In 2011, The Scottish National Party formed government with 69 of the 129 Parliamentary seats, the largest majority recorded in either Westminster or Holyrood. This meant that most of the Scottish electorate had voted in support of the SNP’s manifesto promises, of which one was a referendum on Scottish Independence. 18th September 2014 is the date set for this referendum to be held.
All other major political parties in both England and Scotland have opposed the notion of independence and taken a pro-union stance. The union referenced is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, of which the capital city is London, where the UK Parliament meets.
The case for Scottish Independence is primarily about political representation. Scotland voted in only 1 Conservative MP at the last general election, yet ended up being governed by a Conservative-led Government.
Indeed, the Westminster political elite appear unresponsive to even the demands of the English. In 2002, One million people marched in protest against the Iraq war, expressing the view that the UK should not go to war. The UK government proceeded to go to war regardless of the thought of its electorate. The opportunity to create a modern parliament in Scotland and decentralise the impenetrable power of London is an opportunity that many believe would benefit Scotland.
So, if independence would benefit Scotland and the people of Scotland voted in a majority Government with a mandate to hold a referendum on independence, why is Scottish independence being attacked and vilified in every facet of the mainstream media?
Here is a selection of stories found over the course of last week on Scottish Independence:
Daily Mail: “Scots fear independence more than the rest of the UK as Salmond tries to woo women who are shunning his Yes campaign”
The Scotsman: “Scottish Independence – Agrekko Warns of Risks”
The Herald: “Sir Menzies Campbell – Yes Campaign is a Totalitarian regime”
The Guardian: “1 in 3 firms Could Relocate After a Yes Vote”
BBC: “Scottish independence: Shell boss wants Scotland to ‘remain in UK’”
This is a typical cross-section of headlines in respect to coverage of the referendum. Note that the Daily Mail have marginalised the independence debate to a trivial notion of the First Minister’s, and not referred to him by his title as a means of demeaning the movement.
Some of the others reference that business ‘could’ leave Scotland in event of independence, or warn of ‘risks’. The new landscape could be favourable or unfavourable for business. This is an unknown quantity. Naturally, any business would have to react to changes as and when they happen. They may even decide to move if Scotland remains in the union. It’s a generic answer given by a generic spokesperson to a leading question that can provide a sensationalist answer to provoke fear about job losses.
It would seem that fear and scaremongering, and little long-term thought or intelligent comment has been put across by the press on this important subject.