Friday, January 15, 2016

Scotland's oil? It's a red herring in the Independence debate.

The issue of the oil price is something of a red herring and Nicola Sturgeon and Ales Salmond should say so. The decision as to whether Scotland stays part of the UK far transcends economics. It's an emotional and patriotic choice - do the Scots want to be an independent self-governing nation or not? Does their Scottish patriotism/nationalism trump their Britishness?  

Ireland has only limited hydrocarbon resources and few other exploitable natural resources. Yet it has a viable and successful economy (the overheating of the first part of the century aside!). The Irish benefit from their EU membership and, yes, from their use of the Euro. That is the model for Scotland.  

I don't want Scotland to leave the UK - the country to me is as much a part of my Britishness as England is. But if the rest of the U.K. is insane enough to vote to push us out of the EU then the Scots case for independence would be greatly strengthened. And if that happens and they become an independent State within the EU and adopt the Euro as well (end of silly currency issue which bedevilled the Referendum campaign in 2014) then not only would it work but I might move north of the border! Better a proud European in Scotland than a cut-adrift Little Englander!


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