Re: Debate worthy of a playground
no matter what Cameron says about not resigning after any Yes vote the PM and cabinet that reside over the breakup of the United Kingdom are finished.
Not sure about that. Just like the results of Scottish independence, or the whole lot of us leaving the EU, 'tis impossible to predict.
I do think the Nats are a bunch of shysters, without the courage of their own convictions though. There are some big risks to independence, which they keep either glossing over, or outright lying about. I don't think there's any way to predict the outcome, but Scotland has a well-educated population and a modern economy. I'm sure they'll cope. And the SNP should say just that. If it's about policitical independence anyway. I'd say this equally on the EU debate. There are economic risks to coming out, but also opportunities. Staying in has some serious costs, and a challenge to democratic legitimacy.
Therefore, in my book at least, both are as much emotional issues as practical ones. Personally I feel British. Englishness to me is sporting identity. And it would be less fun being rude about the Scottish rugby/football team if were were separate countries. So I'd be sad to see Scotland go, but I don't think there's anything the government could, or should, do to stop it.
I'd say the feeling I encounter amongst most of the people I talk to (in the South East) is a mild exasperation. Some have taken up the nationalist Scots welfare scroungers position, but that's quite recent and relatively rare. I think it's more a reaction against the rise in overt Scottish nationalism. For example, up until 20 years ago, most English people would have supported a Scottish sporting team unthinkingly - until the anything but England stuff became so common. And of course a natural reaction to devolution, with no tuition fees etc. But I'd say the most common reaction is "whatever". If that's what people want, good luck to them. It would be a shame.
Course, after a YES vote, that could turn into a backlash. We loved you, now we hate the bastards that pushed you away. But my strong suspicion is that it'll turn a bit uglier. It'll be "we loved you, and you rejected us you bastards", from a significant number of people. Which is why I can see the government gaining popularity from being tough in the negotiations. Hence I'm certain it's not a bluff that Scotland won't be allowed a formal currency sharing deal with rUK. And discussion on the subject will often turn unpleasant for a few years. Rejection being a powerful emotion.
I think a fudge will be found that allows Scotland to stay in the EU (probably), and if Salmond can show some diplomatic sure-footedness. He comes across too smug and demanding at the moment. But Scotland will have to lie through its teeth about promisiing to join the Euro. Well it's worked for Sweden... And it will probably cost Scotland their budget rebate and opt-outs.
Meanwhile no pound-zone. And lots of fights over national debt, assets, oil zones and the like. Can't see the government going then. But I wonder if the rest of the Union will last the long term.