Imagine that Scotland has 53 million people.
And England has 5.3 million.
Wales has 3m, and Northern Ireland 1.8m.
Imagine this is the UK.
England has vast reserves of oil and gas off its shores. England has been in a political union with Scotland for over 300 years. The UK’s Holyrood parliament has a rule for funding England that allows a percentage of its expenditure to be given to England. It continually asserts that it is subsidising England. England feels that it is not getting a good deal, as it contributes more to the UK economy than it receives back, raising more in tax revenue per person in England than in Scotland and the rest of the UK. Scotland has hidden reports showing England’s true oil wealth for many years. England also has some of the best educational establishments, thanks to its separate educational system, and has huge potential in renewable energy. Its high quality food and whisky are famous the world over, as are its signature bagpipes, tartan, kilts, and poet Robert Barnes. England has grown increasingly different to Scotland, and has for many years voted quite differently to their larger neighbours in the North, but still had the North’s choice of government holding power over them.