‘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.’
‘A speech by the First Minister acknowledging Scotland’s role would be useful; a fund to promote research on Scotland and the empire, including a virtual museum, would be even better….As Scotland struggles with new questions about identity, it is important to confront the reality of what happened in the empire.
“…now would be a good time to shake things up even further. Who will make that happen? I expect little from the Government or the Parliament, it’ll be for others to push for change..”
“For all the talk of the pandemic (somehow) boosting worker power, it looks more likely to deliver the third real wage squeeze in a decade, and to leave workers substantially worse off than they would have been otherwise. By the end of 2024, average earnings are set to be £740 a year lower than they would have been if even the sluggish wage growth prior to the pandemic had continued.”
“Despite these barriers and traumatic experiences, the young adult migrants we spoke with strongly believed that Scotland was welcoming to everyone because the country “needs more people” and because they had been given equal opportunities to study and work.”
“Previous research shows us that people with common mental health disorders (such as depression and anxiety) are twice as likely to report an alcohol use disorder as those without. While many people may have used alcohol during the pandemic to cope with poor mental health, this short-term relief could lead to longer-term risks to both mental and physical health.”
“Cross-party calls for a culture of ‘kindness’ deserved to develop into a movement to rebuild civility and public trust. Amidst the Paterson controversy, such hopes looked very distant again – but perhaps the furore will in time spur recognition of the need for deeper cultural change.”
Could the outcome of a second Scottish independence referendum depend on the precise wording of the ballot question?
Rob Ford, Rob Johns, and John Garry discuss three likely wordings and their potential implications.
A conversation about a future which has already been decided from the top won’t encourage people to talk. Genuine consensus must emerge from the bottom up.
Whether or not Scotland can legally hold a referendum without the consent of Westminster has provoked much debate. Ciaran Martin argues that the answer to this question does not really matter: regardless of the legality of any referendum, it is unrealistic to think that Scotland will leave the Union without the consent of Westminster. This makes the key question a political one, which the courts cannot resolve.