Mibbes Aye Mibbes Naw – No Voters Reflect

B2IwGf5IMAAi0AKA selection of shorter pieces in our #noway series.

Dave Cullen

First of all, I think it is an excellent thing you are doing by opening your pages to no contributors. I’d like to say Thank-you for that.

Freedom Frenzy. I voted no. My decision was made months before the referendum date arrived and long before the so-called vow. I would vote no again tomorrow.

I voted no because I want devolution to Scotland and changes to electoral systems. But I absolutely do not want the uncertainty of separation.

Had the separatists focused a little more on possible gains in localised democratic control, rather than tales of milk and honey and the Alex Salmond vanity project, you MIGHT have got somewhere.

Rachel McCormack

Disclaimer: I live in London and couldn’t vote. I would have voted Yes as I think the Union is finished and I do not think England will get a proper democracy without drastic change that people here don’t seem to be that bothered about. Yet. I think Scotland should have got out of dodge.

However: The No voters in my family were very concerned that the numbers didn’t add up and were constantly looking for proper believable numbers from the Yes camp and not finding them. One member (a well off one) said to me at least three times “people are struggling, what if it gets even worse” She did not believe in the vow, or any other promise that was made. She knew she would be fine economically in the Union or out, she was genuinely worried about the figures for others. She still believes no matter how bad austerity gets it would be worse in Indy Scotland.

I140912_180953_12159598oTextTRMRMMGLPICT000046157861oA friend was very worried about Universities, the loss of English fee paying students and the cuts that would come in education. I’ve heard a number of times that lots of Scottish universities have a large number of English students to keep them afloat financially. I have no idea if this is true or not, it is worth investigating by someone to see how much truth is in that rumour as it another thing against a Yes vote.

Both things are dismissed by Yes voters as scaremongering without proper figures being give to people and, understandably they voted No.

Interestingly I never met a NO voter who voted no as they were ideologically attached to the British state, apart from some people who went to public school in England. The only ideological attachment I saw was (and is) the central London Establishment foaming at the mouth at the idea of the loss of some fantasy Britain of theirs.

The vow, the Please Don’t Go campaign from the Duke of Westminster’s son-in-law, etc just made the very undecided in my circle of friends in Scotland vote Yes as they were furious at the stupidity and transparency of it.

Ian McLintock

I voted No but regretted it almost as soon as I did. The response from ‘fellow’ No voters was a revelation. There was an obvious and palpable sense of shame and regret, contrasting sharply with the Yes movements deep sadness. I felt I’d contributed to a nation’s failure, which I had.

This ‘sense’ of having done the wrong thing was confirmed in coming weeks after case after case of the Better Together just unfolded before our very eyes.
We were duped.

I do believe however that the Scotland should not build its economy – or its case for sovereignty on oil. This is no to do with its ‘volatility’ (hello Opec!) – but to do with it being a fossil fuel.

Malcolm Henry

Bella, In response to your request for post-referendum thoughts from No voters I can confirm that I remain just as frustrated by both the Yes and No movements as I was prior to the 18th of September.

I was “lied” to by both sides. The Vow wowed me not. Lord Smith has presided over a predictable tray of fudge. The puerile party posturing and bickering is giving me a headache.

The persistent whine of nationalism from both sides of the border continues to divert attention away from what really matters: structural reform of our systems of finance and democracy.

Independence, as it’s being presented, continues to be nothing more than geographical relocation of our existing problems.

Sadly, I stand by my blog post of the 2nd of September.

Maybe it’s too early for the social justice Yessers to turn their attention away from independence and put their efforts into the hard work of how we can make government and finance work better irrespective of where we choose to draw our national borders.

I hope it will happen soon. Keep up the good work.

Malcolm

Sarah Andrews

I came late to the party, panicked and voted No. I expect to be slated for admitting that but I think readers of this blog and many others have no understanding of how many people (most?) are disengaged from politics.That’s changed now.

Every day I would read 20 reasons for Yes and 20 reasons for No. The difference was that the no people seemed to be people in authority: businessmen, Cabinet ministers, senior politicians and the Yes people seemed to be just a handful of the same faces.

Looking back it seems ridiculous. I had a media education but I passed the exams a month too late.
Sorry. I feel enlightened in the aftermath. I’d vote yes tomorrow because I now know we were lied to. I don’t think they can hold us back as a country based on a tissue of lies.



Categories: Commentary

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108 replies

  1. I just want to say ‘thank you’ to the contributers. We’re listening.

  2. All interesting stuff, some would change their vote now and some wouldn’t, kinda fits in with the Ashcroft poll and others done since. Thanks for responding guys and have a good xmas.

  3. I like this dialogue. I’m an expat Scot working abroad because of a lack of job security at home. I’m careful to tell everyone that I work abroad but live in Scotland as my heart is there. I freely admit I’ve been for separation since I was a teenager because I never felt British – always Scottish (and me with an Irish Mum too).

    Ian, the oil is only the pump primer to fund new industry. Scotland has huge potential for renewable energy in its rivers, tides and seas. Think of the power of waves crashing against our 800 islands to give you a vision. This work has started and will bring investment, apprenticeships and work as it progresses.

    Malcolm, the one thing I never heard from the No camp was any real criticism of the Scottish Government’s handling of the economy. They managed to prevent our students paying university fees, maintained free travel for the over ’60’s and gave people free prescriptions. Without independence, there is no way to reform finance but I truly believe that the bankers would have paid the price in an independent Scotland rather than be given a free ride as they were in Britain.

    Globalisation is working for the few who don’t care if the rest starve. The only way to break out of this awful marriage Britain has with the US is to separate. I feel proud when I see the Yes activity continuing with the Common Weal and other enterprises. I feel ashamed that we have food banks, homelessness and people without money to heat their homes.

    I strongly believe that the future is local with the thinking being global. I would be prepared to see things get worse during a period of adjustment as I truly believe we need to run our own land.

  4. Dave Cullen says he had decided he would vote No months before, would vote No again today, and refers to “Alex Salmond’s vanity project”. Excuse me if I don’t pay much attention to your criticisms, Dave.

    Rachel makes some points worth thinking about. I do wonder, however, if No voters who claim to not have been getting credible figures from the Yes campaign don’t actually just mean “I am utterly convinced that Scotland would be worse off, and I will only believe figures that show this.” There’s only so many times you can show someone the GERS figures until you come to the conclusion that they simply don’t want to believe them.

    I’ve got some sympathy for the view about university funding, though. As with the currency, I believe the line being put forward was correct – that the EU would have given special dispensation in the end – but it was a hard sell, and it might simply have been better to say exactly how much English students bring in and how such a shortfall would have been made up.

    From the sounds of it, Ian might be a convert to Yes already, although it’d be interesting to know why he voted No in the first place. To be honest, he’s got a point about the economy, and we can see just now that the unionist parties and media are hell-bent on making sure people keep believing that the Scottish economy is solely dependent on oil (and financial services, if GMS this morning was anything to go by.) Let’s get these myths busted now, not during the next campaign.

    Malcolm seems to be in the “a plague on both your houses, but I’ll vote No anyway” camp. I’m sorry, but I don’t buy it. The campaigns both being crap is not a valid reason for choosing No. Something made him pick one option over the other, so why not simply admit what it was?

    Sarah’s reasons are understandable. I admire someone admitting they simply panicked and went for the “default” option (and the media had made damn sure No was seen as the default option). She’s right of course, the No campaign utilised as many authoritative voices as they could, because they knew fine people would place more faith in their opinions. It’s something Yes could do nothing about, but that we have to be ready to combat next time.

    It’s all well and good saying that people shouldn’t place too much stock in the views of big business, who generally oppose any change of any sort (except tax cuts), but the reality is people do listen to them, so we need to fix that. We can either get them on board (stop laughing at the back there), or we can change people’s perceptions. For all our hype about being a nation that has no time for airs and graces (“I kent his faither”), there’s still too much deference ingrained into the Scottish psyche. Scotland voted No because people weren’t yet confident enough. That’s the biggest stumbling block to independence. Sort that, and we’ll win our independence. Oh, and let’s make independence – that normal thing that every normal nation in the world has – the default. It’s been normalised now, but it’s still the “radical” option, and people need courage to choose the radical option.

    Don’t apologise though, Sarah – people voted No for far worse reasons than you.

    • Doug, if you follow the link in my bit you’ll find a blog post from early September that explains my thinking. I didn’t have time to condense/rewrite it in response to Bella’s request.

      • Well the first section, where you try to disprove the theory that independence would have meant we got the governments we vote for, is very disappointing. All you’ve done is regurgitate the same non sequiturs proponents of FPTP use to try and convince people that proportional representation isn’t actually any fairer than FPTP, and therefore we should just stick with FPTP since it’s what we already have. To be perfectly honest, I’ve little time for arguments that try to artificially shrink a winning party’s vote share by including non-voters – unless it’s used as an argument for compulsory voting or something. It’s something many No voters have been doing since the referendum in order to create the impression Yes lost by a lot more than it did, and it’s inherently dishonest. Already, it’s pretty clear you’re looking for excuses to vote No.

        But it seems your decision was based on the things that follow that, so no matter. What follow is even more disappointing, to be honest. After conceding opportunities for political reform puts the balance firmly on the Yes side, you then go on to build a spurious case for why No just wins on money and taxation.

        But that’s clearly not good enough, so you go looking for more reasons to justify a No vote, which is telling in itself. I always said during the campaign that there were two types of questions people asked. Some were asked because it was something the person was genuinely concerned about and wanted a reassuring answer; whereas others were asked for the sake of asking a question, in the hope of finding that one unaswerable question that could be used to justify a No vote. I’m afraid your article reads like the latter.

        The “distraction” point sounds remarkably like a barrel being scraped. Using the Holyrood building project as evidence that negotiations would go awry is a tad unfair, no? It was the first thing the parliament did – how would you like it if your whole career was reduced down to ONE thing you did badly at the very start of it? Would you consider that to be reasonable?

        You conclude that “the best chance of getting all the good things that my independence-minded friends are aiming for is to campaign for structural reform from within the UK”, yet offer absolutely nothing to back that up. But the last part is perhaps the most depressing.

        “Making money work properly for everyone is a project that could bring people together. With sterling, we have an opportunity to create a financial system that’s more effective and sustainable than anything we could achieve in an independent Scotland.

        For this reason alone I’m voting No in the referendum.”

        Or to put it another way, “I’m voting No to a concrete change that is being offered to me right now and at least has the potential to stir things up, in favour of some non-specific idea that isn’t being offered, and shows no signs of ever being offered either.”

        I’m perhaps being harsh on you, but reading your article brings nothing but frustration. You place the entire burden on the Yes campaign (you even state early on that the onus is on Yes to make their case, automatically loading the scales in No’s favour), and wherever possible, you use worst-case scenarios to criticise independence, while failing to hold the union to the same standard, thus implicitly accepting the unionist narrative that the worst that could happen with a No vote is for things to stay as they are. Far too often, you fall into the trap of assuming what was true on the 18th September must be true forevermore, perhaps best characterised by this cracker of a line here:

        “Membership of political parties has shrunk to a fraction of what they were when I was a boy”

        Oh how quickly things change, eh?

        I’m sorry, you might tell yourself that you voted for the reasons you give, but in reality it’s something deeper, and unless and until you work out what it is for yourself, there’s little point anyone trying to convince you that you should vote Yes.

    • Doug

      A first class post and I think a very fair assessment. The fundemental one for me being that ONLY an Independent country could have made the choices some of the NO voters highlighted. e.g I remain certain that social provision would have taken a fairer path. The use of fossil fuels would have been an interim contribution but in the life of a nation it would have been a short period – the renewable movement would have been advanced significantly and already demonstrated by the recent achiement of 50% of power from renewables highlighted at this weeks FMQ’s.

      I think the photograph of Johann Lamont outside Asda summed up the NO campaign for me – Bad News scare stories that threatened their fellow Scots were to be celebrated.

      The arguements on social change across the whole UK is as flawed as the arguement to removing all nuclear weapons from the World at the same time (instead of from Scotland)

      I wish we could change the World. I wish we could change Europe. I wish we could change the UK. However I remain certain that we could have changed Scotland and built a fairer society.

  5. Thanks to all the posters.
    There is uncertainty within the union as there is without it. All the answers to all, or at least most, of your doubts and questions were, and still, are available. Oil is a bonus, yes a volatile one but, Scotland is a viable economy without it. Even “better together” acknowledged as much.
    Still, it is good to hear the varied reasons, for people voting no, an understanding is important to both sides of the debate.

  6. Thanks again to the ‘No’ contributors – we wullnay be chappin’ yer door at midnight!

    But your names have been taken for a wee bit o’ cuddly re-education ! But any of ye caught wearin’ a kilt will be banished tae Edinburgh, the Army or England…..where kilts belong.

  7. ”Dave Cullen says he had decided he would vote No months before, would vote No again today, and refers to “Alex Salmond’s vanity project”. Excuse me if I don’t pay much attention to your criticisms, Dave.”

    This tosh about Salmond’s vanity project is part of the smokescreen put about in ad hominem fashion a few weeks before the vote – and in a panic. Then I knew the UK establishment was pissing itself in fear.

    Of all politicians, Salmond is the least vain or self seeking I have ever seen bar Tony Benn. I am not a member of the SNP.

  8. I think perceived threat to incomes was the reason many voted No.
    This message was reinforced by big business,oil tycoons and the London establishment.
    We need to get out from under corporate influence which means developing alternative energy sources to fossil fuels and encouraging small businesses.
    Some good points made and some pointless.

  9. This is very interesting to see that the No voters thought of Scotland’s ability to govern herself in an independent country.

    Dave – You seem to let your dislike of Alex Salmond sway you’re thought process, this was nothing to do with party politics, it was about Scotland choosing to govern herself. The changes you want in Scotland will only happen if Scotland is allowed to make these decisions. You gave that power back to Westminster Tories, they are not going to allow you to have these things, because it doesn’t suit them. They don’t and have never supported Scotland.

    Ian- I think a lot of people were like that, more so when they read the Smith Commision and realise WM have made a fool of us.

    Malcolm – I was like you too and had to fall on my own common sense, WM would dump us as fast as possible if we were the car crash they were making us out to be. So I did a little bit of digging to find out why we were in this condition. What I found made me angry, I found through the records of WM Voting that Scottish Labour have never voted in support of Scotland in any area which would have helped her become a stronger country. They have voted to keep UK Labour in their jobs. This has seriously damaged Scotlands people. The Smith Commision being the biggest insult to Scotlands people. Even Micheal Portillo said, ” WM lied and Scotland believed them”. Angry, yes I was. What a fool we had been.

    Sarah – I think a few people came to the party late and panicked WM relied on it. They believed Scotland wouldn’t vote in her own interests and when it thought we were, it panicked and said anything and everything to create panic and fear. People who did not read WINGS/BELLA were not getting the truth, hopefully now we can get as many SNPs down to WM to hold their feet to the fire. Scotland deserves better.

    Most of the bluffs have been proven as such, the oil issue. was only the icing on the cake, Scotland has run without oil for the last 30 odd years, Westminster lied and hide the report in the 1975 of how rich Scotland is and decided to hide this report. As England was on her knees, they used this oil money to build up South, M25 – Euro Tunnel – Police Overtime for the miners strikes etc etc. (Read McCrone Report 1974/5) BBC, MSM tried desperately to keep off air anyone who was telling people that Scotland would be fine.

    Scotlands land, is owned by approx. 400 people, mostly through ill gotten gains and you scratch my back deals. Read “The Poor didn’t have Lawyers”. This will release much more wealth back into Scotland. The Queen, she is the biggest land owner in Scotland, but pays no tax or death duties, these laws allow these huge land grabs to be passed to only one family member which stops this from breaking up the land in Scotland. The have had their hunting and gun laws frozen so they don’t pay what its worth as a business. The fact she doesn’t own these properties is by the by, she has these all tied up in trusts, all quietly done. This has happened over many many years……the poor didn’t have lawyers or read latin. Scotland needs to unpick all this and give Scotland back to Scotland.

    This is more to do with taking the time to educate yourself. Read Cochrane’s book “My part in Alex Salmond downfall” he laughs at the lies he helped to create, he helped Brown/Darling/Cameron to serve lie upon lie and loved how Scotland’s people believed him. Scotland deserves better from her people their children deserve better from their parents and in this instance, they fell for the obvious lies of Westminster.

    Scottish Labour are here to keep London Labour in power, this does not help Scotland and for the last 30 odd years never has. I hope we drive the change Scotland needs soon.

  10. It would be great to have more of this Bella to combat our imperial masters innate urges to divide and rule and our disputatious tendencies to fall for it and fall out with each other rather than keeping our eye on the ball – I’d like to hear every side of the argument as there are many more than two and would like to live in a country where everyone felt that their opinion counted and that their voice could be heard…….lets keep talking in common ground for the common good

    • ‘our imperial masters”

      No Mojo! ……rubbish. The reason we are ruled as we are is because we voted for it.

      Please stop the BraveHeart outlook on history and politics. We are NOT under imperial rule – we Scots want what we have. We got what we deserve and what we asked for.

      Right?

      • Believe it or not, Bothybasher, you’re probably both right to some degree. But I think Mojo hits the nail more firmly on the head if you look at the economic realities. Empires are about economics; politics is just a tool.

      • Not a Braveheart outlook but an acknowledge of the video of the Star Wars welcome to the Labour MPs walking up to the top of Buchanan Street to hold No signs. We are witnessing the end of the Empire as the elite imperial masters retreat to the castle of London. I’m not unhappy with this phrase.

  11. Thanks for sharing your opinions.

    I’m a yes voter but I was really keen on hearing from no voters to see if any regret their decision.

    Good work bellacaledonia

  12. Just want to thank Bella and the No voting contributors, I have read all of these posts avidly. Many Yes people like me, feel genuinely perplexed, curious, frustrated at how we can communicate and engage, so we are listening!

    I hope that those who feel duped or have changed to Yes, will help next year by voting for a pro Indy party, preferably SNP, if only to get that bigger group to represent Scotland down south!

    • “to get that bigger group to represent Scotland down south”

      And for that group to do what exactly? A 400+ MP’s red and blue tory (i.e. Better Together) alliance at Westminster will easily outvote even 50 SNP MP’s. What then?

      We lost our nation through a majority vote of Scots MP’s and we should reclaim our nation by the same method. There is no need for a majority of Scots MP’s to go ‘down south’. All a Scots majority of 30+ SNP MP’s need do is declare independence; prior to Holyrood that was always the understanding at Westminster, and that is what they always taunted Scots with at GE’s. So I would rather our SNP MP’s did that than go ‘down south’ and take the unionist salary. They should therefore stand for election on a mandate to declare independence.

      • I have often thought the same. This was a similar situation as faced the Irish Parliamentary Party in the 19th century. After Catholics got the vote (1828) they were able to build up a parliamentary majority by the last decades of the 19th century as the franchise was progressively enlarged. But the Irish MPs were outnumbered in Westminster. What enabled them to put pressure on Gladstone’s Liberals was the extra-parliamentary agitation that was going on in the rural areas, the Irish Land League meetings, the rural violence, the Fenian Brotherhood. I’m not suggesting that we take to anything illegal. But that the way our MPs will be able to get traction is if there is some kind of extra-parliamentary activity going on in Scotland that has mass membership and is actively agitating for indy/FFA.

      • Why do people keep banging on about UDI? UDI is never going to happen, and if SNP candidates stood on such a platform, they simply wouldn’t get elected. The precedent for gaining independence through a referendum has been set, and it’s the only way of accurately gauging the mood of the nation – bear in mind the SNP could get 30+ MPs with far fewer votes than the 45% that voted Yes, which would be highlighted endlessly anyway.

        If the red and blue Tories do indeed combine to push through things which are unpopular in Scotland, then that will be Labour completely finished, and more likely the union with it. On the other hand, if the SNP started banging on about UDI, they’d scare off those who were undecided but ended up going for No, and probably some Yes voters as well. It would be disastrous.

      • DD: SNP candidates standing at the GE in 2015 do so on behalf of a party whose primary purpose is and always has been independence. So voters know in advance what they are voting for. If a majority of SNP MP’s are elected in Scotland then that is a mandate for independence – it always has been and always will be; this is the recognised Westminster ‘way’, so forget your recent referendum ‘precedent’. If some people are ‘scared’ by this as you suggest then they will no doubt vote for unionist parties, much as they would do in a referendum. Those Scots who are not scared will do the opposite. The UK GE is and always will be the primary opportunity for Scotland to reject the union. By the way I am not so sure you should refer to this as UDI. DI is sufficient.

      • Darien – The only mandate SNP MPs have is whatever they put in their manifesto. I can tell you right now, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the SNP will not put that in their manifesto. I’ve heard it directly from SNP MSPs and Nicola herself said it multiple times – a referendum is the only way. Someone asked a question along these lines when Nicola’s tour came to Aberdeen, and she was having absolutely none of it.

        If you want to vote for a party that will use parliamentary arithmetic to declare independence, then you’re going to have to hope Jim Sillars forms one with that councillor Pat Lee, because nobody else even entertains the idea. Parliamentary arithmetic was the recognised route before we had a parliament, but the situation has changed, and let’s be glad it did, because the only reason we’re looking at such high support for the SNP is the fallout of the referendum, and without Holyrood, we wouldn’t have had a referendum.

        It doesn’t matter what you call it, it just will not happen. No political party supports it. You’re more likely to see the Lib Dems sticking to a manifesto commitment than see any party support that route.

  13. I’m really glad to read the views of those No voters brave enough to give their reasons on this forum. I was a bit uncomfortable with the tone of some comments on contributions from some earlier NO voters, particularly Nigel Calvert. While it’s fine to ask someone to give details of what they see as lies from the Yes Campaign or lack of clarity, it can be done in a non-agressive way.

    In the same way, while I agree we must challenge reporters and politicians, we must be careful to avoid insulting language as this gives them ammunition to use against indysupporters and also puts off those who are still undecided or wavering unionist supporters.

    We need to learn from the referendum campaign that the whole might of the British Establishment and the press will be against any Independence parties’ efforts to get more seats at Westminster. We need to play a canny game.

  14. MBC, the vast majority of Irish Catholics had no vote after 1828 and the franchise has only been made universal in Northern Ireland in recent times. Remember the Unionist maxim of “Vote early & vote often”.

    Independence is very simple it’s about running your own affairs & finding solutions to your own problems. Nobody else, certainly not the Bullingdon Boys, can do this better than we can.

  15. I think while there are some no voters who have no interest in our point of view and will never change their mind there are some who were unsure or are still unsure/scared. I hate seeing abusive comments to no voters, I’ve noticed a lot of it on Facebook and Twitter. Some of them really do troll but it makes us look bad.

    As I said before – me and other people are interested in the voters who were unsure or who wanted more powers without full independence.

    Personally I almost voted no. I’m 24 and to be honest had absolutely no interest in politics before the referendum. I couldn’t make up my mind and was about to go for the status quo. I thought we weren’t big enough to go it alone and I believed all the media stuff. I was working in the Channel Islands and I constantly had English people asking for my opinion but telling me that we would never be able to do it and England subsidizes us. That’s what first made me think about how I should vote. I researched things and went with my heart and voted yes. I’m glad I did because I know I would have felt disappointed with myself afterwards.

    I guess what I’m trying to say is that we as yes voters need to stop attacking others and try talking to the ones who are willing to talk. Maybe we can get some of them to see our side one day.

    Anyway thanks again for the posts

  16. @Ian McLintock
    Thank you Ian for your very valuable comments.
    I was quite taken by your compassionate thoughts about others (on both sides) in the aftermath of the referendum result. It takes a person of quality to think of others.
    I also take your point quoted below:

    “I do believe however that the Scotland should not build its economy – or its case for sovereignty on oil. This is not to do with its ‘volatility’ (hello Opec!) – but to do with it being a fossil fuel.”

    I agree with you, however, I don’t think that most of us do build our case on oil.
    The fact is that we do not actually need to. Oil forms a small percentage of our economy and we have plenty of other resources available to us. It is merely a bonus and I agree that ecologically, the less dependence on it the better. Certainly, we do NOT need to undertake ‘fracking’ and should be cutting our carbon footprint as fully as we can. I think both the SNP and Greens will wish to follow this course and the Scottish Government’s record is excellent over the last 7 years.

    We are gradually moving to a stage where we should be able to supply almost all of our energy needs from ‘clean sources’. Wave power and wind power will supply most of, if not all of our electricity, for example.
    What we need to do is make Alba the manufacturing country it once was, so that we are exporting materials made here, which outweigh the costs of imports. This way, our economy will build up, thus fuelling (pardon the pun) more growth. We would, therefore, not be going inexorably down the borrowing route. It is disgusting that Scotland pays £127 per second of every day for debt on money that it has not borrowed itself.

    I believe that all this is best done in an Independent Scotland. We can trade with any other Nations, independent or not. With control of our own resources, the Holyrood Parliament would not be in the straightjacket that Westminster provides and so would not have to rob Peter to pay Paul. We do not want or need to apply ‘austerity’ tactics.

    A smaller unit, with its own Government which can be reached easily and called to account if necessary, is ideal. That is, an Independent Scotland. The Icelandic Government was called to account after the banking crisis, by people coming to their Parliament and making noise. They did not go away until their voice was heard and their Government did take notice. This could never happen with Westminster (witness the scenes in Parliament Square in London the other month, where it was a no-go area to any demonstrators), but would happen in Holyrood.

  17. ”I’m 24 and to be honest had absolutely no interest in politics” .

    At last Stacey, you realised that tho’ you may have had no interest in politics, politics was interested in you.

  18. Dave Cullen might have been the No-voting clerk who popped out for a smoke at my local polling-station on the evening of September 17th; utterly unprompted he preceded to tell me that he’d made his mind up long-ago to vote No, and therefore never felt the need to read or study any of the arguments presented by Yes

    How many No votes were cast in this, again in my opinion, thoroughly irresponsible manner, we will never know. If, Mr Cullen, we stubbornly refuse to engage in the democratic process, would it not be the decent thing to do to simply abstain?

    A ballot cast in wilful ignorance is, once more, in my opinion, an act of sociopathic vandalism.

    .

  19. @Dave Cullen

    David, you said “I voted no because I want devolution to Scotland and changes to electoral systems. But I absolutely do not want the uncertainty of separation.”

    Well, you voted no and did NOT get devolution and are not likely to. You did NOT get changes to electoral systems and you have got the uncertainty of the Union.

    You have also demonstrated a certain lack of media ‘savvy’. The pro-YES campaign DID focus on localised democratic control, but the media used its spin to overlook this and deflect from it.

    Also, using phrases like ‘Alex Salmond vanity project’ and ‘freedom frenzy’ rather diminishes what you had to say. It was the lowest of the low tactics from the media to demonise him and portray this as being about Mr Salmond.

    The question we were asked was “Do you want Scotland to be Independent?” Yes or No.
    Mr Salmond was not mentioned in this question.

    Nevertheless, thank you for contributing.

  20. Just come across this site and got to say it has been most refreshing. Good well thought out discussion. Keep it up.

  21. I voted NO and would never change my mind.
    The yes campaign lied from the start all the way to the end and even in the aftermath. Thry realised they couldn’t win on Scottishness and nationalism alone so instead promoted it to the working class with lies and deception (The White Paper I believe it was called). Telling tbe poor they will be better off under independence, scaremongering thst the NHS will be privatised if we stay in the UK and laying claim to a currency and a central bank that wasn’t ours to take
    I haven’t met any No voters who would now vote yes. If there are people saying this I imagine it’s for an easy life when confronted by yes voters.
    BTW – Have you guys on here heard about the oil price falls. Now $58 a barrel The SNP projected their independence finances on $113 a barrel.
    Just how skint would we have been under independence ? Who would have had to explain this to the poor who had been promised the earth?

    • There was a similar massive drop back in 1999, then a huge increase in 2007, oil prices fluctuate. Anyway, I’m no expert, there’s a good article here by Iain MacWhirter – http://www.heraldscotland.com/comment/columnists/iain-macwhirter-plummeting-oil-price-stirs-troubled-waters.114828069

      • I know oil prices fluctuate but the point is the SNP deliberately used the top line figure as a basis of funding the country. If there ever is any future referendum in 15 years time or so then they will not get away with this trick again!

    • The oil price now means naught. Scotland was to be independent in a little over a years time from now, what will the oil price be then?
      We would not be skint under independence, as you put it. Oil is a bonus, over and above Scotland’s tax receipts.
      The NHS in England is in danger of privatisation through TTIP, a quick search will find all the relevant information on that.
      You are, of course, entitled to your opinion but, please research your arguments before making assumptions, we would all be the better for it.

      • Yes campaign finances were based on $113 a barrel. The oil revenues were supposed to provide the equivalent of what we get from Barnet to provide all the free stuff we currently enjoy, plus….. At $58 a barrel something would have had to give. Robin Alan Chairman of Brindex and Director of Premier Oil has said “North Sea oil industry is close to collapse”.
        Oil taxes would have be cut dramatically to maintain investment leading to less revenues.
        This was your only real chance of independence!
        Oil revenues will decline rapidly over the next decade and will have an even more aging population.
        Sure, oil prices will recover slightly in tbe next few years but never again will the SNP get away with using a top line figure as a basis for financing expenditure.
        Quite a lucky escape really. ……you should be thanking us No voters!

      • Oil forms only a small percentage of our resources in Scotland and we have many other assets which will generate wealth for our people. It is not the most important part of our vision for the future.

        Oil prices have dropped since the summer and some No voters have suggested that this would have made us worse off in an Independent Scotland. However, the figures below demonstrate that this is clearly NOT the case.

        Oil price (summer 2014) 100 dollars per barrel (average)
        Oil price (December 2014) 60 dollars per barrel (average)

        Scotland UK
        Current % revenue 10% 90%

        In the Union. Scotland UK
        Summer 10 d/b 90 d/b
        December 6 d/b 54 d/b

        With Independence:
        % Revenue 100% 0%
        Price 60 d/b 0 d/b

        Had we got Independence, it would not have come into effect until around 2016. However, these arguments still apply if the price of oil remained low, when Independence came into effect.
        With Independence, Scotland would be getting the full price of oil at any given time (60 d/b just now). Staying in the Union and including the drop, Scotland would be getting 6 d/b at this lower price. In other words, an Independent Scotland would be getting:

        6 times the price that it got last summer OR
        10 times the price it is getting just now as part of the UK OR
        6 dollars per barrel more than even the rUK gets just now
        Clearly, Independence would have been better.

        Thus, it is clear that these arguments from the No camp are erroneous and designed to promote fear, as is their custom.

        The prices are unlikely to remain low as word from the Middle East is that the Oil prices will rise to former levels again, since prices fluctuate regularly.

      • I found it too difficult to import a table or allign headings with figures on posting.
        However, here is a key:
        Revenues from oil are currently 10% (Scotland) and 90% (rUK).
        I have then given the prices/barrel (d/b) for different situations, ie., within the Union and with Independence.

      • Curious about what all the free stuff we enjoy is?????? The Barnett formula is just a means for calculating what percentage of our own money we get back. Under Indy it would have been 100%, Why would we need to use oil revenues to replace it?

      • Not sure what all the free stuff we get is????? The Barnett formula is merely a method of calculating what percentage of our own money WM is gracious enough to let us have back. Under Indy it would have been 100%, so why we would need to replace it with oil revenues beats me. Surely, if you want to talk about oil, and you clearly do, the revenue would over and above our Barnett formula replacement??????

    • Did you not read the contribution above that pointed out the oil is merely a bonus? It was the NO camp that went on and on about the oil. Scotland has far more strings to its bow than oil.

      • Swinney used $113 a barrel to base his finances on. This was supposed to replace the money we receive from the Barnet formula.

      • You are confusing the SNP’s own campaign for governing Scotland with the Independence campaign. Who is to say that the SNP would have been the largest party in an independent Scotland? I personally think that had Labour not failed the Scots so reprehensibly during the campaign, they would probably have been favourites to form a Scottish Government. That being the case, Mr Swinneys figures would have had no relevance to anything. Instead Labour has become the worst profanity in the language of most Scots.

      • John duffy – Oil revenues would have to have accounted for 15-20% of our GDP to finance our country under independence. That is not just a bonus. It would have been a necessity. $113 a barrel is the figure that Swinney used.
        Taking that oil prices have halved the oil revenues would have halved a short fall of about 7.5-10% of our GDP.
        This nonsense about labour getting into bed with the tories is just that – nonsense. That is what happens in referendums – they are fought and won or lost by cross party campaigns.
        Labour backed a No vote right from the very start 2 years ago. They did this because they believed it was the best thing fir the Scottish electorate – and they were right.
        This is just merely an SNP soundbite!
        There will be no SNP / Labour coalition at the GE. If you vote SNP good chance it will lead to a tory majority government due to labour losing Scottish seats.

    • Sure Scot says “Just how skint would we have been under independence ?”, the oil price now really does mean nothing as its artificially depressed. the No campaign told us it was running out, it must be the first valuable scarce commodity that under normal conditions where the price has dropped. I do sometimes wonder about Scots who have so little faith in themselves and their country that they are happy to be the spongers and subsidy junkies that the MSM and Westminster make out. Scotland has a very healthy economy and pays far more to Westminster than the pocket money that is returned under the Barnett formula. The myth that Scotland is subsidised is used to keep its population in check, do you really think that if we cost rUK money then they would fight so hard to keep us because they love us so much?

    • Oh dear! This must be the worst comment I have ever seen on here. A rant! No reasoning. No evidence for statements made. Sure Scot has not read anything that others have said. However, the first sentence gives it all away.

      • Frank M

        Oil is not a bonus for an indy Scotland no matter how much that you wish that it was, The tax receipts from it are absolutely essential. $60 a barrel = a 30% drop in Scotland’s GDP which would see humungous tax rises and massive welfare cuts to make up the shortfall. If you think its austerity now, it would be austerity in perpetuity if there was an indy Scotland

        Bill

    • “I voted NO and would never change my mind.”

      I stopped reading after that, because you’re blatantly never going to believe anything Yessers say. Closed minds reject opinions or evidence that conflicts with their own viewpoint, so you have nothing worthy to bring to the debate.

      • I just tend not to believe in fantasy economics.
        You stopped reading because yiu didn’t see “I would vote yes now”
        Given what is now happening in the North Sea I feel completely vindicated by voting No.
        I did what I felt was best for myself, friends, family and for Scotland and have been proved right.
        You don’t win an argument by shouting the loudest but by being proven to be correct – you don’t have to thank me though 🙂

      • Jimmy Mac – A poor attempt at silencing opinion. Just because someone does not agree with your opinion does not make then a troll!
        I have posted many times on this site – not a regular but when I see something worth commenting on I do so.

      • Sure Scot; You do not have to believe the guys trying to educate you here, you will get the same info from the Office of National Statistics. Scotland currently is the third wealthiest part of the UK – if oil and gas revenues are not included. If they are included, even at todays rates, we are then wealthier than the rUK combined. Effectively if the price of a barrel was $5, we would still be richer than the rUK. You should note than when looking at government figures, there is often a note at the bottom somewhere which says something like ” includes a geographical share of oil and gas revenues”. This effectively means that figures for rUK include the revenue from 90% of Scotlands oil & gas produce. If production stops in the North Sea tomorrow, Scotland loses less than any other part of the union. As has been said, had we been able to secure 100%, it would have been a nice bonus. But we are less dependant on it than rUK.

      • Sure Scot – No, I stopped reading because you said you would never change your mind. If you’ve already ruled out the possibility of changing your mind, why should anyone bother with you? Tedious pish like “fantasy economics” merely shows I was right not to read any further.

        (And if you think the price of oil a mere three months after the referendum vindicates a decision that potentially has reverberations lasting decades, then you really are an idiot.)

      • Doug Daniel – I used to vote SNP when I was younger but have voted Labour the last 17 years.
        I used to believe in independence but not anymore.
        I don’t have a closed mind – I’ve been there and done that and seen Scottish nationalism for what it is – an unnecessary risk.
        The more you call No voters idiots the more they feel they made the right decision 🙂
        I could say that Yes voters are idiots for being hoodwinked by the SNP and labour voters who voted yes for falling for Sturgeon’s line of “vote yes to reclaim your party”……… but I don’t!

    • To me the Sure Scot represents so much of what was wrong with the NO campaign which ultimately led me to becoming a committed YES voter and activist.

      The representation of the White Paper here, as in so many other places is so misleading as to be incredulous; interestingly of all those that I challenged on it, not one had actually said they had read the white paper! To me the White Paper was simply demonstrating what could be done and was not a forecast of the economics in detail of the future.

      The accusation of lying did not stand up when I spent a lot of time investigating on the web, unless the NO campaign was being discussed. Take the NHS example and the accusations of lying. Andy Burnham (Labour Shadow Health) confirmed in an interview with Holyrood Magazine that, in the event of a Labour victory, the English Model of the NHS would be imposed on all parts of the UK – end of free prescriptions, end of free eye tests. Throughout the campaign Labour said the NHS was safer in the Union but immediately after the referendum, the danger of the Tories to the NHS was debated at length at their annual conference.

      Claims that the sterling was not Scotland’s and that there would be no currency union were just as facetious. It is the British currency, Scotland, as we were repeatedly told, is British and therefore is the joint owner of the sterling – so long as we don’t lay claim to that ownership. Currency Union was made out to be the weirdest of suggestions and the fact that the UK has a currency union with a number of other states was ignored. The success of currency union in the early days of an Independent Ireland was ignored also, as were statements from the Treasury to the Financial Times in January 2014 which indicated that Currency was not only possible but was indeed desirable for the benefit of all, in the event of independence for Scotland.

      As for the price of oil? So often we get the whole oil thing thrown in our faces. Independence was not about oil; oil was never a prerequisite for independence; it was/is very much the icing on the cake. The price of oil now is just as irrelevant as the price when the White Paper was written. Even in the event of a YES vote, Scotland would not now be independent and there would have been plenty of time to re-assess the position of oil in the Scottish economy. The price drop at the moment is artificial insofar as it has been artificially engineered to make things difficult for Russia, I have often asked for a list of countries that would turn down ownership of Scotland’s oil wealth if it is so paltry; to date the list remains empty and, on the other side, Westminster seems very determined to retain possession, so it can’t be all that bad. The price of oil goes up and down – but the general trend is up.

      As a semi retired science teacher, I have found that there is much in politics that is similar to science education. Most notably is the ability to ignore evidence in favour of what gives comfort to one’s existing views, even if it requires distorting reality.

      • Andy Burnham can say all he wants about the NHS but the NHS is a devolved power in Scotland. It really amazes me that people fell for the YeSNP scaremongering stories on tbe NHS – even Salmond (under pressure ) admitted this could not happen – but you guys still believe it!
        You’re right we would not be independent yet and the oil prices may recover but the fact is the SNP deliberately used the top line figure as a basis for financing expenditure in an Iscotland.
        The White Paper was not a demonstration – this was what was supposed to sell independence – they had 3 years to get tbst right and it was basically just a wishlist full of innacurate “facts” and figures.
        It was used to convince the poor that this would solve all their problems.
        The SNP realised that they couldn’t win on Scottishness and nationalism alone so instead promoted it to the working class Scots as a solution to poverty/inequality etc. It then became a far left movement but then repelled modtvid the traditional SNP middle class tartan tory voters.
        Nationalism and independence does not improve poverty – they would have been the first ones to suffer when the promises of riches under independence failed to materialise and austerity plus took hold.
        Thankfully more than 55% decided it was not a good idea either.

      • Wandering Minstrel:

        You say that you were “repeatedly told” that Scotland “is the joint owner of the sterling”. This was a claim made (as far as I’m aware) only by the SNP, and is plain daft. Sterling is not a financial asset. It’s a liability of the Bank of England and by definition can’t be “owned” by anyone except the Bank of England.

        You say that “the fact that the UK has a currency union with a number of other states was ignored.” It was ignored because it isn’t true. While it’s technically correct that the UK has a semi-formal currency union with a number of dependencies such as the Falklands, Tristan da Cunha, and the South Sandwich islands, none of these are autonomous states.

        You say that “the success of currency union in the early days of an Independent Ireland was ignored also”. It, too, was ignored because it isn’t true. While it’s technically correct that Ireland continued to use the pound sterling as its domestic currency between independence in 1922 and the creation of the Irish punt in 1928, there was no currency union. The use by one country of another country’s currency is of course perfectly possible – the example often given is Panama’s use of the US dollar, and in the Scottish independence debate this sort of arrangement was often referred to as “sterlingisation” – but this is entirely different from a currency union.

        You say that the Treasury made statements in early 2014 which indicated that currency union was “desirable for the benefit of all, in the event of independence for Scotland”. I cannot trace any informal remarks by the Treasury statements in support of your claim, but its formal position as outlined in its paper “Scotland Analysis: Assessment of a Sterling Currency Union” of February 2014 (https://www.gov.uk/…/CM8815_2901849_SA_SterlingUnion_acc.pdf) is unequivocal in its conclusion: “On the basis of the scale of the challenges, and the Scottish Government’s proposals for addressing them, HM Treasury would advise the UK Government against entering into a currency union. There is no evidence that adequate proposals or policy changes to enable the formation of a durable currency union could be devised, agreed and implemented by both governments”.

        You say that you “have found that there is much in politics that is similar to science education. Most notably is the ability to ignore evidence in favour of what gives comfort to one’s existing views, even if it requires distorting reality”. Your own post rather proves this point. QED, as the scientists say.

  22. Really welcome contributions and many good points made. But to those who regret voting no, there’s always the next time! I think it’s a process – people have to be ready.
    I think the official yes campaign had some flaws – in retrospect perhaps too much emphasis on the positive. I agree it’s all about furnishing everyone with the facts, though I think most are now agreed there was considerable media bias which undermined that process. The good thing is we’re all better prepared, media-wise, for next time

  23. Seems to me the respondents to this call for answers as to why they voted no fall into 3 camps (however they dress it up).
    The first are the Salmond haters, those that would cut their noses of to spite their faces rather than support anything he stood, good or bad. Persuade a few of those to change to a YES vote when it was pointed out that after independence they didn`t have to vote for him and could have anybody they wanted as PM.
    The second are the lazy ones,(I wasn`t given enough information) willing only to be spoon fed information, this was a massive decision for us all and seems to have been decided on by those voter that couldn`t be arsed to look for themselves and the BS that the YES camp lied to us, looking only as far as the Ministry of Information, the BBC to support this.
    The third and the only ones that I have time for are the honest ones, the ones that were afraid, as I said this was a massive decision and “better the devil you know” was the best option they felt.
    Live and learn for next time.

    • Hi Lawrence

      Don’t quite understand how you have missed the white paper’s ‘we will fund an indy Scotland on $113 a barrel when the current price is tanking at $60 answer’

      • Hi Bill, one claim from a white paper that was an SNP vision of a future Scotland. This country has more to offer than oil, a resourceful country with resourceful people, would and will be able to survive, prosper and contribute to the world and that is what persuade me rather than some white paper, that is what I found out when I bothered to look and did some research rather than just sit and swallow what ever the mainstream media fed me.

  24. The debate will continue on ‘YES’, ‘NO’, ‘I still don’t know’ , but the one thing that seems to be coming across is that the venom has been milked from the debate for the time being, now that our votes have been cast. That’s not to say that we’re all still passionate in out beliefs, but there is a sense of an acceptance of our differences in opinion without the urgency of a possible outcome. Perhaps we can truly discuss the merits of staying in a Union or Independence in more amicable tones, for a few years at least. Maybe, just maybe there might even be an avenue for truth, enlightenment and understanding, and a brighter future for Scotland no matter what path she/he takes.

    • And doing so is exactly how we’ll get independence. Up until now, the very idea was instantly derided; but now the idea of independence has been completely normalised (among rational-thinking people, anyway) so it can be brought up in discussions without people looking at you like you’re some weirdo promoting an extreme ideology. Even the media has grudgingly had to accept that independence is, at the very least, a valid ideology.

  25. I voted yes. I was never in doubt of doing so at any stage. Sure both sides used propaganda, exaggerated but only the yes side spoke about the positives of my country, the good we could do and how good we could become. The no side spoke freely about how bad things would be, how poor we’d become, how much scotland is subsidised by the UK and how much of a burden Scotland is. That made me think throughout why are you fighting so hard to keep us in the union? Why not let us go? So what is the real truth? In the later days of the campaign I was in no doubt that every dirty trick in the both was being used by the no campaign. They had control of the media. I saw at first had the numbers involved in demos and marches throughout major cities that received little or no coverage and who really was responsible for violence in George Square but the press failed to cover this independently fairly and correctly. Hopefully in my lifetime the chance comes again and in my opinion, people make the correct vote and secure a better fairer scotland. Hopefully the NHS still exists then too.

  26. The sheer scale of the establishment involvement in the No campaign is being revealed; the Queen’s ‘spontaneous’ comment, carefully scripted, the phone calls from Darling and Lamont after they realised they had been stitched up, Johann Lamont’s resignation revelations (but not news to us), the threats from financial firms that they would leave, labelled a ‘classic tactic’ by a leading economist.
    There were a few things that surprised me about some No voters, some i spoke to who would normally would be very suspicious of big business and right wing politicians suddenly started listening to them.
    And that their normal human awareness and experience didn’t make them very suspicious of the vast volume of negativity coming from the No campaign.
    There is the curious anomaly in the thinking of some that they thought, even though things might be bad we would be protected by being part of something bigger, but it slipped by them that those who were in charge of the something bigger were the ones who had been instrumental and in charge when the economy went wrong in the first place.
    I’m still struck by some comments of folks saying we must now just get on but their lack of awareness of how little their No vote left us to get on with!
    I can in part understand those who didn’t want Independence but can’t those who didn’t use their No vote to get the best deal possible for Scotland.

  27. This is a really interesting discussion and hat tip to the No voters who have contributed.

    A lot of the No voters I have met both before and after simply didn’t want to think about the issues. You can’t persuade someone who has their fingers in their ears going ‘la la la’. I really don’t understand why.

    Take the economy. Every time the books have been opened since the 1890s – a hundred and twenty years – Scotland has been subsidizing the UK. And sometimes that subsidy has been very large. Yet No voters would still tell me ‘we can’t manage on our own’. Very puzzling.

    The roots of this lie in psychology, no? Centuries of propaganda do take their toll on the mind, as well as the exchequer. One of my personal reasons for voting Yes (apart from actually spending our own money on our own priorites, and the chance of getting a decent state pension), was that Independence would, and will, help liberate Scots, as individuals, psychologically. The sort of personal independence and self confidence that you can almost taste in the air in Reykjavik, Stockholm and Oslo.

    The Counsellors speak of the ‘actualising tendency’ – the need for any person to reach their own true potential, that keeps breaking through, however much suppressed and belittled.

    Ian McLintock speaks above of an “obvious and palpable sense of shame and regret” from his fellow No voters. I think that’s correct. If Yes had won the streets would have been full of people, joyful and perhaps a bit surprised. Including No voters. Yet No won, and the streets were empty and sullen, apart from the knuckle draggers who polluted George Square. There was no celebration from the vast bulk of No voters (who are in the majority after all).

    What that tells me. What Ian’s point tells me – is that deep down many No voters know they made a decision which clashes with something within themselves. That is the dissonance between thier own actualising tendency and their actions in making that No X mark.

    Nobody ever goes from a state of personal independence – self-actualisation – back to dependence.

    That ‘shame and regret’ is a cause for hope and optimism. Perhaps the people of Scotland have to free their minds first before the political situation will catch up

    • ” Independence would, and will, help liberate Scots, as individuals, psychologically. ”

      This is another good reason why independence is priceless and certainly not something you can value in GB£. Independence = liberation and freedom.

    • “What Ian’s point tells me – is that deep down many No voters know they made a decision which clashes with something within themselves. That is the dissonance between thier own actualising tendency and their actions in making that No X mark.”

      Spot on. I’m sure everyone’s had that feeling where, given the choice between two options, you end up plumping for the “safest” one, and as soon as you do, you kick yourself for not having a bit more courage. The good news is, you always make doubly-sure to choose the right option if you’re given a second chance. We only need about 190,000 people to have felt that way to get independence next time.

    • Derick re your comment –
      “Nobody ever goes from a state of personal independence – self-actualisation – back to dependence.

      That ‘shame and regret’ is a cause for hope and optimism. Perhaps the people of Scotland have to free their minds first before the political situation will catch up”

      I actually used to want independence until my mid 20’s and used to vote SNP when they weren’t very popular. But I decided it was unnecessary.
      That was about 15 years ago and have never felt the need for independence re merge. Some will go the same way in the next few years and some will still persist with bravado. If there is ever another independence referendum it is what happens in the ballot box that counts when Scots are faced with the harsh risks that independence would bring.
      There is no “shame and regret” in voting No.
      I am very proud of voting No and all the No voters I know have no regrets either.

      • “when Scots are FACED with the harsh risks that independence would bring”

        There ain’t any risks staying with the union I suppose?

        “I am very proud of voting No”.

        Are you ‘proud’ of rejecting Scotland’s nationhood?

      • Hi everyone, I think we should just leave True Scot alone. We seem to be upsetting him and he needs to calm down

      • Darien, I am proud of voting against the uneccasary risk of independence!
        I don’t feel the need for Scotland to be independent.
        You’re using a typical nationalist trick (the “you’re not as Scottish as us” one)
        You are as Scottish as you feel! I am proud to be Scottish and happy to be in the UK as part of a larger union of 4 countries.
        What is happening in the North Sea just now is an example of the benefits of being part of a bigger country – less exposed to market shocks.
        “Nationhood” does not rank high on many people’s priorities – paying bills and feeding their family ranks higher.

      • IAB – perfectly calm 🙂

      • Sure Scot is right… Ian Wood’s conservative estimate that 15000 jobs to go in the North East possibly. Only recourse is to cut tax and subsidise certain aspects of the supply chain. Revenue isn’t just oil tax receipts but, a loss of income tax, corp tax, liquidity and money in the economy. At 15 – 20 % GDP it would have been disasterous. The notion that the Oil industry will recover on it’s own without state stimulous is nonsense (as Alex Salmond suggests – will be interesting to see how he does in Gordon in May). Too wait for two years as SNP suggest would be too late as the very mobile resources (skills, companies, capital investment will have gone elsewhere. On top of this Scotland/ UK comparative advantage in subsea technology would be lost. I’m really tired of listening to die hard Yessers who don’t give a damn about people’s livelihoods and haven’t a clue abot economics. The north sea was always subject to production elsewhere, and for a long time now we have known the US policy for self sufficcency in energy (to become a net exporter) has been a pillar of US federal policy. Add to this the slowing of China (and the very real threat of a property bubble bursting which would be worse that 2008 by far) was predicted due to the government resructing and the rapidly rising wages. Maybe, nats can ‘imagine’ those 15000 back?

    • You say that “every time the books have been opened since the 1890s – a hundred and twenty years – Scotland has been subsidizing the UK.” Interesting. I’d be grateful if you could supply details of the evidence behind that claim.

      • 1920-21

        Revenue Contributed by Scotland… … … £119,753,000
        Expenditure on Scottish Services… … … 33.096,000
        Balance Retained in London for Imperial Services… … £86.657,000

        Westminster records.

        For the last 32.5 years the GERS give you up dated figures so please do read the GERS.
        The GERR are prepared by Scottish civil servants, sent to London for sign off by Wesminster civil servants then passed to an independent accreditation agency who then gives these finalised statistics the kite mark of approval before they are published.
        The state simply Westminster agrees that Scotland pays more in than it gets back – they approve the figures before they are published.

  28. Lust to say thanks to all contributors – I have tried to ask other no voters but they tend to avoid discussion… the day was very hard for all of us

  29. I voted No based on logic….a country without a central bank is simply actually independent. (ask the Greeks).

  30. No central bank no independence.

    • What does a centralized bank do?
      Do you know that there are several independent countries who do not have a centralised bank.
      It means the banks in those countries have to hold far higher reserves than our banks who played Russian roulette with our money because they knew all they needed to do was hold out their hands and say,’ give me more of your money’
      Finally were you fully get the information that the Bank of England is a British nationalised industry and was nationalised 1946-7 by the British Government. You owon as much of that bank as I do and the same as every other person in the UK. The BoE belongs to all of us so every bit a part of Scotland’s assets as the UKs.

  31. “Proud to be Scottish”? I’ve never used that expression in my life, proud of what? pride remember goeth before a fall. There has always been people like you, whether in Ireland, canada, Australia, Latvia, Estonia etc, etc. People who are stuck in a time-warp & have to play catch-up when their country progresses.

    MBC, the vote in Ireland was extended to a tiny fraction of the electorate at the time mentioned. There was no democracy in these islands until after the Great War.

  32. When I first left Scotland in 1979 feeing Thatcherism seemed like a good enough reason. I didn’t plan to stay away for 30 odd years ..but thats how it panned out. No doubt most Scots have relatives like me – who set out to the unknown world as an adventure. I followed the Yes movement for the last year. It had all the excitement of the lead up to the Big Trip. What to take, what to leave, how to manage the finances with no rich relatives to bail you out….but above it all the excitement of freedom….bursting with opportunities..

    Uncertainties became possibilities, and setbacks (like having your belongings stolen whilst travelling) become problems to be solved. You don’t solve the problems beforehand, because you don’t actually know which ones will be showstoppers, and which ones will have the solutions present themselves with no effort on your part. It was only by doing it – taking the risk – setting out with questions unanswered that you discover for yourself that you have all the internal resources needed to shape your own destiny.

    I relate that theme of setting off to the unknown – to those who voted NO because they didn’t want the risk of uncertainty. Who wanted the answers to the exam before they sat the test…..where is the triumph in that?

    How can scots role model self determination in a country that isn’t self determined?

    How to bring risk averse people along for the ride because they trust Scottish leaders enough to work it out better than Westminster (which in truth wouldn’t be a very hard act to follow).

    I guess you only learn mastery by taking risks. As the aussie outback travel ad said “you’ll never ever know …if you never ever go…”

    • excellent comment about real life. Why are some so scared of Scotland being independent when so many countries are independent and new ones have been added to that list all the time.
      At the age of 61 I would be totally ashamed to be dependent. I can’t understand those who believe their country needs hand outs from rUK to survive, and then they put out their hand to Westminster and let the money fall into their hands!!!!! I would pull a plow with my own body rather then live with the shame of being dependent.

  33. Was really good to read the thoughts from No voters, I think most of all, we all want the same in that Scotland stands up a much stronger country and keeps fighting to get what was promised us. For so long so many Scots have felt lowdown,that is how Westminster made Scots feel. We have to all work together to make sure WM listens and Scotland gets real MPs, not the bunch of unionist careerists that showed how shallow and false they were. Scots deserve MPs that standf up for us and for what’s best for us. If everyone had a hard look at their unionist MPs………what really have they done for Scotland. They are put there to make sure Scots voters for the unionist parties cowtow to London….its London first and we get crumbs after we do our duty like servants. I speak as an ex Labour voter after 40 years,on 19th September I joined SNP. In the last 2/3 years I’ve had a gutfull of what I see is long time betrayal………after all I stayed loyal and obedient to Scottish Labour,what I got in return was Red Tories. Both Yes and No have to come to a middle ground where we are politically astute so they can’t pull wool over our eyes, they get paid to work for us and too many have long since forgotten that. We work together to build a strong and be as Independent from the shackles of Westminster, for me personally I have not lost the want of Independence……once its races round your blood, its there,more determined than ever.

  34. Any nation which votes against its own independence is below despising. If any Scot thinks Westminster, in any colour, could run Scotland better than the Scots, then they must have had a drain on their brain. The lasting legacy is that Scotland is the only nation on Earth to be offered independence and reject it. Those who voted No should go down to the food banks in Scotland and tell the people queuing there why they supported the Union that caused their starving plight in the first place. Go on, go down to the food bank nearest you, look the poor in the eye, and tell them that you support Unionist austerity, and another 10 or 15 years of it at that. Scotland will not take much more of this Unionist stupidity, and some Scots will not stand by idly and watch. The No voters lit the blue touch paper, and will reap the whirlwind in Scotland. Logic I can counter, stupidity and selfishness I can`t stomach while my fellow Scots suffer. There is no moral legitimacy for a NO vote.

    • Your first sentence is a valid opinion, but as a “stupid” No voter I would like to comment on your point about austerity and foodbanks. They were the main reason I voted No

      I don’t have the slightest doubt that Scotland would have more poverty and need for foodbanks after independence than it does now. I don’t have the space to go through all the arguments here. I doubt you would agree with me, but nevertheless i reached that conclusion after researching the facts. If you click on my gravatar you will find a discussion about markets to which we should add monetary and currency shock and fiscal overdependence on a declining and volatile commodity, which leads me to conclude there would be sharply reduced employment combined with severe squeeze on public spending.

      I am certain – and I have good reasons to think this – there would be more, not less, unemployment. I have a moral problem with voting to send of my country people to the scrapheap. I also have an issue with a campaign based on there being less poverty, when I know there will be more. So how should I vote?

  35. I voted No. I don’t think the benefits of union (note the small letter) to Scotland were explained well by the Better Together campaign. While the independence campaign identified real issues with the present Union, their prospectus effectively meant abolishing the relationship without replacing it. I don’t think many people who weren’t already signed up believed their assertion that the things we might want to keep would carry on without change.

    As with many people who were open to argument but ultimately voted No, I felt the Yes Campaign was generally dishonest about the practical prospects for Scotland after independence. Some here might point to dishonesty on the part of the No campaign, but that matters less to my group because the No team are justifying the status quo that we know about, and therefore have less to prove than the Yes campaign

    It does bother me that there is no consensus in Scotland either for independence or the Union. The Yes campaign might or might not scrape a 51% result in a future referendum, but I don’t see a 1905 Norwegian style coming together of the nation.

    To convert a No to a Yes, which is presumably the point of these articles, I would need to see the pro-independence team working with the other governments and peoples on our island to come up with a new formal relationship to replace the Union that is permanent, workable and acceptable to all the nations.

  36. Re the low oil price –
    If we had voted Yes to independence, Scotland would be looking at oil revenues of £1.25bn instead of £6.9bn in 2016-17 (1st year of an Iscotland) resulting in a deficit of close to 6 per cent of national income.
    Just as well we voted No then 🙂

    • These people reckon 6.4% deficit in 2016/17 based on oil revenues of £6.4 billion. So on their calculations, the deficit would be a few points higher again, given actual revenues that have all but disappeared. This assumes independence doesn’t affect onshore revenues (it will, very considerably, along with the general economy and employment levels) and no capital flight (unlikely).

      That’s why I don’t think the independence numbers add up and I voted No.

      http://www.cebr.com/reports/scottish-government-deficit-assessment/

  37. I have found this most illuminating. The biggest flaw with the Yes campaign was that too often we were talking amongst ourselves. Most people I knew, family members included, were No voters but other than two highly informed individuals, they weren’t really interested in debate. They had made their decision BEFORE the Edinburgh Agreement was signed. It’s encouraging to note that some No voters feel duped but I wonder whether any Yes voters would vote No now.

  38. The common theme from all those who voted NO demonstrates as usual an illustration of their complete lack of aspiration for their country, one excuse after another to justify why they denied their fellow Scot’s an opportunity to govern their nation for the benefit of future generations,they chose not to do any meaningful research preferring instead to believe the negativity of those with a vested interest in remaining British. Not one has given a plausible reason for remaining British.

    The biggest decision they will ever be asked to make and they chose to deny themselves an opportunity to progress and directly influence positive change in our country. Preferring to leave decisions about out future to a discredited Westminster politically corrupt system and the Tory and Labour oxbridge elite .

    Do any of you aspire to any anthing remotely ambitious?

    • Yes, David Allan, I do aspire to ambitious things for us.
      My primary ambition is to reform the way that we use money so that it works properly for everyone.
      My secondary ambition is to reform the machinery of government so that it better serves our communities.

      Nothing that was proposed by official Yes came anywhere close to addressing either of these.

      The proposals for financial/fiscal arrangements in iScotland were woeful. They would have exacerbated most of the bad features of a dysfunctional system.

      As for reform of government machinery, the official Yes/SNP message was loud and clear: we would continue with centralised power held by an elite few whose decisions would be swayed by the machinations of party and lobbyists. The location of the power base would change along with some of the accents but otherwise it would be business as usual.

      I didn’t vote no to remain British. Voting yes wouldn’t have made me any more Scottish. I don’t see the relevance of my nationality (an emotional concept) when considering reforms to finance and government. I want these things to work properly.

      Independence, as it was presented by Yes, did not offer any coherent plan to progress my primary and secondary ambitions. Indeed, the distraction of setting up the bureaucracy of a Scottish state modelled on existing systems of finance and government would have impeded progress towards my ambitions. Therefore I voted no.

  39. Hi Malcolm – the coherent plan/s would have been presented by all Political parties contesting the first Independent Scottish Elections, that could have been May 2016.

    You obviously remain optimistic that your ambitions will be delivered by Westminster. The point surely is that Westminster is never going to provide any such opportunity.

    “Scotland’s future in Scotland’s Hands” the YES Campaign was about realising our potential the progress toward delivery of your and my ambitions for Scotland could have started then. A NO vote changed nothing and certainty over the future direction of Westminster remains. Scotland following the result has no influence over our future.

    Instead of influencing positive changes which reflect your ambitions you chose to have NO influence.

    • David,

      Telling me that “coherent plan/s would have been presented by all Political parties contesting the first Independent Scottish Elections” is not persuasive. On what would these plans have been based? You’re expecting us to vote Yes on a wing and a prayer.

      I’ve read nothing (Scotland’s Future, Common Weal, In Place of Fear, Business for Scotland, RIC, Scottish Greens) that comes close to providing what I’m looking for. What was offered was a Scottish version of the status quo (Yes/SNP) or a rag bag of reheated 20th century socialist dogma peppered with a few gems of ideas that sparkle individually but have not yet been assembled into anything useful.

      I’m optimistic that the established orders of finance and politics are slowly crumbling. I’m optimistic that good people with good ideas that will progress my ambitions will come to the fore over the course of the next few decades. I’m optimistic that this is happening in Scotland, the UK and beyond.

      If these people and ideas emerge first from within the independence movement, and if they demonstrate that independence offers the best chance of initiating reforms in finance and government that can be replicated across the UK and beyond, then I’ll support independence.

  40. Malcolm – it’s about Influence Influence Influence . So you are prepared to wait decades looking for Utopia. Appears we are back full circle you have NO AMBITION and display a lack of realistic aspiration. Have you really read anything from Common Weal?

  41. David,

    In the same sentence you accuse me of having no ambition and too much ambition. The subtext is that I am at fault for not sharing your ambition for an independent Scotland.

    The truth is that we have different ambitions and they make us see things differently.
    What you see as unrealistic I see as necessary and pragmatic.
    What you see as essential and liberating I see as a distraction.
    I can understand your perspective even if I don’t share it. Can you understand mine?

    Can you understand that my passion for structural financial reform is as strong as your passion for independence? If you can, then try standing in my shoes and doing some critical analysis of what was offered by the Yes campaign. Read the relevant chapters of Scotland’s Future and try to find the proposals therein that would lead to the elimination of poverty and structural debt while providing the platform for a diverse, thriving economy. There are none.

    As for the unofficial yes campaign, I read everything that the Common Weal (and RIC and Jim Sillars) published about money, banking, finance and fiscal policy prior to the referendum and was disappointed that the rhetoric of fairness and social justice (things that I care about) was not backed up by a coherent vision of how to get from where we are to where we need to be. The things that they were proposing failed on both measures of utility: they were economically impractical and electorally unattractive.

    Influence comes from mass electoral engagement. No matter what boundary you draw around the electorate (Scotland or UK), they will not vote for radical reform unless what is being proposed is demonstrably better than the status quo. My ambition is to help with the development and presentation of radical financial reforms that are irresistible to the electorate.

    You will never convert me to the independence cause by telling me that I have too little or too much ambition. If you want my support then tell me how you propose we eliminate poverty and structural debt, and provide a stable platform for a diverse, thriving economy within an independent Scotland.

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