The Labour leader uses the Scottish First Minister's weapon of choice against him.
The former PM retains a strong connection with the working class Scots who could determine the referendum result.
"We would exert a powerful and positive influence through example – the beacon of progressive opinion."
The First Minister says Scotland would not put itself "at a tax disadvantage with the rest of the UK" at New Statesman event.
The Scottish First Minister's claim that independence is needed to make Scotland and the rest of the UK more "progressive" is undermined by the prospect of the election of Labour in 2015.
Whatever the outcome in September, Scotland won't have to wait too long for even greater autonomy
The Chancellor may think he is a realist playing hard politics. But these are tactics the Scottish government could also successfully employ.
Scotland would be left with no central bank, no lender of last resort and no control over its interest rates, and would breach EU membership conditions.
The Scottish First Minister says that "while I was compiling the oil and gas index, David Cameron was still fooling around on the playing fields of Eton".
The Scottish First Minister offered no persuasive argument for Scotland entering a currency union with the rest of the UK.