Scotland’s referendum

Sat, Aug 9, 2014, 01:10

Sir, – The fundamental problem for wavering Scottish voters is the fact that this referendum requires them to write a blank cheque for their negotiating team, and indeed for its opposite numbers from Westminster.

The Better Together campaign has managed to hold onto an almost impregnable lead through negativity and scaremongering, while producing no meaningful vision to counter the Scottish government’s white paper, which actually makes a good and generally sound case for independence. A recent BBC programme by Robert Peston featuring a variety of heavyweight figures from the worlds of business and finance arrived at the conclusion that Scotland’s economic fate would be largely the same in the event of a Yes vote. Indeed, the point was well made that an agreement on the UK’s national debt is just as important to London as the issues of currency and resources are to Edinburgh.

Thus it seems to me that Scottish voters actually need to make a decision of the heart every bit as much as one of the head. The evidence is that they have been well governed since 1999 and that those parties who originally opposed devolution have played their full part in operating it since then. And if the economic argument still niggles strongly, they might recall the UK’s rush to provide financial assistance to Ireland in 2010. The UK’s economic interests in Scotland are such that a good deal will have to be brokered and in that sense Scotland’s representatives are actually holding very strong cards. Yours, etc,

BARRY HENNESSY,

Turvey Walk,

Donabate,

Co Dublin