The World This week from Mennies

A projected profit and loss set of accounts for an independent Scotland .

Well another crazy week business wise with work coming in from all corners and another step towards the inevitable future, electric vehicles. Very shortly our workshops will be equipped to deal with all aspects of servicing and repair of both private electric cars and commercial vehicles including electric coaches. so onward to the future.

Being the end of the week and a chance last night to visit my favorite hostelry, Mennies, I got to thinking once more about independence.

It has now been 7 years since the last independence referendum and basically, nothing has happened with regard to moving towards the natural state of a country and that is to be in charge of its own destiny.

Now this is down to one person, Nicola Sturgeon, but I wont bore you by enumerating her shortcomings once more and my opinion that in place of independence she chooses gender recognition issues and a hate crime bill to back them up rather than the propose for which she was elected, to spend her time.

No, what I want to highlight, is the true reasons why we are no nearer independence than we were in 2014 and quite simply it is this. Most people believed we did not have a feasible economic plan, it is as simple as that, People were afraid that they would be less well off as an independent country.

Now there were many of us who believed the opposite and had done our homework to back up our beliefs and we pounded the streets of Dundee as the Yes Bus team, to try to convince as many as possible that Scotland would be a very wealthy independent country.

Dundee returned the highest percentage of yes voted in the country but it was not enough and although we started the campaign at arround 27% in the polls we achieved a 45% result in the actual referendum. The increase of 18% was simply down to the campaign.,

But, it was not enough, and as I say , it was simply down to economics or the lack of sufficient information on how Scotland would fair as an independent country.

Yes there was an abundance of other issues such as borders, nuclear weapons on the west coast, pensions, health, can we use the pound, can we have our own central bank? etc, etc. But the main point I found was simply down to the money in peoples pocket at the end of the week and in that we failed to make the case.

Shorty after the referendum and still believing that before long we would once again be in another campaign, I looked at the situation as I have outlined and decided that applying basic business principals to the independence case was what we needed.

Starting a new country , or at least turning an existing country from a dependent one to an independent one is similar to starting a new business or indeed buying an existing business. Now the very basic principal of even contemplating such a venture is find out if it is going to be viable and if it is not seen as viable then you walk away, end of story.

So, how do you find out if a business , or a new venture is viable? Dead simple. In the case of an existing business you ask for the audited accounts for at least the previous three years and you then go about looking at how you can improve the figures through different management practices or different markets .

in the case of a new venture, you do your marketing assessment of your product/ service and make up a projected set of figures for the foreseeable future. If the figures don’t look profitable, you again walk away.

So, that is it, in a nutshell, a projected set of accounts for an independent Scotland.

During the campaign I was a member of Business for Scotland headed by Gordon McIntire Kemp. Through almost daily contact with the people of Dundee I became aware that it was the financial case that we were weak on, and I mentioned this at several meetings of BFS . However, things were pretty frenetic at that time and we never really got around to exploring it fully although I did mention it on several occasions after the referendum and Gordons reaction was , yes good idea but give me 20 of a staff and a very large budget and we could do it.

To be fair, BFS did go down that avenue eventually and produced the wonderful publication ” Scotland’s finances the truth” and it should be compulsory reading for every school pupil and every household should have a copy. However it is not a projected set of accounts for an independent Scotland.

So what advantages would a projected set of accounts have over a publication such as ” Scotland’s Finances the Truth “? Well two things, (1), It would be actual figures ( or as near as could be ) and (2) these projected accounts would have a balance sheet and a balance sheet contains the assets, These would be the assets that Scotland would fall heir to when the union was dissolved . In effect it would be a combination of, figures already available through previous trading, combined with a forward business plan taking out all unnecessary expenditure ostensibly made by Westminster on our behalf, such as Trident , 3.5 billion for Army, Westminster, House of Lords, et, etc.

Now who would have the wherewithal to finance such a project, Pretty obvious, the Scottish government, in fact it could be seen that they have a duty to produce this. It would have to be closely overseen of course as of late and led by Nicola Sturgeon the Scottish government have not been exactly the pillar of honesty, and probably an undertaking such as this would be better done after her removal .

Another possibility would be for the SNP to hand over the 600K of “ring fenced money” collected for the sole propose of another campaign, which seems to have gone missing, to, say BFS who I am sure would be able to collate a projected set of accounts assuming access to the good services of Scottish government civil servants who should be able to provide all necessary information.

So there we have it , dead simple, a projected set of accounts including a balance sheet for an independent Scotland, why did someone not think of it before?

Err, actually, someone did.

So to the rest if the evening and a couple of pints in Mennies on this wonderful sunny evening in bonnie Dundee .




I have been in business for well over half a century but I learn something new every day. My politics are the middle of the road. I believe that the far-right and far-left are equally harmful. Jim Murphy ( at that time, leader of the Scottish Labour party) asked me if I called myself a socialist. I said, "no Jim, I am not a socialist, I am a capitalist, but a capitalist with a social conscience.

10 thoughts on “The World This week from Mennies”

  1. Bob

    The gender warriors are not serious about independence and the green fantasists the climate emergency. They are taking us all for mugs on a daily basis yet the faithful just keep going along with all the crap they are fed by these people. There are times when I think Scotland doesn’t deserve independence when so many of the population are so thick and gullible we would fail anyway and the clowns would vote to re-join the union. You can’t make it up anymore and us bloggers are the problem because we won’t bow down like a good unionist at the feet of President Sturgeon.

      1. Yes I agree with you Bob, she would sabotage a referendum. She has no interest in achieving Independence and I believe if Scotland is to achieve it, it must be without NS and the current SNP/Greens government. All members are tainted and it requires a complete clearout of HR for Scotland to make progress. This will be heresy to some but I would not want an Independent Scotland with any of these people who have abused their power and ignored the wishes of the Scottish people. There will be a day of reckoning and it cannot come soon enough.

      2. My thoughts exactly, and I only hope that it happens soon because as long as this awful government continues, the harder it will be to undo the damage done.

  2. Yes 100%. Without clarifying and having an as reasonable as possible view of what the future would look like for the economy, time spent on other issues is a waste of time. That means looking at both what an independent Scotland would look like in the future AND what the UK with Scotland still part of it would look like in the future . No point in just doing one without the other since without that knowledge, how could people make an informed decision on independence vs staying with the UK. Too many people seem to think that independence is a risk without realising that staying in the UK is a risk too. That needs to be made as clear as possible.

    Also the focus needs to be on Government finances AND the national Trade figures for Scotland as an independent country and the UK with Scotland as part of it. The Government finances are important but it is the national trade position that is the more important of the two, often being described as a measure of a nations ability to ‘pay it’s way in the world’.

    With both Government and Trade figures available for an independent Scotland and for a Scotland still within the UK, a decision could then be based for each option based on a full set of quantified national economic figures rather than what’s written on the side of a bus.

    The elephant in the room would then become how an rUK’s Government & Trade finances would look if Scotland became independent, but then since the UK is clearly so desperate to hang on to Scotland, we already know the answer to that.

    1. Yes I agree completely, one of the problems we had in the last referendum was that we were continually trying to disprove unionist figures which were simply plucked out of the air as in the GERS figures This way , the boot would be the other foot but with proper figures. The other point of course was that because of the use of sect 30 the British government were able to campaign against independence which goes against the principal of the UN charter of self determination.

  3. As well as providing much more in the way of realistic economic numbers, it would be helpful if more realistic information was also provided about the economic history of Scotland and the UK. The perception that the UK became wealthy due to having been the first to industrialise tells only a fraction of what happened. The recent study claiming that Britain stole £45 trillion from India during the period when it was ruled by Britain makes it clear that Britain’s wealth was based on far more than a few industrial inventions. The disproportionate removal of wealth will have applied to many other countries as well, all forming part of Britain’s history of wealth creation. GERS clearly has many predecessors.

    These instances may be history but this international transfer of wealth is still in effect today, but in reverse and this has massive implications for the future wealth of the UK. The UK even today, still relies on myths to project it’s place in the world. The reality couldn’t be further from that, yet Brexit is proof that the myths still dominate so many of the UK’s population. For many in rUK, the Global Britain delusion lives on and shows no sign of changing any time soon. Fortunately , as the Brexit vote made very explicit, Scotland doesn’t share this view and with two widely varying and contradictory views, it seems obvious that maintaining a union makes no sense at all, especially since the path chosen by rUK will be a continuation of it’s economic decline over the past 50 years and one that is based on the UK’s declining trade position. Scotland is the only part of the UK that consistently has a heathy trade surplus, yet this doesn’t ever get a mention. Better together?

    Click to access rts_q1_2021.pdf

    1. Yes , Ian you are absolutely correct, Britain had a habit of draining other countries through proxy companies backing their”ventures” with military force. Companies such as the East India company , the Hudson Bay company and people ( Scots) like Jardine and Mathieson who basically started the opium wars in China finally resulting in the Hong Kong lease. Problem is that they still act as though they have these stolen resources

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