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Scottish independence



  • They said the same thing about the channel tunnel in the first quarter of the 20th century.

    Lloyd-George talked bout it after WWI and the French just ignored it as a mad idea, even though the first attempts at a tunnel had already been tried.

  • the tunnel should connect the two islands further south and it would be in Ireland's interests.

    Considering the government can't even build a rail line to the airport though, I don't hold out much hope.

  • it will happen one day, of that I am convinced.

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  • The next ice age is surely within the next 10,000 years we’ll be able to walk to Britain then probably. If you can wait a bit longer continental drift will bring us all closer in the next 100 million years or so.

  • Convinced by what though? It is quite literally one of the most ludicrous proposals ever. I have a feeling that if Corbyn had won the last election and proposed the same thing as PM you would not be so gullible. For the same amount of money both Ireland and Scotland could build a Japanese style bullet train system covering the majority of their population centres. I know which one is more profitable and politically expedient. But I think we would both be fooling ourselves if we think either is going to happen.

  • I see rail as the future of high speed mass transit and lots of very joined up high speed rail networks all over europe. Whether this is rail or hyperloop or whatever, if Ireland isn't connected, it is just going get left behind.

  • The reality of irelands geography will determine our history as it has done for centuries.

    sometimes it has been a blessing sometimes a curse. During world war 2 our geography was a huge blessing.

    During the dark ages on continental Europe Ireland was an isolated refuge for Christianity.

    During the Roman times Ireland was a refuge for Celts.

    Our geography and resources meant we missed out on the industrial revolution.

    but we don’t miss what we never had. It’s likely many parts of Ireland would resemble the North of England today if we had industrialised.

    We will never be part of any high speed integrated European rail system. It makes no economic or geographical sense. Maybe someday the cork-Dublin rail line could be upgraded to high speed but that’s decades in the future.

    Good smooth running airports and ferry terminals is what will keep us well connected.

    Maybe someday technology will allow ferries to run faster and reach france in a few hours that would be the real game changer for Ireland.

  • The costs of HS2 vs Ryanair ? At present rail is more expensive than flying or buses.

    Hyperloop is hype. To keep g forces low you need a large radius of curvature so lots of long bridges and tunnels unless you are crossing very flat country. Besides low passenger capacity so it's not mass transit.

    If they figure out a way to do tunnelling cheaply then we will have lots of cheap geothermal energy which would be nice.

    Be interesting to see how Brittany Ferries get on with their Seaglider electric Ekranoplane which would reduce the economic viability of a fixed link.

    Then again the Faroe Islands have spent lots on tunnels but a Scottish govt might well look at links inside the Shetlands first seeing as how they have a huge chunk of Scotland's EEZ. For the price of a bridge to NI, Scotland could link up a lot of it's islands. It would also send a signal about how things are getting better without Westminster.

    Sometimes it's perspective, Scotland would have no problem becoming an EFTA member with all the opt out's that implies.

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  • and what will Ryanair do when fossil fuel runs out? it would be great to see if an electric ekranoplan can actually be viable, maybe that is a solution.

    Back to Scottish independence though, building tunnels to/between the Shetland Islands may help the Scottish government stop the Shetlands leaving Scotland, along with all that lovely oil that is going to pay for the new eutopia.

  • A tunnel from the Shetland to the closest point on the Scottish mainland would be more than three times longer than the longest passenger tunnel ever built anywhere, and it would make landfall at John O'Groats, which is ten hours by rail, or six hours by car, from Edinburgh. Nobody would use it. Even if it were technically feasible to build and operate such a tunnel it would cost much, much less just to pay every man, woman and child in Shetland £10 million pounds each to induce them to remain in Scotland, and that's a project that could be delivered much more quickly.

    But I don't know why you are speculating about the Scots building a tunnel to Shetland. Opinions about an independent Scotland vary, but nobody imagines that it is going to be led by a man who has missed his true vocation as the back end of a pantomime horse and who is afflicted with a slightly odd obsession with impossible bridges and tunnels. I think he must have had a traumatic experience in childhood on a waterway somewhere.

  • Tunnel to Shetland would be crazy.

    Tunnels or bridges or causeways linking some of the Shetland Islands to each other is doable as part of a "Look North" or cohesive project. And if this is to be believed costs would be in the tens of millions rather than tens (or hundreds) of billions.

    Links within the Outer Hebrides or adding more links within the Orkneys could be done too.

    Take a look at satellite imagery to see how far the sandbanks go to get a very rough idea of where some routes might go.

  • In2014, the people in Scotland were told that the oil is gone. Now we are told that the Cambo oil field will be the saviour of the UK in the next decades

    The Shetland Islands are not leaving Scotland, that is just the unionist bogeyman. Interestingly unionists abhor the break up of the UK but egg on the break up of Scotland... go figure

    Meanwhile a new poll was published yesterday which marked a welcome change from the recent ones

    Post edited by A Dub in Glasgo on

  • I guess the Green half of the Scottish nationalist movement will be happy

  • There any speculation on what caused that 5 point swing? Something local to Scottish politics or just general malaise towards Johnson's cabinet?

  • The five-point swing is by reference to the previous IPSOS Mori poll on Scottish independence, which was last May. So this isn't necessarily a response to any particular development; could be a cumulative thing that reflects a number of developments or a gradual shift in sentiment.

    Or, of course, it could be just one of those statistical blips. I wouldn't get too excited about this unless polls conducted by other companies start to show similar levels of support for independence.

  • Fair enough. Honestly I had kinda presumed the support had dwindled cos the debate appeared to have fizzled out in light of the ongoing double whammy of CoVid and Brexit. That without a clear fulcrum people lost interest; while the SNP had dropped focus after the last public commitment to another referendum. Would make sense to keep the powder dry until the subject has immediacy once more.

  • The age breakdown of that poll makes for interesting reading:

    16-24: 71%

    25-34: 71%

    35-44: 63%

    45-54: 58%

    55-64: 49%

    65+ 34%

    Seems that the support for independence is very strong amongst the younger age groups and it's the elderly that are proving the hardest to convince. Unionists may have to hope that those who are in the pro-independence camp abandon the ambition as they get older but is that likely, especially since the young are the ones who will have burned the most significantly by Brexit?

    It's looking like independence is now a case of when and not if. The difficulty for Sturgeon and the SNP is that many of those who want independence are becoming restless. If she can't deliver a referendum by 2023 then she will look impotent; if she delivers an unofficial referendum, she risks spooking those who have come to the Yes side in recent years.

  • People generally tend to become more conservative as they age, so it wouldn’t be surprising for significant numbers of young independence supporters to soften their position as they get older (assuming independence isn’t achieved first). Even if today’s 21 year old has good reason to feel Brexit has cost her a lot of benefits and opportunities, by the time she’s 40 — and probably has a career, a spouse, children, a home — she’ll be less likely to support as radical a proposition as independence.

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  • It's less that people become more conservative, its that what is defined as conservative tends to get generally relaxed generation by generation. show a british conservative from the 80's their manifesto from the last election and they would probably think the conservative party had gone mad. Really the only genuine constants with conservatism Protect home owners, protect businesses, rings more true when you are older and become a home owner or involved in a running a business. Problem there is the UK is suffering just as much as Ireland with a home owning crisis and the current tory government have been as useful to business as a sack of sh*te. So the conservatives are pushing away those people who would shift more conservative as they get older.

    They should be concerned that the % is still quite high right up to people in their fifties.

  • Looking at those figures, it is the retired cohort who show a majority against independence - the grey vote.

    They can be placated and encouraged by promises and the reality that pensions, health service, free travel, etc. will only improve under Scottish control of the budget, and the absence of Westminster control.

  • There are a lot of retired folk from England in Scotland. Not as much as the number in Wales but that would also explain the grey vote

    Post edited by A Dub in Glasgo on

  • Scotland has a relatively high proportion of over 65s, higher than either part of Ireland. The demographics don't suit them, although they have had some population growth in recent years this may not continue as EU immigration has been greatly cut.

  • Not directly related to Scottish indpendence but interesting none the less. I always thought that the divergence between Scotland and England was due to the Roman invasion but from this story it goes back further.

    The peoples of Scotland and England were culturally divergent long before Hadrian’s Wall and the Roman invasion of Britain, research has revealed. A wide range of archaeological features, including the distinctive roundhouses known as brochs, are widely distributed in Scotland but are almost non-existent south of the border.

  • Thought this was an interesting point in light of Johnson's falling approval ratings.

    On the one hand, Johnson being in office seems problematic for independence supporters given he repeatedly rules out another referendum, yet the hostility he generates in office is great for recruiting frustrated, undecided voters; conversely, Starmer in office might go for another referendum (if he has to do a deal with Sturgeon), but would having what looks on the face of it a more vanilla, moderate PM temper the demands for dramatic change?

  • Were the above true, then the Yes vote would surely be sitting higher than it does? While it also supposes that Tory intransigence on the subject is solely coming from Johnson; no PM will want to be the one that signs away the Union. Can't imagine any new leader softening on the subject, the only difference being Johnson's spoofer persona maybe trembling the needle a small bit more.