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Wings Over Scotland


Book smart, street stupid

Posted on May 22, 2014 by

Dear God. It’s now almost two and a half years since this site first comprehensively debunked and disproved the notion that Scottish independence would give the Conservatives a permanent majority in the rUK parliament, in an article that’s been read many tens of thousands of times here and spread far and wide elsewhere.

samsa

So you’ll forgive us if we spend a few minutes smashing our heads against a brick wall in despair at the mind-bleeding idiocy of some slobbering, sponge-witted poltroon quoted at length in the Telegraph today.

“Scrapping Trident after independence could accelerate the shift of power from West to East and see the UK kicked out of the United Nations Security Council, one of Britain’s leading think tanks has warned.

Ending the UK’s nuclear capability is a ‘far greater’ issue than the SNP suggests and would have geopolitical impacts that would last for years, a Chatham House report concluded.

A Yes vote in the Scottish independence referendum would also put the Conservatives in Number 10 ‘in perpetuity’ and see Europe Union members launch fresh attempts to claw back Britain’s rebate, it was said.

The findings came in an in-depth study of the Scottish Government’s White Paper proposals on defence and security after independence by Prof Andrew Dorman, an associate fellow at the think tank.”

If this is “one of Britain’s leading think tanks”, God save us from the useless ones.

We include the rest of the quote as a warning to show that it’s not necessarily wise to put one’s faith in the pronouncements of dolts, even if they’ve got the word “Professor” in front of their name and have managed to organise themselves into a fancy brains trust without falling down stairs into a bucket of used syringes, because at any moment you might find that the clueless oafs also think that if you subtract 40 from 179 (the size of Labour’s 1997 majority) you end up with a number lower than zero.

But readers, if you thought THAT was dumb, you ain’t heard nothing yet:

“Prof Dorman outlined why separation would be ‘fraught with difficulty’ for both Scotland and the remaining UK while picking apart some of the SNP’s central defence claims.

Scotland’s airspace would be unprotected after independence because the dozen fighter jets pledged in the White Paper are barely half what is currently needed to provide that service, he added.”

As far as we’re aware no hostile aircraft have entered Scottish/UK airspace in years, and those that came close were ushered away by a SINGLE fighter, flying from a base that the UK government is closing this year anyway. We’re pretty sure you don’t need a fleet of 24 jets to get ONE in the air.

“Prof Dorman also warned that Scots caught in turmoil abroad would face ‘far less certainty’ of being evacuated by the government after independence because it could no longer rely on Britain’s international reach.”

Why? Would Scottish ships be somehow able to sail less far than British ones?

“Prof Dorman added that key allies could block an independent Scotland’s application to Nato – proposed by Alex Salmond – as a ‘deterrent’ to other secessionist movements in Spain and France.”

Also possible: SPACE MONSTER ATTACK!

(In fact, a space monster attack is probably more likely than NATO allowing a situation to develop where Scotland wasn’t a member. We’re also not sure that the possibility of being denied membership would be a “deterrent” to the people of Catalonia, and we’re not at all certain we even know what the French secessionist movement is.)

“Taken together, the article provides a scathing critique of the First Minister’s defence plans after independence and chimes with concerns raised by past and present UK military officials.

It also spells out the impact a Yes vote would have both on Britain’s international standing and the West’s attempts to retain its geopolitical significance amid growing economic and military influence of Eastern powers like China and India.”

Oh dear, what a pity, never mind. Did he say “cataclysm” at any point? Who knew little old Scotland was the last nail holding together the wall defending all civilisation from the Forces Of Darkness, eh?

A piece also appears in the Herald, which is at least smart enough to leave out the drivel about the Tories. But it’s not the growth of the internet and social media that’s killing newspapers. It’s their pages being filled with ridiculous honking guff like this, and the gigantic insult delivered to readers by the expectation that they might take it seriously for even a moment.

On the basis of the evidence supplied, we can only assume that Professor Dorman obtained his title from the Polytechnic Of Beaverlick, Kentucky through a classified ad in the back of Private Eye or the Beano. If we were he, we’d ask for a refund, except that we suspect he wouldn’t be able to count up how much he’d paid for it.

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    134 to “Book smart, street stupid”

    1. Bill Fraser says:

      To evacuate citizens the government doesn’t need ships and planes, it can charter them.

    2. donald anderson says:

      “We include the rest of the quote as a warning to show that it’s not necessarily wise to put one’s faith in the pronouncements of dolts, even if they’ve got the word “Professor” in front of their name …”

      They laffed at Einstein, but they never laffed at his brother Frank.

    3. Angus McLellan says:

      Professor Dorman’s paper, in all its glory, is available here. Fantastic!

    4. Murray McCallum says:

      The perpetual Tory government story just never goes away.

      The historic pointlessness of Scottish votes is clear. Also, in future why can’t people accept democratic first past the post elections in England?

      Justifying a country’s existence on the basis of extreme events is peculiar to the unionist mindset. Individuals who allow such thoughts to govern their outlook tend not to lead neither happy or fulfilling lives.

    5. heedtracker says:

      But but but, we’re only going to be a medium sized country, 300 miles long by 100 miles wide and we used to be Rule Britannia. We simply cant lose the Scotland bit of our country to the blighters!!!

    6. JLT says:

      Stuart,

      I wouldn’t despair too much that you’re having to repeat a lot of stuff. After all, you’re pulling in far more people than a year ago, let alone two years ago!

      For your ‘acolytes’ (as the wonderful media call us) don’t worry …repeat away. You’re now doing this for the ‘Undecided’s and the soft ‘No’s. This is the real battle now as we sit at parity; winning over those who are willing to listen.

      For most of your regulars, they are now working hard away at the grassroots level converting those who don’t come to these sites. We are all converting family, friends, and colleagues. Hell! A year ago, my father was vehement ‘No’. Now …he won’t say it, but he’s there. He’s thinking about the future. He agrees with me that Westminster is a corrupt place and holds no hope for the Scots. If he’s thinking like that, then as I once said …hell, has indeed, frozen over!

      Keep at it, mate. You’re a national hero. If we win the day, you’ll go down in history. Keep at it! Keep repeating! Keep winning folk over…

    7. Cod says:

      “It’s their pages being filled with ridiculous honking guff like this, and the gigantic insult delivered to readers by the expectation that they might take it seriously for even a moment.”

      Unfortunately, there are indeed many people who take this stuff seriously, and many of them are no voters, or even undecided voters. And that’s the problem – this constant tsunami of disinformation does make a difference, even as we scoff at it for inaccuracies, exaggerations, and outright lies. Sites like this do help to stem the flow, or at least to provide an outlet where errant believers in Westminster nonsense can be pointed, but they are a stone in a waterfall.

      Still, thank goodness for the internet and social media – at least the status quo establishment supporting media is not getting it all it’s own way, like 1979.

    8. Training Day says:

      Prof Dorman is being conservative in his warnings. He hasn’t pointed out that an independent Scotland COULD be hit by a rogue asteroid PRIOR to the heat death of the Universe.

      For exercising that restraint, we must view him as one of BT’s more rational, level-headed contributors.

    9. Cod says:

      Also, should the OP title not be “street smart, paid stupid”?

    10. Mary Bruce says:

      Angus: I stopped reading Prof Dornan’s article at “Scottish Nationalist Party”. Jings, are these folks not supposed to be educated?

    11. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      In an evacuation, if we couldn’t evacuate our own Nationals, the French, Germans etc etc would do it.

      I met the EU Rep for Sierra Leone, French, who was evacuated by British Forces, although I doubt if they COULD do that now as the bloody boat is about to be scrapped.

      Not exactly O/T but earlier this year the Daily Torygraph ran a story saying the planes Britain was thinking of buying to replace the Harriers, which sold to the US Marines, the F35 is going to be scrapped by the US before it has been bought. So we will have two Fekin Aircraft Carriers with no plane and no likeliehood of getting any.

      Whitehall, Westminster and the the House of Lards are all not fit for purpose.

      You couldn’t make it up, but they did.

    12. Cod says:

      Correction – I meant “book smart, paid stupid”. D’oh.

    13. rabb says:

      I like scrambled egg on toast. My only fear of a Yes vote now is that there may be a cataclysmic shortage of eggs in Scotland post indy.

      There will be obscene amounts splattered all over the faces of some pretty high profile people.

    14. IheartScotland says:

      Rev,
      Surely he got his title from an ad in the back of the ‘Scotsman’
      OK…Beano, fair enough

    15. Schiehallion! Schiehallion! says:

      What JLT (1:06) and the others said, and because this site reminds us what journalism should be about, with the vitriol to remove the UK yah shine from such dormant wits as this, in their high (peugh) places.

    16. Garrion says:

      Don’t smash your head against a wall chaps. C’mon. None of this is surprising. Good to debunk it, but don’t tell me it’s very surprising that there are strangely articulate “quotes and comments” from the MSM using the vox populi to bring life to the last lies they are trying to peddle. We need your heads unbruised.

    17. frazer allan whyte says:

      Personally I believe there will be far fewer foreign mobs baying for Scottish blood than there will be (or currently are) for British.

      Scotland is going to re-enter the world stage as a country that hasn’t bombed, maimed, embargoed or generally oppressed anyone – let’s make sure it stays that way. With all this good will – or at least a lack of ill-will, this will make Scotland an ideal diplomatic interlocuter and peacekeeping country and … able to punch above its weight on the world stage without actually having to possess nuclear weapons!

    18. Jim Marshall says:

      I have made the point on a number of occasions that anyone with Lord or Sir in front of their name is not to be trusted.I now add Prof as well.

    19. Macart says:

      Oh good grief another eejit trying to set the heather on fire. Who knew? From hapless, clueless and penniless to lynchpin of the western world (again).

      And who’s talking of Scotland scrapping Trident? We’re looking for its removal. It would be for the rUK parliament to decide what they’re going to do with a murderous, useless system of mass destruction. 😉

      Then there’s his claims on how defenceless Scotland would be. So unlike now where we have zero surface vessels, zero long range recce aircraft, a massively downsized and amalgamated land force (which is looking to be further downsized), we’d be worse off yet? How much fecking worse could our defence be handled than under current governance? Something like what, £3bn quid in contributions to have some lad in a dinghy use harsh language and someone handy with social networking in intelligence whenever a Russian warship feels like sheltering from rough weather. 😀 LOL

      Utterly barking mad.

    20. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      I bags a Scottish Passport on iDay +1, I don’t want to travel to countries full of brown people who want to kill me if I am a Brit.

    21. G H Graham says:

      Some people enjoying being as thick as yer granny’s porridge because its requires so little responsibility for eh, well, anything much really.

      And the media propagates & encourages this transcendental state of current affairs stupor because it allows them to sell pages of garbage interjected with salacious gossip & risque snaps of talent-less celebrities with big tits.

      It is quite regrettable that so many copies are sold because it tells us much about the society that we are. A quick gaze at the magazine/newspaper racks is a devastating indictment of what type of society we are part of.

    22. Stuart Anderson says:

      I always wonder who the audience is for these people. I cannot believe that too many Scots are bothered if the Tories rule in perpetuity down in the rest of the UK. Yes, and I know the Tories won’t be.

      Neither do I believe that most people are bothered about NATO, in any case, we always have the trump card of Trident if anybody gets too precious about us joining; I also think a lot of people will accept no NATO in return for no Trident.

      Better Together have nothing if threats of perpetual Tory governments in what would be a different country, no NATO, and no shared currency is what they are betting the outcome of the referendum on.

    23. Macsenex says:

      I do find this notion that you can only be a permanent member of the security council of the UN if you have nuclear weapons wierd.

      The UN is due reform but the vested interests which already exist will put paid to any.

      The only issue the Unionists face is will Scotland let EWNI take the UK’s seat?

      One for the negotiators!

    24. Grenscot says:

      Speaking as a British Citizen who was depending upon Britain’s assistance many years ago for extrication, if need be, in a tight situation, despite the fact that they had many more ships than they had now and in fact were in the area, I got diddly squat. I was offered assistance by the Canadians purely on the basis that I was working for a Canadian company. The Scottish government would have to be truly abysmal to be any worse at looking after their overseas citizens than the British Govt.

    25. fairiefromtheearth says:

      The power is already in the East, China and India cant buy enough gold and try to get their citizens to buy as much as they can, an asset worth something not fiat monies, Russia has got all the resorces it needs enough to sell to other peoples, what has the west got War and a ponzi debt system. oh just went out and voted theirs alot of anti-euro partys on the ballot, no SSP so had to vote SNP cant vote green as Harvey thinks chemispraying is a conspiracey theiry, FFs man go out in the street and look up into the sky, oh and thats right their isent enough time on planet Earth to use up all the fossile fuels. LOL Patrick you do know how plants breath right i mean being the head of the green party and all. 😉

    26. Jim Marshall says:

      rabb 1.15

      The mention of eggs makes me remember Eggwina and I feel sick.

    27. galamcennalath says:

      Perhaps ‘think tank’ was a typo somewhere? The Telegraph didn’t realise it was actually ‘fish tank’ when they thought it worthy of quoting.

    28. JLT says:

      Bugger (the Panda) says:

      I bags a Scottish Passport on iDay +1, I don’t want to travel to countries full of brown people who want to kill me if I am a Brit.

      Strangely enough, I said that to our local SNP Councillor at the Polling Station this morning. I want a passport with the Scottish Unicorns on it; not the British coat of arms.

      My current passport is only 2 years old, but believe me, that’s out the window if the opportunity should arise that I can finally buy a Scottish one.

    29. Clootie says:

      …it’s pathetic. The really do think we are stupid.

      We are to be in awe of an academic title and a grand title for an “opinion” tank.

      We can all read / access the internet / etc. We do not need to be guided by those who have sold out on the core principle of academia to boost their financial coffers.

      The con man wears a suit and smiles and not all are politicians.

      Andrew Dorman has undermined the trust of the public in such studies and their value.

    30. JLT says:

      Fairtyfromtheearth

      …oh just went out and voted theirs alot of anti-euro partys on the ballot, no SSP so had to vote SNP

      Funnily enough, there were 10 options on my one in Kirkton in Livingston. To be quite honest, it took my breath away. Literally, if you didn’t choose SNP, SSP or Greens, you were having to choose from 7 right-wing parties. Bizarrely, first one on the list …’Britain First’ (who in hell’s name is standing as the BFP’s Livingston candidate), BNP, UKIP, Tories, Labour, Libs and No2EU.

      Yep …that was one sheet that was fairly unbalanced in candidates!

    31. velofello says:

      Reads like the benign Prof’s wish list for Scotland.

    32. Jamie Arriere says:

      There’s been a dyslexic word juggle there surely – isn’t his name Andy Professer and he’s actually a doorman?

    33. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “cant vote green as Harvey thinks chemispraying is a conspiracey theiry”

      EVERYONE thinks that. The word “chemtrails” is an instaban around here, so mind how you go.

    34. Liquid Lenny says:

      JLT

      You don’t get a local candidate in the Euro Elections, its Scotland wide.

      Did I hear right that the Royal Mail has posted record profits but warms that the days of the universal service agreement are numbered. Should add a few points onto YES.

    35. HandandShrimp says:

      How do people like this face going out the door of a day?

      So much negativity not just about Scotland but about rUK too. Talk about “we are all doomed”.

      The proposal for a Scottish Defence Force are sound. They provide a practical, modern, and flexible capability which over the medium term will not only protect Scotland but fulfil UN peacekeeping commitments. What more do we need? The proposed naval assets are better than we what we have at the moment. If we had to put up half a dozen jets and they were actually engaging other planes in Scottish airspace then we would be at war which, frankly, doesn’t seem likely.

      What rUK do with Trident once they remove it, the Security Council etc., is up to them. I can’t see it being much of our business.

    36. galamcennalath says:

      “JLT says:
      I want a passport with the Scottish Unicorns on it; not the British coat of arms.”

      That is one of many thinks to look forward to!

      Colour? Our Scottish passports need to be a different colour. Personally I would favour Saltire Blue if the cover was made of a material which wouldn’t get grubby 🙂

    37. Dcanmore says:

      This just parroting, only this time someone who is clearly a British militarist. The Tory guff is just filler to hide his actual ‘expertise’ that just makes him sound like an all-rounder academic. Prof Dorman already has the answers BT/WM wants to tell you, it’s just case of putting in the filler beforehand.

      The good professor has close links with Whitehall, he who pays the piper (in grants) …

      Biography:
      Andrew Dorman is a Professor in International Security and an Associate Fellow at the Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House. His research focuses on decision-making and the utility of force utilising the case studies of British defence and security policy and European Security. He has held grants with the ESRC, British Academy, Leverhulme Trust, Ministry of Defence and US Army War College. He trained as a Chartered Accountant with KPMG, qualifying in 1990 before returning to academia. He has previously taught at the University of Birmingham, where he completed his masters and doctoral degrees, and the Royal Naval College Greenwich.

      Professional Activities:
      Chair, Independent Scientific Evaluation Group (NATO)
      Book Reviews Advisory Panel, International Affairs (2010-)
      Founding Chair, Kenneth N Waltz Dissertation Prize, APSA (2006-

      Consultant to:
      Ministry of Defence
      US Office of Force Transformation
      Swedish Ministry of Defence
      1 (Ge/NL) Corps
      Australian Land Warfare Centre
      School of Royal Artillery
      Congressional Budget Office

      http://www.kcl.ac.uk/sspp/kpi/people/kpi-policy-experts/secdefence/dorman.aspx

    38. msean says:

      Another day,another think tank. Who pays for all these think tanks? It seems that whoever is paying is getting ripped off lol.

    39. cirsium says:

      thanks for posting the original article, Angus McLellan. In addition to miscalling the Scottish National Party, Professor Dornan also cites the Economist’s Skintland polemic and Lord George Robertson’s “forces of darkness” speech and all in the first paragraph. As James Sanderson, the football pundit, used to say “Bunkum”. I did not read any further.

      .

    40. chalks says:

      So predictions on how many seats UKIP gets?

      I’ll go for 24

    41. X marks the (sweet) spot says:

      Surely if England chooses “in perpetuity” to vote for the Conservatives then that is their democratic right? (Pity Wales and N.Ireland though but that’s their fight to take up).

      If Scotland really did make a difference to a future UK vote, how do you think that would go down with voters in England when they find out that their democratic choice was subverted by those whinging Jocks? I’m sure things would turn ugly then, despite the blatant irony that Scotland’s had to endure that very scenario for 307 years…

      And how many fighter jets does an independent Scotland really need? While not advocating a similar situation, you have to look at Ireland and wonder how they managed to avoid being invaded by the German Nazis, Commies, North Koreans and space aliens since gaining indepedence. They have the grand total of ZERO, NADA, NO fighter jets AND shockingly are not a member of NATO.

    42. Macandroid says:

      Bugger (the Panda)

      I don’t want to travel to countries full of brown people who want to kill me.

      Wot – like England?

    43. eezy says:

      Imagine the agenda for their meetings….
      “How stoopid can we be.”

      http://www.eezypeezylemonsqeezy.com

    44. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I did not read any further.”

      Unfortunately I did, and trust me, the pish keeps on coming.

    45. JLT says:

      Liquid Lenny says:

      JLT …You don’t get a local candidate in the Euro Elections, its Scotland wide.

      Of course it is. Doh!

    46. Bob Costello says:

      I could be wrong but a couple of weeks age when it was thought that British subjects were in possible danger in Kenya, it was Thomas Cook and Thompsons Holidays who evacuated them

    47. Dcanmore says:

      Noting what the good Professor is consultant to:

      US Office of Force Transformation –

      The United States Department of Defense Office of Force Transformation (OFT) was established October 29, 2001 in the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld called for the creation of this new office to support his transformation vision along with President George W. Bush’s broad mandate to transform U.S. military capabilities. The transformation process intends to challenge the status quo with new concepts for American defense to ensure an overwhelming and continuing competitive advantage. The Director, Force Transformation serves as advocate, focal point, and catalyst for transformation among the Department, reporting directly to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Office_of_Force_Transformation

      In other words ‘lets see if we can kill brown people more efficiently and on budget.’

    48. galamcennalath says:

      I’m sorry for going OT, but JLT has set me thinking. Another thing to look forward to is nice commemorative Scottish stamps (issued of course by the renationalised Royal Mail, well, out bit of it).

    49. orri says:

      Really confused here.

      Things like NATO not wanting Scotland as a member when we would be providing a far stronger conventional presence in our on waters than we get at present and also providing the excuse the rUK would need to ditch its own WMD’s so as to be able to retain a larger conventional force.

      Things like Labour needing us to get in at Westminster when they’ve almost never have before and the Blair government was so far to the right that it was nothing like Scottish Labour. Further to which the last GE seemed to concentrate a lot of ire on Gordon Brown and his intervention on the behalf of “Scottish” banks links that will be broken should Scotland and the rUK part company. Never mind that it’s up to the rUK if they want perpetual conservative rule or not.

      The cracker is of course that somehow Scotland should act in the best interests of the rUK rather than Scotland. Personally I don’t mind if the rUK holds on to the UK’s seat on the UN security council or not. It’s just that I don’t see wasting money on military hardware that will, hopefully, never be used as a priority over more conventional defensive forces or on the welfare of the nation is something I want any part of.

    50. JLT says:

      galamcennalath

      Colour? Our Scottish passports need to be a different colour

      I could be wrong, but if we are part of the EU, won’t they still be the same burgundy colour. I’m sure all EU countries use the burgundy as the default colour.

    51. HandandShrimp says:

      The Conservative rule in perpetuity is I think the piece in this article to show that the report is utter bunk. A Tory wet dream rather than a think tank report.

      Soz for an mental images that may disturb.

    52. Thepnr says:

      @Grenscot

      Totally agree. if I needed to be evacuated from some other country I believe a Scottish Government would act in my interests more than a UK one would.

      In 2010 I was stuck in Bergen because of the volcanic ash cloud, I was all over the internet trying to find a way back not involving air travel. The SG had set up a website for those stranded and in time I was offered transport back on a ferry that the SG chartered.

      I’m sure it was the Aberdeen/Lerwick ferry and was open to all who were stuck in Norway. Westminster did a big fat zero.

    53. deerokus says:

      The only really meaningful national secession movements in France are the Breton and Basque ones. The biggest Breton nationalist party however isn’t really seeking independence any time soon – reunification of the historical territory of Brittany (Nantes is part of a different administrative region) and a devolved parliament are the current objectives.

      I don’t really know much about French Basque separatism, but it involves a tiny part of the country.

    54. X marks the (sweet) spot says:

      JLT

      I’m sure all EU countries use the burgundy as the default colour.

      My Irish wife’s Irish passport is the same burgundy colour as my UK passport. But when Scotland gets kicked out of the EU (just before being forced to adopt the Euro), I doubt burgundy will be allowed. Maybe we’ll need to adopt another colour for the passports such as pink or orange (after the ethnic cleansing of the Catholics is complete – ah good ol’ George).

    55. HandandShrimp says:

      JLT

      I think so, size and format all have to be the same…although it would be unicorns rather than lions as the cover piece emblem.

    56. faolie says:

      That wis excellent Stu. ‘..mind-bleeding idiocy of some slobbering, sponge-witted poltroon..’ LOL right enough!

      Got me thinking though, that if we’re so important in preventing the end of civilisation as we know it, then perhaps other countries are secretly in talks with the FM as to how we could form a new union with them. Angela Merkel, perhaps, to try to prevent the social democrats from ever taking power again!

      Or, or, maybe lots of European states might actually get together and invite Scotland into their club, seeing as we’re so crucial to power and oil and fish and whisky and the GIUK gap and everything.

      Oh..

    57. Jim Thomson says:

      If think tanks are just that, a promulgation medium for thoughts, then we have nothing to fear. I’d worry more about a reality tank.

      These buggers really need to be peer reviewed before they can publish. Then again, their peers are clones of themselves. Lost cause.

    58. Red Squirrel says:

      iScotland isn’t forcing the UK to disarm – if they can’t find anywhere else to park their WMD that’s their problem.

      Nukes and oil – that’s really all they’re bothered about, well apart from the WM trough and the Ermine robes.

      Sunday’s going to be depressing with all those UKIPers voted in… I’m guessing as high as 30 seats.

    59. It’s becoming harder and harder to parody the ‘positive’ messages that Better Together are spouting. Who knew we were holding back the tide of darkness all by ourselves?

    60. Piemonteis says:

      I really don’t get why British Embassies are held in such high esteem. I’ve tried to deal with them here and they’re useless.

      The first time, I went there in person and was told I wasn’t allowed in to speak to anyone unless I was investing in the UK. I was after legal advice. The guy on the door must have been on work experience, and couldn’t speak a word of English, which I wouldn’t normally bat an eyelid at, but at the British Embassy? I wonder where all that passport money is going.

      I was then told, by the way, standing there at the door of the British Embassy, that if I wanted to speak to reception at the embassy I would have to phone, even though the reception staff were 4 metres away, through the wall! Ever since, I’ve been dealing with the Czech embassy whenever I’ve had an issue.

      Also, it should be said that the services offered by the embassy are all extortionate. I means, 102 quid for a new passport? I checked the Irish prices once, and they were about half that, and the courier fee was included.

      What I did notice at the embassy, though, was that the real estate price of the property must be phenomenally high. Scotland’s 8-9% of it would buy a nice wee pad in the centre of the city.

      Rant now over.

    61. Thepnr says:

      Look, the man’s a Professor. He knows things and is only trying to educate us, we must respect his analysis because he works for a think tank.

      Right, all these think tanks tell us how to think. That’s their job.

      If you don’t unnerstand that then your stupid!

    62. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Rev, don’t know if you’re still after images, but the cover of the current SSP Voice is a cracker, and it’s ‘portrait’ too:

      http://www.scottishsocialistparty.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/ssv438.pdf

    63. faolie says:

      The good prof might be on the money though about that cherished permanent wee seat on the UN Security Council. If the nukes go, what’s to stop the Russians and the French telling them that the stakes are nukes only and if you don’t have them you’re oot!

      Worse than losing Scotland? Ooo, I’d think so. Scotland doesn’t make the UK [look] globally important, but that permanent membership does.

    64. Dr Ew says:

      @rabb

      Hold everything. What’s this about an egg shortage?

      Been right through the white paper and, sure enough, not a word about eggs! What are those dam durty nats hiding now?!?
      What’s the plan Vitamin Plan B???

      And what about the chickens??? Won’t somebody think of the chickens?!?!?

    65. heedtracker says:

      TeamGB embassies maybe useless but the ones I’ve seen around the planet are stunning palaces of Brirish opulence. Must a great life farting about in fhe UKOK diplomatic corp, if that’s your thing. A lot of these giant uk outfits provide the life of Riley for quite a lot of the right sort of Brit, from the BBC , Whitehall, diplomatic corp, Brussels etc.

    66. Marcia says:

      As soon as I see ‘Scottish Nationalist Party’ I know the person writing the article doesn’t know Scottish politics very well.

      It reminds of the 1960’s before it became fashionable to use the initials of the Scottish National Party. Some of the old stalwards from the 1930’s who are no longer with us did not like to abbreviate the name. They always called it ‘The National Party’ and were very sniffy of calling it the S.N.P.

    67. Max Solanis says:

      JLT says:
      22 May, 2014 at 2:13 pm
      galamcennalath

      Colour? Our Scottish passports need to be a different colour

      I could be wrong, but if we are part of the EU, won’t they still be the same burgundy colour. I’m sure all EU countries use the burgundy as the default colour.

      I don’t want burgandy, I would prefer a nice blue passport. Blue with the Scottish unicorns on it. 🙂

      Also, been and cast my vote as well. What a choice, Britain first, BNP, UKIP, No2EU, The three mainstreams or SNP. Surprisingly, I voted for the one party I know will stand up for Scotlands interests. I hope everyone else does too.

    68. Ravelin says:

      I’m getting increasingly disappointed…that my own potential favorite headline hasn’t been aired yet i.e. “Vote YES and the gates of hell will be opened!” with, of course, the sub-headline “SNP proposal for an Independent Scotland would see the Devil and his minions unleashed on unsuspecting world.” There’s still time I suppose, maybe a good one for The Scotsman on Sept 17th?

      O/T (reply to comment on previous story)
      @Chalks/Craig Evans

      Also BT are planning to meet at Kemnay bowling club car park at 10 am on Saturday morning for a leafleting event.

      Should be a good chance to try and get some answers from BT?

      This Saturday? If so they’ll never get parked! It’s the annual kids football tournament run by Kemnay FC this weekend at Bogbeth Park, 9am until late afternoon, beside the bowling club etc. Parking will be heavily restricted due to the numbers turning up and the cones the police normally put out to keep the roads clear(ish).

      I wonder if they know this and that’s the plan i.e. leaflet the tournament. I’ll be there so I’ll keep a look out for them (and probably make sure I’ve not got any ‘Yes’ badges on so that I can have some fun with them if I’ve time).

    69. Thepnr says:

      Brainy people with titles are a bit set in their ways in my opinion.

      I remember as a mechanical engineering student doing an experiment with a mini wind tunnel and car body shapes. The tunnel blew smoke in along with the wind and we were to observe the flow of the smoke over the toy car shape.

      Apparently there were supposed to be whorls of smoke coming over the rear of the car. You were supposed to draw this and describe it. I never seen any and said so in my report. Result…4/10

      In other words when you tell the truth and it does not align with theirs, your an eejit and are marked down accordingly.

    70. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      galamcennalath

      It needs to be the same colour as all the EU Passports.

      Burgundy or Bordeaux id you are a francophone.

    71. kendomacaroonbar says:

      @Thepnr it’s intellectual arrogance… I’ve seen it far too often.

    72. Oneironaut says:

      @Dr Ew
      “And what about the chickens??? Won’t somebody think of the chickens?!?!?”

      Personally, I dream of a society where chickens (and all other kinds of poultry and avifauna, regardless of the colour of their feathers) are free to cross the road without having their motives questioned and laughed at.

      And in an independent Scotland, we shall have such a society!

      Trust me, I’m a professor! That’s what this diploma I got by collecting 12 tokens from cereal packets says! 😀

    73. HandandShrimp says:

      Ravelin

      Well I am expecting the headline “Cthulhu to Rise” Cthulhu confirms that a vote for Scottish independence will unleash him from his watery sleep and he will devour all who abide in the lands of Caledonia.

    74. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      @ Piemonteis

      The UK Embassy is right opposite the Imperial Park, in which lies the Imperial Palace.

      It is in a Street called Ichibancho. The full address is

      1 Ichibancho, Chiyoda, Tokyo

      Ichiban means No 1

    75. Max Solanis says:

      “Look, the man’s a Professor. He knows things and is only trying to educate us, we must respect his analysis because he works for a think tank.

      Right, all these think tanks tell us how to think. That’s their job.

      If you don’t unnerstand that then your stupid!”

      On that point, here’s my Thought for the day.

      When you’re young, you’re taught to question things. To ask questions if you don’t understand. Never to believe something at face value, to question and get at the facts. You’re taught to question so that you can educate yourself and make yourself a better person.

      However, when you grow up and become an adult, when you question something, you are told either to shut up and stop rocking the boat, or that it’s ‘because’.

      Why is that? What is it that frightens adults so much, that they need to shut down enquiring minds? At what age are you meant to just ‘accept’ and do what you’re told? Why has society managed to get this so wrong?

      Only by questioning can you get at the truth and expose falsities. Only by questioning can you start to understand about things that beforehand seemed mysterious and complex. Only by questioning can we begin to travel toward a better future.

      So question everything. Don’t take things at face value. Find out the facts before you make up your mind. By questioning, you may make yourself a better person.

    76. Marcia says:

      Oneironaut

      You should have said, ‘Trust me I am a doctor, a spin doctor.’

    77. bjsalba says:

      What is the circulation of the Daily Telegraph in Scotland? How far has it sunk?

      About 18,500 was the last I remember so that would be one in every 300 adults? At most they would sell 4 in my little town. Maybe that is why I can’t remember seeing any DTs in the shops that sell papers.

    78. heedtracker says:

      All the Torygraph does day after day is highlight institutional corruption at the highest levels of teamGB.

      This Prof alone knows full well Scotland is not under any threat from anyone and the Scottish defence will be more than adequate but he has no qualms in fearmongering like this. We have a lot to gain shaking off this enormous cabal in September.

    79. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      I forgot

      1 Ichibancho, Chiyoda, Tokyo

      Used to be worth more than the GDP of most countries, before the Japanese economic collapse, about 20 years ago, through which they are still living.

    80. Thepnr says:

      @Oneironaut

      Now THAT was an LOL. 🙂

    81. Helena Brown says:

      You would think that someone with a supposed the brain the size of a planet would do their homework before coming out with said tripe. I warmed to Mark Carney because he had the brains to stay out of the controversy and the wits to remember he might just need a job here. It was unfortunate that the Better Together types hadn’t the same.
      I too looked up Professor Andrew Dorman, so someone in his family had a decent job in the past after all a door man does earn his living out in the cold. Pity his ancestor didn’t.
      Don’t know how many times the people on the comments pages of the ahem, national newspapers were sent to Wings to see the truth in the fact that the Tories would not be in forever, trouble is they did not want to believe it.

    82. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      @ Marcia

      I prefer,

      “Trust me I’m not Doctor”

      You coming to CH2?

    83. Thepnr says:

      @Max Solanis

      I agree and you have put it so well. Post more often, I want to hear what you have to say.

    84. Max Solanis says:

      Many thanks Thepnr. I shall endeavour to do so.

    85. chalks says:

      Carney doesn’t have brains, he is the man for the job that Osbourne picked him for.

      Canada has low interest rates and a housing bubble….just like us, Carney used to work there.

      South Korea has burgundy passports as well.

    86. jon esquierdo says:

      This is so full of shyte it must a sceptic tank not a think tank

    87. Jamie Arriere says:

      Been up to vote too. On the way out, I was accosted by a BT lady offering me a leaflet. I said “I’ll be polite enough to accept it” and we exchanged laughter and a knowing smile (that I was YES through & through).

      Luckily there was a bin just around the corner.

    88. manandboy says:

      http://www.scottishsocialistparty.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/ssv438.pdf
      ___________________________________________________________

      I’m not a fan of the SSP, but having just followed the link (provided by Ian Brotherhood above)
      and having read several of their articles on Independence,
      the SSP have gone up in my estimation.

      I strongly recommend the aforementioned articles.

      Well done to the SSP and Ian Brotherhood.

    89. fergie35 says:

      This tactic is exactly how GW Bush got elected, on a ticket of fear and we will protect you (by p!ssing of more natives far away, and making them scared also?)
      The UK government must be wasting many £s on telling all their think tanks and committees to come out with this keech. I think UK will have far more enemies abroad than Scotland.

    90. manandboy says:

      Max Solanis says:
      22 May, 2014 at 2:54 pm
      here’s my Thought for the day.

      When you’re young, you’re taught to question things.
      ______________________________________________________

      Max, really enjoyed your comment. However, I have a caveat.

      For your readers,

      Invest one’s questions with some thought beforehand.

      And never ever ask an inane question.

      Cheers Max. I look forward to seeing your name on these pages again.

    91. Marcia says:

      Bugger (the Panda)

      Sorry I cannot make it as I have relatives up from London.

    92. Grouse Beater says:

      Chalks

      Carney doesn’t have brains … Osbourne picked him.

      I got the distinct impression Carney was sent to soften up the Scots before Osborne waded in with his unilateral “No Currency Union” proclamation.

      The philanthropist and orchestral conductor, Sir Thomas Beecham, was asked to what he attributed his success.

      “I always choose inferior deputies when on holiday.”

    93. Graeme Doig says:

      I’ve done a wee study of my own. The conclusions of which are as follows :

      1. As a direct result of a Yes vote Scotland will no longer have to put up with all this derogatory, inaccurate pish.
      2. See ‘1’

    94. Grouse Beater says:

      Max

      So question everything. Don’t take things at face value. Find out the facts before you make up your mind. By questioning, you may make yourself a better person.

      I’d modify that somewhat to, questions authority, and always question those given authority who want more.

    95. eezy says:

      Big Al’s back in town….just a wee reminder….

      http://www.eezypeezylemonsqeezy.com

    96. X_Sticks says:

      Marcia says:

      “Sorry I cannot make it as I have relatives up from London.”

      Bring them too! 😀

    97. Oneironaut says:

      @Marcia
      Well I thought of applying for the post of 12th Doctor a couple of years back.
      I even have a sonic screwdriver!
      (It’s sonic because it makes a noise when I hit it against something!) 😉

      @Thepnr
      Thanks. Just keeping up morale 😉

      @Max Solanis
      I know the feeling, I’ve had that all my life.
      For me it was when I was younger, I was curious about pretty much everything, but all I heard was; “I don’t know, now stop asking stupid questions!” or “Why? because it’s just the way it is!” or any number of equally frustrating responses.

      I learned very quickly that asking questions about society in general is especially frowned-upon by “grown-ups” (who really should be grown-up enough to know better!)

      Really wish the internet had come along sooner. I get more answers on here than I ever did from anyone else when I was growing up.
      It does mean that people really have no excuse for ignorance, other than being too stubborn to consider that they may be wrong about voting No saving the universe or whatever they’re saying this week.

    98. lumilumi says:

      (Sorry, haven’t read all the comments, so apologies if all this has already been pointed out.)

      What strikes me most is how this is written entirely from the point of view of the rUK with a couple of warnings thrown in for Scotland.

      Fair dos, it’s the duty of the ( r)UK government to look after the interests of that country. What really irks me is that ( r)UK interests are presented as somehow identical to Scottish interests. They aren’t.

      The guff about NATO. The clue is in the name: North Atlantic Treaty Organization. NATO will be desperate to have Scotland aboard. Look at a map.

    99. Caroline Corfield says:

      there was an article on the BBC news site which I thought chimed quite well with the 5 years worth of oil left, and that is apparently we only have 20 years worth of trees left.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-highlands-islands-27506463

    100. Max Solanis says:

      @Grouse Beater

      It doesn’t have to be authority. I may have a friend who I believe is telling me nonsense, I’ll question that. They could be telling me the truth, but unless I question, I won’t be able to verify it. The same can happen in any circumstance in everyday life, be it from authority or not. 😉

    101. Marcia says:

      X_Sticks

      I had thought of sending them out leafleting for Yes if I get bored with them.

    102. Justin Ross says:

      “Scotland’s airspace would be unprotected after independence because the dozen fighter jets pledged in the White Paper are barely half what is currently needed to provide that service, he added.”

      UTTER NONSENSE

      NATO’s Baltic air policing mission provides a Quick Reaction Alert for the three Baltic countries (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania). The mission comprises 4 (yes, just 4) fighters provided by a different NATO country every few months.

      So that’s just 4 fighters to patrol a total Baltic land area of 67,563 square miles.

      What the SNP propose is 12-16 fighters to patrol a total Scottish land area of just 30,414 square miles.

      I know that doesn’t take into account the size of Scotland’s maritime airspace (which is extensive), but if the Baltic states can get by with just four fighters while being located right next to Russia, I think Scotland will be just fine with 12-16 (yes, 12-16!) fighters to patrol a smaller and much less insecure area.

      Maybe Professor Dorman just comes up with his conclusions and then writes his report afterwards, like so many Unionist “experts”?

    103. Duncan Spence says:

      PS. French secessionist movement probably Corsica.

    104. Max Solanis says:

      @Oneironaut

      I guess I was quite lucky then. When I asked questions when i was young, if my mum and sister didn’t know the answer they said “sorry, I don’t know, but how about we find out together.”
      Sometimes that meant picking up a book from the shelf, sometimes heading to the local library, Sometimes, finding out from a teacher at school. But most of the time I found out the answer.

    105. TJenny says:

      Caroline Corfield – But what about the squirrels, will nobody think of the squirrels. 🙁

    106. Oneironaut says:

      @Max Solanis
      Yep, sounds like you got lucky there 🙂

      To be fair, my dad was ok. He used to work as a lorry driver, and took me out with him when he was driving all over the country and didn’t seem to mind answering my endless stream of questions on everything I saw.

      Probably couldn’t do that now, with health and safety rules getting in the way. I almost feel sorry for the kids of today. (And now I’m sounding like my dad too!)

    107. ronnie anderson says:

      Thank god ah goat ma Edumacation Certification 40 odd years
      ago, ah couldna afford that Education that Prof Dorman.

      Could some pedant dey a spell check on this post, ah wuld
      like tae keep ma Edumacation standards high.

    108. Something spooky is happening.

      I`ve tried 3x times to illuminate an exacting counter to free us from Faslane re-siting debt – but disappears as soon as I hit submit comment.

    109. TJenny says:

      WantonWampum – try refreshing the page before you hit submit.

    110. 4th attempt.

      Westminster demands an Indy Scot must compensate in full for the re-siting of Faslane. This ludicrous tax to be imposed on Scots is supported by Scottish Labour MP`s,MSP`s and MEP`s in collusion with tories and libdems.

      To counter their ("Tractor" - Ed)ous tax versus the people who elected them, we must remember that westminster employed contractors that destroyed tens of thousands of tons of the oldest geological rock and seabed formations on the planet to allow entry to the Gare Loch and approach to Faslane.

      Check out the “Sea charts of Scotland” via the links to the Clyde,Loch Fyne and etc. chart to witness the scars that defaced the map of scotland.

      Ancient rock and seabed formations that are 650-750 millionyears old. Can never be restored to original state or original age.

      ( 650 million x £100 per year = £65 Billion ).

    111. Muscleguy says:

      @JLT and BuggerThePanda
      That is why my NZ citizenship is so useful. Whenever I travel overseas, regardless of where, I carry both my UK and NZ passports. Firstly so that if one is lost or stolen I’m not entirely in the lurch. Secondly because in the unlikely eventuality of a terrorist with a grievance against the UK hostage type situation I can ditch my UK passport and offer my NZ one instead. Much less threatening.

    112. David Briggs says:

      ‘the Devil and his minions unleashed on unsuspecting world’

      That particular portal opened in Whitehall in 2010.

      First through was IDS.

    113. Muscleguy says:

      Unless the hostage taker is Samoan. Western, formerly German Samoa is the only country NZ has ever invaded and taken over. At Imperial Britain’s request at the start of WWI to deny it to the Germans as a base. Australia took PNG, the South Africans German SW Africa AKA Namibia. The Japanese, our allies then, took the German Chinese coastal enclave, the name of which escapes me.

    114. Iain More says:

      I asked myself once did I want to save England from UKIP and other rabid right wing lunatics and I didn’t spend much time arriving at the answer, it was No. If they want to vote for them then let them. I will be voting Yes to crack myself up laughing at their stupidity and I will have no tolerance for their racism and self indulgence.

    115. Camz says:

      I imagine that if Scotland separated from rUK, England’s turnout would increase, as the English suddenly realise their vote becomes slightly more important, especially in the marginal seats.

      If we had 100% turnout, every seat could potentially be a marginal, every time there’s a General Election. Then parties would have to get very, very serious about campaigning.

      As it is, it suits them to take funding from 100% of the country and focus it on 10%-20% of the constituencies. So if you’re in a safe seat, your party funding is being wasted on some other constituency’s vote share, such as winning a contract in the Midlands.

    116. Tamson says:

      Fact is, the UK already, has permanent Tory government.

    117. Tam Jardine says:

      Thepnr

      I have posted before about the ash cloud and the difference in response between the Scottish Government (who sent a ferry) and Westminster (who did nothing). The Scottish Government was criticised at the time for the low uptake on the Bergen ferry and therefore the cost.

      In hindsight I think it was a fair first response to that kind of crisis for a relatively young Scottish Government whose remit didn’t stretch to foreign affairs of this kind. The Foreign office were only concerned with people trapped across the English Channel.

      Somewhere in me there is a very boring book on the ash cloud debacle. Think of the Greyhound Scenicruiser trip in A Confederacy of Dunces.

      With regards to the white paper defence proposals and the Professor’s remarks I can’t help thinking that whatever the size of the Scottish Airforce or Navy proposed it would be slated.

      What these guys can’t understand is that the size of airforce a country needs for defence is different from the size you need to prosecute war abroad.

      But then the White Paper is a plan and the way democracy works is that we will elect a new government who will pass legislation on these matters based on advice, defence requirements and budget. After Independence it is our business and no one else’s.

      Nice guy is our professor. A quick Google and the Telegraph from 2011 tells us:

      Prof Dorman, writing in a personal capacity, made 10 recommendations including using the international aid budget to pay for more defence projects and “declaring” military support for the Olympics in London next year as a way of receiving additional funding.

      The word ‘hawk’ springs to mind.

    118. JLT says:

      Just checked to see what choices England had in their EU choices. One that caught the eye was the ‘Harmony Party’ and as Mark Pack (Political Blogger) quoted, ‘though as its own description starts “Anti-immigration…”, it doesn’t want harmony with everyone! …Priceless!

      It’s policies seem to be ‘zero-immigration, anti-EU, pro-jobs”, the party has a mixed bag of policies …yep if that’s harmony, then I wouldn’t like to see discord.

      So …another right-wing party on top of the Tories, Labour, Libs, UKIP, No2EU, BNP, An Independence from Europe, English Democrats, Christian Peoples Alliance (who appear to be anti-European), We Demand a Referendum Now Party, Liberty GB Party and of course, the good old ‘Britain First Party’.

      Seriously …what is happening to England?

    119. Captain Caveman says:

      …But it’s surely not as simple as that? Would those Labour administrations have had anything like the working Parliamentary majorities with only English, Welsh and N.Irish votes?

    120. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      When I was in Kano, Nigeria I had an English friend who was charged with murdering his nightwatchman despite the fact that he was about 400 miles away in Maidugeri when the guy died. (The deceased had in fact fallen in an epileptic fit and banged his head on the generator when he went down).

      John got locked up awaiting trial while we contacted the UK Commission office in Kaduna. They wouldn’t act as “they did not interfere with the judicial process of friendly countries”. The whole thing was of course a trumped up nonsense that was to be resolved by some form of gratuity to the authorities involved in it.

      The Italian Embassy stepped in an resolved it(John worked from an Italian construction company). Believe me a Nigerian prison is a very dangerous place to be in for any length of time.

      UK expatriates routinely got assistance from the Irish Embassy in Nigeria as the Irish Ambassador and his staff travelled about the federation without all the airs and graces the British authorities effected

      Don’t get me going about the pathetic support Brits get from British Commissions and Embassies in many places about the world

    121. Mutters says:

      In his bio, Professor Dorman is listed on the Kings College website as a consultant to the MOD.

    122. Tam Jardine says:

      Dave McEwan Hill

      I have heard similar stories which have confirmed to me this idea of us being protected abroad by our wonderful UK state is a myth. Trouble is, it is rarely questioned in the media and during the referendum it is used as a stick to beat the Yes campaign.

      It is a lovely warm notion that a crack team of go-getting empire types are in the background when you are abroad, ready to take your side against the Foreigners. It is just a notion though, dispelled by experience. Feel free to bang on about it as much as you like.

      This business for Scotland piece highlights how far up the priority list Scotland is… Our own Embassies would have a fairly low benchmark. They could hardly do less.

      http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/scotlands-exporters-let-down-by-uk-embassy-network/

      I am sure I read about this on Wings but can’t find the article.

    123. Mariaskid says:

      All these scare stories are now being recycled for the benefit of those undecideds who are just starting to think about the referendum, and are now paying attention to political coverage. We just have to keep refuting the lies and half truths and redouble our efforts to point switherers towards more reliable sources of information….. That’ll be Wings etc.

    124. Craig says:

      Stuart,

      I really like the way you expose these liars and hypocrites, without mincing your words, no matter whether they are Professors or lesser idiots.

      It would be excellent for the independence cause if your articles were being published in paper form with a wide distribution to the general public.

      I wonder if someone could interest the Weirs in such a project, given what they have been subjected to in the media.

    125. Tamson says:

      Gee, I wonder who one of the presidents of Chatham House is?

    126. McKiwi says:

      I am a Scottish-born New Zealander (and, for my sins, a retired Professor) who is currently living , briefly, in Germany. I can’t remember how I discovered WoS, but I’ve been reading it and other Yes blogs for the past couple of months. So, before going on to what prompted me to post this message, I’d like to say thank you to Stuart for (a) arousing a real interest in what’s happening in the country of my birth, (b) for some REAL journalism and, (c) for making me give up on believing anything the BBC says and reducing my online Guardian reading to about 2 minutes a day.

      Now to what I really wanted to say. The shit about Scotland being too small, too far away, too stupid etc. to be able to run its own affairs has been infuriating me. This latest piece of crap was the final straw, so here we go. Comparisons have been made with other small European countries but I haven’t come across any with NZ.

      NZ has a population of about 4.5m people. We have no fighter jets. We have no submarines. We have no aircraft carriers. Nuclear weapon carrying and nuclear powered vessels are banned from our waters. We were cold-shouldered by the US for years because of this but I don’t recall anybody invading us.

      We are about 3,000km, separated by ocean, from our nearest neighbours and over 12,000km from our biggest market. We have no oil worth talking about. We have very little manufacturing. We make our living from being a primary producer, mainly dairy, and primary produce makes up about 68% of exports. Tourism, “knowledge” and other services make up about 25%. Unlike Australia, we don’t live by digging ourselves up and exporting the outcome to China. In the OECD stats on GDP per capita, in which a lot of people put a lot of stock, we rank only 3 places below the UK which is a very unimpressive 17th.

      So, according to the BT “logic”, NZ shouldn’t exist. We’re far too small, we’re too far away from anywhere, we don’t have an army that can be used for aggression and we’re just a bunch of farmers. We should, presumably, be petitioning to give away our sovereignty and become part of Australia.

      Scotland, however, is part of and will continue to be part of, the second or third (depending on how it’s measured) largest economy in the world. Scotland has whisky, various primary produce, still has some manufacturing, has its own “tech” industries, has terrific tourism potential, and I don’t need to say anything about an educated population. Scotland is geographically connected to its largest trading partner. Scotland also has oil.

      So given, these comparisons, why can’t Scotland exist as a nation? Why does Scotland need England? NZ, much less favourably situated and with fewer resources, gets by very well.

      Sorry for the length of this post, but I needed to get it off my chest.

    127. Grouse Beater says:

      McKiwi
      I needed to get it off my chest.

      And just as well – it’s an excellent summation of New Zealand’s dignity and energy. Thank you. I will recount your points in talks and lectures.

      (And it has a great film industry – I recall the early Crash Palace!”

    128. Tam Jardine says:

      McKiwi

      How can this “New Zealand” you speak of exist? How can it survive? I am sure there must be a Westminster paper refuting your claims.

      Seriously, I don’t know what it would take for the press and the Westminster Parties to agree that Scotland could be a successful country. I expect that if we were more resource rich, we would not have been allowed to get this far.

      That Westminster is trying to keep us is no surprise. The all but total complicity in the attack by the press for such a sustained period of time has surprised me. I am sure it was similar only during the first and second world war.

      Thanks for your excellent post. Far from being too long it left me wanting to know more. If you have the time and can be arsed I would suggest a longer piece sent to the Rev would get a well deserved larger audience. It is great to get the perspective from people who have vast experience of other countries and of life.

    129. lumilumi says:

      @ McKiwi

      Aw, you talk down NZ a bit. It’s got huge tourist potential. I’ve only been there once, a long weekend in Auckland, but would go back for several weeks of trekking etc. in a hartbeat if I had the time and money. NZ has the best scenery after Scotland. My 60-something auntie and her husband went there on an kayaking and adventure holiday a couple of years ago and I was soooo envious.

      What little I know of Kiwi culture and history, it’s the quirkier antipodean place, the one with a stronger own culture. Maybe that’s because the natives weren’t oppressed as badly as they were in Aus?

      NZ is a small/medium-sized country, and rich and successful. Much like Scotland could be.

    130. Croompenstein says:

      @McKiwi – Thanks for that post nearly greetin here, copied it for future use 🙂

    131. McKiwi says:

      Thank you all for your positive reception. I’ll see if I can get the time to develop the NZ theme a bit more and come up with something that might be fit for publication. In the meantime, keep up the good work.

    132. Captain Caveman says:

      “…But it’s surely not as simple as that? Would those Labour administrations have had anything like the working Parliamentary majorities with only English, Welsh and N.Irish votes?”

      No answer again, eh? OK.

    133. Hugh Wallace says:

      @McKiwi,

      Thanks for that! I am also a NZ-Scot (born here, brought up there) and it was that experience which in many ways made me the supporter of Scottish Independence that I am today. I was incensed when a Northern Irish Unionist friend of a friend lectured me on how Scotland would be chucking away all the greatness of the UK, who we had stood shoulder to shoulder with during WWII, and who how all that would be as nothing if we broke up the Union. When I informed him that the ANZACs had also been allies of the British during this time yet were independent nations in their own rights and his words were insulting to those who had died he didn’t know what to say.

      I hope you don’t mind if I borrow your thoughts for my own writing in future? Probably referenced of course (and I would invite you to add your comments). A link to my page can be found my clicking on my name at the top of the post.

      Cheers.

    134. Hugh Wallace says:

      p.s. If are a Professor I wonder if you have encountered any of my relatives in NZ. Several of them travel in academic circles…



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