84.5% Scottish Miracle Vote is Scandi-Normal. How does Borgen do it?

140925 CALENDAROn 18 September 2014 Scotland proudly roared into the political record books. The referendum for Scottish independence, the #indyref, exploded in an unprecedented voter turnout of 84.5%. Unprecedented for the Great British electorate, that is. Over in Denmark, Borgen’s alarm bells would have been deafening at anything less than 85%. But why?

Such an event had not occurred in Blighty for over half a century. It was 1951 when 8 out of 10 cats exercised their vote – thus booking an 81.59% attendance at Polling Stations across the Kingdom. So what is it that creates voter apathy on one side of the North Sea and voter appetite on the other?

Since 1951 UK voter turnout has tumbled to such an extent that the 2010 General Election saw one in every three voters ignoring it altogether. The 61.6%, who did cash in their hard won democratic privilege, woke to a shambolic show of headless chickens, darting hither and dither across the Westminster Village, pretending to know what to do with “No Overall Majority”. Continue reading

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Scotland is a country… Isn’t it? What Does Borgen Think?

140914 SALTIRE AND HANDSLast week I took some time out from the Scottish referendum campaign and spent a week – eating too much – in Denmark, the country where even the Conservatives are Social Democrats. Or they might as well be.

Easyjetting in from Blighty where, these days, even Labour is Conservative – or might as well be, the culture shock is palpable.

And hanging out for a while in Scandi-land, it soon becomes clear just how bemused Borgen is by Scotland’s 50/50 independence dilemma. Not that the Danes are ill informed, Danish newspapers and TV news bulletins are endlessly rolling with curious coverage of the Scottish referendum story 24/7. Continue reading