Monday, 21 July 2014

Angel's Advocate

The Parliament of Westminster

The Treaty and Acts of Union in 1706 and 1707 were between two parliaments - those of Scotland and England.
When Queen Anne opened the first session at Westminster after the union she stated it was the parliament's first sitting.
It is contained within the Treaties and Act of Union that only those bodies who created them can dissolve them.  Therefore to dissolve the union Holyrood will become the independent parliament of Scotland with full and all powers pertaining to state and Westminster will become an English parliament with whatever other arrangements staying in situ pertaining to the remaining UK.
So a Yes vote invalidates the Westminster parliament as it currently is and means it must be fundamentally altered. What an opportunity.
Moving on from that, in 1953 the Lord Advocate stated "The principle of the unlimited sovereignty of Parliament is a distinctively English principle which has no counterpart in Scottish constitutional law... Considering that the Union legislation extinguished the Parliaments of Scotland and England and replaced them by a new Parliament, I have difficulty in seeing why it should have been supposed that the new Parliament of Great Britain must inherit all the peculiar characteristics of the English Parliament but none of the Scottish Parliament, as if all that happened in 1707 was that Scottish representatives were admitted to the Parliament of England. That is not what was done." 

Monarchy

The containment of monarchic power, indeed the very concept of what it is, has always been very different in Scotland from simply handing royal prerogative powers to the Prime Minister and placing sovereignty in Parliament.  Go back nearly 700 years to the declaration of Arbroath 1320 stating 'if he (King Robert the Bruce) should give up what he has begun, seeking to make us or our kingdom subject to the King of England or the English, we should exert ourselves at once to drive him out as our enemy and a subverter of his own right and ours,'  This is very clear.  If the monarch ceases to act as approved by the rest of us, they're gone.  They have no option to, as the Claim of Right 1689 accuses James the Seventh, 'invade the constitution of Scotland and alter it' from
 'a legal limited monarchy, to an arbitrary despotic power; and in a public proclamation, asserted an absolute power'
'hath invaded the fundamental constitution of the Kingdom, and altered it from a legal limited monarchy to an arbitrary despotic power, and hath exercised the same'
There is no 'divine right of kings' here, the monarch is first among equals and works for them.  If the monarch acts against the wishes of the rest using autocratic power they are no longer valid as leader.   That being the case and in the essence of Scottish nationhood, it's clear that Elizabeth Windsor has already invalidated herself or at the very least seriously put into question her role as monarch of Scotland.  In the act of using her power of veto to prevent a private member's bill which sought to make power to go to war parliamentary rather than a royal prerogative power see here  she used an autocratic power to retain an autocratic power, acting expressly against the sovereignty of the people, acting to prevent determination of the considered will of the people and acting against the principles of equality and representation contained in the monarch's appointed role as expressed in the Declaration of Arbroath.  She asserted absolute power and exercised despotic power.
Upon a Yes vote Scotland will have no monarch as leader until the considered will of the Scottish people, which is paramount and sovereign, is determined.  In this age that can only mean democratically. 

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