Scottish Independence Debate Podcast

Stuart Johnston presents an independence debate with Ashtin Loughry and Cameron Bark. Will independence be a good thing for Scotland or not?

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Scottish Independence: Yay, Nae or Nae Bothered?

Does anybody care about wee Scotland’s independence? It’s a good question – but recent polls have shown that the answer is probably no. A survey showed that 46% of Scots “don’t really mind”. Not fantastic ground for Alex Salmond’s passionate campaign for an independent Scotland, which he’s been harping on about for the better part of six months. Of course a lot of us try to have an opinion, try to pick a side – but in reality, will a Scotland free from British rule really have a positive impact? Currently, Scotland do have their own legislature, affecting education, health and the economy, but it’s difficult to say whether they have any effective impact. Perhaps having more power over running their own country would improve the state of the education system (which it’s fair to say, is currently in shambles). Or perhaps it would have the opposite effect, if it is revealed that the government is inept to manage an entire country by itself and everyone will find out that the Emperor has no clothes (Alex Salmond being the emperor, for symbolism’s sake). Economically speaking, will Scotland survive? We all know the state of the Republic of Ireland’s economy. Does Scotland want that simply for the sake of freedom from Britain? Salmond seems hellbent on making an Independent Scotland his legacy. But is it for the good of Scotland – or for the good of his ego?

As a girl from Belfast City, transplanted in Edinburgh (slap bang, it’s fair to say, in the hub of the reaction) I have had to carve out some sort of opinion on it. I know a little bit about a country campaigning for independence- Northern Ireland’s history with its campaign for freedom from British rule is the steaming magma to Scotland’s flickering flame. There are a myriad of differences between them, obviously; Britain was tyrannical with the Irish. Because Scotland has always shared an island with England, there’s never been much unrest.

I can’t say I’m informed enough to write authoritatively about it. If Scotland becomes independent, it would be a shame. Northern Ireland would have to make awkward conversation with Wales while England counted its money in the driver’s seat. But it’s understandable why people would want to be separate from Britain – I wanted to as well, once upon a time. It’s all up to the people now: will they go for change, gambling on an unsure thing in the hope it goes right? Or will they (understandably) stay safe ensconced in the United Kingdom? Only time will tell.

Scottish Independence- the infuriating campaigns

The Scottish referendum is set for the 18th September 2014, or as both campaign websites plaster all over there page- 233 days,13 hours and a couple of minutes because everyone is just dying to know that kind of information… Anyway it’s coming up and us Scot’s aged from 16 upwards are going to have to decide whether we want to be free from the apparently obvious English oppression or stay in the warm and positively “cuddly” United Kingdom. Either way its almost guaranteed that no matter the outcome, as soon as things start to go bad everyone will claim that they are free from blame as they “wurney even near wan ae they votin hings” and the problems facing the country are all ………………’s fault (insert A. Alex Salmond or B. David Cameron and the other one).

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No matter which way you’re leaning towards voting for in the referendum one thing is certain- the campaigns are infuriating. Every day we are bombarded by propaganda from both parties, either slagging the other off or inundating us with facts and statistics that are completely at ends with their rivals daily dose of useless numbers and “facts”. What’s possibly the most annoying thing is not just the lies and hate mongering told by both sides, but their frankly childish excuses for disagreeing with the opposition. To be fair I’m slightly pulled towards favouring the yes campaign at this point as they regularly detail how Scotland will be so much better without the English “oppression”, whereas the “better together” campaigns website only details three things that Scotland need from the United Kingdom- security, prosperity and interdependence. so basically without Britain we are hooped, to put it politely- and the blatant fear mongering for votes is something that I despise.

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The Yes campaign is no better in this regard however, with many of their campaigners claiming that England is the source of all our problems and if we don’t get rid of them immediately then our country shall become a totalitarian oppressive government such as the one seen in “V for Vendetta”.

Personally I think that no vote is a wrong vote, both sides have a valid point but the thing that many people don’t realise is that nothing is going to drastically change! it’s almost certain that the wealth disparity will get bigger, the Government will still continue to make cuts no matter how much money they save, and politicians will always be class A wankers.

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But a question still needs to be asked, where do the majority stand on independence? is it a good idea or will it doom us all to become a impoverished third world country begging Britain to be friends again? comment your opinions!

Scottish Independence

Should Scotland be an Independent country? Yes or No? On the 18th September 2014, Scotland’s fate will ultimately be determined but who knows all the facts?

For an 18-year-old girl, I would consider myself politically informed. However, I’m sure even I don’t know half of the facts. Many people just want a simple list of positives and negatives but is it as easy as that? Who could simply list them and give an un-bias opinion. With the release of the White Paper , it gave Scot’s an opportunity to read up on the main questions which many wanted the answers to. I feel the document was targeted at those already politically informed, but not in any way educating the younger 16 year olds which are clueless yet been granted the opportunity to vote.

‘Would Scotland participate in Eurovision’ was a question in the 670 page document, the White Paper on Scottish Independence. It deeply concerns me why anyone would consider this an appropriate question when 5.3 million Scot’s lives could change due to the consequence of the decision.

The ‘Yes’ campaign to me, uses the Scot’s patriotic attitude to encourage their vote. If you don’t vote yes then you are not a true Scot! I am a proud Scot, but I too am proud to be British.

The petty Scot vs. English hatred still remains in the 21st century, but why? Is it for political reasons or is it for the trivial reason that when Andy Murray won Wimbledon he was claimed to be British and not Scottish. Or when Susan Boyle walked onto that stage at the Britain’s Got Talent audition, she was a joke, until she sung and she is now deemed as British treasure.

Unless I get answers , I will stand by my decision.

Just give me some peace and quiet for a while. Please.

Scotland: the country that gave us Robert Burns, William Wallace and Ricky Ross. It’s also the country that has given us an entertaining, yet dreary independence vote. Ever since the Scottish National Party pledged to hold an independence vote in their manifesto in 2007, it has almost come to the time where Scottish people make their decision to whether they want to vote ‘Yes’ or ‘No’. While there is plenty of time to make a decision on whether you want to vote for ‘Yes’ or ‘No’, the topic of independence has grown tiresome.

Most Scots are prevalent on Twitter and the aspect of social media has been a significant factor during the Scottish independence vote so far. This is mainly down to the SNP’s idea of implementing social media in order to get people to vote ‘Yes’. It is supposed to allow people to be convinced to vote ‘Yes’ by using a simple hashtag: #voteyes. However, it isn’t all roses and daisies. There seems to be a fair use of animosity on Twitter – and not just Twitter. Facebook, blogs and YouTube seem to be hostile, filled with arguments about why independence is better for Scotland. On Twitter, especially, you can clock the people who are voting ‘Yes’. They have ‘Yes’ in their profile picture; they have ‘Yes’ in their bio; and they have ‘Yes’ in their cover photo. One, in particular, and this is no word of a lie, had a guy who designed melted cheese on toast in the shape of ‘Yes’. There’s being passionate about your opinions, and then there is making cheese on toast as a statement. Hang your head.

The argument continues on Twitter when Scotland Tonight is on air. Very often they have a televised debate which usually ends up in a fat politician being lynched. That genuinely happened in November of last year when Nicola Pigeon (Sturgeon) faced the Secretary-of-State for Scotland, Alistair Carmichael in a match of politician deathmatch. Here, we witnessed the vulgar tongue of Sturgeon who essentially vilified Carmichael on air while he was – and I’m going to quote Malcolm Tucker here – like a sweaty octopus trying to unhook a bra. The man was all over the place, but mainly because the vicious Sturgeon had dropped him into that – a woman who has absolutely no dignity or respect. I took to Twitter following that debate and the Scotland Tonight hashtag was filled with ‘Yes’ voters claiming that Sturgeon had ‘won’. Nobody won. You will only win in September, and that’s if you win.

Now it seems that you cannot get away from Scottish independence. Wherever you go, there are people in the street handing out fliers; there is adverts everywhere; there are people wearing ‘Yes’ badges; and there are even households getting ‘Yes’ newspapers through the door! That newspaper is essentially free bogroll, but I don’t want independence shoved in my face. I mean, you don’t provide the Scottish public with a newspaper through their door and state that The Proclaimers are for independence. Nobody cares if those two halfwits are for independence, it isn’t going to swing my vote. In addition to this, there is even sly bribery involved where you can win an iPad and money if you enter a competition. How desperate does one party become in order to gain more voters on their side? I know it isn’t directly targeted towards me but glancing over the next computer, there was someone on the Yes Scotland website which stated that a River City ‘star’ was for independence with a picture that tries to grab the attention of male readers. Great tactic. Totally irrelevant, Sean Lafferty (or Laugherty, perhaps?).

That’s why I have become bored of independence. I’m bored talking about it, I’m bored hearing about it, and I’m bored seeing it everywhere I go. Not only am I fed up of all that, I’m sick (yet quietly laughing) at the desperation of the ‘Yes’ campaign. I know it’s extremely difficult to move away from independence, unless you moved to Singapore or something, but you can’t go anywhere without knowing about it.

Reading this, you may be thinking, “this guy is definitely a ‘No’ voter.” Actually, I’m on the fence more than anything, but if from now to September there is a continuation of desperation in terms of ideas and off-the-hook policies, I won’t be venturing into ‘Yes’ territory.

Scottish Independence Referendum – For Or Against?

By Marc McArdle and Laura Palmer.

One Scottish student’s view on Scottish Independence: