The National:

As a result of us hitting 6000 subscribers, we reached a key milestone in our 10,000 Steps campaign – and are now producing monthly supplements targeted at winning over No voters. In the first of these, we explain why Scotland is Big Enough, Rich Enough, and Smart Enough. Check out our 10,000 Steps campaign page to see our next milestones.

TOWERING hills, huge skies, high rises, big business and huge ambition – Scotland is home to all of these and more.

The geography and demography are undeniable – Scotland has a smaller land mass and lower population than its nearest neighbour.

At around 80,000 sq km to England’s total of more than 130,000, and at 5.4 million people to the almost 67m living in England, it’s not hard to see why the “too wee” myth has persisted.

READ MORE: Why Scotland is RICH ENOUGH to thrive as an independent countr=

But, in terms of governance, constitution and the economy, the maths doesn’t add up – and Scotland’s size relative to that of England is one of the key reasons why it should be independent.

What the population imbalance does add up to is a democratic deficit that denies Scotland a say on the most basic of matters at a UK level.

The National:

Take Brexit, one of the most outrageous examples of this deficit in action.

Voters in every single one of the country’s 32 local authority areas delivered a Remain majority, with more than 60% of people declaring their wish to remain within the European Union’s family of nations.

But now the country is being dragged from the EU against its will as a result of a strong Leave vote in England and Wales, which delivered an overall 52% Leave majority for the UK as a whole.

READ MORE: Why Scotland is SMART ENOUGH to thrive as an independent country

That referendum was called by David Cameron, the leader of a government Scotland did not choose and did not want.

In fact, Scotland has not voted for a Tory government for more than half a century.

And that democratic deficit has cost lives. In a 2017 report, NHS Health Scotland said Thatcher’s social and economic policies in the 1980s are responsible for the premature deaths of hundreds of working-class Scottish men.

The report said drug-related deaths in recent years are linked to long-term substance use by males from working-class populations who, due to London’s decisions, were left with “rising income inequality” and “the erosion of hope”.

And while the Scottish Government is doing what it can with its powers – recently extended after a sair fecht – Westminster retains the key controls that could allow us to increase our population and boost our economy.

Gaining the gift to decide who lives and works in Scotland could help bring new blood to rural communities, close skills gaps and help staff key sectors like agriculture and social care.

But London leaders won’t allow the Scottish Parliament the chance to make that choice. And the Tory Government’s policy to slash immigration – a policy which does not serve Scotland – will be rolled out here, regardless of the predicted harm.

Unless, of course, we do what so many other modern nations have done and embrace independence.

That’s what Singapore has done, and Ireland, and Malta – three very different countries with populations around the same size or smaller than Scotland, and all of which were once ruled by London.

With thriving industries, diverse populations and strong national identities, no-one could look at these states – all major tourism draws – and say they’d be better British.

If they can do it, why not Scotland?

Scotland in numbers

5.4 million

MORE than five million people live in Scotland – that’s more than the populations of already independent states Iceland, Jamaica, Malta, San Marino and Ireland.

The National:


SCOTLAND has stunning scenery, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors to the Highlands each year – the largest mountain in the British Isles, Ben Nevis, stands at 1345m above sea level.


RIVERS, lochs, canals and ponds in Scotland contain 90% of the UK’s freshwater.

The National:


Scotland is proud to be home to a diverse population. More than 170 languages are spoken across the country, including Gaelic, Scots, British Sign Language and many more.

14.3 million

Plenty people travel to and from Scotland every year. In 2018, our busiest airport – Edinburgh – served 14.3 million customers and 157 destinations.

Scotland and beyond

SCOTLAND is increasingly looking to the stars. Glasgow builds more satellites than any European competitor and almost 20% of the UK’s space sector jobs are based in Scotland.

The number of space companies headquartered here has grown by 25% since 2016, and, according to the UK Department for International Trade, Scotland’s space sector will be worth up to £4bn by 2030 as companies like Clyde Space, which specialises in small devices, and data firm Ecometrica continue to push the boundaries of what is possible.

Natural capital the Office for National Statistics (ONS) found fish capture in Scotland’s waters increased by more than two thirds from 2003-16 and accounts for 70% of the UK total, while timber production – which is around 60% of the UK total – almost doubled between 1997 and 2017.

The National:

Renewable energy

AS many as 17,700 people work in the green power sector, which turned over a total of £5.5bn in 2017.

Our renewables expertise is now at work in more than 70 countries as firms enter into projects in places including Burundi, Canada, Mozambique and Taiwan, according to industry body Scottish Renewables.

Some small success stories


HOME to one of the world’s oldest surviving parliaments, Iceland has a population of fewer than 359,000 – that’s around the same as North Lanarkshire.

Trying telling them they’re too small and see where it gets you. The country gained its independence from Denmark in 1944 and returned its – and the world’s – first directly elected female president in 1980.

Famed for its unique geography, it counts tourism as a major part of its economy, with seafood and aluminium also among the top sectors.


THIS south-east Asian city-state is a global financial hub that is home to 5.6 million people.

The former British colony, which became independent in 1965, is a confident “tiger” economy which promotes entrepreneurship and is ranked the best for human capital development in the World Bank Human Capital Index.

Leaders there invest heavily in education to keep the economy competitive.