George Kerevan is undoubtedly justified in assuming that the UK Government would not only reject but actively seek to sabotage any arrangement which benefits Scotland both economically and politically. Scotland is, after all, regarded as a threat to the British state. Our increasingly distinctive political culture is the antithesis of the One Nation British Nationalism espoused by Theresa May’s administration. The purpose of the British political establishment is, not to empower that difference, but to eliminate it. The objective is to lock Scotland into an unreformed political union and bring public policy here into line with the rest of the UK (rUK).
Nicola Sturgeon is pursuing a ‘bespoke’ deal for Scotland, not because she considers such a thing to be a realistic prospect, but in order to demonstrate to all concerned the willingness of the Scottish Government to explore all options. And to allow Theresa May to demonstrate her unwillingness to accommodate any interests other than those with which she identifies.
The rather complex set of arrangements suggested by Mr Kerevan are almost certainly feasible. But there is a rather important question missing from his analysis, aside from the ones he asks about whether Scotland could really be in the European Single Market while still being part of the UK, and whether the British state would go along with this. There is the question of whether the EU would accept such a deal. Or, for that matter, Norway.
It is unsurprising that a British nationalist like Theresa May would be so arrogant as to assume that privileged access to the European Single Market is there for the demanding despite the UK renouncing its membership of the EU. But it is disappointing to find indications that someone of George Kerevan’s standing might be tending towards similar presumptuousness.
There are diverse interests involved here besides those of Scotland and rUK. Despite Scotland’s vote in the EU referendum, we cannot take it for granted that either the EU or the rest of the European Economic Area (EEA) will be willing or able to resist the UK Government’s efforts to make a special deal for Scotland impossible.
The UK Government is structurally incapable of representing Scotland’s interests in the world. Only our own government can do that. Given that the Scottish Government is being prevented by a British government that was decisively rejected from doing the job for which it was elected by the people of Scotland, we have to be prepared to take appropriate action. We need to be ready to restore to the Scottish Parliament the power to freely negotiate the terms on which our nation associates with the rest of the world.
We must prepare for independence.Views: 4239
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