Switzerland is the Model for an Independent Republic of Scotland

Scotland is on the verge of one of the most critical periods in its ancient history as the referendum on independence approaches in September. Scotland has been part of a union with the Kingdom of England since 1707 and the North of Ireland since 1801, and next month the people of Scotland will vote on whether to remain part of the UK or break away independently.

Switzerland is the model for an independent Scotland as the Swiss style of government combines a constitutional republic with elements of direct democracy. This is not to say everything the Swiss do is perfect, but many aspects of their style of government should be emulated. Scotland should be a republic ruled by a legal constitution and a bill of individual rights which is voted on by the people, enshrined with innate liberties that are the essential foundation for a free country to be built upon.

Freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the right to privacy (online or otherwise) and a right to a fair legal trial should all be included, in addition to other basic human rights.

Referendums are a hallmark of the Swiss system as any change to the law that affects the constitution is required to go to a referendum before being ratified. The Swiss people are legitimately able to directly affect the political decisions of their country, as opposed to allowing aristocratic politicians to make decisions on their behalf. If a petition acquires 50,000 signatures on any subject — out of a population of 8 million — a national referendum is called. Imagine if this was written into the British legal system at the time of the Iraq war, do you think a war crime would have been averted in 2003?

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