Friday 21 October 2016

Punk economics: David McWilliams on why 'Britain is like Game of Thrones minus the sex'

Published 17/05/2015 | 16:36

As Britain sails into uncharted waters following the rise of the Scottish National Party, Irish economist David McWilliams offers up his own colourful perspective of the status quo post-election.

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Collaborating with the EU Spectator magazine to produce a video guide to Britain, McWilliams ponders if the Conservatives have sacrificed the union for another five years of power.

“The British people have spoken but no one seems quite sure exactly what they’ve said,” he surmises on the New Britain - "Europe’s 21st century version of the Balkans".

“After this election the so-called United Kingdom is about as united as a Liverpool FC dressing room… When you have anti-English, pro-European nationalists in Scotland and anti-European, pro-British nationalists in England, spiced up with a few anti-English, pro-European nationalists in Wales, and of course, the anti-each-other, pro-whatever-you're-having-yourself British and Irish nationalists in that blissfully incoherent chunk of Ulster/Northern Ireland, you know you’re not in the old UK.”

“In fact, with all these warring factions, the UK is just like Game of Thrones without all the sex.”

Outlining the choice facing David Cameron and the future of Britain, McWilliams lays clear that the UK’s ‘Scottish Problem’ is far from over.

“If the English vote no [on the EU referendum], will the Scots choose to stay in a UK dominated by England without being in Europe?"

“[Cameron] could break with the EU, and force the Scots go, and in doing so ensure that the Conservative party remains the permanent party of government in a much smaller UK."

“Or he can allow the Scots to hold the English to ransom permanently."
“[Either way] this election is the beginning of a process, not the end. Cameron has a choice – he can keep his country together or keep his party together.”

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