by a Newsnet reporter

Speaking at the Lib Dem Scottish conference in Inverness yesterday in front of just 300 Lib Dem delegates, Scottish secretary of state Michael Moore declared his “frustration” with the Scottish government’s timetable for the independence referendum, and said that he wanted the vote to be held next year.  This is a reversal of the position of the Lib Dems prior to the May 2010 Scottish elections, when the party refused to hold a vote at all, Mr Moore now wants the vote to be held as soon as possible.

Mr Moore said:  “What I find frustrating is the Nationalists’ determination to go slow.  If Mr Salmond has confidence in his plans – if he really believes that Scotland will vote to leave the UK family – why does he drag his heels?

“In January, the SNP said Scots should wait nearly three years to determine their future.   But we don’t need 1,000 days to decide this crucial question.  We can get this done in the 500 days that follow the consultations.  In 500 days you can plan the poll, pass the law and hold the ballot.

“That is enough time for the Scottish people to hear the arguments, consider the evidence and express their view.”

His comments were supported by party leader Nick Clegg, who repeated Conservative Prime Minster David Cameron’s statement that Scotland could be offered unspecified additional powers within the UK.   Mr Clegg announced that the Lib Dems would set up a “Home Rule Commission” to be headed by former party leader Menzies Campbell, which would “look at the next stage in the relationship between Scotland and the rest of the UK”.

However Mr Clegg stressed that the question of extra powers for Holyrood could only be decided after Scots had rejected the option of independence.  

“We need to settle the independence question first.  But if the Scottish people decide they want to remain in the United Kingdom, then we can get on with the business of giving Scotland more power.”

Commenting Mr Moore’s comments, SNP Depute Leader and Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:

“The anti-independence parties are mired in confusion and negativity.  They are confused, because they are either unable or unwilling to spell out to the people of Scotland what their alternative to independence is – and Labour have just asked for a year to come up with one.  And they are negative, because in the absence of a positive alternative they are consigned to negativity about independence.

“Michael Moore is in no position to dictate to the people and parliament of Scotland about the referendum.  First, like their Tory allies, the Lib Dems have failed to set out an alternative to independence.  And second, the Lib Dems have no democratic mandate to dictate the terms of the referendum – having lost every constituency seat in mainland Scotland last year, and they are currently languishing in single figures in the polls.

“These are matters for the people and parliament of Scotland to decide, and we have set out a proper, detailed timetable for the referendum in autumn 2014 which meets our election pledge.

“Autumn 2014 is the correct timetable for the referendum, which reflects the procedures of the Scottish Parliament, and the need for the fullest possible public debate on Scotland’s most important decision for 300 years, with all the questions answered.

“The Scotland Office timetable is flawed and full of holes.  We have already secured thousands of responses to our consultation, and these will be properly analysed in the summer.  This autumn and winter there needs to be a minimum of 10 weeks to test the ballot paper – as required by the Electoral Commission.

“Also, it would be totally inappropriate to enact a Bill of this importance and magnitude between autumn and March, without allowing for a proper period of parliamentary scrutiny.  And given the abysmal farce of the AV referendum, the very last people to listen to on the timing and terms of a referendum would be the Lib Dems.”


# Jester 2012-03-04 00:12
Moore is like a broken record! Yes, it’s possible to have it in 500 days, but Alex knows best, his tactics are sound and you have been told NO! So wind your neck in Moore.
# Jiggsbro 2012-03-04 00:16
Tell him we’ll have it in 2014 or when Dave specifies what further devolution is on offer. Whichever comes first.
# J Wil 2012-03-04 00:47
Moore said the SNP are determined to go slow which suggests that they are continually making excuses to defer the referendum.

This is a travesty of the truth. The truth is that the SNP have been completely consistent in saying when the referendum will take place. On the other hand there are mixed messages coming regularly from the unionists, including from Mr Moore.

Mr Moore’s frustration is of his own making and it sounds as though he is in panic mode because he cannot bully the SNP into altering their time table. So his moans are a face-saving exercise to offset his own incompetence as Scottish Secretary.
# Vincent McDee 2012-03-04 01:33
Leave the lad alone!

He’s doing a wonderful job of becoming irritating with his insistance.

Is causing more harm than good to his side.

Just ignore it.
# Hing em high 2012-03-04 01:49
I am perfectly happy for him to harp on about it. In fact we should be enouraging him to utter his drivel daily.
# DoricBob 2012-03-04 02:27
It’s easy for Clegg and Moore to promise extra powers, because they know they won’t be there to deliver on their promises. It’s all hot air and guff!!
# Al Ghaf 2012-03-04 04:02
However Mr Clegg stressed that the question of extra powers for Holyrood could only be decided after Scots had rejected the option of independence.

Reminds me of watching kiddies play, quite often, when things are not going a particular kids way, they make up new rules to suit themselves.
# Angus 2012-03-04 04:40
Quoting Al Ghaf:
However Mr Clegg stressed that the question of extra powers for Holyrood could only be decided after Scots had rejected the option of independence.

Reminds me of watching kiddies play, quite often, when things are not going a particular kids way, they make up new rules to suit themselves.

Exactly, this isnt 1979 when we had no voice.
This is so wishie washie that only a fanatic or feeble could support it.
# clootie 2012-03-04 07:17
I thought the timescale was the one stated at the election – the 2nd part of the term?

If I arranged to meet someone next Monday then I would struggle to understand a phonecall on the Friday asking why I was dragging my heels.

I can only put it down to his not being too bright.
# Ben Power 2012-03-04 07:40
Presuming the unionists are serious about passing more powers back to Scotland, and that actually was their answer to preserving the union.
Would it not then be reasonable to pass devolution (plus, mini, lite, max whatever) right now so that they could say “look you have all the power you need to self govern why leave our cosy little union”
But they do not do the obvious thing that possibly would keep us in the union willingly.
Instead they are just spreading confusion to minimise the Yes vote in the referendum.
It is a high stake gamble, but confusing voters has won many times in the past.

Confusing referendum voters to get a negative result works well unless the voters become very aware of it and react negatively to the attempt.
We should ignore all the devo fluff and call it out for the confusion strategy it is to all we know.
# Aplinal 2012-03-04 07:59
Agreed, Ben. This seems to be the strategy as the unionistas do not have a positive reason for Scotland remaining a country under the thrall of the Westminster parliament.

And I do not think that 1,000 days is too long when we have an agressively anti-SNP press, and decades of lies, misinformation, and propaganda to overcome. It is obvious that despite the myths about “subsidy Scotland” having been taken apart, many people still believe them. (Read the comments on any blog to witness this over and over. These same people simple will not believe they are wrong, and worse, will not even find out for themselves.)

The challenge in the next 2 1/2 years is to get sufficient FACTS out in the public arena that enough undecideds realise that there IS only one answer in the referendum. Scotland NEEDS to be independent if we are to move ahead and overcome the many difficulties we face. This will NEVER happen under the yoke of Westminster.

Saor Alba
# John Lyons 2012-03-05 10:12
The Scotland Bill was a perfect oportunity to do exactly that. Cameron wants yes no question? Fine. Use theScotland billto grant additional powers and the second choice question goes away.

Instead we get silly Lords like Sinclair using it to take power AWAY from Scotland, And Forsyth and Foulkes just turned the whole thing into a laughing stock.

If Michael Moore really wants to get serious and stop messing around with theconstitution he’d do well to start by telling the lords to behave themselves!
# The_Duke 2012-03-04 07:42
This from a party that has little representation in Scotland who joined forces with a party who have one MP in Scotland, both parties did not want a referendum on Independence prior to the last Scottish elections….. are telling the SNP who have an overall majority (in a system that was designed to make this extremely difficult to do)…. to hurry up and hold the Referendum sooner.

You couldnt make this up.
# scottish_skier 2012-03-04 08:30
I’d have thought they’d like to maintain the Union for as long as possible. If we go by the SNP date, the unionists are guaranteed at least another year+ of union. Some people don’t know what they want.
# Macart 2012-03-04 08:47
Heh! Sounds as though Mr Moore is feeling a little tight around the collar. There was a time when the Scottish Secretary’s word was the last word in Scotland. Job description these days seems tae huv a punch bag clause. Take a pounding from both sides of the border and pretend you have a job that’s worth anything. 🙂
# John Lyons 2012-03-05 10:14
Once upon a time the Secretary of state for Scotland was Scotlands man in Westminster. Now he is Westminsters man in Scotland.
# truth 2012-03-04 08:57
The people of Scotland have waited 305 years for a say on the Union.

Another 2.5 years to do it properly is neither here nor there Mr Moore.
# cjmjr 2012-03-04 09:18
Dogcollar it was Lurch. Moore is sounding silly constantly bletting on about the time scale, we in Scotland know when it is we are happy with when it is. Why does he not tell us about the case for the Union that we hear so much about,tell us of the wonderfull powers we are going to have IF we reject Independence, tell us how Scotland will achive our hopes and asperations UNDER Westminster rule. Pie in the sky is not going to get it done, put all these things you promise in Before the Referendum, then its a straight Yes / No Status Quo V Independence.Not an unreasonable request I don’t think.
# scottish_skier 2012-03-04 09:27
I must admit I did not think Charles Kennedy would come out openly in favour of an alliance with the Tories.…/…

“I do hope Scottish Labour and its STUC allies will overcome natural apprehensions and see the broader need to share platforms and make common cause with the Scottish Conservatives.”

How low the Lib Dems have fallen.
# Macart 2012-03-04 09:27
Don’t know if anyone’s watching, but Moore has just said on the Marr show that the SG doesn’t have the power to conduct a referendum. I kid you not.
# Holebender 2012-03-04 09:36
Is that the same Michael Moore who told the BBC on the 8th of May 2011 Quote:
I firmly believe the Scottish Parliament, if it so decides, can proceed with a referendum
# Macart 2012-03-04 09:44
The very same HB. He’s just insisted that only Westminster can provide a legally binding referendum.
# gopher3 2012-03-04 10:25
I watched it, found myself shouting at the tv again.
# DonaldMhor 2012-03-04 09:28
Watching Moore right now on Marr, he has pushed the lie again that there is damage being done to Scotland’s commerce due to the referendum. What a pathetic liar.

His voice when he speaks appears to be recorded and is out of sync with his gob, perhaps he is android?
# Macart 2012-03-04 09:33
I’ve just got whiplash from shaking my head too much DM. 🙂
# hiorta 2012-03-04 09:32
Don’t these Unionist politicians have enough work to occupy their time?
The timescale of our referendum has been clearly and repeatedly stated in public, so why the artificial ‘concern?’

Perhaps some civic ammenity work in litter/ grafitti removal to justify the high salary and expenses would help.
# BillCo 2012-03-04 09:47
500 days. So he wants the referendum held in 2013.

The Unionists accuse Alex Salmond of choosing 2014 because it’s the 700th anniversary of the famous Scottish victory at Bannockburn which resulted in 400 hundred years of independence.

I supppose it’s logical therefore that bozo Moore should wish the referendum to be held on the 400th anniversery of our heaviest defeat at Flodden.

I don’t think his constituents in the Border country would be to happy. After all, the ‘Floo’ers o’ the Forest’ refer mostly to their young ancestors who died on that bloody field.
# Galen10 2012-03-04 10:07
Moore and other proponents of an early vote should be politely reminded that they have no mandate to dictate when the vote is held.

They should instead concentrate on using the time between now and when the Scottish people have authorised their government to hold the vote, to develop a detailed proposal of what extra powers they propose to devolve to Holyrood after the “no” vote they are hoping for.

Surely that isn’t too much to ask? If they are so confident of their position, they owe it to the Scottish people to formulate a positive plan enjoying majority support for a “new” system. Of course, this might be a tad problematic for them given their current state of disarray, but as has been constantly pointed out it isn’t the business of the Scottish government or the SNP to dictate what devolution mini/midi/plus/max looks like!

All the signs seem to be that both the LD’s and Labour will lose seats to the SNP at both Holyrood and Westminster in coming elections (assuming they achieve their hoped for “no” vote in 2014), so there is still all to play for.
# Harry.Shanks 2012-03-04 10:12
Good News!

Willie Rennie says he will “work with the SNP”
(after a NO vote in the referendum of course).

Why the delay Willie?
This sort of talk is harming business you know – already the sales of Caramel Wafers have dipped.
Why don’t you just get on with it?

After all, at the level you operate, you could have Alex’s shoes cleaned by this time tomorrow.
# cjmjr 2012-03-04 10:27
He will have to clean Alex shoes he certainly could not lace them.
# Diabloandco 2012-03-04 10:34
How are teacakes doing?(they were my favourite)

300 years and we have to hurry up and decide!
# gopher3 2012-03-04 10:36
O/T Lib/Dem Conference (EBC 2) The only reason the SNP won a majority vote last year was “because a lot of Lib/Dem supporters did not vote.”
# scottish_skier 2012-03-04 10:50
..for the Lib Dems, but for the SNP instead.”

Reminds me of father Dougal and the importance of distinguishing ‘Dreams’ from ‘Reality’.…/
# Holebender 2012-03-04 10:58
I thought the post-election analysis had shown that a great many former LibDem voters had shifted to Labour while a lot of former Labour voters had gone to the SNP? It wasn’t a simple LibDem to SNP switch (which probably goes to illustrate how nasty a lot of those “nice” LibDems really were).
# scottish_skier 2012-03-04 11:13
Yes, it was not a simple switch but traditionally in terms of political stance the Scottish Liberals (pre orange book) were closest to the SNP in terms of manifesto and socio-economic political stance; they are both ‘yellow’ in colour for a reason. The Libs were supposedly ‘federalist too’.
# Harry.Shanks 2012-03-04 12:56
Ok I can do this too:

The only reason that the SNP did not win an even bigger majority in 2011 is that a lot of SNP supporters knew the SNP were going to skate it and didn’t turn out.

I reckon that stacks up as well as, if not better than, the Lib Dem spin.
# Marian 2012-03-04 10:58
I see that the BBC is reporting that a “yes” campaign for Scottish independence will start soon after the Scottish government’s consultation and May local elections, according to FM Alex Salmond – see…/…

Alex Salmond’s timing is immaculate as usual.

The Tory/LibDem/Labour privatisation of public services and punishing of the poor and weak will be getting into full swing by then, and the independence movement will be able to draw sharp distinctions between the Tory/LibDem/Labour “vision” for the rest of the UK, and compare it with that for an independent Scotland.

The SNP have also successfully smoked out all of the Tory/LibDem/Labour scare stories over the past few months and will now be able to get down to the business of demolishing them one by one with hard factual evidence during the campaign.

The Tory/LibDem/Labour parties will be smarting and in-fighting after their annihilation at the Council elections on 5 May, and unable to form any kind of response other than their usual negativity and scaremongering.

The Tory/LibDem/Labour parties are stuck in a rut of negativity which no-one in Scotland wants to hear so the timing is now right for the independence movement to take a clear way forward with their positive vision for an independent Scotland.
# call me dave 2012-03-04 11:08

I look forward to that part of the debate myself.

We can also start a campaign suggesting that Johann’s consultation and Ming’s home rule enquiry should be done sooner rather than later as the referendum is due soon.

It’s not as if they are going to have too many responses, and if they are contrary to what they have already decided will be binned.

Look forward to ‘The First Eck’ on the telly at 11:30 to hear some sense and detoxify from the weekend guff from Dundee and Inverness.
# Islegard 2012-03-04 12:55
Can’t they just book out the 1979 referendum consultation, the Steele Commission, the Calman Commission, then compare with Ming the merciless’s commission and the Lamentable Jo Commission. When can we expect the Commission on the Commission?
# Harry.Shanks 2012-03-04 13:39
Quoting Islegard:
…. When can we expect the Commission on the Commission?

“When the time is right”
# Marga B 2012-03-04 12:36
Even grouses about the combining of the Scottish police force into a single force can contrasted against the massive privatisation happening in the rest of the UK.
# bonnie scotland 2012-03-04 12:19
somebody should tell Michael Moore that we will have a referendum in the time we voted for in the eection- and no-one actually voted for him!!
# Islegard 2012-03-04 12:19
I think he means Moore should decide. Scotland already decided when to hold a referendum by voting in a landslide to allow the SNP to have a referendum in their own time. This doesn’t suit Moore an MP from tiny fringe party who will loose his seat at the next election.
# Islegard 2012-03-04 12:25
I notice the papers are saying today Broon and Darling will be pearheading the no campaign. I imagine the campaign will be along the lines of an independent Scotland would have been utterly destroyed if a pair of loons like them ever got to run it. Similar to what they did to the UK when they were in charge.
# J Wil 2012-03-04 13:17
Broon and Darling. A right pair of pears.
# Islegard 2012-03-04 13:32
Ha Ha! actually I’m not going to correct that typo it makes better reading as it stands!
# J Wil 2012-03-04 15:23
The one I always have bother with is pubic (as in ‘a member of the pubic’).

Member (that is also one to avoid, particularly in connection with pubic).

You can’t be too careful.
# nottooweeorstupid 2012-03-04 20:30
Everyone has a default typo, don’t they? Mine is when I tell people I’m very busty at the moment but will deal with their request as soon as possible.

Seriously though, don’t they realise that they would come across much better if they just said, ‘Know what? We respect the right of the Scottish people to decide their own future, and we’ll deal with that decision as big boys.’

Good work, Moore & Kennedy, I wonder how SNP membership is doing this weekend – anyone know?
# mealer 2012-03-04 12:27
Moore and Kennedy will offer a stout defence of the union.They can stand with the tories and point out how lucky we are to have nuclear weapons just outside Glasgow.A benefit of union,dontcha know.
# pictic-1 2012-03-04 12:52
I think the Scottish lib-dems are the weakest link in the unionist chain of the no’s.

They may be political pygmies but they can see what’s going on even if they still have to toe the unionist line. C Kennedy is not being much help either and as for english Moore …. dear me!

However, with potential oblivion facing them in the very near future and an inceasing reality that the cons are dead in the water north of Hadrians wall, SLAB on its way to third world status, survival mode will soon have to kick in. Come the referendum the LDs will either go belly-up or if they had enough forsight to realise where the journey is going, cut the ties with the union and go for independence with the possibility of playing a positive part in Scotlands future.

It certainly wouldn’t harm AS’s plans.
# johnp 2012-03-04 12:58
Why isn’t this ‘hurry up’ argument being shot down with the simple statement that it is a important decision for Scotland and shouldn’t be rushed? Surely that would shut them up or at least put them on the defensive by having to explain why they want to rush the most important issue for Scotland for 300 years.
# Electric Hermit 2012-03-04 14:12
If you’re resigned to being a one-trick pony, as Moore evidently is, Then you’d be well advised to make sure it’s a good trick. Flogging a dead horse just won’t do it.Quoting johnp:
Why isn’t this ‘hurry up’ argument being shot down with the simple statement that it is a important decision for Scotland and shouldn’t be rushed? Surely that would shut them up or at least put them on the defensive by having to explain why they want to rush the most important issue for Scotland for 300 years.

That argument has been made. They’re unaffected because they’re not listening.
# John Lyons 2012-03-05 10:35
Slamond should arange a meeting with Moore for say, a week Thursday. Then he sould phonehim every day and say Hurry up! see how he likes it.
# Legerwood 2012-03-04 13:28
It will take more than 500 days for the pro-Union side to get their act together.

DevMax, Devo plus, what next – Devo approximate, Devo average? Devo whatever?

No one who proposes/promotes these solutions ever mentions who would implement them or when they would be implemented. Nor do they mention that Devo etcertera does not require a referendum – the Scotland Bill is , supposedly, about giving more powers to Holyrood. Did that require a referendum?

The truth is that further devolution of powers from Westminster to Holyrood is NOT possible within the current framework of the UK. It has huge implications for the other constituent parts of the UK and, just as importantly, for the structure of Westminster itself.

The anomalies Devo whatsit would throw up would be the equivalent of the West Lothian Question on steroids.

So while the pro-union partiesmay appear to be promoting further devolution of powers in reality they would be unlikely to implement it. The Scotland Bill is as far as they are prepared to go.

The sooner people realise that the better.
# Islegard 2012-03-04 13:34
“The truth is that further devolution of powers from Westminster to Holyrood is NOT possible within the current framework of the UK.”

That’s not true under Section 30 of the Scotland Act if both Parliaments are in agreement any power can be transferred immediately.

What people need to realise is if they were serious about more powers we could have them today. They are not serious it will be the carrot forever offered.
# Briggs 2012-03-04 13:39
That should be repeated ad infinitum till it sinks in.

They know they’re telling “porkies”.
# Legerwood 2012-03-04 14:43
Islegard 2012-03-04 13:34
“The truth is that further devolution of powers from Westminster to Holyrood is NOT possible within the current framework of the UK.”

That’s not true under Section 30 of the Scotland Act if both Parliaments are in agreement any power can be transferred immediately.

I guess I did not explain exactly what I meant there although I did state in the paragraph before that one that devolving powers does not require a referendum and can be done now. I am perfectly aware that powers can be devolved now BUT devolving further powers, whether Max, plus or any other permutation thereof, does create an imbalance in the current government structures within the Uk particularly in Westminster. For Example, what would be the position of MPs from Scottish Constituencies within Westminster if, under DevoMax, the Scottish parliament was responsible for raising all our taxes and spending them? Would they still be allowed to vote on tax and spend issues in Westminster when those issues would not apply to Scotland. As I said: the West Lothian Question on Steroids.

And this would be just one of many such anomolies affecting Westminster. DevoMax or an form of further devolution would probably require a re-organisation of Westminster and its current structure and operation. And this would involve all the constituennt parts of the UK having a say.
# pictic-1 2012-03-04 14:04
Here is an article from Auld Acquaintance that I will gladly beat the drum for.

Lamonts utterences torn to pieces.
# jafurn 2012-03-04 18:17
Absolutely spot on ….
completely deconstructs Ms. Lamonts ‘speech’
# Dundonian West 2012-03-04 14:15
PAN-UNIONISM POLICY.”However Mr Clegg [LibDem Leader] stressed that the question of extra powers for Holyrood could only be decided after Scots had rejected the option of independence.” At Inverness Conference,2012.


Read it slowly,carefull  y,and without a hint of scepticism.

We don’t want “Something”,after saying NO——we intend to say YES.
Every country worth it’s salt has it,including our best friend and closest neighbour,Irela  nd.

Oh,and WHY do you want to keep us? Don’t tell us it’s for our own good.
# Holebender 2012-03-04 16:06
PAN-UNIONISM POLICY? If people buy it would it be safe to say they’ve been sold a PUP?
# Mad Jock McMad 2012-03-04 14:48
Moore is less …. 😀
# Siôn Jones 2012-03-04 15:10
Perhaps we should have a debate on a) How the figure of 500 days is arrived at, and b) when does the countdown start from?

Perhaps Moore would like to convene a convention on the issue? It would probably report a couple of years after independence.
# J Wil 2012-03-04 17:42
Better still someone should put a (very large) counter on the outside of the Scottish Parliament, with a countdown to the referendum in 2014.

There is one for the Olympics and there was one in Dublin for the millenium. The referendum is much more significant than either of these.
# Holebender 2012-03-04 18:54
We’d need to know the date first!
# J Wil 2012-03-04 19:35
That is true. Hopefully it will be coming along soon after the SG consultation ends in May.
# John Lyons 2012-03-05 11:38
I think the SNP are waiting for the Local elections. If they take Glasgow they may very well bring the referendum forward a wee bit.

The problem with the countdown clock is if there is a No vote. We’d look a bit silly counting down to the status Quo.
Still, once the date is announced maybe a few websites like this one can start thier own clocks…
# Islegard 2012-03-04 15:44
“devolving further powers, whether Max, plus or any other permutation thereof, does create an imbalance in the current government structures within the Uk particularly in Westminster.”

Hardly would devolving say drink driving legislation tomorrow create the strucural imbalance you talk of? No there are numerous other pieces of legislation which could be devolved without causing a structural imbalance. Are you seriously stating that any further devolution of any form requires a re-organisation of Westminster and its current structure and operation?

The only issue you raise is an extension of the West Lothian Question. It’s the same situation we have at the moment regardless of the quantity of powers. It is an issue for Westminster. Other than that I can’t see any other requirement for ” a re-organisation of Westminster and its current structure and operation.” I take it your a Lib Dem.
# Legerwood 2012-03-04 17:30
I am talking about the devolution of serious powers such as revenue raising i.e. all taxation raised in Scotland and spent in Scotland. Not trivial powers which can be devolved without any problem but that is not the only powers that people want.

The imbalance that this would create in the body politic of Westminster has been acknowledged by some more thoughtful editorial writers.

It is this that makes Independence the onl;y viable route to gaining power for the Holyrood Parliament. Something I have stated on numerous occasions on this site.
# Islegard 2012-03-04 18:01
My apologies you confused me with your statement “BUT devolving further powers, whether Max, plus or any other permutation thereof, does create an imbalance in the current government structures within the Uk particularly in Westminster.” When you said devolving powers or any permutation thereof. I didn’t realise you were excluding the “trivial powers.” Which would total up to devolution of everything except taxation and the economy.

I’m still not sure I follow you on serious powers being devolved causing some vague, ambiguous “imbalance.” The Scotland Bill proposes to devolve some taxation. Admitedly unusable, unworkable taxation powers. Will this create this “vague, ambiguous “imbalance” you did say taxation would do this. Perhaps you could direct me to these “more thoughtful” than the rest of us writers.

What I do see is you have shifted from your initial line no more powers can be devolved immediately to admitting they all can but some will create an unbalance in the force or something.

Are you a Lib Dem?
# Legerwood 2012-03-04 18:52
I have not moved one iota from my original and long held position. Namely the Devolution of powers from Westminster does not require a referendum vote.

Devolving those powers does however throw up various questions about the current role and structure of Westminster which are not addressed or acknowledged by those who promote Devo Max or any variation of devolution. It would probably require aa more federal structure and that would take time and considerable effort to bring about.

Independence delivers all that people want and more and can be delivered relatively more easily than Devo Max.
# Islegard 2012-03-04 19:24
Any power can be transferred under the section 30 of the Scotland Act to the Scottish Parliament tomorrow if there is consent between the 2 parliaments. Eh Legerwood. At the end of the day when we cut through all the wishy washy Lib Dem nonsense. That is the truth of the matter. I’ll grant you it may but it doesn’t stop the ability to transfer any power.

We must also conclude as this is the case Lib Dems are liars when they vaguely propose unspecified powers in the future as there is no reason they cannot br delivered immediately.

We’ve now moved from no more powers are able to be transferred to it does “throw up various questions”. Your comments give interesting insight into the mind of a Lib Dem. We only need to see what you initially typed to what you say now.
# gopher3 2012-03-04 16:05
Why not have a UK wide Referendum next year on what extra powers we would get.?? Then we can vote in 2014 with a better idea of what to expect if we vote no.
# Briggs 2012-03-04 16:16
Quoting gopher3:
Why not have a UK wide Referendum next year on what extra powers we would get.?? Then we can vote in 2014 with a better idea of what to expect if we vote no.

Aye very good!

# pmcrek 2012-03-04 16:53
Typical Lib Dem cant make up his mind.
# Davy 2012-03-04 17:33
Have you noticed when-ever a unionist politician starts whinning about the date of the referendum, they start acting like a kid who’s bursting to pee!!
Please please, I need to go to the referendum NOW, pleaseeeee I cant wait any more.What is the rush ? none of them have produced a positive response to being in the union. I thought they would have liked having the time to put their case together for remaining in the union.
So why the MAD RUSH for a referendum ??? any guess’es.
# John Lyons 2012-03-05 11:50
I can’t get my head around that one.

They seem to think that They’ll win if we have it now.

That must therefore mean they think the SNP will win if they have it later…so why is that?

The Bannockburn Aniversary is just funny. I don’t think it’ll whip up a storm of Nationalism that isn’t already there.

I think we’re in recession and independence will be expensive, so they want a vote when everyone is skint so we’ll vote no.

I think they can see economic recovery coming, even if it’s super slow, and they’re affraid that by 2014 Scotland will be reasonably prosperous. (Unemployment is already lower here than in England!) If we can see the country recovering faster under the SNP than the rest of the UK is we’ll be more inclined to vote for independence.

This reasoning is further backed up by the fact that most of the Unionist arguements against independence are money based – This debate makes investors nervous, Scotlands a subsidy Junkie, The oil isn’t actually worth that much any more etc etc. I think the oil is worth plenty and giving it to Scotland would leave a big hole in the UK recovery plan. I think the Westminster money men are pooing it.
# Dundonian West 2012-03-05 11:20
Some ‘undecideds’ in Scotland may go for something JUST short of Independence.
For those,that is really the only REALISTIC option to independence.
Anything LESS than that is a non-starter.

However,it would NOT get through the UK Parliament.
Can you imagine North East England and Merseyside MPs,and voters supporting that?
Not in a million years.

There is really only one way to go.
Yes,to Independence.
# Holebender 2012-03-05 11:57
That’s really the whole point of the SNP continuing to talk about being open to DevoMax. It raises expectations among the fearties and brings them to the point of supporting greatly increased powers for Scotland. When Wastemonster finally pulls the rug from under DevoMax the SNP will say they tried but the UK wouldn’t play ball so it will just have to be a single question yes/no referendum and all these people who have become convinced about increasing the powers of Holyrood will be left having to decide between the increased powers of independence or… nothing. Most of them will take the small step from DevoMax to independence rather than the cold lonely road back to Calman UltraMinus.

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