By Stephen Bailey

Rise of the devosceptics: The anti–devolution revolution is coming. An examination of the processes that drove Brexit and which are currently driving attitudes towards legislative devolution reveal striking similarities.

In 1991, an obscure Cambridge academic, Dr Alan Sked (a Scot) founded a political party called ‘The Anti–Federalist League’, later to become ‘The United Kingdom Independence Party’ (led by Nigel Farage) which aimed to get the U.K. to withdraw from the then European Economic Community (today’s E.U.) as he said that the bloc controlled us and we weren’t an independent country anymore. He was virtually unanimously vehemently sneered at and derided by most of this country’s population as holding non – mainstream views and of being an extremist.

Fast forward to today and his views have been completely vindicated and are now those of the majority of the population. His views have been revealed to be the truth. This mirrors the experience of Tam Dalyell, who correctly asserted during the debates on devolution in the mid – late 1970s during the Callaghan Labour Government that devolution would be a ‘one way motorway to independence, with no turnoffs or roundabouts’. He has been similarly vindicated by subsequent events.

The same process can happen with abolishing the devolved legislatures. What is perceived as the views of a minority can, if the positive case for abolition is consistently and assiduously put to the public (with objective empirical evidence to support it) gradually be accepted as being the truth by the majority. Maybe one day in the near future the U.K. will stand on the brink of ‘Re-unification Day’ as the U.K. becomes a unitary whole again.

Just as the Eurosceptics employed persistence and determination in the face of hostility from all corners, including the establishment. People who are sceptical of legislative devolution and the clear and present danger it presents to the Union (the devosceptics) must show similar persistence and determination in pursuing the goal of securing the existence of the U.K. into the future by persevering on a path towards reuniting our country by consistently presenting the case for the Union. Like Brexit, it won’t happen quickly, but the end result is definitely worth the effort.

The famous victory of Brexit can be that of the devosceptics.

In June 2016, the long journey of the Eurosceptics, largely led by an initially small, but gradually larger, U.K.I.P., triumphed after all those years of campaigning led to the majority of the U.K. backing leaving the E.U. in the referendum of that year.

U.K.I.P. had won a famous victory against what had appeared to be insurmountable odds and an establishment that was solidly against them by consistently presenting the positive case for leaving with much patient persistence. It had taken a long, tough and titanic struggle, but the end result had undeniably been worth it. An initially small, marginal party viewed by the vast majority of the public as eccentrics had won a famous victory.

This CAN happen for people who want to abolish Holyrood, the Welsh ‘parliament’, Stormont and the London Assembly, the devosceptics.

If the same tactics as the Eurosceptics are employed and the case for the abolition of devolution is patiently and consistently presented then, after a journey that might be arduous at times, the devosceptics CAN emerge victorious after winning a famous victory against apparently insurmountable odds.

All Unionists who desire to maintain the Union should begin to vigorously and robustly strive to advocate at every turn the case for abolishing Holyrood, the Welsh ‘parliament’, Stormont and the London Assembly to those in power and to the wider general public as a matter of extreme urgency.

Surveys in Scotland and Wales that consulted as much of the poulation as possible carried out earlier this year have determined that disillusionment with Holyrood, the Welsh ‘parliament’, Stormont and the London Assembly is gaining traction as their manifest failure to improve the living and working conditions of ordinary citizens or provide good governance becomes ever more manifest and now stands at around 22%. 


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© 2020 Stephen Bailey


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