If speaking in isolation, the strategy is often to say that without funding from down south, Scotland would be in trouble. This leads to something like yesterday where Labour backbenchers appeared to cheer their belief that Scotland is subsidised by the UK. In one way that could be construed as cheering the (perceived) weakness of your own country, perhaps not the seemliest thing for MSPs to be doing.
However, in other platforms, when the discussion seems to be that Scots contribute more to the UK than they get back, or that Scotland is doing better in some of the figures than much of England, then the No campaign strategy is to move to talking about redistributing wealth down south.
So to recap.
- Scotland gets more, so we redistribute it south.
- Scotland doesn’t have enough and needs to rely on England
Does anyone else see that those two can’t simultaneously go together?
Furthermore, if you look at the image above, if all this wealth had been being redistributed all around the country by successive Labour and Tory governments, keen to do their bit for the “regions”, I suspect that map would be rather different.
If however, as many would suggest, money from Scotland tends to go south and gets stuck there, it seems to make more sense, don’t you think?