Posted on 01-12-2009
Filed Under (Current Affairs) by Rashtrakut

Jackie Ashley from the Guardian has an article detailing the various machinations on the subject.  On a sidebar after reading the article, it is amusing to see how much the cause of union is aided by the Scottish need for a financial bailout.  A major selling point for the Act of Union in 1707 allegedly was a financial bailout for the disastrous Darien Scheme.  With Scottish Banks requiring bailout today it is not surprising that some Scots can appreciate the benefits of the Union Jack over the Saltire standing by itself.  With the Scots absorbing a higher proportion of Westminster’s largess it is not surprising that the English have cooled a bit on the Union.

The modification in English attitudes reminds me of the response of a friend resident in Ontario at the thought of Quebec seceding from Canada.  He was tired of Ontario subsidizing Quebec and then hearing grumbling from Québécois on how they would be better off with their own country.  Similar attitudes prevail today in Belgium with Flanders and Wallonia eternally at odds with each other and very few “Belgian” institutions (the monarchy and the soccer team) in place holding the country together.  Unions of different cultures are always difficult to sustain.  When the common bond (historically it was often religion or a personal union of crowns) starts to fray, people are all to eager to question whether the sum of the whole exceeds the sum of the parts.  A few more velvet divorces may be in the offing.

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