Back to basics

As we enter the last weekend before the referendum vote, it is a good time to remember what this choice is all about. The media are increasingly filled with ‘point-scoring’ arguments from both sides. The issues that are being brought up (such as the currency, the future of the NHS, and so on) are vitally important. But the way that they are being discussed is in the form of brief soundbites and avoidance of real dialogue. For example, leading political figures such as David Cameron and Gordon Brown tell us their version of things, but are unwilling to respond to questions or to publish their ideas in a form that can allow critical scrutiny.

In all this last-minute frenzy, it is perhaps useful to get back to basics. A powerful, coherent and detailed case for an independent Scotland has been made. Listed below are the key documents. These are not last minute, hurriedly assembled proposals. Instead, they are carefully argued, and provide references to sources of evidence.

The White Paper (Scotland’s Future). This was produced by the Scottish government several months ago. It is a long document – but then, it is discussing all aspects of Scottish society.

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2013/11/9348/0

The Wee Blue Book. Produced by the Wings over Scotland team – an easy to read, shorter account of topics covered in the White Paper, along with responses to subsequent criticisms of the case for independence that have been made in the mainstream media.

http://wingsoverscotland.com/weebluebook/

Draft constitution. This is a remarkable document, which has received rather little attention. It proposes a set of rights and responsibilities of people and government in an independent Scotland, and invites everyone to be involved in a consultation process that will take place following a yes vote.

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Resource/0045/00452762.pdf

Fiscal Commission. An authoritative and detailed discussion of the options for Scotland, in relation to currency and other aspects of economic policy.

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Economy/Council-Economic-Advisers/FCWG

Wings over Scotland document archive. A repository of documents on various aspects of the independence debate. Includes some items that were published on Wings, along with key reports and documents from a wide range of organisations.

http://wingsoverscotland.com/reference/

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