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I don't know one single reason why Scotland would want to quit the UK

(366 Posts)
ClementineKelandra Wed 14-Nov-12 11:50:50

I'm genuinely interested in the reasons why Scotland want to break away from the UK. I'm sure there must be many good ones but I jyst can't see any atm.

prettybird Wed 14-Nov-12 13:29:27

One example would be during the referendum about whether we wanted devolution, we were also asked if we wanted tax varying powers (of up to 3 per cent, iirc). Now everyone knew that if it were implemented, it would be to increase tax, not to reduce it - yet we still voted for it.

I remember Marti Pellow being interviewed on Radio 2 and making the point that he didn't mind paying more tax if it could help people like his brother, who needed support.

There was a recent survey on tax and apparently even amongst higher rate tax payers, there was a consensus that if more taxation was required in order to retain services, then that was OK. (Can't find a link for more detail, sorry)

Groovee Wed 14-Nov-12 13:29:58

Actually it's Mr Salmond who wants Scotland to breakaway. He forgets that we'll loose the purse strings off Westminster if he gets his way.

Aboutlastnight Wed 14-Nov-12 13:31:12

In culture I find strong principles of fairness and equality up here, there is still a strong working class culture, trades union membership, still a strong folk memory of hard times and poverty.

I grew up in the south east of England and I would say that the culture is more individualist, less communal and more about what you can achieve yourself rather than as a society.

But I'm probably wrong, no doubt someone Scottish will come along and tell me I am completely wrong as there is also a strong culture of debate and a dislike of Engludh people talking about Scottidh things smile

LessMissAbs Wed 14-Nov-12 13:31:58

Mrs Keith Richards
Scotland is not a right wing nation

Thats the sort of viewpoint that makes me want to leave Scotland if it becomes independent. Its so intolerant, and so dictatorial. I'm afraid I don't fall for the "right wing is bad, left wing is good (as long as we get to hob nob with every American billionaire that courts us and throw out our principles when it suits us)" rhetoric.

A balanced country represents all interests. Scotland was traditionally right wing and rather rural and presbyterian until very recent years. Personally I rather like coalition governments.

Our vote counts for nothing on a national level

I suppose holding sway over the Government that ruled the entire UK despite England voting a different way for the past 10 years has passed you by?

If Scotland was a truly socialist left wing country, we would have (a) excellent public transport (instead of just pretending we do) and (b) robust planning laws which wouldn't permit our First Minister to personally throw away the rules which apply to everyone else so he can follow his personal obsession with celebrity and money.

Oh, and he'd also do something about the cybernats...

prettybird Wed 14-Nov-12 13:33:25

(Denmark initially ruled Norway - but laterally it was Sweden and Norway had to argue the case for "separation" from Sweden - which I felt was more pertinent to the current discussion)

Furoshika Wed 14-Nov-12 13:36:10

(lol prettybird so it was, apologies)

LessMissAbs Wed 14-Nov-12 13:40:20

I also find the debate on "Scottish identity and culture" essentially missing and partially uninformed.

It seems to consist of statements that Scotland or anything Scottish is wonderful and superior, horror and bitter criticism of anyone who disagrees, and constant propoganda by way of tv programmes along the theme of "10 Greatest Scots Explorers", "10 Greatest Scots Musicians" etc, constantly.

Things I can't help but observing as a Scot having lived in various countries and planning my escape if Independence does happen:

- too much obsession with money, while all the time pretending to be socialist.

- old fashioned sexism towards women

- an education system which tends to produce pupils who are afraid to speak in public, or even in university tutorials

- a very poor localised transport infracstructure, whilst having autonomy over the subject for a long time, allied with failure to do anything about it

- a cynical working culture - too many not very many clever people able to make a lot of money by being awarded overpaid work by their cronies, while the clever, qualified people do the poorly paid jobs

- despite years of Socialists politics, the total failure to eradicate poverty

- a lack of tolerance towards any constructive criticism

- with the trades union movement, the attitudes, and so on, the country it most reminds me of is the former East Germany.

Aboutlastnight Wed 14-Nov-12 13:42:28

I just can't see a way forward for Scotland under Labour with the Tories in power in Westminster.

Furoshika Wed 14-Nov-12 13:42:31

I think lots of people share the worries about Salmond and how he will handle big business. Supporters of independence too.

prettybird Wed 14-Nov-12 13:42:50

I remember years ago being on course for managers in the NHS (I lived in England at the time, so it was the English NHS). A guy from the Kings Fund talked to us about the history and values of the NHS: he said that WW2 had been a driving force behind the desier to set up the welfare state and the NHS as the "we're in it together" of the war had created a stronger sense of society and a need to care for others. He said that ever since then there had been a move back towards the "individual" and looking after yourself with the exception of Scotland - and he was most emphatic about that.

The interesting thing was, looking around the table, every single one of the attendees (who had all joined the NHS on a fast track managerial scheme from industry) were either Scottish or had chosen to go to university in Scotland - even though they now lived and worked in England.

mrskeithrichards Wed 14-Nov-12 13:43:51

Holding the sway?

That's not measurable! You could say Tesco staff hold the sway or quilters. Stupid statement.

The fact being Scotland's representation is completely over shadowed by the rest of the UK's voting. The current Tory situation being a good example.

PoppyAmex Wed 14-Nov-12 13:46:20

Actually I think the debate here is not whether Scottish culture is superior or not.

It's also not about Scotland's perceived/very real shortcomings, but about being allowed a National identity.

I'm sure my family isn't the smartest or the wealthiest in the world but hey it's MY family.

To use Scotland's flaws as a deterrent for independence is just silly - why should there have to be "merit" behind the desire to be oneself?

mrskeithrichards Wed 14-Nov-12 13:47:36

I agree it's not about feeling superior, just different!

Aboutlastnight Wed 14-Nov-12 13:51:36

LessMiss - I do agree with the cronyism here and the sexism - but this is also evident in many large city councils in England.

Also the contradiction between a socialist ethos, trades union membership etc and a country which allows the bin men to choose to work shifts on a lucrative Sunday while female dominated carer/home help sectors also do hard physical work, have an emotional cost in caring for vulnerable people and yet are paid less - Scotland is not perfect but independence is an opportunity for re evaluation of what kind of country it is, and what it would like to be.

LessMissAbs Wed 14-Nov-12 13:52:36

I must apologise then, because I see the person, not the Nation State. I believe in people before nationalism, and fervent nationalism makes me feel a little bit sick. Its too close to racism for me, not in the traditional sense, because the SNP will take on allcomeers who pledge them money, but in the "you;re not part of our gang therefore you count for less/your views are less worthy/you won't get the priveleges party membership confers" sense.

btw MrsKeithRichards I know a number of Scottish farmers, who do actual hard, dirty physical labour on a day to day basis, who are strongly right wing and conservative. Denying the existence of an important part of the political spectrum because its more fashionable in certain circles to be left wing scares me. Its not the makings of a tolerant society.

Furoshika Wed 14-Nov-12 13:54:42

Actually it is a thought: if we vote for independence, will there be a renewed vigour for the execrable heritage industry? Will we all start wearing tartan by choice? Will Carol still be allowed to do the Beechgrove Gairden?

mrskeithrichards Wed 14-Nov-12 13:55:04

Sorry did I say there was no one in Scotland with right wing leanings?

LessMissAbs Wed 14-Nov-12 13:56:15


"a country which allows the bin men to choose to work shifts on a lucrative Sunday while female dominated carer/home help sectors also do hard physical work, have an emotional cost in caring for vulnerable people and yet are paid less "

Ah, you've noticed that too, have you? And of course the rubbish doesn't get collected if it snows or rains, so they get paid triple time over Christmas?

Its just that the signs for an independent country are not good. I get the feeling all the bad things, which are currently not known that well, will simply be covered up all the more, and everyone will go about pretending its wonderful, while living with third world facilities. And anyone who dares to speak out is "unpatriotic" (and probably won't get a job if they don't tow the party line).

sleepyhead Wed 14-Nov-12 13:57:48

Well, you could argue that in an independent Scotland, those with a more conservative/right wing leaning could have a party to represent their views and might not be stuck with a single Tory MP.

I don't think the Conservative Party in the UK really reflects the views of the more right wing Scottish people I know either tbh.

PoppyAmex Wed 14-Nov-12 13:58:31

Oh this makes me so cross!

What does Scotland's "cynical workforce" or "pseudo socialism" have to do with the right to independence?

Why should we have to defend Scottish culture?! WTF?

Do you go around demanding England or Morocco justify why they "deserve" to be a country?

sleepyhead Wed 14-Nov-12 14:00:33

What party line MissAbs? What makes you think that an independent Scotland would have an SNP government (in the medium to long term anyway)?

Who are you scared of? Noone knows what the political landscape would be in an independent Scotland. There's no reason that it should mirror the current one. It would be very freeing actually to be able to vote without considering the rest of the UK. I for one might vote differently.

Aboutlastnight Wed 14-Nov-12 14:02:07

Oh the culture thing is seperate to the independence debate - I am sure I could pick many aspects of the culture of the south east and conclude that indeed England is not capable of being independent of Scotland grin

AitchTwoOhOneTwo Wed 14-Nov-12 14:04:37

i do think that the naysayers on independence all sound a bit bonkers. that's a problem for me, increasingly.

having said that, there was some professor in the papers a week or so ago warning that the edinburgh agreement made it so that we would only get to discuss the financials of secession (sharing debt etc) AFTER a yes vote. does anyone know if that's true? makes a yes vote impossible, i'd have thought.

ScarlettCrossbones Wed 14-Nov-12 14:05:34

Exactly, PoppyAmex. I have a feeling things would be a little different for the naysayers if the UK parliament had been based in Aberdeen for the last 200 years.

LessMissAbs Wed 14-Nov-12 14:06:44

Its just that the precedents the SNP are setting in the way they behave are not good, and I worry they are indicative of the way in which an independent Scotland would be run, as these matters are already under auotonomous control.

e.g. everyone has to submit to the ridiculously stringent, strict rules of the planning system. Unless you are an American billionaire with direct links with Alex Salmond. The fact that compulsary purchase in a private development was even seriously discussed in political circles fills me with fear.

Alex Salmond's publicity seeking with Lottery winners, simply because they give him party a million pound donation. This is presented as a "coo" for the SNP, even though he never had any interest in meeting them when they were "ordinary" working people.

The failure to crack down on, and indeed positive encouragement of, awarding big public sector contracts to cronies, permitting of poor work practices in relation to public services, the activities of "cybernats", the failure to identify and reward the intelligent academic and business minded people in the country (unless they are cronies), etc..

The switching from the "we must model ourselves on Ireland" to "we must model ourselves on Norway" when it suits. Bloody Norway is not somewhere I'd want to live, downtown Trondheim is full of people trudging about in the rain because the public transport is totally inefficient and they have road charging, and everyone drives hundreds of miles to shop in Sweden anyway! Its like something out of the Russian paper Pravda!

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