Area for all other political discussion
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
 
By youngian
Membership Days Posts
#494159
I am warming to the idea of an English assembly and I think it would capture the public imagination to bring people together. Not as knee-jerk nationalism but attracting people who just think it works for Wales and Scotland so why not us.

I'm not proposing an English parliament that would duplicate Westminster but one that has a regional veto system in order to counterbalance centuries of centralising tradition in England. A bit like the EU Council of ministers for the regions (best to only mention that after the English think its a great idea). It could be built somewhere off the HS2 in the West Midlands so it under an hour from London and half that from Northern cities. Many civil service functions and quangos could be moved out of London to save money and maybe even cut the bill of parliament's repairs.

The assembly could be a Foster type design which is open and welcoming within a purpose built town with a mixed economy which would be massive construction project providing all sorts of jobs and training for young and older people in the Midlands and the North.
 
By Andy McDandy
Membership Days Posts
#494243
Interesting idea, although what I suspect the likes of Philip Davies mean by an English assembly is the HoC as is, but the nationalist parties are forced to attend (but not vote or speak) and everyone tells them to suck it up, the Celtic weirdoes.
By mr angry manchester
Membership Days Posts
#494246
Don't you think it would be seen as yet another tier of administration with no real power?
 
By Andy McDandy
Membership Days Posts
#494264
It was when Prescott mooted regional assemblies which would have had actual power. But hey, that was John Prescott.

In fairness, there are talking shop levels of government, in particular at district council levels. Actual power to get things done is at county/unitary level. However the government since 2010 has been adamant that the genuine efficiencies and savings that could be made by dissolving this level were verboten, mainly because they didn't want a load of ex-councillors moaning all over the local press.
By mr angry manchester
Membership Days Posts
#494275
I was actually against Prescott's regional assembly idea because in the North West it would just have been the Richard Leese* and Pat Karney* show, run on behalf of Peel Holdings**

*two pain in the arse Manchester councillors who are never out of the Evening News

** greedy property firm who seem to want to take over, and build on, as much of Greater Manchester as possible
 
By youngian
Membership Days Posts
#494279
Andy McDandy wrote:Interesting idea, although what I suspect the likes of Philip Davies mean by an English assembly is the HoC as is, but the nationalist parties are forced to attend (but not vote or speak) and everyone tells them to suck it up, the Celtic weirdoes.
A good reason to support it as it would isolate Tories like him. Although wasn't his dad an English Democrat nutter?
mr angry manchester wrote:Don't you think it would be seen as yet another tier of administration with no real power?
No more than the Welsh assembly. It could take the powers granted to English QUANGOs by Westminster which include unelected regional bodies.
mr angry manchester wrote:I was actually against Prescott's regional assembly idea because in the North West it would just have been the Richard Leese* and Pat Karney* show, run on behalf of Peel Holdings**
*two pain in the arse Manchester councillors who are never out of the Evening News
** greedy property firm who seem to want to take over, and build on, as much of Greater Manchester as possible
It would attract a better calibre than the embedded hacks in local government who receive little scrutiny. Ken Livingstone made an interesting point that it was only him and Boris that have had a good training ground for national politics in England. German national politicians have served as regional first ministers for example.
 
By Andy McDandy
Membership Days Posts
#494284
As pointed out on his own thread, Davies is a troll. For all the legislation he says he wants to see introduced, he's done sod all to get anything done. I imagine he'd back an English assembly on the basis that it wasn't so much about giving English people a voice as denying Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish people one.
 
By Bones McCoy
Membership Days Posts
#494306
Andy McDandy wrote:Interesting idea, although what I suspect the likes of Philip Davies mean by an English assembly is the HoC as is, but the nationalist parties are forced to attend (but not vote or speak) and everyone tells them to suck it up, the Celtic weirdoes.
You're describing the improved form of EVEL - once they've got over a few teething problems.
 
By Bones McCoy
Membership Days Posts
#494308
mr angry manchester wrote:Don't you think it would be seen as yet another tier of administration with no real power?
There may be 2 ways around that:
* Keep the headcount relatively small - counties or cities returning members (Perhaps with several members and (whisper it) PR) for the larger ones.
* Decide what matters are to be devolved (You've a fairly good template form Scotland and Northern Ireland).


It raises questions regarding Wales:
* Do they get an upgrade to a proper devolved assembly (I can't remember their arrangements, but think they got something a bit less autonomous than Scotland or Ireland).
* Or do they get lumped in (Cricket style) with this new English (and Welsh) assembly.
 
By bluebellnutter
Membership Days Posts
#494310
A few years ago I wrote down some proposals for something which I thought would work. Never got beyond the "letter to the Guardian" stage but reading it back through it's hard to imagine how anything over the last few years has radically proven this to be any worse an idea.

========================================================================

Since the Scottish referendum a couple of weeks ago the key word on everyone's lips has been “devolution”, and more specifically how to deal with the supposed “West Lothian question”. Several suggestions have thus far been proffered, none of which would seem to be satisfactory, and all amount to either gerrymandering or simply kicking the issue into the long grass. I have been giving this some thought and I believe that I have come up with what should be the ideal solution.

Essentially, it uses the Scottish model as an example. Scotland has the extra powers as promised by the Westminster parties devolved, and this should be a relatively quick process. My thinking is to take this and transpose it onto the other three member nations of the Union. For Wales and Northern Ireland this ought to be a relatively straight-forward exercise with some tinkering, beefing up and so on. But England would need to start from scratch.

So, establish an English parliament, with an electoral system based on the Scottish system, which governs the same matters for England. Crucially, and I feel this is a vital step for this to work, this Parliament needs to be based outside London, preferably somewhere in the north. Manchester would seem to be the obvious location. London is a great city with a lot going for it, but many successful nations find it a good idea to split their financial and political epicentres. I would recommend this be made up of approximately 400 MPs. This would mean slightly larger constituencies, there are currently approximately 530 English constituencies, but with a large scale political renewal such as this moving a few constituency borders ought to be relatively problem-free. It would also help alleviate the problem of almost perpetual Conservative rule in England, it should not be that we simply set something up knowing in advance that one party will dominate it.

Having said all of the above, I would not remove the Westminster Government entirely from the equation. The four regional Governments should have some accountability, and I would retain a UK-wide Westminster Government dealing with the issues which cross those internal borders, such as defence, the economy, foreign policy and the like. This would see a dramatically reduced House of Commons from 650+ to around 200 (say 201 to mean there’s a majority one way or another) UK-wide MPs. Unlike now, these will not be constituency MPs, they should be elected on the basis of a List system of PR (each party submits a list of MPs and if they get 20% of the vote they get 20% of the seats, filled from 1 to 40 on their list). Proper PR and allows those in the UK-body to get on with their job without dealing with local issues. This body would, however, still have to get some measures passed by national Governments, such as declarations of war or the like. Everyone is accountable to everyone else, meaning everyone has to pull together.

As a final thought, the House of Lord’s, which has been an anachronism for a century, would be abolished. I would replace this with a chamber made up of representatives elected by business and other bodies (such as Trade Unions) to act purely in an advisory capacity, not in a way where they can vote on, raise or block legislation. This would also replace the current select committee system. After all, I’d rather have the future of the NHS scrutinised by people who work in the NHS, rather than a group of MPs who think they know what they’re talking about! I’d also remove the rubber-stamping element by the monarch from this, lead to a proper separation of church and state.
Brexit Fuckwit Thread

The modern problem with arguing with idiots is tha[…]

Nigel Farage

A lavish, fawning, sympathy-inducing spread on the[…]

More "middle-class" bollocks

Umm... So what else do you drink out of? Your sh[…]

Shona Sibary

Blimey, it's been a while! Admittedly I don't […]