Scottish Finance Minister, John Swinney, has disagreed with former
Chancellor, Alistair Darling over an independent Scotland's economy
Scottish News: News in Scotland - Monday
Right wing think tank raises fears over independence
A London-based neo-liberal think tank has said that Scots would face "starker" economic choices should oil revenues fall away after independence. The report - to be presented in Edinburgh this evening - by the Institute for Fiscal Studies which has links to the Tory party, speculated that Scotland's social policies may not be sustainable "over the long run" because of volatile and diminishing North Sea revenues. Former Chancellor and head of the pro-Union Better Together campaign, Alistair Darling, and Scottish Finance Minister, John Swinney, have clashed over the report's conclusions.
Scottish independence: British banks becoming uninvestable, warns ABI
The benefits of remaining within the Union took another blow after a major investor group warned that British financial institutions are becoming "uninvestable". The Association of British insurers warned Westminster MPs that as a consequence of opaque accounting, regulatory upheaval and political interference shares in British banks were becoming increasingly exposed to risk and shrinking returns.
- Referendum question to be tested
- UK Crisis: Scots suffer from declining British economy
- Second referendum on EU needed
- Westminster released false figures to ‘distort’ Scottish economy
- Scottish independence: Nationalist split emerges over EU policy
Scottish independence: Five million questions to help voters
A major project tasked with examining the issues relating to independence has been launched by Dundee University. Organisers of the Five Million Questions project aim to apply academic discipline to the ongoing referendum debate, and engage comprehensively with the Scottish electorate across all aspects of the major issues surrounding the option of independence, through a process of lectures and discussions.
Scottish jobs market boost continues
A strong rise in the number of permanent and temporary jobs has been published in the latest Bank of Scotland's report, as the Scottish labour market “is steadily improving”. Despite the economic slowdown over the summer, the survey also suggested a slight increase in average salaries. Edinburgh-based recruiters reported a substantial increase in permanent staff placements.
Former Scottish Labour minister welcomed back to party after jail term
The disgraced former Scottish government minister for tourism, who was jailed for fire-raising, has been allowed to rejoin the party after completing his jail term. The former MSP and MP, Lord Mike Watson, was welcomed back to the Labour Party and given the Labour whip in the House of Lords after serving eight of his 16-month jail sentence.
Clinton: referendum classic case of ‘identity politics.’
Former US President Bill Clinton has commented that the issue of Scottish independence is a “classic case” of identity politics which dominates the twenty-first century. Mr Clinton, who famously signed the Glass-Steagall Act which led to the financial crash in 2008, compared Scottish nationalist sentiment to identity problems within Egypt. Pro-UK organisations have seized upon the comments, claiming Mr Clinton agreed the “best way to deal with the challenges we face is to bind together, not break apart.” A spokesperson for the SNP insisted Scotland will continue to be cooperative in a “twenty-first century partnership of equal nations.”
UK and WORLD
Cameron crack down on ‘time-wasting’ appeals
The prime minister is to crack down on legal challenges to government policy caused by the “massive growth industry.” David Cameron addressed the Confederation of British Industry conference in London, promising he would “get a grip” on people forcing unnecessary delays, adding the government was “too slow” at cutting the deficit. Cameron pledged: “So here’s what we’re going to do: reduce the time limit when people can bring cases; charge more for reviews – so people think twice about time wasting.”
Clarke: EU ‘irresponsible’ debate damaging UK influence
Ken Clarke has issued a warning to leaders “of all political parties” that the “irresponsible” debate surrounding Britain’s membership of the EU is damaging the country’s influence at the negotiating table. Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Clarke said Prime Minister David Cameron had taken a “very strong line” on the budget”. The senior Conservative cabinet minister added that calls for a seven-year freeze were a “good starting point” for negotiations. Miliband has retorted by stating that he will not allow the UK to “sleepwalk towards exit.”
UK crisis: Food price rise leads to unhealthy diets
Food prices increased in the UK, up to a point that it reduces the amount of fruits, fish and vegetables families buy. According to a food purchasing habits survey collected by the consumer analyst Kantar Worldpanel, and published by The Guardian, this trend has soared since 2010, particularly among the poorest households. Food prices have risen by 32 percent over the past five years - according to official government figures – meaning the least well-off consumers buy more frozen and processed food, which leads to an unhealthy diet. The retail price of processed food has risen 36 percent, including a 15 percent rise in the year to 2012.
Gaza: Calls for truce ignored as death toll rises
The UN-Secretary General has called for an immediate ceasefire as the number of Palestinian deaths reached ninety-two. Israeli airstrikes have continued for a sixth successive day, bombing eighty locations in Gaza overnight. Ban Ki-moon is set to arrive in Cairo to aid truce efforts after Egypt became the first to attempt to negotiate a ceasefire. Israeli media have reported a delegation from Israel have departed to Cairo to commence talks to stop the violence. Edgypt’s president Mohamed Morsi met with Khaled Meshaal, the political leader of Hamas, and Ramadan Shallah of Islamic Jihad as part of the mediation efforts.
Syria: Netherland and Germany may send missiles to Turkey
It is reported that the Netherlands and Germany are considering sending Patriot missiles to NATO ally Turkey which claims that it requires them to defend its border with Syria. The 560-mile border is tense with Syrian rebels reportedly operating on both sides.
Syria: government criticises ‘hostile’ France
The Syrian government have criticised the decision of the French government to host an ambassador from the opposition. France invited the National Coalition, the newly formed Syrian opposition bloc, to send an envoy to Paris, after President Francois Hollande met its leader, Ahmed Moaz al-Khatib. National Reconciliation Minister Ali Haidar told AFP in Tehran: “France is acting like a hostile nation.” Despite the French offer to host an envoy, Paris remained cautious on the issue of supplying weapons to rebels amid fears of the conflict spreading.
Syria: Iranian conference attempts to broker resolution
Iran hosted a conference in Tehran on Sunday seeking to help find a resolution in the Syrian civil war. Iran has been a strong supporter of President Assad and has accused western powers of fomenting violence in Syria by supporting rebel groups.
Tensions rise at Asian summit
It is reported that Japan has warned that tensions over the South China Sea row may undermine "peace and stability" in Asia. Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda has complained that host Cambodia has suppressed debate over the South China Sea, where China's territorial claims vie with those of neighbouring nations including Taiwan.
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