It’s about more than just oil and gas

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So Alexander McKay 
(Letters, 3 December) takes the “recent dip in the price of oil” as evidence of his personal wisdom and the wisdom of those who voted No in the referendum.

Ignoring the fact that even if the majority had voted Yes and that Scotland would not have gained independence before 2016, Mr McKay also offers his personal insight that an independent Scotland would have headed 
for “unimaginably severe economic problems” and fared much worse than Greece.

History tells us that not only is the oil price highly volatile, but through cyclical ups and downs an underlying upward trend in the price is evident that reflects the gradual depletion of this important natural resource.

However, while none of us know what the oil price will be in 2016 and beyond, we do know Mr McKay’s opinion that without oil and gas Scotland would not have the economic capability, in spite of the considerable array of other resources at its disposal, to join the growing family of proudly independent 

This is a sad indictment of the Scottish people (in whom those who voted Yes in the referendum appear to have more faith than Mr McKay), as countries with similar populations to Scotland but with limited or negligible oil and gas reserves, such as Finland, Singapore and New Zealand, are not generally considered to be “economic disasters”.

Returning to Mr McKay’s perceived “wisdom”, one wonders how self-satisfied he will be if a long-term 
consequence of the implementation of the Smith 
Commission recommendations is that even more of Scotland’s industrious, skilled and talented children feel compelled to move to England and other countries to find desirable employment, further their careers and achieve their ambitions.

Stan Grodynski


East Lothian