Monday 7 February 2005

What's wrong with the Scottish economy?

The Federation of Small Businesses report on the Scottish Economy has been receiving a lot of attention recently. Stuart Dickson gives us an SNP perspective over on the Independence blog.

In his regular Scotsman column today, former SNP MSP Duncan Hamilton also says that national independence is essential if our economy is to improve:

That frustration, anger and resentment at the current state of Scottish life and the burning desire to see things change is what makes me a Scottish Nationalist.
No real surprise there, coming from a member of the SNP. But Mr Hamilton went on to say:
PART of the absence of entrepreneurial thinking in Scotland must be linked to our failure to tackle the core question for national governments in the 21st century. The unthinking maintenance of the traditional relationship between the state and the individual has embedded a particular model of government responsibility and individual dependency. That is not to say all benefits must be slashed and all state aid removed. But it is, emphatically, to support a fundamental reappraisal of what individuals should legitimately expect from government and what level of personal responsibility and risk they should adopt.
Bravo, Mr Hamilton. Nationalist politicians spend a huge amount of time examining the relationship between Scotland and Britain but don't ever seem to notice the importance of the relationship between the individual and The State, whatever its nationality. Many of us think that that second relationship is more important than the first. All entrepreneurs worry deeply about that second relationship and if the nationalists are really concerned about the economy we should be hearing more from the likes of Mr Hamilton and less from the "it's all the fault of the English" brigade.

1 comment:

David Farrer said...

Comments made on previous template:

Andrew Duffin
Stuart, you misunderstood me. I didn't accuse YOU of being statist, I was referring to your comment in which you stated quite plainly that the SNP is a leftist organisation. Here's your exact comment: 
"2. SNP 21% (social democrats, centre-left, pro-Scottish independence)" 
"Social Democrat" and "Centre-left" equates to "statist" in my book. 

8 February 2005, 11:29:10 GMT
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Issue with Mr D (I took it!)
Now Stuart, what were your excuses for avoiding an alliance with the heinous baby eating Tories? Lib Dems, Labour, SSP, Greens? I don’t spot a pro “economic liberalisation” party there, do you? 
Come on, admit the obvious, admit that the Tories for all their faults are the only party the SNP could seriously do business with. Given that they will be unlikely to command an overall majority they will need to go into coalition with someone. Are they ready to embrace grown up politics, or do they prefer trying to impress Tommy’s Born Again Trots? 
The answer to that question will say much about the character of the SNP.

7 February 2005, 19:49:00 GMT
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Stuart Dickson
Golly, that was a truckload of spelling errors. 
Lesson: do not submit comments when you are hurriedly stealing 30 seconds from things you are meant to be doing.

7 February 2005, 14:45:13 GMT
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Bishop Hill
"That is not to say all benefits must be slashed and all state aid removed." 
But it surely is to say that most benefits and most state aid should be slashed. You cannot change substantively the relationship between individual and state without doing this.

7 February 2005, 14:44:14 GMT
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Stuart Dickson
Who, pray tell, are the "it's all the fault of the English brigade"? 
Certainly not the SNP. 
Our national predicament is purely of our own making, and the solution is purley in our own hands at the ballot box. For we are a soverign people. 
We vote for dependency at every opportunity. That is tremendously sad - pathetic even. 
Exactly where recently was I statist. If you consider me to be "firmly of the left" then you have not been reading my contributions very attentatively. 
Mr Hamilton is no maverick. He is a well respected and popular figure in the party, and one of a growing band of SNP voices calling for economic liberalisation.

7 February 2005, 11:55:09 GMT
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Andrew Duffin
If this sort of thinking ever becomes official SNP policy, I might be slightly interested. But in fact their view - as confirmed by Stuart commenting on another post below - is firmly of the left, ie statist. I'm afraid Mr. Hamilton is a bit of a maverick.

7 February 2005, 11:23:04 GMT