The big constiutional issue of the year looks firmly set to be that of Scottish devoltion/independence and the ultimate issue of the fate of the Union. Quite what was David Cameron doing in lighting the toucpaper for a debate on Scotland’s future which could end with the United Kingdom splitting apart? Initially it seemed a masterstroke catching Salmond on the hop, but it seems to have backfired. Salmond in some eyes is a ‘political genius’ but does that make him right on the issue? Very briefly here is a snapshot of a few relevent articles:
What Alex Salmond calls independence is really the break-up of the United Kingdom.
As Alex Salmond makes hay haggling over process points for a referendum on Scottish independence, we risk losing sight of the big picture. Mr Salmond may see crude political capital in casting the debate as Scots versus English, but the referendum will define the constitutional architecture for the United Kingdom as a whole.
Scotland’s voters will be asked to make a political decision in its referendum on independence, but it will be a decision coloured inevitably by economics – or at least economic perceptions, for the long-term economic impact of independence is far from clear. But such is the nature of politics that economic arguments will be used by both sides to support their case.
Alex Salmond, the ebullient leader of the Scottish National party, was in his element this week, doing what even his foes concede he does best: hogging the centre of the political stage, draping himself in history and arguing the case for independence that would break up the United Kingdom.
Only a start…...