First Published in New Statesman 29/08/14
I despise nationalism. I despise patriotism. I hate bagpipes, I hate kilts and tartan and I hate the cringe inducing shouts of “wha’s like us” in bars across the nation at closing time on drunken Saturday nights. I love the other countries we share this little island with. I am not what you could ever call a patriot or a nationalist and I would call myself European long before I’d ever call myself Scottish. I believe in cultural and ethnic integration. I believe in a world where nationalities blur into one another rather than divide on tribal lines. I have been, until fairly recently, a staunch ‘No’ voter. However, all things considered, I now feel I am left with no choice but to vote Yes in the forthcoming referendum.
There are economists on both sides of the argument saying wildly different things. I’m not an economist, and neither are the majority of people who seem to have decided to believe one side of the economic argument because it suits their inherent prejudices (as I did until recently.) This is not a decision the lay person can make based on just economics. It has to be about more than that.
We have the unique opportunity to build something better than the status quo – a status quo that is destroying the fabric of our society, that more than ever in living memory, supports the rich and powerful at the expense of the weak and the poor (regardless, I think it is fair to say, of whatever Westminster party is in power.) To ignore the possibility of changing this, to not at least consider taking that risk of independence, is at best shameful and at worst a disgrace to future generations.
How does anything happen in human history? How do we make the great leaps forward? We take risks. We place our hope in new, heretical ideas. If Albert Einstein had accepted the status quo of physics we could be living in a vastly different world. The same goes for Jesus Christ and Mohammed and Socrates and Galileo. New ideas that are heretical to the established order are fundamental to human progress.
I am not interested in Alex Salmond as a man or the SNP as a party. I don’t care about keeping the pound and I accept that, should the country vote Yes, Scotland might initially struggle economically – as any country would while trying to find its feet. That is not the point. This is bigger than you and me. This is about the future.
This is about more than you and your own wallet and your own ideas of culture and history. This is about more than whether you will have enough money to take the family to Mallorca next summer or to buy a new flatscreen TV. It’s about more than the “shared traditions” you were brought up to believe in.
It is about refusing to accept the pernicious lie that, “we are all in this together.” It’s about making the decision to redefine that phrase. In an independent Scotland, the wealthy and the powerful who comprise the British establishment will no longer get to define what “we” “this” and “together” mean anymore.
I have no idea if an independent Scotland can do all that I want it to, but I have to take that risk. The only other option is the status quo with its interchangeable political parties and neoliberal selfishness – an oligarchy in all but name. As a nation that consistently votes to the left, we can be sure that the policies of the main UK parties will not hold as much sway in Scotland as they do now.
Independence offers us a chance to make a change, to take a leap of faith, to show our brothers and sisters in England and the world beyond that there is a better way of living and treating people.
I urge you not to play it safe and I urge you to think about more than your own pockets. I urge you to see something better in the people around you. I urge you to vote Yes.
57 thoughts on “Why I changed from a ‘No’ to a ‘Yes.’”
I like the fact that you’re taking a longer term view, and you recognise that there is a clash of global ideologies at play in the referendum
After last night, there are many people who agree with you.
No there isnt
Oh yes there is!
There are many thousands like you who feel exactly the same way. You said what many would like to say but perhaps can’t quite put it so eloquently. This is the mature argument and not the base political mud slinging that had marred the debate and distracted from the fundamental reason why Scotland must run its own affairs. I wish it hadn’t come to this but our hand had been forced by social injustice that must be put right.
I thank you for your candor and I hope there are others who will come to realise that, like it or not, a Yes vote is the only solution and that both Yes and No voters are not the enemy of Scotland.
How the hell do you know there are thousands
All the polling results & commentary on social media would suggest that ‘thousands’ is something of an understatement.
I am also a former no but now a yes. Decision made today after reading a column in the Telegraph very reasoned like you and utterly convincing.
We have to move well away from the neo-liberal triumvirate who are running amok in Westminster.
Oh dear. This is rooted in an anti-globalisation feeling that we all have. It is rooted in the success within which we bask. After independence it won’t be about flat screens and holidays… but mortgages and food on the table. Higher interest rates and GDP deficits, higher taxes and poorer standard of living. All the defence, ship building and financial jobs will move south. It will cost more for Scotland to borrow. It runs a deficit.
There is a reason UK is in a union with Europe, Nato, partnership with USA.
Yes seems to be a patriotic fervour, rebelling against age old grievances of treatment by awful English kings… understandable… but not in the interests of a countrys people. Nobody can turn their back on this awful globalisation… not without sever suffering. Money rules the world. Not Westminster, that is a displaced mistake… It is not Westminster that determines budgets but the Bond market.
If your country is at higher risk it pays more for it’s debt. Projections are for 2% increase in Scottish borrowing with it’s own currency.
Scotland doesn’t want to piggy back the pound because the rates will be set for
UK, not Scotland. Scotland will have less control as Scottish MPs in Westminster are booted out.
Get a grip people! Union is always better…. Tents on a hill are vulnerable, a village with walls is better…. Right now Scotland has powers. It has as much control over finances as the market will ever allow.. Plus it has defence for it’s resources.
How you vote is up to you… but go in with eyes open instead of this patriotic blindness.
Hope to have been of help.
Chris (the Viking)- who over ran Scotland long before England because there was no union!
“Rebelling against age old grievances of treatment by awful English kings”
Why should the actions of some awful English kings who lived hundreds of years ago have influence on anyone’s answer in this debate?
Answer: It shouldn’t. It’s completely irrelevant. It’s not about the past, it’s about the possibilities for the future.
A Yes Voter.
English Kings? Have you forgotten that the first King of the united countries was Scottish? King James 6th of Scotland and 1st of the united kingdon. Get real my Scottish friends. We are much better off as part of the Union. Don’t fall for the would be King Alex.
Chris 2,500 Scottish companies think you are wrong. They expect a brighter future in engineering, exports and business. Joseph Steiglitz Clinton’s economic adviser sees your worries about the Scottish pound as irrelevant given the huge assets of Scotland, and that’s outwith the oil.
I totally agree with you and have been in two minds recently but reading this article I thought it was just me of course it’s about my money otherwise how do I provide for my family!!! You have totally swade me to no again….thank you!!
Agreed Chris. There are so many risks and unknowns. If you look on the UK.gov website and realise how many new government departments (dozens) will have to be set up with an unknown cost, you realise what an enormous gamble it would be. Alex Salmond is right, Independence will create a large number of jobs – government jobs. 200 business leaders can’t be wrong in my book. These are the people who create proper jobs, not civil servants.
Absolutely no help thanks Chris!
You clearly haven’t read this blog post or many other publications on the referendum if you’re still harping back to patriotism! Patriotism has absolutely nothing to do with the referendum. It’s much bigger than that. It’s about the dissolution of power into smaller units so that the people on the ground might receive more of it. It’s about democracy, ensuring that people’s voices and hard work will be heard and rewarded so that the people living in Scotland have more say as to where the spoils of Scotland’s already robust and wealthy economy (one of the richest in the world) might go to.
Scotland has already proved itself to be more outward looking and pro EU. than you are making out. My vision of a progressive future is smaller nation states that can work cooperatively within and between national borders. Independence and self-determination movements can go somewhat towards that vision which is international in its scope… not at all regressive and inward looking.
now theres sense and reason! what a pity the last 18 months of debate has been anything but
I’m an independent financial adviser and have been for the last 25 years. I read with interest your thoughts regarding the Union and noted that your main concerns are that independence must mean less surety and increased risk. You also maintain that bigger is better by design and that this is always the case due to the protection that this offers the component parts of any political alliance.
I’d like to point out to you some instances where political alliances have historically been very bad as big is not always better.
The Soviet Union broke up because centralised government was not taking account of regional and national concerns within the Soviet Bloc and their economy was faltering.
Yugoslavia broke up because political and ethnic differences within a country meant unequal power sharing and wealth within it’s borders which reignited old ethnic tensions.
Sudan has recently broken up because of differences in faith between north and south.
I’d like to point out that in no way am I comparing the situation in the UK to any of these places however these examples do illustrate what goes wrong when central government does not apply an even hand to all members of society.
We have a referendum in Scotland precisely because there is a significant number of people who feel that the Westminster Government is not attuned to their needs as Scots or for that matter Scotland’s needs.
This is not a feeling that is unique to Scotland as the same disquiet exists in other areas of the UK such as Wales, NE, NW and SW England and to some extent the Midlands.
There are perhaps different reasons for this disquiet regionally however one reason that applies to all areas is the dysfunctional UK economy. We have a service based economy and a low manufacturing base which is not a sustainable long term model. Moreover the type of economy we have acts as a gravity well, sucking huge resources and money into the capital London. As a result we have a two tier society and the gap continues to widen as the greatest wealth and opportunity in the UK is only to be found in London.
Is it so unreasonable therefore that people from all regional parts of the UK feel disenfranchised by the policy makers in London when repeated Governments on both sides of the benches do little to address the continually broken economic model that is the UK economy?
A lot of people who intend to vote no are voting because they fear the hyped up mythology of the risks they are taking. How sad for them as they have grown content with their lot perhaps even institutionalised as employees of UK plc and cannot see beyond that glass ceiling.
Hooray for those people out there who have the courage to stand up and say I’m happy with my lot but that doesn’t stop them from aspiring to something better.
So you’re not willing to accept either side of the economic argument yet you seem happy to conclude very firmly on another argument with the fact that an independent Scotland will be ” better than the status quo”. What exactly is it that makes you so sure that the same problems that you complain of in the UK won’t develop in Scotland? Why does independence suddenly change the ground rules? Why won’t “the wealthy and the powerful who comprise the” Scottish “establishment” be just as bad as those in the UK.
It’s this supposition that all will be rosier if only we reduce the size of our country that I really have a problem with. How do you know that? You may reassure yourself that we are “a nation that consistently votes to the left”, but that’s just recent history, it hasn’t always been that way, and the change to independence has to last forever.
Yes there are problems in the UK right now, but I’d rather see the energy and purpose of those campaigning for independence directed towards campaigning to fix some of those problems for everyone in the UK, rather than segregate ourselves off in the hope that we are somehow greatly different as a population and can fix these problems in isolation only. And for that reason, I’ll be voting to continue supporting like-minded people across the whole of the UK and rejecting the wishful thinking of independence.
I think that the point is that, yes, Indy Scotland could easily develop the same troubles as the UK currently. But, the option seems to be:
a) keep things as they are.
b) try to change something, it might not work, but it’s the only way you can change.
I also don’t get the “Ah, but Scotland didn’t used to be a left leaning country” argument. The point is that, for the past 30 years, the Scottish consciousness has become more and more left win. No, it might not always stay that way. But one could make the exact same argument that England could move even further right, and Scotland could do nothing about it. The point is to have control over our own affairs.
Engand *is* moving further right, and will continue to do so, even under a Labour Govt.
What about the option,
c) try to change something, within the UK
The referendum campaign has shown people that if they get engaged and start talking and acting, then change is possible. That’s what I meant about redirecting that energy on a wider stage for even greater change.
I think people are tired of trying to change things within the UK and consistently being ignored, can you give me a recent example of people power changing UK policy?
I absolutely hate the fact that Scotland may break away from the U.K There are lots of reasons why, Im an English women and would hate it, I TRUELY hope you all don’t think we have it better than you, because if your worse of than me your on the bread line, where I live we have no housing, we pay for immigrants that come through Heathrow, our schools are full, so it’s hard to get places, our hospitals are full and we pay for all this, but were great Scotland is great as is Wales and Nothern Ireland, I don’t think you all nor your children will gain from it, it’s hard the world over, but United were so much stronger, don’t leave us Scotland Please
for the benefit of the people of England and the rest of the UK, devolution and the breaking down of control structures will have a positive impact, eventually. if we choose not to stand for Westminster then hopefully neither will England and neither will northern Ireland and wales and you will have an opportunity to have your voice heard louder and more prominently than before! I’m Scottish, born and bred and I can tell you this now, this is not about divorcing the people of England its about breaking free from Westminster and the children of thatcher. you the people are not to blame for the government.
You’re on the breadline? One in five Scottish children live in poverty, and that number is only going to increase under Westminster. We have the chance to do something about it.
Btw “we pay for immigrants that come through Heathrow” sounds just a wee bit racist.
We do pay for immigrants, every single one of them, there is nothing racists about it unless of course immigrant is now a race…
For info its not only AScottish people who live on breadline, poverty, rely on foodbanks etc THE WHOLE of the bloody country does so dont try and give us Scotland is only people affected when its not and that my nat friend is a fact.
Paul you’ve hit the nail on the head – just from the wrong side.
You are perfectly correct that there are people in poverty everywhere in the UK but the UK electorate can’t do anything about it as legislation is via Westminster and it will dictate that Trident, HS2, Aircraft Carriers (with no aircraft!!) and whatever other scheme gets the go ahead – no matter what ‘Party’ gets elected. The difference is that we (the people of Scotland) have the opportunity to stop being governed by Westminster and to be governed by our own elected Government who will put our interests first. I know that sounds selfish and maybe it is but if the roles were reversed and you were given the opportunity to wouldn’t you put the people of England first? Obviously you’ll pick up on that I’m Scottish by my father who is a born and bred Londoner agrees that if the roles were reversed then he would vote ‘Yes’.
Eh, immigrants are by definition people from other countries/races, ergo speaking out against immigrants is inherently racist.
Hope that helps.
Perhaps you could point out where I said it’s “only AScottish people who live on breadline”? I haven’t, so don’t put words into my mouth – I didn’t “try and give (us) Scotland is only people affected…”. Scotland, however, has a chance to do something about it.
A final point (or rather two) – I am neither a “nat” nor your friend and, given your obvious yet denied racism, I wouldn’t want to be.
I thank you for your comments Betty , and I appreciate what your saying, I as a scots woman hear you, but somthing has to change, we can’t go on as we are, maybe with us making this change things will improve, it’s got to be easier to organise smaller segments , you might find England , having less to worry about, without us, may make your life easier, hopefully !!!! Yours, still with you in heart.
There is no real evidence that Scotland would be more left leaning. Prior to the 1960s Scotland had a substantial Conservative vote which waned in the decades afterwards due to Thatcherism and post-industrial decline. Part of that reduction in rightwing support was also due to an inherent anti-englishness that identified a vote for the Conservatives as a vote for an English establisment. An independant Scotland would lose that as a driving factor in left wing support with the result there could be a substantial swing to the right in future. The problem at the moment is that many people are projecting their desires (many of which are totally unachievable) onto a Scotland which if it were independant would struggle to fulfil, especially given the fiscal problems it may have to deal with. Salmond cannot threaten to renege on national debt and borrow from the money markets at the same time.
Salmond hasn’t “threaten(ed) to renege on national debt” he simply said that, without a fair share of the assets, Scotland could not be expected to pay a fair share of the national debt.
If they were to do so, the money markets would be *less* likely to lend.
I am Canadian of Scottish origin via my grandparents on my mom’s side.. but British on my grandfather’s side… I am allergic to wool, can’t drink a drop but I like the Scots’ compulsion and “umph”… I have that in me and I know where I got it.. Grandma Yeats. I’ve lost the Scotland connection but reading in these Independence blogs, I have found interest. Canada is a wild mix of new cultures that I just find way different and they all want to keep their old ways here. Uh, it’s frustrating to live with a load of cultures that are new to us . . but my heart is at least visiting Scotland.
I wish you all the Best in Your Future.
I certainly agree with the sentiments you express here, from the unpalatable ethnic nationalism that has been an underlying foundation of the independence campaign, to the spirited potential for an independence nation to break away from injustices of the UK establishment.
But the spirit of this argument gathers around an incomplete statement. Whether the Scottish people envision the same clean break from current systems of injustice, and a sense of self-determination deserved after a history of oppression — this has little bearing on the existence of a Scottish elite ready and surely willing to fill any vacuum in the new establishment.
My most recent ‘Yes’ campaign pamphlet, received yesterday, is written heavily in terms of the potential economic gain, rather than the potential values of an independent Scotland. It’s leading assertion – ‘A rich nation. A wealth of opportunity.’ – is supported by a breakdown of why ‘Scotland’s got what it takes’. What does it take? Well, apparently industry revenues, ranging from Life Sciences (£1.9 Billion) to Tourism (£10 Billion) to… Oil & Gas (£1,500 Billion).
Regardless of the way in which these figures are calculated, and acknowledging the potential per capita increase in tax revenues for an independent Scotland, the message is quite clear. Unless more individuals have a stake in Scottish oil than I’m aware, or will have a say in the ways government and corporate interests collude (which out of necessity and mutual interest they do, and will), there is an overwhelmingly disproportionate power looming. And I think it would be naive to think that – of all industries – the oil and gas industries are sympathetic to sharing the wealth, and securing for the people a clean break from establishment injustices and inequalities.
Well written Kev – we can agree to disagree about the bagpipes! Referendum is not about economics, it’s about politics. The question is, what kind of society do you want to live in?
Britain,as the 9th largest island in the world,in a planet of thousands,can hardly be a ‘little island’,
“I despise nationalism. I despise patriotism.” Mostly irrelevant to the issue, both sides have their preferred view of the nation they are advoating having soverignty, one happens to be Scottish the other British (or UKish?).
“I am not what you could ever call a patriot or a nationalist and I would call myself European long before I’d ever call myself Scottish.” Good reason to vote Yes, will mean the threat of a referendum to leave the EU disappears from Scotland. The lovely thing about the EU is there’s no need for the middle layer of government that is the UK.
Why the need to attack aspects of Gaelic culture?? This is not thought through. The idea that you want one world culture is frightening. What this has always meant in the past is someone is robbed of their culture by a homogenising centre. It is basically the imperial project or a sinister communism (same thing) all over again. How about we just earn to live with difference??
What is wrong with respecting other cultures? Other cultures are wonderful things. They teach us more about ourselves and each other than any attempt at a world culture would. Besides it is just human nature to diversify our culture. We can see what happens if the money men try and standardise culture the world over. It becomes bland and predictable. I know you think you are trying to be inclusive etc.But what you are wishing for is horrific.
I wish people would think about these things more. Gaelic culture was deliberately attacked by the British state. It was attacked under the same banner as you are suggesting now. Cultural homogeneity. It had its main symbols stolen and incorporated into the British Army and culture. Now people turn on this culture again as the centre of an ethnic nationalism they don’t like. It is perverse to blame the culture the British state almost wiped out in its last homogeneity project (which was supposed to be for the good of all as well).
Let people be. Let the enjoy their own cultures. Trying to make everybody the same is a simplistic and quite obviously bad solution. Not far away from Hitler’s final solution. Think about it. The way to get rid of ethnic nationalism is to be vigilant. Not destroy all the beautiful cultures of the world.
Have you heard of Godwin’s Law?!
Scotland will get Independent the question is with what percentage, the higher the more United the Country will be. People have had to fight wars and see death in order to get independence we are getting it on a plate just got to say YES. no blood shed no wars, but diplomatically. The word No itself is negative, the impact as we have seen for the past so many years is also negative. YES is a positive word that’s what Scotland’s future will be. People who have sunk the country into debt are the ones trying to think of its betterment, err, no thank you. You had your chance Mr Alistair Darling & Gordon Brown you messed it up enough. I urge all to thing of a prosperous country with the highest number of YES voters for a stronger United Scotland. Don’t be the minority by voting No. On the final note to all No voters listen to our National Anthem carefully “Flower of Scotland”.
Reblogged this on Foxy Revenger Strives for More.
Kevsherry, thanks for that. I am a YES voter [just voted, by post] who normally wears kilt. When advising on a medical programme in Afghanistan employers were worried about reaction of Taleban. So I wore Afghan dress = Shalwar Kamij. And when I met the Taleban they were ordinary friendly human beings. David
What an excellently written piece.
I’m an English girl in exile on another island… moving away from Westminster and the legacy of English right’wing politics is a smart move. After Scotland, can I request a referendum on the Republic of Manchester? I might even be tempted to move back.
Good luck my Scottish brethen!
You say your brothers and sisters of England you do realise the UK isnt just Scotland and England, there is also Wales and Northern Ireland. Do you also realise that if independence happens those brothers and sisters will become foreigners.. There is NO turning back, the chance you want to take if it goes belly up has no chance of recovery.. You and others would have wrecked this country for what? A chance to get rid of the English, lets face it, its only reason the SNP wanted this referendum.
Whats wrong with foreigners? Are my Aunties in Dublin foreign? Not to me, I am English and voting Yes, whats the big deal, my mum down south will still be my mum, just because we have a different system of government doesn’t mean we will suddenly become strangers. Most people down south don’t really mind if Scotland leaves, its nice if it stays but it has a minor impact on the lives of most people there.
I completely agree, Kev, that this is not (or more importantly, should not be) about patriotism. It should be about humanism.
Economics are important, of course they are. We all need to eat. We all need a safe, warm place to sleep. We all need our health. The key thing though, surely, is that we ALL deserve these things. With that in mind, the argument to put the economic question aside in formulating a decision is wholly valid.
We are being progressively encouraged to become more insular in our views on the world. Consumerism ranks supreme, as we all scramble to surround ourselves with as many ‘things’ as we possibly can, because we are continually assured that this will make us happier and safer. It doesn’t. It makes us more fearful of losing what we have, because what we come to value most (above all else) is our access to all these things that we truly don’t need in order to live happy lives. We build up crippling debts that threaten our ability to make free choices and put our homes at risk and accept that ‘that’s just the way it is’. It becomes a self-perpetuating cycle that eventually causes people to view everyone around them as part of the ever-increasing malice that is poised to take away your prized PlayStation given half the chance. God forbid.
Of course, many roll their eyes in a predictably demeaning and patronising manner when you speak of such things. I have been called short-sighted, intellectually inept and a liar for having these views. The irony is not lost on me, but I won’t sling mud back. It is natural, based on the way that this obscene love of money has corrupted our ability to care about others, for people to have a tendency to strike out as opposed to accept that they have been duped into being less of a person that they had ever hoped to be.
The world will never be perfect. We are all selfish every day in innumerable ways. It is part of the human condition. This is no reason not to strive to be better.
I will be voting based on a hope for a better future; I will not be voting based on a fear of uncertainty. It will be a vote that is rooted in the desire to do what is best for the most underprivileged in our society, not just because it is the noble thing to do, but because all of us are a very small number of bad decisions away from being in that position ourselves. If it happens to be noble by proxy, then so be it.
I won’t have anger for anyone who votes ‘No’, because the beauty of democracy is that we are all allowed to voice our opinion. I will only have anger for those who vote (whichever way that might be) based on sentimentality and ignorance.
I love the tones of social justice that are emanating from this whole debate at the moment and long may it continue, into a bright, caring and mutually supportive future.
It is now obvious that the yes is the right choice for progress, it is an opportunity to redefine what democracy really is.
I am not “born and bread” in Scotland.
I arrived in the UK 17 years ago ( I was nineteen) and started my journey like most immigrants in London. After 18 month I moved to Scotland and I never turned back from my new found home. Not because I found work easily and had the opportunity to study, not because (at the time) the pound was strong compared to other currencies in Europe, no, I stayed because of the people, because what I have found in them was different: the people I have met were more human, fundamentally less corporate, I did not feel that the social class divide amongst the scots was as deep as what it was in London.
This is why I trust that an independent Scotland could set us on the right path to become a bright new nation, with bright new ideas and inspire other nations and at the end bring us together so we can all work towards a better world with real justice and peace for everyone!
In Scotland I trust…Vote Yes
Reblogged this on Sonsiekat and commented:
Great post. Like Kev, I despise nationalism but will be voting for Scottish independence.
I think we can put the tired old charge of anti-English nationalism to bed please. History will remember that the only nationalism and appeal to emotion during this campaign has come from the Naysayers ‘shared heritage’ ‘Waterloo’ (?!) etc, etc. And with the rise of UKIP in England, the voice of British (or, indeed, English) nationalism is only growing louder. Ask yourself how it is, that if independence is about Scottish ethnic nationalism, why so many people from ethnic minorities not only feel comfortable with the idea but are active supporters of it? Would Asian Scots, for instance, happily support a cause which was motivated primarily by Scottish nationalism? It is tiresome and a mere distraction. Just yet another cynical tactic to avoid debating the real issues which those on the Left in the No campaign especially, know they cannot win.
Coincidentally, I just sent T & T the Scotland Yet Video a few days ago, so hopefully your great blog will also inspire them.
Reblogged this on Lorraine Cleaver.
I do not grasp the logic. Nationalism was the force that provided the cultural, political and intellectual drive to free many European states from subjection by empires; Ireland is an example. It was a potent element during the British Raj and in African liberation struggles. Ok kilts and pipebands are touristy and rather bogus and militaristic, tartan a “romantic Scotland” confection but their is a wealth of real, specifically Scottish culture marginalised, ignored or suppressed by the current system that an independent state would naturally and rightly promote. Call that nationalism? many would say simply common sense. After all without the distinctive marks a national culture brings the whole referendum exercise would be a waste of time. Better just to be absorbed by England and submit to the largely bland consumerist culture, the vapid blur, of America. Scottish nationalism is about as far removed from the nazi label eagerly pinned on it by its detractors as you could possibly get as many of its founders were internationalist and well to the left.