Norman Bonney

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    Labour’s leadership election result in Scotland will transform the Scottish political landscape

Labour’s leadership election result in Scotland will transform the Scottish political landscape

Jim Murphy was elected the leader of the Labour party in Scotland. He’s tasked with somehow turning around the party’s fortunes in Scotland following a precipitous decline in support since the independence referendum. Norman Bonney thinks Murphy, with his experience and connections, is well suited to re-position Labour and reverse the downward trend.
Jim Murphy, the newly elected Labour Party leader in Scotland, has the capacity […]

December 15th, 2014|Featured, Norman Bonney|1 Comment|
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    Labour’s current system of leadership selection is a self-imposed handicap

Labour’s current system of leadership selection is a self-imposed handicap

While Tory MPs continue to elect their party’s leader, since 1981 Labour has used an electoral college system with MPs, individual party members and trade unions each getting a third of the votes. Norman Bonney argues that this has been disadvantageous for Labour. The system sometimes produces leaders that don’t have the full backing of their own MPs, such as in the […]

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    What happens if Scotland votes ‘Yes’ in the independence referendum?

What happens if Scotland votes ‘Yes’ in the independence referendum?

What happens if Scotland votes to separate from the UK on September 18th? Norman Bonney investigates this question and writes that the scene is set for a major constitutional crisis in the event of a ‘Yes’ vote. 

If there is a majority of ‘Yes’ votes on 18 September 2014 in favour of the Scottish independence, the UK will be plunged into the […]

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    Since devolution, policymaking in Scotland has been profoundly conservative

Since devolution, policymaking in Scotland has been profoundly conservative

Scotland has been largely self-governing in major areas such as health, education and local government since devolution in 1999. All types of policy innovation were promised with devolution and are promised by advocates of independence. In this context it is salutary to reflect that the overall record of the Scottish Government and the Scottish Parliament in these major policy […]

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    The Orange Order’s planned march through Edinburgh just days before the Scottish referendum raises important issues

The Orange Order’s planned march through Edinburgh just days before the Scottish referendum raises important issues

The Orange Order is planning a march through Edinburgh five days before the Scottish independence referendum. Norman Bonney writes that the march makes manifest a significant dimension of the referendum campaign that has received little attention, the religious dimension. The UK state is, in terms of current law, a Protestant Christian one. Whatever the result needs to be a fundamental reassessment of whether […]

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    Would an independent Scotland be a religious or a secular state?

Would an independent Scotland be a religious or a secular state?

In the fifteen years of devolution a new multi-faith religious establishment has emerged in Scotland in partnership with Scotland’s national Presbyterian Church. The denominations involved are seeking to guarantee that they have a continuing privileged position should Scotland become an independent state. But does religion need any special constitutional recognition and why should it be singled out from the […]

The Scottish independence referendum debate has significant religious dimensions

The prospect of Scotland ending the current parliamentary union with England, Wales and Northern Ireland as a result of the referendum to be held in Scotland on 18 September 2014 again raises major issues concerning UK state religion. Should there be a ‘Yes’ vote in the referendum, major associated matters would require to be negotiated, writes Norman Bonney. There is a comfortable […]

February 3rd, 2014|Norman Bonney|9 Comments|

The Church of England: An anachronistic religious monopoly ripe for reform

The Church of England’s unique constitutional status gives it a monopoly role as the sole official state institution charged with relations between the UK state and with God. Norman Bonney argues that these arrangements are increasingly inappropriate for the current era, noting that long term trends and more recent experiences make the case for disestablishment.  In a country which is increasingly secular, […]

August 21st, 2013|Norman Bonney|3 Comments|