The problem with not being independent is that Scotland would continue to be ruled by people like Theresa May. Her threat to close the border is a patent bluff, and motivated by racism. Her fear is that “Buried deep in Alex Salmond’s white paper is the admission that, just like the last Labour government, a separate Scotland would pursue a looser immigration policy.”
It is neither hidden nor an admission. Scotland welcomes immigrants who contribute to its economy and its culture. Scotland doesn’t have a politics of pandering to racists. That is one of the things which so many Scots want to get away from.
There is no way that independent Scotland will be forced out of the EU. First, there are no grounds for the assumption that WENI will be the successor state and Scotland a legal new entity; the Czechs and Slovaks, for example, both inherited the entire treaty obligations of the former Czechoslovakia. But even if Scotland did have to reapply – which I doubt strongly – Scotland already meets the acquis communitaire, by definition. The Commission report establishing that would be prepared in the transitional period between the referendum and actual independence, and Scotland’s application and acceptance would be a same day process. If Spain wanted to stop that – and many anti-Catalan Spanish politicians are intelligent enough to realize that extreme hostility to the Scots would provoke more, not less, Catalan nationalism – Spain does not have the political clout within the EU, and is in too dependent a position to isolate itself by a veto.
I worked for four years as First Secretary in the British Embassy in Warsaw specifically on Polish preparations for EU entry, and I know what I am talking about – indeed I have no doubt I know a great deal more about EU accession than Teresa May. I also know that there is enormous sympathy for Scottish nationalism right across the EU’s international relations community, be it national politicians and diplomats or EU staff. You would be surprised just how much ground has been quietly prepared by Scottish diplomats and civil servants in advance, sotto voce, in our spare time! With Scotland firmly committed to the EU, and the Conservative Party committed to a referendum on leaving, those who believe the EU’s sympathies lie more with May than with Scotland are deluded.
Actually nobody does really believe that, the propagandists of the mainstream media merely want you to believe it.