At the last Indy referendum, ‘Project fear’ was able to capitalise on peoples fears over currency, the economy, asset/debt split and some how offending the memories of dead soldiers from World War II.
Now with the latter point there is no point trying think up any form of objective retort as those who listen to such nonsense are beyond the realms of reason.
With the other points however, these must be answered conclusively before the impending 2nd Independence referendum.
Alex Salmond was far too gracious in the referendum and refused to speculate on Scotland’s currency prospects lest it caused a run on the Pound. Nicola Sturgeon should be belligerent on currency regardless of the effect it will have on London’s currency.
There are essentially 3 options:
- Float the Scottish Pound
- Join the Euro
- Peg the Scottish Pound to either Sterling or the Euro
Now many countries in Europe have had large inflationary pressures immediately after joining the Euro and this would be worth percentage points to the Loyalists. The smarter option is to maintain the Scottish Pound.
As it is, if the Scottish Pound were to be floated it would be the first time that you could exchange it outside of Scotland. Anyone who has traveled with the Scottish Pound knows the nervous stares of the exchange cashier as they look at the note over and again, ring a colleague and then finally ask you “where it is from” or “is it real”.
Try and spend the Scottish Pound in England, Wales or Ulster, you cant convince the shopkeeper that it is in fact Sterling. So for all intensive purposes the Scottish Pound is worthless. To exchange it anywhere you need to swap it for the Pound with the youthful queen upon it.
By floating the Scottish Pound of course there would be a need for a Central Scottish Bank. Since Scotland would be joining the EU, there is no harm in asking the Europeans with help establishing this bank.
There would be a need for some economists, a printing press, a constitution which works within the fiscal guidelines of Europe and indeed International market regulations.
This is easily achieved, the idea that Scotland cannot do what every other independent nation has done panders back to the “too wee and too stupid” mentality of the Loyalists.
Loyalists might understand themselves to be idiots, I frankly agree with their assessment, but it doesn’t mean that all Scots share a penchant for bowing to a foreign un-elected leader whilst complaining about foreign elected leaders.
As earlier alluded to, there can be no winning the votes and minds of the intellectually bereft.
With a central bank established, the Scottish Pound upon Independence could be floated straight away. In the event of a No vote, Scots would at least have control of the printing presses of the national currency.
As it is: who controls Scotland’s printing presses? The English do! They can print their currency when needed but Scotland must ask for a foreign country to print our money which we can only use outside of our country if we first change it back to their currency.
And people say the Euro doesn’t make any sense!
Should the floating of the Scottish Pound lead to a substantial fall in its value, then merely peg it to the Euro. Many countries operate with this system and it is both legal and internationally accepted.
The entry talks into the EU were somewhat mooted last time, as Europe didn’t want to offend Britain. This time Britain has offended Europe grievously and there is no need to enter discussions about becoming a new member, it is merely a matter of maintaining our current membership under a new name. Out with the Brits, in with the Scots.
With the question of debt, a unilateral declaration that Scotland would accept 8.4% of the debt as this is the percentage of Scots within the UK is both rational and simple.
With assets, there is room for leverage on things such as trident. Sturgeon should say we will keep it in the Clyde with a St. Andrews Saltire on it and a policy of neutrality possibly aligned with Ireland.
This of course would never be accepted but if you want your nukes back you can share the plunder of Britain’s national reserves, foreign investments and throw the keys in to Balmoral while your at it.
The Scottish economy freed of London’s costly foreign adventures and wasteful monarchy could be argued to be in a far better position within a trading block than outside of it. Any other argument is ludicrous.
As the referendum inches closer, the debate on these issues must be had by the SNP and the positions of an Independent Scotland laid out in stone for the people to ponder.
When there were an endless amount of post referendum possibilities the Scottish Main Stream Media took great delight in focusing on the most negative eventualities and parallels it could possibly dream up. These issues need to be resolved so the cage rattlers from Project fear can gain no traction at the ballot box.
To gain independence, Scotland will need a leader strong enough to take the hard decisions: establish value in the currency, negotiate entry to the continent and maintain the rights of Scottish business to trade in the Worlds greatest economic project.
I believe Nicola Sturgeon is that leader and that now is her time to strike.