Date: Friday, May 19th, 2017 11:05 am (UTC)
danieldwilliam: (Default)
From: [personal profile] danieldwilliam
I think there is a lot of truth in that Observer article on Scottish Independence. Scotland is probably to the left of England and certainly to the left of the governments that England ends up electing. Westminister is probably getting in the way of what probably most of us probably want if the constitutional question and the question of nationality were answered.

Independence is being offered as was to achieve the Scandinavian style social democracy we think we want in Scotland.

I think this presents a difficult choice for centre-left Unionists who will increasingly be asked to chose between Tory Unionism and SNP lead social democracy. There's a potential long term outcome where Scotland keeps getting additional powers and ends up quasi-autonomous but this is difficult when England is so heavily centralised and England doesn't understand what Scotland's desire for greater autonomy is for and where Scotland is not willing or able to do all of the things that Scandinavian social democracies actually do. (For example our business creation rate is very low compared to Scandinavian countries, our bright youngsters go in to the professions rather than running SME's in Scotland.)

There is also a bit of purposeful nation-building and foundation mythologising going on. Parts of Scotland are telling themselves that one of their defining characteristics is that Scotland is to the left of England. By telling ourselves this I think we make it true. It comes with some implications, if our position is relative rather than absolute. If our foundation myth is not that we are a centre-left social democracy frustrated by Tories at Westminister but that we are *more* left-wing than England then no matter who the government is in Westminister we would want to be more left wing than them.

The SNP coalition (which is different from the pro-independence coalition) includes a small measure of blood and soil type nationalists, a measure of centre-right nationalists who would like Scotland to be independent so they can de-regulate it and a goodly measure of fishers and farmers who are Euro-sceptic and liked the idea of an independent Scotland outside the Common Fisheries Policy. The SNP just about manged to bind those groups in to the pro-indepedence coalition in 2014. I wonder if they might start flaking off and if so, will they be replaced by former Labour and Lib Dem voters who have given up on Westminister or do those voters chose the Union over policy?

Date: Friday, May 19th, 2017 12:05 pm (UTC)
danieldwilliam: (Default)
From: [personal profile] danieldwilliam
Indeed, I think the three supportive-of-the-Union parties in Scotland have taken a pretty unequivocal line on independence and become Unionist parties and the centre-left indy leaning members will have already headed off to the SNP or the Scottish Greens.

No one appears to be able to out Union the Tories. I think the Scottish Lib Dems have failed to articulate their position of a federal Britain with much more local devolution. I think this is largely because there is sceptism of that policy in England for England

What I'm watching to see is if centre-left voters Unionist voters decide that the SNP is fundamentally right and the only way to get a centre-left Scotland is for Scotland to be independent and that they would prefer a centre-left Scotland to a centre-right Union. I, personally, think that's the determining factor about whether Scotland becomes independent in the next 10-15 years or not.

And that's why the SNP are determined on destroying the Labour Party.

Date: Saturday, May 20th, 2017 09:04 am (UTC)
andrewducker: (Default)
From: [personal profile] andrewducker
I think you're right. The Scottish Lib Dems have done three things which have hurt them:
1) Made Unionism a matter of principle.
2) The Coalition.
3) Carmichael.

If the SNP didn't exist then they probably would be recovering from (2) and (3). But as it is there's a perfectly functional "Nice Party" which everyone can vote for instead.

Which is a shame, because there are SNP policies I disagree with, and would like more LibDem influence on.

Date: Saturday, May 20th, 2017 07:53 pm (UTC)
andrewducker: (Default)
From: [personal profile] andrewducker
Quite possibly. And the SNP have been very good on LGBT issues, in my experience. But not so good on the police. And terrible on sex work.

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