Most of the nationalist parties in the UK have tended to be left of centre, while conversely unionism has generally been a cause of the right.
One of the first suggestions I made in this blog is that there is an emerging free market case for Scottish independence. It seems to me that this case is making significant progress on the right, particularly in the pages of the Sunday Times, where hardly a week goes by without some article pointing to ‘soviet’ levels of public spending in Scotland.
I certainly never expected to read one of Thatcher’s ministers saying stuff like this:
As the Irish economy has freed itself from British influence, and in a new context for relations between London and Dublin created by the European Union, the Irish seem largely to have shed their anti-British hostility…
Perhaps Scotland could return to greatness if it severed the apron strings that bind it to England. Given its independence it would need to slash the size of its state and compete for foreign investment. Leadership would surely pass from the trade unionists and former public sector workers who fill the posts now, to those who could display the necessary dynamism. Socialism could not survive there any more than it has in eastern Europe. A Tory Scotland would be on the cards again.
Only such a dire prospect could lead the chancellor to declare his support for Beckham and the boys. (Sunday Times)