The reason people use the language of divorce to characterise the ending of the Act of Union is because divorce is a negative concept associated with the breakdown of a loving relationship, the breach of vows freely given and regretable consequences.
But Scottish Independence can be seen in entirely positive light – an opportunity for a de-merger to create a more nimble operation capable increasing the economic, social and political capital of a medium sized island (as a whole) off the coast of mainland Europe. As a business opportunity in a globalised economy, where the internet abolishes geography, an Independent Scotland makes a lot of sense.
And yet Gordon Brown and Wendy Alexander trot out the numbers to impoverish Scottish ambition. Scotland is an economic basket case, they say, England earns the money and subsidises you. On your own you will fail, lose, be a disaster. Now I know that the figures they use are crap because they’re based on incompetent assumptions. For example, the UK defence budget is allocated on a pro-rata basis. Which means that in totally regressive manner, the pensioner in a tenament in Scotland pays the same for the war in Iraq or Trident as the broker in Hampshire. Yeah, right – that make sense for a Labour government.
But, if they want to threaten the consequences of separation dressed up in the language of divorce, let’s just remember how divorce works these days. The UK wouldn’t be what it is today without the flow of Scottih soldiers into the imperial armies or the flow of Scottish brainpower down to London. So, if there’s going to be a divorce – we’ll be having half the assets. OK!