Better or worse

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The question: “If we are better together, why aren’t we better together now?” certainly poses problems for the No campaign.

Saving the “Scottish banks”, as an answer, won’t wash as more than 90 per cent of those banks’ business was based in England or abroad.

The fact is that some places are, in Orwellian terms “more better together” than others and the “most better together” place is unquestionably London.

London sucks the rest of the country dry like an omnipotent vacuum cleaner leaving Scotland in particular with nothing but Trident and crumbs.

It is the sacred cow, where the Jubilee line, for example, was allowed to go £1.6 billion over budget (enough for four of the much-maligned Scottish Parliaments).

If you wish to progress in the civil service, you must go south to seek promotion.

We are not better together now, in Scotland, because we 
are constantly outvoted, and 
industries such as fishing are sacrificed readily when it is 
perceived to be politically expedient.

The date of 18 September is a penalty kick for Scotland. We mustn’t miss it.

Joseph G Miller

Gardeners Street

Dunfermline

One of the most astute questions in the BBC’s Salmond v Darling debate was: “If we are better together, why are we not better together now?”

I came in to the referendum debate with a leaning towards Yes. My views were based on democracy, making best use of our resources to benefit the many, not just the few, and the benefits of bringing all decision-making closer to the people – a view echoed by the former Chief Medical Officer Sir Harry Burns regarding the positive impact independence could have on health outcomes – in my view this perspective could also be applied to economic outcomes for the most neglected in our society.

Like many, I have also done some research and would freely admit that if the performance of the UK demonstrated that we are “better together” I may have considered my position on the vote. What I have found is that the ranking of the UK against other developed economies on every long-term economic and social measure is abysmal.

Whether it’s inequality, social mobility, levels of welfare and state pensions, productivity or business investment, the UK is at, or near, the bottom of the tables. This probably goes a long way to explaining Alistair Darling’s woeful response.

Andrew S R Gordon

Craiglockhart View

Edinburgh

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