As published in the Sunday Times referendum supplement
With less than a 100 days to go before we take arguably the biggest decision in Scotland’s history this guide to independence hopefully offers voters a welcome insight into the pro’s and con’s of a yes or no vote.
Through scotlandseptember18.com my Foundation has attempted to shine unbiased, non-partisan light on the issues at hand in the referendum debate – that is, and continues to be, a challenge when all parties seem masters at obfuscation and muddying the waters.
In early August with the ESRC and the David Hume Institute we will publish 15 summary papers offering voters a hard, unbiased and honest view of what the yes and no camps are offering for your vote.
The truth of the matter however is there are critically two important questions that remain unanswered. For the unionist parties campaigning for a no vote – collectively what will they offer by way of devo-max; guaranteed no strings attached no matter which party wins the next UK general election.
For the yes campaigners its simply this – how much is this going to cost and are we to be better or worse off with the field of dreams on offer?
Unless the unionist parties come together and offer a firmly defined, minimum guarantee on additional powers those voting on the 18th of September are simply guessing as to what the increased benefits of staying with the UK are.
Likewise to not know how much establishing an independent Scotland will cost and thereafter what return it offers to the voters, is a bit like buying a car without knowing its purchase price and its running costs.
Right now I believe voters are being done a disservice by the politicians of this land and indeed by the bureaucrats providing the ‘evidence’ – the economic analyses are so far apart from both sides just who should we trust?
In business I have one motto, learnt from a very hard commercial fall when I funded a failed go-karting business, never let your heart rule your head. The numbers didn’t stack up, but I loved racing.
As I ponder whether to vote yes or no I’m still searching for the hard evidence, objective analysis that will enable my head to take the right decision, after all that decision will be final, irreversible for my children and their grand children. My heart wont be ruling that decision, its far too important.