Scottish independence

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Valentina86
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by Valentina86 » Mon May 12, 2014 10:33 pm

I have no proof at all that George Osborne will unleash harsher cuts but he has stated he has 20 billion in cuts to make next year alone. I just don't think we have seen the worst of this yet. I just don't trust this current UK government one bit and I think we will be punished for turning down the opportunity to go it alone. I'm not sure about the main banks and businesses moving south in the event of yes. I'm really not sure why certain businesses are happy to say they have no plans to move down south (e.g. Tesco, BA) and yet many do make this point. I think in the end money will talk. If there is money to be made in Scotland (which there will) then businesses will stay.

And yes I agree council tax is a total rip off!

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HedleyLamarr
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by HedleyLamarr » Mon May 12, 2014 10:40 pm

daydreambeliever wrote:... Hedley, did I say that they were?
Yes.

You seem to have a clearer vision of an independent Scotland than anyone else I've read from or discussed this with. So lets say Scotland votes yes. Then what? What does this political uncertainty look like? What does this economic uncertainty look like? What happens over time? Can you give me some sort of picture because your posts imply that you think Scotland will end up as some sort of backwater.
daydreambeliever wrote:1,2,3 and 5 are significant risks though if you think it through that it would be Braveheart mentality bravado to brush over.
I think the whole campaign and public discussion has been remarkably free of jingoistic nationalism (either British nationalism or Scottish nationalism). Instead I hear people from both sides making clear-eyed, rational arguments based on the long-term interests of Scotland as a whole. Thankfully few people are going to the extremes of making either catastrophic or flowery meadows predictions for an independent Scotland.
daydreambeliever wrote:Can you help me understand your thought process as to why a "no" vote will suddenly unleash lots of cuts from George Osbourne ? Not sure I follow. Given that the economy is modestly making a recovery, not sure it's in his interests to rock the boat with sudden severe cuts?
He's already told us his plans for the future: "In a speech in the Midlands on Monday morning, Osborne said there was still a long way to go before recovery as he set out a five-point plan to help the economy. "We've got to make more cuts – £17bn this coming year, £20bn next year, and over £25bn further across the two years after. That's more than £60bn in total." http://www.theguardian.com/politics/201 ... -austerity

daydreambeliever
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by daydreambeliever » Tue May 13, 2014 7:42 pm

Hedley - "daydreambeliever wrote:
... Hedley, did I say that they were?

Yes."

No.

My perspective is based on information I have been given. At present, that leads me to have an awareness of major potential problems which are highly likely to come courtesy of an Independent Scotland (e.g. Banks and Businesses moving their HQs down south to avoid risk, increasing tax to avoid cuts, Academics losing access to EU funding for a period (whether temporarily or permanently is a bigger debate). On the other hand, I don't feel anyone has given me any valid arguments (i.e. those based on sensible theory, logic and ideally fact with supporting documentation) as to why these problems are worth enduring - if there are any such arguments for independence I'm genuinely keen to hear them. Valentina's posts yesterday have come the closest to swaying me to consider that there may be positives in an Independent Scotland as I care a lot about the future of the NHS - but on examination of the facts I'm not convinced we couldn't just retain our devolved NHS as part of the UK and avoid voting in the Tories so George Osbourne doesn't have that power over us. Annoyingly I'm not sure who to vote for though as there aren't any politicians or parties I have faith in at the moment. What I do hear often in discussions from the pro-independence folk is a sense of patriotism and sentimentality - Hedley we must be reading different material. For me that doesn't justify the problems indicated above and elsewhere in the thread.

Valentina86
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by Valentina86 » Tue May 13, 2014 8:46 pm

Scotland already doesn't vote in the Tories but we tend to get them anyway. And Labour are the Tories in disguise as far as I am concerned. I am at a loss who to vote for really. I think in an independent Scotland we might actually get a different type of politics from these parties (and new ones forming too). I think there would be renewed interest in politics amongst the general public. It would be quite something to go to the ballot box and know that your vote made a difference. I don't feel like that at the moment as part of the UK and I doubt I ever will. For me independence isn't an ideal situation. There are plenty of risks as we've discussed. However I think support for independence (whilst only hovering around the 30% mark a lot of the time) shows a desire for change. Something has to change. 1 in 5 children in Scotland live in poverty, record numbers of people using food banks (many who are out working yet still cannot afford to eat), people choosing whether to eat or heat. I know you will be aware of these issues and I'm sure that anyone drawn to a career in psychology cares about these things. I just can't see how this dire situation will get better under any UK government we will ever get. Independence is a chance to be closer to politics and to have a real say in the issues affecting this country and the people who live in it. It's a leap of faith but I'll take it.

daydreambeliever
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by daydreambeliever » Tue May 13, 2014 9:57 pm

I agree with a lot of what you've said strongly -

"Something has to change. 1 in 5 children in Scotland live in poverty, record numbers of people using food banks (many who are out working yet still cannot afford to eat), people choosing whether to eat or heat. I know you will be aware of these issues and I'm sure that anyone drawn to a career in psychology cares about these things"

Absolutely. I work in one of the most deprived areas in Europe, where we're talking 1 in 2 children living in poverty - and of course there's multiple deprivation, it's not just about money. Now if only there was a political party actually proposing to do something about that, they'd have my support! If I had your faith that independence could make a difference to the above, I'd be in too.

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HedleyLamarr
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by HedleyLamarr » Tue May 13, 2014 11:13 pm

Valentina86 wrote: 1 in 5 children in Scotland live in poverty, record numbers of people using food banks (many who are out working yet still cannot afford to eat), people choosing whether to eat or heat.
This is pretty much what I was going to post - nice to see we're all in agreement on something! If there is anything that would sway me one way or the other it would be this issue. This video is well worth watching to get an idea of what its really like at the coal face: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x-ZMwp1elXw

Nobody can be sure that independence will improve the situation but we can be absolutely sure that it'll only get worse under the current government.
My mind is aglow with whirling, transient nodes of thought careening through a cosmic vapor of invention.

daydreambeliever
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by daydreambeliever » Wed May 14, 2014 7:59 pm

To supplement Hedley's video link, here are other websites which show the extent of multiple deprivation in Scotland -

http://simd.scotland.gov.uk/publication-2012/

(Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation)

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Stati ... omePoverty

(Scotland situation compared to UK)

http://www.understandingglasgow.com/res ... oor_health

(Impact of multiple deprivation as a child on long-term outcomes)

Health and social inequalities are a HUGE issue in Scotland (e.g. Craiglockhart vs Wester Hailes in Edinburgh or Bearsden vs. Springburn in Glasgow) - I have yet to come across any arguments as to why independence would help change that, but can appreciate the perspective that might go something like "well surely it couldn't get much worse, so lets hope the grass might be greener on the other side". I'm just too much of a cynic to bite perhaps.

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HedleyLamarr
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by HedleyLamarr » Wed May 14, 2014 10:17 pm

daydreambeliever wrote:I have yet to come across any arguments as to why independence would help change that, but can appreciate the perspective that might go something like "well surely it couldn't get much worse, so lets hope the grass might be greener on the other side". I'm just too much of a cynic to bite perhaps.
Not to be too harsh but I think the idea that yes campaigners have little else to offer than "lets keep our fingers crossed things will be better" is a little patronising. There are plenty of arguments out there about why independence might help in this area, you should have a google. And the arguments are lot more sophisticated than you predict - a commitment to the welfare state, an increased minimum wage, better regulation of the labour market, etc. These aren't fanciful ideas - they're reasonable and achievable and moreover they are probably a reflection of the centre ground of Scottish politics. Scotland has made a success of taking control of health care and many other areas - the argument is that taking control of the rest of the welfare state via independence could be similarly successful and would be a step, albeit a modest one, in tackling the shocking levels of poverty and inequality that you've outlined.
My mind is aglow with whirling, transient nodes of thought careening through a cosmic vapor of invention.

daydreambeliever
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by daydreambeliever » Thu May 15, 2014 8:38 pm

Hedley, I've had a lot more than "a google" and I actually find your suggestion that I do that more than a little patronising. I think one of the skills we gain from clinical psychology training is the ability to be a critical consumer of research and policy. I have a right to read the info available to me and come to my own conclusions, even if they do differ from yours. Personally I do consider that the white paper on the five challenges the Scottish government would have to tackle is a bit vague about how the challenge of health inequalities would be addressed. The argument you outline below also has a raft of assumptions in it which I don't particularly buy into. e.g. why is it the case that the Scottish Government having control of health care should mean that they would do a similarly good job with taking on control of the welfare state? That's a big leap. The welfare state has a whole host of messy complexities to it which need to be addressed systematically if it is to be improved. "Let's take control of it and wave a Scottish magic wand at it" isn't really an adequate answer for me as to why that would make it better. "Committing to the welfare state" also isn't sufficient to make it work better. An increased minimum wage is only of use to those able to work. Also, how exactly would the labour market better be regulated, what would this look like?

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HedleyLamarr
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by HedleyLamarr » Thu May 15, 2014 10:59 pm

Your previous post didn't say "I've yet to come across any convincing arguments", it said you hadn't come across any arguments full stop. So to suggest you have a search is a fairly reasonable suggestion. And I'm sorry, but if you still think those arguments amount to "waving a Scottish wand" at these problems then my advice remains.
My mind is aglow with whirling, transient nodes of thought careening through a cosmic vapor of invention.

daydreambeliever
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by daydreambeliever » Sat May 17, 2014 10:34 am

Hedley, I think we're going to have to agree to differ. I have a sense that you're interpreting what I say and then responding to your interpretation of it, and that on forums like this when you don't know the person behind the post it's easy to pick the person up wrong. As a person, I wouldn't enter a debate without informing myself of the available facts first. To be clear, I haven't found any arguments for Scottish Independence that I personally find convincing - that does not mean I haven't read any arguments or made any effort to understand where people are coming from.

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BenJMan
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by BenJMan » Wed May 21, 2014 9:30 am

Personally I have still yet to find any arguments pro Scottish Independence that I find convincing or even based in facts rather than speculation. Much of the response that seems to come when people act tough economic questions or questions about 'how' the goals will be achieved seem to get the response of 'well we just will'. I think the single currency debate is a good highlighter of this, even now all these months on, there is no back up plan or convincing argument, despite both the UK Government, The Bank of England and all sorts of independent organisations saying it would be completely unworkable. Despite all that the party line from the SNP still seems to be 'well we just will, they are just saying it to put people off'.

I'm neither pro not against independence.. but my experience has been that sifting through the propoganda from both sides as much as is possible, most of the independent people seem to be saying it would be a bad move for scotland or at best, a very unpredictable one.
I think a hero is any person really intent on making this a better place for all people ~ Maya Angelou.

Valentina86
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by Valentina86 » Wed May 21, 2014 4:52 pm

Sometimes there are questions that cannot be answered until you are in a particular situation (independence in this case). There is a lot of speculation but I accept that I cannot be given clear cut answers for all possible scenarious. I think for me this is a personality thing. I am someone who is prepared to take risks in life. I measure up the possible outcomes as best I can but then I usually just go for my gut instinct! My instinct is telling me Scotland, despite issues around a currency union, EU membership etc, would be better off managing all of its own affairs. It's risky but it's quite exciting to take a risk... and I have (so far) found taking risks pays off. I also fail to believe that Scotland would disappear down the drain in the event of independence (I know you are not saying this but the way Better Together describe it we will be turning into a third world country should we dare go it alone). I think it will be a hard slog at first with a fair amount of instability but I think Scotland will be reaping the rewards of its decision long after 2014 should it vote Yes. I really think it has to come down to faith in the end since no-one has all the answers on this particular matter.

daydreambeliever
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by daydreambeliever » Fri May 23, 2014 7:22 pm

BenJman - yes strongly agreeing with you!

Valentina - you may be right that personality comes into it, as I'm someone who prefers to base big decisions more heavily on available evidence and logic than feelings. I'm also someone who thinks everything through from every possible angle where I have a choice before acting, and I don't do impulsive or avoidable risk taking given a choice. With independence I've had the choice to look into all angles and think about it as it's been a lengthy debate in the media.

I also think though that my character has been shaped to some extent by my clinical training which has taught me to be an evidence based practitioner which has strengthened my preference for utilizing facts and logic where they're available (and in this case they are available and pointing towards staying as part of the UK being the sensible and safe move all round).

My views are also shaped perhaps by my life stage though (living and owning a lovely house in a beautiful part of Scotland, getting married to my long-term partner and working in a permanent job I love). Because I love my life the way it is I guess I'm resentful of the risk of Scottish Independence coming along and messing that all up for me (since I'd then be having to sell my house and move to England and take on some temporary contract in a struggling English NHS and move away from family and friends). So, for me it's pretty clear cut. For others, if life isn't treating them so well, there may be more of a sense of "It can't get worse" or "we have nothing left to lose" so lets take a gamble. Unfortunately that gamble could leave those people even worse off and I worry people could be led down the garden path by the hope of a fairytale that won't come true.

Valentina86
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Re: Scottish independence

Post by Valentina86 » Fri May 23, 2014 10:02 pm

I get your point. I too have a mortgage here in Scotland and I feel quite settled but I am in no way expecting independence to mess things up to the point that I would have to move country. I also think that no matter the outcome you and I will be fine. We are well-educated, have our feet on the property ladder (no easy feat!) and probably have the resources to generally get through the hard times (not just financial resources). Other people are not so well off. I won't say I'll be voting yes to help other people because that sounds ridiculous and a bit arrogant but I am concerned about the general direction the country (read UK) is heading in. It's also not all about us. Life is short. We will probably be long gone by the time the real positive consequences of Scotland taking charge of its own affairs is felt. This is a vote for future generations. Vote yes and we will struggle a bit but our children and grandchildren will reap the rewards. I truly believe that. I am actually certain that Scotland will be an independent country within the next 100 years. It's just going to take a special and courageous generation (or several) to vote for it.

I also think there may be a sizeable portion of "I have nothing left to lose" who will turn out for Yes. I hope they are the ones who push the Yes vote through. The ones who have been vilified by the Tories for the past 4 years. What poetic justice that would be.

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