Scotland in Union Updates

Welcome to our updates page where we publish our latest news, research and opinion pieces.

Alastair Cameron: Why are the SNP so bad at running the country?

Why are the SNP so bad at running the country?

By Alastair Cameron, Scotland in Union

Nicola Sturgeon asked us to judge her on her education record. The verdict arrived this week from independent assessors, PISA (The Programme for International Student Assessment) and it wasn’t good.

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St Andrew's Day - Guest Blog by Wesley Hutchins

St. Andrews Day is quite obviously Scotland’s national day; it is in honour of the country’s patron saint and as such, it is a day for people to commemorate in the manner they feel to be appropriate, with music, food, and dance. It also marks the beginning of late fall and early winter festivals in Scotland, including Hogmanay and Burns Night.

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The UK: A Strong Commitment to Foreign Aid

Some places are more fortunate than others. We are lucky to live in a safe and prosperous country, and should do what we can to help others. However, we also have to recognise that our own resources are not infinite, and that is why we must make sure that our contributions are as effective as possible.

The SNP have recently pledged a great deal of money for climate change and flood aid.  Whilst this makes for good headlines, there could be better ways to help. By working with the UK departments set up to promote international development, the nationalists could ensure that they are not just giving away money for others to spend, but actually making a difference on the ground.

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How working together can make a real difference.

We are all concerned about the future of our planet. Levels of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere have undoubtedly risen above those of the pre-industrial era, and global temperatures also appear to be on an upward trend.

However, we are also lucky to live in a time when these problems can be recognised and addressed. For example, food crops can be modified to better withstand drought or pests, which allows vulnerable people to have more food security while at the same time reducing our impact on the environment. Fewer people go hungry than ever before.

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Britain after Brexit: Toxic referendums and territorial constitutions, by Professor Jim Gallagher

Referendums are held up as the gold standard of democracy. After a state regulated and funded campaign, the people make a decision, which government then honours. But referendums can go toxic: two different pathologies can produce anti-democratic outcomes. The Brexit referendum suffered from both, but paradoxically it opens up opportunities for quite radical changes to the UK's territorial constitution. So Scotland has the chance to avoid compounding the UK's errors with another potentially toxic vote, and instead it and the UK can settle on a constitution that most Scots can assent to. This paper suggests what such a deal might look like if political leaders had the courage to make one.

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Why Brexit Would Be Good For Scotland, by Anthony Rush

In declaring that Article 50 will be invoked before the end of March 2017 the Prime Minister has given the Eurocrats a need to negotiate a deal with the UK by early 2019.  There should be no doubt, however angered Eurocrats may feel about the outcome of our referendum, some European members would invite the wrath of their people if they permitted the UK to exit at the expense of their trade with the UK and our Commonwealth partners.

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31 Down 1 To Go - No More Referendums Tour

Scotland in Union has now reached 31 campaign stops as our tour of Scotland’s 32 council areas draws to a close, with only the Western Isles still to be visited by our Campaigns Manager Andrew Skinner.

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The Land of the Neverendum

The Land of the Neverendum - How Quebec lost its way, by Peter Scowen

The neverendum

In 1960, Montreal was Canada’s most vibrant city. Once the seat of the Canadian Parliament, it was the country’s first metropolis and its economic engine during the fur-trade boom of the 18th and 19th centuries. The wealthy industrial barons who built the railway that would connect the east coast to the west lived and worked there. Most of the country’s oldest and most storied companies were headquartered in the downtown neighbourhood that sits elegantly between Mount Royaland the St. Lawrence River.

The 1950s in particular had been a period of rapid growth and new development, and the good years just kept coming. In the summer of1967, Montreal hosted a world’s fair that drew more than 50-millionvisitors. Nine years later, the city would host the Summer Olympics - the only Canadian city to ever do so.

Fifty years later, Montreal is a shadow of its former self. Its economic growth stalled in the late 1970s and has never recovered. Today it ranks a distant second to Toronto in population and economic power.

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Alastair Cameron: Far too much at risk by ditching the Union Dividend

By Alastair Cameron, director of Scotland in Union (Published in the Herald Scotland - 03/09/2016)

A friend posed a reasonable question the other day: if it was shown one day in the future that Scotland would be economically better off as an independent country, would I support it?

With oil prices low, the Barnett Formula secure and the economy seemingly down the Holyrood priority list, this prospect seems pretty far off, if not impossible.

I couldn’t see myself supporting independence even in those circumstances. For me, the UK is about something deeper; it is about neighbouring nations working together in a common interest, solidarity with people beyond borders and a respect for the different layers of identity.

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George Kerevan and Project Fear

When those of us on the pro-UK side warned of the profound consequences to Scottish independence in the run up to the 2014 referendum, we were dismissed as being part of ‘Project Fear’.

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Where Next for the 'Beautiful Dream' of Scottish Independence?

Scotland in Union supporter Martin Redfern asks the question: where next?

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The SNP manifesto and Shakespeare

By Professor Hugh Pennington

The first President of Eire, Douglas Hyde, summarised it nicely when commenting on the exaggerated anglophobia of the Irish, that there is a hibernian habit of denouncing England while imitating everything English. The SNP is the same.

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NHS Deserves Better

Scotland’s NHS deserves better than being used as another excuse for nationalism, argues a Scotland in Union contributor

A new survey by Swedish think tank Health Consumer Powerhouse shows that the NHS in Scotland – like its counterpart in England – is lagging behind most other western European health services.

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If 'Yes' Had Won, by Professor Hugh Pennington.

Alex Salmond’s preface to the Scottish Government’s White Paper ‘Scotland’s Future’ nominated March 24th as Independence Day.

The 649 page document attempted to predict the changes that independence would bring. There would be full fiscal autonomy. The Barnett formula – from which Scotland has benefitted enormously for almost 40 years– would be history. 

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A Question of Identity

In this article, a version of which was first published in Highland Perthshire Comment in 2013, Aberfeldy resident and Gaelic historian Richard Devéria argues that Scottish attributes have contributed significantly to the emergence of British values, and he calls for Scotland to uphold her identity within the Union.

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We Were Right to Vote No, by Alastair Cameron

If Nicola Sturgeon and John Swinney had got their way, Scotland would be preparing to become an independent country on March 24th.

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"21 out of 100" The Many Ways the SNP have misled us, by Keith Howell

Information or misinformation? Some thoughts from Scotland in Union supporter Keith Howell.

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I'm No Fan of Nationalism, by David Bone

SIU supporter David Bone is no fan of nationalism. Here are his reasons why.

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Scottish Separatists

What makes a separatist? Here's a thoughtful article from historian Jill Stephenson.

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Why I Voted 'No', by Alastair Cameron

Founder of Scotland in Union, Alastair Cameron explains what drove him to vote against independence in 2014.

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