For the first time yesterday I read the McCrone Report (I know, I should have read it sooner).
As I read it, I could feel myself becoming pretty angry at it.
For those of you who have read it, you will possibly sympathise with that, those of you that haven’t should read it.
Whether a pro-independence or pro-union person, there is no getting away from the contents of the report and how the deceit played upon the Scottish people by the hiding of its findings was very detrimental to the Scottish people. The whole basis for hiding it was summed up in the following text from the report.
Britain is now counting so heavily on North Sea oil to redress its balance of payments that it is easy to imagine England in dire straits without it. The oil prices since the Yom Kippur war make this a much more serious matter than could have been imagined before; and it is now likely that transfer of North Sea oil to Scottish ownership would occasion much bitterness in England if not an attempt to forcibly prevent it.
The report was written and researched in 1974 on behalf of the UK Government. It was composed by Professor Gavin McCrone who was employed at the Scotland Office (now the UK Government Office). The report was commissioned under a Conservative Government led by Edward Heath, just prior to the 1974 election which produced a hung parliament under Labours Harold Wilson.
The covering letter is the source of the oft-quoted phrase about “taking the wind out of the SNP’s sails”; Professor McCrone was here outlining what actions he believed would be necessary to prevent support for the SNP from growing further.
To put that into perspective, below is a running vote return for the SNP in Scotland prior to the commissioning of the report from 1955.
The nationalist vote was very much a concern to the UK Government in Whitehall, and it was clearly imperative that the SNP be stopped. The McCrone Report makes mention of this, it states:
If, in five years’ time North Sea oil is contributing massively to the UK budget, while the economic and social condition of West Central Scotland continues in the poor state that it is today, it would be hard to imagine conditions more favourable to the growth of support for the nationalist movement. Very determined steps to urgently transform economic conditions in Scotland will therefore be necessary and the Scottish people will have to be persuaded that their problems really have received the attention and expenditure they deserve if this outcome is to be avoided.
In other words, the UK Government must create some faux uplift in Scotland’s West Central Region to keep nationalism at bay.
Below is the chart just from 1974 to 1987 for the SNP vote across Scotland at General Elections.
Is it a coincidence that after the report’s conclusions were published ot Whitehall and the Scotland Office, that support for the SNP started to drop? Is it also a coincidence that the UK Government accused the SNP of paranoia when its leaders claimed it was being spied upon by government agents? This belief was eventually substantiated by declassified government files. These files proved that the government had in fact spied on the SNP in the 1950s. During the 1970s, the British government used both police and agents placed within trade unions to limit the growth of the SNP the best it could. The Labour Party, which controlled the government at the time and drew a great deal of support from Scotland, saw that the SNP had become much more than a protest vote. It is alleged that government interference is part of what helped bring about the collapse in support for the party in 1979 as detailed above. Labour continues to ridicule the SNP for their claims of government interference. “The SNP appears totally paranoid. All the evidence shows they are absolutely no threat whatsoever to the British state,” said a Labour spokesperson in response to the SNP’s complaints. Despite these words, the Labour government has had several files on the SNP sealed for fifty years, citing reasons of national security.
Odd isn’t it?
As time passed by, the SNP vote sort of plateaued out. Some elections up, some down, but fairly steady. After devolution and the Invasion of Iraq against Saddam Hussein, opinion started, again to shift in Scotland. Between 2003 and 2011 the below votes were cast for the SNP.
Scotland was, at this time talking again about the right to choose a different path. The UK Government under David Cameron was clearly advised that the Scottish people should be given the right to hold a referendum, and subsequently the Edinburgh Agreement was signed.
The McCrone Report makes mention of this rising issue in its summary back in 1974. The report states:
Wealth does not automatically mean full employment and the end of net emigration. But provided sensible policies are pursued, it is possible to see how this situation could be used to re-equip Scottish industry and renew outworn social capital thereby providing the expansion necessary to absorb Scotland’s excess labour and the increase in productivity required to raise incomes. Thus, for the first time since the Act of Union was passed, it can now be credibly argued that Scotland’s economic advantage lies in its repeal.
When this situation comes to be fully appreciated in the years ahead, it is likely to have a major impact on Scottish politics, since it is on social and political grounds alone that the case for retention of the union will in future have to be based.
As the rhetoric ramped up towards the independence referendum in 2014, the establishment in Whitehall were all too aware that support was actually growing, even though they had turned the campaign for Unionism into a political battle ground of SNP versus everyone else. Exactly what the McCrone Report highlighted needed to happen. Whitehall also pitted social classes against each other. Better Together, the official Unionist campaign, preached to the older conservative leaning social demographic that Pensions in an independent Scotland would be under threat. They also pitted against the younger, more Europhile group when they claimed leaving the UK meant they would leave the EU. This, again, was what the McCrone Report advised they should do. And it worked.
The referendum result was that 55% of Scotland chose to remain in the UK.
Whitehall, had for the time being been able to stifle the nationalist movement and hold onto Scotland.
Since the referendum in 2014, Whitehall is fully aware that nationalism was not going to shrink away like it did in the 1970s after it rose to the heights it did in 1974. There was only one thing that could be done to try and stop it growing and the demand for a second referendum to wane.
Split the demographic right down the middle, or at least try to and pit Scotland against the rUK. How would this be achieved?
Brexit will go down in Scottish history as the greatest deception ever played on the Scottish people, it will surpass the Act of Union as its sole aim, is to stifle the breakup of the United Kingdom and the Crown.
This is playing out at this moment. We have the Continuity Bill and we have a weak Labour opposition in Westminster who will not side with the remain voting citizens and the other nations of the UK have allowed Westminster to take control of their destiny.
To illustrate this, here is the chart of votes since the Referendum in 2014.
Interesting to see that it somewhat mirrors chart 2 above. Just as nationalism increases, something occurs to try and stop it.
The difference this time though is that Brexit was the wrong choice of the establishment to try and stop the independence movement. The only saving grace, which is what I believe is the ultimate aim, is that once we are out of the EU, if the Continuity Bill doesn’t hold up and Westminster can overturn any consent from the Scottish Parliament, you will see the removal of Devolution and a renewed Constitution which will bind Scotland to the UK forever.
I’ll leave you with this little bit from the McCrone Report. It may help you understand just what was at stake is the Scottish people were ever told about the reports contents and the UK Governments projections for an independent Scotland.
It must be concluded therefore that large revenues and balance of payments gains would indeed accrue to a Scottish Government in the event of independence provided that steps were taken either by carried interest or by taxation to secure the Government ‘take’. Undoubtedly this would banish any anxieties the Government might have had about its budgetary position or its balance of payments. The country would tend to be in chronic surplus to a quite embarrassing degree and its currency would become the hardest in Europe, with the exception perhaps of the Norwegian kroner. Just as deposed monarchs and African leaders have in the past used the Swiss franc as a haven of security, so now would the Scottish pound be seen as a good hedge against inflation and devaluation and the Scottish banks could expect to find themselves inundated with a speculative inflow of foreign funds.
Don’t fret too much about the Unionist statements of, ah but oil is running out, it’s on the decline, it’s volatile because every commodity is volatile and has its ups and down, but just remember that in 2011, Scottish Oil provided £35,000,000,000 to the UK balance of payments. That’s almost the entire annual block grant Scotland receives from Westminster.
To Download the McCrone Report, click mccronereport.
3 thoughts on “McCrone Report – UK Establishment Deciet!”
I’ve intended to read this for a long time, having now read it I understand my apprehension. Initially it made me angry, by the end, sad. What our country could have achieved had it not been for the deceit, the greed and the complete incompetence of the UK government.
However, what I’m left with is determination and hope, this was written before we had a successful food and drink industry, high tourism and a Scottish government investing in our future through homes, manufacturing and green energy to name but a few.
Of course the whole brexit debacle puts a different perspective on this report!
LikeLiked by 2 people
As the saying goes, “Fool me once, shame on you …” Hopefully “Never Again!”
LikeLiked by 1 person
[…] Macrone Report wasn’t kept secret for nothing. The media are 99% Unionist for […]