back to article Scot Nationalists' march on Westminster may be GOOD for UK IT

The Scottish National Party had an astonishing election night. It previously had six Westminster seats; it now has 56 of Scotland’s 59 MPs, some elected on swings in excess of 30 per cent, with most of its seats gained from Labour. It already runs the Scottish Parliament as well as 11 of Scotland’s 32 councils, although some in …

Cause and effect

Basic science:

Cause:

Nicola Sturgeon said she wanted to help lock the Conservatives out of Downing Street through a deal with Labour and other left-wing parties.

Effect:

But the Conservative party surprised most, by winning a small majority of 12. It can govern on its own.

It's as simple as that.

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Re: Cause and effect

@ yugguy

You may have something there. I thought at the time 'why say that' just as I wondered about the denials about DUP backing the conservatives.

However, saying that may have assured scottish voters that a vote for the SNP was not going to contribute to another conservative government, bolstering confidence.

So maybe only a secondary effect then.

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Re: Cause and effect

Close.

Cause:

Salmond repeatedly boasted in public that he would blackmail the labour party, insisting he would write both the queen's speech and their budget and give them no choice but to accept them.

Effect:

Thousands of Labour voters get scared by this strange scary man talking like a playground bully and they don't vote Labour, so the Tories get a majority.

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"... would not seek another referendum ..."

You wrote: "After last September’s rejection of independence, the SNP said it would not seek another referendum for a generation."

This is entirely untrue. What the SNP, Alex Salmond I think, said (I don't have the exact quote) was something like "This is a once in a generation opportunity.". It was not a pledge, it was a warning: "If you vote no now, you'll not get another chance in a long time.".

Of course, Scotland did indeed vote no last September, to a large extent on the strength of "the VOW" for devolution-max announced by Gordon Brown on behalf of the unionist parties, and surprise, surprise, that now looks unlikely to materialise to any notable degree. As Ian Hamilton, the man who led the project to recover the Stone of Scone in 1950, once wrote: "I did not, do not and never will trust an Englishman in political office. Nice people as they are, they carry power as badly as a Scot carries drink.".

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

" to a large extent on the strength of "the VOW" for devolution-max announced by Gordon Brown on behalf of the unionist parties, and surprise, surprise, that now looks unlikely to materialise to any notable degree"

Well if you will get suckered in by that sort of 'promise' you deserve all you get.

"the man who led the project to recover the Stone of Scone in 1950"

By recover, I assume you mean steal?

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Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

Yup, "steal" is fine. Don't give a monkeys what you want to call it, really. Indeed, perhaps the Greeks should stop being polite about it and just "steal" the Elgin Marbles back and the Australian Aboriginals should just "steal" back their dead from our museums?

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Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

"[Ian Hamilton,] the man who led the project to recover the Stone of Scone in 1950. By recover, I assume you mean steal?"

Not at all. To steal means "to permanently deprive the rightful owners of [property]". The Stone of Scone was looted in 1296 and reset[*] in Westminster Abbey. Who is the rightful owner of looted property? Nothing could have been further from the minds of the project members than theft - a short time later, Hamilton freely returned the Stone to the authorities.

[*] Scottish legal term. Look it up!

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Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

He said started the response you are talking about with "In my view" which rather specifically excludes any further binding on the SNP as long as Salmond is not in charge.

It's being spun in the media all across the UK as a commitment made by Sturgeon.

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Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

Actually I'm talking about Nicola Sturgeon (who's now taken Salmond's position as party leader), who reiterated this after the referendum and since then has been consistent in saying she doesn't intend to push for another referendum (although she raised objection to David Cameron claiming he could prevent a second one)

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Re: "Stone of Destiny."

But before 1296 the Irish lent it to a Scots to get coronated on.

Perhaps Ireland should get it. The one at Tara is a fake.

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Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

Well....he returned a stone to the authorities. Just not the real one. It was broken removing it from the throne in Westminster Abbey and repaired by a stone mason in Glasgow by inserting a steel rod. He also made a couple of copies just in case.

The real stone was never handed back and lay under the hand of one of those involved in the taking, the Rev Nimmo in a church in Dundee until about 10 years ago when it was moved for safe keeping. I viewed it often.

It is telling that on recovery the authorities have always declined to x ray the stone as the original had a distinctive pin placed inside during the repair.

Just as well that the good burghers of Scone gave Edward I the lid of the St Marys Covent cesspit in 1296 in the first place.

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Re: "...St Marys Convent cesspit ..."

Various theories and legends exist about the Stone's history prior to its placement in Scone:

One story concerns Fergus, son of Erc, the first King of the Scots in Scotland, whose transportation of the Stone from Ireland to Argyll, where he was crowned in it, was recorded.[2]

Some versions identify the stone brought by Fergus with the Lia Fáil used at Tara for the High King of Ireland. Other traditions contend the Lia Fáil remains at Tara.[3][4] (Inis Fáil, The Island of Destiny, is one of the traditional names of Ireland.)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stone_of_Scone

Despite the claim on Wikipedia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lia_F%C3%A1il

The Lia Fáil (Irish pronunciation: [ˌlʲiːə ˈfɔːlʲ], meaning Stone of Destiny), not to be confused with the Stone of Scone, is a stone at the Inauguration Mound (Irish: an Forrad) on the Hill of Tara in County Meath, Ireland, which served as the coronation stone for the High Kings of Ireland. It is also known as the Coronation Stone of Tara.[1] In legend, all of the kings of Ireland were crowned on the stone up to Muirchertach mac Ercae c. AD 500.

The oldest Irish written sources actually claim it was lent to the Scots and not returned. Obviously the one at Tara is for the Tourists and how could you sit on it anyway?. Irish legend claims also it was Jacob's Pillow AND brought by the Tuath Dé from their city when they invaded Ireland (it can't actually be both, the Jacob's Pillow is a typical later Christian insertion).

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Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

The real stone was never handed back and lay under the hand of one of those involved in the taking, the Rev Nimmo in a church in Dundee until about 10 years ago when it was moved for safe keeping. I viewed it often.

Sorry, but I don't believe you.

Anyone smart enough to steal it and prepare the fake would be smart enough to carry their secret to the grave, as opposed to showing off the real one to ... well... anyone on the internet.

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Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

I thought the "real" stone sat safely in Scotland while the English were conned into having their monarchs crowned above an ancient cesspit cover.

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Anonymous Coward

Little Englenders

I see we have a number of Little Englenders on here who have escaped from the Daily Mail comments page. I was hoping for a better discussion than some of the comments on here.

Why are the Little Englenders so outraged that the Scots want to take more control of their own decisions ?

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Next stop Venezuela

No mention of the Scottish financial sector? It's huge and it would emigrate within 24 hours of independence. Don't believe that? Take a look at the oil sector. Prices are down, exploration has stopped and extraction and refining are fast grinding to a halt.

The Scots are sensible people. They will not vote for independence.

Which leaves Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon in a more precarious negotiating position than the media suggest. They pretend now to advocate the merits of socialism which have done so much for life expectancy in Glasgow.

Will Salmond and Sturgeon stand on a "next stop Venezuela" ticket?

No. They're too sensible. See above.

They'll do the best they can by their constituents. Which is as it should be. And that's it.

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Re: Next stop Venezuela

I have heard that Aberdeen as a whole is suffering a downturn due to the low oil prices.

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Re: Next stop Venezuela

It is indeed, and goes through this every 5 years or so. Everyone lays people off, then hires them back again when things pick up again.

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Anonymous Coward

It will be interesting to see how the new SNP MPs, many of whom are relatively new to professional politics and had real jobs until recently, handle the verbal abuse they will get in the Commons.

Incidentally, the SNP are more riding a wave of popular activism than creating it, primarily on the basis of being the only option to vote for in Scotland if you don't want someone who ultimately has to follow the orders of their bosses in Westminster.

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Anonymous Coward

Real jobs?

I think you'll find a lot of them haven't even had real jobs recently. Unless trolling people on Twitter counts as a real job.

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@ac

"handle the verbal abuse they will get in the Commons"

I think you'll find that Scots are perfectly capable of handling verbal abuse...

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Wow.. such anti-Scottish vitriol...

And yet if there was a surprise English Independence Referendum tomorrow, I wonder how many English would vote Yes for that?

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If memory serves,,,

...about 35%.

At least that's my recollection of the percentage of support for Scottish Independence in England in the run up to the referendum.

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Anonymous Coward

Bit sad really

The vitriol on here is to be expected but a bit sad. Please get used to the idea that a good percentage of us up here in Scotlandshire (45% at the last count) wish you well but don't want to be part of your state. You may have your opinions about what a mess we would make of it but it would be our mess, not yours. Like a good portion of the world (India, Australia, USA, Canada, Ireland..to mention a few) we'll have fond memories but don't think we would regret the separation.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Bit sad really

No problem, have you seen Escape From New York Scotland ?

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Anonymous Coward

I don't know why Westminster don't just give Scotland the tax raising powers they want. I think what bugs non-Scots is Scotland seen to be getting "better" services (no university fees, etc) but the rest of us paying for them. So if they want to spend the money then they raise the cash, simple got no problem with that at all, pays the money takes the choice!

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Anonymous Coward

No idea about economics have you ? You can't give Scotland fiscal freedom and be left to carry the currency can. I'd be quite happy to see the back of Scotland and when they come back broke as they did 1707 we'll buy them for £1. In fact the RBS is already broke and mostly owned by English tax payers.

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Four years old but worth a read

http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/the-staggers/2011/11/scotland-12288-union-public

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Anonymous Coward

hmmmm "The remaining £624 is easily accounted for by decades of UK government under-spending in Scotland on defence and on other items which are not routinely broken down by region, such as foreign office services." If its that easily accounted for why don't they account for it in the article rather than just pluck the figure out of thin air. How have the government underspent on defence in Scotland for example???

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Anonymous Coward

"How have the government underspent on defence in Scotland for example?"

Is it a reference to having amalgamated or disbanded Scottish regiments? Or putting squadrons elsewhere in the UK?

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Anonymous Coward

might be but plenty of "English" regiments and bases have also closed. And Scotland gets more than its fare share of Naval spending the new Asute class sub's going to Faslane when the Trafalgar subs they're replacing are based at Devonport. And of course Trident is based there, ermmmm oppppsss hang on a minute!

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Braveheart?

I'd love to see the figures for the use of the Braveheart image and harking back to history used by the two sides during the independence debate.

I have seen it used most by the unionists but that's maybe just my experience.

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Remove the requirement for a deep water inlet (questionable) and there are a number of obvious choices for basing the Trident replacement, from Barrow (where they are built), to Falmouth, Plymouth and Portland. More interesting would be whether the SNP really does want to lose the jobs from Clydeside and Rosyth. The Royal navy predates the Act of Union.

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