There is plenty of Oil in Scotland.
Hate is the Oil that the Scottish National Party produces by the barrel load.
‘It’s Scotland’s Oil’, the cry from the 1970’s is back again, wasn’t able to work then and 40 years down the line it still doesn’t work.
Scotland’s ‘jolly fat man’ Alex Salmond is under pressure from opposition leaders at Holyrood to explain how an independent Scotland would deal with the dramatic fall in oil revenues.
The answer is ‘hark back’ to the distant past, but we all live in the here and now!
And that is where the answers should come from.
Scotland ran a deficit, the shortfall between public spending and the taxes raised to pay for them.
That number is huge, a jump to £12 billion after North Sea receipts dropped by £4.4 billion in 2012-13.
An independence bid and the economy of Scotland cannot all hinge on a single oil field’s production.
Salmond’s bluster after being caught out was to tell MSPs at FMQ’S that the UK is in deficit by more than £100 billion, but insisted Scotland is in a “relatively stronger position” over the past five years.
This shows he is living in denial, and you can’t live in denial, although he isn’t responsible for the North Sea Oil industry, he hasn’t bothered to do the work on reform of Government or Local Government leaving Scotland vulnerable.
Labour leader Johann Lamont said that Scotland’s public finances would be in worse shape than the UK based on the most recent figures.
“Will he now confirm that the rest of the United Kingdom has a relative surplus compared to Scotland’s relative deficit?”
“And can he explain how he would maintain our schools when he has lost the equivalent of an entire school’s budget would he cut services or raise taxes?”
And the truth is Salmond would have to do both to manage a disaster.
Salmond was forced to accept Scotland was £283 per head poorer than the wider UK last year.
Did you see the posters by Yes Scotland seen by many as an SNP front, would you like to live in one of the wealthiest countries’
How wealthy would be if taxes are raised and budgets cut?
This isn’t the land of milk and honey he and unpopular Nicola Sturgeon have promised, this isn’t nirvana.
Tory leader Ruth Davidson then made the obvious point about being part of the UK helps Scotland to “absorb these shocks”.
“We have the support from the UK Government to keep the North Sea going and we have the support of a nation with broad shoulders to absorb the shocks. The last thing we need right now is to end these advantages.”
Although that sound terribly good, we should also remember that no of this translates to helping the poorest in society, something which will keep the Scottish Tories are a fringe party in the minds of the Scottish public.
Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said that “one year of problems” in the North Sea oil resulted in £4 billion being wiped off Scotland’s balance sheet.
Salmond said he didn’t expect that type of problem to happen again, how can he guarantee this?
He can’t, he put all his eggs into the one basket and when it got dropped it was a rather costly affair.
“Which taxes would go up and which taxes would be cut?”
To lose £4.4 billion without a backup plan to offset such an event rather shows that the deeper people look into his independence vision, the more people will see that is substance lite in every key area.
How can anyone vote for independence when the Scottish National Party are so far out of their depth?
Quite simply, a No vote is required even if you do believe that Scotland should be independence, independence is supposed to make people’s lives better, in the SNP, it is all about making the SNP clique richer at the Scottish public’s expense.
That isn’t happening; Alex Salmond has gone as far as he can go!
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University