Iron constitution.

Well, we didn’t get rid of the Scots. I must admit to having calmed down a bit since yesterday when I’d decided that the Scots were basically just a bunch of racists, which they are. How do I feel about things now? I find that I’m indifferent to the union at the moment. Scotland will get more powers but more importantly for me it seems like England has woken up. For years Scots MPs have been able to vote on English matters while English MPs haven’t been able to vote on Scottish matters. For instance it was Scots MP’s that voted for university tuition fees in England and then voted against them in Scotland, we’re talking the exact same people. English taxation has been partly decided by Scots MPs as well as Welsh and Irish MPs.

Now that Scotland is getting more power devolved to it English MPs have decided that it’s time for an English parliament or some other system for excluding non-English MPs from non-English matters. This is now what interests me and the referendum is already starting to feel like old news. Of course Labour want to block an English parliament because they never get enough MPs in England to enable them to govern, so even if they win UK general elections they’ll be unable to pass legislation in an England whose MPs are overwhelmingly Conservative. So there’s talk of a constitutional convention which could effectively spell the end of Labour as a political force in UK politics.

For instance while there’s talk of maintaining the Barnett formula under which Scotland gets £1500 per capita more than England it’ll be English MPs who’ll control it’s funding and if they decide that their constituents shouldn’t be paying to keep the Scots then they’ll vote against the budget and the Barnett formula is dead. The fact is that Labour’s support base will be too diffuse, tiny bits in England, more in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, but never concentrated enough that it will be able to match the power of the Conservatives in England. Every UK budget will be dependent on English taxation and so every UK budget will be at the discretion of the English MPs.

At this point Scotland seems to me like a bit of an irrelevance.


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