Should Scotland become independent?

June 30, 2009

As Scotland prepares to celebrate 10 years of devolution on July 1, the question of whether the nation should gain full independence from the Union refuses to go away.

An opinion poll has found that 58 percent of Scots support the Scottish government’s wish to hold a referendum on independence in 2010.

This does not mean that the people of Scotland actually want to break free, however. The poll, carried out by ICM for the BBC, also showed that only 38 percent of the 1,010 respondents said they were in favour of Scotland becoming an independent country, while 54 percent said they would vote against the idea.

Respondents were also asked if they believed it was likely or unlikely Scotland would become a completely independent nation within 20 years, with 10 percent saying they thought it was likely and 28 percent quite likely. A larger proportion were not as convinced — 34 percent said it was quite unlikely and 24 percent said it was very unlikely.

The issue of Scottish independence is a hot topic south of the border too. Many feel that Scottish MPs should not be allowed to vote on laws that affect only England, while the multi-billion pound annual subsidy Scotland received from the Treasury also gets many people hot under the collar.

What do you think? Should Scotland separate itself from the United Kingdom? Would it be able to manage on its own?


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Of course scotland should be independent all countries in the world govern themselves why should scotland be any different. Scotland will be able to manage fine on its own the UK government hid a report called the mcrone report which showed this. They would not have hidden this if they didnt know it was true.

Posted by karin | Report as abusive

Shouldn’t somebody be asking the English if we’d like to be independent of the Scots (and of the Welsh and Northern Irish)? I suspect we all know what the resounding answer to those questions would be.

Posted by Matthew | Report as abusive

i’m english and i think scotland should definitely be independent :) so they would have to rescue their own banks, keep their chancellors of the exchequer / pm’s to themselves and take back their moody tennis players!! referendum anyone???

Posted by mark | Report as abusive

At the time of Union, Scotland kept its own legal system as well as religious, education, and sports systems. Unfortunately the English have controlled these since, with a greater or lesser sense of decency, and it is long past the time when Scots should control their own affairs. The Calman Commission started with the answer and then worked back to the solution. This is not a good approach. The so-called subsidy referred to in the article excludes large chunks of Scots revenues.

Posted by neil | Report as abusive

The thought of doing away with the Midlothian question, the Barnett formula and other injustices visited upon the English is wonderful to contemplate. At present the English also suffer under the Scot Brown’s dictatorship as well, although it is hard to imagine that going on for more than another year. However permanently getting rid of the possibility of the Scottish tail wagging the English dog is another benefit devoutly to be wished for.

Posted by John Lamble | Report as abusive

Every country should be independent, should have control of its own borders and should pay its own way in the world. That includes England.As to whether Scotland can survive on its own – it should be borne in mind that the Act Of Union was largely a result of Scotland’s bankruptcy following the failure of the Darien Scheme. It seems that history is repeating itself with the recent collapse of Scottish financial institutions. The difference this time round is that the Scots exported their unwanted politicians to England so that they could bring both countries down at the same time.

Posted by Peter | Report as abusive

I think Scotland can manage on it’s own.It will take time but doesn’t everything?

Posted by irene millar | Report as abusive

In Scottish schools pupils were not taught Scottish history and I remember being curious once I left.Well, no wonder pupils are not given lessons. Amazing what the English government did to 500,000 Scottish people back in the 19th Century.Explains why there are millions of Scottish descendants not in Scotland.Of course we in Scotland all remember Maggie Thatcher using the Scottish people as an experiment for the Poll Tax before the rest of the UK.And when North Sea Oil was discovered, she changed the law so that oil found off the coast of Scotland would no longer belong to Scotland. But became the property of the whole UK. Well that was ¬£200 billion Scotland wouldn’t see again. ;-)Then more recently BBC England getting officially told off for bias against Scotland when reporting bad Football fans.It’s all these small niggles that annoy us. :-)

Posted by Stuart Halliday | Report as abusive

“No taxation without representation” should be the sole consideration.English taxpayers subsidise Scotland through the Barnett formula, but have no representation in Scottish affairs. Scotland should be independent and the decision should be made by a referendum in England, not just in Scotland.

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive

I know Scottish people do not like reminding of the fact but England beat Scotland and took over.That is why the “union” exists and why the oil belongs to us.

Posted by Billy | Report as abusive

I am backing Britain, only the ingorant in naive think that seperating an Island would be a good idea.Grow up everyone and stop blaming each other for the nations failing, we are one Nation, one Island and should be proud of that.The Union happened for a reason and it brought peace to a fractured Island, it is easy to moan when you have never had it so good.

Posted by Robert | Report as abusive

Please, Please, Please can we have independance from Scotland – I am English and all people I have spoken to (non Scottish) in England and Wales would welcome this with open-arm….. No Scottish politicians voting on English and Welsh issues (I live in Bristol), no Bank of Scotland Rescure (Scotland could not have rescued them at all), no handouts for free perscriptions, free university and anything else the UK wants to give them…… good riddence. This will not affect us in going there as we are all part of the EU, however will be good as we will no longer need to support a country where you are expected to be British if English, however Scottish if Scottish (sorry I am English and I loved it when Fedderer beat Murray, who seems to hate being called ‘British’)

Posted by Anthony | Report as abusive

As other people say look what has happened to the independant part of ireland, it is brilliant in economics, and Scotland is very similar to Ireland, And also the Union was a result on Bankrupcy only because Scotland put all its money into a fleet to go to south America to make a colony, however was the union in 1701 designed for the 21st Century

Posted by Matt | Report as abusive

On the subject of “Scottish” Oil (to Stuart Halliday)… Are you suprised? Stuff found off the coast of England dosn’t belong to England, because like it or not we are in a Union where we share things with eachother. Its not Scottish Oil, its British Oil and it has British people paying for it. I mean British as in people living in England, Scotland and Wales, and of course our fellow friends on the Channel Islands too.

Posted by William | Report as abusive

This saddens me. Look at what we have achieved as Britain, in the Union. We have done more together than we have apart.

Yes Im English first but proud to be British second.
When I think of my country I think Britain. If I had to defend a Scottish coast line/welsh coast line or English coast line, then I would fight with the same effort for each.

Typical in-fighting. I guess unfortunately we have been doing it for over a thousand years, why should now be any different. Should be glad its verbal and not physical but I worry a break up within the Union can only spell bad news for future generations.

Whats to stop a nut case dictator getting in one day who wants to Ethnic cleanse the Scots out of England or vice versa. Im being over the top now but its just a crying shame.

Posted by matrixgeeza | Report as abusive

why are people on here so proud to be scottish? I was born in Glasgow but i am BRITISH. I would never say i was scottish because if my mum had just travelled to Australia, i would of been Australian. And all this stuff to do with things that happened thousands of years ago has nothing to do with what happened in the recession. I am not saying that i liked Gordon Brown or that i like the Tories or The Liberal Democrats but we dealt with it together, as The United Kingdom. And to all the English people on here do you realise your just being racist? We have just as much right to be part of the UK as you do. The whole recession was the whole countries fault not just one bank or own part of a country. So grow up and get over the love for your part of a country we are all part of the United Kingdom and if you don’t like it move!

Posted by rachael_13 | Report as abusive

[…] United Kingdom that Thatcher is so loathed and revered, which is appropriate for a nation still¬†thoroughly divided about its social and cultural […]

Posted by The Iron Lady — iMax Cinema London | Report as abusive

I think it should because the english are ruining us. They are not rescuing us they are making the country worse! If we are independent it cant get any worse than it already is! You are all pathetic. I would love to see you spending a year in scotland with taxes going up and us getting ruined. The only person we can count on is alex salmond. Definetly not you english people

Posted by Kaybiff | Report as abusive