Scottish Independence Vote on Thursday

It’s already the 18th in the UK so there’s less than 24 hours left before the conclusion of the referendum on Scottish independence. I haven’t been following the debate that closely, but it looks like the most recent polls suggest that the “No” side has a slight edge.

Many people have been eagerly watching this because there are a number of other independence movements throughout Europe. Scotland seems to have the best chance of actually winning independence since the UK seems to actually allow secession votes without needing major constitutional changes.

I don’t have any particularly strong feelings either way about these votes, but I do find it interesting that a bare majority in a single referendum could be enough to make such permanent changes to a country. The history of secession in the US – where those trying to secede were willing to sacrifice hundreds of thousands of lives to maintain a stranglehold on political power and to enforce a brutal economic system – makes it difficult for me to not feel cynical about the whole endeavor.