Today is Tartan Day, and the 697th anniversary of the signing of the declaration of Arbroath, during the wars of independence between Scotland and England. Thankfully, all we have to do to secure independence nowadays is put an X in a box. We can safely leave the claymores at home.
What London could not achieve in fifty-seven years through force of arms, it now achieves through propaganda. It employs misinformation as a weapon, because that is the only way it has of preventing us from regaining that independence, and it must prevent it at all costs. It must prevent it because without Scotland and it’s oil, the rUK will be in serious trouble.
The rUK has a massive balance of trade deficit. It has next to nothing in the way of manufacturing, and nothing much to export. In short, without Scotland’s oil and gas, it has no way of financing its staggering £1.6 trillion debt, or shoring up it’s falling currency. The pound would likely fall to around $0.80 against the dollar. That’s the view of Jim Rogers, of Rogers Holdings, co-founder of the Quantum Fund, which broke the Bank of England in 1992, forcing it to devalue the pound. Remember that, the next time a unionist tells you that Scotland is reliant on the rUK for its survival. The truth, as it usually is with propaganda, is the opposite. It’s worth pointing out here that Scotland has no such balance of trade deficit. In fact, we have a small surplus.
The unionist’s propaganda machine is nothing new of course, and it has several arms. During the last Independence debate, prior to September 2014, it became known, appropriately, as “Project Fear”. It consists of an eclectic mixture of outright lies, economic scare stories, and media bias (including bias by omission), particularly from the state propaganda outlet, the BBC. The BBC…the world’s only propaganda channel that citizens are forced to pay for. Even in North Korea the propaganda is free.
The problem with misinformation of course is that, in time, the lies tend to be exposed as being just that. The more that happens, the more people become skeptical of the line you’re trying to sell them. What do you do when the threat of Scottish independence raises its head again, and most of your lies have been exposed? Why, you just invent some new ones of course. Welcome to Project Fear 2.0.
Project Fear 2.0 is well and truly underway, and it needs to be viewed with that aforementioned skepticism. Recently we’ve had the Scottish Office running endless ads on social media in Scotland, informing us how we do four times as much trade with the rUK as we do with the EU. Who is paying for these ads I wonder? The taxpayer of course.
The skeptic would of course question this claim. He might point out that there are no reliable figures to base it on. He might reasonably ask how much of that trade is actually with the rUK, and how much is just passing through the rUK, on its way to being exported via English ports. He would find of course that no-one can answer his question, because the figures don’t exist. He might then ask how much trade the rUK does with Scotland. He would find the answer to that question surprising, because the rUK sells more to Scotland than we do to them (even if you do accept the ludicrously unlikely premise that 100% of our exports are destined for rUK). Are we supposed to believe that the rUK would cease that trade with Scotland on independence? When you further realise that a large portion of our exports to the rUK are in the form of electricity and water (two things the rUK cannot produce enough of for itself), you come to the conclusion that the rUK are saying they will literally turn the lights out, and go smelly, just to spite us.
Some other nice pieces of propaganda this past week, come in the form of unionists claiming that our First Minister is “swanning about America” rather than “getting on with the day job”, and that the Scottish Economy is shrinking (a 0.2% drop in GDP), which the Main stream media is dutifully reporting as “sparking fears of a recession”, across most of the unionist newspapers.
The first point can be simply answered. Promoting Scotland’s interests in the US and internationally is her day job. Attracting US and international investment to Scotland is her day job. Is PM Theresa May “swanning about” in Saudi Arabia? No, she’s busy selling bombs to that barbaric regime to drop on Yemeni children, which she no doubt considers part of her day job. Is Scottish Secretary David “Fluffy” Mundell “swanning about” in Burma? Of course, you would expect Ms. Sturgeon, astute politician that she is, to make these very points when the accusation was put to her in a BBC interview. She did. The BBC edited her comments out. There’s some of that bias by omission.
As for the second unimaginative piece of propaganda, about the drop in GDP, well, that’s already been answered by professor of economics, Richard Murphy, when he said;
“…there simply isn’t enough data to reliably estimate Scottish GDP. We have no figures for where sales take place in the UK, for example. VAT returns are an utterly unreliable source for this: a UK company does not submit data separately on sales in Scotland from elsewhere. The same is largely true on spending. So forget Scottish GDP data: we just don’t know what it is.”
It’s also worth pointing out here, again, that even if you accept the drop in GDP as real, the SNP Scottish Government has almost no control whatsoever over the Scottish economy. It is therefore ludicrous to blame the SNP, as the media are doing. If the economic contraction is real, the blame lies with the Tory Government in Westminster, and it’s not a good advert for the union.
So there it is folks. Project Fear 2.0 is in full swing, but it isn’t going to work this time. We are more skeptical and better informed than in 2014. People are working hard to address the questions that were perceived as weak points last time round, and this time we’ll be ready. This time we will win, because; “It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours, that we are fighting, but for freedom – for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself”.