ENGLISH INDEPENDENCE

by Ian Hamilton

I know that the welter of comments added to an article in my last blog is not typical of England. They were petty and hostile. The English Nationalist Parties should take lessons from us Scots. We are internationalists. We know that our country can never take its place in the comity of nations until its independence is assured, but we are moderates. Let us discus things.

Independent minded we may be but racist never. We want more immigrants. Come and live with us whatever your colour. We are underpopulated. Our schoolchildren protest in the streets at the thugs from the London Home Office who deport their black school friends. There are no pure bred Scots. We are all mongrels here.

With those in England who seek your own Parliament we have sympathy but you bewilder us. You already have your own Parliament. It is the Westminster Parliament. Its traditions are English. Its history is English. The vast majority of its members are English. That you have so many Scots governing you is your own choice. It isn’t our fault. We despise them too. In Scotland a quarter of the children live in poverty while these politicians plunder what they can for themselves. Indeed the best Scots are no longer going into politics. They neither want to govern England nor sit in the powerless Parliament at Holyrood. Once we get independence people will regain their interest in public affairs, and so will the voters. Meantime it is unfair of you to choose these Scots and then blame it on us. They are the best that money can buy so make the most of them.

You chose New Labour as the Party of Government, albeit on a minority of your popular vote. It is a peculiarity of the way Westminster is elected that you always get a Government you don’t want and haven’t voted for. You haven’t had a Government since 1945 that was elected by a majority of English voters. Often it is the Scottish vote that decides things. It is a bad mixture. On the things that really count both you and we are frustrated. Most Scottish MPs voted against Trident, but were overwhelmed by English MPs. This is the other side of the West Lothian question. We dislike being over ruled by you just as much as you dislike being ruled by us. Now that you know our wishes are you going to take these submarines away from near Glasgow and put them on the Thames? That’s where the people who want them live. If not why not? Or do you want to keep us in the Union as your atomic bomb base?

We understand your frustrations. I hope you understand ours. Perhaps some of you still have dreams of Empire and have difficulty with your own identity. You would rather run second to George Bush than risk being an outsider on your own. We gave up that thinking long ago, and want only to be a peaceful Northern country. Our aspiration is to look towards the other small countries on the fringe of Europe.

Among these is England. We have been through so much together that we value your friendship above everything except the right to go our own way. Do not be deceived because we support any team that plays England in the World cup. Since our team never gets far we pay you the compliment of jealousy. Do you expect us to be neutral? The shout of, ‘Come on both sides,’ is too comic even for Gordon Brown. You are welcome to him but do not say anything nasty about his being a Scot. That might be misconstrued as xenophobia. Remember he is an MP in your own Westminster Parliament.

Talking of xenophobia we Scots are instinctive internationalists. That is why our Tartan Army is welcome everywhere, drunk or sober. We are passionate about the beautiful game because we invented it. The first mention of it in history is in an Act of the Scottish Parliament of 1424. Our forefathers called it ‘fitba’ and we still do. It is the proper name for the game. Anything else is corrupt English usage. Don’t you agree that ‘The Fitba Association’ sounds much better? But I wander.

You have made it clear that you don’t want us anymore. Enough! Lord let the English now depart in peace.

Ps. Should anyone wish to write for me they will be very welcome. Articles should not be more than 600 words and sent as an attachment to write@ianhamiltonqc.com

Contributions from England are particularly welcome.
 

51 Responses to “ENGLISH INDEPENDENCE”

  1. Eleanor Justice Says:

    Mr.Hamilton,
    About welcoming more Immigrants to Scotland I cannot comment on that I will leave that to your own people.But you are wrong in saying the English have their own Parliament as you surely know,we the English are being pushed into forgeting who we are, by this Labour government,who are nearly all Scottish men,”britishness” is what they preach,to the English ,not to the Scots or Welsh,as well you must know!AS AN English woman I wish Scotland well,Ihope you gain your full independence,Iwish Alex Salmon the best of luck in the coming elections.
    Brown may be a Scot in Westminster Parliament but no English Person Voted for him.England is at a strange crossroads at the moment,but what happens in the May elections should make things clearer.Ilove my country Mr. Hamilton as you love yours,let us hope we all find what we are looking for.

  2. Ian Campbell Says:

    I think you do not distinguish clearly enough between English and British government. There has not been an English government since 1707. It was a British goverment that sited nuclear weapons in Scotland. Who knows if England wants them? England at present is a defunct administrative unit with no political voice of its own. It is the national equivalent of Middlesex. No matter what its traditions, the Pariament at Westminster is the UK Parliament. Only a minority of MPs who represent English constiuencies speak up for English interests. Those who do are denigrated as Little Englanders. The rest duly vote as their party directs and all three of the main British parties are Unionist. As someone with a foot in both England and Scotland, I supported devolution in the 1970s and the 1990s. Naively I assumed that if devolution were a success in both Scotland and Wales, the people of England would also be offered a referendum. Instead, I discovered that the Labour government intended to proceed with the complete abolition of England by ‘devolving’ power to regional assemblies. The British government poured money into researching and promoting such assemblies, broke electoral law with impunity in sending Ministers to the North East, called in Mr McConnell and Mr Morgan - and lost the vote. It is now proceeding by stealth. There has been no attempt to recognise the English as a ‘proud, historic nation’ or to promote and celebrate English national identity. Attempts to do so have been described as ‘racist’. Charles Kennedy called into question the very idea of an English identity. Mr Prescott denied there was any such thing as an English nationality. Instead, the government seeks to promote ‘Britishness’ (but only in England where most immigrants already describe themselves as British rather than English)
    The only way England can save itself is by having its own Parliament. This need not necessarily mean the break-up of the Union as trumpeted by Blair & Co. The Union will last ong as the people support it. It could well be that Scotland will seek to withdraw in the not too distant future. The British government’s attidude to England means that the disillusioned people of England have no reason to save the Union but every patriotic reason to encourage the Scots to leave.

  3. will hanlon Says:

    Mr Hamilton.
    I echo the ladys comments above,however the westminster parliament isnt an English parliament,MSP’S are elected to serve their national interests unlike MP’S at westminster,English domestic affairs are dictated by MP’S of Scottish seats who are not answerable to their constituents in these matters.Thus the westminster parliament is in no way an English parliament.We in England are now saying,Englands parliament is Englands right.
    Just like in Scotland.

  4. Tom Waterhouse Says:

    Mr. Hamilton,

    You say, “That you have so many Scots governing you is your own choice”. No, it’s not our choice.

    Gordon Brown (who gave £12 billion of England’s money to Scotland last year), Douglas Alexander (who wants to implement road pricing in England only), John Reid (in charge of England’s overwhelmed police and overcrowded prisons, but not Scotland’s), as well as Alistair Darling, Des Browne et al represent Scottish seats. It is not our choice that they govern us. There is nothing anyone in England can do to stop them governing us. That is why we want an English Parliament- so that we may be governed by people that are elected by us.

    It is a simple matter of democracy and representation.

  5. Stephen Gash Says:

    Scots are internationalists? Don’t make me laugh. Parochialism and clannishness are both Scottish inventions. Scots are obssessed with Scottishness, you even claim Elvis Presley is Scots and have erected a statue to him accordingly.
    We have nothing to learn from Scots. What we now are free to say is that we no longer have to pander to them.
    Fair play is not a British characteristic. It is an English characteristic. The only notion the Scots have of fair play is when they on the receiving end of it from the English.
    Not for much longer methinks.

  6. Patrick Harris Says:

    Mr. Hamilton,
    “You already have your own Parliament. It is the Westminster Parliament. Its traditions are English. Its history is English. The vast majority of its members are English. That you have so many Scots governing you is your own choice. It isn’t our fault.”
    Utter drivel, name one English voter (domiciled in England) that voted for Gordon Brown, or John Reid or Des Browne. Name one English voter that can hold the above named, democratically, to account. £1 for each.

  7. John Hutchings Says:

    ” With those in England who seek your own Parliament we have sympathy but you bewilder us. You already have your own Parliament. It is the Westminster Parliament. ”

    oh gawd , how can a supposedly educated person be so ignorant .
    Mr Hamilton , it is the BRITISH parliament despite the trappings and that is the problem . In no way does it represent England or the English . In fact it goes out of its way to be a vehicle for the suppression of all things English , while confiscating English funds to send to its beloved celts .

    By the way , you are also sadly deceived as to the your supposed outgoing freindliness of your countrymen . Doesn’t seem that way from England .

  8. Carol Says:

    If you think Westminster is an English Parliament, could you please explain whey Scots, Welsh and Irish MPs are sitting in it, voting on English policy and in a few cases, holding English portfolios?

    Where are the English MPs in the Scottish Parliament?

    Are you really that ignorant or just practicing?

  9. Patrick Harris Says:

    Mr. Hamilton has left the building.

  10. Carol Says:

    I think Mr Hamilton left the planet, never mind the building.

    The Scots get their own Parliament and elect their own, separate government, but still get to the elect the British government and sent politicians to Westminster, then he call it the English Parliament.

    That must be the Scottish verison of democracy. Empire building. Its in his blood.

  11. Terry Says:

    Ian, come on, you need to get out more, or at least do a little research. The errors in your article are too numerous to mention, but here’s a few…

    you say…”You already have your own Parliament. It is the Westminster Parliament. Its traditions are English. Its history is English”

    If this is true (think about it) what are fifty-odd Scots elected MPs doing there? Do you think it might not be true and it is, in fact, the UK’s Parliament?

    You say… “You chose New Labour as the Party of Government, albeit on a minority of your popular vote.”

    Again, not true, come on read a little! The majority of those that voted, voted Conservative in England in the last election. Labour would have still been able to form a Govt (just) because of the way constituency boundaries are drawn.

    you say…”We are passionate about the beautiful game because we invented it.”

    No, you did not invent it any more than the Chinese invented golf! People have been kicking a bag of something all over this world for thousands of years! In England a game was played where people would dribble the ball and attempt to score a goal. In Scotland they played a game where they passed the ball to each other (did not run with it) and attempted to score. When the world’s first international was played between England and Scotland, they integrated the rules of both and the beautiful game, as it is recognised today, was born. It was the only good thing to come out of this so called Union.

    I’ve noticed that many Scots are incredibly inventive when it comes to inventing stories about things they have invented. One once tried to tell me they invented the steam engine and another said they invented the train (or rather locomotive)! They were, of course both invented by Englishmen…like most world changing/defining inventions.

    So, come on Ian…concentrate, read a little more and don’t forget to vote SNP in May

  12. Ian Hamilton QC Says:

    Please keep it up. The narrow English nationalists are writing my next blog for us all.
    Ian

  13. Terry Says:

    I see.

    You’re not just plain; demonstrably; factually wrong… it’s everyone else being “narrow”!

    Classic. Are there any narrow Scottish nationalists? Are you one of them, or just a badly informed Scottish nationalist?

  14. Tricia Says:

    If the Scots are causing the English so many problems and the Houses of Parliament are so full of Scottish accents that it hurts, why don’t the English just tell the Scots to go away? Give the Scots their independence and sit back and watch them make a mess. You can then gleefully rub your hands and stand in the wings ready to pick up the pieces and act all superior.

    OR

    Maybe you are just feart. Those darned Scots might just make a success of their country. If all the Scots in Wesminster come on home and give us the benefit of their experience then the English might just fall on their faces and the scots can come in and pick up the pieces - unless the Americans beat us to it.

    The stars and Stripes flyng over London - Now there’s a thought!

  15. Terry Says:

    Tricia, please! Please God, just vote SNP in May and then vote for independence.

    Those of us in England: those of us that that created the mother of all Parliaments; the Magna Carta; the modern world (via the industrial revolution); the abolishers of slavery; ie. the architects of the modern world; do not have a voice.

    We cannot rid ourselves if the Scottish burden because our opinion does not only have no value, it is never solicited. We have no suffrage… you do.

    Do the decent thing, vote SNP, vote for an independent Scotland and put the English out of YOUR misery!

  16. Patrick Harris Says:

    Tricia,
    “If all the Scots in Wesminster come on home and give us the benefit of their experience”

    Oh how I wish!

    Tony - will send you off to war (4 times) probably on dodgy intellience.
    Gordo - will tax your arse off.
    Reid - Will have you all murdered in your streets.
    Browne - will make sure that your troops are well equipped.
    Falconer - will make a complete hash of your legislature.
    As for Kennedy and Ming - Puhease.

    I’ll personally pay their train fare.

  17. William Gruff Says:

    Anyone who has ever spent any time in Sc*tland knows that Anglophobia is so deeply ingrained in the bitter and twisted Scotch psyche that it is impossible for them to open their mouths without denigrating the English. When that is added to their inability to accept the compromises required to be Br*tish in anything other than the most superficial and subsidy dependent way it is easy to understand why they cannot conceive of the (whipped) Westminster parliament as anything other than ‘English’.

  18. Terry Says:

    The problem William is that Scotland is isolated and parochial. The kinds of views expressed by the likes of Hamilton in the pub/playground/corner shop are normally met with “aye” and sage nods of the heads.

    When they come into the wider world their dreams of phantom inventions (like fitbal (sic)) and imagined English domination are challenged. Their “facts” are shown to be false and the only option they have is to shrink under their Anglophobic comfort blanket, shouting “narrow English nationalists”. It’s quite sad really.

  19. Patrick Harris Says:

    Amen to that.

  20. Kinghobbe Says:

    These people who identify their alleged Englishness through denigrating Scots are not going to ever gain an English Parliament.

    I can assure the person that says “Gordon Brown (who gave £12 billion of England’s money to Scotland last year)” is mistaken if he believes ‘England’ is in a position to ‘give’ Scotland monies, and that i myself wish for the right to keep all our taxable revenue where it belongs-in Scotland.

    You are in a dream-like state of political ambition for England if you can ever be deluded enought to believe that Gordon brown is doing anything other than representing British interests, and of course, his own ambitions.

    Because he happens to have been born in Scotland does not mean in the slightest that he seeks to give Scotland anything different than that of all his Westminster predecessors which is to control our government and resources.

    I was writing about the lack of English democracy before……………most English people, and before the reconvening of a wee effort of home rule via a devolved Parliament in Scotland.

    i knew about the West lothian question since I was a teenager in the early 80’s, but nobody in England was too worried, a democratic deficit was so far away within the sense of Britishness adopted by most English voters, and their own cosiness with the Tory government which was at odd with the wishes of the Scottish electorate.

    May i just say that when it comes to narrow-mindedness, the supposed representatives of English nationalism on here comes across very strongly, and as always seeks to do things the “british” way by creating cartoon enemies with your view of Scots, and demonising us in a most petty manner.

    You appear to equate the likes of those who support Jack McConnell as being representative of myself, a person who has close relatives who are English, some of who live in Scotland.

    Think before you post please.

    As tae fitba, I don’t really care where it originated from, but Scotland had people kicking baws about pretty early on, as well as hitting a snaller ball with a stick sporting a hook at the bottom with the aim of getting the aforementioned ball into a rabbit hole. I have heard these claims to being the originators, but they aren’t that important.

    I didn’t cry into my co-co pops when I saw a mural from 9th Century China showing people in jodhpurs (they weren’t Scottish or English!) playing what closely resembled golf and realised that perhaps Scotland didn’t invent this boring way to relive boredom.

    Also the Mayans played a game similar to football where the winning team captain was given the ‘honour’ of being decapitated by the losers.

    So don’t lose yer heids over the small stuff.

  21. Kinghobbe Says:

    “Those of us in England: those of us that that created the mother of all Parliaments; the Magna Carta…….”

    A series of moans from nobles that the Kings of England ignored whenever they felt like it? Edward I of England, one of the greatest (depending on your position) most groundbreaking and reforming (as well as warmongering) Kings of England laughed away at the Magna carta.

    Don’t get me wrong, some of the laws that came from the magna carta were probably good, but these documents don’t come from the people (or even mention them) and the English parliament is nothing that great to boast about in the past or whatever recognisable aspects remain from the British version that plagues us all.

    You should read the Declaration of Arbroath, it would take a few minutes and is the expression of a modernising community directed at Europe (not England-the easier target) via their leaders which is not shared within any English constitution or “British constitution” (if there can be said to be such a beast) because it was based on democracy which was a concept unknown and unexpressed by most nations for hundred of years.

  22. Carol Says:

    In the meantime, the rest of us will look at the state of democracy under a Scottish PM and Scottish Chancellor and wonder, “Has the Auld Enemy mentality that has been allowed to fester in northern Britain, now manifested itself government policy?”

    Of course it has.

    Roll on independence. Vote SNP and set England free.

  23. Kinghobbe Says:

    “In the meantime, the rest of us will look at the state of democracy under a Scottish PM and Scottish Chancellor and wonder, “Has the Auld Enemy mentality that has been allowed to fester in northern Britain, now manifested itself government policy?”

    Golly gumdrops-what political insight!

    No English Mp’s in the Labour Party in Westminster then?

    Don’t worry, you can look forward to having so much better democracy when perhaps an English born person successfully challenges and beats Gordon Brown as Labour leader, or wait a while until the Tories are in charge of Westminster.

    Anybody in British politics born in England has always championed having an English parliament etc haven’t they?

    I forgive you and others on here being hopeful for the SNP to give you your rather short lived lack of democracy back, because you lt have little chance of achieving much more beyond a blame culture.

  24. Ian Hamilton QC Says:

    In history England was looked on as the ‘auld enemy’.
    These days are gone and for centuries we have lived together in an uneasy Union.
    Let us start a new phrase and call it the ‘auld friendship’.
    May we part as the friends we truly are.
    Ian

  25. Terry Says:

    “Because he happens to have been born in Scotland does not mean in the slightest that he seeks to give Scotland anything different than that of all his Westminster predecessors which is to control our government and resources.”
    If Brown is not looking out for Scots’ interests, then he should be thrown out of office. He was returned by Scots, in a Scottish seat and it would be wrong for him to do anything that acted against their best interests. He should never, for example, campaign against the Barnett formula because his constituents enjoy 30% higher spending on benefits than they would if they lived in England. (A “who subsidises whom” argument here is irrelevant. The fact is he would not be doing his job if he opposed it.)
    This is why it would be wrong for Brown to become PM. Where he was born doesn’t matter, it is where his seat is that makes the difference. Blair was born in Scotland…no problem. There is a Scottish bloke (name escapes me) who sits for a seat in East Anglia, again no problem if he was to become PM. Brown should not because the two dearest (in the loving sense) and dearest (in the cost sense) policy areas are Health and Education…and Brown has no interest in these areas because they don’t affect his constituents. (This by the way is the English Question of which the WLQ is a part.)

  26. Terry Says:

    As for the Magna Carta, you have to judge people and their documents in their historical context. It was ground breaking because it broke the Monarch’s power in favour of the aristocracy. It forms a basis for human rights in many liberal democracies around the world. It did in fact refer to “the people” but it did so as “free men”. As more of us (and later women) joined that happy club we became protected by it.

    Parliament was significant because it broke the power of the aristocracy in favour of the commoners (the middle classes in reality). You can see where this trend took us and the rest is history.

    Now, we don’t have a bloody Parliament to call our own and because England swallowed the whole British thing hook line and sinker…we have sleep walked into this, but now were beginning to wake up.

    Regarding the auld friendship, yes of course it is ridiculous to suggest we are anything else. I’m forty seven and for the first thirty seven years I thought myself to be British and nothing else. I used to joke ‘if an island mentality is too worldly for you, vote SNP’, but not now!

    We will have our own Parliament because we have seen exponential growth in demand for it. Ten years ago only a handful of people called for it and now polls are showing 68% are in favour. This is without a newspaper or political party campaign, this is heartfelt from the grassroots. No Government can resist such calls for long.

  27. William Gruff Says:

    The hardest part of composing a reply to idiots like Kinghobbe lies in stifling one’s laughter for long enough to type: The Scotch ‘raircteh-chewed’ is almost tangible, and all the more risible.

    A South African colleague of hers once asked Mrs Gruff (while working in Sc*tland) in all too evident disbelief: ‘These people want to govern themselves?’ When she answered yes, he responded with: ‘They’re kidding themselves’.

    It’s apparent to anyone not wearing tartan tinted spectacles that the Scotch couldn’t organise a ‘piss-up’ in Sauchiehall Street, but who cares? As long as their grasping hands are out of our pockets they can do what they will.

    Here’s to Independence!

  28. kinghobbe Says:

    “As for the Magna Carta, you have to judge people and their documents in their historical context. It was ground breaking because it broke the Monarch’s power in favour of the aristocracy. It forms a basis for human rights in many liberal democracies around the world. It did in fact refer to “the people” but it did so as “free men”. As more of us (and later women) joined that happy club we became protected by it.”

    Not many men were “free” in early medieval times but then I didn’t criticise the Magna Carta, it does have some aspirational content that has served to this day around the world, but only now as people have theoretically become the bosses of their own destiny within the confines of what democracy should mean.

    The English parliament was nothing special on occasion as far as the ‘big things’ go, if you wished to have an education but were poor, then you didn’t get one.

    “Parliament was significant because it broke the power of the aristocracy in favour of the commoners (the middle classes in reality). You can see where this trend took us and the rest is history.”

    The “commoners” were iactually the medieval equivalent of representation of the most richest of traders, rather than the Middle Classes, but “commoners” never ever meant representation of the common people, rather than the mention of House of Commons denoting the right of the unelected MP’s to run the lives of the population by making them work, make them fight wars and tax them.

    Very few people had a vote you see.

    “”Regarding the auld friendship, yes of course it is ridiculous to suggest we are anything else. I’m forty seven and for the first thirty seven years I thought myself to be British and nothing else. I used to joke ‘if an island mentality is too worldly for you, vote SNP’, but not now!”

    Your recognition of your Englishness should see you look for a less negative approach to your expression and promotion of such a correct argument that comes with promoting an English parliament.

    I have only responded in the hope that you have the gumption to realise that your rhetoric would be better directed at the real target, the argument is already won for England being England alone in my eyes, because Ian hamilton is right, there is a negativity and an air of tarring a whole country with a political wrong that involves the Parliament for Britain housed in England and staffed full of people who are English as well as Scottish.

    That lets a few posters here down.

    cheers

  29. kinghobbe Says:

    “The hardest part of composing a reply to idiots like Kinghobbe lies in stifling one’s laughter for long enough to type.”

    Was it difficult for you to compose, I’d never have guessed by the poor quality of the content.

    You’ve let yourself down there, as it must obviously take a bona-fide all singing all dancing idiot to actually struggle when replying to what is merely a token idiot like myself.

  30. Bunc Says:

    Go on any blog or discussion forum where the issue of Scottish Independance is being discussed and the same ranting nationalism from both sides of the union is increasingly evident. This is,sadly, the consequence when the nationlist cat gets out of the bag.

    Those that think that either the process of dissolving the Union or the situation after dissolution will improve this have their heads in a paper bag. The blue touch paper of narrow nationlism and parochialism that both sides demonstrate will be lit each time the interests of Scotland and England diverge.

    We are it seems marching towards an era of political turmoil on this island and the masses are shouting “bring it on”. What a sad end for a union that has lasted three hundred years.

  31. John Says:

    Modern football was invented by the English, in London, under the auspices of EC Morley, a fact recognised by FIFA.

    http://www.fifa.com/en/history/history/0,1283,1,00.html
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ebenezer_Cobb_Morley

  32. John Says:

    King Henry IV of England provides the first documented use of the English word “football” when in 1409 he issued a proclamation forbidding the levying of money for “foteball”.[8]

    In 1314, comes the earliest reference to a game called football when Nicholas de Farndone, Lord Mayor of London issued a decree on behalf of King Edward II banning football.

  33. David Says:

    Who cares?! It’s only a game…and not a particularly beautiful one at that…

  34. Paul Fraser Says:

    Please god help the Scots to independence so that England can be free of their endless whinging.

    Mr Hamilton, you really ought to see what is posted in the name of Scottish Independence on the World Wide Web (English Invention).

    As to England and Scotland being friends, with the vile, rabid, anti-English bile that continually pumps south from Scotland dont bank on it.

  35. Trevor Jary Says:

    WHAT ARE YOU ALL TALKING ABOUT!!!!!
    Unless you all want to be governed by a unelected European government(one where a 3x disgraced MP-Peter Mandelson is now an unelected EMP)This Is What these EMP have been waiting for! they want the Union broke into TINY PIECES which is all we are Independent!They will then have us were they want us! at the moment as the UK we get little push and pull in regards to Europe as it is! As Scotland ,Wales, N Ireland and the Regional Assemblies formaly known as England (Given there way)they are aiming to divide and concure and who has helped this along…Tony Blair! who has his eye firmly on a much bigger prize the Primeminsiter…..President of Europe …who suggested this idea of a President holding term for a whole 4 years…..Tony! unfortunatly hes not as popular as he was …but i’m sure the Old Euro guard (France And Germany)will thank him for his services! We are Brothers and we must see this for what it is and expensive ,pointless european 30 year plan to get us to join europe! A Independent Scotland sounds great but apart from the fact they would get no more say than the Dutch ,who pretty much have to put up with what ever law comes out of europe ,they would also be walking away from the union And I guess that would mean no rights to I.E Military defence the whole fleet would belong to what would be left of the union,I guess Scotland would have to start again, the remaining union, If it Stuck,would be calling for no more money to be sent north to Scotland with no money coming from WestMinister and dwindling oil Reserves the INDEPENDENT Scotland Would need A Subsidy……And guess who’ll be there to give the cash….Europe..Bingo…Scotland in Europe (with no Referendem) England, wales, N island would shortly follow suit!
    In the Mean time all this money could have been spent on Hospitals,Transport ..Important stuff..we (together)are the 4th/5th largest Econamy! we dont need them they need us!I am not against a fair Europe Where we all have a fair say but this Europe is UNFAIR,UNJUST,and UNELECTED!And bullies its way into getting what it wants (I.e the constituion, which is now making its way back on the table wrapped up in a better lable)
    some of the things I have said are guesses but I just see this “BREAK UP” Happening now.. this way!
    I Now like to point out that I am…. DUTCH!!!
    Think before you leap!!! We all have enough Money food everything! my life in London is not that different to the one in Glasgow or Cardiff(I Have Lived in all)So why fix somthing that aint broke? as a business it doesnt make finacial sense to break the UK up!

  36. Stephen Birch Says:

    I was bought up (born 1956) to believe I was British and to be proud of what had been achieved by the union of four nations; each with destinct characteristics but held together with a common pride in fair play and shared values.

    My parents fought in the second world war under the British Flag (and before any Welsh people comment, I am aware that it does not contain any Welsh symbolism but does include a representation of a foreign country The Irish Republic). My father in particular spoke of being British never English.

    Up until about 1990, I always felt British, but I am now constantly TOLD by the media, friends, colleagues and all manner of people that I am English.

    It is strange that, the only people in this land who regularly calls themselves British are usually those of foreign descent or those that have become British after immigrating to these shores. Probably because they are not as aware of the history and culture of these islands.

    I fear that the arguments by the seperatists are taking hold and the UK, will disintegrate as did Yugoslavia, Czechoslavkia, USSR. Of course a precedent for this already occured for the UK in 1922.

    As I have grown older, I have travelled further and more frequently both at home in the UK and abroad, even living and working abroad for a time. I have two clients in Scotland, one of which is an agency of the Scottish Executive. Naturally as a businessman I need to satisfy my clients’ requirements so I listen intently as to what is important to them. Their requirements, understandably, are around meeting the needs of their clients, the Scottish people. I am constantly told that the needs of the Scottish are different to “the English”. I can’t see it myself, they seem the same to me. There is a British culture which is shared by The English, the Northern Irish, The Welsh and The Scottish, there are geographicall variations but no more than between someone from Sussex compared to someone from Newcastle. As a “Working Class Brummie” by birth, I am sure I have a different view on some issues to a “Public School South Eastern”; indeed I might have more in common with someone from a similar background in Cardiff or Glasgow.

    If we look at the USA, the largest economy in the world and a very successful nation created from assimilating people from all over the world into one relatively unified melting pot. They appear to have a very strong national identity and developed a common culture that the rest of the world can easily recognise as “American”.

    The strength of the UK too has always been its willingness to absorb and adopt incoming cultures, to be tolerant and to bend a little, to accommodate new ideas and develop them; that is our strength and we shoulld stop trying to emphasise the differences and start to respect them.

    That includes respecting what each home country has done for the union.

    Whilst I recognise that my voice is somewhat in the wilderness as a pro unionist, I still feel the union is worth saving for its richness of cultures and strengths.

    I would abolish the devolved governments and adopt a one nation appoach. No separate legal system for part of the union, one educaton systems, one health system. I would insist the the Monarchy recognised this and the Queen became Elizabeth the first of the United Kingdom. I would insist that representation at the UK Parliament (where ever it be based) is done purely on an equal representation by population per consistuency.

    Even if you don’t agree with my views, thanks for reading them.

  37. M Anderson Says:

    “Because he happens to have been born in Scotland does not mean in the slightest that he seeks to give Scotland anything different than that of all his Westminster predecessors which is to control our government and resources.”

    The claim of right

    The Claim of Right read:

    We, gathered as the Scottish Constitutional Convention, do hereby acknowledge the sovereign right of the Scottish people to DETERMINE the form of Government best suited to THEIR needs, and do hereby DECLATE AND PLEDGE that in ALL OUR ACTIONS and deliberations THEIR interests shall be paramount.
    We further declare and pledge that our actions and deliberations shall be directed to the following ends:

    To agree a scheme for an Assembly or Parliament for Scotland;

    To mobilise Scottish opinion and ensure the approval of the Scottish people for that scheme; and

    To assert the right of the Scottish people to secure implementation of that scheme.

    The Claim of Right was signed by 58 of Scotland’s 72 MPs, 7 of Scotland’s 8 MEPS, 59 out of 65 Scottish Regional, District and Island Councils, and numerous political parties, churches and Scottish organisations.

    It was treated with contempt by the last Tory Government. Since Labour formed the government in May 1997 it has also been, again predicatably, contradicted or ignored by many of its Labour signatories.

    GORDON BROWN SIGNED IT!!! What did you state again?
    “[just] because he happens to have been born in Scotland does not mean in the slightest that he seeks to give Scotland anything different than that of all his Westminster predecessors which is to control our government and resources.”

    YOU, SIR, ARE A LIAR AND A HYPOCRITE!

  38. Liz Says:

    I have recently returned from being in Canada for the past 10 years. Laterly I was in Nova Scotia, so have been subjected to quite a lot of Scottishness (all be it from Canadains wearing kilts). I support Scotland’s independance as it will lead to England’s independance. The Act of Union may have taken away Scotland’s independance, but it destroyed England’s identity, which I believe is a worse loss.

    I can understand some of the Scots animosity towards the English, as this country has been the wealthiest and largest in population, which at times has led those in Parliament not being considerate of the other countries needs (ie the introduction of the despised Poll Tax into Scotland first). However this does not mean that all that is ill with Scotland now or in the past is due to the English. It would be a shame that the UK can only be dismantled with lots of mud slinging and animosity. This would not be good for the future. We will still be neighbours after all.

    I do disagree that the Scots are more open than the English. The Scots are no more open than the English and have their fair share of bigots. It is time the Scots, stop crying foul and blaming the English for all their woes. No doubt they can point to many historical references for their victimhood, but some of that history has been overplayed and exploited for political purposes.

    My last point is the Scots are not better than the English, and need to move on from claiming all inventions or initiatives as Scotish. This is quite an annoying habit.

  39. Kip Kane Says:

    I wish the english would shut the @#$% up. The Scottish people will decide what they want. We are a nation and we will never submit to british rule. Go home ya huns. Take ter queen along wi ye.

  40. harry Says:

    the westminster parliament is in england but thats as far as it goes it`s the uk government,we need an english parliament where no other nationalities can vote on english only issues

  41. harry Says:

    kip kane tells us (i suppose he means us english) to go home,he needs to look at the numbers of scots in england and compare the opposite.

  42. Ian Says:

    I think we should have independence but keep northen ireland and Wales with all our terratories left to us and leave Scotland with nothing. Just see how they cope without our financal support.

  43. David Says:

    Harry, perhaps you could explain what exactly is an ‘English only’ issue…given the way the UK operates and the way in which the Barrnet formula works, there is very little legislation which passes through Westminster that affects only England…until such time as Scotland truly does control her own affairs, without medalling from London, Scots and their MPs have every right to vote on legislation that affects them financially, even if it’s policy intended only for England…sorry bud…

  44. Michael Hume Says:

    Well, Mr Hamilton QC. If you’re indicative of the standard of the Queen’s Counsel then no wonder we’re in such a mess legislatively and we’re in big trouble. There’s so much plainly incorrect in this blog that it’s mind boggling. It would be funny if this weren’t such a serious discussion.

    However, I will pick up on one assertion you made about Scots never being racists. I was born in Scotland, to a Scottish father whose father, grandfather, great grandfather, etc. were all Scottish. I happened to grow up in England and, therefore, developed an English accent. Imagine my surprise and horror when I last visited Scotland to be racially abused for being English. Not only was there the typical anti-English bile thrown at me, but also threats of violence. I had to escape by running. Yes, welcoming Scotland, indeed. Oh the irony because I’m actually Scottish. I know of other people from England who have experienced similar. If Scotland had been forced to accept millions upon millions of foreigners into its mix in the past fifty years would it have passed as peacefully as it has done in England? I’m not sure about that.

    No racists in Scotland, my arse:

    http://www.sacc.org.uk/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=127&catid=27

  45. Kevin McGill Says:

    Mr Hamilton, I was born on this island in Manchester and you and nobody else will stop me going were ever i feel like when i feel like it. Three hundred years of peace. There may be trouble ahead.

  46. David Says:

    Michael, while I’m sorry you experienced that sort of treatmenet, when I used to live in England I was regularly bullied for being Scottish; on one occasion I was actually kicked out of a pub for simply being Scottish.

    It works both ways. This is not a Scotland-only problem…please don’t make it out to be as such…

  47. Adrian Peirson Says:

    There is a distinctly Zionist feel to some of these comments, Is Pro EU One Worlder Jack Straw Stirring up trouble between the English and the Scots & Welsh again.

    Wasn’t it Jack Straw that said ‘the British are not worth saving as a race’
    So let’s see, British means Welsh, Scots, & Irish, Cornish and here he is Causing division.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/596717.stm
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/uk/596703.stm
    Is this a Divide and conqEUr Policy I wonder.
    Thankfully the comments show British people are not so easily led to division.
    Why does this man still have a Job, why is he still in our Country,
    Does he work for Britain, the EU or the Zionist cause.

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