EDITOR'S LETTERJohn Stepek
Greek lessons for Scotland
Who controls Greek economic policy? It’s hard to give a full answer to that question in this short space. Any half-decent attempt would have to mention Mario Draghi (president of the European Central Bank), the International Monetary Fund, and maybe throw in a nod to German chancellor Angela Merkel.
But I can tell you one thing for sure – it’s not the Greeks. If the Greeks want to keep the euro as their currency – and despite everything, they keep voting as if they do – then they have to do what the rest of Europe tells them.
Why am I bringing this up now? Because of the ridiculous debate over Scotland’s currency. With less than a month to go until the independence referendum, the nationalists are falling over themselves to persuade voters in Scotland that they’ll be able to keep the pound if they vote ‘Yes’ – despite the resounding “Oh no, you won’t” from every party in Westminster.
So keen were they to give this impression that the Bank of England even had to give Scottish finance minister John Swinney a public telling off last week after he suggested that the nationalists had held – entirely fictitious – “technical discussions” with the central bank over a potential currency union.
I don’t want to run through the options for future currency arrangements yet again here – we’ll have a longer story on the implications of independence in the next few weeks. But what I find ridiculous is that the status of the pound should even be a debating point at this stage, let alone the definitive issue.
• Read the full editor’s letter here: Greek lessons for Scotland