The response to the SNP's outstanding victory in this month's Scottish Parliament Election from unionists within Scotland and British Nationalists outside Scotland has been interesting. The general opinion seems to be that Alex Salmond will bottle out of a referendum on independence, because he knows that it will fail to deliver a Yes vote. They base this on polling results that suggest that "only" 33% or so of Scottish voters poll as supporting independence; a rather blinkered view, in my opinion.
The last two referenda on the Scottish constitution managed a 60% and a 62% turnout. If one makes the fair assumption that those who support independence are likely to be more motivated to vote than those who are ambiguous or disinterested on the No side then the current polling already suggests that the Yes side COULD gain a simple majority of votes cast if the referendum was held today. (I'm not good at maths but I think that if 33% of the electorate vote yes in a 60% turn out it gives something like a 55% Yes 45% no vote.)
Whatever our opinion about how desirable Scottish Independence is, we should all accept that it is a possibility that Scotland might become independent within the next few years and recognise that if Scotland does become independent that it will have an effect on all of us that remain in the rest of the UK.
Northern Ireland's Unionist link to the UK is very much a link with Scotland. Where does Scottish Independence leave the NI unionists? Would they want to remain a member of the remainder UK linked to England but not to their Scottish heritage?
Polling support for English Independence is much higher than support for Scottish independence, but independence has a lower priority on the political scale in England than it has in Scotland. A campaign for Scottish independence, especially a successful campaign could raise the issue of English self determination on the English agenda.
So where does this leave Wales, where polls suggest that a miserly 10 to 15% of us support independence for our country? We could have independence thrust upon us without having made any preparations for it.
Perhaps even those dinosaurs who oppose any form of Welsh self-determination should wake up and smell the coffee and prepare for the possibility that we may have to take care of our own destiny whether we like it or not!