This site is intended to be a place where anyone who’s concerned about the political and constitutional future of England can join in an ongoing ‘national conversation’ about it, partially modelled on the Scottish government’s National Conversation for Scotland.

The reason why this conversation is needed is that it is virtually inevitable that the Scottish people will vote for independence from the UK at some point in the next few years, perhaps as early as 2010. This means that, whether the English people choose it or not, the present United Kingdom will break up, and England will then have to determine new arrangements for its government and relationships with Wales and Northern Ireland. So, as a nation, we need to be prepared for these changes and to take the opportunity to debate the future for England. If we do not do so, we could find that England will just drift into another version of the present-day constitutional settlement: a UK minus Scotland with no national English parliament or civic institutions, merged into a British doppelganger of itself that strangely cannot acknowledge the existence of England as a nation while effectively serving as the English state in all but name. An unrepresentative London-centred government, with massive majorities for one or other of the two leading parties bolstered by one of the most disproportionate democratic electoral systems in the world; and hence, burdened with governments that can just do whatever they like, ignoring the will of the English people.

England deserves better government than it has had to put up with for many decades. The secession of Scotland is its chance to seize it.

I welcome all comments, favourable or not. The only ones I will moderate out will be ones liable to cause offence to others or to break laws, such as those inciting racial or religious hatred, or personally malicious. Also, anything totally irrelevant to the discussion in progress may find itself ‘censored’ in this way.

I’m particularly keen to enlist the support of any persons that are more web-savvy than myself in improving the design and usability of this site, and in adding features. I’ll gradually evolve things myself; but if anyone else wants to get involved, that would be great. The same applies to adding content, e.g. opinion pieces, news items or polls. The aim is not to produce long discussion pieces and just have heavy intellectual debates; but rather to introduce a new topic every week or so, and let the discussion roll. Any potential contributors of any sort can get in touch with me via the comments to this About page.



7 Responses

  1. Hello David,

    Can I just suggest that a forum where nationalist, regionalists and autonomists from all the home nations, crown protectorates and historic regions and of all political persuasions could come together and debate the questions would be a step forward (at worst an interesting talking shop).

    We have countless debating forums for England, Scotland, Wales and Cornwall but nowhere where we can all come together.

  2. Good idea, Philip. If you want to go ahead and set up such a blog site, I’d gladly be a regular contributor of either articles or comment. I’m not in a position to set up such a site myself, as I have neither the time nor the web expertise to ensure that it had all the features that would be required. However, if there’s a financial cost involved – i.e. if you chose not to host the site on a free platform such as WordPress – I would gladly make a (of necessity, modest) contribution.

    If this isn’t too ‘Benettonish’, you could call it ‘United Nations of Britain’ or something! Anyway, whatever you call it, I’d be glad to support it.

  3. We are pleased to announce that a new blog has been launched. English Progressives has been launched in response to the growing prospect of independence and the vacuum of progressive pro-independence political thought as parties like the English Democrats move increasingly right wing. Whether you are pro-english independence or not there is a need for a different voice on independence and the constitutional questions that we face.

    But we aren’t just any other blog, we are also launching the English Progressives Network in order to connect all those who seek an independent England , and who support the independence movements in Scotland and Wales . A network which is open to all whether you are a member of a political party or not…

    Please support us by adding us to your links on your blogs and if you would like to join the network then please email us at englishprogressives@yahoo.co.uk

    Thank you,

    English Progressives Network

  4. My comment on alternative voting systems dated Feb 6th is still showing as awaiting moderation.
    Is that right?

    • My apologies for taking so long to approve your comments, Stephen. As you can see, I haven’t updated the site for some time; but will be doing so again soon. I’ll check out the voting systems you recommend.

  5. DPEV
    a comparison between DPEV and DPR Voting would be interesting.
    Alternatively I would be interested to hear your assessment of DPR Voting.

    • Yes, I think I partly drew my inspiration for DPEV from your DPR system. I quite like DPR. The main problem I see with it is that it turns MPs into party drones and delegates that are morally and practically obliged to vote along party lines because their voting weight directly depends on the parties’ UK-wide share of the vote. Under DPEV, by contrast, MPs are separately accountable to their local electorate because of the separation between the individual and party vote, and because of the system for demanding by-elections if the MP persistently votes against the majority in their constituency.

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