Currency at a cost

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Alex Gallagher (Letters, 3 April) asks if he is the only one, “who thinks it is a peculiar lunacy to hail as a triumph the possibility that control of your economic levers might be transferred to a foreign bank and foreign politicians, placing control of your economy outwith your borders…” The answer is “No, he isn’t”, as an increasing number of Scots are beginning to realise that a currency union would ensure that a Yes vote would still fall far short of independence.

The alleged leak from the unknown minister has certainly caused problems for the No Campaign but in the fury surrounding the leak, there is a danger the Scots electorate lose sight of the most important aspect of the currency union debate viz the potential loss of control of the Scottish economy, something which Nationalists have fought against for as long as I can remember.

The other point which has merited barely a mention, but which may prove to be as important as the currency union, is the quid pro quo which the rUK would demand for an agreement on the currency. According to the unknown minister, a deal might be arranged if the Scottish Government agreed to keep Trident on the Clyde, something which both John Swinney and Nicola Sturgeon claimed will not happen, 
although the latter added the 
caveat that the move would have to have regard to the safety of both Scotland and the rUK.

The other actor which has not been mentioned at all is Nato, membership of which was so important to the SNP leadership that it was prepared to split the party and suffer the loss of two MSPs, to force a policy volte-face. The increased tension in Ukraine could not have come at a worse time, to ask Nato to consider favourably an application for membership from an independent Scotland, whose first action would be to expel nuclear weapons from its soil. The announcement that Nato is considering offering membership to Armenia, Moldova and Azerbaijan, is bound to increase the tension even further.

This now raises a number of questions; how important is the currency union to the SNP? Will it be a currency union at any cost? If not, how much is the SNP prepared to pay and how much is Westminster prepared to concede? Finally, who will blink first in this game of “bluff, bluster and bullying?”

jim fairlie

St Ninians

Crieff