These were the words Nicola Sturgeon used to open a Yes Scotland campaign meeting at Lochgelly, Fife, before a massive audience of four hundred and sixty people last night. Independence is the 'normal' state of affairs because since World War II the number of independence nations in the world has increased from 50 to 200, none of whom have ever gone back to be ruled by their imperial masters.
Nicola's argument for independence rested on two points; Can we do it, and, Why should we do it?
Can we do it : Like in Wales many of the apologists in the Better Together camp argue that Scotland is too too small, too weak and too poor for independence. Nicola demolished that argument by quoting Scotland's continuing disproportionate contribution to Scientific inventions i.e. Dolly the sheep! Scotland would not be the smallest independent nation by any means and at present Scotland would have the 14th highest GDP contribution in the world whilst zither UK is at 18th place.
The other point the 'cynics' make is that Scotland is over dependant on oil; which is not true! Oil makes up 15% of Scotland's GDP, oil is a bonus, Scotland is not dependant on it, there are other sectors that earn Scotland a vast amount of money, Food and Drink, Life Sciences and Renewable Energy to name just a few. A further argument by 'Better Together ' is that Scotland cannot afford its welfare bill! Again not true, Scotland us not subsidised, all it's welfare and pensions is fully funded by Scottish taxation.
Why should we do it : We should do it because decisions about Scotland should be made in Scotland by people elected by the people of Scotland and not by a party 600 miles away which has never been elected by the people of Scotland. Independence is not a magic wand and we shall make mistakes in an independent Scotland but at least it will be mistakes made by people elected by the Scottish people. With independence comes the ability to use Scottish resources in the way we believe they should be used, to protect public services from austerity cuts and redirect spending away from nuclear weapons to public services. Scotland decides our priorities and not Westminster.
To properly serve the people of Scotland we need to access ALL the levers of economic policy. The Social Security system has been dismantled by a government hardly represented in Scotland and in opposition to the wishes of the Scottish people. We need to prioritise how we spend our resources.
We are not anti Tory, we are pro democracy, we want the government we vote for.
She finished with a plea, this is a massive opportunity for Scotland, let's take this opportunity we may not get another one.
There then followed an hour of questions from the NHS to Maritime law, Scottish defence to the only question on currency, which were all answered in a confident and competent manner, she came over as being very honest in her answers. Irrespective of one's political allegiances one would have to have been extremely partisan not to be impressed by this polished performance.