Sunday, 24 January 2010
The Conservative Government Time-bomb
In Scotland the Conservatives are in the minority, with Labour and SNP parties fighting for dominance. A peek into the video broadcasts (BBC Democracy Live - see sidebar) of the proceedings in the Scottish Parliament will soon provide evidence that the SNP is wiping the floor with the Labour opposition.
In Wales, traditionally socialist, in character and politics, the situation is rather different, with the Tories making headway but as yet far from making a serious impact on the political complexion of the country. The Liberals are in danger of losing their seats in Ceredigion and Montgomeryshire and it is Plaid Cymru and Labour which represent the radical and progressive nature of Welsh politics.
Moving over to northern Ireland, there are two Unionist parties, one of which is in government with Sinn Fein. David Cameron, the PM in waiting it may be presumed, has come out in support of the Unionist party and has even suggested a fusion with the Conservatives of Britain. This stance is ill-advised to say the least and ignores the trend of opinion in the nations in which politics takes a very different line from the politics of England.
The government in the north of Ireland is pushing for policing powers to be devolved yet is facing opposition and obstruction from unionist circles. Wales is hampered by the slow and unworkable system of LCOs which involve Westminster's approval before laws passed by the Welsh Assembly are ratified. In Scotland the parliament is focused on the need for more powers for Scotland, with no interference in Scottish Affairs from the government in London.
David Cameron will soon discover that he has inherited a Britain that is no longer as united as it was before 1997 when Labour came into power. In fact, by introducing devolution, Labour unwittingly encouraged the process together with the unravelling of the constitution. Scotland is well on the road to independence. Ireland is an unfinished project and must eventually be united. Wales will assert its individuality as a separate nation - Cymru - and Cornwall is agitating for a similar status. These are matters which a Conservative government will need to deal with, certainly within a ten-year period in office, as the direction of politics in the British Isles diverges and evolves.