In his speech today, Alex Salmond, First Minister of Scotland, hit back at last week's salvo from the 'No' campaign (as in 'Yes' for an independent Scotland and 'No' to independence and to stay in the UK).
It all seems such a pointless argument. What is national sovereignty these days anyway? In reality, the central banks and multinational corporations have the whip hand in policy-making these days. And anywhere they're denied hegemony gets regime change, one way or another. Any politician advocating independence to his or her compatriots should at least have to address that particular aspect of self-determination. Yet there's no such mention of it from any of the pundits or politicos. Well, we all have to earn a crust.
George Osborne, UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, last week tried to throw a spanner in the works of the 'Yes' campaign saying, "It is clear to me; I could not, as chancellor, recommend that we could share the pound with an independent Scotland." Hmm, we can expect things to get progressively slimier as the September 18th independence referendum draws closer.
President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, stuck his oar in for the 'No' campaign too, threatening that Scotland would have a difficult time cutting a deal to stay in the EU.
Alex Salmond is a likable and very able politician. He knocks spots off the rest of them. And he's especially good at slapping down the media shills. Whosoever coined the phrase, "Politics is show-business for ugly people", must've had Alex Salmond in mind. He's a good turn. But, belied by his avuncular persona, he's a bit too amenable to the oligarchs. And what does his version of an independent Scotland offer the Scots?
In the 2011 Scottish Parliament general election, against all intended odds, Alex's Scottish National Party won a landslide. It's not that the Scots particularly want independence; it's just that they're trying desperately to shake off the Thatcher legacy, whatever guise it comes in: Tory, New Labour, or the current Con-Dem (Conservative/Liberal Democrat) coalition.
The next step was then to have a referendum to separate from the UK. After all, that's what the Scottish National Party was all about. It seems his main prize was that Scotland could then set its own corporation tax. At that time, the Republic of Ireland had its corporation tax at 12.5 percent. (They must've been the envy of all the world's remaining banana republics). Alex Salmond intended to undercut other countries in the corporately inspired race to the bottom. How convenient would that be for the corporate sweatshop owners of this world? What sort of independence would that bring to ordinary Scots?
About the same time, his Finance Minister, John Swinney, indicated that his great aspiration for independence was that it would give the Scottish Parliament "borrowing power". What kind of 'power' is borrowing power? It would seem that now we Scots are to vote for the power to go grovelling to the biggest bunch of crooks on the planet - to borrow debt-based, usurious rows of digital coding. What sort of independence is that?
The Scottish people might expect real independence if they hear their politicians advocate independence from the corporations and the banks. That would spell freedom. But not just for Scots. Because of the stranglehold we've allowed the corporations to have over the world economy, all working people in the world would need to vote for independence from the central banks and corporations too. Otherwise, Scots would have to turn inward, repossess the land and return to subsistence farming - which, on consideration, would probably be a better prospect than wage slavery and debt peonage. (We could rename Scotland, Ludditeland.) Scotland has the land and natural resources, but it's doubtful that the people would gladly adapt back to 18th-century living, whilst ducking the intrepid drone attacks.
Mind you, the minute we hear politicians utter the words 'free-trade agreement', we should lock them up and throw away the key. They're traitors. The trouble is we never hear such words uttered until it's too late, because that sort of 'freedom' is negotiated behind closed doors, the politicians having signed the necessary gagging order. That sort of freedom is only meant for the privileged few; it means they're free to shaft everyone else, at home and abroad.
However, it is possible, albeit daunting, for small countries to defy the corporate connivers. The people of Iceland, for example, unlike t he rest of us still struggling with austerity, are apparently well on their way to economic recovery. They dissolved their parliament. They told their would-be 'creditors' that debt accrued fraudulently should be deposited where the monkey stuffed his nuts. They wrote up a new constitution and jailed the dodgy bankers (is there any other kind?). You won't hear much about that on the mainstream news.