Err, yes Paul, yes

But if Scotland leaves – and Northern Ireland is given some kind of halfway status to prevent a border being re-erected with the Republic – then what’s left cannot be called “rUK” – the rump or remainder UK. It will be England-Plus.

It will be “England and Wales” just as it is now.

This new country will still be a major global economy, a nuclear power (albeit in need of a new port for its nuclear-armed submarines), a permanent member of the UN Security Council and home to the head of the Commonwealth. And it will need an ideology.

He really does miss quite how fascist he sounds there, doesn’t he? A nation must have an ideology…..

But here is where the problem begins. Just as it’s hard to deglobalise a national economy, breaking up an imperialist ideology into its constituent parts is going to be very tricky. The British imperial ideology, and its post-imperial successor after 1945 was the creation of a national bourgeoisie.

Cod Marxist fascism even.

So what can we do? Some figures on the left have argued for an English parliament. I dismissed this proposal two years ago, but Brexit has convinced me the federal argument is strong.

That raises the question: what form should English federal institutions take? Given the opportunity to redesign the English political institutions along federal lines, we should push not for an English assembly, but for powerful regional states, along the lines of the German länder. The result might look a lot like the map of the British isles around 830 AD, once Wessex was a unified kingdom – with the equivalents of Mercia, Northumbria and Wales each having a devolved assembly.

At which point he advocates exactly what the EU has been trying, to kill off the nation state and devolved everything down to the regions. The EU wanting this so as to be able to cow them of course.

Sigh.

My major argument against this is that there just isn’t the talent out there. When we look at the morons who make up the lower ranks of Parliament itself we can see that we’re not going to end up with lots of bright people in all those regional assemblies, are we?

22 comments on “Err, yes Paul, yes

  1. “My major argument against this is that there just isn’t the talent out there. ”

    I’m not sure there is any sense of demos / ID at that level (in England). German lander and French regions are quite different.

    People say, “I’m British, English, Welsh, from London, Birmingham, Cornwall, Devon” etc. They don’t say “I’m South Westian, South Eastian” or whatever.

    Quite academic, as “But if Scotland leaves” is fanciful,

  2. If Scotland leaves the UK (good riddance), then seeing as the Scottish Nazi Party are dead against Trident, lets negotiate for Faslane to become a Royal Navy enclave in much the same way Oranjemund in Namibia is a De Beers enclave.

  3. Who needs talent? The government should be doing less. The more I see of “experts”, the less impressed I am with them. We do not need people smart enough to explain the differences between Trotsky and Chomsky. We need people who have the right instincts. Who know their limits. Who lack the ambition to rule the world. The Shires used to be full of nice but dim Tories.

    How much intelligence does it take to take out the rubbish once a week anyway?

    I warm to his Federal idea. Except not to a Federation of regions. A federation of counties on the other hand makes sense. We could devolve primary education to the LEAs, secondary education, the police and running schools to the counties, tertiary education, foreign policy, nuclear weapons and funding medical care to London.

    Best of all, we could offer Scotland proper local government – they have retained their equivalents of counties – while gutting the Scottish Parliament of power and money.

  4. PF,

    I’m not sure the French have much of that either. I’ve never heard a Frenchman talking about having a south-westerly identity. You have the odd thing: Brittany, Basque in the same way we have Yorkshire and Cornwall, but they don’t think about regions.

    I suspect the French and German thing is just about administration. How far does someone have to go to have a meeting about building a new road in England vs France? And in France it’s a sod of a long way from many cities to Paris in a way it isn’t here. So, you put the decision making to a regional level.

  5. I suspect granting more power to the regions would attract greater talent than what currently sits there. But then that’s a pretty low baseline.

  6. and Northern Ireland is given some kind of halfway status to prevent a border being re-erected with the Republic

    Wait, wait … I smell an unwarranted assumption.

    If Scotland goes independent, then nobody is talking about the May wall being erected on the border.

    So why, especially as Ireland is outside Schengen, should there be a physical border between North and South?

    Yes, there will be smuggling across the border. There will be farms on both sides. One of my colleagues has a farm that will be split by the UK of E&W and People’s Socialist Utopian Republic of Greater Alba border.

    I suspect granting more power to the regions would attract greater talent than what currently sits there

    No sign of it up here.

  7. The British governing psyche is fundamentally centralist – even council tax is to a large degree determined by Westminster.

    I remember reading a while back that the UK is, on the basis of how much spending passes through the control of central government, the 2nd most centralised EU country. The first being Malta – an island microstate…

    Devolution on a regional level is just not in the blood.

    And people forget that Germany has only been a united country between 1870 and 1945, and then since 1990… So a grand total of about a century with a ruddy great 45 year gap in the middle… Hence there’s much more feeling of regional identity than in England at least.

  8. I’ve never heard a Frenchman talking about having a south-westerly identity.

    I have, very much so. But they are still very much French. I consider myself both Welsh and British, which a lot of bitter, miserable Scots and Irish can’t understand.

  9. You’re missing the point – there’s no way Wessex etc would be given the same powers that the devolved Scottish Parliament have now, let alone possibly in the future. The whole point of the idea of ‘Devolved regions’ is to emasculate England. Regions wouldn’t be allowed to change taxes, or trade policy or immigration, or welfare or anything really. They would be county councils writ large, deciding how often the bins are collected, and what colour the lamp posts are and thats about it.

  10. @Tim Newman “I consider myself both Welsh and British, which a lot of bitter, miserable Scots and Irish can’t understand.”

    I consider myself both Scottish and British, which a lot of bitter, miserable Scots and Irish can’t understand.

  11. Giving the Scottish their own Parliament was a disastrous mistake.

    Still, Scottish independence should just be ignored for a few years. They had their once-in-a-generation referendum, and they voted to stay. So that’s it for the foreseeable future.

    Even if there is another one, they’re unlikely to vote Leave this time, seeing as the oil money has dried up, and it’s become clearer that they won’t be able to join the EU.

  12. “Even if there is another one, they’re unlikely to vote Leave this time, seeing as the oil money has dried up, and it’s become clearer that they won’t be able to join the EU.”

    Which is the very time to give them another vote, if you’d rather the UK stayed as the UK.

  13. I really wish Paul would fuck off out of the UK which he clearly despises. Once gone, there would be no need for him to infest the media and the airwaves with his depressing drivel and his whining nasal voice.

    I hate the cvnt.

  14. PF – Yarp. Aside from a few cranks and sinecure-chasing shit-tier local pols, there’s about as much demand for devolved regional assemblies as there is for Keith Vaz’s sexy parties.

    The whole concept is just off-putting.

  15. “My major argument against this is that there just isn’t the talent out there. When we look at the morons who make up the lower ranks of Parliament itself we can see that we’re not going to end up with lots of bright people in all those regional assemblies, are we?”

    That’s not entirely true. The problem is that because MPs aren’t paid a million quid a year, so the job mostly attracts retards.

  16. Talking of Northern Ireland, I see Martin McGuinness has died 66 years too late. I just hope he is cremated and Gerry Adams forgets to let go of the coffin.

  17. That’s not entirely true. The problem is that because MPs aren’t paid a million quid a year, so the job mostly attracts retards.

    But because of the various selection systems, if they were paid £1m pa, all we’d get is richer retards.

  18. BiW

    “I’m not sure the French have much of that either.”

    My personal experiences of talking with French is that there is a stronger regional emphasis?

    And it’s interesting, if I scroll through the list of old regions in these two links, just how many are instantly recognisable.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regions_of_France

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Provinces_of_France

    I accept that the more contrived EU equivalent regions have needed to re-label / merge some of these to fit the preferred size criteria.

  19. If we’re going to make sneery snarky comments about “rUK”, I think it’s time we starting referring to the “rEU” – after all it’s about to lose its second largest nett contributor by a mile, something has to change.

  20. I’m not sure I’d ‘argue’ against Mason other than to say: “Get in the sea you mentalist fascist cunt!”

  21. I voted against the Welsh assembly for the simple reason that it was just another layer of govt to waste money, regions certainly wouldn’t have any more power, though I can see the dumb idiots deciding to add regions below the assembly leve if England has them

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