Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Scottish Independence and the reasons a British Unionist changed his mind.

I have been a UK Unionist all my adult life. But I am completely fed up with the constant accusations that Scotland is some kind of 'subsidy junkie'. That Scotland never contributes anything the UK Union of nations that I loved so dear.

I have argued the Scottish corner of the Union debate in a Pro-British fashion for years and now I have given up. I have come to the conclusion that even if 5 million people in England (about 8% of the UK Population) were to completely understand Scotland's vital role in the UK, that would still leave about 45 Million English people who simply could not care less. Some are anti Scottish, most are probably indifferent. Either way, my idea of British unity is quashed.

I live in New Zealand, I moved here in 2003 and as an Expat Scot on the outside looking in, I'd like to think I have a unique perspective on this issue. All nations seek positive recognition. New Zealand certainly does, and I can assure you that after being out of Scotland for 8 years, I now understand that Scotland is not seen as a significant nation in the world. Many people in New Zealand and Australia genuinely seem to think that Scotland has no real importance, via the UK union or otherwise.

Scotland is seen as a cute 'cultural attachment' to the UK or 'England' and despite hundreds of years of Scottish participation with England/Wales in Empire and Union, this view does not seem likely to change.

I always fight for Scotland's corner in the UK and the world. I tell people that Scotland is a rich, modern wealthy nation. Rich in education, skills, natural resources, all of which have been contributed to the UK and Empire. I tell anyone willing to listen that my home country of Scotland has always more than pulled her weight in the UK and for a population of only around 8.6% of the UK with 30% of the UK landmass and Europe's largest EEZ, Scotland contributes more than her fair share of taxes, resources, skills, technology and much more. This can be seen at all levels of British society and British history.

But no-one cares, especially the vast majority of the 50 million people in England.

I have gone round after round, argument after argument with Kiwis, Aussies, Scots, Germans, Italians, Spaniards, Danish, English. You name it. One inescapable conclusion has found me. Scotland is a non country. A cultural anomaly in the 'English' dominated part of the North Atlantic.

When those bombers crashed their vehicle into Glasgow airport a few years ago, some of my Kiwi friends were shocked. I said 'Well, it was only a matter of time'. Because after all, Scotland does participate in the UK and the UK is at war in Iraq. Yet, nobody understood this. 'Poor Scotland' they said, 'it's a lovely little country' they said, 'why would anyone do that to Scotland?'....

Not that I want Scotland to be a terrorist target, but talk like this embarrasses me. The patronising pat on the back makes me cringe and it was made clear once again that nobody thinks of Scotland as being in the UK.

Scotland is NOT seen as an integral part of the UK or a valuable member. My personal revelation is that I now realise it never has been. As a staunch Unionist I always knew Scotland was and is, a vital contributor to the UK in every way and that despite the disparity and some odd constitutional problems, the UK union was overall, a great thing.

But like I said, I have simply given up.

For many people in the UK, Scotland is seen a as a sponger, a subsidy junkie of England, a mere department of the London Government and the UK media seem quite happy to propagate this myth.

This recent recession has brought this whole topic into the spotlight for me. Cuts are being made all across the board and I understand this. The problem is, Scotland is receiving a disproportional level of cuts being made at the London level, by a government that very few people in Scotland voted for.

One thing that has absolutely infuriated me, is all this nonsense surrounding the so called bail out of the 'Scottish' banks.

I would also like to note, I like all the other UK countries. I also really like England. Many of my friends live there and some of my family moved there too. I think England should also prosper as a free and independent nation, free of Scotland and free of whatever burden many English people seem to have with the nation and the people of Scotland.

My fight for Scottish recognition, unity and respect within the UK is over. 

My fight to advance the cause of Independence and to end Scotland's isolation within the UK begins.


Mel Rowing said...

Who are you?

How do we know you exist?

Muzzerino said...

Um, sorry, should I have left my name etc at the bottom?

wonkotsane said...

Just one comment: under international law the maritime border between England and Scotland is an extension of the land border which puts a lot of "oor oil" in English waters. It was the British government that gifted English waters (and resources) to Scotland in contravention of international law without asking a single English person if they agreed with the transfer of their natural resources.

The Righteous Ranter said...

I think you'll find that is the other way round. Pre devolution the UK government 'moved' the maritime border to include a large area of Scottish waters in England. We'll have it back come indepependence.

Ken Mac

David said...

6000 Miles of Scottish sea was given to the English in 1999.

mrzouk said...

I agree England took scottish waters, another thing comes to mind and that is the so called soveregn nations of australia and new zealand.... australia has not got full sovereignty in the same sense as say united states of america has, and it is infact just a colony of U.K. it was formed out of an act of parliament...

infact i would say it's piracy at best.

show me the treaty between the United Kingdom / England and the Originals / Origines of Australia and then we'll talk lawful possession of land and resources.

otherwise piracy stands as the only other thing.....

like i said.... piracy at best....

a group of boat people arrived just over 200 years, and they never left....

they did however use force, coercion and every other trick in the book....

doesn't make it a legit sovereign nation.....only one run by pirates

get your treaty soon