of the latest publication from the City Growth Commission the BBC
investigates the role of cities in the UK following the Scottish
4 The Devolutionaries: Powering up England's Cities
McGovern hears from economist Jim O'Neill, who has chaired the City
Growth Commission, a year-long investigation into the subject, which
publishes its final report later this month. She discovers why
O'Neill believes it is important for cities outside London to be able
to grow into metro regions, in the way that American cities like
Boston have been able to recover from deindustrialisation.
meets the civic leaders in Manchester to hear about their innovative
'earnback' scheme for investing in new infrastructure.”
pointed out in the documentary above Manchester has an economy that is
bigger than Wales, yet has very little control over that economy in
terms of tax revenue or investment spending. Manchester in common
with the other major cities of England loses out to London in the
fight for resources. While the politicians fight over England's
devolution they seem to be united in identifying 'the city' as an
economic driving force. If we take Scotland as a (devo max) economic
unit: by population alone England could be divided into 10 city
and devolving power to the English city states can begin in the
immediate future and the economic benefits can start to generate
while Westminster squabbles over the 'English' question.
final report from the City Growth Commission is scheduled for release
on the 22nd
October 2014 – full details and additional informative reports can be found below.
No matter what happens with the Scottish referendum tomorrow – Yes or No – the Whitehall 'elite' have shot themselves in the foot. Devolved government or full independence for Scotland, the referendum has sparked life into regional issues and regional democracy. In the UK cities that have been neglected because of the extravagance and greed of London are at last being heard.
The Autonomous Republic of Manchester is no longer a fantasy – It can become a reality along with the other great cities of the UK (to be known as the The Crown dependencies of EW&NI ).
These cities are not interested in toothless figure heads such as city Mayors but real democracy by the people for the people - with taxes raised locally and spent locally. (Any pundit who points to the City of London as a major contributor to the UK's wealth – just remind them who bailed out the banks.)
The regional entities of Yorkshire & Cornwall will no longer be content to be ruled from Westminster.
European independence beckons for Catalonia whilst successful semi-autonomous regions such as South Tyrol within the EU keep quiet lest their nation states decide to take away their freedoms. In addition to Catalonia the following regions will closely monitor the Scottish referendum
Dig a little deeper and you will find a myriad of geo/political groups seeking independence from the centralised unelected bureaucrats of Europe. Although many of these groups are based on quasi nationalistic myths, these populations are discontented with & disenfranchised from the political process. Today's austerity coupled with a lack of social justice could lead to tomorrows revolution
The United Kingdom is a failed state. Scotland seeks independence, Wales seeks greater devolution and Northern Ireland has conflicted affiliations. England is divided not only North by South but by rich and poor. Inequality in the UK is greater than ever.
The economy is being destroyed by corrupt banks that have been bailed out by the state, the essentials of life are privatised or are in the process of being privatised. The media delivers the same sycophantic stories over and over again: stories to support the elite establishment at the expense of ordinary working people.
The biggest failure of all is the failure of political will. The failure to take bold radical steps to ensure a basic standard of living for all in society. This has resulted in an electorate that has been disenfranchised by the lack of viable alternatives.
The starting point for change can be the creation of autonomous CityStates where local people can be involved and take control