Thursday, 11 September 2014

Five Thoughts about this Referendum Thingie

It’s everywhere: the Guardian alone has had 1,707 pages of coverage this week, more than five times the actual thickness of the paper (or so it seems).   So don’t imagine you can come here to escape it! 

I’m not entitled to vote, obviously, which gives me the right to say whatever I damn well please about it.  So, just five random thoughts:

  1. Why aren’t I entitled to vote?  In my admittedly limited experience, divorces usually allow both parties to have a say.
  2. The actual question – ‘Should Scotland be an independent country?’ – seems to mean ‘Just say Yes or No to something or other, we’ll work out what afterwards.’
  3. Here’s an idea for Gideon.  Flog off NatWest; implement the Williams and Glyn English branch hive-off; then sell what’s left of RBS to Scotland to use as its new central bank.  They already have the money-printing presses.
  4. What will the residue be called?  ‘Rest of the U.K.’ doesn’t really catch you, does it?  I suggest ‘FormerlyUnited Kingdom’ or ‘DeUnited Kingdom’.  Do the acronyms and say it quickly …
  5. What about the weather forecast, eh?  What about the weather forecast?  The BBC doesn’t do the Republic of Ireland; will they continue to do Scotland?  And will the SBC do England?   This is important!


  1. If Scottish "independence" arrives, what will be the nationality of those with many generations of Scottish ancestry who reside elsewhere?
    What will be the criteria for obtaining a Scottish passport?
    FUK or DUK may well be satisfactory acronyms for the rest of the UK; no doubt ScotlandlessUK could also be considered? Or ProvinciallyLiberatedUK?

    1. Richard all these questions and many many more are answered in the Scottish Government's weighty tome entitled "Scotland's Future: Your Guide to an Independent Scotland".

  2. Firstly let me say that I am not making a case for Scottish Independence even though I have lived here for the majority of my years.

    There are, in fact, four parties involved: Scotland being but one. Scotland is a nation without sovereignty. The UK is a sovereign state without nationhood. No Scot calls himself British even if he is a rabid supporter of the Union. The Welsh call themselves Welsh. The majority of the English refer to themselves as British whether they support UKIP or the Labour Party (It does still exist south of the border doesn't it?). I understand that Northern Ireland is rather divided on that issue. Therein lies the difference. Scots feel (as did when I was a Northern English resident) that the High Tories of the South control the UK. Many Scots are afraid that UKIP will force the government to the right and may even jeopardise the future of the UK in Europe. Pre-1707 history and the Auld Alliance are almost yesterday for many Scots and the country's ties with Europe run deep.

    The UK Government made the offer of a referendum on Independence in the clear belief that the overwhelming majority of Scots were in favour of the Union. If Scotland does vote for independence then I very much regret that the blame will lie to a large extent with the arrogance of the Westminster Government,