‘The territorial politics of Brexit is a bewildering mix of ignorance, apparent disdain, confrontation, cooperation and collaboration. Rarely have the so-called devolution ‘settlements’ appeared more unsettled.’
‘I think the deal stinks’ said one Lloyds shareholder. ‘A lot of people will lose their jobs’, said the former Bank of Scotland CEO. No-one foresaw the full and lasting cost of Lloyds rushed takeover of HBOS in September 2008.
Who has paid the cost in the HBOS crash? Inside HBOS, staff earning £15,000 -£18,000, who were also shareholders, were watching their savings evaporate. Ray Perman continues the story of a banking disaster unresolved to this day.
The events leading up to the crash began in New York, 7 September 2008. A week later the shock waves engulfed Scotland’s oldest bank in Edinburgh.
Where will the money come from? Who invests in Scotland’s chance to be a world-leader in ‘vertical farming’. Key questions add to the urgency and excitement in the huge potential growing inside a small shed on the edge of Dundee.
‘… were legislation introduced the day parliament returned from the party conference recess, on 9 October, the earliest Thursday on which a referendum could be held would be 28 March – the very day before exit day. Of course, the introduction of legislation so soon is very unlikely, and there is plenty of scope for delays along the way…’
The current domestic debate in the UK thus represents the beginning of the Brexit process, not the end, and it would benefit from a greater understanding of what drives the EU in this process.
‘It is important to remember that GERS takes the current constitutional settlement as given. If the very purpose of independence is to take different choices about the type of economy and society that we live in, then a set of accounts based upon the current constitutional settlement and policy priorities will tell us little about the long-term finances of an independent Scotland.’
‘The problems now inherent in Scottish education, both falling standards and the attainment gap, are cultural not just structural. Significant progress can only be made with real attempts to alleviate poverty and a genuine alliance of people and organisations across Scotland committed to significant change’.
Gaps between rhetoric and delivery reveal urgent need for joined up thinking in Scotland’s plans for tackling climate change: ‘Scotland must cut emissions to zero by 2050. Increase the 2030 target to 77% and, crucially, commit to actions on integrated policies to make that happen.’