Comment posted Launch of ‘Scotland Yes’ campaign contradictory, lacking information and out of touch by Integrity? Not in the ConDemAll.
You misunderstood me David. I am not saying you made up the social indicator facts. What I am saying is that the facts do prove where the UK is sitting in comparison with other nations however this doesn’t necessarily mean that an independent Scotland would fair any better (or worse).
Cheers for the other links – I will have a look at them once these two rascals get to bed!
Integrity? Not in the ConDemAll also commented
I will grant you that ‘fraction’ was not the best choice of words. The first expedition saw 70 die out of 1,200 in the outward journey and the second saw 160 die out of 1,300. Of the total of 2,500 only about 500-600 survived overall with the vast majority dying for reasons unconnected to the actual voyage.
I don’t know the exact cause of death for the 230 that died on the outward journeys but I would hazard a guess that the numbers are not all that unusual for a fleet of ships making a hell of a journey in the 17th century were large numbers of those on board were very far from cut out for a long sea journey.
If anyone has any information on this and a link between the cause of death and skimping on the ships I would be interesting in reading it.
- Must admit I was puzzled by the comment about the Darien ships (not just because of the lack of relevance). The ships were never the issue. Both expeditions arrived at their intended destinations and the reasons for failure were far more to do with the fact they were doomed from the outset.
William Paterson was totally taken in by Lionel Wafer’s erroneous tales about Darien and persuaded people they were investing in some sort of paradise on earth where there would be trading a plenty.
Only a small fraction of the people on board died whilst travelling to Darien (in the first expedition). When they arrived they soon found out that Darien was nothing like Wafer had described and the local Indians were not at all interested in all the naff stuff they had brought with them to trade. Then when they did try and trade at sea they were blocked because English ships were under instruction not to trade with the Scots. In addition, as referenced by Dave mcEwan Hill, horrendous weather brought widespread disease.
The second exhibition (which departed having no knowledge of the first) faired almost identically and had the added problem of having the Spanish hunting them down. Again very few settlers actually died on the trip which strongly suggests the ships were fine.
So all in all it had nothing to do with the ships and largely to do with a woeful plan!
It is a fascinating bit of history but, I repeat, entirely irrelevant to the current indepedence issue.
- Personally I don’t feel Terry Fields dfeserves to be in that list. His actions were a stance against an indecent tax which should never have been imposed on British people and he did so fully aware that he would be caught and probably punished.
The others committed their offences for purely personal gain and hoped to do so without ever being caught.
- To be fair Dave, most of what David Mcann has said there isn’t really facts.
The GDP per capital figure is based on Scotland getting an illustrative share of North Sea Oil (which it clearly should get) however I am not sure how that share has been calculated.
All the other factors he mentions (i.e. the social indicators and standard of living) seem to be mentioned with the assumption that Scotland’s position will, by default, improve with independence.
I am not necessarily arguing that they will, or won’t’ just saying that David has raised valid areas for the debate but not an argument based on facts.
- Oooff, that took a bit of reading through! To some extent I agree that the event was really just a launch party and therefore it was, and was probably intended to be, more style than substance. That said I do think it could have been better stage managed .
I think the promotion of Alan Cumming and Brian Cox as almost figureheads for the campaign (granted that might have been more by the media than the SNP however we don’t know that for sure) wasn’t the smartest move. I hear the Doc’s argument about why they are different from Sean Connery (it still baffles me why he is so famous – one good film, maybe two?) but the fact that they are based full time in the States does make them slightly less credible as bastions for the cause. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think living abroad means a person should have any less of a voice on the matter, or that their opinion is less ‘worthy’, however it would have been far more savvy of the SNP to have used Scotland based, or certainly more Scotland based, personalities as faces for the campaign. I also don’t think the commitment by Cumming and Cox to be resident of Scotland ahead of the referendum means all that much.
That all said I wasn’t at the event and am very conscious that most of us are reflecting on the media’s presentation of it which is mainly limited to five minute slots on the news. This is never going to give a full flavour of the event and the media is always going to focus on the more mainstream personalities and camera friendly faces.
I also think the seeming lack of any Scottish business heads was a bit of a failing (again I mean as figureheads because I repeat I don’t know the full attendee list). We are in very turbulent financial times and the case for independence is hugely affected by it (with arguments on both sides). Given that I would have thought presenting a confident face for the Scottish economy post independence would have been an astute idea and maybe had a but more impact than a few actors.
So I guess my take on it is that there was no need for an excessive focus on entertainment and there should have been a little more substance and a little less style. That said I think the reaction to it is a little out of proportion as it was never meant to be a showcase of policy or to present a roadmap to an independent Scotland.
One thing that does worry me is the gradual emergence of an unpleasant ‘You’re either with us or against us’ culture (and I mean from both sides of the independence camp and I certainly don’t mean by all). It reminds me a little of a watered down version of the American ‘You’re either back the war or you’re on the side of the terrorists’ culture which developed rapidly after 9/11. It is an unhealthy way to look at the things and does a disservice to those who are trying to weigh up a lot of arguments, some of which are very complex and also require a leap of faith.
Dismissing arguments as claptrap or insufferable guff, calling people cybernats or deluded etc etc is far from constructive and is more likely to make people disengage rather than engage in a topic which is of huge significance to the country we live in.
Scotland will not gain independence, or remain in the Union, through the loyal support of those at either side of the spectrum. The big numbers are still in the middle and both sides need to appeal to them, not throw stones over their heads in an attempt to hit the other side.
As for cancelling the referendum I agree with Dougie (and others) that it shouldn’t be. The world is in difficult economic times right now and will be again in future. The people need to decide whether or not they feel Scotland, as an independent nation, has the capacity to stand on its own two feet through good times and through bad. As such the referendum should be held regardless of the climate.
On a lighter note I applaud David McCann’s reference to Eurovision – aargh sweet sweet Italy, you were robbed!
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