Unionist Propaganda Surge 78


George Osborne is all over the media warning that an independent Scotland must follow Tory foreign policies if it wishes to stay in the pound. In fact the pound does not belong to the English – it was a new, shared currency created in 1707.

The problem of all liars is consistency. Keeping today’s lies straight with yesterday’s. My favourite bit of today’s attempt to bully the Scots is this:

“The UK government believes that a newly independent Scottish government would be required to formally commit to joining the euro as a condition of its EU membership”.

They seem to have forgotten their last big lie, which was that an independent Scotland would be kicked out of the EU and unable to join. Oh dear. They can’t both be true.

What is most amusing is the fact that an independent Scotland would, according to the official GERS report acknowledged by the Treasury, actually have a smaller fiscal deficit as a percentage of GDP than the current UK, so Osborne’s admonitions should better be addressed to the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer who is … err…

As for Osborne’s warnings that the oil price may be volatile (presumably along with the whisky price), I am happy to take our chances on that one. A commodity in finite supply for which demand continues steadily to increase seldom suffers devastating and permanent price plunges.


78 thoughts on “Unionist Propaganda Surge

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  • David Milligan - a very Sovereign Scot

    Oh and one more thing. Craig, you could have warned us that “Murder in Samarkand” was going paperless before I bought the paper version. pffft! (lol)

  • Brendan

    I think the unionists have missed a trick. They should send Osborne out as a kind of double-agent into the SNP camp. Because anything Osborne says makes me want the opposite. Were he to ply his weaselly political trade on the side of the independence camp, I’d probably want to remain in the union.

    As has been said many times, the desire to be a politician should preclude one from actually becoming a politician. They appear, as a class, to be essentially vermin. There are exceptions of course, but we shouldn’t assume an exception, just because someone is plausible. Blair used to be plausible, if you weren’t looking too closely.

    Personally, I doubt we’ll see an independent Scotland in my lifetime, and personally I’m not bothered either way. The kind of super-confident Nu Lab bell-end we see in parliament will just be replicated in an Independent Scotland, and nothing much will change. Still, if Osborne doesn’t like it …

  • Fred

    “scaremongering” is that going to be the Scottish Nazi Party’s answer every time anyone dares to tell the truth?

    Truth is if Scotland gets independence Salmond will not be able to dictate to Britain that they enter into a euro style common currency with what would be a foreign country. Fact is they would have to negotiate and Westminster would do what they considered best for the British economy, common currencies don’t have a very good track record.

    Glad to hear Craig is prepared to take risks from down there in the south of England but here in the Highlands I think the people should be informed of the facts before they decide.

  • Je

    Their pro-independence policies will likely have a bigger impact. The bedroom penalty, council tax bills for those on benefits, food banks etc If anyone needed a reminder how vile Tory governance is.

  • Fred

    “Their pro-independence policies will likely have a bigger impact. The bedroom penalty, council tax bills for those on benefits, food banks etc If anyone needed a reminder how vile Tory governance is.”

    That would be the same as who was in government.

    Look some high flying professors at Harvard accidentally faked a report showing that governments with high public debt have slow economic growth which led to austerity.

    It was a load of bullshit but whatever government was in would have fallen for it.

    Here, read all about it.

    http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2013/04/grad-student-who-shook-global-austerity-movement.html

  • Titus

    If Salmond had any , not paid for real balls, he would be talking up Scotland starting up its own currency. The biggest problem for Scotland as I see it, is London will release the time bomb that is RBS or at least threaten that. Scotland should not join the Euro. Scotland should look to Iceland.

  • Peter Kemp

    And by the way Craig, don’t ever let any southern foreigners (including the EU) try to persuade Scotland to alter the Scottish verdict system ie guilty, not guilty and not proven. (‘Not proven’ sometimes in jest: ‘not guilty but don’t do it again’) 🙂

  • Kempe

    “Scotland should look to Iceland. ”

    Massive cuts in spending, 100 new taxes, 4% inflation and people needing 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet?

    I’m sure that would go down well.

  • Komodo

    “…. London will release the time bomb that is RBS…”

    In which the UK taxpayer is an 80% shareholder. Without voting rights or any effective control over its policy. London’s position on this would be less shambolic if it had actually nationalised the bank, but it didn’t. The sale to Santander of the relatively secure High street end fell through as the prospects for the UK economy flatlined – now everyone’s on the point of admitting that there’s a depression, I don’t really see RBS being flogged off any time soon. The Co-op’s buyout of HSBC collapsed yesterday, for the same reason (anyone remember Bank of Scotland?)
    Less of a time bomb than a dead vampire squid, then. Hosted by Her Majesty’s glorious United Kingdom, and no longer in any realistic sense a particularly Scottish problem.

  • Komodo

    …Massive cuts in spending, 100 new taxes, 4% inflation and people needing 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet?

    vs. massive cuts in spending, tax cuts for millionaires (only), inflation figures subject to intense massaging and people needing 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet. Especially if they have a mortgage.

  • Kempe

    “The Co-op’s buyout of HSBC… ”

    Llyods; and then only part of the business.

    Co-Op buying out HSBC. That I’d like to see.

  • Kempe

    “…Massive cuts in spending, 100 new taxes, 4% inflation and people needing 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet?

    vs. massive cuts in spending, tax cuts for millionaires (only), inflation figures subject to intense massaging and people needing 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet. Especially if they have a mortgage. ”

    So we’re agreed there’s little difference and either would be crap?

  • Komodo

    Apologies, Kempe, you’re right. Perils of listening to Today with half an ear while getting ready for work… Lloyd’s High Street it is. But it’s still fallen through. HSBC branches wouldn’t be impossible IMO…

  • Yonatan

    “Co-Op buying out HSBC. That I’d like to see.”

    That, I would not like to see. We do not need fewer bigger banks, we need more smaller banks not beholden to remote (as in distant) control.

    A restoration of separation between retail and investment would be good too. But I suspect the whole shebang is now so totally fscked that it is too late for remedial measures.

  • Roderick Russell

    @Komodo – “The Iceland option (letting the greedy bastards go bust and not pumping good money after bad) makes more economic sense. I think the pain, while sharper, would have been shorter.”
    .
    I agree. Iceland does seem to be doing rather better economically than those countries that bailed out their banks.

  • sjb

    “It is a myth that Iceland allowed banks to fail completely […]” – per Iceland’s central bank governor.[1]

    “They [capital controls] were a big mistake. There is no exit strategy.” –per head of the Confederation of Icelandic Employers.[2]

    [1]http://www.irishtimes.com/business/economy/europe/iceland-questions-its-model-on-handling-crisis-1.1319615
    [2] ibid.

  • sjb

    The referendum question: “Should Scotland be an independent country?”

    Does anyone else wonder how many of the pro-Unionist supporters will vote ‘No’ on 18 September 2014?

    It seems to me there is a difference between wanting to remain a member of a union and impliedly agreeing to be dependent on another.

  • Komodo

    “They [capital controls] were a big mistake. There is no exit strategy.” -per head of the Confederation of Icelandic Employers.

    Is there, in any remedy yet proposed by Osborne, any sign of anything remotely resembling an exit strategy? See also [1]:

    IOW, flood the banks with yet more taxpayers’ money so that our confidence is restored..

    Borrowing Funding For Lending has been extended and improved [2]

    [1] http://www.cbi.org.uk/media-centre/press-releases/2013/04/cbi-responds-to-latest-boe-lending-data/
    [2] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-22275344

    Pump up the next bubble. Don’t on any account even consider changing the rotten system.

  • sjb

    I think if the Tories do very badly in the forthcoming local elections then Osborne & Hague may swop jobs, which provides the opportunity for a change in course.

  • Komodo

    If the entire Cabinet were replaced by emperor penguins, it would not make an iota of difference. Except that the tangible smell of fish surrounding the economy would have a visible cause.

  • Clydebuilt

    Ken ” but surely the SNP are playing into their hands with this achingly long delay in the actual referendum”

    Craig “The problem of all liars is consistency. Keeping today’s lies straight with yesterday’s”

    The more todays between now and the referendum the harder the job will be for the Liar’s.

  • Komodo

    It seems to me there is a difference between wanting to remain a member of a union and impliedly agreeing to be dependent on another.

    A point which the pro-American, anti-European Tories will take to heart, I’m sure.

  • Fred

    “Does anyone else wonder how many of the pro-Unionist supporters will vote ‘No’ on 18 September 2014? ”

    People seem to be getting a skewed impression of the situation up here.

    I don’t know of any Unionist supporters. There are plenty of people who don’t think independence would be a very good idea but I haven’t come across any rabid fanatical Unionists like there are rabid fanatical Nationalists. I have no doubt there are some in the more sectarian parts of the country but that isn’t how it is here.

    Why not just give people the facts then let them decide for themselves without all these accusations of lies and propaganda from those who are not averse to lies and propaganda themselves. The SNP seem to be attempting to turn this into a Scotland vs England battle and use the old patriotism card rather than let people make a rational decision.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    Just to clarify :

    If an independent Scotland “joins” or “re-joins” the European Union then it is committed to adopting the € as its currency once and if the so-called “Maastricht criteria” have been met.

    It will have no choice, since it has to apply the “acquis communautaire”. And that “acquis” provides that all new Member States have to join the €. This is why all the new central and eastern European Member States and Cyprus and Malta are obligated to join once the criteria are met ( a number of them have already done so, having met the criteria). Only Denmark and the UK have a Treaty-based permanent exception of which they can (but of course do not have to) avail themselves.

    Hence Osborne’s comment is not a scare story, it is fact.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    “exemption”, not “exception”, although it was clear enough, I think.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    To be even clearer :

    One of the two exemptions I referred to is contained in the Protocol on certain provisions relating to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (this is a Protocol annexed to the Treaty establishing the European Community; it used to be numbered Protocol n° 25, but the numbering changed after Lisbon, I think).

    The clue is in the title of that Protocol. An independent Scotland would no longer be part of that Member State called the UK of GB and NI and therefore it would no longer be covered by the exemption. It would be in the same position of every other Member State, whether old or new, except Denmark : obliged, by the acquis communautaire, to join the € when the criteria are met.

    _______

    To be fair, I suppose it could be argued that Scotland could attempt to negotiate a UK/DK style exemption, but there is no guarantee that it could obtain this. The position of the EU in all accession negotiations so far (including that of the UK, by the way), as regards the acquis communautaire, has been to say to the accession candidates “swallow it whole and swallow it now”.

  • sjb

    A member state has to participate in ERMII “without severe tensions” for two years before it qualifies to adopt the €. Membership of ERMII is voluntary so I suspect that is a method Scotland might use to delay joining the €.

    But I think all member states will eventually join the € to avoid the Eurogroup – finance ministers of member states that have already adopted the € – acting as a caucus.

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