Monday, 1 September 2014

the referendum question

A fortnight in Scotland emphasised that the first victory in the Referendum war was won by those who got their side of the question to have the answer 'Yes'. I wonder how different the shape and feeling of things would be if the question was something like 'Should Scotland remain part of the United Kingdom?'

In a way I'm surprised they didn't go for a question which avoided yes/no (something like 'What should Scotland be?' with the answer options 'Independent' and 'Part of UK'), but maybe that would have been considered insufficiently simple.

For maximum confusion and entertainment, however, I'd have gone for:
What should Scotland's position be in relation to the UK?
- Apart
- A part

Avoids unpleasant and awkward arguments:
'How are you voting?'
'Apart.'
'A part? Me too!'

You wouldn't get away with that though:
'Aye, but are you a Spacer or a non-Spacer?'

I also like the fact that the word structures are the opposite of what they would be campaigning for:
'Apart - Putting Space Between Us!'
'A Part - Better Together!'