The crumbling of the no camp position perfectly illustrates the problem for the no campaign.
Technical issues relating to a post independence world, we are told, will not be discussed in advance by the UK Government.
Fair enough, they don’t want to see part of their country break away and an agreement or understanding that a currency union is possible or acceptable concedes a bit of ground.
What’s not acceptable is the no campaign using that position to create uncertainty, then have that whipped up by a compliant media and to consistently say ‘they can’t use the pound, what’s their plan B?’
A mantra repeated and repeated a negative chip made into the arguments for independence.
‘Why can’t Alex Salmond tell me what currency we’ll use in independent Scotland’
A bawbag question, a stinker.
‘Me’ is, of course, part of the no campaign using the resources of the UK (despite the Edinburgh Agreement) to deny any upfront technical discussions, then twisted that into an argument that gets aired by TV and newspapers.
The uncertainty goes to ordinary people who rightly worry about the idea.
But, they’re Scots, they read about it, they find out more. They ask.
They get answers.
We can use the pound if we want.
We need to negotiate the assets and liabilities of the UK on a fair and proportionate basis after independence.
People realise that if they vote yes, that there’ll be discussions and negotiations on a range of subjects to make independence work.
By their own means, they say ‘well of course the yes campaign aren’t going to give up the pound before the terms of independence are negotiated. ‘
It’s not that difficult and many of us have to trade or negotiate in the course of our working life. We use eBay to trade, local markets..
So like many things, it’ll get sorted after the vote, it’s not an issue that would grind things to a halt or stop independence.
But, ‘the pound’ like many things about the UK, isn’t a real ‘national currency’ as defined and clear as other countries.
In England (and Wales) it’s Bank of England notes as ‘legal tender’. Different in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Scottish clearing banks use age old rights to issue notes backed by arrangements with the Bank of England.
These clearing banks are now part of wider groups. Bank of Scotland as part of the wider Lloyds Banking Group, Royal Bank of Scotland as part of RBS and the Clydesdale as part of an Australian Group.
There’s a bit of status about issuing bank notes. In all likelyhood they’ll continue to do so, but bond with a Scottish Treasury or ‘national bank’ that will keep ‘pounds Scots’ at parity with Sterling on an ‘official’ basis or unofficially.
So your notes will still get funny looks from cashiers down south..