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Nature versus nurture

Posted on July 10, 2015 by

Because our recent Panelbase poll shared a sample with one for the Sunday Times, there was an unasked-for bonus in the data. The ST had asked Panelbase to divide the 1002 Scottish residents into those born in Scotland, those born in England and those born elsewhere (including the rest of the UK).

The paper has a slightly unsavoury track record for doing so, and it did it this time for the sake of running a deeply statistically-iffy question aiming to prove that a lot of Yes voters were anti-English, but we’ll get to that in another article.

What that meant was that we were able to cross-reference the “ethnicity” data against all of our questions, and that resulted in a couple of interesting findings.

It’s a staple of Unionist commentators that there are no differences in the fundamental political ideologies of Scottish and English people. Social-attitudes surveys regularly find that voters on either side of the border are broadly in agreement about many – though not all – of the issues of the day.

(Though inexplicably, such surveys then never seem to make any attempt to find out or explain why, despite the two countries supposedly being politically and socially the same, Scotland hasn’t voted Tory in 60 years while England does so frequently.)

But that wasn’t what we were setting out to discover when we asked a question about income tax in the context of the Scottish Parliament’s imminent(ish) new powers.


As a headline result that wasn’t massively surprising. Voters were split almost down the middle twice – firstly, roughly half wanted income tax kept the same when Holyrood controls it, and in the other half it was close to a 50/50 split between people who wanted the tax increased to fund public services and those who wanted it cut.

The political breakdown wasn’t terribly unexpected either. Only SNP voters were (by just 4%) in favour of paying more tax to keep the NHS and schools running, while supporters of all three Unionist parties wanted it cut – Labour and Lib Dems by narrow margins and Tories by a resounding two-to-one.

That also translated fairly predictably to referendum votes – by a hair’s breadth (32-31) Yes voters wanted to pay more, with 37% saying that the rate should stay the same, whereas the Tory-heavy No group had a modest margin for tax cuts (18-25), with the majority (56%) backing the status quo.

But when – as an afterthought after several days of poring over the poll data – we glanced over to the Sunday Times’ ethnicity column, we spotted something striking.


While Scots-born respondents were evenly split about whether income tax should be raised or lowered, the difference among incomers was dramatic. English-born people in Scotland wanted tax cuts by more than two-to-one, and those from elsewhere by almost three-to-one.

We can only speculate about the reasons for the stark divide. It could be that a high proportion of English-born migrants to Scotland are Tories, for example. We simply don’t know, and we’re not about to start leaping to spurious conclusions.

And lest the usual suspects on social media start wailing tediously again, we should re-iterate our position for the avoidance of doubt: in this site’s view it is absolutely correct that the franchise was, and should be in any future referendum, based on residence and not ethnicity. The people who live in Scotland are the ones who should decide its future, regardless of where they happen to have been born, because they’re the people who’ll be affected by the decision.

But it may be worth bearing in mind the next time a social-attitudes survey of people living in Scotland produces results which seem at odds with the electorate’s political choices that the 10% of the Scottish population born in England, and the other 10% from elsewhere, may not be enough to significantly affect the outcome of elections (especially First Past The Post ones), but they WILL show up in polls.

And for reasons as yet unexplained, they don’t seem to think the way other Scots do.

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    247 to “Nature versus nurture”

    1. Gavin Alexander says:

      May I suggest that people anywhere will be more willing to pay more tax towards the benefit and improvement of the country that they have a long-term investment in (ie, they are planning to be there, and for their bairns to be there, for a long time). Not always the case for people who may expect to move on or don’t feel rooted in (or possibly committed to) the place.

    2. Tartan Tory says:

      I think the country of birth ‘thing’ can be a bit spurious when it comes to social attitudes. Both sides of my family are 100% Scottish and I was brought up with a presbyterian Scottish mindset. My grandfather had to learn English at the age of five as he was a native Gealic speaker. However, just by chance, I was born in England. Being born there doesn’t make me any more likely to think in an English way.

      I once knew a chap from Leith who was born on a plane in Chinese airspace. Didn’t make him any more dextrous with chopsticks and as far as he was concerend, he’d never been out of Edinburgh in his life.

    3. David McKeen says:

      Wha’s like us? No many, right enough.

    4. Carol Sadler says:

      I find this fascinating,because being born in Italy to an Italian mother with not much early input from a Scottish soldier father,both my younger brother and myself*seem*to have a slightly different mindset to our youngest siblings.We were born and brought up while our dad was still serving in places like Aden and we were still*moving about*,but the youngest were born during discharge and were brought up in one place their whole life.The differences are subtle,but are definitely there.Even on things we agree on it’s more like parallel train tracks going in the same direction than a one-way road.

    5. Alex Monaghan says:

      Agree with Gavin’s point – but it doesn’t invalidate the conclusion. In the case of Scotland, the residents with the highest investment in and attachment to the country, are always likely to be those born in Scotland.

    6. Muscleguy says:

      There may well be a nature effect too. New Scientist last week had a feature on the origins of Europeans. Seems Europe was populated by three main waves in prehistory: the original hunter-gatherers who arrived 45,000 years ago; the neolithic farmers who came about 9,000 years ago and tall, cattle herding horse riders from the steppes called the Yamnaya who spoke proto-Indo-European that all of us except the Basques speak 4,500 years ago.

      Different populations in Europe have different proportions of gene from these three groups. Probably because the differences are notable it splits Scots and English. Scots have about 50% more hunter-gather genes (less fertile farming land so less farmer penetration) And more Yamnaya quite probably due to later Scandinavian incomers who got much wider over Scotland than in England.

      Whether such things alter attitudes is a moot point but it shows Scots and English do differ genetically.

      Also living in small groups under environmental stress tends to select for cooperation and communitarianism, those who try to go it alone struggle to survive. When conditions are more clement I’m alright Jack can thrive more easily. Such conditions can condition the genes as much as they do the mind.

      BTW I’m Scottish born but genetically English, and I grew up in New Zealand. My eldest sister was born in England too. So my biases may not be what some think. I’m a scientist, I see data and follow it.

    7. Breastplate says:

      The difference may be between the people that define Scotland as their country and others who just happen to live in Scotland but define somewhere else as their country.

    8. Brian Powell says:

      Well Osborne has a plan. He is putting £50 million into creating more cadet units, doubling, in state schools.

      Create poverty among the young, fill up the army for cannon fodder from the poorer population.

      Tory shit-rating just went up, wouldn’t have thought it possible.

    9. Robert Tyler says:

      This is a factor which must be taken into account when considering electoral trends in Wales. Only 72% of people living in Wales were born in the country, with more than one fifth of the population born in England.

    10. handclapping says:

      I’d say its nurture not nature. We learn to be communitaire on our stair or in our row, we’re from Govan not Glasgow, Foggie not Aberdeen. Its even worse in Fife; it doesn’t matter if you’re from Kirkcaldy or Kilconquhar, Saline or St Andrews you’re still from the Kingdom!

      An English upbringing is much more individualistic, of self defined self worth, you against the bully rather than us against him or her. Also very much butressed by the conflation of Britain with England in history and sport as England is 85% of Britain.

      It really can’t be nature as the Brits from Lands End to John O’Groats are all mongrels

    11. Geoff Huijer says:

      I stayed at a B&B near Aviemore once; it was mansionesque.

      The owner had sold a 2 bedroom house in High Wycombe (we lived in nearby Marlow) & had bought the place lock stock & barrel.

      Circa 1999 a car-port type garage with corrugated roof sold for £50k in Marlow.

      I’m guessing, just talking to the man, that he was a Tory – certainly his views seemed fairly Right Wing.

      How many ‘working class’ English people can afford to move up here anyway?

    12. Nana Smith says:

      Here is the link for the cannon fodder story Brian at 2.55pm mentions. What a bloody government.

    13. heedtracker says:

      And for reasons as yet unexplained, they don’t seem to think the way other Scots do

      You can do your surveys online and they will tell you says Scotland’s bankrupt without pooling and sharing with England and if you voted YES, you’re really stupid and duped by the SNP.

      Have wee listen

      Too small, poor, stupid Scotland.

    14. Brian Powell says:


      Thanks, 5x, not 2x as I said, even worse.

    15. Dr Jim says:

      Full timer or Part timer

      Who’s got the bigger vested interest?

      Do you get shares in the company if you’re a part timer?

      Do you get to shape the company’s future if you’re only there till you go somewhere else?

      The council won’t give me the right to re-design my house, coz I might move

      I suppose there’s lots of ways to look at it

    16. galamcennalath says:

      Perhaps the stats are skewed by a particular type of born-in-England Scottish resident – I’m think of middle class well off retirees. Sold their residence dorn souff, bought a something in Scotland for a fraction of the price. Majority are Tory voting. Off springs beyond education. Perhaps private health care. Resent paying any tax!

      This would be in contrast to the younger family who move from England to Scotland for work. I doubt of they could be stereotyped as supporting any party in particular. They probably support the welfare state like the rest of us.

      Evidence would lie with the age of those Tory Voting, want to pay less tax types. Well off retirees?

    17. K1 says:

      O/T (sorry)

      ‘The Scottish Affairs Committee is seeking views on its programme of work. What should we do and how should we do it?

      The Scottish Affairs Committee wishes to involve the people of Scotland in its work, from Scottish Parliamentarians to the business, academic and voluntary sectors and members of the Scottish public, we want to hear from you. We want to know what issues you think we should be examining during this Parliament and the best ways for us to go about that work.’

      Think this is important, I’m sure we all could come up with some particularly important issues close to our hearts…like devolving broadcasting…and if we all wrote in…they may just have to really examine this very closely, wouldn’t they (they’d f***in’ love it 🙂 )…?

    18. caz-m says:

      The Tories want to take us back to the good old days – of Charles Dickens.

      Seriously! They do.

      The good old 1800’s.

      Where you have the elite ruling class and then you have us.

      And they could be in Government for the next ten, twenty, thirty years.

      Thanks Scottish Labour.

    19. shiregirl says:

      Geoff @3.14

      I was born and raised in Leith right on the shore. My grannies old flat (ex cooncil) is now a penthouse.

      My partner also lived in High Wycombe and was able to sell a grotty two bedroom flat and move to the ‘shire to escape 4 hr commutes in jam packed motorways and a very poor quality of life. House prices are mental down there. He had enough and moved up here. He was able to afford something nicer, found any jobs he could and then worked to get a wee bit land to grow his veggies.

      However, tory he aint! He is SNP through and through – and voted Yes. He works in a manual semi/skilled job with average pay and has always felt that he has more in common with Scots thinking. He did at one time when down south vote Labour.

      The gap, however between his way of thinking and that of his family and friends is unbelievable. Some of what they say and call Scots (‘jocks, sweaties and my fav, ‘scotch’) is said without them even thinking it is in any way offensive. He puts them right, tho.

      I do agree that there are many South England migrants who move up to Scotland who are tory through and through ( we have several here nearby who don’t talk to us as we had a vote yes poster up then a SNP poster) but there are a good few English who I know voted yes and consider themselves proud Scots.

    20. David Wardrope says:

      I feel slightly awkward commenting on this, I am aware that although polls show trends, there are a good few people not Scottish born who have just as much invested in seeing Scotland and her people thrive. I too agree that it should be all people resident in Scotland who should decide how she is governed.

      The figures seem to me that the views of Scottish born have enough impact to pull the rUK figures far enough left to make UK look (just) credibly socialist, however the bubbling underneath shows that there is a fire of right-wing ideology burning hot and bright. Has the UK created a monster? And worse, are Scots covering it up for them?

    21. Richard Taylor says:

      A suggestion as to why Scots voters vote differently to English ones despite apparent social similarities:

      Hispanic voters in the USA are actually a fairly conservative bunch. Most are Roman Catholic with religious social views. Many have earned citizenship through army service. So one would imagine they would vote in droves for Republican candidates like Donald Trump, who….ah… Many Republican candidates appeal to non- Hispanic voters by implying- or outright stating- that Hispanics are a bunch of criminals stealing jobs from hard-working Americans and bringing drugs across the border.

      So the difference in voting habits may be explained by, “they don’t appear to have our best interests at heart”.

    22. Paula says:

      I can’t see Irish or even Welsh incomers being more tory than the English, the 44% in that poll are most likely from the EU. Maybe the Polish immigrants dislike higher taxes/higher public spending because of their revulsion to anything that suggests communism?

    23. HDot says:

      I was born in England but have lived in Scotland since I was a baby. I’ve never thought of myself as an ‘incomer’. So I agree with those who find the country of birth distinction doesn’t quite hit the mark. Maybe there’s a more useful distinction to be made between those who have grown up here and those who moved here as adults? Or the kind of attitudinal distinction made by Breastplate (2.54pm)?

    24. heedtracker says:

      This is nice, “The Scots didn’t have the guts to go it alone and now they intend to milk the English for all they’re worth.”

      And my new best friend and No.1 WoS fan Keverage, says the sweaties are so stupid, they don’t even understand GERS

      Kevin Hague ?@kevverage 6 hrs6 hours ago
      Kevin Hague retweeted Ron Sturrock
      A near comprehensive list of misunderstandings about GERS – why do people not realise SG adjusts for *all* of these?

      Wish our imperial masters would make up their brilliant minds, or is it one and the same: didn’t understand GERS, and no guts to vote YES to get away from the UKOK red and blue tory boy creep show, that thinks they own Scotland.

    25. michael diamond says:

      Agree with you shiregirl, although i live in england, whenever we visit family in scotland and pre referendum, my wife who is from hertfordshire gave some of (ashamed to say) my no voting family except my mum, sensible financial reasons to vote yes. And is an avid yes supporter like myself.

    26. george says:

      *avoids leaping to conclusions, or in fact just guessing*

      very, very interesting, but smallish sample.

    27. Charles says:

      …confused article, can we just call a spade a spade here.

      Fact: Majority of Scots born residents voted Yes in the referendum.

      Fact: Majority of Non Scots born residents voted No.

      Fact: It was the Non Scots born residents which swung the referendum in favour of No, the majority of which were originally from England.

      We now have differing views on income tax between those born in Scotland and those who were not, why is this a surprise?

      There is a clear line between the social concience of majorty of Scots who want to empower the Scottish parliament to create wealth and address social inequalities within their communities, and the majority of those who have settled from outside Scotland but still feel comfertable maintaining the Union and desire lower taxes as part of that experiance, why is this such a surprise?

      If Non Scots born residents swing any future referendum in favour of No again, will we still feel good about ourselves because we didnt base the right to vote on ethnicity? if this transpires, then Scotalnd should accept that its many cultures ultimately prohibit it from crossing the line in becoming an independent nation. How many referendums do you have before you convince at least 65% of those born in Scotland the merits of Independence? These are the numbers required to absorb any ‘ethnic’ No vote.

      We have to make our minds up, just because the all inclusive vote prevents us from being branded Nazis by the MSM – does that make it right?

    28. call me dave says:

      If you live in Scotland and satisfy the criteria for residency your in. Nothing to do but convince enough of the voters to go for independence.

      PS: New post Scot goes Pop

      Thorniewood: Breakdown of the vote preferences

    29. UncleBob says:

      Maybe a factor is length of residence in Scotland?
      As others have mentioned the recently (within the last 10 years) retired English born folks who now live here versus those who have been educated here, have worked here?

      Generally speaking this seems kind off like those English folk who retire to France of Spain and try to change those countries into smaller versions of their homeland. Whereas those who go to France or Spain to work and raise a family fit in.

      Perhaps when we have the next Independence referendum we should require those who have the right to vote to have been resident for more than 10 years, 15, 20 ???

      My English born relative was resident in Scotland for 96 of her 99 years and WAS Scottish. In a similar way my Scottish born Aunt and Uncle have been resident in England for 25 years now and no longer see themselves as Scottish, they feel British.

    30. Ken500 says:

      Interesting. People with the biggest stake will pay more tax. A 2/3 year residential qualification for the next Independence Referendum? When the Polls start going up. The carry on in Westmnster must put the Independence vote up, or there is no tomorrow. A talking shop for Unionists poseurs, with a sense of entitlement. An old boys (school) club. They even look to see if the camera is on them. No wonder they never get anything done. Half of them look pissed. Instead of searching folk as they go in, they should drink/drug test them as they go out. Boris is descended from King George 11 of Europe and an actress, and it shows. A performing crown. It really is a farce. a pantomime where the vulnerable are shafted.

      The Barnett Formula is deliberately complicated to understand, to cover up Westminster fraud. Along with the ‘D’ notices and the Official Secrets Act. Some people are taken in or just don’t care.

    31. Ken500 says:

      It is posdible if a 2/3 year residential qualification had been in place, if feasible, in September, YES would have won. Alex Salmond was far more respectful to the MSM than they were to him.
      Our day will come.

    32. Roger Mexico says:

      We can only speculate about the reasons for the stark divide. It could be that a high proportion of English-born migrants to Scotland are Tories, for example. We simply don’t know, and we’re not about to start leaping to spurious conclusions.

      Oh yes we do know! And we have known for a long time that the rUK-born have a different voting pattern from the Scots-born (with those born outside the UK somewhere in between). For example from a YouGov poll a week before the election[1]:

      Party / Scotland / rUK

      Con / 14% / 22%

      Lab / 25% / 33%

      Lib Dem / 6% / 9%

      SNP / 52% / 31%

      So in this poll the ‘English’ were 50% more likely to be Conservative voters. This sort of pattern was why Panelbase and then YouGov introduced the ‘scottish skier’ adjustment, weighting by place of birth. Because not only did rUK vote differently, but they were over-represented in the panel responses by 50-100% and this distorted the overall result.

      It’s worth pointing out that a lot of the political differences we see in the rUK group may not be because of their ‘nationality’, but because those in Scotland are more likely to be older and/or in ‘higher’ social grades – both of which also tend more towards Conservative voting.

      I also have to point out that the sample sizes in both the ‘England’ and ‘Elsewhere’ groups are pretty small – on England you’re talking about a Margin of Error of +/-7 points, so it’s perfectly possibly that the differences are even less dramatic

      [1] I’m sure if you ask Ivor Knox he would be able to give you the breakdown from your own polls at the time (they were weighted by PoB but the breakdown wasn’t shown).

    33. a supporter says:

      “in this site’s view it is absolutely correct that the franchise was, and should be in any future referendum, based on residence and not ethnicity. The people who live in Scotland are the ones who should decide its future, regardless of where they happen to have been born, because they’re the people who’ll be affected by the decision.”

      In fact because of the voting laws that is how it will proceed.

      However it won’t stop me from complaining that it is sad that Scotland’s future might be decided by the many English and other UK born immigrants who have no long term intention of staying in Scotland and are merely passing through. For example ‘other UK born’ at university or on the career ladder for International companies; and ‘other immigrants’ here to ‘make their fortune’ before returning home.

    34. Doug McCalman says:

      What ever the difference is I don’t care, all I want is my country to be ruled by the people who live in it, not others based in another country, be they left, right or middle of the road wing!

      Those in the colonies knew there was not an egalitarian reason for rule from London, they knew their colonial masters wanted their resources and people for various reasons. I bet the brits used the price of sugar or cotton in much the same way as they use the price of oil today.

    35. Ken500 says:

      Kevin Hague dosen’t seem to realise Westminster can decide what Scotland spends on ie Trident/illegal wars, tax evasion in the City of London, banking fraud. All costing £Billions.Scotland is not part of the decisions.

      Thatcher/Brown illegally took Scottish resources and secretly wasted them. Westminster taxes the Oil sector 55% to 80% while (foreign) multinational making vast profits on commercial activities in Britain tax evade through the City of London. Ie pay no tax. Scotland raises more tax (pro rata) than then the rest of the UK. The UK does not collect enough to pay it’s way but borrows and spends more, on anything it decides. Scotland is not allowed to borrow.

    36. Legerwood says:

      Perhaps there is another explanation for the results that has nothing to do with country of origin but everything to do with their grasp of economics.

      Look at the almost identical percentages of those who say keep income tax as is.

      Income tax is a very blunt instrument for raising taxes. If income tax goes up in Scotland, or anywhere else for that matter, then there is increased pressure for pay rises. This then has a knock on effect on jobs – businesses decamp to a lower wage area. The job losses mean that the tax revenues fall, benefits bill rises and there is little, if any, extra for spending on the NHS.

      If you have power over indirect taxation then you can raise taxes, and revenue, without necessarily putting jobs at risk. Few people ask for pay rises because stamp duty has been increased or the threshold for paying inheritance tax decreases.

      The Scottish Parliament has always had powers to raise income tax albeit to a limited degree but those powers have never been used and the scenario outlined above may go some way to explaining why. The new powers will not improve matters.

      As to those advocating a residency qualification for voters in a future referendum – No.

      If you want to make an ancient nation anew then starting off by excluding people from the franchise in order to gerrymander a result is not the way to do it and would almost certainly ensure that the new nation would not prosper when from the start some of its people have been classed as second class citizens.

      That is not the sort of independent Scotland I want to see. If an independent Scotland is to be brought into being and to flourish then it must take all of the people along with it on that journey.

      Look at the result of the referendum and its aftermath.

      Better Together won but it did not win nice. All of the parties involved in Better Together have paid the price in loss of votes and seats. The BBC did its master’s ( i e the British State) bidding in bringing about that result and now it’s master has turned on it and threatened its funding. Individuals in the BT parties and in the BBC have also seen their reputations decline and have, in some cases, been demoted or moved sideways in the operation.

      If the next referendum delivers a Yes vote but is not won nice then the Scotland that emerges will not flourish.

    37. Stoker says:

      @ K1 (3.31pm).
      Can’t help but wonder what happened to all those Smith Commission submissions and how many, exactly, were taken on board, eh!

    38. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Tartan Tory 2.20pm PMSL might be because they flied lice are hard tae pick up wie chopsticks.

    39. Ken500 says:

      Although 50% of ‘English’ voters vote Tory they are far less. They can be outvoted. 5%? of the electorate. 2.5% of the vote? It could have made a difference in the Referendum a higher %?turnout.

      2Million NO 1.6Million YES. Higher turnout.

      Approx GE 1.6million SNP. 1.6Million Unionist. The GE lower turnout lost 400,000 voters? The number that swung the Referendum.

      Retired people came out to campaign in the Referendum. The vote could have been lower if they had not campaigned.

    40. ronnie anderson says:

      It might be a good idea for the Scottish Gov to have a Census,not once during the Election Campain did I see any Electorial Rolls in the campain offices,every councillor or MSPs/MP had copies for their areas.

    41. heedtracker says:

      Kevin Hague dosen’t seem to realise Westminster can decide what Scotland spends on

      Keverage says SNP, White Book, WoS are liars. He says that GERS shows Scotland would be bankrupt, like Greece apparently, that Scottish economy cant sustain higher benefit costs, he picks £7, £10, £12bn deficit based on not Scots oil tax revenue right now.

      Its a ferocious attack because like many Britnats out there, he’s decided that Scotland must have balance books, unlike say teamGB with a deficit that cant be paid off and a national debt now over £1.55 trillion. He also savages FFA, yet knows full well Westminster will never allow FFA to happen, just in case Scots used FFA to build a sustainable balanced fairer economy.

      Keverage is also staggeringly condescending but as we all know, a lot of UKOK Britnats are.

      Check out the German national debt. No one is wetting their knickers Keverage style over this level of debt in Germany. Nor is Germany suffering UKOK toryboy austerity aimed directly at the poorest, because the Germans have a sustainable economy. TeamGB does not.

    42. Ken500 says:

      Indirect tax costs those on lower incomes more, as a proportion of their income. A heavier burden. If Scotland cut Scottish Gov spending on Trident/illegal wars and nuclear waste being dumped rust at Rosyth etc. Thry could increase tax on higher land/property values (millionaires) or put a tax on ‘lose leading’ drink. People could be healthier/lower social care costs and raise more revenues.

      Scotland already raises what it spends. £54Billion. There would be more to spend on the vulnerable, education and NHS and invest in the economy creating growth, jobs and wealth, as Scotland decides. Not policies it doesn’t vote for from Westminster. The society would be more cohesive, less divided, more inclusive, equal, healthier and happier.

    43. Kate McLaren says:

      There’s also the point that “tax cuts” could mean widely differing things. I am all for the tax threshold being raised so that people who earn very low wages do not have to pay tax or have to pay very little. So yes, I am for tax cuts. But I am vehemently against cutting the percentage of tax that the higher earners pay, and ditto against cutting corporation tax. So no, I am against tax cuts.

      Statistics mean very little, or rather, you can make them mean what you want them to mean. The above *could* mean that English-born Scots are poorer. I don’t suppose it does, but it could.

      Progressive taxation, in other words, can be expressed equally well, or equally badly, as “tax cuts” or “tax rises”.

    44. K1 says:

      Aye Stoker! Another fur instance for them to get their teeth intae. 😉

      Gotta keep pushin’!

    45. K1 says:

      Ronnie, did you or anyone else get the letter from either the SNP or SG just before the election asking about voting intentions? I did, and a whole bunch of other questions were included too, I took that as an informal (or perhaps even formal) census that they were doing on the lead up. No one ever mentioned it on any of the threads though…including me, for some reason I decided to stay schtum….

    46. Karen Richmond says:

      The difference between Scots personal outlook and political choice is the difference between Scottish politics and the UK version. Scots retain a strong civic identity separate from their personal opinions. But UK politics is just the politics of self-interest writ large.

    47. Andrew Haddow says:


      The purpose of having a residency requirement would be to STOP gerrymandering.

    48. lochside says:

      How about Imperialism?…for hundreds of years England tried to impose its rule on us and the other Celtic nations. From 1707 and our Union ( now classed as an incorporating one by the English judiciary) what has really changed?

      We certainly have a cohort of colonial serfs called the Orange Order and those who are Scot/brits identifying through wealth or military service. But there are also the frightened old poor OAPs, and last but not least ..the English residents.

      The latter is the hardest to accept amongst the ‘NO’ vote..they came, they saw, they bought big houses. They are entitled to, but the majority are factually not accepting of our fight for self determination. This is very hard to accept.A minority are in favour of ‘YES’..great!. But no-one is going to convince me that the hundreds of thousands of the ‘NO’ voting English are going to ignore their basic ideology bred into them from birth of their fused English/British identity.

      Their education, their media and their institutions have created the mindset. As Thatcher’s theft of our oil was used to create modern London and the S.E.’s infrastructure it created almost overnight large swathes of homeowners sitting on over-inflated property. Thus the mass migration to France, Spain and Scotland of this enriched class of English.

      Incidentally the same colonial mindset is found in these countries where the ex-pat English, with the sprinkling of ‘sweaties’, ‘taffs’ and ‘paddies’ cluster intheir encapsulated Englishness, immune to the rich culture surrounding them.

      So what can be done? I believe in residential qualification for voting. But as English emigration is now a established trend on an increasing scale, and as our young struggling again under Tory rule ,will continue to do as they always did…emigrate. Scotland’s population is 5.2. million, the largest in a hundred years but only 4.7 million are Scots born.

      I am concerned that the emigration of colonial Brit/English in the same way I would fear a mass of Ulster Loyalists (Ulster Scots!!). It is not about emigration per se, our other immigrants have generally segued into dual national identity.

      The problem is not race or nationality but identity and loyalty, and more importantly votes in favour of another dominating ruling State. Therefore, eventually, unless we extend residential qualification for voting to ten years at least,that we will be outvoted and end up like Wales, a shrunken and diminishing nation cajoled into endless English Tory rule.

      An even better solution would to have Scottish citizenship whereby this would become a non issue! But that will have to wait.

    49. ArtyHetty says:

      Shiregirl@ 3.49pm.

      My experience entirely, most of my friends from England voted yes, lots neighbours no, mostly Scottish. But some very well off English neighbours voted no and do not speak to us with our snp and yes signs on the windows, suits me like.

      Not sure, but the English can be incredibly arrogant, they have a bad reputation abroad in holiday destinations? Get the feeling some are very arrogant when they come to live in Scotland, but not all by any means.

      I consider Scotland my adopted country after residing here 26 years and feel more Scottish than Northern english. And yes, most people that I know South of the border, are either ignorant and/or insulting regards Scotland, they are brainwashed, some laughed at us literally when we tried to talk about the quest for Independence, more fool them.

    50. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “We have to make our minds up, just because the all inclusive vote prevents us from being branded Nazis by the MSM – does that make it right?”

      Yes. Yes it does.

      The alternative is to say that anyone who lives in Scotland but wasn’t born there is a second-class citizen who doesn’t get a say in how the country is run. That is a very dark path to start down, and I’d rather lose a dozen referendums than win one by excluding people who’ve chosen to make their lives in Scotland because of where they happened to be born.

      Ethnic nationalism can fuck off.

    51. Grouse Beater says:

      There are any number of people living in Scotland who simply will NOT allow Scotland to regain its independence, certainly not by an all-comers welcome plebiscite.

      How we get past that hurdle is the only hurdle.

    52. Dr Jim says:

      Had a thought a wee while ago about crowd funding
      We do it for Wings and other projects that are good for us

      Scotland, had it a mind to, because we’re a small country could have an advantage inasmuch as some Infrastructure projects don’t need Billions only Millions

      At a couple of quid a pop each we could fund all sorts of good stuff ( new road ) ( ferry ) stuff like that, we do it for lifeboats, transplants, why not National Public Projects

      Maybe instead of throwing it away on the “National Lottery”
      we could build something
      See what they think of that south of the border, let’s subsidise our own country for a change

      That’s me hearing music in the background again…

    53. Luigi says:

      Some of the nicest, hardest working helpers I met during the YES campaign were English-born and elderly scots. There is no way that I can turn my back on either of these groups, just because they are turning to YES more slowly than the others. They are still turning! Bear in mind that even among the so-called ethinic scots, we only achieved c. 52% last year, so plenty of room for improvement, across the board, methinks. 🙂

    54. Truth says:

      The trouble with this sort of thing is, that where you are born often has little to do with where you identify with.

      I too was born in England, but have only ever identified as Scottish.

      I recently lived and worked in England and never felt at home there nor did I use my vote. It didn’t feel right. I had no intention of staying there long term.

      We do have to be careful of the conclusions we may draw as I also know people who identify as English who also enthusiastically voted yes.

      Basically, someone born in England should be viewed as a potential yes voter like everyone else.

    55. Sam Mitchell says:

      I agree with Geoff Huijer… in D & G. the vast majority of those born south of the border have simply bought a property in this beautiful but backward area BUT they have brought their prejudices with them. They are more interested in the same old status quo than any improvement as most are retirees who wish to take the free health care and prescriptions as part of the bonus of living in an area of low crime & good air. They have almost no regard to planning for Scotland’s future other than it being tied to wm. Many times whilst canvassing for YES it was made painfully aware to our group what side of the fence these ” enlightened ” souls stood. With some actively tearing up any pamphlet that crossed into their palatial homesteads. Also… the most blatant case that I know of was a couple who own a holiday home not more than 200 yards from my home. They reside in Spain. He is American & his partner is Danish. They travelled back to Scotland to vote as they felt they could not “”” trust “”” postal voting. They are both No’s.

    56. cearc says:

      Dr. Jim,

      I don’t think the SG are allowed to issue bonds. I thought that would be a great way to get things going if we had had a yes vote. Bonds for specific projects.

      Is there anyway they can stop us having a Scottish lottery though?

    57. cearc says:

      UKGov seem to have sucessfully diverted attention from criticism of their ghastly budget by their ’emergency’ evacuation of holiday-makers from Tunisia.

      Cynical, moi?

    58. Joemcg says:

      Sam-wonder how those two people would feel if an incomer scot voted against Danish or American independence in their homeland if the roles were reversed? In my opinion that is wrong morally and on so many other levels. Cannot see how other posters on here seem to think that’s ok.

    59. shiregirl says:

      ArtyHetty@6.51 says

      Not sure, but the English can be incredibly arrogant, they have a bad reputation abroad in holiday destinations? Get the feeling some are very arrogant when they come to live in Scotland, but not all by any means.

      It is true, unfortunately – when we are abroad my partner tells people he is Scottish – when abroad locals love the Scots. He also gets me to do the talking! However, when I am in England, I do feel the first thing they bring up is how lucky ‘we jocks’ are that we are still in the Union – don’t you know, us ‘jocks’ are subsidised by the great nation of Engerland? Yeah, up ya.

      I also (just my experience) find that within this area, many English folkies have moved here for their retirement. Nothing wrong with that, but here are a few (the same persons, often) who are members of every committee going and almost wanting authority – it’s very difficult challenging things or getting on any committee. Some locals are really peeved about it. It’s like they have come here to do us a favour? I don’t know.

      I also amn’t sure if there is a north south divide? My experiences are base on the deep south (hehehe – deliverence) of England.

      Ah well. perhaps I should make more of an effort – it’s difficult tho. It’s like sometimes like they talk and just don’t listen to your opinion.

    60. frogesque says:

      Dr Jim says:
      10 July, 2015 at 7:19 pm
      Had a thought a wee while ago about crowd funding
      We do it for Wings and other projects that are good for us

      Scotland, had it a mind to, because we’re a small country could have an advantage inasmuch as some Infrastructure projects don’t need Billions only Millions

      At a couple of quid a pop each we could fund all sorts of good stuff ( new road ) ( ferry ) stuff like that, we do it for lifeboats, transplants, why not National Public Projects

      Maybe instead of throwing it away on the “National Lottery”
      we could build something
      See what they think of that south of the border, let’s subsidise our own country for a change

      That’s me hearing music in the background again…

      Been hearing the same sort of beat myself. We need affordable housing, we have an eyesore of derelict ground at the old Ravenscraig. Why not use Land Reform and go ahead and build that New Town as promised some years ago!

      Real houses for real people, triple glazed, energy efficient modern construction and maybe even a wee bit garden for the kids!

      As the song goes:

      If you don’t have a dream
      How you gonna have a dream come true?

    61. muttley79 says:

      @Rev Stu

      Yes. Yes it does.

      The alternative is to say that anyone who lives in Scotland but wasn’t born there is a second-class citizen who doesn’t get a say in how the country is run. That is a very dark path to start down, and I’d rather lose a dozen referendums than win one by excluding people who’ve chosen to make their lives in Scotland because of where they happened to be born.

      Ethnic nationalism can fuck off.

      This sums up how I feel on the matter. The reason we did not win last year was largely down to having support for independence at to low a level at the start of the referendum campaign in 2011 and 2012 imo. I agreed with the decision to have an inclusive criteria for voting in the referendum at the time, and I agree with it now.

      It is funny how unionists in Scotland keep telling us that we on the Yes side are the ethnic nationalists, and then when the British government does not allow EU nationals in the UK to vote in the upcoming EU referendum, then they go very quiet indeed. Mind you, now that Darling has got ‘elevated’ to ermine in the House of Lords, we can hardly expect him to give a fuck who the ethnic nationalists are anyway.

    62. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      I’ve been catching up on this page and what I find are many comments about entitlement to vote in any future referendum.


      Where a ‘vote’ is about the future of a nation / country, the entitlement to vote in that referendum should be bestowed upon those who have shown a bit of commitment towards their place of residence.

      Over the past few months, there have been many anecdotal reports of holiday home owners registering to vote in the first IndyRef last year.

      I feel that it should be stipulated for any future IndyRef that those wishing to vote should have displayed commitment to Scotland.

      As a Scottish degree course lasts 4 years, a five year limit would allow graduates, who have stayed to work in Scotland, to have a say in the future.

      This same 5 year rule should be applied to holiday home owners. I’m sure all the electoral rolls from every electoral officer are part of the national archive, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to wean out the carpetbaggers. Those who had no interest in the 2011 election, or subsequent council elections, wouldn’t be on the roll, would they? So no proof of residency.

      So, what I’m saying is that a five year residency qualification would be fair.

      I’m prepared to be shot down…

    63. yesindyref2 says:

      Anyway, totally at random, I think now is a good time for the reissue of YES stickers and for people to put them on their cars and houses.

      It keeps the last minute deciders thinking (I’ve met a lot), and makes the NO campaigners angry as usual. Specially if you ask them if that’s their car with the sticker! I did that the other day, and it was a laugh. Smoke and steam and that was just the ears.

      They called it hope over fear, perhaps it should have been hope and fun over fear and anger.

    64. shiregirl says:

      Rev Stu @7.03 says

      The alternative is to say that anyone who lives in Scotland but wasn’t born there is a second-class citizen who doesn’t get a say in how the country is run. That is a very dark path to start down, and I’d rather lose a dozen referendums than win one by excluding people who’ve chosen to make their lives in Scotland because of where they happened to be born.

      Yes. Scary stuff.

      I think Scotland thrives on diversity and difference and the thought of a ‘census’ of birthplace sounds like something biblical and darkly eugenical – only pure bred scots can vote on the next ref?, that can NEVER be allowed to happen – this isn’t something Scotland could allow or want to be remembered by – and we would lose lots of yessers who are english, welsh etc. Everyone’s vote is just as important as the next persons

      I guess the answer is to make those English tory no voters the very small minority and keep sticking tracts through their door! Softly softly!!

    65. Pool9 says:

      My take on this:

      1) The elsewhere were happier with lower taxes because they send money back to elsewhere, so any income saved here is income that can be sent out of country. (You asked for a guess in the mouse-over – that is mine)

      2) The SNP voters and Scottish birthplace folk wanting to keep taxes the same (40 and 48% respectively) – how many of these are fully aware that any taxes raised by the Scottish parliament will be clawed by by Barnett adjustments etc.? And therefore are not interested in raising taxes under current powers/ the current political arrangement as they know fine well it will make zero difference to actual local welfare provisions etc.? So they take the no change as the best option available as they do not believe in putting their own short term interests first in the form of a tax cut?

      If the question of raising taxes withing a framework of FFA/Independence were posited, I think you would see a more dramatic difference in terms of folk voting for tax raises, as there would be more faith that those tax raises would be used to good purpose in our local communities.

      As it stands voting to raise taxes within the current system could be an own goal. Voting to lower taxes is typical self interest. My guess is that the large numbers voting for no change may reflect that thought process.

    66. galamcennalath says:

      Hey guys, we only need to get 51:49 in Indyref2 and we’ve won! ( though something close to 60:40 might look a little more convincing on the world stage! )

      All we need is to convert a single figure percentage of NO voters, and we’ve won. Personally, I don’t care what their motivation in the past has been, their party of choice, or their place of birth. Say Yes, and you have become an individual of vision and hope!

      That said, NO voters come in different shades. Some are BritNatz and will probably never vote yes. At the other end of the spectrum are a small percentage who fell for The Vow and could probably be converted easily. In between, they may be harder to ‘crack’.

      Those who believe the MSM and the BBC, give them a National or three.

      Those who haven’t found Wings etc, give them a invitation and a link.

      55% is a big pool of people to target for conversion!

      Yes, go for the ‘easy’ ones first, but English born Tory voting retired wealthy people can be sold our vision of a better country.

      And, never forget those who didn’t vote at all. Get them persuaded that life after Indy should be better for us all.

    67. gfaetheblock says:

      I think Geoff has it. The wealthy are more geographically mobile, so if the incomers have done so for professional jobs, or are more motivated to seek a better life this may well explain it. Most of us are here by default.

    68. Husker says:

      Is there a breakdown of the socio-economic and age groups of those who participated in the survey?

    69. fillofficer says:

      Dr Jim
      “but is that no wot we pays oor taxes fur” they might quip.
      don’t agree, smashin idea, especially when a rogue council takes an unpopular stand against sometin popular

    70. Bob Mack says:

      I have two elderly aunts ( both no voters), and both born in England. They voted no for very specific reasons i.e. pensions and currency.Both have been resident in Scotland for several years and love the country.The are by no means anti Scottish,but felt there were too many uncertainties for their llking with regard to their pensions ,house values etc.

      I know several like them with the same circumstances,and I am certain that if they had been convinced by the arguments they may well have voted yes.

      I am afraid the mass media had very little opposition to cope with and therefore won the argument.It is difficult to persuade people when all the experts tell them the opposite in news ,TV AND newspapers.
      That is the real battle we have to win.

    71. Craig says:

      Sorry for going O/T, I have nicked this comment from FB to show to those who are demanding that the SNP do something about another referendum, I think this post below will go some way in explaining what is happening in the background

      Reality Check.

      For all those people who think the SNP are swithering and avoiding the question of Scottish Independence, just pause for a minute and appreciate what they are currently addressing.

      1. They run the Scottish Parliament with a big majority, so they have to deal with all the wheels and cogs of government, mitigate as much of the Tory cuts as possible, balance the books, and keep an eye on the development of problems just over the horizon. They also have manifesto pledges they must honour – and only fail to deliver if genuine unforeseen circumstances prevent this from happening.

      2. They did spectacularly well in the General Election. 56 MP’s returned from one Scottish Party is astonishing – but it comes at a price.

      Those 56 MP’s were, for the most part, councillors in local Government. This means 56 By-elections to elect new Councillors. This requires a strict vetting process for each candidate who wishes to stand, and then the organisation of campaigns, hustings, meetings, etc, and the final By-election itself. Cash comes into this process as well and don’t forget, the normal day to day council business still goes on.

      The 56 MP’s in Westminster have a mandate to speak for Scotland – and this requires serious consideration and effort – its a huge jump from 6 MP’s to 56 MP’s and everyone needs to clearly understand the position of Scotland and her requirements. They are sitting in the Lion’s den and the Lions are constantly circling, looking for a weakling to snatch.

      3. The 2016 elections for the Scottish Parliament are getting closer and closer. This requires considerable planning, vetting of candidates where appropriate and publicity campaigns for the period before the vote.

      There is also the requirement to create a manifesto which will attempt to cover the aspirations of the membership (and Scotland in general) for the next 5 years – much of this is based on feedback from the huge SNP membership and requires time and diligence (not to mention a full-blown Conference) to reflect their true wishes.

      The manifesto will also reflect lessons learned throughout the previous 5 years and will seek to address short-comings and new initiatives in this light.

      Could you imagine Scottish Labour handling these issues? They would be in total melt-down by now and lots of spit dummies would be lying on the floor.

      The LibDems would have simply run away by now and the Scottish Tories would have received their orders from Westminster as to how they should proceed.

      Each of these three Unionist Parties only have to deal with one By-election each (hopefully an additional by-election for the LibDems in Orkney and Shetland – our 56 might become 57).

      The SNP have extremely talented people beavering away behind the scenes and they are lead by a dedicated and charismatic First Minister who is rapidly (and successfully) promoting Scotland on the World Stage.

      They are a credit to Scotland and quite frankly are the only people capable of voicing what the majority of Scots want. Other non-Unionist parties are in the mix, but don’t as yet have anything like the experience or sheer clout of the SNP.

      So the next time you see a post that vents obvious frustration at the speed of events, think on and be comforted in the fact that the SNP strategists are no amateurs. The party is dealing with all these previously mentioned issues, but is also keeping an eye on unfolding events in Westminster and nearer to home.

      This is an extremely dynamic time for Europe, the UK and Scotland.

      The SNP are the only Scottish political force that can offer a joined up strategy to deal with anything that gets thrown at us – so let them get on with what they do and wherever possible, show your support for all their efforts on our behalf.

    72. Grouse Beater says:

      Freeing the mind to find a winning formula means ditching the absolutist positions of ethnic and civic.

      Holding to one or the other divides us before we begin.

      Repeating one or the other endlessly as an expression of self-righteous purity blocks solutions.

    73. heedtracker says:

      Scots majority want devo-max and that makes sense. Its doesn’t matter where you’re from. took devo-max off the ref ballot paper, They put it back on the ballot when they thought they’d “lost” Scotland, then they totally ripped us all off with their Smith Commission farce.

      All of which is one of many reasons SLab are done in Scotland and no matter how hard the BBC etc lie to Scotland that The VOW’s been delivered, everyone knows we’ve monumentally robbed by our imperial masters.

      Some like that, majority are extremely angry. Electorates don’t appreciate being taken for mugs by anyone, just ask a LibDem.

      So now, only 8 months after Scotland got fabulously UKOK robbed and Project Feared into NO, we have 56+1 SNP MP’s, Orkney and Shetland take another fraud LibDem unionist to court and none of this was affected by anyone unlucky enough not be Scottish.

    74. yesindyref2 says:

      I had the NO campaigner I mentioned say to me that the Bank of England has loads of gold to support the pensions, which Scotland wouldn’t be able to afford What about my pension?”.

      Doubly wrong, the gold is there for the currency not pensions, and it’s not loads, far less than 10% of the gold stored in the BoE belongs to the UK, in fact the value of the UK gold is around £8 billion.

      Just another little factoid to throw at the DM NOes.

    75. bjsalba says:

      @Brian Doonthetoon
      I canvassed in my seaside town and I saw many of our Holiday Lets occupied just for the referendum. If the Electoral Officer was required to verify that Council taxes were paid at the full rate for a period, say 3 or 6 months, that might reduce the fly-by voters.

    76. Dr Jim says:


      See, that’s it, that’s the attitude, John F Kennedy Think not and all that stuff

      We could we definitely could

    77. crazycat says:

      @ Craig at 8.11

      I realize you are quoting someone else, but that stuff about by-elections is rubbish. There will be far fewer than 56, and the unionist parties won’t “need” any, let alone one each – though they might well choose to stand candidates in the ones precipitated by SNP Westminster victories. If so, they will have exactly the same selection/election costs as the SNP.

    78. Macart says:

      I don’t care where folk are born, we all put our socks on one foot at a time. I felt and still feel that the precedent set by the referendum process was bang on. If you live here. If you choose to make Scotland your home? Then you get to vote on Scotland’s future.

      If its more difficult to convince some folk on what path that future should be? That our vision of how an independent Scotland can be inclusive, socially just, prosperous and outward looking? Then we try harder.

      But I’m a big believer that we’re a Jock Tamson’s bairns and that if you want to be a Scot and you’re willing to contribute to our body politic, our economy, our culture and our future, then you’re a Scot.

    79. Dan Huil says:

      @Craig 8.11 pm. I understand what you’re saying. However I must admit I’d like to see the SNP proposing a 2nd referendum in their 2016 manifesto – the referendum to be held before the end of the new Holyrood parliament and regardless of what Westminster thinks.

    80. Ken500 says:

      Figures on Internet. (If they are correct.)

      Germany has a debt of €2156 = £1400Million 80Million pop

      The UK has a debt of 1.5 Trn. 62.5million pop.

      Germany raised (old figures?) £466Billion in taxes (same as UK) but Germany pays NHS separate. They have a contribution scheme. UK pays -approx £110Billion for NHS. Scotland raises £54Billion in taxes spends £12Billion on health care. = £42Billion 5.2Million pop

      Scotland raises more tax pro rata than Germany but gets approx £10Billion of UK debt because the rest of the UK doesn’t raise as much tax.

      Germany is in surplus because it has invested it’s surplus in the economy for years. Now Germany practically is debt free. £1.4Billion.

      1 million people in Scotland raise £8Billion in tax. Taking off the NHS figure. 1 million people in the rest of the UK raises £6.5Billion in tax. Taking off the NHS figure. The rest of the UK borrows and spends £90Billion and gives Scotland £10Billion of debt (Trident/illegal wars, tax evasion/banking losses through City of London).

    81. Cactus says:

      Like your thinking Dr Jim & frogesque, if they won’t do anything for us (let alone take anything and everything they can away..) in the meantime we’ll do it for ourselves, so yeah let’s crowd fund Scotland.

      Aye thepnr from the recent ‘Just two things’ article ~

      Indeed, we have two imminent gigs on the check-list:
      » Saturday 25/07/15 @ the Clyde Bar/Helensburgh (open invitation)
      » Saturday 01/08/15 @ Kelvingrove Park/Glasgow west-end (from 11:00hrs)

      Check out ‘Off-topic’ for further details..

      Have a fantastic Friday night you seekers of independence.
      Yours aye.

    82. Paula Rose says:

      30 years in Scotland – does that make me Scottish or an incomer? Answers on a post card.

    83. Ken500 says:

      LibDemsBT Christine Jardine spent twice as much as the Salmond campaign in Gordon.

    84. Ken500 says:

      The SNP Party has much more money because of increased membership, donations and the usual Fund raising. They get more money for Administration from Westminster. Funding from Westminster funds all Members/Parties proportionately, to their elected numbers.

    85. Grouse Beater says:

      Paula: 30 years in Scotland – does that make me Scottish or an incomer?

      No one is talking about you.

      Avoid parading personal example as the be-all and end-all of political correctness.

    86. shiregirl says:

      @Ken500 8.39pm

      showing my ignorance here – who pays for it? Is it the libdem party (do they have a figure they are allowed to spend on their campaign?) Or is it funded through taxes?

      If she has spent excessively, will she be made to pay back the difference?

    87. Husker says:

      Charles @ 4:31

      “We have to make our minds up, just because the all inclusive vote prevents us from being branded Nazis by the MSM – does that make it right?”

      Inclusive has a lot of meanings.

      I was born in a working class town to working class parents, went to a state run school. Because I wasn’t born to a well to do family and didn’t have a private education, should I be excluded from trying to do the best for myself in this society? The same applies to somebody who was not born here, should they be excluded from trying to the best for themselves? If a foreigner is excluded from trying to better themselves in an independent Scotland, then what stops a person born and bred here, like me, from being excluded as well because I am ‘not the right Scot’?

      We need to face the fact that we live in the 21st century, an era of globalisation where borders and place of birth is pretty meaningless. It is fantasy to drink the UKIP ‘koolaid’ that we can somehow turn the clock back, pull up the draw bridges and keep Johnny Foreigner out. It isn’t going to happen if we want a realistic chance of competing in the 21st century global economy. We need a balance between allowing our native born and bred to be the best they can be if they choose to stay here and those who want to come here and make this country their own.

      To end, being inclusive may mean to allow non-Scots to participate in the political process while it could go against what we are striving for in the short term but it means reaching out to these non-Scots that they have nothing to worry out and win them over. More importantly, it means that we can reach out to those who are disenfranchised by the political process and society in general that those in favour of independence are serious about creating a better society where everybody regardless of their background, place of birth, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation can as much stake in our society as anybody else.

    88. Robert Peffers says:

      @Charles says: 10 July, 2015 at 4:31 pm:

      “…confused article, can we just call a spade a spade here.

      Great idea, Charles, so why are you calling the spade a shovel?

      “Fact: Majority of Scots born residents voted Yes in the referendum.”

      And you know this because … ?

      “Fact: Majority of Non Scots born residents voted No.” And you know this because … ?

      “Fact: It was the Non Scots born residents which swung the referendum in favour of No, the majority of which were originally from England.” and you know this because … ?

      So with all those facts I have to ask this, perhaps, stupid question – As the ballot box is legally secret, (for a very good reason I’m sure), how can you be so very certain your facts are accurate?

      I know two brothers who had a Scottish father and a Scottish Mother but one brother was born in England while the other was born in the USA as their father was a military man who was an executive ranked officer and whose job took him all over the World. Strangely the one born in England was every bit as much Scottish as I am and the one born in the USA was as English as David Cameron. That was they not only spoke with different accents but had markedly different cultural outlooks.

      The secret being the English born brother was only in England for weeks then brought up in Scotland and the USA born brother was weeks in the USA then brought up and schooled in England.

      What you think you know, Charles is a very limited survey of around 1000 people out of a population of around 50.2 million and that sample of people probably all have at least one thing in common – I’ll leave you to figure out what that one thing is.

    89. Husker says:

      Paula Rose @ 10 July, 2015 at 8:39 pm

      “30 years in Scotland – does that make me Scottish or an incomer? ”

      That’s a logical fallacy and adds nothing to the debate.

    90. Tam Jardine says:

      Dr Jim

      I like your idea.

      Scotland is a hard country to convince and the Calvinist mindset pervades many of us- don’t get above yourself, don’t take risks, know your place, how can WE possibly even THINK we can…. All that shite that’s been holding us back forever.

      The Yes campaign was fighting against more than radges like Brown and Cameron, McTernan and all the journalists etc. A country at ease with itself would have seen off all those cynical beggars with no effort. We had something within ourselves as a nation to defeat. We still do.

      I just called it calvinist because I can’t think of a better term. It’s why I’m In the same job I’ve been in for years, why people (not myself!) endure loveless relationships, why some bairns struggle to leave the nest.

      Now I don’t care where people are from or skin tone or accent but I do care if people are working towards making this country of ours a better place. That is our purpose and the National movement is in place for that purpose.

      Maybe if those of us who are for an independent Scotland can start really getting behind one cause after another and really embed it in the national psyche that we are pro-Scotland and proactive in trying to improve this land of ours for those who choose to live here- we might just find a few of those pensioners and EU migrants and the disengaged and disenfranchised might start to waken up.

      We were not always as cautious and self doubting as the referendum result suggested. And indeed what is happening is a kind of national renewal. The cringe, or whatever we call it is being consigned to the past but it will take time before the monkeys off our collective back.

      Might as well get something done while we wait for the next indyref. Im not talking about digging a canal or some vast earthworks but there are projects out thete which collectively we can get hold of. Any ideas?

    91. Ken500 says:

      Can Scottish Gov arrange an honourable vote for Rev Stu in #Indy2. Celt ring and robe, a Gaelic band.

    92. muttley79 says:


      Those 56 MP’s were, for the most part, councillors in local Government. This means 56 By-elections to elect new Councillors.

      I don’t agree with that. I think a fair number have not been SNP councillors, including Tommy Sheppard (although he was a Labour councillor in London ages ago), Mhairi Black, Stephen Gethins, the lady who worked in the NHS and campaigned for Yes (her name escapes me had the moment), Tasmina S. Ahmed, Joanna Cherry, Michelle Thomson, Calum Kerr, Natalie McGarry, and there is the original five MPs from pre 2015, along with Salmond of course.

    93. Luigi says:

      Paula Rose says:
      10 July, 2015 at 8:39 pm

      30 years in Scotland – does that make me Scottish or an incomer?

      Paula, you look far too young to have spent 30 years in Scotland. 🙂

    94. Robert Peffers says:

      @george says: 10 July, 2015 at 4:29 pm:

      “very, very interesting, but smallish sample.”

      Very astute, George, but not only is it a smallish sample but all those in any particular poll have at lest one thing in common.

      They take part in polls and/or they are somehow selected for questioning and such selecting, particularly in these days of mobile, land line and Skype phones; on-line-computer and in some cases are signed up members to one or other particular survey company.

    95. Alistair says:

      Therein lies the path to guaranteed Independence.

      There is no surer way to drive out the No voters in their droves than if the SNP raise income tax. Non-Scots move south as they have no vested interest. SNP lose a few votes from their more right wing supporters. However, now is the time to take the hit – at the moment 45% of people will vote for them no matter what, and Barnett will soften any resulting loss of wealth, if indeed that is what will happen.

      Next referendum is won for Yes.

    96. yesindyref2 says:

      I think that was duff info, or a slipped billion to million. In euros according to this:

      Germany 1,577 billion – 1.577 trillion euros
      UK 1,428 billion – 1.428 trillion euros
      Greece 71 billion euros! Not a lot, so perhaps wrong too.

      According to

      Greece is 344 billion euros which is more like it. But there are a few different ways of counting national debt it seems.

    97. heedtracker says:

      Vive la difference Paula Rose.

    98. Rock says:

      “in this site’s view it is absolutely correct that the franchise was, and should be in any future referendum, based on residence and not ethnicity.

      The people who live in Scotland are the ones who should decide its future, regardless of where they happen to have been born, because they’re the people who’ll be affected by the decision.”

      A fine principle that cannot be argued against by anyone who is a true democrat, all other things being equal.

      But as immigration to Scotland continues to increase, newcomers will be highly likely to vote to stay in the UK.

      20% might not be significant but it is a significant hurdle.

      Unless there is a sudden massive swing from No to Yes as there was from Labour to SNP in the recent Westminster election.

      For a future referendum, I would be in favour of a system which would allow a vote to only those who have been resident here for the last five years or something like that, whether or not of Scottish ethnicity.

      Those would then be the people who would (hopefully) have a better understanding of Scottish society.

    99. yesindyref2 says:

      @Paula Rose
      Being Scottish is a State of Mind!

    100. Rock says:

      Paula Rose,

      “30 years in Scotland – does that make me Scottish or an incomer? Answers on a post card.”

      Out of interest, how long did it take you to understand Scottish society?

      When you came, did the Scots appear very different from the English to you?

    101. yesindyref2 says:

      @Robert Peffers
      They also have time to do surveys. I always say no thanks. Which means my demographic whatever that is doesn’t take part.

    102. Petra says:

      Geoff Huijer says at 3:14 pm ”How many ‘working class’ English people can afford to move up here anyway?”

      Maybe we’ll find, through study of migration statistics, that over the next 4 / 5 years many more ‘working class’ English people will now want to migrate to Scotland due to welfare cuts rather than (or over and above) the, in the main, well to do English retirees.

      Thousands of jobless under 21 year olds are going to be made homeless due to the abolition of housing benefit, many disabled people will see their incapacity benefit (Employment and Support Allowance) cut and families and single parents with more than two children will be impacted upon in relation to tax credit cuts and child benefit restrictions. Their decision to move here, if they decide to do so at all, will no doubt depend to some extent on the particular welfare policies that will be devolved to Scotland / the SNP. If this does come to pass will they ‘drain’ our economy / push up taxes and contribute to a loss of SNP popularity or will we find that they’ll be more inclined to vote YES in future elections? Time will tell.

      @ Sam Mitchell says at 7:25 pm ”Also… the most blatant case that I know of was a couple who own a holiday home not more than 200 yards from my home. They reside in Spain. He is American & his partner is Danish. They travelled back to Scotland to vote as they felt they could not “”” trust “”” postal voting. They are both No’s.”

      Blatant! …. Sam I got talking to a Canadian couple at a bus stop in Arran. They explained that they were on a day trip and had a holiday home near Oban. They normally visited Scotland every 2 / 3 years. They had actually been in Scotland the previous year but had returned to vote NO.

      @ Brian Doonthetoon says at 7:53 pm ”Where a ‘vote’ is about the future of a nation / country, the entitlement to vote in that referendum should be bestowed upon those who have shown a bit of commitment towards their place of residence … So, what I’m saying is that a five year residency qualification would be fair. I’m prepared to be shot down.”

      Brian this makes absolute sense and will cut out those who just move here for a few weeks to enable them to vote, migrant workers who have no plans to stay, holiday home owners and students who will return to their homeland following graduation (EU, overseas and rUK). We have to get real in this country if we ever want to get our Independence. Over 60,000 Scots (mostly aged 23 / 24) leave here every year and over 70,000 migrants relocate here …. and the figures are escalating at some rate. One doesn’t have to be the brain of Britain to work things out.

      @ Husker says at 8:04 pm ”Is there a breakdown of the socio-economic and age groups of those who participated in the survey?”

      I don’t know about that Husker but there is some interesting socio-economic data on the Edinburgh University site under Prof Ailsa Henderson.

      @ Craig at 8:11 Thanks for your post Craig. Most enlightening.

      A couple of interesting articles:

      ‘People with similar psychological traits can congregate in the same areas for various reasons, but the scientists highlight three in their study. The first is that social traditions and customs of a particular area shape people’s lifestyles and influence their attitudes and behaviour.’

      ‘Silent majority: The flipside can get ignored – those living in their own homes, in the more lucrative white collar jobs, who were less likely to support independence. Was it because they felt more British? That they were more head than heart, and didn’t believe the claims made for independence? Or that they feel they have more to risk and more to lose?

      My hunch is that the silence of the so-called “silent majority” was because it was the latter. They have a stake, they don’t want to lose it, but they didn’t want to shout about it either. More than that, you could argue that it’s these people who have benefited most from devolution over the past 15 years, and they quite like things as they’ve been.

      They’re the ones who might have to pay for student tuition fees and care for the elderly if it weren’t for Holyrood budget decisions. If council tax hadn’t been frozen for seven years, their bills would have gone up by much larger amounts than those in less valuable housing. Whatever their grumbles and their insecurities, they have reason to like the status quo rather than wanting to stir it up.’’

    103. KraftyKris says:

      I’m not sure you can draw any conclusions from the “English” and “Elsewhere” born data. The sample size (80 and 90) is too small, margins of error are greater than +/- 10%.

    104. Ken500 says:

      The LibDem pays but they were advertising and deliberately trying to get donations from NO’s and BT organisation to oust Alex. The Tories are the problem in the Constituency area. People voted LibDem to keep the Tories out. Labour does not have a chance, often did not put up a candidate, a quite rural area. Some farmers, fishermen are conservative with a small ‘c’. Traditional. Some are manic SNP supporters Flying flags etc. Many newcomers. A quite rural area but busy with Oil business. There are inprovements in the area because of the SNP getting things done in Scotland.

      It is quite understandable why English people and the elderly vote NO. They were scared. Most of the NO voters were alright and pleasant. Often there is just a bit of banter. When Alex goes out he gets mobbed by lots of folk waiting for him. He is very popular in the Constituency. Bit like a celebrity. People have voted for him for years. That is why the negativity doesn’t bother him because of all the support he gets at local level. Nicola is the same when she goes out in Glasgow. Mobbed. The politicians have to work together. They have often known one another years.

      It was money raised legitimately, within budget and all accounted, but with no grass .
      roots/campaign support. They can be charged for any inaccuracy, even if it was accidental. Taken to court. Alex campaign was crowdfunded. Over subscribed. Look on internet. Alex Salmond twitter or facebook all the details are there. Or SNP East Aberdeenshire.

    105. Dr Jim says:

      @lotsa folk

      Thanks for good words on the crowd funding thing, I’ve got a wee in with the Guv and I mean Wee

      So on Monday I’ll put it forward as a thought and see if there might be some way it could be a workable thing, and I’ll keep everybody posted

      You never know

    106. crazycat says:

      @ Petra

      Unless he had dual nationality, the American holiday home owner will not have been eligible to vote last September (or at any other time).

      Typing this, I’m wondering how many people pretend to have citizenship that they don’t in order to register fraudulently (not that I am suggesting this particular person did this) and whether the new requirement for National Insurance numbers and dates of birth will be sufficient to prevent it in future. The chances of being caught must be quite low.

    107. Paula Rose says:

      @Rock 9:19 I felt at home.

    108. Joemcg says:

      Would any other “nation” you care to mention be happy that foreign nationals voted no and helped to deny their independence? Think you know the answer to that one. Why are we Scots so saft?

    109. muttley79 says:


      Being Scottish is a State of Mind!

      And a mental one at that! 😀

    110. Rock says:

      Rev. Stuart Campbell,

      “The alternative is to say that anyone who lives in Scotland but wasn’t born there is a second-class citizen who doesn’t get a say in how the country is run.”

      After independence, every single citizen would be an equal citizen, under a written constitution, no ifs no buts.

      It is very clear to the vast majority of us here that the majority of people living in Scotland, irrespective of their ethnicity, will not be better off under Westminster (mis)rule.

      We have more than 300 years’ history to prove that.

      A one-off slightly undemocratic exercise to get us independent once and for all would be fine with me.

      Coming shortly after Cameron’s ethnic EU referendum, no one would be in a position to fault us.

      We absolutely need to break free from this rotten to the core system once and for all, and as fast as we can.

      Apart from that, I am totally against “blood and soil” nationalism.

    111. cearc says:


      The change in Employment Support Allowance is that new claimants from April ’17 who are in the ‘work-group’ will get the same amount as JSA.

      Of course Osbourne could change that in a sniff but at the moment it doesn’t affect current claimants or those in the ‘support group’.

    112. Dr Jim says:

      What does it matter where you came from
      Is it not more about where you are now and do you care about where you are

      If you’re not from here I’m sure you’re proud of who you are or where regardless

      My mother was English and she would have voted NO even though she lived here 60 years, what would I do? throw her out??!!
      This is all getting a bit nuts

      You’d end up going door to door demanding to interview folk next

      Oh!!! wait a minute, some unpleasant folk did that in another country and we didn’t care for it much did we?

      It’s all down to trust honesty and peoples own conscience
      I don’t see as how you can ask for more

      Although my Dad would’ve told her she was daft

    113. Ken500 says:

      A young guy. Engineering Degree from Estate in Glasgow. Family has done well, parents in the gMiddle east. Young (graduate) wife. Two young children. wife doesn’t work for now. Oil job reasonable salary but some uncertainty the downturn. Voted for Independence as did most professional mates. Facebook banter etc. Changing views and YES e-mails. Clued up. Most were disappointed at the NO.

      At GE thought of voting Tory. ‘Thought about paying less tax’. Didn’t know much about Tory/Unionist history. Got some stick, they were telt. Would have had a much high studeht debt, under the Tories 5 figure sum? It was mentiined some Tory MP’s were in favour of death penalty, opposed Equal marriage, wanted conscription introduce, war, attacked the vulnerable/disabled etc. A change of heart?

    114. Dr Jim says:

      News just in

      Kezia’s set to become the new Labour Leader with the overwhelming majority of the votes

      Have to stop typing now I’m spluttering all over everything

    115. Ken500 says:

      There is a Scottish guy from the Central belt who worked in London for years, until the recession and work dried up. Came to work in Scotland but hated the freezing cold in winter. He spoke with an English accent and couldn’t understand a person in Scotland (with a strong Scottish accent) who had been born overseas.

      The recruited Maltese bus drivers went home within six weeks, because they didn’t like the cold.

    116. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Alex Salmond admitted, in interview with Derek Bateman, that deciding the parameters of voting eligibility (for Indy-ref 1) was the hardest thing the SNP had to deal with in preparing for The Edinburgh Agreement.

      Personally, I don’t give a flying proverbial about where anyone comes from, looks or sounds like, or what they’re wearing, eating, drinking, smoking, or planning to do for their fucking holidays – so long as they’re committed to seeing Scotland free of Tory rule, and want to do it peacefully? they’re my pals.

      There is no other game in town right now – once we get those deviant bastards out of our lives, all else will follow.

    117. Tackety Beets says:

      Thanks for the info Rev , it is indeed interesting.
      I am still very very disapointed , naw F@@@@D OFF , with the Ref result but I feel how people voted does not matter a fig now.
      Its all behind us and cannot change. so no point in.

      Nae pint in ” Mitherin yer wrath t keep it warm”

      I fully appreciate the sentiments for change by many of you on here.

      In the next Ref we will need to up our game and convince everyone,as many as possible , to vote for iScotland.
      Moving the “Voters goalposts” may improve the percentages slightly but would it make the result more conclusive or convincing to those Onionists ?

      I tend remember ;
      ” To every action there is an equal but opposite reaction”

      Can you imagine the uproar by ALL ConLabLib ,MSM etc if any form of exclusion , like suggestions on Euro vote ,were to be implimented in an Indy Ref ?

      It would be ammo for them all.

      There is always the technical faf involved with sorting the exclusions all out ,whereas the E’ Roll exists.

      “K.I.S.S.” factor ?

      There is nothing more important than for us ALL to focus on making the case to EVERYONE on iScotland.

      Craig @ 8.11 , Worth while post , Thanks .

      I’m sure we have all done a bit o plagiarism in recent times.

      If I wrote it I would be delighted for it to be shared.

      @ Paula , if you were only here 30 minutes , yer aye welcome.

      ” you is what you is ” Hopefully a Happy Yesser .

    118. Joemcg says:

      Dr Jim- no one is talking about throwing anyone out, can you answer this question,if England had a similar vote would your mum be happy that a majority of scots voted no and helped to deny her country independence?

    119. heedtracker says:

      He spoke with an English accent and couldn’t understand a person in Scotland (with a strong Scottish accent) who had been born overseas

      I’m from Aberdeen, leafy westend suburb and we grew up to look down on, sneer, jeer etc on the Doric. Now I’m big, I love it and when I hear it, wherever I am, I know its my home. But even oor Eck’s an adopted son. He’s done nae bad like.

      Go figure:D

    120. Rock says:

      Paula Rose,

      “@Rock 9:19 I felt at home.”

      That doesn’t answer my questions.

      You really should stop playing the ethnic card at every opportunity:

      Grouse Beater,

      “Paula: 30 years in Scotland – does that make me Scottish or an incomer?

      No one is talking about you.

      Avoid parading personal example as the be-all and end-all of political correctness.”


      “Paula Rose @ 10 July, 2015 at 8:39 pm

      “30 years in Scotland – does that make me Scottish or an incomer? ”

      That’s a logical fallacy and adds nothing to the debate.”

      Or is it your mission to lower the quality of debate on every thread?

    121. FairFerfochen says:

      @Ken500 says:
      10 July, 2015 at 8:39 pm
      “LibDemsBT Christine Jardine spent twice as much as the Salmond campaign in Gordon.”

      Oh I think CJ is fiddling the books there.
      I had a total of 2 SNP fliers whilst CJ’s Liberals sent me somewhere in the region of 40. So that’d be twenty times more, not including the postal workers wages.

    122. MJack says:

      Firstly this gives us an insight that BT seemed to have during indyref 1 as to the project fear, ww1, Britishness/military, pensioner vote and THEY did play the ethnicity card for Britishnes and hammered English voters hard to win. But we will need to target non Scot born voters relentlessly, in indy ref 2 and re-assure our older voters (cause we can’t just sit and wait for them to die off) that Scotland has a great future.

      If there is an Indy ref 2 and Scots vote yes in more numbers but English voters vote against and we dont get it I can see a lot of resentment occurring.

      We need to bring on-board our 10% English migrants to help us succeed.

      But as the facts say, if it was only Scot born voters we would be an independent country!

    123. Socrates MacSporran says:

      I’ve enjoyed all the chat on here about ethnicity and so-forth.

      I have lived in a small former mining village in Ayrshire, for the last 35-years, almost half my lifetime. I was, however, born in another Ayrshire mining village, some eight miles away. This makes me an Incomer.

      I was called an Incomer at a function a few weeks ago by one of my contemporaries, a lady, born in this village, I have known for over 50-years.

      However, she married one of my mates when she was 21, and has spent the subsequent 40-plus years living in the next village. She still insists, I, having lived in this village for 35-years, am an Incomer, while she, who hasn’t lived here since the 1960s is a native.

    124. call me dave says:

      Burnham helping labour in Glasgow.

      Where & when is this by-election anyone know?

    125. Clootie says:


      If you ave to ask then the answer is NO!

      ….of course only you would ask.

    126. Paula Rose says:

      @ Rock – Could you please explain why you are so angry at me? I have been commenting on this site for years – what is your problem?

    127. crazycat says:

      @ MJack

      But as the facts say, if it was only Scot born voters we would be an independent country!

      No, that is not a fact.

      It is, at best, the outcome of an opinion poll, with a margin of error of at least 3% (if the sample was as large as 1000), that outcome being approximately 52% Yes. Subtract 3%….

      If it’s not even based on a poll, it’s hearsay and anecdote.

    128. FairFerfochen says:

      Some stuff never happens but what if?

      Following on from Dr Jim & Tam J’s excellent ideas re crowdfunding something Scottish, I’d be up for chipping in to a comedic but powerful play about the referendum.
      Something portable that could go on tour revisiting all those wee venues and village halls that suddenly popped up for debates last year. Something inclusive and free.

      Often wondered what became of all those creatives at National Collective.

    129. P G McLaughlin says:

      Already received Poll Card for Ward 4 Craigton. Iris Gibson SNP retiring

    130. Ian Brotherhood says:

      Anyone stupid enough to pursue the ethnic line ought to consider who they’d present as evidence of a ‘pure’ Scot.

      Some of the comments on this thread are disgraceful, and the mischief-makers know who they are. Please just pack it in with the imbecilic shite – the logical terminus of your arguments is utter loneliness. And as we all know, no-one really wants to be alone.

      Here’s the Bee Gees singing about it all:

      Bee Gees, ‘I Don’t Want To Be Alone’ –

    131. Mealer says:

      Democracy is never fair,but we hope to make it as fair as possible.There were plenty 15 year olds who were more than capable of making an informed decision last September but who were denied a vote because we choose to use a minimum age as criteria for voting.I dare say there were people resident in Scotland last Sepember who do not intend to be here long term but who got a vote in the referendum,but there isn’t a practical way of avoiding that without disenfranchising many others who are committed to a future here.Hundreds of thousands of people didn’t vote.Thats what we need to be discussing.

    132. yesindyref2 says:

      Along with crowdfunding for public services or capital investment could go crowd ownership, kind of shares, but with some form of credit shares available for those with no money to spare – perhaps some voluntary services.

      I’m sure I’ve read something somewhere long ago about this kind of public funding thing, it may come to me later but I doubt it.

    133. John from Fife says:

      At the risk of being criticised again I think that a 5 year residency is the best way forward for non born Scots in the next Indy ref. After all David Cameron thinks that EU citizens cannot vote in the EU ref but UK citizens who have lived abroad for more than 10 years can. Is that fair?

    134. dakk says:

      call me dave 10.51

      If Burnham thinks his effete Scouse accent will be enough to camouflage the Red Tories Britnat Imperial soul he’s kidding no one.

      His mascara will be running down his face when Labour get the next instalment of their electoral rout at the Holyrood Election

    135. HandandShrimp says:

      Where & when is this by-election anyone know?

      Call me Dave

      It was a council by-election in North Lanarkshire last night. The SNP won with 47%. So not much of a beginning for Burnham

    136. call me dave says:

      Looks like Dr Jim was right, what a combination

      Dugdale and Baker! …The answer to labour voter’s prayers. 🙂

      Mind you the other dross is not any better.
      I’ll ask my acquaintances from the labour ranks first chance to test the water.

      Many dark looks and furrowed brows there recently and they huddle over their coffee and talk of many things:
      Of shoes–and ships–and sealing-wax–
      Of cabbages–and kings–
      And why the SNP is so shit hot–
      And whether labour pigs have wings.”

    137. call me dave says:

      @HandandShrimp says

      Aye! I had a feeling it was maybe so…thanks. 🙂

    138. Modern text of `Macbeth`,could have been written today.

      Is Scotland the same as when I left it?

      Alas, our poor country! It’s too frightened to look at itself. Scotland is no longer the land where we were born; it’s the land where we’ll die. Where no one ever smiles except for the fool who knows nothing. Where sighs, groans, and shrieks rip through the air but no one notices. Where violent sorrow is a common emotion. When the funeral bells ring, people no longer ask who died. Good men die before the flowers in their caps wilt. They die before they even fall sick.

    139. Col says:

      So Scotland’s biggest festival is on the TV but not a single Scottish person available it would seem. What insight they have though to come out with sh’t like “Wow, Scotland really loves kasabien ”
      How lucky for the headline act, sure they will breath a sigh of relief after finishing their set.
      Oh well, what did we expect after the Glasgow commonwealth games were hijacked by London.!?

    140. HandandShrimp says:

      I still have no idea who Richard Baker is

      Given Labour’s woes that is probably a selling point.

    141. crazycat says:

      @ call me dave

      That article in the Herald bears today’s date, but is one of the kind that talks about what a politician “will say” – presumably based on a press release – rather than actual words, and refers to Burnham campaigning in Glasgow next week, so it will be one of the upcoming by-elections, not the one that has just happened (which was in North Lanarkshire, not Glasgow). There are 3, all in August, 2 because the councillor is now an MP, plus 1 following a Green resignation. I can’t archive the Herald article about it because I’ve used up my monthly ration.

      Dugdale and Baker have received the most nominations, but the actual voting doesn’t start till Monday; they will probably win, because the margins are quite large and there may not be enough individuals who wanted to nominate the other candidates (or did not vote at nomination meetings) to overcome that.

    142. Mealer says:

      John from Fife 11.32
      Well,Mr Cameron isn’t always right,is he? But,your suggestion of a 5 year residency qualification is,I think,a perfectly reasonable point for debate.

    143. CameronB Brodie says:

      As was stated earlier, “very, very interesting, but smallish sample”.

      Sticking my neck out here, nature over nurture is a very Boris Johnston outlook and follows in the footsteps of Galton’s eugenics twatery. As a trained social sceintist, I’d suggest that a lot of these incomers may well be well-off Tory bigot types. That’s what we are up against, a colonial mindset that has been breed into them. Apparently, all the formative stuff is done and dusted in shaping one’s identity, by around the age of 21.

      Scotland’s liberation from colonialism is one of the last to occur and is turning out to be one of the more complex. We have a lot against us but we have so many strenghts on our side. Keep the faith folks.

    144. K1 says:

      Handandshrimp…let me be the first to introduce you to Mr Baker…here he is on Newsnight being asked about ‘knife crime’ in 2011. Isobel Fraser on top form…this should give you a pretty clear picture of his character…

      Starts at 4.13.

    145. caz-m says:

      Here is the Greek Parliament discussing the latest bail-out. It’s live, but I cant understand a word they are talking about because I don’t speak Greek.

      So I’m off top bed. I hope they vote against the latest bail-out.

      If you are that way inclined AND you can speak Greek, then here is the link:-

      Mainly suitable for Greek insomniacs.

    146. dakk says:

      Scott 11.44

      Macduff/Ross ‘where funeral bells ring … ‘

      FFS , I’ve had a day from hell and that’s just finished me off

      I’m off to bed – tomorrow’s another day – or maybe not with a bit of luck.

      That is the question

    147. Ken500 says:

      Richard Baker. They are finished. Andy Burnham will be trying to get votes for himself.

      Andy Burnham was Health Minister when the North Staffords Hospital scandal happened. People were dying of neglect. Patients were not getting enough water and drinking out of vases. The conditions were terrible. People complained and nothing was done. Eventually a Report was made. The staff were threatening the complainers. One woman whose mother died moved house because of harassment.

    148. Cactus says:

      Saturday morning, I gotta feeling that a new Chris Cairnstoon is just around the corner..

      And what a choice of happenings to choose from.

      See y’all honda flip-side 😉

    149. Dr Jim says:


      That’s why I said I think it’s up to peoples own conscience
      The franchise is what it is, some folk will be happy some won’t

      What the argument maybe should be is, just because you can, should you?
      Other than that them’s the rules

    150. call me dave says:


      Yet he still rose to obscurity in the labour party. Knife work if you can get it.

      But where is Andy Kerr’s calculator and the answer to Ian Gray’s question about how an oil fund is ‘funded’?


      “To sleep, perchance to dream-
      ay, there’s the rub.”

      You’s should be away to your beds and let us yins wi insomnia and louping sore legs ease off our sore bits in asses milk or something similar. 🙁

    151. Ian Brotherhood says:

      @CamB (12.07) –

      Good to see you mister. I don’t know what you’re on about, but I’ll check it tomorrow.


    152. ewen says:

      The country of birth distinction is a bit iffy. My mother was born in Middlesexe to a Scottish mother and Welsh father and only came up to Scotland when she finished school. She has stood for the SNP for council wards in the 70s when people with English accents didn’t do that.

      Both my daughters have never lived in Scotland. They were born in Lithuania. They are proud to be Lithuanian and Scottish. My eldest is 15 and could give the average unionist a hiding in any independence debate.

      All of them born furth of Scotland but more Scottish than yyour average Scotbut.

    153. ewen says:

      HandandShrimp says:
      10 July, 2015 at 11:49 pm
      I still have no idea who Richard Baker is

      Did he not used to read the news and narrate Mary, Mungo and Midge?

      Ok, I’m showing my age.

    154. Ken500 says:

      Boris J is full of other nationalities. Turkish, French, German. Hs great grandfather was killed for opposing Turkish Nationals fighting for Independence. The grest grandfather was a campaigning reporter, who nearly got hung, but escaped to France., one his return he opposed the popular new national head of State. A crowd attacked him, stoned him, stabbed him to death and hung his body from a tree. His granny was French but lived on a sheep farm. His 6 x grandfather was George 11 of Europe. His 4 x Grandmother was an actress. The Pantomine at Wesminster suits his pedigree. Chum.

    155. Robin Banks says:

      You’re basing your analysis on a tiny sample size for people born in England and making multiple analyses on the same sample which is very bad practice.

      Using a sample of 90 people to attempt to establish the idea that people born in England are less likely to support raising income tax to support public services is just not sustainable. There’s not enough statistical power to allow you to match 15 people to a population which is spread across so many different areas, ages and ethnic backgrounds.

      You should also the polling company appears to have already weighted the sample so that it is only considering 90 of the 156 people who are considered to be English-born.

      It’s quite possible that people born in England are less likely to think income tax should be higher to fund more public services, but this survey doesn’t give us any evidence to support that beyond anecdote.

    156. Rosemoont says:

      A desperately unfair stereotype and of tenuous relevance, I admit, but the easily quotable line by Longshanks in Braveheart occasionally kicks back into my head as I read these polls and remember my frustration at the 55/45 result:

      “If we can’t get them out, we’ll breed them out!”

    157. K1 says:

      Just to be really clear who Richard Baker is…here’s him defensive and truculent in 2102 as he goes full SNP bad whilst Isabel Fraser exquisitely fillets him on what Better Together is offering prior to a No vote…he was one of the 5 directors of the Better Together Campaign.

      If Duggie ‘n Baker are the ticket…Labour have just entered into their final gasp of breath in Scotland…roll on 2016…’bring on the clowns’.

    158. Molly says:

      Frogesque/Dr Jim

      I’ve always thought a crowdfunder to build a huge storage/delivery unit Inverness way so the people in that area / Highlands and Islands would benefit . Something both locals and the rest of Scotland could invest in.

      If they can deliver fruit from the south of England 400 miles to Scottish stores why not a hub for the opposite direction?

      Apart from the fact, they are unfairly penalised in delivery costs , it would bring jobs too.

      Paula Rose, it makes you my sister – we’re aw Jock Tamsins bairns

    159. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi Craig.

      A good post, let down by assumptions about 56 by-elections.

      My own new MP, Chris Law (Dundee West) was a businessman who took a sabbatical, to drive “The Spirit of Independence” Green Goddess fire engine all over Scotland, in the months leading up to the Referendum.

      See “Spirit of Independence – Our Epic 2,300 mile journey” at:-

      Then you can check out all the videos from the expedition at:-


      Hi Crazycat.

      To get round the Herald / National page view limit, if you are using Firefox, download and install the Firefox add-on, “Remove Cookies For Site”.

      Once installed, wait for a Herald / National page to compete its loading, then right-click. You should see an option “Remove Cookies For Site”.

      Click on that every time you load a page from those periodicals and you should be able to browse unfettered. Works for me.

    160. Thepnr says:


      Hundreds of thousands of people didn’t vote.Thats what we need to be discussing

      Hit the nail on the head, these non voters should be the easiest to win over to the Yes cause. Though it takes a lot of effort and RIC are due a lot of credit for the inroads they made.

      Next time we will work even harder and that’s a promise.

    161. Dal Riata says:

      The eligibility criteria for participation in the UK general election, set in Section 1 of the Representation of the People Act 1985, states that “UK citizens who have left the UK in the last fifteen years are eligible to vote in UK General Election; their vote is cast in their last place of residence”; for those formerly resident in Scotland, this means their Scottish constituency.

      The Scottish government’s White Paper stipulated ‘at the date of independence’ that ‘British citizens habitually resident in Scotland on day one of independence’ (projected for 24 March 2016) as well as ‘British citizens born in Scotland but living outside of Scotland on day one of independence’ would automatically obtain Scottish citizenship.

      Yet, for the vote itself, it disenfranchised citizens born in Scotland but living outside of Scotland on the day of the referendum who, should Yes have won, the Scottish government would have considered to be Scottish enough to be attributed citizenship on ‘day one of independence’, that is, to be part of the constituent body-polity that in due course will adopt a ‘modern [written] constitution’ for Scotland (following a constitutional convention).

      At the same time, it enfranchised some residents in Scotland from other countries and states who were, apparently, well-placed to decide whether Scotland should be an independent country or not.

      But, can one say for certainty that this inclusiveness truly represented *all* ‘the people of Scotland’…?

      Meanwhile, citizens of Scotland – the people of – were excluded from the referendum process because they were, at the time, living outside Scotland.

      Yet, had Scotland won its independence, those same born-in-Scotland citizens who had been made exempt from the vote would have been, from day one, granted Scottish citizenship.

      So, then, for IndyRef 2, why not have something similar to the voting eligibility for UK General Elections? ie ‘Scottish citizens who have left Scotland in the last fifteen years are eligible to vote in the Scottish Independence Referendum due to take place on (insert date).‘

      ‘All those resident in Scotland and of age at the time of the referendum will be qualified to vote; as will those who have left at any time up to fifteen years previous to the actual voting date, and who may vote at their last place of residence in Scotland.‘

      (with thanks to Ruvi Zeigler)

    162. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “You’re basing your analysis on a tiny sample size for people born in England and making multiple analyses on the same sample which is very bad practice.”

      Subsamples are dodgy, but only because they increase the margin of error. The gap is sufficiently big to be noteworthy even with that factored in.

      “making multiple analyses on the same sample”

      No idea what that’s meant to mean. I’ve only talked about one thing.

      “You should also the polling company appears to have already weighted the sample so that it is only considering 90 of the 156 people who are considered to be English-born.”

      I don’t think you quite get how weighting works.

      “It’s quite possible that people born in England are less likely to think income tax should be higher to fund more public services, but this survey doesn’t give us any evidence to support that beyond anecdote.”

      It does. It gives us hard factual evidence, not anecdotes. Because it’s a small sample it’s not CONCLUSIVE evidence. But then I didn’t claim it was.

      It is, however, also evidence strongly backed up by the fact that the electorate in England, who are predominantly English-born, are now and historically have been a lot more inclined to vote for the main tax-cutting party, something Scots haven’t done in well over half a century. Is a sample of 40 million people big enough for you?

    163. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “So, then, for IndyRef 2, why not have something similar to the voting eligibility for UK General Elections?”

      Because people who don’t live in a country have no business imposing major change on the people who do. The fact that the UK franchise is shit isn’t a good reason to copy it.

    164. Petra says:

      @ Dal Riata says at 1:15 am

      I’ve brought this up before Dal Riata. 800,000 Scots who had relocated to rUK alone (mostly because they couldn’t get work here) were unneccessarily disenfranchised last September. As far as I could make out the Scottish Government couldn’t afford to include them as it would have doubled the costs. Let’s hope that next time round (many) things are different.

    165. thedogphilosopher says:

      I’ve got this terrific book called ‘What On Earth Happened?’, easy to read, lots of pictures and diagrams.

      Well, anyway, according to this book, it seems we all originated in Africa.

    166. yesindyref2 says:

      Franchise? It’s very simple. If you live here you’re directly affected by whatever the government here does. If you don’t live here you’re only indirectly affected, same as the rest of the UK is affected if Scotland “leaves the Union”, same as the rest of the EU is affected if the UK leaves the EU, same as the rest of the world is affected if we get a Conservative Government in Westminster – or a UKIP one.

      Kind of makes me think of a family where a 21 year old wants to leave home, get a flat, get married, start a family. The rest of the family take a vote on it: “We’ve voted and you’re not leaving. Now get out in the kitchen and wash those dishes (rattle those pots and pans)”.


    167. CameronB Brodie says:

      Ian Brotherhood
      Hi Ian. I’m wandering out off my comfort zone, but reckon our state of mind is everything. It’s totally mental, which is shaped by our environment. Totally environmental. 🙂

    168. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi yesindyref2.

      When I was 18, I told my parents I wanted to leave home and get a flat. My Mum told me I was far too young to leave home.

      Fast forward… When I was around 25, my Mum suggested to me that it was about time I was thinking about getting my own place. I suggested that I was quite happy with the current arrangement.

      I finally got my own flat when I was 28.

      Nothing to do with what you typed – just a memory.

    169. Meindevon says:

      @Petra and Dal Riata.

      I am an ex pat Scot who would have voted yes if I had had a vote. However I have six Scots friends here and only one of them was a Yesser and he only lived for a few years in Scotland after he was born there ( he was also the only one really interested in the detail of it and of course I pointed him in the direction of Wings to ‘seal the deal’). The rest all felt they should have had a vote which would have been No, mostly due to getting all their info from the MSM. None have any intention of returning to Scotland in the future.

      I would return tomorrow if my family circumstances allowed it. Unfortunately that is unlikely. Why should I have a vote on the future of a country that I will not live in and the outcome have no consequences on my life?

      I would add the only one who I thought maybe should have had a vote was someone who still owned property in Scotland.

    170. @Meindevon: “I would add the only one who I thought maybe should have had a vote was someone who still owned property in Scotland.”

      Absolutely not. That kind of proprietary nationalism is even more insidious than the ethnic kind… it’s a kind of thinking that may have a precedence and basis in English polity, but not in Scots law or tradition. One resident person, one vote – rich or poor. That’s who we are here, since time immemorial. The people are sovereign, not just the propertied classes.

    171. Meindevon says:


      As I said it was just ‘maybe’.

      You point is a good one and I stand of changed mind!

    172. Stoker says:

      K1 wrote:
      “..anyone else get the letter from either the SNP or SG just before the election asking about voting intentions?”

      Nope! News to me!
      As i’m not a member of the SNP maybe it was just sent to members.
      Perhaps others can confirm for you one way or the other.

    173. Husker says:

      Joemcg says @ 10 July, 2015 at 9:44 pm

      “Would any other “nation” you care to mention be happy that foreign nationals voted no and helped to deny their independence? Think you know the answer to that one. Why are we Scots so saft?”

      Firstly, we aren’t any other nation. Secondly, our situation is different from most countries in that we have been part of a union with a number of countries on a voluntary basis which has seen a lot of internal migration between the host countries. I appreciate that the voluntary part is very debatable but it is the hand we have been dealt and it isn’t being saft in having to do the best with that hand.

      The solution isn’t to happy or not that people, whether foreign or not, voted no at the recent referendum but to make the case directly or indirectly about independence. Given how the Tories will be in power for the foreseeable future and their goals are diametrically opposite to to the majority of Scots then we should be making the case that there is a credible alternative.

    174. Husker says:

      Rock says @ 10 July, 2015 at 10:37 pm

      “That’s a logical fallacy and adds nothing to the debate.”

      Or is it your mission to lower the quality of debate on every thread?”

      Rock, If this statement is directed at me, I suggest you read what logical fallacy means.

    175. ScottieDog says:

      If we want to win the indyref arguments next time we need to start talking about currency….
      Thoroughly recommend Ronnie’s Morrison’s book ‘Moving On’ which can be found here…

      Folk need to realise how destructive the UK monetary system is. We need to ask why would we want to be part of a sterling zone..

      So let’s change the argument.

    176. Pool9 says:

      This thread was started by a post pointing out differences in opinions about tax raising powers.

      It almost instantly degenerated into an argument over who should be able to vote in the next indy ref.

      If we have one.

      Get it together FFS.

      Remember divide and conquer. Don’t be divided. You are fighting over fragments. You’ll be shouting ‘splitter’ at each other soon enough.

      Who’d laugh at that outcome? Who would benefit from a divided campaign for Scottish Independence?

      Any guesses?

    177. Ken500 says:

      If you can’t run a Hospital you can’t run a Gov. Andy Burnham another useless trougher, along with the rest of them. Every MP who promotes nuclear should have to declare their family/associates links to the nuclear industry and their benefits. Stop using Scotland as a nuclear dump.

    178. manandboy says:

      I’ve lived in several villages and in each one, an ‘incomer’ was always an incomer. But it made no difference to the way they were treated as far as I could tell.

    179. Joemcg says:

      Husker-you did not really answer my question. Dissent seems to be too easily quashed by the PC brigade on here and other places. It’s a very unique question being asked one of nationhood and in my opinion I don’t see why other nationalities should have a say. Feel free to have a pop but that is my thoughts. It just seems wrong.

    180. HandandShrimp says:

      I watched the Richard Baker interview with Isabel Fraser 🙂

      I think Richard represents that intransigent status quo element of Labour that has stymied every review they have had in trying to deal with Labour’s troubles. He is an absolutely ideal match for Kezia’s perfect vacuum of ideas and random sound bites.

      I thought we were lucky with Murphy because of his Blairite history but things look set to get even better.

    181. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      muttley79 at 9.07pm

      I did a count following an appalling article in Private Eye. I think 19 out of 56 were councillors

    182. Fred says:

      Anent the alleged 800,000 Scots who live furth of Scotland, they’ve voted with their feet, gone, vamoosed, they’re entitled to zilch. Why should my vote be cancelled out by somebody living in Sheepy Magna for God’s sake. If they’re so desperately patriotic about their say in Scotland’s future they should get their arses back here & work & register. We have industries here which can’t get locals for love nor money & folk from abroad supply their places so don’t give us the “Can’t get work in Scotland” business.

    183. K1 says:

      Stoker, not SNP member either…so yes, surprised no one else seems to have received this…or mention if they have…hmmm.

    184. Muscleguy says:


      With virtually everything it is not one or the other but which proportions of nature and nurture. We know that many aspects of personality are genetically underpinned and this feeds into politics. It is not hard and fast in all cases but there is definitely nature there and that can be inherited and environment including social environment can select both for and against and the ‘wrong’ genes in a particular selective environment can cause you not to thrive and pass them on.

      One idea about the decline in violence (yes, really the stats don’t lie) is that over time the most violent tend to gravitate to the army especially as society restricts their violence there, and they get killed off, on average. This still happens but what also happens is the violent get gaoled and so their opportunities to pass on their genes is curtailed. Just one example.

      As I said small, hardscrabble communities do not survive if they are made up of hardcore individualists and nonconformists.

    185. HandandShrimp says:

      I am a member and I got loads of emails but they they were all encouraging me to get active, deliver leaflets, act as a polling agent, all that sort of stuff. Don’t recall any asking me how I was going to vote…the emails all assumed I was voting SNP and would want to get out there and help the SNP win.

    186. Lochside says:

      Why do so many on here stick up the straw man of ‘ethnic nationalism’ when dealing with the self evident fact that several hundred thousand people from our largest neigbouring dominating state voted to prevent our freedom.

      As I noted, immigration and ethnicity is unimportant,however, national identity is, particularly when the cohort concerned comes from an Historically imperial and colonising State.

      If I believed in ethnicity, then would I happily welcome the thought of hundreds of thousand of ethnic Ulster Scots into Scotland?…No. The reason, they are blindly Unionist. Would I welcome the 800,000 exiled Scots voting from England in another referendum?…No because they don’t live here.

      Look at it this way, if the Unionists had been allowed to impose an all UK vote for Indy for Scotland and we lost because of the rest of UK, would we feel cheated?
      So why are we so mealy mouthed that we can’t address the reality that the balance was tipped by the resident English vote for ‘NO’.

      The logic of unbridled immediate voting rights for anybody stepping off a bus or a train from RUK will finally bite us in the arse. We are continuing to lose our youth and replacing them with rich, professional and wealthy retired English. The majority of whom will definitely continue to vote ‘NO’, no matter how utopian we would like to be. The survey at the top of this page proves that the English population is moving further what will change these new immigrants outlook?

      The English voting ‘YES’ are not incomers, but welcome additions to our country, but they are the minority. English folk on here sometimes display a lack of insight as to what the argument really is about…Let’s make it clear, we are not talking about disenfranchising anyone, particularly yourselves or the existing resident ‘No’s, you voted yes, but the majority of your countrymen and women didn’ how can we prevent this being a determinant in the next Ref?

      Ideally citizenship would preclude any further problems. Any person resident here who committed to our country could not vote us back into colonial status.
      As that is not achievable yet…residency will slow down the increasing amount of RUK ‘No’s affecting another result. Denmark used similar actions to prevent Rich Germans buying up most of its coastline.

    187. Derek Henry says:

      Of course the real issue is most of you have been brainwashed within an inch of your lives.

      If you think taxes fund anything then you are a fiscal Conservative.

      Repeat after me

      “We no longer work from a gold standard”

    188. Derek Henry says:

      The only way we can be succesful is if we ave our own central bank issuing our own curreny with a floating exchange rate.

      It’s time for Labour and the SNP to join together to say it. They can’t leave it alone any longer.

      Role of the national government:

      We need a clear statement of purpose for any national government. I think some of the erroneous reasoning in the media and within the broader debate stems from a lack of clarity about what it is that the national government should be doing on our behalf.

      The national government which issues the currency as a monopolist has a charter to advance public purpose ( Everybody’s welfare) at all times even if, in doing this, specific private interests are impeded. In general, the advancement of public interest will provide a sound basis for private benefit also. But at times this will not be the case.

      From that broad charter, full employment, poverty alleviation and environmental sustainability become the most significant expressions of public purpose.

      However, it is highly unlikely that an economy will perform to potential if these policy targets are compromised in any way so I think there is a good case for making them the starting points in the pursuit of public purpose.

      Conduct of the Central Bank:

      The Bank Of England should manage the liquidity (cash) system to maintain a zero overnight interest rate as a permanent feature of the monetary system. All adjustments to aggregate demand are better made using fiscal policy.

      A zero interest rate policy would reduce the rates right across the term stucture and would be beneficial to investment, output and employment. This policy would to some extent alter the behaviour of saving (positive interest rates reward savers) but any desired adjustments to the behavioural changes (reduced saving) can be accomplished via fiscal policy.

      The notion of a natural rate of interest (derived from Wicksell) which is neutral with respect to output is not sustained in the acceptable research literature. The short-term rate of interest which would emerge if the non-government sector was net saving and the government was maintaining full employment (with positive deficits – as a matter of accounting) would be zero. The central bank would have to do something (artificial) like sell bonds to alter that “natural” tendency.

      At times the central bank lends to its member banks (those who have reserve accounts with the central bank). This lending should never be constrained and should be priced at whatever the current rate for lending to banks is (the interbank market). No special arrangements are needed to facilitate this.

      For example, reflecting on Obama’s proposals, the US central bank (Federal Reserve) currently requires collateral from the banks it lends to despite the fact that the assets used already fall under the Fed regulative ambit. So as long as the regulator is ensuring the assets held by the banks are viable then demanding collateral is a waste of time.

      Some analysts think that if the central bank restricts its lending to the banks, then this will serve to restrict credit. If it is thought that there is too much private borrowing then this would suggest that the central bank should not offer unlimited loans to the member banks.

      But once we reject the “money multiplier” view of the world, then we learn that commercial bank lending is not reserve-constrained (as it is in the text book models that students learn from). That is, banks lend to any credit worthy customer and worry about getting the necessary reserves after the fact. So constraining the central bank lending to the banks will not alter their own lending.

      What will happen though is that the rate it lends to banks and its target interest rate will be affected. The central bank has to offer whatever reserves are demanded by the commercial banks if it wants to maintain control over these two rates. Further, by making this offer the interbank market would disappear and that eliminates the inefficient process of banks borrowing and lending reserves between each other.

    189. Derek Henry says:

      Conduct of Our Treasury

      Our Treasury implements fiscal policy on behalf of the elected government. At present we have voluntary arrangements in place which resemble the constraints they faced under the Gold Standard. These relate to constraints on net spending and the necessity to borrow from the non-government sector (either domestically or foreign) every time they net spend a new pound.

      These arrangements are a denial of the opportunities that a fiat monetary system offers the elected government. They open the government to criticism from the fiscal conservatives who equate the government budget with the household budget. An examination of the reasoning behind these constraints typically uncover ideological statements along the lines of needing to put a strong check on government involvment, so they deliver fiscal discipline.

      Of-course, the conceptualisation of “fiscal discipline” is far-fetched and biased towards the government running surpluses and reducing its command of the economy’s resources. This manifests as the government being bullied into reducing its spending, particularly on social welfare and public goods (education, health etc) and reducing taxes for the high income earners). But there is a sickening hypocrisy displayed when it comes to payments to business (so-called corporate welfare).

      This form of government spending is never challenged by those who receive them and criticised as being wasteful or undermining incentive and action. Accompanying this rhetoric is a firm belief in self-regulation of private markets, which means that transparency and accountability are reduced.

      The voluntary constraints, in turn, create political constraints on the government such that it has been pressured to maintain high rates of labour underutilisation for the last 35 years in most countries because they are unable to run deficits that are required to match the saving desires of the non-government sector.

      As a consequence, aggregate demand has been restricted and even undermined in recent decades by the pursuit of budget surpluses and the non-government sector has been pushed into dis-saving (and increased indebtedness). Over 400% of GDP as we speak.

      These voluntary constraints thus lead to unsustainable outcomes but the costs of the dysfunction that follows are borne mainly by the less advantaged groups in the society.

      In that regard, we should abandon all voluntary constraints on net spending and the institutional machinery that has arisen to implement these constraints (for example, the Office of Financial Management which was created to place government debt issues into the private markets).

      That is, we should recognise the differences and advantages that a government in a fiat monetary system has over one operating in a convertible currency system (Gold Standard) and create behaviours and institutions that allowed the the government to exploit those advantages.

      Specifically, we should stop issuing Treasury debt instruments – that is, stop public borrowing.

      Such borrowing is unnecessary to support the net spending (deficits) given that the national government is not revenue-constrained. There is nothing positive in terms of advancing the primary goals of the national government

      This would mean that the net spending would manifest as cumulative excess reserve balances at the central bank. Instead of being sold in the private markets.

      Some people will immediately ask: so this will be the “printing money” option that is spelled out in the macroeconomic textbooks.

      To which we say: it has nothing to do with “printing money”. All government spending occurs in the same way – altering bank account balances in the private sector or issuing cheques that end up in bank account balances.

      What the government does otherwise doesn’t alter that. Taxation – is just the reversal of the spending processes (debiting bank accounts).

      In the case of debt issuance, the government only really borrows as part of monetary policy – to manage the reserve impacts of the net spending. So the issuance of Treasury bonds allows the central bank to maintain a positive target rate of interest at the short end of the term structure which, in turn, conditions the longer maturity interest rates.

      It is clear that this leads to higher interest rates than would be the case if there was no debt issued and it is hard to imagine why this would be seen as being economically beneficial. If the government wants the private sector to have less spending capacity at any particular time, then it can use taxation increases to accomplish this goal.

      Further, the government can always instruct the central bank to pay a return on excess reserves if it wanted to maintain a positive overnight interest rate. It is not necessary because typically the central bank should run a zero interest rate policy.

    190. Derek Henry says:

      Role of the Commercial banks :

      Public purpose end of story !

      Break em up

      The only useful thing a bank should do is to facilitate a payments system and provide loans to credit-worthy customers. Attention should always be focused on what is a reasonable credit risk. In that regard, the banks:

      Should only be permitted to lend directly to borrowers. All loans would have to be shown and kept on their balance sheets. This would stop all third-party commission deals which might involve banks acting as “brokers” and on-selling loans or other financial assets for profit.

      Should not be allowed to accept any financial asset as collateral to support loans. The collateral should be the estimated value of the income stream on the asset for which the loan is being advanced. This will force banks to appraise the credit risk more fully.

      Should be prevented from having “off-balance sheet” assets, such as finance company arms which can evade regulation.

      Should never be allowed to trade in credit default insurance. This is related to whom should price risk.

      Should be restricted to the facilitation of loans and not engage in any other commercial activity.

      It is true that the meagre separation of banks from investment funds does not eliminate the problem that the Wall Street firms would still be “too big to fail”.

      The issue then is to examine what risk-taking behaviour is worth keeping as legal activity. We ban all sort of risk-taking behaviour so governments around the world are not averse to taking drastic action.

      The thing that should be foremost in our minds is what public purpose do these Wall Street capital market monoliths serve? If the answer is very little then they are akin to cars driving too fast on the crowded roads. Fun for the driver – for a while – until a massive pileup is caused. There is no public purpose in allowing the cars to drive fast in the first place. We clearly regulate that severely.

      While it is unlikely to happen, I would legislate against derivatives trading other than that which can be shown to be beneficial to the stability of the real economy. While there is a lot of unwinding that has to be done to accomplish this end, it is the only way to address the “too important to fail” problem noted by Mervyn King.

      We will not hold our breath waiting for any of this though.

    191. Derek Henry says:

      The issuance of Treasury bonds acts like corporate welfare for the purchasers who typically are financial institutions and foreign governments. Why should they enjoy a risk-free government annuity? There is nothing to be gained from that. The futures traders use the government bond as a pricing vehicle (as the risk-free asset).

      Why couldn’t they develop a private benchmarking asset to fulfill the same function but which wouldn’t carry the public transfer of funds connotation? The answer is that they clearly could and their continual claims that the government has to issue debt to maintain financial stability in futures markets etc are just special pleading by lobbyists and are spurious.

      What about sovereign funds? These involve the national government via its treasury speculating in financial markets through the purchase and sale of financial assets. There is no public purpose that can be achieved by using net spending to build stockpiles of financial assets.

      Typically, this behaviour is constructed as the government “storing its surpluses” in some asset for later use – to permit some future liability (public pensions, public service superannuation, ageing-society demands etc) to be “funded” more easily. But, of-course, that logic is inapplicable to a sovereign government in a fiat monetary system which is not revenue-constrained.

      The purchase of the financial assets is not “storing surpluses” – it is just plain government spending – in this case on financial assets instead of other uses that the spending could be put to – such as, better schools, better hospitals, higher employment, more generous research funding etc.

      While the true test of the benefits of any government spending is what you might be doing otherwise with the spending, It is a fraud that it could ever be “better” to buy shares in some company as a speculative venture rather than to improve public education or health. Further, we know that great discoveries come from research. Perhaps the next pound spent by the government on research in the university system will discover the cure for cancer! That will never come from speculating on the share price of a telecommunications company.

      Thus, as an operational rule we would ban the government from purchasing speculative financial assets (note we are not including the central bank in this rule)

    192. Derek Henry says:

      In context of the budget

      It is clearer to simply say that (a) the act of creating a deficit—raising the net financial wealth of the non-government sector—is fiscal policy, and (b) the act of announcing and then supporting an interest rate target with security sales (or purchases, or interest on reserves)—which has no effect on the net financial wealth of the non-government sector—is monetary policy. In the case of (a), whether the Treasury or the central bank cuts the checks, it’s fiscal policy, and with (b), whether the Treasury or the central bank sells securities, it’s monetary policy.

      In other words, fiscal policy is about managing the net financial assets of the non-government sector relative to the state of the economy, and monetary policy is about managing interest rates (and through it, to the best of its abilities, bank lending and deposit creation) relative to the state of the economy.

      It is a much more useful to say the following because it makes clear from the start that (1) the currency-issuing government isn’t constrained while (2) the interest rate on the national debt is a policy variable.

      All kinds of human suffering the past 6+ years may have been avoided if those two basic points were widely understood.

      So in that context, there is no case for governments to issue any debt. This choice would introduce no increased inflation risk. The monetary operations that accompany fiscal policy changes have very little impact on increasing or decreasing the inflation risk of continuously running an economy close to full capacity. The risk is real but can be managed.

      Further, there is no financial reason for issuing the debt because the sovereign government retains monopoly control over the currency. The practice of debt-issuance is a hang-over from the gold standard era where governments had to “finance” their spending in order to retain control over the exchange rate.

      The practice has lingered because it is now a convenient ideological cum political tool used by neo-liberals to limit the size of government and to give the corporate sector access to corporate welfare (the risk-free government debt) that they use to create profit.

      If everyone knew that there was no functional (financial) reason for the government to issue debt and that it just transferred public funds into the hands of the speculators then I think attitudes might change. Eventually.

      The simple double entry book keeping ( accounting) at the Bank Of England raises a serious question…

      That if a GOVERNMENT starts giving out money, it will create liabilities with no corresponding assets — thus depleting its equity ?

      However, the same accounting answers that question because the deficit and debt are a STOCK and not a currency flow. It does not matter that the GOVERNMENT’s equity is reduced. Standard accounting terms lose their usual meanings when applied to GOVERNMENTS. Money isn’t a liability in the ordinary sense. Nobody is owed and nothing ever has to be paid back. As a stock on the Bank Of England’s it represents the wealth of the non govermental sectors. The rest of us at home and abroad who holds £’s.

      Again, though, for the public at large and fiscal Conservatives, when the Bank Of England does it, it’s monetary policy and they recognize quickly that “money isn’t a liability in the ordinary sense”.

      But were HM Treasury to do it, it would be fiscal policy and the fiscal Conservatives and their media lap dogs would scream, “Oh, no! We’re living beyond our means! The government will go bankrupt! The bond vigilantes are coming to destroy our economy!”

      What the fiscal Conservatives refuse to accept is The Bank Of England is an agency of HM Treasury, and its debt IS HM Treasury debt. There is no difference who creates liabilities with no corresponding assets ( money from thin air) and since nobody is owed and nothing ever has to be paid back.

      Just shows the sham that was witnessed today.

      If I was Nicola this is where I would start. I would go on full attack week after week after week attacking the Bank Of England. Smashing and destroying the smoke and mirrors leaving it’s dark arts destroyed and laid bare for all to see.

      With it fiscal Conservatism would be dead.

    193. Derek Henry says:

      In context of the word “borrowing” in the budget

      To understand the difference between a stock and a flow think of a bath-tub. The water in the bath is a stock – it is measured at a point in time. The water that comes into the bath (via the taps) and/or out of the bath (via the sink) are flows and you measure them as a rate of water flow per unit of time. So many litres per minute.

      If the inflows are stronger than the outflows the water level in the bath will rise and vice-versa. In other words, flows add to and subtract from stocks.

      In economics, this distinction is very important and most students fail to really understand it. I think that is because mainstream macroeconomics then doesn’t go onto to use the distinction properly, especially in the area of fiscal relations.

      So the level of bank reserves is a stock – measured at some point each day.

      Government spending and taxation, consumer spending, saving, investment, exports, imports, etc are all flows of £’s per unit of time.

      Government spending adds to bank reserves and taxation reduces (drains) the stock of reserves.

      So-called reserves are simply settlement balances in a payments system that is run by the Bank Of England. Payment balances reside as entries in commercial banks’ current accounts at the central bank.

      These payment balances can be exchanged back and forth with currency if a government chooses to issue currency at all. When HM Treasury spends it just instructs the BOE to credit these current accounts.

      As I explained the bank reserves are a stock not a flow and are paid off every day in the interbank market.

      Whatever the deficit or surplus is at the end of each day ( goverment spending minus taxation) bonds are used at the end of every day to balance the bank reserves to zero. Hence the deficit or surplus is destroyed everyday and transfered from being a goverment deficit or surplus to non govermental sector profits/ assests/ wealth.

      Bonds either add to the reserves or drain the reserves in the interbank market every night so the BOE can reach its overnight interest rate. HM Treasury, the bank of England and the commercial banks reserves must be zero at the end of everyday. They do this by buying or selling bonds between each other until they all balance to zero.

      This is the travesty. We should not sell short term bonds it is corporate welfare. All we need to do and have been doing since the crash is just put an interest rate on the reserves and extinguish the day to day deficit or surplus this way.

      Once these bonds have been bought or sold. Then the entires are switched from current accounts at the central bank to savings accounts, and vice versa. The amount of net financial assets remains constant and only the term changes ( 1 year, 10 year, 30 year), which may involve an interest differential depending on the bond

      As in other banking, there is usually an interest differential between a current account and a savings account, at the BOE between a payments account and a securities account. In this way the central bank can conduct monetary policy that influences the yield curve of the different bonds offered over different timescales. Which provides a benchmark for other lenders, thereby influencing the spread and by implication money demand, that is, demand for loans.

      There is no need for a government to provide both types of account under the existing monetary system. One account for settlement balances that pays no interest is sufficient for operation of a contemporary payments system.

      The issuance of government bonds is an anachronism, a historical residual that could be dispensed with. Since interest is no longer operationally necessarily, payment of interest constitutes a subsidy for holding safe assets voluntarily provided by HM Treasury. The question then becomes what public purpose does this subsidy serve since it benefits only a segment of the population directly.

    194. Derek Henry says:

      The irony of all this is, is of course the speculators would not be able to buy the bonds (the risk-free government debt) in the first place. If HM Treasury did not run defcits.

      It is the defcits that allow the non govermental sector to save in the currency of issue that thus then allows them to buy the bonds. Without defcits the non govermental sector would not be able to save.

      And if there is a surplus it gets worse not only will they not be able to save in the currenct of issue. They will have to spend their savings or borrow just to meet their tax liabilities.

      As goverment spending will be less than taxes collected.

      Where will the non govermental sector get the currency from if they are paying more currency in taxes than the goverment spends ?

      Once the non govermental sector savings run out then it’s debt time baby. The non govermental sector will then have to borrow to get the currency it needs to pay its taxes. Meaning the non govermental sector will just increse their debt levels.

      I think we have enough of those already thank you.

      Which is currently over 400% of GDP already.

    195. Thepnr says:


      You may be interested in this slightly more scientific assessment in deaths in the UK armed forces for the last 10 years.

      57. In 2007, 2009 and 2010, the Army was at a significantly increased risk of dying compared to the UK
      population, accounted for by the number of operational deaths. For the years 2004, 2005, 2006, 2011
      and 2012 the risk of dying for the Army was no different than for the UK population. For 2008, 2013 and
      2014 the Army had a statistically significant lower risk of dying than the UK general population.

      As for prisoners and their opportunity to pass on their genes. The evidence appears to contradict your view.

      Approximately 200,000 children in England and
      Wales had a parent in prison at some point in
      2009. This is more than double the number of children
      affected in the same year by divorce in the family.

      The population in custody on 30 June 2009 was 83,900, a rise of 220 from a year earlier.
      The population in prisons was 83,500 rise of 260 from a year earlier), in Secure Training Centres (STCs) it was 260 and in Secure Children’s Homes (SCHs) it was 180.

      These figures suggest an average of 2.4 children per prisoner which is greater than the average number of children for the UK population as a whole which in 2009 was 1.96 children.

      The Total Fertility Rate (TFR) for 2009 shows an average of 1.96 children per woman in England and Wales, although this figure is still relatively high, given that the 2008 figure was at its highest rate for 35 years.

    196. Donna says:

      I was born in central London.
      My Mother English, my father Scottish.
      I’ve not seen him since I was 4, so I can’t say much about prior Scottish ties.

      I am a working class Londoner that could not stand the noise, the pollution and the downright rude people in my birthplace.
      Took a chance, found a place to rent, threw my belongings in a van and moved to Argyll.
      I gathered it was a much more beautiful place to be totally broke and took my chances.
      I’ve managed to keep my small business ticking over.
      I have been here 3 years now, and am a proud founding member of my local SNP branch, and a yes voter!
      I love Scotland and I am getting worried by people that think I should not have the right to vote.
      I did not choose my birthplace, but I did choose my home!

    197. Derek Henry says:

      The Bank Of England have told you all many times that taxes do not fund anthing in a fiat currency.

      So has Labour list.

      Taxes are nothing more than a monetary tool that adds or takes away currency to either stop inflation or produce growth. They are also there so that it creates a demand for the currency so that people will provide goods and services and labour to meet their tax liabilities.

      This is the biggest con played on the people and because of TV you fall for it.

      I’m putting together a slide show that shows how currency is created in reality.It is Scotlands answer to the currency question. All I need now is the common weals permission to take it around scotland.

    198. Derek Henry says:

      The UK deficit exactly EQUALS the total net increase in the £U.K. financial assets of the rest of us – businesses and households, residents and non residents – what is called the “non government” sector.

      The deficit = = = the total net increase of financial assets in the non govermental sector

      In other words, government deficits equal increased “monetary savings” for the rest of us, to the penny. Simply put, government deficits ADD to our savings (to the penny). This is an accounting fact, not theory or philosophy. There is no dispute. It is basic national income accounting.

      For example, if the government deficit last year was £1 trillion, it means that the net increase in savings of financial assets for everyone else combined was exactly, to the penny, £1 trillion.

      The national debt is just the outstanding public debt held by the non-government sector (with some held by the central bank). It is a stock and reflects the wealth of the non-government sector held in this form. The funds from deficit spending end up as non goverment sector savings and assets.

      Once you realise this first year student fact and understand what this stock looks like on a central banks accounts then you realise the deficit the no voters scare us with are a good thing.

      The last thing Scotland should do is balance the books.

    199. Derek Henry says:

      If he knew how our sectoral balances work the last thing you would try and do is balance the budget.

      What the UK sectoral balances help you to understand is why the fiscal conservative orthodoxy in macroeconomics has failed for nearly 50 years.

      The UK sectoral balances shows you that the mainstream belief that markets self-equilibrate at levels that are remotely socially acceptable is erroneous. Markets do not self-regulate in ways that avoid major financial upheavals and these crises have profound impacts on the real economy.

      In particular, the fiscal conservative body of literature that is built upon the belief that fiscal policy should only be a passive support to an inflation targeting monetary policy is shown to be highly damaging to the long-term growth prospects of modern monetary economies. They still believe we work from a gold standard.

      The current crisis confirms that the only way that the non-government sector can save is for the government sector to run continual budget deficits. The stock-flow framework allows you to understand why this fiscal conduct is non-inflationary and, if managed properly, exerts downwards pressure on nominal interest rates and underpins full employment.

      As a matter of national accounting fact ( not political or ideological), the sovereign government deficit (surplus) equals the non-government surplus (deficit). The failure to recognise this relationship is the major oversight of neo-liberal, fiscal conservative (and Austrian) analysis. Just look at our Sectoral balance graph since 1900 for proof.

      In aggregate, there can be no net savings of financial assets of the non-government sector without cumulative government deficit spending. The sovereign government via net spending (deficits) is the only entity that can provide the non-government sector with net financial assets (net savings) and thereby simultaneously accommodate any net desire to save and hence eliminate unemployment.

      Additionally, and contrary to neo-liberal, fiscal conservative (and Austrian) rhetoric, the systematic pursuit of government budget surpluses is necessarily manifested as systematic declines in private sector savings.

      The decreasing levels of net private savings which are manifest in the public surpluses increasingly leverage the private sector. The deteriorating debt to income ratios which result will eventually see the system succumb to ongoing demand-draining fiscal drag through a slow-down in real activity. So this proves the private indebtedness traces back to the conduct of the government sector.

      The analogy neo-liberals, fiscal Conservatives (and Austrians) draw between private household budgets and the government budget is false. Households, the users of the currency, must finance their spending prior to the fact. However, government, as the issuer of the currency, must spend first (credit private bank accounts) before it can subsequently tax (debit private accounts). Government spending is the source of the funds the private sector requires to pay its taxes and to net save and is not inherently revenue constrained apart from inflation.

      With that in mind, the theory of unemployment based on the conduct of fiscal policy (compare that the Austrians, fiscal conservatives who emphasise excessive real wages). In a fiat monetary system, unemployment occurs when net government spending is too low. As a matter of accounting, for aggregate output to be sold, total spending must equal total income. Involuntary unemployment is idle labour unable to find a buyer at the current money wage.

      In the absence of government spending, unemployment arises when the private sector, in aggregate, desires to spend less than it earns.

      Nominal (or real) wage cuts per se do not clear the labour market, unless they somehow eliminate the private sector desire to net save and increase spending. Thus, unemployment occurs when net government spending is too low to accommodate the need to pay taxes and the desire to net save. This is a fundamental mistake that neo-liberals, fiscal Conservatives (and Austrians make).

    200. Derek Henry says:

      The following accounting identity shows an aggregate relationship that must hold by definition for a closed economy, such as the global economy as a whole:

      (G – T) = (S – I)

      In this identity, G is government expenditure, T is tax revenue, S is private saving and I is gross private investment.

      The left-hand side of the identity, G – T, is the budget deficit. The right-hand side, S – I, is referred to as net private saving or the private sector balance.

      Net private saving is the amount by which disposable income exceeds private spending. This can be seen by noting that S = Y – C, where Y is disposable income and C is private consumption expenditure, which implies S – I = Y – (C + I). When the private sector, in aggregate, spends less than its income, it is said to be in surplus. When it spends more than its income, it is in deficit.

      The identity can therefore be restated as:

      Budget Deficit = Net Private Saving

      This shows that, in a closed economy, the net saving of the private sector matches the budget deficit dollar for dollar. A larger budget deficit means higher net private saving. A reduction in the budget deficit implies lower net private saving.

      This relationship makes sense considering that government expenditure involves crediting private bank accounts whereas taxing involves debiting private bank accounts. If the government spends more and taxes less, there is a net increase in private bank deposits held by households and firms, and a corresponding increase in bank reserves, held in special accounts with the central bank. Some households and firms may use the extra funds to buy government bonds, which will result in some bank reserves being converted into bonds. Either way, there is an increase in net financial assets (which comprise currency, bank reserves and government securities). If, on the contrary, governments try to cut spending and raise taxes, as they are beginning to do in a misguided attempt to reduce government debt, private saving will be squeezed.

      For open economies (i.e. individual trading nations), the analysis can be extended to include external sources of revenue and expenditure. There are now three sectors: the government, domestic private and external sectors. The accounting identity becomes:

      (G – T) = (S – I) – NX

      Here, NX denotes net exports (exports minus imports). In words, we have:

      Budget Deficit = Net Private Saving – Net Exports

      If we rearrange this expression, it becomes clear that there are now two possible sources of private net saving:

      Budget Deficit + Net Exports = Net Private Saving

      If domestic citizens sell more goods and services to foreigners than they buy in return, export revenue will exceed import spending and there will be a build up of financial assets. So, in an open economy, private net saving can come either from government deficit expenditure or net exports.

      In many countries, though, including the US, net exports are typically negative, which means the external sector subtracts from net private saving. This leaves the budget deficit as the only source of net private saving. For trade deficit countries such as the US, in other words, it is impossible for the private sector to net save unless the government runs a budget deficit.

    201. Derek Henry says:

      This is what happens in reality.

      Currency creation part 1

      Currency creation Part 2

      Fully backed up by the Bank Of England

      It’s about time you all learned it a currency union a pegged system or joining the Euro would have been a dusaster for us.

      We would just have been currency slaves to London or Brussels.

    202. Derek Henry says:

      If none of you believe at a word of what I posted and don’t believe what Labour list and the Bank Of England has told you many times.

      Then just phone Japan or China they’ve been doing this for nearly 40 years now.

      We could do the same and the rating agencies and markets won’t be able to touch us.

    203. Derek Henry says:

      And REV

      If wings is now the 3rd biggest place that Scots get their news. You have a duty to explain to them how our currency would be created.

      The role of the central bank is not included in any economic text books in universities. There is a reason for that it has been erased since 1979.

      It’s like talking about and analysing the rain cycle but missing out the precipitation part.

      You should allow guest bloggers on this site to explain the reality to the Scottish people. You would provide a currency solution for an independent scotland.

      Look no further than

      Neil Wilson –


      Professor Billy Mitchell –

      They will help you right till the end because they want Scotland to succeed.

      Send them an email and chat to them and let them help you get the truth out there for the people of Scotland.

      I’ll being doing the very same if the common weal lets me.

    204. Husker says:

      Joemcg @ 11 July, 2015 at 9:52 am

      “Husker-you did not really answer my question. Dissent seems to be too easily quashed by the PC brigade on here and other places. It’s a very unique question being asked one of nationhood and in my opinion I don’t see why other nationalities should have a say. Feel free to have a pop but that is my thoughts. It just seems wrong.”

      I appreciate that I sound like one of those flower power head in the sky middle class lefties that pops in the in Guardian forums but I am not. I do admit I wear my heart on my sleeve at times but I am a realist. I see myself as one of many voices that hopes to shape the future of an independent Scotland, not the sole voice.

      You use the argument of the ‘PC brigade silencing opinion’ retort but I am not trying to silence your opinion. I am putting my opinion forward. It is different from yours. Should your opinion be more important than mine or mine yours?

    205. cirsium says:

      @Derek Henry – thanks for your comments and the links. Very thought-provoking. I agree that the currency is one of the issues which should be discussed now in preparation for IndyRef2.

    206. Grouse Beaten says:

      I think ‘Derek Henry’ needs his own blog site, and then he can refer readers to relevant portions whenever the occasions arises.

      I simply don’t have the life in me to read the toilet roll factory process he’s used.

      And to be blunt, for all I know the lot could have been lifted ad hoc from another site.

    207. Derek Henry says:



      It is THE issue and there are over 15 Univesities and hundreds of economists with the answers for Scotland’s currency. One of them is now working for washington Stephanie Kelton

    208. Derek Henry says:

      @ Grouse Beaten.

      Firstly if you are going to attack me personally instead of any content of my posts at least use your real name.

      Second I post under Jimmurphysbrassneck on the Guardian. Click on my name and read my history if you want clarification.

      And you should take the time to read it if you truely believe in an independent Scotland.

      Currency and how it is created and by who is key if not god when it comes to an idependent Scotland unless you want to become like Greece.

      There’s way too many gold standard household budget zoomers out there as it is.

      Who have no idea what the difference is between a sovereign fiat currency nation and one that isn’t.

      I hope the common weal allow me to change that.

    209. Grouse Beater says:

      Henry: Firstly if you are going to attack me personally

      I criticised your self-defeating style of communicating what appears to be complicated facts.

      If you don’t like criticism don’t go public. If you are intent on demonstrating you know better in the matter of currency show some mercy for readers.

    210. dakk says:

      Drew Henry

      Just finished a tough week at work so not in any state to digest your post in detail,but thanks for the effort you have obviously put in.

      I’m no expert,so will not likely have the knowledge to have a fixed view on these matters.

      One thing did occur to me though.

      As Russia and China appear to be buying tonnes of physical gold,what happens if the fiat currency system is replaced by a new goldcstandard

    211. Alan McHarg says:

      Playing “Devils Advocate” I agree that Scotland’s future should be decided by those who have a stake in Scotland’s future. However, a section of society do not have Scotland’s future in mind, but their present as their future is shorter than some, and vote accordingly. There is a section of society that see Scotland as an extension of England and wish it to remain that way and vote accordingly. You have many Scots who see Scotland as a partner in a religious and political union and fear change as it will affect their status and perceived superiority and will vote accordingly. Those that have come to work and live in Scotland from Europe, some may see their status as a gift from Westminster and UK policy and therefore vote accordingly. And those politically loyal to Westminster parties who put party before country and vote accordingly. Oh and those loyal to the crown, those servile with no national identity and vote accordingly.

      If we believe what we say and the vote on Scotland’s future is for all those living in Scotland, then we should be prepared to accept that, Scots, non-Scots with religious allegiance, political allegiance, Westminster allegiance, cultural allegiance to England, those who have no understanding of the cultural, ethnic and historical differences between Scotland and England seeing them as the same entity, those with no national view by purely personal, all have a say and sway over Scotland’s future.

      With so many variables we must be prepared to accept that Scotland may never be an Independent nation as a result.
      That is democracy after all…but is it acceptable to those who see their country violated, its resources stolen and their children and grandchildren’s birth right squandered by a foreign power? Scotland’s Independence is not just about control of our own economy its about the survival of our nation, its identity, its culture, its history and its very existence! Thoughts?

    212. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi Alan McHarg.

      When I saw your first ‘paragraph’, it occurred to me that Rev Stu must be in a fairly laid back mood today.

      You seem to have inserted just enough paragraph breaks to save you from death by hammers!

      Apart from your sailing close to the paragraph wind, I agree with your input. And, as others type, we should be reaffirming that “YES” hasn’t gone away. I still have my YES and Sunday Herald stickers on my van and have added “Bairns Not Bombs’, “Red Tories Out” and SNP stickers to the rear, since the referendum.

      My four saltires are still hanging from my flat’s front windows…


    213. Grouse Beater says:

      Alan: With so many variables we must be prepared to accept that Scotland may never be an Independent nation as a result. That’s democracy after all, but is it acceptable to those who see their country violated, its resources stolen and their children and grandchildren’s birth right squandered by a foreign power?

      Straight to the crux of the dilemma.

      We are a colonised nation.- hence Rowling’s repugnant remark that the two nations have become too enmeshed, too complicated to unravel. There’s cultural imperialism right there in that attitude.

      People here are fond of quoting Gandhi – a quotation even sits on Wing’s ‘masthead’ – but they forget all that went before the British decided to up-sticks and leave India. They forget the turmoil and resistance and deaths that finally had them see sense and leave.

      We do not wish to take that course on settlers and placemen, but no one has produced a formula that will ensure Scotland is returned to a genuine democracy.

      The answer seems to be the feckless notion that we should wait until a Tory government is so bad, so heinous in its policies, so detrimental to the health of the whole of the UK, even non-Scots will vote for independence.

      I see no such certainty.

    214. Thepnr says:


      I did not choose my birthplace, but I did choose my home!

      Welcome and well said Donna.

    215. dakk says:

      Donna. 2.45

      Wish there was more like you.

      You put our cringing Uncle Jocks to shame.

    216. Rock says:


      “Rock, If this statement is directed at me, I suggest you read what logical fallacy means.”

      No, it is not directed at you. I was pointing it out to the poster it had been directed at.

      I totally agreed with your comment.

    217. Rock says:

      Paula Rose,

      “@ Rock – Could you please explain why you are so angry at me? I have been commenting on this site for years – what is your problem?”

      I am not angry with you.

      I am just challenging your comments, most of which I find patronising, trivial and generally lowering the quality of debate.

      You always make personal attacks on me instead of debating and puting your alternative views forward.

      Unlike you and your sycophants often telling me to shut up, as if this site belonged to you, I have never asked you to shut up.

      You were criticised by two other posters for turning the whole debate into a personal one.

      Why can’t you just debate the issues?

    218. Rock says:



      If you ave to ask then the answer is NO!

      ….of course only you would ask.”

      Care to explain what your talking about?

    219. Rock says:

      John from Fife,

      “At the risk of being criticised again I think that a 5 year residency is the best way forward for non born Scots in the next Indy ref. Is that fair?”

      Sounds fair to me except that the residency rule must apply to all residents, even Scots who have been living abroad for more than five years.

      “After all David Cameron thinks that EU citizens cannot vote in the EU ref but UK citizens who have lived abroad for more than 10 years can.”

      We could have a referendum immediately after Cameron’s EU referendum and use a five or even ten year residency requirement.

      They would be in no position to find fault with us then.

    220. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Rock. to describe fellow Wingers as “sycophants”, because they don’t agree with you, is becoming a tad clichéd.

    221. Rock says:


      “Hit the nail on the head, these non voters should be the easiest to win over to the Yes cause. Though it takes a lot of effort and RIC are due a lot of credit for the inroads they made.

      Next time we will work even harder and that’s a promise.”

      Have you changed your mind recently?

      I have been pointing this out since the referendum but got a lot of attacks from you.

    222. Derek Henry says:

      They’ll never go back to a gold standard.

      Especially the way things are. Why would they when in the set ups they have they can spend what they like as long as it does not cause inflation. The currency is created from nothing and backed by nothing.

      However, they are trying to leave the dollar as the world’s reserve currency. They are trying to get the Brics into a club with them in the same way the Eurozone have.

      These countries would need to be insane to give up their own central banks but they seem to trust China and Russia more than Washington.

    223. Derek Henry says:

      @ Grouse Beater

      It only sounds difficult the truth is it isn’t.

      Read the links I’ve given with diagrams and everything will fall into place.

      After all it is what we did between 1945 – 1980 before it was hijacked.

    224. Grouse Beater says:

      Henry: before it was hijacked.

      I have written about it so often – as have experts – in my essay blog that I am in danger of labouring the obvious. Most folk here are well-informed, even if some are not perfect on detail.

    225. Rock says:

      Brian Doonthetoon,

      “Rock. to describe fellow Wingers as “sycophants”, because they don’t agree with you, is becoming a tad clichéd.”

      I can debate with those who don’t agree with me, no problem at all.

      The problem is sycophants like yourself – why don’t you let Paula Rose answer for herself – who attack others when they have lost the argument:

      “Rock, as I typed on another page, you have been SUSSED.

      You are a disruptive influence, so there, NYAH!”

    226. Ali says:

      sorry folks this talk of disenfranchising anyone to get our way is a red line to me. i wouldn’t even support a referendum that disenfranchised anyone.

      fairness and democracy is at the heart of everything we stand for or at least i have stood for over almost 50 years and how disenfranchising anyone fits into that model defeats me.

      i will be writing to SNP HQ to get their view on this matter and request they make it public, lets hope nicola puts the tin lid on this idea once and for all and kill any notions stone dead in the water.

    227. Donna says:

      @Thepnr and dakk Thank you 🙂

    228. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi Rock.

      You do tend to be disruptive in your ‘debating’ style.

      If two or more disagree with you on the same point, you label them ‘sycophants’. The first rule of debating is to attack the point being made, not to insult the person(s) making that point.

      If a point or points made by a poster do not concur with your own opinion, you use the label ‘pedant’, once again insulting the poster instead of debating the point raised.

    229. michael diamond says:

      Trouble is , a lot of newcomers to scotland dont want to assimilate!

    230. michael diamond says:

      Lochside i am in full agreement with you!

    231. Rock says:

      Brian Doonthetoon,

      “The first rule of debating is to attack the point being made, not to insult the person(s) making that point.”

      If only you and Paula Rose would follow that rule.

      “If a point or points made by a poster do not concur with your own opinion, you use the label ‘pedant’, once again insulting the poster instead of debating the point raised.”

      I attack the pedantry, not the poster.

      And it applies mainly to the posts of Robert Peffers.

      I note that both you and him have shut up on the “sovereign” pedantry.

      I ask again:

      “Where the hell is that “sovereignty” if 71% of the people want Carmichael to resign but he refuses to do so?

      Or is the judge who will almost certainly find Carmichael innocent who is actually “sovereign”, rather than us plebs?

      In which case the establishment is “sovereign”.

      In reality, we the plebs have no sovereignty whatsoever.”

      Attack the comment, not me.

    232. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi Rock.

      To use a descriptive noun (pedant), is attacking the messenger, not the message.

      Re: Carmichael.
      The way things stand, it doesn’t matter how many people want him to resign, he can’t be forced to stand down. If he didn’t have such a brass neck, he may have resigned but he’s obviously gonna stay as long as he can.

      To mention ‘sovereignty’ in connection with this case is a mistake.

    233. tickle says:

      truly sad to see you wedging england born scots away from scotland born scots.

      i think i was wrong about civic nationalism.

    234. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “truly sad to see you wedging england born scots away from scotland born scots.”

      Do fuck off. I’m doing the opposite. I’ve argued strongly, and will continue to do so, that everyone living in Scotland is equal. The Sunday Times chose to add the “ethnicity” category, not me.

    235. Rock says:

      Brian Doonthetoon,

      Re: Carmichael.
      The way things stand, it doesn’t matter how many people want him to resign, he can’t be forced to stand down. If he didn’t have such a brass neck, he may have resigned but he’s obviously gonna stay as long as he can.

      To mention ‘sovereignty’ in connection with this case is a mistake.

      No, it isn’t. It proves that in reality we have no sovereignty at all over our imperial masters.

    236. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi Rock.

      Carmichael is acting within the law, as it stands.

      If you don’t like it, get the law changed. In which way would you change the law – and how? What process for law-changing would you instigate?

      The law, as it stands, is being used by the four petitioners. In which way would you deal with this matter differently?

    237. Johnny B Goode says:

      I think Tickle has a point here – you seem to be creating a contradiction here Stu. Either everyone in Scotland are Scots and equally deserve their point of view, or groups that are not “100% Scots”, such as English-born Scots, as it infers, are catogarised as having different political.views/thinking in general. They don’t think differently from the other ‘Scots’, they may think differently though from a set or group of Scots that you have decided on your own represent what it is to be a Scot, and how you must think to be a Scot

    238. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “I think Tickle has a point here – you seem to be creating a contradiction here Stu. Either everyone in Scotland are Scots and equally deserve their point of view, or groups that are not “100% Scots”, such as English-born Scots, as it infers, are catogarised as having different political.views/thinking in general.”

      It’s the first one. Glad to clear that up for you.

    239. Johnny B Goode says:

      It doesn’t clear it up though. If that’s the case then why start a dialogue about how the “10% who are English born Scots” think differently than other “Scots”. That’s clearly in contrast to an assumtion of everyone just beinh regarded as Scots. So try again to clear that up. Or are you going going to tell me to f@#k off too?

    240. Rock says:

      Brian Doonthetoon,

      “Carmichael is acting within the law, as it stands.

      If you don’t like it, get the law changed. In which way would you change the law – and how? What process for law-changing would you instigate?

      The law, as it stands, is being used by the four petitioners. In which way would you deal with this matter differently?”

      It is you and Robert Peffers who go on about the people being “sovereign” under the law.

      If Carmichael is “acting within the law”, where the hell is our “sovereignty” when 71% of us want him to resign?

      You are admitting that the law does not give us, the plebs, “sovereignty”.

      The judge and the judicial system are tools of the establishment.

      You or Robert Peffers didn’t answer what “sovereignty” the Declaration of Arbroath gave to the plebs.

      In reality, “Sovereignty” of the people is nothing more than hot air and pedantry.

      Give me one example in history where the plebs have exercised “sovereignty”.

      I am talking about the plebs, not the aristocrats (“Lords”).

    241. Paula Rose says:

      Apt name for this thread of comments (never mind the post) – Nature versus nurture.

    242. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      No Rock, the phrase should be “Sovereign OVER the law”.

      I’ll leave you ponder on that and, maybe, you will work out what the actual position is.

    243. Rock says:

      Brian Doonthetoon,

      “No Rock, the phrase should be “Sovereign OVER the law”.

      I’ll leave you ponder on that and, maybe, you will work out what the actual position is.”

      We plebs are “sovereign” over absolutely nothing.

      If it was not for the internet and people like the Rev. Stuart Campbell, we wouldn’t even have a platform to express our views, unless we behaved like subjects of the purring Queen.

      Try posting your “Sovereign” pedantry on Pravda GB, the Herald, the Hootsman, the Guardian and report back how you get on.

      You still haven’t answered what “sovereignty” the declaration of Arbroath gave to the plebs.

    244. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      As I understand it, Rock, if the people of Scotland believe that THEIR monarch is not doing the business for them, then they can replace that monarch.

      If you feel, as a sovereign Scot, that your monarch is not standing up for you, what procedure would you use to exercise your right to replace that monarch?

    245. Rock says:

      Brian Doonthetoon,

      “As I understand it, Rock, if the people of Scotland believe that THEIR monarch is not doing the business for them, then they can replace that monarch.”

      There is a better chance of pigs flying than Scottish PLEBS, that is a majority of the population, being able to replace a monarch they don’t like.

      But we will love King Charles and Queen Camilla and we won’t want to replace them, so you can keep on pretending that you are “sovereign”.

      I know I have no sovereignty and I don’t want to pretend that I do.

    246. Brian Doonthetoon says:

      Hi Rock.

      I would think that once Scotland is independent, there will be a referendum on the monarchy. That’s when we’ll get our say.

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