We are delighted to host a second guest post from North East SNP MSP and Holyrood Health and Sport Committee member Mark McDonald.

Back in the 1970s, while suppressing the McCrone report, the parties who now make up the No campaign told Scotland that it would be as poor as Bangladesh if it voted to become independent.

Withholding the true extent of Scotland’s potential oil wealth to construct a narrative of a nation incapable of running its own affairs was insulting to Scotland then, and it persists now.

But the comparison was also an insult to Bangladesh, and her people. By using another nation to construct a negative narrative, you are by definition looking down on that nation, sneering at it if you will. There is no doubt Bangladesh faces serious problems of poverty, but I would be willing to bet that her people are still fiercely proud of their independence, and would view an attack on their nation’s integrity in a very dim light.

And yet this contemptuous attitude to other members of the community of nations continues unabated from those opposed to Scotland taking her own path. The desire to undermine the cause of Scottish independence appears to be so overpowering that diplomatic niceties go out the window.

This weekend, the No campaign, with little concern for the UK’s relationships with other nations, made Denmark the target in a bizarre quote from a UK coalition source, when trying to explain why Scotland’s interests were best served as part of the UK in Europe:

“At these European summits, you see all the key players moving around, the French, the Germans and the British. But where are the Danish? They’re nowhere. It’s not that Denmark is not significant, but it’s not as important as these other nations, simply because of its size.”

I suppose the UK Government won’t be banking on any support from the Danes in European negotiations any time soon.

Over the last few years Ireland and Iceland have taken the brunt of the anti-independence campaign’s international insult offensive. The gleeful use of the ‘Arc of Insolvency’, coined by smug anti-independence politicians in 2008 – despite the fact that the UK was somewhat goosed at the time as well, and that those self same anti-independence politicians were in part responsible for the UK’s plight – hardly helped international relations. Now while Ireland and Iceland may well have faced significant difficulties, we know that they went through those difficult times as independent nations, and are recovering well as independent nations. How galling for them it must have been to look to their near neighbour, the UK, with whom they might have expected to find some solidarity in the face of financial adversity, to instead be faced with politicians laughing at them and calling them names in order to achieve some form of political one-upmanship in their own constitutional debate.

This behaviour appears regularly at First Minister’s Questions where we have seen Iain Gray and Johann Lamont stand up and openly do down other nations for the sake of trying to undermine the arguments for independence. From Namibia to Montenegro, Ireland to Togo nations are brought up to draw an unflattering comparison. In the unlikely situation that Johann Lamont becomes First Minister, imagine her first meeting with the Namibian ambassador: “Hello ambassador, your country’s a bit rubbish isn’t it?”

You see, this is the crux of it all. I don’t want Scotland to be independent because I think we are better than any other nation, or because we are bigger or richer than any other nation – which is essentially the narrative being cultivated by the No campaign in all of the examples above – I want Scotland to be independent because we are just as good as any other nation.

I want us to take our seat at the EU top table, alongside the Danes and the Irish, and any other nation the No campaign wishes to insult. We may not have size on our side, but it isn’t about how loud you shout, it’s about what you say.

I want to sit at the UN and make common cause in pursuit of international peace and tackling poverty and inequality with nations like Bangladesh, Namibia and Togo, because I believe an independent Scotland can be a force for good in the world. Togo, in fact, was one of the rotational members of the Security Council in 2012-13.

And above all else, I want to see a Scotland where we make our own decisions, on the issues that matter to our people. Just like every single one of those nations the No campaign look down their noses at.

To paraphrase Winnie Ewing – Stop insulting the world, Scotland wants to get on.