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“Scotland expects these to be honoured in rapid course” September 19, 2014

Posted by WorldbyStorm in British Politics, Politics of Scotland.

With just Highlands to deliver a result it’s at just under 45% for Yes, just over 55% for No. Not entirely unexpected since the accuracy of pre-referendum polls were always open to question – though their implacable similarity in the last few days was indicative of the way things were most likely to go.

A disappointment, but even at this early stage there are straws in the wind as to how this will go on from here. Even Rupert Murdoch tweeted during the week that things would never be the same again, well, probably not, though one suspects from Cameron’s rhetoric he and others would dearly love them to be otherwise, and some will make a damn good effort to ensure they most definitely are. I wonder about his ‘settled for a generation line’. It’s cute, but it’s not really in his gift. Settled for a decade? That’s perhaps more like it. But the key thing is that even he accepts it’s not ‘settled’ as such.

And Salmond clear that: “Scotland expects these commitments to be honoured in rapid course”.

And no end of voices complaining about the concessions made towards the end of the campaign (interesting to consider what the vote would have been like without them). Nigel Farage with a certain degree of chutzpah amongst them. What of those concessions?

Cameron – and as noted before, an oddly diminished Cameron at that, says:

To those in Scotland sceptical of promises ….. the three pro-union parties have made clear commitments of further power for Scottish parliament and will ensure these promises are kept in full…

There’s going to be an enormous temptation on the part of London and British parties not to be seen to ‘reward’ Salmond and offer greater powers, while simultaneously wanting to take heat out of the question by doing something, anything. That’s a fine balance to walk. I don’t know if they can.

And it’s a telling indication of how matters lie to hear Alastair Darling wants ‘leadership’ from those who made commitments… We’ll see. Labour must be breathing a sigh of relief. The next UK election is theirs to lose, but how much more difficult going into that in the context of the prospect of an rUK. And Labour figured prominently in the campaign and in the delivery system of commitments on greater devolution. That will be remembered too.

For the SNP though, it will be intriguing to see how it manages to manage politics over the next while. But they’re used to it.

Martin Kettle wrote some irritating stuff in yesterday’s Guardian, today he notes that there was a strong class aspect to the vote “Richer Scotland stuck with the union”, and this this morning is more useful:

Alex Salmond and the SNP are not going anywhere. They will still govern Scotland until 2016. There will be speculation about Salmond’s position, and the SNP will need to decide whether to run in 2016 on a second referendum pledge. More immediately, the SNP will have to decide whether to go all-out win to more Westminster seats in the 2015 general election, in order to hold the next government’s feet to the fire over the promised devo-max settlement. Independence campaigners will feel gutted this morning. But they came within a whisker of ending the United Kingdom on Thursday. One day, perhaps soon, they will surely be back.

As said above, what exactly is ‘settled’ about the status quo?

Any thoughts about the campaign?


1. Peter - September 19, 2014

Surprised to learn a full 20% of the electorate was not Scottish.

That would be a very big hurdle to overcome. If you say this is Scotland so Scots ruining it is a positive they will say why not include me are you anti English.

If you say this is about economics then they can turn around and say okay but then voting labor at the elections is the best route.

You can try soon them over but this is what the emotional investment in nation is required.

Should Scotland go down the you are in Scotland so be Scottish and Scottish only and ensure that those people identify with Scotland rather than the UK mishmash or do they keep on the route of just going they feel bring Scottish is more than just being a init in the UK.



2. An Sionnach Fionn - September 19, 2014

Two lessons from the Scottish referendum for any party in Ireland wishing to challenge the status quo:

1) Get your economic policies right, leave no ambiguities or room for doubt. If asked a question have an answer and make damn sure it is a good enough answer to convince at least half the audience that you know what you are talking about – even if they might not agree with you. Related to which is…

2) Get friends, allies and supporters in the mainstream media. Blogs, minority periodicals, social media, etc. just won’t cut it. You need professional media outlets on-side or at least sympathetic to your cause. Furthermore they need to form at least 40% of the mainstream media market. They are the ones who will get your message out and give you a free pass every now and again.

As long as parties of the Left/Centre-Left in Ireland can be challenged on their economic policies, as long as the vast majority of the Irish media remains Right/Centre-Right, there is little hope for fundamental political change in this country.

The ballot box does not exist in isolation nor do voters.


WorldbyStorm - September 19, 2014

I think the MSM is – as you say – still fundamentally important today. And that’s a very good point re economic policy. Something those on the left have to address if they want to win significant shares of power.


3. roddy - September 19, 2014

You are right regarding social media ,blogs (etc).The vast majority of voters get their news from TV,radio and newspapers.There is a political website in the North called Slugger O’Toole which likes to think of itself as influential.It is renowned for it’s anti SF hysteria (on a par with the Sindo) I used to let it get to me until I discovered that 99% of the population have never heard of it let alone take any heed of it.The media is indeed right wing dominated but I think the best tactic for taking them on is to get stuck into them at every opportunity.Parties and groups should have a rotweiller or two at the ready to launch at the establishment and their lackeys.Believe me journalists are not held in high regard by ordinary people and they delight in seeing them getting a good kicking!


WorldbyStorm - September 19, 2014

Just to +1 you re the reach of social media. It’s a lot less far than those involved tend to think. A lot lot less far.


4. CL - September 21, 2014

“Simultaneously Cameron will push through (with the devo max measures) a bill disallowing Scottish MPs from voting on English questions. This will keep the Tories united, UKIP happy and Labour shafted.” Tariq Ali.
If this happens it will create severe problems for Labour. ‘English votes for English laws’ could mean that even with Labour winning a U.K election the Tories could still rule in England.


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