly realised that they have nothing to say to the people of Scotland. Nothing to offer them.

While the mainstream media continues to peddle a cosy consensus informed by the perspective of the British state, politics in Scotland has changed. The referendum debate in particular has moved on apparently unnoticed by the majority of commentators. The question people in Scotland are asking is less and less why they should vote for independence and increasingly why they would want to stay with a UK that has irretrievably succumbed to the ideology which is driving the Tories' economic and social vandalism.

Independence has long since ceased to be the big scary abyss that the British parties still try to portray with a desperation that borders on the ludicrous. Independence is normal. It is the default condition of all nations. It is the constitutional status to which the people of all nations aspire. In Scotland, more and more people are wondering why they should continue to be the exception.

 

Why that should provoke such a bilious response from so many people outside Scotland continues to be perplexing.

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