Scottish separatists going Francophone?

A leading Scottish National Party member, Mike Russell, in a new book ‘Grasping the Thistle’ has advocated a stepping stone approach to Scottish independence. He calls for the establishment of a ‘New Union’ with more powers given to Holyrood. This suggestion is similar to the “Sovereignty Association” concept developed by Quebec nationalists. Russell’s idea jars with the SNP’s present proposals of a referendum within a year of forming an Executive and if his suggestion is popular it could reignite internal SNP tensions just as polls show growing support for the party and independence.The aim of Sovereignty Association was to tackle the fear among soft opponents of full separation about the degree of change. It was intended that this would enable the Bloc Quebecois to extend beyond its base of Francophones. Despite this 50%+1 has proved illusive. It is worth noting that in the Canadian context strong regional government has been a proven barrier to Quebec independence. Essentially when the separatist party has run the region well voter contentment meant no demand to go further and when there were problems the party and the idea of independence suffered. Also specific policies enacted have motivated opposition. The strict language laws, enacted after concerning Census figures about the state of the French language, motivated the Anglophone and minority ethnic groups against spearatism.

  • Fair Deal

    I suppose this is a more intelligent approach to nationalism than this.

    Deeply ironic given the historic antipathy between English speaking Scots and the French in Montreal.

  • smcgiff

    Should I put my pants on right leg or left leg first. Vote now!

    Calls cost 50p per minute.

    Seriously, I never really got people that pay to vote on voxpop issues.

  • Greenflag

    Deeply ironic given the historic antipathy between English speaking Scots and the French in Montreal.

    So not deeply ironic given the historic ‘Auld Alliance ‘ between Scotland and France prior to the ‘Buy out ‘ of the Scottish Parliament in 1703 following the burst bubble of Scotland’s Darien Eldorado quest for Empire ?

    The Scots are finding out that the half way house is just that and that halfway across an abyss there are no footholds .

    On the positive side an independent Scotland would be a welcome addition to the ranks of smaller countries within the EU .

    As for the British Isles unit – Given the long historical and economic and social links between all countries then some kind of Council like that in the Nordic countries might suffice perhaps with mutual defence obligations .

  • Brian Boru

    I think the falling apart of the UK will begin in Scotland.

  • Greenflag

    Doubly deeply ironic that a failed Scots empire opened up a vastly inflated role for them in the subsequent British one!

  • dodrade

    The voters didn’t buy Sovereignty association in Quebec, why would they in Scotland?

  • English

    Nice to see that a growing number of Scots (42%) support independence, and the yes camp will continue to grow. The break up of the Union will benefit everybody including England! I wonder if such a pole has ever been carried out in England?

  • Greenflag

    pakman,

    Indeed -proof that closing one door can mean opening another. Mind you in the early 18th century that’s not how many Scots saw it

    Brian Boru,

    ‘I think the falling apart of the UK will begin in Scotland. ‘

    I’d have thought that began in Ireland (Free State ) in 1922.

    Perhaps Scotland will put an end to the present Union format . But don’t be surprised if it doesn’t resurrect itself in new clothes .

    Dodrade,

    ‘The voters didn’t buy Sovereignty association in Quebec, why would they in Scotland? ‘

    The use of the verb ‘buy’ is perhaps no wise in the case of Scotland . These lads are short on the pennies and notorious skinflints at the best of times . Voters in Scotland are used to receiving anything that’s going . The Scots are not Quebecois and not American -Buying is not their forte .