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Thursday, 11 June 2015

Ius civile and Ius gentium - some ideas of mine from 2012 updated for 2015


Some of the ideas here come from a 2012 blog – I’ve pulled out the bits that I believe are still pertinent, and updated the concepts for June 2015.

The Act of Union was a treaty between two independent kingdoms. It doesn't take two to end a treaty or an agreement, it only takes one, either by negotiating the terms of exit - or unilaterally. The ius civile and the ius gentium are undoubtedly relevant, but so is the ius naturale, especially after 300 plus years. If the UK Government wilfully misunderstands this after the 2014 Referendum result and the GE2015 result, and continues to act like the Romans in decline, then the Scots will become less civil and move towards acting naturale - take note, gentlemen and gentlewomen of Westminster. All the cape-waving over full fiscal autonomy tends to push the independence-minded electorate down a road towards an approach to the 2016 Scottish Parliamentary election and the SNP's manifesto that might make you feel uncomfortable all over again. Be nice - behave like grown-up politicians - like statesmen and women if you can manage that. After all, our First Minister has given you a role model to emulate.

Independence is a beautifully simple concept, and needs no complex definition - it means a nation doing its own thing, in every aspect of its affairs. Full fiscal autonomy doesn't need a giant intellect to tell you what it is - it's independence in everything except the ultimate sovereignty of Westminster, foreign policy and defence, the nuclear deterrent and membership of the EU and the UN.

If you really expect us to blow our negotiating hand in advance of the SNP's 2016 manifesto, dream on, rUK. But by all means set out what you see as the detailed agenda for our new relationship in Westminster, and we'll let you know what we think of the items that might be up for discussion. If you want to go down in history as statesmen, rather than as pompous windbags, you might consider addressing the issues in an adult, statesmanlike fashion. Try and act in the spirit of the ius naturale. The Roman Empire first began to negotiate seriously when it was near to collapse - maybe the UK can make a better job of it in similar circumstances ...

We know what side you're on - the UK's side - and you know what side we're on - Scotland's - and England's and Wales's and Northern Ireland's. Talk calmly about the issues that lie ahead and stop your ridiculous posturing and grandstanding - it cuts nae ice wi' Scots. Frankly, it gie's us the boke ...