2007 - 2022

Scotland, a European Nation

CmG3NetWEAQrd1lScotland, a European nation adjourned in 1707, is hereby reconvened.

The Scottish parliament, overwhelmingly and without a single vote against, has endorsed its first full diplomatic engagement with mainland Europe in over 300 years.

What remains of the UK state now has two distinct foreign policies, with the resources of the Scottish Government focused on maintaining our place in the European Union.

Today First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will travel to Brussels to meet the presidents of the EU Commission and European Parliament.

Yesterday the parliament of the world’s largest trading area rose in solidarity with the Scottish democratic claim of right, and the protection of its position within Europe.

These are extraordinary times. A European nation has been reborn.

Followers of Scotland’s political renaissance know this change is far from being as sudden as these historic moments appear.

CmHNUDkXEAAtnN6Playwright Peter Arnott noted that Scotland may have narrowly rejected statehood in 2014, but now it’s people and parliament are exercising sovereignty.

A new consensus has emerged. Sturgeon led with confidence while Westminster descended into chaos. The Scottish Greens immediately took to the street – leading the first Scotland in Europe rally outside of parliament.

Order within Scottish Labour and the Liberal Democrats was shaken. Party supporters have moved towards backing independence, and leaders Kezia Dugdale and Willie Rennie had no choice but to side with the mandate of the Scottish people.

Like the 1980s and 90s, there is now a broad movement – Scotland United – in support of national democracy, and in direct conflict with a dangerous and illegitimate Tory government.

Gaelic_FlagMore significantly, that alliance is now deeply rooted in an idea of Scottish internationalism.

MSP Mike Russell described that movement as facing an “existential choice” concerning Scotland’s place as a European nation.

“It is not half a century of EU membership that has made us European; it is centuries of engagement,” he said. “We were European before we were British — sending students to the continent, sharing citizenship with France and appealing our very nationhood to Rome. Wine was being shipped to Loch Fyne — Loch Fìne — in the 15th century. In war and in peace — an cogadh, an sìth — we looked to Europe and it looked to us, in Voltaire’s words, for our very idea of civilisation.”

Christina McKelvie also recognised the significance of the moment, and spoke of Scotland’s movement for democracy in the wake of the French revolution – naming Rabbie Burns, Thomas Muir and Thomas Paine.

Scotland’s European history – of Scotland’s cosmopolitan enlightenment, of merchants who left for Poland, of intertwining systems of law and political alliances – endures in parallel to its participation in British empire building.

Today, when the President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins becomes the first international head of state to address the Scottish Parliament, there will be another landmark placed upon that map.

We are yet to see if this new expression of sovereignty, a fierce defence of European citizenship, will seamlessly transition to full statehood. That story is yet unwritten. But this week, among the tumult, Scotland, a European nation adjourned in 1707, has hereby been reconvened.

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  1. bringiton says:

    I hope you are right.
    However,the Westminster establishment covets the territory north of it’s border above all else and will once again focus it’s attention on ensuring it keeps control of it.
    They are already making sounds like they didnae really mean it and that in return for some controls over immigration might be persuaded to remain within the EU..albeit in a semi detached way.
    A price worth paying,in their view,if they can hang onto Scotland.

    1. John B says:

      They have other concerns and priorities.

      You imagine Scotland is as important to them as it is to you.

      The English Brexiters know nothing about Scotland except what they read in the Daily Mail, and they would welcome being rid of us.

    2. against feudalism says:

      “the Westminster establishment covets the territory north of it’s border”

      And actually owns a disproportional amount? without contributing to the nation! We need radical LAND REFORM NOW. That means some form of land value tax.

      A tax on 2nd/holiday homes is also needed, as is a program of council house building, in both urban and rural areas, once lvt reduces land values.

  2. baronesssamedi says:

    Yes Bringiton, but we’re not going back into our box, are we? The word for the UK is ‘broken’.

  3. Mach1 says:

    Nicola’s visit to Brussels is a welcome development and, despite Donald Tusk’s scepticism, will surely insure positive engagement with pan-European allies.
    On the UK stage, both main parties at Westminster look set to split, creating the opportunity for the SNP to become the official Opposition. It will be interesting to see how the parliamentary authorities respond to the request for this to be acknowledged in light of Labour’s vote of no confidence against Jeremy Corbyn.

    There remains, however, a debate to be had about the nature of the UK referendum result. It would have been obvious to dispassionate observers that when, the day before the referendum and as reported in The Times, it was apparent that most of the undecided voters when pressed would have supported Remain, that the result depended on which side was better able to mobilise its support.

    This leads me to a central criticism of the Remain (Stronger in the EU) campaigns. Unlike in Scotland, where the bulk of SNP activists were encouraging people to get to the polls and vote Remain, the UK-wide campaign lacked any real organisation. Indeed offers of physical help to the Remain camp were met by a hail of emails seeking financial backing, with the occasional appeal to go along to a photo-op/demo thrown in, as if Remain had a grassroots constituency to call upon.

    Simply put, without a grassroots organisational base, Remain failed to get their vote out. Add disillusionment with both Labour and Tory leaderships, and it is not hard to see why, in England at least, the Remain vote stayed at home.

    We now have the spectacle of Labour and Tory parties tearing themselves apart. I watched Ruth Davidson yesterday, and the Glums on her backbenches, and realised that her party in Scotland simply does not know which way to turn. Dugdale, meanwhile, for Scottish Labour, has decided that she must support the anti-Corbyn camp, more I think to prop up Ian Murray than to challenge anyone at Westminster. Her position effectively put her at odds with the new model Labour party which delivered a Corbyn victory in the leadership election.

    This brings me to a final point. In the coming days and weeks, as it becomes obvious that no amount of behind-the-scenes calming activity by the BoE and Chancellor can prevent market turmoil and a UK recession in the months ahead, calls will grow for an early General Election.
    Like the EU referendum, it will be a proxy for resolving internal party disputes/division.

    For the SNP, campaign tactics will be key. There now seems to be majority support for independence, so do party leaders include a mandate for independence in the manifesto?

    There will also be calls for reform of the referendum process, which could act against the SNP securing a future vote on independence. The failure to mobilise voters by campaigns which have
    no effective activist base, will fuel calls for compulsory voting along Australian lines (where non-voters pay a fine). There will also be calls for 16-18 year olds to get the vote. In the interests of democracy, both should be supported, both before and after what could be the most chaotic
    election campaign of the post-war era.

  4. Graham Ennis says:

    Almost silently, something important is happening today. The President of Ireland is in Scotland, in Edinburgh to directly address the Scottish Parliament on the crisis. He did not ask the UK government for permission, neither did the Scottish Government. It is implicit diplomatic recognition of the autonomy and sovereignty of Scotland, by a European head of State. Beyond the diplomatic protocols, it is a significant development. The Irish Government is also in discussions and the main Party Fine Gael has opnely supported the Scottish Government, in Parliament, as have the other parties. This is an extraordinary development. Things are now moving with remarkable speed. Saor Alba.

    1. John B says:

      Things are indeed moving fast – faster than the end of WW2!

      SLab and S-Con have three options: to support one side, the other, or split.

      They can’t split because they are too wee, and too poor.

  5. Blair says:

    “Endures in parallel”, “Endures in Parallel”, ?

    Whats is perceived and what is actually perceived. Hidden in full view yet unseen.

    What real and what is a virtual reality?

    The only thing we can trust is art and museum treasures, they travel in both real and virtual time.

    Past, Present, Future

    God created man in His image we should be able to perceive things in real time but our brains are only capable of assessing True 2D and virtual 3D.

    In reality events should have followed the Mayan calendar May 2003 but intead postponed due to systems an unexpected event on 12th August 1993: On that day we were switched to virtual real time and The Christina Project started Virtual real time is coming to an end and Christina is preparing for reconnecting to Real Time.

    Scotland is safe because Christina’s Project is Scottish and based in Aberdeen.

    We had the Trinity. When reconnected to real time we will have the 4th Quadrant.

    Connection requires all mankind to agree, work together, live in peace and seek out New Jerusalem.

    It can only be done on Earth using 3-phases. Time is short and Mankind has to make a their own choice before their own time runs out.

    There is one whole universe for us to explore.

    1. David Fee says:

      Aye. I think that pretty much sums it all up.

      1. Mr T says:

        Does make me wonder why I bothered paying my mortgage off though.

    2. tartanfever says:

      So what were those lottery numbers again for tonight’s draw ?

  6. Kenny Green says:

    The Biggest load of Tripe I have ever read. Democratic vote of the UK. (Which last time I looked, Scotland was a part of.) To come out of EU. NS and her party do not speak for me or many others in Scotland. Get a grip and accept the democratic vote. This is a great oportunity to get the UK back on its feet. Get our Industries back where they belong. In the front line. Having a country back, that Companies wish to invest in and bring their business to. Etc, Etc. Then we may look at Scotland getting a Second Bite at the Cherry. It would be benificial for Scotland to have a strong UK.

    1. John Mooney says:

      What planet are you living on!Wasteminster is in complete and utter meltdown with the pro brexit clowns standing around without any coherent plans aghast at the utter shambles they have caused and the so called “Labour” opposition engaged in suicidal fratricide and the only coherent ideas being postulated coming from the S.G. at Holyrood.Companies are already bailing out of England by the hour and relocating in Europe,I suggest its time for you to wake up and smell the coffee! :o)

      1. Whatamess says:

        It’s going to be kind of interesting in a ‘slow down and look at the car crash’ way watching how all the strident Brexiters and Scot Yes supporters are about to have their certainty stress test. Some have stayed very quiet? Why is that?

        …all your certainty that Scot indy won’t ruin lives, won’t lead to a small neolib back water like the Baltics, that we can now expect a socialist utopia with free everything, that austerity will no longer plague us, all those half baked opinions and self confident assertions made on sites like this are about to be either vindicated…or exposed as total hot air. Wonder how people will react and look back in 5 years time?

        Hope over Fear?

    2. Broadbield says:

      Sorry, Kenny but I think the tripe is coming from your pen, other than your point that it “would be beneficial for Scotland to have a strong (r)UK.” Have a look at today’s economic analysis on Newsnet which suggests strongly that the UK outside of the EU has a long way to go to get “back on its feet” – if ever.

    3. John Page says:

      Dear Kenny
      It will probably be 1 to 3 years before any 2nd Scottish Independence Referendum.
      How about an experiment? Stop reading your current newspaper….spend the money on books and perhaps the Weekend FT…….read up on Scottish history, climate change…….read the Silk Roads by Peter Frankopan, This Changes Everything by Naomi Klein…….the Weekend FT is great for book reviews. Find out who owns the newspapers in the UK and Google their residence and tax arrangements.
      Whatever decision you come to, it will at least be your own informed decision. Your comment that Brexit is an opportunity for the UK to get back on its feet suggests that you have accepted one sided propaganda from the Press controlled by tax avoiding extremists who want to have a free for all society with low wages, no human rights, no taxes for the wealthy and no protection for the environment or action to avoid the real consequences of very damaging limited change.
      Please give it a try
      Thank you
      John Page

      1. John Page says:

        In this connection, see the flurry about the leaked e mail from Sarah Vine (wife of Michael Gove) and the reference to Murdoch and Paul Dacre (editor of the Daily Mail) in the context of who will be the next UK PM. Please keep an open mind
        Thank you

    4. Andimac says:

      Don’t be deterred, Kenny – keep posting comments like that: we all need a good laugh to lighten things up in these troubled times. Don’t take your tinfoil hat off though.

    5. Robert Graham says:

      well we all have our views Jackson or is that Ruth the mooth who has hijacked yer keyboard , so you endorse the total chaos south of the border are willing to wait and see until it all calms down you like a lot of English people seem to forget we us up here are not a part of greater England if you want to be with them trains planes and busses leave nightly i am sure you will be given a warm welcome just like the many thousands of Scots before you , I would change your Scots notes before you go or get the usual reply err whats this funny money and thats in the royal bank branch in regents street i kid you not it has happend

  7. ALAN says:

    Are there any figures relating to how much it would cost an Independent Scotland to remain a part of the EU?
    The UK contribution is widely acknowledged as £161 million a week. How much money would Scotland be expected to contribute?
    I say this as an SNP member who supported Independence(obviously) but also as someone who voted to Leave the EU. My vote was nothing to do with immigration, I welcome anybody that wants to come and live in Scotland. I also agree with all the EU employment laws that safeguard workers rights, workers wages etc etc. I also agree that there are some economical benefits to be gained from being a member of the EU. But how much will it cost?
    An Independent Scotland outwith the EU can surely trade with Europe & the rest of the world, uphold workers rights, be fair to all that live in this nation, ensure the fair distribution of wealth to all, welcome immigrants, etc etc etc.

    1. Whatamess says:

      As far as I understand it is usually around 1% of GDP, but UK gets a rebate so?? that would be (my maths isn’t great so??? 140 billion GDP, 1% of that is 1.4 billion p.a. But you have to factor in the probable loss of future medium term GDP if the UK/ Scotland goes into long term recession which is looking likely.

    2. Gralloched says:

      The cost of access to the EU market, while relinquishing full membership, like Norway, is pretty much the same as the contribution of a full member. No big savings there. But a massive loss of influence. Oh ! And they’ve just lost their veto on the accession of Turkey.

  8. tartanfever says:

    You know when you read ‘Which last time I looked, Scotland was a part of’ thats it’s going to be a belter.

  9. Whatamess says:

    Serious times, need serious people. Triumphalist playground articles are really helpful. Maybe you should be addressing the real issues?

    I’m a No voter who will now vote yes to leave the UK – Scotland is now effectively on it’s way to independence. So rather than indulging in ‘wha’s like us’ playground selective history and hubris perhaps you ‘radicals’ would like to address the questions that you have forced upon us moderates.


    1) It seems Spain may veto any continued membership (that apparently is the indication) – but this could change poss? – but if it doesn’t, what is the plan for currency and trade while we are outside both the UK and EU during which the 5 -7 year accession period takes place? UK trade at 64% worth around 47 billion to our economy and EU trade at 15 ish % isn’t it? That’s a lot of jobs dependent on continued free movement, capital, people, services and goods.

    2) If we do remain in the EU it is most likely that we will have to adopt the Euro (Sweden and Denmark were prior to the Euro and new states are expected to) + rUK (given the current hostility stoked up by nationalism from the Indyref and Euroref) will not be willing to share currency union – so where will the austerity cuts come from to reduce the budget deficit from 10% to 3% GSPact come from? That’s 15 billion extra in savings we now need on top of current cuts and austerity. Or will we be forced to privatise and sell things, NHS in order to meet any bail out criteria the EU/ Merkel will impose on us like Greece?

    3) If we do remain in a shared currency union, minus fiscal transfers from the rUK, how will we meet the convergence criteria? 3%? if we don’t have macro control of the economy?

    4) Does this mean we now have to float our own currency and find even more public money to save in reserve for the new Scottish central bank while also cutting around a quarter of public spending from the current budget? The question is rhetorical.

    5) Given that massive austerity cuts are now inevitable, how should they be spread? Who do you think should lose their jobs? which vital services shall we cut? and how much will taxes go up and how much will wages fall by?

    6) Given that every other country who has gone through the process Scotland is about to has followed (see Slovenia, Slovakia, Baltics, Poland etc) the pattern, of massive public spending cuts, Thatcherite shrinking of the state, mass privatisation, and mass youth unemployment and emigration, how will those like yourself on the ‘radical left’ react to this new inescapable reality? And what will you to those who are on the receiving end? The poor, the young, the unemployed and homeless who will lose all benefits and social security?

    This is the mess nationalism (in both England and Scotland) has left us with. So now is the time for all those strident indy Yes people to start coming up with solutions, because what ever way you spin it, the shit really just hit the fan.

    1. Jim says:

      Hi Whatamess. You raise valid concerns. At times like these I wish I was an economist. I look forward to J.P. Morgan’s forthcoming note outlining their ‘base case’ for an emergent independent Scotland. Can I ask your reason(s) for voting Yes in a hypothetical second independence referendum, rather than sticking with the UK outside of Europe? Would sticking with the UK, even factoring in the expected economic fallout of Brexit, not be the safer option? Cheers. J

      1. Whatamess says:


        TBH I suspect you’re guess is as good as anyones as thing stand. Any politician who claims they are ‘in control’ is frankly bullshitting.

        But IMO, if you’re looking at it in purely economic terms then remaining with the UK is the safer, more sensible option. Same language, 300 years of interconnected networks/ 64+% of trade and investment + a functioning and proven Optimum Currency Area (google it if you’ve never heard of it – is important/ vital to both UK and EU – boiled down it’s the optimum area of a shared currency zone for goods, services, people, capital to flow back and forth), fiscal transfer (that’s the big one – even with EU membership there are no fiscal transfers to mitigate against serious asymetric shocks – an example of which is the oil price collapse in Scotland and the current fiscal transfer to maintain things – another example was the sub prime crash in the states when Florida and a few other states were saved from bankruptcy by the US federal reserve backing them. All the EU has at the mo is fairly limited structural funds (this is the problem and where the tension lies, as to become a proper functioning OCA with central fiscal control, they have to make the politics work and sacrifice sovereignty/ control and turn the EU into a Federal super state. It’s actually quite interesting to see the history of the various members at play in the process and their approach/ popular perception of the process – e.g. Germany is more relaxed as it sees the benefits and security angle as it went through this process when the disparate central Euro states – Bavaria, Prussia and so on unified – not without protest, alot of fighting, but really the process started after a the destruction of the 30 years war that exposed the vulnerability of the German states to the French, Swedish, Polish and other surrounding Empires, so popular perception is generally in favour – England, it’s all Rule Britannia and WW2 etc – the Baltics and East, Poland are actually quite skeptical of further deepening also due to Soviet Union experience of a super state (similar attitudes to England in many ways) so it will be interesting to see what effect Brexit has on the speeding up of deeper integration including a federal reserve system (like the US or Candada, Australia, Germany) and fiscal control by the ECB? Then there’s France – don’t want to even contemplate Marine Le Pen and a French ‘Frexit’ referendum, with the problems they have at the moment and so soon after Paris attacks. This is one of the reasons Hollande won’t allow Scotland in, he has to show 100% commitment to the EU to push away calls for a ref from the right, and that means punishing Britain for leaving, and unfortunately Scotland due to the nationalist support Basques and Catalans. People forget in Scotland that all European countries are collections of older historic states, just like the UK.

        The EU on the other hand is only 15% of trade, not and OCA, and isn’t especially center left anymore. In fact it’s arguably more Thatcherite than UK now with regards to Greece and loans and entry conditions.

        So yes UK is much safer than alone then EU, even with Brexit – if it happens? The best option which was the one I was hoping for was for Sturgeon to make good with a federal solution, where by Scotland could remain in both the EU and UK.

        But on principle, it gets on my wick that Brexit happened, that there was a ref at all and that we have these idiots in Westminster who haven’t a clue and who treat it all as a game. My position has been pretty consistent. I dislike nationalism, it’s hard to see when in history it has been a positive force aside from anti imperial/ colonial separation, so I was pro union with UK, pro greater local govt and regional autonomy (economically) rather than the current very centralised SNP model, and pro EU.

        I honestly don’t know what I shall vote now. All bets are off. I may just abstain or get on a plane to New Zealand?

        Don’t have a scoobie.

      2. Whatamess says:

        But i find it pretty contemptible that the SNP aren’t being honest to their supporters and Scottish people either about the truth of UK separation – the possibility of a decade of austerity far worse than now, nor are they taking responsibilty for their part in stoking UK nationalism.

        But then I find Boris and Gove pretty contemptible also…rock and a hard place.

        1. Valerie says:

          There is a lot to read about the Scottish economy and its strengths. Scotland is a rich country, but that narrative doesn’t suit Westminster, so you need to look.
          Just as a start to how things work for Westminster.

          On 10/9/14, Mark Carney of BoE was asked by the Chair of the Treasury Select Committee to put a broad figure on Scotland’s domiciled banking assets. His response ‘north of 1 trillion’.
          Does that sound professional, forthcoming or transparent? The Chair recognised his discomfort, and moved on.

          Did you know that, or was it publicised, or did you read about capital flight from Scotland, including RBS? The footage is there on Parliament live TV.

          This week Ruth Davidson asserted Scotland wants to put up a barrier to our neighbour whom we do 64% of trade with. What she failed to mention is that Scottish exports make their way to England to be shipped, so they count as UK exports. There are no accurate records of what are Scottish goods.

          Whiskey makes up almost 25% of UK exports, billions. Do you think they want they classified as Scottish?

          Just as a general suggestion, if you are interested in the economic case, Business for Scotland is a good place to browse.

          1. Valerie says:

            Also, a bit of historic browsing.


            To anyone who genuinely has an open mind, and wants facts, evidence – it’s there.

  10. Whatamess says:

    Brexiters and Scot Nats remind me of that joke at the start of La Heine, both are in so much denial to the reality of their circumstances.

    The guy trips and falls off the skyscraper, stunned and in denial he watches each floor go past and says…

    ‘So far so good, so far so good, so far so g….’

    1. Robert Graham says:

      was that supposed to be a joke a profound statement or just a load of pish ,yeah a load of pish this after due consideration is my conclusion .

      1. Whatamess says:

        In answer to your question, it’s not supposed to be a joke, it is a joke…google it quite an old one. Whether it is profound or not is up to the person who interprets it I suppose.

  11. Big Jock says:

    Kenny honestly words fail me. You are a self harmer who does not believe that your vote, or Scotland’s vote matters. It might be acceptable to you but not to me, and the majority of Scotland agrees we voted to remain in the EU.

    What kind of UK do you think we will have if Scotland is forced out of the EU! We will have a Scotland that refuses to co-operate with Westminster and a people who feel robbed, cheated, swindled , conned and stateless. In other words we will be held in a union we utterly despise. Thankfully you are not in charge and the rest of us don’t take pleasure in self harming.

    Good God man what kind of person enjoys being punished and ignored. The UK is finished you get it! Fisnished!

  12. Iain Miller says:

    Yes, yes I know all that but, as far as I’m concerned, the best way forward is still a federal UK within a federal EU …..

    That way we could save both Unions and avoid an awful lot of uncertainty, so let’s give our friends and relations south of the border one last chance before we quite literally go for broke?

    1. Whatamess says:

      I would remove the ‘for’ in ‘go for broke.’

    2. seastnan seastnan says:

      I recall Gordon Brown being wheeled out to offer us ‘federalism … as near as …’ during the purdah period of the last Scottish referendum.

      So what was the result of that all that empty talk? Empty promises and one of many that they made at the time – in between the threats.

      What about the Lib Dems and their talk of ‘federalism’? Just bits of mouldy paper.

      Westminster has had its chance over a federal solution. It is never going to happen as they have never had a sincere desire to deliver it.

  13. Whatamess says:

    Hi Michael or anyone?

    Seriously, see the questions posted…we are now about to enter some frankly terrifying waters. You and other strident nationalists (UK/ Eng, Brit and Scot – whatever) played a huge part in this process that began with the Scot indyref. We now have independence coming, you got what you wanted. So it seems fair, those of us who cautiously preferred the security of both the UK and the EU and based our decisions on rational thought and economic reality and aren’t huge fans of flags and identity politics, would be very interested in what answers you have. It is now your responsibility just as Brexiters are responsible for the mess in Brussels.

    Please, I’m deadly serious, 15 billion or 10% budget deficit at a time of global econ stagnation when the Scottish economic is shrinking due to the oil crash (4% in cash terms last year)? What are we going to do? No excuses, no whataboot, no but look at them in Westminster.

    You people who brought us here to this scenario need to start answering questions like what are we going to now do to plug the gap? How will we avoid spiraling debt and Greece, if we borrow at a much higher rate in a new currency to pay for public services? How will we borrow if we refuse or default on our share of the UK debt that we now have to service. How will we hang on to the NHS if we need a bailout from EU and they force privatisation on us? How will we avoid mass job losses in thee public sector when we are forced to cut back services by the EU? Where are we going to find the 1500 ish (at the moment) extra per person that fiscal transfers with the UK provide? How will we grow the economy when borders and tarriffs and quotas are about to be imposed on rUK by the EU and when the Uk will returns the favour when 60 70% of our trade and tens of thousands of jobs rely on free trade with rUK?

    I’m sure you nats had a plan? Yes? So what is it?

    How will we now pay for the pensions of millions? How will we

    1. Robert Graham says:

      ha ha so you want a cherry on top as well as a cast iron guarantee sorry Guarantees are only given out on a Friday if you think England is going to look after you have a look south its doing f/kn brilliant dont yah think feel free transport provided nightly heading south ,mind the gap .

      1. Whatamess says:

        No I just want not wake up after independence with that sick feeling I had when I heard of the Brexit vote.

    2. Pilrig says:

      The responsibility for the mess lies with the Brexiters, no one else.

  14. Big Jock says:

    Iain That would only be a temporary solution. Would lead to independence as there would be too many disagreements economically.

    1. Iain Miller says:

      Possibly, but at least we would have given them (and ourselves) the chance to get the Union back on a level footing, along the lines of the old Liberal Party’s policy. Speaking of which, what has happened to the Liberal Party? They used to champion the idea of devolution for the regions, but now they’re just a spent force in the guise of Willie Rennie ( a bit like Scottish Labour and Kezia Dugdale).

  15. john young says:

    I have tried my best to understand Scots like Kenny,tried to understand why they accept being treated as second class citizens being continually derided/denigrated and it fails me,I know that a lot of it is down to Scots being well to the fore in the forming of the Empire therefore there is a tenuous link there but to accept what is heaped on us is a mystery,most English know nothing of us and care less,I know I travelled throughout England and married an English girl who,s friends were aghast that she was moving to Scotland,asking her in the process if we had proper electricity I kid you not.

    1. Whatamess says:

      Seems the Spanish feel the same way as the English. In fact where is this public support from all our Euro chums? A bit of a clap from MEP’s but where is Merkel and Hollande and Junker? Why have they not publicly stated support for Scotland to remain in the EU?

      Is it because they don’t actually give a shit? Is it because they really really don’t want another country with Greece style public deficit that can no longer trade with rUK if it leaves UK but remains in the EU.

      Why? oh why? oh Why?

      1. seastnan seastnan says:

        The difference is only in the form of discussion as needing to be informal at this early stage proior to becoming more formal.

        Even the brexiteers are saying that they want a year or so of informal talks ahead of triggering the formal article 50.

      2. seastnan seastnan says:

        Why oh why is it that too many Scots are born with too-tight vagina’s between their legs instead of big dicks and full balls?

        Issues like this are best approached with an – as American’s say – a ‘can do!’ attitude. If all you look for are problems based on a negative outlook then you are not going to get that far.

        There are no problems, only solutions but they will be Scottish solutions to Scottish problems.

    2. Robert Graham says:

      agree i wonder what it would take for it to sink in how many boots in the nuts will it take how many broken promises ? the ones who have woken up are being dragged back by the idiots that fall for anything they are told by the BBC and government sponsored media , waken up for f/ks sake

  16. Whatamess says:

    So it seems Spain says piss off Scotland, your not getting in. Mmmmmm?? what now?

    1. seastnan seastnan says:

      Well it’d be Europe’s loss but that ain’t going to happen.

      If the other countries want us to stay in then we will be staying in because Scotland has so much to offer and we’d be coming in … no staying in with a can-do/want to do attitude.

      In any case Spain has not actually said they are hostile to Scotland remaining in the EU. There is an article recently published in The National on this very subject.

      Corporal Frazer is an English TV creation and he’d never ever be a future forward looking Scottish TV creation.

  17. Whatamess says:

    Wow, this is getting worse by the minute, no UK no EU no currency, no fiscal transfers or EU subsidies, structural adjustment funds, no single market…bloody hell…might sing a song to cheer myself up.

    When you gooooooo will you send back a letter from where ever it is you’ve emigrated to….

    ….Oil industry no more,
    Public services no more,
    fiscal transfer no more,
    EU subs no more,
    Sterling no more,
    Benefits no more,
    …..Free tuitioooooon feeees noooooo mooooree.

    1. Andimac says:

      You do a lot of commenting for somebody who’s got not much to say.

      1. Whatamess says:

        I’m just hanging around for someone to answer a few of the questions? Have you read them?

        I’m a Yes voter now.

        1. John Page says:

          Naw yur no…….yer a troll……….Corporatist Hell?

          1. Whatamess says:

            What are you talking about?

        2. Pilrig says:

          You’re a Yes voter..aye and Nigel really loves Europe as well.

          1. Whatamess says:

            Was a No voter, cos just like Brexit I thought it was economic folly, but now that Brexit has happened I have switched to Yes as I want to re join the EU. But the economics will be a disaster, but hey ho, I’ll be ok.

  18. The Clumpany says:

    That really is Grade A, utopian tosh! A bit of aggrieved grandstanding on the part of the Scottish Government and you go all dewy-eyed. Scotland voted to stay in the UK. The EU referendum was conducted on a UK-wide basis. It may pain you to have to grasp this fact, but it really is very very simple indeed.

    The way for Scotland to look out for the interests of all its citizens is to get involved in the negotiations which the Government (the actual government, accountable to the sovereign Parliament of the U.K.) are going to hold with the EU (and yes, I agree they need to get their act together). It is NOT to go running for an exit door which Scotland has absolutely no power to pass through. And it is NOT to try and pretend Scotland has a voice on the European stage, when all it has is the hope of receiving some courtesies from senior European figures who wish to be polite. Senior European figures who are very clear indeed that they will not negotiate with – or give promises to – a region of a member state.

    The EU might let Scotland in if it was independent. But that isn’t going to happen for a very long time.

    Ask yourself these questions:

    Will the Government (the actual Government) back another independence referendum given a legal, decisive, and ‘once in a generation’ poll was held in 2014?

    Would the courts overturn any attempt to hold a referendum on independence (or indeed a non-binding poll) if there has not been the necessary amendment to the Scotland Act 1998?

    Can you be certain that Spain (no matter who is its PM) would not simply block a newly-independent Scotland from the EU on the basis that it does not want to create a precedent that Catalonia might wish to follow? [A similar question could be asked in relation to Belgium].

    What currency would an independent Scotland use?

    If it’s the Pound, do you want your monetary policy set by the Bank of England in perpetuity?

    If it’s the Euro, are you happy to sign up to everything that goes with that?

    What oil revenues will there be? Will an independent Scotland be able to maintain its current (or better) level of services pursuant to a *realistic* assessment of likely oil prices going forward? Especially, given the deficit and debt levels it would inherit.

    What sort of credit rating would an independent Scotland have given all of the above? It will most certainly need to borrow quite a lot of money.

    Can an independent Scotland guarantee that pensions and other transfer payments to which folk are entitled WILL be paid in full?

    I voted Remain and am probably as disappointed at you at the outcome of the referendum, but please spare us the laughable pie-in-the-sky emoting when there are now all sorts of hard-headed issues to resolve for the benefit of all our fellow citizens of the United Kingdom.



    1. Andimac says:

      “Kenny Green”, “Whatamess” and now yourself – there can’t be many of your fellows under the bridges at present.

      1. Whatamess says:

        So why don’t you answer what the guy just said. Are you denying the Spanish have just told us to bugger off? Are you denying there will be no more UK govt support for the oil industry? Do you think Engerland of the Boris’ and Gove’s are going to give us favourable terms on the currency? Can you guarantee that borrowing in a new currency that has no back up or history in an already indebted country will be tripple A or will it interest be extortionate? And what about pensions, they are the single biggest cost in the UK budget, and will be proportionately bigger in an indy Scotland given the shrinking population and the aging, can you guarantee that we can get the tens of thousands of migrants into Scotland needed for the economy outside or even inside the EU? Will we have two tier systems like in the UAE, with temporary migrant workers… There’s a lot to worry about and so far only people dismissing it all.

        I’m cacking my breichs.

        1. Andimac says:

          Fair enough, Whatamess – I stand corrected, We’re all doomed: we’re too wee, too poor and too stupid to be independent. We’d better just stay in the U.K. After all, Bojo, Farage, Gove and cohorts have told us we’ll have no problems trading with the E.U. and the rest of the world – there’ll be no tariffs, no freedom of movement, no European unelected bureaucrats robbing us of out sovereignty, etc., etc., ad nauseam. We must, therefore, stay with the U.K. as it soars to new heights of prosperity, social inclusion and full employment – look up “irony” in the dictionary, by the way. You don’t like the SNP – fine, nobody’s asking you to: you go and vote for whoever you think’ll do a better job. You don’t think they, the SNP, have any answers – fine, go and find somebody that does: you might be a long time searching, mind you. You and other naysayers on here want itemised, armour-plated assurances about every detail before we stand on our own feet. Aye, ye’re right aboot keechin’ yer breeks: that’s aye “what a mess!”

          1. Whatamess says:

            Eeerrrrmmm it actually seems we are too poor at least… think we might need more than a few slogans.

            And it’s not up to Boris, Gove, it’s up to the EU to set the trade conditions and many may see a good opportunity to undercut certain UK exports and mop up the companies that will leave.

            Scotland would either have to abide by the EU maj meaning potentially putting up tarrifs on some UK imports and I’m pretty sure the UK would return the favour – and the UK is approx 40% more than EU for Scottish trade. And if we are out of the EU and out of the UK? then no one is going to invest here.

          2. Whatamess says:

            EFTA of course and Switzerland do it, but they are essentially a tax haven and an offshore bank.

          3. Whatamess says:

            But but but…you lot kept banging on about how much we were loved and that the EU would welcome us with open arms and that oil was just a bonus and that we would become the Saudi of renewables and that independence would end austerity…why the change of heart?

    2. Hi Clumpany,

      thanks for the comment. Here’s an attempt at some replies .

      Will the Government (the actual Government) back another independence referendum given a legal, decisive, and ‘once in a generation’ poll was held in 2014?


      Would the courts overturn any attempt to hold a referendum on independence (or indeed a non-binding poll) if there has not been the necessary amendment to the Scotland Act 1998?


      Can you be certain that Spain (no matter who is its PM) would not simply block a newly-independent Scotland from the EU on the basis that it does not want to create a precedent that Catalonia might wish to follow? [A similar question could be asked in relation to Belgium].


      What currency would an independent Scotland use?


      If it’s the Pound, do you want your monetary policy set by the Bank of England in perpetuity?


      If it’s the Euro, are you happy to sign up to everything that goes with that?


      What oil revenues will there be? Will an independent Scotland be able to maintain its current (or better) level of services pursuant to a *realistic* assessment of likely oil prices going forward? Especially, given the deficit and debt levels it would inherit.


      What sort of credit rating would an independent Scotland have given all of the above? It will most certainly need to borrow quite a lot of money.


      Can an independent Scotland guarantee that pensions and other transfer payments to which folk are entitled WILL be paid in full?

      WHY NOT?

      1. Whatamess says:

        You see this is what annoys me. This is not balance, this is spin. A lie by omission is still a lie.


        The political situation in Spain regarding the constitution and state unity/ separatist tensions has not changed (irrespective of left or right) since Isabella got the hots for Ferdinand in the 15th century and Charlton Heston booted the Moors out. And WTF does eternity mean? This isn’t a Bangles song! Be more specific with people – do you expect the Spanish situation to change in the next 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 years (most would bet on the 100 at the least given they’ve been at it for the past 500 years. Oh and then there’s all the other countries, Italy with the Veneto, Netherlands with Friseland, Belgium, Germany, Poland with Silesia, France and Corsica…in fact I don’t think there is a country in the EU that doesn’t have a separatist movement.


        Aye, and they all think it will be a disaster. Every George Soros from Shanghai to New York will be lining up to short sell until collapse…and again be straight with people. Tell them what that will mean for assets, house prices, inflation and rising food prices (I thought you didn’t like food banks?), how we will manage the deficit with increased borrowing costs (far far greater than those by the downgraded UK AAA) without getting to the point of Greece where interest payments are just too big everything, all public services have to be cut… Scotland’s debt will already be 90% (same as the UK) which is getting up there. Greece is an gob smacking 175%, Portugal 129 % but we have a much larger deficit to manage and would soon be over the 100% mark when it gets silly.

        Also, how will you prevent massive capital flight while setting the currency up? Will you do like Slovakia and borrow load of foreign currency, then put capital controls in place – not being allowed to exchange currency and take it out of the country. How will that effect people who want to go abroad? or tourists in Scotland? And who is then going to invest. If you stop money going out, it stops coming in also. Not to mention trade with the rUK.


        Ideal? It’s simply doesn’t make any sense if the objective is to join the EU as we would have no control over monetary policy and thus fiscal policy (to prevent econ divergence – google it). so how do we meet the criteria?? And more over, what’s the bloody point of Independence if we still have to do what London tells us. Plus the precedent is that states in currency unions with vastly differing sizes of econ without fiscal unity/ criteria end up collapsing. Slovakia and the Czech rep CU lasted a grand total of 30 days. Google it.

        And Salmond has been wrong about pretty much everything and will say anything. 1) Oil at 100 USD blah blah…2) EU will let us in with open arms blah blah….3) The UK are bluffing on CU blah blah….He’s like Boris Johnson.


        Any actual evidence for this? Or is it just prejudice? The UK isn’t perfect, but it has proven itself to be one of the most adaptable states in history and there is nothing to suggest it can’t adapt and change also. I agree that the EU can and will change also though.


        Fine, can we have details of this ‘Alternative models’ with actual forecasts and projections rather than vague waffle.

        ‘Can an independent Scotland guarantee that pensions and other transfer payments to which folk are entitled WILL be paid in full?

        WHY NOT?’

        Eeeeeeerrrrrmmm???? Maths basically. 10% budget deficit is WHY NOT. That means a third of the current budget alone is being shredded. Pensions are the biggest expense of any modern democratic welfare state… FFS, you don’t give a damn about people at all, like all ideologues, everything is expendable for your dream.

        WHY NOT is NOT AN ANSWER!!!!!! Please

        1. The strength of your enthusiasm for independence shines through with every comment.

          1. Whatamess says:

            And your casual contempt for people’s actual lives is a clear as the Highland Spring water.

            And I will still vote for independence, or not stand in others way by abstaining, if that is what people genuinely want. But it would be remiss of me not to point out the truth when they are being lied too, just like Johnson and Gove lied to the English working class, just like Trump is misleading the US working class, just like Marine Le Pen and Farage and all the others.

            All I ask is you tell the truth…be honest about the INDEPENDENT calculations (Eurostat + IFS + USfed) about the 10% budget def and what 15 billion out of a budget means in real life terms.

            You can do that can’t you. Then if people still vote for indy, if they are prepared to pay the price then fair enough. Go for it.

      2. Whatamess says:

        ????? UK can’t change but the fact that Austria came within a breath of electing and actual fascist government??? Oh but that’s safe isn’t it. European demagogues hanging around on the fringes make Farage look like Ghandi.

  19. Broadbield says:

    @Whatamess & @ Clumpany – too many false dichotomies. Nobody I’ve read on the Indy forums is talking about a “socialist utopia” – a simplistic slur. Yes, we need a plan and answers to many questions and these will come in due course. I believe CommonWeal have made a start to a programme. But you also have to do some of the spadework yourself by reading more widely than you seem to have, for example, understanding the place of government borrowing to invest, in contrast to Brown who preferred to mortgage our future to private interests through PFI.

    1. Whatamess says:

      Ok fair enough, I’m happy to be wrong and would love someone to tell me what there is to be optimistic about. But do you actually understand what a 10% deficit means? I not being a dick, I’m being honest. It’s kind of terrifying. I want to remain in the EU, on principle, but I also don’t want thousands of job losses and a decade of crippling austerity in Scotland. What we have now is bad enough, add 15 billion on to it – that’ll be about a quarter of current public spending – the cuts will be similar if not worse than Greece and who knows when or if we will recover.

      But if someone has a plan, if they know something I don’t or can see an angle I can’t then by all means share it.

    2. Whatamess says:

      Commonweal? I’ve read it their stuff on the economy and it’s fankly a bit of a joke. Well meaning but utterly impractical and utterly lacking in any understanding of our actual situation. It’s all vague stuff like building a few ferries (that would have to be subsidised anyway and besides them/ RISE/ Greens and the other left radicals will never get elected, nor be anything more than a side show in and independent Scotland so utterly irrelevant really, take a look at what happened in the last elections. With the cuts to come I suspect many will switch to the right, conservatives and blame the left for bringing this down on them.

      As for the SNP, they brought us here so I think they need to address publicly the situation. Not for me but for the many in the NE who will probably be out of work in a year or two, or the public sector workers or to the Scotstoun and Rosyth ship builder and so on who are guranteed to lose their jobs because of MOD contracts. They will probably have to massively scale back the army, airforce and navy (although many may choose to stay in UK forces for job security) so Leuchars and Lossiemouth are they going to be kept open?

      And I agree PFI was rubbish, but that’s history. Now is now.

      1. Whatamess you seem to be arguing that military bases should just be kept open as a source of job security rather than for any strategic, geopolitical or moral reasons.

        Is that correct?

        That’s essentially Jackie Baillie’s argument over Trident 2 as a sort of nuclear job creation scheme.

        It would seem to be a massive failure of imagination and one that leads inevitably to the sort of illegal wars we’ve been dragged into in recent years.

        Can you clarify if that’s what you mean?

        1. Whatamess says:

          My point is that people’s jobs are important and that there is a big, actually quite small, dictator in Russia who is busy putting the shits up the Finns, Swedes, Norwegians and Baltics and we’re next.

          So yes it is our moral duty to stand by our Northern European neighbours and fellow liberal democracies and pay our way and play our part in maintaining collective security. The Swedes and Finns have upped their game to the highest level since the 1980’s. They don’t trust Putin so why should we?

          I think it may be you who lacks imagination if you think that the world is a lovely cuddly place, when nationalism is as rife as it was in the 30’s, when Russia are behaving like Hilter in the 30s, when China is behaving like 1930’s Japan and Vietnam, the Phillipines and Japan are at their throats. And then there’s an isolationist America, a full scale regional war in the middle east and all the socialist states of South America on the verge of collapse and social breakdown.

          But hey, Iraq blah blah blah… lets cut defense spending, then we can be kicked out of NATO along with the EU, UK and everything else. Freeeeeedum.

          1. “We’re next”.

            Please give evidence that Russia are about to invade and take our foodbanks.

            I think you’ll find its the British state that’s been cutting defence spending.

            Anyway I look forward to announcements next week that will no doubt strengthen your arguments in favour of continuity with British foreign policy.

          2. seastnan seastnan says:

            If I recall correctly it was Westminster and, by implication, that wanted to kick us out of NATO for even daring to think that we could hold a referendum on independence.

            It would have been Darling’s and your panicking negativism and just sheer vindictive nastiness that would have seen us out of NATO. The SNP, by contrast, were positive and came at the problem with a … wait-for-it … problem-solving approach. My goodness, who’d have thought? A problem that can be solved by cool unfearing and rational thinking … It cannot have been someone from Westminster.

            However, in the real world I rather suspect that somebody in the NATO High Command would have noticed that enormous gap opening up between Iceland-Faroes–Norway.

            I am in no doubt that we would handle our own coastal and wider sea defences far better than the Hoorey Henry’s and Henrietta’s at Westminster who you might recall deliberately destroyed the maritime aircraft just so Scotland would not get them and who can only ever muster a shitty little Royal Navy destroyer out of Portsmouth whenever the Russians pay a surprise visit to the Moray Firth.

            Putin might be pissing himself laughing – you’ll know a lot about pissing yourself I expect whatamess – but it won’t ever be because of anything this or a future Scottish government does.

        2. Whatamess says:

          Bleating on about Iraq (however justified) is NOT A PLAN! So what is the actual defense plan for Scotland? What % of spending will it take??? what relationship with UK? Will we keep 2% and remain in NATO?

          Any actual answers welcome.

          1. Whatamess says:

            That’s not an answer. You public campaign independence, I don’t. So YOU please provide an answer to Scotland’s defence policy.














            I could go one. Try NYTimes, Foreign Policy, other serious political/ economic journals, leave Scotland once in a while and learn a few things before being so certain.

            This is 6 year politics/ International relations and playground economics.

            It would be hilarious if it wasn’t so serious.

  20. Archie Hamilton says:

    Whatamess, you really should think about changing your monniker to “Doom Monger”.
    Take your tablets and retire into a dark room for a few hours, it’ll all be much easier to cope with in the morning.

    1. Whatamess says:

      I would be a tad concerned if I was a vocal Yes person because many people are going to be very very very angry when they realise they were lied to and sold the ‘hope over fear’ message and it turns out that leaving the UK was a disaster when they were told it would be a new dawn of prosperity. I mean take this site, still banging on about austerity in the UK yet were facing another 15 billion on top of that? Unless what I’ve read is bollocks?? IS it just scaremongering? I don’t know so if (and I repeat if – I’m not a clairvoyant and accept and hope to be wrong) and we don’t get into the EU immediately or ever if Spain does block us in the long term which seems likely, and we leave the UK, then WTF. People are really really going to suffer and angry people will look to blame. Maybe I am wrong? but from where I’m sitting, as the Starks say ‘Winter is coming’.

      1. Pilrig says:

        Winter is coming, brought to you by the Brexiters and their useful idiot – Dave Cameron.

        1. Whatamess says:

          I agree, but also by the SNP and Yessers now it seems.

  21. Whatamess says:

    Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear…

    Seems all Germany and France given us the finger and told us to get tae also…what was all that about automatic entrance Salmond, Harvie and other Yessers were on about…seems Scotland is about to follow our footy team in not qualifying for the Euros for decades. mmmmmm?? Any plans Yessers?

    1. Andimac says:

      Earlier (4 hrs ago) you posted, “I’m a Yes voter now.” As we say where I come from, “Aye, that’ll be right!” You don’t really want answers on here to all the questions you’ve posted – you’re doing this for a laugh. Well, you’re getting plenty – we’re laughing at you. No doubt you’ll respond with some comment that we’ll all be laughing on the other side of our faces soon (a Faragism?) But frankly I’m bored reading the keech that ye’ve managed tae spare frae the rest that’s in yir breeks. Away an’ jine the Tories or Labour – they really seem tae enjoy a good stairheid rammy – ye’ll fit in jist fine for they’re a’ stupit tae. Ta ta!

      1. Whatamess says:

        4 hours earlier, Spain, France and Germany hadn’t told us to fuck off. I thought Sturgeon was a great diplomat and would keep us in. Genuinely. But I will still vote for Scotland to leave the UK to reapply. The huge cuts won’t really directly affect me so…

  22. Strategist says:

    What are the three flags?

  23. c rober says:

    I see Hollande is now on a different tune , our once great ally France , a supposed socialist country formed for its dislike of monarchy to free the the oppressed. But it was Ok for America to go indy with their backing though.

    Of the many French people I spoke to in the last week , I travel there a lot you see , nearly every single complaint about France centres on the same ones that have ironically led to the UK wishing to leave the EU. Immigration , lack of housing and investment into services etc. AND there is a rising interest into a EU ref as a result , so perhaps this is more about a short sharp shock on their own.

    But the educated French working poor also know this is just a smoke screen of wealth preservation , whom unlike the wealthy avoid french reverse austerity taxes by commuting From England , Belguim , North Spain , where I also spend some time.

    I also see Spain , backed by the EU with its veto powers , wishes to prevent Scotland any integration due to the Catalan problem rising further.

    Much as I had warned already , Spain will throw its toys out threatening to leave the EU , and France too not wishing and affluent Catalan so close to its borders that would impede its own wealth , even more so If Catalan then decides to avoid any EU membership after their treatment from the EU – regarding backing all democratic referendums of independence.

    So therefore the other big power in the EU , Germany , whom has so much money in the pot in Spain , France and of course Greek debt , will also object. Thus this also is a biased union , so perhaps the brexiteers were not so much aff the mark , historical monetary pun intended.

    As much as I am VERY pro EU , I NOW can and do see the argument of both remain and brexit , my income depends on it more than most Scots you see , but as long as the EU prevents Spain from allowing Catalan to become independent , without Spain choosing it for them as in the Scottish results vs those in England with a Spanish EU ref , then why even bother to attempt joining in the first place? That is unless we condition our entry to make any state unable to prevent an indy ref of their own and adding to the democratic pot.

    I am at a crossroads now IF the whole EU question would be better than the UK union , which is unusual for me , if you have ever taken the time to read my posts , you may have noticed I do decide less on heart and more on quantifiable measurements in politics.

    SO I do sometimes wonder if this is the beginning of the big unraveling of the EU ball of string.

  24. Fixit says:

    Scotland is intrinsic to the UK which in turn is embedded in the EU. After decades of trying to leave the UK, we suddenly find England expecting to pull the UK out of the EU. This has led to pressure for Scotland to leave the UK. This is a very perverse solution and only seems sensible because we’ve been pushing at the independence door.
    England and Wales voted to leave the EU. This is most simply achieved if they leave the UK. No article 50 and no time pressure. rUK then remains in the EU. The twist is that rUK = Scotland, Northern Ireland & Gibraltar. rUK can’t be held accountable for other countries so no renegotiation. Where’s the catch?

    1. Crubag says:

      These aren’t states (yet) so don’t qualify for membership. We need to do the institution building first – central bank, currency, statistical office.

  25. Fixit says:

    UK is a state so rUK remains a state. The trick will be to convince the leavers to leave. If England/Wales leave, we keep the pound, the central bank (albeit one based abroad and depleted of settlement revenue) and the statistical office. Once Scotland leaves, I can’t see any option but renegotiation.

  26. Alf Baird says:

    Its very clear already that the larger EU states in particular will make EU membership or even access to the Single Market ‘difficult’ for Scotland irrespective whether we are in or out the UK. This means the first priority is always going to be to achieve independence and then make our own decisions on membership or not of any supra-national organisation. Otherwise we are always going to be merely a powerless little ‘sub-state’ farting in the wind, as we are today.

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