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ę "Catalist," Obama's Borg-Like Base-Turnout Machine | Main | Sure Why Not Ľ
September 18, 2014

Scottish Independence Vote Count Update

The best available information shows "No" with 0 votes thus far counted, tied with "Yes" with 0 votes counted.

Okay so I lied.

But I can give you some polling news: per the Guardian, the latest poll has "No" leading by six.

The campaign against Scottish independence appears to have edged ahead in the final poll of the referendum campaign, with the no campaign at 53% of decided voters compared with the yes group's 47%.

As unprecedented numbers of voters cast their votes on Thursday, Ipsos Mori reported a slight strengthening in the no campaign's lead. The same firm issued a poll on Wednesday night showing no ahead by only two percentage points, based on earlier field work.

Polling stations have been busy across Scotland with 97% of residents registered to take part in the referendum, and 95% of those polled by Ipsos saying they would vote....

In Westminster there are already signs of a backlash regardless of the result, with some Tory MPs complaining about the devolution [of more power to Scotland's local government] offers made to Scotland if it votes no.

Hey remember when Edward Longshanks promised he'd return the Stone of Destiny and then, like, didn't?

More on this poll.

All the leading pollsters have now issued final polls suggesting a no win by 53% to 47%, or 52% to 48%, but Labour officials remain cautious, saying it is still unclear how undecided voters will break, or what could be the impact of a high turnout. As few as 200,000 votes could determine the outcome....

Some 95% of Scots say they are certain to vote today, including 90% of those aged 16 to 24. Both sides include supporters for whom this is their first time registered to vote: 13% of yes supporters and 10% of no voters.

In what is often a good predictor of the result, just under half (46%) of Scottish voters believe the Better Together campaign will win the referendum, compared with 30% who think the Yes campaign will win -- while a quarter (24%) say they donít know.

There are also some data on whether people say they are motivated more by hope or by fear, or more motivated by practical considerations or a sense of national identity. You can check those out but the results, I think, are tainted: People are always going to claim they act out of hope more than fear, and more out of rationality than emotion. (The results say just this -- but that's precisely what you'd expect, and I don't know if we can treat this as a real result, or just people telling pollsters what they know the "right" answer is.)

Three interesting essays for you to read:

PJ O'Rourke prays for "Yes."

This coming Thursday [today] the Scots will vote on whether to make Scotland an independent nation. And I hope they do because it will be a disaster.


Ah, thereís nothing like a primitive, quarrel-torn, disastrous Third World country. And Scotland has everything it needs to be what old-school foreign correspondents fondly call a "shit-hole."

I like Niall Ferguson's essay even more, because while he too Trolls Scotland, he's kind of more serious about it. He thinks Scotland will become a failed state, and he doesn't seem to be exaggerating for humorous effect like O'Rourke.

[W]hat I encountered in Scotland last week was not just a tale of two campaigns. It was a tale of two countries. My Scotland -- as proudly British as it is Scottish, imbued with a sense of our unique historical contribution -- is still there, but it has fallen silent. Another Scotland has sprung up alongside it that is quite different.

It pretends to be multicultural but is in truth subtly (and sometimes not so subtly) anti-English. It could not care less about Scotlandís past, except as something to be distorted for political ends. And this other Scotland is very, very noisy.

I wish I had a fiver -- yes, a Bank of England one please -- for every rude name I have been called since I re-entered this fray. (Most are unprintable, but "weegie bampot" gives you a flavour. A "weegie" is a Glaswegian. I have never been sure what a "bampot" is, but it's a great insult.)

In the lengthy discussion that followed my lecture, virtually every question was from a Yes supporter. (The worst came from that insufferable type of person who is always claiming to feel "offended" by something. Most, I should say, were civil.) The common objection was that my argument for the Union was rooted in the past. But what did history have to do with Scotlandís future as a new Scandinavian-style haven for egalitarianism, inclusiveness, clean energy, world peace and all the other things implicitly repudiated by the gimlet-eyed Tory bampots?

It really is a pungent essay, and a good one. I recommend it highly.

However, reading it, I can see why the Scottish would be inclined to run their own state: Because everyone seems to claim that they're incapable of it.

The New York Times, of all outlets, checks in with this headline:

Scotland's Independence Vote Shows a Global Crisis of the Elites

When you get past the details of the Scottish independence referendum Thursday, there is a broader story underway, one that is also playing out in other advanced nations.

It is a crisis of the elites. Scotland's push for independence is driven by a conviction -- one not ungrounded in reality -- that the British ruling class has blundered through the last couple of decades. The same discontent applies to varying degrees in the United States and, especially, the eurozone. It is, in many ways, a defining feature of our time.

The rise of Catalan would-be secessionists in Spain, the rise of parties of the far right in European countries as diverse as Greece and Sweden, and the Tea Party in the United States are all rooted in a sense that, having been granted vast control over the levers of power, the political elite across the advanced world have made a mess of things.


And so the results [of the Scottish Independence vote] will ripple through world capitals from Athens to Washington: People donít think the way things are going is good enough, and voters are getting angry enough to want to do something about it.

I have a really terrible reason for supporting a Yes vote (though I strongly suspect No will prevail):

Because there's nothing good on TV and I want something interesting to watch.

digg this
posted by Ace at 02:43 PM

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