21/08/2014 Newsnight


21/08/2014

A special programme live from the Edinburgh Festival. Looking at the Scottish independence debate through the prism of Scottish arts and culture. With Kirsty Wark.


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Welcome to Newsnight, live on stage at the Edinburgh Festival.

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Four weeks today, Scotland votes to stay in the Union or to go it alone.

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Tonight, with a stellar cast of performers, writers, and thinkers

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from both sides of the border, including the actor Simon Callow,

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Rory Bremner, Val McDiermed, Linda Colley and Scotland's most eminent

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All that, and stand by for the newest

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and shortest lived TV talent show - the snappily titled, Newsnight

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It's not independence you are talking about. You are talking about

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divorce. Divorce is expensive, especially with England, she is

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going to bleed you dry. # To be ourselves again... #

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All hail our resident house band, Federation of the Disco Pimp.

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It's a wonderful coincidence that the

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referendum on Scottish independence is happening just weeks after this

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Where better to take the temperature of the Union than the Athens

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As the independence debate rages in town halls and villages all

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across Scotland, Edinburgh is jam packed with writers, performers,

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thinkers and clowns - many talking about the vote and what

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A festival city with a fringe on top.

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But is it growing out of hand, as some of the critics maintain?

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Well, this year, Alec, we have 39, which is quite a record number.

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Now there are more than 3,000 in the organised chaos of Edinburgh

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Cultural and political conversations about the referendum are happening

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all over the capital, on stage and on the streets.

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I get asked for my opinion all the time, which of course I don't give.

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You don't have to be on the television to get asked

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When you talk to the visitors, what are they asking you about?

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Well, they can't believe that we're not independent in the first place.

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This campaign is all hinged on one stupid two letter word "if."

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Shouldn't you be campaigning for a No vote?

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Even Westminster politicians can't contain themselves.

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This is the most important decision we will ever take.

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Nothing we've ever decided on before has been of this magnitude.

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If this is seeming just a bit male,

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one lunchtime referendum show was all about women and the Yes vote.

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Initially, we met women on doorsteps who said.

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We've now moved on from that so much, in terms of people feeling,

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women feeling, that there's absolutely a point in voting.

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This is a different type of question that we're being asked.

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But are women, who are potential Yes voters, being turned off by one man?

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It's a danger recognised by Alex Salmond,

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who has now said he will be willing to disappear from the picture

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Another well-known face is trying his hand at stand-up.

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Unsurprisingly, he delivers a volley of infective about the referendum,

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But off stage, he just can't help himself.

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If Scotland's independent will you still go fishing in Scotland?

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I fully expect that once there are watchtowers along the River Tweed,

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as I fully expect there will be in the event of Scottish independence,

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that one will merely flash one's passport and proceed on one's way.

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There's a galaxy of voices at the Festival,

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but when the last actor packs up on the Royal Mile the whole of

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Scotland will still get to play its part in the drama of the century.

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Joining us, the comedian, Rory Bremner, the actor, Simon Callow,

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and the writer, Val McDermid - all appearing at the Festival this year.

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CHEERING AND APPLAUSE First of all, Rory. Great house band. Great house

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band, Disco Pimps. You can't say the name or that happens. Paxman did had

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that. Are you managing to get a whole lot of humour out of the

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referendum at the Festival? Yes it is. The atmosphere is Fred

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tremendous. The independence thing was going, I was in Edinburgh this

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year. A woman said, this is something I've waited for all my

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life. Hundreds of years we have been waiting for this. She was talking

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about the tram system. The pandas, have got in. She is pregnant. I had

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it down as an undecided. Last year she was, no, thanks. This year she

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is yes. This is something the SNP is doing. He will need to impregnate

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every voter. He promised to withdraw?

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Lower the tone. He thought he was harming the debate? I can't follow

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that! Do your own jokes, Kirsty. You have come back to Scotland from a

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time away. Living in Edinburgh again. You have recently come out as

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a Yes supporter. So have you been enjoying the Festival from a

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different perspective now having made that decision? I feel relaxed

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having made the decision. I spent a long time in, this week I think

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this, this week I think this. I have made a decision and feel comfortable

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there. Everywhere you go for it the Festival, or this country, it crops

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up in every show, every comedy routine. What made up your mind,

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comedy, politics, what was it? The fact the politics couldn't give us

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any straight answers. Every time you spoke to a politician you got a

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different answer. I thought about the way that the real world works.

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When you come to the end of a relationship, when you want

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different things, when your aspirations point in different

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directions, you don't stay together because you are worried who will get

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what when you split the CD collection. You make the decision

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and make the arrangements afterwards. I look at what the

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sporment has done since we had the Scottish Parliament. The decisions

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they made about education, health and social care were in tune with

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how I felt about the world, much more so than what happens at

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Westminster. Not only you your son is enjoining the Fringe and talking

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about the referendum Yes. He lives in England most of the time. He has

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been having a great time at all the comedy. Especially those with

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swearing. Simon Callow you are a veteran of the Edinburgh Festival,

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how do you feel this year? What do you feel about the atmosphere around

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the referendum stuff. It's in stand-up and Dedicoat indicated

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plays as well? ? It is. It's all encompassing it goes beyond and

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above that. A lot of people here don't know anything about it at all

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or think much about it at all. They are here to do a show or see lots of

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shows. The show that I'm doing has absolutely nothing to do with modern

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Britain or Scotland, apparently. It's 2,000 years old. The There is

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something informing the air at the moment. I feel melancholy to adapt

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the image that I was given, I feel like a child one of whose parents

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wants to divorce and the other doesn't. There is a kind of

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tremendous longing for it somehow to stay together on my part. Is that

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why you are a signature to the letter from lots of thespians and

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writers saying - please don't go? Absolutely. In my first job as a an

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Octoberor was in this city, in the Assembly Hall, where I'm playing

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now, 40 years ago. I worked here for many years in all sorts of mediums.

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Scotland, particularly perhaps Edinburgh, feel absolutely part of

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me. I feel part of it. I feel that if we were to break up, I would be

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immensely diminished by it. It's totally polarising isn't it, unlike

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the don't knows. A general election all over the country we have

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different choices. Do you think celebrities should be involved in

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this? Do you think comedians have a good role in this?

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thing. Better together, she sells bras, so it is a interest -- it is

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in her interest. I think there is a space, and comedy provides it.

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Andrew Maxwell, brilliant comedian, he did a wonderful show... Oh, we

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are under attack. And if you are wondering, and watching this in

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Gaza. People ask about getting into

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something less controversial like wind farms. When I started doing

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jokes last year, I was doing a documentary. I was doing something

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about this 360 degrees view and she was saying, one day, all of this

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will be mine, and the next thing, it sounds like you go on the SNP

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website and you get that. I voted for Alex Salmond, people say, don't

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insult me. You don't get in -- get any of that. It's important

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politicians should be part of laughter. The worry is that part of

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the Yes campaign does lack the humour. I think it is important we

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put the humour back in. Politicians should be held to account by comedy

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and political means. I did not fight in two world wars... Well, I didn't

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fight in two world wars. But my father did, and if Alex Salmond or

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Alistair Darling have only got one ball, and the other is in the Usher

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Hall, we should be allowed to sing about it. It's an important part of

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democracy and we should not allow this to be a humour free zone. I

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know this is heartbreaking for you, Rory, the referendum is about the

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politicians. It's not Alex Salmond's referendum, or Alistair

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Darling's, it is our referendum. We are the ones who make the decision.

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Whatever happens, we have to rethink the future. Whatever happens on

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September the 18th, there will be a realignment in Scottish politics

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because people have been energised and people who have been in gauged

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are not -- who have been engaged art doing so in a way they never have

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been before. Was it that England should have become more engaged in

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the conversation? Should they have been more engaged? I think so. Most

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English people think it is unthinkable. There is a general

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feeling it won't happen. If it does happen, we are a different nation

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than them. We, the English, are a different nation, and the British

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will be different. We are both diminished, in my view, but that's

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another story. I'm sorry it has come to this. I wanted to see the

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Scottish parliament given more powers. I was born and raised in

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Edinburgh and I am a patriotic Scot and I have a house in Scotland. And

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you have a boat. Absolutely. -- afloat. You have to choose between

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head and heart, and the arguments are not finally cut. IU leaning in

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one direction or another? My life has been about having the best of

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both worlds. My Channel four series is filmed in London and a lot of

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work I do, but I feel at home in Scotland, so where does it put me?

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On the final question of how comedy and drama and all of this informs

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political debate, is the drama to agitprop rather than giving you a

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choice question one of the comedians did half of the show as yes and half

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as no, and drama doesn't do that. Some drama has made its mind up

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before you walk into the theatre but there is a lot of stuff that hasn't

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because people haven't made their minds up and a lot of people still

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don't want to think about this. One of the reasons there has been a

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renaissance in Scottish literature over the last 20 or 25 years has

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been because we are talking about ourselves, to ourselves. How do we

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see ourselves question mark this is a discussion the country has had a

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lot longer than the last few month -- how do see ourselves?

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Thank you very much for that. For now, everyone, Val, Simon and Rory.

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What is Scotland in the 21st century?

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One of the big drivers towards independence has been

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a growing cultural confidence, and a desire to express that through

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But the roots of that sense of difference from Scotland's

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bigger neighbour go back a long, long, way, as Allan Little reports.

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What is Scottish national identity, and how did it break out of it

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kilted straitjacket to be shaped by the times we live in now? The old

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stereotype was born here, at Abbotsford, the country home of Sir

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Walter Scott. He summoned this Scotland from his imagination,

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romantic, exotic Scotland for English consumption, no longer

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savage, wild and lawless. Scott was very clear when he wrote his first

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novel, Waverley, that what he was doing was introducing Scottish

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readers to their own history and English readers to Scottish history.

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There is something fake about it though, isn't there? There is

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something fictitious, not fake, but fictitious. Even being here, under

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this wonderful roof that looks like a wooden chapel, it isn't, it is

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papier-mache. The whole place is a theatrical set. But there is

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something good about that. The idea that our identity is not something

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fixed, but something changeable. We know that national identities are

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constructs. The problem is, who is brave enough now to create new

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constructs? Victorian Britain loved this manufactured Scotland and

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bought it wholesale. This Scotland sat comfortably in the prospering

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British union. # Donald, where's your trousers? But so many people

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wondered why there was this representation of Scottish nurse on

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its TV screens. It did not know anyone who did this kind of thing --

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Scottish nurse. When you look at the way that Scottish national identity

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is expressed, especially by the popular performing arts, what did it

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look like question mark kilts, haggis, the White Heather club. --

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what did it look like? As a young person growing up in Scotland it did

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not relate to me. I did not look out and see anybody that reflected me at

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all. That sense of what Scotland was was carried around the world by the

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British Empire, the canny Scot and the dour Scot, landing on every

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shore. They dressed in tartan and toasted Robert Burns every January

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and sang sweet, sentimental memories about longing, loss and regret. For

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a Scotland that did not really exist. A Scotland that was a

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romantic, imagined constructs. That Scotland was safe, tame and knew its

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place in the greater scheme of things. It had a rebellious past

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that could be saluted and celebrated as long as that rebelliousness sake

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-- stayed safely in the past. And that Scotland survived into our own

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time. Think of Private Fraser in dad 's Army. What is a canny Scot

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anyway? And can an Englishman ever be canny? One Saturday night, at the

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age of 15 or something, onto the television came a version of, and I

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didn't go to the theatre, the John McGraw play. Prepare the people to

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make way for the sheep. It drew a direct line between the Highland

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clearances of the 19th century and the sudden, catastrophic decline of

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heavy industry. This was a powerful new voice in Scottish culture. And

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it changed my life, really. I had never seen my own culture and my own

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country reflected back to me in the wake that it did. There was a

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re-claiming of who we were Ulster the cheesy it was an angry plate --

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of who we were. The Cheviot was an angry play. 70% of the population

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owned 84% of the wealth. Scottish national identity began to wrap

:20:01.:20:03.

itself in the cause of social justice. In the idea of resistance

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to unaccountable wealth and power, imposing its will from outside. This

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Scotland was also irreverent, self mocking and hilariously funny. Billy

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Connelly, who had been a Glasgow shipyard welder, spoke for a

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Scotland that now began to eclipse the old stereotype. That is the

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white heather image,, I hope so. What is it you object to? The

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English view that we have of the Scottish? The kilt on the sporran.

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It is completely false, the wee cottage in the Highlands, the purple

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Heather, it's not on. The guys who sing it, they live in the West End

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of Glasgow. They don't know what they are singing. A wee cottage in

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the Highland will cost to about 40 grand. It is not really on any more.

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This was the Scotland that emerged to replace the White Heather club

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and the Green Hills of Tyree. This Scotland was urban and it spoke in a

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voice and with the wit and wisdom of the cities, of Glasgow in

:21:23.:21:26.

particular. It was dismayed by what was happening and felt dispossessed,

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abandoned by Britain as the industries that once serviced the

:21:32.:21:34.

empires collapsed. This Scotland was angrier, less tame, less docile,

:21:35.:21:39.

less reconciled to its place in the greater British scheme of things.

:21:40.:21:44.

This Scotland felt much, much less British. Country, Scotland. It is a

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peat bog, it is a dark forest. It is a cauldron at the base of a coal

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mine. If you are lucky, it is a bonny medal. Liz Lochhead is the

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national poet of Scotland, and one of the country's most celebrated

:22:10.:22:13.

artists. In the 1980s she began to write in Scots as well as English.

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Scottish kids had always been punished for using Scots idioms and

:22:20.:22:23.

locutions in school. Standard English was bumped into you. But by

:22:24.:22:28.

the 1980s, publishers wanted literature to reflect the demotic

:22:29.:22:34.

speech of ordinary folk. They realised there was a market for

:22:35.:22:38.

things that talk about ourselves in our own terms, and with the first

:22:39.:22:42.

failed referendum, there really was a sense of depression, which then

:22:43.:22:47.

expressed itself in a sense of let's get on with it and a revival of

:22:48.:22:51.

Scottish identity. In the visual arts as well, you

:22:52.:23:02.

sensed a gradual decoupling. Ross Sinclair is one group of young

:23:03.:23:06.

artists who emerged from the Glasgow School of Art in the 1980s. In this

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installation, installation, he, like Walter Scott, addresses the

:23:12.:23:15.

manufactured nature of national identity. From the fake grass to the

:23:16.:23:20.

fake rocks and fake waterfalls. But he says, for his generation of

:23:21.:23:23.

artists, Scotland's access to the wider world no longer lies through

:23:24.:23:30.

London alone. London still has its straw and it is still fantastic. I

:23:31.:23:33.

show down there now and then, and it's great, but there are all kinds

:23:34.:23:37.

of other relationships with Europe, Berlin, Scandinavia, the US, China,

:23:38.:23:44.

Africa, wherever. I'm just thinking of projects that are going at the

:23:45.:23:48.

moment. These are the kind of relationships that are not based on

:23:49.:23:52.

some historical premise that has this sort of built-in power

:23:53.:23:55.

relationship. These are kind of new, fresh relationships. Horizontal,

:23:56.:24:01.

organic things. A feeling that anything can happen. Walter Scott

:24:02.:24:14.

conjured a Scottish identity that could fit in a wider British

:24:15.:24:19.

context. Scotland's artists had been pushing at the boundaries for 40

:24:20.:24:20.

years. Rory Bremner is still with us - he's

:24:21.:24:30.

leaning towards a 'no' vote. We're also joined by the writer Damian

:24:31.:24:34.

Barr, who is firmly in the no camp, the actor and writer David Hayman

:24:35.:24:37.

and the historian Sir Tom Devine - Last but not least, Linda Colley -

:24:38.:24:40.

who doesn't have a horse in the race but is perhaps the

:24:41.:24:44.

greatest historian of the Union. play, which you appear in, which

:24:45.:25:05.

talks about Scottish independence. How much is your decision about

:25:06.:25:10.

identity, heart over head, as about anything else? It's very simple,

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it's not necessarily about identity. I want to live in a better country.

:25:15.:25:19.

A country that's a small, progressive, European, peace loving

:25:20.:25:24.

country with social justice and democracy and, at its heart. Whether

:25:25.:25:28.

I would be Scottish or English Orwell shall it wouldn't make a

:25:29.:25:31.

difference to me. I think we have to improve the quality of life for all

:25:32.:25:35.

of us. I think our values are getting warped around the world. I

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think we have a wonderful opportunity, we are a separate

:25:39.:25:42.

nation, to be able to create a new paradigm for how we all live

:25:43.:25:46.

together. Damian Barr can you put the same passion into the argument

:25:47.:25:52.

for Union? Nobody wants a small, toxic back word looking country

:25:53.:25:55.

which isn't progressing in the world. I want the same things. I

:25:56.:26:00.

disagree about how we achieve them. I think the best way is to stay in

:26:01.:26:03.

the Union. I'm a citizen of Scotland, I'm not resident in

:26:04.:26:07.

Scotland. My vote has been taken away. The I'm one of the nearly

:26:08.:26:11.

800,000 people who were born here not allowed to have a say in the

:26:12.:26:16.

future. That makes me incredibly angry. Do you think the decision

:26:17.:26:21.

would be influenced heavily by those outside the country It's great the

:26:22.:26:25.

country is talking about it, it affects the whole country. It's

:26:26.:26:29.

great tonight I get in the cab over here it's the first thing that comes

:26:30.:26:33.

up. It's exciting. I don't think we need to break the Union up to do new

:26:34.:26:37.

things in Scotland. The Government has many powers it doesn't use. The

:26:38.:26:41.

Scottish Government could raise incomes tax by 3p and spend it on

:26:42.:26:47.

the arts and NHS, they haven't done it. Why do they want more powers?

:26:48.:26:51.

You nailed your colours to the mass, saying you were going to vote Yes,

:26:52.:26:55.

what was that journey? Is what were the points on that journey?

:26:56.:27:00.

Reflection. Thinking about where we are, in terms of my own profession,

:27:01.:27:05.

that is history. It is seeing where Scotland is likely to go. Seeing

:27:06.:27:11.

what I think is the quite massive decline in the Union connection.

:27:12.:27:16.

Also, seeing the potential. Also, particularly, I think, we're now a

:27:17.:27:21.

mature nation. We are now a mature nation, in terms of identity, as has

:27:22.:27:27.

already been said this evening. We're also got, I think, a much more

:27:28.:27:32.

resilient economic system. It's not necessarily the best in the world.

:27:33.:27:36.

It's certainly resilient in terms of what it used to be as late as the

:27:37.:27:42.

1970s, 19'80s. The other important thing is, if you have an entity like

:27:43.:27:46.

that, a collective sentiment, that as a nation, you are still

:27:47.:27:53.

independent, as we are, because the Scottish Parliament, despite the

:27:54.:27:55.

number of very good things it has done, is actually still dependant on

:27:56.:28:00.

a block grant from the other country. The final thing I would say

:28:01.:28:05.

is, the difference... I mean, both countries, England and Scotland,

:28:06.:28:10.

have got similar, almost identical social problems of inequality and

:28:11.:28:15.

the rest. But there are developing different political cultures and

:28:16.:28:20.

voting patterns between England and Scotland which, in my view, cannot

:28:21.:28:27.

really be dealt with exception an amicable release between the two

:28:28.:28:32.

countries. Linda Colley, are the historian of the Union, do you see

:28:33.:28:37.

that conjectory differently Well, I do. I mean, you can... Nationalism

:28:38.:28:47.

tends to create an other against which it can define itself. The so,

:28:48.:28:52.

it's tempting to say - oh, England is different. English politics are

:28:53.:28:56.

different. Identity is different? Identity is different. But, you

:28:57.:29:00.

know, English politics aren't always different you look at voting

:29:01.:29:04.

patterns in the north-east of England. There is hardly any

:29:05.:29:10.

Conservatives there. And, I think most countries, like most human

:29:11.:29:15.

beings, contain multiple identities. I think that's very healthy. I think

:29:16.:29:23.

one of the challenges of periods of political excitement is there is a

:29:24.:29:28.

temptation to overstreamline identity. The I think we need to

:29:29.:29:36.

keep it multivarious. Far too binary - I think Scotland retains that

:29:37.:29:40.

number of identities from the local to the Scottish to the

:29:41.:29:42.

international. What is the sensibility that is different?

:29:43.:29:46.

Actually, I would welcome the north of England joining us.

:29:47.:29:51.

APPLAUSE Because, this is an issue, you know,

:29:52.:29:55.

quite seriously, ladies and gentlemen, between the southern of

:29:56.:30:01.

England, particularly south of the Severn Trent line, the Metro Poland

:30:02.:30:04.

some parts of the south-east, the area you know well, Kirsty, from

:30:05.:30:10.

your travels. That is the essential difficult recipesal. Let me talk to

:30:11.:30:14.

Rory. You know the area well. This is your territory? I think there is

:30:15.:30:17.

a problem at Westminster. There is a problem with England. I would be in

:30:18.:30:20.

favour of seeing a more Federal United Kingdom. There is, that is a

:30:21.:30:24.

problem. I don't necessarily, as I have been thinking about this, think

:30:25.:30:28.

Scotland splitting up from the rest of the United Kingdom is the answer

:30:29.:30:31.

to that question. Yesterday, for example, the headline in the

:30:32.:30:35.

newspaper was a poll amongst English people, the English were polled

:30:36.:30:40.

asked about it. If Scotland vote for independence we wouldn't them to

:30:41.:30:46.

keep the pound. If they don't vote for independence we want their

:30:47.:30:49.

public spending cut. You are setting a nation against itself. Alex

:30:50.:30:53.

Salmond might say - this is the sovereign will of the Scottish

:30:54.:30:57.

people. English people will say, sod you then. Damian Barr, do you see

:30:58.:31:03.

this discussion, in a way, as being corrosive of the relationship, no

:31:04.:31:05.

matter what happens? Absolute slid. It's hard to find positive things

:31:06.:31:10.

about it at this stage. So many of the English people I know living in

:31:11.:31:14.

Brighton people are like - don't go. Don't leave us. Clutching at you as

:31:15.:31:18.

you walk out the door. The more radical thing to, do the braver

:31:19.:31:22.

thing to do, is to stay and actually be radical within the Union. Let's

:31:23.:31:27.

not forget Scotland can be a force for good for the other constituent

:31:28.:31:32.

countries in the Union help affect change. It's not all about us. David

:31:33.:31:38.

Hayman About 10 years ago, John Prescott was Deputy Leader of the

:31:39.:31:41.

Labour Party. He offered the north-east of England atomorrow

:31:42.:31:47.

mouse power, devolved power, it was unanimously rejected. I spent the

:31:48.:31:51.

last two summers doing a TV series in Newcastle. They have changed

:31:52.:31:55.

their minds. If that offer was on the table today they would accept it

:31:56.:31:59.

and say yes. That backs up Tom's argument, let us devolve everything

:32:00.:32:03.

away from London. It's like a great suction. Just sucking wealth and

:32:04.:32:09.

talent and people. The That is an argument for devolution rather than

:32:10.:32:14.

for independence. Tom, you are a historian, Scottish identity were

:32:15.:32:19.

during the enlightenment with Adam Smith. David human. That was under

:32:20.:32:23.

the Union. That is the thing... I don't want to have to make this

:32:24.:32:27.

decision. This is the thing. I have been wrestling with it all along.

:32:28.:32:32.

Linda? Yeah. One of the many mistakes David Cameron has made was

:32:33.:32:37.

not to include devo max as an option.

:32:38.:32:41.

APPLAUSE Because one of the repercussions has

:32:42.:32:47.

been to polarise. The reason why I'm part Welsh, part Irish, part

:32:48.:32:51.

English, I'm not a Scot, I don't have a vote this September, but I'd

:32:52.:32:54.

actually find it difficult to know which way to go because I don't want

:32:55.:32:59.

the status quo. I don't want Scottish succession. What I'd like

:33:00.:33:05.

is devo max in this country as an integral part of a constitutional

:33:06.:33:11.

reordering and reimagining of the UK. That is what you wanted at first

:33:12.:33:17.

Tom Devine, it wasn't there It's not simply Cameron. Come Ron, I agree

:33:18.:33:23.

with you, made a major error not allowing this. There were reasons

:33:24.:33:28.

why he made that error. In a sense also, Alex Salmond and the SNP may

:33:29.:33:32.

also have made an error because they didn't go for a gradualist approach

:33:33.:33:41.

to their potential goal. He may well regret that because I know, in the

:33:42.:33:47.

internal councils of the Scottish National Party there was discussion

:33:48.:33:52.

about first having a vote over Defoe max, which would have delivered a

:33:53.:33:56.

huge majority. Bedding it down in five years' time coming down and

:33:57.:33:59.

asking for the next one. A lot of people, if there is a no vote --

:34:00.:34:05.

devo, will say that was a bridge too far. A gamble too quickly. Better

:34:06.:34:11.

for a gradualist approach to take place. Back to Linda's point. If on

:34:12.:34:16.

that fateful morning in September we wake up and there is a No vote. I

:34:17.:34:20.

hope there is a maximum Yes vote as well. That will create the kind of

:34:21.:34:26.

scenario where you can then move into Federalist or devo max

:34:27.:34:31.

conversations. On that point, David Hayman, do you think the danger is,

:34:32.:34:35.

whatever way it goes, say it goes No, that the Yes campaigners have

:34:36.:34:39.

invested so much emotionally in it it will be a huge downer for you and

:34:40.:34:43.

it will be a real shuddering problem for people that wanted that, as in a

:34:44.:34:49.

way it was cultural in 1949? I don't it will be a shuddering problem.

:34:50.:34:54.

What has been exciting about the last two years, the levels of

:34:55.:34:58.

debate, the levels of debate have been extraordinary. People are

:34:59.:35:01.

engaging the politics in a profound way for the first time in their

:35:02.:35:05.

lives, young people, old people. It has been energising and exciting to

:35:06.:35:08.

hear all this. Wonderful progressive ideas have gone around. There is a

:35:09.:35:11.

force that has been unleashed. I don't think that force will go away.

:35:12.:35:16.

Even if it is a No vote and we are disappointed. I think we will come

:35:17.:35:20.

back to it. Whatever happens the Union has already changed. The Union

:35:21.:35:26.

has changed historically. The Union always has changed. This would be

:35:27.:35:32.

its most radical change. With have our own law. We have our own

:35:33.:35:36.

education system. We have our own church and language and weather, as

:35:37.:35:40.

we have all experienced this summer. I feel like - I can't really see

:35:41.:35:44.

what is to be gay gained I can see lots of what is to be lost. I feel

:35:45.:35:49.

we should be trying to finded common ground - There is a lot missing on

:35:50.:35:56.

your list that is sovereignty. The capacity to decide what is right -

:35:57.:36:04.

We have our own Parliament. Yes that Parliament is dependent for over 80%

:36:05.:36:10.

of its income from south of the border. You are sitting there

:36:11.:36:14.

listening to this. I wonder what you think, in a kind of way, whether

:36:15.:36:20.

Scotland. Is this a conjectory, the same way that devolution to this has

:36:21.:36:25.

been a conjectory, actually if there is a No vote would it be like

:36:26.:36:32.

(inaudible) referendum. Is it a conversation that will keep going.

:36:33.:36:35.

If there is a No vote the governance of the United Kingdom stays the

:36:36.:36:45.

same? I think some of this being a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity puts

:36:46.:36:49.

it to extensively. I think this is going to be a rolling debate. You

:36:50.:36:57.

know, there may be, if we get No this time, there may be pressure for

:36:58.:37:01.

another referendum 10 years on, 15 years on. We don't know. What I am

:37:02.:37:09.

concerned about, what does worry me, is that nationalism historically is

:37:10.:37:16.

a very volatile emotion. It's a very contagious emotion. One has to be

:37:17.:37:25.

careful that relationships in this large island, at the moment called

:37:26.:37:29.

Great Britain, we main as amicable as possible. I rather worry that

:37:30.:37:35.

that had may not remain the case. Do you think that, David? I have been

:37:36.:37:41.

amicable. If you remember, you don't know before the Commonwealth Games

:37:42.:37:47.

Team England were counselled how to deal with boos and jeers when they

:37:48.:37:53.

come to Scotland for". At Celtic Park 40,000 people gave them the

:37:54.:37:57.

most loving, warmest welcome. I was so proud of my fellow Scots. I think

:37:58.:38:02.

that is the level of love and respect we have for each other. I

:38:03.:38:05.

think that will always be there. Coming to the end of this part of

:38:06.:38:09.

the debate. I want to run round in an unscientific matter. How do you

:38:10.:38:15.

think it will go, Rory? Well, the polls would suggest - depends on how

:38:16.:38:19.

you look at the polls. They are suggesting about sort of 55-45 or

:38:20.:38:26.

something. The nationalists say the polls are narrowing. The Unionists

:38:27.:38:37.

say the polls are widening. Nigel Farage says, why ask the Poles, they

:38:38.:38:43.

don't live here! Thank you Rory Bremner for that.

:38:44.:38:48.

Newsnight was keen to flex its cultural muscle here

:38:49.:38:51.

So back in May we launched a contest to find the most brilliant

:38:52.:38:55.

artistic rendition of the Scottish independence debate.

:38:56.:38:57.

We received dozens of entries from musicians, stand-ups and performers.

:38:58.:38:59.

It fell to Steve Smith to separate the wheat from the chaff and,

:39:00.:39:02.

here in Edinburgh, with our peachy panel of judges, to pick a winner.

:39:03.:39:29.

spotting comedians and musicians willing to appear under the auspices

:39:30.:39:34.

of Newsnight. Nobody said it was going to be diesel. -- easel. Have

:39:35.:39:43.

they got something to say about the referendum? Something the rest of us

:39:44.:39:47.

might enjoy listening to? And by the way, are there any venues going

:39:48.:39:53.

begging to help you out with the 3000 shows. The Queen Dome of the

:39:54.:39:59.

famous pleasance. Let's do the show right here. Only the creme de la

:40:00.:40:08.

creme have made it to the home of variety, and now they get just one

:40:09.:40:14.

chance to impress the judges. The man who puts to rest into

:40:15.:40:17.

referendum, Arthur Smith, followed by the talented and popular

:40:18.:40:24.

stand-up, Janie Godley, and more intellectual Alistair Brom Hannah

:40:25.:40:26.

McGill. Your judges, ladies and gentlemen. -- more intellectual

:40:27.:40:41.

ballast. On the way, the show stoppers, more Gilbert and Sullivan

:40:42.:40:54.

meet the referendum. # we can't we leave that all behind with

:40:55.:40:56.

Bannockburn and foreign I thought it was absolutely lovely.

:40:57.:41:04.

If I ever want to hear three English people beg from me, I will have

:41:05.:41:09.

these three. For me, there were too many words. Thereau a huge number of

:41:10.:41:16.

words flying past. -- there are a huge number of words. With military

:41:17.:41:21.

precision the Edinburgh Tattoo, the stagehands set up for the next term.

:41:22.:41:28.

OK, Scotland, focus. This is your big moment. It's not independent you

:41:29.:41:31.

are talking about, you are talking about divorce. And divorce is

:41:32.:41:34.

expensive, especially with England, because she's going to bleed you

:41:35.:41:38.

dry. Because she has Wales to support, and Wales ain't never can

:41:39.:41:43.

get a job. And what's the cheapest way to get through any divorce? Have

:41:44.:41:48.

the second marriage lined up. I say, OK, independent Scotland, who in the

:41:49.:41:52.

neighbourhood will you get married to question the island, she's broke.

:41:53.:41:57.

Iceland, she's bankrupt, France, she's a slut. You're going to be

:41:58.:42:03.

looking at the next UN conference at the singles bar getting hit on by

:42:04.:42:08.

North Korea. Is it natural commentary territory? You made it

:42:09.:42:13.

seem so. -- comedy territory. In this country, yes, but the rest of

:42:14.:42:17.

the world has no idea where it is. Who is being sick to death about

:42:18.:42:22.

being asked about voting in the Scottish independence debate?

:42:23.:42:24.

Together at last, the Scottish referendum. How will you vote? And

:42:25.:42:31.

sock puppets. They are a bit like Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling.

:42:32.:42:35.

This is what I thought, too angry little creatures sniping at each

:42:36.:42:38.

other. Strangely familiar if you've watched the TV debate. And Hillary

:42:39.:42:44.

Fox brought her ukelele stylings to an affectionate parody of a classic

:42:45.:42:51.

song from the rock canon. # what about the oil? Do we get to keep the

:42:52.:42:57.

pound? Will you get your own defence Force and get it off the ground? #

:42:58.:43:02.

now is the time for making your mind up. # go one out and vote and make

:43:03.:43:10.

your mind up. She is absolutely right, we should be making our mind

:43:11.:43:14.

up, but like most Scottish people I will wait until the day and see how

:43:15.:43:19.

the weather is. You know that if you do well here, you might go on to the

:43:20.:43:23.

judges houses and you might go back to balance with Arthur. That is the

:43:24.:43:28.

best offer I have had today -- bal. I think they have been very good,

:43:29.:43:33.

and they've all had a go, as my mother would say. I am Scottish, so

:43:34.:43:37.

we will wait to see the whole picture and then we will make a

:43:38.:43:43.

decision. Yes, it's the Newsnight Edinburgh referendum review, and

:43:44.:43:45.

this might be the closest we get today to a boy band. The Walk

:43:46.:43:50.

Mischief. # An independent Scotland is a

:43:51.:43:54.

better Scotland # We've got Edinburgh castle and

:43:55.:43:56.

Stirling Castle # And Glasgow Castle and Elgin

:43:57.:44:10.

Interesting what lads can do. This is a salutary distillation of the

:44:11.:44:32.

important issues, the things they will take away in a big fan if we

:44:33.:44:37.

vote no. How important is it for you guys to win this talent show today?

:44:38.:44:42.

We all quit our jobs today to be here. So if we don't win, it would

:44:43.:44:47.

be quite catastrophic for us and our girlfriends. # the thorn is

:44:48.:44:58.

withdrawn. Is it? It is. The former BBC Moscow correspondent, Angus

:44:59.:45:02.

Roxburgh. They say in every battled reporter there is a song and dance

:45:03.:45:07.

man bursting to get out. # to be ourselves again. # to be ourselves

:45:08.:45:19.

again. # Be ourselves again. It's a lovely warm, kindly sentiment that

:45:20.:45:22.

we could do it without spittle rancour, but it's been proven that

:45:23.:45:25.

is not the case, but it's nice to hold out for. To be ourselves again,

:45:26.:45:34.

so, have you not been yourself? We don't feel ourselves at the moment.

:45:35.:45:39.

I've not been myself all day. If you don't vote in the UK, it's not that

:45:40.:45:42.

you don't care, you're just exhausted. Because you are voting

:45:43.:45:46.

all the time. You have X Factor, Big Brother, Britain's got talent. There

:45:47.:45:49.

is something called a by-election, which I think is a late night show

:45:50.:45:53.

on Channel five. I have followed all of these issues and American

:45:54.:45:58.

politics, because they are more exciting, because we have got guns.

:45:59.:46:03.

You stuck around all day for us, is it because it was raining or it

:46:04.:46:07.

meant the world to you? This is the big moment. Everybody knows that

:46:08.:46:10.

comedy on Newsnight is the best varies. , acerbic and he will

:46:11.:46:17.

probably come fourth or fifth. That is the first steer we have had of

:46:18.:46:24.

the judges thinking. # home is where the heart is. # That is where we

:46:25.:46:33.

belong. # Nothing can divide is. Were the referendum to be decided on

:46:34.:46:36.

vocal performance, you would be in with a shot. I thought it was a

:46:37.:46:40.

collection of cliches. Home is where the heart is. Perhaps you are

:46:41.:46:46.

judging too harshly. I've changed my mind. They were brilliant. I will

:46:47.:46:53.

put them first. That's what we want. What a journey our contestants have

:46:54.:46:58.

been on. Who can blame them for a few butterflies? Only one act can

:46:59.:47:02.

win a life changing live performance on Newsnight. It all rests on our

:47:03.:47:07.

unimpeachable judges. They are without fear or favour. Or a fee,

:47:08.:47:15.

very nearly. Coming third is a brilliant lady with the ukelele,

:47:16.:47:17.

give it up for Hillary Fox. For making us laugh heartily and

:47:18.:47:27.

insulting us gently and for dressing better than any of us, second prize

:47:28.:47:29.

is David Mills. The winner of the inaugural and

:47:30.:47:43.

final Newsnight referendum review is...

:47:44.:47:46.

Excuse me, everyone. Hello, boys. How do you feel? Absolutely

:47:47.:48:05.

phenomenal. It started out as for friends, and now we are free friends

:48:06.:48:11.

and someone else in the process. -- three friends.

:48:12.:48:15.

Thank you to all my guests and congratulations to the winners

:48:16.:48:21.

of Newsnight's Referendum Revue, here to play us out live.

:48:22.:48:24.

The Orc Mischief's Song may sound like a paean to independence, but

:48:25.:48:27.

# An independent Scotland is a better Scotland

:48:28.:48:31.

# An independent Scotland is a better Scotland

:48:32.:48:39.

# We've got Edinburgh castle and Stirling Castle

:48:40.:48:48.

# And Glasgow Castle and Elgin Castle

:48:49.:48:55.

# And Forth Road Bridges and Forth Rail Bridges

:48:56.:49:29.

# An independent Scotland is a better Scotland

:49:30.:49:51.

# An independent Scotland is a better Scotland

:49:52.:50:02.

Good evening. We are set to continue with a rather cool weather story

:50:03.:50:27.

through the next few days. Blame it all on the northerly or

:50:28.:50:31.

north-westerly breeze. That will be lighter across the British Isles on

:50:32.:50:34.

Friday than Thursday. There should be more in the way of sunshine and

:50:35.:50:38.

less in the way of showers. Those factors combined could bring us a

:50:39.:50:43.

warmer feeling day. That breeze will feel more showers in throughout the

:50:44.:50:46.

day to parts of Northern Ireland and the north of Scotland. Southern and

:50:47.:50:50.

central areas should see sunshine. Greater risk of showers across

:50:51.:50:54.

eastern England through Friday afternoon. Still plenty of sunshine

:50:55.:50:58.

around as well. Many areas will avoid the showers altogether.

:50:59.:51:01.

Temperatures in the south-east of England in one or two spots up to

:51:02.:51:05.

around 20 degrees Celsius. More typically, we are looking at highs

:51:06.:51:10.

in the mid to high teens. It is a couple of degrees down for this

:51:11.:51:14.

point in August. With the breeze becoming lighter still overnight

:51:15.:51:17.

Friday, into Saturday, we could be off to a pretty chilly start to the

:51:18.:51:22.

weekend. Again, with a few scattered showers around, we are not talking

:51:23.:51:26.

about a bad day all in all. A lot of sunshine. Temperatures in the best

:51:27.:51:31.

of any sunshine up to 17-18, maybe 19 degrees. Here is how Saturday

:51:32.:51:34.

looks. Showers possible across northern England, perhaps for East

:51:35.:51:38.

Anglia later in the day. Overall, a lot of fair weather. A slightly

:51:39.:51:42.

lighter breeze through the day. Temperatures in the mid to high

:51:43.:51:46.

teens. Look out for a chilly night Saturday night into Sunday.

:51:47.:51:48.

Make the most of your bank holiday, wherever you are.

:51:49.:51:50.

Use the BBC Weather app to stay one step ahead of the weather.

:51:51.:51:55.

A special programme from the Edinburgh Festival, looking at the Scottish independence debate through the prism of Scottish arts and culture. With Kirsty Wark.


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