Possibly My Last Ever Post from a Unified UK! Or Not!

You guys, this could be my last ever post this side of the Union! The next time I write, one quarter of my nationality (ethnic background? Family history?) might be foreign. Which would take my total amount of Britishness down to… like, a quarter. I’m not actually sure. Independence could cause a bit of confusion in England for people like my dad and his siblings, most of whom I think were born in England, but all of whom have lived in Glasgow and are Scottish on my grandfather’s side. Does this mean they can get another passport? Will we all need to get our passports out when we cross the boarder for Hogmanay or the Edinburgh Fringe? I dunno, because Scotland would probably have to apply to the UN to be a sovereign state (and join the queue behind Kosovo and Somaliland I think) and also apply to join the EU (behind Iceland, Albania and Turkey to name but a few).

It’s a bit complicated, innit, and the SNP should have clarified this. In fact, they may have clarified it in the last week or so but I’ve become so fed up with the sudden wave of campaigning that I’ve stopped paying attention and am just waiting for the result. Is it just me, or was nobody in the mainstream media particularly interested until about three weeks ago?

I’ve discussed my opinions about independence in a relatively calm state of mind – now the vote is actually upon us, I’m resisting the urge to post “DON’T DOOO IIITTTTTT SCOTLAND WE NEEED EACH OTHER PLEEEAAASSSEEE JUST CHOOSE DEVOLUTION PLEEAAASSEEE!!!” everywhere online. That might not fit into a Tweet, now I come to think of it, so I might just go and work on The Webways and choose which tartan skirt I want to wear tomorrow, grinding my teeth about the inherent shittiness of all politicians and wondering if the rest of the UK will get a vote if Scotland remains in the Union but is granted more governmental powers.

Oh, and I’ve decided to update the sidebar. Cleaner, huh. I’ll get one I’m happy with in the end.

Don’t do it, Scotland…. please…

The Ten O’Clock News: Not USA-Independence Day!

The government’s gone and bought itself a massive effing boat, the unveiling of which is a massive effing attempt to convince the Scottish people to vote Union. Personally, I would then vote ‘no’ because will the Scottish government have a warship capable of carrying “40 jets and helicopters”? No. Because the Scottish government will not be able to afford a paper bag after independence, having spent everything on large tariffs and taxes it currently avoids as a member of the UK and EU. Or pro-independence celebrations. Or new flags. Or new currency. Or a new national broadcasting service.

This old-ish Guardian article explains the referendum pretty well and suggests that Scotland would, in fact keep the pound and the monarchy. But since when has a newly independent country kept the nice bits about its old state and just gained power? The last countries to join the UN as sovereign states were South Sudan in 2011 (result of civil war in Sudan. Now there is just inter-state war), Montenegro in 2006 (ex-Yugoslavia, ’nuff said) and Timor-Leste in 2002 (ex-Indonesia, massive guerilla war for ages). It’s pretty rare for peaceful states to suddenly declare independence, because usually a region wants sovereignty due to ethnic or religious differences with their neighbours. So, does Scotland have significant ethnic or religious differences from the rest of the UK?

Not really, no.

The UK is traditionally Christian, though secularism is increasing pretty much everywhere; most British people have family from elsewhere in the UK because we’re a small group of islands (most people aren’t hugely British going back a few generations but that’s a rant for another time). As far as I can tell, the biggest “national differences” are accent, traditional choice of alcohol and “national treasures”. Even then it’s dubious because let’s face it everyone loves Shakespeare and Robbie Burns and Lily Allen and Alexander Graham Bell. Okay I’m being facetious and I’ve done absolutely no statistical research for this whole paragraph… but it sounds like the SNP seriously expect to gain independence, keep all the things it likes about Britain, remove all those it doesn’t and magically fix all its problems.

From sensualeodicaprio.tumblr.com
From sensualeodicaprio.tumblr.com

I think that is a good place to end.

The Ten O’Clock News: a Debate About Scottish Independence

Had a few issues with my laptop earlier so instead of being the link-and-image-filled collage I’d planned, this is going to be a nice discussion post!

Tomorrow is Burns Night  and since it is potentially the last one with Burns as a Brit, I think we should talk about the referendum. Ask the Important Political Questions about Scottish independence. The questions that matter.

Should Scotland keep the BBC if it becomes independent?

Clue’s in the name, love. No Britain, no Sherlock or Strictly or ad-free TV. Get yer own broadcasting service and buy it in like they do in the States.

Should Scotland keep the pound if it becomes independent?

The pound is British currency. (I sense a theme.)

Should Scottish people keep their knighthoods and government-or nation-based awards if it becomes independent?

Hmm. I think foreign nationals can become honorary peers of the realm or something, so it should be like that. I mean, “ex Sir Whatever” sounds a bit crap.

Will each nation be able to extradite or deport shitty residents?

For example, if Andy Murray loses badly.

Will all the cool, shared things become contested and start conflict? 

Conan Doyle was Scottish. Holmes and Watson are not. Everyone likes whiskey. Everyone likes David Tennant. Alex Ferguson ran Manchester United. We all use telephones.

Will those “cute British accents” become more ‘British’ or ‘Scottish’? 

Wait a second. Cute British accents. Tea with the Queen. The Loch Ness Monster. Union flags with punk rock slogans. Tartan. A mutual distrust of everything that may attack this tinny island with rapidly-waning international power. You guys, all the things that endear us to the world are generally British. They are specifically Scottish or Welsh or English or whatever but to the schmucks we sell t-shirts to on bus tours, we’re all British. All of us. Aww.

Will Scotland place higher or lower than the UK in Eurovision?

Now that is worth a referendum.

(It is probably worth noting in the interest of general politics that a) the best economical and military and scientific successes to happen to all four British states have happened while they were British, b) the last time a sovereign nation came into being without conflict and hatred as a cause was probably never so why bother we’ve stayed together this long, babe, we love each other really – let’s just get counselling and a fresh start and c) not one of the pro-independence politicians has demonstrated an ability to found a nation, or even a nation that already exists.)

Plus also I don’t want my ethnicity and nationality to be any shittier to categorise on forms. Anyway, thoughts?