“The way is now open for the UK Government to say that there is no time or way for Scotland to exercise its acknowledged right of self-determination, for no other reason that it has the power to do so. As others have noted, this turns from one of consent to a union of (narrowly interpreted) law.” Michael Keating on Scottish self-determination and UK sovereignty in the light of the Supreme Court ruling.
It’s time to talk to the neighbours
“There is now a pressing need to investigate some common ground, if not a broad strategic compromise, in a new isles-wide partnership of states for the 21st Century.” Glyndwr Cennydd Jones puts the case for constitutional collaboration
A monetary straitjacket: Scottish Government economic plan for independence
“A Scottish currency is no guarantee that independence would see the country’s deeply embedded economic problems tackled. A monetarily sovereign independent government would still be perfectly capable of chronic mismanagement. But to have an independent country with a fighting chance of making even partial economic and social progress, monetary sovereignty is a pre-requisite. Another Scotland is still possible.”
Can muscular unionism save the Union?
“Muscular unionism didn’t work in Ireland in 1921 and there is no reason to expect it to work now. Ignoring the votes, and the people elected, in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, is not unionism. It’s imperialism.”
The left must abandon high tax policies
“The left should opt for an eco-fiscal policy, designed to dismantle rentier capitalism. It should accept that high progressive income tax is out of date. It should make clear that income and consumption taxes are mainly for public services and infrastructure, including transport, defence, housing, schools and other social needs. Beyond that, the aim should be to restructure fiscal policy as a means of common justice.”
Scotland deserves better than two bad choices
The latest Building a New Scotland paper on the economy is being roasted – including by informed nationalists. Here a prominent unionist dissects a weak case. “Doubtless the SNP will argue all this is “Project Fear”. It really isn’t. It is the reality that flows from our underlying economic position.”
Labour’s revival puts SNP on the defensive
“The process of recovery has begun for Scottish Labour. It can now focus on winning back what Anas Sarwar describes as ‘soft SNP’ voters. This will not be plain sailing. The SNP remains a formidable campaign organisation…” Prof James Mitchell on how Labour’s revival has put the SNP on the defensive.
Strategy for going everywhere and nowhere
“The report, the launch, the minutes of the Advisory Council meetings – all point to a ‘just get it done and get it out’ approach. And as with previous, failed, economic strategies it will go through various hoops of progress reports and ‘accountability’ that are underplayed and soon forgotten. But without anyone taking real ownership, without a genuine attempt to identify and plan a way forward, little will change.”
What are Scotland’s real choices?
‘Clearly the political and institutional landscape has changed dramatically since 2014. One inescapable fact about any future debate on the economic case for Scottish independence is that the terrain – by which we mean the political, economic, social and cultural context – has shifted significantly.’
What have local councils ever done for us?
“A start to redressing this imbalance would be for the UK Government and the devolved governments to sign the European Charter of Local Self Government – then we could at last begin to have serious conversations, based on a joint understanding of and respect for each other’s roles, on how we are to successfully tackle the substantial and increasingly complex issues of the future.”