In 1999 I wrote a book asking this question. I hear that people are reading it again. I stand by my conclusions then, now tested by 15 years passing. When I wrote the summary I said
“Can the UK survive devolution, European integration, reform of the Lords, slimming of the monarchy, proportional representation?
Will Scotland now seek to shatter the Union by demanding full independence? Will the new House of Lords be anything more than a rubber stamp full of the friends of the PM? Would the abolition of the pound mean common taxation and political union with France and Germany?
….Viewing the Blairite revolution as the agency for wider changes coming from the agenda of France. Germany and the European Commission, I ask the questions: are these changes inevitable, are they desirable, and what will they mean for us here in Britain? In the name of the people, the people’s right to a voice and justice is being damaged. More and more decisions are being made behind closed doors, in quangos and in Brussels. ”
I enjoined people to fight the battle to save the pound, the one part of the scheme we could prevent because we were offered a referendum. The last decade and a half was not in vain, because we won the battle of the currency. If we had lost that Britain would have been well and truly dead and buried.
Commenting on devolution I said ” The end result will be a more divided, more factious, more overgoverned, more overregulated UK…It will not reconnect the people with the politicians. It will confirm the public in their view that politicians by and large do not solve problems, do cost too much and are good at misleading the public in their own interests”
I concluded the book by saying ” Labour’s constitutional blueprint is nothing more than a plan for the destruction of UK democracy. It threatens splits within the kingdom. It threatens transferring far too much out of democratic control. It gives far too much ground to the federal plan on the continent. It dares to do all these things in the name of democracy, when the result will be less.”
Today we are facing the consequences of those bad decisions. We are trying to resolve the question of Scottish independence, because devolution did unsettle not solve the problem. We have to tackle the problem of excessive powers passing to Brussels. We are living with the consequences of quangos like the Environment Agency controlling large parts of our lives. We need a new settlement, which gives people back their power to sack accountable MPs and so change the government. In turn MPs need to take responsibility back for governing the country so they can serve the country well. .