Remember, first and foremost, this is a vote about self-determination. We have to decide how we are to be governed. After a yes vote, more than a year of negotiations will take place to determine every aspect of Scotland's future. Every single issue currently being cynically bandied about by the media will not be decided by this vote. We are simply being asked to decide whether or not we want to have the power to make those decisions for ourselves. After a Yes vote we will make mistakes and definitely won't get it right first time. So what!
Scotland has a culture so far removed from most of English culture that we clearly stand out to external observers, yet decisions that affect our culture and every other aspect of our lives are made in Westminster by the Southern English.
Westminster is elected by the south of England, where the majority of the British population lives, dominated by reactionary Mail/Express reading,closet BNP cowards, xenophobes and those who define the very nature of political apathy. Scots are predominantly anything but any of those things.
The notion that we are better off as part of something bigger doesn't hold true for most of the small nations on earth and what do they mean by better anyway? At the moment we have no choice but to be as badly off as England/Wales/NI. The English (particularly in the south) don't like different and, to them, it is always somebody else's fault whatever the problem. They will assimilate us completely in time. People of Scotland, please don't abandon our heritage, not now!
No nation on earth would be better off being independent than England. They need us to help steer them in that direction. Wales and Northern Ireland will have to make their own choices ultimately and for both of them and us, I recommend history is taken out of the decision making process. All we have is the future.
For those of us confused by political loyalty or the status of the monarchy, these are red-herrings, completely separate to the nationhood status this vote is about. This must not become a Loyalist versus Republicanism issue and we must definitely not allow the interests of extremists in either camp to undemocratically undermine the simple self-determination debate. Let's gain a right to make those decisions for ourselves before we argue about them. A year or so after a yes vote we will choose the politicians who will run Scotland based on their manifestos and general political positions. That is when we vote for SNP, Labour, Liberal or any of the other lunatics and that is when we decide on the head of state. My view - why change that? Let QEII reign over us, so long as she spends a bit more time in Holyrood. After all, as an independant democratic nation, we will be able to change our minds in the future.
England is a nation dominated by the politics of fear, envy, bitter recrimination and a collective sense of being owed for past sacrifices. Scotland needs to move on from that.
We have a choice. Do we need somebody else to decide what is best for us from here to eternity? Perhaps they can start by redesigning the Victorian kilt they invented and while they are at it they can tell us what language to speak and what music to listen to, how to educate our children and how to care for the weak and infirm. They can also tell us what to think and believe and what opinions we are allowed to express and how to judge our peers in our own courts.
They can tell us how to treat strangers and visitors and how to react to world events. They can tell us, because they know best, where in the world to sacrifice Scottish lives. They can tell us which global corporations can tear apart our natural heritage and how our natural resources should be exploited. They can tell us who our friends are and who to trade with and trust. They know best and we are too stupid or incompetent or divided to argue with that because we are the lesser nation, the embarrassing but pretty rump whose people are a bit loud and unduly proud. We should be seen but not heard. Do we really want to remain the child in this relationship. Our ancestors did behave like children, 300 years ago, running home to mummy and daddy after our first big mistake. Their ancestors, who fought for 100s of years against endless brutality and tyranny are currently twisting endlessly in their graves at the very notion that we may throw away this chance to undo their decendants' mistake.
If you have lived amongst the Southern English, as I have (for too long), you will know the contempt in which we (and all who are not them) are held by so many of them. Every one of us considering voting 'No' needs to know the truth (and long term consequences) of that particular elephant in the room. The Union Jack is English for most of them; Scotland is in England as far as too many of them are concerned; everything British is declared English by a majority of them. This is not a petty thing, it is a mindset that is a constant detriment to anything that is not English and we allow them to rule over us and think they are our friends. When we vote 'Yes' we will see their true colours. It will be a painful divorce but think of our children's children Scotland. They will not thank us for remaining in this marriage for their sake.
All the cynical spoilers about the Defence of our nation, EU, UN, Commonwealth membership etc. are in the same category as post nationhood politics and the monarch, we will sort them out and we will decide when we gain the freedom to do so, not them, if we can find the collective courage to unite as a people. Should we, the Scottish, worry about the 'break-up' of the United Kingdom? Definitely not, each of the nations is capable of looking after themselves. It will require everybody to work hard but surely that is no reason to avoid it.
The empire has served its purpose. It's time to join the other post-colonial free states of the world. If we get it wrong, we can fix it. Scotland, let's be brave! It is time to let go of the collective fear and self-denigrating inferiority complex that put us in this position three centuries ago. The SNP perspective makes good reading. The Ingrates recommend everybody that cares about Scotland reads it from cover to cover.
Above edited 30/01/14.
So now the government of England propaganda machine (especially the biased BBC) is beginning to turn on all its guile and cunning, taking advantage of the weak minded; I suspect aimed at the southerners living in Scotland. The immigrant head of the Bank of England is telling us that he will dictate Scottish economic policy if we vote for self-determination and choose to stay in a Sterling zone. Don't tell us what to do Carney! Also apparently our 16-17 year-olds don't understand nearly as much about the issues as their parents. Even, worse, when clumsily tested (BBC One Show 29th January), nobody understands enough about the issues. Let's test the whole of the UK before the next general election and see what they understand about the issues they can't be bothered to vote on. They are still underestimating us by applying their own dumbed down standards to us. We must resist the brainwashing Scotland. We will not be assimilated!