Originally posted by infinite
The government has three solutions. 1) English Parliament 2) English votes for English laws or 3) Scottish Independence.
None of which are desirable. There are other alternatives.
1) English Parliament - Do we really want another
layer of politicians and bureaucrats running our lives? And, speaking as a Northerner, I'm
not keen on the idea of a single English parliament that would inevitably be dominated by London and the South East. This is why I find the notion of
Englishness deceptive; the divisions between North and South are deeper than one might expect. The English identity is dominated by the South. I am a
Yorkshireman and I'm British, but I'm not English. It means very little to me at all.
2) English votes for English laws - Just what is an 'English law'? Many votes take Wales into account, and other votes that may superficially appear
to be English may affect other areas of the United Kingdom. And again, like an English Parliament, it would be dominated by MPs from London and the
3) Scottish Independence - I've covered this numerous times before. Go look up some old posts.
You miss two other key solutions, infinite. Namely:
- Federalism: The Scottish Parliament and the Welsh Assembly are dismantled and replaced by regional assemblies across Scotland, England and Wales.
These represent about 3-5million people with Westminster being the central Parliament - governing macroeconomics, foreign affairs, defence, policing
and so forth. It would also take into account regional differences (e.g. Highlands/Lowlands, North/South England, North/South Wales etc) The
Australian model could be adopted for this purpose. People can then choose whether they want to spend their taxes on free prescriptions and so forth,
or whether they want cuts in public services and taxes. It could vary from region-to-region, and each could be virtually self-financing.
- Local democracy: Implement wholesale reform of local government and empower it, having two layers of government: Local councils and Westminster.
This would take matters directly to the voters - the people who would be affected by them. Their leaders would be genuinely accountable to the
Devolution in its present form is unworkable; we're agreed on that. But there are so many other solutions than simply trotting out an English
Parliament in an attempt to appease Little England.
[edit on 20/4/08 by Ste2652]