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Agenda:

In Roman times they used to say that all roads led to the Milliarium Aureum, the golden milestone at the centre of Rome's forum.

Today "all roads lead to Rome" is a metaphor denoting that, regardless of the decision taken, the result will be the same. Despite the increasingly hostile debate, that seems to be the case with the independence referendum vote.

If Scotland votes Yes vote next September, as set out in the White Paper, the Scottish Government will seek a multi-union agreement with the rest of the UK. It seems there will still be a union of crowns, with both countries continuing to share the same head of state; a monetary union with both countries sharing a currency and central bank; a border union, and defence co-operation, and lots more. In fact, apart from powers over tax and welfare, nearly everything else that resides in Westminster will in practice be left much the same.

Alternatively, how will Scotland look in the event of a No vote next September? With all the three Unionist parties talking about greater tax and welfare powers being devolved to Scotland, it seems the direction of travel is clear. The Liberal Democrats have already published their report offering greater devolution and, to a greater or lesser extent, Labour and the Conservatives will do the same when their reports are published at the beginning of next year.

So, both sides in the independence debate are progressively moving towards the centre ground - towards Devo Plus. Hardly surprising, given that every poll that has asked the question "What do Scots really want?" confirms that most of us want greater fiscal and welfare powers devolved to give more local autonomy to Scotland, but that we value being part of a larger Union for the economy and defence.

So when all the dust has settled after 18 September next year, the landscape may well look not dissimilar, whomever wins the acrimonious debate over the next nine months. Even the core constitutional point of which set of politicians has the final say, Holyrood or Westminster, is converging. The SNP accept that there would need to be joint controls over numerous issues such as public sector deficits and borrowing limits whilst the LibDems are pushing for federalism. Some sort of mutual agreement on issues between the parliaments seems inevitable whatever the vote.

However, there is another, much wider, factor in this debate. The post-internet age group views nationhood rather differently from our pre-internet generation. It is rather like the way our generation sees our grandparents' views on the Empire and colonies as outdated. If you belong to the internet age then you are comfortable with being part of a global community as well as expecting much more individual and local control. The under-30s believe you can, and should, have it all.

This change is happening across the world where people's affinities to groups are blurring and an individual is just as likely to support Europe in the Ryder Cup, or Real Madrid as their club football team, but still feel strongly that they belong to a local community in rugby, support Britain at the Olympics or Scotland in international football. The internet age has opened up instant communication across the world which gives direct access to new groups with which people can identify. For many, you don't have to belong just to one nation.

If there are positives in this referendum, then perhaps in the end it is not the vote that is important but the debate and how we look at ourselves in this changing world.

However, when we do so, let's remember that, whilst it is in the interests of most politicians to portray this as a debate between polar opposites, it is in fact a debate notable for a significant amount of agreement over Scotland's future direction.

Whatever the result, we're heading for a Scotland with substantially increased say in its own affairs whilst operating in at least some sort of union with the rest of the UK.

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