Just finalised talk on implications of UK Internal Market Act 2020 for devolved policymaking by Scotland / Wales in field of public health, e.g. strategies to combat illness & deaths arising from tobacco / alcohol / obesity.

Key points in short thread, for those interested:
1) Imagine Scottish Government & Parliament want to ban marketing of product proven to have adverse health impact on population, e.g. uber-sugary soft drinks or super-salty junk food. Effect of Act? They can only ban marketing of Scottish made products; not those made in England.
2) Or imagine Welsh Government & Senedd want to restrict advertising of / consumer access to unhealthy products (without banning them per se). Effect of Act? Need to check Welsh rules aren't trying to exclude / somehow discriminate against English goods: that's no longer allowed.
3) Illustrates UKIMA's in-built bias towards free trade / against public interest regulation. Combined with total refusal to acknowledge / allow for economic dominance of England / constitutional dominance of London institutions: explains Act's inhibiting effects on devolution...
4) Reinforced by, eg lack of guaranteed UK-wide minimum social standards; no serious attempt to reform UK governance / foster mutual trust with devolved institutions; UK ministers' power to rewrite whole parts of UKIMA itself; court's power to disapply "offending" devolved rules.
5) At very least: UKIMA limits power of Scotland/Wales to pursue independent regulatory paths/experiment with new policies, e.g. to enhance public health. But real suspicion is: UKIMA is part of post-Brexit ideological campaign to undermine devolution/re-centralise UK by stealth?

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Michael Dougan

Michael Dougan Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @mdouganlpool

27 Apr
One point that Brexitists are particularly ignorant/dishonest about, re NI Protocol: they regularly claim it guarantees "unfettered market access" between NI & GB, so EU is acting unreasonably / even in breach of Protocol itself, by trying to enforce checks. Utter rubbish. Why?
1st, the reference to "unfettered market access" relates only to movement of goods from NI to GB (not the other way round). And even then, there is an immediate exception for any export limits imposed by EU law to fulfil international obligations on control of certain goods.
2nd, there is no provision saying "unfettered market access" for movement of goods from GB to NI. That has to take place in accordance with legal duties laid down in Protocol. EU & UK must use "best endeavours" to facilitate such trade - but still in accordance with those rules.
Read 4 tweets
2 Apr
I wish the Telegraph/Mail/Express would hold back on their evil-EU-proxy-war for just a few days. We get it: you're rabid English nationalists itching for a scrap with some forriners. Yadda-yadda-yadda. Though I suppose they do need something to fill pages with, since it's not...
... challenging their darling government. Say, over ideas like racism really being a figment of the imagination of people who just need to work harder. What a contrast with their coverage, eg of Labour's struggle to confront antisemitism. Anti-racism, a la carte, nouvelle cuisine
Speaking of which: shocking as it is, such a transparent Tory-led attempt to "rewrite the narrative on race and inequality" to suit their own worldview, it is still marked by exactly the same leitmotif as virtually every other facade of government policy under the current regime:
Read 4 tweets
20 Mar
I thought I knew Scotland fairly well and loved it mightily. But some of my new twitter penpals tell me I am in fact a clueless nobody who needs to learn some facts. So I did - from their helpful profiles. What an education! Here are 3 things, oddly, I didn't know about Scotland:
1) Apparently, Scotland is actually a banana republic, far more corrupt than Mexico, much more communist than China and even more authoritarian than North Korea. On the plus side, I would venture to add: also more imaginative than the far-away realm of Cloud Cuckooland...
2) One of the few freedoms left to my new penpals in their Scottish gulag, it seems, is to tweet and retweet conspiracy theories about climate change, viral pandemics, public health lockdowns and EU protocols. Poor soulless miseries! Shovelling snow would surely be an improvement
Read 5 tweets
15 Mar
Amid the howls of Brexitist outrage about the EU's commencement of enforcement action against the UK for latter's clear breach of its international legal obligations (there's no "alleged" about it...) - let's recall a couple of basic but rather important facts:
Protocol = fundamental compromise. UK accepted [ie Johnson proposed] border down Irish Sea, in order to deliver Hard Brexit demanded by Tory Leave Extremists. EU agreed [a major concession, made for sake of peace in Ireland] that a 3rd country would police its external frontier.
So HMG's actions aren't just an affront to rules-based international order & destabilising intervention in already tense situation in NI - though they are both those things. HMG's actions also directly abuse trust vested in UK, to act as a responsible guardian of EU's own border.
Read 4 tweets
13 Mar
Twitter’s great for slagging off Brexit. But even better when you learn something new. Especially from collective wisdom. As I did from responses to yesterday’s thread on the EU’s “existential challenge”. So: quick follow-up with some reflections, inspired by replies/comments:
1) Worth clarifying: idea of “existential reflex” is not that large numbers of people want their MS to leave EU, or for EU to cease existing. [Though if don’t mind me saying: seems bit complacent to say “noone thinks like that in my MS"; let alone forget there are other MSs too!]
2) Instead, idea behind "existential reflex" is whether significant numbers of citizens have really *internalised* what it means to be a Member State of the EU, in the same way as they take for granted the institutions / roles / powers of their own state.
Read 13 tweets
12 Mar
Just been asked an interesting question: what’s the biggest challenge facing the EU over the coming years? Pretty wide-ranging, huh?! But good to get thinking. So here was my instinctive response, in a short thread:
1) Would be easy to pick one from long list of current problems: post-pandemic economic recovery, climate crisis, digital transformation, threat to basic values posed by Hungary / Poland, how to tackle global instability & its consequences, eg for mass migration etc etc
2) But for me, EU faces more long term & underpinning challenge, which (for the EU as such) is arguably at least as serious as any one of those (still considerable) current & specific problems. Let’s call it the challenge of the “existential reflex”. By which I mean:
Read 11 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!