So we now have the conclusion of the Smith Commission with the capitulation of the Scottish Government to an agreement of mediocrity. After negotiations, that commenced with the formation of the commission. This was set in place by the British government to in some way allow the Scottish people to believe that there was actually a vow, instead of the invention that was the editorial in the Daily Record a couple of days before the referendum.
The British government chose to string us along because they perceived an advantage in doing so and we have just discovered exactly what that advantage was.
The clue to that advantage is in what the Scottish government has been saying for the last few weeks. They have been telling us that this agreement had to be “without detriment to either party” well that is exactly what they got, and without detriment means exactly that and that is also, without advantage to either party.Well not quite true, because this “agreement is only for 6 years after which the British government will no doubt extract their pound of flesh
So we have been on a mission to stand still. Well not exactly, because what we will have is the blame for all of these taxes we are to act as unpaid tax collectors for.
So let’s speak about these new found tax raising and lowering (within limits) powers we are the new found recipients of.
Ok so let’s think about how we can use them, well we could put them up, (to the delight of Labour who we have been castigating for suggesting a penny increase to alleviate the effects of Tory cuts)to ease the burden of government cuts, and if the Scottish Government were in a suicidal mood, then I suppose they could do that. So let’s stretch the imagination and say that this might be something they would consider. So how much do you think they would dare to increase our taxes by? 1%, 2% or would you think 3% might be the amount?
Well, it might surprise many of you to learn that the Scottish Government have had the power to raise or lower taxes by 3% since their inception in 1999.Or, at, least they did until they voluntarily allowed the agreement with HMRC to laps in 2007.However, this could have been reintroduced with notice.
Now all this gives me the feeling of being given the responsibility of rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic, more so as the UK is heading for a financial crash that will make the one in 2008 ( aided and abetted by Brown and Darling, oops, sorry Lord Darling)seem like being hit by a snowball as opposed to an iceberg.
I am afraid the SNP’s negotiation abilities are somewhat limited and I feel that they should get back to doing what it says on the tin and that is striving for independence.
I for one will not be going out early and putting my beach towel on any of these deck chairs