Monday, 15 October 2012

And The Best Of British Luck

One of the regular comments about the Scottish Referendum is to the effect that it represents the break up of Britain.  Up to a point, there is still a land border across which a good deal of the food and other goods Scotland consumes will be carried.  More important is that Britain is already broken, so the Scottish thing is just part of the flotsam and jetsam.

The UK has come to be a highly centralised state with its politics, media, finance and other things concentrated in London.  But for all the flag waving and fun of The Olympics London is no longer British.  It is now an international city with a major European element amongst its population.

As such it has become remarkably inward looking and self contained.  It does not care or interest itself much in the provinces or its peoples.  What is does do is to demand and get a hugely disproportionate amount of both public and private investment projects to sustain a way of life that is foreign, in the fullest sense of the word, to the rest of England.

The London I knew in the past certainly had its Imperial and other World connections and links.  Whilst there were many migrants from different parts the population consisted of mostly either people from around the South East with migrants from all parts of the Atlantic Isles.  The Scots seem to have commanded many of the senior management jobs.

This is no longer the case, there are still incomers from around the Atlantic Isles but there are now much larger numbers from wherever you care to think about and since 1997 the door was opened to almost anyone from anywhere.  With free health treatment on offer, guaranteed housing and benefits from UK taxes, inevitably they came and keep coming.

What has become clear with the fall out from the last Labour government’s “scorched earth” policy, drive to change radically all our key institutions and the infliction of the cult of modern management and computer driven financing is that the economy is now said to depend on the property market and this means crucially London.

Moreover, we now have occurring a series of gross failures, blunders and failures of government that not only impose huge costs and rising debts but make effective government and administration of the UK an unlikely event in the foreseeable future.

The first consideration for any government is the defence of the realm.  We have an air force, a navy and an army that are too small and too badly equipped to deal with any serious matters.  Worse, we have expended their capital on campaigns in small wars that cannot be won.

We have an energy policy which will deliver high costs and uncertainly but not enough energy, a national health service slowly heading for collapse, any major health problem will see to that, social services that are anti-social in the treatment of children and an education system that has become a business that does not educate.

But with London attached to the EU by an umbilical cord of jobs for the boys and girls, corruption, criminality and crazy economics this is not going to change.  It is still not clear that we will have an EU Referendum or on what basis.  Putting the Scottish one before the EU one is very much the cart before the horse.

The other question is why should any border depend on a grubby marriage settlement brokered in 1328 between members of related elites?  Had not William The Marshal saved King John and King Henry III in the early 13th Century, a border might have been well to the south with the Scots taking all of Northumbria.

In 1320 one of the signatories to the Declaration of Arbroath was a Mowbray.  Again if events had been otherwise the Mowbray magnates of The North may have opted for the King of Scots.  Had Edward The Bruce not gone to Ireland to lose his head but campaigned South it might have been a very different story.

That Queen Isabella and the Earl of Mortimer not staged a coup on behalf of King Edward III then again the border could well have been to the south, King Robert The Bruce had a claim to the Earldom of Northumbria, as well as several others.

So should different parts of England at present not be given the option to join Scotland should they wish to?  It could be quite interesting.  Perhaps Kent could join with Clackmannan if Scotland devolved local government, as it should.  If The Shetlands might look to Edinburgh to be the capital city then why not Canterbury?

There are all the signs of yet another Great British botch in the whole business.  What worries me about Scottish independence is a former RBS employee getting his hands on the loot on behalf of his friends. 

All change but no change.

1 comment:

  1. Perhaps Scotland could take all those Northern subsidy-sinks with them!