On 2 May 2014 I wrote an article “Ethnic Identity is the Problem”. You can still look at it in the UKIP Daily archive. I still stand by everything written in the article but as an Engineer my purpose in life is to first identify the problem or a need and then find a solution.
What seems strange is that there are highly educated people in our universities who specialise in philosophy, political science and social engineering, yet they haven’t become aware that when groups of people are forced into a political union without their consent then eventually civil unrest and even civil war will break up the union.
There is clear recent evidence from the pulling down of the Berlin wall and the reunification of Germany followed by the break up of the Soviet Union, as well as they horrendous break up to Yugoslavia and the recent fragmentation of Iraq. Ethnic similarity pulls people together and ethnic difference forces them apart. Ethnic and tribal differences in Afghanistan is what has kept it in a state of war for decades now.
Small nations have a unique identity but little power or a serious voice in the world. Large nations rule the World but at the expense of ethnic identity. So what is the solution? The British model of a United Kingdom made up of forced unity with Wales and Northern Ireland and consensual union with Scotland has survived for 400 years but now is in danger of breaking up.
Here, though, the nation states have had their identity acknowledged and even reinforced by the means of independent parliaments for each (except the English of course.) This has kept people with clear cultural differences in a reasonably successful and stable union, until now.
In North America it took a war of independence from Britain followed by a civil war between northern and southern states to establish a framework for a government of union of states. Since the first faltering moments of the union other states have joined by the consent of the electorate. A federal government looks after common national interest internally and externally. Individual states have their own governance and additional tax raising powers.
In Europe the model for an economic union gradually turned into a federal union and now is being driven towards being just a single entity like Yugoslavia was. Do the social engineers of the EU not realise that this union has been put together by the governing classes of the nations usually without the consent of the governed?
The single currency was a huge step in this direction but now has proved to be its biggest problem because of the disparate nature of richer nations of northern Europe together with the poorer nations of former Soviet Union and the slower economies of the Mediterranean countries. One size of currency and the trend towards a single tax regime not only does not fit all but actually creates economic stress where currency valuation or devaluation is not possible.
There are now signs that the ever closer union of the EU is being rejected by some serious members such as in France and the UK and the economic stresses on the Mediterranean countries is reaching breaking point.
The nation states of many of the earlier members are now beginning to revolt and either work towards leaving or at least returning to their own currency. We have seen how every crisis in the Euro-zone is used to create further legislation or treaties to progress the union. Yet each further step along this road without the consent of the governed creates further stress between the EU and the nation states.
So, what would be the best solution for the United Kingdom? Although Margaret Thatcher was against the idea of a federal Europe we are already in that and probably the majority of UK residents don’t like it, if for no other reason than they have never given their assent before any treaty was signed.
Fortunately we didn’t adopt the €uro so don’t have the monetary stress of the other member states that did adopt it. Also we can withdraw in accordance with Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty without the problems that Scotland is likely to have over currency, if it votes for independence.
The answer for the UK, as I have stated in previous articles, is to become a United States of Britain. Each country has its own parliament dealing with its specific needs and there is an overall federal government that deals with the common interests internally and externally. This is really the only model that allows national identity of a small nation state on the one hand and the strength of a larger country and larger economy on the other.