Ed Miliband by Department of Energy - This file was derived from Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org

Big risks

Yet another day, yet another “It’s too scary, you can’t risk it” story trotted out and dutifully served up by mainstream media.

This time it’s Ed Miliband banging on:

What the SNP needs to come clean about is that there are big risks, big instability, whatever currency option they choose in an independent Scotland.

There are a number of interesting things about this statement.

  1. Ed is assuming the SNP are the only party who’ll be negotiating in an independent Scotland.
  2. Ed acknowledges there are a number of options.
  3. Ed acknowledges it’s a Scottish choice on currency.
  4. Ed acknowledges there will be an independent Scotland.

FEAR! SCARE! The key element is ‘big risks, big instability‘!

Aside from being illiterate (ever measured a risk with a ruler?), it’s nonsense, of course. A wealthy, highly developed modern nation with a critical asset of North Sea Oil is likely to immediately enjoy a better credit rating than the UK. And if the UK refuses to enter a currency union (which would be a financially perverse act for any government) then Scotland will just continue to use the pound. And it could quite justifiably refuse to share UK debt if it is not allocated a fair share of UK assets. It is after all as much Scotland’s currency as it is that of Wales, Northern Ireland or England. Imagine being in a debt-free oil-producing country!

The big risks for me are some of these:

  1. The prospect of a coalition between the Tories and UKIP at the 2015 election.
  2. A UK government and English nation that appears to want to leave the European Union.
  3. Commitment to expenditure of billions on pounds on a Trident replacement.
  4. Additional ‘austerity’ measures which will push a further 100,000 Scottish children into poverty.
  5. No UK plans to use new oil income to build up a wealth fund for the future.
  6. Commitment to billions of pounds of expenditure on HS2, which benefits only England.
  7. Changes to funding mechanisms for Scotland if it remains in the UK which will further disadvantage it.
  8. Scotland being forced to raise tax revenue for the UK exchequer and hand it to London.
  9. Privatisation of the Scottish NHS and additional harsh and punitive treatment for the unemployed, unwell, and disabled.

FEAR! SCARE! The big risk to working people!

Ed went on to say “I believe that risk is going to be borne, not by the richest who can move their money around, but by working people.

This is a meaningless statement. It has no basis in fact and no relation to reality. What the hell is he actually talking about? What precisely is this risk, and why are only working people going to be affected? Aren’t there any working rich people? What about unemployed people? Is this a run on the banks? A devaluation of Sterling? All Scottish Banks collapsing? All currency being converted to the Norwegian krone, which then loses its value completely? It’s a sound bite designed to scare people. It’s a piece of complete and utter shit.

What Mr Miliband needs to come clean about is that there is a pile of steaming shit coming from his mouth. I believe that the shit will have to be cleared up not by the rich, who don’t mind the stink, but by working people.

The risk and uncertainty is caused by the UK establishment ganging up to threaten Scotland by saying they will not allow Scotland to use its own currency. Do what we say, or we’ll take everything away from you! Those who oppose Scottish independence are creating uncertainty. Charming, inclusive partners in our Union, don’t you think? No, more a bunch of venal, cheating bullies. It’s just the familiar Project Fear. And if you say these things it often enough, ably assisted by a hideously biased media, you might scare enough people into voting just to keep things as they are. Politicians like the fact that people are afraid of change. Fear is a wonderful tool.

It’s a pretty sad state of affairs when all this comes from the party leader of a party that was founded in Scotland to fight for the rights of working people against capital, but now is in an unholy alliance with the likes of the Tories, Lib Dems, BNP, Orange Order, UKIP, and Britain First to deny Scotland its freedom. Lies, scares – they’ll say or do anything, because they’re defending their privileges and know that without Scotland’s oil, energy, exports, tax, ingenuity, and education system, the rest of the UK is an isolationist, declining, divided, unequal and essentially hopeless society.

It’s about Hope over Fear. As Nelson Mandela famously said:

May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears.

The prize is a better country for the people of Scotland. And that’s only 40 days away.