Listen to this article
Sir, Martin Wolf is right to highlight the transmission mechanisms between fiscal and monetary policy, and the inevitable constraints on the former if there is to be a sustainable currency union between the UK and Scotland (“If Scots keep the pound they forgo independence”, September 5). Given the importance to the Yes campaign of generous public spending and what they postulate will be a fairer society, one must suspect a wilful blindness in this regard. Surely the eurozone’s extended travails must be warning enough to anyone who would wish the fiscal and monetary connection away in the name of politics?
I suspect that there will be no real difference in the longer-term outcome, whoever carries the day. The absence of the Conservative party north of the border requires a political solution, which “devo-max” more than adequately addresses. Meanwhile the compromises that would likely be visited on an “independent” Scotland are such that any Yes vote would ultimately result in no more than a repackaged “devo-max”. Real independence has to mean total independence. That possibility is not being denied the people of Scotland by the UK government; it is not being offered by the Yes campaign as they know that voters have no interest in a future as “hydrocarbon hermits”.
A conundrum also presents itself to the Yes camp; if it is Tory economic policies they seek to evade, then voting Yes is more likely to result in a series of solid Conservative majority governments south of the new border. Conservative fiscal and monetary policies will then transmit themselves to Scotland via the currency union, in the manner Mr Wolf describes.
Mr Mark Burges Watson, Stanley, Hong Kong