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Subject: Separitism in Great Britain--pro or con??
Herc the Merc    1/16/2007 3:18:23 PM Blair warns against Scottish independence by Lachlan Carmichael 1 hour, 6 minutes ago LONDON (AFP) - Prime Minister Tony Blair has warned against any bid to break Britain apart, saying it would be "a crazy" step 300 years after Scotland and England united. ADVERTISEMENT Blair's warning Tuesday came as the Scottish National Party (SNP) used the anniversary of their union to launch a fresh drive for independence, while some opinion polls suggested a majority of Scots and English want to separate. Speaking at his monthly press conference, Blair said Britons should celebrate "with pride" Tuesday's tercentenary of the merger of the Scottish and English parliaments. "In commerce, in trade, in security and above all in shared values, the union of England and Scotland continues to be good for England, good for Scotland and right for the future of Britain," Blair said. It would be "crazy for Scotland to be wrenched out of the United Kingdom" of Britain and Northern Ireland, he added, noting that 2.5 million Scots live in England, half Scotland's total. England's population is some 50 million. "Separation is a retreat into an old-fashioned view of the world that would be bizarre in the 21st century," Blair warned. "It would be an incredibly regressive and reactionary step to break it apart now." Blair, who was born and schooled in Edinburgh, warned that even the prospect of a referendum on Scottish independence would damage economic confidence. However, he stopped short of echoing a warning by Gordon Brown, his Scottish finance minister and heir apparent, of a "dangerous drift" toward separatism in Britain. The SNP is using the anniversary to back its bid in May local elections to wrest control of the Scottish parliament in Edinburgh from a coalition of Labour and Liberal Democrats with plans for such a referendum. Having disappeared 300 years ago during the January 16, 1707 Act of Union, a limited Scottish parliament was restored in 1999 as part of a bid to blunt separatism by Blair's Labour government. However, the SNP insists desire for a separate Scotland is higher than ever. "Those in the London parties who would deny the people their right to choose are the political reincarnation of the 'parcel of rogues' of 1707 who sold Scotland away," SNP leader Alex Salmond said. His party played on the grievance by launching a campaign featuring posters declaring: "1707 No right to choose -- 2007 the right to choose." George Foulkes, a Labour member of the unelected House of Lords in London, told AFP his party was mounting a vigorous campaign for seats in the Scottish parliament as he was "genuinely concerned" about rising separatist sentiment. Though two polls since November showed that a majority of Scots and English favored a split, a BBC poll on Tuesday found that 56 percent of Scots and 73 percent of the English supported union. Blair suggested the way some opinion polls are phrased can influence people's answers. "I don't think people in Scotland want independence," he said. No extravagant bash is in the works for the tercentenary. Planned events include the launching of two-pound commemorative coin in London Tuesday evening. "I think they realized that very few people would turn up -- and it's unwise to hold a party no-one would come to," the SNP leader said. Blair said union was about substance rather than glitz. "The most important thing is not fireworks but argument, and giving a coherent reason as to why the union of England and Scotland is good for today's world and the future," Blair said.
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mithradates       1/21/2007 5:41:15 PM
That union is not.  U.K should be partitioned into smaller blocks.
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Yimmy       1/21/2007 7:21:05 PM

That union is not.  U.K should be partitioned into smaller blocks.

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flamingknives       1/22/2007 1:41:44 PM
The thing to remember is that if Scotland separated, they'd have to take him and Mr. Brown back.
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Yimmy       1/22/2007 4:09:38 PM
The thing that amazes me, is how every ignorant Scott you talk to about it is stuck thinking that they would get North Sea oil in the division.  This when it is owned by BP, a British company.  What are they going to do, Nationalise the oil rigs?  I bet the EU would love that.... which would end their second favorite source of income.
You would think the case would be heard by a divorce court or something - as though we would split everything with them 50/50!
If they think the Scott regiments are hard done by now - lets see how many battalions they can afford to run when we stop paying for them!
If they gained independance it would be like the Mexican border with the US... we would have to rebuild Hadrians wall to keep the feckers out.
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AdamB       2/22/2007 1:52:11 PM
If England gained its independence from Britain it would be an incredibly wealthy country - it would be the 7th richest country in the word in terms of per capita GDP, and richer than the United States.
Republic of Ireland - $50,150 (5th)
England - $45,373 (7th)
United States - $44,333 (8th)
Canada - $35,133 (16th)
Germany - $33,854
Italy - $29,700
France - $29,316
Scotland - US$25,546
Wales - $23,741
Northern Ireland - $19,603

But the UK's GDP (England/Scotland/NI/Wales) is $38,624 (13th) [[between the US and Canada in the above list]].
So it would be good for the English if we became independent because our GDP per capita would be VASTLY higher than the other large EU countries - Germany, France and Italy - and even surpassing the US.  In fact, because we wouldn't have to pay billions of £s to the Scots for subsidies anymore, an independent England could be even richer.
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Yimmy       2/22/2007 2:07:29 PM
Re-reading my post, I didn't realise quite how anti-Scott I came across!
I don't mind them really.
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AdamB       2/22/2007 2:15:16 PM
The Celts also let us down in terms of standard of living.

On the HDI Index, Britain ranks only 18th in the world, with an HDI of 0.940.

But Canada has an HDI Index of 0.950, ranking in 5th place in the world.

The US HDI Index is 0.948 - ranked 8th.

France's is 0.942 - ranked 16th.

So all those countries are ranked higher in the HDI Index than Britain.

BUT if you count just England (taking the Celts out of the equation) then England has an HDI Index of 0.955, ranked 5th in the world, a higher standard of living than Canada, France and the United States.
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AdamB       2/22/2007 2:37:28 PM
So the English are richer than Americans (only 6 countries are) - and VASTLY richer than our rivals the French and Germans - and only 4 countries in the world - Norway, Iceland, Australia and Republic of Ireland - have a higher standard of living.
HDI Index
Norway - 0.965
Iceland - 0.960
Australia - 0.957
Ireland - 0.056
England - 0.955
Sweden - 0.951
Canada - 0.950
Japan - 0.949
United States - 0.948
So if thisn't a spur for the English to become independent then what is?  It beats continuing a part of the UK which has an HDI Index of 18th in the world and GDP per capita only in the $30,000s.
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flamingknives       2/22/2007 3:05:49 PM
There are a number of reasons as to why the UK shouldn't split up.
1) Whisky. If Scotland were separate we would have to pay import tax. I would not be amused.
2) Scottish soldiers. Wonderful chaps. Bunch of bloody psychopaths. Wouldn't want them on anyone else's side.
3) Welsh mountains. Great fun, if you're there on the eight days of the year when it's not raining. I'd hate to have to get my passport out to cross the Severn.
4) Land borders suck.

There are also some good reasons for devolution
1) Scotland takes back Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.
2) Scotland takes back Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.
6) Scotland takes back Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.
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Yimmy       2/22/2007 3:25:01 PM

There are a number of reasons as to why the UK shouldn't split up.
1) Whisky. If Scotland were separate we would have to pay import tax. I would not be amused.
Surely that would just be for Scotch?
I went to Wales last weekend, in the Breckons.
It was cold, foggy, hilly, with sheep everywhere.
The only good thing was the lack of rain.
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