So much has been said about Scotland in the last few weeks.
Peoples’ opinions really show you the extent to which the truth of a matter is so hard to find; it is something which really frightens me. In my opinion, opinions are formed based on experience, collected information, and more often than not, personal agenda. Unfortunately when countries are governed by those which most say are untrustworthy, and we are bombarded by media which most admit is steeped in agenda and bias, then where do we turn to learn the truth of our political situation?
If you dig hard enough you can find independent facts. If you know the source then you can usually factor in their bias. But even if you had this factual information what do you do with it? A lot of people feel like they have the most reliable information.
I had a conversation the other day about the Independence Vote with a relative living in the North of England; an area geographically most affected by Scotland. The conversation inevitably turned onto money. She seemed to just recite what the news had been reporting, since I know she has no particular interest in politics; “ I don’t know what their problem is, they get more money than people in England, it should be us that’s upset.” *sigh* I couldn’t fault her. That is true. But there is so much more to the story. Everyone pays tax, on everything. All that tax gets sent to Westminster. Westminster then send a percentage back to where it has come from, Scotland, N.Ireland, Wales, for them to allocate to certain expenditures. So, because Scotland generates more tax, they have a higher percentage of money returned. Scotland for instance, spends this money on allowing free prescriptions for all and free tuition at University…etc… (For more information look up the Barnet Formula). The media, however, leaves that part out. Politicians leave that part out. And this made me so painfully aware of just how many people based their opinion on the political situation on these two avenues alone.
Too exhausted to continue that conversation, I simply said, well if Scotland costs the UK that much, why do they still want to keep it? Surely a government drowning in debt, it would let Scotland go and save itself some money. It’s a very simple question with a very simple answer.
…..Lost my train of thought there. So hard not to just descend into a rant.
Currently, there are a lot of disappointed and worried Scots…I would say 45%, which is the amount of Yes voters, but from the look of twitter is seems that a lot of No voters are already regretting their vote!
I stayed up til 7am on the night of the referendum to watch the votes come in, live on TV. It took me about three days to stop feeling blue. We moved to Ireland recently, an already Independent country, and have felt quite removed from the whole proceedings except online, but still felt the heavy impact of what this meant for our friends.
I wasn’t always a Yes supporter. At first I rebuked it, based on Scotlands ability to completely govern itself. This however quickly dissipated with the realization that even if things didn’t go perfectly, even if blunders happened, the responsibility would be in Scotlands hands; and really that’s what matters. Britain might seem like a strong country, but if you look at its individual parts, it is struggling. Its people are struggling with everyday needs like food, yet the main government is too concerned with the Global Stage….saving face.
The political system is broken, its self-serving ways have gone on for too long. I think everyone, Scotland, English, Welsh, Irish, all deserve a better deal from their government, and my biggest hope from a Yes vote was that it would shake things up so much that the whole system would need a big update.
Lots of the devoted followers in Scotland have joined the, We are the 45, movement, to channel all of that determination for change. I desperately hope change does come, change for a better, greener, more sustainable world.
Have a conversation. Read articles. Watch videos. Shake the system.
Hope never Dies.