Who’s Still Voting No?

NOI enjoyed listening to a sleep-deprived Loki on Radio Scotland on Saturday talking about how he’d do this referendum differently. As someone who’s campaigned, let’s be generous, aggressively for independence; I tried to take Loki’s message on board. I set out to listen to what No voters had to say.

So, I had semi-structured conversations with people I knew had been No voters with the idea of not lecturing them that they were all idiots. I talked with:

Janet and John: Lived in Scotland for 10 years after being born in England and working internationally. Run their own small business grossing c. £70 pa.
Three young kids. Vote Tory. Sheena: born and lived in Scotland all her life, part time support worker in a university and single parent earning c. £17k. Votes Green/LibDem/Labour. Interested in the environment. Gavin and Stacey: Born in and lived in Scotland all their lives. A part-time marketer and senior manager in the NHS. Earning £100k+ jointly. Voted LibDem, Tory and Labour. Three teenage kids. Fiona: middle aged single parent of grown-up kids. Runs her own business, c. £60k pa. Votes LibDem/Tory. Interested in disability issues.

How did they feel about the new referendum? Uniformly, they were negative about the idea of a referendum.

“We’ve been all through this” – “It caused so much division” – “I just want a life without all this stuff”.

But isn’t this stressing just a result in living in a democracy? Weren’t the SNP clear in their manifesto about the current situation and their planned response to it?

“Well Nicola might have her audit trail in place but I don’t want independence” – “I’m fond of the EU but more fond of the bond with my relatives” – “We have the benefit of free prescriptions, free personal care and free tuition fees while we can rely on the UK to support us” – “My English relatives would have a fit”.

When the Tories reneged on their manifesto commitments re self-employed National Insurance payments and their additional tax on company dividends, how do you feel about that?

“I’ve never trusted any politicians” – “I’m sure Alex Salmond lies too” – “I don’t trust any party” – “I don’t read manifestos because they don’t matter” – “They all lie”.

Wouldn’t you like to stay in the EU?

“Yes but not enough to vote for independence” – “The hard Brexit stuff is just a negotiating front” – “Who really cares, we’re all buggered anyway”.

What about the kind of country you want to see – care for disabled people, the environment, social justice?

“Britain isn’t that bad” – “We’re not about to turn into Trump’s America” – “Scotland wouldn’t be that different, just in degrees”- “Scotland is an economic basket case”.

If Scotland’s economy is a basket case, how has 300 years of the union made that happen? Why is Norway the happiest place in the world to live?

“Doesn’t matter what Norway have done, we’re starting from where we are and at the moment, that’s f*cked” – “The Norwegian sovereign wealth fund is a great idea but for us, it’s not an option” – “How do we fill a £15 billion hole?”

I listened carefully, tried to do no more than ask open questions and offer wider information to confront any of the usual Daily Mail type headlines. It showed me that there’s very, very little chance of changing a No voter’s mind. The mind-set is tired, it’s cynical, it’s tuned out – just not receptive.

“When this stuff comes on the telly, I just switch off”.

The No voters I spoke with will simply spend the next two years rhythmically chanting “I’m not listening, I’m not listening, I’m not listening”. All except one. Helen is a part time teacher and mother of three teenagers who votes Labour.

“I detest the SNP and the Greens aren’t much better but the EU was the last straw. I don’t want to be part of the sort of country that the UK is any more. I would vote for independence now.”

And the happy result of that is that Helen is all we need. If we swing around 1 in 10 No voters whilst retaining our own vote, we can win. So, I have to train myself: don’t abuse them, talk, listen and just work your way through them until you can find that 1 in ten that you can work with. And make sure that she votes.

Christ though, it’s hard!

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  1. Alex Grant says:

    I listened to so called LOKI as well and all it told me was that the BBC wanted someone who claimed to have been a Yes voter and when interviewed wouldn’t help the cause in any way!
    And as to the people you interviewed they are mostly a lost cause and we need to concentrate on those who are persuadable by addressing their concerns. People who tell you ‘all politicians are the same’ and ‘we are all buggered anyway’ are not worth the effort. They are not willing to analyse their prejudice
    We don’t need to talk to all NO voters. A sophisticated targeted approach can get us over the line. Their is data and expertise is available to do this but the Yes campaign last time were useless at it. We got to 45% by bottom up effort only

    1. MBC says:

      It’s the poor and depressed we need to reach: all those crushed by austerity. Overcoming their apathy will be crucial.

      1. Lee says:

        Aren’t those guys not on the voters register? I’m assuming anyone in debt probably doesn’t put their name down due to the debt chasers knowing exactly where you are once your details are there. Correcting this would probably win the vote without trying. Or am I wrong?

        1. Jim says:

          You don’t have to put your name on the public register.

  2. MBC says:

    That’s a really great piece of research. Thank you.

    It really reveals the No mindset. Middle class and comfortable. ‘I’m all right, Jack’.

    They just don’t care about Scotland. Not interested. They are content in their comfortably-off bubble. Brexit and its horrors won’t really affect them, they suppose. They have enough padding.

    1. Wolf of Badenoch says:

      It’s this kind of attitude that’s damaging the Yes campaign already. The holier than thou, if only we get that extra few percent it’ll all be sunshine and flowers.

      The vote was mobilised fantastically last time, especially the apathetic groups you mention in your other comments. What wasn’t done was make a solid case for an economic argument.

      Independence needs to take all of the social classes along with it and address the majority of concerns. And the problem for some is that the middle classes are the ones who actually question and are skeptical of broad strokes promises, having seen to many betrayed before (council tax reform anyone?).

      1. MBC says:

        I agree to an extent, because there are some questions on the economic arrangements that need answers like currency.

        But if you have to argue on the narrow economics you are asking the wrong question. Freedom is priceless. Either you want it or you don’t.

        1. e.j. churchill says:

          Can you elide a bit?

          How are ~YOU~ negatively affected by Scotland and ~positively~ by iScotland.

          Observable, quantifiable outcome please.

          Living in the UK is pretty sweet. Scotland is bankrupt now. iScotland would be a waste land.

          I am willing to concede you have the moral argument voter in hand. That said, Moral argument is a loser. It was in 2014, it will be a bigger loser this go-round.

          1. MBC says:

            Scotland is my country and I want it to be free. Then I will be free. It’s a moral and existential issue for me. We have our own destiny and I want us to fulfill it. We are a different country. Implicit in autonomy is fulfillment. That carries economic implications of course. As people imagine that if they are autonomous then economic benefit is axiomatic. But you don’t pursue autonomy primarily for economic reasons. Otherwise you would never leave the security of your parents’ home, would you? Better cling on to the safety blanket, wouldn’t you? People set up for themselves and cut the apron strings in order to be themselves. If you are not being yourself, what point is there in living? You are living somebody else’s life, you are sleeping, catnapping. Not living your own life or fulfilling your own potential. Economic benefit is a spin off.

            Likewise people leave stifling marriages for the same reason – to be free to be themselves. The marriage need not be abusive, if it is stifling then that is enough reason to go. People are generally poorer after a divorce. Kids who leave their parents home to set up for themselves are hard up for the first few years.

            England and Scotland are two different countries on different trajectories and want different things.

            Some people couldn’t care less what government we have or whether they voted for it or not as they are well enough off to have autonomy within their own private well-heeled bubble.

    2. Honestjoe says:

      What a load of utter tosh most of these comments are..bordering on delusional..or denial…I’ll start with your middle class andcomfortable..yeah that’s what most no voters are…utter bollocks…most no voters I know live on council estates but work…but get labelled by some keyboard warrior that knows Better…your obsession to label folk is trash…as for the author of this piece saying I have to train myself not to abuse them…quite absurd language…I hope he or she is not married and have to train themselves not to abuse their partner…not absurd language quite frightening if you have to attack someone with a different political view…and that is the nats Achilles heel…the militant no nonsense no debate ignoring facts loathing of your fellow countrymen is certainly not appealing to no voters..who perhaps share many of your grievances..freedom is priceless comment either you want it or not…it’s not Eire..we can choose it anytime ..over the last100 years..remove the16-17 year old from the vote and it’s unlikely to happen..fortunately for you they are easier to brainwash..as for another nonsensical reply about Norway being a happy place to live..I’m sure it is..how did you measure that…I’ll measure it in jock terms..£1 to 10 kroner and avrvg beer 80kroner…you do the maths and tell the good folk of govan they will be happier..now to resort to your level what will the currency be the haggis or buckfast??as the war criminal rapist bill Clinton once said it’s the economy stupid…if you don’t win that you can over anilize all the no voters in the world…you will still lose..

      1. Alf Baird says:

        With respect Honestjoe, I deduce from your use of language that you have little cultural understanding of or respect for the Scots or our nation. Does this perhaps help explain why you so vehemently oppose independence?

  3. Brochan says:

    Good article that IMO accurately reflects what we are facing.

  4. Rose says:

    I agree the ‘Helens’ are probably our best hope!
    I recently started up a thread on the Facebook group ‘Aye Mac’, which has about 2,000 members (it’s an informal group set up to talk about issues related to Scottish independence).
    My question was ‘what will our arguments for Yes be this time?’

    I’d had my chats with people who voted no in 2014. One no-voter’s view was: ‘I feel the same about coming out of the Union as I do about leaving the EU – I don’t think more division is the answer’. (yes I know it’s illogical, since we’re being taken out of the EU!)

    Many no voters are also those on the left who support the same values that most left-wing or socialist yes voters do. I think the issue is still fear of change – i.e. ‘why bring about more instability?’

    Also, I think some no voters feel that while there’s still some hope for Labour (or at least a similar left-wing party) to recover over the decades, why not think in the longer term?

    People in the ‘Aye Mac’ facebook group expressed a range of ways we could improve the arguments for yes. One of the most interesting views was based on a study on how to change people’s minds.

    The article argued that whenever you try to change someone’s mind on a matter they feel strongly about (doesn’t matter what the facts are), you actually entrench them more in their opinion. Facts that oppose a strongly held opinion feel threatening or unpleasant.

    The article suggested that the most effective way to change someone’s mind, was to appeal to their curiosity – the pleasure of finding out new information. Also we know from the success of Trump’s campaign that emotional triggers work – again, facts are irrelevant! So according to the article it’s a complete waste of time trying to change someone’s mind. Instead, we must rely on voters who might swing from no to yes because for example they want to stay in the EU, or just can’t bear another 30 years of Tory rule. Won’t stop me trying to change minds though!

    1. Richard MacKinnon says:

      Rose,
      I like some of your ideas. “One of the most interesting views was based on a study on how to change people’s minds.
      The article argued that whenever you try to change someone’s mind on a matter they feel strongly about (doesn’t matter what the facts are), ……………………… Facts that oppose a strongly held opinion feel threatening or unpleasant.
      The article suggested that the most effective way to change someone’s mind, was to appeal to their curiosity – the pleasure of finding out new information…………….. facts are irrelevant! ”
      So what is it you are thinking of Rose? Inducements? I’ve heard of that kind of thing. Its the kind of stuff associated more with religious fanatical sects. I’ve never had the nerve to try that sort of thing myself but I have been tempted.

      1. Rose says:

        Mu use of exclamation marks was there to indicate alarm and amusement at the idea of inducements, but that’s lazy writing on my part.

        No, I don’t advocate questionable inducements and emotional triggers ala Trump, I’d go along with the idea of piquing curiosity, encouraging folks to explore perhaps?
        My comment simply points out the fact that, for many, politics can be a turn-off and browbeating them with facts might have the opposite effect intended, even though offering alternative facts, or sources, is in my opinion a respectful approach.

    2. Salt n Sauce says:

      Interesting point. It’s quite a well researched area, the whole confirmation bias, and the evolutionary reasons to why people make decisions and process information. Here’s a good break down of it for those interested.

      http://www.npr.org/podcasts/510308/hidden-brain

      I’m right you are wrong.

    3. Crubag says:

      I wouldn’t take from Trump’s win that facts are irrelevant, more that arguing from authority has been weakened. Clinton had strong support from the media, from business, but her claims didn’t seem to fit with the lived experience of voters, especially in the heartlands.

      1. Honestjoe says:

        Plus the fact she is a neo liberal horrible human that never wanted to intervene in the balkans costing more lives in the delay…supports a husband who is a rapist and who killed innocent civilians on the day of his impeachment to divert news headlines…americans thatcher really…your right she had the establishment behind her and still lost..yet the left love her wtf?its a bizarre world….and now we have trump

  5. Frank says:

    I have never been convinced by Loki and find him a classic case of style over substance. He is incapable of talking about independence without mentioning his other fascination, namely himself and every article he pens inevitably leads to narcissism.

    I’d seriously question giving him a platform as most of his analysis centres on what’s wrong with the yes campaign. This is fine – Gerry Hassan did a good if somewhat apolitical analysis on here the other day; yet, Loki’s analysis is based on a caricature of yes which is draws from a narrative set by the media and Scottish Labour.

  6. Richard MacKinnon says:

    Jim,
    When you feel the urge to ask all these questions, “Who’s Still Voting No?” or “How did they feel about the new referendum?” or “Wouldn’t you like to stay in the EU?” Can I ask you, do you ever ask yourself ‘what business is it of yours?’
    .

    1. Jim Bennett says:

      Hi Richard, the people I talked to in the article are my friends. Friends happily chat about a variety of things from school gate gossip to structuralism. Mostly though, I just listened.

      1. Richard MacKinnon says:

        Jim,
        They must be good friends. Are you sure they are OK with you telling the world of their marital status, what they do for a living, how much they earn? Seems all a bit unnecessary.

          1. Richard MacKinnon says:

            Jim,
            That link to you tube, I checked it out, Tony Blair saying ‘am I bovered?’
            Is that you Jim, are you saying to me: “Am I bovered?”?
            That is an interesting reference: TB, ‘am I bovered’? Have I got this wrong? Do you think like him? as in, please make all the bad things go away. Is that what this is about?

            PS Going back to your original question, when you ask “Who’s Still Voting No?” I say again “What has it got to do with you?”

  7. Alan Bissett says:

    Agreed. As much as we should try and be sensitive and open in approaching the subject with No voters, my experience is that the majority of them are now completely closed to hearing our side of things.

    Most of them didn’t even want to have the discussion in 2012-14, so certainly don’t now. They are generally people who:

    i) are doing fine under the present system (of Jim’s initial list of No-voting friends in this article, only ‘Fiona’ is atypical, the rest are business-people or in senior management, earning well above the national average, with a history of voting Tory at least some of the time); or who

    ii) feel primarily ‘British’ in their identity; or who

    ii) are cynical about the possibility of progressive change in any form and simply don’t trust politics. Sturgeon is a politician, therefore a liar, and independence would just turn out to be ‘more of the same’.

    Many are a combination of all three of these factors. Pretty much nothing will persuade these folks and there is no point trying, especially in a social situation which will make others around you feel uncomfortable and resenting the debate.

    Like Jim says, it’s always worth opening the discussion initially – even with strangers – in order to find the ‘Helens’, the ones who *are* open to changing their minds. Helen does fit the profile of those who are likely to give Yes another hearing: state-employed, current or former Labour voter. These will be people who:

    i) voted Yes last time but are tempted by No because they are Eurosceptics; or

    ii) almost voted Yes last time but were wary of the economic case, believe(d) in Labour’s solidarity argument, or were giving the Union one last heave, but who now don’t like the look of the post-Brexit UK to come; or

    iii) EU nationals.

    There are enough of these groups to take us over the finishing line. Finding them and opening the conversation is our task now.

    But recognise the early signs of a committed No voter, which Jim identifies above – who will quite quickly cite phrases like ‘divisive’, ‘we’ve had this vote already’ or ‘where’s the money going to come from?’, or who refer to ‘Wee Jimmy Krankie’, ‘Braveheart’ or ‘Eck’ – and just drop the subject.

    Better to have pleasant conversation about something else, than end up in a tense debate with someone who was never going to change their mind anyway.

    1. Alan Bissett says:

      I meant to refer to ‘Sheena’ from Jim’s article, not ‘Fiona’. Apologies.

    2. Salt n Sauce says:

      If/ when there is another independence referendum, can some please gag Alan Bissett? He, and a few fellow very vocal ‘ambassadors’ seem to single handly antagonise all those who need to be engaged. It is perfectly acceptable for people to have differing opinions to you. Pat’s Alan on the head as he stomps his feet like a toddler.

      Did you read the piece? The point that was being made (if I read correctly) is that to re-engage the Yes debate, there needs to be a step back and listen, be more pragmatic and can the hubris and the in yer face identity stuff.

      Do you really think bullying others, telling them they re less than Scottish – who for their own very good reasons, including identity among other reasons – aren’t keen on leaving the UK.

      As a Yes voter, I’m a bit of a rarity among my friends (perhaps because we/they are all ‘evil’ capitalist middle class professionals who should be flogged through the street by self appointed chippy working class hero’s like yourself – yet I like many have a complicated background. I grew up in working class area but worked hard to get to university encourage to be the first in my family by my parents to go and get on.

      What exactly is it you do again that gives you the right to sneer at others like this? And more to the point, where exactly do you live? I’m guessing the leafy West End and not the East End? Didn’t you also go to university and weren’t you a middle class professional yourself once?

      When my No voting friends roll their eyes and have that irritated contemptuous look on their faces, a lot of it (left unspoken) has to do, NOT with the arguments, or a lack of openess to discussion about Indy – most people are not dogmatic ideologues, but pragmatic and unsure and perfectly capable of changing their minds – but because they are actually quite smart and dislike being being hectored and having false motives ascribed to them and and reject the undeniable undercurrent of bullying that many now associate with the Yes campaign. Thanks to the likes of you.

      1. Alan Bissett says:

        Michty, where do I even start with this?

        “The point that was being made (if I read correctly) is that to re-engage the Yes debate, there needs to be a step back and listen, be more pragmatic and can the hubris and the in yer face identity stuff.”

        I don’t think you did read it correctly. I think the point that was being made is that 9/10 No voters, despite all the evident listening efforts Jim has made, aren’t remotely interested and that we should focus our efforts on the 1/10 who are.

        “Telling them they’re less than Scottish…”

        Can you point to where I did this exactly?

        “…because we/they are all ‘evil’ capitalist middle class professionals who should be flogged through the street by self appointed chippy working class hero’s like yourself.”

        I’m going to ignore your ridiculously florid and emotive language here and just point out that if you look at the breakdown of the No vote – conducted by professionals in the field – it correlates to how higher up the NRS social grade one is. Of course there are working-class No voters and wealthy Yes voters, but the general pattern is that the richer you are the more likely you are to vote No. That’s been proved time and time again by surveys. Why’s it so taboo the point that out?

        “And more to the point, where exactly do you live?”

        Why should I tell you, given you haven’t even used your real name?

        “I’m guessing the leafy West End and not the East End?”

        As it happens, I don’t even live in Glasgow, but you’re just after very forcibly making the point that one shouldn’t ‘sneer’ at someone based on where they live.

        “…who for their own very good reasons, including identity among other reasons – aren’t keen on leaving the UK.”

        Okay, so when I talk about a British ‘identity’ being a factor in the decision-making process of No voters I’m ‘ascribing false motives’, but then you go ahead and do it? You also seem to be saying that’s it’s a ‘good reason’ to voted No on the basis of idenity, but that Yes activists should ‘can the in-yer-face identity stuff’?

        “Most people are not dogmatic ideologues, but pragmatic…”

        Except I didn’t say they were ideologues, did I? The people I referred to who are comfortable under the current system are hardly likely to vote against it, are they? That’s a pragmatic choice.

        “…and unsure and perfectly capable of changing their minds, because they are actually quite smart.”

        Interesting, given that there you are replying to Rose’s comment elsewhere on the page, talking about ‘confirmation bias’ and how people make their decisions based on ‘evolutionary’ factors, rather than the deployment of reason. Your argument, sir, not mine.

        “They dislike being hectored.”

        Which is why I concluded that, when faced with a No voter who isn’t interested, we should immediately ‘drop the subject and have a pleasant conversation’ instead. I guess that doesn’t fit with the phantom of Big Scary Alan Bissett that’s floating around in your head though.

        “…the undeniable undercurrent of bullying.”

        I’m amazed that you got ‘bullying’ from that post, but it’s also hilarious, given you opened your post with “Can someone please gag Alan Bissett.”

    3. e.j. churchill says:

      NS was a liar long before she was a politician and has zero respect for democracy and taints the Sep side. That she is among the very best demagogues the world has ever experienced is a separate issue entirely.

      I am not going to suggest that the Unionist are smarter than the Nats, but if YOU cannot TRUTHFULLY assuage two VERY obvious & up-front issues:
      – Where’s the money coming from?

      – We’ve done this: NS bald-faced lied and broke a treaty. Why are we redoing the same question. You don’t respect us – clearly.

      waste land

      ’tis sad

      ejc

      CityBankster

      1. Alan Bissett says:

        Ejc, my point is not that Yes activists have no reply to questions like “Where’s the money going to come from?” or statements like “We’ve had this vote already” it’s that experience tells us that those who rush in with those questions immediately are the ones most likely to completely disregard the answer – *any answer* – you give them. That you claim Nicola Sturgeon “is among the very best demagogues the world has ever experienced” suggests to me that this is very much the case here also.

        1. MBC says:

          You are quite right Alan. These economic questions are generally asked by people who are already opposed to Scottish independence for other reasons. It wouldn’t matter what answer you gave, it would never convince them because Scottish independence is something that they are existentially opposed to. That’s fair enough. We are Scots and they are not. What annoys me is that they will not own up to their position whilst we own up to ours. Scotland and England are different countries and are on different trajectories. Britain is no longer a concept except in English and Anglophile minds where they see it as meaning the English Empire (Scotland being taken for granted as their colonial possession and right). Us wanting to move out and set up for ourselves is seen as rejection and a threat to their dominant identity. How dare we. Our desire to seek autonomy is seen as wrongful. Instead of sniping at us, they need to ask themselves what role they played in this alienation of affection. Though it is probably too late now to repair the damage. If you want an answer to that question, look no further than Thatcher and the neoliberal politics since 1979. By shrinking the state and handing it over to private corporate power, they dissolved the social glue holding us all together in a British consensus. A British consensus is factored on a British commonwealth. Get rid of public ownership and you get rid of Britain. They reap what they sowed.

        2. e.j. churchill says:

          lemme ‘splain a bit, Lucy.

          a. I’m a non-dom, live & work in the City, and I can’t vote or contribute money. I have/always had a keen interest in power politics and other than investments, I care not one whit if Scotland floats off, or sinks in place.

          b. *EYE* should not be asking these kinds of questions … believers should be, for the direction iScotland is headed will be Mali with better roads and a lot worse weather. If you cannot see & accept that, go to the back pew with the rest of the mouth-breathers who have neither maths nor economics.

          c. That the two sides are viewing the same car-wreck through 180º different lenses, I wholeheartedly agree. That there are several reasons/excuses for each of those disparate views, I also agree. That the counter-revolutionaries should meekly join the Leninist side is where we split.

          ’tis sad

          ejc

          CityBankster

        3. e.j. churchill says:

          That you claim
          ” … it’s that experience tells us that those who rush in with those questions immediately are the ones most likely to completely disregard the answer – *any answer* – you give them.”

          Consider it small penance you are asked to provide real answers for the lies and distractions that were YES meat and mead, last time. That you re-refuse is telling.

          (Nicola Sturgeon) “is among the very best demagogues the world has ever experienced” suggests to me that this is very much the case here also.

          That was a compliment, actually, against some *serious competition: Mussolini, Huey P. Long, David Koresh, James Jones.

          She would lie when the truth sounds better, is evil from birth and totally amoral, and is cosseted and enabled by a complicit media. That said, those minor things can be overlooked – heh heh – for we agree on the ONE thing that matter.

          kpr

          ejc

          CityBankster

        4. Wul says:

          Guy’s a wind up merchant Alan. Best ignored completely.

          1. e.j. churchill says:

            jezze, Wul … is that compliment or insult? I know I make uncomfortable points, but the lack of kickback indicates most fall close to the mark.

            ejc

  8. Geoff Bush says:

    Good article , but there are “hooks” in the NO voter responses to work on. In “sales parlance” what they are telling you is that they have objections to becoming a YES voter next time round. Now some of these objections are pretty hard but others at least identify objections which can be tackled or at least gently undermined in the next conversation you have with them, because we already have strong and valid arguments against these objections. The journey from NO to YES will require regular conversations with every NO voter in order to convert them over time, it is unrealistic to expect conversion in a single chat.

    1. Alan Bissett says:

      I hear ya, but my experience is that they will resent you bringing the conversation up again and again, when they made themselves clear the first time. They will detect an obvious attempt to ‘woo’ them and feel threatened and/or condescended to, as though you think you know what’s better for them than they do or believe that they haven’t thought things through. This will only get on their nerves and that’s fair enough, I suppose.

      You need to read clear signals that they are open to changing their mind and enjoying the conversation or you are simply going to entrench them further.

      1. Jim Bennett says:

        Woohoo! I’ve finally made it…Alan Bisset commented on an article by me!

        1. Alan Bissett says:

          *blush*

      2. e.j. churchill says:

        100% correct.

        That it is a self-inflicted wound from distraction, dishonesty and bullying last time is a (mostly) separate issue.

    2. e.j. churchill says:

      Salesmanship 101 … works.

      I’m not so sure strong and valid reasons for killing GB exist, but belief is strong.

      ejc

  9. bringiton says:

    Unfortunately,despite all the cries of “we don’t want another referendum”and being “fed up” etc etc,these people will still turn up to vote it down.
    The view is that only Westminster can ultimately guarantee their continuing lifestyle but they are happy for an SNP government in Holyrood to give them “free” prescriptions etc.
    We have to get the working class vote out next time or these peoples’ views will prevail.
    Absolutely correct about the “I’m all right jack” mentality with little aspiration beyond their front doors.
    Thatcher would have been proud of them.

    1. Paul Codd says:

      Its perfectly valid for people to vote for what they believe is best for them and their families. Calling it “I’m alright Jack” or Thatcherite doesn’t seek to understand them.

      Independence should be the best choice for them. Otherwise it isn’t. In which case they shouldn’t vote for it. Doing so would not only undermine a healthy democracy but would also condescend the people they are intending to help.

      We, as yes supporters, desperately need to transcend the classism that a few commenters in this thread have expressed. Hearts and minds can be won, if we’re on the same team. Independence is only a stepping stone to other things, like freedom and democracy, and it doesn’t guarantee we will get those other things. Sturgeon is just a politician and politicians do not often deliver on their promises. Cinicism is a valid and rational response.

      Let’s try harder to understand one another. It is only by transcending traditional class barriers that we will be able to build a nation and a culture that transcend class barriers. That is easy to say, but catching out our own blind spots and inventing new responses to them is easier said than done. Doing so requires effort, patience with ourselves, tolerance of others and constant vigilence until we’ve fully transitioned.

  10. barakabe says:

    “And the happy result of that is that Helen is all we need. If we swing around 1 in 10 No voters whilst retaining our own vote, we can win”- as much as I agree with this conclusion, we will still, very unfortunately, lose yes voters who would rather (inexplicably, irrationally even) stay in the UK than be in the EU- ie Brexiteers who voted yes in the scottish referendum, most visibly represented by the likes of Jim Sillars. Where we gain, we appear also, to be losing. I would suggest that Brexit, coming out of the EU, the political deficit in each & every election, a generation of austerity, a cult of war worship, financial corruption at the heart of the City of London, losing our human rights, having a Tory government in perpetuity, or the utter scandal of the squandering of the North Sea’s vast oil boon by Westminster, is not enough to change no voters mind then literally nothing will change their minds.

  11. Bert Logan says:

    So yes – its hard:
    “caused so much division”
    Glass half empty? I was so proud of how Scotland did the 2014 vote – amazing
    engagement – compare the the EU one? This is someone who is scared of the truth.
    I used to be this w.r.t independence. I opened my eyes. Thats the trick – finding
    what opens their eyes.

    “more fond of the bond with my relatives”
    Oh FFS – they will still be on the same trainline, I have relatives in NZ,
    Aus, Canada, USA, France, Qatar … I still have a bond. England will get
    added to it – that is all. The free prescriptions et al .. because is is Scotland!
    that why YES!!! They are lied to about subsidy – there are clear examples you
    can show them.

    “Britain isn’t that bad”
    Yes, the part they live in is better -Scotland with 30% control, but down
    south its hellish. So much going wrong, disabled deaths, poverty growing,
    Drs striking, prison riots, NHS privatised (direct neg Scot effect) = 1% winning.
    how much better with 100% control?

    “sovereign wealth fund is a great idea but for us, it’s not an option .. 15 billion”
    This is jaw dropping. Lets leave things crap when we can do better. I
    believe the Tories and UK parties on finance? – and its truly f*cked
    on a UK level!!!! Or, if they think that – 30% control – so only 4.5
    billion is actually Scotlands ‘fault’. Its UK imposed austerity.

    “I don’t trust any party”
    Stop voting No then. You are trusting Tories by doing so.

    “When this stuff comes on the telly, I just switch off”
    And yet they go to vote ‘No’ – sigh. I don’t envy me!

    For me it is unimaginable that they are happy with the status quo. The ability to ignore the obvious!

  12. barakabe says:

    I also forgot to say nuclear weapons next to our only metropolis

    1. Jeff says:

      Metropolis. Funny!

      1. barakabe says:

        The general definition of a metropolis is a large city or conurbation which is a significant economic, political, and cultural centre for a country or region, and an important hub for regional or international connections, commerce, and communications. A metropolis is not necessarily a global city—or, being one, it might not be among the top-ranking—due to its standards of living, development, and infrastructures. The West Midlands (centred on the city of Birmingham), West Yorkshire (centred on the city of Leeds), Greater Manchester and Greater Glasgow which make up the most densely populated areas in the British Isles outside London- these are all metropolitan areas.
        Are you a moron?

        1. Jeff says:

          Hey fcuckwit, I’m no moron. Read the defenition of ‘metropolis’ again and apply it to….where? EDINBURGH. Read it and weep weegieboy.

  13. Elaine Fraser says:

    People need ,no deserve, spaces where they can think about what matters to them. Some ‘listening’ exercises were on offer from the YES campaign during indy1 but maybe no where near enough. The one I attended was fun but also challenging. Personally, it felt like going to the gym after a very long time. It felt strange that I was being asked my views on a range of things , some I hadnt really thought through before others I didnt feel I knew enough about. But it was fresh, interesting and challenging and got me thinking.
    We have enough time ( I hope) to start listening again allowing folk to consider things for themselves rather than being bombarded by information from either side. Other European nations have much more de-centralised power structures and so ordinary citizens are more involved and have more control in decision-making at local level. In UK this is not the case so we shouldn’t really berate folk for not having exercised those ‘muscles’ for some time if ever. But I believe that when folk get the chance to think through over time and then are genuinely asked for their ideas /input it can be empowering and minds can change or at least be more open to new ideas. I would hope we could persuade more than the bear minimum to get Yes over the line because we are going to need the buy-in of as many as possible especially as things might be challenging for some time.
    I always find Loki fresh, interesting and yes challenging.

  14. Penny says:

    The secret to 2014 was aspiration. IF Scotland were independent, what COULD it do for you?
    Clean energy
    National Parks with a hutting system
    Seriously Hi Speed Internet everywhere
    Employed owned and managed enterprises

    Couldn’t this be done in the UK? No. Why not? Westminster is controlled by traditions, mindsets and opportunities that are indifferent to or opposed to any of those possibilities. Best example: starving state schools while spending millions to set up & fund what are effectively privatized schools. May-hem’s vision of a serious innovation.

    So what COULD independence do for you?

    1. Crubag says:

      For me, those are the kind of politician promises I’d be sceptical of, as with the exception of energy, all of these are already devolved:

      energy – reserved to Westminster, though the Scottish Parliament can block/enable using the planning system, environmental controls, etc. Renewable energy has grown in Scotland because there is access to English consumers to pay the subsidy, that would be uncertain after independence.

      national parks with hutting – national parks are created by the Scottish Parliament so we can create plenty more, and there are campaigns for this. Hutting could be done using the 12% of state-owned land, or buying up land if considered a priority. Probably not, alongside housing shortages.

      High-speed Internet – Scottish Government is already putting public money into this.

      Employee-owned businesses – job creation/business support is already devolved.

      For me, the stronger argument is accountability, being able to better scrutinise decisions. I’d include a revamp of Holyrood as part of that pitch.

  15. MBC says:

    One No voter I know simply doesn’t believe that Brexit will actually happen, in the sense that they would steer some sort of deal that would preserve most of the current arrangements. Head in the sand. But if it does happen as we imagine it will, he is well enough off that it really won’t affect him much.

  16. w.b.robertson says:

    seems much of the Indy2 strategy hinges on persuading 0ne-in-ten No voters to see the light and jump the dyke…I would suggest there will need to be at least equal effort on preventing the one-in-ten Yes voters doing a similar somersault because they are pro Indy but strongly anti-EU. I personally find it depressing that the SNP have continued to carry on a love affair with Brussels.

    1. Bert Logan says:

      Strongly anti EU? Simple.

      Vote Yes for #ScotRef.

      Persuade (not too hard I agree) that EU is not great. I will oppose along lines of we can make it better.

      If you win, Article 50! We leave on a simple 2 year process.

      OR:
      Vote No for #ScotRef.
      Leave EU, and stay a Tory for life.

      The reality is, if you vote No then you were never a real Yes voter, or you never thought of the implications?

      1. e.j. churchill says:

        Bert, are you making the presumption that an iScotland WILL be in the EU, or EU, Jnr upon independence?

        Both Scotland and iScotland are OUT and there is no such thing as a wink-wink, nod-nod fix, or so people knowledgeable of the process have averred.

        And your back-of-hand conclusion is pretty insulting and wholly inaccurate, don’cha’think?

        ejc

        1. Bert Logan says:

          “Bert, are you making the presumption that an iScotland WILL be in the EU, or EU, Jnr upon independence?”
          My assumption is based ona 62% vote – the EU see that, and how aligned we are already with all EU regs. It is actually very simple to work this out.

          “Both Scotland and iScotland are OUT and there is no such thing as a wink-wink, nod-nod fix, or so people knowledgeable of the process have averred.”
          LOL – yes – both out, but one wants back in, and if it voted for this the EU will note it. Or are you simply anti-democracy?

          “And your back-of-hand conclusion is pretty insulting and wholly inaccurate, don’cha’think?”
          So you voted ‘Yes’ but cannot see that the EU is ok? Alright, then you now think the UK who has just ripped you out is better? Tory for decades .. better!!!

          You must be slow – if you once voted Yes for a better Scotland, and are now No .. then you really don’t care about Scotland.

          1. e.j. churchill says:

            Hello Bert,

            Let me mention a couple of semi-random things before we see how much we agree:
            – i’m a non-dom, ergo voting is out
            – i am ambivalent what happens to Scotland
            – i will profit regardless, but Scotland becoming Mali is generates absolutely GREAT wealth
            – i practice cruel neutrality and love to poke stupidity/ignorance/arrogance
            – finance is my meat & mead, and i do not shade
            all that said …

            We both know the EU can do what it wants to, no matter how stupid and ‘against the rules’ so Scotland could be welcomed and feted, no matter unqualified facially, and on face Scotland is nowhere near qualified for either EU, nor EU, Jnr. Plus, the EU has enough poor and undeveloped countries, as is. The EU needs Scotland like they need another hear.

            My confusion is the same as (probably) a majority of Scots who work in any loosely tied export market: what is wrong with us killing a smooth running VERY profitable market, for one we have been unable to expand … period.

            UK exercises a real loosey-goosey rein on the devolved. That is absolutely NOT the EU life and all know it.

            Soooo, so far the SNP has demonstrated both their innumeracy and illiteracy. What’s next?

            enlighten me, please.

            ejc

            CityBankster

    2. TheStrach says:

      Scotland voted by a large majority to stay in the EU. Nicola Sturgeon is simply reflecting the democratic wishes of the Scottish people. She also knows we need all the friends we can get and that the EU can help us to gain our independence.

      When we do gain independence it’s the people of Scotland who’ll decide whether we stay in the EU or leave if it doesn’t suit us. No one will ever again be able to make Scotland’s decisions for it.

      For me, that’s the main reason to be independent.

      It’s a bit depressing reading some of the thoughts from our NO voting compatriots. However, we got to almost 50% support for independence and I’m confident that we can convert enough soft NOs next time around. Keeping and getting out our own vote will of course be crucial.

  17. MBC says:

    The people who don’t want Scottish independence are the people who don’t need it.

    1. Richard MacKinnon says:

      MBC,
      No that statement is impossible to substantiate in logic. There are people out there that don’t agree with you MBC. There are people that don’t want independence because they don’t believe in it. I can see this being a difficult concept for you to get you head around MBC, so you are going to have to trust me on this one. Maybe there are like you say people that don’t need independence and as a consequence don’t even think about it, but there are others that have thought about it and have come to the conclusion that is the exact opposite to yours, that the union with the UK is good for Scotland.

      1. MBC says:

        Quoi?
        The union serves some people well enough. Therefore they don’t need Scottish independence. Therefore they don’t want it. The fact that others need it is of no consequence to them.

        1. Richard MacKinnon says:

          MBC,
          One more go.
          Not everyone thinks like you.

          1. MBC says:

            Or you. Ever thought of that?

          2. Alf Baird says:

            “Not everyone thinks like you.”

            This is undoubtedly correct, and the way we think is determined by our culture and particularly our language. i.e. the more British/English one culturally feels (pushed along by the usual BBC etc influences), the greater the likelihood to vote No, and to oppose Scottish nationhood. And it follows that the more Scottish one feels, the greater the likelihood of voting Yes. Culture/language is who we are, how we think, and act. This also explains why state propaganda and cultural indoctrination is so important an influence, making it not only feasible for a people to intentionally thwart their own nationhood, but for them to actually believe this to be somehow appealing, despite the self-inflicted demeaning (sub)national cringe incurred. Culture is the ultimate Yes/No deciding factor, all else (e.g. currency, economics, defence, etc) being of secondary importance.

  18. Crubag says:

    Interesting embedded research, but I think the situation is still very fluid. It’s not clear to me that the EU is a particular issue, as the timing for any referendum will take independence beyond UK exist. Scotland will have the luxury of choice on whether or not to apply to EU or EFTA, depending on how things have gone with UK/Republic of Ireland/rEU. SNP, at least, seems to be talking more about market access than membership at the moment.

    The status of non-UK nationals in future elections might be an issue though (majority No voters in 2014, according to polling). Possibly they will get the same voting rights as UK nationals in rEU, whatever those might be.

  19. Donald McGregor says:

    We need to find what allowed 76% of us to vote in favour of a new Scottish Parliament in 1997.

    I think we surprised ourselves then with the scale of the approval, although it was an approval of a big party first time in power for 20 yrs promoted idea. Someone else was ‘to blame’ if it went wrong.

    We haven’t a hope of getting that again, but really , where ARE Rowley, McLeish, et al? They need to get out and speak out.

    And I think we need it done by election. Let’s vote for an SNP/green government that will just do it. I think we will get significantly more support for a vote that asks a trusted party, supported by others, to just go and do what is best for our country.

    1. Craig P says:

      The Daily Record, the Labour Party, BBC staff in Scotland supported it. It was a done deal, the referendum a formality. I think we would have to live through several unpleasant years at the hands of a Westminster government before we get that kind of blanket support from the media again.

  20. Alba woman says:

    My childhood in a working class area of Lanarkshire included watching the Orange Order marching in huge numbers led by the local ministers and senior politicians. Many hundreds waved their little Union Jack flags with pure enjoyment of the spectacle.

    A major OO march in the same area in the last ten years attracted marchers from all over Scotland and numbers were boosted with marchers from Northern Ireland. Local ministers and senior politicians were missing from the event.

    Missing too were the hundreds of folk with their little flags. I heard one of the marchers saying ‘you would think they would come out to support us.’

    It appears then that minds can be changed in Scotland. A main reason for such a social change was ordinary folk intermarrying. It did take courage to go into a ‘mixed marriage’. The fallout of this decision could be very difficult for a loving couple.

    Attitudes and behaviour are slow to change but change they do. Religious taboos were challenged with intermarriage and these began to overcome a fair percentage of folk’s fears of other religions.

    I go with the persuasion model. There will always be folk who are inflexible psychologically. I think we should respect that folk are entitled to their viewpoint. It is a fundamental freedom.

    Respectful discussion with others not so inflexible ,will be a useful way ahead in any future campaign.

    1. bringiton says:

      Well said,a woman from the 21st Century.

  21. Alf Baird says:

    Most other nations only permit people who were born in their country to vote on major constitutional matters affecting that country. That is the global norm. If Scotland adopted the same global norm then approximately half of all No voters would simply disappear, thus guaranteeing independence. Scots would then not need to plead with the No voter cultural mindset, which by its nature is anti-Scottish anyway.

    1. Alasdair Macdonald says:

      But, we are not going to do that, Alf. And I think we are right not to do so. The decision should be made by those of us who live in Scotland, irrespective of our place of origin and antecedents

      1. Alf Baird says:

        “The decision should be made by those of us who live in Scotland, irrespective of our place of origin and antecedents”

        Why make Scotland different from the global norm? Residents can still get to vote on who governs the country, from time to time. However, those who come here from other nations do not and should not expect to be able to determine our very nationhood or instead seek to ensure our continued sub-nation/colonial status, more especially when they have a vested interest in and a cultural bias in favour of the latter.

    2. e.j. churchill says:

      ‘anti-Scottish’ Alf or anti-Independence?

      ejc

      1. Alf Baird says:

        “‘anti-Scottish’ Alf or anti-Independence?”

        Is there really any difference, ejc?

        1. e.j. churchill says:

          Is that similar to if you are not a Catholic, you are Apostate?

  22. MBC says:

    I can’t quite forget the sight of people going in to vote at the local polling station in Edinburgh where No was 65%, that I was standing outside on the day. There was a bunch of us Yessers holding our banners and a bunch of No folk holding theirs.

    And it began to dawn on me that maybe we weren’t going to win this by the frozen stares and lack of enthusiasm that looked back at us.

    But neither were they smiling at the No folk. They stared straight ahead and blanked both sides.

    It looked to me very much like they were going in to do some kind of grim duty, like put the dog down at the vet’s. There wasn’t any enthusiasm for it, any pride, any joy. I wonder what it must have felt like to go in their and put your cross down against the aspirations of your own country?

    1. Alf Baird says:

      “in Edinburgh where No was 65%,”

      This should be expected in places where such a large proportion of voters come from rest UK, not from Scotland. And which raises the question, why give them (i.e. cultural/natural No voters) a vote on Scottish constitutional matters in the first place?

      1. Craig P says:

        >>why give them (i.e. cultural/natural No voters) a vote on Scottish constitutional matters in the first place?

        Because they live in Scotland.

    2. e.j. churchill says:

      Did you mean, ‘against the aspirations of a minority …?’

      Putting your dog down was a good analogue. Having to take time and effort away from a pleasurable pursuit to DEAL WITH A PROBLEM THAT SHOULD NEVER HAVE ARISEN is rarely a smiling occasion.

      ejc

      1. MBC says:

        I’m glad we agree on that analogy. That was/is the Unionist mindset. Having to deal with the unpleasant task of putting us their fellow countrymen down. This is the way they think: Who are these people stirring things up? Don’t they know things are perfectly OK as they are?

        For them, maybe.

        It just shows how alienated they are from the ones for whom things aren’t perfectly all right as they are. It shows how they bury their head in the sand.

  23. MBC says:

    If they really cared about the union and the idea of Britain, they might pause to think: how come things got as bad as this that folk want out? But rather than do some honest soul searching, they just throw muck at Yessers and the SNP.

    Thereby rather proving our point, that the union is finished.

    It’s like a marriage where irreconcilable differences have arisen and the dominant partner who had always called the shots, wakes up to the fact, rather belatedly, that the junior partner is dissatisfied and wants out. They are dissatisfied because they are fed up not being able to develop in their own way because constantly thwarted by the dominant one who hasn’t had the tact or sensitivity to check if the junior one was on board. They have been on different trajectories for years but the dominant one hasn’t noticed, because basically they don’t love the junior one or care about their aspirations. If they had listened, maybe they could continue to co-habit quite congenially, even though growing apart.

    But their response to learning of the dissatisfaction of the junior one is fury, bullying, and condescension. ‘How can you possibly leave? How could you live without my money paying for the big stuff? And who else would want you anyway?’

  24. john young says:

    “Convince a man against his will that man remains a doubter still”,they won,t/don,t listen they won,t/don,t see,they won,t/don,t hear,we have no chance of changing them they will just blank you,if we fail this time I would dissolve Holyrood and give the fcuking unionists what they want Tory blue/red rule for the foreseeable future,we might as well all suffer.

  25. barakabe says:

    As I suggested earlier, if the cataclysm of Brexit, coming out of the EU, the political deficit in each & every election, a generation of austerity, a cult of war worship, financial corruption at the heart of the City of London, losing our human rights, having a Tory government in perpetuity, or the utter scandal of the squandering of the North Sea’s vast oil boon by Westminster, or nuclear weapons next to our only Metropolitan area, & yes GLASGOW IS A FUCKING METROPOLIS- if this is not enough to change no voters mind then literally nothing will change their minds. I often wondered if it’s to do with a mixture of sectarian unionist ideology ( why the scots conservative rebranded themselves as Conservative & Unionist Party), combined with class, & all the bourgeois myopia that comes with being ‘comfortable. But it could also be a case that, as an analogy, these are the types of people who support Chelsea, once supported Man U, & in the 80s supported Liverpool- they simply support the ‘winners’- & they perceive the winners to be Westminster, Tories, the Unionist Establishment etc. Needless to say that it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to deconstruct the programmed Brit-Nat mindset, save spiking the Scottish water supply with Ibogaine in order to decondition the indoctrinated. These are people who think no surrender tank commander Ruthy Davidson is doing a good job, Willie Rennie is an astute politican, that Theresa May is in the right, that Trident is a good job creation scheme. This is what we’re up against. A censorial culture of rigid conformity where they all register the same set of formulaic slogans: ’15 billion deficit’, ‘worse debt than Greece’, ‘The oils ran out’, ‘Nicola Sturgeon wants us overrun with asylum seekers’, ‘I don’t want my relatives to be foreigners’, & now in their hysterical intransigence & delirious fear are saying Yessers are ‘insurgents’ & committing treason. People who still read newspapers & believe BBC bias is a fringe conspiracy. This is what we’re up against. People of such servile mindset, worshippers of authority- like those who sat at the front of the class at school, dislocating their shoulders to raise an arm to tell on someone speaking at the back- that they will not change, no matter the consequences, & snuggle up to power no matter what. They are the types of people who will always take the side of power. We just have to hope as the brilliant article says, that we can reach those less inflexible no voters, who are not coagulated in the mire of moral turpitude, like so many who are comfortably off living in their little bubbles. Those who would rather have endless tory rule than a Scottish government voted in by people living here. We just need to shake enough trees to see what fruit falls I guess, & hope none of the firm pessimistic fruit doesn’t drop & damage us in the process. My own pessimism comes from a lack of confidence in significant change since the 2014 vote- should we have waited for a significant shift in demographics before calling for another referendum? I really, really hope I’m wrong.

  26. c rober says:

    The idea that many cant be changed is perhaps proven , but with one caveat , being hit in the pocket , which is after all correlated to higher income earners geographically as per no voting intention and history.

    I think I have already mentioned one proud conversion I had , and as noted by many other peroples papers since , shouting in the ears doesnt work , but I offer that PROMOTING the pocket DOES.

    Of course on the other end of this is the “fear pound” in the pocket , the fixed incomer , the pensioner.

    As the data came in post indy 1 the data I had myself confirmed as such , that NO voters were above average earners and the most fearful in the higher density no regions of high wealth , higher than national average employment. The TRUE and always REAL division in politics , is that promised bribes work , even if only partially delivered , just as well as projected fears , with both keeping just enough voters to get over the winning line.

    So firstly can a fearful pensioner mind be changed?

    I think so , NHS , pension and pound is their fear , so lets tackle it , or offer even more fear prediction in a non independence scenario. A cherry on the cake , one that the no camps have noticed , is schooling , which is perhaps why the MSM have went that route , especially in BBCS.

    So we should also be warning about the care need NATIONAL income , their homes being sold for care removing wealth from the next generation , WM purse strings strangling UK NHS means Scots one , and with it the demographic shift that may mean multiples of variables that WILL affect them. Say pension tax , reduced pensions and importantly an ever increasing pension age slipping further away from the Glasgow affect.Perhaps then a perfect offer to counter PF II would be reducing the age in a post indy Scotland for claiming , backtracking on womens age too?

    We must warn them of the English media in cahoots with the goal of a privitised NHS , including that Darling guy that was so promising of protecting it , yet is on the board of private healthcare. We must remind the voter of 30 years of beating it down , and Scotlands NHS budget being based on that Spent in England , which is now being offered as unsustainable currently , never mind with the age increase projection over the next 30 years.

    This should be not be the SNP and indy II version of project fear , but project fact.

    It is easily achieved by saying that Holyrood can only protect so much of what they value , need , with the deliberately created poison chalice funding and legislation it has IMPOSED UPON IT. The perfect way is to have this in situ bypassing the MSM proper project fear machine , in pensioner groups and the like , or even in the home care sphere itself , so those workers need to know their future income too is dependant on it.

    As for the wealthy , well they can be brought on board in the same manner that now means the limited rise in their true allegiance , the tory bribe.

    This means making Scotland the tax productive place that the likes of the McCrone report warned about , it wasnt just warning on oil you know , and is I can assure everyone in or out of indy sphere the true reason why Scotland is prevented from being in the EU , and of course being offered a special deal.

    We can go around putting the wealthy in the stocks , shouting in their ears to change , and using them as the blame hound , just like their tory machine with the EU , immigration , benefit scroungers and so on forever – and it will not change a thing.

    A regime change , through poison chalices , on the other end of the scale only takes patience to work , which is why perhaps the RED Tories are happy to slip down the polls , they want TORIES to RISE in order to defeat the mutual enemy – the SNP . Then come in on the white horse saying we told you so. They cannot fight the SNP and Tories , so one has to go , and the most socialist , on paper at least , frankly is the harder enemy to beat considering they lost the socialist vote that enabled them historically when they went tory lite.

    This is perhaps the reasoning for the proper Tory WM model trying to appease the JAMMERS , coming across as the new workers party , much like how NuLabour did going Tory , or the SNP with going socialist.

    So then how to engage the wealthy?

    Importantly without disenfranchising the poor and working poor?

    Well that comes down to one thing , poorer in the UK or richer in iScotland.

    This can be achieved easy enough , it means shifting taxation to ethical investment , making the wealthy a willing partner in an iScotland , say by state soverign bank , tax write offs for investing into it , or even with a Scottish version of NSandI.

    What I suggest then is both carrot and stick , taxed higher than the norm , unless Scotland itself becomes a TAX HAVEN for ALL its people as personal investors , this as WM Tories are gearing up for a post EU in the same model but using public funds shifted from elsewhere to do so.

    Unfortunately we cannot have a socialist utopia without some form of capitalism , so the ethical model should be the promoted model , not the oligarch one.

    Our 1 percenters own the media , that in turn elect their enablers and protectors , done so through the 10 percenters , then the fearful and bribed. To remove the 1 percenters is easy enough , the media barons , and the state propaganda public machine that is the SBBC – but that take Holyrood using the power it has to punish them – hard.

    Which is why media and the airwaves are a reserved matter , as I mentioned WM ARE enablers and protectors , but Scots libel and slander laws are not reserved. So until the chamber actually grows a pair , then it will always be in a head wind , so its not just a matter of the electorate being unpersuaded by the indy argument its that the truth is prevented , obfuscated. Fake news , front page headlines unread , and tiny retractions similarly unread need to be acted upon.

    How often are we seeing the KNOWN lies of the yoonshpere repeated as fact today , despite being proven wrong , and the politicians challenged on the fact they are indeed wrong? As they say the bigger the lie , the more it is believed , and the more its repeated again the same.

    Just how many today that ACTUALLY remember pre Thatcher , the destruction of industry , will still vote to see more of the same fearing worse , and how many even know about how this great union colluded and stole its nations wealth? Just how many know of Brown and the VOW lies and he is back on the stage offering the bestest mostest federal nation crap again , when the last two times he had an offer for Scotland it cost us more , including Holyrood itself with its broken democracy and stealing Scottish waters the very day it opened. Just how many remember the 17 years of complaining about the tories in power , then 14 years of failure to enact those promises in the reundustrialisation of Scotland and more council homes?

    If division is bad , it is because its the kind that the enemy fear.

    So instead of taking the war to the known battlefield favoured by the enemy , then take it elsewhere.

    Bring in the wealthy , protect the fearful , the rest already have the hymn sheet.

  27. Craig P says:

    One thing I have noticed is the tendency to be always looking over our shoulder to see what the English think. There is a particularly acute need (in my own family, at least) to be seen to be acceptably loyal to the UK in front of English relatives. We need more English voices saying “go for it Scotland, save yourselves from our folly!”

    That’s the only thing I can think of that will make a unionist pause for thought.

    1. Bert Logan says:

      As a half’n’half Scot/Eng – I can assure you – they understand now why Scotland should leave. Only the MSM and the UK political classes plus the inane Brit types dont!

  28. john young says:

    C Rober that is why we should call their bluff,tell them that if they cannot contribute to Scotlands future cannot offer fcuk all else then get on with it let the tories blue/red run the country as they seem to scream that they know best,no bus passes no free prescriptions and other health benefits,shovel it into them.

    1. c rober says:

      John Y

      yep its the point I was trying to make , turn PF on its head , make PF a warning of things to come by remaining in the Uk – the fearful pensioner must learn what IS on the horizon from WM , if that means telling them that only an indy Scotland means those things they have today will have to be lost then I think they can be won over.

      The same as I mentioned comes with the wealthy , well the upper 30 percent income takers , in that there will be no such thing as public subsidy of wealth creation , or protection of it , unless its into the future of an iScotland.

      I am a risk averse investor , property developer , self made.

      I have not one fear that an iScotland can if steered right end up exactly what McCrone was warning of – even without oil. Investors WILL pile in to both a new currency and a new country — but its also the biggest risk unless we insist on the soverign model and not the private or corporate one being in the larger numbers.

      This is the reason why Scotland is being prevented from autonomy , self determination , then the wealthy lose their influence , power , public subsidy , and protection.IF the English electorate had their indy , then we would be cast off due to the same wealthy and politicians making Scotland appear to be the parasite as they did with the EU…. mi5direction.

      Norway works , its now this week supposedly voted as the best country to live in in the World , so for the last 40 years we have been the tiny dog to the English elephant sized tick , and even as it is being dragged from europe WM still wants it as a bargaining chip.

      So for me post indy II yes and in the political and fiscal doldrums then the Norway model should be adopted rather than the EU – that is unless the EU gets their finger out and installs a new article , but I fear we to them are just like WM merely a chip on the baize.

  29. Wul says:

    What got me on the path to “Yes” was a gradual realisation that the whole UK nation’s wealth has been diverted into the hands of the few for hundreds of years.

    It started with reading Jonathan Coe’s “What a Carve Up!” and continued as I read more widely into where the UK’s wealth from land, oil, minerals, labour & industry etc. actually ended up. It didn’t go into public infrastructure or working people’s hands, that’s for sure. (Well, a tiny bit did, just enough to stop us rioting or being too ill & frail to fight in wars to protect our master’s wealth)

    Many Scots were complicit in this greedy theft of a nation’s wealth.

    All that UK wealth, plus the bloody plunder from the empire & slavery. A lot of money. An unimaginable amount. It was divvied up amongst a few hundred families who have worked ever since to protect their wealth and pass it (untaxed) to their offspring.

    They created laws to favour themselves and paid a few lackeys to keep the plebs in check.

    Most people living in the UK today, including the comfortably-off middle classes, have no idea of the birthright that was, and continues to be, stolen and hidden from them.

    (One example might be that local authorities must pay hedge fund managers an 8% return every year for decades for loans for schools that fall down and kill school children. These local authorities pay five to eight times the true cost of the school, but can’t afford to employ enough home carers to look after the elderly & ill.)

    I don’t think an iScotland will be immune from the greed-driven & parasitic desires of bankers and other money-movers, but we would at least have a chance of making some fairer laws and more humane policies than Westminster, which is terminally corrupt.

    If nothing else, being a historically poorer country, the ratio of “wanks” to “good guys” is lower here. We will know where to find the politicians if they don’t work properly for the common good. Most of us can get to Edinburgh in a few hours by train, take part in a demonstration and be home for dinner.

    I’d like to see a resource where the historical fleecing of the UK could be recorded and made available in an easy to understand and shareable format. If more people realised just how much wealth has been lost already, they might be more keen to have a go at a different way of running a country.

    1. c rober says:

      I think thats what the majority in the independence camp want , fairness.

      But on the other end of the scale is the 10 percenters , enabling the 1 percenters , then the fearful below them.

      Thus the only way forward is to turn the enablers in on themselves , remove their maisters , that for me is ethical investing into your own country , its people , and importantly your future and that of your children and those after them. Only a soverign bank can get that , with secondary business and infrastructure investment ones – which BTW is the German model as well as the Norwegian one.

      Much is made of the 3 meal rule , in that even your best soldiers will revolt just like the great unwashed once the 3rd meal is taken from them , indy II therefore should be fought in the same manner as how indy one was lost – project fear , specifically fear of remaining in the union and showing what 17 years of Tories did already , before austerity.

  30. john young says:

    It is so did-appointing c rober that people do not see the huge potential that this country has to offer or maybe they do see it but still prefer subservience,depressing or what.

    1. c rober says:

      If you have the pensioners scared , the wealthy owning the media that feeds them their daily merde , and the working wealthy wanting to protect their own talking Scotland down , then its simply enough to win… However it seems that the English and 32 percent of Scotland never seen leaving the EU as any form of fear.

      This of course was a result of the culturing of the EU , the immigrant , as the blame hounds for broken Britain , not instead those at the reins with underinvestment into housing , health and job creation , or creating austerity in the first place through deregulating the banks….then bailing them out.

      While the wealthy media owners stoked those fires , they really didnt think for a moment that there would be a result that came in.

      So since then its been not about changing the minds of the voters , but rounding the wagons in wealth self protection creating new opportunities for the few , ie tax haven and special deals for the 10 per-centers that have no fear of a devalued pound , one that creates more wealth for them via exports…. Exports that are now at threat , and are costing the worker themselves in imports like gas and food rising as their wages havent kept pace via inflation.

      So as I now say adopt project fear , fear that we are going down the same rabbit hole , and with it add some more widespread information on how Scotland has been treated , while London will get its subsidised banking passport , the North East of England is car industry aided , Ni with is open border , Wales with its devolved corporation tax – while Scotland remains seen and portrayed as a parasite.

      Then at the apex drop a McCrone report and oil on the clyde documentary to let more than half of the population of Scotland see what WM has done in recent history , and let them judge for themselves whether it will be the same or worse to come.

  31. C E Ayr says:

    I wrote this piece in August 2014.
    It seems nothing has changed.

    No Question

    I have a friend, a lady I have known for over 30 years.
    I love her dearly, like a sister.
    She is intelligent and articulate.
    She is easily among the top ten most caring, compassionate people I know.
    And she is voting No.
    I ask her why.
    She does not answer.
    I ask her why she wants to dismantle the National Health Service.
    She says she doesn’t.
    I ask her why she wants to fund the useless obscenity of Trident.
    She doesn’t.
    I ask her why she wants our involvement in more wars like the illegality of Iraq and the folly of Afghanistan.
    She doesn’t.
    I ask her why she wants to eradicate the small but crucial support given to the elderly.
    She doesn’t.
    I ask her why she wants to support the Anglicisation of the Scottish Education system.
    She doesn’t.
    I ask her to give me one positive reason, so that I can understand her.
    She either can not or will not.
    I don’t want to argue with you, she says.
    I promise her I won’t say anything.
    No response.
    I ask her please to email me.
    No response.
    I really want to know why you feel this way.
    No response.
    I repeat.
    This is my friend who is intelligent and articulate.
    She is easily among the top ten most caring, compassionate people I know.
    And she is voting No.
    Does she really want to condemn our grandchildren to a life of futility under David Cameron or, much worse, his successor in waiting, Boris Johnson, with his well-documented contempt for all things Scottish?
    In alliance with UKIP?
    The stuff of nightmares?
    No.
    So why?
    Is it just moral cowardice?
    The famous Scottish cringe?
    Help!

    1. Culturewars says:

      For as long as there are self-righteous condescending hysterical nutters like you around, the next referendum will win itself for the unionists.

      Deluded, blinkered and clueless.

      1. C E Ayr says:

        Thank you, you just answered my question.

    2. e.j. churchill says:

      She COULD ask you, ‘How is this going to work?’ and you’d sound like Joanna Cherry.

      js’

      ejc

  32. e.j. churchill says:

    Never fear: Sean Clerkin will rise again!
    and
    Both Sides will get what they deserve!

    ejc

  33. 3Rensho says:

    Activists of every stripe forget an insight that Tony Blair expressed nicely once, and which itself gives a insight into his electoral success, when he said, “the vast majority of people don’t give a thought to politics the whole day long”.

    The truth is, most people in Scotland and almost everywhere else are apolitical and/or basically a bit ignorant. Capitalism chugs along better that way. The reason for all this handwringing about how to treat, and how not to treat the No1 voters is the false underlying assumption that there IS some magical recipe to conjure or invoke the right political formulae, and that out of that will magically pop some majority-politicized Scotland. Usually this takes the form of sober-sounding talk of “an economic case” etc. Well, look. There MAY BE no economic case, presently, which the sort of lumpen/stodgy petit bourgeois No1’s CAN find compelling. And the only way that variable’s going to change is when the Brexit omnishambles really starts to hurt the pocketbook. Then you’ll have an open goal. No amount of stuff about Gaelic primary schools, Trident, wind turbines, or other intra-tribe signalling exercises is going to reach these people’s brains.

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