Lies and Statistics

What is it they say about lies and statistics?  Yet when they come from official government sources they must be right, surely?

For too long we have been hearing that Scotland is too wee and too poor, usually too stupid as well, to survive without the mothering embrace of London.  Now we have confirmation from Michael Moore MP that we would have run up a debt of £41bn in the past 30 years or so had we been an independent nation over that period.

Michael Moore is currently the Secretary of State for Scotland.  He holds that post as part of the coalition arrangement whereby the Lib-Dems were ensured seats at the top table.  However the choice of parliamentarians from within the coalition ranks to hold the post, assuming it is best that they represent a Scottish constituency, is somewhat limited.  So Moore got the nod, despite campaigning through the previous parliament for the abolition of the Scottish Office, which he viewed as being no longer required as a result of the devolution process.  That process of course saw the Lib-Dems in coalition with Labour at Holyrood, whilst the latter held sway for non-devolved matters.

So the man who wanted to abolish the Scottish Office now heads it up, and holds the post as Scotland’s man in Westminster, or their man in Scotland as you may prefer.  In the past year or so he has built a reputation of uttering some drivel, so much so that I tend to the view that every announcement made from the Scottish Office under his tutelage actually helps pave the way to the independence vote that the Holyrood government will seek in a few years time.

His latest one takes the biscuit.  For in confirming that an independent Scotland’s debt would have been £41bn, he reassures us all that life without the smothering from the south, would indeed be better.  For Westminster’s own figures confirm the national debt at £715.5bn, and thus that our pro-rata share of that based on population amounts to £60bn.

By the admission of the Secretary of State for Scotland, this nation of ours, the one that is too wee, too poor and too stupid, is thereby worse off to the tune of £19bn by being a member of that accursed union.  In other words Scotland has been subsidising the rest of the union to the tune of £3,800 by each and every one of its citizens.  Thank you Mr Moore for that confirmation.

Strangely enough I don’t think the BBC have picked up on it yet, or more likely have chosen to bury it, but you will find it on the STV News website, as well as the usual reliable sources for all things Scottish.  £19,000,000,000 better off – that’s quite a figure isn’t it?

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