Which Union Does Scotland Want To Be In? 142

The rabid anti-Europeanism displayed in the recent House of Commons debate on EU funding was a further clarification of a simple political truth. The real choice facing Scotland in 2014 is, “Which union do you wish to be in?”

Scotland can either be independent within the European Union or part of the United Kingdom outside the European Union. In joining the pro-UKIP wing of the Tory Party in the vote, Ed Milliband was, with short term shrewdness, tapping in to a bottomless well of English atavism that I have no doubt, from living there and simple observation of those around me, is leading England inexorably out of the European Union.

UKIP support rises, the Tory xenophobes bray, New Labour joins them because as always it scents the way to money and power. The English have already kept the UK out of Schengen and the Euro, the two most important developments in the history of the EU and both of which it would be great to be in. (On my advice a company here in Ghana is now buying tens of millions of pounds of manufactured equipment from Sweden, switching source from the UK, because the weak Euro gives much better value for money). The UK is already out of some of the most important aspects of the EU, snad the rest will follow.

When did any major English political figure dare to suggest in public that the EU is a good thing? That, incidentally, is a genuine question. Any answers? Neither English politicians nor media care to hide their gloating at the Eurozone’s economic difficulties, and the London media still makes daily predictions of the end of the Euro, despite having been wrong on the subject 1,000 days in a row.

Most amusing is when pundits who don’t actually support the EU themselves leap with glee when they can find a Spaniard wishing to be disobliging about an independent Scotland’s EU status. Said Spaniard is suddenly the ultimate authority on EU law, even though the same pundits deride Spain in every other circumstance.

It won’t be on the ballot paper. But the real question for the Scots is “Which union do you wish to be in?”

142 thoughts on “Which Union Does Scotland Want To Be In?

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  • Phil

    Nevermind 1 Nov, 2012 – 6:49 pm
    “If in doubt, Phil blame a Kraut”

    Anti-German sentiment has nothing to do with my point. As I said:

    A choice between those two unions is unimaginative – both will result in just another NATO member with a corrupt political class.

    The problem of which union to join is not really the problem.

    The Siemens example was my attempt to use a business, already mentioned, to identify one of our real problems – the murderous rule of big business.

    EU or GB? Who the fuck cares. They are the same fish in matters that matter.

  • Vronsky

    “I should be interested to know if Alex Salmond and the SNP would do anything about releasing documents on the Dunblane shootings.”

    No, absolutely not (how seldom you get a simple answer on a blog). I’m dismayed that every day it seems another of the absurd fancies appearing on the aangirfan blog turns out to be true. Can you get Cynicism Fatigue?

  • Mark Golding - Children of Conflict

    Komodo agree and we can examine this further. Michael Wright, to me the ‘special relationship’ is about nuclear deterrent and the support of US global priorities, period; effectively Britain is shackled to American hegemony. Those who populate the upper echelons of American administration are only tied up in knots with UNSC sustainer votes that command superiority for their NATO killing machine(s).

  • English Knight

    The real question is whether the Scots can break free from the deeply hidden forces (that are scratching each others backs – ask Esther Rantzen) that got lezi Bouden to raise the Savile Newsnight episode bar so high. The same devils who spent £2b bombing gaddafy and will soon conspire to lead the Union into a great war against Iran.

  • Mary

    Quite right too.

    Greek bank list editor Costas Vaxevanis acquitte
    dThe BBC’s Mark Lowen asks Costas Vaxevanis why he published the list

    Greek crisis
    Greeks hear call of soil and sky
    Can new government survive?
    Greek austerity targets
    Mason: Challenges ahead

    Greek journalist Costas Vaxevanis has been acquitted of breach of privacy after publishing the names of 2,000 Greeks with Swiss bank accounts.

    He had been accused of breaking private data rules and faced up to two years in prison if convicted.

    But Judge Malia Volika said the court in Athens “has ruled that you are innocent”.

    Mr Vaxevanis, 46, published the list in Hot Doc, the weekly magazine that he edits.

    He had said that those who should be in prison were the politicians who had covered up potential tax evasion.

  • Frazer

    @Nevermind…Siemens was never a competitor of Craig in Ghana…in fact the power plant built in Ghana used Siemens Gas/Diesel turbines made by Siemens in Lincoln..a fact of which saved a large amount of jobs with the UK branch of Siemens, a factor that Craig was very aware of.
    I know this as I built the power plant ! I enjoy reading your comments, but try to get your facts straight mate.

  • Frazer

    Oh and by the way…fess up all of you whom attempted to calculate the new spam filter and got it wrong !

  • N_

    tapping in to a bottomless well of English atavism“.

    I know the colour of this blog’s prose is often purple, but too much purple is…too much!

    The English have already kept the UK out of Schengen and the Euro.

    As if there’s no ‘Scottish’ money in the City of London! (I won’t harp on about how many Scots there have been in official UK ‘governments’, because only a fool thinks politicians run the show.)

    On my advice a company here in Ghana is now buying tens of millions of pounds of manufactured equipment from Sweden, switching source from the UK, because the weak Euro gives much better value for money)

    How do you work this one out, given that Sweden isn’t in the eurozone? Does the supplier in Sweden flog its stuff for euros, or what? (Edit: OK, so yes – the German multinational Siemens is profiting from selling goods in one country priced in another country’s currency. Which of course helps destabilise things for working class people in Sweden. Mind you, the interests in Ghana probably aren’t paying with money from Ghanaian bank accounts either.)

    But for all this line you’re taking against ‘the English’ (who was it who mentioned atavism?), you omit to mention the reason why the UK isn’t in the eurozone. That’s because of the country’s much stronger links with the US. And the US itself is controlled by a group which keeps its own little fascist ‘sovereign’ state elsewhere.

    The line that the UK government ‘stands up’ to Europe, deciding its own independent line, etc., is just hogwash for the punters. It always makes me laugh, when the UK gets deeper into trouble because it’s not in the eurozone, that the British media talk about British ministers striding into meetings on the Continent to tell the fuzzy-wuzzies what’s what.

    Meanwhile, the SNP is pro-NATO. Let’s spell it out. That means they want to keep Scotland under the US nuclear umbrella. That means they won’t ban US nuclear warheads from Scottish ports.

    Indeed, they are also pro-UK: pro-sterling, pro-BBC, pro the British monarch.

    Never mind the flaming Battle of Bannockburn, so beloved of idiotic freemasons. Scottish nationalism was talked up in the early 1970s, as a way to move workers’ militancy out of the picture.

    Look at the second 1974 election. Later in the 1989 Euro elections, the Green Party was also talked up – and won 15% of the vote. Later still, hello UKIP. Politics is public relations. Markets are created. It’s like with publishing. The promoters latch on to what’s in people’s heads, take control of it, and make people think they’re free agents. In the Scottish case, it was ‘Scottishness’.

    Of course Scottish nationalism is xenophobic. All nationalism is. That’s why some Scottish nationalists put signs on their car saying ‘Ecosse’. A classic case of protesting too much.

    Nationalism was also talked up at the same time, in the early 1970s, in South Wales – and, with terrible consequences, in Northern Ireland. In the immediately preceding years, there had been large-scale radical efforts in those countries – notable in Glasgow, in the Welsh Valleys, and in Derry/Londonderry. Those all went down the drain to the sound of nationalist pipers.

    Then later, the Hollywood film ‘Braveheart’ had a bloody lot to answer for.

    The SNP are taking people in Scotland for idiots. They aren’t even defining what ‘independence’ means, other than that people watching the telly will hear the voices refer to “the government” rather than “the Scottish government”. They wore their stupid white roses, but they support the existing monarchy! Surely some mistake! But not if you have contempt for your audience, as almost all politicians and other entertainers do.

    Except that Billy Connolly is right when he says the SNP are whipping up anti-English feeling. In a lot of Scotland, racism against the English (and in fact, not just the English), is allowed and encouraged and out in the open.

    Scotland has never been a land of opportunity. You must know that, Craig. If it is, why aren’t you there? It’s the opposite.

    In a country where almost all of the administration are vile hypocritical freemasons (and yes they are), there are huge numbers of chips on shoulders. Many Scots in Scotland will always see an English person’s ‘Englishness’ first, and then once they’ve weighed the person up for having this supposed great fault, or lack of good fortune, or whatever it is, they might say the English person is OK and not like the others. Which in England is the sort of attitude that is typically shown by anti-black or anti-Asian racists who when someone comes along who is black or Asian, that’s always, for the white twit, what’s most important for them at first.

    I’m not saying all Scottish people in Scotland are like that. They certainly aren’t. But quite a lot will tolerate those racist morons who are, and the same is also true, perhaps even to a worse degree, in parts of Wales.

    And now we have the perhaps unique state of affairs where the polls in England are showing a majority in favour of Scottish independence, and the polls in Scotland are showing a majority against! This is the disgusting position that Scottish nationalists have created…

    …very probably in a cosy relationship with ‘English’ Tories, whom of course they helped win the general election in 1979 by bringing down the Labour government.

    This isn’t an ‘adult’ ‘debate’. Sorry. The SNP are a bunch of buffoons. You do know that Salmond’s background was an oil ‘economist’ for the Royal Bank of Scotland, right?

    They haven’t even said who’d they’d give Scottish citizenship to The biggest non-Scottish group in Scotland is probably the English – people born in England, who may have lived in Scotland for decades. Are they going to get citizenship or not?

    You might think it’s funny to blame the English for everything, Craig, but I can tell you that most English people in Scotland will give a lot of importance to the question as to whether they will be denied citizenship and classes as foreign nationals in the country where they live.

    And if so, under what conditions might they be ‘given’ citizenship? Or perhaps they expect to be the target of the despicable policy in Latvia, which denied citizenship to about 40% of the population, i.e. all Russians who didn’t want to demean themselves by dressing up in recently-invented national Latvian costume and reciting poems from 10 leading Latvian poets, or whatever the vile test involved.

    The SNP are a right bunch of Norman Tebbits in this connection.

    The hell with nationalism; the hell with national identity. Turn off the telly, and stop blaming the ‘English’ and the ‘Pakis’.

    Point the finger where it should be pointed – at the global ruling class of money-grabbing big businessmen, who own the corrupt regimes in the UK, in England, in Scotland, in the US, in Russia, etc. etc.

    I shall cheerfully blame the English for everything, under any circumstances!

    You say a lot that’s sensible, Craig. But here you’re being a bloody silly sod.

  • Komodo

    Salmond’s never been one for rushing his fences. So far, he’s shut the ultra-Scots Nats up by delivering on stated and planned stages. The next one is the hardest. It has to be capable of being called independence, BUT it need not be quite what Siol nan Gaidheal have in mind. From then on, it will be capable of further modification. Until then, Salmond is wise not to close down too many options, or sources of national income either. So right now I don’t see a dichotomy; an independent Scotland should retain the pound and anything else it can hang onto from the Union, while working its way into a favourable trading relationship in Europe.

    Trouble is, these plans were laid long ago, and with an eye on Eire’s European experience – subsidies hand over fist from seemingly bottomless wells of money. Now look at the place.

  • John Goss

    I got a bit stuck on this one Frazer.

    e2yz + zx − 5xy = 2
    yz − zx + 2xy = 1
    yz − 2zx + 6xy = 3.

    Do they get harder the more you solve?

  • Dick the Prick

    Not wanting to disavow a perfectly reasonable rant but wasn’t the Son of the Manse able to do whatever the fuck he wanted for 11 or 12 years?

  • Mary

    Pure as the driven snow. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siemens

    See Controversies

    2007 price fixing fine

    In January 2007 Siemens was fined €396 million by the European Commission for price fixing in EU electricity markets through a cartel involving 11 companies, among which ABB, Alstom, Fuji, Hitachi Japan, AE Power Systems, Mitsubishi Electric Corp, Schneider, Areva, Toshiba and VA Tech……….

    Bribery case

    Siemens agreed to pay a record $1.34 billion in fines in December 2008 after being investigated for serious bribery. The investigation found questionable payments of roughly €1.3 billion, from 2002 to 2006 that triggered a broad range of inquiries in Germany, the United States and many other countries……

    Iran telecoms controversy

    Nokia Siemens supplied telecommunications equipment to the Iranian telecom company that included the ability to intercept and monitor telecommunications, a facility known as “lawful intercept”…….

    Greek bribes, greek metro and traffic lights controversy

    See also: 2008 Siemens scandal

    Siemens has been accused of bribing Greek officials……..

  • John Goss

    I’m being a bit sneaky there because I forgot to add

    xyz = ±6

    And you need to find the values of x y and z

    And the e in the first line of the equation shouldn’t be there (it was a typo).

  • Frazer

    @N..nice argument, yet you are perhaps David Cameron in disguise ??
    I assure you that when we get independance, we will not demand that every English person living in Scotland dress in our national dress and perform a rite of passage by drinking a single malt at every pub on Roe Street to prove thier right to continue living in Scotland.
    Billy Connoly has never said that the Scottish are whipping up ante English feeling, I know this as I know his wife quite well and they have never said anything to me !
    Anyone, whatever nationality, race or creed are welcome to live in Scotland, we as Scots do not judge a person by thier origin, in fact the EDL tried to open a branch in Edinburgh a few years ago and were laghued out of court…Scotland has the highest paid teachers,doctors,police, fire brigade and the best functioning NHS in the whole country..fact..investment in Scotland is 30% above the national average for the UK and we are justly proud of this. Yes we do have our faults, but when we gain Independance we will build a strong country on our on sweat and vision….By the way, did not like the “Paki” comment….some of the nicest people I know come from Pakistan.

  • Frazer

    @Jon Goss…I am now going to bed having braced myself with Einstiens Theory of Relativity, but it still comes out as 42 !

  • Donald

    Frazer, not worth arguing with the superficially informed. Or those who know fuck all and don’t wish to learn.

    All these questions of overseas entanglements and alliances are not the SNP’s to decide, far less the current first minister’s.

    They are for the people of an Independent Scotland, and no-one else. First, let’s break free.

  • John Goss

    Frazer I think Douglas Adams solution is as good as any. I certainly have no idea why all that money was wasted on the Hadron collider which hasn’t come up with anything. And it’s better than simultaneous equations that can’t be solved. Sleep on that mate.

  • Phil

    Donald 1 Nov, 2012 – 8:58 pm
    “All these questions of overseas entanglements and alliances are not the SNP’s to decide, far less the current first minister’s. They are for the people of an Independent Scotland, and no-one else. First, let’s break free.”

    The ‘independence’ you are being offered is not even a change of ownership. Just a change of strip.

  • MJ

    “When did any major English political figure dare to suggest in public that the EU is a good thing?”

    Yesterday (Nick Clegg).

  • Donald

    Oh Phil, ffs. Independence is independence. You can do with it what you will. Anything else is not independence. Independence is the freedom to say yes, or to say no.

    I trust the Scots to make their own decisions once they have independence. Without independence the Scots will forever be led by the fainthearted ignoramuses of the Home (?) Counties.

  • Komodo

    They haven’t even said who’d they’d give Scottish citizenship to The biggest non-Scottish group in Scotland is probably the English – people born in England, who may have lived in Scotland for decades. Are they going to get citizenship or not?

    As an Englishman who lived in Scotland for 30 or so years, I was always given to understand even by nationalist hardliners that I could be a citizen if I chose to remain after independence. This would come as a relief to the English rat-race refugees who have sent property prices through the roof in the idyllic areas in which they have chosen to live.

    Though dual-nationality might not be so freely available, obviously. They’ll have to choose.

  • Beyogi

    @Mary: Considering the fact that the greek officials are more corrupt than their politicians bribery is the only way to actually get a job there. I’d blame Siemens for many things, but not bribery in greece.
    It would probably be a mercy to the population if the EU invaded and made greece a colony or something. Much worse than their own government ain’t possible. Right now they’re a Banana republic already.

  • nevermind

    I shall keep it simple, because it matters. Siemens is as much a crooked multinational as much as, come on Mary, you can do it for at least ten other companies which are not German, its the fact that the globalisation talks of the 80’s, 90’s and the last ten years, have resulted in powerful accounting blocks, Multinationals, sheer giants, in tune and up to date, with daily movements in billions, stock market operators of magnitude, in the case of Siemens based on a firm that has grown from small to become supranational and led by outside influences, a vast plethora of shareholders, not just that of German interests…. oh what the fuck do I care….burn burn burn

    I think that the debate in the House of Commons was predicted by the German Government, clear as glass and as hard is the response.
    Mr. Bond, wear your asbestos pants, its going to get hot. If Britain minority geezers do not want to play socially responsible, it must feel like a scratchy jumper to those fed on bent bananas, they have to join the second rank and face the consequences of a restricted market. Just to translate this, it means bleeding, shot and foot.


  • boindub

    I saw flags outside of the UN building.
    All independent proud nations
    There was no scottish flag. They are kept with the Micky Mouse ones.
    Is pride too expensive

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