The man once dubbed ‘The Godfather of Devolution’ today warned of ‘revenge’ from Westminster if Scotland rejects independence and that the promises of greater powers would not be delivered.
Canon Kenyon Wright, who chaired the Scottish Constitutional Convention which laid the groundwork for the re-establishment of the Scottish Parliament in 1999, urged voters to vote Yes and take the ‘Road of Hope’ and not be cowed into following ‘The Way of Fear’ as laid out by the No campaign and their daily diet of scaremongering stories.
“I believe the suggestions of revenge against the Scots emanating from Westminster are very real if there was a No vote on September 18″ said Canon Wright, a retired Episcopalian clergyman, who arrived in Glasgow to sign the Independence Declaration at Yes Scotland HQ in Hope Street.
“There will undoubtedly be cuts to the Barnett Formula, affecting the NHS in Scotland, social security and that benefits will suffer – we’ve already had George Osborne and his Bedroom Tax – and I envisage devolution being undermined despite promises of more powers.
Not that I believe that the devolved parliament will be abolished, but its powers will be diminished.
“Like many, I argued for a second question offering a middle way – which I saw not as devolution but as ‘constitutionally secure autonomy within a reformed UK’. That door was slammed shut – but not by Scotland.
“Devolution is no longer enough; it’s incomplete and even ‘max’ leaves key areas unguaranteed. So Messrs Cameron, Miliband and Clegg cannot be surprised if I now see independence as the only way left open, to give Scotland power over her own affairs that is both complete and secure. Their way offers neither.”
I fear a no vote. I’d be gutted if that’s what happens. I’ve blogged on ‘Consequences’ back in April and I believe there will be a determined effort to put the lid back on independence should there be a no vote.
I think there might be steps towards more powers under devolution but that these powers will be constrained, diluted and undermined.
I think the ‘ties that bind’ will be reinforced, I think Scots will be made to know their place and that there’s a danger of Independence being a soured topic of debate. A bogey subject.
I also think some ‘No’ voters will regret their decision, but it will be too late when their belief in devo more or devo max delivers a poodle parliament that can only bicker over what it had raised and what it can afford to spend.
Whatever the shade of Westminster government comes in 2015 it will ‘piss in our porridge’ and will set up Holyrood to fail or at least become unstable.
They’ll do that to prevent a ‘never-endum’ situation where the question of independence is asked again.
It will be a concerted effort to stamp down on the embers of a defeated yes campaign. The Scottish Cringe will return.
Money will come for projects and jobs and to invest, but on Westminster’s terms.
Austerity will continue, Labour are committed to it too.
The cuts will bite to shrink the debt. The economic upswing might radiate outwards from London, but we know from past experience how slowly that wave moves and how easily the ripples of hope can stop again.
The union will be repeatedly spoken about, the reminders placed that yes failed and that Scots want to remain and by doing so, must share the cutting of debt and government spending.
We’ll reach the ten year anniversary of the banking collapse no better off.
(I’m sorry, but there’s not a happy ending after a No vote)
If you think I’m wrong read what Iain Davidson MP and Lord Reid have been saying in the Telegraph recently.