The question we are asked more than probably any other is how a party seeking regional devolution can support remaining within the European Union. But recent events have exposed the clear democratic deficit within our disunited kingdom. Our so-called “unwritten constitution” helps maintain the illusion of democracy, but it relies on the notion of the gentleman’s agreement, in which all parties act in the best interests of the nation, working through their differences through discussion and compromise to reach a mutually acceptable solution.
Alexander Boris De Pfeffel Johnson’s short time as prime minister has already exposed the fragility of these arrangements in the face of a ruthless sociopath whose carefully crafted TV persona as a bumbling toff hides a contempt for democratic norms and a desire to win at all costs, even if it means destroying both his party and his country in the process. The result of the advisory referendum in 2016, in which a slim majority voted to leave the EU, has provided him with a perfect opportunity to pose as a defender of “the will of the people” as he cynically prepares to line his and his ERG cronies’ pockets. Whilst parliament has temporarily taken back control from unelected bureaucrat Dominic Cummings, it remains to be seen what further plots Johnson and Cummings come up with to thwart our elected representatives.
In truth, England has not been a democracy since 1066, if ever. It is ironic that those who fulminate about European interference, while swallowing zombie myths about bendy bananas and duck eggs, seem perfectly fine with some 80% of our land being owned by a handful of families with names like De Montfort and (until 1916) Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, with far-reaching social consequences.
The Wessex Regionalists see the best hope of preserving true democracy as a devolved England within a Europe of the regions. We stand with parties seeking regional autonomy in places such as Catalonia, Corsica and Flanders (all of whom have regionalist or civic nationalist MEPs), as well as supporting independence for Wales, Scotland and Cornwall.
We do not deny that there is much work to be done ensuring that the EU works for its people and not corporations, with power vested in regions rather than nation states. But we would not throw away the decades of peace and prosperity that European unification has brought for the sake of allegiance to a backwards-looking plutocracy where blue blood and old school ties count far more than character or ability,