Astonishing Coincidence 125


By an amazing accident of timing, the Westminster Select Committee on British Affairs has today published a report saying Scotland will have no currency at independence and may have to barter. The Committee consists of Conservative, New Labour and Lib Dem MPs.

The Scottish Sun has run the currency scare on the front page for the last three days. Labour, Lib Dem and Tory leaders all asked nothing else at First Minister’s questions yesterday. The media and Holyrood frenzy could have been sparked as reaction to the TV debate. But what the publication of the Westminster report today shows is that this massive currency scare has all been pre-planned by Tory, Lab and Lib-Dems with heir media allies for some time. This is their big push keep Scotland’s resources.

What is increasingly plain – and I warned before the debate – is that the conduct of the entire “debate” was a part of this co-ordinated plan, pre-determined to allow the media to declare the currency issue is the only one that will decide the referendum. Salmond was grilled on nothing but currency for twelve minutes, and then the chairman picked out members of the public from the IPSOS/Mori selected audience pre-primed with questions about … currency.

Audience members had had to fill out forms for selection indication if they were Yes or No voters. They were then asked again at the door, and many Yes voters who had been invited were excluded. No voters were seated in a selected central area where the questions were taken from. Better Together staff were present briefing their questioners.

This really is a major test of the power of the mainstream media. There is no currency question. A very large majority of the countries in the world became independent in the last seventy years. Countries with far weaker economies than Scotland
support their own currencies. I have personally in travelling had at least 40 different currencies in my pocket. All over the world, what matters is not the unit of denomination, but how the money is distributed and used.

Scotland like Denmark could have its own currency. It could keep the pound either in a formal currency union or not. It could join the euro. As an independent country it will have the choice – and if the English want to burn the choice of formal currency union, that will not sink Scotland by any means.

Currency is not the be all and end all of independence. But what we have is a concerted effort by the Westminster politicians and the entire media to convince people that it is. Will this work? Or will they stand against the raw aggression and hatred now pouring out from the British nationalist camp?


125 thoughts on “Astonishing Coincidence

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  • AAMVN

    I am in part exasperated by this ridiculous non-issue being pushed forward as if it was the make and break of Scottish independence and in part heartened since it shows how desperate the ‘No’ campaigners have become.

    As a half Scottish ex pat UK citizen I am looking forward to seeing what happens and hopeful the Scots will reclaim birthright. They really do have nothing to lose. Better together? Hard to see how it could be any worse really.

  • Jack Fletcher

    Rod C: The extent to which an individual’s voice matters or is pertinent does not however change their entitlement to freedom of speech.

  • Robert Peffers

    What a great deal of total ignorance in the above comments. Mind you the posters are not alone as some of the pure ignorance from the laughable expert political figures in the red/blue/yellow Westminster de facto parliament of the country of England is clearly seen.

    Let me put it this way for you : –
    What was David Cameron’s job before he entered politics?
    What was George, Gideon, Osborne’s CV before getting elected?
    What was Nick Clegg’s employ?
    What was Darling before he had to resign as an advocate?
    What of the brothers Miliband?
    What did Ed \balls do before Westminster called?
    Now what were the jobs very well done by Alex Salmond before becoming a full time politician?
    Which of the above should I take as an expert economist both from their university and actual work experience.

    I’ll give you a clue – it wouldn’t be the one whose first job after a modern history degree sat at a London NHS computer terminal typing in the data about recently dead Londoners, then worked at refolding towels and re-hanging ties. It would be the one who studied economics, became a top economics man with a then top bank as well as a top journalist.

    Go figure which one that is.

  • passerby

    The extent to which an individual’s voice matters or is pertinent does not however change their entitlement to freedom of speech.

    Typical double speak.

    Anyone can exercises their freedom of speech, so long as they are in a solitary in the middle of the Epping forest in the permitted containment area that has an eight mile wide exclusion zone, and is guarded by some outfit that has direct Isreali ownership or has close links for traning the relevant staff in Isreal.

    Hey baby you have freedom of speech, say what you want, now!

    As the good rabbi said on the telly; We cannot allow people running into a packed theatre and shouting fire, that is no freedom of speech!

    Why would anyone wish to run into a packed theatre and shout fire, is besides the point, but sounds mendacious and mischievous and that is what matters!

  • David S Briggs

    @MJ

    You have that back to front. The FM set the trap and shouty, pointy Alistair fell into it, as will become apparent between now and referendum day.

    The FM is a very adroit politician, you just haven’t realised it yet.

    I commend you again Roderick Russell for another excellent post.

    @Craig

    Why are the unionist trolls circling you like flies round a cow pat. Have you said something to upset the poor dears?

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella) !

    David S Briggs

    “@Craig

    Why are the unionist trolls circling you like flies round a cow pat. Have you said something to upset the poor dears?”

    ___________________-

    David, I’ve just awarded you today’s OBN (in case you don’t read Private Eye, that stands for Order of the Brown Nose)!

    Enjoy!

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella) !

    Passerby

    “As the good rabbi said on the telly; We cannot allow people running into a packed theatre and shouting fire”
    _______________

    That’s very true. Always listen to your rabbi *, he’s a very wise man!

    _______________

    * Cue for various loonies to start quoting Rabbi Ovadia (or whatever he’s called)

    ******************

  • Juteman

    You are calling someone else a brown nose, Habba?
    That’s sweet coming from someone that only has the soles of his feet showing.
    Mind you, it is your blog, and you can say whatever you like.

  • MJ

    “The FM is a very adroit politician, you just haven’t realised it yet”

    Silly me.

  • Reluctant Observer

    There are 10 posts listed in the “Recent Posts” list at the bottom of the page, which includes this one.

    Out of those ten, only two are not exclusively about Scotland, Scotland, and Scotland. And also – in fairness – about those beastly English who aren’t cheering on an independent Scotland.

    The exceptions being, that one post about Baroness Warsi which contained two short paragraphs, and the other some drivel about golf for nine paragraphs.

    A good thing that there isn’t anything important going on in the world worthy of informed comment these days!

  • Anton

    @ Robert Peffers 4.32pm:

    Like you, I place no great faith in the economic expertise of politicians. But we don’t need to. Luckily for us, the Centre for MacroEconomics has conducted the first and, I believe only, survey of independent professional economists on economic issues raised by the Scottish Independence debate. The results can be found here:

    http://cfmsurvey.org/surveys/economic-consequences-independent-scotland

    A summary overview can be found here:

    http://www.pieria.co.uk/articles/would_scotland_be_better_off_as_a_independent_nation

  • Just saying

    Robbie Burns 1786

    Poem: Lines Written On A Banknote

    Wae worth thy power, thou cursed leaf!
    Fell source o’ a’ my woe and grief!
    For lack o’ thee I’ve lost my lass!
    For lack o’ thee I scrimp my glass!
    I see the children of affliction
    Unaided, through thy curst restriction:
    I’ve seen the oppressor’s cruel smile
    Amid his hapless victim’s spoil;
    And for thy potence vainly wished,
    To crush the villain in the dust:
    For lack o’ thee, I leave this much-lov’d shore,
    Never, perhaps, to greet old Scotland more.

    Will the currency “NO” voters kiss Scotland goodbye for a “cursed leaf”?

  • Juteman

    I really do find it hilarious that Westminster thinks currency is a vote winner.
    Projection in action.

  • Vronsky

    On currency, this is an interesting read. It’s a summary of Sir Walter Scott’s Letters of Malachi Malagrowther in which Scott attacks English plans to introduce £5 notes. Scottish banking had been stable at this time, English banking anything but, and Scott’s campaign was eventually successful.

    By the by, it’s curious to see Unionists claiming Scott as one of theirs. In the Letters he refers to the Union as ‘that odious surrender of our sovereignty’.

  • doug scorgie

    Windsock
    8 Aug, 2014 – 12:54 pm

    “If Scotland means that much to you, why are you living in Ramsgate…”

    ——————————————–

    Windsock, why not pose a similar question to Habbabkuk and the other Zionist trolls here?

    Ask them if Israel means so much to them why don’t they live there?

    I don’t know what response you might get.

  • Tony M

    Vronsky (8 Aug, 2014 – 6:43 pm) on Walter Scott

    As Mary pointed out in an earlier thread, the BBC’s Radio 4 have done a re-written version of Ivanhoe set in 2035 in a post-independence world of cross border conflict. This follows on from a re-write of Rob Roy, set in 1924 compounding Scottish national identity with Irish republican terrorism. They really need to be taken to task for this disgraceful re-writing of 18th century classics into poisonous modern day political unionist screeds. Whoever manages the estate and papers, the legacy of Scott should have dissociated the author’s name and works from these malicious travesties of the originals. It all the more annoying that Scottish studios have done some great drama work in the past, often involving Patrick Raynor or Gaynor McFarlane, and often with tremendous haunting traditional musical scores and performances. These new U-KOK versions of Scotts’ works I suspect were under London or Manchester oversight, and the opportunity was squandered to produce high quality productions. I’m surprised that David Tennant willingly participated in the malicious Project Fear version of Ivanhoe. I agree with you that SWS bitterly regretted the union of parliaments, consistently throughout his work.

  • Tom

    If, after independence, savers have no confidence in the new Scottish government and decide to withdraw all their savings, causing a run on the banks, then, yes, you would have to barter.
    Saying things like ‘the currency is not the be all and end all’ is burying your head in the sand about a potentially disastrous situation for millions of Scots, which you are choosing to ignore. If people have no money in the bank and no ability to borrow then it certainly would be the be all and end all.
    Yes, countries can become independent and adopt their own currency – but they do so having worked out which currency they will use well in advance of becoming independent. Salmond doesn’t have a proper plan, except hoping the British will fall into line and do what they are told.
    What a liar and a charlatan the man is.

  • DavidFromScotland

    “IT’S THE ECONOMY, STUPID!!!”

    Economics is THE most important issue in this referendum – Bar None.

    An independent Scotland cannot be the land of milk and honey promised to us without a sound financial underpinning.

    Currency union is not just using the same notes and coins as another country, it means agreeing to use the same macroeconomic policies – i.e. interest rates and government spending plans. It entails as Bruce Carney puts it – “A loss of sovereignty.” What is the point of setting up an independent sovereign state and then immediately surrendering that independence to another nation.

    All the Plan B’s have severe flaws as well that will make it harder for Scottish industry to compete in a global economy

    I’d like my children to have the opportunity to make a prosperous future for themselves in Scotland if they want to stay here. An independent Scotland will make it harder for them to stay here.

    Love and Kisses

    Your Tory Friend

    David

  • fred

    “If, after independence, savers have no confidence in the new Scottish government and decide to withdraw all their savings, causing a run on the banks, then, yes, you would have to barter.”

    That isn’t going to happen. The Scottish government are incompetent but they aren’t that incompetent.

    It isn’t a question of boom or bust, neither would be likely to happen as what either side says. It’s a question of if quality of life would be better for the residents of Scotland. Independence would not be all good or all bad for the average person in Scotland it’s a question of if the good would outweigh the bad. For some it would, I think for myself it wouldn’t. It would more likely benefit those in the cities down south and then not all of them.

  • Tony M

    Oops, it was a new version of Red Gauntlet that Mary spotted, set post-independence, which I’ve heard too and deplore, not Ivanhoe. The objectionable rework of Rob Roy was broadcast in April 2013.

  • Yap

    George Soros broke the bank of England like a twig. LIBOR and related options markets are a cesspool of corruption. London private banking is the last redoubt of money laundering. And this is a currency I should be scared to give up?

  • fred

    “George Soros broke the bank of England like a twig. LIBOR and related options markets are a cesspool of corruption. London private banking is the last redoubt of money laundering. And this is a currency I should be scared to give up?”

    Hell no, give it up, by all means.

    Just let us know what you were thinking of replacing it with.

  • Tony M

    http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/euro-pound-or-scottish-pound/

    “Keeping the Bank of England, and the pound sterling, still gives us a choice to launch our own currency in the future should that be the right decision. Interestingly we don’t have the option to join the Euro (if we ever wanted to) until our own Scottish currency has been launched and has participated in the exchange rate mechanism for at least two years.

    So, far from the scare story of being forced to join the Euro, we couldn’t join, even if we wanted to. Launching our own currency would be more costly and more difficult than agreeing a currency union at the outset of independence, but it would also upset the trade balance with our friends in the rest of the UK by making cross border trades also a cross currency trade. If this damages the rUK economy then that isn’t in anyones best interest, independence can be a boost to all the nations of the UK economically and democratically.

    The economists who work for the UK Government and in the treasury know all of this, and would move heaven and earth to ensure an independent Scotland kept the pound – everything else is just political manoeuvring in the hope of maintaining control of Scottish taxation at Westminster.”

  • Leslie

    The currency question is becoming the nemesis of the Yes campaign – the unthought-out flaw of a love for independence that dare not speak its name, in case it frightens the voters. In a campaign that can be thrown by £500 either way, to be left looking at your wallet is a Yes campaign disaster. And the Maestro brought it on himself. Juggling aliens, the EU and the right hand side of the road – he fell on his arse. The cocksure bluster collapsed before the boos. And the little dull man, AD, nailed him with an eight year old metaphor. We love it!

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