Okay, forget that Salmond bloke, or that Farage bloke or any type of bloke or gal, when MPs say they don't see why Scottish based MPs should vote on English only matters, what they are really saying is that they hate that THEY cannot vote on Scottish matters - tell those highlanders what to do!
But then, they also have a point. It is odd that someone can vote on something that has no effect on the people they represent. But that could include MPs in Northampton voting on something that effects people in Cornwall, it doesn't have to be across some convenient "border" that has no actual physical landmark.
The problem here is not that devolution is "broken," that wonderful emotive term that politicians roll out every time they want to grandstand on something that they don't understand. No, the problem was that it was cocked up in the first place.
Which complete prat thought it was a good idea to pay for yet ANOTHER layer of politicians whose sole job it was to deal with issues that had been artificially taken away from the existing layer of politicians?
Who in their right mind thought that the existing MPs could properly represent their constituents when they had just had half their responsibility removed?
And which complete idiot believed that what the population wanted more than anything else was to pay for twice the number of bone idle, useless and out of touch politicians than they were already paying for?
Of course, the answer to all three is: A POLITICIAN. Thereby proving how self-serving the entire process is in the first place. But we knew that already.
Okay, let's imagine that we can press a lever and roll back to the late nineties and have another go. Let us pretend that someone with half a brain that is not pandering to a group of unelected pressure groups gets to have a go. What would they have done? Here is my offering.
Sound: Phone ringing.
Scottish Voice: "Aye, hello! Look, I don't want to be an arse, but I am spending a lot of time down in Westminster talking about things that are nothing to do with Scotland. Is there any chance that anything very Scottish is moved a bit more local so I don't have to pack up my pipes and travel a 100 miles by bus just to listen to your drivel?"
English Voice: "Well, hello there! I have to admit that talking all about Scottish things is getting in the way of my crochet, so I am well up for this, wotto?"
Welsh Voice: "Sorry to hack into your conversion boyo, but we in the Valleys are right fed up with both of your wittering and we would like to keep things local to."
Scottish Voice: "Well, sounds like we agree. How do we do this?"
And the answer was to create tons of bureaucracy and employ loads more people and cause resentment everywhere. The pity is that the answer was actually in the conversation.
All that was needed was to put up a building where Scottish members of the UK parliament could spend most of their time talking about Scottish issues and Scottish laws. The same for Wales and the same for England (I am sorry, I am leaving Northern Island out of this simply because the entire situation was and is dangerously different. Pity though.)
So, a Scottish MP would spend probably three weeks out of four either in their constituency or in their local parliament dealing with exclusively Scottish laws. As do all the others in all the regions*. And then for the other week, they all meet in Westminster (we put up a nice hotel for them so they don't have to have two houses), and talk about UK issues or cross region issues.
It is so simple I could scream. No voting conflicts, no confusion as to who is representing what and everything is really accountable. Politicians are primarily voted to their regional parliaments and that gives them automatic UK voting and debating rights. End of story.
Now, about that sneaky little asterisk I bunged next to regions. There is an argument that England is too big. Not only does it unbalance the others, but what is needed in Cornwall is probably different to what is needed in Cambridge. So actually we could chop it up a little more to balance it all out a bit and reduce traveling for those poor overworked MPs.