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Wings Over Scotland

The only stat that matters

Posted on August 05, 2014 by

As so insightfully predicted by Lallands Peat Worrier yesterday, the media has raced to proclaim victory for Alistair Darling in tonight’s STV debate. For our money, the only winners were the people who watched something else.

The debate was a mess – not quite as shambolic as Nicola Sturgeon and Johann Lamont’s effort on the same channel a few months back, but none of the lessons from that trainwreck were learned. Darling was angry and personal from the start, while Salmond was off-form and the strategy he adopted for dealing with the only subject Darling wanted to talk about – currency – was absolutely dreadful.


We warned back in February that Yes couldn’t just keep flatly saying “There will be a currency union” for seven months, even if it’s true, and the studio audience was deeply and audibly unimpressed with Salmond’s evasion of Darling’s repeated question, even if the tactic got old and tired when the No man was still using it an hour later.

But we’re not going to get into too much spin, because our view is partisan. The main evidence used for the hasty declarations of a “triumph” for Darling was a snap poll conducted immediately afterwards by ICM for the Guardian. But on even a cursory examination, the poll actually found the opposite of what the media said it did.


What those numbers show is that – astoundingly – people who were Yes voters before the debate thought Salmond won, and those who were No voters before the debate thought Darling won, both by enormous margins. Colour us shocked. But the telling stats are among the people the debate was targeted at – the Don’t Knows.

And what the poll discovered is that among voters who’d started out as undecideds, Salmond won by 55-45. Among those who remained undecided at the end the First Minister was still judged to have done best, by a thumping 74 to 26.

That’s a very different story to the one you’ll read in tomorrow’s newspapers. The people closest to neutral, and the ones whose votes were actually being fought for, gave the win to Salmond. That, not the spin from either side, is the only thing that will ultimately count at the ballot box in six weeks’ time.

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    1. 06 08 14 02:16

      Scotland’s Story | A Wilderness of Peace

    2. 06 08 14 10:49

      A few thoughts on TV debates | The Science of Independence

    389 to “The only stat that matters”

    1. Marcia says:

      The referendum will be decided by these at present undecided voters.

    2. davidb says:

      But if those voters now see media reports that are completely at odds with what their own eyes saw, can we hope they will begin to realise that they cannot trust anything they read. I am reminded of Chemical Ali in Iraq…..

    3. Calum Craig says:

      Yay, I win thanks to broken STV stream!

    4. Defo says:

      Thanks for picking out the fine detail Stu. I’ll take that 55-45, happily.

      Craig Murrays take on it. Hope you don.t mind.

      “I am truly astonished by the debate format, designed to leave no time at for consideration – or considered answers – on any of the questions and to ramp up the speed and sheer hysteria of the programme. The cutting aside to the “spin room” and that really horrible shoutey New Labour numptie woman. Also a very strange absence of the Tories, who are financing the Better Together campaign, and the other unionist elements.”

      He means you Fifi.

    5. kendomacaroonbar says:


    6. heedtracker says:

      Say it long, say it loud. Scotland wants to run Scotland.

      Among those who remained undecided at the end the First Minister was still judged to have done best, by a thumping 74 to 26.

    7. Murray McCallum says:

      Well maybe that’s the lesson not to be a shouting, angry politician that doesn’t even answer the questions he asks himself.

    8. Timorous Beastie says:

      New posts, please share

      todayinscotland | The Referendum Blues

    9. Indy_Scot says:

      Its funny I was just thinking that, maybe the debate did not appeal to the people in the know, because they are in the know. Maybe it was meant for the people not in the know.

    10. Patrician says:

      I still think this was a tactical mistake by Mr Salmond. Denis Canavan should have debated with Alistair Darling. Mr Darling is only head of the No Scotland campaign, he has no authority to promise anything, he is just “wind and fury signifying nothing”.

    11. Grouse Beater says:

      Can’t agree that salmond’s adherence to Choice 1 was weak.

      He knows to drop that ball has his opponents all over him as uncertain, weak, can’t make up his mind.

      It isn’t any way to negotiate by entering the room and saying, if nobody likes what I am going to propose I do have other ideas, just not half as good.

    12. Dr JM Mackintosh says:

      Rev Stu,
      You were bang on months ago and still correct. There is nothing wrong with a plan B which should be S£ pegged to sterling or not.

      Simpler if Yes just stated that and stopped holding on the CU issue at all costs.

      Possibly it will end up with a CU anyway so may as well spell out what Plan B is in some detail and its implications both for Scotland and rUK.

    13. heedtracker says:

      @ Patrician, hellooooooooooooh, read the stats

      And what the poll discovered is that among voters who’d started out as undecideds, Salmond won by 55-45. Among those who remained undecided at the end the First Minister was still judged to have done best, by a thumping 74 to 26.

    14. TheBauer says:

      Comical Ali you mean? Chemical Ali was the one who gassed the Kurds in Helebje, Comical Ali the one proclaiming Saddam’s victory.

    15. Lesley-Anne says:

      I hope that all those undecided voters who were asked about tonight’s debate read all the guff in the morning’s papers and make a reasoned decision to move, even slightly, more to YES ready for fully voting YES in September.

      There is only ONE way BBC and MSM can come out with an Alistair Darling win and that is to look at the figures for NO voters and NO voters alone. As Stu says, the debate was aimed at the Don’t Knows and in that case Alex Salmond has won handsomely. Admittedly he was already ahead before the debate but he must have done something right during the debate to shift so many undecided’s over to making him the winner by the end of the debate where his vote went UP and Darling’s vote went DOWN!

    16. Robert Bryce says:

      I had a chance conversation with a woman yesterday where something clicked with me. She didn’t actually care about what currency we would be using. In her words “I don’t have enough money any way so I don’t care about what currency we have”.

      Despite Alistair Darling’s insistence I’m not convinced any one REALLY cares about it. I don’t. If it’s the pound it’s the pound if it’s no it’s not. If I can pay for the roof over my head and food on my table then that’s what matters most.

      I’m not entirely sure it’s the big thing the media make out. Tonight all Darling done was reinforce the currency situation in those already voting no.

      Ordinary punters don’t really give a shit. It’s ordinary punters that will win the referendum.

      The debate was shite but Salmond made a more positive case for yes than Darling could for No. He simply spewed out the fear mantra with nothing positive at all.

      For me it’s no surprise undecided voters saw through it and leaned towards Salmond.

    17. Tackety Beets says:

      I think AS needed to appeal to DKs and anyone who is not keen on him. Meant he had to appear not overly confident but this found him in a place he is unaccustomed . Its done now ,move on . We all need to keep chipping away in our “locals” and make a few more conversions as we go . It feels like the polls are off the mark , plenty Yessers to seen.

    18. Devorgilla says:

      I think Salmond was ‘off form’ because he was trying to tone down his usual pugative style in order to appeal to female voters but his attempt to be more ‘statesmanlike’ lacked gravitas and authority, and merely came across as complacent, even flat and lack lustre.

      Whilst I think this is an issue for Salmond (to modify his technique according to different audiences) I would also give the advice I regularly give my students – and that is, never to try experimentation when it is an ‘exam’ and the matter is critical.

      Best just to stick to what you know, and what you are comfortable with.

      Leave experimentation and development of different approaches to low key situations and don’t launch them in critical situations until you have perfected them.

    19. Scots Renewables says:

      Salmond won’t discuss Plan B because it would only get attacked and cause a clamour for Plan C. We all know what Plan B is anyway. (And plan C – it’s all set out in the Fiscal Commission Working Group report)

      My bet is, if it is still an issue in the final week he will confess to a (sensible) Plan B then, when it is too late for a big counter-attack and there is too much else going on for the counter-attack to be effective anyway.

    20. Grouse Beater says:

      Dr MacIntosh: Simpler if Yes just stated that and stopped holding on the CU issue at all costs.

      He did. He did exactly that.

      He pointed out the White Paper has other solutions, but he’s elected to do the best for Scotland, and Scotland’s best advisers say a shared currency is the best one, plus the dividend is, it benefits England too.

      That way keeps our ties as two nations on one land mass. Cries of separatism are therefore bogus.

    21. kendomacaroonbar says:

      Dr JM

      To admit to a plan B agrees with the no side that there will be no CU.

    22. Iain says:

      And that poll also showed a 4% swing to Yes on previous ICM. Just imagine the swing if Eck had been firing on all cylinders.

      An aposite post on Scot Goes Pop from Mick Pork:

      ‘here’s a fairly representative example from the caledonian mercury of the press and media debate analysis from the 2011 debate where Iain Gray and Salmond clashed. Since some of us do actually remember that campaign and it’s debates.

      “None of the leaders emerged as the clear winner of the debate. Tavish Scott, the Scottish Liberal Democrat leader, gave his best performance of the campaign – possibly because he has become so resigned to doing badly that he has relaxed enough to enjoy it.

      Annabel Goldie, the Scottish Conservative leader, did not quite make the impression she has done in previous debates, but was clear and decisive – while Alex Salmond was his solid, competent self without excelling and dominating the way his party managers had hoped he would.”

      Now here’s the toughest question of all for the comedy Britnats.

      What happened next?


    23. geeo says:

      What the media THINK means nothing to someone standing at the ballot box on the 18th september.

      The other well said point made regularly here, Yes voters will turn out in HUGE % numbers, will all the “i hate salmond” zoomers who say No turn out to vote ?

    24. Blue Horse Shoe says:

      Having raced home from canvassing, I could have punched the wall. It was poor. But we should all have learned by know that this lot won’t win it for us, it is us. And on the currency, the question is not of currency but of a plan B and by Christ the message on the doorstep is simple –

      In an Independent Scotland you will still be paid in pounds sterling
      In an Independent Scotland your pension will still be in pounds sterling
      Transactions in Scotland will be in pounds sterling
      Transactions with the rUK will be in pounds sterling
      Banks will operate as normal
      “Will there be a currency union?” This is very likely but not certain as this will be part of the negotiations
      “What about Plan B?” In fact there are three, peg the currency, Scottish currency or Euro (p107). Euro won’t happen. The other two options operate successfully around the world but aren’t favoured in reality by either Scotland or rUK despite the rhetoric. Ask Hammond.

      Now Salmond tool up and quote your own white paper and help us doorsteppers out

    25. Borderer says:

      Playing devil’s advocate I’d say another stat matters too – the number of undecideds that had migrated to ‘no’ by the end of the debate. That is something to be a little concerned about, I think.

    26. Tartan Cyclist says:

      I didn’t see the debate live so I saw everyone going on about how Salmond looked bad because of the lack of plan B. Just watched the re-run now and that is a flash in the plan. It really wasn’t as bad as people made out.

    27. Adrian B says:

      If one person in a debate goes shouty/angry with pointed fingers early on then its going to be difficult to overcome this in a calm and reasoned manner.

      I don’t think that everything went the way that Salmond wanted and some things could perhaps have been answered a little better. However if you wish to work with others and take others with you then responding in an angry fashion needs to be avoided.

      This was never going to be a kick ass presentation from Salmond – its not really his style and it will not help to win over undecided voters – leave that to those that can get away with that presentation style like Jim Sillars, Dennis Canavan and Tommy Sheridan.

    28. Gary says:

      AS has to kill the currency argument stone dead in the eyes of the undecideds. Ii know it is a distraction and the only reason its thought to be important is because BT says so. The legs must be cut from under them on this, they don’t have anything else, they’re a one trick pony.

    29. Jimmy the Pict says:

      To the PISS poor of Scotland
      AD “I want.I.want. I.want”
      AS “We nee a fair Scotland”


      Currency does no matter. Food does. Heating does.

    30. Ian says:

      Been following your excellent posts for a year but just thought I had to say something after tonight. You really hit the nail on the head about currency. People wanted more from Salmond. Hope its not a chance lost as that was how it must have come over. Also trying to be swarmy about UFO’s and driving wrong side of road-way off target and made me cringe-far better to attack on NHS or lies about oil.

    31. Jimmy the Pict says:

      P.S. I have bee PISS poor in my life.

    32. Lesley-Anne says:

      What happened next?


      Gosh I’ve no idea Iain, no don’t tell me it’ll come to me just give me a minute to figure it out. 😉

      We were attacked by aliens? … NO that can’t be it cause Hammond said they’d only attack if we went independent. 😛

      erm … it wasn’t … a win … no it couldn’t be that, could it? … it wasn’t an SNP win by any chance? 😀

    33. Jimmy the Pict says:

      Sorry about the missing d

    34. Democracy Reborn says:


      Good riposte to the bullshit spin by the MSM.

      I can’t believe the negativity of some posters on the previous thread. Short of Darling imploding, did anyone seriously believe the MSM would spin it other than a ‘win’ for him? Too many Yesers were unrealistic in their belief that AS would skewer Darling. Darling lies, distorts & obfuscates, but hae’s not a total mug.

      Saw a tweet by Libby Brooks from the Guardian. Post debate poll also showed AS coming over as more “appealing” than Darling by 47% to 39%. Not unimportant, especially for female voters.

    35. TYRAN says:

      Format of the show is shit. It’s like a stage tour version of FMQ. Prefer something like the QT format over this with more voices. Canavan, Harvie and Sturgeon would be my choices. Instead we’re going to get this style again. Be like a rerun but in a different venue.

    36. handclapping says:

      Stu, I’m surprised at you!

      433 sample size, 17-34 uprated more than twice and you are using their “data” in support rather than blasting it for the nonsense it is.

      Too much electioneering, time to revert to basic journalism.

    37. Grouse Beater says:

      Salmond represents Scotland.

      He represents me and all others no matter how we vote.

      Who does Darling represent?

    38. TD says:

      Delighted with these numbers. Maybe Alex knows a thing or two after all. Which is fair enough – he’s the FM and leader of the SNP.

      Just on the currency point, I accept that having a roof over your head and food on the table are the most important issues for most people. But please let’s not be so naive as to think that the currency does not matter. If we get that wrong, we could potentially be unable to afford a roof or food. To afford the things we need, we need a strong economy. To have a strong economy, we need a trusted currency. That could be the £ sterling, or my choice a £ Scots. But don’t say it doesn’t matter – it does.

    39. Jim68 says:

      This actually surprises me. I thought the currency question would have cost YES a lot more. Salmond had the wrong strategy, saying “You’re lying, so we don’t need a plan B” is no answer when people are dealing with “project fear”. rUK may do a scorched earth, and try to blame blame indy as a distraction. SOME kind of backup is essential for peace of mind.

    40. Michael says:

      But the problem, Gary, is that the undecideds thought he’d won. They weren’t bothered about the currency question. That’s the whole point of this article.

    41. Paul Kelly says:

      I don’t understand why there are so many dejected Yes voters. We were using sterling in an independent Scotland this morning, when we were winning. We will be using sterling in an independent Scotland tomorrow when we’re winning. The audience was hand picked to be pro-no, hence the boo’s. Stop worrying peeps! I can’t understand why Salmond didn’t focus on Darlings credibility more and all the lies he’s told personally? He should pay more attention to his Wings!

    42. Peter A Bell says:

      For reasons that I am tired of explaining Salmond cannot – must not – get drawn into talking about a “Plan B” on currency. If people don’t understand those reasons now then they probably never will. Unless Salmond actually did fall into the trap. And then they’d be saying how foolish he was not to stick to his position.

      Where Salmond missed an opportunity was his failure to turn the currency issue around by quizzing Darling on who made the decision to threaten abolition of the currency union; what advice was sought prior to making the threat; and what consideration was given to the implications for the economy of rUK.

      Salmond pretty much wasted the chance to challenge Darling directly on Better Together scaremongering. I’m bloody annoyed about that.

    43. Grendel says:

      “Grouse Beater says:
      6 August, 2014 at 12:17 am
      Dr MacIntosh: Simpler if Yes just stated that and stopped holding on the CU issue at all costs.

      He did. He did exactly that.

      He pointed out the White Paper has other solutions, but he’s elected to do the best for Scotland, and Scotland’s best advisers say a shared currency is the best one, plus the dividend is, it benefits England too.”

      He should have stated it plainly, not “refer to page 4 of the fiscal commission report.”

      An awful performance by Salmond. Didn’t come across as trustworthy.

    44. Grendel says:

      “Grouse Beater says:
      6 August, 2014 at 12:17 am
      Dr MacIntosh: Simpler if Yes just stated that and stopped holding on the CU issue at all costs.

      He did. He did exactly that.

      He pointed out the White Paper has other solutions, but he’s elected to do the best for Scotland, and Scotland’s best advisers say a shared currency is the best one, plus the dividend is, it benefits England too.”

      He should have stated it plainly, not “refer to page 4 of the fiscal commission report.”

      An awful performance by Salmond. Didn’t come across as trustworthy.

    45. Nana Smith says:

      Well for what its worth I thought the FM was braw.

      He didn’t insult anyone, unlike darling who grimaced and pointed and generally disrespected the first minister of Scotland.

    46. Invisible handcuffs says:

      Alistair Darling keeps saying “definitely no currency union” but tonight Alistair Darling said something like “even if you do negotiate a Currency Union…..”.

    47. Chris Paton says:

      Sorry, I’m a Yes voter, but is this right? Surely the 74% and 26% refers to those who had yet to make their minds up after the debate (a total of 31 people), whereas there were a total of 57 don’t knows before the debate – but that means 26 made their minds up by the end of it. The number of No Voters who thought Alistair won increased by 18, the number of Yes voters who thought Alex won increased by 14 by the end. The bit I genuinely don’t get is how 35 people (20%) started off as Yes voters but thinking Alistair Darling would win, dropping to 34 after, whilst 21 No voters thought Alex would win beforehand, dropping to 15 after? Why would you assume Darling would win if you were a Yes voter, and vice versa? That’s why I am not sure I am interpreting these right, seems odd?

      Sorry, I have been struggling with this for 20 mins as I am not a mathematician, and am one bottle of wine down the road from misery to happiness!

      I actually thought the debate was a score draw – which means that if Yes is to gain momentum, we need to do more at the grass roots level than just rely on the FM.

    48. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “433 sample size, 17-34 uprated more than twice and you are using their “data” in support rather than blasting it for the nonsense it is.”

      Oh, come on. The piece is a debunking of the media proclamations. Point is that they’ve read it wrong, not that it’s significant in itself.

    49. TYRAN says:

      “What currency do you want to be flipping your house with, Darling? How much was that? Let’s talk about what you were up to…”. That’s how you answer.

    50. Lesley-Anne says:

      Thing is Grendel he not only referred to page 4 of the Fiscal Commission Report but he did in fact also state quite clear and in simple terms during the debate that we would be using the pound, a shared currency is the best option and that this option is in the best interests of England as well.

    51. Robert Bryce says:

      Every voter needs to be catered for. I understand that. My point is that for many it’s not on their radar in any way shape or form. They live hand to mouth. Currency to them is moot.

      As you assert above though, I’m sure AS knows what he’s doing 🙂

    52. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “For reasons that I am tired of explaining Salmond cannot – must not – get drawn into talking about a “Plan B” on currency.”

      He doesn’t have to “talk about Plan B”. He has to point out to Darling that we can use the pound anyway, and that he therefore doesn’t need an alternative to the pound.

      This isn’t about what we think. You heard what the audience thought of his evasion. I don’t give a fuck about losing and saying “Ah, but we stuck to some meaningless abstract principle”. The line Salmond used tonight is not tenable with the public, and that’s all that matters a damn.

    53. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      I’m entirely in agreement with Craig Murray here. The format was awful and allowed absolutely no time for considered and expanded explanations.

      I suspect in a few days most will remember Darling shouting and Salmond being nice,friendly and less confrontational.

      The ITV round-up was absolutely bizarre and obviously well prepared in advance.

      I disagree with Stu on the currency issue. Firstly most people are not hugely exercised by that issue and secondly and increasing number of people now know we can use the pound if we want to. I think it is quite clever just to tie Better Together up on that issue and that of the EU. Both these issues are very far from any priority with most voters.

      Salmond’s quiet determination to keep saying we will be keeping the pound because it is in England’s and Scotland’s best interest is gaining traction

    54. mr thms says:

      Remember the furore when George Osborne came to Edinburgh and said it wasn’t our pound, then left without taking questions? The polls had a surge in support for Yes afterwards. Alex Salmond was right to pull up Alistair Darling. It’s also our pound..

    55. Brian Powell says:

      Evan if the papers don’t put this out, two million people here will read it, and those of us in Scotland will be spreading it around.

    56. Dougie says:

      Sorry I sat with undecideds and as much as they hate Darling. They hate salmond more!Blair jenkins ,Patrick harvie, Michelle Thomson , would all have been far more effective
      Tonight was a wasted opportunity
      And NHS was missed a crucial vote winner a massive fail for me sorry

    57. adam ogilvie says:

      iv just wasted 2 hour of my life watching this dribble

    58. Colin McCartney says:

      I see that “Ms ordinary woman Lally” was in the spin room, gets about a bit doesn’t she?

    59. Andy Howie says:

      Surprised no one has noticed, there is a 3.2% swing from No to Yes in that poll! This is on top of the 4% swing already. It is within our grasp to finally rise up and be a nation again

    60. Darren Martin says:

      Strong yes voter here but from what I can read the data shows that of the of the 31 people in the survey who were undecided pre-debate and felt Salmond won, 8 of them turned YES. Of the 26 people who were undecided pre-debate and felt Darling won, 18 of them turned NO. Of the remaining 31 people still undecided even after the debate, 74% thought Salmond won. Indicates that tonight’s undecideds went more to the NO side, but those remaining undecided are leaning YES. I might be reading it wrong but that’s what I can ascertain. Though not a massive sample though with 435 people, so probably got a large margin of error. Salmond was poor tonight but here’s hoping it doesn’t go against the Yes vote too much.

    61. Brian Mchugh says:

      Stu… you should know better… this is a marathon, not a sprint.

      …there is a long way to go and a hell of a lot of dry powder.


    62. John Lyons says:

      It’s like asking me how I’m getting to work

      “I’ll take the car”

      – But what if you can’t

      – but I can it’s the best option

      – but what if it’s broken and you can’t use it? What’s your plan B?

      I don’t need one I will take the car but I can take the other car, I could take one of three buses, I could take a taxi, I could walk”

      So which other method will you choose.

      I won’t I’ll take the car

      But what is your plan B?

      Well any one of a range of options

      So what transport will you use

      I’ll take the car

      But what if it’s broke

      It isn’t

      What’s plan b?

      Well there are a range of options

      So how are you getting to work?

      I’ll take the car

      What if you can’t?

      But I can

      What’s plan b?

      Well there are a range of options but I’ll be taking the car!!!!

      You aren’t answering my question!!!!

      See what I mean?

      Courtesy of my clever wife Susan Lyons.

    63. AnneDon says:

      I think we are all too close to the debate to judge how the FM performed, which is why I’m pleased to see these figures.

      I thought the FM improved as the debate went on; I could have lived happily without being taken back to the “spin room” to be told what I’d just seen, as if I was too thick to understand it, and the show could have been a lot shorter as a consequence.

      However, as it went on and the FM had the chance to calm down and answer questions, he came over better.

      It also reminded me how rarely we see him being spoken to and allowed to finish what he’s saying.

      Darling is an angry man, out to defend his future seat in the House of Lords. I imagine even the dogs in the street could tell that.

    64. Dr JM Mackintosh says:

      @Peter A Bell,

      good post – that is what I am trying to get over – why is nobody pointing out the disaster for the rUK if there is no currency union.

      It never seems to get raised – the consequences of a plan B , plan C or plan D (some time after C) for the rUK economy.

    65. John Lyons says:

      It’s like asking me how I’m getting to work

      “I’ll take the car”

      – But what if you can’t

      – but I can it’s the best option

      – but what if it’s broken and you can’t use it? What’s your plan B?

      I don’t need one I will take the car but I can take the other car, I could take one of three buses, I could take a taxi, I could walk”

      So which other method will you choose.

      I won’t I’ll take the car

      But what is your plan B?

      Well any one of a range of options

      So what transport will you use

      I’ll take the car

      But what if it’s broke

      It isn’t

      What’s plan b?

      Well there are a range of options

      So how are you getting to work?

      I’ll take the car

      What if you can’t?

      But I can

      What’s plan b?

      Well there are a range of options but I’ll be taking the car!!!!

      You aren’t answering my question!!!!

      See what I mean?

    66. David Fee says:

      I was disappointed that Alex didn’t ask Darling: “So if Scotland votes Yes, will you personally refuse to let us use Sterling”. I would like to have seen him be put on the spot on that point at least. I think that Mr Salmond had TOO much talk with advisors beforehand.

      Anyhow. I called it for Darling. So what do I know. It’s all still up for grabs. And apparently this debate my even have improved the situation for Yes. Yes!

    67. Come now, those ‘don’t know’ figures you’re clinging to come from such a small sample. A difference of fifteen people. Absolutely laughable.

      Come on, Eck took a pasting. I’ll admit, I was very surprised . delighted, but surprised. Yes supporters I’ve spoken to have admitted it too. Squeaky bum time for the nats.

    68. Jock Scot says:

      Hi. I thought that Salmond came across as ‘one of the people’ and it is my belief that % of those with Nothing to lose/risk has swung back to the majority and the 55/45 split ties in with this. Remember the sentiment of Labour’s ‘Things can only get better’ theme which kicked the Thatcher Tories out. Shame it was Blair using the image instead of John Smith. Daring is, as always, a Twat. For those of you who have any doubts..TRUST the people of Scotland…Salmond does, so why not you?

    69. Grouse Beater says:

      Styuart: The line Salmond used tonight is not tenable with the public, and that’s all that matters a damn.

      He has argued, publically, that to discuss a Plan B is to weaken Scotland’s case before he has reached negotiations. I agree with that. He has also point out there is a Plan, B, C, D, and so on, and to read the White Paper.

      We keep hearing Joe Public say, with regular monotony, there are too many unanswered questions, that after months of questions being answered, analysed and answered again. I am sure many have never troubled to seek out the White Paper if they were never in possession of one.

      There are people who will never shake off their anxieties no matter what you tell them or what guarantees there are.

      It’s naive to assume open discussing of Plan B will stop the aggression of the Fear Campaign in its tracks because they will be satisfied. Their entire MOD is muddying the water by whatever means is at their disposal.

      Their motto is, ‘Keep the public befuddled.’

    70. Murray McCallum says:

      I personally will not watch another debate if the same format is used. I’m sick of it. I thought Alistair Darling, as well as being Mr Angry, failed to remotely answer anything.

      Maybe each politician should be asked the same set of questions. The questions could come from the studio audience or from online. Each politician should have a set time to answer. If they do not answer it should be highlighted as such by the Chair.

      This would also ensure a wider variety of topics were covered.

    71. Lesley-Anne says:

      I think JL, or rather his wife (doffs hat! 😉 ), has hit this currency fandango squarely on the head.

      No matter how AS answers Darling’s rants about what Plan B is he will always come back with “Yes but what currency will an independent Scotland use?”

      The problem is not so much that AS hasn’t answered the question, he has, it is more a point that Darling does not like the answer and wants a different answer. Unfortunately for Darling he aint going to be getting one any time soon! Darling seems incapable of accepting the simplest of facts that AS has answered his question and given him a definitive answer to boot i.e. an independent Scotland WILL be using the pound.

      Now the fact that Darling does not like that answer is not AS’s problem it is one for Darling. The longer and longer he continues with this absurd “What currency will you use?” routine whilst constantly being told “We’ll be using the pound.” then it is HIM and not AS who looks the bigger idiot. He may not like the answer but hey that’s life chum! We all get into situations where we don’t like the answer but hey we all get on with life I suggest Darling does the same … move on Bubba the whole world knows what currency an independent Scotland will be using. The fact you do not like that answer is YOUR problem, accept this FACT and move on or, as you seem to want to do, keep doing what you are doing and look an even bigger idiot every time you ask this boring question!

    72. Grouse Beater says:

      Grendel: Didn’t come across as trustworthy.

      Like your opinion?

      Here it is in black and white. But don’t take that as Gospel. This black and white isn’t trustworthy?

      You are a wag.

    73. Patrician says:

      @heedtracker at 12:13 am

      “@Patrician, hellooooooooooooh, read the stats”

      hellooooooooooooh, read the spin. We who visit this site are savvy enough to know when we are being told lies. Unfortunately, people who don’t visit this site and only rely on the MSM have this spun as a Darling win, also not everyone watching the news will have watched the debate.

      To make matters worse, Mr Salmond felt a bit “off” at the beginning of the debate, too much media/presentation experts input?

    74. Cuilean says:

      My phone supplier is BT (British Telecom), an English company. If ‘YES’, will BT still want me to pay them? Of course. Will I be paying them in pounds? Er … yes. There you have it, Flipper. That’s what will happen to the currency on Scots independence. And. Life. Goes. On.

    75. Truth says:

      Thanks Stu, you know how to make us feel better.

      Was feeling a bit deflated after the debate, but Salmond knows what he is doing, and this observation confirms it.

    76. Grouse Beater says:

      I found Darling to be neurotic, shrill, abusive, pointing the finger in accusation, and mono-manic.

      The problem for a lot of posters here is their familarity with Salmond’s arguments. I think people expected he’d develop them to a great extent. You just can’t do that in that debate format. It’s devised for maximum confrontation.

    77. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Charlie Murphy
      Rubbish and you know it. I can’t even remember what Darling actually said about anything and that’s only a couple of hours ago. I do remember him shouting a lot and Alex Salmond being very quietly controlled. That’ll be a major image of many who watched though they might not know that yet.

      As for the papers – we all knew exactly what they were going to say anyway.

      And, by the way – we’ll be using the pound.

    78. Capella says:

      I think AS is quite right on the currency issue. Research into voter attitudes to currency and EU membership carried out by Tom Farmer months ago shows that it comes at the bottom of the list of voter priorities. We basically don’t care what currency we use or whether we are EU members.
      What is important though is to stick to your favoured option. There is no point in spelling out plan B because we will then be harangued about plan C then plan D etc etc. The purpose of whinging on about plan B is to create uncertainty.
      What currency will you use? The pound
      Yes but answer the question, what currency? The pound
      Why won’t you answer the question? The pound.

    79. Cath says:

      I was disappointed in Salmond but there is two things I’ve taken away from Facebook tonight. One is that people who have been shy to talk about the referendum before are all discussing it now.

      And two is the sense of disappointment and disillusionment. The worst of that is coming from Yes voters, but I’ve seen none who have shifted to don’t know or no. Instead the’ve become more determined to get their own version of facts out there, most of whom now think they can do better than Eck.

      But the second worst sense of disappointment is coming from those who have recently converted or are still slithering slightly towards yes. That sense of disappointment is not so much with Salmond and the Yes campaign, as it is with the solid Yes voters, but in the fact that they seem to have been hoping to be convinced for sure and weren’t.

      If people are wanting to be convinced, that’s a good thing. But also if they feel somehow disappointed Yes didn’t win, that bodes well for what they’ll plump for on Sept 18th. After all, Darling didn’t give any positive vision for Scotland or positive reasons to vote no at all – he won on the currency issue by sheer doggedness, but will that be enough, really? It’s enough to make the solid no voters happy. That’s about all. At the end of the day, really undecided people will either not vote, or they’ll have to plump for one or the other. Knowing which one you’d be more disappointed to see lose could be what swings it.

    80. James S says:

      Couldn’t get the STV player working here and don’t have a TV by choice.

      Overall on the two thirds I did see thanks to Keltik on ustream it looked like AD lost his rag for a moment after AS had used the bizarre aliens, pandas and driving quotes as build up to this:

      ‘Do you agree with Cameron that Scotland can be a successful independent state? Yes or No?’

      AS was more in touch with the audience in style, but it was clear that most of the audience have not spent much time living and working abroad. I spent USD in Vienna and GBP in Japan, the issue under debate is when you convert it to your account asset or liability. They don’t teach this in schools, so you learn the function of currency is different from the name on it when you use it.

      That issue needs to be clearer.

      The best way to win the rat race, is to stop being a rat.

    81. Anne Lawrie says:

      Chance to sort it all out today with the “undecideds” – RIC mass canvass. We must all be ready to answer questions on CURRENCY!

    82. Grouse Beater says:

      Some of the self-doubts expressed tonight are unwarranted.

      It reminds me of Cool Hand Luke. Newman’s character was expected to be everybody’s hero without them ever taking any risk or responsibility themselves to better their lot.

      Either you believe Alec Salmond has made the strongest bid for self-determination or you don’t. He gave us the plebiscite we asked for.

      Back him or hold your counsel!

    83. Michael McCabe says:

      Alex should have asked Flipper which house he was claiming for this month.

    84. Barontorc says:

      I struggle with the ‘pension here-after’ question caused by my piggy-bank confusion, that what we paid into a pot to get back out again, we would get, when it was our turn.

      Now Darling tells me that I’m wrong to think that I should expect to get back from HM Treasury what I’ve chipped in for, for the last umpteen years.

      He should be telling me how he proposes to make this good when we wander off in perfect determination to plough our own furrow.

      He and his crowd have had my contributions, how does he intend to give it back to me? I ain’t askin’ I’m demandin’

    85. David Stevenson says:

      There were 435 people polled. After the debate, some of the Don’t Knows shifted to a decision. We gained 9, they gained 18. Among those who still hadn’t made up their minds, 3/4 thought Salmond won the debate, though obviously not by enough to push them into a decision.

      That doesn’t look to me that Salmond won the fight for the Don’t Knows, but I would be happy to be persuaded otherwise.

    86. Dcanmore says:

      There is a lot wrong with the media in this country, it is wrong because we, the supporters of independence, are the enemy. We are at war and the first casualty of war is the truth.

      The referendum debate held tonight, and subsequent debates held so far on television, have only taken place because the electorate at large began to question why we were not having televised debates on such an important subject. So what we got was something that was purposely delayed until an answer was found.

      Downing Street was adamant that David Cameron was not going to debate Alex Salmond. That was delay number one. Secondly was the ramping up of negative anti-independence stories from all over the shop (Barosso, think tanks, treasury, astroturfing and so on and on). These had to come into the media before any debate with Alex Salmond took place. Thirdly was to find the required patsy and arm that person with right ammunition to face Salmond. Darling drew the short straw.

      Next up was the format of the debate. Totally designed to put people off as a tactic. Nothing like a squabble to get people to turn over. Darling tried to hit the weak point (currency) over and over again to back foot Salmond with nothing else to offer, the rest of the pro-union arguments is old rope.

      The media is of course compliant. The STV organised debate was odd and alienating. This can’t be put down to simply incompetence, it is planned and rehearsed. The NO audience was not a cross-section of Scotland, they were loudly partisan as if they came off the same bus.

      The whole shebang was designed to generate headlines for the pro-union media to deliver an anti-independence message. Most of the columns to be read tomorrow would have been written beforehand with some quotes placed in later for good measure. If Darling had a total nightmare and shrank into a little sobbing ball for an hour then the media coverage tomorrow would simply not exist. The debate would not have been reported on.

      It has to be understood that the media in Scotland is actively working against independence, they are effectively the press and communications department of Better Together. It is with that acceptance then YES people can then understand the enemy. We are against the rotten core of the British State, it exists in the media, your local council, Holyrood, Westminster and business. Collectively they are a massive monster, and this monster is only now beginning to use every single dirty trick and lie in the book to thwart a YES result.

      Better Together is not a single anti-independence organism, it is part of a much much bigger construct. It is part of the enemy called the British State. What we probably don’t know is how much money has really been pumped into the anti-independence cause so far. I suspect it’s tens of millions and counting. These amounts will be buried and like all mafias, are good at burying money deep from prying eyes.

      Just like we see our enemy in fractured terms, disperate organisations with different titles here and there, the funding is fractured too so it looks like ‘donations’ are coming and going from all these organisations. But as I said it is a collective and most of the funding will be coming directly from UK government. All the media have to do is report donations that go to Better Together and gives the illusion it’s the cosy celebrities and caring businesses that are funding NO Thanks. The human face of the British State.

      More than ever, if Alex Salmond, Nicola Sturgeon and YES Scotland are to go on television debates, then they must be prepared to put the monster to the sword, straight through the heart. Not by getting caught up in microscopic detail of every issue forced upon them, but bringing forth the vision of an independent Scotland. Like the Rev said on his Twitter, AS acted as if he was at FMQ. The game must be raised, new tactics employed, be more clever and more importantly … speak to the people and engage with the voter.

      The people of Scotland are waiting for true leadership from a statesman, that will deliver hope with big ideas and a path to a future that will make our lives better for everyone, not to get bogged down and suffocated by grey suit micro-management arguments. To get out of the swamp the debate must be lifted out of the swamp and only then will the country embrace radical change. Forget the media, they are the enemy within, to fight this dirty war we must go to the people directly it’s the only way.

    87. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Dr JM Mackintosh

      good post – that is what I am trying to get over – why is nobody pointing out the disaster for the rUK if there is no currency union.

      Because it wouldn’t be a disaster? The disaster would happen if rUK does enter a currency union.

      The eurozone nations which are still mired in depression level unemployment are the ones with large external deficits. Those deficits need financing, and without currency sovereignty – issuing their own currency – countries lose the ability to finance them. Their economies crash when economic troubles hit.

      rUK, like the UK now, will run a large external deficit, and if it doesn’t have its own currency it will end up like Spain. Or worse, since it’s external deficit will be larger than Spain’s.

    88. Doug Daniel says:

      Number of times currency has come up as a subject with undecideds when out canvassing, talking to folk, etc: zero.

      That’s the most depressing thing. No one is going to vote based on the currency. It’ll be an excuse for some who would vote No anyway, but most folk don’t care what money we use, as long as they have some!

      STV were desperate to have a US-style presidential debate. NEWSFLASH: we’re not electing a president. It was far better when they fielded questions from the audience. Some were moronic, as you’d expect with a crowd that’s 40% No (and 40% Yes, since they can come out with some partisan pish as well), but it was far more enlightening than “WHAT’S YOUR CURRENCY PLAN B?” “DUNNO, BUT ADMIT SCOTLAND COULD BE A SUCCESSFUL COUNTRY.” “NO, PEOPLE MIGHT START BELIEVING IT.”

      That debate has achieved one thing though. I’m going to get back out there after several weeks of inactivity.

    89. G. Campbell says:

      Salmond has to keep it simple for the next debate. None of the page 4 of the fiscal comission pish. Something like:

      “Any country can use the pound. Scotland will use the pound. Rest of UK business will want Scotland to use the pound. That’s why there will be a currency union.”

      Plan A and plan B in 4 sentences.

    90. Cuilean says:

      I watched with 9 YES folks and one undecided. We all thought Salmond won, hands down. Being obsessed with the Referendum, [who isn’t] I re-watched it, which reinforced my conviction that Salmond won. It’ll be hard for MSM to ‘highlight’ Flipper besting Salmond, as it just never happened. BTW, the audience, [as per Question Time’s audience] was absolutely chockers with middle-class Scots & middle-class English-Scots. That’s not an accurate or random electoral representation. I suspect all of these polls have canvassed the mainstream middle-class whilst whole strata of residents of Scotland remain untapped…. including the mother-lode of YES, which will bring a resounding YES vote 18 September 2014.

    91. Capella says:

      @ Dr JM Mackintosh 12:50 am
      “that is what I am trying to get over – why is nobody pointing out the disaster for the rUK if there is no currency union.”
      A chap in the audience raised this point to some cheers from his fellow YES supporters – towards the end of the debate. His question was aimed at AD but, naturally, went unanswered.
      BTW if AS had come out all guns blazing he would be now roundly condemned as “smug” and “aggressive”. One BT plant in the audience actually did accuse him of being snide and aggressive, even though AS was mild as milk. (much to the annoyance of those who wanted a killer punch).

    92. Molly says:

      Someone said to me last night if we vote Yes, when we go to England they won’t like us !

      Followed by it’s not our pound,it’s England’s

      Followed by – ah dinnae like Alex Salmond

      At that point I walked away laughing, what can you say ?

    93. stuart says:

      Not sure if anyone knows but here’s the full poll results.

    94. Cath says:

      “It’ll be hard for MSM to ‘highlight’ Flipper besting Salmond, as it just never happened.”

      Yup. The highlights on the news programmes I’ve seen afterwards have all looked very positive for Salmond and nowhere near as much for Darling.

      I think Yes voters were just expecting a bit too much from one guy and one debate.

    95. Adrian B says:

      Currency is NOT an issue – The only ones talking about it are BT and the media down south.

      Gaining Labour support from those yet to make up their mind IS a priority right now.

    96. Jamie Shepherd says:

      Also note that the survey respondents were 185 male to 250 female. It is clear from previous surveys that support for no is much stronger among women, so this would even out the yes/no figures quite a bit if those surveyed had been 50/50 M/F.

    97. Capella says:

      Another thing about the currency stance of AS – it’s a negotiating position. You go into a negotiation with your “ask” i.e the currency union. Robin MacAlpine describes the situation on his blog.
      “A well-managed negotiation involves each negotiating side having an ‘ask’, a ‘minimum’, an ‘offer’ and a ‘sanction’. A rule book and some facts and figures are handy but not essential. An ask is the maximum version of what you want and a minimum is the least you will accept. An offer is just a ‘carrot’, something nice you give the other side if you get what you want. A sanction is just a ‘stick’, something you do if you don’t get what you want, some sort of real or implied threat of a bad outcome for the other partner.”!Some-negotiating-basics/c112t/1D610429-C032-4701-A702-FC43806FC1F0

    98. G. Campbell says:

      Best bet for the next debate would be for one of the Business for Scotland bods to go in wearing a prosthetic Salmond suit. A bit of voice training and no one would know the difference.

      I’m seriously thinking about starting a fundraiser.

    99. Adrian B says:

      @Cath – you should see the front page of the papers – they are looking rather predictable. The thing is tonight has reminded me of being 4 weeks out from the SNP getting elected at the last elections.

      (picture of some of the front pages of todays papers)

    100. CameronB Brodie says:

      Re. the repeated questioning of which currency Scotland will use. I can’t be bothered counting the number of times the FM referred to the work carried out by the Fiscal Commission Working Group. Is it reasonable to expect the FM to comment in detail on these option, during the debate? Was the studio not full of journalists? Do they not have functioning ears? The FM was correct to state his preferred option. Otherwise he could be accused of not looking out for Scotland’s best interests.

    101. Dr Ew says:

      What Alex could have said about currency:
      “We will use the pound – that’s Plan A and Plan B. The currency union will be negotiated after the political posturing has faded away, because the rUK will not want to lose Scotland’s huge oil revenues in its valuation, exchanges and balance of payments. Regardless of the scaremongering by Westminster, Scotland will choose our currency as is our right, and ensure our trade, your savings and your pensions remain with a stable pound.”

    102. Dr Ew says:

      Besides being stronger and clearer on the currency issue, Eck just needs to be himself. ALl this nicey stuff is all very well but the stakes are high and we want to see a bit of grit. He’s a brilliant debater – so long as he’s not thinking about all that spin and presentation gloss.

      It’s gloves aff time.

    103. bookie from hell says:

      scottish pound/tracking sterling plan B


    104. Taranaich says:

      I’ve accumulated my thoughts into my post:

      In short: when I saw how many people on my Twitter/Facebook/etc feed ERUPT with what Alex Salmond could have said, I knew what was happening – Alex Salmond is giving the power to us. If he did the obvious, then it would be Alex Salmond destroying Darling. But seeing dozens of people doing it for him on social media, knowing that there are hundreds of thousands of Yes voters doing the same, I realised that the First Minister was essentially channeling that power to us.

      Because as is obvious, it is the people who will make this. And when the people are saying we can use the pound for reasons that can’t be directly traced back to Alex Salmond via a quote, isn’t that MASSIVELY more powerful than repeating soundbytes about pandas and tories?

      The debate, ironically enough, isn’t important. What we say tomorrow is, when the undecided come into Yes shops and ask what that pound business was all about, when triumphant No types crow about the media crowning Darling the winner despite the stats showing the complete opposite, when Yes folk may feel demoralised that the First Minister didn’t destroy Darling.

      We have to change the story.

    105. Alan Ritchie says:

      You are mis-reading the poll, those percentages are meaningless, and shouldn’t have been printed.

      “What those numbers show is that – astoundingly – people who were Yes voters before the debate thought Salmond won, and those who were No voters before the debate thought Darling won, both by enormous margins.” is backwards. It shows that voters who thought that Salmond won were yes voters before the debate, which is slightly different.

      190 people thought that Alex Salmond won the debate. Of those 190, the number of yes voters changed from 138 to 152, the number of no voters fell from 21 to 15, and undecided went from 31 to 23.

      242 thought that Alastair Darling won, with 18 moving from DK to No, and a Yes voter disappearing, either a rounding issue with the weighting, or he also moved to no which would tie up with the weighted base figures.

      So I think the important number is the weighted base – 26 previously undecided voters split evenly between Yes and No. (Contrast to the unweighted numbers 27 DK split 9 Yes and 18 No, so Alex gained undersampled younger voters while Alastair gained older ones)

      With No polling at 50%, Yes will need to win over all the remaining DKs, so it doesnt matter what percentage of the DKs thought Salmond won. While it looks like a score draw, it is actually a goalless draw away from home for Yes. Only a win in the second leg will do.

    106. Dal Riata says:

      @Dcanmore @1.18am

      Terrific post there and oh, so true! Well said.

    107. Barontorc says:

      Tonight there were no negatives – that’ll do for now – let the U/D voters take from that what they will.

    108. aldo_macb says:

      That snap poll by ICM shows Yes on 46% which is up 3% on the previous ICM poll last month. Looks like we are heading to 50 50 very soon.

    109. Faltdubh says:

      The poll is encourgaing that we are up 3/4% after the debate. Whilst I agree that the media is bias. Tonight was a level platform, whilst Poncy may have had some poor programs/ediotrials ”Not one Yes voter in Dundee”etc.

      Tonight – there was no bias for 2hrs during the debate. Let’s be honest folks, Salmond was poor tonight! The currency is the elephant in the room – no one is expecting explinations, but even if the audience member who wrote to Salmond etc (probably a No anyways) asks him for A,B,C,D – to continue repeating that we’ll use the pound will not win over the undecided/soft no vote.

      What they want is – a clear response about how their ideal position is a currency union (explain the reasons why the UK will come the 19th Sept, the UK Gov will be signing up to one) then say thoroughly and precise that if they continue to risk their own prospects – run through the other options.

      That way the issue is gone! Darling or whatever BT rep can pick away it, but we can immediately put the shoe on the other foot by asking if they’ll support a SNP/Yes Scotland team in negoiatians.
      By saying it’s in agreement with The Fiscal Commision (Who? That’s who most undecided voters will be asking are) or it’s on page 203 or whatever will not work.

      Although, it’s not the end by all means. We’ve still got 42 days, but we need to work our arse off. Tonight I see as a lost opportunity, no matter how we paint up the polls.

      People are undecided because they want to vote YES!

      Let’s get out there and work our arses off to get that vote.

    110. CapnAndy. says:

      As I’m offshore and couldn’t watch the debate I’m reading folks comments with interest. I don’t doubt that AS could wipe the floor with Darling even on a bad day, but Dave McEwan Hill makes the point.
      ‘I suspect in a few days most will remember Darling shouting and Salmond being nice,friendly and less confrontational.’
      You will find that was the tactic from the start. Had AS wiped the floor with Darling, he may well have lost votes. Darling did the finger waving shouty man bit in contrast to AS’s calm and polite performance. Darling loses, badly.

    111. CapnAndy. says:

      I forgot to ask. Did anyone check on Darling’s blink rate?

    112. thoughtsofascot says:

      With the currency issue, the way its being handled is all wrong. Its being tackled from the entirely wrong end when dealing with the chumps in the No camp.

      We say “Its beneficial for Scotland.” They say “Its not beneficial for the UK.” That is exactly what happened tonight. We played right into their hands.

      No, we have to think outside the box here and point out the direct benefactor is the rUK, because it will stop the pound from going into freefall and nuking their economy. We only benefit indirectly through trade. It’s easier to trade with an economically stable partner, than one that’s in turmoil – Just ask Greece’s trade partners.

      There. In one fell swoop, the Bitter Together line of argument is nullified and it implies that taking any other option with regards to currency is immoral and tantamount to saying “Let em all burn!”

      The Bitters can’t assault it from either side. the only line of attack they can take is to go after the underlying premise that ripping close to 10% out of the GDP of a nation will rattle investors and sink the currency, but history is littered with examples of currencies that sank whenever the parent nation took a serious economic blow.

    113. ian says:

      If the SNP start talking about plan B The No side will beat them with the stick that says “Scotland now wants to force transaction fees on it’s own people as well as rUK

    114. Alan McHarg says:

      How many times have you walked away from a conversation, debate or argument an thought to yourself “I wish I’d said this or that” or training/working with someone, using jargon, telling them the end product whilst all the time assuming they understand what your saying and how to get to and achieve the end product. It is easy to assume, when you live and breath your business, that everybody likewise understands your business. We all make assumptions and mistakes.

      I believe those still undecided know and here what AS’s end product is, but are unsure of the process. They need to be told in simple language/instructions how they are going to get to that end product i.e. how it is going to be paid for. They need to see and hear a viable process in order to achieve the end product. The trouble is the STV debates don’t offer the time nor maybe the opportunity to go into it in great detail and is therefore not the ideal platform to enlighten the undecided as the crux of the matter often gets lost and replaced with easier and quicker sound bites (to much frustration).

      You could argue that the format is by design and more suited to the union’s scaremongering and lack of a vision for Scotland than the Yes campaign having to explain it’s huge vision for an independent Scotland.

    115. bigGpolmont says:

      I thought that AS was not as bad as some people are trying to make out.Yeah we all wanted to see him kick ADs arse but at the end of the day what good would that have done? Te press would be full of Salmond is smug, bullish, arrogant and a political bully.He held the line on CU. he did say that there were other options in the white paper but to have come out with anything else would have laid the whole campaign open to attack with only six weeks to go.Okay he was not at his best but he did come out from behind the rostrum often unlike Darling who was clearly rattled at some of the jibes Salmond was relaxed and confident AND that is what I think made the difference to the undecided voters Even when all this was going on more than 200 people
      attended a yes meeting for undecideds in Grangemouth those of the undecideds who have not yet committed to a definite yes have all moved closer to yes. So all in all a good night Onward folks onward!

    116. thedogphilosopher says:

      Couple of things … post-debate caught glimpse of Lesley Riddoch on newsnight and she emphasised how the grassroots (the real) campaign is off radar and being ignored by mainstream media and how that’s typical of social revolutions, they rise from the ground up …


      One word keeps coming to mind: complacency.

    117. Iain Gray's Subway Lament says:

      Currency is a low priority issue. After months and months of No banging on fruitlessly about it the polls are still narrowing. The only danger is being stupid enough to let the unionists set the terms of the debate and keep endlessly naval gazing about the one issue the Britnats desperately want to put at the forefront of the campaign.

      The unionist press and pundits say Yes need to have an answer every single time currency gets reheated and they will keep doing so all the way till the 19th.

      Because it doesn’t matter what Salmond says about currency since No and the unionist friendly press self-evidently aren’t interested in the slightest in his answers. They aren’t whining because Salmond isn’t giving answers, they are whining because they don’t like the answers. NOTHING will convince them to admit before the 19th “Fine! you caught us out, we were bluffing all the time”, so get used to it. It’s about trust not economics or central banks.

      Salmond also didn’t leap across the podium and demand Darling explain his expenses troughing and paid speeches for companies trying to privatise the NHS. So f***ing what? Darling was a shrieking, blinking, almost demented ball of anger and negativity. Which is precisely why on the only stat that mattered Salmond BEAT Darling and won over more undecideds.

      For those with a short memory we’ve been here before and the only reason we are having this historic and momentous referendum AT ALL is that Salmond and the SNPs strategy to be statsemanlike and project competence resulted in the 2007 win and then the 2011 landslide win against a labour party almost as negative as Darling was last night.

      Does the lack of fireworks please some of those already convinced to vote Yes? Obviously not. Nor did it in 2007 and 2011. Yet however many zingers and rebuttals we might have made in his place those of us who worked tirelessly in 2007 and 2011 also know perfectly well that Salmond and the SNP are light-years ahead of the tory funded labour machine. we also know that the scottish public REALLY don’t give a sh*t about a press they mistrust almost as much as westminster. Nor do the polls dictate their actions. That isn’t theory, it’s what’s already happened TWICE.

      Then you add in the the missing voters. Those who the pollsters can never reach and who the No campaign aren’t even trying to. Those at the bottom who have almost nothing left to lose and who don’t bother to vote at any other time. Yes can and will reach them on the doorsteps and in the streets in these final vital weeks of this campaign. The blind panic from the Britnats when we do reach them, and the No campaign begin to realise we are reaching them, will be a thing to behold.

      Telling the low paid, the unemployed, those struggling on a pension or living from day to day with the help of foodbanks to be happy with more of the same just won’t cut it. No can say bye bye to those voters right now and they are very far from an insignificant number when we get out the vote.

    118. Tattie-bogle says:

      AD stated that there will be negotiations on pensions but heehaw on the £.
      I can’t remember at which point he said it don’t think i can watch it again dreadful stuff STV

    119. Seasick Dave says:

      I travel many places with my offshore career and use Switch wherever I go.

      I hardly use cash and don’t think about what currency I am using or not using.

      Most of the scaremongering about currency is just a distraction and best ignored.

    120. steviecosmic says:

      Just saw BBC world news here with a Scots pundit (never got his name) saying Darling wiped the floor with Salmond and that the snap poll after the debate showed this, ably backed up by the BBC anchor.

      Some breathtaking lies about guaranteed devo max in there too after a No vote.

      Same old shit, different day.

    121. lochside says:

      Dcanmore, excellent piece. We are at war with the multi-headed monster of the British State which masks its well co-ordinated campaign behind the ‘grass root’ front organisations such as ‘No Borders’ etc. and the pimps of the msm.

      I am tired of spin, and AS showed that when he listens and acts on spin doctors’ advice he looks vulnerable. Last night, when he momentarily took the gloves off, it worked.

      However, unlike some, my experience at the doors, is of Dks fear of CU not happening because of what it means to their income. This is not a trivial matter. Last night AS kept repeating ‘Scotland’s best interests’ when what he should have been saying ‘RUK’s best interests’. Someone in the crowd highlighted the 10% loss of the Uk if Scotland’s share of the B.of.E. is removed and the Oil fields to boot. This should have been AS’s tack.

      But this format is nothing but a set-up to allow Ponse and all the over-paid nonentities to further their career. It does the ‘Yes’ campaign no favours. Me?, I’d rather see an all out attack on Darling’s personal reputation and the corruption of Westminster with a detailed list of their lies and illegal wars, with an impassioned appeal to crush its rule over us forever. But I’m no politician, so what do I know?

      Once last thing…why don’t Patrick Harvie and Pat Kane take a running fuck to themselves, and take their self-serving careers somewhere else than giving weasel words of succour the No crowd?

    122. Wp says:

      All this was, was a last gasp effort by the media and STV to try and stem the flow of Yes momentum of the past weeks. I, like many, thought I would see the Alex Salmond we all know laughing at his opponent and winning his arguments easily. That he used a more relaxed approach and allowed Darling to get angry was obviously his plan. This is now seized on by the no camp as a defeat, which is nonsense. No matter how it went last night the media would have picked holes in Alex Salmond because that’s what they do. The facts are, Darling gave this his best shot yet the undecideds still moved mostly to Yes. I’m sure when we see Alex Salmond on TV nearing the big day he won’t be holding back. The polls are almost level. What’s to be negative about ?

    123. bjsalba says:

      I didn’t see the “debate” but then I have been so turned off by the MSM (both TV and newspapers)that I have avoided them both for decades as much as I can.

      I fully expected them to behave badly as serving the public interest or providing any decent coverage of anything is well beyond their comprehension and capabilities.

      In Roman times it was bread and circuses, now it is cheap booze and TV “events”.

    124. thoughtsofascot says:

      My thoughts exactly!
      I was dumbfounded at that. He was given the stake to skewer the currency argument once and for all, yet he dropped it. It was like watching a re-run of Brazil V Scotland 1998. I was thinking “This is it, the most obnoxiously annoying, yet most consistently debunked argument of the no camp is going to get buried like it should have been long ago.” And then nothing ever came of it. The line of argument was allowed to go back onto the bitter together rails of “It’s in Scotland’s interests but not the UK’s” and it ended up feeling like that horrible own goal

    125. Grouse Beater says:

      Did we really expect the British establishment and its servants to admit Darling failed miserably to address the democractic reasons for self-government?

      Are we surprised they claim an easy victory where none exits? Are we so foolish that we rely on appointed heroes to win the battle single-handedly?

      What changed that has us cry, ‘Wur goin’ hame – we didnae think it wuz a real battle’?

      Stand your ground and prepare for the next attack.

    126. Ken500 says:

      It’s irrelevant. It was just an opportunity for STV shareholders to make money.

      It will be forgotten about in a week.

      Voters are not voting for Alistair Darling or Alex Salmond. There are voting for Democracy. They are voting for the right to take responsibility to run their own country.

      Some people would never vote for Alistair Darling and always vote for Alex Salmond. Alex Salmond approval rating are far higher than Alastair Darling, but that is not the issue. The majority of people recognise the issue.

      Vote YES

    127. You and My Comb says:

      I didn’t see it all but I thought Salmond got some big stealth hits in there.

      Darling avoiding confirming that Scotland could be a successful country was an interesting issue that could be played quite well in conversation but I think that Darling couldn’t get by the fact that Scotland has subsidised the UK for, at least, the past 33 years is really important. I also thought that Darling conceded (as Carmichael did in helensburgh) that the EU was a certainty (like Carmichael, he tried to open up a new battlefront on conditions of joining but nobody seemed bothered)

    128. notWillieRennie says:

      Audience picked by Ipsos MORI explains everything (even back to the start of the campaign!). Is it just me, or do some No voters seem professionally prepped with their questions. BBC/ITV news were obviously preset with stories about how AD won it (ITV won the most vicious prize this time).
      Don’t think AS was playing to us, he was playing to the undecideds and perhaps Labour No/Undecided voters.

    129. Ken500 says:

      The currency issue is irrelevant. Currency is just a form of exchange.

      What matters is if the books are balanced. Scotland has balanced the Books for ever but has been dragged down by Westminster malicious incompetency, secrecy and lack of proper democracy. The only way for people to achieve fairness and democracy is to vote YES and vote for the SNP. The SNP publishes the Accounts is committed to open government. Official Scottish Gov website Search GERS. Westminster does not. Westminster gov administration condones secrecy and lies.

      The SNP is funded by it’s members. Ordinary people concerned about their community. Crowd funded if you like. This gives Alex and Co the opportunity to do the right thing without
      consideration for vested interests, secrecy and lies. Vote YES

    130. Marco McGinty says:

      In relation to AD’s claim that Andy Burnham was joking, and Burnham’s own follow-up statement to confirm that view, the quote used in the Telegraph reads as;

      “I would feel really genuinely sad if Scotland votes for independence, not just for our own self-interest and in the extra difficulty we would face getting a Labour government in England but I also don’t want to drive up the M6 and get my passport out or have to drive on the right when I want to drive on the left.”

      Perhaps he was misquoted, but it doesn’t appear to be a joke, suggesting that Burnham and Darling are both liars.

    131. Al Ghaf says:

      I remember only a few years back the line, “Ordinary hard working Scots are not interested in the SNP obsession with the constitution. They want to to know about jobs, health and education, the things that matter…..”

      Or variations of the above being spouted ad nauseum by every unionist that got within gurning distance of a microphone ..

      Now today, we have food banks, zero hour contracts, privatisation of the NHS in England and the knock on effect in Scotland. And we are told all the ordinary hard working Scots want to know is what is the currency plan B? Seriously?

    132. Ken500 says:

      No wonder Alex Salmond gets fed up sometimes. Constantly attacked berated for telling the true by ignoramuses. How many times do they have to be given the information? Boring.

    133. PRJ says:

      This debate centralise Salmond as the Yes campaign. Exactly what the No campaign wanted.
      Did Salmond once mention the Yes Scotland or any other Yes campaign group?
      This was a political broadcast SNP against NO!

      SNP policies which as far as I’m concerned is not what this campaign is about.

    134. Ken500 says:

      Come on folks.

      How many people would vote for Alistair? How many people would vote for Alex?

      That is not the issue. The issue is far more important. What kind of community and country do they want to live in.

      Vote YES

    135. Nation Libre says:

      The bookies were giving odds on a winner, who are they paying out on?

    136. I thought the format was bad. The questions from the audience section was a mess, which played into Darling’s hands.

      I also thought Alex Salmond too-often, played the man rather than the ball.

      Yes, we know Darling is a nasty, self-serving piece of work. It was particularly telling that he could not, would not, agree that Scotland can and will flourish as an independent nation. But, a bit more about a better Scotland and a bit less about the mess Darling and his mates have got the UK into might convince a few more Don’t Knows.

    137. gfaetheblock says:

      Let’s not too excited, the percentages quoted are based on a sample of less than 50, therefore the margin for error must be so big to make this meaningless.

    138. heedtracker says:

      @ gfaetheblock, its how are chums in the media are using the poll as a No triumph thats the point. Wake up and smell the coffee, Scotland is voting Yes.

    139. Lochside says:

      Ken 500: ‘The currency issue is irrelevant’…well it may be to you mate, but as I’ve stated, it matters to people on the doors I’ve canvassed.

      They’re the type that don’t read White Papers, but watch shite like last night’s charade and think Darling is ‘hard hitting’.

      AS had the opportunity to bury stone dead, in plain terms, the CU fox. He didn’t. He fell back on sound bites. That’s why the ‘NO’ dupes in the crowd were allowed to barrack him.

      When he got stuck in on Food Banks and Poverty, they shut up. If you attack Darling and his accolytes with plain facts, not ‘Page 4 blah, blah, blah..and Scotland’s Interests’ knee jerk jive,then you’ll convince DKs.

      Anorak Yesses like you and I are not relevant to this, we know the truth, the DKs don’t and they need it spelled out for them.

    140. cal says:

      What kind of country would stand by and watch its neighbour struggle financially as it tries to set itself up as an independent state and make its own way in the world while it also suffers financially because it refuses a currency union with one of its closest friends and allies? A spiteful and vindictive one perhaps. What kind of relationship can we possibly look forward to if the union is to continue?

      If Mr Burnam was joking about driving on the right were BT also joking about the lack of access to blood and organ donations, the crazy 2.7 billion set up costs, the merging of our two NHSs? The privatisation of the English NHS-is that a joke too? If it’s all just a bit of fun, if the refusal to discuss a currency union a joke too? Yes . It’s a special kind of joke known as a “bluff”.

      Where was the vision from Mr Darling? The plan to get us from where we are now to where we need to be? Where was the message for all the disaffected, those who never vote, the missing million? No vision, no plan, no hope, no future Mr Darling.

    141. heedtracker says:

      Keeping it real Scotland. People want change. Why should the south of England take all Scotland’s resources, then give us the hand outs and bits of government they decide we need?

      Edit 07:00: There was more good news for the Yes campaign when a poll cunducted by the Guardian newspaper showed that amongst who were undecided before the debate, Salmond won by 55 to 45. The margin increased significantly when those who remained undecided after were asked – they gave it to the First Minister by a whopping 74 to 26.

      Despite this, speaking on BBC Radio Scotland at 06:40 this morning, political correspondent David Porter when speaking specifically about undecideds, told listeners that the Guardian poll had made Darling the winner. It was true that amongst all of those who took part in the poll, the Better Together head had emerged victor, but the undecideds very definitely did not give the debate to Darling.

    142. Peter Sneddon says:

      So much for Ipsos-Mori’s “specially invited” Audience of Labour party trolls and halfwits, If that lot where typical of Scottish people I would be out of here like a shot,but they’re not! The harassment of the first minister of Scotland (allowed by Ponsonby and the wee man shouting in his ear) was imho organised thuggery. I wonder just how many were selected due to low IQ ratings? Then add insult to injury by having that semi sentient mug from Forth radio talking the same shite he always does while reasoned intelligent voices such as Ian Macwhirter where conveniently sidelined until the end. I just feel numb we have so much ignorance in our society.

    143. Ken500 says:

      It was always going to be boring

      Alex can’t say, ‘you were the stupid dumb F who helped crash the banks, supported illegal wars to make yourself a tax evaded fortune and caused people worldwide to be starving and dying.

      Alistair can’t say, ‘”I am so jealous of you because you are honest, successful, caring, popular and you can count, that I got to call you a Nazi and a lot of other names beside. ‘a real Braveheart’.”

    144. heedtracker says:

      Post debate BBC newsnight London meant to have great Alan Little reportage but screwed it up and cut to excruciating UKOK vote NO BBC propaganda desperately trying to arm twist teenage Scots into vote no.

      All they did via a shameless Kirsty Wark, was make themselves look cheap and nasty and when they did get Alan Little on, he knew it too.

      Maybe some of these BBC chancers do have some shame.

    145. Ken500 says:

      Round the doors the currency issue. ‘I havenae got a bean to mi name’ but Aye I’m worried about the currency issue. Most people in Britain haven’t got a spare £100. Most people in Britain have just got debt, expect for 10% of the population, who are worried about the currency issue. How they can get their hands on even more of it?

    146. Helena Brown says:

      Well I did not watch it as I knew I would be doing damage to the Television. First thing on the Radio this morning, and I put that off. Got a quick glimpse of the ticker tape on Sky and ignored it, came straight here for the truth. It can be palatable or not but spin is just out of hand in the MSM. The Guardian, why the bleeding Guardian, who on the earth of Scotland reads the Guardian. I do hope all the Labourites in England realise that their precious Guardian is going to be used against them just as soon as they put the Scottish Question to bed.

    147. David Smith says:

      The fact that AS came out from behind his lectern to respond to questions while AD used his as a barrier sent a signal of its own in my opinion.

    148. Muscleguy says:


      One thing Salmond not only let slide but adopted himself was Darling’s saying we would have to apply to ‘re-enter’ Europe. This was wrong, we will not have to re-enter as we will not be outside. The continuance of our membership is what will be negotiated with Europe between Sept 18 and March 2016.

      It’s an important point and Alex chose not only not to pursue it but adopted the word from Darling which conceded the point unargued.

    149. paul says:

      A look at Darling’s life om Wikipedia tells you all you need to know about this chancer not only is he a crook who flipped his home four times he was also responsible for the department that lost public records valued in the millions if the information was to have been sold on. Scotland needs no lessons from this Tory baffoon. He is the nephew of a Tory MP and attended a fee paying school. His tryst with socialism was the usual teenage rebellion against his upbringing but now as a adult he is fully at home with the Tories that he thinks should lord over us. I detest Torie and everything that they stand for but, Darling’s type makes me vomit.

    150. Ken500 says:

      How many times do YES have to say it. Scotland can use the pound, Scotland can use the pound, Scotland can use the pound. After a YES vote Scotland can use the pound. In the event of a YES vote Scotland can and will use the pound. In the event of a YES vote Scotland can and will use the Pound.

      They might not use it for ever, but when Scotland votes YES, the currency of the country will be the Pound because it would take two years at least to change.

      If people vote YES, the currency in Scotland will be the pound.

    151. Robert Peffers says:

      Oh! For Heavens sake folks – get a grip! I’m nothing if not clear that the real story of last nights so called debate is that it proved Darling is a total numptie.

      His whole plan of attack, if he ever had one, was to repeat the same mantra like one of those dolls with the blinky eyes that say the same things when you pull the wee string hanging out the back. Yet this oft repeated mantra seems to have fooled so many YESSERS and is thus a bit of a worry for the YES campaign. Darling kept parroting the same quite incorrect and superfluous question like some demented long Dead Parrot with a broken recorder stuffed up its jaxie.
      “What is Plan B”.
      “What is Plan B”.
      “What is Plan B”.

      This is not a question that has any answers, for the real sensible question has been asked and answered too many times to count. The currency question only requires a simple answer and that question is, ”What currency will an Independent Scotland Use”? . The simple answer has always been an unequivocal,The Pound Sterling. So why does this fool, who leads Better Together, keep asking the same idiotic question?

      The question he keeps asking, “What is Plan B”, is not, in any way, one for the YES campaign to answer for the answer given to the real question has usually always finished with the qualification, ”preferably in a Currency Union” and THAT, is a question that requires negotiations and is one for a post independence ENGLISH parliament to answer. The YES campaign has always insisted it is their first preference. So why does Darling keep harping on about Plan B when he has been told that an independent Scotland will be using Sterling with or without a currency union?

      It cannot even fall to Darling to answer the question of a currency union unless, by some unlikely chance, London Labour were to win the next – post independence – election and be stupid enough to appoint the failed Chancellor who cost then the governance of the UK into the same office.

    152. davidb says:

      On transaction fees. There is a transaction fee in all banking transactions. The free banking provided for many retail customers hides the cost, but it is there.

      The transaction fees thing is not really important in the lives of most people. Its a cost on business but it is not as huge a cost for the smaller businesses as fuel/ carriage charges. Most Scots businesses are small.

      I buy a lot from the Euro zone. There is a charge for sending & converting money, but we just do bigger transactions. The floating currency rates – which can be hedged – can have dramatic effects, but if say a Free Scot was buying in a currency which shadowed Sterling the cost of the transaction would be known by all parties. So wheres the problem?

      A bigger transaction cost for me personally is having to buy from English “UK agents” who do little for their rent seeking position beyond adding a margin. I would wonder how much of the trade England does into Scotland would find itself lost to them as Scots buy from the manufacturers in Italy or Germany which being a separate Nation they will find easier to do.

    153. Heather McLean says:

      “Indy_Scot says:
      Its funny I was just thinking that, maybe the debate did not appeal to the people in the know, because they are in the know. Maybe it was meant for the people not in the know.”

      Exactly my thoughts! I’ve heard Alastair Darling go on about the currency more times than I’ve had hot dinners – and the same old argument debunked time after time but I’m immersed in this campaign and have been part of it from the get go!

      However, a lot of people are just beginning to tune into it now and were watching last night for the first time – Alastair Darling trying , blustering and failing to deny actual quotations made by himself that the currency union is the best option for all concerned just last year will surely have alerted the undecideds watching that the man is an evasive liar!

      Generation Yes had a bingo card made up for the number of times Darling would use phrases such as ” better and stronger together” ” irreversible decision” ” foreign” ” pooling and sharing risks and rewards” etc – I wish I’d printed it out – I’d have had a full house and at least it would have helped to relieve the boredom of listening to him!

      I’ve scrolled right to the bottom to comment so forgive me if anyone else has already asked – did anyone else notice how Alex Salmond frequently came out from behind the lectern to speak directly to the audience and viewers at home – while Alastair Darling stayed behind his and directed his gaze and comments to either alex or Bernard Ponsonby?

      I notice too that the newspapers this morning are declaring ” first blood” to Darling – only to be expected from the biased MSM I suppose!

    154. Nigel says:

      I did not watch the debate – out leafleting! I had a feeling that the MSM would spin it as a win for AD, no matter what. The debate was a media distraction, a side show and nothing more. Canvassing and leafleting is much more valuable. It remains with us Yessers to get out there with our leaflets and canvass sheets and keep talking face to face. Forget the media stuff…

    155. Cal says:

      If anyone has not seen this report by Prof Leslie Young on the Treasury’s reasons for refusing a currency union they should read it now. It comprehensively rubbishes the Westminster government’s reasons. “There may be good reasons for the UK to reject a currency union with an independent Scotland, but none can be found in the Treasury letter. Yet, that letter is the key justification for the stance of the UK Government”

      I’m not sure how to format links which start with http so perhaps someone could do it properly for me?

      Http(colon)(forward slash)(forward slash) slash)wp-content(forward slash)uploads9forward slash)2014(forward slash)03(forward slash)FinalScotlandCurrencyA1The-Hunter-Foundation(dot)docx

    156. Robert Louis says:


      Wholly agree. The debate is just a distraction, which will be spun to suit the media viewpoint. The headlines could have been written three weeks ago.

      The momentum in the polls is with the YES side, and NO are steadily falling in support. It is on the ground we will win this – something the media and pollsters have so far failed to understand.

      I think Alex Salmond was careful in what he said, as he was appealing to soft No’s and ‘don’t knows’, rather than dedicated Yes people as we find on here. The currency question is a trap, desigend to distract, and Salmond did not walk right into it. Smart.

      Let’s stop all this self defeatism, and criticism, as the main stream media will happily do it for us. We have the momentum, so let’s not fall into the trap of tangling ourselves up in whatiffery.

    157. Robert Louis says:

      What currency will iScotland use? Pound Sterling.

    158. Bugger (the Panda) says:


      Just publish the link from www. onwards, leaving asid eth http and slashes nits. The blog software adds it is automatically which is R Stu gets pissed off with people who leave all that stuff in. He has to go in manually and rewrite.

      Just the http://www.xyzab,.com/

    159. biggpolmont says:

      Wee douglas Bendy wendys wee brother has just stated on GMS
      that it was obvious that alex wanted to tie Scotlands Economy to an English! pound in the same way as Panama had tied theirs to the US dollar E

    160. Bugger (the Panda) says:

      see the http bit was added automatically to that dummy address.

    161. bunter says:

      Last night was the first time that while discussing a C.U. that Salmond has not hit back with oh well, no assets no debt thing, as he always says that we have a right to a share of the BOE and sterling. Don’t know if that’s significant.

      Is it not about time that Stiglitz and Mirrlees stood up and defended their recommendation of a C.U. as its their findings and reputation that are being rubbished. Just sayin.

      Oh and another thing lol. Why did Salmond not skewer Darling on the extra powers thing. Darling was on the ropes but it was not pressed home.

    162. Lindsey Smith says:

      Well I flat out told Claire Phipps, who blogs for Guardian, that their claim was a lie. She was offended. The request to retweet if you support AD was conspicuously never moving off 40 something but the retweets to support FM were combing all the time. MSM is never going to support a YES victory.

    163. Another Union Dividend says:

      John Curtiss still going on about economic problems “Post Oil Scotland” on Radio Scotland this morning.

      FFS He,I and most of the listeners will probably be long dead in 50 years time.

      Mind you Alex Salmond needs to find a simpler narrative on Plan B nonsense such as “After a YES vote what currency arrangement do the Labour and Tory parties in Scotland think is best for an independent Scotland.

    164. Macart says:

      Yeah, the headlines for this were written days ago.

      FM looked a bit off form and lacking his usual passion for a fight, but otherwise didn’t break. Couple of tactical screw ups which also was unlike him and I think we saw too much of the statesman and not enough of the debater. Mr Darling however simply couldn’t help himself. When under pressure and he was on several occasions, simply revert to shouty finger wagging and wild claims. 🙂

    165. heedtracker says:

      Why all the negativity? Its what Scotland needs, a First Minister not a knock about boxer.

      Darling looked and acted like a clown and Salmond let him get him on with it.

      Millions of Scottish people have never even heard of the rancid Guardianistas but they get up and go to work for peanuts today while the tax dodging rich try to projectfear them into saving the union of the rich.

      Change is coming, Alex Salmond did a fine job and thats all we needed.

    166. I sincerely hope that AS knows what game plan he is playing over the next few weeks. I love the man AS HE IS and dont wish a watered down Salmon who becomes less confident in his own skin.

      We all know we are NOT too poor, nor too small , but unfortunately the majority of Scots might just be a tad too stupid see through the smoke and mirrors and arrive at a YES vote.

    167. Robert Bryce says:

      Doug Daniel, Adrian,
      Thank you. I’m glad others can see what I see too. BT are on the wrong track with this but hey, let them fill their boots!

    168. Footsoldier says:

      Undecideds want to know about the currency pure and simple. If this is not answered to their satisfaction and a credible alternative offered, they will vote No. The problem is any alternative plan will be slaughtered by the opposition. A bit of a Catch 22 situation but an answer has to be found.

      I agree with earlier comments that introducing aliens and driving on the right was a stupid thing to do. Perhaps AS and others are too immersed in the political bubble, when campaigners are crying out and want to hear BT being attacked on NHS etc.

    169. Ken500 says:

      Scotland has more assets and resources than Panama

      The US has more resources than Panama

      Scotland pro rata has more assets and resources than the rest of the UK.

      Ie England claimed to have won the Commowealth Games. pro rata Scotland, NI, Wales were more successful.

      The US and Panama are not relevant comparisons. The rest of the UK is not like the US (less assets and resources) and Scotland is not like Panama (more assets and resources) The US pro rata has more National debt than the UK ( but more assets?)

    170. chalks says:

      Sorry folks, Salmond was poor, but I am a man and last nights performance wasn’t for the men, it was for the women, where his numbers have jumped up 8%…..if we convince women in a majority, we’ve won the referendum.

      A few undecideds will now vote no, but there is still time to convince them otherwise.

      I think these people were probably going to vote No anyway, I was disappointed with Salmond and his line of questioning, I think it would have worked had it been quicker.

      We are operating inside a bubble and I was staggered by the poll before the debate, 42% telephone poll….commonwealth games has clearly had an effect on the shy yes factor.

      P.s. the media isn’t actually that bad today, the sun headline is interesting…..

    171. Rabrats says:

      It was Indy Debate for Dummies, expected as much with Darling at the helm for the Tories. Cammy might fancy his chances now though, and try take it to a level 1 debate.

    172. heedtracker says:

      Prof Curtice is just one more wealthy UKOK conman. I woke up to BBC world service rdaio news online and the BBC shyster in same Embro cafe where Rowling wrote Harry freakin Plop Plop interviewed actual academic poll researchers going around Scotland.

      An American researcher had been across the whole Scotland and the Highlands and even he had found massive Yes majority and then they cut him off too.

      People know they are being conned by the biggest fraud of their lives but none of its even coming close to making them want to be ruled and taxed by our friends in the south.

    173. Grouse Beater says:

      Alastair Darling trying, blustering and failing to deny actual quotations made by himself that the currency union is the best option for all concerned just last year will surely have alerted the undecideds watching that the man is an evasive liar!

      Worth repeating.

    174. Famous15 says:

      Of course Darling stated last year that A currency Union was reasonable.When he was put in the frame to “lead” Better Together he flipped and made it a condition of accepting that the Tories get in bed with Labour and say a big no to Currency Union. I wish that email could be leaked.

      He ain’t called flipper for only one reason!

    175. Ken500 says:

      Any alternative plan will be put to the voters in Scotland and they can decide, after there is a YES vote. It will be up to the voters to decide, if there is a need for change.

      Any attempt by Westminster to stop Scotland using the Pound will damage the rest of Britain’s economy. Cut off their nose to spite their face. People in the rest of Britain will not vote for that.

    176. Ken500 says:

      Some Academics in Scotland are getting £Million of public money from Union supporters, without declaring an interest. This can affect their professional judgement.

    177. Graham says:

      The problem, and why No may win, is that some people want answers to questions, which are, in principle, unanswerable: what will the price of bread be after Independence? They don’t ask how will the economy of the UK develop after a No vote, they seem unconcerned by being ruled by the Nasty Party and are unfazed by the prospect of Nasty Party Lite, they don’t realise that the UK is in a fiscal and social mess and believe austerity is the only answer to the problems left by Labour and if that means the poor and vulnerable must suffer then so be it. The same questions they want answered by Yes they fail to ask of the UK which faces an even bigger risk than an independent Scotland will face. They seem uninterested in socio-political questions and won’t inform themselves.

      As well as an obligation on politicians to inform the electorate, we must also inform ourselves.

    178. Hewitt83 says:

      Wish I had a shred of the optimism of some on here.

      I thought that debate did the Yes campaign zero favours last night. WE know the ‘no currency union’ line is a campaign tactic.

      WE know this. And both campaigns know this.

      However, ordinary Joe Public who takes no interest in Politics usually and doesn’t bother to undertake any critical research does not know this. And he/she makes up a very sizeable chunk of the electorate.

      It is bullying but unfortunately it is very effective with your average undecided/soft No voter.

      I said from the start we should’ve went for a new Scottish currency and ultimately that may cost us.

      Praying for a mirable on the 18th of September.

    179. paul says:

      The Daily Retard won’t let post anything negative about Darling censorship is alive and well at the Tass sorry I mean Record. Their poll is very close but yes just shading it.46% to 42%.

    180. Mosstrooper says:

      I watched the debate and I’ve read the comments and soon I am off to deliver 350 pamphlets for YES. all of which reminds me of the ZEN teaching;

      Before enlightenment–chop wood, draw water.
      After enlightenment—chop wood ,draw water

    181. Awayanbileyerheed says:

      I was at the debate but couldn’t ask a question! Seats were allocated prior to arriving following a vetting process. Most of the people next to me beside the center floor seats were Yes and we had our hands up for the entire meeting and were looked at but none of our section were ever asked. Only the center floor section were asked.
      They asked what way we were going to vote and a potential question at the weekend before the debate. I’ll let you draw your own conclusions

    182. Colin Church says:

      Disappointed. Salmond referencing in the know, in the political bubble, lines that just went over every undecided head. Side of road and aliens nonsense bizarre when he should have nailed pensions, UK NHS / GOSH, Broons scare on transplants etc. Was always going to run out of time to nail this route properly. Bitters mantra for next 6 weeks will be plan B – what is it?. It is all they have left. Our defence of an un-named source in a Guardian report is weak. Format was dreadful. Ponsonby more effective at skewering Darling than AS. New powers bit was the best question of the night that should have been pursued. I wanted to see the “we seek a country” Salmond.

    183. heedtracker says:

      Praying for a mirable on the 18th of September. and a spell checker

      HALF A MILLION Scots take home barely a fiver an hour, another half a million are on state benefits or have never and probably will never work.

      Social housing was ended by Thatcher and Darling and Labour made sure it stayed that way and food banks or soup kitchens are a fact of life for people living in a country that floats on oil and gas. Norwegians are staggered at poverty in Scotland.

      Where does Scotland’s wealth go?

      Why can the teamGB rich legally evade tax Alistair Flypper Darling?

      Why do we let them keep taking Scotland’s wealth and pump it into the south of England?

    184. Robert Peffers says:

      @Peter A Bell says: 6 August, 2014 at 12:29 am:
      Where Salmond missed an opportunity was his failure to turn the currency issue around by quizzing Darling on who made the decision to threaten abolition of the currency union

      Peter, I’m going through my recording of the broadcast right now and Salmond did challange Darling. He stated BT claimed the three minister/shadow ministers were doing what Darling asked when they united to say no currency union. Darling just ignored it.

    185. Graham says:

      I thought the setup would be rigged. Why not lie when vetted and then ask your real question if picked?

    186. Dorothy Devine says:

      Some folk are in danger of doing what the MSM wants – making the referendum all about Alex Salmond .

      I think it was abundantly clear that this debate was going to push that , that and nothing else.

      The voices of reason were too reasonable, too analytical when it came to the round up at the end .
      Messrs McWhirter and Kane being the two of whom I’m thinking .

      I was a member of a debating society many moons ago – never have I seen a debate set up in this manner.

      Perhaps STV could take a lesson from this,

      If that doesn’t work try googling Glasgow Uni Independence debate and join it halfway through.

    187. Gordon E says:

      I was really disappointed last night, but as mentioned before, Salmonds performance seemed to be specifically for the female vote. More measured and less combatative.
      In this he has won, with the female Yes voting intentions up 8%. All the women I have spoken to today have said positive things about Alex last night and all the men negative.

    188. bunter says:

      We must remember, the YES campaign have got this far despite 2 years of MSM monstering, so as no doubt the propaganda today will be bad, it cant be that effective.

      YES just needs to keep doing their thing and next time a debate comes along, Darling’s pound scare will sound tired and we get the old Salmond back.

    189. Gordon E says:

      Speaking to my Yes voting bus driver this morning, he mentioned his friend was involved in last nights poll.
      When asked what his voting intentions were he was told that the poll was now closed after he said he was voting Yes.
      What is going on there then!

    190. Cyberniall says:

      I think I was disappointed last night because Alex Salmond couldn’t clearly answer questions. I understand why and that Darling was the same but that’s my point, I don’t want your typical question dodging politician running an independent Scotland.

      He needs to win over No voters and undecideds. Simple as that. Yes supporters like ourselves know the answers but it needs to come from him. We saw it last night when audience members made points about the pound losing value, point he should make. Too many people have not thought that far ahead and assume it is just wishful thinking on AS’s behalf.

    191. chalks says:

      My facebook is going mental, so taranaich maybe has a good point lol

      Sharing the currency options far and wide and also mentioning that the ruk would have their pound weakened by us not being in a currency union

    192. galamcennalath says:

      After the debate I concluded Salmond had won. Not by the questions he had answered nor by the way he tackled the pound issue. He won because he managed to make points which would appeal to Labour voting DKs.

      I posted my thoughts last night on the previous thread, but as often happens, it failed to appear.

      Salmond succeeded in making points about food banks, child poverty, bedroom tax .. and other social justice topics. This would have been intentional and would have been aimed at the main target DK group.

      In contrast, Darling’s focus on the pound might play to hard No voters, but I doubt if it’s the most important issue for the target DKs.

      In my estimation Salmond set out with too objectives. Firstly, as stated, to get a message to Labour voting DKs. Secondly to attempt show BetterTogether for what it is – fear, confusion and disingenuous (he couldn’t quite claim lying). He reinforced this second in the minds of the target DKs by continually highlighting the relationship between BT, Darling and the Tories. In those he succeeded well, if not quite resoundingly.

      Darling lost on a number of fronts. Most, by focusing on the tactically irrelevant pound argument.

      Now I see Stu’s clever deduction that DKs thought Salmond won 3:1, I believe my analysis was correct.

    193. Awayanbileyerheed says:

      They had data from Ipsos Mori which is why I was invited so to try to say the opposite of what I said to MORI could have made it worse for me in my mind. Thought they were just going to give put random seats as you entered. Even the key questioners had their seats allocated in what made it appear randomly distributed. But they all had to ask their questions before in a test before going live

    194. schrodinger's cat says:

      more heat than light, nothing new in the debate
      audience reaction was what was on show, how many boos did as/ad get etc
      the questions that were asked by as/ad were not spontainious, they were considered before hand, asking about project fear was a good idea, but by choosing the most rediculous, aliens etc, allowed AD to laugh them off as a joke. AS should have asked about browns transplant fiasco and the reply from g. ormond street. less funny
      wrt the Currency question, this has been done to death and got salmond the biggest boo, was there anyway to avoid this? i doubt it. this format would never give space for reasoned debate although one member of the audience did take the correct route in trying to point out what would happen to the pound if scotland (10%) left.

    195. heedtracker says:
      Swing from NO, after their triumph last night is not a triumph and they know it.

      Or and but, how is Yes gaining 4% after last night losing? Pull your heads out of your behinds and soak up the BBC propaganda. You’ll never see this level of state broadcasting corruption anywhere again, until the try to get Cameron reelected:D

      Don’t knows thought Salmond won, 45% to 55%
      No’s thought Darling won, 90% to 10%
      Yes’s thought Salmond won, 80% to 20%

      10% of NO Thanks UKOK thought Darling won shock.

    196. Clootie says:

      Just a thought/reflection:

      Think back to that handful of souls fighting for independece 40/50 years ago.I was not one but I have met a few – those still active are filled with an incredible determination

      The newspapers were very strong and very unionist.No SKY TV etc – A few channels and all news controlled and a few slots during the day not 24/7 cover. (although we did’t know the full extent of the bias at the time)

      The Labour Party was all powerful.

      No Internet – link up communication / research / source material / etc – NIL

      Printing leaflets on old fashioned roller presses and hand delivering.No computers and printers (or laminators etc)
      Coming 4th. in seats or losing deposits.As one said to me “…and worried sick in case you did win because you had work the next day”. So few in number that they took turns at stand ing for election.

      Poor link up to co-ordinate (no computers / no internet / no mobile phones (maybe no land line phone)

      They kept going and enabled us to get to where we are today.
      Think about what they achieved and with zero chance of winning but with every effort put in to move things on.

      We have the chance to cross the line thanks to them – think of them and what they had to work around when you feel the head going down.
      In the best Monty Python tradition …”you think you have it bad?”

    197. Ken500 says:

      If Alex Salmond increased the female vote job done.

    198. CarbonBlf says:

      Beatiful work Stu. I felt as though Salmond’s biggest mistake was preparing for a civilised debate with references at the ready instead of coming up against an opponent who behaved like a back seat drunken heckler at a Fringe show. And is it just me, but that Darling’s shouty ‘how dare you’ finger waving in our face prompts my own fingers to curl into a fist.
      You’re right about all this Plan B stuff – it should have been sorted and answered long ago so we can get on with the serious stuff. Overall, I saw a grand opportunity wasted and I still can’t for the life of me understand why anyone would vote anything but Yes.

    199. ian foulds says:

      Taranaich says:

      6 August, 2014 at 1:49 am

      ‘… I knew what was happening – Alex Salmond is giving the power to us. If he did the obvious, then it would be Alex Salmond destroying Darling. But seeing dozens of people doing it for him on social media, knowing that there are hundreds of thousands of Yes voters doing the same, I realised that the First Minister was essentially channeling that power to us.

      Because as is obvious, it is the people who will make this.’

      WELL SAID.

      Our slightly disappointed fellow-travellers have unconsciously taken up the cudgels – keep it going!

      I a sure AS will keep his ‘powder dry’ until it is too late for BT.

    200. john j says:

      Yesterday’s Herald headline was ‘Salmond odd-on favourite to win TV battle’ , today’s was ‘Darling draws first blood’. Raising expectations yesterday to emphasise today’s pre-determined headline.

    201. William Steele says:

      I am so disappointed in Alex Salmond’s performance. He spent time on trivia and evading answering the currency question when he could have attacked the lies and psychological warfare of the UK government. He could have addressed the issue of the NHS, and al the positive reports on independent Scotland’s finances. I’m so disappointed.

    202. Bill Halliday says:

      Wait ’till countries and traders holding sterling in the hope of an iterest rate rise start to get jittery about Project Fear’s stance on the pound. Then you will see some back tracking.

    203. yerkitbreeks says:

      If the Plan B or other, is admitted to it should be closely allied to the post YES discovery that the government of our new neighbour is so hostile as to beggar its own population and business.

    204. john j says:

      And Rev. You’ve got a great career ahead of you as a psefolo– psephol–sefolo– Och you know what I mean!

    205. Juteman says:

      Maybe Darling was only ‘joking’ when he said there would be no CU.

    206. heedtracker says:

      @ William Steele, you’re not disappointed about the 4% swing to YES though are you William?

      Maybe there’s more to the future of Scotland than trying to monster a completely failed has been opposition bank bencher like Alistair Darling.

      We are all living with the consequences of New Labour and ConDem Westminster’s nightmare for Scotland. We don’t need one of teamGB’s chief architects monstered on stage by Scotland’s FM who dspite austerity, really is balancing the books and working for Scotland.

      Darling and co have had their day. Unless you’re a City bankster, a warmonger, a tax dodger etc, they were a disaster. Let’s move on.

    207. handclapping says:

      We will get the pound, rUK will be using Bitcoin 😉

    208. Arel says:

      I think we should remember that this is only the first of probably 3 TV debates. I would imagine that AS is probably keeping his powder dry for later debates (closer to the Referendum itself for maximum impact) and then hit Darling big time on his lack of answers for more powers, NHS privatisation, the Barnett formula and have another go at him about whether he thinks Scotland can survive and prosper as an independent nation.

      Salmond’s strategists will have been watching this last night and will be advising him where he looked strongest and weakest.

      AS should not waver on the currency issue because no matter how many plans he had it is simply the attack dog for No and their sole tactic. I think there is a lot more AS can say in defence of the CU especially the vindictive approach taken by Osbourne, Balls and Alexander. I think we’ll see something in later debates.

      Darling and BT/No Thanks have nothing positive to offer, just the usual fears. AS should continue to hammer them on that.

    209. Ken500 says:

      Aye remember when Clegg did well in a TV performance. It didn’t turn out too well. People are being sanctioned and walking to food banks.

      Unionists including Danny Alexander, who implemented ‘the room tax’, increased students fees and privatising the NHS now claim after 4 years that it was a mistake. The Scottish gov was right.

      The ConDems elected to protect NHS/Education and pay off the debt are a failure.

    210. Ross Mckay says:

      To be fair, given that the undecideds in the poll post referendum were just 31 people its not really something to get excited about.

    211. ian foulds says:

      Clootie at 9.30am

      A good reminder to us all – thanks

    212. Edward says:

      Having slept overnight (sounds a bit obvious) have had tme to reflect on last night

      The conclusion was this :

      1. STV are hopeless at organising debates

      2. Bernard Ponsonby was crap at moderating, including a hint of bias

      3. STV were idiots with having both commercial breaks AND breaks to the so called ‘spin room’

      4. STV should have a serious look at their ‘live streaming’ set up – its crap!

      5. STV should have at least done a deal with ITV to broadcast to the rest of the UK

      6. STV should not have had any arrangement with IPSOS/MORI, which clearly skewed the poll as well as the audience

      7. Alex Salmond was badly advised to talk at length about ‘Project Fear’ – Why? we already know about it, everyone knows about it and should have been dealt with over a year ago!

      8. Alex Salmond should have been more blunt regarding oil, when Darling kept saying that it was running out, that should have been challenged. This is now a fresh item with news regarding Clair Ridge (doesn’t his advisors keep up with what’s going on?)

      9. Alex Salmond should have been blunt, that without sharing the pound and not having any oil to back the pound, England will be fucked (perhaps not as strong as that, but you get the drift). He should also have stated the countries that have and still do share currencies or have currencies that are pegged to the US Dollar, such as Hong Kong.

      Finally to say, that Alex Salmond WAS set up, that is clear, we had all the pre debate hype, aided and abetted by all that he was ‘going to wipe the floor with Darling’ and other such stuff. I knew from the level of guff flowing from the MSM, that this was a set up. Enter Darling with new designer specs, the underdog, helped along by the host, suddenly the blood on the floor is not Darling’s its Salmond’s THAT IS the perception and perception IS everything

    213. Hobbit says:

      Forget the polls – can we actually get people out to vote?

      I was at an independence meeting a few weeks ago in Edinburgh which was hosted by the Scottish Socialists. At question time, someone asked, “how can we get middle-class voters on side?” – the implication being that their view was on balance, no – for all sorts of reasons.

      Now, on that basis the middle class(es) will get out and vote, and vote no … how do we know that the Yes campaign will be able to get its voters out?

    214. Rolf says:

      Last night I felt pretty disappointed by the debate. Felt that Salmond squirmed or smiled meekly when he had an open door to be concise or cutting.

      However, this morning I feel differently.

      Judging by social media/comments here and elsewhere, Yes voters all now seem more energised and focussed in their arguments. How many have you seen or heard say, “I could have answered that question better myself”?

      On the currency topic, Salmond is constrained and can’t talk too much about plan B. He also can’t talk too much about the damage that would be done to rUK/Sterling if Scotland’s revenues came out of the balance of payments and Scotland took no share of the debt (remember it is assets AND liabilities or neither). For him to talk too much about the former could scare the markets and would be portrayed in the media as threatening and irresponsible. However, the rest of us can and will talk about these issues.

      We all keep saying that Yes isn’t about Alex Salmond and for me last night brought that closer to home. It is up to all of us to get out there on the doorsteps and say the things we think Salmond didn’t/couldn’t.

    215. heedtracker says:

      Ross Mckay says:
      6 August, 2014 at 9:58 am
      To be fair, given that the undecideds in the poll post referendum were just 31 people its not really something to get excited about.

      READ the report, its the UKOK propaganda machine thats using it for their Darling saves the union bollox.

    216. Murray McCallum says:

      I would really like to hear from Angry Darling why Scotland could not thrive as an independent country (e.g. where Scots could continue to live and work unlike now) and why it, if you listen to him, is uniquely placed to not successfully operate any form of currency.

      The next debate needs to be more about the future longer term visions of the UK versus an independent Scotland.

      They really need to change the format.

    217. Ross Mckay says:

      If the yes vote does lose in September the finger of blame can be pointed squarely and unwaveringly at Salmond and the SNP, due to their incomprehensive failure to come up with a plan B to the currency union.

    218. Bugger (the Panda) says:


      I thought the £stg was effectively a prototype bitcoin.

      A currency built on fresh air.

    219. heedtracker says:

      Retweet there on WoS, Rangers fans boo Flower of Scotland and soon the Orange Order will be marching through Edinburgh en masse. Rule Britannia, Scotland region.

      Forever Rangers
      @mstewart_23 go fuck your maw ya inbred ginger cunt flying a tricolour in Britain !!! Not allowed

    220. Ross Mckay says:

      ‘Salmond is constrained and can’t talk too much about plan B’

      Why not? Don’t the Scottish government have a duty and obligation to the people of Scotland to tell us about their plan B (if they have one), particularly as they claim that they want us to have an ‘informed debate’.

      ‘Scotland took no share of the debt (remember it is assets AND liabilities or neither)’

      But a system of currency isn’t an asset.

    221. heedtracker says:

      Ross Mckay says:
      6 August, 2014 at 10:03 am
      If the yes vote does lose in September the finger of blame can be pointed squarely and unwaveringly at Salmond and the SNP, due to their incomprehensive failure to come up with a plan B to the currency union

      Sterling is Scotland’s currency and Scotland is voting Yes.

    222. Ross Mckay says:

      ‘is uniquely placed to not successfully operate any form of currency’

      But no one is saying Scotland couldn’t operate any form of currency – just that the SNP have failed to come up with an actual plan to do so.

    223. Adrian B says:

      Four interesting perspectives in the Daily Record that people should have a quick look at regarding last nights debate:

    224. McTim says:

      Irvine Welsh on twitter last night: “Couldn’t give a toss whether Indy Scotland would have Pound, Euro or new Scot currency. It’s whose pockets it goes into that’s the issue”. Let’s hope many undecideds feel the same way. Wee Eck needs to hammer Flipper hard on Trident and the risks to the Scottish NHS next time, and point out the risks to the rump UK if they really did decide to cut off their own noses to spite an Indy Scotland’s new Government.

    225. Ross Mckay says:

      ‘Sterling is Scotland’s currency and Scotland is voting Yes’

      No, sterling is the UK’s currency. If Scotland votes yes it will be voting to leave the UK.

      A system of currency is not an asset.

      Why have the SNP failed to come up with a plan B to the currency union as any normal capable competent government would do?

    226. Nana Smith says:

      Well for all the negativity folk on here Mr Salmond appears to have done just fine.

      We all knew the media would push darling and put BT plants in the audience. For me the opening statement from the FM showed who really cares for Scotland and its people.

    227. Murray McCallum says:

      Can all trolls please read the White Paper for currency options.

    228. No no no...Yes says:

      Currency- the public do not fully understand the Currency Union. BT want to keep it that way, they do not want clarity. The public only want to know about the money in their pocket. Keep the message simple:

      On 19 September Scotland has the right to continue to use the pound. After that the technical details of any Currency Union will be discussed with the UK government.

      Found this online:
      The petition is closed but there were only 496 signatories, such was the interest in currency unions!

    229. gerry parker says:

      @John Lyons.

      Well done your wife. When asked what currency we’re going to use we should pull out some Scottish Bank notes from our wallets and purses and say” This is the currency we will use”
      End of story.

    230. heedtracker says:

      But a system of currency isn’t an asset.

      Its a legal entity, with legal personality, like a country or a state or you Ross and if its accepted, anyone can use it.

      So thats why post YES negotiations will go, can Scotland have a currency union with you England and England will say NO because we don’t like you Scotland. We love you when we shared an incredibly unequal political union but now, you can fcuk off, no matter how bad it gets for us all?

      Cant see that happening somehow, especially as the City calls the shots and the City won’t stand by and let britnat zealots destroy profit, share values, pound price drops.

    231. AllyPally says:

      Like others here, I’ve not found currency a big issue at the doors. Two people have brought it up. One was a prosperous-looking extremely No lady in a big house, who presumably has plenty money in the bank. The other mentioned on passing that she didn’t know why the politicians thought currency was a big deal.

      Poverty, the NHS, and fairness in general are all huge issues for the people I’m canvassing.

      Other areas will have other issues I’m sure, but those are the ones I’m hearing.

    232. Derek M says:

      i dont know i thought it was a good showing from wee eck he was in the lions den and they all wanted to try to discredit him and not once managed it he walked out unscratched ,as for flipper he was a train crash same old tired lies ,the main point everybody is missing was at any moment Eck could have used the ammo he has but let Darling sweat his nuts off waiting for it coming ,and it showed he was blinking like an escaped loony as the lies just kept coming out his gob,this was not for us the yes voters it was to show the undecided what kind of liars they have on the no side ,of course in the world of BT unionist politics shouty angry man wins will be the headline not the zero facts he produced about why we should remain in the union.

    233. Iain (orri) McCord says:

      The Project Fear and the alien invasion / driving on the right thing was actually quite good. It paints the picture of the NO side either so desperate to avoid losing that they’ll say anything or so confident they think they can take the piss. The reply by the bloke who made the driving on the right crack doesn’t just undermine that article but everything else he’s written. They think Scotland being independent is just one big joke.

      Currency union, Salmond actually gave plan B, Sterling is tradeable. We’ll use it, initially, with or without a CU. Darkling didn’t get it and it’s more of a “Rope a Dope” than anything else.

      The right to collect up to 40% of income tax ourselves is actually only one “power”. It’s also less than the ability to vary it by 3% in either direction we already had. It’s also meaningless if Labour legislate that we can’t lower it.

      The last bit is even less “guaranteed” if you caught what Blair McDougall said afterwards, if we don’t like it we can change it. So even if we (as in Scotland) get more powers we (as in the UK) can take them away if it doesn’t workout.

    234. heedtracker says:

      @ Ross Mckay A system of currency is not an asset.

      Why have the SNP failed to come up with a plan B to the currency union as any normal capable competent government would do?

      So why does the eurozone exist and why is there a European Central Bank and why does each EU country share the same currency and why is that not possible here, seeing as its the best logical shared outcome?

      The issue is clearer if you ask, well why are you britnats prepared to give Scotland much more powers if we vote NO, and stay in currency union but NOT give Scotland control over its own economy, or at least as much as that enjoyed by every other country in the EU?

      Answers on a postage stamp please, because UKOK vote No for more devo is just one of the bigger bettertogether frauds on Scotland so far.

    235. desimond says:

      Small countries have to balance the books…..those words will come back to haunt Mr Darling.

      I didnt consider the playing to female audience tactic, this has really raised my spirits and shows another good tactic despite questionable execution.

    236. Ross Mckay says:

      ‘please read the White Paper for currency options’

      The white paper doesn’t say anything whatsoever about what the Scottish Government’s plan B option is, or what their plans for that option are (if any).

      The Fiscal Commission academically analysed the different options and recommended currency union, they did not set out any detailed plans for a plan B option – and, obviously, they are not the government and the government has utterly failed to plan for a plan B option.

      The SNP’s failure to bother planning for a plan B option can be neatly summarised in a wee quote from Sturgeon:

      “Plan B is our Plan A”.

      That says it all. They have let down the yes campaign and the people of Scotland.

    237. NODROG says:

      The DON’T KNOWS have it. No matter what happened last night that is still the case. Let us go forth and convince them that Scotland’s future is best in Scotland’s hands. So vote YES.
      If you vote no Scotland’s future could be in Tory/UKIP/Westminster’s hands and we would be out of Europe. You decide – all the information is available – just read it!!!

    238. Ross Mckay says:

      ‘On 19 September Scotland has the right to continue to use the pound’

      With respect, it appears to be you who doesn’t understand what a currency union is, if you think its the same thing as just using the pound.

    239. Murray McCallum says:

      Ross Mckay

      What is your preferred option for currency in an independent Scotland?

    240. James S says:

      A video from a namesake in Stirling, Australia, here is the difference you can make.

      Passenger fails to mind the gap at Stirling train station, commuters work together to free him.

      If someone else controls the tracks and trains, you can still help those in need when they need it.

      Now imagine controlling the trains and tracks as well. You would probably redesign the network to avoid any gaps ever again.

    241. David says:


      It seems the online lot AKA YOU and ME did not understand what was going on last night.

      Last night I was disappointed not to see Alex Salmond totally rip apart Alistair Darling and see blood on the floor. Watching the debate I thought Alex Salmond was too passive. BUT today when I see the flood of posts by YES, I get it now, Alex as usual was playing the long game and got what he wanted to say out to the masses….this was not a win for Darling at all as in this first round of debates Alex was not trying to win the debate last night but promote his message and have a message to promote online……very clever stuff really.

    242. Ross Mckay says:

      ‘So why does the eurozone exist and why is there a European Central Bank and why does each EU country share the same currency and why is that not possible here’

      It is possible, but the SNP have failed to plan for that option.

      They gave up wanting the euro years ago – do you think you can just decide to switch to the euro one day and start using it the next?!


    243. Ross Mckay says:

      ‘What is your preferred option for currency in an independent Scotland?’

      Scotland to have its own currency, so it isn’t economically shackled to rUK as it would be in the SNP’s currency union plan.

    244. ronnie anderson says:

      Alex Salmond should Ditch the Guru ( it did,nt do the Beatles much good )get back to REAL POLITIC,& again the BIAS Media running the rear guard action for the NO camp.

    245. Alistair says:

      Ok, so the debate, from the perspective of BT, has distilled down to “currency”. Someone (possibly Napoleon) one said – “To control a country, you must first control its currency” . It looks like that is Westminsters plan to control Scotland.

      This is good however as it makes our job simpler. We can now predict the question every undecided (and No) voter will ask on Facebook, on Twitter, on the doorstep, at work. Answer that question and there is nowhere left to run.

      There are five answers. The best is – we’ll just use Sterling for everything without a currency union. “But who will underwrite our banks”. We will, but they must be more strictly regulated and the casino banks will have to leave. The Scottish taxpayer will cannot bail out incompetent bankers. The rUK taxpayer can if they wish.

      “fine by me then”

    246. Murray McCallum says:

      Ross Mckay

      So, to be clear, you are voting Yes and campaigning for Scotland to launch its own currency?

    247. Luigi says:

      I think some people were perhaps expecting too much from this “debate”. The whole thing was engineered by STV as a circus (as they usually are). Mistakes were made on boths sides.

      Salmond was a bit too nice and laid back, and spent far too much time on the pandas and aliens stories (I think everyone knows about Project Fear by now, so I hope we don’t go there again), and could have deflected the currency attacks far better, perhaps by listing real alternatives more strongly, and counter-attacking Darling with a bit anger himself. I understand he has toned it down for the female vote, but a little more anger would have been useful at that point. He came over as “Ok, but could have done better”.

      Darling certainly upped his game, but he looked and acted very weird. He could not agree that Scotland could be a prosperous country (very telling). His body language also appeared very nervous: Aggressive, angry, shouty and quite insulting at times and that pointy finger was a real turn off. He came over as a very nasty person indeed.

      I do not think this was ever going to be a game-changer, but this is not what the YES campaign has ever been about. Steady progress, though persuasion rather than sudden conversions, has been the order of the day. Both sides will learn from this, more polished performances to follow, probably another two score draws likely. Only the MSM thinks a game-changer is required. Those in YES Scotland know otherwise. The theatrical TV debate last night was useful, in that the public are now fully engaged. People will now start searching for answers. Game on.

    248. caz-m says:

      Does anyone remember this tactic by the Herald/Scotsman MSM about 6-8 months ago, when they ran with similar victorious headlines for the Scottish Government knowing that they were going to slaughter them the very next day.

      And the majority of us fell for it. Only a few picked up that it was a set-up, I think Rev Stu was one of the wiser ones who didn’t fall for it.

      And fast forward to today, they are still pulling off the same con trick.

      I think they call it, “Setting you up for a fall”

    249. bookie from hell says:

      @fter a nights sleep and bottle of southern comfort thoughts

      AS can regroup next debate

      1.When talking plan B,needs to drop fiscal commission,sounds evasive –be direct,it’s a scottish pound-we will track sterling if needs be.

      2.hammer darling on more powers,over & over,he’s a rabbit in headlights

      3.just be positive,don’t bring up better together scare stories,tell us how Scotland will be run

      4.i don’t know who advised AS on alien an right side of road,bring in Alex bell for advice

    250. K1 says:

      And everyone seems to have fallen for their narrative. I actually find it stunning how easily they manipulate us all. We are winning.

      If it is the reality that we are ahead, which it is, then what have the other side got left? The entire backing of the msm plus well manufactured ‘shows’ like last night’s ‘set up’.

      The object of which is to increase doubt, obsfucation and navel gazing in the minds of those wavering. There are a lot on here feeding that very line.

      Alex was steady and relaxed, why? Because we are winning. Don’t people trust themselves, are we really suggesting that people are stupid here?

      This ‘hook’ of currency is a red herring. It’s their only ammunition. Are we being led by donkeys again? Regroup and think again. Why are we winning? Because this is a ground movement, that is a fact. The only one that counts.

      They are going for an all out aerial strike, everyone knew this is what their strategy would always be.

      Calm, measured steady faith is what is required in the face of this people. Stop falling for their propaganda.

      It is not about Alex. It is about us. They do not represent us, don’t take your eye off the reality that we are winning. That’s what they want you to do, to doubt, to argue with ourselves, to nit pick and get lost in their narrative.

      The one thing I am hearing on a daily basis in ‘real life’ is the reality that no one seems to know any no’s, and the one or two we do are unmovable, everyone is experiencing this. Trust that what you have done so far has worked and will continue to do so…people trust those they know who are trustworthy; friends, family, workmates et al.

      Time to reject the msm’s ‘take’ on this. Don’t feed the machine.

    251. a2 says:

      How do you address ” No because Salmond’s fat and smug”? lose weight and don’t appear smug. How do you appear smug? have a definitive answer for everything. Can anyone remember the details of what was said?

      Don’t agree about the currency not mattering to people though, it’s enough to make people fell uncertain even though they might not raise it , it’s there to make people doubt that there will be any money at all.

      And the car analogy posted above is lovely, thanks.

    252. Les Wilson says:

      Ponsonby was clever with his bias last night, he knew the currency issue was a difficult one for A/S, at the very start asking the audience in the first 4 he asked for a question 3 of them were obvious No’s and all wanted to ask about currency. Ponsonby then used this ” popular issue” to start the currency issue rolling.

      Coincidence? I think not he was setting it up for Darling knowing that Darling was well rehearsed in it.

      He also allowed Darling to change A/S questions a number of times without him answering what A/S had asked, he also allowed him to rant at will.
      Poor show Ponsonby, and STV ( their spin room was a disgrace ) You have shown your cards and we see them now for sure.

    253. Robert Peffers says:

      Right lads and lassies. I’ve re-run right through the broadcast recording and the count of times the, “What is Plan B” question or, “What Currency”, was asked was in excess of 22 times. Three at least came from the audience and one came from Ponsonby.

      Now, as I pointed out, the question of, “What Currency”, is not in any way in doubt and that of, “What is Plan B”, can only be answered, post independence, by whoever is the Prime Minister of the de facto parliament of England at Westminster or perhaps the as yet unknown Chancellor. The certainty is for the Scottish Government’s preferred option is without doubt a Currency Union. So just what part of, “Scotland will be using the Pound Sterling and preferably in a Currency Union”, is it that Darling, The MSM, The entire Better Together campaign and numerous unspecefied numpties cannot understand?

    254. heedtracker says:

      @ Ross Mckay, BetterTogether dudes like you just make no sense at all. You rage against this giant mythical border barrier that Scotland running Scotland will suddenly create, yet here you are desperately trying to erect a total giant currency barrier at Carlisle and all just for your vote NO camping too.

      Hope you can see the bizarre logic in BetterTogether camping Ross, vote NO we can’t possible have a barrier border with our biggest trading partner BU! if you vote YES, we will purposely create a giant barrier border and all because we didnt want you to vote for Scotland running Scotland.

      Good luck with that there fraud alone Ross. Now try telling Scotland privatising the NHS is a great thing and why Trindemt nuke strike subs have to be stashed in Argyll

    255. caz-m says:

      I went along to a well attended meeting last night for undecided voters.

      It had reps from the SSP, Labour for Independence, Business for Scotland and Jim Sillars. Excellent speeches by all and had the desired effect on the audience.

      It’s meetings like this that will win us the Referendum, not whether Alistair Darling has a good or a bad hair day.

    256. gg says:

      To temper enthusiasm a wee bit on the 74/26 poll numbers….this was from a sample of 31 people only. 95% confidence levels still put that at 55%-88% for Salmond though so still statistically significant.

      I think the 45/55 stack up better 🙂

    257. donald anderson says:

      I am afraid I have to agree with the Rev, though it pains me and I am an unshakable Yes voter.

      Alex Allowed Darling to ham on about plan B for the 12 minutes of his interrogation and the audience actually booed Alex. Can there really be any nation in the world that bottled its Independence over a currency issue like that? What ever currency we have to use it will be for the best according to the circumstances of the time. What does Darling care about Scotland’s future currency. He is against plan a to Z anyway. We have the resources to back any currency and England will be the loser.

      To keep interrupting a waffler with a Yes or No demand was a bad mistake. We heard him the first time. Play to the Jury. Do not make the accused look like a victim. He should have let the Tory Darling dig a hole for himself then calmly whack him. Where did Pat Kane get off on Darling being a “Social Democrat?”

      I think this set us back, but only temporarily. Our case is too strong for one a off TV debate. As Nick Clegg proved and Labour’s record in office you can‘t trust an Empire Loyalist. None of yesterday’s debaters came off too well and we should have won by miles ahead.

    258. Defo says:

      Fear not. All is well.
      Boris, everyones favourite kiddyoney halfwit buffoon has announced he’s standing in 2015. If you think that the timing of this announcement is random….
      Ammo for the next debate, and out in the real world.

    259. Les Wilson says:

      Robert Peffers says:

      Robert, they understand ok, however they WANT to portray muddy waters to confuse and worry people. This along with many other issues they lie and manipulate are pure propagandist. The well known aim of propaganda is to steal votes and that is their sole agenda.

    260. BuckieBraes says:

      I disagree with what others are saying about ‘Don’t Knows’. By this late stage in the proceedings, ‘don’t know’ is generally just another way of saying, ‘I’m apathetic and uninterested and probably won’t bother voting.’

      I find that ‘DKs’ are seldom interested in discussing the referendum. They are just not receptive. On the other hand, ‘soft Nos’ (who aren’t really ‘Nos’ at all) often want to initiate a dialogue: which tells a story in itself.

      I think it is largely a waste of time to expend energy on ‘DKs’ that would be better used to shift the ‘soft Nos’ into Yes territory.

    261. Ken500 says:

      ‘Darling wins the debate but loses the argument’?

    262. donald anderson says:

      Just back from my local barber, who is Algerian. He day his mother was tortured by the French OSS who were looking for her brothers, as if they would have told her. He said they had to fight and sacrifice for their Independence and yet the Scots are worried about which currency and will their pensions be OK. Money is only a yardstick for wealth, which we have in abundance. Poverty increased under Labour and the rich got richer thank you. Darling should have been hammered and must be until will get the wishy washy voters out of their feartie zone.

    263. Murray McCallum says:

      There seem to be people out there that want an independent Scotland to have its own currency. In order to achieve this reasonable ambition they seem to be voting No?

      Or maybe these people are time wasting, ingrained No voters?

    264. Ken500 says:

      It was STV who win revenues, who framed the debate and spoilt the argument.

    265. bunter says:

      YES are targeting women and Slab voters to achieve its aim. An aggressive Salmond and Darling ”left in a pool of blood on the floor” would achieve neither I think.

      Salmond changed his tactics for a reason and that is to connect with these two groups.

    266. ronald alexander mcdonald says:

      Firstly on the currency issue. Salmond is doing the right thing. If he stated that plan B is to have our own currency pegged on a 1 to 1 basis with sterling BT would have a field day. They would scaremonger to an extent you wouldn’t believe. Run on a new currency, vast amounts fleeing Scotland etc. Their tory supporting company directors would announce they would have to leave Scotland etc.

      The SNP’s internal polling is showing circa 55% support for yes. I believe they are using the same system as 2011, which they bought for a considerable sum. If this is true then last nights tactics had to be stay calm and don’t upset the horses, which AS did, although not his best performance, but possible the lesser of two evils.

    267. heedtracker says:

      The last honourable UK political commentator says

      Let Darling etc get on with monstering Salmond. Let them try and frighten us. Its all they have and its a big ukok gamble for bettertogetherBBC

    268. X_Sticks says:

      Is it just me, or does anyone else think botox played a part in last night debate?

      Debate format crap, Darling as nasty as usual, Eck not on best form and I think badly advised on both questions and answers. MSM crowing a Darling win. Pretty much what I expected really.

      The truth is folks the winning or losing this referendum is down to us. Only the efforts of those out campaigning will win this, not politicians.

    269. Edward says:

      For all those hitting the streets and nocking on doors
      You WILL be asked what is plan B, this IS the question that many will ask

      Answer succinctly that Plans B through to Z will be for Westminster wanting to share the pound, in fact will be screaming to share the pound.

      Why is that?

      Simple, Scotland has 10%GDP which will be removed from the UK, so the economy of England, Wales & N. Ireland will have lost 10% GDP, that in itself gives markets the jitters
      currently the pound is backed by the current GDP of all of the UK PLUS the Oil. Scotland will have its 10%GDP PLUS it will have the Oil, Money follows money.
      Worst case scenario is that Scotland will use the pound anyway.
      Also point out that sharing the pound does not mean leaving decisions in England. Far from it, Scotland will actually be calling the shots, remember Scotland has just taken its 10% GDP and its OIL from Wesminster clutches, so effectively is holding a nap hand

      That, for me is the message you need to get across

      So far the unionists have used the CURRENT strength of the UK (that includes Scotland) to hit a future independent Scotland with. But take out Scotland and what’s left is actually quite weak

    270. Dr Ew says:

      @ Buckiebraes

      This is not a “late stage in the proceedings” for a huge number of people – the Don’t Knows. For a great many people who take little or no interest in politics, this is the crucial stage. Many, many of them will vote and this intense period will be more like a General Election campaign. And that’s where it’s won or lost.

      There is still everything to play for – get out there and canvas!

    271. bjsalba says:

      What is the possibility of setting up our own Scotland-wide agents? I know that would still mean transaction costs but at least they would not be at London rates, and the money and jobs would be in the Scottish economy. If the goods were transported directly into Scotland, there might even be Scottish port and delivery worker jobs in it.

    272. Mary Bruce says:

      I see that Mick Pork’s “comedy britnats” are all over here now trying to convince us that the currency myth wasn’t debunked months ago. Even Gordon Brown admits that it was another of their scaremongering scams.

      The entire Scottish population knows this is a scam, so tell us again why you are on here punting it like fury? It’s a bit embarrassing to be honest. Instead why don’t we have a wee chat about what the future of the following will be if we stay in the union;

      Zero hour contracts, trident, bedroom tax, food banks, workfare, benefit sanctions, NHS privatisation, free personal care for the elderly, student fees, increase in retirement age, minimum wage, banking regulation, membership of EU, foreign policy, arts funding, child care, growth of UKIP, privatisation of state pensions, involvement in foreign wars?

      Come on, we want some answers.

    273. Flower of Scotland says:

      We all knew what the outcome of the debate would be. The British State in all it’s forms can only try to muddy the waters as they see support for Indepence rise! Just focus guys! There will be other debates. Let’s not get our knickers in a twist!

    274. thoughtsofascot says:


      It stands to reason then that the next set of audience members need to be tactical.

      Say you are a no voter. Lie your teeth off so that you get selected, then lay the smackdown on Darling.

    275. galamcennalath says:

      BT want to deflect the debate away from the things which matter most to Labour voting soft-NOs and DKs ie social justice issues like food banks, austerity hitting benefits, bedroom tax, child poverty etc.. Also the NHS threat. This is the battleground.

      All this pound crap is just a side issue. There will be currency Union, nothing else makes sense for England.

      And has their tactic worked? Well, look at the comments above – all about the pound. To the DKs who will decide this, I don’t believe it’s the big issue.

      The MSM and BT has always said “the economy” will decide it. I never agreed with that.

    276. Proud Cybernat says:

      Plan ‘B’, ‘C’, ‘D’ and ‘E’ are in the White Paper. These do not need to be considered until after two conditions have been met:

      1) Scotland votes YES.

      2) A currency union is rejected AFTER a YES victory.

      Only THEN when Plan ‘A’ has been rejected AFTER a YES victory will the Scottish Govt. have to look at the alternatives in the White Paper and not before. Westminster can shout it from the rooftops before the vote that there will be no currency union but does anyone really believe Westminster? It’s a bluff pure and simple because the City of London call the shots and will not allow Sterling to plummet as a result of losing Scotland’s contribution to the Balance of Payments.

      And using the £ outwith a formal currency union didn’t do Ireland any harm.

    277. Yeah : Nana Smith that was a nice wee read from DR online

      I was not as disturbed as many by media spin (its predictable from vested interest types and always expected from the MSM), suggest people read ‘The Case for Independence’ small book by Ian Goldie;

      Predicting the result / spin of an independence debate is not clairvoyance really, read the book and see how it goes.

    278. Calgacus MacAndrews says:

      ‘ProudScot’ is so proud he can’t answer ‘Yes’ when asked ten times whether Scotland can be a successful small country.

    279. Fergus Green says:

      Daily Record poll now showing 60% YES

    280. Michael says:

      Edinburgh Evening News reporting big swing to Yes post debate. Yes on 54%

    281. faolie says:

      So we say, reasonably, We’ll use the currency that’s best for Scotland and the UK, we’ll use the pound. Well ye can’t! We’ll no let ye! Where’s yer plan B? Where is it, cos we’re no gonnae let ye use the pound!

      That’s their argument really, that if we vote Yes, then boy, we’re really going to screw your economy good and proper.

      Oh I so wanted AS to really stick it to Darling at this point, ridicule him, humiliate his little Englander Tory-led stance because he and the rest of the fear mob have really had it coming to them for a while.

      We will use the pound. End of story. You want to know our plan B? It’s the pound you dolt. We’d prefer a currency union but if you and your Tory chum Cameron are really going to be so spiteful and unhelpful to your newly independent neighbour with whom we’ve created and shared a currency for 300 years then screw you, we’ll use the pound and leave you with your debt mountain.

      I’m just so angry about these threats, fears and bare-faced lies continually being used to scare us because we want independence. Proud Scots my arse. Fuck the lot of them.

    282. X_Sticks says:

      Calgacus MacAndrews says:

      “he can’t answer ‘Yes’ when asked ten times”

      I think Darling has been advised NEVER to use the Yes word. They’re scared the cybernats will nick the clip and use it to create a Yes Darling viral video.

    283. john king says:

      I wanted to see Salmond skewer Darling on WHY scotland has an ageing population and WHO caused this?
      and why remaining in a union that perpetuates the disparity between workers and pensioners will serve our purposes rather than doing something about it?

      Since staying in the UK with an immigration policy which is harmful to a future Scotlands Pension fund, especially as we the current crop nearing pension age die off and future pensions will have to be wholly supported by Scottish workers alone?

      Consider if we vote no and our workforce contracts (as it is already doing) and oil does come to an end, how long do we expect the rich areas of the UK to support the poor areas before they decide they want a referendum to end the union?

    284. biggpolmont says:

      I really don’t care what the media says they can hardly be held up as a model of truth or decency up to now!
      Look at the body langauge Salmond confident and relaxed. Darling hanging on to the rostrum for grim death. Yeah he scored a couple of hits with what currency, but we have had those questions for months and and it hasn’t lost us any votes. Whereas when darling was repeatedly asked if he agreed with david cameron (21 times) he would not answer! it was the same with Little dougie on Gms this morning. he would not answer! There is another weak spot! At every opportunity ask any bt rep “do you agree with David Cameron about Scotland, ability of being a prosperous independant country”. You can have a lot of fun with their answers depending on whether they are Labour , Tory or like Darling just dont answer the question. Lets stop knocking Alex Salmond. He wasnt as good as we had all hoped for but if he had wiped the floor with Darling He would have been described as a thug. Get behind the man if someone says he was beaten by Darling ask in what way? “you must have been watching another debate from me because from most folks viewpoint alex Salmond won hands down”!

    285. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Interesting that the Daily Record carries a full page on four “don’t knows” three of whom say the are now voting YES following the debate and the fourth saying he will probably vote YES.

      Alex Salmond very deliberately did not get involved in divisive issues last night which certainly does not suit him, the format was appalling (why take four questions from the audience and then give AS or AD about 40 seconds to address all of them)and the press were always going to give Darling whatever benefit it could.
      I don’t think much was resolved last night though it was obvious that Alex Salmond was uncharacteristically constrained and was far from his greatest hour.

      I find it a bit dispiriting that some of our supporters are parroting complaints from our opponents. “They would say that wouldn’t they” is the best way to describe much of their reaction and that should be understood

      On the currency issue (as on other issues) the furious attack on us is not because it is a weak point, but because it is very uncomfortable for them (and as they full well know Scotland holds all the aces in a currency union).

      Keeping the pound in a currency union is by far the most sensible option in the immediate and they want to damage the reassurance this would give electors.
      Any other policy proposal would actually allow them more opportunity to attack us

      If we should abandon this position because our opponents attack us on it all the time perhaps we should abandon the equally contentious policy of independence

    286. Calgacus MacAndrews says:


      He no the Man from Delmonte …

    287. Ken500 says:

      Alex’s done it again. The consummate Politican.

      Scotland should be proud of him, giving Scotland back it’s self respect.

    288. Ken500 says:

      Vote YES

    289. G H Graham says:

      The FM may well have won the undecided voters but could have landslided it, if he had learned the lessons of the trainwreck that occurred when Ms. Sturgeon met Ms. Lamont a few months ago.

      Darling is really his own worst enemy, agitated, nervous & angry who couldn’t help himself, pointing like a demented prosecutor.

      And what did Salmond do in response? Attempt to interrupt at almost every opportunity.

      I learned a long time ago when I used to sell big ticket stuff to corporations that it is often more productive to just shut up & let the other side vent.

      When they’ve run out of steam, you then deliver some facts rather than try and argue why they are wrong.

      After all, that’s what the undecided voters really wanted; facts.

      Instead, we got two guys shouting over each other trying to win an argument.

      Lesson 101 for Alex Salmond, you can’t win an argument with an entrenched opponent. But you can control your own pace, tone & delivery.

      Whoever advised the FM needs to get the boot. There may be one last chance on the BBC to have another go. Third time lucky?

    290. john king says:

      DMcH says
      “Alex Salmond was uncharacteristically constrained and was far from his greatest hour.”

      Maybe Alex is playing the long game in the knowledge that this is not the only televised debate just when Darling thinks he’s getting the upper hand the SNAP the trap shuts and Darling and the no camp are neutralized once and for all.

    291. P.R.D. says:

      Can independence be built on the touchy feely ebb and flow of multilateral progressiveness?

    292. Rosa Alba Macdonald says:

      Thoughts on the Great Debate:

    293. Edward says:


      I understand what your saying
      Yes there are UK Sales offices in England , that, as you say, just act as a go between, but don’t actually get their hands dirty, just skim off a commission to pay the rent.

      There is nothing at all to prevent any company in Scotland from doing the same, its all about talking to manufacturers directly. Some will not want to change or add to their existing ‘sales’ representatives, but its always worthwhile just having a coffee and a chat. Opportunities sometime arise at trade shows in continental Europe itself.

      As for currency transactions, I would guess that your using a bank to send euros? I tend to use currency traders, who basically will give you a better rate than the bank 🙂

    294. Andy Hartley says:

      I know it’s been said above, but the Don’t Know sample size was 49! That gives a margin of error of about 14% (or in this case, almost exactly 28 people!!)

      You cannot draw conclusions based on how don’t knows changed their minds with that sample – especially since the difference is something like 5 people!

    295. Richie says:

      That Statistic should have been highlighted by the press and media. But a 5% swing to YES (55% Vs 45%) of the ‘Don’t Knows’ who did make up their mind after the debate is a small margin.
      I was hoping for a game changer here, a knockout, with the pedigree of Alex, but at best he won on points. His more friendly and positive approach will of won some over but again small margin.
      A Cameron debate would have been a real potential game changer, but he was never going to walk into that trap.

    296. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      G H Graham

      Salmond very rarely interrupted last night if you watch it again. He mostly only tried to speak through Darling’s interruptions of his statements.

      Darling interrupted Salmond virtually every time he spoke

    297. Cath says:

      “The thing is tonight has reminded me of being 4 weeks out from the SNP getting elected at the last elections.”

      Yes. Like most on here I’ve been solidly yes and heavily involved in this debate for 2 years now. In 2011 I wasn’t at all political, not on Twitter, not a member of a party. I was just reading the MSM and watching the BBC. I thought the SNP government had done a decent job and was a bit pissed off by what I’d come to see by then as “the Westminster parties” ganging up on them, and a clearly biased media.

      As those parties, and the media ramped all that up in the weeks before the election, I started to find two things – my anger at it rose, and my disappointment every time I was told the SNP has “lost”, or “suffered a blow”, or “Labour has it in the bag” became worse. 2011 was, as I recall it, the first time I ever voted SNP but I couldn’t wait to get to that polling place and do it!

      I’m currently sensing something similar happening with the referendum. All through, many people have been “heart yes” but unwilling to admit it, or nervous, or just not wanting to speak out. Some are now beginning to speak.

      “In short: when I saw how many people on my Twitter/Facebook/etc feed ERUPT with what Alex Salmond could have said, I knew what was happening – Alex Salmond is giving the power to us”

      Yup, and also interesting is the number of “undecided” voters who don’t appear to be paying attention, but who are today frustrated because even they feel they understand the currency options better than Salmond explained them, and are busy asking why he didn’t just say “x, y or z”?

      I find on the doorsteps usually the most effective way of converting people isn’t hammering them with facts but letting them talk about what’s bothering them. Once spoken out loud it begins to seem a bit daft and they talk themselves towards yes!

    298. Liquid Lenny says:

      Ross Mckay

      There will be no UK when Scotland leaves, we will be dissolving it.

      Sterling is an asset, therefore we are entitled to our share. BTW there is a plan b etc read the white paper

    299. Wee Alec says:

      Its very iteresting door knocking. Done my own analysis as its not as simple as yes/no/undecided.

      Def No – Queen and Country types, no way of changing them.

      No, hate Alec Salmond. Press has doe a good demolition job.

      No, dont have enough information.

      No, going along with family/friend/neighbour.

      Undecided, dont have enough information.

      Undecided, currency issue.

      Undecided, no interest.

      Def Yes, mainly SNP supporters.

      Moderate yes – have been persuaded by arguments.

      The biggest undecided category is definately the currency worriers. It is them we need to convince.

    300. Joseph says:

      As a native German and supporter of the better-together campaign, I am tremendously shocked by the low level of journalistic evidence that is presented in this “article”. Salmond is nothing but a jumped up fish in an ocean full of sharks who tries to ruin the heritage of the Scots.

      Better together! For a stronger Scotland!

    301. Barontorc says:

      Well, that was a long read today and quite definitely cathartic for me at least.

      It’s all coming down to trust. ‘Do you trust the Scottish Government to look after the interests of Scotland better than Westminster?’

      All that Westminster can say is – ‘you can’t do this, you can’t have that, etc., but we’re going to do this and we’re going to do that – and you know it makes sense, because we’re telling you it does and it’s best for Scotland, because we say so’.

      It’s all just – clyde – banana boat – head zipped up the back, stuff.

    302. Robert Peffers says:

      @CarbonBlf says: 6 August, 2014 at 9:33 am:
      You’re right about all this Plan B stuff – it should have been sorted and answered long ago

      Has it not got through to you yet?
      It was sorted out long ago. Plan B is exactly the same as Plan A and all the way to plan Z.

      It is to use the Pound Sterling with a preference for a currency union which is, of course only a decision that can be made by the de facto parliament of England at Westminster. It cannot be a Scottish Government plan as their plans has been stated to everyone all along.

    303. AndrewF says:

      ICM media pages for their poll showed 42% pro Yes prior to debate. 48% (47% unweighted) pro Yes after the debate from the same sample. Also a clear shift from remaining don’t knows in the direction of Yes.
      Strangely, this is reported as a Darling ‘win’.

    304. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Robert Peffers, And is the SNP come out with a plan B, thats where we will end up at plan Z,people need to be engadged. Alex should have mentioned Sth Ireland, that would have put Darling on blinkity blink mode.

    305. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “You cannot draw conclusions based on how don’t knows changed their minds with that sample – especially since the difference is something like 5 people!”

      I’m not. I’m noting that the media spin on the poll is dishonest.

    306. handclapping says:

      Looking at the IPSOS-Mori, a reputable pollster 1006 sample, but there are some weirdo figures.
      Look at the 5 affluence areas
      Num Yes No DK
      153 80 64 10 Least affluent 20%
      171 64 85 22 4th most
      173 72 82 19 3rd most
      199 70 108 21 2nd most
      202 55 127 21 Most affluent 20%
      898 341 466 93 Total of all those reported by area
      YND% 38% 51% 10%
      108 34 58 14 calculated “missing” # and split to get final reported
      %s 31% 54% 13%
      1006 375 524 107 finally reported shewing a gap of 149

      If we tot up the 5-3 we get
      497 216 231 51 Total 5-3
      %s 43% 46% 10%
      which is over 100 short of the 60% we should expect for three 20%s so what if the missing 108 match the 5-3 profile we’d get
      108 46 50 11 “missing” 108 match missing 5-3
      and a final result of
      1006 385 516 104 and a gap of 131 so the gap has gone from 15% to 13%

      I dont think IPSOS-Mori are wrong, its just that telephone samples don’t address the whole Scottish population. It is however curious that when the whole of Scotland is covered by some 6000 seperate affluence areas IPSOS-Mori cannot locate 10% of their sample geographically.

      If you are interested in puzzles like the one above try it with their party support
      129 15.5% Con
      283 34.1% Lab
      54 6.5% Lib
      295 35.5% SNP
      69 8.3% Oth
      830 Total 176 “missing”

    307. arthur thomson says:

      Salmond knows what he is doing. He isn’t daft enough to launch a frontal attack when all the odds are stacked against him. At last a leader with more brain cells than testosterone. Hold your nerve, avoid the sucker punch and clear a path for our women to deal the winning blows. They will not disappoint.

    308. Cath says:

      Certainly my experience is that I’ve been concerned about a lot of my female friends as they’ve been quiet and undecided for what I’ve regarded as too long, and I had an odd feeling a lot of them would break for no.

      Over the past couple of weeks though, several undecideds, including a couple I thought were actually pretty firm no voters have either come out for Yes or been making very skeptical noises about the No campaign.

      The positive thing about that is when quiet, skeptical, non-confrontational women start to break for a particular position, that brings on many others (male and female) who are still undecided in a way men (or indeed women) who are already certain and strident in their views never will.

    309. Nana Smith says:

      I have 3 German friends, 1 Italian and 4 French all voting Yes. These people have done their homework and know who is telling the truth.

      Sadly for Joseph he has been hoodwinked by BT/NO hopers,

    310. ronnie anderson says:

      @ Nana Smith no comments on Buis Insider.

    311. Bob Malcolm says:

      I thought Salmond was very poor,1. he must have known the currency issue would come up (everybody on this site knows why the UK needs a currency union, actually more than Scotland, I would rather ditch the pound, ditch the debt).
      2 Slamond let Darling away with cooments about the cost of pensions, when the UK has already accepted responsibilty for these. 3 he failed to address the question of being flooded by english students looking for free university places,when he only had to explain how Germany gets round the peoblem. A rotten effort not that Darling was really much better.

    312. Nana Smith says:

      @Ronnie Anderson

      Buis?? I’m a bit slow today Ronnie. What is buis?

    313. chalks says:

      Attention now turns to the next TV debate on the BBC, in a few weeks….you can expect EVEN MORE people tuning in and half the world….I am now thinking Salmond is biding his time.

      This is going to be something else in the run up to the referendum.

      Really is our future in our hands.

    314. Blair paterson says:

      Saying darling came out on top is on a par with saying j.l. Was debater of the year ,when will you realize that they just make things up to suit themselves like their comfort polls the only ones they are fooling are themselves the dogs in the streets know they are losing it big time vote ye

    315. davidb says:

      @bsjalba & @edward

      Thats my point. There are opportunities here for businesses. But in my industry I know of only a couple of Scots based UK wide agents. Companies in Eire can buy from the european factories, but we have to trade via UK agents. No UK = opportunities.

      So much is made of trade. Even now, almost 100 years after Eire left, the Republic’s trade is greatest between them and the UK. But a lot of the trade from England to Scotland is up for grabs if we become a free Nation again.

      Incidentally. All forecasting and what if type questions seem to assume that the only thing thats going to change is the name on the letterbox here. We get all the levers of control once we are free.

      Our population is static because our young people emigrate. That is one reason our population is ageing. Ageing issues affect All advanced economies. I would really wonder how UK PLC was going to pay its pensions – Mr Darling did tell us last night that NI was a Ponzi scheme. Presently they have hitched their star to importing young workers from anywhere they can get them. Thats working wonders for quality of infrastructure and the chances of a young person owning their home.

      Some of the obstacles that blether together put in our way affect England as much or more so than they affect us. Others here point out the balance of trade effect on rUK of losing oil exports. Whisky too is exported. After independence England becomes an export market too. I hadn’t thought about it before, but they need us as much as they think we should need them. Its like a disfunctional parent hanging on to their ambitious daughter.

    316. ann says:

      I personally thought that the debate was too long and many questions outwith the usual currency and pensions questions were not covered.

      For me Bernard Ponsonby lost control virtually from the first question and that set the tone for the whole debate.

      Of the two, Alex was more statesman like and I did like the way he left the podium to come out and address the audience in response to some of the question from them.

    317. Phil Robertson says:

      What you have failed to notice in the same figures is that, pre- and post-debate, the number of DKs turning to the No camp is twice those switching to Yes.

      To use your won words, that’s a very different story.

    318. Betsy says:

      I must say I find BTs stance on the currency a bit odd. I realise it’s intended to scare us into voting No but they’re also saying to the rest of the UK that they intend to make them take on Scotland’s share of the national debt post Yes and damage both the Scottish and wider UK economy out of spite. If I were an rUK voter I’m not sure I’d be terribly inclined to vote for that deal.

    319. faolie says:

      Well, after all that excitement, Radical Independence mass canvass tonight anyone??

      Plenty of time to watch telly in October 😉

    320. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Bob Malcolm

      …everybody on this site knows why the UK needs a currency union, actually more than Scotland…

      I don’t know why this myth persists. Unlike Scotland, rUK could not sustainable operate in a currency union.

      The UK is a single sovereign state which issues its own currency, and issues debt in that same currency – government deficits. It also runs persistent and large external deficits; these are the main cause of the government deficits.

      It can finance the external deficits because, with its own currency, it does not have to acquire currency before it spends.

      After Scottish independence, and if there were a currency union, rUK would no longer issue its own currency, leaving it unable to guarantee financing of its external deficit. It would be at the mercy of the markets, and it would face default risk.

      rUK will need to retain currency sovereignty, just as the UK needs it now.

    321. Murray McCallum says:


      An independent Scotland would not be “issuing” currency in the event of a currency union.

      I do agree that a long term (as desired by rUK) formal currency union is not in Scotland’s interests primarily due to the unsustainable nature of the rUK economy, their poor spending priorities and complete lack of economic vision and planning.

    322. Robert Peffers says:

      @ronnie anderson says: 6 August, 2014 at 12:27 pm:
      And is the SNP come out with a plan B, thats where we will end up at plan Z,people need to be engadged. Alex should have mentioned Sth Ireland, that would have put Darling on blinkity blink mode.

      Ronnie, there is only Plan A, which is to use the pound and for a preference in a negotiated currency union. Thing is, Cameron refuses to pre-negotiate so now it is up to the de facto parliament of England at Westminster to accept it or reject it. The choice is not ours anymore.

      If Westminster turns down a currency union AFTER independence then Plan A is still the same choice. Use the Pound and be ready to negotiate a currency union. Then when Westminster discovers that WESTMINSTER is up to its neck in financial trouble. (That is after losing the Scottish share of the BofE, the deposited cash in the BofE vaults to cover Scottish issued banknotes, the value of all the Scottish exports from the English Sterling zone and Scotland’s share of the former UK national debt and so on). Then Westminster is in a bad place coming cap in hand asking for a currency union to Holyrood.

      In other words there is only Plan A with the already stated options contained in the SG White Paper. Both the crying for a stated Plan B and the threat to NOT allow a currency union are bluff and bluster and both will cost Westminster dearly. If I were a betting man I’d bet on it.

    323. P.R.D. says:

      “Salmond knows what he is doing. He isn’t daft enough to launch a frontal attack when all the odds are stacked against him.”

      Salmond has to go for the decisive victory otherwise Scotland will end up polarised post-ref regardless of the outcome and that would serve no one’s interests.

      The debate is taken place within a political vortex in the anomaly of 21st century progressive politics where the dynamics are not conducive to nation building.

    324. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Betsy

      Taking on Scotland’s share of the debt will do no harm, provided rUK also retains currency sovereignty.

      It doesn’t matter how much of currency X you owe if you and only you can issue that currency.

    325. Iain (orri) McCord says:

      The Conservative party were so determined to win the 2010 election that they pushed the economy even further into recession than it would otherwise have been. Their mistake is that they don’t think anyone else is listening to them than their indented audience. It’s the same with the UK press and their different headlines for Scotland and the rUK.

      One thing I was a wee bit disappointed on was Salmond allowing Darkling to talk about the oil receipts being so far down last year without explaining that at least two of the reasons were down to the actions of Westminster. The most obvious being the tax cuts on future investment the oil companies have been allowed. The second, less obvious, was the lack of Westminster intervention into the Grangemouth dispute which was a dual purpose fuck the workers and depress oil related revenue kind of thing. Funny how as soon as Holyrood said well if it’s that’s worthless we’ll nationalise it for you that it all suddenly cleared up isn’t it.

    326. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Murray Mcallum

      An independent Scotland would not be “issuing” currency in the event of a currency union.

      And neither would rUK, which is what matters, because unlike Scotland rUK will need to issue its own currency. It can’t sustain external deficits otherwise.

    327. Murray McCallum says:

      “It doesn’t matter how much of currency X you owe if you and only you can issue that currency”

      So the UK could give each and every citizen in the United Kingdom £10,000,000 each and finance it by buying its own bonds?

    328. Murray McCallum says:

      Scotland has no external deficit and will unlikely ever* accrue anything like the level of the Uk’s in the next 50 years.

      * This is on the basis that Alistair Darling is never in a position of managing an independent Scotland’s economy.

    329. Cath says:

      One of my very recently turned ex-no then undecided female friends currently ranting about how biased the BBC is. I kind of feel like a baton has been passed from us early adopters onto the more recent ones after last night. That’s an interesting development.

      Essentially what I think Salmond and the Yes campaign have done is trust the Scottish people. Let the media and no camp do their stuff, kept the head, been as honest as possible. And trusted that enough people will see it through it.

    330. Iain (orri) McCord says:

      I’ve yet to see an explanation of how, outwith a formal CU, the BoE would be able to set interest rates in an independent Scotland. They can only do so within the present UK by laws giving the authority to do so. No such laws need apply post independence.

      That said Westminster could act to devalue Sterling without our agreement. That’s why the long term plan should be to get a 1 to 1 pegged currency and ensure our debts are in Sterling. When Sterling devalues our own currency would then be worth more of any residual payments agreed as part of Westminster incurred debt or any borrowings Scotland has made. We’d then be able to pay them off in a way that best suited us and, preferably, by doing so bring our currency back into parity with Sterling.

    331. horacesaysyes says:

      Well, while the debate was disappointing, it has at least had the effect of getting folk who had previously been reticent to discuss the referendum actually talking about it. I’ve spent most the morning answering questions and concerns on friend’s Facebook pages, including directing a few here. 🙂

    332. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Murray McCallum

      Scotland has no external deficit and will unlikely ever* accrue anything like the level of the Uk’s in the next 50 years.

      Absolutely, it’s not Scotland that would face problems in a CU, it is the rUK. It will have a huge external deficit and no easy or quick way to reduce it, and will need its own currency to finance that.

    333. Cath says:

      I’m getting mightily pissed off with the Nawbags and the undecided they debate with continually saying a CU isn’t in the interests of rUK because “why would they want to prop up a failed neighbour or bail out its banks”.

      It’s simply taken as read that Scotland will always play the part of the failed state and basket case while rUK will always be bailing us out.

      Sorry? We’ll be the country with the oil, the strong export trade, the re-industrialising economy etc. rUK will be the one that’s just lost 10% of its economy, a lot of its resources, and potentially 10% of the value of its currency overnight.

      A CU is about *both* of us having a vested interest in not seeing the other one suffer unnecessarily and making the transition for both as smooth as possible.

      It’s a rather nasty and obvious manifestation of the still prevalent, “too wee, too poor, too stupid” idea that still seems all pervasive among no and undecideds.

    334. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Cath

      A CU is about *both* of us having a vested interest in not seeing the other one suffer unnecessarily and making the transition for both as smooth as possible.

      It really isn’t, because a CU would wreck the rUK economy.

      The UK economy is only sustainable because we have our own currency, and the rUK economy will only be sustainable it it has it’s own currency. Same reason; external deficits.

    335. Will Podmore says:

      No, the votes about who won the debate count for nothing. The votes on the 18th are the only votes that count. And the Nos are still far ahead and the Yeses are not gaining.

    336. big jock says:

      Apparently according to John Curtice 56% of people asked say the currency question will make no difference to how they will vote. The other 44% is divided 1/3 2/3 more likely to vote yes and more likely to vote no. So the large amjority of neutral people don’t really care about the currency. So the question is who is driving this issue other than Darling and co. It appears to be yet more media invention and mock outrage. No one believes the pre referendum rhetoric from no other than those that want to mislead the public. Yet again our MSM are showing utter contempt for the Scottish electorate.

    337. manandboy says:

      Will Podmore says:6 August, 2014 at 1:58 pm

      And the Nos are still far ahead and the Yeses are not gaining.

      I don’t believe a word of it.

      In a country saturated with State propaganda and with controlled TV and Press, why would anyone imagine that opinion polls are truthful?

    338. Andy-B says:

      As predicted by all the unionist press, acted as though Alex Salmond dropped the ball, granted he wasn’t at his best, but still he managed to put Alistair Darling on the ropes.

      I thought Alex did well at explaining, how independence could , bring hope and prosperity to Scotland, whilst Mr Darling didn’t mention how Scotland could become more prosperous under the union, Mr Darling couldn’t even name two more powers that would benefit Scotland.

      Both sides were a bit incoherent at times but, I saw nothing from Alistair Darling,that would sway anyone who’s undecided on how to vote to chose to vote no.

    339. Jim says:

      “Motorists would have to drive on the right and present their passports at the Border if Scotland becomes independent, Mr Burnham added.

      Mr Burnham told Holyrood Magazine: “I would feel really genuinely sad if Scotland votes for independence, not just for our own self-interest and in the extra difficulty we would face getting a Labour government in England but I also don’t want to drive up the M6 and get my passport out or have to drive on the right when I want to drive on the left.”

      Doesn’t look like he was joking after all, the muppet.

    340. Murray McCallum says:

      My posts are not appearing.

      We need to separate the short and long term.

      A currency union would help achieve a fair financial settlement of assets and liabilities and transition the amicable and democratic “divorce”.

      Long term each country should be free to go their own way. If rUK wishes to go the route of spiralling debt and devaluation then good luck to them.

    341. Cath says:

      It really isn’t, because a CU would wreck the rUK economy.

      Nonsense. If you really think that, let’s see what the business, finance and Treasury response if if, after a Yes vote, a new party emerges to fight 2016 on a platform of dumping Sterling and setting up a Scots pound. Which, by the way, I very much hope it does, and would vote for.

      And the Nos are still far ahead and the Yeses are not gaining.

      Rubbish as well. Up until a few weeks ago, though I don’t think polls are entirely reliable, I would have agreed that Yes were still trailling.

      Having seen the amount of people just within my own networks (and that’s a relatively middle class demographic) who’ve shifted to undecided then to yes I simply don’t believe the polls when they show no movement. There is huge movement, and it is only one way. Why the polls are failing to pick that up is a different question.

    342. Jim says:

      They made a big deal over Salmond’s comments about aliens and driving on the right, etc but he was pointing out some of the more ridiculous pap being put forth by the no camp. Ruth Davidson and her no Doctor who comment, lol.
      It’s watched in 94 countries and counting.
      If that is the best they can do then…

    343. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Murray McCallum

      My comments aren’t showing up either. It’s all a plot by the BBC to keep the people from sorting the currency issue out.

      A currency union would help achieve a fair financial settlement of assets and liabilities and transition the amicable and democratic “divorce”.

      I don’t agree with that, and not just because of the damage a CU would do to rUK. An amicable settlement is entirely possible without a CU, even if a CU weren’t damaging: rUK keeps sterling, and all the debt, including no agreement on Scottish contributions.

      rUK keeps its ability to finance its external deficit, Scotland gets a clean sheet with which to start a new currency. Mad claims that a new Scottish currency would be weak or untrusted – no doubt such claims would come – are easily countered by the strong position Scotland would be in in terms of a solid base economy and an external surplus.

    344. Cath says:

      Mad claims that a new Scottish currency would be weak or untrusted

      The biggest danger of a Scottish currency is not that it would be weak but ridiculously too strong for a small country reliant on exports. It would be backed by vast oil reserves, and that was one issue the McCrone report commented on – likely the strongest currency in Europe bar the Kroner.

    345. Murray McCallum says:


      I’m afraid I can’t envisage an amicable settlement that sees Scotland as perceived as walking away from a “fair” share of UK debt – however justified it is.

      This will cause long term resentment in the south.

      Who knows how things will pan out. Either way – formal currency union, £Sterlingisation, or Scottish currency the bases are covered as far as I am concerned.

    346. Famou15 says:

      The UK economy is only sustainable if they have Scotland trussed up like a turkey and we vote for Christmas.

      They are scoundrels but the question is are we fools to allow them to succeed?

    347. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Cath

      Why the deference to business? Business leaders aren’t all geniuses, or even particularly knowledgeable about economics. Business is not the same as economics, particularly macro economics. And a lot of them seem to be supporting the No campaign.

      Would the financial sector want a union? Possibly, since it would provide them with a new target to take advantage of. That’s not good, and neither is a treasury that panders to the financial sector.

      On the danger of an excessively strong currency: that’s the ‘problem’ Switzerland has, and they deal with it simply by creating new Swiss francs and using them to buy foreign currency, increasing the amount of francs available to meet demand and thus reducing its value. If an independent Scotland found its new currency was too strong it could do the same.

      If it found its new currency weakening later it could use the foreign currency reserves acquired above to buy up Scottish currency, reversing the process.

    348. Suzy says:

      Is it really the best option to use the £ if it’s tied to Westminster and we have no say over it? Doesn’t that mean we’re still dictated to by Westminster and we still blame them for all of our woes?
      Just like the Tories are still blaming Labour for a GLOBAL Crisis 5 years later?

      What’s wrong with having our own currency? Aren’t we planning to be our own country?

      Sorry, I’ve come late to this debate! If there’s an article I can read, please point me in the right direction. Why not Scots Pound?

    349. handclapping says:

      @Cath 2.28
      That is why an oil fund is needed. It syphons off the excess from the economy and smuggles it out to foreign lands for investment so reducing the build up of value in the SCT ( Scottish Thistle, initial value 1T=£10) It worked for Norway, the NOK is not so overpriced and just look at the value of their PensionFund.

    350. Thepnr says:

      @Murray McCallum 2:12

      Totally agree, I’m saw FlimFlamMan’s argument many times as to why a currency union would be bad for the rUK. However not to enter one would also be bad for the rUK.

      Loss of a net contributor to the treasury purse and a massive hit on their balance of payments due to their imports of oil and electricity from an Independent Scotland would destroy the UK pound.

      Quandary eh!

    351. Cath says:

      Why the deference to business?

      I have no deference to them at all, nor to Westminster. I’d far prefer our own currency and don’t want a CU. My point is watch all those unionist no supporting businesses and Westminster types squeal if that’s what looks like it might happen after a yes!

      What’s wrong with having our own currency?

      Nothing at all, except that probbly for a transitition period we’ll either need to keep Sterling or have a peg. There are pros and cons to all currency options. A good summary article is here:

      Or there’s a summary of the fiscal commission working group here as well:

    352. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Thepnr

      Loss of a net contributor to the treasury purse…

      There is no treasury purse in that sense; sovereign governments create the currency as they spend and then tax and/or issue bonds afterwards.

      …and a massive hit on their balance of payments due to their imports of oil and electricity from an Independent Scotland would destroy the UK pound.

      Let’s assume this is true – the bit about destroying the pound. How does a currency union help? rUK’s BOP will take a ‘hit’ no matter what. Scottish GDP, Scottish trade, will be, as I’ve said before, Scottish. It will not be on rUK’s balance sheet, no matter what currency is used.

      In terms of the effect of demand for the currency on sterling’s value, it’d be hard to make a distinction between CU and sterlingisation, since in either case Scotland would still be using the currency and so the sterling currency area would be the same size.

      So there are no advantages there, and we’re back to the problem of lost currency sovereignty wrecking the rUK’s ability to finance its deficits.

    353. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Cath

      Well then we’re in agreement 🙂 let them squeal; their arguments are baseless and ignore reality. Which is unusual.

    354. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Suzy

      Here’s a couple of pieces by an Australian economics professor:

      They’re a little long, but worth it.

    355. Murray McCallum says:


      I don’t think the Australian writer adds much to the debate nor understands many basic issues, e.g. North Sea oil and international maritime law.

      See here

      The writer seems to work from the flawed premise of unlimited currency creation to create what he calls full employment.

      As I mentioned before, why not simply give every citizen £10,000,000 by printing money and covering it by issuing bonds which your Treasury holds as “security”.

      While academic theories are interesting and do provide a way of discussing different views, there reaches a point where they cease to offer any guide to the real world of human behaviour.

    356. Murray McCallum says:

      A country with an unlimited money supply and sovereign debt would have to be self sufficient in every aspect of life.

      They could buy no goods from outside countries as they would ultimately have no foreign currency reserves and no one would accept their currency in settlement (as it is worthless outside the country of issue).

    357. Snode1965 says:

      Both daughters watched last night, tho not politically active. Both thought darling was an angry bitter bully. They are now engaging on Facebook and passing on WOS links. All part of AS plan methinks.

    358. Thepnr says:


      Their is and will continue to be a Treasury purse in rUK even after Scotland says Yes.

      The point is that rUK will need to borrow even more to make up for the shortfall in what they take from Scotland and hand back in return by way of the block grant.

      As far as the state of the rUK’s BOP after Independence, the following from the Fiscal Commission paper may give a small clue.

      4.79 In accordance with National Accounting principles total Scottish exports do not include any exports of oil and gas extraction from the UK continental shelf.

      Scotland’s oil and gas reserves would also make a significant contribution to the Scottish economy post-
      independence, not least in its trade position.

      For example, Oil and Gas UK estimate that North Sea oil and gas exports, the vast majority of which originate from Scottish waters, boosted the UK’s balance of payments by £40 billion 2011-12.

      The de-facto contribution to the Scottish economy however needs to be seen in the context that oil is traded offshore by large international companies.

    359. gerry parker says:

      Well, as expected, the 20 quid was duly spent on garments and services with no problems – leaving me short of 20 quid cash but still convinced that using pound notes as a visual aid would convince waverers that we have a currency at the moment (the pound) and that we could still use it after independence. OK – I know that the real issue is a CU, but it’s still being presented as a simple “you won’t be able to use the pound” and that’s what people say on the doorstep and what we have to counteract.

      I did get my own back (a bit) when she donned said garment and looked over her shoulder (in that coquettish way that women of a certain age have) and said.

      “Does my bum look big in this?”

      No tea for me tonight I’m afraid.


    360. archieologist says:

      There are many people out there who are undecided and were looking forward to a debate that would provide them with some answers on a range of issues. They were sorely disappointed. It was summed up for me by a member of the audience who went in undecided and came out more undecided!

      The programme was a lost opportunity to debate a range of key issues. The STV format was poor. Most of the 2hours was spent banging on about currency and a range of other important issues barely got a mention.

      Alex Salmond said he intends to keep the pound and favours a currency union. Though this is the most likely scenario after a YES vote, NO will keep on saying this won’t happen right up to September 18. If Salmond put forward a plan B they will attempt to rubbish that, so Salmond is damned by NO either way.

      The BBC debate later this month must be structured so that a range of topics on which the voters want clarification are properly debated and allotted a time slot within the debate. The ‘Spin Room’ was a complete waste of time which should have been used to debate key issues and should be dispensed with.

      I want a 2 hour debate with time allotted to key topic areas and suggest the following:

      1 The economy, currency

      2 NHS, health , welfare,social security and pensions.

      3 Defence, NATO and the future of Trident WMD

      4 Education, the Arts and culture

      5 Scotland ‘s place in the EU, the UN and foreign affairs.

      In this most important of debates ,the voters deserve better from Scotland’s Broadcasters who need to raise their game and pronto!

    361. alastair seago says:

      If the oil is running out and Scotland will not survive without it how will the UK survive without it? The No’ers don’t address this.

    362. FlimFlamMan says:

      Murray, I’m trying to reply to you but this comment system ain’t cooperating. Short comments, long comments, it just doesn’t like my comments. I’ll try again later.

    363. FlimFlamMan says:

      Murray and Thepnr

      trying to reply to you both but comments aren’t going though, which means this particular piece of typing is probably a waste of time. I’ll try again later.

    364. Thanks Chic, cheered me up no ends 😀

    365. J. Denham says:

      It’s ironic is it not that the First Minister will probably retire in ten year’s time, no doubt to write his memoirs, while the ex Chancellor will be keeping his fingers crossed for promotion to the Upper house, with his white hair and black brows the perfect foil for his ermine collar. Altruism?

    366. The Morgatron says:

      STV = Shite Television .Rounded up another 5 eligible voters on Holiday in Croatia
      on holiday to watch the square go. Nothing but buffering ! Would hazard a guess knowing our twisted media this would be delibrate. As usual with our corrupt msm they feed lies and misinformation. I bet they reported Goliath whipped Davids ass, well maybe not!

    367. CameronB Brodie says:

      Did someone mention Panama?

      The second point is the interesting bit. George Selgin has pointed to research by the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta about the Latin American countries that unilaterally use the dollar. Because these countries – Panama, Ecuador and El Salvador – lack a Lender of Last Resort, their banking systems have had to be far more prudent and cautious than most of their neighbours.

      Panama, which has used the US Dollar for one hundred years, is the most useful example because it is a relatively rich and stable country. A recent IMF report said that:

      By not having a central bank, Panama lacks both a traditional lender of last resort and a mechanism to mitigate systemic liquidity shortages. The authorities emphasized that these features had contributed to the strength and resilience of the system, which relies on banks holding high levels of liquidity beyond the prudential requirement of 30 percent of short-term deposits.

      Panama also lacks any bank reserve requirement rules or deposit insurance. Despite or, more likely, because of these factors, the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report ranks Panama seventh in the world for the soundness of its banks.

    368. Sporkeh says:

      It’s amazing that no one else has noticed that the figures are skewed… How can there be 155% of responses for Alistair Darling and 145% for Salmon post debate?

    369. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ Thepnr

      There is no purse in the sense of a store of money somewhere in the treasury that gets added to and subtracted from. There is accounting, but modern money gets created from thin air. The gold standard is over.

      The point is that rUK will need to borrow even more to make up for the shortfall in what they take from Scotland and hand back in return by way of the block grant.

      Yes, although it’s more the loss of Scottish exports and the resulting increase in the external deficit. But this is my point: rUK cannot sustain this unless it has its own currency.

      4.79 In accordance with National Accounting principles total Scottish exports do not include any exports of oil and gas extraction from the UK continental shelf.

      Scotland’s oil and gas reserves would also make a significant contribution to the Scottish economy post-
      independence, not least in its trade position.

      For example, Oil and Gas UK estimate that North Sea oil and gas exports, the vast majority of which originate from Scottish waters, boosted the UK’s balance of payments by £40 billion 2011-12.

      Again, yes, you seem to be agreeing with me. That is all currently counted as UK export, on the UK’s balance sheet, because the UK is one country. After Scottish independence it will be on Scotland’s balance sheet, not on rUK’s. rUK’s external deficit will grow, which requires continued currency sovereignty.

    370. Iain Hill says:

      Why do we not start a massive campaign – no holds barred- for a Cameron/Salmond debate. It will be a win/win situation.

      If he comes Salmond will destroy him (nay, even Johan Lamont could destroy him, given the right script!). If he refuses to come he will be portrayed as too scared (frit as his great heroine once said) to come north when summoned by the people of Scotland to defend his Yookay. Let’s make a great stubs hie about this.

    371. donald anderson says:

      My comment on the debate, agreeing with the Rev, didnae get through neither. Whit’s going on?

    372. ScottieDog says:

      As currency is very hot topic , come along to ‘All Back To Bowie’s’ in the fringe at St Andrews square tomorrow if you can. Starts at 12:20. The topic is currency.

      This guy will be there…

    373. Walter Scott says:

      This whole debate paled into nothing when Boris Johnson said he’d like to stand as an MP. The beeb wet itself

    374. FlimFlamMan says:

      @ donald anderson

      Heavy traffic? Sunspots? Black ops? Excessive atmospheric turbulence caused by Darling’s blinking?

      My reply to Thepnr has appeared, but the reply to Murray McCallum posted just before that hasn’t.

      It’s impossible to carry on a conversation like this.

    375. Suzy says:

      Thanks Cath and FlimFlamMan – I’ve read your links – although the blog link from your articles, FlimFlam, made my brain bleed and I had to give up – and I’m not even a complete economics dunce – but I thought if I need to understand all this then how’s everyone else getting along with it? Probably better than me, was my conclusion.

      I watched the debate last night. It wasn’t too long, it allowed plenty of time for each person to have a go and if Alex Salmond was trying to not be pugnacious it worked! Hurrah! But he looked, quite weirdly, I thought, like a completely different person. Like he was ill? Or badly advised.

      So I’m sticking with it. Any more good articles?

    376. Chris Robinson says:

      Hi All
      I’m joining in at last. The Scotsman and Herald present as schizoid with contradictory articles re the debate outcomes. I thought Eck played it calmly and well. Glad he stuck to the currency position. We should not shift from that. Edinburgh Evening news poll post debate Yes / no was 54/40. No amount of spinning will persuade many people Salmond lost the debate. This is desperate stuff from BT and their media pals. Yes friendly people should stick by Eck he is still our best asset as are Nicola Sturgeon and co. My English wife was astonished at the numbers of No supporting English accents in the debate audience. Some of these pollsters seem to be self selecting their samples to get the results they want. Where were all the No supporting Scots accents? It’s pretty clear to me that some of the pollsters are part of the Pro UK campaign as indeed are most of the media. Some honourable exceptions of course mainly in the Herald. What a right wing rag the Guardian is proving to be – first order colonialists who pretend to be on the left only where and when it has no relevance. Keep going Eck we are almost there. In the next debate though please wear a green tie to help convince a few of my yes leaning fellow Hibees

    377. donald anderson says:

      True, by we all need to work on a currency for dummies, under a different title of course.

    378. Joan Munro says:

      Darling came across as a Bully with his finger pointing, name calling and aggression. Salmond is right to keep re-iterating the pound is ours as much as it is the rest of the UK and keeping it benefits the rest of the UK. In the highly unlikely event that we are refused the pound there are several other options set out in the white paper.

    379. donald anderson says:

      Yohann was also finger pointing today at FMQ. She obviously has a comprehension problem when she is given answers. The FM really has to do a currency for dummies session.

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