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11Feb/14Off

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Blossom: What Scotland Needs To Flourish

Lesley Riddoch

BlossomI've been over preoccupied with the independence referendum of late. I've always taken a keen interest but it's taken an obsessive edge in the last couple of weeks.
I decided that I was getting trapped in the same old self-referencing group of commentators online (because the mainstream press is beyond hopeless and not a source that any rational adult would use in this debate) and that I needed to expose myself to a different point of view.
Riddoch uses history, personal anecdote and old-fashioned journalism to expose what she sees as the underlying problems facing Scotland.
It's a surprisingly enjoyable read given it's nature and I certainly found it enlightening - especially when she talks about the consequences of our feudal past.
I personally think she underplays the potential problems with some of the solutions she favours and oversells the benefits of social activity in the countryside but it is hard to resist a vision of a much less centralised Scotland with empowered local communities and with land ownership moved out of the hands of the very few.
If you think that there's nothing much wrong with our country as it stands then I suspect that this book will only infuriate you. If, like myself, you despair at the feeling of powerlessness at the heart of contemporary politics then there's lots of food for thought to be found here.

Rating: A-

Posted by Greig

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