Stephen Nisbet (Letters, 22 August) is asking the wrong question. The question is not why all the major UK parties oppose a currency union but why Alex Salmond would want one.
Mr Nisbet, however, is correct in saying that it is “strange that Alex Salmond says he can live with independence-lite”. Not only is it strange – it is simply not credible.
Does anybody seriously believe that Mr Salmond would accept a scenario in which “some oversight would be demanded by London to ensure that Edinburgh behaved in a fiscally responsible way”? What about the constantly trumpeted necessity of “full control” of the economic and fiscal levers? And it is not simply distrust of Mr Salmond which convinces me that this would never happen and that he is concealing the real intentions of the Yes campaign.
Other prominent figures in the Yes campaign such as Denis Canavan, Patrick Harvie and Jim Sillars would want a new Scottish currency on the grounds that only that would deliver genuine independence from the dreaded London “oversight”. Even Mr Salmond’s deputy, Ms Sturgeon, has admitted that a currency union would only be a “transitional” arrangement. Transitional to what is the question – the euro or a new currency?
Mr Salmond’s claims about the pound are as disingenuous as his nonsensical claims about threats to the Scottish NHS. These are political ploys designed to win at any cost. Telling people the truth – that in the event of a Yes vote we would not have the pound because that would not create an independent Scotland – is something that Mr Salmond simply does not have the gumption to do. It would be a disaster if independence was achieved as a result of a campaign based on such fabrications.
Braid Hills Avenue
As the independence currency issue rages on, why did the SNP wait until six months before a referendum to decide they did not have a currency to offer the Scottish people?
The Scottish Government should have been talking to the Bank of England, the IMF, World Bank and the bond markets at least four years ago and working out some sort of strategy.
It is grossly incompetent to get within four weeks of a life-changing referendum and still want to use the currency of the country they want to leave.
What would happen on day one of independence? Who pays the bills for police, doctors, nurses etc? Do the government take out a payday loan from Wonga?
Or, as I suspect, hope that the country we have just left picks up the tab?