I had an e-mail today asking if I thought there was a racist element at work regarding the current situation.
I think there is - but it's one of a number of things working against the people of England in the devolution game.
A few thoughts of mine...
1) The "racist" element...
England is a cosmopolitan country with a very long history. Since the Act of Union with Scotland, England has become absorbed into the bulk of the UK in a way that Scotland and Wales haven't.
For some reason, all the baggage of the old British Empire has been laid at England's door - despite the fact that it was actually a venture of England, Scotland, Wales and the whole of Ireland. And the Scots were disproportionately active in the running of the Empire. The trouble is that the other UK nations have heaped the blame on to England. And the poison has spread abroad.
The Empire was a BRITISH venture, in very different times, now judged by many to have been a "very bad thing". Fine. But it's gone. We can only learn the lessons from it, and scapgoating England, with the other nations smugly climbing into their pulpits to denounce us for something they were EQUALLY guilty of, is not on.
2) Celts and Anglo Saxons.
We know that the traditional cultures of England, Scotland and Wales were largely based on traditions handed down from the Celts and Anglo Saxons. Fine. But it sticks in my crop a little when some Scots, Welsh, Irish and "Cornish" folk refer to themselves as "Celts". There is a similar problem with some English people proclaiming themselves "Anglo Saxon". Surely English, Scottish, Irish and Welsh are nationalities - not proclaimations of pure bloodlines?!
Surely you don't have to be WHITE to be English, Scottish, Irish or Welsh?
In the case of the English, people proclaiming themselves "Anglo Saxon" are usually smacked on the snout with TV programmes like "100% English". But the Scots, Welsh and Irish are allowed to describe themselves as "Celts" and nobody says a word. Stinking double standards.
I sometimes get the impression that the people of England are treated as an "impure rabble" by this UK Government - and that is why we have health apartheid, the West Lothian Question etc - and as soon as anybody mentions England or Englishness the Government screeches "RACIST!!" Very odd. But UK PLC and the likes of Gordon Brown feathering his own country's nest must come first.
When Mr Brown rambles on about his plans for "Britain" he's usually talking about England by the way. He has very little authority over domestic policy in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. His own constituents up in Scotland are largely unaffected by his actions. And he isn't democratically accountable to the people of the country he does rule. That's right, England.
Brown's in a flap, he's forcing public buildings in England to fly the Union Flag (they fly their own flags in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) purely for his own ends. He's not out to foster a sense of solidarity in England. Far from it. Divide and rule, that's his game. He's ramming the Union Flag down your throat because he's terrified you may realise what's going on in devolution (for some) Britain.
And what about regional assemblies? These are basically a way of dissolving England into easily-ruled, tinpot regions. The North East, the only area allowed a referendum, voted 78% NO to regionalisation. But it still continues apace. Non-elected, corrupt, money sapping bodies, taking powers from your elected local councils.
3) Who can be English?
English is a nationality and all citizens of England are entitled to be English. England is a country with traditions stretching back centuries and these should not be suppressed as the UK Government is always attempting to do. English culture, like St George's Day, is supposed to be "non-inclusive". Rubbish. That's just the Government trying to brainwash people. The culture of England is as inclusive as its people want it to be. Nobody moving here imagines that they are moving to a country with no history or traditions. It is a cynical ploy by the Government to divide and rule when the screeches of "RACIST!" are heard. I live in an ethnically mixed area, and I can honestly say that the only people I have heard debunking English traditions are white, chattering class, Nu Labour supporting idiots.
And remember whilst you are at it that Nu Labour is NOT Old Labour. Back in the 1980s, I was vehemently anti-Thatcher, a confirmed Socialist. But Nu Labour is NOT a Socialist party. The damage done to the NHS, social care and education in England under Nu Labour would have had us fainting with disbelief back in the 1980s!
And the writers of this blog are all care workers and nurses. We speak from experience. Not Okay when Thatcher tried it, but nowdays people take the high moral ground for voting for Nu Labour, who have done a damned sight worst.
To return to "Who Can Be English", I believe that the establishment of an English civic national identity is highly important. Scots and Welsh versions are already being worked on by their national executives.
One of the worst developments of recent years is the rise of the odious BNP. This is happening as that party makes hay with the government's and main opposition parties' skewed and unfair policies. It must be stopped.
So much more I could write...
But remember that it cannot be right that millionaires in Wales don't pay prescription fees, whilst people scrimp and save for them in England.
It cannot be right that public services and the NHS are higher funded in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, via subsidies from England.
It cannot be right that people die in England for want of medication available on the NHS in Scotland.
It cannot be right that unaccountable MPs, including our PM, force legislation onto England that will not affect their own constituents.
It is not only the BNP that is racist. UK politics is heavy with it, all levelled against the people of England.
We do not live in a democracy.
If, after this, you believe that England is getting what it deserves, that it is an evil, corrupt country which has dominated the UK for far too long, then take a closer look at history. Once again, you will see that England is all too often scapegoated for the sins of Britain.
For instance, did you know that Ireland was partitioned under PM David Lloyd George, a Welshman, with a Cabinet stuffed full of Scots?
Blame for the past must be shared.
And England must be allowed parity with the other UK nations - or the so-called Union must end.
By the way, I'm very happy to proclaim myself English and I'm of English/Scots parentage, with a hefty dash of German not far back.
Take a little time to think things over. Drop that ipod, turn off that DVD. Politicians are getting away with murder whilst the electorate lounges around.
And what are English MPs doing whilst all this is happening, you may ask? Most are riding the gravy train. Because they are never called to account for England.
Because politically England does not exist.