By passing its power to the EU the Brit ruling elite has exceeded the authority delegated to it by the Brit people. They now have three options to restore their liberties: civil war; velvet revolution; or a Thatcher-style houseclean.
In 1689, just 38 years after the Civil War and immediately following the Glorious Revolution, John Locke defined the English political settlement in his Second Treatise on Government:
…the legistative cannot transfer the power of making laws to any other hands. For it being but a delegated power from the people, they, who have it, cannot pass it over to others. The people alone can appoint the form of the Commonwealth, which is by constituting the legislative, and appointing in whose hands that will be.
That’s the heart of the UK’s unwritten Constitution:
No Act of Parliament may be made secure from amendment or repeal by a future Parliament.
Brown’s government has broken this covenant:
Gordon Brown has consistently ruled out a referendum on the (EU constitutional) treaty, which will abolish dozens of national vetoes and create the new posts of EU president and foreign policy chief.
Brown’s employers don’t buy this:
Pressure for a national referendum on the Lisbon treaty intensified yesterday when a pressure group announced that more than 150,000 people took part in local ballots on the issue.
Votes in ten Labour and Lib Dem-held marginal constituencies organised by I Want A Referendum showed 88 per cent to be for a referendum and against the European Union treaty.
The results are perhaps unsurprising given that many treaty supporters refused to campaign but it is the turnout that will unnerve some ministers. The organisers appeared to have confounded predictions that the exercise would be a flop.
The smaller of the two opposition parties supports Brown:
The Lib Dems fought the 2005 general election promising a referendum on the constitution. But like Gordon Brown, Mr Clegg now argues that the new treaty is a different document so no referendum is required.
That leaves the opposition Tories defending the Brit constitution alone:
“Every political party promised one [a referendum] at the last election and it is only the Conservative Party that is sticking to its pledge and campaigning for that referendum,” Mr Cameron said.
“I hope that Members of Parliament who signed up to manifestos saying they backed a referendum will stick to their promises.”
But the Tories know Brown’s Parliament will defeat them, and won’t commit to repealing the treaty if they’re elected. So they too are breaking the deal that they are the servants of the British people.
Brits have three options.
1. Civil War
This is the most disruptive – lots of people get killed, and the economy tanks. And, based on history, it’ll probably be followed by a limited dictatorship along the lines of The Protectorate, since there will be lots of nasty work to be done cleaning out the old elite.
The virtue of this approach is that it works.
2. Velvet Revolution
This keeps the core institutions, replaces all the players without too much bloodshed, and extends the constitutional settlement. It corresponds to the above mentioned Glorious Revolution, which produced the English Bill of Rights that provided the legal and moral basis for the American Revolution.
However this approach allows for backsliding, since the bad actors are left standing.
3. Thatcher-Style Houseclean
That keeps the current constitution but changes the rules, probably with a written constitution and a big tear-down of the Brit state. Nobody gets killed, although millions of people currently living off the state would have to get proper jobs.
This is by far the least disruptive, but because the Brit state has such an enormous payroll, it may be too late for such a peaceful solution.
We’ll game these three options in future posts.