Wednesday 17 September 2014



THE last full week of referendum campaigning has been pretty scary, with lots of dire warnings about the long-lasting financial consequences of a Yes vote.

There have been warnings from John Lewis and Asda about the rising costs of their products after independence.

Obviously it costs more to bring a lorry full of stuff to Edinburgh or Inverness — starting next week.

Tesco was quoted in a Better Together leaflet suggesting prices would rise 16 per cent with independence — a claim bosses were forced to publicly shoot down.
But there are two reasons why the price of your shopping will not rise because of independence. One is Aldi and the other is Lidl.

Tesco profits are down by £900 million this year. The big supermarket chains are losing out hand over fist, undercut by the newly arrived chains.

These guys can manage to run a supermarket operation in Scotland all the way from Germany.

So the chances are Tesco can manage to do it from Kent if they really put their minds to it.

But if they are absolutely determined to make sure more people shop at Aldi, a good way to do that would be to make their prices even higher.

RBS and many other banks and financial institutions have made it clear they will flee from Scotland if there is a Yes on Thursday.

The chief economist at Deutsche Bank, David Folkerts-Landau said voting for independence “would go down in history as a political and economic mistake” as large as those which sparked the Great Depression of the1930s.

Just to be clear, this is the same Deutsche Bank which made a loss of 1.153billion euros in only the last four months of 2013.
Roughly half of that loss came from legal fees in America where the bank was forced to pay fines of 1.4billion euros for selling dodgy financial products.

So you may wish to accept Mr Folkerts-Landau’s advice — or you may take the view that he should spend a bit less time fretting about us.

Last month, the London branch of Deutsche Bank was fined £4.7million by UK regulators for financial irregularities in an astounding 29 million separate transactions.

It would have been more but, after they were caught, they put their hands up so they got a 30 per cent reduction.

Which is nice but not the sort of thing that usually applies to your average shoplifter.
In December last year, Deutsche Bank was fined — wait for it — £578 million by the European Commission for fiddling the Libor rate.

That means they were part of a conspiracy to manipulate the interest rates you pay on your car loan, your credit card and your mortgage.

Can you guess who else got fined, who else was part of the conspiracy to rip you off?
That’s right, it was RBS who were fined £310 million.

Do you know who paid that fine? It was the shareholders of RBS.

And do you know who owns 81 per cent of the shares of RBS? That would be you and me.

These people are like criminals — they keep getting caught. They are like inept criminals.

They are so astoundingly bad at their jobs that they actually managed to go bust in the biggest bankruptcy the world has ever seen.

They relied on the rest of us to clean up their mess, continued to use our money to carry out illegal activity and when they got caught, used our money to pay the fines.

Actually I've changed my mind. They’re not like inept criminals at all. That’s brilliant. They are masterminds.

But when they come forward to issue their dire warnings on Scotland’s future, I remember that — however clever they are — they still acted illegally.

It’s just possible — in fact I think it’s more than likely — that these people are not speaking with my interests at heart.

A policeman might suggest I should remember to flick the catch on my double glazing and possibly invest in a new lock for the front door.

A burglar is likely to offer rather different advice.

It’s been a scary week but I’m not scared.

I don’t have room in my heart to be scared because I’m so proud of us.

Look at what we have done. Can you ever think of a time when people were talking about politics in pubs and cafés, on the bus, on a train? It’s happening every day.
Could you ever imagine church halls would be packed out night after night with people wanting to discuss and debate and learn and think and plan together?
Yes, Jim Murphy got hit with an egg. Big deal.

One should not have joined if one could not take a joke.

Aside from that, we have come through this with dignity and generosity, understanding and a willingness to listen.

It took Northern Ireland 30 years of bombings and murders and bloodshed and intimidation to get to where we are now.

And we could be on the brink of going an awful lot further with hardly a nose punched.
That is a fantastic achievement by a fantastic nation.

It’s like the Bible says — “Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams”.

Our sons and daughters are daring to look ahead to a future that will be much different from what we have known.

There is a vision now available to us of a Scotland over the horizon.

These past two-and-a-half years have changed everything.

I look at my kids and I trust them. I’m not scared.

On Friday, we are going to start again.

We either start from scratch on new foundations or we rebuild what we’ve got.

But we have to believe it’s going to be better so, please, don't be scared.


  1. Some music to get people through the day. Nothing especially ponient, just general feeling stuff. (Helloween: I Want Out) (Joan Jett: Change the World) (Bob Marley: Get Up, Stand Up) (The Beatles: You're Gonna Lose that Girl) (The Libations: Caledonia)

    Enjoy :-)

    1. Good stuff Illy the Music Man!

    2. Well, there's not much I can do, so I do what I can.

  2. Morning Munguin and Tris, I read this, and wow, who would have thunk it. I am glad the Sun has not come out for independence as Murdoch is toxic for our campaign and our FM. Too many of those with butterfly minds in the BT Campaign who conveniently forget how much they owed to him for Tony Blair and that Gordon Brown lost because he did not like him. God sometimes that man Murdoch had good taste.
    So we are still behind in the polls, good, even the pollsters recognise they have not got it right, but then they have been guided to that point. I bet they have not been asking people in Wester Hailes, Craigmillar and all similar Social Housing as they like to call it now.
    Much respect to RIC who have done such sterling work in ensuring that the sma folk who Labour dispossessed are going to be heard tomorrow. The same sma folk who won Bannockburn for Bruce, practically against the same enemy. In case somebody thinks I mean the English I do not I mean the Norman Aristocracy who are still with us, but wear nice suits and put their money and influence into subverting Democracy,.

    1. Yes. that's right Helen.

      The pollsters haven't talked to the people who never vote.

      They haven't talked to RIC.

      As Craig Murray pointed out, the people whom the pollsters talk to are the politically engaged. They are the ones that register for the YouGov panels.

      So here we are without Mr Murdoch (whose Sun might have, over a long time, influenced something, but who wouldn't in the last few days).

      Still, it is a powerful editorial from a unionist newspaper!

  3. Whichever way you look at it that's one hell of a statement.

    I would consider 'Yes' to have been endorsed.

    1. Have to say David, so would I, at least by the Political Editor. I think there are many more lurking, just waiting their time.

    2. I suppose, as you say, given that this is a very senior man, you might say that it has been endorsed. But they happily carried two page ads yesterday jam packed full of lies.

  4. I keep getting emails from people in the No Campaign, asking me for help... and in this case than king me for all I've done.

    What a weird lot:


    I just wanted to make sure you had the right information for our offices in Dundee:

    Your campaign centre: Dunsinane House, Kilspindie Road, Dunsinane Industrial Estate, Dundee, DD2 3PW
    Your local organiser: Joanne Findlay
    Contact number: 07834 344314

    All are open from 6am until 10pm. Anything you can do to help will make a difference. We need help staffing polling stations, knocking doors, delivering leaflets and phoning voters.

    Thanks for everything you've done so far.


    Joanne Findlay
    Scottish Labour Party

    1. Maybe someone pranked your email onto a No list?

      Or maybe someone in the No campaign really does want a Yes vote?

    2. LOL Yes.

      I must admit poking around in Better Together at some stage to see if I could find an event we could go to, without success, but I don't remember leaving the email.

      Yeah, I wonder how much Tory cash I could get off them for helping out tomorrow????

  5. Best thing ever written in the Sun.