“We can govern ourselves better than anyone else”

Thus Alex Salmond’s closing statement.

Well, perhaps. Let’s … well, yes, let’s hope so.

The precedent is none too promising, however.

For all the corruption that went with the closing down of “independent” Scotland in 1707, a couple of crucial facts remain.

Thirty guid poonds Scots exchanged for just one pound sterling.

The “Crown in Scotland” (i.e. the Scottish national debt) needed the English Exchequer to cough £398,085 and 10 shillings to clear the accounts. That’s covered by section XXV of the Act of Union.

That was for a total Scottish population of fewer than one million people, and at a time when eighteen [English] pence a day (that’s less than 5p) was the top daily wage for a labouring man.


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