Saturday, 18 April 2009

Cheese Costs 50p

As a confirmed Euroscot, i've long favoured dumpin the pound to jump on board the Euro express. Gogs Broon's 5 key tests were an obfuscation for a decision that the government clearly never had the cojones to take. And let's be frank, it's a shite state of affairs that we have to pay commission to the banks and their pals any old time we can afford to splash cash in Ireland, France, Spain, Slovakia etc.

England's apparent attachment to its queen on the notes is one of the ways in which opinions in Scotland diverge from those elsewhere on this group of islands. Seems like we'll never get the Euro til we get independence. But that's really no the point right here, right now.

As i was reminded last night in the pub (Victoria Bar, Leith Walk: bit pricey, bit poncey, patchy tunes but i'm a sucker for those soft furnishings), cheese has, does and always will cost 50p. Some folks find this hard to get their heid roond but it's a very simple concept. (To be fair, before 15/02/71 cheese cost 10 bob but maist cats alive dinnae even mind the 74 World Cup so it's no a big issue.) Under my preferred state of affairs, cheese would suddenly cost 56.66 Eurocents which, no matter how it's dressed up just aint as catchy as the pounds and pence version. That's bound to be a hard sell to the skeptics.

So, my solution: independence now or ditch those 5 key tests ( i think they were chucked long ago but no-one's ever told me so) and adopt a simple round cheese/Euro rule. I'm no central banker but currency markets are up and down affairs and it cannae be long til the cheese is worth a rounder number than 56.66. Whether it's 50, 60, 70 or 40, on the day that the cheese/Euro ratio is divisible by 10, let's cut the crap and have it.


  1. Naldo, can I ask a maybe stupid sounding question?

    Would you say that most Scottish Independence type people are pro-EU and would want to adopt the Euro?

  2. Not a daft question at all, Ms TB.

    There are bound to be many different opinions but i reckon the short answer to your question is yes. I think that most Scots in general are more pro- European and pro-Euro than citizens in the UK as a whole.

    But hey, that's just my opinion and there might be an element of wishful thinking at work in it.

    Think i'll research this and get back to ya.

    Great question, thanks.

  3. Simple answer if you don't mind me butting in - yes!

  4. Ah well, there you have it.

    After extensive research, the results indicate a 100% pro-European stance amongst Scottish independence types.

    Sample size (erm....2). Thanks for your butt, Neil.

    I'm still lookin into it, though.

  5. Ok, cool. Two yeses. Deux wee ouis.

    I did suspect that just from talking with people and from the wee bit of understanding that I have.

    Also just wondering, or further pestering... do you think the sense or push for Scottish independence is stronger and maybe more likely now because of its membership in the EU? (Or is it stronger? I sense that it is but I'm 6000 rounds of cheese away so I'm really just assuming.)

  6. Vraiment, deux petits ouis.

    Hmmm....this is a very complex question.

    Personally, I don't think an independent Scotland would be viable without the European Union. Scotland is a very small nation and breaking from the UK would leave it politically and geographically isolated if its citizens didn't still have the freedom to travel, work, settle, trade and exchange ideas and experiences throughout the nations of the EU.

    However it's also fair to say that the EU strikes me as more like the sort of place I'd like to live than the UK. In general (always dangerous cos there are exceptions) the EU is run more democratically, has more progressive taxation policies, provides better public infrastructure and seems more open to change and neighbourly co-operation than the UK.

    The UK is a rigid old beast, still struggling to shake off its recent imperial past, still looking to the anglophone US for a lead and still a bit suspicious of Europe. That rigidity is something I want to get away from and I genuinely believe that independence would be good for Scotland and good for the rest of the UK.

    People are in favour of independence for Scotland for all sorts of reasons but I believe that a majority of them support it for what I would consider progressive, even radical reasons. They are not nationalists in the sense of being obsessed with (or even interested in) ethnicity and they hope for a Scotland that’s open and welcoming to people of all and any background. They want an end to the conservative two party state that the UK has become and they often look to Europe as a model of how much better things could be.

    Apologies for ignoring your question, Ms TB. It’s probably because I don’t know how to answer it (and I really like to ramble a bit sometimes). Despite being all those cheeses away, you are clearly very perceptive though.

    Maybe Neil would put it in more straightforward fashion and just say “yes”.

  7. Big problem here is that you're working from the assumption that Scotland is a member of the EU in it's own right. It's not. We're only part of the EU as part of the UK. Many commentators feel that if we did gain independence, we'd have to re-apply for membership. That's my understanding anyway. For a pretty full but sometimes innacurate story of Scottish Independence see Wikipedia, Scottish Independence, Marnie. But you may need to get the Talisker out!

  8. Fair point, Neil but d'ya really think Europe would knock us back? I can think of no good reason why it would.

  9. Naldo, I don't think you ignored my question at all. You actually answered a lot of questions that I tried capsulate into that one question. And it's not me being perceptive; I just like cheese.

    Good point, Neil. I never that of that. Talisker, haha! With these blogs, wikipedia and that bottle, my education about Scotland is going to be very expensive indeed.

    Thank you both.

  10. The sooner we get the Euro the better as far as I'm concerned, as a part of the UK or as an independent Scotland (preferable).

    I agree with pretty much everything above, except the gratuitous use of French.

    It would also solve the problems I have highlighted here: Nationwide is yer lot.