Scottish Independence: Nonsense

The leader of Scotland’s separatist movement predicted on Friday that the United States would not try to stand in the way of the breakup of Britain, Washington’s staunchest ally for decades, if Scots vote for independence at a referendum this year.

Instead, the Obama administration could use the reasonably orderly debate in Britain about Scotland’s future as an example to other countries facing constitutional crises, said Alex Salmond, the separatist leader who heads the Scottish National Party and who is Scotland’s first minister.

“I don’t foresee pressure. I don’t think that is what the United States would want to do,” Salmond told Reuters. “There are certain principles involved here. One is the principle of self determination. Secondly, the principle of a consented and peaceful process.”

Pro-independence campaigners have always long lagged in opinion polls behind supporters of maintaining Scotland’s 307-year-old union with England. A March 20 poll showed that around 40 percent of Scots plan to vote for independence in this year’s referendum while 45 percent intended to vote against it. The figures have remained constant throughout Salmond’s campaign.

The problem for Salmond is that he is the only reason the Scots have been bothered to consider independence in the first place – also this is the only crack at independence Scotland will have for many years. He is a wily politician and – whilst not looking like a leader – he has a certain way with soundbites that makes him noticeable. Behind him are a team of highly uncharismatic players including his deputy (also fish-sounding) Nicola Sturgeon, who are seen as closet Marxists by the informed and who could not have the same galvanising effect on the Scots as Salmond somehow has.

There is talk amongst Scots seeking independence that the main reason to be independent from the rest of Britain is because they have been living for the last 300 years under the yoke of the Tory English down south. Ask the English and round about 40% of them are pro Scottish independence also, as this will mean lower taxes as Scottish subsidies disappear. The reality is that England supports the rest of the UK.

Salmond’s suggestion that an independent Scotland will aspire to being a great country like Norway (occasionally he has mentioned Qatar) does little to inspire any closet Bravehearts,

The whole exercise is a pile of nonsense. Britain will carry on as a respected large country with or without. Better with than without.



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