I find the whole prospect rather depressing that the people of Scotland may reject this incredible opportunity to become something special, a force for good in an increasingly Neo-Conservative world populated by identikit politicians. Never-the-less I will try and muster the energy to do my little bit to help the cause. Between now and the independence referendum I will attempt to write a series of short pieces outlining how the choice appears from outside Scotland and the UK. If you are sitting on the fence or side with the Better Togethers I hope to convince you otherwise. If you are going to vote Yes then I hope to provide some material you can use to convince others. If you are living in other parts of the UK then please do not see my views or that of the Yes campaign as being an attack. It is not. I believe that an independent Scotland can be a strong partner and an example for people way beyond its borders, a chance to show that an alternative way of living is possible.
I left Scotland in 2000 and have lived in the Netherlands ever since. The UK has much going for it and there are a great many things I miss but in comparison to the Netherlands the UK feels like a third world country. The class division, poverty, crime, right-wing policies, police state control and poor infrastructure never cease to amaze. Right now there is only one thing that will bring me back to Scotland and that is independence.
Scottish Independence? Why not? I could rewrite all the valid arguments and trash the blatant lies of the Better Together campaign – a campaign built on fear-mongering – but where would the value be in that? If you don’t have the time or patience to make a detailed Pros vs Cons list or go through the SNP’s 700 page manifesto then ponder these two facts for starters:
- According to the likes of David Cameron, Scotland takes 1000 pounds per head more out of the UK than they put in (this is bull, by the way).
- The Conservatives have exactly 1 MP in Scotland. This is up from previous elections. That leaves 59 MPs in Scotland from other parties. Without Scotland in the equation the Conservatives would not need a coalition with the Lib Dems. And at the 2005 elections Labour would have had a majority of 1.
So David Cameron cares so much about Scotland that he is prepared to risk his political chances and fork out 5 billion pounds per year? What a lovely man! Or could it have much more to do with oil, gas, water, whisky, electricity, Trident, etc?
And really why should two lands with such differing political views be one? Scotland consistently has believed in greater equality, accessible education and healthcare for all; has been anti-war, anti-nuclear. Like a marriage that has run its course, a better future for the kids is usually when the parents go their own ways.