Saturday, 18 March 2017

Leaving minus part of ones country

Harder, more old school posting today that between the everyday fluff this blog was more noted for that that other one never goes into brought about this weeks Current Affairs.
Getting on for nearly nine months back, we had here in the United Kingdom, a referendum that asked us if we wished to remain in the European Union or if we wished to leave.
Very much a simple tick which of the two boxes you agree with thing although nobody would say the propositions themselves don't have complexities and for some people the final outcome was more a finely balanced judgement than just a straightforward Yes.
Well the one thing we do know know is our Prime Minister will start the formal process of leaving with its discussions by months end having gotten Royal assent Thursday with much arguing around the legality of Government just starting the process and what if any approval by Parliament is required upon the completion of negations by both the United Kingdom's and the European Union's negotiators.
Going back some two and half years ago however Scotland held a referendum of its own about remaining  a member of the United Kingdom or establishing itself as a fully independent state to which the outcome was to remain a part of the United Kingdom by a majority of ten percent.
Nicola Sturgeon, leader of the majority SNP party and First Minister of the Scottish Parliament however has decided  that although it was said to be decided for a generation, the UK exiting the European Union including leaving the Single Market and Customs Union to control migration and make own trading agreements so undermines Scotland that another be held between the Fall of 2018 and Spring 2019 and is pushing a bill through institution to cause it to be considered by the UK House of Commons.
The problem with this is it would be right in the middle of the negotiations for the whole of the UK to leave the EU including any terms that would effect Scottish Interests and these would be helped by the best brains of the Civil Service so not only does this add extra layers on for Scotland, the nature of what may even be agreed under Independence may alter it plus these same 'brains' would not be available for those talks.
Even if all of this were to happen, upon the UK leaving the EU, that would take Scotland out and so it would need to wait in line to apply as itself (there would be no question of 'taking' the UK's place) so for a period Scotland would be outside the EU anyway.
Then, many Scots who do favour independence don't like the EU whose popularity has dropped a lot so mixing the idea of Independence with joining an unliked institution that does usurp some sovereignty may not play out too well.
As well some four-fifths of Scotland's business is with the remainder of the UK and that upon Scotland joining the EU would be effected by the terms  agreed between the remainder of the UK and the EU plus they'd be expected to work toward or adopt outright the Euro as currency that would complicate life for individuals crossing the border and business.
Then the border itself may need fortification being a EU/England+Wales+Northern Ireland one that may require checkpoints, guards and travel documents.
Who is going to pay for that if Scotland votes for independence? The English taxpayer who will be no doubt livid???
 If this question really needs re-examining, on grounds of practicality and giving everyone an informed basis of what life post Brexit would impact everyone including Scots, this really is best left until at least 2020. Maybe as former Prime Minister Brown is suggesting a more overtly federal structure for the whole UK including Scotland is a more realistic option for all of us?
It just smacks of political opportunism rather than a serious attempt to deal with real issues.

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