Devolution Will Never Appease the SNP
Last week, it emerged that the Conservative Government commissioned a report from Hanbury Strategy, a London-based consultancy firm, to offer strategic advice on how to keep the UK together.
Worryingly, the report advises that we give more powers to Holyrood to “placate” the SNP, including new powers over finance and immigration.
This is the last thing we need, and would only further imperil the Union. As Brian Monteith pointed out in a recent article: "...if one thing has been clear in the last 21 years it is that no amount of devolution is ever enough for the nationalists – for they do not believe in improving British democracy and accountability, they believe in destroying it, no matter the cost to our economy and the livelihoods of our communities."
Unionist commentators are finally waking up to the danger of devolution. Stephen Daisley recently remarked that: "...every enhancement of the Scottish Parliament’s powers has not only failed to stem the separatist surge, but has hollowed out the constitutional settlement that existed prior to 1999.
The Union has been so thoroughly gutted by both Labour and the Tories that a further round of devolution would take Holyrood so close to formal independence as to call into question the continuation of the Union.
...A new strategy is needed and if neither Labour nor the Tories will adopt one willingly, a new party may well come along to force their hand."
Both Brian and Stephen are absolutely correct, and the Conservative Party needs to take note. Devolution has been causing the constituent parts of the UK to spiral apart for two decades now. For 13 years Scotland has had an inept, independence-obsessed SNP government that has marginalised its everyday devolved duties over health, education and policing. Holyrood serves as nothing more than a platform for the SNP to push for separation, and we’re now paying over £100 Million annually for this devo-debacle.
Instead of giving Holyrood more powers, those who care about the Union must adopt a devo-sceptic perspective and start pushing back against the tide of divisive separatism.