With less than three months to go until people in Scotland vote for ‘independence’, Leg-iron and I have just received the 16-page booklet from HM Government, What staying in the United Kingdom means for Scotland.
There are not many ‘ethnic minorities’. Normally, government literature is bursting with them to rub our noses in diversity (Andrew Neather). There’s only one black person; the setting is a warehouse with three people wearing hard hats. The black gentleman is standing in front of a bearded man who looks like he’s about to cry (I think the black fella’s standing on his foot, hence the broad smile on his face). The trio is completed by a woman with a slightly mad expression who is baring her teeth. Maybe this is why the bearded man is afraid?
As they’re all undoubtedly actors, it’s difficult to know what the photographer was trying to get from them. Vote ‘No’ for pain? It’s pain either way, if you ask me.
The style of the booklet is staid; written in language much like you would expect to read in a brochure for a hemorrhoid ointment. It contains gems of information, like the 31 million taxpayers in the UK which they allege makes the pound safer. What they mean is the 31 million income tax payers, not the 60 million real taxpayers.
Pensioners pay VAT, Council Tax, alcohol/tobacco/fuel duty, etc., etc. When I was an alcoholic on benefits, my tax rate was about 50%. Even young children pay 20% VAT on their toys and sweets.
What the UK Government leaflet is telling us is that criminally high levels of taxation make for a stable currency.
“2/3rds of Scottish exports go to rUK” (edited account).
This is a genuine worry. As a small business owner probably 80% or even more goes to rUK. As it’s retail, would independence put people off buying from me? Or, if an independent Scotland wouldn’t get into the EU, as Leg-iron claims, because Spain would block our application in case Catalonia gets ideas, then people in rUK would be able to buy our goods without having to pay VAT.
That’s why the big CD/DVD/Games companies moved to the Channel Islands. This could be a benefit, not a worry.
Apparently, we have cheaper bills being in the UK. I don’t think mine could be any more expensive. Of course, once Windy Miller gets the country up and partially running with another few hundred wind farms, bills probably will be even more expensive.
“Lower taxes, higher public spending.”
They are trying to tell us that taxes would be even higher in an independent Scotland. How could this be possible? They allege that each and every Scot (not just income taxpayers) is £1,400 pa better off being in the UK.
That’s strange, because the ‘Yes’ camp claim we’d be much better off out. Their ‘newspaper’ which arrived several months ago claims that Scots have each paid ‘the equivalent’ of £1,700 extra in tax pa compared to those in the UK as a whole.
Just who do we believe? They cannot both be right.
Or can they? Maybe they can by using semantics and statistics to produce the most misleading conclusions.
Like today’s ‘science’. You start with the conclusion: “You will be better off by voting our way,” then find the data and the right wording to demonstrate some degree of accuracy.
Or just lie and ‘stuff the stupid proles’?
Then we discover that the UK “is the second largest aid donor in the world”.
So vote ‘No’ and keep watching your money disappearing into the bank accounts of dictators while you carry on struggling to make ends meet. Bad move, UK Government Ministry of Truth. Surely they know that we Scots have short arms and deep pockets? At least, that’s the common (mis)perception.
Here’s a cracker, bearing in mind Mr Juncker’s appointment as next European Commission President and Cameron’s alleged humiliation at being only one of two not to vote this federalist in charge (the Hungarians were the other objectors); a man who will insist on further integration thus relegating Cameron’s notions of “reforms” to the dustbin of his mind.
Although, a number of commentators are writing about how it moves us closer to exit from the EU.
According to the UK Government propaganda booklet, the UK is “An influential voice in important places”.
Tell that to David Cameron.
How many thousands of times have we been ordered to do as we’re told by the EU, UN, European Court of Human Rights, other countries etc.?
Heads we lose; tails we lose. Maybe if the coin lands on its side we will stand a chance…