I am not a nationalist, and never have been. I have always loathed nationalism. I favor open borders. But I hope with all my heart that Scotland votes for independence tomorrow.
A vote for independence is not a vote for the Scottish National Party, or for nationalism, but for a democratic Scotland. While the S.N.P. has moved from being the "Tartan Tory" party it used to be, it's still not my party, and I've disliked Alex Salmond for at least 25 years...
But none of that matters. Because, if the S.N.P. doesn't keep its promises in an independent Scotland, the voters will kick it out at the first election.
Salmond isn't stupid. He knows this.
He knows that in order to remain in government in an independent Scotland, his party has to deliver everything listed in the image above.
And there's no reason why it can't.
In fact (and I do mean fact), while there are many reasons to vote for independence, there is not a single reason to vote to stay part of the far-from-United Kingdom. The Better Together faction has had to resort to wild economic scaremongering, because it has nothing else to offer. Bizarrely, England is now offering Scotland more power than it had before if it votes No. So, if we vote No, our masters will kindly give us less power than we'll have if we free ourselves from them by voting Yes?
Such an offer is unsurprising. We're used to them treating us like idiots.
If we were "better together," we wouldn't be having this referendum. Whatever the challenges faced by an independent Scotland (and of course there will be many, most of them unknown to us at this point), it will be better than the best we can hope for if we continue under English rule, as subjects, not citizens.
There's a reason England is desperately pressuring Scotland not to split. But Scotland doesn't need England. Scotland doesn't need the National Health Service and education to be privatized. Scotland doesn't need to be a warehouse for American nuclear weapons.
Scotland has had centuries under English rule, and has been robbed, lied to and abused all along, "bought and sold for English gold" as Burns had it. For the 29 years I lived there, Scotland had no future, and little tangible past, only an oppressive present.
The future can begin now.
(Article changed on September 17, 2014 at 09:53)