#IndyRef Poll of Polls moves to a 45 to 55 split between Yes and No…

Nice piece of analysis from John Curtice at What Scotland Thinks in which he notes the strong pro Yes dynamic in the polls of the last week, in contrast to the general stasis of much of the campaign heretofore. Their poll of polls processes the latest ‘gains’ for yes, and (excluding Don’t Knows) set the current rate at the tightest margin yet…

He offers four key points…

…the issue that above all seems capable of persuading people to vote Yes or No is whether they think independence would be good or bad for Scotland’s economy.  Up to and including its poll in June YouGov had never found more than 30% saying that Scotland would be economically better off under independence. Now, having risen to 32% in YouGov’s poll a fortnight ago, that figure now stands at 35%. At 44% the proportion who think Scotland would be worse off still outnumber the optimists, but they are fewer in number now than in any previous YouGov poll.  It looks as though the Yes side has made some significant ground on the crucial economic debate in recent weeks.

Second, although unfortunately in this poll YouGov asked new questions about people’s attitudes towards the currency issue, and thus we cannot see whether attitudes have changed in the wake of Mr Salmond’s clarification of his stance in the second leaders’ debate, it certainly looks as though this issue is still not scoring for the No side in the way that it believed it would. It remains the case that most voters – including most No voters – would like an independent Scotland to keep the pound, while many voters (or Yes supporters at least) still believe that this is what would happen.

As many as 56% of all voters – including 54% of No voters – would like an independent Scotland to keep the pound as part of a monetary union with the rest of the UK. Meanwhile 67% believe that an independent Scotland would carry on using the pound, either as part of a monetary union (41%) or otherwise (26%). Amongst Yes voters that last figure stands at no less than 87% (including 67% who think there would still be a monetary union, but even just over half of No voters (54%) reckon Scotland would keep the pound. In short the No side’s claim that an independent Scotland would not be able to keep the pound is still widely disbelieved and goes against the grain of what many of their own supporters would want to happen in the event of a Yes vote.

Third, the Yes side appeared to have secured some traction in its recent claim that the NHS might suffer if Scotland were to remain in the Union.  As many as 42% think the NHS will get worse if Scotland remains in the Union, while only 9% believe that it will get better. In contrast as many as 37% believe that the NHS would get better under independence, while only 29% believe it would be worse. Of course many of those who think the NHS will get worse if Scotland remains in the Union are existing Yes voters (while contrary to what the Yes side themselves have been claiming, fewer women than men supports its view about which option offers the brighter future for the NHS). But at least the Yes side have identified a supposed risk that at least their own supporters find credible –  in sharp contrast to position in which the No side finds itself on the currency issue.

Fourth, the Yes side appear to have made particular progress amongst the less well-off C2DE social groups, at whom much of its campaigning has been targeted in recent weeks.  Support for independence amongst such voters is up nine points on a month ago (after Don’t Knows are excluded) whereas amongst more affluent ABC1 voters the swing has been a more modest six points. Doubtless this helps explains why support for Yes amongst those who voted Labour in 2011 has increased over the same period from 18% to 30%, though in truth the former figure was always rather low as compared with the findings of most other polls.

He finishes with this intriguing caveat…

Just one group of voters appear to have resisted the tide towards a higher Yes vote – older voters. Despite the particular importance of the NHS for such voters, at 31% support for Yes amongst the over 60s is actually slightly down (by two points) on a month ago. Indeed, but for the Yes side’s weakness amongst this group YouGov would be putting Yes in the lead. Will pensions now be one of the crucial battlegrounds in what promises to be a very keenly contested last two weeks?

I suspect that this has been well known to the Yes camp for some time how. Much of their campaigning has focused resolutely on brigading younger and poorer voters into social networks both online and in the various in situ ‘monster meetings’ up and down Scotland. The social effect, they hope, will help offset their greater propensity not to vote.

 It seems to have worked for the Democrats over the last couple of general elections, though its hard to tell whether it was social or candidate selection that innervated black and hispanic voters to get out and vote in unprecedented numbers.

As an aside, the read out on the currency issue will be particularly disappointing for the No camp. It’s a given that an independent Scotland will keep a pound whether its independent and Scots pegged to the Bank of England rate or through a tight fiscal union with England.

The Euro’s a basket case, and no one’s even remotely thinking about launching a new free floating currency in the current hostile climate.

Their problem is twofold. As Paul Cairney points out, in the white heat of #IndyRef…

…no-one wants to give any ground. As a result, the debates tend to be very limited and partial, producing more heat than light. A simple example is the prospect of currency union: ‘keeping the pound’ can refer to using it as a means of exchange (simple enough) or agreeing to use the Bank of England as a lender of last resort.

Or, NHS ‘privatisation’ can refer to anything from the use of private companies to deliver health services, to a less-well funded service, or the removal of a tax funded service. Or, people use ‘Barnett formula’ to mean Scotland’s budget rather than the means to adjust it.

As Quintin Oliver warned a few years ago one key to winning is who gets to frame the debate early…

…first mover advantage often goes to those who ‘frame’ the discourse most coherently, at an early stage; in Cyprus in 2004, after years of UN-brokered talks, leading to broad agreement, dissenting Greek Cypriot PM, Tassos Papadopoulos returned from Switzerland (location of the negotiations for reasons of distance) characterising the deal, as ‘The Annan Plan, after the UN Secretary General, playing up its external origins and exogenous nature; had it been called ‘The Cyprus Plan’, been signed on Ledra Street and promoted by the Yes parties together, it might have stood a better chance. 

And that would be the Yes camp in this case.  John McTernan’s squeeky bum time is getting closer and squeaker. In losing the first TV debate, but winning the second, it is Salmond rather than Darling that comes aways with the reward of momentum.

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  • Morpheus

    Yesterday’s polls from YouGov have it even closer at 53-47, the question being do the Yes camp have sufficient momentum?



  • mickfealty

    Yes Morph, it’s extensively referenced in the link…

  • Morpheus

    And the big feck off title saying “#IndyRef Poll of Polls moves to a 45 to 55 split between Yes and No…”????

    Trying to helpful Mick, I’ll know better in future

  • mickfealty

    Sorry, but the post is exactly what it says on the tin! I used the PoP figures to avoid any outlier problem. We could be finally seeing a serious breakthrough here in the next week or so.

    I’ve looked back at McTernan’s post from a month or two back, and very few of the points he makes as strong arguments for the union have raised themselves in the debate since April.

  • mickfealty

    I’ll add this for further effect…

    YouGov IndyRef poll for the Times finds NO leads down to just 6%. It was 18% in July. %age of LAB voters supporting YES up from 13% to 30— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) September 1, 2014

  • Morpheus, you ask a very important question about whether the Yes camp have sufficient momentum. As someone who has followed this campaign with utmost interest since it began, I can tell you that motivation on the Yes side is at fever pitch. With less than 2 weeks to go, there is no question of the yes side running out of steam at this stage. In fact the exact opposite is true. Independence is offically within touching distance and gaining ground by the hour. In fact I actually believe that the true figure is much higher for Yes than the official polls admit and believe that the final result will see the pro indepence figure closer to 60% than 50%. There’s a huge demographic of ‘under the radar’ yes supporters all over Scotland who never get asked their opinions in these various establishment supporting surveys. There are also large numbers of previous no supporters changing to yes as well as don’t knows coming down for yes in the last couple of weeks. This is turning into an unstoppable tide which will see the biggest political changes taking place in these islands for 100 years.

  • mickfealty

    I agree with some of that, though I’ve firends who also believe that there are people not being picked up on the radar of polls. I suspect that’s the network effect of ‘everyone I know is voting yes’. It’s a line US republicans were buying in 2012 and the polls proved stronger.

    That said, I think the momentum is clear, and I would expect a further swing here. Salmond did what he had to and he’s now set matters up for a tumultuous endgame. It’s what people do in solitude of the booth that’s going to matter.

  • Morpheus

    Seriously Scotty? I don’t think I have heard anyone say it was within the realms of possibility that the Yes camp would get near 50% never mind put it at well above 50%!

    But hey, whatever Scotland decides Scotland decides and best of luck to them I say

  • Hope over fear is the message. The solitude of the polling booth will, I think, also be the moment when many nationalistic Scots No voters will place an X in the Yes box. They will be thinking about their consciences and the guilt they will feel for depriving themselves, their children, grandchildren and great children of the chance to do something different, the chance to change Scotland fundamentally and forever. Many Scots with serious reservations and doubts and fears instilled in them by the bitter together lobby will, on the day, be unable to deny future generations that opportunity to make decisions for themselves and will be terrified of being asked to explain by their future grandchildren why they voted No to Scottish independence.

  • Michael Henry

    Just seen on Twitter ( @ potatojunkie Stuart Crawford )-a picture of crowds waiting in a Queue to registrar to vote in Glasgow today-seems that ones who have never voted before or have not voted in a while are taking a interest in the Scottish Yes / No vote-

  • Neil

    Article from the You Gov guy regarding that poll (and whether it’s an outlier), worth a read.

    All polls, however carefully conducted, are subject to sampling error. Can we be sure the rise in support for independence is real?
    I am certain it is. My reason is that of the 1,085 people we questioned, almost 500 are people we had questioned earlier this year in one of our surveys reporting much bigger leads for the no campaign. We can therefore compare what they said then with what they say now.

  • You bet they’ve moved in favour of Yes, and it’s a good deal more than they let on! Westminster is going into panic mode but it will do them no good, it’s too late, momentum is with the Yes and there it will stay. Watch tonight’s debate on STV at 8pm (you can programme STV in manually on your sky box) or watch it on line, but you will see the polls move even further tomorrow after tonight’s debate.

  • smcgiff

    Wow – that’s a massive shift in the You Gov poll position.

  • handelaar

    (I think I’m one of the friends in question.)

    There is this one other elephant in the room: most of the polls themselves are part of the No campaign and were bought and paid for by active participant groups therein. I’ve bought polling before in other contexts and you’d be *amazed* how much a decent sales-driven research company can tell you about how you can prove what you want to prove.

    For anybody wondering how you’d skew a poll like these, let’s theoretically take a subset of pollees (like, say, soi-disant undecided voters) and ask them “Do you agree that Scotland should be an independent country?” in these two ways:

    a) As the first substantive question, or
    b) Only after five-to-ten-minutes of questions invoking No talking points about currency and pensions and the smoking ruins of the economies of Helensburgh and Rosyth.

    Sensible people don’t think those two approaches would result in identical poll data. And that is very much the point of the exercise for all but one of the newspapers paying for the polling.

  • I’m Trending on Twitter

    I think it’s better that the yes vote is high in polls as it will likely encourage more people to come out and vote on the day, also I think it’s time for London to come up with a few what ifs scenarios. Scotland looking to keep Sterling will still mean it suffers from London-centric monetary policy the same way Northern Ireland is affected such as London’s housing market over heating and the Bank of England considering rate hikes, whereas in the regions the housing market is different, it is cool and borrowing should be kept cheap as chips. I do think it’s time for London to play hard ball, I’d like to see in the event of Scottish independence England leave the EU and for it to restrict employment rights in a way that all but debars Scottish and even Irish nationals the right to work in England, so that both lots can go back to their respective countries and draw down benefits at the expense of Scottish and Irish taxpayer and free up jobs for those that like English governance and let those that respect England and the English way of life have priority to work in England over those wanting out.

  • Lionel Hutz

    I think David Cameron should say that. exactly that!

  • Mister_Joe

    Something that I haven’t heard discussed much is what the constitutional position will be if the Scottish folks vote for independence. Will they become a republic nation or will they go on accepting an English – Germanic monarch as their Head of State? Surely not the latter. Won’t the English woman have to cede her Scottish estates?

  • Reader

    They are planning to keep the monarchy in the first instance. I think the SNP would probably want to have another referendum to get rid of it when it seems realistic, but they would have to be nuts to include that in the in/out referendum.

  • Barneyt

    As long as the SNP stay clear of Kinnock style triumphalism in the next few weeks, they may squeak in. But, if this is close, and the No campaign wins, many say there will be a repeat vote. Will we get the same in reverse? Doubt it as the change is in one direction. No backout plan if Scotland goes for it.

  • John Gorman

    Agreed. The yes campaign would love such a boost next you will be telling me the orange order will have a big anti-independence parade in Edinburgh days before the vote oh hang on a minute.

  • Thomas Mills

    I was there at 10pm last night and there was still a steady stream of people handing in registration forms. Very impressive level of engagement.

  • Mister_Joe

    Thanks for the reply,Reader. That makes sense.

  • Lionel and IToT, you are having a laugh, aren’t you?? You do realise, don’t you, that nothing will make more Scots vote yes than hearing a big steaming pile of right wing jingoistic BNP English nationalist clap trap from a bunch of Little Englanders. It would just underline and proves everthing the yes campaign has said about the Westminster ruling elite’s attitudes towards Scotland to be 100% accurate.

  • Fantastic, and I bet they will all be yes supporters! Do you have a feeling Thomas for what way it’s going in your area in terms of the percentages? Thanks

  • Thomas Mills

    Anecdotally I know very few No voters and Glasgow seems to be pretty firm Yes territory. Again I have to say that’s just a feeling although a lot of people I thought were firm No’s have surprised me in recent weeks and months by coming over to Yes.

  • John Gorman

    In fairness to Lionel I think tongue was firmly in cheek

  • Barneyt, I agree that the yes side does need to stay clear of triumphalism – Kinnock style, and they have! Nothing is being taken for granted campaigning will go on for every single vote for yes right up until the polls close, which will be at 10pm, two weeks tomorrow. However, the excitement is building and momentum is clearly with the yes side, quite inspirational to watch actually if you are involved in it. I think a lot of people had written off the yes side a long time ago and have now been caught unawares. the problem for no, is that they have nothing to offer by way of positive reasons for keeping the union, except fear and threats and and scaremongering. Yes is fighting the positive case for a better Scotland and the people of Scotland can now almost smell it and taste it, and they like the look of it, it looks braw!

  • Excellent news, thanks! These next two weeks are going to be incredible. My only fear is the dirty tricks which will inevitably emerge from the bitter together / Westminster spooks. They will wheel out every privileged and titled establishment buffoon to pour scorn, contempt, doom and more threats on a yes vote. However, I believe that most people in Scotland will no longer fall for such predictable and negative tactics. Project Fear has done its worst already and it wasn’t enough!

  • I’m Trending on Twitter

    If Scotland goes independent politically that will leave England with a Tory majority who can set to work and take back the country for English people and other people loyal to England, those who don’t have anti-English anti-Union sentiment in their hearts, kick out George Galloway and the jihadists as well.

  • Lionel Hutz

    I would say I was joking but I really would love Cameron say that. Guarantee a yes vote

  • IToT, Am I right in thinking then you support both Scottish independence and the Tories at the same time? The Tories are supporting Bitter Together and don’t want Scotland to leave, so how do you square that and how do you think rUK will manage without their oil and gas tax take from Scottish North Sea oil? Or do you think that the Scots are just a bunch of scrounging subsidy junkies who don’t pay their way and that England would be financially a lot better off without them?

  • I’m Trending on Twitter

    The EU is perhaps a driver of Scots independence as it lets would-be secessionist states and their citizens have it both ways thanks to free movement rights and other human rights, it is impossible to play hard ball if in anything there is almost an onus on Westminster to facilitate a very soft landing for Scottish independence should the Scots go for it. Not sure why this should be the case.

    I would like Scotland to stay part of the UK but if it switches I fully support England setting to work to take back its country, it’s been open to far too many foreigners for far too long some of whom have ripped the arse out of England, slagged it off, bombed the place, and now even beheaded, but will no doubt have benefited out of the country, worked there and have family in the place, all doing well for themselves. Unfortunately as things stand with the EU human rights framework in place, it is impossible to get to grips with the tiny minority of people that need kicked out and removed, to pave the way for robust social policies that integrate the minorities that are in fact becoming sizeable. Scotland leaving the UK may well be a blessing in that England gets to take back its country and assert the popular will of its people who seem to have had it with multiculturalism and are demanding the Westminster government does more to integrate its people and citizens. Clearly why would you want to even attempt to integrate Scottish and Irish in England seeing as both don’t want to be in the Union, just let them work there because of money and better jobs available due to England developed economy, jeez is it too much for a government to say NO bog off back to your dearly beloved independent states and take your families and hangers on with you? Why should that be seen as unfair discrimination or something seems proper order to me, if you don’t want to be in the Union largely because of anti English sentiment, then the English government should debar Scottish and Irish and prioritise those that like English people and the English way of life.

  • Morpheus

    How’s this for irony…

    …thousands of ‘bands and brethren’ are heading to Scotland right before
    the vote to encourage the people of Scotland to stay part of
    the Union but those in Better Together – those tasked with
    ensuring that Scotland remains part of the Union – thinks that the ‘bands and brethren’ will do more harm to their campaign than good if they do march.

    Quite the conundrum for the good ‘Reverend’

    The Clash’s “Should I stay or should I go now?” springs to mind for some reason


  • IToT, I’m really not sure how to respond to that, where to start? Probably best therefore not to engage you on this as I can see where it’s going and it aint pretty. I will just make a couple of points though, if / when Scotland leaves, what’s left isn’t England! Had you forgotton about Northern Ireland and Wales or would you like to see the back of them too? And the other point I would make is that I don’t think the driver for Scottish independence has anything to do with the EU, but rather it is, in my opinion, the result of a massive democratic deficit between Westminster and Scotland while at the same time the Scots watch as the UK squanders Scotland’s North Sea oil resources on foreign wars, Trident nuclear submarines and the City of London, while many tens of thousands of Scots depend on social security benefits and charity handouts from food banks. Is it any wonder that Westminster has to rely on fear and threats to promote a No vote?

  • Cinaedmor

    “Westminster spooks”, give me strength!

    The Scottish debate has been refreshing and certainly points the way as to how such discussions should take place. No greeting about Edward I, the Highland Clearances or any other such historical detritus was conjured; except of course that is for those relatively few instances when such nonsense was indulged in by a tiny minority, who were roundly condemned for it by all – despite the attempt by some in Better Together to inflate the problem.

    Indeed many in the Yes side of the argument were at pains to point out that they were not old style nationalists but were simply for independence irrespective of any historical or cultural baggage.

    It’s a lesson that could be learned by those across the water who’s arguments are far too often couched in terms of Race and Land.

  • So Cinaedmor, what’s your point? You bring up historical issues grievances in your post, only to point out that historical grievances have not factored in the debate. Therefore, why bring up a non-story unless of course you want it to be a story, which it won’t be! Westminster spooks? What’s wrong with that, why should you need “strength”? Do you actually believe that this has been a fair fight conducted from Westminster and their unionist allies? It hasn’t, BBC bias, tory press bias, tory millionaire funders of Bitter Together, project fear and something else, something which is beginning to unravel for the unionists – oil. The untapped west of Shetland Claire Ridge oil field is ginormous!!! Industry experts forecasting perhaps 100 years of untapped oil and gas in this and other west of Scotland reserves. Expect this story to start emerging big time over the coming days. By the way, David Cameron visited Shetland in secret recently to meet with oil industry bosses, following which all workers and staff on the rigs there were put on extended gardening leave until after the referendum. Westmister certainly does not want the Scottish people to know just how much oil and gas the UK is planning to extract from Scotland in coming decades in the event of a No vote. Unfortunately for them, the truth is out!

  • Cinaedmor

    Conspiracy, conspiracy it’s all conspiracy! Calm down lad you’ll do yourself a mischief.

    The people of Scotland will go to the polls and the votes will be counted. We don’t take much notice of No Campaign stooges manufactured nonsense to help us along, we’re way too canny for that.

  • Okay Cinaedmor, let’s accept that everyone in Scotland is too canny to vote based on “manufactured nonsense”, then why are Bitter Together spending so much of their energy promoting fear stories and threats. Then there’s the “Patronising Lady” broadcast last week and putting up Sir Ian Wood to undermine his own oil predictions. They are spending millions trying to scare canny Scots into voting No. Care to reveal which way you intend to vote and why…?

  • mickfealty

    Salmond’s not as raw

  • Cinaedmor

    I’ve no knowledge of the thinking that mapped out the No Campaign’s strategy. I’ll leave unveiling ‘secrets’ and trumpeting the ‘truth’ to others.

    I will concede this to the No Campaign being positive and cool about a negative is a difficult sell. Especially in an environment where the odd egg is flying and childish jibes are sometimes the order of the day: ‘Bitter Together’ anyone?

    I will vote Yes. Not as a result of any nationalistic hubris, I’ve long consigned that bs to the 19th Century where it belongs, and I’ve never felt a lump in my throat singing any anthem.

    Where does your ‘x’ go?

  • My X, if I had one, would of course go straight into the Yes box. You do
    Didn’t say why you’re a Yes, care to expand a little? As for any charge of ‘nationalist’ as the reason for for separation, this is not in the least accurate. While most Scot Nats will be voting Yes, some will not, but more importantly, it will be unprecedented numbers of Labour, socialist, Greens, many Lib deems and even some Tory voters who will be voting Yes along with their SNP neighbours and it will be these people who ultimately will decide if it is a Yes victory. The pro Yes is not nationalist, it is just pro independence because they believe for many many diverse reasons that Scotland will be to be a separate sovereign nation.

  • Cinaedmor

    You are confused. In Scotland, with the obvious exception of the SNP, party political affiliation does not necessarily say much about an individual’s nationalistic tendencies. A Tory, Green or Labourite can be every bit the blubbing Flower of Scotland crooner, or not as the case may be.

    So you don’t have a vote? You’re either a child or someone who does not live in Scotland. I suspect the later.

    To be honest I’ve had quite enough of Don’t-Go Love Bombers and Yes groupies giving us the ‘benefit’ of their analysis and advice.

  • No, I don’t have a vote, and no, I’M not a child either – even if my posts might appear so – I will blame predictive texting for most of that. I’m an adult but living on Northern Ireland, hence no vote. I agree with you to an extent about nationalistic attitudes amongst some non ST voters but it is, I think of minimal consequence in this debate. I get your cynicism about both sides, and while obviously pleased to hear you are a Yes vote, I would like hear more about why you have decided to vote Yes?

  • Deanmck7

    That has got to be the worst statement I’ve heard. My reason?

    You do know the amount of refugees and illegal immigrants and workers without trades or any title that shows to be beneficial to the UK employment industry has been a major talking point for years and Cameron himself stated he will not stop it from happening as he thinks it’s good for the UK. Even though immigrants know all the scams on having a great benefit lifestyle as long as they make it in to the UK for what ever reasons they use for their ‘stay’.

    What chance have you got of England leaving the EU and kicking all nationalities out of England so English jobs can give English people the jobs?

    You’d have more of a chance of dying and being reincarnated as baby Jesus in Bethlehem.

    What a stupid statement, sorry but it is.

    Before all the people attempt at using a racism card on me, I am not a racist and believe if a person from a country has great credentials and is going to be beneficial to the country then let them in regardless of nationality, colour and so on. However my opinion on this is clearly do what the Australians do and your country will benefit

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Jesus Wept!

    What are they thinking?!

    When official organisers are actually stating that the OO’s actions could hobble the vote and p*ss off some swing voters then how in the name common sense do they think they’re supporting the union?

    Do they not get that people who march view marches differently from those that don’t?

    Sod it, IF Scotland does go independent I hope it’s by the narrowest of margins so that people can blame the OO, that way they might some day get it:

    “Now concentrate this time, Willie and Mervyn. These cows are very small; THOSE cows are far away… ”


  • Cinaedmor

    I am a ‘Yes’ because a federal UK is not on offer. I believe governments, with full fiscal powers, should be as close to the people they represent as possible. For many reasons, and here I’m generalising in order to be brief, the people of Scotland have consistently voted for more left of centre politics and have diverged from England and Wales in that. Indeed with the potential for the continued rise of UKIP, and the Tories following them down that path things don’t seem likely to improve.

    Within Scotland I hope for more meaningful regional empowerment. The Highlands and Islands, particularly Shetland (with all ‘its’ oil), have different priorities and needs than the central belt and borders. I will not be satisfied with London’s hegemony simply to be replaced by an Edinburgh version.

    But why are you “pleased” that I’m voting yes? Why so energised about the debate in Scotland, why does it matter to you?

  • Cinaedmor, a good answer, thanks for providing it – I can’t disagree with anything you said. Westminster had the opportunity for devo max to be on the ballot paper but they vetoed it and are now trying to backpedal and offer allusive and mysterious new powers (maybe?). So, yes many who would have gone for devo max are now going for full independence, which is fine by me as I have always supported full Scottish independence. I am pleased you are voting yes for a number of reasons, the first one being that I first took you for no voter and was therefore happily surprised to find I was wrong. But mostly I am pleased because I want it be a Yes vote in two weeks time and I want to see Scotland show the world how successful it will be as a sovereign independent nation. Most of my family live there and I hope to move back there too some time, but I don’t think I could as it currently stands. I also think that independence for Scotland would be good fo r the rUK as only then will Westminster be forced to rethink its direction of travel in terms of maintaining Trident pushing its military might around the world by invading other countries and killing countless thousands of people in illegal foreign wars. An independent Scotland will not be invading Iraq or Afganistan any time soon! Loads of other reasons too, but those are some of the main ones.

  • Cinaedmor

    Alas your future-proofing of Scotland’s army’s international activities may not be as effective as you seem to believe.

    The Yes campaign’s defence plans are one of the weakest aspects of its argument. Joining NATO, an alliance that operates under a nuclear shield, whilst wanting Trident out of Faslane. Should NATO decide on an international expedition in the future, to support the Baltic States against Russia for example, will an independent Scotland fulfil its NATO undertakings?

  • Personally, I would not want Scotland to join NATO and the SNP only changed its own opposition to joining it in 2012. I would prefer scotland to remain neutral like RoI and Switzerland. But whether an indy Scotland joins NATO or not, is not what I was referring to wrt Afghanistan and Iraq etc, which were, in my opinion and the opinion of many people in this county, illegal wars. Scottish regiments had no choice when they were sent to Iraq or Afghanistan. In an indy Scotland they never would have been sent in the first place – whether Scotland had been a member of NATO or not. The concerns over Ukraine are premature. It isn’t a member of NATO and I personally don’t envisage NATO going to war with Russia in the foreseeable future. Ukraine looks like it will be resolved sooner rather than later anyway as neither the west nor Russia want an escalation. If Scotland does join NATO, then to answer your question, yes, I believe Scotland would fulfill whatever military obligatoions it had committed to (which I think would be minimal obligations anyway). However, Scotland as part of the UK is already in NATO and if it is a NO vote, the UK will drag the Scottish armed forces into whatever camapign is going whether a NATO one or some other illegal one of the UK’s making, so Scotland won’t be better off militarily by remaining in the UK anyway.

  • gunterprien

    Other humour is available.
    Besides Father Ted…

  • gunterprien

    House prices in the WEE six are MORE affected by the Free State than what happens in London. Interest rates are pretty much the same over Europe. in the last 20 years.

  • Cinaedmor

    Well as you’ve pretty much got the future sorted there’s nothing more to say.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    But I care not.

  • I’m Trending on Twitter

    I was simply making the point that there’s no point going independent if you can’t control your money and the cost of borrowing which will continue to be set inside the Bank of England.

  • No Cinaedmor, I haven’t got the future sorted at all, just giving you the benefit of my observations and opinions on the situation you asked me about. I don’t have a crystal ball and fully accept that all of my predictions could turn out completely differently from what I hope or expect. That doesn’t however prevent my from having hopes, expectations and opinions though, anymore than it does you. And here’s another opinion, your condasending attitude doesn’t help.

  • gunterprien

    What?? And you can’t make this point by not staying true to the facts?

  • I’m Trending on Twitter

    The facts are yes houses prices have been affected but as a would-be independent country you cannot control external factors emanating from another country, such as another country’s lending practices and its banking system lending to foolish Irish, who over borrowed and pushed up prices in another jurisdiction close to it. That is asking for the impossible, remember we are talking about powers that should go with independence and what good governance should be as part of that not the euro zone and its free market impact on house prices. You are the one getting mixed up, my point is that you need full control of powers as an independent country to mitigate some of the impacts of external forces that you mention and indeed internal ones such as inflation and so on etc, as without them the vision or dream of independence is a rather hollow one.

  • gunterprien

    Oh dear..The point is..In the so called UK the Wee 6 had the fastest rising house prices during the Irish property bubble
    And when that bubble burst property in the wee 6 has fallen faster.
    See the connection.
    What’s foolish is to draw a border and exclude yourself from the State where the bubble started>
    But hey..That’s Unionism for ye.
    How long will it take those foolish people to wake up???

  • I’m Trending on Twitter

    Things are a mess re housing, interest rates, euro, economy and so on at the moment, but hey if you’re opting for independence in today’s climate I guess you would want as many levers to pull as possible and being in control of money and currency would be handy, otherwise you are asking citizens to join in with another mess not of their own making perhaps the euro. A new currency is the only option I would give the SNP credit for and going alone and rebuilding from scratch. That’s a good god honest attempt at independence, not the sneaky wee ‘we don’t trust the brits but let’s keep sterling and hold out for the euro’ approach, a hollow independence, a trick a con. Fools gold as it has been termed.

  • angie paterson

    I think Cameron should take his face for a sh*t