With 31 of 32 councils declared, the ‘No to independence’ for Scotland side appears to have won by 55:45 in Scotland’s referendum despite the people of Glasgow voting ‘Yes’ (53.5 per cent).
For latest results, check out the Guardian’s live blog.
Perhaps it was the last-minute decision to devolve more powers over taxation (tax band rates may be allowed to vary by up to 15 per cent) and welfare benefits that swayed some voters into remaining with the union. All the three main UK parties need to agree on the details and that might be easier said than done.
It is worth noting that six newpapers in northern England, published by three different firms, have united to call for a fair deal from Westminster for areas such as Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Middlesbrough and Darlington.
But critical bloggers like Glasgow’s John Hilley have described the eleventh-hour carrot of devolution for Scotland as “cynical and illusory”.
Some on the ‘Yes’ side had wanted to create “a newly-inspired community of people, one that rejects austerity, banishes poverty, secures our NHS and truly cares for others. It can be a community that earnestly cherishes our environment, and allows us to rid our beautiful landscape of those appalling nuclear weapons.”
It remains to be seen if Westminster can fulfil some of these aspirations for all the talk of ‘reconciliation’ and devolution after the vote.
But limited devolution, the type promised by Westminster at least, may not be enough in the long run to address broader concerns over the prevailing “sovereignty of corporate power, the nightmare of neoliberalism, the degradation of our planet, the mind-twisting propaganda of our elite-serving media”, writes John.
Like elsewhere in the world, these forces have shackled the minds of ordinary people and held them back from creating a more empowering, holistic and fulfilling model of human development.