HAVE we have got this indyref thing the wrong way round? Are we meekly playing to the rules of Westminster, which, as Boris says, is the de facto English Parliament? This needs to be turned on its head – reframed. Plan C perhaps!

None of Scotland, England, Wales or Northern Ireland can actually leave the UK – they ARE the UK! If one leaves the UK, the UK ceases to be, so acknowledging that Westminster even has the right to issue a Section 30 or other quasi-legal device is a mistake, while the Yessers who demand UDI are unconsciously acknowledging Westminster sovereignty by demanding the need to somehow break away.

READ MORE: Call for SNP to reveal indyref2 alternative as plan B rejected​

Scotland and England remain, on paper, independent nations, but joined by a Treaty to pool resources, political, industrial and military strengths, though not judicial or religious ones.

This previously successful Union has become unfit for purpose. The English element is vocally exasperated at having to financially subsidise its smaller northern neighbour, while the Scottish element is diverging politically and feels it must make its own decisions without reference to the Union Parliament.

READ MORE: Chris McEleny: why we need a Plan B for indyref2

The Treaty of Union can be revoked by either party at any time (though one side having broken the terms of the Treaty many times gives further justification), so the aggrieved signatory, Scotland, withdraws from the Treaty. The Scottish Parliament declares the Treaty and Acts of Union void and immediately places the matter before the UN International Court of Justice (ICJ) for arbitration and testing of the Treaty in law (that heads off any challenge by Westminster, which will also be will be referred to the ICJ). Scotland is now an independent country pending confirmation of status by the UN.

At that point, the misnamed indyref2 is called by the Scottish Parliament to be held at a later convenient date. The referendum question should therefore be something like: “Should Scotland REMAIN an independent country and REJECT further Union with England – YES/NO?”

An extended period will be required to enter into renegotiations regardless of the outcome. During this period, no constitutional changes can be made to Holyrood, as it is (at least until the UN ruling is declared) a sovereign parliament. All co-operation with England would continue, with approval of both signatories to the Treaty.

The English Parliament (having presumably reconvened) also will have to decide if it wishes to join in a renegotiated Union with Scotland. This is surely the democratic way to resolve the problem, as the people of both countries would be consulted (separately) in referendums to ascertain whether a new Treaty of Union should be entered into.

The ICJ cannot deny the independence of BOTH countries prior to the signing of the Treaty, therefore on the withdrawal of one of those signatories, both would revert to individual independent states (the EU/Brexit creates a precedent for this, for despite the difficulties in the detail, nobody disputes the right of the UK to leave the EU. An added advantage would be that the UK (deceased) is the member state of the EU, so the newly reconstituted states of Scotland and England would have to re-apply ... or not).

Personally, I think the people of Scotland would overwhelmingly vote to stay OUT of a Union with England once the full bile of the English nationalists and their MPs is directed at us in their own “union with the subsidy junkies” referendum campaign – and in the current political climate would England vote against its new-found independence. We might not need to “leave” the Union – England might declare itself independent.

Would they leave another Union with no deal?

Alan Laird
via email