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Wings Over Scotland

A second weird thing

Posted on February 12, 2014 by

We dropped our contact at Ladbrokes an innocent line last night enquiring why we could no longer find the bet they were offering just a fortnight ago with odds of 50/1 on an independent Scotland NOT using Sterling. Hey, it was worth a try.

They emailed back saying that the bet had been suspended due to the BBC/Guardian news story, but later this morning it resurfaced with new odds.


Click to enlarge if you can’t make it out. That’s curious, isn’t it?

There’s no catch. Bets are void if there’s a No vote. But the bookie has still installed Sterling as a hot odds-on favourite to be an independent Scotland’s money in 2017, with a new Scottish currency well out at 3/1 and the Euro a frankly rather stingy 10/1, given that it’s basically impossible.

And you’d think that with every potential 2015 UK Chancellor apparently set to say that a currency union is unequivocally out of the question, Sterling would be the rank outsider. Unless, that is, for some reason Ladbrokes – which like all bookmakers is somewhat reluctant to give away cash – doesn’t believe them.

For perspective, we checked the firm’s football markets. You’ll actually make more money betting on Premiership leaders Chelsea to win at home against Everton next weekend (8/15) than you will betting on an independent Scotland using the pound. Unbeaten SPFL champs Celtic are at only slightly longer odds (1/4) to overcome St Johnstone at Parkhead this coming Sunday than Scotland is to keep Sterling.

Those are – when taken in the context of what Osborne, Balls and Alexander are supposedly about to say – simply extraordinary odds. People whose job is putting their money where their mouth is have just come right out and said the statements will be empty, meaningless political posturing.

Are they right? Who knows. But we’ll be keeping an eye on the numbers tomorrow.

[EDIT 17.41: Danny Alexander’s just been on the radio denying all knowledge of the story. Looks like Ladbrokes have people on the inside. We’ll be watching even more closely from now on.]

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    223 to “A second weird thing”

    1. HighlandMart says:

      Apparently the 10 Year gilt yield rose today as well. Well calmed Gideon.

    2. Wayne says:

      This is interesting Stu, thanks for posting. However, this market has nothing to do with a currency union per se, as YES are committed to using the pound no matter what and can do so without a currency union as Wings has made clear for a long time. This is the reality, our currency will be the pound formal union or not.

      I’d say the 1/3 might look positively generous. Not of course as good on the odds on a yes vote!

    3. Adrian B says:

      Another really weird thing is that the Tories have persuaded Ed Balls on board with this. We have all seen on twitter and other places online Labour No votes backing the Tories to the hilt. I wonder what message the undecided voters are getting?

    4. Adrian B says:

      * should read – Labour No voters

    5. Misteralz says:

      I’m tempted to sign up to stick £50 on the over 55% yes result – especially if I can take £50 of their money to bet on it as well. That’d be £800 in my wallet come September the 19th…

    6. Atypical_Scot says:

      Taking cash from people is the name of the game. If Ladbrokes are still thinking it’s a no, surely sub-bets odds are simply teasers?

    7. Bill McLean says:

      But does it mean in currency union or just pegging Scotland to GBP? Why am I having to sign in every time to comment – don’t mind but are others experiencing this?

    8. Les Wilson says:

      I watch the odds fairly regularly, and you pointing this occurrence out makes me laugh out loud, they have this issue sussed. No doubt a lot in Westminster will be checking these also. They will cry in their champagne glass!

    9. PRJ says:

      Slight change of topic. Found this link about ddos on 11th is this referring to you?

    10. Monkeytail2002 says:

      Just heard that Danny Alexander is claiming he hasn’t got a clue as to where this story came from and that he’d be surprised if it was from the Treasury. Backing out with all the furore I’m guessing.

    11. My prediction: Yes to win by 63% of the voting electorate.

      (And no, I’ve not left the engine running for a quick getaway.)

    12. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I’m tempted to sign up to stick £50 on the over 55% yes result”

      I thought it was interesting that the odds on 40-45% Yes were tighter than those for 35-40%. Looks like they reckon it’s already close.

    13. Davy says:

      I wonder if Danny Alexander, Ed Balls, Alistair Darling and the rest of the NO campaign will really understand how Scotland will react to being threaten by a tory George Osborne and they are seen backing him.

      Let them find out tomorrow, and may they reap the storm.

      Blue tories, red tories & yellow tories, their all Tories bastards towards Scotland. Follow the bookies they know more about money than Osborne ever will.

    14. JasonF says:

      With the latest stuff about backtracking, it could be difficult for the No side to hold their ‘unlikely’ line.

    15. Marian says:

      Ladbrokes are right – Scotland will almost certainly continue to use Sterling as its startup currency.

      Osborne and Balls will soon learn they are in the big boys world once the currency markets intervene to tell them to stop gambling and politicking, and form a sterling currency union when Scotland becomes independent – its only a matter of time before they do.

      I see another Project Fear aka Vince Cable this time scare story has bitten the dust this afternoon when RBS chief executive Ross McEwan says the bank could “adapt” in the event of a “Yes” vote in the Scottish independence referendum, see:-

    16. FlimFlamMan says:

      Lack of a currency union doesn’t mean Scotland couldn’t use sterling.

    17. Andy-B says:

      The bookies very seldom get it wrong, and with a one to three on odds, of keeping the pounds, the bookies must feel Osborne is bluffing.

      This guy claims to be the most read political blog in the UK and he also claims to, have the best online source of political betting,on politics. I think Wings is head and shoulders above his wishful boast.

    18. Embradon says:

      As we can’t join the Eurozone without years of having our currency in the ERM, that option does not look a good bet for 2017. Straight choice.

    19. msean says:

      That 3/1 actually is a good bet.

    20. Bill Walters says:

      In a sense, it doesn’t really matter to Westminster whether it’s a bluff or not. The only way they’ll be called out on it is if they’ve already lost the referendum (by which point it doesn’t matter in any case). It has to be taken at face value either way in my view and that means presenting an alternative – plan B, call it what you like.

    21. Macart says:

      Oooo, I might have some of that action. 🙂

      After the love fest over at the Guardian today, I could do with a bit of fiscal payback. It really has become Mail/Telegraph 2.0 BTL.

    22. ronald alexander mcdonald says:

      Disgraceful reporting by STV (Ponsonby)

      He said that Carney stated that Scotland would cede sovereignty with a currency union. Carney stated that Scotland would cede “some sovereignty”.

      Also failed to mention that Scotland could use sterling without entering into a currency union, although a spokesman from The Adam Smith Institute stated that we could use sterling without Osborne’s permission

    23. Al says:

      I’m not sure this lends much support. Weren’t the previous odds for a currency union? So we could be using the pound regardless of whether there was a formal union or not.

    24. Wayne says:


      Absolutely right, all the little Englanders over at the guardian are hopping mad with vitriolic anti-Scottish fury at the merest suggestion we might renege on the debt. It was so bad in fact (and remember quite often guardian readers comments lean towards pro-yes). It is so bad I wanted to see how much worse it could be at the Daily Mail, but I couldn’t find the story there at all. They seemed more concerned with the weather (fair enough), slimming celebrities and some poor russian mother who was decapitated in a lift.

    25. Desimond says:

      Why do BBC Scotland News have the Welsh Minister on giving his Pounds worth…can we give it up with the Rentagubs!

    26. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      BBC UK and BBC Scotland are continually telling a lie.
      They are saying that the UK will not allow Scotland to use the pound.
      They can refuse a currency union, which is different and it can only be deliberate that they are confusing the issue

    27. Papadocx says:

      The one thing that unites SLAB TOLLY LIBS is their HATRED for Scotland and their love of money.

      They are reprehensible slugs.

    28. Desimond says:

      Douglas Fraser ..”This leaves the SNP with a few challenges”

      Oh dear, seems its “Lets push wee Eck into a corner” tactics.

      You should never jab a sleeping bear!

    29. westie7 says:

      BBC Scotland news website story now says all three parties will ban the USE of the pound!

    30. Craig P says:

      Were the odds of Scotland using sterling not 1/100 a couple of weeks ago? Gone from a racing certainty to worse than evens. Though I don’t think the bookies are experts in this field. It’s a one off event and there is no form.

      In the new year Yes was 4-1 and No 1-6. In a two-horse race that is expected to be close you could imagine even some no voters punting on yes…

    31. Papadocx says:

      EBC scotland : The ladies in Kirkcaldy interview regarding the pound had much more understanding about the truth and understanding than the SUPPOSED PROFESSIONAL REPORTERS, WHO WERE SCAREMONGERING AS EXPECTED.



    32. Brian Powell says:

      Interesting; is BBC reporting of this, showing once more BBC Scotland is completely shit at their supposed job?

    33. Arbroath 1320 says:

      I’ve just watched a bit of (dis)Reporting Scotland, honest it was just a bit. 🙂

      I thought Jackie Bird was almost trying, I said almost!, to be reasonable when she was talking about our options. She said that if the currency union is not going to happen what are our options?

      1) we could still use the pound. Yep she is on track so far, quite surprising actually.

      2) we could have our own currency. WOW! she came up with that one on her own I’m almost gobsmacked with her mentioning this one.

      3) we could use the Euro. HA! I knew it was too good to last! We can NOT use the Euro for reasons laid out herre.

      Option 4 specifically says:

      Exchange rate: Applicant countries should have joined the exchange-rate mechanism (ERM / ERM II) under the European Monetary System (EMS) for two consecutive years, and should not have devalued its currency during the last two years, meaning that the country shall have succeeded to keep its monetary exchange-rate within a ±15% range from an unchanged central rate.

      What a pity BBC seem to persist with this Euro lie when the evidence is out there for everyone to see that this ‘option’ could not possibly happen until Scotland had been in a stable ERM for 2 consecutive years. This means that we can not possibly use the the Euro until 2017 at the earliest, assuming full independence happens in March 2015 of course.

    34. Desimond says:

      Last headline reminder on BBC Scotland News…”A severe storm warning for South of England and Wales”…then a lingering shot of a ragged Union Flag in the wind.

      Seemed rather allegorical in my eyes.

    35. heedtracker says:

      I wouldn’t touch it. City spread betting companies makes a fortune on exactly this kind of Tory boy political brinkmanshit.

    36. cirsium says:

      Rev – your update at 17.41 re the Treasury not knowing anything about this issue makes me think that the original story was another essay in disinformation from the BBC with the goal of producing negative headlines to frighten the DKs and stop the flow from DK to YES.

    37. Papadocx says:

      Does anybody know if BBC ENGLAND IS SPREADING THE SAME PROPAGANDA AS BBC SCOTLAND regarding the NO to currency union.

      Think if they are spreading that in London & financial news reports might be dangerous for HMG

      VERY TELLING IF SCOTLAND & England are getting different info. WHICH IS WHAT I THINK


    38. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

      It was nice of Reporting Scotland tonight not to mention for an instant the fact that iScotlands’s remaining currency options all come with that big no-national-debt-anymore headache.

    39. Marcia says:

      It will be interesting to read what the actual Treasury thoughts (for this week) are tomorrow when we read it in black and fright.

    40. Roland Smith says:


      I usually think the guardian CIF punters are where you get sensible comments. Today I spent an hour reading comments and commented myself that I wouldn’t have the courage to check out the DT having read their bile. The general ignorance of the economic reality in Scotland and the overall hostile nature really surprised me. It was also noticeable that there are some unionist posters who are posting over and over again, a technique you normally see in the Scotsman and DT. I have never really noticed this before in the Guardian and for about the first time on that site reported a couple for moderation.

    41. frankieboy says:

      Papadocx_ the only person mentioning it in England on BBC is Naughtie. What does that tell you?

    42. Malc says:

      One thing you can be sure of is none of them will have the gonads to actually say it will not happen. It will be weasely words all round. BBC have done their job for them.

    43. Robert Kerr says:


      More obfuscation from the news agency.

      “(Reuters) – Britain’s main political parties will tell Scotland in coordinated statements in coming days it cannot keep the pound if it votes for independence, two people familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.”

      Wait and see.

    44. Ken Mac says:

      [EDIT 17.41: Danny Alexander’s just been on the radio denying all knowledge of the story. Looks like Ladbrokes have people on the inside. We’ll be watching even more closely from now on.]

      Well less than an hour later Reporting Scotland said categorically, Beaker was on board.

    45. caz-m says:

      Does that p**** Douglas Frazer think we button up the back. He is meant to be the financial wizard at BBC Scotland, yet he still comes out with statements like,

      “and the Euro wouldn’t be to popular”

      He knows the entry rules regarding the Euro, but he thinks we are that stupid that we don’t know anything about Euro currency entry rules.

      What a team of venomous, anti-Scottish, unionist lovin, scum bag bastards that are over at Pacific Quay.

      Campbell, Brewer, Bird, Frazer, Taylor, Bradford, Robertson and the rest.

      Between them they couldn’t think of a positive thing to say about Scotland. EVER.

      Flavour of the month for a kicking at the moment is the Commonwealth Games, followed closely by anything to do with Bannockburn.

      They seem to take great delight in highlighting any problems either of them maybe having.

      I hope the two of them are a great success, just to prove that lot wrong.

      The whole shower turn my stomach. GRRRRRRRRRRR!!!

    46. fairiefromtheearth says:

      Plan b for our currencey we put our excess GDP into silver and have our currencey backed that way.not a fucking false promise like the banksters of todays world and to the fucking chairman of RBS all you fucking banking scum better adapt CORRECTLY to an independant Scotland or go to jail.

    47. Brian Powell says:

      Five Live still reporting all three Parties will ban the use of the Pound!

    48. G H Graham says:

      Breaking News !

      Scotland will use pound post independence.

      England refuses currency union.

      Scotland continues to use pound anyway.

      Now, back to watching Eastenders which you are not supposed to be able to watch but you can cos the Dutch & the Irish do. For free.

    49. fairiefromtheearth says:

      Thats the problem with privitation you send all three party Chancellers their script and some end up getting delayed in the post.

    50. alexicon says:

      Sorry for O/T (again)

      It’s been reported over on tamb that Danny Alexander has been on LBC backtracking on Gideon’s statement saying no to a currency union.
      He’s saying it’s highly unlikely, again!
      If true, it looks like a unionist media headline set up by Westminster.
      More confusion for voters?

    51. Boorach says:

      @ Papadocx

      Don’t know about TV transmissions but radio 4 have certainly been running with the currency story

    52. Gfaetheblock says:

      Think these odds are really poor value. As € by 2017 would be nearly impossible and a new currency incredibly difficult and risky, therefore the use of the pound is a certainty. Having agreed a currency union would be possible, but there is nothing stopping us using the pound outwith an union, so this Is basically a certainty. Strange that the odds are so long (for something that we all agree requires no agreement from rUK government and is the SNP’s preference) unless it is felt that there may be a need for a plan B, i.e. If is felt that the cost of using £ would be too great for Scotland to bare.

    53. Robbie says:

      Liked this one from a poster on another site.

      Within 24 hours The panicking unionist,s have exchanged Love bombs for stink bombs.

    54. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

      @alexicon says:
      It’s been reported over on tamb that Danny Alexander has been on LBC backtracking on Gideon’s statement saying no to a currency union.

      Danny Alexander has never had a real job in his life.

      Before getting elected as a Lib Dem MP he was the press officer for the Cairngorms National Park FFS.

      He has always done a great job of being the PR officer for Danny Alexander, but don’t anybody waste time ever listening to anything he says.

    55. Misteralz says:

      Technically we could use the Euro – Montenegro do. They’ve been using it for years and they aren’t even in the EU.

      I doubt that’s what ol’ Jackie had in mind, right enough, but she’s not wrong.

    56. X_Sticks says:

      Westminster is very, very frightened . . . . Ian Hamilton QC

      Brilliant usual.

    57. Desimond says:


      Nick Robinson seems to have detailed info on “government announcement’ which seems to take a different stance:

      Sources say the Treasury review – which has been written by government officials, not by politicians – will argue that three conditions would be necessary for an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK to use the same currency. The governments in London and Edinburgh would have to agree to:

      Underwrite each others banks

      Allow taxpayers in one country to subsidise the other

      Reach broad agreements on tax, spending and borrowing levels on both sides of the border

      The Treasury review will not argue for or against so-called “currency union”, but in a speech in Edinburgh the chancellor will warn that such arrangements would be unacceptable both for Scotland and the rest of the UK.

    58. FlimFlamMan says:

      The story was on the 6pm BBC 1 news in England, but with the usual BBC confusion. George Alagiah in the studio, in introducing the piece, said the three Westminster parties would announce that Scotland would not be allowed to use the pound after independence. He then passed to Nick Robinson in the usual pointless outside broadcast, who talked about the three parties announcing that there would be no currency union.

      So the first version is false, well, they could both be false, but the first version isn’t even possible. Scotland can use sterling even if Westminster doesn’t like it, just as Ecuador uses the US Dollar.

      On Arbroath 1320’s point; Scotland may not be able to join the Euro, but it could use it, in the same way it could use sterling: by acquiring foreign currency thanks to external surpluses, like Ecuador. Which is not to say it should do either.

      In any case, they’re sticking to their story, so if it all turns out to be nonsense the BBC are going to look pretty silly. Shocker, I know.

    59. Clootie says:

      I cannot think of any possible wording for his speech that does not make him look like an idiot (I know don’t say it)

      A confirmed no currency union – reckless / market collapse

      A confirmed no currency union supported by Balls/Alexander – bully / market collapse even further

      A backdown to “unlikely” statement – manipulating lying bastard (I know don’t say it – again)

      The last also turns up the heat on the BBC bias.

    60. gillie says:

      “Highly unlikely”

      Now two Treasury ministers have used this phrase in the last few hours.

      This story is going nowhere, it is simply another 24 hour propaganda exercise.

    61. a2 says:

      ” we could use the Euro. HA! I knew it was too good to last! We can NOT use the Euro for reasons laid out herre.”

      Well technically we could for the same reasons that we could use Stirling without permission, or the way many countries use the dollar we just couldn’t join the exchange rate mechanism.

      Again, if everybody is prepared to accept it as payment you can use whatever you like.

    62. X_Sticks says:

      Having Danny Alexander around must save Osborne a fortune in toilet roll!

    63. Rough Bounds says:


      It isn’t required to make use of either a comma (,) or an apostrophe (‘) when it’s just a plural. The word ‘unionists’ is fine on its own.

    64. Desimond says:

      Yip, its all much ado about nothing…clues in bold

      The Treasury review will not argue for or against so-called “currency union”, but in a speech in Edinburgh the chancellor will warn that such arrangements would be unacceptable both for Scotland and the rest of the UK

      No Insist
      No Demand
      No Refuse

      Simply warn…which means heehaw in Politics

    65. Davy says:

      With both the heads of Barclays and RBS stateing they will work within an independent Scotland, does this qualify enough to satisfy Johann Lamont wanting to know who at the top of major companies in Scotland is still going to back us both before and after a YES vote, can she still remember the question? it has been a week.

      Also does not having all the unionist parties state that they will not form a currency union with an independent Scotland, actually concede the fact they believe Scotland will be independent.

      They have refused to negociate on any other subject concerning independence so why the rush on the currency, there is months to go? And after the YES vote in Sep their is still 18 months to talk about it until independence day in March 2016.

      Has something scared them, with all weather problems down south surely Westminster has enough on its plate, so why now ???

    66. Desimond says:

      Next weeks leak:

      “EU reject Scotlands automatic membership – confirmed by UK Govt”

      24hrs of media frenzy later

      “The Minister will warn that should the answer to any future EU enquiries be a denial, then Scotland would not be allowed into the EU. This would duly destroy the Scottish Governments plans”

    67. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

      @Rough Bounds says:
      It isn’t required to make use of either a comma (,) or an apostrophe (‘) when it’s just a plural. The word ‘unionists’ is fine on its own.

      If it’s fine on its own, why has ‘unionists’ got a apostrophe at either end of it?

      I’m not sure the word unionists is ever fine.


    68. a2 says:

      ” so why now ???”

      Because it’s in the script.

    69. gillie says:

      NB the story has now been downgraded to a Treasury Review that is neither for or against a currency union.

      The whole thing was/is a black propaganda exercise that is unravelling fast.

    70. Rooster says:

      Isn’t ruling out a currency union at this stage effectively pre negotiating the terms of Scottish independence? Something Cameron ruled out a year ago.

    71. Conan_the_Librarian says:

      @ X_Sticks

      Just that hairsbreadth of a pause:

      “These English … Public Schoolboys”


    72. TootsCapoot says:

      BTL comments in The Guardian are certainly becoming increasingly nippy and manic. The articles tend to pitch downward to click bait, which is cat nip for the paper’s visitor numbers but stupefying for those of us looking to get something more out of it.

      On the currency issue there is an astonishing lack of basic understanding, resulting in acres of pointless and repetetive jibber jabber.

      A combination of paywalls elsewhere, together with the blinkered and the trolling, all add up to a frothing mix of over wrought bile and ignorance. I

    73. TheGreatBaldo says:

      The Big Lie continues….

      I assume this piece post at 10 past 8 is for the paper edition of the paper.

      At 10 past 8 everyone in the world knew that the Treasury tomorrow WON’T rule out a Currency Union yet the Guardian claims they will

    74. gillie says:

      This story has died on its arse. The Treasury and the BBC are now in retreat.

      So what fear-bomb will the unionists lob next?

    75. Edward says:

      I noticed that prick Nick Robinson on BBC News channel in full flowing jingoistic outpouring about all three political parties in London agreeing that Scotland will not be allowed to use the pound and emphasised it by a flow of ‘nada’ ‘zip’ etc etc ad nauseum. Obviously enjoying himself smirking all the while. So much for neutrality and providing unbias facts

    76. GrahamB says:

      And now Vince has been telling porkies, unsurprisingly.
      From the BBC webs(h)ite …

      “RBS could “adapt” its business in the event of Scotland’s independence, bank chief executive Ross McEwan has said.

      His comments came after UK Business Secretary Vince Cable said RBS would “inevitably” move its headquarters to London if Scotland became independent.

      Mr McEwan said he had not discussed that possibility with Mr Cable, in the event of a “Yes” vote in the 18 September referendum.

      The bank boss made his remarks in an online Q&A for the Guardian.”

    77. gillie says:

      This has been a Treasury/BBC set up right from the start.

      It will be interesting to see what Labour’s reaction is now that this ruse has been exposed.

    78. Appleby says:

      Very much a case of putting your money where your mouth is. This lot aren’t going to bankrupt themselves.

    79. Thepnr says:

      More bizaro world! Last week BAE were to invest £200 million on the Clyde to build the Type 26 frigates. Tonight the boss of BAE is hinting that both yards may close in event of a Yes vote.

      All we can do is talk face to face and convince people their lying.

    80. ronnie anderson says:

      Aye that,s it they,ve pissed me aff, ah refuse tae use decimal currency ,ah want tae go back tae £.s.d.,if we,re gonna use the poon we might as well use a real pound.

    81. Hetty says:

      Papadocx says
      VERY TELLING IF SCOTLAND & England are getting different info. WHICH IS WHAT I THINK

      When my cousin from NE England was up visiting us just before xmas, she said that they were not getting any info in their media and any reports that did get aired or printed were/are totally biased against YES.


      I was at a short course past couple days on a certain aspect of healthcare in Scotland, when I mentioned to a couple of care workers that the NHS in Scotland is and always has been an entity in it’s own right and unconnected to the English NHS they just would not believe it. Also one of them said that the oil belongs to the UK, so we are a poor country, which is when I did a John Swinney, head in hands. All I could do was to write down the names of websites for them such as WOS, so they could make an informed choice, which they said they would look at. Oh and one person said she thought that Indy would be a bad thing because A.Salmond had ‘got into bed with Donald Trump’.
      I hope they do go onto the internet to look at the yes sites, because there are still people out there who are not engaged and who totally believe that the ‘news’ papers and the telly are telling them the truth , Arghhhh!

    82. TheGreatBaldo says:

      So what fear-bomb will the unionists lob next?

      I’ve mislaid my timetable but I’m pretty sure that Thursday is ‘EU Scare Day’.

      Ian Davidson is showing off a letter he’s got from the boss of BAE to assorted hacks about the shipyards…

      So that’s ‘20,000 jobs at risk if youse bastards vote YES’ taken care of.

      Oh and OPEC has predicted a downturn in North Sea Oil & Gas…

      Ye know the old Oil : Why Scotland having it is like a really really BAD THING

    83. heedtracker says:

      I missed BBC in Scotland vote no teatime news/threats of the day but did they mention latest Financial Times report that Scotland’s GDP is bigger than France, if we can just get hold of our own resources? Probably not…

    84. FlimFlamMan says:


      Even if they’re not lying, an independent Scotland would have the capacity to support whatever industries it decided were important. BAE want to close the yards? Fine; nationalise them and build support ships for the offshore wind and tidal energy sites. Or the hardware for those sites.

    85. Papadocx says:

      Conservatives will do Scotland down for its own English government.

      Liberals will do Scotland down for its own English government.

      Will labour do Scotland down for its own English government.

      Will labour in Scotland stab Scotland in the back for its own English Tory government TREACHERY JUDAS.

    86. Hetty says:

      online bbc news still has ‘latest’ piece saying ‘tories, labour and libdems declare opposition to currency union’. they really are trying to brainwash people, as well as deliberately attempting to cause divides across the border, these people in westminster really are utterly despicable.

    87. Thepnr says:


      Totally agree, about time we built our own ships again for Scottish use. Just like Norway does. I was a victim of Thatcher when she closed the Dundee Caledon in 1980, all for ideology. A revival under Independence is on the cards.

    88. gerry parker says:

      Thing I noticed about the episode was when they interviewed the good ladies of “The Lang Toon” they all replied “we can use the pound if we want to”
      The truth is spreading.

    89. Rod Mac says:

      What will it be tomorrow, Vote Yes and we will not let you use English?

    90. Luigi says:

      Oh Dear! So the latest love-hate effort (Cameron good cop, Osbourne bad cop) routine is about to backfire spectacularly. Something has either spooked them (latest opinion polls YES on the rise) or annoyed them (Salmond’s “get your wellies on and get down to Somerset” message to the PM). What may have started as another scare (leak) has gotten completely out of control. They probably grossly underestimated BBC Scotland’s desire to spoil the independence debate. What may have been planned as another strong suggestion has been announced to the nation that it’s a definite no to a formal currency union. Osbourne now either has to go whole hog and hope that AS does not call his bluff, or he makes another strong hint, and ends up looking weak. The timing could not be more worse. This is what happens when poor politicians play politics.

      Having said that, if they really do want rid of us, then they have played a blinder! I cannot wait until tomorrow. Things are about to go critical.

    91. Thepnr says:


      Thanks for the link to the Ian Hamilton video. Very good.

    92. Desimond says:

      Under an hour until Scotland Tonight covers the currency story.

      No holding your breath now that the actual truth will be covered, it will be gently swept to the side as the scare story gets all the attention and the Unionist representatives rants and raves and blames the SNP.

      Never let the truth get in the way of a good scare.

    93. Luigi says:

      The MSM were very quick off the blocks to announce “No shared currency!”. Something that Osbourne may or may not deliver tomorrow.

      Scottish Labour were among the first to support this unconfirmed Tory policy. What a bunch of numpties.

    94. Alba4Eva says:

      Are they saving the Lovebomming for Friday?

      Ooh Ooh… they are arent they… Ooh… this is so exciting… I hope they get us a card, flowers… gotta be roses of course… and a cuddly toy. Cant wait for the lovin’ 🙂

    95. Albalha says:

      FYI the full release today from Ladbrokes

      For immediate release

      Independent Scotland odds-on to keep sterling

      AN INDEPENDENT Scotland would still use sterling according to the latest odds from Ladbrokes.

      Despite George Osborne’s pledge to rule out a currency union, the bookies still make Scotland odds-on at 1/3 to use the pound should they defy odds of 7/2 to secure independence.

      It’s 3/1 a new Scottish currency is formed while the use of the Euro is considered an outsider at 10/1.

      The latest referendum odds suggest a decision may never need to be made however, with Scotland 1/5 to remain within the UK.

      Alex Donohue of Ladbrokes said: “The odds suggest that should the referendum come to pass there will still be a way to keep sterling. The creation of a new currency entirely looks far likelier than adopting the Euro if that isn’t feasible however.”

      Ladbrokes latest betting

      IF Scotland becomes independent, what will its currency be on 1st Jan 2017?
      1/3 GBP
      3/1 New Scottish currency
      10/1 Euro
      Bets void if Scotland remains in UK.

      Referendum odds
      Yes 7/2
      No 1/5


    96. Train Fares says:

      If you want to hear some bile LBC are doing a phone-in at 10pm on “Should Scotland have a currency union”

    97. Luigi says:

      No holding your breath now that the actual truth will be covered, it will be gently swept to the side as the scare story gets all the attention and the Unionist representatives rants and raves and blames the SNP.

      Too late for that now – the world has been told that it’s a definite NO to a shared currency agreement. People have noticed. The BBC can spin furiously, but it’s way too late – the damage has been done. BT took a very big hit today.

    98. bunter says:

      Might as well tear up the Edinburgh agreement as its not worth the paper its written on. The UKs word means heehaw.

    99. theycan'tbeserious says:

      There are not enough cat’s up trees this weather for the
      bbc in Scotland to report, therefore they need to fill their reports with untruths, spin and fear. This is just another daily scare! normal service will resume in the spring…

    100. Luigi says:

      I wonder what George Osbourne’s valentine message to Scotland will be.

    101. Craig says:

      Latest from the BBC

      Osbourne speech from treasury review, so looks like there is not an unequivocal No

      “Sources have said the Treasury review, written by government officials and not by politicians, will argue that for an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK to continue to use the pound, the Scottish and UK governments would have to agree to:

      Underwrite each other’s banks
      Allow taxpayers in one country to subsidise the other
      Reach broad agreements on tax, spending and borrowing levels on both sides of the border

      The Treasury review will not argue for or against a currency union, but in a speech in Edinburgh on Thursday, Mr Osborne will warn such arrangements would be unacceptable both for Scotland and the rest of the UK.”

    102. Papadocx says:

      Lungi 9:39

      If Ossie goes the whole hog don’t think AS will need to call his bluff think the financial markets, CBI
      Bank of England and many more will be lining up TAE STUFF HIS BLUFF. Where the sun don’t shine.
      Whoever spun and leaked this shit ain’t to bright if they trusted PQ to do a good job for them, their awe Sycophantic amateurs led by a heedless chickens.

    103. alexicon says:


      If you think the story is on its arse, nip over to newsnow on Scottish Independence and see all the headlines from today’s news.
      All the bbc news headlines stand out as if today’s rumour is a fact.
      The required headlines wanted by the unionists’. Job done.

    104. west_lothian_questioner says:

      Latest update 4 minutes ago at
      Nice wee interjection from Henry McLeish at the bottom of the piece.

    105. HandandShrimp says:

      The media seem to be blowing this love in between the parties to big effect. I do hope Gideon is not going to disappoint with woolly words.

      The Guardian and HYS were replete with rabid offerings, probably all Daily Mail approved, and Cameron’s hug a Jock campaign died a horrible death. That said DC seems to have a reverse Midas touch at the moment. I particularly liked his throwing down of the money no object gauntlet to Mother Nature. Wisdom personified 🙂

    106. caz-m says:

      This fiasco must put BBC Scotland firmly in the Better Together/Project Fear camp once and for all.

      Was it coincidence that the “breaking news” came through at 11.05 pm last night. Right at the start of Newsnight Scotland.

      Then was followed up by a frenzy of dramatic headlines on every news bulletin, right up to Newsnight Scotland again tonight, a full 24 hours later.

      This story better be true, otherwise BBC Scotland’s reputation is completely blown out of the water.

      And if they are wrong, then they owe millions of viewers/listeners a grovelling apology.

      And reported to a higher authority for blatant scaremongering.

    107. Edward says:

      Article on LBC Radio website about Ed Balls interview—from-5pm-85921

    108. Vincent McDee says:

      The Spaniards use the phrase globo-sonda or probing-ballon to talk about a Government proposal testing the waters, which will be denied if the reception of the leak is poor. or reasserted if favorable.

      Now they know the very real consequences of actually confirming the (no)chance of a currency union.

      Fortunately for all of us is the existance of the Civil Service and their making of decisions always “interpreting” the intructions received.

      Yes Prime Minister or in this case Yes Your Chancellory.

      Can you imagine their opinion of this lot?

    109. mr thms says:

      BBC Scotland’s reputation on the line as confusion grows over Osborne currency threat

      “Claims that a currency union are set to be explicitly ruled out by UK Chancellor George Osborne tomorrow have become mired in confusion after it emerged the Chancellor will in fact be responding to a UK Treasury paper which will lay out tests and conditions his own officials claim are required for such an agreement to operate.”

      10 o’clock news is on now, but despite the above story, the BBC has learned nothing and still repeating the same mantra.. Scotland will not be allowed to share the pound..

    110. Arbroath 1320 says:

      Well I don’t know who is and who isn’t telling porkies any more but just now at 22:@15 we have the same old story about the three main parties refusing Scotland to have a currency union, ably supported by Nick Robertson. We now have Lorna Gordon in Glasgow laying out the options being laid out from Glasgow, the pound, the pound in a union , the Euro blah blah blah!

    111. IainGraysSubwayLament says:

      The BBC must realise they will never be trusted again if they have just placidly spun a line fed to them by Osborne and the tory party.

      They’re still spinning it as a definite No on the BBC right now BTW.

      I’m afraid this doesn’t look good at all for the BBC and the former national chairman of the Young Conservatives Nick Robinson. They will be a laughing stock if they are proved wrong.

    112. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      There are a few things happening at the moment that are not necessarily immediately obvious (or not immediately obvious to those that are doing it).

      1.The unionists are looking anti Scottish and malicious
      2.Labour is looking anti Scottish.I would love to be privy to what Labour Scotland thinks of this.
      3.The media which is hyping this nonsense is not only damaging its own reputation it is helping the unionists to damage their credibility and reputation.
      4. It should surely be obvious now to intelligent Scots that the YES leadership has led the unionists all over the place and into a trap

    113. bunter says:

      Just saw a tweet between Stewart Hosie, Nick Robinson and a third party where Robinson backs up Hosie when he says the UK Gov will NOT rule out a currency union.

      I expect it will be an enhanced scare with all three parties in on it, but not a definite NO!

    114. Angus says:

      Very strange that the news at ten on ITV basically reported that the pound is being ‘disallowed’ for Scotland because the Yes campaign has seen a jump in the polls.

      Even without my Yes head on that is what I got as the message, a really daft knee jerk about the increasing awareness and drive towards a Yes vote mean that suddenly the unionist side is saying we are not better together after all.

    115. Churm Rincewind says:

      I really don’t understand the discussion here. Of course an independent Scotland could continue to use the pound, just as (for example) a French company could trade with a German company in pounds sterling if it so wished.

      That’s not the issue. The only real question is whether in the event of Scottish independence rUK would agree to a currency union.

      Others above have made the same point. But it’s worth making again.

    116. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      I thought Lorna Gordon was pretty reasonable on BBC just now.
      What many Scots but also many English people may take from this is that Scotland had a number of viable options but wanted to do the right thing not only for Scotland but also for England and it is being rudely rebuffed.

      We are fighting with fools who would be sunk without the media

    117. Grahame says:

      looks like Distorting Scotland at 10:30 once again leads with this currency union nonsense !

    118. msean says:

      All three main parties and George Galloway on the same side lol.Now we must be doing something right.

    119. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Good for you, Henry Mcleish

    120. HandandShrimp says:

      You couldn’t make this stuff up….oh wait, they do.

      The BBC’s integrity regarding actually analysing and dissecting news stories was shot to shit years ago, probably pre-Iraq war. I doubt it will improve. Guardian with Nicholas Watt and Severin not much better but then the Guardian does at least allow others to put the other side of the case too….although a cynic might argue that they simply get double click bait by annoying both sides 🙂

    121. Macart says:

      @Wayne & Roland Smith

      Yeah, busy day over at the Guardian. Didn’t matter how many of us tried to talk some sense or calm things down, the nutters were dead set on their pound of flesh. There hasn’t even been an official announcement yet and they’d already gone rabid.

      If Gideon does anything short of promise an apocalypse for currency union tomorrow, an awful lot of people, including several Guardian columnists are going to look and feel incredibly stupid.

    122. Desimond says:

      Ian Murray is running around the question now on Scotland Tonight…”Its all just speculation….wheres the Plan B regardless?”

      Now hes trying to hide the Bank of England.
      Its ‘SNp’..’SNP’…’SNP’

      Deary me…this is embarrassing from the Unionists today.

    123. Luigi says:

      It’s all a bit surreal now. Very similar to that day when a confident MSM had everyone waiting for PM Gordon Brown to call a GE, only for him to bottle out at the last minute.

      Lots of egg on BBC face tomorrow, me thinks.

    124. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Who said this? –

      ‘Alex Salmond has always been a master of bluff and bluster…’

      Any idea?

      Here ye go:

    125. Guy McV says:

      I was listening to Classic FM at 8pm and their take on what Danny Alexander said was that he “hinted” there would be no currency union. Unsurprisingly the news is missing from their ‘Listen again’ function.

    126. Desimond says:

      Somewhere, Scottish Labour discuss the key question of the day

      “There must be a Squirrel running about somewhere?”

    127. Churm Rincewind says:

      @ Dave McEwan Hill – Just for clarity, could you explain briefly why you take the view that a currency union, rather than a common currency, would be “the right thing” for England (aka rUK) in the event of Scottish Independence?

    128. bunter says:

      Nice to see Iain MacWhirter standing up for Scotland and calling it as it is, an act of financial aggression!

    129. Jingly Jangly says:

      Cant believe I used to rate McWhirter, he aint half talking rubbish on Scotland Tonight, not as much as Simon Pia. McWhirter saying that Scots will be highly pissed off with the UK over not allowing Scot’s to use Sterling but will still vote NO. No mention of using Sterling anyway.

      And they are still talking about it as a done deal and we now know that Gideon etc are now backpeddling.

      I really cant be bothered to watch any MSN TV program anymore, it does nothing for a my blood pressure.
      Think I will stick to RT

    130. Ian Brotherhood says:

      At least Ozzy is coming to Scotland to deliver this ‘ACME’-style fizzing bomblet. (Pure gallus, eh?)

      Where will Balls and Alexander be? (I assume they’ll be doing the needful?)

      Can you imagine Danny Alexander issuing threats to you, your children, friends, neighbours, or pets, about anything?

    131. Linda's back says:


      Why does STV persist with Simon Pia?

      He adds nothing to the debate and merely mouths the lastest Labour press release. Once a spin doctor, always a spin doctor.

      Macwhirter at least does not parrot the SNP line.

    132. msean says:

      Let us just cut the c$%p and have our own currency,pull the carpet from under the naws,then watch the rising panic.Lets get out now.

    133. Flower of Scotland says:

      Mostly naw people on Scotland Tonight , even Mcwhirter seemed to think people would vote NO because of this threat but feel bitter about it ! What a load of absolute rubbish ! BBC , STV Whatever , they are all biased to NO side and peddling lies again and again !
      Hope the rest of the world notes —- WE have a CORRUPT GOV , BIASED BROADCASTERS , BIASED MEDIA , what have we ever done to deserve this backlash from them ?
      Could the answer be that we are actually a rich country and Westminster has been stealing our assets for 300 years ! NO more , vote YES .

    134. Training Day says:

      Well, it’s all over folks. Iain McWhirter has just said that enough people will be frightened into voting No by the currency issue, albeit grudgingly. But hey, we’ll all move on with a ochone or two.

      If we really are that spineless the Tories’ punitive measures post a No will be draconian. And we’ll deserve it.

    135. I don’t understanding betting at all, but assume those in the know, nudge nudge wink wink, have all in hand. Osborne, Balls and Alexander all joining up agin the Scots. Cutting off a nose to spite their face(s). They are in a mess for sure. Keep up the great work, we’re going to win this thing.

    136. Flower of Scotland says:

      Just heard Henry MacLeish . Well done . Good job!

    137. Al says:

      As I understand the previous odds were 1/100 for currency union. Now the odds are 1/3 just for using the pound. Are bets being taken on a currency union, or are the bookmakers waiting for further news?

      At any rate the bookies are taking this with more than a pinch of salt. Maybe the unionists are bluffing, maybe they are not. It’s a chess game, so best to keep cool (i.e turn the caps lock off).

    138. Desimond says:

      @Ian Brotherhood

      At Home with Danny Alexander

      “Right thats it ya wee neds!!, See if that ball comes over my fence again, i’ll put a knife through it so I will”

      “Oh Danny darling, you know you’re not allowed near sharp objects silly. Come away in and have some cocoa”

      “Yes dear. Has George called?”

      “No dear”


    139. scottish_skier says:

      They’ve been negotiating, they’re largely done. The joint statement is very soon.

      It’s why everything is coming thick and fast right now and it all seems to smell suspicious.

    140. Churm Rincewind says:

      @ Al: No, using the pound and currency union are completely separate issues. The fact that they’re conflated by Ladbrokes (who are not known for their political and economic analysis) tells us absolutely nothing.

    141. Paul says:

      I will use monopoly money as long as I can spend it. Scotland can use any currency that it likes. What do they mean the unionist parties won’t allow it ? On a real world level what are they going to do? get everybody they find in Scotland trying to use pounds and arrest them. Maybe we should call their bluff and hint that we may join Mr Putins new Russian currency zone he seemed quite keen on the idea.With all Russias gas and our oil that could be quite formidable.

    142. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @Desimond –


      It really is that ludicrous.

      Danny Alexander is about as threatening as one of those old dried-up white jobbies you used to see on pavements in hot summers. If you stepped on one? Nae danger – it just went to dust.

    143. Truth says:

      Please, whenever you see disgusting intemperate comments towards the Scots on newspaper comments, DO NOT report these for moderation.

      Leaving them be serves us better.

      Imagine an undecided seeing it. What would their reaction be?

      See? If we go about reporting these comments, we are harming our cause.

      Conversely if you see disgusting intemperate comments from Scots, report these immediately as these can damage our cause.

    144. annie says:

      Just watching the obnoxious John McTernon looks like he should be wearing a dirty mac cannot believe they allowed him through the door of No.10 even if it was in Tony Blair’s day.

    145. Indy_Scot says:

      Have to agree with many others, if it is not a definite cast iron ‘no’ tomorrow, then BBC Scotland is not fit for purpose and should be shut down.

    146. Tîm Criced i Gymru says:

      @Desmond 6.59
      Quote from weather/climate expert on this evening’s BBC 10 o’clock News: “Britain can’t control its own weather” ! Oh, no, we’d better have another referendum then, so we can leave that alliance as well! Help! Call UKIP!
      Sorry that our Carwyn has had to put his big foot ‘n mouth init again – just be assured that loads of us here in Cymru are rooting for you on September 18th.

    147. Thepnr says:


      The BBC is repeating it again “Scotlands Top Ten Battlegrounds”

      I’m laughing, you’ve got to. The man in charge is an idiot.

      Brainwashing. Huh, my brains already scrambled aint gonna affect me yah tube. LOL

    148. scottish_skier says:

      A cheap Asda sandwich a day sells indy on a 63.4% Yes.

      £500 is an excuse, not a reason.

      Did a sandwich a day secure the 1997 Yes-Yes vote (63.5% on Q2)? I don’t ever recall being offered one or getting coupons.

      Or did people vote Yes for another reason…

    149. Linda's back says:

      Good point made by Alex Bell on Newsnicht.

      After a YES vote in 2014 what will Labour’s favoured currency option for Scotland be during the 2015 Westminster elections.

      Also there will be Scottish Labour representatives in Scotland’s negotiating team and they should be asked at every opportunity as to what their Plan B is if Scotland votes YES?

    150. Mary Bruce says:

      Delighted to see Henry McLeish’s intervention, good for him, he is a credit to the no campaign and the only politician, journalist or campaigner from their side with any integrity left. I hope he comes over to our side, I’m going to buy champagne to celebrate if he does.

    151. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Does anyone know for sure where Ozzy is going to speak tomorrow?

    152. FlimFlamMan says:

      @Churm Rincewind

      I really don’t understand the discussion here. Of course an independent Scotland could continue to use the pound, just as (for example) a French company could trade with a German company in pounds sterling if it so wished.

      Companies trading in foreign currencies aren’t really a good example; the key thing is the relationship between the currency and deficits.

      Companies which run persistent deficits — losses — go bust, no matter what currencies they trade in. That’s fine if the nation has decent support for people who lose their jobs, both in terms of government programmes and simply the availability of new jobs.

      Nation states that run deficits don’t usually go bust in the same way, not to the point of ceasing to exist. But they can wreck their economies if they don’t have their own currencies, and there’s no effective support structure. Look at the Euro zone and see which countries are suffering; it’s the ones with external deficits.

      That’s why the currency discussion is important.

      Currency unions are about the pooling of sovereignty. Ceding sovereignty; that’s what Carney was talking about. To work they need not just currency and monetary union but also fiscal union. Fiscal transfers. They’re needed to accommodate deficits, and their absence is the reason the Euro is killing people in southern Europe. Most people agree that that degree of union needs democratic control, so you need political union as well.

      Scottish independence is, rightly, about breaking the fiscal and political structures that exist so that the people of Scotland can make their own decisions about the sort of society they want. But that means a currency union, if it existed, would not have those aspects that can make unions actually work.

      Essentially currency unions have to become nation states. A Federal Republic of Europe using the Euro would work. Carney the other week talked about Canada being a successful currency union. Well of course; it’s a single nation state with its own currency and fiscal transfers.

      The UK runs an external deficit right now, has for decades, but it’s fine because the UK has its own currency. In the sort of currency union that’s possible between iScotland and rUK — which would involve both nations ceding control of the currency, and the elimination of existing fiscal transfers — iScotland would run an external surplus and would be fine, but rUK would run a deficit and would suffer.

      All of which means Westminster would be insane to agree to a currency union, whether or not the current story is true.

      Conversely, none of this means iScotland needs a currency union; it can prosper with its own currency.

    153. tartanarse says:

      He will of course be talking from his arse.

    154. Churm Rincewind says:

      @ Paul – You’re absolutely right. There is nothing to prevent an independent Scotland using any currency it wishes. And I don’t think anyone disputes this point.

      The question is, who stands behind this currency as the lender of last resort? And that’s a tough call. If, as you say, Mr Putin was prepared to guarantee the currency of an independent Scotland then problem solved. But I find it hard to imagine that Russia would even contemplate the idea. What possible advantage could there be for Russia to underwrite the financial obligations of an independent Scotland?

      But I fear I’m getting tiresome on the subject.

      My problem is this. I can absolutely see why a currency union (as opposed to a shared currency) would be to the advantage of an independent Scotland. But I still struggle to see why a currency union would be viewed with favour by anyone (outside, of course, from the EU).

    155. a2 says:

      I’m of the opinion he will rule it out and in the event of a yes can back track, nothing left to lose then.

      It’s a gamble but I think they think it’s playing their ace before we get to the tipping point by which time it will be too late.

      I also think they think “the markets” are their pals and this is the firm hand their pals want to see.

      Makes you wonder if there is anything else that needs hiding this week.

    156. Desimond says:

      @Tîm Criced i Gymru

      Im sure you know its not a shout against the lovely people of Wales( hello to family friends in Ystrad Mynach!), and I know the WFM is just making the best of a given Political opportunity but it doesnt get annoying.

    157. FlimFlamMan says:

      @Churm Rincewind

      The question is, who stands behind this currency as the lender of last resort? And that’s a tough call. If, as you say, Mr Putin was prepared to guarantee the currency of an independent Scotland then problem solved.

      Why bring Russia, or any other, country into it? Scotland would stand behind the Scottish pound, just as the UK stands behind sterling, Australia stands behind the Australian dollar, Japan stands behind the Yen and so on.

      The value of a currency is bound to the condition of the nation that issues it, in terms of economic output, social cohesion and so on. Scotland doesn’t need a foreign sugar-daddy.

    158. Churm Rincewind says:

      @ FlimFlanMan – Yup, I’d go along with all of that.

    159. Greannach says:

      For Danny Alexander’s sake, I hope the Tories can find him a safe seat in England before the next election because I can’t see the voters in his constituency talking kindly to his threat to make life difficult for us if the result should be Yes in September. What is wrong with him? Do they put something in the food at Westminster to cut them off from reality? Bye, Danny. It’s been average.

    160. Ian Brotherhood says:

      If we really need someone to underwrite our currency, can’t we ask China?

      There’s an awful lot of Chinese folk who love genuine Scotch, and they’ll still want it well after the very last drop of North-sea/West-coast oil has been sooked-oot, be that a hundred years hence or otherwise.

      Anyway, very much looking forward to seeing the various BT gobshites issuing their warnings tomorrow. Should provide some precious clips and soundbites, especially from Danny ‘Foodbank’ Alexander.

      Bring it on, bawbags – we’re all waiting.

    161. jake says:

      Aunty Beeb has put up an Aunt Sally to help the anti-independence campaign.

    162. Thepnr says:

      The chit chat about “lender of last resort” is just more bullshit. Proper regulation of banks will ensure that this fictional lender will never be required.

      What are banks for? To enrich bankers would seem to be one reason. Just this week with Barclays:

      “The bank’s adjusted pre-tax profits for 2013 fell to £5.2bn, while its statutory pre-tax profits rose to £2.9bn.”

      “The bank’s total bonus pool for 2013 rose by 10% to £2.38bn”

      What? So most of Barclays profits are used to pay bonuses.

    163. FlimFlamMan says:

      @Churm Rincewind

      I hit submit too soon.

      I can absolutely see why a currency union (as opposed to a shared currency) would be to the advantage of an independent Scotland.

      A currency union is a shared currency. Or by shared do you mean Scotland simply using the rUK pound without ‘permission’? Either way, the only real advantage is that it’s less likely to scare the horses.

      But I still struggle to see why a currency union would be viewed with favour by anyone (outside, of course, from the EU).

      In or outside the EU, other nations have no reason to care. Transactions with Scottish entities are already in a foreign currency as far as other nations are concerned, and after independence they still will be. Perhaps a different currency to now, but still foreign.

      @Ian Brotherhood

      If we really need someone to underwrite our currency, can’t we ask China?

      There’s no need. Nations far smaller than Scotland back their own currencies perfectly well. A significant factor in Iceland’s, admittedly imperfect, recovery is its having its own currency. Their population is around 330,000. Scotland is neither too wee, too poor nor too stupid.

    164. Murray McCallum says:

      The SG should continue to push their preferred option of a Sterling zone with the UK. That is a reasonable preferred option.

      If Osborne, Balls and Alexander categorically rule out a Sterling zone (I always thought future governments could never be tied – but apparently it only takes 3 people!) then the SG should add some flesh to how they would reasonably approach this scenario.

      From what I have read the HM Treasury paper does NOT rule out a Sterling zone, but sets out very high obligations for the parties involved. Osborne and his chums are basically saying these obligations are unacceptable.

      The SG do not need to say they will not take on board any UK debt but what they can reasonably do is start to raise the list of implications of being denied the currency Scotland helped to forge.

      The costs to the SG of establishing a Central bank and currency reserves (which will take time and is likely to require a period of first operating a pegged currency) could quite reasonably be deducted from any share of UK debt.

      Like in any negotiation you can value your desired starting point at whatever level you choose. This may mean that the implications of Scotland being denied the currency it helped build are costed out at almost equal to the share of UK debt that is deemed “fair”, i.e. it is offset and effectively nets to zero.

    165. Thepnr says:

      I think Ian was “aving a larf”

    166. Ericmac says:

      WOS is becoming the site that everyone comes to now for analysis and reading of the zeitgeist. All the comments, opinions, ideas and analysis on the comments are invaluable. There is no where else on the web that people can get a better understanding of what is going on.

      Here is a list of top ten people that read the articles and comments on here on a regular basis…

      McIntyre OBE

      Does anyone know any others that are on this site checking the comments??

    167. FlimFlamMan says:

      Well Thepnr, I was in hospital last week, maybe they performed a sense of humour bypass while I wasn’t paying attention.

    168. Train Fares says:

      Surely the ‘lender of last resort’ is just a canard as the BOE is not the lender of last resort, the tax payer is as we have all seen and still seeing with the ongoing financial crisis.

    169. Vulpes says:

      We could adopt the Euro in pretty much the same way as we could keep using Sterling. It’s fully tradeable, too.

    170. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @FlimFlamMan/Thepnr –

      Ignore me. I’m full of Lambrini.

      P.S. FlimFlamMan (FFS, do you have any idea how difficult it is for one to write that handle when one is full of Malribni?) Anyway, I hope the hospital gig wasn’t serious, whatever it was. There’s nothing wrong with your sense of humour so far as I can see (mind you, right now…)

      PPS – Thepnr – you still up for April 4th? I aim to reccy the venue this weekend.

      Cheers all!

      Here’s to Ozzy!

      Good luck tomorrow Ozzy!

      And here’s to Ed!

      Good luck tomorrow Ed!

      And here’s to, no, hang on…Danny Alexander?

      Fuck it, I’m off to bed.

    171. Fittie says:

      Have all comments on the hootsman been disallowed ?

    172. CameronB says:

      Hi guys. 🙂

    173. CameronB says:

      Hi newspaper guys.

    174. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @CameronB –

      I just got my Panda onesie on, almost ready to hit the sack, but have to ask – what are you up to? Hmm?

    175. Colin says:

      Please don`t get rid of Simon Pia from our TV`s, he`s f*>king hilarious. Makes me laugh no end! He`s a dinosaur of the old/new Labour.
      He`s just so obviously,unashamedly talking Labour crap, McWhirter was sitting there laughing his head off at what he was saying.
      McWhirter must have been rubbing his hands when he realized Pia would be on because it just makes anyone, even a 5 year old look ten times more intelligent than what they maybe are.
      You can imagine him swanning into the studio and the crew giving each other looks saying under their breath. “Oh, here he comes”

    176. CameronB says:

      Just being friendly Ian, though I wasn’t expecting the thread to advance before I posted. I was actualy saying hi to the journalists, not the plebs. Hopefully it will make it more uncomfortable for them to patronise me, if we ever get into a debate.

      Apart from that, I’ve just been watching the last couple of threads.

      Remember, I’m always watching. 🙂

    177. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Here’s another weird thing, as linked by Rev on Twitter – read what Ed Balls and other worthies had to say about all this currency palaver, the day before before they said it:

    178. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @CameronB –

      Okay, so I’m a pleb now?

      No Valentine card for you this year, pal.

      (Indignantly raises hood of Panda onesie and storms off to bed…)

    179. Niall says:

      Slightly O/T

      Apparently al-Qaeda are getting the Pound but Scotland aren’t! 😆

    180. FlimFlamMan says:

      @Ian Brotherhood

      Ignore me. I’m full of Lambrini.

      P.S. FlimFlamMan (FFS, do you have any idea how difficult it is for one to write that handle when one is full of Malribni?)

      I also answer to FFM-FFS, which by coincidence is absolutely the easiest thing to say when one has been at the sauce. Maybe not to type though.

      Anyway, I hope the hospital gig wasn’t serious, whatever it was.

      A heart scare, but no problems showed up. Final verdict was it was a combination of being knocked on my arse by shingles and drinking too much coffee.

      There’s nothing wrong with your sense of humour so far as I can see (mind you, right now…)

      Yeah, I’m probably gorgeous right now as well…

      Cheers all!

      Here’s to Ozzy!

      Good luck tomorrow Ozzy!

      Isn’t it exciting? I think the whole currency thing was a ruse, and they’ll actually announce scientific proof that the kraken is real, sleeping in the North Sea, and will devour Scotland if it separates from the protection of the Bullingdon Club.

    181. CameronB says:

      Now that I think of it, perhaps I’m the original source of the VIRUS, if Lamont actually reads our comments.

      Oops. Sorry. 🙂

    182. CameronB says:

      I won’t read the BBC as it is toxic material. Does the article say who their lender of last resort would be?

    183. CameronB says:

      Sorry, coding numpty.

    184. Niall says:

      It says the C.I.A will be there to help them out again 😛

    185. Niall says:

      Hi NSA!

    186. angus says:

      You are a bit of a downer Cameron with your negative attitude, get a grip mate and have a ‘larf’.

      that’s what Rodney wuudve dun.


    187. Patrick Roden says:

      So where does this leave Alistair Darling?

      He insisted that all three leaders would definitely rule out a currency union yesterday.

      Poor Alistair has been left without a shred of credibility and surely now any claims that he has the authority to debate Alex Salmond, must be blown completely out of the water.

      Oh and yes, I’m needing to fill out the name/email boxes every time I post, must be the protective measure put in place since the ddos attacks.

    188. ronnie anderson says:

      The common thread running thoughout the mantra, from BallS/Murrray/Mc Ternan/PLAN B Alex Salmond doesent need to do anything,if they do come out and say there will be no currency union, the World Financial Markets will have a field day, see Murray / Mc Ternan interviews, they both have been given the same script, & make the same mistake ie ( there is no plan B ) then there is a plan B.

    189. CameronB says:

      Re. banks and money and stuff. I know very little about them, but I found this old article interesting. The second link is for those in a rush.

      The Public Bank Option for Scotland: Ensuring Economic Sovereignty
      By Ellen Brown, December 07, 2012

    190. Marian says:

      Independent Scotland will use the £sterling let there be no doubt about that.

      According to the latest rumour from the BBC state propaganda mouthpiece Osborne and Balls will state that they don’t think that rUK would accept the conditions drawn up by their Civil Servants for a full sterling currency union which is an entirely different interpretation from that which was being touted by the BBC yesterday.

      The independence campaign has exposed the nasty vindictive streak that runs through Westminster. Scotland’s massive contribution to the wealth and security of the UK has been taken for granted for 300 years and Scotland is now declared to be worthless and a burden on Westminster by transient opportunistic Westminster politicians who put their party fortunes above all else and have now decided to adopt a scorched earth policy in their campaign to prevent the people of Scotland enjoying better government and a far better quality of life.

      Scots had better wake up to this and get out from under Westminster rule whilst they can by voting YES on 18 September.

    191. CameronB says:

      From above link;

      This volume suggests that savings banks and microfinancepolicies are capable of steering domestic financial systems toward better income distribution, social inclusion, political development, and democratization.

    192. sneddon says:

      It seems to me the reason for all the UK parties not being keen on a currency union would be the conditions imposed on any winner of 2015 GE by the BoE in a currency union with indy Scotland. These jokers need to borrow like mad to keep their neo liberal nightmare alive and their chums in the city happy. Any restriction on debt levels would bring their house down and they would actually have to address the structural problems with tax collection and enforcement as one example.
      Just saying likes.

    193. bunter says:

      Just thinking that the decision of the UK to take responsibility for all the debt a few weeks ago, may have been in preparation for todays announcement. If Salmond threatens to leave the UK with all the debt, then the markets wont be spooked, and will then give the unionist lackeys in the MSM to run the headlines of iScotland defaults on debt scares and Salmond will make Scotland an international pariah.

      You can also imagine the three Unionist stooges at Holyrood lining up with the ”just because A.S. asserts something, doesn’t mean to say that its true” blah blah and extrapolate that across the whole white paper.

      Today, the white paper either stands or falls, and if it falls, just what will the Yessers be selling on the doorstep tomorrow?

    194. @bunter

      Scotland has no debt as it hasn’t borrowed any money.

    195. sneddon says:

      With or without debt(which UK govt has taken responsibility for) Scotland would not be an ‘international pariah’ because of the 100 billion it exports and the natural and human resources it has. Unionist parties being their usual SNP hating selfs. The WP will continue to blow holes in the assertions and lies of the unionist parties. ‘Yessers’? selling nothing but hope and vision for a better more accountable Scotland, Do you have a problem with that?

    196. Albalha says:

      Who needs a Yes campaign when you’ve got No voting H McLeish calling it as it is re Osborne, currency, treating voters like ‘idiots’.

      From BBC story, also featuring on GMS

      But Labour’s former Scottish First Minister Henry McLeish criticised the intervention by the three pro-union parties, and said Scots “shouldn’t be fooled” by the suggestion that a currency union could not be worked out.

      He told BBC Scotland: “This is entirely political and of course consistent with the unionist campaign. This is negative, it is about spreading fears and scare stories.

      “What we require from the unionist parties is a bit of statesmanship and quite frankly their behaviour so far falls well short of that.”

    197. Tattie-bogle says:

      Ericmac all of us we are more important than that list of balloons

    198. scottish_skier says:

      BBC are now clearly stating ‘No Scottish Pound’ if it’s a Yes, yet George et al. have not actually said anything.

      Are we about to witness the BBC – that last bastion of Britishness in Scotland – destroyed?

      Something smells big time here.

    199. JLT says:

      Was working late last night so a lot of this has whizzed by me. Just catching up with all the comments.

      My view to this morning when Osborne finally decides to make his grand announcement. If he says ‘likely’ or ‘unlikely’, then George is going to look a tad silly. Once again, Project Fear, but with this one, it grew legs and ran out of control before George has to finally kill the beast. The Scottish public will not be amused at another red herring, and more mis-information.

      If he says ‘No’. A definite ‘No’, then we have a game changer. What do ‘Yes’ do?

      One, Yes, SNP and Alex might just keep schtoom for a few days. Say nothing, and let the Business leaders tear Osborne a new one. One area that will be furious will be the Financial Institutions. They will most certainly not be amused.
      British Financial Institutions whose HQ’s are in Edinburgh, but the vast majority of policy holders are in England.
      For, if this is now going to get nasty, with threat and counter-threat, then these places are in a hard quandary. What do they do? Do they move down south which will bring Scottish wrath at a perceived betrayal, watch people close their accounts down south; possibly on mass, or watch Sterling nosedive as every other nation pulls their money from Sterling in what could be the bitterest fight between Scotland and England since 1745-46.

      The Yes campaign may just watch. Let businesses kick Osborne’s head in (and deservedly so!) Is George playing a blinder, or is this the biggest blunder to date? Time will tell. If Scotland votes Yes, and George still sticks to his guns, then to be quite honest, I would WANT out of Sterling asap as Sterling will nosedive without the oil receipts, tax receipts, rise on import and export duties once they pull out of the EU, and crippling austerity measures. In fact, George could be doing us a favour!

      If George is not for moving, then personally, Alex Salmond and YES should come out in say a couple of weeks time, hold up their hands and say something on the lines, ‘look …we tried to talk to the UK Government. They did want to know from day one. We asked, pleaded, reasoned, offered and they continually stonewalled us. Now, they have told us in no uncertain terms. Therefore, we have no choice, and this is what we propose. A Scottish pound’.

      Now if this is done right, and in a very positive light, then many Scots might sit up at the thought of a new Scottish currency piggy-backed on to Sterling. Create new notes. A new Scottish central Bank. Explain the costs, how much in reserves, how it will be on a ration of 1:1 with Sterling to begin with, etc.
      And possibly …just possibly …we say that we WILL honour our take of a percentage of the UK debt. A hard one to take, but it will make the UK Government look childish, petulant and for what it truly has become. A land for bitter, rich wee toffs who are completely out of touch with the 99% of the peoples of the UK.

      Doing this …just might …put a new pride into Scottish hearts. We got shafted by the Tories (again), we took it on the chin. We came up with a new idea, implemented it, and we STILL paid our debts.

      A lot of nations will look at Scotland in a new way, and know that this is a nation that you CAN work with!

    200. caz-m says:

      BBC/British Establishment seem to be pushing the non-payment of debt angle, should Scotland not be able to use the pound.

      They really don’t paint a very flattering picture of us do they.

      After 300 years together, their opinion of us is not too high.

      Your average English person thinks we are deep fry mars bar eating, alcoholic, screaming skulls, that scrounge from Westminster to survive and to cap it all, the money they kindly lend us to survive, is not even going to be paid back.

      This was even repeated by a Scots MP last night. MP Ian Murray got stuck in to us. It was as if we owed him the money directly.

      This non-payment of debt rhetoric has to stop immediately.

      BBC and BBC Scotland are the biggest pushers of this story. They are tarring all Scots with the same brush, it doesn’t matter if you are a YES voter or a NO voter, you are going to be labelled a debt defaulter.

      Trying to demonize a whole Nation is a very dangerous road to go down.

      It should stop now before it starts getting very nasty.

    201. Richard says:

      Does the UKOK position play out ok? Scotland uses £ outside currency union and valu of £ drops because of debt to income ratio. Makes debt cheaper? (I’m not sure I fully understand but am trying to understand why markets won’t be spooked by this). In the currency wars are we aiding UKOK in the ‘race to the bottom’ by voting YES?

    202. scottish_skier says:

      Hmm, headline changed again. For posterity, as it was earlier…

    203. Caroline Corfield says:

      Iceland defaulted massively and let its bankers bear the brunt of their own mistakes, this enabled it to turn its economy around faster than Ireland ( trapped in the euro zone) and hasn’t done its status any harm, Iceland is seen as a good investment, not a pariah and perversely because of the way it behaved.

      The world and the global markets do not all think like the politicians in Westminster do about how important London is. It’s a big financial centre but its not the only one. If the political establishment is seen to put its own pettiness over consideration of the market it will look like London is provincial not global.

    204. scottish_skier says:

      Now if I was a Tory (be that a blue, yellow or red one) who recognised that Scotland was lost to all UK parties. That a solid vote for the union is a pipe dream. That a narrow No would solve nothing and could result in chaos should the SNP be elected in majority for the 2015 GE, potentially holding the balance of power. That there can’t be more serious devo unless the whole Westminster system is ended. That a federal Britain would never work due to the size of England and would not be in my interests anyway. That there is electoral advantage in Scotland leaving. That the union as we know it is crumbling before my eyes yet Westminster can march on if things are played correctly.

      Well, I’d leak something to the BBC which would make Westminster appear very nasty and threatening. The document would be lies however, designed to ruin Scottish Labour – sorry, BBC Scotland’s reputation irrevocably as they report it with glee, only for me to then say ‘Hey, I never said that exactly’. The BBC not fit for purpose.

      Something smells here. It smells really, really strongly.

      And the joint statement is soon, very soon.

    205. scottish_skier says:

      Oh, and if I really, really wanted to make sure of a solid Yes, whereby ensuring a smooth transition, I’d deem BBC unfit for purpose over the scandal and pass emergency legislation devolving control of it to Scotland. That would be a perfectly legitimate move of course, for in a democracy under the current pre-referendum circumstances, the state broadcaster in Scotland should be Scottish.

      Oh, and newsnight would be cancelled, replaced by another referendum focussed show.

      Anyway, just sayin. Certainly, things are not what they seem. Something’s afoot. Something big.

    206. bunter says:

      @ cynicalHighlander @7.18

      Yeah we all know that all the debt is the UKs, but it didn’t stop the BBC et al last night proclaiming Salmond threatening to default on debt. The media is prepared to feed any old crap to the man/woman in the street and this is what they will hear and read.

      Our media are criminal!

    207. Training Day says:

      Good old Henry McLeish. Tells it like it is, eh?

      Just one minor caveat. As of this morning he’s still lined up alongside Osborne.

    208. tartanfever says:

      Currency issues – BBC Radio 4’s ‘Today’ programme just ripped apart SNP/ Yes campaign, and I mean they made it look foolish.

      A biased report from the start, Nick Robinson does his best to be as anti-Scottish as possible, then followed by Ian Murray (Labour Edinburgh MP) doing his best to lie at every stage of the interview without any comeback on his comments.

      The set up to this interview and the balance was provided by a separate interview with Blair Jenkins before hand.

      Seriously, why the f**k do we have a campaign manager doing an interview that requires a political response ? This is way out of his league.

      So, either we have been knobbled by the BBC in the set up of this interview in which case it actually would have been better not to have any response whatsoever from anyone on the Independence side. At least it would put a bias spin on not hearing a Yes voice.

      SNP / Yes campaign, really need to get their voices heard effectively, and when they are not, they have to consider the effectiveness of not putting out a voice at all instead of a weak, insipid one which could be damaging.

    209. callum says:

      colleague that I work with (big financial) says that an rUK has a lot to gain from Scotland not being asked to pay back debt because it means Scotland could also not ask for a cut of the quantitatively eased currency value – which, we think, is around 8.3% of 50% of £1.3 trillion — which would be quite a float to start a new country with.

    210. John H. says:

      Thank you George Osborne. Thank you MSM. A special thanks to the BBC. Now, thanks to you, the Scottish people have a much better idea about what a currency union would mean. They also are learning that it isn’t necessary, and that Scotland can use whatever currency she wants without Westminster’s permission.

      A genuine thanks to Henry McLeish on GMS, for telling the truth, and calling for a mature debate on independence.

    211. Training Day says:


      Aye, and the same problem was mirrored on GMS. Naughtie badgering Blair Jenkins and not asking a single question of Michael Moore, who was allowed to declaim unchallenged.

      It’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that bizarrely, and against all evidence and logic, some in the Yes campaign really do think they’ll get fair treatment from the BBC.

    212. Eric says:


      The point is they are reading all this valuable insight.

    213. scottish_skier says:

      colleague that I work with (big financial) says that an rUK has a lot to gain from Scotland not being asked to pay back debt

      Aye, there is much more to all this than first appears. Certainly, there could be advantages here for both the rUK and Scotland. They are negotiating.

      A debt-free Scotland would sell a Yes in a jiffy. If that’s what you were aiming for anyway.

    214. heedtracker says:

      BBC clearly think currency is going to kill off Scottish independence but even after listening to all BBC R4 vote NO propaganda this morning, there is no one round here who’s changed their mind either way. What a bunch of gits, last week we really love you Scotland and now colossal vote no or else BBC fear campaign is hardly much of a strategy from our genius ruling elite.

    215. Helena Brown says:

      Funnily enough many of the islands in the Windwards, you know those ones that Westminster did not have any more use for in the 1960s. Well they have the East Caribbean Dollar, but they also use the US Dollar and the Euro. Now by my reckoning they are not members of the US or Europe.
      This is only out to ensure they cause more fear among those who have no access to the internet, or who are stupid enough still to believe their propaganda. Someone on Newsnet suggests that we take the BBC to court for breaking their contract with their biased reporting, I for one would happily fund that.
      One question for the NO campaign, why should anyone vote for them as representatives if the vote goes their way, surely they have just made themselves redundant after all they say we should let the English rule us, why get in the way.

    216. jingly jangly says:

      I understand that the qe holdings of the BOE are around 375 billion meaning Scotlands share of these “assets” are around 31 billion, that much would be knocked off our
      share of the debt, plus there is around 3.8bn of Scot’s banks deposits in the BOE which would have to be paid back to Scottish Banks.
      This talk of 150bn is a red herring, unless the UK is already balance sheet bankrupt, the assets should outstrip the liabilities. Therefore even with us say taking 10% of the assets that are located in Scotland , our debt will be near zero. If you look at it with an open mind.

      the UK’s military assets are pretty much useless to us, we would be a genuine Defence Force, where as the UK is an Imperialistic intervention force. We don’t kneed the destroyers which are designed for Aircraft carrier protection. The Eurofighter is very expensive to operate, around 18k usd per hour against the Saab Grippens 4.7k usd per hour. The Grippen can be leased as well so its not a capital cost.

      see for Aircraft comparison

    217. heedtracker says:

      “I doubt it will come to divorce because Scots will see the cost of voting for independence, in Westminster’s current belligerent mood, being too high.” Scotsman’s Ian McWhirter thinks it’s all over now and same Scotsman mocks “they” can always use the groat. I disagree but can British journalism get any worse? yes they can. BBC R4 news before Melvyn Bragg In Our Time said Osborne, Darling and Alexander were coming to Edinburgh to tell the Scots they can’t use the British pound if they vote YES and after all their annoying “we Scots” schtick too.

    218. heedtracker says:

      Thanks for linking this up there!

      Norway’s Anne-Lise von der Fehr comment is interesting
      “I fear a ‘no’ in the referendum will make the Scots feel like a nation of cowards. But I hope not.” Maybe this has been the whole point of the BBC/media/UKOK Scotland doesn’t really exist propaganda. So last week David Cameron plighted his troth for Scottish cowards but it’s ok though, you’re merely a region of the great UK.

      For rather a long time we’ve been told we’re the fat drunk sick man of Europe scrounging off the English taxpayer and now we’ll be cowards in the eyes of the world too. That’s not good:-)

    219. Vronsky says:

      While it’s easy to understand the SNP’s reluctance to frighten the horses, and with all due deference to Salmond’s guile as a political chess player, I think Plan A should have been use of the pound without currency union.

      In chess, always develop with a threat. You might not mean to pursue the threat, but your opponent (if he is inexperienced or nervous) will react to the threat instead of constructing his own plan. Salmond should have rejected currency union and had Osborne running around demanding it, and a sharing of debt.

      It’s not too late – tell Ozzy that Plan B always was currency union, but if he doesn’t want that we’ll stay with Plan A, and he’s shafted.

    220. tartanarse says:

      Daily politics. Old brillo wig getting very animated as he tries to get plan b from oor Nicola.

      He listed everything you might find in the Scotsman, Telegraph etc, and the wee woman sat beside him tried her best to join in.

      The best he could muster was a parting jibe about how she, d have a fight for her pound.

      What a snivelling sycophant, I thought before they wheeled out Iain Stewart.

      Fairly soon I, m going to need a new telly.

    221. Grahame says:

      Radio 2 are running a bit on Jeremey vine regarding Osbornes intervention at 1pm, i’ve phoned in, hopefully get on the show and put a little home truths over. ( Yes Scotland Briefing paper and other notes to hand)

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