Yes to an independent Scotland, or a Scotland whose future is dictated to by generations of Tories in three colours?
Yesterday (15/10/12), the First Minister of Scotland, Alex Salmond, and the Prime Minister of the UK, David Cameron signed an historic document striking a deal for the Scottish independence referendum. Although the vote is still two years away (autumn 2014), the main agenda has been agreed, the timing of the vote, one question on the ballot paper, and 16 and 17 years olds will get to vote.
The Yes Scotland campaign is already underway, "Let's get straight to the point," says Blair Jenkins, "Why is independence the best option for Scotland? In a nutshell, it is really very simple:
"It is better for Scotland if decisions about our economy, quality of life, environment and society are taken by the people who care most about Scotland, that is by the people of Scotland. As a nation and a community, we have the greatest stake in making our country the best it can possibly be and will work hardest to deliver a fairer and more successful Scotland.
“Under successive UK governments we have become one of the most unequal societies in the developed world. According to research by Danny Dorling, Professor of Human Geography at Sheffield University, the UK is in fact the fourth most unequal society in the “rich’ world. And right now we are now witnessing a sustained assault by the UK Coalition on the welfare state and the targeting of the most vulnerable people in society." (source)
In a small country that prides itself in issues of social justice and fairness, the onslaught of the UK Tory government, along with their partners-in-crime, the Lib-Dems, on the welfare state, the NHS, and their general ineptitude in running the economy of the UK, bodes ill for the future of Scotland. What is happening in England at this moment in time will be happening here very shortly, the writing is on the wall, the Tories do not want a welfare state of any description, they will abolish it piece by piece. No public services will be safe in Tory hands, and if the people of Scotland vote no, then the little bit of social difference the Scottish government is making at the moment will be eroded away to nothing. The only choice for a decent future for Scotland and the people of Scotland is a Yes vote, and complete independence.
It is no use looking at Scottish Labour, or the Lib-Dems as an alternative to Tory policies if Scotland votes to remain in the UK. Johann Lamont, the Scottish Labour leader, has already proved her Tory compliance with her recent speech, being widely congratulated by Ruth Davidson, the Scottish Tory leader. The welfare state is not safe in the hands of someone who describes most of the essential benefits as 'freebies'. The fact the 'freebies' are paid for by taxes paid by voters seems to have escaped her notice. It is no surprise the Tory red team, or B team, are in the decline. The Tory yellow team, already in coalition with the Tories, are insignificant in Scotland, and will probably be non-existent, at least in any regard that would be meaningful in any political sense by the next UK election. Perhaps they are beginning to realise that an afterthought of an apology, for blatantly lying to the electorate to gain votes, is not the way to keep them.
Over the next two years, many of the issues important to the people of Scotland will become clear, a great many of the lies and falsehoods put forward by the unionist trio will be dispelled and the truth will out. As the true facts become clear, I suspect the percentage of Yes voters will rise, I also hope fervently that supporters in the existing Scottish unionist parties with a desire for a Scotland more supportive of social justice, free education, essential benefits, and equality (for there are many), will begin to show their support for an independent Scotland. A wide and varied cross-band of opinions would be welcome, no matter what side of the political spectrum they came from, as long as they voiced their own free opinions rather than a Westminster script of Tory rhetoric.
Susan Stewart, director of communications for Yes Scotland, said “an independent Scotland will be fair, more compassionate and more prosperous than under the United Kingdom.”
Scottish Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who was closely involved in the backroom negotiations that led to the referendum agreement, called it “the biggest opportunity the people of Scotland have had for 300 years to determine the kind of nation we all wish to live in.”
Alex Salmond hailed the referendum deal as "a major step forward in Scotland's home-rule journey. We're not in the business of ripping things up. We're in the business of developing a new relationship between the people of these islands — I think a more beneficial, an independent, equal relationship."
Why vote Yes? - Answering your questions about an independent Scotland
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