May 5th. is looming large on the Media’s reporting horizon;besides the Referendum on the Alternative Voting system,there’s also the local council elections.Neither of those two exercises in ballot-boxery will make the slightest difference to anything that actually matters and is of real concern to the electorate.It is good however, that even the semblance of constitutional democracy is maintained even if the efficacy of it has long since been impaired.More of what the Coalition is keen on peddling as “localism”is also “good”;the less power that is ¬†exercised by a Centralised State,in theory the better everyone’s life.Britain ,almost uniquely amongst contemporaneous European States with a broadly similar pattern of historical development,has been more centralised and for a much longer continuous period than anywhere else.And it shows.France and Germany,to highlight just two of many,have readily identifiable and distinctive Regional Polities,where certain matters are dealt with and discussed differently from the nominal national Centre.Paradoxically,this has tended to strengthen national identity and national consciousness rather than detract from it,although the case can be made that Belgium disproves that.And so it does,but,hey Belgium is ,well Belgium.


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