I’m heading to Scotland again this year, as I often do for the wonderful Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival.

But this year there will be an additional excitement in the air – the pre-referendum build up to whether Scots vote to secede from the UK or not.

I have both a philosophical and personal viewpoint on this.

My dad was born in Scotland and I have a strangely compelling genetic bond with the place. On this level I support independence as a reinforcement of Scots identity and self-determination. But I also support the idea of smaller states and secession as a matter of philosophical principle.

I do, however, have some disagreements with the way the SNP (Scottish National Party) is laying things out, and cannot fathom why Scotland would want to leave the UK and sign up to the EU – trading one loss of sovereignty for another.

When you look at the euro-zone now, there is clearly a lot of dissatisfaction with the EU “superstate”. There is a strong rise in nationalist tendencies, as witnessed by the increasing popularity of UKIP – the United Kingdom Independence Party.

But it’s not just in the UK that disenchantment with the Euro project is on the rise, but also the Netherlands and France, to name just two of the major members.

So while many in the UK want to leave the EU, Scotland wants to leave the UK, but stay in the EU.

Then there’s the currency issue.

Scotland has a long history in banking, and still prints its own banknotes which are markedly different from those circulating in the rest of the UK. For starters, the notes are issued by private banks (like in Hong Kong), not the Bank of England – the UK central bank.

When departing from Scotland, with local banknotes still in your wallet, it’s often embarrassing to find that other retailers in the UK look at the notes with suspicion, and sometimes don’t want to take them.

Given this, it would not be difficult for Scotland to issue its own currency.

But that is not the plan. The SNP is pushing for a “currency union” with the UK – something the UK says it will not countenance – as a way of reducing economic friction between the two countries, should independence go ahead.

Of course, even without a currency union, there is nothing to stop Holyrood (the Scottish parliament) from making the pound sterling legal tender in Scotland, in the same way that some countries have co-opted the US dollar. The only downside, from a government point of view, is that such an arrangement does not allow for manipulation of the currency on a national level.

Another option would be to peg a Scottish currency to the pound – or even the euro if that was better.

Personally, I prefer the idea of issuing their own currency and going it alone, as a more determined way to declare independence. Sure, there maybe a bit of volatility on the value of such a Scottish “pound”, or whatever it was called, but this would settle down after a while, leaving Scotland in control of both fiscal and monetary policy.

So the big question is… will the Scots vote for independence? I certainly hope so, and there is reason for hope because the polls have continued to show rising support for the “yes” vote. But it will be a close call either way, and last minute campaigning is certain to shift perceptions closer to the vote.

I want Scotland to succeed in its independence bid for another, larger, reason also.

What makes this referendum  important is the way it was organised. The UK government agreed to it. It is “legitimate” in the eyes of the state. And more importantly, only those living in Scotland get to vote, not everybody living in the UK.

This will set an important precedent, the moral rightness of individuals to decide if they want independence from an existing state, and being allowed to vote on it in a way that guarantees the outcome will be respected.

If Scotland votes for independence on September 18, then the way will be clear for other nationalities within other countries to do likewise, and to point to Scotland as the successful “template” for their own cause.

The future of freedom requires massive decentralisation of government institutions. One way to achieve it is to see the emergence of more and more small states, with correspondingly smaller governments.

When we look at the warmongering tragedies over the last 100 years or so, it’s clear that big states are capable of causing mayhem – not to mention the killing of millions of people. Perhaps much smaller economic and political units will lead to a more peaceful world.

And perhaps Scotland can lead the way.