Monday, 30 August 2010

If the UK Broke Apart...

Within the components of the UK there are a vast array of differing opinion when it comes to issues like the Union, Devolution and Independence...

So let's pose a hypothetical (It's what is done on this blog mainly), It's September 1st 2010 (tomorrow from when i'm writing) and after an emergency meeting the night before between the cabinet and the devolved executive bodies it has been decided that the UK will break up..what now?

As an added feature in respect of it's Celtic heritage, Cornwall is an additional part along with Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England.

Outcome 1) Five Nations: Every part of the former UK decides to become a fully independent state;

Scotland would most likely retain the Monarchy and would probably be able to draw in investment with it's status as a source of Oil, though the Scottish Economy would most likely be the strongest of the Celtic Nations leaving the UK

Wales may retain the Monarch but may also shift to a President (an Idea would be to ask that the title of Prince of Wales pass to Prince Harry to separate the Monarchy), It would have to reinvest heavily in tourism, Light manufacturing and agriculture to rebalance it's economy

Cornwall may install the Duchy of Cornwall as it's head of state (though again an idea would be to ask that it passes to Prince Harry so as to separate the Duchy from the Monarchy) Cornwall's economy would be reliant on tourism but as they already qualify for EU poverty funding money would be entering the Cornish economy to stimulate an independent Cornish economy (NOTE: Relies on Cornwall Remaining in EU)

Northern Ireland, due to it's current Unionist Majority would not reunite with the republic, It's economy would face a huge problem with rebalancing and moving away from the public sector, Reinvestment in Engineering and Heavier Industries would be it's safest move due to the and educational strength in those fields, The Monarchy may not be kept by Northern Ireland and perhaps they would install their own President as a concession to Irish republicans.

England would most likely benefit with it's economy already being the 18th highest GDP PPP and no longer having to cover the Celtic Nations, It would also enjoy a stronger position in Foreign affairs thanks to this and it's size in comparison to the Celtic Nations, The Monarch would most likely remain as England alone would provide a large Tory majority (using current seats)

2)Patchwork Unions: This outcome would see the establishment of 4 entities existing within the British Isles.

a)England (see previous outcome for economical)
c)United Ireland
d)Welsh/Cornish Union

England and Scotland would be viable enough economically to survive on their own and thus may not see any benefit to Uniting with any of the others.

United Ireland would make geographical sense and with the promise of greater influence Ulster Unionists may see it as their best bet to reshape the Northern Irish economy.

Welsh/Cornish Alliance although perhaps a surprising idea would make sense in soem regards, Both are fishing nations, Rely partially on tourism and quite geographically close, could also see the development of a strengthen small boat industry with travel between the two.

Perhaps an Unlikely outcome but plausible

3)England and the Celtic Union: As the name suggests this outcome would see the formation of a Celtic Union with England remaining on it's own.

The Celtic Union would most likely be formed with all the former UK Celtic countries and the Republic of Ireland, With the Republic of Ireland and Scotland being the dominant economic powers. This would also allow Northern Ireland to Unite with the rest of Ireland without ceasing to exist. Although a Celtic Union would most likely run on a Federal system it would likely require some economic aid from Scotland and the republic of Ireland to help rebalance the other Celtic economies. The Monarchy would most likely be replaced by a President, either within a new office or simply expanding the Role of the Irish President to encompass all the Celtic Union.

This outcome would be more likely as it would provide the Celtic Union a bit more clout in Foreign Affairs and offer a fresh debate on EU membership.

4)The Ulster-Scot Union, Welsh/Cornish bloc and England

A slight tweak to the 'Patchwork Unions' outcome in that Northern Ireland would join with Scotland due to their similarities culturally and a generally very close relationship, would again require Scotland to help Northern Ireland rebalance it's economy

There are many different possibilities for potential outcomes, What do you think?

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Slow Death of The PUP

The UVF linked Progressive Unionist Party has over the last few months seen it's Heavyweights slowly drift away from the Party.

First Dawn Purvis the Leader and the only PUP Assembly member left following the killing of Bobby Moffett on the Shankhill Road in Belfast, which was blamed on the UVF. Now David Rose who is a member of the Policing Board has also left after 'Reflection' following the murder and citing that the party was drifting in the direction of Being Conservative.

The PUP is not one of the major players in the Northern Irish Political Landscape, finding most of their support in Belfast among working class voters. However this slow bleed of the Party's heavyweights presents an opportunity for one of the Main UK Parties.

The PUP are supposed to be a Left/centre-Left party but if it is true that they are drifting to the right Labour are being presented with a potential seat in the Assembly. Dawn Purvis still holds her seat and considering the fact she was the leader of a party at one point it is possible she shall retain her seat next year.

If she can be convinced to sign up with Labour it could be viewed as a huge coup for Labour in gaining seats ahead of the Tories whose main allies, the UUP, are running a leadership election with two candidates both expressing anti-Link views effectively killing the UCUNF experiment on the eve of the Link-ups first assembly election.

Though Labour would only have one seat it would provide them with an Experienced Northern Irish politician in a position outside the Executive which would give them a greater platform to try and create a more Labour Friendly Northern Ireland come the Next General Election.

One aspect labour would have consider is the direction their new leader takes them in, a centre-left Blairite catch all labour would face problems from not only Unionism, which is neither left or right, Nationalists, who have socialist DNA but also Fianna Fail, a centre left catch all party just starting to set up shop as well.

A Left Labour may be able to find a niche in Belfast and a deal with the SDLP could put extra pressure on Sinn Fein and the DUP with a party who have clout in both Northern Ireland and the UK as a whole.

As always this is speculation and theory not solid fact