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Thursday, 27 February 2014

UK to be Python-esque “dead parrot” after Scottish Independence?



The British Establishment’s increasingly desperate support for the idea of the "rest of the UK" (rUK) reminds me of (for the middle aged amongst us) the “dead parrot” sketch from Monty Python. I am reminded of the shop-keeper’s self-interested and ludicrous attempts to persuade his customer that the parrot is healthier than it seems! Here is the 'Python clip >>>

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vuW6tQ0218



The House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution, chaired by Jim Callaghan's daughter, Baroness Jay of Paddington. It has called for evidence for an Inquiry into the constitutional implications for the remainder of the United Kingdom in the event of a Yes vote on the 18th September.

The assumptions for the questions are that there will be a constitutional entity called the rUK. My view could be expressed as a mathematical formula:-

E + S = GB   therefore   GB - S = E 

(Where E = Kingdom of England, S = Kingdom of Scotland, GB = United Kingdom of Great Britain).

Below are my submissions to the Committee. What do you think?

Scottish Independence: Constitutional implications for the rest of the UK

I am the Chairman of the English Democrats, which is the only English party that is interested in such constitutional implications. We are of course interested in the constitutional implications for England. As English nationalists we call for English Independence.

The first point to make crystal clear in the event that Scotland goes independent, and I make this point, not only as the Chairman of the English Democrats, but also as a lawyer and practicing solicitor, that there is no automatically persisting entity known as “the rest of the UK”. This point rests on basic constitutional legal principles and derives from the nature and wording of the Act of Union in 1707. The relevant articles of which are stated as follows:-

"ARTICLE 1

THAT THE TWO Kingdoms of England and Scotland shall upon the first Day of May which shall be in the Year one thousand seven hundred and seven, and for ever after, be united into one Kingdom by the name of Great Britain;

ARTICLE III

That the United Kingdom of Great Britain be represented by one and the same Parliament, to be stiled, The Parliament of Great Britain.”


It therefore follows, as a matter of trite law, that in the event of Scotland becoming independent this must involve the repeal of the Act of Union 1707. This automatically means that the then new constitutional entity that was created by the Act of Union, namely the “United Kingdom of Great Britain”, will be dissolved. This leads to the automatic dissolution of the Union with Northern Ireland.

The Union with Northern Ireland is the residue deriving from early 20th Century Southern Irish independence of a Union which was created by the Act of Union of 1801 between the Kingdom of Ireland and the United Kingdom of Great Britain.

Obviously therefore the Union so far as Northern Ireland is concerned, is with the United Kingdom of Great “Britain”. With the dissolution of the “United Kingdom of Great Britain” there will be no automatically persisting Union with any then existing constitutional entity.

The position of Wales is different because Wales was fully incorporated into the “Kingdom of England” by the 1536 union legislation. That is why of course the Act of Union 1707 does not mention Wales because Wales is then encompassed within the term the “Kingdom of England”.

It follows that without new constitutional legislation the independence of Scotland leads to the dissolution of the “United Kingdom of Great Britain” and of Great Britain’s union with Northern Ireland. It will thus give rise to the re-emergent “Kingdom of Scotland”, the re-emergent “Kingdom of England” and the “Province of Northern Ireland” with no current Union between England or Scotland (or the Republic of Ireland).

It is worth considering the above points carefully because the consequence of Scotland becoming independent isn’t just that Scotland technically would be classified as a new state, under the emerging body of what, for want of a better term, is called “international law”, but also that the Kingdom of England and the Province of Northern Ireland will also all be now States.

The Committee has asked for answers to specific questions.

1. Negotiations – Is the timetable of independence by March 2016 realistic?

Yes, I would have thought it was. It will impose an obligation on negotiators to get on with it promptly.

2. Who will negotiate for the remainder of the UK? To whom would they be accountable?

You will appreciate from my introductory points above, about the nature of the constitutional implications of Scottish independence, that there would not automatically be a single entity which is the remainder of the UK.

It is certainly not appropriate for anyone to purport to negotiate on behalf of England if not expressly and avowedly and legitimately mandated to do so. This will particularly apply to those British politicians who have expressly stated either their hostility to the English nation and/or their Scottish origins, such as David Cameron or William Hague, let alone anyone who is actually of Scottish origin, such as Gordon Brown or Alastair Darling.

The English negotiators should be accountable to the English Nation. It is essential that an English parliament and government be reconstructed quickly in the event of Scotland voting for independence so that there are proper lines of democratic accountability and legitimacy within England.

3. What impact would the timing of the UK general election in May 2015 have on negotiation?

It will clearly have a destabilising effect on the negotiations as it may well result in the replacement of the original team with a different team of negotiators and with a different government involved in the negotiations.

4. What happens if the two negotiating teams cannot reach agreement on an issue?

The answer to this question will, of course will depend on the issue. For instance if the issue was where the boundary between English North Sea oil and Scottish North Sea oil lies, then that could be adjudicated upon by the International Court at the Hague. If it was something that was within the giving of one of the parties but requested by the other, such as a role in the formulation of policy at the Bank of England that will not be capable of adjudication. Clearly the English team could simply refuse and the other team would not be able to insist upon it. If in fact on that item there is such a refusal then I suspect the Scottish negotiators will take the advice of the highly respected international law authority, Professor David Scheffer of the Centre for International Human Rights in Chicago and decline to accept any share of the UK’s debts.

5. Assets and liabilities and shared services. What legal principles should apply to negotiations on the apportion of assets and liabilities that are currently UK-wide?

Since all the participants in negotiations will be acting on behalf of potentially “new States” the negotiations are inevitably going to be without hard and fast rules and will be based on give and take. In principle all parties could walk away from the liabilities of the “UK”. So far as assets are concerned, that will either rest on satisfactory negotiations between the parties or will be based on who has physical possession.

6. What are the constitutional implications of maintaining services shared between Scotland and the rest of the UK (for example, the Bank of England and those services listed on page 364 of the Scottish Governments’ White Paper)?

Answer 5 above answers this question.

7. Parliament. What would the position of MPs for Scottish constituencies be from May 2015 to March 2016?

Until the dissolution of the “United Kingdom of Great Britain” and Northern Ireland they would of course be members of the Union Parliament. Upon dissolution the Union Parliament itself will have to be reconfigured in accordance with the new constitutional situation. The same will apply to peers of the Union Parliament.

8. What impact would independence have on the House of Commons if MPs for Scottish constituencies left it in March 2016?

Clearly the balance of the parties would be shifted, but the point remains that the House of Commons constitutional position will be altered as Parliament will no longer be the Parliament of the “United Kingdom of Great Britain” but rather only of the Kingdom of England which will also exclude Northern Irish MPs.

9. What impact would independence have on the House of Lords? 

The House of Lords is of course currently one of the two Chambers of the Parliament of the “United Kingdom of Great Britain” and Northern Ireland. With the dissolution of the United Kingdom of Great Britain the membership of the House of Lords will be dramatically affected as it will only be appropriate for English peers to sit in the English Upper Chamber. The English Democrats position is that all members of the English Upper Chamber should be democratically elected by the people of England.

10. What legislation (or other measures) would the Westminster have to pass in order for Scotland to become independent?

The Act of Union of 1707 would have to be repealed.

12 comments:

  1. Another excellent job, Robin! It is important to de-bunk this "Rest of the U.K." nonesense. My fear is, (and I'm a music teacher, not a lawyer,) that the British government will seek to incorporate the repeal of the 1707 Act into a new Act, creating a new union of England, (unlikely to be mentioned by name,)Wales and Norhern Ireland. I certainly can NOT see them standing by and allowing the remaining former components of their precious U.K. drift apart, and whilst the creation of an independent Scotland would cast grave doubts as to the legitimacy of the former British government, what machinery is there to challenge that legitimacy?
    You say that negotiators representing England will have to be properly mandated, but again, how is that to be achieved, when the Brits don't believe there is an "England"?
    I'm not sure how one can plead "unconstitutional" with an unwritten constitution!
    All that said, I return to the positive tones used at the outset to re-affirm a "Well done!" These House of Lords types certainly have something to chew on!
    Clive,
    Weston-super-Mare

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  2. Acts of terrorism have never ceased in Northern Ireland, even after the so-called "Peace" Agreement. Given this fact, we can expect things to get much worse if Scotland votes Yes. As a result, I think we should immediately call in the United States to act as peacekeepers rather than using our own troops, using the perfectly reasonable point that our own presence would merely inflame the situation.

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    1. That would leave the Loyalists in a terrible predicament considering the support from the Americans for the republican cause. Protestant NI is loyal to Britain and the implications of their ties with Scotland and England against the communist republicans is another horror for them to face. My view, as an Englishman, is that England, as an established protestant nation should offer continued support in conjunction with Scotland and its protestant brothers in NI. After all the British government have dealt into the hands of the IRA who in turn have sold Ireland into the EU multicultural sausage machine without a whimper.

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    2. probably the best solution for Ulster would be partition between Scotland and Ireland with the city region of Belfast going to Scotland and the city region of Derry going to the Ireland

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  3. In its opening discussions, Baroness Jay's committee worked on the basis that 'rUK' would be a legal entity if the Scottish bit of it seceded. The word 'England' does not seem to have been mentioned. Only Scotland, in the committee's view, would be a new state. This is likely to be the establishment line. All we can be sure of is that the British will do all they can to prevent the re-emergence of England.It will be up to the people of England insist on their sovereign rights. What we will need is a new Declaration of Rights.

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  4. The principal problem is that England would still be at the mercy of the Cultural Marxists of the establishment parties. The liberal establishment would continue legislating against England and we hated English even with a nominally English parliament. It is interesting to remember that during Robin's recent appearance on the Daily Politics a question arose that required clarification on the finer constitutional points regarding the status of 'rUK' should independence be the result, which Robin proceeded to do. The questioner and the panel went into a disbelieving torpor as the prospect of England being both free and out of the EU sank in.

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    1. I was talking to somebody recently about what unites the financial fascism of the American financial-industrial complex and the Marxism of the EU and beyond. The answer was fascism. Fascism is really a small body of people bullying or brainwashing the rest into going along with their Weltanschauung. We are now subject to political and financial totalitarianism. Thinking about it the totalitarian socialism of Hitler was hand in glove with Nazi Germany's banks and big business, the latter happy to take on slave labour. So here we go again with big business driving down wages to slave level and welcoming in the traditional Slaves/Slavs from Eastern Europe.

      However, the Drang nach Osten seems to be foundering once again on Russia's doorsteps. Even the Sun showed a picture of Putin with the headline "Are you hard enough to take me on EU" or something similar.

      This totalitarianism is uniting the "far right" and traditional left against the "fascist" bid for world domination. So you had Robert Oulds of the Bruges Group talking about regime change in the Ukraine. The Neo-Nazis who are anathema to the EU within its borders are supported by the EU in the Ukraine, along with those who fought with jihadist terrorists and Ukrainian oligarchs that the coup was meant to remove.

      The biggest joke, of course, is Obama talking about a breach of international law and infringement of sovereignty in the Crimea. This is the country which has changed the regime in the Ukraine as elsewhere around the world through force.

      Most of us in the prison state that is the EU hope that Russia, as predicted by the Zagorsk Prophecy, will now save us before the EU reaches Alaska and we are all trapped by the financial-industrial complexes world domination.

      My one fear now is that they will pull the plug on Russia Today and Al Jazeera and block internet connection with the rest of the world in the same way that that former Soviet Union, not the EU variety, jammed broadcasts by the Voice of America et al to Eastern Europe. The thought is deeply depressing but I am still optimistic that nasty nationalism will win through in the end before they win.

      As regards the slavery they wish to subject us to, only Russia and China are holding out and this is why they are being targeted. Ironically Mr McQueen dedicated his film to those fighting slavery worldwide whilst his family is backing the plutocracy in their aim of enslaving and eradicating Europeans through the technique of further encouraging white guilt.
      Russia is European Christian Civilisation's last hope and we must hope that they do not let us down and have the strength to resist.

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    2. presumably after a yes vote Wales would cease to exist except as a region of England.
      you have certainly put the cat among the pigeons (parrots?)

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    3. Presumably the country will then be called what it is already in terms of certain legislation i.e. England Dan Wales. I was amused to see discussion already of what the new flag of rUK will look like. The most popular suggestion was something like the Royal Standard; but that won't go down too well with anti-monarchists. Obviously, nobody wants another tricolour and then it would have to be red, green and white and easily confused with that of Italy and is it Hungary?

      The alternative is the St George's flag with the Welsh dragon and the red hand of Ulster somewhere but this would probably be deemed to give too much prominence to the former over the latter. Anyhow, all this might be much too much premature.

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  5. Speakig about the Viking exhibition in London, the Danish ambassador said on BBC 4's Today programme that the Danish language changed the "British" language. Another example of political correctness and the denial of English?
    The British language (Brythoneg) is Welsh. Our English is strictly speaking Dano-English and that is indeed down to the Danish settlement of Yorkshire and the East Midlands (the Danelaw).
    Much of the vocabulary might be from Latin, but the Danish strain runs deeper.

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  6. As a viewer of Russia Today I wonder if I am alone in finding myself in the disconcerting position of not knowing who is telling the truth over the Crimea. In the old cold war days it used to be so simple as we were, so we were told, the goodies and those beyond the Iron Curtain were the baddies.

    However, because of the Western Press's seemingly blind allegiance to all that is coming out of Washington on behalf of the American financial-industrial complex and their Neocon, whether Republican or Democrat, spokespersons, I really don't know what is going on.

    This morning we hear that Obama has said that he wants to get the Russians involved in decisions as to the Ukraine's future provided the Russians withdraw their forces. Does he mean the forces that are stationed in the Ukraine by international treaty, as America has a base on Cuba? Obviously, that is not going to happen and for good reason, the Russians are not going to let NATO anywhere near their Black Sea Fleet.

    It appears that the Oligarchs are now in control of Kiev, the richest men in the country - a bit like here really, the sort of people that Putin is chucking out of Russia to come and settle and launder their money in London.

    For those of us opposed to the ever-expanding EU totalitarian empire the thought of a Russian victory over the EU and the American corporations, oil companies and the banking cartels that want to go in and fleece the Ukrainians and reduce them to penury is good news.

    I am informed that a German soldier at Stalingrad revealed that the Germans' ultimate goal was the Ukrainian oilfields, so here we go again.
    It all reminds me of 1984 with the creation of competing power blocks all held together with the hatred of each other. The one way to try to unite Europeans and Americans is for them to join forces against the Russian bogeyman. By the way, I am not saying that Russia is perfect but the time has come for nations to work together for the good of all. I have nothing against European nations and beyond co-operating to avoid bloodshed; but this pretext has been used to advance the aims of petty psychopaths, either political, financial or both, who, like the playground bully, thrive on subjecting the rest of us and bending us to their will, either through force, politics or manipulation of the press etc.

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  7. The United Kingdom was formed in 1801 when "The Kingdom of Ireland" became a part of the Union. When most of Ireland departed from the Union, the United Kingdom should have ceased to exist, but it didn't! If Scotland votes yes, leaving just one "proper Kingdom" in the remaining union, I suspect that the term United Kingdom will continue

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