I hardly ever mention politics in this blog, but politics were very much on the agenda in the pub the other night. Unusually, when No Longer Grim Jim and the Tall Thin One are in attendance, Natalie Portman was only mentioned twice throughout the whole evening. Instead, there were detailed discussions about how disasterous or otherwise it would be if the Referendum results in an independent Scotland.
The conclusion reached was that the process would be well-managed, and that very little would actually change in the years immediately following independence, apart from property prices almost certainly falling in a time of uncertainty. Economically, the situation would either be a little better, or a little worse, but not by any great degree.
This is very worrying for me, because it would be after about five years that things would potentially start to go wrong socially. If little changes, then people will start to ask “Why are we not doing better?” And then we start to get into a blame culture.
“It’s the fault of the English!” This will be the likely response, and such a thing has it’s inevitable consequences.
History shows us that this sort of thing – i.e. blaming someone else – happens almost every time in similar circumstances. And that is when things turn nasty.
My friend D was at a public meeting the other week. He said that there was a lot of heckling, and that the hecklers made it impossible to hear both sides of the arguments. Well, that’s not good, but it’s also not that bad. However, he also said that the hecklers very aggressively turned on anyone who did not support independence. “Call yourself Scottish! You should be ashamed of yourself”. Though he didn’t voice any opinions at the meeting, D felt extremely intimidated. He told me, “That’s what Jews must have felt like in 1930s Germany”