“Only an independent Scotland can keep the fatcats in check” says Elaine C Smith

Sunday Mail

By Mark Aitken 24 Feb 2013 08:43

THE Rab C Nesbitt star said a vote for independence would be a vote for a fairer Scotland.

Actress Elaine C Smith
Actress Elaine C Smith

 

ELAINE C SMITH yesterday claimed only an independent Scotland can keep the fatcats in check.

The Rab C Nesbitt star spoke out after the Yes campaign insisted a vote for independence would be a vote for a fairer country.

Elaine, who is a high-profile supporter of the campaign, said the widening gap between rich and poor is a national disgrace and that too many Scots turn a blind eye to poverty.

And she slated bankers for fighting for bonuses after being bailed out by taxpayers.

She said:

“We have to ask ourselves the question – how much do they really need? And hearing that bankers want to defer their bonuses so they can pocket more by saving through tax changes – don’t get me started.”

Elaine, who helped the Yes Scotland campaign launch a bid to win over trade unions on Friday, said it was awful that there are now food banks in Scotland.

She added:

“Many people don’t want to hear that because they fear that it gives a shoddy, tarnished image of Scotland.

“If you are a retired GP living in Broughty Ferry with a comfortable life and a great pension, driving a Merc to and from Marks & Spencer for your weekly shop and flying off to Majorca for a long ­weekend, maybe life isn’t that bad.

“But for too many of our citizens, that is a dream that they will never achieve.

“For me, the real poverty is the poverty of aspiration and a lack of hope.”

The actress, who played Susan Boyle on stage, defended the SNP’s ­insistence that ­benefits such as free prescriptions should be available to all.

She said:

“The question of ­universality and universal benefits is something I struggle with. I’ve questioned whether I needed child benefit when maybe I should give it to the woman along the road.

“Surely her need was greater than mine. But means-testing would cost even more.”

Elaine, a former Sunday Mail columnist, said a vote for independence would secure a fairer Scotland where the vulnerable were protected.

She said:

“There is an old saying that small is beautiful and I think the nearer politicians are to the people they represent, the harder they work and the nearer to accountable they are.”

Elaine believes you do not have to support the SNP to back ­independence.

She added:

“I campaigned for devolution, not as a nationalist but as someone who wanted progress. It is a small step to vote yes.”

She spoke after the head of the Yes Scotland campaign claimed independence would deliver a fairer tax system and stronger worker rights.

Responding to an STUC call for both sides in the debate to reveal how they would address the gap between the rich and the poor, Blair Jenkins said workers would be better protected and tax revenues more fairly raised and distributed in an independent Scotland.

He said:

“We believe the trade union movement will be able to deliver more of its agenda through Yes than No.”

But the campaign’s pledges were dismissed as vague, uncosted pie-in-the-sky promises by critics.

A Better Together spokesman said: “When it comes to people’s jobs, money and livelihoods, they don’t want warm words about how, if we close our eyes and believe, suddenly everything will be better.

“We all want to live in a better Scotland. But the nationalists are unable to give real evidence that separation would be the answer to any of ­Scotland’s problems.”

The Scottish Daily Record and Sunday Mail

See also

Yes to a just Scotland response to the Scottish Trades Union Congress report Posted on February 22, 2013

STUC welcomes shift towards social justice in referendum debate

Why Labour doesn’t need Scotland Posted on January 10, 2012 by Rev. Stuart Campbell

 

Comments
  • Annos February 24, 2013 at 5:48 pm

    Before I start I will tell you all I am a Scot.

    Elaine C Smith is NOT telling the truth!!!, I would tell her to her face if I ever met her. I know the SNP, they have over the years gone from a left of centre party to a right wing party, which is what they are today!. They are a party of BIG business, their leader is good friends with Murdoch, just to mention but one of the company of disreputables that SNP MSPs keep. The SNP now want to stay in NATO, that is just one in a whole list of the SNPs new found twists and turns to the right in their never ending march to the right in political ideology. Some high up members in the SNP have now left the party over all this. The truth…The only differences (political and otherwise) between the SNP and New Labour are purely cosmetic, all due to the independence issue and nothing else. If Scotland ever gets its independence the people of Scotland will be NO better off, they will remain as they are now, abused, neglected and exploited. If people can’t see “the writing on the wall” now, they never will.

  • George Woodward February 24, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    I hope Scotland gets its independence if that is what the majority vote for,however if it doesn’t work out what then?
    It shouldn’t be able to come back into being like it is now part of GB.,if once it leaves coming back shouldn’t be seen as an insurance if times get tough.
    How many live in Scotland,5 million,6million,does Elaine Smith think 5 or 6 million can support Scotland,of that 5 or 6 million,say 2 million are unemployed and retired,so it is down to 4 million to provide pensions and benefits.
    Will Mr. independent Scotland,Sean Connery move back to Scotland to take advantage of the new independence,he’s banged on about it for so long.
    Will Scotland join the Euro and “enjoy”being part of Europe.

  • David Moynagh February 24, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    An independent Scotland WILL NOT use private foreign companies to torment the sick and disabled into committing suicide. An independent Scotland WILL NOT form a parliament whose sinister motives against sick and disabled are reminiscent of nazi germany. An independent Scotland WILL NOT use a forced labour scheme to jackboot unemployed people into making huge profits for multinational corporations at the taxpayers expense. An independent Scotland WILL NOT have to pay billions towards the isolated prosperity of London and south east England. An independent Scotland WILL be a fairer , more compassionate and prosperous country. A n independent Scotland WILL no longer be the subservient underdog controlled by a tory engineered westminster government of professional parasites who take from the poor to feed the rich. An independent Scotland is a right and a duty.

  • Serenity February 25, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    But that is exactly what the Scottish parliament are doing David, I don’t see a mass rebellion at Holyrood of MP’s resigning in protest, too busy implementing the new rules!
    I’m with Annos on this, show us action not words, they haven’t convinced me, this union is far too important to break up on the basis of airy fairy promises of living happily ever after .

  • Billy Connor June 1, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    Well Serenity where do we start…..When the welfare cuts are brought in by Westminster they are actually a cut in money that Scotland receives…..incase you haven’t noticed…there was also a cut to the money that people receives in council tax…The Scottish parliament took the hit on that and wouldn’t implement the cut….We most definitely not live happily ever after if we remain shackled to Westminster, as they are now planning cuts to pensions..here is a airy fairy promise the gulf between rich and poor will get worse unless you vote YES to independence.

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