Well said, Peter; and my opinion of Mrs May, has gone up considerably since she took over from Cameron. She has good leadership qualities, admits her mistakes, but holds on to her vision. We need more like her. Sturgeon by contrast imagines 2 + 2 makes 5!!!!
God help Scotland if she EVER gets her way!
Scotland needs the UK and the UK needs Scotland! You only need to witness the Falkirk Wheel to realise that! Those words have ironic historical significance too! Since Falkirk, Scotland has turned full circle with pride!
The SNP have mismanaged the Scottish economy to such an extent that even though they received around £1,600 more per capita through the Barnett Formula it has managed to spend £127 per capita for every £100 it received from Westminster, even useless Labour could not manage that.
Scotland must actually be bankrupt.
I, too, wonder about the Scottish economy. Also I have read and seen a lot of reports that another referendum isn't particularly popular and if it goes badly wrong Sturgeon's career would be damaged - not a bad thing from my point of view - I am not at all keen on her. The Scots must realise that their economy is in bad shape and leaving the union, Brexit or no Brexit, they may well need us, more than we need them. Also if they do vote to leave and lose the Barnet formula they will lose the pound sterling and may well have the Euro as their currency and agree to be part of Shengen - our borders will have to be well-protected as if they do get European workers migrating to Scotland it will be a good way of getting into England. That's assuming they are accepted for membership of the EU which is not guaranteed.
The whole idea of another Scottish referendum seems fraught with hurdles and seems like a political risk for Sturgeon.
I personally wouldn't like to see Scotland leave the union but if they really feel that it would be better to leave then perhaps the electorate of the UK should be able to vote as they are currently in the union? T
I don't want us to go, Mary! Heaven forbid - just posted this on Sunday Times Digital!
Chris G 1 hour ago
As a gift to the EU when we leave, could we give them Scotland.
Mr D Akenhead 37 minutes ago
@Chris G ...don't be nasty! we're joined at the hip! Get used to it!
Chris G 35 minutes ago
@Mr D Akenhead @Chris G
They voted to stay in the EU.
Mr D Akenhead 28 minutes ago
@Chris G @Mr D Akenhead history! past tense! guilty as charged, but that was then, and that was more a protest against the undemocratic behaviour of Whitehall prior to the last Referendum which had many Scots like myself seething! I would not encourage my clan to vote that way under Mrs May!
Mr D Akenhead 6 minutes ago
@Chris G @Mr D Akenhead P.S. I had no idea how close we would get with that vote in Clydeside and North Lanark, seat of my ancestors with Bruce! or I might have reconsidered my appeal on the eve of the vote on Canadian television. I wanted to convey a message which clearly resonated with the people of Glasgow!
The SNP as a political entity are totally unsuited for Government, they are fiscally imprudent in their management of the Scottish economy.
The national deficit of Scotland stands at £15 billion ( 9% of GDP), public spending out of control( for every £100 received by the SNP from Westminster it spends £127)
The SNP desire to leave the UK and join the EU beggars the question; what price independence?
Can Scotland survive outside of the UK?
If Scotland leaves the UK and joins the EU there is a major cost factor that needs to be examined, first there is the loss of Scotlands Barnett Formula funding from central Government currently worth £566 billion per year.
EU membership is based on a percentage of GDP, so if we compare an independent Scotland with the EU costs of the Irish Republic, which currently sit at 1.31% of GDP then EU membership could cost Scotland £2.17 billion per annum.
How can the 1.9 million working people of Scotland fund such an enormous outgoing, when at the same time funding the 900,000 + under 16 year olds and the almost 1,000,000 pensioners and the unemployed and the disabled, how can if fund it's military, police, border force, customs and excise, inland revenue, universities, and all the rest of infrastructure investment?
It warmed my heart, David, to hear that you don't want Scotland to leave the Union. We so often get so many different views from Scotland, that the Scots are wanting independance. It doesn't make sense to me - we are part of the United Kingdom and hopefully will remain so. I agree that the referendum result was very much about the people being very disenchanted with Whitehall and all those MP's that are totally out of touch with the people and reality. Also immigration is a huge factor and that is not to say that we are racist just fearful seeing our country and economy change so dramatically. The poverty arising from austerity causing the destruction of our public services which look as if they will never recover. There are so many factors to many to list and it is not that we are zenophobes or racist but distrust Brussels and our own government, just for starters! Sturgeon has used the referendum outcome as a lever to get another Scottish referendum- just a political and cynical move and possibly a selfish one that may well come back and bite her in the backside!
As i have stated i am very much in the mind set to remain in the UK now that our English cousin's have grown a pair and chosen to leave the EU, i want to be part of a federal UK a new Union of four equal partner's, no more should the larger population overrule the three smaller population.
This is why the UK is leaving the 27 other nations who with their majority can dictate to the UK.
In my opinion Scotland Wales N. Ireland are just the same as the UK within the EU...... Powerless to drive our country in a direction of our own choosing.
Anyway to my point.......
You like so many people point to the Scottish border with England as a source of England being flooded with immigrants should Scotland leave the rUK and remain in the EU, however, you make absolutely zero comment about the South and North of Ireland border which will be an immediate source of immigrants flooding into the UK as soon as we leave the EU.
Why would you chose to highlight Scotland's border but not the Irish border which will be for sure a back door and is an immediate threat of which you speak or fear about.
As i said in my original post.......
We voted as one country namely the UK to leave the EU and the only thing the SNP and Nicola Sturgeon are getting wrong is we respect the democratic vote to leave the UK and we see the SNP and Nicola Sturgeon using the leave the EU as "opportunism" the taking opportunities as and when they arise, regardless of planning or principle.
I would also say that the SNP should also be getting on with using the powers it has won from Westminster but they are again rather than using the powers they are still trying to play the blame Westminster for all Scotland's problems but again this is political opportunism as it helps drive towards Scotland leaving the rUK.
As a Scot my views on SNP and Nicola are.....
They are head and shoulders more capable than anyone in the other three main Scottish parties and at the moment are better than the national UK Labour party who are falling further and further into the abyss....... Which is doing more harm to the breakup of the UK than the SNP could ever do, as you may be aware the Scots do not like a Tory government and in the next 10 year it looks like Tory's will be king in the UK not good for a United UK
I do apologise of course you are correct I neglected to mention the Irish border and the likelihood of immigration into the UK. I was focussing on Scotland and neglected to mention your obvious point!
I agree that Labour is falling into the abyss and really needs to get itself organised and start challenging the Tories effectively - as yet it has failed to so. It warms my heart to know that the Scots dislike the Tories - me too with massive loathing!
The SNP does act with passion and as a united front and Sturgeon is a formidable foe but I would hate to see Scotland go.
At the moment I suspect that our current shambles of a government have no idea what to do and how to achieve Brexit successfully and to the benefit of all. As someone who voted to leave, I do fear for the future with or without Scotland. The thought of a Tory administration for the foreseeable future fills me with dread - they are so concerned with their own self enrichment and that of their wealthy friends. They will sell off everything, of which not much is left, and privatise all public services and given our experience of privatisation eg energy, rail and all forms of travel, education and the NHS which are both steadily being privatised by stealth, we will have a great deal to regret from their time in power and may lose Scotland to boot!
As you will have noticed I have been busy with my calculator again, I have computed that in the event of Scotland leaving the UK but not yet a member of the EU, the cost to individual taxpayers over and above their normal PAYE deductions would if current services are to be maintained, amount to a tax liability for each of the 1.9 million workers paying tax of an additional £29,680.42 per annum. Of course this would not include the cost of repairing the 9% black hole in Scotlands GDP.
Yes John i have been reading you calculations on what the Scottish finances "might" look like should Scotland opt out the Union with rUK.
However, you will forgive me if i take your calculations with a pinch of salt and not to insult your mathematical skills but not even the best financial minds can agree on what Scotland's finances would look like and with the govern of the BoE, IMF etc etc and your now ex- chancellor George Osborne and ex Prime Minister David Cameron who predicted a financial melt down should we vote to leave the EU of which never happened.
The bottom line is no one can produce with any degree of certainty about financial matter 6 months ahead never mind 2 years and the multiple variables that could affect a countries finances.
I would hate to get into a rerun debate of Scottish independence again but.....
I am happy to remain in the Union with rUK long-term or at least until after the UK have negotiated our exit from the EU and if and only "if" the UK move quickly towards a federal UK a new Union of four equal partner's regardless of population size......
If a new Union of Equals is not forthcoming from Westminster i would be looking for a breakaway from rUK.
The truth of the matter of Scotland remaining in the Union with rUK lays more with the desire of our English cousin's who appear to want a vote as to whether they EJECT Scotland from rUK or not!!!!!
The sentiments expressed by English people have been deliberately provoked by the irrational nature of the demands made by Sturgeon & Co.
As to whether or not you accept my calculations, read them again, they are based on the Scottish Government in an independent scenario maintains the level of public spending currently funded by Westminster.
I agree that the SNP demands to leave rUK has not helped relation with our English cousin's but it is far far from the only fact that is driving our English cousin's to want a vote not to leave the Union but to EJECT Scotland from the Union.
This kind off rhetoric and anti Scottish sentiment does nothing for Unity and may drive more anti English feeling which will eventually drive a wedge between the Union at a time we should pull together.
I would be unable to vote for Scottish independence if it would result in re-joining the EU.
I do not want to be run by an unelected self-serving elite in Brussels.
I believe Nicola Sturgeon has used Scotland’s clear vote to stay in the EU to call for a second referendum on independence but this has been a gross miscalculation by the SNP.
There was around 500,000 of Scots like me who voted to come out of the EU and under no circumstances would vote to go back in.
In my humble opinion for Nicola Sturgeon to make a second independence campaign about remaining part of Europe to be a Colossal Mistake.
One of the biggest miscalculations by Nicola Sturgeon is to believe that the 1.6m Scots who voted to Remain in the EU would automatically then vote to go back into the European Union.
This would mean Ruth Davidson leader of the Tory party, and all the Tories who voted to Remain, would in fact vote to leave the United Kingdom and take a Scottish state into the European Union........ Cloud Cuckoo land if you ask me.
Around 400,000 SNP supporters are believed to have voted Leave in the EU referendum and Sturgeon faces a difficult task to persuade them that powers gained from Westminster should then be immediately handed to Brussels.
If i were Theresa May i would grant Sturgeon her indyref2 and she will go down as the PM who brought an end to the independence call from the SNP once and for all.
If Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP had any sense they should bide their time and wait for Brexit deal to be finalised and if support and appetite was in the air for Indyref2, this is the time to go for Indyref2 this way the SNP could go for independence out the 1707 Union and have the benefit of any Brexit deal and would no longer need to rejoin the EU as Scotland would be part of the negotiated UK exit from the EU.
This scenario would leave the SNP to truly offer Independence to the Scottish people.
Having said this......
I would be in favour to remain in the Union but only in a new Federal Union of four Equals, no longer should the three smaller nations destiny be Dictated by the country (England) that has the largest population.
Then by final comments in the previous post where you state your desire for equality of status for all four constituent countries in the union, would that include equality in every area?
Areas such as public spending per head of the population in each country?
Equality between communities is always subject to economies of scale.
If the inhabitants of Scotland who number just one fifth of the number of inhabitants of England, are to have equal power to effect the lives of the Majority that is five times it size then such an arrangement flies in the face of democracy.
Federalism is simply another way of divide and rule, whereby a minority group controls the masses.
The only way a state can operate is with one Government , where every citizen has an equal voice through the medium of the ballot box. The only way we can achieve this in the UK is by the dissolution of the devolved system of governmental powers.
I'm with you guys - been having a bit of fun on Times Digital this morning!
Mr D Akenhead 52 minutes ago
I wish some would wake up to the fact that we now now have a leader with whom we can all be proud. Mrs May cares passionately about our future and keeping our Kingdom United! and she sees the wisdom of making London again the Mecca it once was as the trading capital of the world, with (taking a leaf out of the Irish experience) attractive conditions for businesses. EU seems to turn a blind eye to Ireland, for some reason, or maybe it's because of all those German and French interests there! Who knows, if they (the EU) have to eat humble pie and woo Mrs May with generous severance terms after all, Ireland too might be persuaded by the lady's potential. Personally, I would like that! a united Ireland as part of a greater United Kingdom, would, for me and my ancestors, be a dream come true! In Unity lies Strength! to quote the prophet Orwell!
Keith Mottram 38 minutes ago
Bloody hell its only 11:30 and you're already drunk!
Mr D Akenhead 37 minutes ago
@Keith Mottram haven't touched a drop of Talisker yet!
Mr D Akenhead 22 minutes ago
@Keith Mottram @Keith Mottram p.s. you got your first recommend from me! Here as a virtual exile in Canada, I have to put up with Mr Trudeau who is raising business rates instead of lowering them like Trump! Our green Premier is discovering that many Canadian interests are now shifting to London too, not to mention the the Scandinavians, the Icelanders and the Scots, of course! Now I'll have that wee dram I promised mysel', cheers! and cheers to you, Mrs May!
VeloGarcon 12 minutes ago
@Mr D Akenhead If unity is so good, why are we leaving the EU?
Mr D Akenhead 5 minutes ago
@VeloGarcon @Mr D Akenhead because we support free trade and not cosy cartels run by pigs in Brussels! Perhaps, you have heard of Napoleon, in Animal Farm?
Isn't it strange how we as a human race can see different outcomes to the one and same such as where.....
"Federalism is simply another way of divide and rule, whereby a minority group controls the masses. "
I see a federal UK as a renewing of four countries of equal partner's and not minorities or majority ruling the direction we as four very differing country's direction of travel want to go in.
This is "THE ONLY WAY" to bring unity within a truly United UK.
As i have said before the genie (Devolution) is out the bottle and will never ever be bottled again.
I want to remain in the UK pulling our resource's together and the unity in strength but also leave each country with the ability to govern themselves.
The English want the rights given to Scottish, Irish and Welsh devolved government's, which is only but right!......
It is after all only governing what happens within our own country's.
We already have English law and Scottish law.
We have powers being devolved in ever increasing amounts year in year to Scotland and shows little sign of abating.
Cameron already has conceded more powers and Theresa May will no doubt need to give more powers after Brexit is realsied to avoid the Scots from voting to leave the rUK.
Leading figure in the Vote Leave EU campaign brandished a leaflet given to Scottish voters by the pro-Brexit group which promised Scotland would automatically win significant new powers after the UK left the EU.
the leaflet said.......
"Scotland will regain control over fishing, agriculture and important social and environmental areas giving Holyrood even more power to deliver for the Scottish people"
Westminster should not i repeat had better not renege on these powers being granted to Scotland after Brexit has been achieved.
If Westminster was to renege on a this leaflets promises, this would be the catalyst that would force a majority to once and for all say.....
Stuff it to Westminster and walk away from rUK and the Irish may well follow us but if they don't they will no doubt force more concessions from an ever weakening Westminster government.
Westminster is already said through David Mundell, the Scottish secretary had confirmed that shifting powers from Brussels directly to Edinburgh is on the table, including justice powers.
Mundell said...... the UK government’s starting point was to ensure nothing interfered with the UK’s internal market but increasing the Scottish parliament’s powers was clearly on the agenda.
Mr Mundell said......
“We’re approaching the discussions on repatriation with a completely open mind and in a pragmatic way, by looking at where those powers sit best,”
You can see from the Westminster direction of travel towards Brexit is clearly towards more Devolution not less.
There is no going back my friend no going back to Imperial English rule.
It is clearly going in the direction of a new Union of equal partner's or more Devolution.
"I wish some would wake up to the fact that we now now have a leader with whom we can all be proud.
Mrs May cares passionately about our future and keeping our Kingdom United!"
I would say Mrs May has proven nothing as yet, she like Gordon Brown has not had a mandate through the ballot box, she has said some good and promising things but its way to early to say whether she is passionate about keeping the UK united.
Read in my comments directly above to see the promises or rhetoric about more powers to Scotland once Brexit is realised.
If she dare renege on these powers being devolved that have been promised in the Leave EU campaign up here in Scotland, she will do as much if not more damage which may well see her as the PM who broke the Union