John Proctor (Letters, 21 August) suggests that, in the event of a Yes vote, Scotland should keep the pound in a currency union because that will be the “sovereign will” of the people of Scotland. It would be nothing of the sort.
If there is a Yes vote, then the sovereign will of the people of Scotland will have been to leave the UK, and therefore forfeit the benefits that come from such membership.
Indeed, the Yes campaign keeps suggesting more benefits of UK membership that it wishes to keep – which, in addition to the UK pound, also include such things as the UK opt-outs with the EU (rebates, VAT, etc), a UK-wide pensions authority, the UK National Lottery, the UK DVLA, free and open borders with rUK, full access to all of the BBC (including iPlayer, which the Irish must pay for), shared access to many UK embassies and consulates, and the continuation of many UK-wide charities.
In the event of a Yes vote, it will be up to the sovereign will of the people of the rUK (or the EU for those crucial opt-outs and the rebate) – not Scotland – to decide how many (if any) of these benefits they are willing to share with a former member, and on what terms.
However, it is simple to keep all these benefits – say no thanks to withdrawal from the UK.
If you think the benefits lost by leaving the UK are less important than those that might be gained by the white paper version of independence – which means using a currency you don’t control, spending huge sums of whatever currency we have setting up new government systems, and being a small member of a union committed to “ever closer political and economic union” – then vote Yes, but don’t expect to keep all the bits you want from the UK.
I would like someone to explain a conundrum to me.
The Bailiwick of Jersey, the Bailiwick of Guernsey and the Isle of Man are locations each of which has its own parliament which passes laws, does not need London’s approval, has its own legal system and courts, sets its own tax rates, etc, and has never been a part of Britain or the UK or the EU. Yet all three use the pound.
Special arrangements have been made so that they can trade easily with the EU.
Scotland post-independence will be in a very similar position except that it was a part of the UK and as such has been part of the EU. Can anyone explain why Scotland would not be “allowed” to use the pound in a similar way?
My suspicions are that, in contrast to the other three, Scotland has many natural resources, or that the other three are very useful tax havens.
(Dr) Evan Llewelyn Lloyd