Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Scotland’s referendum will be decided by the Banks.

International banking, the big investment houses and the global investment companies will be the ones to ultimately decide Scotland’s future path. Unless we, through political leadership, act now.

There are many scenarios, all pointing to only one of two possible outcomes in the 2014 referendum, a “YES” or a “NO”. While that sounds obvious what is not often spoken of in the “YES” camp is that the “NO” camp is presently winning. That and the fact that the “YES” camp isn’t making any significant inroads on even the soft “NO” vote.

This has much to do with the fact that the “NO” camp will not, cannot allow a Scotland only referendum, built in Scotland and funded in Scotland, because just like 1706 it needs the money and support of the City, her institutions and her bankers to secure victory. The “NO” camp will get that support, funnelled from the Union parties if needed, channelled by thousands of little donations if required, but it will get it.

This is the principle reason Independence support has wavered in Scotland over the last three decades, from less than 30% to almost 60%. Polls show the last five years of SNP administration has seen independence support at between 30% and 45%, but its static nature within that band does nothing to affirm the present Holyrood administration’s primary policy, rather it reflects the desires of Westminster, of its backers and its accomplices in Fleet Street.

Simply put, that level of support is not enough. Independence will remain just a dream.

Scotland runs a real risk of becoming not just bought and sold for English gold, but duped by it as well. The joke ultimately will be upon us however, as there isn’t any gold left these days.

Since the late 1990’s when support for Independence peaked there have been two Labour led coalitions in Holyrood, there have also been two substantial depressions with the dot com burst and the market collapse / credit crunch. It can be construed that the failure of promise, that lack of vitality at Holyrood during these first two administrations was a Union success; it soured the attitudes of many Scots towards the administration in Edinburgh.

We did however get what we collectively voted for, again with the above caveats of money and influence.

The depressions added little cause for optimism.

A major scare tactic used by the UK government and her proponents is the financial doom and gloom surrounding the bank bailouts related to the credit crunch. It has been repeated so loudly and so often that many believe it on some level. These people may not have swallowed the whole Union bile, but it is without doubt colouring their perspective. All the negativity the Union puts forwards about Scotland colours opinion.

Support for independence therefore waxes and wanes amongst the electorate at large, presently hovering just above that 1/3 of individuals who see themselves as Scots patriots and who’d vote “freedom” whatever the price. For the rest as they watch Europe’s woes, independence is a dying cause; they see Edinburgh tied to London as Greece is tied to Germany, dancing to her tune under the Euro. With Holyrood’s proposal that post independence we’ll be tied to Sterling and the Bank of England, the common perception can be no other way.

The Darling [Alistair] of the Union aptly playing the only card the Union has left. The solitary ace in the Union deck is Sterling. The Scots electorate are not stupid. As they watch Europe unfold its tale of woe in the Eurozone they can only wonder if this is the fate awaiting Scotland if we vote “YES”; subtly the response from our electorate veers towards “no thanks” to the Independence cause.

The Union has a strong positive case in this argument, if Scots leave there will be no return, but London says “you’ll be the Euro zone’s Greece to our Germany”. It is only a positive case on the surface because Scots are not getting all the facts, and it’s safe to say the facts will continue to be sparsely disseminated.

Scotland will have to use the Bank of England as a lender of last resort we’re told, but it’s often overlooked that we’re simply not likely to need such a lender. It’s rarely told that the Bank of England needs a lender of last resort; it’s the IMF. The very establishment the BoE called during the 1970’s. Westminster’s proponents ignore the fact that Greece was not only bailed by the EU, the IMF has many hands in that pot as well.

Many colonial nations and Ireland used the pound for a period after independence, the Bahamas and many other nations use the dollar, and they are not tied to US fiscal policy other than in the currency value. This would apply to Scotland in Sterling, yet the case made by Holyrood for this is muddy, it simply isn’t reaching the electorate at large. Average Scots are having difficulty getting past the media spin. They are able to reach through the message Westminster and the City wants us to hear, but can’t seem to decipher Holyrood’s code.

The administration in Holyrood need to make plain to all Scots that the tie-in to the pound would only last as long as it benefits Scots; that if and when the times comes where Sterling becomes no longer viable, we will be presented with alternative currency choices. This is a small and acceptable policy step for Holyrood, an intelligent step of a forward looking government while planting the seed that Sterling itself is none so secure a currency.

It is time to spike the Union guns. Time to destroy what should be their final argument.

If we are to stride with purpose towards the referendum and not stagger drunkenly towards oblivion of the type facing Greece, Spain or Portugal then these currency steps are necessary. These are steps we must take if we are to enlist the markets help, for the market will in many ways decide Scotland’s referendum. If the Unionists continue to control monetary policy and the Nationalists continue to promote it, essentially it’s “game over” for Independence for at least a generation. The referendum could be lost by as much as a 70/30 split. It may take the nationalist cause decades to recover.

The markets are crashing; worldwide they are in some type of subdued panic mode. Europe’s economies are moribund, stagnant, almost zombie like.

An independent Scotland must put herself in a legislative position of achieving anything from letting the banks liquidate, to securing the small savers, to bailing out the banks. Holyrood must propose that in a Sovereign Scotland the small saver will be secure; the banks will be liquidated as appropriate. Our government, all of us, we’ll simply guarantee deposits to a percentage of the annual median salary with any banking group. It’s far cheaper than bailing out the banks. It promotes multiple smaller banks and helps curb the “too big to fail” culture. Banking costs are driven down by competition. We can gain both diversity and vitality here.

The markets are crashing; there simply isn’t enough bail-out money to go around. The EU is struggling with Greece, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Ireland and France. Meanwhile, Germany is being asked to underwrite these debtors, but is also staggering under the burdens already imposed by EU policies.

Credit ratings are being slashed across Europe; from banks to Sovereign nations, they’re consistently revised – down. Brussels recently legislated to basically ignore the agencies reviews, the EU might well do that, but the private investors won’t. The agencies and investors are multinational, they really don’t care what Brussels thinks, money is their law, and the pursuit of more is their god.

Still, the markets are starting to get very jittery, just last week they bought billions of Euro’s worth of Danish currency at a negative return. Essentially they loan Denmark ten billion Euros for three years, Denmark pays them back nine billion Euros and keeps a billion for the privilege of borrowing the money. The numbers may be slightly exaggerated, the principle is not.

The markets are doing this because they’re putting their money where their mouth is, that Denmark will decouple their currency from the Euro, and its relative value will rise, ultimately giving them a profit. Even if it doesn’t the cost to insure Euro based debt is now virtually guaranteeing investors a loss. Scotland can guarantee a profit from its currency and stimulate inward investment by similarly de-coupling from Sterling in time of need.

This brings us back to the UK, now the most indebted nation on earth by many standards. The last time UK-plc turned a significant profit it relied on Scottish oil, and Michael Foot was running against Margaret Thatcher. Since then it’s been a nation living of the never-never. Eventually there comes a day of reckoning, and that day is almost upon us. Scotland was in the black as recently as our first ministers’ last administration. We may still be in the black if we had accurate accountings, for GERS does not give the whole story.

The question for Scots of an independent mind is weather the crash in the pound Sterling will come before or after the referendum. It will be close in historical terms either way. The question for Holyrood is will they have a “Plan B” or is there such a dramatic lack of foresight on the part of all concerned in Edinburgh that they will simply wallow in the subsequent mire.

Alex Salmond must make clear that the pound Scots will be an independent currency if the need arises, the markets must also be aware of that. Stating that this is simply a clarification of policy is easily achieved, it’s an independent currency tied to the pound Sterling. Sterling will be accepted in Scotland as the pound Scots should be south of the border. Note – should be, as little is expected to change there.

When the markets remove their funding from UK debt, when the collapse comes, if it’s before the referendum there can be a plan “ready for implementation”, but dependent upon a “YES” vote. Who would wish to stay with Sterling in a tailspin of devaluation against a stronger “pound” Scots.

If it’s after the referendum, after a “YES” then Holyrood can tie the Scots pound to the dollar, the Euro or any other tradable currency it chooses. A true Scots government could even elect to make it an independently tradable currency of its own. Again we Scots have options; the back door remains wide open. Only a fool or foolish government cuts off lines of escape.

By re-adopting the pound Scots, whose notes we are familiar with, whose coins already line our pockets, the politicians in Edinburgh will be following their goal of minimal perceived upheaval while achieving the much more valuable prize of getting Scots pounds back onto the international markets. The pound Scots will be right alongside all other nations’ currencies, ready for that decoupling in case of need.

When the butcher’s bill becomes due for Sterling’s decades of excess on the good graces of the world and her markets, it is the markets who will dictate where their money flows. It will flow away from Sterling, from London and from “The City”. Scotland can either be tied to the UK and suffer the ignominy of a position like that of Greece, where even medications for hospitals are unavailable, or she can be in a position to free herself from Sterling and stimulate investment.

In the run up to the referendum the markets will likely push for and fund a campaign for the retention of an integrated UK, it’s what they know, and investors hate uncertainty or upheaval. After the referendum if the markets get their way, as is likely, for money is often what makes the world go around, the chance is strong indeed that they will rue the decisions made. It will be the old case of “be careful what you wish for”.

As for the average swing voter on the independence issue, polls indicate that much will be decided on the value and type of currency in their pocket, and that value is something the markets will also dictate.

They always have done.

It’s simply up to us Scots to give the markets a few options and some sensible direction. We can either let the banker’s money, fundamentally our own money, hoodwink us. Alternatively we can put forward monetary policies that will get Scots excited, policies to make them vote “YES”, for without them the Union and her bankers will win, the only real question will be “by how much?”.

Sunday, 24 June 2012

After independence Scotland needs a second chamber.

There have been too many scare stories, opinions, preferences and noises from all aspects of society to make anyone believe we don’t actually require a second house, although Holyrood’s political leaders are on record that one is not necessary.

Individuals, nationalist, unionist and those with no political opinion have all voiced concerns about the dominance of a single party. It seems to be fine at Westminster, or in France where Hollande’s socialists just swept all chambers, but not in Scotland. Odd that.

Perhaps the reality is that Scots are more finely tuned towards democracy, it’s an ages old tradition here. It wasn’t always effective but we used to have clan councils, clan heads, chiefs and others would get together and agree, our seven Ri, or sub kings, would elect our Ard-Ri, or high king. Our old parliament was constructed of three “estates”, all of whom had to be won to a cause. Arguably Scots had one of the best of old world democracies.

It is fair to make the argument that more than any other nation on earth democratic principle and individual sovereignty is in our heritage, our psyche, our blood.

What we don’t need in Scotland is two elected houses that operate in contradictory fashion, as the US often has with Democrats in the Senate and Republicans in the house, this usually just ends in “horse trading” and more un-required money being spent on additional “bridges to nowhere”.

What we need in Scotland is a uniquely Scottish solution to our perceived issue. What we need is a second house which is funded by the taxpayer without requiring significant additional burdens to be borne by the taxpayer, better yet by reducing burdens we already have.

Proportionately we have somewhere around 150 “representatives” at Westminster, between commons and Lords. That’s approaching an all in bill, when they’re working for us 9-5 daily, of about £50 million a year for folk we “send south”. Simply transferring half that burden to a new second house of around 51 will create substantial savings of about 2/3 just by numbers alone, more when removing any need for a “London loading”.

How would a second house work, what would it do, and how would it interact at Holyrood are all excellent questions. Questions that are best answered individually over time, but suggestions might be that it would only review Holyrood’s proposed legislation for benefits to the Scottish people and affordability – is it properly costed or must other areas be reduced to accommodate the legislative proposals.

The second house might best work if it was remote from Holyrood, yet balanced with it geographically. Perhaps locating it in the old Highland capitol, Inverness might be an option. Placing it in a smaller building than Holyrood, perhaps a restoration or conversion of an existing historic site would be appropriate. If we choose this path and choose it well the budget could be small.

Meetings could be held in Inverness once each month; the principle office of each representative would be in their constituency.

These individuals could vote on the legislation by a simple majority, and it could be done either in Inverness or from their offices, all votes of each individual being subject to immediate publication. These individuals we elect could even be permitted to vote electronically – with today’s technology it would be simple. With the results public on such a small sample the opportunity for fraud would be almost nonexistent and if suspected could be quickly remedied.

It would also be important for the second house to be as devoid as possible of party politics. Only independents should sit there. The criteria for public campaign funding should be simple, comprehensive and elegant. Each candidate should have a set grant and be permitted no other funding. Private funding from any source to second house members, except perhaps from their pre-existing own business, should be illegal.

If our national leaders at Holyrood had the spirit to pass such legislation and enact such a second chamber it would stop much corruption in its tracks. It would advance cleanliness in Scottish politics by a considerable degree.

It would help arrest any potential of corruption, this second house, but it would also put the UK system to shame. It would be no toothless chamber, able to be ignored at whim, able to reform without a constitutional referendum. It would be a truly inclusive, geographically representational body for all Scots.

Orcadians would have five representatives, as would Glaswegians. There could be five more from the highlands, offset by another five from the borders. Each of our three largest cities could have five representatives. The Western Isles would have an equal voice to central Scotland. Such an inclusive chamber would go a substantial way to preventing or lessening feelings of disenfranchisement within our more remote communities.

Such an inclusive chamber could only serve to weld our nation together as one single polity. It will forever spike the Union guns about a situation in Scotland that might mirror the Irish, where some parts decided to found a new state allied and beholden to London.

It is time Holyrood started clarifying the choices that will be available to Scots after a yes vote. A second chamber should be a choice of all Scots, enhanced democracy and democratic safeguards are difficult for the establishment to argue against. But they will.

Holyrood, it’s up to you, you have the voice, the authority, the coverage to initiate and disseminate policies that will get us excited, make us enthused and weld a brave new path for a resurgent nation, or you can do nothing and watch the dreams sink in a sea of privilege and political correctness.

Saturday, 16 June 2012

The six things Holyrood could promise to be certain we'll vote yes.

The issue at present- until Scots of a nationalist persuasion can reach into and beyond the ranks of the undecided, there remains a possibility of the referendum failing to achieve our desired result. Holyrood, the elected government of Scotland is a mirror of Scots society. The majority believe in more powers through to full sovereignty for all Scots, yet the debate drivers are focusing on entirely the wrong areas. Holyrood continues to debate on Westminster’s terms.

There’s no present indication of any change in tone or direction, the debate has been bogged down in minutiae, primarily driven by Unionist leaning politicians and an often fawning media with a London centric world view. It’s not a minutiae debate; it’s a full canvas big picture debate.

That Scots are hungry for change is without question, with more than 2/3 leaning towards either more powers or full independence. With such a healthy majority backing additional repatriation of sovereignty in some form then it should be a foregone conclusion that this will come to pass.

This conclusion has the potential of being stymied through Westminster intervention, where the range of options available to Scots will not reflect the wishes or aspirations of the nation.

Its worthwhile examining what, under a truly representative democracy, should be available to the Scots people. All variables and potentials should be on offer, and our polls would refine them as our nation sees fit. It may require multiple polls to accomplish this constitutional issue in a truly democratic society, for democracy itself is not a static issue.

Having resolved the parliament question in 1997, perhaps the next subject could simply be do we wish to continue with the status quo or do we wish more powers repatriated to Holyrood. In the unlikely event the nation votes for the status-quo the story ends until a popular up-surging through electoral returns or political agitation is indicated. If the populace votes for additional repatriation the debate continues.

Eventually we arrive at the level of self government we as a people select. That’s true democracy, that’s a fundamental right under the UN, but with London rule it will not be coming to a location near you anytime soon.

One issue that’s apparently taboo in Scotland’s mainstream media is just why anyone, not just Scots, is willing to meekly accept such disenfranchisement.

Given the absence of true democracy which is being forced upon us by Westminster, we must examine the limited choices available. Until a middle ground is defined and identified on the ballot, and all sides agree on the content of the middle ground then it must be removed from the equation. Today, although a denial of democracy, that middle ground is somewhere as likely as a significant lottery win.

Choices are therefore reduced to either the status quo or a fully sovereign parliament in Edinburgh.

There are potentially some 30% or more of Scots residents who’d fall into the undecided category, these are the devo-max supporters who must find another home, or simply stay home.

Present polling indicators on a two choice ballot are that slightly more of them may lean towards the status quo than sovereignty, perhaps by as much as 2:1. This speaks of a lack of compelling argument in favour of full sovereignty from the perspective of this significant section of the franchise. The ubiquitous Cybernat or other individual can’t address this; the leadership is required to come from Scotland’s parliament.

The challenge for Holyrood is how to sway this segment. In part Holyrood has gone some distance towards meeting that challenge with its consultation; it garnered some 20,000 plus responses.

The issue is that that number is still only around 0.3% of the population. Amongst the voting section of the population it’s somewhere around half that number. That is a woefully small percentage, less than 2 of every thousand of us, who felt this subject mattered enough to voice an opinion, although it still a magnitude better than managed by Westminster on a significantly larger base.

Scots simply aren’t moved to act, to devote time and resources necessary to the single question which would be the most important political event in their nation during the last three centuries, and few in the establishment are asking why. As this situation self evidently benefits Unionists, Nationalists must examine and respond to these fundamentals of self disenfranchisement.

To be certain of winning the referendum Holyrood must first beat voter apathy.

Everything surrounding the negative perspective appears to center around one thing, which is the “why bother” or “nothing much will change anyway” type of attitudes.

These attitudes strongly reflect the political reality of today’s Scotland, where we as a whole view politics and the political process with distrust.

It’s a system that is perpetuated by continual media scare stories and articles headlined “politician accused”. A constant stream of Westminster based scandals, Leveson, expenses, cash for honours, police corruption and sex for secrets also do nothing to inspire confidence in any elected official. Without confidence in those elected and appointed it is difficult for many to uncover the need or desire to express their right of franchise. It becomes exceedingly difficult to actually persuade them to make the effort to go and vote.

This lack of engagement, the problem with the upcoming referendum is that it is bogged down in minutiae. The media circus focus varies from the wording of the question to how many soldiers or ships a sovereign Scotland might have. Will we be £540 per year better off, or just £450, these are the detail distractions the media and Westminster are using to obfuscate, confuse and create apathy. The internet and message boards are infested with proponents of both sides doggedly arguing the hues without an apparent comprehension of the spectrum.

The referendum debate to date has been a triumph of obfuscation for London.

At day’s end these debates are simply that, they’re a distraction. The only predominant question Scots needs answered is “are we viable”, to which the widely acknowledged answer remains what it has always been, “yes”.

After that it’s simply a matter of choice as to the physical location of government and the specific political system Scots choose to select. In that perspective it is incredulous that five million voluntarily would allow fifty million neighbours to dictate to them, to dilute their franchise.

In 2014 there is opportunity for real democracy, a change the establishment in London is trying to prevent by using the micro debates false premises to create confusion, because as they themselves are well aware no government can solidly dictate future policy.

Quite simply, in a democracy if the electorate doesn’t like what the existing government is doing, they throw them out during the next electoral cycle and put in an elected leadership they prefer, usually with different policies. Sometimes this even happens at UK level, though the policies rarely change there.

The real issue about the upcoming poll is missing, and that’s the aspect of constitutional change.

The constitution when updated and enacted in Scotland should remain constant irrespective of individual government policies unless the people vote for subsequent constitutional change. This is unlike the present scenario whereby true democracy is being treated like the plague by almost all parties concerned with driving the upcoming poll.

Under the present Holyrood limitations, barring line item specific declarations of UDI by Holyrood against the “reserved powers” issues, there’s not much that can be implemented until after a positive referendum result. It can still be planned for however.

It is beyond time for Holyrood to unveil the big picture plans.

Various parties, individuals and organisations have looked into, even drafted an updated constitution for Scotland. These could be put forward for consideration after the referendum. Representatives should be placed on a panel that is assembled like Iceland’s was – people driven. Then the final document should be voted in, or rejected for amendment. Once adopted it should have constitutional hurdles to prevent needless tinkering. This should be one facet of the new Scotland we will vote upon in 2014.

Holyrood also appears to give little consideration to the fact that Scotland is a completely diverse country. We have mountains and lowland’s, we have moors and farmland, industry and agriculture, with cities, towns, villages all the way through small crofting and fishing communities to lonely dwellings in the glens. All need a voice.

Perhaps a second chamber of government is appropriate, although Holyrood at present thinks not.

The Westminster MP’s will cease to exist for us, that funding could mean each of Scotland’s regions given a vote with identical membership on this second house, a requirement being no party affiliation. Independents would give people politics, not party politics to that legislative area.

Highland could have ten members, as could Strathclyde. There would be a balance on the political representation of our communities. This is a subject that has a potential to excite many, especially if all politicians salaries and packages were tied to a percentage of the average wage.

This second house would not initiate laws, but could reject and amend proposals. The better the nation is managed, the better the nation performs, the better our politicians are rewarded. Ask the people and we will answer. We will tell you that promoting economically sound and sustainable policy is what we want.

Scots need to know that parliaments are not “just au’ the same”, that ours will be different. We need to know that all primary election promises must be funded, and that the parties making them must publish the details and timeframes before the election, then hold to the promises that are made or face a recall. Scots need to know that issues like the Liberal Democrats signed and discarded pledges will not be allowed to happen here. We will happily enshrine these principles.

When it comes to Europe we must be asked, the choice must be ours. The promise of such an expansion of democracy after the referendum will win many to the cause Holyrood is promoting. There also must be policies to make certain that if our best intentions result in a mistake today; our children are not bound by our revealed stupidity. All treaties entered into by our nation that deal with future issues of sovereignty must have sunset clauses, clauses which do not prevent popular reaffirmation. Our children must be ensured the freedom of choice that has for so long been denied to us.

We know that the Euro is threatened; we know that the pound has been inflation prone for almost three quarters of a century, and that the Bank of England is a serial de-valuer with a record stretching back even longer than that. Neither Brussels nor London has been proven capable of effective money management. With these facts self evident Scots need options for a plebiscite on currency under a sovereign Holyrood. It is not necessary to supply details at present, simply the timeframe under which we will be polled.

On the subject of Money, we need to know our land will never be in thrall to the bankers, usury agencies and financiers who are increasingly running our world. We need to know that we will continually balance our budget and that in cases where borrowing is called for beyond a certain minimal limit, we must approve it. That is a democracy I would vote for, that is a democracy which will be worth fighting for.

Six simple enhancements of democracy, give us a constitution we ourselves develop. Mandate an independent second house as a check and balance, make political promises real, make them funded and binding. If we can do this and add the choices on Europe, our monetary system and our nations finances to be all driven by the electorate we would have a system worthy of acclaim, a system worth implementing, a system that will never happen in Westminster’s corrupt halls. There is only one location Scots can ensure such a system.

Give me this and you will inspire me, give us this and you can inspire a nation, for the debate is not about the minutiae, it’s not about Unionist V Nationalist, it’s quite simply about the potential of democracy from Edinburgh against dictatorship from London.

Holyrood, show me you are aware of this divide in the debate, show me you know it’s about something far, far larger than the petty squabbles we presently hear, show me you know and understand the bigger picture.

Edinburgh, make me this promise and win not only my interest, win my vote. Grab not only the imagination of Scots, but behold a world astounded.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Europe’s Scotland, Scotland’s Europe; both can be defined by Scots leadership.

Today Scotland isn’t even worthy of consideration on the European stage. Scotland and her resources are administered by Westminster. London is who Brussels deals with and in practical terms rarely a thought is given otherwise. Scotland at present effectively has no voice in Europe. The interests of Scots are subordinated to general UK policy. This is Scotland’s Europe, 2012.

Scotland’s MEPs are mostly faceless amid myriad others, key committee roles and policies from fisheries and farming to oil remain decided by Westminster.

In 2012 Scotland has no opportunity for leadership in Europe, but she is full of promise.

Against this background the next half decade is fluid, dynamic and potentially vibrant, at least for Scots, should we choose. We can also lead Europe to a new path.

Europe is changing because Europe must. Most of us pay little regard to the backdrop of the EU and Eurozone crisis, it’s a news item, but not that significant as we deal with the turmoil of our daily lives and more personal crises.

The Europe we know is changing, and it’s changing quickly. Many are seeing it as Germany’s Europe, where the mid European powerhouse economy dictates to the rest of the EU, primarily through its financial support of the Eurozone. Germany is laying down the law, dictating social structure, welfare and benefits, her tentacles are seeping into every aspect of EU life as conditions of perpetual bailouts.

This perception of Germany is a myth based in reality. The Germans are certainly underwriting the EZ, but only because that’s what the EZ governments, these popular “democracies” desire. We the citizens demand benefits and safety nets, policies and welfare to elect our politicians, so our politicians promise them, even in the knowledge that our nations can’t afford them. Then our politicians turn to the German backed institutions of the EU or the global IMF for funding.

This is essentially underwritten by the parasitic banking system, where private banks are licensed to create money and lend it to us so that we have to pay interest on the money they create.

We have lived with this snake eating its tail since William Patterson first convinced William of Orange this was a good idea. With the concept that money and wealth can be “created” by private banking companies and not as a product of the work of the people there would always be a day of reckoning, and that day for Europe is now dawning.

Europe is now in a situation that will play out largely in a timeline with Scots independence, barring an accelerated disaster with Spain, Italy, Ireland or Portugal. The two, the EU and Scots sovereignty are interrelated and intertwined on a multitude of levels. Both scenarios are about money, power and the politics of fear.

It was the politics of fear that had the Irish confirm the latest EU treaty, it will be the politics of fear that will have the Greeks vote for an EU supporting party this weekend. Of course there could be an unlikely result where the Greeks vote to restore their sovereignty and steal Scotland’s thunder. Don’t expect such a result in Greece; the entire EU machine has directed its broadside of impending doom at Greece in recent months. Present indicators are that the Greeks will buckle.

The Greeks will join the other countries of the EZ who are now bailing each other out – it’s portrayed as neighbours helping neighbours. The problem is there’s only one truly strong neighbour, Germany, with the others all in varying degrees of onerous debt. We’re now seeing Spain’s banks being bailed out, Ireland has to use some of its bailout funds to help Spain – or it can try to borrow more. Italy is on the hook for almost 20B Euro’s as part of Spain’s banking package, and it has to borrow that money at 5% to lend it to Spain at 3%. That’s the EU rules. For those who noticed, Spain’s bailout euphoria only lasted a few hours this time. The banks and “investors” are always demanding more, and with governments in debt to them they are rarely told “no”, and then it’s often just for appearances sake with decisions quickly, quietly reversed.

This Spanish bailout is a good example, it means Italy who the markets are already avoiding, will have to find 2% of 20b each year to finance Spain, that’s 400 million Euro’s a year the Italian taxpayer has to eat, on top of financing their own debt and paying into the EU. The Italian taxpayer, like the Greek and Spanish are beginning to have second thoughts. Confidence in the EU and Euro is dropping and the drop can be expected to gain momentum. The UK is a microcosm of the EU.

Contrast this with Iceland’s experience; it dumped the debt on the bankers rather than the public purse. Iceland had two rough years but is now well on its way to sustained recovery. The markets are not avoiding Iceland. Iceland also held the bankers criminally to account.

The EZ and the UK by contrast has an overall negative debt ratio, a negative balance of payments and an overall contracting economy.

The EU, particularly the Eurozone, as it presently exists is lacking a single overall positive indicator which says the recession/depression will even have a potential of terminating. The politicians of the EU and the UK are using wealth that has only one foundation in reality, the future penury of the individual through onerous taxation. Our premiers and politicians are enriching a privileged few as they perpetuate an ideology of a United States of Europe.

This United States of Europe is simply a project that most of those involved with can’t afford to see fail, for with its failure goes their credibility, careers and backers profits.

The single prop still holding up the EU is the one leg of a four legged stool, when the economic foundation is eroded, the natural wealth denuded and mortgaged, national assets stripped and sold or privatised all that remains is taxing the futures of the average citizen. The average citizen can only be taxed so far, have so much of their future mortgaged before social unrest commences. It’s that burden which has led to revolution, to upheaval, and to demands for only taxation with representation in the past.

Europe is about to undergo such a period. Scotland will also undergo such a simultaneous change, both are now predetermined. What is not set is Scotland’s path, it can be the opposite of Europe and the UK should her people choose, or it can mirror the impacts of the larger area. Everything is dependent upon whether Scotland’s course is within or outwith the UK. Indicators state that charting our own path will mean travelling in much calmer waters.

We can expect the Euro to collapse during the period of Scotland’s march to self determination, we can also expect the pound to lose approximatetely 20% to 50% of its value over the same 2012 – 2017 period; both relative collapses have already started. Both Europe and the UK are suffering from the same malaise.

The revolution within the EU will likely be peaceful for the most part, like the revolution that created the Euro. A two tier EU will emerge, with the EZ being reduced to a block largely consisting of the original EEC members, Germany, France, Belgium, Italy, Holland and Luxembourg. Italy, from a market perspective is ailing and questionable, but the potential for a viable reduced EZ certainly still appears to be present amongst the group. The EZ has a potential to retrench, reorganize and expand, but it has a relatively small window of opportunity.

Scotland within the UK is in the same position.

The scenario we can expect to develop as Scotland elects to once again to beat her own drum, putting her own needs forward within the international community instead of relying upon London using her “proxy” vote, all too often left in the envelope, is one of hope for other small EU nations.

We can anticipate the EU/Eurozone very reluctantly reducing to a more stable trading community with a substantial recovery of national sovereignty. A sovereign Scotland will help the retrenchment; it will enhance the viability and reduce the social unrest. Scotland will be able to demonstrate to Europe that smaller nations can repatriate sovereignty and recreate the levers of economic success without destructive revolution and terminal social decline.

This is the base scenario of what we can consider to be Europe’s Scotland in 2017 and beyond. Europe will be a continent struggling through the aftereffects of abysmal policy by Brussels and resurrecting national sovereignty on a nation by nation basis. The electorates will demand it.

A newly independent Scotland will be undergoing a similar, but peaceful upheaval as she finally stumbles towards prosperity in her own right, prosperity now delayed some three centuries.

That our future Scotland will be part of the new European framework in some fashion is without question. That she will be there on her own fair, democratically decided terms is also without question, for Scots have what Europe needs. It is those very needs that for good or ill will make Scotland a focus, a beacon.

Scotland has more than 40% of the EU fossil fuel reserves, our coal supplies are relatively untapped, and we have between 10% and 40% of the EU’s renewable energy potential by industry, with less than 2% of her population. Scotland can also be a net exporter of water and food to the remainder of the EU; we have an abundance of both. Scots stand poised for a boom of potentially unprecedented proportions.

As this decade of radical change draws down, Europe’s Scotland can be developing into Continental Europe’s powerhouse, it can be helping fill Europe’s breadbaskets, it can be culturally enhancing our fellow nations within the EU to a considerable degree.

Most importantly, the dissolution of the UK that can be engineered by the Scots in 2014, in peace, in friendship and with amity can shine a light for the rest of the peoples of the EU. We can show them that “stronger together” is a great ideal when nations remove trading barriers, but also that sovereignty reclaimed is democracy enhanced and the individual re-enfranchised.

Europe’s Scotland can be a place where the Greeks, Spaniards, Irish and Italians can learn that fear of withdrawal from the EZ is just that, fear. That it can be done in an orderly fashion, that it may not be painless, but will involve far less hardship than perpetually pursuing failed monetarist policies to ultimate bankruptcy and individual penury.

Europe’s Scotland will only exist for a short time, until she learns what Scots can teach her, that Unions must be equal, that proportionate representation between nations simply doesn’t work, for the smaller is always subsumed and the greater will accept no other form of Union. Slowly, after our referendum, it will again become Scotland’s Europe.

If we choose.