The principal reason for hoping that the Yes campaign will not prevail in the Scottish Referendum on Thursday is the need for the working class to stay united in the face of the attacks it is undergoing at the hands of those with wealth and power. The panic in Westminster following the YouGov poll putting Yes in front and the speciousness of many of the arguments clearly intended to frighten Scots into voting No does not engender much confidence that this will happen. One thing is, however, clear from the panicky responses of Cameron, Miliband, Brown and Clegg: very little thought has been given by our rulers about what happens after the referendum. If they think that we will all return to business as usual and that Rump-UK will sink back into a passive, Little England conservatism permanently electing a Conservative (or occasionally a New Labour) government, they are very much mistaken. Here are just a few of the issues that will have to be addressed following a Yes vote:
The inappropriateness of such a large military for so small a county.
The unsuitability of an unelected House of Lords at a time of constitutional change.
The need for a written constitution including adequate provision for workers’ and trade union rights.
The undemocratic nature of the current Westminster parliamentary system.
The likelihood that Wales will follow suit.
The unwillingness of local government in England to remain totally tied to Westminster apron strings.
The need for a stable tax base in R-UK, especially as an independent Scotland dominated by the SNP may well seek to compete in a tax race to the bottom.
The unaffordability of (and absence of a home for) the nuclear deterrent for R-UK.
The bloated size of the Royal Family when the Scots no longer contribute to their upkeep.
The only issues temporarily reprieved by Gordon Brown’s promised Devo-Max solution following a No vote would be the last two. All the others will remain to be dealt with.
None of these issues will, however, be resolved in our favour through the beneficence of the ruling class. They all require hard work from the bottom up, albeit with guidance and organisational expertise from the Communist Party, and it may well be best to start with more ‘bread and butter’ issues such as health, education, housing and opposition to further cuts in services. An excellent starting point will be the inaugural meeting of the Croydon Assembly on 15 November. Be there and help start to get the ball rolling.