Economics of Independence

Could England decide to leave the UK?

Ruth Davidson to Patrick Harvie: Leaving the UK means leaving the EU, simple…

There is an answer to the whole Brexit debacle, that no one seems to be considering.

We all know the UK doesn’t have enough trade negotiators and will have to recruit “foreigners” to set up its sovereign trade deals.  We know that Brexit uncertainty is harming investment, threatening to prick the over-inflated London and South East housing bubble, crashing the pound, driving up inflation and soon increasing interest rates in a highly leveraged economy. We know the UK Government doesn’t have the money to pay for Brexit nor compensate Scotland for the loss of EU grants and jobs that will follow and it will take years to complete.

However, maybe there is a simple, cost-effective and quick way to Brexit without the fuss.  Remember what Ruth Davidson said about the EU during the independence referendum? No, not the bit where she said Patrick Harvie was being disingenuous to suggest there was more chance of leaving the EU if we voted No, the bit after that when she said: “Leaving the UK means leaving the EU, simple.”

Forget all the expensive negotiations, England can just declare unilateral independence from the UK and they are out of the EU, simple.  Wales and Northern Ireland can join them if they want and Scotland and can stay in the “UK”, seamlessly maintaining our EU membership, no need for indyref2 and Scotland keeps all the EU opt-outs on using the euro and Schengen. After a year or so we can just change our name to Scotland. Westminster issued the UK debt and therefore remains responsible for it but may try to do a deal with the other nations to take a population share but that would be up for negotiation.

English independence – a way to finally get rid of those pesky nationalists from Westminster

Once Scotland changes its name we can offer the name UK for a new Council of the Isles where all nations are crown dependencies and Scotland can have a referendum to see if anyone wants to re-join the UK. Think about it, no need for English votes for English laws, Westminster would lose all the pesky nationalists, no need for long-lasting Brexit negotiations, England gets the independence it clearly wants and gets to stop Scotland leaving the UK.  Northern Ireland gets to stay in the EU and doesn’t need to leave the UK.

Crazy, yes totally but even that is a damn sight smarter than thinking you can avoid the pain of Brexit by exporting classic British items like tea and promising jam tomorrow while going for an unnecessary, economically suicidal hard Brexit you don’t have a mandate for or making promises to Nissan that only the EU and not Westminster would be able to keep.

Since I first floated this idea in my newspaper column an online petition for England to unilaterally declare independence has been launched and so it might even be discussed in parliament, or maybe Nicola Sturgeon can use her hotline to David Davis and suggest it – just as long as she records his answer.

Many English people would consider English independence the union is being held together only by those that feel they profit from it – the rest of us would like to opportunity to reaffirm our friendship, trading and social alliances with the rest of the countries of the British isles without an outdated, privilege based, London-centric failing political union getting in the way.

About the author

Gordon MacIntyre-Kemp

Gordon MacIntyre-Kemp is the Founder and Chief Executive of Business for Scotland. Before becoming CEO of Business for Scotland Gordon ran a business strategy and social media, sales & marketing consultancy.

With a degree in business, marketing and economics, Gordon has worked as an economic development planning professional, and in marketing roles specialising in pricing modelling and promotional evaluation for global companies (including P&G).

Gordon benefits (not suffers) from dyslexia, and is a proponent of the emerging New Economics School. Gordon contributes articles to Business for Scotland, The National and Believe in Scotland.


  • Everyone should have the right to decide who they are governed by. If the scots want to govern themselves, then they should be allowed to do so. But I suspect that it is only the Scottish politicians who want tthis and not the Scottish people.


  • Gordon

    Where have you got to with this?

    I just thought of this myself..and find you got there first

    As a ‘South Brit’ living in Scotland and appreciating the values of tolerance, openness and compassion much in evidence here…but also valuing my UK identity- this is a perfect solution.

    Particularly in light of polling that reveals conservative members putting Brexit ahead of the Union.

  • I do not get it, the question is wrong.
    The question should be could the rest of the uk vote to remove Scotland from the uk.?
    If we are going down the Indi ref#2 road then maybe the whole debate should be opened up to the whole of the union.
    It is only our first minister and her party that is pushing for this, so lets put it to the the others, do you want us or not, if they say go then great, we get what we want, and the cost will be on them not us

    • With respect, that’s ridiculous. To allow Scotland’s future to be decided by a nation that has been deliberately misinformed about Scotland for decades is insane. The people who should get a vote on Scotland’s future are those who live there.

      England wants out of the EU and Scotland wants to stay in. Easy. England leaves the UK, and it will be instantly out of the EU with no section 50, no sanctions, no nothing. And the remaining UK will still be in the EU as if nothing had happened. The only negotiation then is between England and Scotland. Also, it would respect the outcome of the 2014 referendum, since Scotland would not become independent in this scenario.

      It really is the only sane solution. And that’s a big part of the reason why nobody’s even talking about it.

  • Amidst all the self congratulations of Gregg Clarke and Theresa over the Nissan Commitment to build their two new models in Sunderland, it all came crashing down to earth the other night when a Japanese business strategist told Newsnight that Nissan was the exception and he was advising his many Japanese business clients to hold off from investing in the UK until Nicola Sturgeon had made her play and Scotland had decided to go with the EU rather than the UK, thus implying that Japanese investment would be looking for other locations other than England. My take on it was that he was keen to remain within an English speaking area but crucially it must be within the EU.

  • Wish they would kick us out before.
    We. Take the bull by the horns &Leave !
    For to long scotland has subsidised English. Infrastructure.

  • Idea is a non-starter. UK (England) 2015 trade deficit was 5-6% of GDP. Without Scotland England’s trade deficit would rise to >9%.

  • I posted an article on this in June after the referendum result; listing various benefits of E/W independence for ALL the UK nations. see Not likely to happen (not impossible) but I think it should have been posited by mass media/politicians. I’m setting up a gov petition if it can gain enough support it will have to be debated by Parliament. More details on petition later.

  • This article is so similar to an earlier article in another publication, if it isn’t breach of copyright, it’s close to plagiarism. The article “Why doesn’t England just leave the UK?” appeared in “Euro Weekly”, which describes itself as “Spain’s largest free newspaper in English” which is “read by over half a million every week” (there’s a LOT of British expats in Spain). Both of these very similar articles have to be taken with a huge pinch of salt, of course, but, taking the proposition seriously, I’ll point out one big flaw. The SNP , the Scottish Green Party, the Scottish Socialist Party, and half a dozen other organisations are committed to independence for Scotland. Being shot of England but NOT of either Northern Ireland or Wales isn’t independence. Indeed, this would contradict the fundamental aim of the SNP, and be utterly unacceptable to a huge section of its membership.

    • Two things firstly this was originally published in The National newspaper on Friday 28th – written and submitted on Thursday 27th. The “Euro Weekly” piece was published on the 30th and yes I agree there are striking similarities but I won’t be accusing them of plagiarism or breach of copyright I prefer to think brilliant minds think alike. See my article here Gordon MacIntyre-Kemp: Independence for England is best way out of the Brexit jam via @scotnational

      Secondly re your very serious point scoring claim about SNP finding it unacceptable I have looked up the following information on the internet and I think it may be helpful for you.

      containing or using satire.
      “a New York-based satirical magazine”
      sarcastic, critical, and mocking another’s weaknesses.
      “his satirical sense of humour”
      synonyms: mocking, ironic, ironical, satiric, sarcastic, sardonic, scornful, derisive, ridiculing, taunting; See also Article on English declaration of independence by Gordon Macintyre-Kemp for shinning example,

  • It’s an excellent idea and one I had more than two months ago but, can England support itself? I think not and I suspect the mandarins in Whitehall know this too. Although oil is clearly a millstone around Scotland’s neck I believe it’s pivotal in the UK’s economy. If I’m wrong please tell me.

    • Hi Gordon, I suspect it is more to do with the wealthy tax avoiders and offshore resistance, as if England had to properly support itself, all those trillions of taxes would have to come back to England, and all corporations based in England will have to be forced to pay full tax period. no exemptions or fiddles in any way and that is against their interests. I am English, and as I see it the wealthy of all countries don’t care about the poor of the country they reside and do business in. we are here just for them to use abuse and con silly. they do not care about nationality, just making plenty money for themselves, or saddling area’s with massive fake banking money made up on a computer from nothing.

  • hi, Anyone North of watford would vote against that idea Gordon. England is obviously hugely Divided and anything the Tories want I foresee a lot of resistance.
    Those in Government, and their southern Electorate voted for the mandate to punish the poor with welfare cuts,and that has caused a lot of suffering in the north of England, and in the midlands where I reside. we hate them all and we would want independence from them I would suspect.
    The other part is the Investment all comes under the criminal Banking Industry which is deeply hated as far as I see. why would anyone want to be saddled with more debt? they can take their criminal bankers, and Banks and the fractional reserve banking and kick them into mainland Europe. protectionism is going to be big in England, and in a lot of other countries. it is the opposite of globalisation which everyone dislikes.

    • Don’t worry its not an idea I ever expected to fly but maybe we can persuade them to kick us out?

      • They won’t kick scotland out, as the Queen at the Privy Council considers scotland as ‘ The Scottish Executive ‘. she and the privy Council is the place to fight for Independence. Alec Salmond, Angus Robertson and Nicola Sturgeon need to grow a big pair of ball’s and be more like Jeremy Corbyn. The way I see it is those three aforementioned are Afraid of the queen and the Crown. forget Westminster, they do what they are told.

        • “Alec Salmond, Angus Robertson and Nicola Sturgeon need to grow a big pair of ball’s and be more like Jeremy Corbyn.”

          I just lost half my cup of coffee when I read that!

          Please God they never show any Corbyn traits.

      • I think many in england would love to kick Scotland out, were fed up now just go on your own and good luck to you all.

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