Thursday, September 11, 2014

David Cameron heads to Scotland to plea for 'No' vote at Sept. 18 referendum

British PM David Cameron dropped everything today to head to Scotland to stem the momentum of the "Yes" campaign for secession. For Alex Salmond, the Scot leading the charge for independence, the move means the Brits are panicked. "If I thought they were coming by bus, I'd send the bus fare," he tells Reuters. Cameron's visit comes a day after his impassioned Daily Mail piece, in which he promised Scots that a "no" vote wouldn't keep the status quo, but usher in more power over taxes, spending, and welfare. Secession is a "leap into the dark … Our fear over what we stand to lose is matched only by our passion for what can be achieved if we stay together."

The presence in Scotland of the "most distrusted Westminster (politician) ever" will bolster the campaign to topple a 307-year-old union, Salmond tells the Daily Record. Secessionists say England has mismanaged the Scots for decades and that independence promises a bright future; unionists believe the irreversible schism will create financial, economic, and political uncertainty, as per Reuters. The result of secession would be like a divorce—the fate of North Sea oil, nuclear weapons, Scottish debt, the monarchy, and "Union Jack" will have to be debated, the AP adds. The most contentious and critical point of argument has been the pound, which the British Treasury says it will not share. As for Salmond? "It's our pound and we're keeping it," he says.