19 September 2014

Scotland stays in

In the end, it wasn't even close.  Scotland voted against leaving the UK by 55%-to-45%, a decisive margin much larger than the last few polls had suggested.  Turnout was startlingly high, over 85%.  The question is now settled for the foreseeable future.

Towards the end the pro-independence campaign took on an increasingly thuggish character, but this failed to intimidate people and may even have turned them off.

The land of my ancestors will remain undivided.  Secessionist movements all across Europe, and the enemies of the West in general, will go without the encouragement which a break-up of the UK would have offered.

Congratulations to the Scottish people on their wise decision.


Blogger Shaw Kenawe said...

Chan eil tuil air nach tig traoghadh!

19 September, 2014 09:10  
Anonymous Nina said...

I'm also very happy about this! Unity is stronger, and to go separate ways at this point would be a shame.

19 September, 2014 13:04  
Blogger Unknown said...

I thought that the Scots hadn't thought it all through -- especially on the monetary front. But I see no reason why they can't break away from the UK and they may well do it in the future.

Regardless, it is not true that it wasn't even close. For decades, roughly 30% of the people in Scotland wanted independence. In this vote, roughly 45% went for independence. I think that's a rather good showing. Of course, I never thought there was much of a chance of Scotland voting for independence. So perhaps my expectations were just lower.

I have also read that at the time of the Revolutionary War, only about a third of the colonists were for independence. People are risk averse. I hope this election leads to UK reforms that Scotland was promised if it stayed. My guess is not so much.

19 September, 2014 13:06  
Blogger Unknown said...

Listen up Shaw! You and your Gaelic! You know what flood is subsiding? British imperialism! The Scots would be free now if only they'd had a nice British helper like Thomas Paine! And really, I thought there was a good chance an independent Scotland might choose Oi Polloi’s "Don't Burn the Witch" as the national anthem! With all the problems of Scottish independence and all the disruption, don't you think that would have made it all worth while?!

Put to death in flames and smoke
You were used as a scapegoat
Troubles blamed upon the witch
When they should've really burned the rich.

Don't burn the witch!

Also: am I the only one who finds Mel Gibson's creep torture-loving portrayal of intellectual diplomat William Wallace offensive? Can't that man keep his deeply troubled soul away from actual great men?

19 September, 2014 17:07  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Shaw: Well, this flood is subsiding. Such a decisive result should settle the independence issue for a generation at least.

Nina: Glad to hear you get it. The separatists had their chance to make their case, and the unity side made theirs, and people got a chance to make up their minds, and hopefully that's the end of that.

Frank: Not only had the SNP not "thought it all through" they were being deliberately deceptive about the currency situation and the likely problems, in an effort to bamboozle people into voting for independence. Salmond is lucky he's never going to have to face his people after they got hit with the actual results of embracing his delusions.

By any normal standard a 10% margin of victory is a landslide, regardless of previous expectations. We almost never have a popular-vote margin that size in our Presidential elections, for example.

You know what flood is subsiding? British imperialism! The Scots would be free now if only they'd had a nice British helper like Thomas Paine!

Frank, this is an insult to my intelligence and frankly to yours as well. The Scots are already much freer than most people in the world and much freer than they probably would have ended up under independence. Any analogy with the US war of independence is ridiculous. The main issue in that case was taxation without representation -- the American colonies were not represented in the British Parliament. The Scots are, on the same basis as the English. The UK is no more "imperialist" for including Scotland than the US is for including California. Try reading an assessment by somebody who actually knows what she's talking about.

If Scotland had voted for independence, the UK would have spent the next couple of years preoccupied with a whole slew of utterly pointless problems, distracting it from dealing with real and pressing problems like immigration, the EU, economic stagnation, terrorism, Russian expansionism, etc. Likely the same would have applied to most of Europe, since the result would have encouraged and emboldened every crank separatist movement from Andalusia to Narva.

What medieval witch-burnings have to do with any of this is beyond me.

Mel Gibson is deranged and it's far from unusual for movies about history to make a hash of it.

20 September, 2014 05:14  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Frankly, I think a lot of Americans' support for separatism overseas is just a fascination with the idea of upsetting an applecart they don't really understand, and which is far enough away that they won't be the ones who have to deal with the resulting mess.

20 September, 2014 05:52  
Blogger Unknown said...

Infidel753! I was being "humorous." You know: "a nice British helper." And "Don't Burn the Witch" as a national anthem?! Come on!

I thought maybe I didn't get the tone quite right, but I thought the content was enough over-the-top to push me through. Plus the "Listen up Shaw" was a giveaway.

I still think Scottish independence is a good idea if done correctly. But geez! I'm not wearing a Scottish flag screaming in the streets!

But Oi Polloi is a great band!

20 September, 2014 10:13  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Frank: I didn't see the humor, and still don't. Scottish independence would have been a disaster, as I discussed in more detail here. It would have weakened one of our most important allies. It would have distracted the UK from dealing with real issues as I described in the comment above. It would have fomented chaos all over Europe by encouraging separatists in other countries. Whether Scotland kept the pound, adopted the euro, or adopted a separate currency, there would have been huge problems. And the subtraction of Scotland's left-leaning voters would have shifted politics in the rest of the UK sharply to the right. Nobody who supported Scottish independence addressed any of these points, not even Salmond, who just ignored the evidence and blathered idiotically about "scaremongering" in a way that reminded me of how Republicans react when confronted with evidence about global warming.

On your own blog you seem to be saying that even if staying with the UK was a good thing, it doesn't matter because "the rich got what they wanted". So we should refuse to have good things if the rich also want them? Come on, this is absurd.

Again, it's easy to call for others to take risks, from a safe distance away. The people who would have been most affected decided otherwise.

20 September, 2014 14:27  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

PS: No, I didn't think you were serious about suggesting a witch-burning song as a national anthem. But I don't see it as particularly humorous, nor did I make much out of it when I responded. I don't think you were trying to be funny when you claimed that a 10% margin is "close" or when you made a comparison with the American war of independence, which were the main points I was responding to.

20 September, 2014 14:37  

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