Immoral to walk away from debt

Of course Scotland can use the pound. Any country can call its currency anything it wants. The question is still about which pound we would have.

Are we going to have a pound which we send into care – the care of a foreign government whose fiscal policies have apparently already led us to the brink of the abyss, only to be saved by the knight in shining armour that is the Scottish Government? Or a pound, orphaned at birth, sent out into the world with no security or insurance, to make its way as best it can? The truth is that there is still no Plan B – and Plan A is on a pretty shoogly peg.

What is really worrying is the threat made about how to ensure Plan A happens. If the rest of the UK doesn’t agree to a currency union, then Scotland will walk away from any share of the UK debt. If the pound is “as much Scotland’s as it is the UK’s”, then so is the debt. It would be quite immoral to plunge the rest of the UK into even deeper austerity just to get our own way. It would do us no favours – so many Scottish companies have the rest of the UK as their main market. They need that market to be prosperous.

Is this the Scotland we really want for ourselves? Scotland the playground bully. A Scotland so devoid of morals that it is quite ready to do damage to its neighbours and where blackmail is seen as a perfectly legitimate means to get what it wants (even if what it wants makes no sense other than to save its face). A Scotland seen to be prepared to default on its debts.

If this is the Scotland we vote for on September 18, then we will be the ones who have to live with the consequences and we will only have ourselves to blame.

Frances Pringle