Trump’s victory has, for now at least, destroyed the basis of unionists’ economic arguments against independence. Trump and Brexit together so alter the prevailing economic orthodoxies and assumptions of the 2014 independence referendum that refusing to re-consider the situation afresh would be the very definition of dogmatism. The ‘bad economic outcomes’ arrow has disappeared from the unionist quiver and, for now, credible economists must begin their calculations again from scratch.
Scots who voted No reluctantly in 2014 can now simply not tell which course – Brexit or independence – is the riskier. What they can see, however, is an England infected by the same right wing populism which Trump’s election has placed into the ascendant in the US. That was the meaning of Farage’s visit to Trump’s campaign; it’s what’s enabled the right-wing takeover of the Tory party.
England has chosen right wing populism and all that it implies. Anti-immigration, small-mindedness, fear of outsiders and competition, switching state spending away from those in need and towards the richest of businesses and individuals. It would simply be monstrous if English politicians playing to English constituents were to be allowed to dictate values and policies to Scots who have chosen a different, more progressive, path time and time again.
Scotland really is a different country in all the cultural ways now. Rational people who voted No in 2014 and have since seen the basis of our arguments destroyed in just a few months will think afresh about dignity, self-determination and the kind of country we want to live in.
And a lot of us will move from No to Yes.