The Date of the Independence Referendum & the Battle of Bannockburn

There has been much hot air about the supposed date of the Independence Referendum falling on the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn.  This may seem like a good time to mention that that particular anniversary falls on the 23/24th June 2014 which is bang slap in the middle of the 2014 World Cup Finals which run from 12 June – 13th July 2014.

Now Alex Salmond is many things but the sort of person who may allow the vicarious fortunes of the Scottish national football team (the horror!) to potentially interfere with the most important political decision to be made in any of our lifetimes…. I don’t think so!

Even were Scotland not to qualify I doubt if anyone in their right mind would call such an important vote during the World Cup finals.  Got that Mr Forsyth? Okay now thats been cleared up can we go back to Planet Reality, please?

NB For what its worth I think its a good bet that the date of the Independence referendum could be April 2014 or early May 2014.  The Westminster election in 2015 pretty much rules out all of that year.  Autumn 2014 is a possibility but still perhaps too close to the Westminster election.  The sharp money will go on April/early May 2014 in the run up to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

I suspect too that the First Minister will announce the date very soon since his inner circle have supposedly been informed of the date already. Things may get very interesting around here, and a lot sooner than folk think.

 

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  1. Albalha says:

    Re media today and Bannockburn Newsnight at it now as well oh and making clear that David Cameron has more Scottish ancestry then Alex Salmond, dear oh dear oh dear. Given the Moore statement tomorrow I do wonder how many chess moves we’re all in for.

  2. Fraser says:

    Am thinking May – and either on the day of the vote, or the result of SNP’s victory last year.
    Connects in a lot of things between SNP/Good governance/Independence VS Unionists who got the boot.

  3. allymax says:

    Kevin, here’s my tuppence.

    I think the proposed Scottish independence referendum will be 2015, or even better 2016.

    The longer Scots get more and more of this blustering, bluffing, and general bs pash from Calamity Cameron, and his bumbling oafs at Westminster, the better for Scotland, and the more ‘Yes’ votes it will produce for Scottish independence.

    I’ve never known such a dichotomy to exist as that Scots have a ‘hardened renege’ for anything the Tories do. Besides, the longer Calamity Cameron does his ‘thing’, the funnier it gets watching Jim (Cringe) Murphy squirm. Dear old Bullingdon boy, call-me-dave, could actually wipe out Labour in England, as well as Scotland. The longer we give him the room to do it, I sincerely believe he will achieve it.

    I sincerely hope Calamity Cameron heaps on the pressure on now; we’ve already seen Michael Moore reduced to a pathetic sideshow, Danny Alexander following in fast behind him, and Jim Murphy screaming with rage at his golden moment quickly disappearing right in front of his eyes.

    This is great stuff; what novels, and films are made of.
    I also think the First Minister of the Scottish Government and Scottish parliament Alex’ Salmond, doesn’t really need to do anything; Calamity Cameron is doing all the hard work for Scotland.

    Cheers Cam’; though I doubt if Jim Murphy will be saying the same.

  4. RevStu says:

    Good point about the World Cup. Unless Craig Levein falls off a bridge we won’t be there, but the middle of a finals is a hell of a time to try to get people out to vote.

  5. RevStu says:

    My money’s on St Andrew’s Day 2015, incidentally, but the same date in 2014 also a possibility.

  6. allymax says:

    It seems Scotland’s independence referendum has caught the ‘legal’ attention of England. Democracy, like a legal trial, relies on opposing cases being put. And for Scotland’s independence referendum, that’s a Scottish jurisdiction only; absolutely nothing to do with Westminster what-so-ever!

    The ‘court’ is in Scotland, the trial is in Scotland, the jurisdiction is Scots Law, and the ‘opposing’ party’s are in-deed the union people/parties and the independence people/party in Scotland; again, absolutely nothing to do with any-‘body’ from outside Scotland; especially Westminster, and that includes Calamity Cameron, Odious Osborne, Moronic Moore, nor Atrocious Alexander. It’s all up to Scotland because it’s their jurisdiction, under Scots Law.

    If Westminster continue to bluster, bully, and generally b-s their way through this matter, then I see no other stance for the Scottish Government than to veto the Scotland bill; kick the can down the road for a few years until we arrive at the ‘preferred’ date Scotland wants to hold the independence referendum. There’s absolutely nothing Westminster can do under international law to force Scotland to have our independence referendum when we don’t want it, nor can Westminster force Scotland not to have the referendum when we do want it. Regardless of what Westminster say, the independence referendum in Scotland, when it does happen, will be legally and institutionally binding to E.U, and UN protocols. Forget Westminster they lie, confuse, and obfuscate only because that’s the only thing they can do.

    One more thing. Calamity Cameron can forget about trying to force his ‘stooges’ the Electoral Commission, into a ‘prominent role’ in Scotland’s independence referendum; again, it’s a Scottish issue, and only Scottish ‘bodies’, (committees of electoral status), will oversee the independence referendum in Scotland.

    I mean, we can’t have Westminster playing their world-famous underhand ‘fix-trix’ election cheating, now can we !

    1. bellacaledonia says:

      These are good points Ally. Westminster seem to think that they operate outside internationally recognised treaties on the rights of nations to self-determination. These treaties, which the UK has signed, specifically state that the exercising of such rights must be without outside interference.

      KW

  7. It can’t be 2016. Or even November 2015. It’s time to think this through in practical terms.

    Let’s suppose the referendum returns a yes vote. This is an endorsement for the SNP to apply to establish a separate nation called Scotland. It will be irrefutable. But it can’t happen overnight. There will have to be negotiations and agreements to lay the foundations of a sovereign nation: passports, government departments, ambassadorial presences, currency and so on. Then there’s the potentially disruptive issues such as how we divide up the oil fields and what happens to the Trident subs. It will all have to be agreed, but it will take time. Precedent from other recently independent nations suggests six months is realistic.

    In the meantime – that is, the time between opening discussions and declaring independence – we’ll have to bumble on with the system we have. And one of the constraints of that system is that the next Scottish Parliament election is due in May 2016. If independence hasn’t been declared by that date, things start to get very tricky indeed. Do we still have the election? If not, does Alex Salmond still have a mandate to govern (and, therefore, to continue negotiating)? We don’t know and I doubt very much that the SNP want to stick around and find out.

    Ideally, I suspect, the government would prefer to wrap things up by May 2015 to avoid the awkward distraction of what to do with the Scottish seats at Westminster. So let’s assume they plan to set aside six months for negotiations plus another three for contingencies. Working backwards, that leaves us with August 2014 as the latest convenient date. August is a bad month in terms of the political calendar, July and June are accounted for as noted above, which brings us back to… May 2014.

    I’m off down to Ladbrokes.

    1. allymax says:

      Gordon, you were right on the button, but then changed your mind.
      But, at least it’s been fun toolin’-aroon wi’ Westminster !

  8. James Coleman says:

    I believe Spring 2014 will be the preferred date for Scottish Government. Any later and the problems you mention apply and it needs a fair time for debate et al beforehand.
    Thus Cameron has shot himself in the foot talking about timing when 18 months from now is so near a probable date by the SNP

  9. Andrew says:

    Gordon i like your thinking, i don’t suppose you could consult the ball a bit further and give me an exact date,”i will get better odds the more presise the date”.:)

    1. Ah now, that would be telling 🙂

  10. RevStu says:

    Well, I reckon my 30-11-2014 guess is still looking like the best bet…

    1. allymax says:

      Outstanding guess. To give an actual date really shows how precise your ‘guess’ was. Oor Andrew will be pleased.

  11. Douglas Strang says:

    So Autumn 2014 it is. Interesting to see if Westminster will still push for an earlier date.

  12. Donald Adamson says:

    Douglas,

    Moore is persisting with the line that the referendum should be held “sooner rather than later”. Frustratingly, none of the interviewers who’ve spoken to him – even after Alex Salmond made the announcement about Autumn 2014 – have asked him to be more specific.

    His standard response so far is to refer to the government’s Consultation document, available here:

    http://www.scotlandoffice.gov.uk/scotlandoffice/files/17779-Cm-8203.pdf

    It’s clear from this document that three of the most highly contested areas will be, 1. The timing of the referendum. 2. The SNPs proposal to reduce the voting age to 16. 3. Whether the Electoral Commission will oversee the referendum.

  13. Donald Adamson says:

    Forgot to add, as a PS to 1-3 above, as the left often says of bank nationalization (the proper kind not the paper kind), looks this will create a lot of work for the lawyers!

  14. bellacaledonia says:

    Wasnt too far out with the imminent news warning. Few months out on the date. Will try harder next time!

    Anyway, its game on folks.

    KW

  15. Donald Adamson says:

    Kevin,

    Good call. Mind you, looking at some of the earlier posts on this thread, you’ve got some serious competition for the soon-to-be-advertised vacancy for Bella’s very own ‘Mystic Meg’.

    1. Gordon Darroch says:

      Looks like RevStu is buying the drinks.

      At least that’s that prelude out of the way. Now we just need to knock Moore’s garbage about ‘legally binding referendums’ on the head and we can have a proper debate about the actual issues.

  16. allymax says:

    “Michael Moore, the Scottish secretary, confirmed that the UK government’s legal advice was that the Scottish parliament currently had no legal authority to stage the referendum in any form, …He said the UK government’s law officers, including the Attorney General Dominic Grieve, had ruled that under the Scotland Act 1998, Holyrood was explicitly barred from passing any measure which affected the UK’s constitution. If Salmond tried to stage a referendum the UK government or private citizens could get it struck down as unlawful by the UK supreme court.”

    Wait a minute, haven’t we heard this ‘official Westminster’ line on ‘legality’ before ?

    Wasn’t it Attorney General Goldsmith, who told Bliar, that declaring war on Iraq would be illegal, then, after being ‘told’ to go away and think again what to say, and to come back and say it again, Goldsmith came out with very similar ‘language’ as we’re being fed here ?
    Me thinks Westminster are liars !

    Scotland will be independent come 2016.
    Goodbye Westminster. We never loved you.

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