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Old 17th February 2013, 10:47 PM   #41
Silly Green Monkey
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
If you disagree with what I said, it might be interesting to have a discussion about it. Simply parroting "Better together" is not going to win either hearts or minds or votes.

Rolfe.
I'm pretty sure 'better together' is the punchline.
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Old 18th February 2013, 12:09 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Ha! I look forward to Scottish independence, as long as it comes with strict immigration border and passport controls and complete separation.

As for the UK leaving the EU. It would be economic suicide.
Why? Ireland seems to get on reasonably well with you without those things.
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Old 18th February 2013, 12:47 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by ddt View Post
Nice article, but I fail to see a widespread movement clamoring for Bavarian independence.
Indeed, as a Bavarian myself, I perceive these guys as an absolute fringe movement. Essentially whiners whining about how the rich Bavarians have to subsidize the poor East Germans - ignoring the fact that Bavaria was essentially agricultural and poor until way into the 70s and only grew todays economy because we received lots of federal cash ourselves.

Well, if we split off, then, of course, the next fringe will become active - the Frankonians are clamoring for secession from Bavaria for a while. I guess this would go on and on. When the town I live in finally declares independence, then I guess I have to take that step too and declare my property Imperial Republic of GeneMachinistan under the EU, where I will live off EU agricultural subsidies for not cultivating my lawn and where I will benevolently rule over my faithful cat as the Eternal God-Emperor GeneMachine the First and the Last.
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Old 18th February 2013, 01:06 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by Furi View Post

If the UK decides to leave the EU I will leave the UK,
€80 and a little bit of paperwork would get me an Irish passport.
If the UK was genuinely likely to leave the EU, I'd be taking up that option.
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Old 18th February 2013, 02:01 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by Silly Green Monkey View Post
I'm pretty sure 'better together' is the punchline.

I'm not sure how familiar you are with what's going on around here, but "Better Together" is the name adopted by the official No to independence campaign. (Generally referred to as "Bitter Together" on account of the general tenor of their presentations.) Mummymonkey has pretty much given you a detailed exposition of their entire case.

The "positive case for the union" is a mythical beast whose existence is much declaimed, but which has never actually been sighted.

http://wingsland.podgamer.com/tag/th...for-the-union/

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Old 18th February 2013, 02:06 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by GeneMachine View Post
Indeed, as a Bavarian myself, I perceive these guys as an absolute fringe movement. Essentially whiners whining about how the rich Bavarians have to subsidize the poor East Germans - ignoring the fact that Bavaria was essentially agricultural and poor until way into the 70s and only grew todays economy because we received lots of federal cash ourselves.
This has similarities to my view of the Scottish independence movement; a great deal of greed and selfishness, mixed with some honest hatred and a dash of moral rectitude.
But , because of the essential unelectability in Scotland of any of the major parties after the last general election, we have a moment when the SNP have won power in the Edinburgh parliament and are going ahead with their election promise to hold an independence referendum. I don't see them winning, but it's certainly possible. If , in the next 18 months, the Westminster government does something to seriously annoy a majority of Scots, we could end up breaking up the UK- an outcome which would have repercussions elsewhere.
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Well, if we split off, then, of course, the next fringe will become active - the Frankonians are clamoring for secession from Bavaria for a while. I guess this would go on and on. When the town I live in finally declares independence, then I guess I have to take that step too and declare my property Imperial Republic of GeneMachinistan under the EU, where I will live off EU agricultural subsidies for not cultivating my lawn and where I will benevolently rule over my faithful cat as the Eternal God-Emperor GeneMachine the First and the Last.
Ah, but the pro indies will tell you Bavaria has a historical claim to statehood which your lawn does not.
It's the same tired argument that got us the Israel / Palestine face off.
Bronze age thinking.
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Old 18th February 2013, 02:18 AM   #47
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Greedy, selfish, hateful - just to want to be like other countries, to have what other countries have.

OK.

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Old 18th February 2013, 04:25 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Why would an independent Scotland be in the EU? It is part of the EU at the moment because it is part of the UK. Once it decides it doesn't want to be part of the UK then how can it be part of the EU any more?
If the Act of Union is dissolved then the UK doesn't exist anymore. Nobody can be a part of it. Not even little Englander Union Jack waving UKIP voters. Nobody.

The EU then has the choice to accept the former UK countries as members or not.
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Old 18th February 2013, 04:30 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by Soapy Sam View Post
The general reason people view breaking up countries as bad is because of inertia.
Complex societies have lots of shared networks. Breaking them up loses economies of scale, creates duplication of effort and incurs costs.

The POV of those pro independence- as in Scotland- is that these costs and inconveniences will be outweighed by gains to the citizens of their area. This may be a "moral" gain- freedom, standing on one's own feet, whatever- or financial gain- ("It's our oil").
Some well intentioned souls may feel it's honestly better for both parties, (the amicable divorce model); but true "win / win" situations are rare.
In general, few people seek independence if they feel they would then be materially worse off. Despite some talk about a moral imperative, I have yet to meet a Scot who is seeking independence because he altruistically feels England, Northern Ireland and Wales will be better off on their own and he is happy to take the hit.

Countries get bigger for two reasons; military conquest and common interest. Such interest can change if circumstances change. However if mutual interest has declined sufficiently for a state to divide, it is likely it will continue to decline after the split.

It has taken 300 years for the present "British " identity to form. It has always been somewhat fragile- almost a consensual illusion. Most Scots believe that when anyone from southern England says "British", he really means "English" - and few Scots make a secret of their feeling of being Scots first and Britons second. After a split, how long will it take for the innate perceptual differences whose importance is often stressed by the pro- independence camp to widen to the extent of real mutual alienation?

Also, outsiders may have an interest in the preservation of the status quo.

The EU may be divided on the UK / Scotland question, but the US (at least inside the beltway) probably is not. We do not yet know how the EU would see the rUK (the bit left if Scotland were to go its own way). Nor do we know how the UN would see it.

Could the rUK still have a legitimate claim on a permanent security council seat? *
What if Wales and Northern Ireland also separated? Would England still keep the seat?
(And would that not prove what the nationalists said all along, that England never truly committed itself to Britain as a union of nations?)

The Americans do not want to see their closest western ally lose that seat, or lose a significant chunk of its resources and military, or become involved in potential internal differences that take attention away from the (supposedly shared) international agenda .
I don't suggest the US is silly enough to do anything to influence the referendum, but I'm equally sure they would prefer a "No." result.
Which I think there will be.

* We might ask why Britain as presently configured still thinks it has that right. If Scotland does not, then who actually does?
I presume you are talking about the US government rather than the US people?

The Americans I speak to generally fall into the camp of either not understanding, not caring or supporting independence because it sounds like the right thing for a country to do.

I think the vast majority of people generally tend towards the view that nations should be independent as they cannot see a reason why their own nation would benefit from being subsumed into a neighbour.
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Old 18th February 2013, 04:31 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
If the Act of Union is dissolved then the UK doesn't exist anymore. Nobody can be a part of it. Not even little Englander Union Jack waving UKIP voters. Nobody.

The EU then has the choice to accept the former UK countries as members or not.

That's a bit extreme. After a Yes vote next year, nobody is going to be summarily ejected from the EU. What will happen is that negotiations will take place to determine the future status of both England+ and Scotland as continuing members.

Both countries will have to re-negotiate things like number of MSPs and contributions and rebates and so on. The EU is both expansionist and pragmatic. Just as it accommodated the enlargement of Germany to include a bunch of territory and people that hadn't been in membership before, it will accommodate this. It is in nobody's interest for it to be otherwise.

This will all be sorted out before the actual independence day which is likely to be in the spring of 2016.

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Old 18th February 2013, 04:37 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
I think the vast majority of people generally tend towards the view that nations should be independent as they cannot see a reason why their own nation would benefit from being subsumed into a neighbour.

The Westminster government has been extremely supportive of the independence movements in eastern Europe, being quick to recognise Kosovo, for example, while Serbia was still resisting the inevitable.

As far as Westminster's own former colonies is concerned, the pattern has been fairly constant. Single-minded opposition to independence, undermining the local independence campaign, denigrating and bad-mouthing the uppity natives - until the day it actually happens, when it's all sweetness and light and somehow everything arranges itself with remarkably little fuss.

Apart from New Zealand. It seems to have been quietly forgotten about, and found it was independent without actually doing anything about it. New Zealand is about the only former dominion that doesn't have an independence day.

Independence is evil, selfish, fascist, greedy, getting ideas above your station, doomed to failure, all the rest - until it happens, when it's completely normal and within five years you'd be hard put to find more than a handful of people who would go back.

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Old 18th February 2013, 10:37 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
I presume you are talking about the US government rather than the US people?
Yes. That what I mean by "inside the beltway". The Washington admin set.
I'd expect the views of those individual Americans who know where Scotland is will vary as widely as those of Scots themselves.
I've discussed it with some American colleagues, none of whom had any opinion beyond a general view that self determination was probably good. The ones who have actually lived here tended to be sceptical that it will happen. Some admit they don't actually know where Scotland is. Some thought it already was independent. Most are confused about the differences between "England." " Britain" and "UK". As one Coonass said, when I said I was Scottish, not English, "A difference that makes no difference is no difference".
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The Americans I speak to generally fall into the camp of either not understanding, not caring or supporting independence because it sounds like the right thing for a country to do.
Yes. That more or less matches my experience.
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I think the vast majority of people generally tend towards the view that nations should be independent as they cannot see a reason why their own nation would benefit from being subsumed into a neighbour.
The vast majority of people have all sorts of notions.

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Old 18th February 2013, 10:43 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Greedy, selfish, hateful - just to want to be like other countries, to have what other countries have.

OK.

Rolfe.
We already have one thread on this.

But yes, people who want independence seem to do so because they feel they personally will do better in that way, because their bit will have a bigger share of some resource. If that's not selfish, what is it?

If you are saying selfishness and greed are universal human attributes, then we agree.

I don't doubt some Scots and Bavarians want independence for motives of purest altruism and human benevolence.
I just haven't met any yet.
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Old 18th February 2013, 12:02 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
That's a bit extreme. After a Yes vote next year, nobody is going to be summarily ejected from the EU.
Of course not.

But the UK is a unique situation legally as (at least as far as I understand it)we are not talking about a region breaking away from a country we are talking about the dissolution of a union between 2 countries.

If that's the route that is gone down then there can be no argument that the rUK is the UK and Scotland is Scotland.

Just as if you dissolve a business partnership one partner cannot legally go around claiming to still be that partnership when it suits them.
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Old 18th February 2013, 12:30 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by ddt View Post
IBelgium: split-up into Flanders and Wallonia (and Brussels?). Belgium already has a highly federal structure, with a federal government, three territorial governments (Flanders, Wallonia, Brussels) and three language community government (Dutch, French, German). A breakup of Belgium into three would reduce the number of governments of seven to three and make it more transparent which government is responsible. It would also ease coalition forming: the last government formation took over a year because of the Brussel-Halle-Vilvoorde issue and federal reform.
Belgium has six governments (Flanders has one unified government), which could be reduced to five without a breakup, and will only be reduced to four (not three) in case of a split.
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Old 18th February 2013, 12:34 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
As far as Westminster's own former colonies is concerned, the pattern has been fairly constant. Single-minded opposition to independence, undermining the local independence campaign, denigrating and bad-mouthing the uppity natives - until the day it actually happens, when it's all sweetness and light and somehow everything arranges itself with remarkably little fuss.

Apart from New Zealand. It seems to have been quietly forgotten about, and found it was independent without actually doing anything about it. New Zealand is about the only former dominion that doesn't have an independence day.

Independence is evil, selfish, fascist, greedy, getting ideas above your station, doomed to failure, all the rest - until it happens, when it's completely normal and within five years you'd be hard put to find more than a handful of people who would go back.

No. This just isn't true. At all. The dominions that got independence after WW2 (such as New Zealand and Australia) didn't really want independence, and we only ratified the Statute of Westminster reluctantly; New Zealand 16 years after the Balfour Declaration (and to quite a lot of resistance) and Australia 11 years after the declaration. New Foundland didn't want independence at all so instead joined itself to one of the other colonies - Canada - in 1949.

For what it's worth, the date of New Zealand independence is 25th November, 1947. We don't celebrate it as "independence day" because it's not a meaningful date in our history, and our independence came gradually over hundreds of years (we only ended Westminster's power to legislate for NZ in 1986 and only abolished appeals to the Privy Council and created our own Supreme Court in 2004). Our national days are instead on the anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi (which celebrates the joining of New Zealand to the British Empire) and ANZAC Day (which is widely regarded as our first step towards being an independent nation).
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Old 18th February 2013, 12:43 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by ddt View Post
They'd only pay for a fraction of it - the other EU states would pay as well. And that would put pressure on Wallonia to clean up its debt.
Wallonia doesn't have a large amount of debt. Belgian debt is almost all federal debt.
Originally Posted by Humes fork View Post
But why is it a bad thing? If these countries don't get along internally, what's wrong with splitting them up?
Because in the case of Belgium, it's very hard to do. It's already hard to negotiate much less significant reforms. Plus, there's already an enormous problem with the monetary union that will only get worse when countries get smaller.
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Old 18th February 2013, 12:47 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
Of course not.

But the UK is a unique situation legally as (at least as far as I understand it)we are not talking about a region breaking away from a country we are talking about the dissolution of a union between 2 countries.

If that's the route that is gone down then there can be no argument that the rUK is the UK and Scotland is Scotland.

Just as if you dissolve a business partnership one partner cannot legally go around claiming to still be that partnership when it suits them.

Given that Scotland is only one of four partners in the Union, I don't see how Scotland's departure dissolves the Union. That's like saying that if Texas left the USA, the USA couldn't call itself the USA anymore. Or indeed, if the entire South left, the USA couldn't call itself the USA.

That's simply not true. The United Kingdom would remain the United Kingdom, it would just be the United Kingdom of England, Wales and Northern Ireland, instead of the United Kingdom of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
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Old 18th February 2013, 01:07 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by gumboot View Post
Given that Scotland is only one of four partners in the Union, I don't see how Scotland's departure dissolves the Union. That's like saying that if Texas left the USA, the USA couldn't call itself the USA anymore. Or indeed, if the entire South left, the USA couldn't call itself the USA.

That's simply not true. The United Kingdom would remain the United Kingdom, it would just be the United Kingdom of England, Wales and Northern Ireland, instead of the United Kingdom of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Great Britain was created by the Union of Scotland and England. Ireland came later and that Union was with Great Britain. I'm not sure if Wales ever actually signed anything.

If the plan is to dissolve the Act of Union (and I'm not 100% clear if it is) then Great Britain ceases to exist. Its not equivalent to the Texas example because Texas joined the USA rather than creating it. Had Texas formed the United Kingdom of the Americas with the USA and then left it'd be harder to argue that what's left is still the UKA.

The UK as it stands is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. No GB, no UK.

Of course, it'll never come to that. But when people start quoting technicalities telling us we won't be in the EU it's good to have some to counter with.

In reality what would happen is a negotiated process where a sensible resolution is found.

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Old 18th February 2013, 01:24 PM   #60
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I'm with Rolfe on this one. I don't get why Scotland is considered as odd because a sizable minority of its population currently support independence. Scotland is about the size of Ireland, has considerable natural resources like Norway, has a decent infrastructure like most of the 1st World and has some on the most decent, smart and hard working people you could meet. If enough people move towards voting Yes and we become independent, like Slovakia, Croatia, Estonia etc then why is that greedy or selfish rather than normal? We may be worse off after independence, nobody can promise the future after all, but at least we would be Scotland, making our own way and our own decisions and surely that is a mature and sensible way to behave?
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Old 18th February 2013, 02:48 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by Parsman View Post
I'm with Rolfe on this one. I don't get why Scotland is considered as odd because a sizable minority of its population currently support independence.
Who said this was odd?
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Scotland is about the size of Ireland, has considerable natural resources like Norway, has a decent infrastructure like most of the 1st World and has some on the most decent, smart and hard working people you could meet.
With you so far...
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If enough people move towards voting Yes and we become independent, like Slovakia, Croatia, Estonia etc then why is that greedy or selfish rather than normal?
It's both. Greedy and selfish are normal. Same motivations the gummint down south has for wanting a "No" vote.
There's nothing wrong with wanting more of the cake. There's certainly nothing wrong if you can show that you are actually baking more of the cake to begin with.
But neither is it nice, or altruistic, or noble. It's self interest pure and simple.
I have no objection to a self interested argument, but hypocrisy gets up my nose, as do imaginary lines on maps. Scotland has no more ancestral right to autonomy than any other arbitrary division of the planet.
We already have one by default- an island, which is convenient in some ways. If we don't like the way power and resource is divided, I'd suggest we push to change it. I don't think creating two states from one is a good way to do that. We will just end up with more politicians and different imbalances. Some lawyers and businessmen will get richer.
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We may be worse off after independence, nobody can promise the future after all, but at least we would be Scotland, making our own way and our own decisions and surely that is a mature and sensible way to behave?
Well, no, I don't think it is, because I don't see any magic line between Scotland and Britain. To me it looks like a backward step. If you don't like how Britain works, fine, get out there and fix it. Change the voting system. Ban political parties. Demand equal rights for ten year olds, whatever. Same goes for Europe.
Tearing things apart to fix them has costs as anyone knows who ever tried to clean a clock. Until we are all pretty sure what those costs are and whether we feel able to afford them and that we feel the result is apt to be worth it, and where the wee springs will land on the carpet, it just doesn't seem like a smart move to me.
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Old 18th February 2013, 03:47 PM   #62
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Small Nitpick, Great Britain (Or Britain) is the largest of the 1000+ British Isles And includes Mainland England,Mainland Wales,Mainland Scotland, and Berwick.

Although can be used as a political part as in the Kingdom of Great Britain (And Northern Ireland) unless plate tectonics go into massive reverse Scotland will still be physically attached and the Physical Mass that is Great Britain will still exist.

The Welsh joined a lot earlier (earlier but they signed the name in Red ink at 45 degrees with a Colon in front of their name and had their fingers crossed, so it didn't count)

In fact it would be easier to state that England Joined Wales as the country was formed by cessation of territory from Cymru by those Raunchy Romans, Pesky Angles, and Surly Saxons, and Bastard Normans
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Old 18th February 2013, 03:54 PM   #63
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And Britannia Minor (Less Britain) is now in France, because England has no further territorial claims in Europe at this time.
(Except Berwick)
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Old 18th February 2013, 04:19 PM   #64
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Twice in the last election people accused Obama of abandoning Czechoslovakia. I think people just don't want to be even more confused . But I've never met a person who understood the British Isles situation anyway.
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Old 18th February 2013, 04:38 PM   #65
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Oh, it's easy. You see, it's greedy and selfish to want something. So the only way to avoid being greedy and selfish is to make sure always to vote for the outcome you don't want.

Or something like that.

I think.

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Old 18th February 2013, 04:53 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by Humes fork View Post
I read the newspaper this morning about European countries threatened by being split up. The UK, Germany, Spain, Belgium, and Italy were in the spotlight. The general view as given in the newspaper seems to be that this is a bad thing, it is not what Europe "needs".

But why is it a bad thing? If these countries don't get along internally, what's wrong with splitting them up? I don't see it. Can Europe collectively "need" anything? I think Jared Diamond was right when he in Guns, Germs, and Steel wrote that Europe naturally resists attempts at unification. Europe is naturally provincial and empire-builders are unliklely to make lasting achievements.
I have no idea what you're talking about. Splitting up what ?

EDIT: Oh, I see. The OP didn't help, though. I don't understand why they'd split up after so long. Merge, maybe.
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Old 18th February 2013, 04:59 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Ha! I look forward to Scottish independence, as long as it comes with strict immigration border and passport controls and complete separation.
You mean, physically, like with bombs to split the landmass, right ?
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Old 18th February 2013, 05:01 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by Ryokan View Post
To keep the darkies out, I guess.

I'm not sure that many people think splitting up countries is such a bad thing. Most people I know supported an independent Kosovo, Bosnia, Slovenia, Macedonia and Croatia. Most people I know would support an independent Kurdistan. Most people I know don't really have an opinion on independent Slovakia and Czech Republic.
Personally, I'm not against it, but my personal opinion is that being a larger pool of more diverse cultures is good. I guess I'm a minority, though.
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Old 18th February 2013, 11:57 PM   #69
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
I'm not sure how familiar you are with what's going on around here, but "Better Together" is the name adopted by the official No to independence campaign. (Generally referred to as "Bitter Together" on account of the general tenor of their presentations.) Mummymonkey has pretty much given you a detailed exposition of their entire case.

The "positive case for the union" is a mythical beast whose existence is much declaimed, but which has never actually been sighted.

http://wingsland.podgamer.com/tag/th...for-the-union/

Rolfe.
I'll have to take your word for it----Mummymonkey has been so vague that I can't tell if they think the idea of separation is what's delusional, or that the attempts to keep Scotland are hilarious. I'd assumed 'better together' came from the UK government.
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Old 19th February 2013, 12:04 AM   #70
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Originally Posted by Furi View Post
Small Nitpick, Great Britain (Or Britain) is the largest of the 1000+ British Isles And includes Mainland England,Mainland Wales,Mainland Scotland, and Berwick.
Nitpick back: the Kingdom of Great Britain was the state that was created by the Act of the Union in 1707.

Originally Posted by Furi View Post
The Welsh joined a lot earlier (earlier but they signed the name in Red ink at 45 degrees with a Colon in front of their name and had their fingers crossed, so it didn't count)
They were conquered and subsumed into the Kingdom of England, AFAIK, and never awarded a special status (until recent devolution), AFAIK.
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Old 19th February 2013, 01:57 AM   #71
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Wales was explicitly regarded as a part of England in the union treaty. The Irish thing came later. It's a debatable point what the bit that's left after Scotland regains independence will call itself, but "United Kingdom" would be a bit hilarious since the two kingdoms that united to form the "United Kingdom" will not be united any more.

I'm not sure what England and Wales called itself before 1707. "England", I rather suspect.

There's an amusing blog post somewhere about the situation with the EU post Scottish independence. The Westminster parties keep insisting that "the UK" will sail on exactly as before with no change whatsoever to its status. The blog post imagines the other European countries pointing and laughing at the "UK" representatives sitting behing the flag of a country that no longer exists, with a third less of the land mass it used to have, trying to pretend nothing has changed. I don't suppose anyone in Scotland cares two hoots if England wants to hold on to the name "UK" somehow, or keep the blue of the St Andrew's cross in the flag. It's not just a river in Egypt.

I'm sure a mutually acceptable compromise can be worked out, but England cannot expect to keep all the UK's current number of MSPs, or its rebates, and there's no point in pretending it will.

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Old 19th February 2013, 02:30 AM   #72
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You know, it's easier to find a good spoof of the Bitter Together arguments, than to find these arguments themselves.

History professors to strike over SNP destruction of their subject

Independent Scotland will no longer be able to call things "things"

That's about the level of the debate. England will be forced to bomb our airports if we vote for independence. The Chinese will demand that the pandas be removed from Edinburgh zoo and relocated to England. You evil Natz are all fixated on past history - vote No for the great British Empire and the defeat of Hitler.

Yes we totally respect Scotland, you are an equal partner in the United Kingdom, greatly valued. And if you uppity Jocks even think about leaving, we will screw you so hard you'll be in penury for a century. And by the way, England actually assimilated Scotland in 1707 and Scotland ceased to exist, so we get to keep the house and the car and the golf club membership. But you still have to pay the mortgage.

I'll be glad when they stop all this nonsense and actually sit down and talk a bit of sense. If ever.

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Old 19th February 2013, 03:13 AM   #73
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Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
Great Britain was created by the Union of Scotland and England. Ireland came later and that Union was with Great Britain. I'm not sure if Wales ever actually signed anything.
Yes, I am familiar with British history, thank you.


Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
If the plan is to dissolve the Act of Union (and I'm not 100% clear if it is) then Great Britain ceases to exist.
That doesn't mean the United Kingdom must cease to exist.


Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
Its not equivalent to the Texas example because Texas joined the USA rather than creating it. Had Texas formed the United Kingdom of the Americas with the USA and then left it'd be harder to argue that what's left is still the UKA.
Okay, same example, but one of the original thirteen states. Makes no difference.


Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
The UK as it stands is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. No GB, no UK.
Wrong. No Scotland no GB, but that doesn't exclude the Kingdoms of NI and England forming a "United Kingdom" and preserving the same short-form name. In fact, there's nothing to stop England/Wales continuing to call itself the "Kingdom of Great Britain". Scotland might not like it, but tough biscuit.


Originally Posted by Last of the Fraggles View Post
Of course, it'll never come to that. But when people start quoting technicalities telling us we won't be in the EU it's good to have some to counter with.

In reality what would happen is a negotiated process where a sensible resolution is found.
In reality the laws that will be passed to establish independence will also establish the new status of the UK. Suggesting otherwise is akin to suggesting a country would vote to eject the Monarchy but not make any effort to establish a replacement form of government.

Any act of independence for Scotland would involve the new domestic and international status of both Scotland and the remainder of the UK, encompassing their relationship with each other, their future form of government, names, flags and general identity, and their status within all existing international frameworks such as the UN, EU, NATO, and so on.
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Old 19th February 2013, 03:19 AM   #74
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Wales was explicitly regarded as a part of England in the union treaty. The Irish thing came later. It's a debatable point what the bit that's left after Scotland regains independence will call itself, but "United Kingdom" would be a bit hilarious since the two kingdoms that united to form the "United Kingdom" will not be united any more.

Would it really be that odd? One of the two kingdoms that united to form the UK isn't united now, and it's even acknowledged in the name.

Perhaps they'll rename themselves the "United Kingdom of Southern Great Britain and Northern Ireland"?
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Old 19th February 2013, 03:21 AM   #75
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Perhaps they will. It will be hilarious if they do, but as I said, denial ain't just a river in Egypt.

However, the two kingdoms that united to form the United Kingdom were England and Scotland. If Scotland goes, then keeping up the "UK" pretence will just be farcical.

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Old 19th February 2013, 03:27 AM   #76
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Is there a minimum viable size of country ?

Once (if ?) Scotland becomes independent would there be widespread support for a separate Gaelic state if the Gaelic speakers would like it. Would the voters of Dumfries and Galloway be able to either break away into a separate state or to join with the remainder of the UK if they felt that, as the only remaining Tory voters in Scotland, they would be better served being part of a country that more accurately reflects their views ?
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Old 19th February 2013, 03:42 AM   #77
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Interestingly I read some discussion recently of studies that showed (or claimed) that about 5 million is the optimum size for a country. Something about being small enough not to be a supertanker that takes a week and 100 miles to change course, but large enough to support diversity and economies of scale.

I think places like Andorra, Monaco and Liechtenstein show that there is no real minimum size for a country - or if there is, it's about the size of a large town.

Your speculations about Scotland reveal a deep ignorance of the reality here. Gaelic speakers are rather few, but more importantly are spread around the country to quite a surprising degree. There are Gaelic-medium primary schools in Glasgow. Dumfries and Galloway vote Labour, not Tory.

Scotland has been a country within its present borders for longer than most European states. I've heard it said that the border between Scotland and England is actually the oldest European land border. Within Scotland there are many different regions, as there are in all countries bigger than the mini-states I mentioned above. That doesn't mean there is any desire for particular regions to become independent countries. People are Scottish, and they know what that means. There is a much greater degree of national cohesion than you seem to realise.

Having said that, independence movements happen. They could happen anywhere. I had a man say to me, at the time of the last election, well if Scotland can be independent, why shouldn't Lancashire? The only real answer to that is, if there is a genuine and deep desire for Lancastrian independence, let them set up a party supporting independence, let them fight for and achieve a devolved parliament, let them elect a majority government with a manifesto promise to hold a referendum, and let them come to an agreement with Westminster about the binding nature of the referendum.

That is what Scotland has done. It has taken many decades of extremely hard work. Just turning round and sneering "so why not Lancashire then?" isn't much of an argument. In the same way, "why not Dumfriesshire?" is a red herring of an argument. (Note, "Dumfries and Galloway" is a recent local government construct. Galloway and Dumfriesshire are very different places.) It's not going to happen, but if it was something a lot of people wanted, they know what to do about it.

Indeed, whether it's intentional or not, I find these discussions quite insulting. Scotland is an ancient European nation-state which is older than England, as it happens. To compare Scotland either to a county of England, or to one of Scotland's own counties is to denigrate that historical state-hood.

Rolfe.
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Old 19th February 2013, 04:14 AM   #78
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Indeed, whether it's intentional or not, I find these discussions quite insulting. Scotland is an ancient European nation-state which is older than England, as it happens. To compare Scotland either to a county of England, or to one of Scotland's own counties is to denigrate that historical state-hood.

Rolfe.
Whatever your personal feeling of insult at the ignorance of the discussion I want to have, as a citizen of a newly independent Scotland would you support an independence bid from a part of Scotland or would you consider the borders of the new state fixed ?
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Old 19th February 2013, 04:21 AM   #79
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That's so hypothetical as to be meaningless. Independence movements take decades, indeed generations, to become established. There is no such independence movement at the moment. When there is such an independence movement, one might be in a position to judge whether it was something to be supported or not.

Rolfe.
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Old 19th February 2013, 04:50 AM   #80
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Perhaps they will. It will be hilarious if they do, but as I said, denial ain't just a river in Egypt.

However, the two kingdoms that united to form the United Kingdom were England and Scotland. If Scotland goes, then keeping up the "UK" pretence will just be farcical.

Rolfe.
Two kingdoms, with one king, a status that remains if independence happens, (except substitute queen into that).

If independence happens it is nothing to do with Scotland what the remains of the UK chooses to call itself.

The land that makes up and the naming of the UK/Britain/GB has never been popularly settled and we will just continue with that situation for ever more.
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