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Scottish Independence

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Should they play fast and loose with that they'd be lucky to borrow the cash for a bottle of buckfast and a deep fried mars bar on the markets.

Apologies for a double 'quote' but (as a bit of a facetious comment but not totally so) might it not help out some scottish widows, &c.? :P

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The next part of Osborne’s plan is probably to announce that if Scotland becomes independent, it won’t be allowed to keep its zoos, so the day after the vote it’ll have to release tigers and bears and crocodiles into the streets of Edinburgh. But it won’t be able to ask for help because it won’t be allowed to use our language, or any of our letters, so they’ll have to communicate by barking.

 

They already do, don't they? 

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21n1wcl.jpg

 

Apparently Simon Rattle is the new queen of Scotland, or the old queen of Scotland, whichever way it is.

 

Who cares?

 

Actually, what's Phillip's official title if Scotland pull out of the deal?

 

Where's nearest to Edinburgh? Carlisle, North Berwick?

 

That'll help balance the North/South divide for a few weeks.

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Begby

They'll declare war on everyone during the first week of independence, perfect genralissimo

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So Emperor Salmond has released his Plan B for the Scottish currency in the event of independence, use the £ anyway but have no control of interest rates (set to benefit the remaining UK economy by the BoE) and have no lender of last resort.  I think I'm right in saying the financial industry is Scotland's third largest employer after the oil industry and the government (although with another 30,000 UK civil service jobs north of the wall evaporating should they vote 'YES').  By ensuring no lender of last resort would exist after independence, the Scottish financial industry will have no choice but to move south on mass.

 

Starting to get the feeling the SNP haven't really thought this thing through... 

 

link

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So Emperor Salmond has released his Plan B for the Scottish currency in the event of independence, use the £ anyway but have no control of interest rates (set to benefit the remaining UK economy by the BoE) 

link

 

Sounds like there will be no change for them there then!

 

Just out of interest what would you suggest is the best currency option for Scotland should it wish to become an independent state?

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I think Bannan should be the king of Scotland. I would like to see this happen.

 

Shouldn't Taban Amin be crowned the King of Scotland, after all, his father Idi was the last King.

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So Emperor Salmond has released his Plan B for the Scottish currency in the event of independence, use the £ anyway but have no control of interest rates (set to benefit the remaining UK economy by the BoE) and have no lender of last resort.  I think I'm right in saying the financial industry is Scotland's third largest employer after the oil industry and the government (although with another 30,000 UK civil service jobs north of the wall evaporating should they vote 'YES').  By ensuring no lender of last resort would exist after independence, the Scottish financial industry will have no choice but to move south on mass.

 

Starting to get the feeling the SNP haven't really thought this thing through... 

 

link

The case the SNP are putting is essentially emotional rather than logical, and the gaping holes in the argument about currency illustrate that.

There's a school of thought that Salmond thinks independence is unattainable right now, and the game is to bolster support and win more powers (Devo Max, which interestingly won't be on the ballot but which may have won a majority), returning to the issue perhaps in ten years or more.

There's also a theory that Cameron would like to lose Scotland, making it a little easier to command a majority in rUK. Which might explain his very poor handling of the issue.

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So Emperor Salmond has released his Plan B for the Scottish currency in the event of independence, use the £ anyway but have no control of interest rates (set to benefit the remaining UK economy by the BoE) and have no lender of last resort.  I think I'm right in saying the financial industry is Scotland's third largest employer after the oil industry and the government (although with another 30,000 UK civil service jobs north of the wall evaporating should they vote 'YES').  By ensuring no lender of last resort would exist after independence, the Scottish financial industry will have no choice but to move south on mass.

 

Starting to get the feeling the SNP haven't really thought this thing through... 

 

link

The case the SNP are putting is essentially emotional rather than logical, and the gaping holes in the argument about currency illustrate that.

There's a school of thought that Salmond thinks independence is unattainable right now, and the game is to bolster support and win more powers (Devo Max, which interestingly won't be on the ballot but which may have won a majority), returning to the issue perhaps in ten years or more.

There's also a theory that Cameron would like to lose Scotland, making it a little easier to command a majority in rUK. Which might explain his very poor handling of the issue.

 

 

Camoron in just a poor leader, that's all.

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So Emperor Salmond has released his Plan B for the Scottish currency in the event of independence, use the £ anyway but have no control of interest rates (set to benefit the remaining UK economy by the BoE) 

link

 

Sounds like there will be no change for them there then!

 

Just out of interest what would you suggest is the best currency option for Scotland should it wish to become an independent state?

 

Turnips.

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So Emperor Salmond has released his Plan B for the Scottish currency in the event of independence, use the £ anyway but have no control of interest rates (set to benefit the remaining UK economy by the BoE) 

link

 

Sounds like there will be no change for them there then!

 

Just out of interest what would you suggest is the best currency option for Scotland should it wish to become an independent state?

Turnips.

Nah Mars Bars and watch the chip shops turn into alchemists

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Interesting article from David Nicholson, a contributor to Forbes magazine.

I cover media, technology and business and how they intersect

Speaking as a Scot who lives in England, I have divided loyalties in this debate.

But speaking as an economic commentator, I am amazed at the naivety and short sightedness of the Scottish National Party (SNP). Here’s 5 reasons why.

1 Currency confusion

Not long ago (in 1999), SNP leader Alex Salmond described the pound as a ‘millstone around Scotland’s neck’ and derided the currency in 2009. Today he is desperate to keep it, realising that an independent currency would be so volatile and problematic that it would dissuade investors, reduce trade with the rest of the world and threaten to turn Scotland into an economic backwater.

The European Union has effectively ruled out Scotland joining the euro (or even the EU) for many years, leaving Salmond exposed and blustering.

2 Delusions of oil grandeur

The SNP’s main economic platform is that Scotland should own the revenue from North Sea oil and gas, making it a petro-dollar paradise equivalent to Norway. Although they have similar populations (5.05 million for Norway, 5.3 million for Scotland), the hydrocarbon revenues are massively different. Norway’s government gathered $40 billion in 2013 (according to the BBC) while the UK made $10.8 billion (according to the Financial Times), a fall of 40 per cent from 2012. Current predictions? Further falls, to £3.3 billion ($5.5 billion) in 2016/17, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies.

There’s no amount of careful stewardship that is going to magic $5.5 billion into $40 billion, when many of the North Sea rigs are at the end of their life and production levels are falling.

3 Financial mismanagement

Scotland’s banks have become a byword for chaos and catastrophic losses, after the hubris of the 1990s turned into the near-collapse of the mid-2000s with massive rescue packages needed for Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds (both of them based in Edinburgh). The SNP announced in November 2013 that, under future independence arrangements, the Bank of England ‘would become a lender of the last resort’ following any future crises.

This would mean taxpayers in the rest of the UK bailing out Scottish banks, despite them being in an ‘independent’ country. The evident nonsense of this position seems to be lost on the Scottish National Party.

As one website remarked, Alex Salmond believes he still has the right to use gym equipment, despite giving up his membership. ‘I have been a member for many, many years, so why they think everything in the club is for the exclusive use of the remaining members is completely beyond me,’ the website imagined him wondering.

4 Loss of credibility

The UK has sunk an awful long way since the height of empire in the 19th century, but it remains the world’s sixth-largest economy and the second-largest in Europe behind Germany. This confers all kinds of useful benefits, including low interest rates, a permanent seat at the UN Security Council, leadership in NATO, a major role at G20 conferences and in the WTO, among many others.

For decades, even centuries, Scots have been at the heart of this economic presence, as Chancellors of the Exchequer (Gordon Brown, Alastair Darling under Labour, Norman Lamont under the Tories) or as Prime Minister (Brown again, Tony Blair – even David Cameron has Scottish roots). They also helped to build and maintain the Empire.

So instead of a seat at this high global table, Scotland seeks to become… what? The new Slovakia (population 5.4 million, average income $24,000)? It’s an instructive parallel. Slovakia became independent of the Czech Republic in 1993 because the Czechs wanted rid of their poorer partner under the forced communist marriage of Czechoslovakia. The SNP, by contrast, is under the illusion that Scotland would emerge a wealthier nation than it is today by ditching its richer partner. The logic is perverse.

At least Slovakia is part of the European Union, with all the benefits that brings. An independent Scotland could not guarantee that its citizens would be able to live and work in the rest of the UK.

5 Lack of natural resources

Once the oil runs out, what does Scotland have that will sustain its fabulously wealthy future? It has whisky, but even with this contribution of £3 billion ($4.8 billion) across the economy, as estimated by the Scotch Whisky Association, it’s small beer. The ability to attract major industries – manufacturing, IT, finance – to the country would be diminished by independence, for all the reasons listed above.

The insurer Standard Life has already warned that it could relocate its headquarters in the event of a Yes vote for independence, endangering 5,000 Scottish jobs. Many more companies are doubtless thinking along the same lines.

I once asked a politician who represented the Western Isles of Scotland why people living in these remote and hostile places should receive subsidies. ‘To keep a diversity of culture,’ he replied. You could say the same of Scotland as a whole. The rest of the UK is content to subsidise this rich and ancient culture. But take away that subsidy and there would likely be massive depopulation. ‘Go to Scotland and there’s nobody there,’ as the country’s best-known comic Billy Connolly succinctly put it.

All these arguments pale into nothing for nationalists, whose blood is up and who scent a kind of revenge on the English for centuries of (as they see it) domination and exploitation. They’re determined to cut off their nose to spite their face.

* * * * *

As a Scot, a yes vote at independence would feel like my parents divorcing. As an economist, it would feel like a regressive, small-minded, self-inflicted act of exile from the 21st century.

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