I have never been a big fan of Gordon Brown. In fact, I've never voted Labour in my life. However, whatever my personal feelings, if I was advising Gordon Brown, this is the picture I would paint for him. Like him or loath him, if he is the man that saved the Union, this all becomes quite plausible. Watch out Salmond. The Clunking Fist of Brown isn't finished with you, or the SNP, just yet.
Military action might make us feel better about ourselves and it might even "degrade" Isis but it won't "destroy" it (to use Obama's preferred terminology). How will dropping bombs destroy the hate-filled ideology behind the terrorist group? How will air strikes prevent foreign fighters returning home to the west to carry out revenge attacks?
Scotland's story is also America's story more than we tend to realize, and the Scots' decision today will say more about the world at large than we might think.
The only poll worth watching was the final one. While commentators, business and markets have twitched and twittered with the gyrations of #indyref polls in the past month - NO has won this referendum by a clear margin. While David Cameron will breathe a huge sign of relief - a vote of no confidence is off the table from even his own side - you have to agree with SNP deputy leader Nicola Sturgeon - that "Scotland has changed forever" But that change is not just coming to Scotland - it now looks like a federal UK is on the cards.
It is up to all of us to carry on the flag of hope of a fair, more secure society for all across the whole of the UK. A new constitutional settlement is part of that. The prospect of hope for a better future from radical change in our approach to the economy and environment is another critical ingredient.
The people of Scotland have taught the rest of us an invaluable lesson. They have shown us that people do still care about the country they live in, its future, and how it is governed, and that they can become engaged, enthusiastic and passionate if they believe their views will make a real difference. So surely we can learn that lesson and build on it. Now it's time for the rest of us to demand that we too are given the same opportunity to make our voices heard, so that we too can have a say in what kind of country we and our children will live in.
We all know that the Scots didn't really want to choose full independence, don't we? We know that really, deep down, an option for the third way was the best option, right? Whatever happened to devo max? The old way of seeing the world in black or white, left or right, or on this case yes or no, is tired. We've all been tricked into thinking about this as an ultimatum. We've all been played by politicians who tell us they future can only be how they see it. It's not. We need to resist the temptation to try and knock lumps out of each other and draw dividing lines between ourselves.
Importantly for the UK as a whole, however, a yes vote would mean a long period of hugely complicated negotiations. The legal statuses, international affiliations, assets, debts and currency arrangements of the successor states would all have to be agreed...
People are waking up, and the BBC and the Labour Party can't stop them. History is within Scotland's grasp, a beautiful and inspiring climax; self-determination is possible. If it's a YES, we can see a great renaissance and a new age in Scotland. Maybe the next Alan McGee of the 21st Century won't have to go to London to make his mark in the world, and I believe in that.
The 20th century challenge was for Scotland to maintain its cultural identity while at the same time cooperating with the four nations of the U.K.. Now the challenge is even greater: to uphold cultural traditions and national identities in a world where there are no such things as nation-only solutions. By answering those who claim that independence can make a difference with policies that show interdependence can make the difference, Scotland can show the way forward by thinking big and not small.
I voted No but I suspect I did so for entirely distinct reasons than many of my fellow No-voters would wish, and many Yes-voters would imagine. These reasons are purely personal: I believe the following policy areas are the most crucial in improving UK society as a whole...
Though it was not our past more recently England has concretised individualised, responses to social problems. None more so than the 'split off' way children's homes have been discussed with an attendant burgeoning policy framework that sees them as almost another country.
Put simply, it may be better to downplay these murders than to allow them to dominate the narrative. This is far from a simple task - especially as the nature of social media has (rightly) weakened the ability of news organisations to control the debate. But any serious assessment of policy must recognise that this violence is a tool and Western policymakers are being manipulated into making rash judgements.
As a kid, I didn't understand why we could marry, pay tax, leave school and join the armed forces -- but not vote. It's funny to think that 15 years later, with the polls too close to call, 16 to 17 year olds may hold the key to Scotland's future.
In an increasingly integrated, globalised world, such isolationism curtails the freedom a nation needs to exercise the economic and trade decisions and activities needed for long-term economic prosperity and political success.
There is something visually disappointing about an island with borders. When the people of an island feel the need to draw lines between themselves, it seems like a failure of human nature. In light of the impending referendum I find myself asking does the world need another border? Is this not a backward step in the progressive advancement of humanity?
Vote 'no' for your future, and the future of your children, your grandchildren. Vote 'no' in solidarity with your friends and family across the UK. Vote 'no' to live in a safe, stable and prosperous nation. Vote 'no' to have the best of both worlds. And vote 'no' to be proud to be Scottish and proud to be British. Make the patriotic decision, and say 'thanks, but no thanks'.
Scotland can do us all a favour and help relegate to history all the centralised, top-down control. As if only the nice parts of London mattered. But it won't be easy. Scotland already has the problem of being an economy that is massed around its central belt. But that will not be solved 400 miles south.
Scotland is a country that I adore, but she is letting herself down. Scotland is having a tantrum and behaving like a petulant teenager. And like a petulant teenager, she is neither big nor strong enough to go it alone. Get over yourself Scotland. You are a small country, deal with it... What's so special about Scotland anyway? Well, a lot actually. I think it's one of the greatest nations in human history. For a small country, it has and continues to contribute a disproportionately large amount to the world. Scotland's offerings in science, medicine, technology, music, engineering, entertainment and art are unparalleled. That's not to mention the landscape, the cities, the drinks and the epic women. But that doesn't mean you have to break off and go it alone