The Empty Chair

Jul 6, 2014 by


Irish brewing company Guinness has a new video that shows the best way to end the American Fourth of July holiday weekend—with a nicely poured pint of Guinness… and a patriotic reminder that out of sight doesn’t mean out of mind.


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Time To Join the Liberty Dance, Scotland

Jul 4, 2014 by

Today, July 4th, America celebrates our declaration of independence from the tyrannical rule of Britain. Though only a small colony with no standing army, America’s untried citizen-soldiers defeated the vaunted military might of the British Empire, showing the world that a strong, unbreakable desire for liberty can overcome against all odds.

During its history, Scotland has fought many bloody battles for freedom from Britain; unlike America, the Scots were never successful in using military force to achieve that liberty.   A rare democratic, non-military chance for Scottish independence is on the near horizon.   On September 18, 2014, Scotland’s citizens will vote yes or no in answer to this simple question:

should Scotland be an independent country?

indexamerica scotfreedom

Many, if not most, Americans–a large proportion of them with Scottish ancestry–if asked would likely tell the Scottish people that the benefits of independence far outweigh the supposed security of having another country make your decisions.   Nationhood is rough in the beginning, but all great things often start with a few missteps.  To paraphrase Scottish freedom fighter William Wallace : it’s been hard getting to the ceilidh, now it’s time to see if you can dance.

Time to rightfully claim your freedom, Scotland–vote AYE!




Here are some thoughtful comments about liberty, from famous Americans, Scotsmen, and one small Corsican fellow:


My Son, Freedom is best, I tell thee true, of all things to be won.
William Wallace, as quoted in William Wallace, Guardian of Scotland (1948) by Sir James Fergusson

They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin, Memoirs of the Life & Writings of Benjamin Franklin

For so long as a hundred remain alive, we will never in any degree be subject to the domination of the English. Since it is not for glory, riches or honour that we fight but for liberty alone which no good man loses but with his life.
Scottish Declaration of Independence, letter to Pope John XXII sealed by the barons of Scotland at Arbroath Abbey, 6 April 1320

Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of Liberty.
― Thomas Jefferson

I believe that every Scotsman should be a Scottish nationalist.
–John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir of Enfield (1875-1940)

Nothing is more difficult, and therefore more precious, than to be able to decide.
― Napoleon Bonaparte

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