Like buying a house blind; no viewing, no particulars, just the assurances of the estate agent!

We voters are being asked to decide on whether we should become an independent country without any certainty about what currency we would use. This is the single most important issue there is; though by no means the only one.

Like buying a house blind; no viewing, no particulars, just the assurances of the estate agent!

Alex Salmond

Alex Salmond

BBC News – Scottish Independence : Alex Salmond hits back at opposition to currency union

Mr Salmond said an independent Scotland would want to assume its share of the UK’s assets and debts. Both he and Nicola Sturgeon have, and continue to assert that an independent Scotland will be using the pound (Sterling), otherwise  iScotland will not be taking their share of the national debt.  They think the currency is an asset – but it is not. If they carry out that threat, iScotland starts off as a pariah state which no one will lend to, except at punitive interest rates.

We voters, and I have spoken to quite a few, are getting heartily sick of the childish behaviour of these two politicians! They really need to start giving us hard facts on which we might make a considered decision on how to vote, on this and all other issues concerning independence.

George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, made it quite clear yesterday in a speech in Edinburgh, that the UK Government would not allow iScotland to use the pound in a currency union.

George Osborne

George Osborne

Speech by Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne on the prospect of a currency union between an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK.

Later, Ed Balls, the shadow chancellor, confirmed a future Labour government would not allow a currency union with iScotland as did Danny Alexander, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, for the Liberal Democrats.

At last, we have something that is certain!

However, Mr Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon said, as usual, that the announcement yesterday was no more than “bluff, bluster and bullying” on the part of the three main UK parties.

They suggested that after a YES vote, the UK position would change and they would accept iScotland into a currency union. According to Ms Sturgeon, forcing Scotland to use another currency would cost rUK businesses hundreds of millions of pounds in new financial transaction charges when selling goods and services to iScotland.

But, would that be true? I am no expert. However, I understand enough to know that businesses will increase their prices rather than absorb a new cost. iScotland’s import costs will increase, not the UK’s export costs.

Also, current and future contracts between UK and Scotland already specify that payments will be made in pounds sterling, so currency fluctuations would be iScotland’s risk, not rUK’s.

I think the SNP and Scottish Government need a reality check. Imported goods and services (including from England & Wales after independence) are going to become more expensive.

Independence for Scotland is an idealistic idea, but there are too many risks associated with it to consider it viable.

A decision, once made, will be irrevocable – there will be no going back.

I will be voting NO!


About homerlindsay

I am a retired systems analyst. I love travelling with my wife and 2 Yorkies in our motorhome around the UK and Europe. I am interested in people, politics and photography. In retirement I am interested in helping hard-working and focused people to build an online business.
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5 Responses to Like buying a house blind; no viewing, no particulars, just the assurances of the estate agent!

  1. iainb2014 says:

    Hi Homer, Aye, Scottish ex-pat, living in Norway. There lies the problem. As someone living outside the UK, I can see more of the ‘overview’ if you will. I have access, as do you, to more than just the UK MSM. Unless you speak Norwegian, though, what I read is of little use to you 🙂 I lived in the UK (mostly) until 1995. So I know how it works. 20 years of Norway, however, has shown me how it SHOULD work.
    I consider, for instance, that it would have been a fairly straight line from a published McCrone report, to a sufficiently large yes vote to have taken Scotland out of the UK in 1979ish, to a Scotland which could have measured up to Norway in every way. I’m not saying Norway is paradise, but it is, in my view, vastly better than the Scottish UK region.
    I respect (almost) everyone elses right to an opinion, if I offend anyone with what I write, let them be offended. I DO NOT aim offense at any single person.
    You believe in a ‘no’ vote leading to devo-max. I don’t, since I tend towards the evidence based, and there is none for devo-max after a ‘no’ vote. There is, however, enough evidence, from past behaviour to promises for the future, of what will, with no doubt whatsoever, happen in the event of ‘no’ being the answer. Not only scrapping Barnett, but punishment on a scale never before seen in Scotland, for our cheek in not knowing our place.
    If you think only 5 million inhabitants can’t hack it in todays world, again, Norway. (Boring you, yet?)
    5 million, and they own 1% of the world. Yes, 1% of the worlds equity. With a fund built up from oil revenues, since 1990, without the need for austerity in any form.
    Yes, tax is high. Or is it? Economics is not a strong point with me, but I’ll give you some numbers.
    Base rate, no deductions, 34%. That’s it.No N.I. contributions or any other ‘stealth’ taxes. Road tax, £150p.a. Fuel, same as UK. Council tax, less than UK for equivalent property, but better service. UK tax is 20% base, +N.I. at 12%, if I read the figures right. You can maybe correct me on this. I’m paying 34% on a salary that would take me to the 40% band in the UK, with N.I. on top, that would be 52%! I have a mortgage of 2/3 market, paid in full by a tenant in the cellar flat. This is tax-free income :-), so our disposable (married) is, after EVERYTHING is off, food, heat, whatever, is £10,000. She’s a social worker, basic level. I’m a janitor in a housing scheme. How much would we have to play with in the UK, with the same jobs?
    I am of the opinion that Scotland not only could be similar to Norway, but SHOULD be. The Scots are far more egalitarian than the south-east me-first English that rule the UK. We SHOULD break free, and show the rest of England, outside the M 25, that there is a better way. £33m per day deeper in debt isn’t the answer, IT’S THE PROBLEM!
    Sorry for raving…..I do that 🙂 No personal digs intended…..but you seem bright enough to take other opinions for what they are. Other opinions. Just thought I’d give you some detail. Oh, and I say ‘we’ when referring to the Scots, because I am. Can’t help it 🙂

    • homerlindsay says:

      Let me correct some of the numbers you attribute to taxation in the UK. People can earn up to £9440 tax free in this tax year; and £7749 N.I. free. Income Tax and NI are progressive, meaning that the 40% rate is applied, for example, to earnings over £41450. Anyone earning a gross £41450 would actually pay a net 15.44% tax + 9.76% NI. If you earn £159440 gross, you would actually pay 33.62% tax and 4.02% NI. Much less than your estimate of 52%!
      There are other ways to legally reduce your tax; contributions into a pension scheme attracts tax relief at your greatest marginal rate.

      There are too many variables to make a precise comparison between Norway (or any other country) and UK; it really comes down to an individual’s perception of lifestyle etc..

      I am sure that Scotland could make it as an independent country but I and a lot of other people do not believe that we’d be better off.

  2. iainb2014 says:

    Voting no to remain in a house with a leaky roof, choked drains, and a mortgage of far more than it’s worth. And promises to remove yet more of the slates…..Had I the vote I’d be moving. Sight unseen.

    • homerlindsay says:

      Your own blog is quite amusing though it’s unfortunate it continues the familiar bleat that we in Scotland are all victims. We most certainly are not.

      Scotland is a great country, and its people are respected throughout the world. However, we are only 5 million citizens; what real influence would we have against the big powers in terms of finance, the economy, trade or even defence?

      I strongly believe that we will continue to be better off and grow remaining in the union and that a NO vote will provide some form of devo-max; you clearly do not but I respect your right to that view.

      As you do not have the vote, does that mean your are a Scottish ex-pat, or living somewhere in the UK outside Scotland?

  3. caronlindsay says:

    Reblogged this on Caron's Musings and commented:
    Great post and I love the analogy – fits exactly what SNP is trying to make us do.

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