To paraphrase – we do not successfully roll back the frontiers of the EU superstate, only to see them reimposed from Westminster.
While I enjoy celebrating the start of our EU exit, I am aware that our finally leaving the EU still represents unfinished business. Whether the EU continues over the channel, or withers away, is not the issue – Westminster is! The last three-and-a-half years have thrown into stark relief the reality and flaws of the Westminster system when it comes face to face with a voting people whose will is at odds with its own. That the result of the 2016 referendum could be treated as it was, shows the London-centred, elitist, view in the Westminster bubble cannot truly represent the people of this nation, and is no longer fit for purpose. Looking further back, as we see the undemocratic path that led us into the EU, the betrayal of Ted Heath who hid the true objectives of the EC, then John Major, and Gordon Brown, taking us into the EU and then sneaking in the EU constitution, without any people’s vote, we see that our sovereignty at the grassroots wasn’t safe then and still isn’t now. At any time such underhand tactics could still be used, to rob us of our sovereignty.
What does all this mean? It means that the constitutional framework of our nation needs sorting out. In recent years there have been references to a ‘constitutional crisis’, one exacerbated by Westminster skulduggery, that has blown away any confidence the voter can have in the robustness of what has become laughingly called our ‘unwritten constitution.’ Since the referendum we’ve come to learn it’s not worth the paper it is written on.
All that has happened since 1973 has exposed the dangers of a top heavy, centrally controlled system based in Westminster, and the lack of a constitutional document that we can all make reference to.
The Libertarian Party, in its 2019 manifesto, proposes solutions to both of these concerns. Firstly, we call for a devolution of power away from Westminster, transferring it to regions and communities so that local people can make decisions that work for them, and so that state power is no longer remote and protected from the voter but more fully accountable to the people. Secondly, we propose a new written constitution for establishing this devolution of power and accountability, which ensures each individual is sovereign and that the poor decisions made in one place cannot be imposed on the whole nation, and which transparently lays out the functions, roles and powers of the state, reserving all others to the individual sovereign people.
In the coming eleven months, knowing what has happened in the last 47 years, we must ensure our independence from the EU is complete so that Britain can forge its own future un-hindered by treaties with those who wish to control us from afar and which hold us back. Beyond that, recognising the role Westminster played in selling us out for the last 47 years, we need to take back control from London, and divide up and devolve power, diminishing the impact of bad politicians, making it truly accountable, and bringing it closer to the people.
If we fail to do this, everything we have worked so hard to achieve regarding our independence, everything we seek to do to return power to the people, all that we do to push back against big-government and to restrain state infringements on civil liberties, can all be undone by one signature without any reference to the will of the people. That can never be permitted to happen again.