Posts Tagged 'Europhilia'

The incredible ignorance of politicians writ large

After the John Major government tied the UK to the Maastricht Treaty, Douglas Hurd was reported as saying:

I suppose we had now better go away and read what we have signed up to.

It’s a lesson that successive intakes of politicians have failed to learn.  Most recently this has been demonstrated by the Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, Margaret Hodge.  The Mail reports on today’s session of the PAC where the HMRC Annual Report and Accounts 2012-13 was being examined.  The witnesses were Edward Troup, Tax Assurance Commissioner at HMRC, Jim Harra, Director-General Business Tax at HMRC and Jennie Granger, HMRC’s Director General Enforcement and Compliance.  Some of Hodge’s reported comments include the following:

The tax gap is really the tip of the iceberg in the gap between the money that you collect and the many if everyone paid their fair share.

It looks to me that you should be litigating. Why have you not chosen to litigate and test your powers?  Why have you not litigated against one single internet company?

Make a few cases, a few show cases. It’s so bloody obvious.

According to the Mail, Hodge named Google, Facebook, Amazon and Starbucks as companies whose tax affairs had sparked public anger and doubts about whether they were paying their fair share in Britain.  However, if Hodge had the first bloody clue about what she was bloody well talking about, she would bloody well know that she was spouting a load of bloody nonsense.  What Hodge is encouraging HMRC to do is spend public money pursuing cases that would be lost.

Why would HMRC lose?  Posting about a separate issue over on EU Referendum, Richard makes clear that companies moving money between EU countries in the way Google, Facebook, Amazon and Starbucks are being demonised for doing, is one of the most fundamental provisions of the European treaties, the “free movement of capital” which was one of the “four freedoms” in the original 1957 Treaty of Rome.

Chapter 4 of the Treaty of the European Union (the Lisbon Treaty) , Article 63 declares that “all restrictions on the movement of capital between Member States and between Member States and third countries shall be prohibited”. Furthermore, the article states that: “all restrictions on payments between Member States and between Member States and third countries shall be prohibited”.

Hodge, as a well remunerated Committee Chairman of one of the most muscular select committees in Parliament, with significant research resources available to her, should know this.  The fact she doesn’t demonstrates the incredible ignorance of our politicians.  Despite the supposedly powerful position she occupies, she doesn’t understand that what Google, Facebook, Amazon and Starbucks are doing is what the EU’s rules permit them to do.

Any show case would simply show up the stupidity of the UK authorities and result in a win for the demonised firms.  But it seems no case will be forthcoming because, unlike Hodge and the expenses troughers in Westminster, HMRC understands the rules – and that seems to be why Edward Troup told the committee:

We make sure we collect the tax due under the law.

It is because of corporate friendly rules such as the free movement of capital that company bosses like Richard Branson and CBI stooges like John Cridland are desperate to keep the UK in the EU.  it suits big business to engage in tax tourism and it suits them to hire in the cheapest labour from around the union.

Politicians like Margaret Hodge can grandstand, rant, rave, stamp their feet and pretend to be the conscience of the population, but it is she and her ilk who signed the UK up to EU rules they clearly don’t understand, and who want to keep the UK firmly inside the EU.  It is at times like this, when they are constantly telling us why the UK’s future has to be within the EU, that the consequences of EU membership – the loss of tax sovereignty – become apparent.

But rather than acknowledge the reality and the self imposed limitations under the structures they are constantly trying to convince us we should remain part of, they depart into the realm of fantasy like today’s performance in Room 15 of the Palace of Westminster, where they resort to bluster and blather and playing to the audience, but ultimately will change nothing.

The David Cameron speech – reality, delusion and ignorance

It was the kind of speech one should expect from a privileged individual, who has been brought up with a sense of entitlement to rule.

Cameron has a misplaced belief that in spite of all evidence he alone can change a decades-old destination; while leaving intact the structures built to enable its eventual arrival, ignoring reality and insisting that political union is desireable can be made to be democratic and be achieved while leaving nations states in charge of their own affairs.

This was less David William Donald Cameron, more Hans Christian Andersen. But no one who has paid any attention to this man’s approach and behaviour will have been surprised.

We cannot do justice to the response needed to David Cameron’s speech and tackle points that need to be rebutted with an immediate blog post. So a considered and detailed response will be forthcoming in the coming days – drawing upon evidence Cameron simply refuses to acknowledge.

The die has been cast and it is what we expected. Everything is being put together in a way that maintains the status quo. We now have the time to counter Cameron’s assertions and whimscal ideas with hard fact, and time to share it with people acriss the UK who perhaps feel there is more to all this than meets the eye. They are right. The clarity they are seeking will be published soon.

Open Europe displays its europhile Closed Mind

Returning home this evening I intended to draw attention to a piece in the Barclay Brother Beano.  However Richard has done it justice already, so rather than spend time recreating the story with slightly less panache, here is how Richard sets the scene on EU Referendum…

Unable to fight his corner even on his own blog, after the assertions he made on Norway were challenged, Mats Persson of Open Europe has scuttled off to his Telegraph clog, repeating his propaganda in the hope of reaching a more gullible audience.

However, while desperate to support the Cameron line that Norway, within the EFTA/EEA matrix has “no say” over the framing of EU rules, Persson has been forced to concede that Norway does indeed have some input on the framing of laws. All he will grudgingly allow, though, is that “Oslo has exceptionally limited ability to influence them”.

There’s more where that came from, once again exposing Persson’s shallow and ill-informed assertions for the misleading rubbish they are.

The comments section under the post in the Beano are a joy to behold as they almost universally rip little Mats’ argument to shreds.  Christmas may have come and gone but one Persson is still working as Cameron’s EuroElf.  However the goodies coming out of the sack are shoddy imitations and already broken before they have been opened.

What is the Daily Mail complaining about?

This is one of the lead stories in the online version of the Wail today…

The Wail can’t have any complaints.  It doesn’t often publicise its love of the European Union as it tries to hold up its circulation by printing much of what its readers want to hear.  But when the Wail declares itself and pursues the non-existent ‘renegotiation’ line, it’s unequivocal…

EuroMail

You’re either an ‘inner’ or you’re an ‘outer’.  If you want to be in, like the Daily Mail, you can’t complain when the consequences of faux democracy and scandalous waste of public money bite.  That’s the way the unelected and unaccountable EU works.

Telegraph’s hack pack continues ramping up the pro-EU narrative

If anyone was in any doubt that the Barclay Brothers’ Telegraph is planting its flag firmly on europhile ‘in’ campaign ground, then their Head of Business, Damian Reece, has provided clear evidence of it in that comic, declaring in a piece titled ‘We may soon need Europe more than Europe needs us’ that:

For as long as I have been in work I’ve been writing about Europe’s single currency in one way or another, from the Exchange Rate Mechanism to a eurozone break-up.

We could try to negotiate our own bilateral trade agreements but given our market of 60m people we’re unlikely to win such attractive terms as a market such as the EU’s 500m.

All that time I’ve maintained a stubborn opposition to Britain’s membership. But now an equally difficult choice is looming, which centres on what sort of Europeans do we want to be or, perhaps more realistically, what sort of Europeans can we be?

Having spent years currying favour with its readers with various criticisms of the EU, now that push is coming to shove the Telegraph’s hack pack is declaring itself for the UK to stay firmly inside the EU pumping out evidence-free strawman articles and commentary, while downplaying or completely ignoring every negative aspect of membership.  For example, in light of a raft of opinion polls how could Reece have possibly concluded that:

There is a consensus here that the UK must retain its membership of the single market but that we should remain outside the single currency.

Where there is evidence that Reece’s assertions simply don’t stand up to scrutiny, he simply dismisses it, as he does in this little section:

But as the brakes come off world trade, the biggest beneficiaries will be members of the biggest trading blocs. Those outside these groups risk missing out on the biggest benefits of multilateralism and trying to join after the event risks less favourable terms. We could try to negotiate our own bilateral agreements but given our market of 60m people we’re unlikely to win such attractive terms as a market such as the EU’s 500m. It’s true the likes of Switzerland do it but I don’t believe we should be aspiring to be Switzerland — no offence to the Swiss.

So his argument is undermined by evidence that the Swiss, a much smaller entity than the UK, successfully negotiate bi-lateral agreements. So to deal with that inconvenient fact he puts up another strawman that we shouldn’t be aspiring to be like the Swiss.  Eh?  That’s the only way he can make his argument stand up?  Such deep thinking.

The even more inconvenient fact Reece dodges is that Switzerland – with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein – make up the EFTA group of countries. and they do have real influence along with all-important independence.  The EFTA countries are highly competitive, open economies representing a sizeable market with strong per capita purchasing power.  There is always an option for Britain to join that bloc, if only as a temporary step, and that bloc could easily cooperate to secure attractive world trade terms.  Indeed, EFTA could easily transform itself into something different and even more beneficial.  But of course when europhilia is coursing through one’s veins, one is blinded to any alternative to remaining in the EU’s unnecessary and anti-democratic political union.

It seems the only europhile argument is that we should sacrifice this country’s ability to govern itself in return for the illusion of ‘influence’ and access to a market that is in any case open to other countries outside the EU.  And Reece is buying in to it along with the mythical renegotiation meme pushed by the Tories and their little helpers that still leaves the EU in control of the UK.

As faith in the political class is at an all time low and still falling, thankfully so is faith in the fourth estate as the disdain and mistrust extends out to encompass the whole establishment – a point Lord Justice Leveson would do well to grasp.  That much is clear from reading the almost 900 comments the overwhelmingly majority of which ridicule, challenge and deconstruct Reece’s supposed new-found europhilia.

But the important fact to take from all this is the establishment is setting itself against the wishes of the people, therefore serving interests other than ours.

It will necessitate an organic, grassroots campaign of a type not adopted here before, reaching out directly to the electorate to explain why leaving the EU will be beneficial for this country.  It’s the only way a positive message can be presented that by-passes the lies and distortions of the political class and their poodles in the mainstream media.  Battle needs to be joined for the future of the United Kingdom.

The supposed listening Prime Minister

David Cameron and his Cameroon Tories are very fond of telling voters that the Conservatives are ‘listening’ to them.

One wonders if Cameron will be listening to one of his Witney constituents who has published a robust and uncompromising open letter to Cameron, accusing him of lying to the general public when he stated of the UK’s future:

I don’t think it’s right to aim for a status like Norway or Switzerland where basically you have to obey all the rules of the single market but you don’t have a say over what they are.

Witterings from Witney’s accusation is well founded even if the language is somewhat unparliamentary. But who couldn’t excuse his frustration?

The only way to challenge false assertions is through attention to detail and citing evidence that proves the assertions are untrue. Witterings does this with finesse as he tells Cameron:

Where the rules of the single market are concerned you are fully aware that your statement belies the way most single market legislation is made. It is well known that most proposals, by the time they reach the Council for a vote, are already cast in stone and thus unable to be changed; consequently the voting issue is the last and least important part of the process. Not least, a huge amount of technical legislation is formulated at a global or regional level, in bodies such as UNECE (on which Norway is represented) and then handed down to the EU institutions as “diqules” which cannot, in substance, be changed. Thus Norway, for example, has a considerable say in the nature of regulation, long before it gets anywhere near the EU.

Witterings adds more solid evidence for good measure that you can see by visiting his blog. It would be a delight to sit down with some popcorn and watch Cameron twist and turn, bandy weasel words and obfuscate furiously in an effort to qualify his assertion in a forlorn effort to make it fit with this powerful contradictory evidence. However it is more likely Cameron will not ‘listen’ as he claims and instead remain in the ‘transmit’ mode that seems to infect politicians who play their idiotic games inside the Westminster bubble.

As such this blog (and I hope, you, dear reader) will do its bit to spread the word about these false claims and point to the truth until even the media cannot ignore it any longer and are forced to put Cameron and his ilk on the spot about these falsehoods in front of a large audience.

His masters’ man

Profoundly disappointing, but unsurprising, to see Andrew Gilligan using his platform at the Telegraph to perpetuate a demonstrably untrue assertion about the kind of relationship the UK would have with the European Union if we managed to leave.  Gilligan is, after all, his masters’ man.  He takes the Barclay Brothers’ coin and follows their pro-EU lead, as he shows with the following comment:

Yet the British impetus for full withdrawal may be dangerous: in the modern world, the very idea of “UK independence”, as promoted by the eponymous Eurosceptic party, is surely an illusion. Even if we left, given the amount of trade we do with the EU, we would still have to follow most of its rules – while no longer having any role in setting them.

This is the same fallacious tosh knowingly spun by the Norwegian foreign minister last week in spite of the reality he is completely aware of.

For a journalist who boasts a reputation for ‘investigative’ ability, Gilligan has failed to investigate the truth before doling out the sort of lie that helped Edward Heath Harold Wilson secure his EEC referendum victory (Apologies – in my rush I conflated the 1975 referendum with Heath’s 1973 parliamentary action).  Members of the EEA/EFTA do have a substantial say in the trade rules.  To suggest otherwise is an outrageous lie.

The tactics of the europhiles remain the same.  The truth is not their ally, but something to be concealed from the populace.  Instead of matters of substance on the subject of EU membership we are subjected to a narrative of superfluous nonsense, which Gilligan resorts to at the end of his article to underpin the europhilia that inspired it:

On that day in 1973 when we joined, an opinion poll asked the British people whether they wanted to see in their country Common Market “customs” such as “regular wine with meals”, “more pavement cafes”, “more shops open on Sunday”, “pubs open all day” and “coffee and a roll for breakfast, not bacon and eggs”. The poll respondents said no to all these dangerous foreign innovations (apart from the wine), but now, of course, along with Polish waitresses in London and British pensioners in Spain, they are standard parts of national life. For all our professed hostility to the EU, we are in some ways far more “European” than we were.

To expose how shallow the justifications for EU membership truly are, there’s two questions that eurosceptics should continually keep asking the europhiles to answer:

  • Why does it require the surrender of control of our country, identity, money and self determination to an unelected and unaccountable power overseas to realise any supposed benefits?
  • Why can’t benefits be achieved through cooperation and agreements, without rule from Brussels?

Norwegian Foreign Minister lies about EEA to help British ‘in’ campaign

There is only one kind of person who is even more enthusiastic about the EU than the legion of EUrocrats, and who will say anything – even blatant lies – to advance its agenda.

That person is a furiously frustrated member of the political class who is a wannabe EUrocrat, but is trapped outside the doors of the Brussels/Strasbourg gravy train by the voters in his/her country who are determined to remain independent.

One such EUthusiast is the Norwegian Foreign Minister, Espen Barth Eide.

Like the rest of the political class in Norway, Eide is desperate to take his country into the EU.  Although Norwegian voters continue to return socialists to office in Oslo, they savour their independence and do not want to be part of the EU.  It is a classic political class/electorate disconnect.  The political class see they can do nicely out of the EU, the voters see it will be a bottomless pit into which they will be required to pour their money while at the same time giving up tcontrol of their own laws and regulations.

As an EU wannabe, Eide is keen to suck up to the EUrocrats at every opportunity in the hope of some financially lucrative reward later down the line.  This explains why Eide lied shamelessly in an effort to con Britons into thinking that leaving the EU and becoming part of the European Free Trade Area (EFTA) – which along with the EU makes up the European Economic Area (EEA) – would strip Britain of any remaining influence in Europe and lead to ‘regulation without representation’.

Eide knows it’s a lie.  The EU knows it’s a lie.  And thanks to this clinical dissection by Richard over at EU Referendum, you too can now see for yourself that it’s a lie.

It’s interesting to note that the BBC was very keen to promote these lies.  Where was their fact checking?  Where is the evidence of their duty to impartiality and accuracy? This is another glaring example of the ludicrous nature of Lord Justice Leveson’s assertion that mainstream journalists enjoy a “powerful reputation for accuracy”.

Clearly Leveson’s cocksure comments were just another steaming pile of establishment-generated bullshit.  Once again it has taken the blogosphere to uncover the truth and publicise it in the face of concerted political and media deception.  Let the good Lord Justice hold a lucrative enquiry into that and force the BBC to be held to account. We won’t hold our breath for that to happen.

David Cameron’s ‘fax democracy’ lie nailed by the facts

If you read about this

Then please do take a few moments to read this by Witterings from Witney, followed by this from Richard at EU Referendum.

It might not please some of the Cameroon true blue Tory partisan party animals but the truth, rather than Cameron’s shameful lies, should be told.  When you see the scale of the deception you have to ask what other lies are being told.

Similarly it might not please some of the Farage fan club in UKIP but the content of those two blog posts, rather than tweets such as the one below a day after the lies were told, is how you tackle and defeat Europhile untruths.  It makes one wonder whose side he’s on.

Boris’ fairytales: Chapter 317

So Boris Johnson wants the UK to form an “outer-tier” of the EU with countries like Norway and Switzerland.  He has called for a “pared down” relationship with the EU.

And I want the end of every rainbow to land in my garden so I can collect all the pots of gold from the leprechauns. And peanut M&Ms to be free in every retail outlet.

The problem is neither is possible.  The acquis communautaire dictates you are either in the EU or you’re not.  There is no EU-lite choice.  It is not an option.  To suggest there could be such an option, in clear violation of the EU’s very construct and agenda is as much a myth as the rainbow’s leprechauns and free M&M’s I am calling for.

So much for the Tories’ great white haired hope

Boris Johnson is the blue-eyed boy for many Tories who want to free themselves of the social democrat clutches of David Cameron.  The great white haired hope was making all the right noises a week ago on the subject that confuses Conservatives more than any other, a referendum on EU membership.  But if a week is a long time in politics, it’s a lifetime on Planet Johnson…

Last week:

“We haven’t had a referendum for a very long time, not since 1975.  I think it would be a good thing at the right moment to settle the matter and ask people, ‘are you basically in favour of being in or out?’

This week:

“With great respect to the in-outers, I don’t think it does boil down to such a simple question.

“I don’t think it’s as simple as ‘yes, no, in, out’. Suppose Britain voted tomorrow to come out. What would actually happen? In real terms, what would happen is that the foreign office would immediately build a huge – well, the entire delegation would remain in Brussels.

“We’d still have huge numbers of staff trying to monitor what was going on in the community, only we wouldn’t be able to sit in the Council of Ministers. We wouldn’t have any vote at all. Now I don’t think that’s actually a prospect that’s likely to appeal.”

This shouldn’t surprise anyone. Johnson is a Tory and Tories cannot be trusted.  He is also an ambitious political animal and if he wants the Tory crown, he needs to sing from the hymn sheet handed to him by the kingmakers, those monied men in grey suits behind the scenes who control the party and run it to suit their personal and business interests.  No one gets a position of ‘power’ without their approval.

We can expect Johnson to start a hearty rendition of ‘I’m a constructive Eurosceptic’ in days to come despite his admission he wants the UK to remain a clear member.  He will do so as per the wishes of the puppeteers who want to keep increasingly disenchanted grassroots members in the party fold amidst a continuing mass exodus.  The important to thing to note as always, the political class is putting vested self interest and their own views before the wishes of a majority of the British people.

Maybe now the scales will fall from the eyes of a few more people.  Slowly the reality is dawning.  Who knows, maybe some on the centre right who liked Johnson might wish he was still stuck up on that zip wire at the Olympics.

Richard Corbett and his trivial 5% figure

During the media’s scratch at the surface of the EU’s budget discussions former Labour MEP Richard Corbett, who was rejected by voters in 2009 yet nonetheless continues to suck at the teats of the taxpayers in Brussels, has been keen to push the narrative that the EU’s bureaucracy and administration ‘is only 5% of the total budget’.

This is a deliberate line being taken by a fanatical EUphile career bureaucrat to avoid stating the embarrassingly huge monetary cash amount the EU spends on itself.  It’s so much less painful to hear ‘it’s only 5%’ rather than hear the actual figure.  So for the sake of transparency let’s assume Corbett’s 5% figure is accurate and put the monetary value on it that he avoids stating at any cost.

The EU’s Financial Framework 2007-2013 set the global level of commitment appropriations, namely the budget, at €864.3 billion.  That equates roughly to £700 billion over the period. The 5% Richard Corbett is so fond of referring to was therefore a bill of around £35 billion over the last period that was picked up by taxpayers across the EU.

If we consider Herman Van Rompuy’s proposed budget for the next period of €973 billion (around £787.3 billion) Corbett’s beloved 5% becomes £39.4 billion.  Not such a trivial figure when put into proper context, is it Rich? It makes all those £120 bottles of wine possible.

As for our useless establishment fawning media, when will a single journalist listening dumbly to Corbett trotting out this 5% figure do their job, put him on the spot, and ask him to tell viewers and listeners the actual monetary amount?

Panic!

It’s as if there was never a world before the Euro.  It’s as if countries inside the Eurozone never had currency of their own, never had the ability to value and manage their currency as they saw fit, and had political structures where decision making was domestic rather than outsourced to Brussels.

But anyone reading Failygraph and the dire warnings of Robert Chote, head of the Office of Budget Responsibility, could be forgiven for thinking anything prior to the creation of the single currency is pre-history.  The Fail’s interpretation of Chote is designed to further the sense of panic and requirement to fill column inches:

Britain’s economy may suffer “permanent” damage and “never quite get back up” if the euro collapses in a chaotic way, the Government’s chief economic forecaster has said.

Reality is being replaced by theatrics.  It never ceases to amaze me how this country manages to survive with so many defeatist idiots in positions of responsibility.  A break up of the Euro would result in pain, probably for some years.  There are banks that would fail and debts that would not be repaid.  But the planet will continue to spin on its axis and orbit the sun.  Countries would revert to currencies they can control, which would be more beneficial for them than the restrictive and skewed one-size-fits-none political tool that is the Euro.

Economic activity will continue as before.  People will still need to buy food, goods and services and companies will continue to trade to provide those – paying taxes and employing people.  Some economies may look and feel different, but to suggest ‘permanent’ damage could result is nothing short of ridiculous. There will still be the same markets in Europe that we will sell to today.  Remember, if it were not for the same political motives behind the creation of the Euro we would be working in our own national interest to access markets elsewhere around the world and trade freely on our own terms without being constrained by the interests and wishes of other EU member states.  If the Euro goes, so to might the bureaucracy that hamstrings us.

No doubt when the Great Depression took hold there were fearmongers like Chote saying economies would suffer ‘permanent’ damage.  Yet we have seen huge growth and economic transformation since then.  People adapt, people are entrepreneurial and opportunities are created and seized.  The fearmongers are those who have an agenda and see it crumbling before their eyes.  They are the ones who can only see their own vested interests in the intermediate, rather than the big picture in the long term.

Operation Deceive and Destroy

The Conservatives are following their messaging calendar to the letter.

Their communications plan has seen the Tory whips suggest to George EUstice and Chris Heaton-Harris that they form a group of Europlastic MPs to ‘promote debate‘ about this country’s ‘relationship’ with the EU.  It has seen David Cameron framing his answers to talk about this EU ‘relationship‘ as he appeared before the Liaison Committee.  And now it sees the rent seeking arch quisling-in-chief, William ‘Eurowillie’ Hague, dropping some carefully chosen words onto the willing ears of the Times about ‘loosening ties’ with the EU.

You don’t need to be an etymologist to see how the meaning of the noun Eurosceptic has been deliberately and cynically transformed to enable those who are nothing of the sort to adopt its mantle while undermining Eurosceptic aims.  The media has been complicit in this, routinely referring to pro-EU politicians who actively further the aims of the EU as Eurosceptic.  It suits the Tories and the media well.  It gives Eurosceptic voters the illusion the Tories share their desire for an independent UK, while giving  internationalists the opportunity to attack the supposedly xenophobic Tories on tribal party lines which delights the leftist media.

But back to today’s instalment from Eurowillie.  As always it is the case that when it comes to politicians we should ignore what they say and judge them by what they do.  Is William Hague a pro-EU or not?  The answer is, like Cameron, he sees himself as a ‘practical Eurosceptic’ which means he firmly and resolutely supports the UK remaining firmly in the grip of EU governance.

In fact he has gone further and actively endorsed the EU. Hague fronted a six week campaign to promote careers available in the European Union which ran in the Telegraph and on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website in January and February this year. Both microsites have been wiped from existence, but we still have Hague’s comments and a screen grab of the ad campaign for posterity: (click to expand image)

Presumably the area of Foreign Affairs is not one of the ‘ties’ that Hague is in favour of ‘loosening’.  How very Eurosceptic of him. Hague is just another Judas goat, aided and abetted by the useful idiots who are given a little latitude to ‘dissent’ in the hope of retaining Eurosceptic supporters.  As such we need to keep highlighting the evidence far and wide in the hope more people understand how they are being manipulated.

Will Conservatives finally accept Cameron and Europlastics have deceived them over EU?

Well, Conservatives, your man has spoken.  Governor Cameron has decreed from on high thou shalt not have a referendum on membership of the European Union. So what are you going to do now?

Cameron, pictured meeting his overlord outside the provincial gubernatorial residence in London, described himself to the Liaison Committee in Parliament as a ‘practical Eurosceptic’ – confirming the extent to which the name has been corrupted, hijacked to become the diametric opposite of what it has always meant and been commonly accepted to mean.  He said:

“I want us to be influential in Europe about the things that matter to our national interest – promoting the single market, pushing forward for growth, making sure we get lower energy prices.

“Those are things we will be fighting for but I don’t see the case for an in out referendum on Europe.

“We are in Europe, we have got to make it work for us.”

So because he doesn’t see the case the British public will be denied their democratic entitlement to determine how this country is run.  And in case he had not made clear his very personal position would be projected upon the nation he also said:

“I don’t support an In/Out referendum because I don’t think that’s the question people want asked about the EU.”

If Cameron was honest he would tell the British people: ‘What you want is irrelevant. Every decision I make has democratic legitimacy because I say so. I am in Downing Street and you can do nothing about it. I want this country to be part of the EU so that’s the way it’s going to be.  If you don’t like it, tough.’

So that covers ‘our most instinctively Eurosceptic Prime Minister for 20 years‘.  What about the Europlastics? You know, those Tories who wrapped themselves in the cloak of Euroscepticism to enhance their electoral prospects, but who are nothing of the sort.

The charade continues, as Richard North on EU Referendum points out.  How?  Step forward George Eustice, Europlastic Tory MP for Camborne and Redruth. George describes himself to all and sundry as a Eurosceptic, but he doesn’t want us to leave the EU. He doesn’t even support the idea of a referendum.  He is a co-founder of a group of around 80 Conservative MPs who also claim to be Eurosceptic, but who only want EU reform while Britain continues to be ruled by bureaucrats in Brussels and Strasbourg. Eustice is quoted by the BBC as saying his group would promote a:

“sensible discussion about how we can radically overhaul the EU and make it fit for purpose in the 21st Century”.

and:

“It is important we start to come up with thinking about what the EU will become and how we want to start to change it.”

All those calls for a referendum and opinion polls saying a majority of Britons want this country to leave the EU fall on deaf ears where Eustice and his sidekick and former EU gracy train rider Chris Heaton-Harris are concerned.  They want Britain to stay firmly inside the EU and their group is designed to ensure that happens regardless of what the majority of this country’s citizens want.  Repatriation of powers has been abandoned and the EU project cannot and will not reverse integration. The group’s aims are on a par with other myths, such as the tooth fairy, Loch Ness monster and the Easter Bunny.

Despite this we see Roger Helmer, a self professed Eurosceptic MEP who says he wants an In/Out referendum – and who is Honorary Chairman of The Freedom Association, the pressure group that runs the Better Off Out campaign – publicly supporting this group of pro-EU reformers.

How can we trust anything we are told by Roger Helmer, the most prominent member of the ‘Better Off Out’ campaign, when he pledges to do anything he can to support a group of MPs that is committed to i) denying the British public a referendum and ii) keeping Britain firmly inside the EU?  Maybe now the penny will drop among those who feel this blog has been unfair to Helmer for exposing his stunningly contradictory position.

Of course Helmer could confound this criticism by denouncing Cameron’s stance, urging Conservatives to take on Cameron, and rejecting the Eustice / Heaton-Harris Europlastic grouping which is actively seeking to undermine that which he claims to stand for.  So what has the great man decided to talk about on his website the day after Cameron and Eustice’s comments?  Fuel poverty.  And even then he only mentions one of the EU’s directives and laws imposed on this country that are increasing energy prices and plunging poorer families into fuel poverty.  Perhaps it is all part of his strategy.

The reality of the Europhile Conservative position, of supporting ever closer union and denying the population an opportunity to reject EU membership, has been laid bare in words and deeds. It is unambiguous.  It is unmistakable. The myth cannot be sustained any longer. So for how much longer will Conservatives who want Britain to leave the EU stay in that Europhile party, kidding themselves Cameron is a Eurosceptic?  The fantasy is over.

Update: The excellent Witterings From Witney weighs in with a clinical evisceration of another Europlastic, William Hague.

And so the Tory deception continues…

Writing in the Telegraph, political editor Patrick Hennessy tells readers that up to 70 Conservative MPs are to join a new group dedicated to “reversing the process” of closer European Union integration in a move he says is likely to place fresh strain on the coalition.

Three Conservative MPs are setting up this new group, one of whom is Daventry MP, Chris Heaton-Harris. They were the authors of a letter circulated among Conservative MPs that explained:

“The political objective of the group would be to reverse the process of ever-closer union.”

Of course the bullshit-o-meter should already be blaring. Surely, someone who is opposed to ever-closer union would be shouting from the rooftops about something as far reaching as, say, the EU’s Draft Regulation establishing a programme to support the further development of an integrated maritime policy. There is evidence to the contrary.

This blog wrote about the draft regulation in July, to highlight how Parliament’s European Scrutiny Select Committee – chaired by ‘Eurosceptic’ Bill Cash – nodded through the regulation in 2010 without so much as a murmur.  It should come as no surprise to readers therefore that Heaton-Harris sits on that Select Committee. Despite his supposed opposition to further integration it seems Cameron the cat has got his tongue.

After the blog post AM submitted a Freedom of Information request to Parliament by email for the full minutes of the committee’s deliberations about the draft regulation, to see what Cash and Heaton-Harris had to say about it.  The response received last month showed that the only information in the public domain is what we had already linked to in the blog post.

We keep being told the UK is very a democratic country, boasting a Parliament that is committed to openness and transparency in such weighty matters; so it obviously follows that in response to such a request it tells the citizens it is supposed to serve:

Any other information which may or may not be held by the House of Commons on any discussion in the European Scrutiny Committee on this item is exempt information under section 34 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Under this section, information is exempt if it its exemption is required to avoid infringing the privileges of the House of Commons, which include the right to decide whether, when and how to publish information about proceedings in Parliament, such as meetings of select committees held in private.

You can see the full response below:

The long and short of this is that even when the so called Eurosceptic Tories have an opportunity to take a stand against further integration and ever closer union, they don’t. Their promises are meaningless, and they do not honour their duty to the people they are elected to serve.  For all the acres of newsprint devoted to diversion pieces like the one Hennessy has published, all we have to show for Tory Euroscepticism is an acceleration in the transfer of power to Brussels and a long list of broken promises.

‘The Eurosceptic Steve Hilton’ or ‘Agendas in action’

So the man who is a parody of himself, Cameron adviser Steve Hilton, has let it be leaked in the media that he is said to have swung behind moves for the UK to go it alone after being shocked to discover how much sovereignty has switched from Westminster to Brussels.

Very little leaks out of Westminster in this way unless someone has an ulterior motive.  That motive could be to show up Hilton for the vacuous fool he is, it could be an attempt to soothe the ruffled feathers of the Tory grassroots that a man with Cameron’s ear is a Eurosceptic to arrest sliding membership numbers, or it could be an internal power play by someone who would benefit from Hilton’s removal. Whatever, there is more to this than meets the eye.

What the article does do is draw attention to the lack of understanding among senior government figures about how this country is run and by whom, and the sheer dumb ignorance of those who profess to be in leadership positions. There is nothing more to add about this ‘story’ that has not been analysed by Dr Richard North at EU Referendum. His post on the matter is worthy of your time.

The Foreign Office story the Belfast Telegraph should have told

Today we have yet another example of the media missing a serious point of public interest in order to focus on triviality and matters of little consequence.  It demonstrates further proof that the media is not fit for purpose and the public are ill served by it.

According to the Belfast Telegraph:

The Foreign Office has been left red-faced after it inadvertently published a confidential briefing which suggests European Union foreign policy chief Cathy Ashton was not experienced enough for her job.

The story explains how the briefing document in question contained sensitive material that appeared to be blacked out but could in fact be read by anyone using a computer to copy and paste it into another file, before going on to point out that the Foreign Office memo reveals that the UK Government felt only a former foreign minister, prime minister or head of state would have “enough authority” to become the EU’s first High Representative for Foreign Affairs.

This is no big deal in the scheme of things.  What would have made the story a heavyweight piece and added value to readers was if it had focused on the information that followed:

The document calls for a “strong, effective” High Representative who could help build a “credible” European diplomatic corps, known as the External Action Service (EAS), and “represent EU foreign policy in the wider world”.

While it is no secret, there would be a great deal of value drawing the attention of readers to this.  For here we see the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office, funded by British taxpayers, was (and still is) actively encouraging and supporting the EAS and the projection of ‘EU foreign policy’. The UK is demonstrably and evidently nothing close to independent. Not that one would see that from the absence of any mention of the EU on the FO’s home page.

The Foreign Office is stuffed to the gills with Europhile officials and is seen here to be working in its own interest rather than that of the people of the United Kingdom.  There has been much discussion about how the EU diplomatic missions have the capacity to supplant the work of British embassies around the world, thus making it clear how Brussels policy overrides UK policy.

Many citizens who have missed this creeping Eurofication of Britain’s place in the world could benefit from having the reality of our situation writ large and examined in detail for them. But the media is watching the birdie and devoting its energies to triviality rather than substance. Is it any wonder why so many people do not think the EU is a pressing political issue?  But then, that is what the political class wants and its media toadies are helping them to hold the line.


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