Posts Tagged 'Sovereignty'

It’s time to take on and defeat the pro-EU side

Under the section on ‘Progressing the Agenda’ on page 26 of the Harrogate Agenda pamphlet, it says:

One of those objectives, not explicitly stated, is the withdrawal of the UK from membership of the European Union. As it stands, the direct democracy embodied in THA is not compatible with membership of the EU.

The inception of the Harrogate Agenda was to campaign for a transformation in British democracy – namely bringing it about.  It just so happens that democracy, real people power, is utterly incompatible with membership of the EU and its model of governance beyond accountability, which is why THA says it is necessary for the UK to leave the EU.

However, given the significantly changing pace and indeed face of the EU referendum debate, the Harrogate Agenda committee and advisory panel will meet in May to discuss formalising and increasing the link between THA and the EU Referendum issue, in order to give more prominence to campaigning for withdrawing from the EU.

In other words, although THA was not brought into being to fight for withdrawal from the EU, it is looking to re-focus its activity to achieve that end.

This does not mean THA will abandon its aim of demoratic reform in the UK.  Far from it.  Rather it is a recognition that before that can happen the UK needs to be free of the EU and we have a part to play in that.

To achieve that goal of leaving the EU there is a clear need for the anti-EU side to get all the help it can.  Blogging supporters of THA have variously highlighted and lamented the shortcomings of the anti-EU side over months and years.  Therefore the proposal being put before THA supporters – who are currently engaged in building the foundation of the movement before presenting it to the public – is that we now actively get involved in the game, that we devote our attention and focus on EU withdrawal, while formally bringing to it whatever philosophical and technical tools we can.

There are too many things that the public is not being told.  There are too many Europhile lies going unchallenged.  The media is awash with FUD, spin, deliberately sown confusion and ignorant commentary.  Not enough is being done to provide voters with reassurance that leaving the EU can have positive benefits in addition to the UK governing itself and speaking with its own voice on the world stage.

It’s time to tackle and overcome those problems.

THA has something to contribute – not least Richard North’s outstanding, condensed FLexCit plan that provides a definitive roadmap for leaving the EU and dealing with expected stumbling blocks along the way. It’s time to get out of the stands, onto the field and energise the pro-independence side.

Ukraine, UK, foreign policy, defence and the EU

The media is at it again, with ‘journalists’ and commentators demonstrating that for all the lavish salaries and resources showered upon them they know very little and understand even less.

Con Coughlin is a case in point. Bunkered at the Telegraph, lest he get chased out of a pub by fellow hacks, the great sage has a piece that his sub editor has chosen to title ‘Britain reduced to shaking a weedy fist at Vladimir Putin’ with a subheading thus, ‘Protests against Russia’s annexation of Crimea can’t disguise the fact that Britain is now a mere bystander on the world stage because of defence cuts’.

While that is partially true, it only tells us a fraction of the story and does nothing to explain why we have this state of affairs.  Instead Coughlin deigns to inform us that:

It was always going to happen – the eruption of an international crisis so grave that it laid bare the full limitations of Britain’s ability to act on the world stage. And so it has come to pass, with the humiliating revelation that our policy for confronting Vladimir Putin’s Crimean land grab is to do… precisely nothing.

[...] So far as Britain is concerned, the best we can hope for now is that Ukraine’s new interim government does not react to the blatant acts of provocation perpetrated by Russian troops. For, as we now know, courtesy of a Downing Street photographer’s telephoto lens, Britain’s ability to respond to Russia’s wanton acts of aggression is nonexistent.

There are very good reasons for this.  The defence capabilities of this nation are largely supposed – among other things – to be geared to do two things:

  1. to defend our national territory, and
  2. to protect our national interests and support our foreign policy objectives around the world

I’m over here…

The key point here is point 2.  It is essential to note that we don’t have our own interests any more, the EU has them for us.  And we no longer have any defined foreign policy objectives, as again our foreign policy is dictated by the EU.

For these reasons our defence requirements are ill defined, and our capabilities are being eroded to the point our armed forces cannot act independently – to help bring about the EU plan of an interoperable, member state force taking orders from Brussels.

But Coughlin makes no mention of this. The media has, by and large, embraced EU membership and makes no effort to learn what the EU is designed to do, why it is doing it and how it goes about achieving it. So it is that Coughlin and his friends continue to rail against many effects of EU membership, such as the dearth of a foreign policy supported by defence capabilities to underpin it, but keep telling us how EU membership is essential to this country’s interests.

This mentality extends far beyond the media and deep into the political class, where a few days ago we saw Sir Christopher Meyer, former British Ambassador to Germany and to the US, write in the Times (£) that:

Foreign policy is not an edition of Radio 4’s Moral Maze. It should be based on a cold calculation of national interest. It is time to get back to basics: the clarity of openly defined sovereign interests and publicly acknowledged spheres of interest.

Yet despite these implorings we see no mention of the EU let alone criticism of the fact membership has brought us to this. In fact the Foreign & Commonwealth Office of which Meyer was part is possibly the most enthusiastic cheerleader and advocate of EU membership in the UK.

The fact is, as part of the EU, our armed forces, for all the billions spent on them, will not be strong enough to field sufficient divisions, wings and naval groups to respond independently to geopolitical crises – as it runs contrary to the notion of interoperability. In any case the would not be prepared to do so because our country’s foreign policy will be written in Brussels and our interests will be what the EU defines them to be.

You just won’t hear any journalist, politician or FCO pension recipient telling the public the truth of it.

There is a very important reason why Parliament isn’t busy

In the Telegraph today, Tom Harris MP is whining about the lack of legislation going through Parliament.  He says that it means there were no votes in the Commons last Monday, none the previous Monday either, there won’t be any next Monday, and there hasn’t been a whipped vote on a Thursday for months.

He places the blame for this at the door of the government.  However, in the comment thread it is apparent that more and more people have grasped the essential point Harris is too unwitting to realise or unwilling to acknowledge – that Parliament has less to do because the EU is our surpreme government and rubber stamping diktat from Brussels doesn’t take very long.

This has been obvious for years.  The ever lengthening recess breaks are not just MPs wanting to take longer holidays, they are a consequence of less parliamentary business being required because the EU determines almost all the laws the people of this land must live by.  This central fact isn’t convenient for Harris, who instead makes his piece an attack on five-year fixed parliaments and government running out of ideas and having nothing to do.  Rooted in the past, when Parliament and UK courts were supreme, Harris declares:

The difference now is that the traditional remedy – to dissolve parliament and allow the various parties to be reinvigorated by a campaign and the judgment of the electorate – is unavailable.

Sadly for Harris, while an election campaign is an exciting wet dream for politicians and the media that faithfully trots alongside them hoping for some scraps to keep them sustained, the reality it is a sham.  For whichever party wins the next election, the electorate can expect more of the same.

With all the decisions of consequence being made in Brussels, or handed down from there after decisions in global committees and commissions, the UK parties have very little in their gift to manage or change.  There is little between the parties because no ideology is required to deal with the limited number of genuine matters of substance that are still governed by the UK.  So even after going through the motions of moving around and changing the colour of the deck chairs, the ship’s direction of travel will remain unchanged, unless the officers in Brussels sitting on the bridge, decide otherwise.

Harris may be upset that he is being denied involvement in big political fights like those of yesteryear, but as part of the political class he shares the blame for that and supporting the surrender of control of the UK to the EU.

Who should run Britain?

‘Who should run Britain?’

That is the only issue and it cannot be avoided any longer.  Should we stay trapped in the EU or should we become independent?  Whether it is immigration, trade, environment, energy or any other governance matter, the EU tells us what to do and we have to do it.

The pro-EU side try to frighten people with lies about having to stay in the EU (politics) to be part of the single market (economics).  It’s not true.  They only say it to move attention away from the core issue of sovereignty.

Don’t play the game the politicians want us to play by focusing on single issues like immigration, because all the roads lead to one place – sovereignty.  Look at the bigger picture and ask yourself ‘Who should run Britain?’ then decide if you want that to be the British or the EU.

This is a little more encouraging, but only a little

In all my criticisms of Nigel Farage and UKIP, I have always made clear that I would prefer to be praising them for pushing the right agenda.  So it’s nice to be able to say that Farage’s op-ed in the Telegraph this evening represents something of an improvement for the UKIP leader.  It’s far from perfect, but it is better than much of what we have seen in recent months.

The major and worrying problem is that Farage is still riding his immigration hobby horse and trying to suggest that leaving the EU is the antidote to this country’s migration issues.  This is disingenuous and risky for EUsceptic credibility because, as has been explained at a superficial level on this blog but in greater detail on EU Referendum, leaving the EU will not resolve our immigration problems.

No one is proposing leaving the Council of Europe (which includes a much wider range of countries that are not in the EU),  and we are still party to conventions and standards of the International Labour Organisation (contrary to the understanding of the UK’s Attorney General).  UK involvement in both of these means even after a Brexit we will still be bound to observing certain conditions on immigration.  This is another example of the global governance agenda that makes the EU little more than ‘Little Europe‘ – a proxy for handing down regulations and directives that the UK has had no opportunity to shape at the global top table where they originate.

Further, because it would be political suicide to attempt to sell to the British people the idea that the UK should not be part of the Single Market now or after Brexit, we would almost certainly have to maintain Single Market access through membership of the EEA – perhaps via EFTA – which would mean we would still be bound by the ‘four freedoms’, which include the freedom of movement and freedom of establishment.  As Richard has explained, this means the UK would be required to permit Bulgarian and Romanian workers to take up residence here in any case.  Farage is only outfoxing himself by not understanding this and shaping his policy accordingly.

But at least Farage has dared once again to reference leaving the EU.  He has at least aligned that imperative with the fact that as EU members we are effectively powerless and cannot change rules that cause this country harm or our people frustration.  He needs to go further in stressing the core issue as being about ‘Who should run Britain‘ and he needs to get off the immigration bandwagon because under scrutiny people will discover his ‘solution’ is nothing of the sort.  It’s a lot more complicated than simply leaving Brussels behind.

Farage’s time would be better spent countering the EuroFUD on economics and dragging the debate and argument to where it should be, on governance.  The whole Brexit issue is about one thing – sovereignty.

The whole EUsceptic side needs to rally around that issue, own it, hammer home the reality continuously to expose and deconstruct the lies of the CBI, Open Europe ad the other proxies for the EUphile side, and make ‘Who should run Britain‘ the defining issue of the campaign.  The current immigration focus may be convenient for Farage to score some easy hits, but it will damage UKIP eventually and that represents a huge risk to the EUsceptic cause; because as Farage clearly has no comprehension of our true situation, it follows that he can have no credible solution either.

A reply to the Letter regarding HMRC and taxation to Margaret Hodge MP

Readers may remember that this author recently sent a letter (shown below) to Margaret Hodge regarding her comments and those of HMRC directors at a recent meeting of the Public Accounts Committee.  A reply has now been received – a not entirely satisfactory one – that follows on below…

Your comments and suggestions about what next steps could/should be taken are most welcome…

—————

Dear Mrs Hodge,

Since the recent appearance of senior HMRC representatives including Edward Troup, HMRC’s Tax Assurance Commissioner and Jim Harra, the Director-General of Business Tax, before the Public Accounts Committee, I have undertaken some reading which has resulted in me identifying two very important questions that need to be answered.

Following your recent appearance on BBC Radio 4’s PM programme where you explained that you actively seek to engage with voters, I hope you will be kind enough to answer my questions.

You were quoted as saying in Committee that:

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.

It transpires HMRC has already pursued a case to test their powers in respect of the movement of capital within the EU, the Thin Cap Group Litigation v Commissioners of Inland Revenue.  In 2007 the European Court of Justice rejected HMRC’s case.  HMRC therefore clearly know the answer to your question is that they have tested their powers and know they would lose such a case.

My first question is, although Mr Troup did say, “We make sure we collect the tax due under the law,” why did neither he nor Mr Harra reference the Thin Cap Group Litigation case in their evidence to your committee in answer to your question, explaining that EU law prevents the taxation you would like to see applied to the likes of Google, Facebook, Amazon and Starbucks in the UK prior to transfer payments being made to another EU member state?

My second question is this.  Given the ECJ verdict in respect of Thin Cap Group, have you not been informed by advisers or civil servants about this failed test of powers, as it is central to the UK Exchequer’s inability to tax profits made by corporations that based their EU trade in another member state?

I am sure you will agree that it is only right that people should be encouraged to understand the laws that apply and their origin, and that discussion related to this matter in Parliamentary committees should be open and transparent.  It is clear that the UK does not have tax sovereignty as laws made elsewhere pertaining to taxation have primacy.  Do you not think this should be made clear in your committee?  Will you seek to explore this further in future PAC hearings?

I look forward to and thank you in advance for your reply.

Yours sincerely,

Tom Nightingale

The reply received is shown below…

Letter regarding HMRC and taxation to Margaret Hodge MP

The letter shown below has been sent to Margaret Hodge.  Should a reply be received it will be published here.

—————

Dear Mrs Hodge,

Since the recent appearance of senior HMRC representatives including Edward Troup, HMRC’s Tax Assurance Commissioner and Jim Harra, the Director-General of Business Tax, before the Public Accounts Committee, I have undertaken some reading which has resulted in me identifying two very important questions that need to be answered.

Following your recent appearance on BBC Radio 4’s PM programme where you explained that you actively seek to engage with voters, I hope you will be kind enough to answer my questions.

You were quoted as saying in Committee that:

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.

It transpires HMRC has already pursued a case to test their powers in respect of the movement of capital within the EU, the Thin Cap Group Litigation v Commissioners of Inland Revenue.  In 2007 the European Court of Justice rejected HMRC’s case.  HMRC therefore clearly know the answer to your question is that they have tested their powers and know they would lose such a case.

My first question is, although Mr Troup did say, “We make sure we collect the tax due under the law,” why did neither he nor Mr Harra reference the Thin Cap Group Litigation case in their evidence to your committee in answer to your question, explaining that EU law prevents the taxation you would like to see applied to the likes of Google, Facebook, Amazon and Starbucks in the UK prior to transfer payments being made to another EU member state?

My second question is this.  Given the ECJ verdict in respect of Thin Cap Group, have you not been informed by advisers or civil servants about this failed test of powers, as it is central to the UK Exchequer’s inability to tax profits made by corporations that based their EU trade in another member state?

I am sure you will agree that it is only right that people should be encouraged to understand the laws that apply and their origin, and that discussion related to this matter in Parliamentary committees should be open and transparent.  It is clear that the UK does not have tax sovereignty as laws made elsewhere pertaining to taxation have primacy.  Do you not think this should be made clear in your committee?  Will you seek to explore this further in future PAC hearings?

I look forward to and thank you in advance for your reply.

Yours sincerely,

Tom Nightingale

Questions for HMRC that need answering

Staying on the subject of Margaret Hodge’s hissy fit and in particular the evidence given to the Public Accounts Committee, by Edward Troup, HMRC’s Tax Assurance Commissioner and Jim Harra, the Director-General of Business Tax, there is a very important question that needs to be answered.

Margaret Hodge continued with her now familiar narrative of having a show trial or two for major companies who, in her eyes, don’t pay their ‘fair share’ of tax to the UK Exchequer – because despite trading here and generating impressive revenues a lot of the money is sent to another EU location in the form of transfer payments and the like.  Hodge said to Harra:

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.

Now, HMRC knows very well about the Thin Cap Group Litigation, with the subsequent European Court of Justice ruling on in March 2007, and how that makes Hodge’s demand impossible.  It would therefore be pointless HMRC spending our money to pursue a case it already knows from case law there is no prospect of winning.  So,

  1. Why did neither Harra nor Troup simply tell Hodge that European law allows what Google, Facebook, Amazon and Starbucks are doing?
  2. Why did they not explain to the committee that challenging the companies, in the way Hodge is demanding, falls foul of Article 63 of the Lisbon Treaty which declares that: “all restrictions on the movement of capital between Member States and between Member States and third countries shall be prohibited”, and that: “all restrictions on payments between Member States and between Member States and third countries shall be prohibited”?
  3. What is it they are trying to conceal from the PAC, the media and the wider public through this refusal to state what the facts are, explaining that European law and treaties have primacy and have supplanted the UK’s tax sovereignty and that Westminster therefore does not have competence make the rules in these matters, thus putting an end to Hodge’s continuing witch hunt?

Something doesn’t smell right.  It is such an open and shut matter that there has to be more to this than meets the eye.  Surely it can’t just be a desire to divert attention away from the EU elephant in the room.  Someone needs to call out HMRC on this so that the facts are aired in public in an open and transparent manner.

Then even the media might get curious and show more interest in this issue than repeating the ‘he said/she said’ exchanges, which leave people wondering why Parliament appears toothless, why no action is being taken by HMRC and why the corporates are continuing with their current tax arrangements within the EU.

Sausages and laws, the media doesn’t understand how either are made

Witterings from Witney picks up on an article in the press about proposals for more 20mph speed limits and enforcement cameras, one in which the well-paid hack has failed to ‘dig beneath the surface’ of the story where the origin of legislation is concerned.  It indirectly provides more evidence of the fallacy of the ‘fax democracy’ the EU supposedly dictates to non-EU members of the European Economic Area (EEA).

It is a valuable piece that all readers would benefit from taking on board, as it shows that much of the legislation being introduced by national governments – and the European Union – is not ‘home grown’ and does not even originate in the European Commission, but rather is formulated by sovereign nations and handed down by UN bodies to which they have acceded.

The EU’s ‘common position’ as representative of its 28 member states therefore mean each member state has less of a voice in shaping these decisions than independent nations such as Switzerland and Norway – who engage directly with the UN bodies to shape legislation with their own voice.

As WfW wryly observes:

As mentioned on twitter by @WhiteWednesday, no doubt – and hopefully – the Swiss “faxed” Brussels to give them advanced warning of legislation they would shortly have to introduce – but I digress again.

Quite.

David Cameron’s Impotent Number 10

Over at the paywalled Sunday Times there is a story that anyone who has worked within representative politics will recognise, as subscribers are told that David Cameron often learns of his policies from reading the papers and listening to the radio:

‘David Cameron’s former policy chief has revealed his “horror” at the powerlessness of Downing Street to control government decisions, admitting the prime minister often finds out about policies from the radio or newspapers — and in many cases opposes them.

‘Steve Hilton, who remains one of Cameron’s close confidants, said: “Very often you’ll wake up in the morning and hear on the radio or the news or see something in the newspapers about something the government is doing. And you think, well, hang on a second — it’s not just that we didn’t know it was happening, but we don’t even agree with it!  The government can be doing things … and we don’t agree with it? How can that be?”

‘He described how No 10 is frequently left out of the loop as important policy changes are pushed through by ‘paper-shuffling’ mandarins.”‘

This is what happens when civil servants in government departments and the various tiers of local authorities take their orders and direction not from elected politicians in Westminster or City and Town Halls, but from the various organs of our supreme government in Brussels, the EU.

This is the state of ‘democracy’ in 21st Century Britain.  The likes of Cameron cannot have complaint about this state of affairs, it is what they support and want to maintain.  So any bleating from them should be treated with the contempt it deserves.  But the British people do have cause for complaint.

What is being done by the civil service, following the instructions of a foreign entity that is answerable to one one, has not been elected and cannot be removed by this country’s voters, operating outside of democratic accountability can justly be described as a coup d’etat – albeit one the idiot politicians have facilitated by signing over huge swathes of power without understanding what that entails and without asking the permission of the people they are supposed to serve.  The Irish get it.

This is why the UK needs to become independent again by leaving the EU.

Useful idiots Big business mandarins like Richard Branson couldn’t care less about democratic legitimacy and accountability matters such as these, and certainly don’t want ordinary people to understand the consequences of EU membership for this country.  They prefer to retail scare stories about a departure from the EU threatening our economy and jobs, while deliberately ignoring the fact being part of the single market does not require this country to outsource political control by being a member of the EU.

It is not xenophobic or acting like a Little Englander to want the UK to leave the EU, rather it is an expression of the desire for democracy – people power – that the political class cannot stand and is trying to erode.  We are Better Off Out of the EU.

Open letter to Philip Gordon, US Assistant Secretary for European Affairs

Dear Mr Gordon,

I read with interest the following comment you made on behalf of the Government of the United States of America, in your capacity as US Assistant Secretary for European Affairs, regarding the United Kingdom’s membership of the European Union:

We have a growing relationship with the EU as an institution, which has an increasing voice in the world, and we want to see a strong British voice in that EU. That is in America’s interests. We welcome an outward-looking EU with Britain in it.

This comes as no surprise as it reflects the thinking of other senior members of the Obama administration, who have previously opined that the United Kingdom should remain a member of the EU.

The President of the United States is considered by many to be the leader of the free world, and the United States itself considered to be a beacon of democracy.  So it is profoundly disappointing to see the United States administration endorsing and encouraging something that is fundamentally undemocratic.  I would like to ask you the following questions.

  • Would it be acceptable to you and your fellow United States citizens that over 70% of the laws and regulations they were forced to comply with across all 50 states were created by a supranational government comprising layers of complex political and judicial structures, mostly unelected and unaccountable, and made up of delegates from not only the US, but Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Belize, El Salvador, Panama, Colombia, Venezuela and Peru?
  • Would it be acceptable to you, your fellow United States citizens and members of the Senate and House of Representatives that they were routinely handed diktats from the various bodies that make up the supranational government and were bound by law to implement the directives or be fined or dragged into a supranational court operating an alien form of judicial code and process?  Further, that Congress was denied the ability to draft, and the President sign into law, other legislation of national interest whenever the supranational decided it was not appropriate?
  • Would it be acceptable to you, your fellow United States citizens and the Justices of the Supreme Court that decisions made by the bench, the highest court in your land, could be appealed to a supranational court overseas with the hearing presided over by foreign judges and if overruled the Supreme Court would have to accept that as a binding ruling?

If these scenarios do not sound very democratic or judicious to you and your fellow Americans it is because they are not.  Intentionally and by design.  But this is the reality of the United Kingdom’s membership of the European Union and its associated bodies and institutions.  UK membership of the EU has entailed a substantial loss of power from our democratically elected Parliament as it has been quietly and steadily transferred to unelected and unaccountable bodies abroad – all done without the people of the UK being asked to give their consent for it to happen.

While it may be in the geopolitical interest of the Government of the United States for the United Kingdom to remain a member of the European Union, opinion polls show this anti-democratic situation is opposed by a majority of British citizens.  Membership of the EU dilutes the voice of the United Kingdom.  Seats on various world bodies held by the UK have been given up so the EU can supposedly represent the competing and disparate interests of 27 countries in a wholly unsatisfactory fudge that frequently fails to serve British interests.

I am sure you will recognise the obvious contradiction in the position of the United States, on one hand calling for Syria’s regime to heed the wishes of the Syrian people, while on the other calling for the government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to maintain membership of the EU, despite the wishes of the British people.  I am sure you will also recognise the obvious contradiction of the United States urging countries around the world to embrace democracy, while urging the United Kingdom to maintain its place in political and judicial structures that replace representative democracy with control by unelected and unaccountable aliens who are drawn from a pool of self-selecting career politicians and civil servants.

Would such a situation be an acceptable settlement in the United States?  I think we both know the answer to that is categorically ‘no’.

No one who believes in democracy – people power – would endorse and encourage a continuation of this anti-democratic situation for the United Kingdom.  That is what this issue is about.  So, Mr Gordon, please do not presume to meddle in our affairs and wish on us that which you would aggressively oppose for yourself.

Yours sincerely,

Autonomous Mind

The Swiss paradox

After all that has been written on this blog about the government’s war to seize other people’s money without legal justification, it was nice to see James Higham’s piece about an interesting snippet of Swiss history.

It’s worth remembering that while western European governments – particularly our supposedly ‘business friendly’ morons in Westminster – strive to misappropriate more money in taxes from individuals and businesses, independent Switzerland is being put under huge pressure by the EU to raise taxes to EU levels and adopt EU law.

This is something we’ve covered before.  The aim is to pressure countries outside the EU to make their tax systems as thoroughly harmful to business and individuals as those inside the EU, so no matter where a company or person goes they will have a government helping itself to copious amounts of their money.  It is tax injustice, a blatant effort to financially imprison firms and people.  It is also naked anti-competitiveness writ large; a transnational war by governments on the people they are supposed to serve.

200 years after Swiss troops fought defensive actions against the enemies of a meglomaniac who sought to unite Europe under his rule, the Swiss people are now on the other side of the fence, fighting a defensive action against a meglomaniac entity that is seeking to achieve the same end… worryingly with rather more success.  Many people who believe in the nation state and people power will be hoping the Swiss win this time around.

EU plan for UK-French military merger inches closer

In September 2010 this blog explained to readers how plans for a Royal Navy aircraft carrier share with French Navy is nothing more than an element of a much bigger Tory idea dating back 14 years. We posed a question:

But what will be Cameron’s excuse when the deeply unpopular plan for the Royal Navy and French Navy to share aircraft carriers and integrate operations is confirmed?  After all, as EU Referendum reminds us, this is nothing more than the realisation of a long standing European military cooperation agreement signed by the Conservatives under John Major in 1996.

The Barclay Brother Beano, for reasons passing understanding, is still the Tories’ rag of choice. And it is there that the latest instalment in the drip feed of confirmation has been positioned…

(Note the date of the piece – 6 June – a typo error, or carefully timed release to fit with an announcement that has gone pear shaped?)

It has long been the EU’s plan for the UK and France to share military hardware in this way.  The article is a measure of the contempt in which the political class treats us, and an underlining of the ignorance/complicity of a fawning media that props up this worthless parasites.

What we are seeing is the end game, the execution of a long standing plan to bring about interdependence between the UK and French armed forces, which means Britain’s capability to undertake unilateral military operations will no longer exist.  We can only act militarily with the permission and active cooperation of others. The next stage will be the gradual assimilation of other elements of armed forces from other EU member states, operating under the blue banner and gold stars of the EU, giving Brussels its dream of a military capability under a unified command structure taking orders from the unelected and unaccountable mandarins who rule over us.

All this has been planned and delivered, hidden in plain sight of the electorate and the media, yet even now many in the media are still unable or unwilling to connect the dots and explain to our population what our political class has done. They are sickening quislings to a man and a woman.

Fine Gael’s win will change nothing in Ireland

Ireland’s voters have moved the deck chairs around and the faces in the government ministries will now change. But little else.

Fine Gael will be the largest party in the Dail and form yet another coalition, and Enda Kenny is almost certain to be the new taoiseach. But beyond that, what difference will Ireland’s voters see?

There is excited talk of Kenny starting the process of renegotiating the previous government’s 85bn-euro (£72bn) EU/IMF loan package.  It is something that has echoes of David Cameron’s pledge to renegotiate the repatriation of power from Brussels to Westminster and is likely to have the same outcome.

But then, what else do the Irish expect?  Fine Gael actually helped Brian Cowen’s sinking government to put the Finance Bill to a vote in the Dail, supported some of its provisions and failed to stop the ones it opposed from passing. It is unrealistic in the extreme of Fine Gael to give the impression they will be able to change the terms of the expensive loan the EU and IMF put together.

Bar some tinkering around the edges nothing will change.  Ireland’s voters will still be paying higher taxes and experiencing huge cuts in spending on public services.  They voted for change but will not see any, because when all is said and done the government of Ireland is cannot be found in the Dail, it resides in Brussels.  No one was able to vote for or against it.

Those making the decisions for Ireland have not appeared on any ballot paper. Ireland is not mistress in her own house. The democratic process engaged in by 70% of those eligible to vote is meaningless, a charade, an illusion. How can Ireland’s government be on a collision course with the EU, when the EU is Ireland’s government? It is already making this clear:

As Irish voters headed for the polling booths on Friday, the European Commission bluntly declared that the terms of the EU-IMF bailout “must be applied” whatever the will of Ireland’s people or regardless of any change of government.

“It’s an agreement between the EU and the Republic of Ireland, it’s not an agreement between an institution and a particular government,” said a Brussels spokesman.

A European diplomat, from a large eurozone country, told The Sunday Telegraph that “the more the Irish make a big deal about renegotiation in public, the more attitudes will harden”.

“It is not even take it or leave it. It’s done. Ireland’s only role in this now is to implement the programme agreed with the EU, IMF and European Central Bank. Irish voters are not a party in this process, whatever they have been told,” said the diplomat.

It will become apparent to the Irish people in the weeks and months that despite the campaigning, the voting and the time consuming counting they have changed precisely nothing, they are not a party in this process. It has been nothing more than a very expensive piece of theatre.

The question that will then need to be asked is what will the Irish people do about it.  Will they confirm their surrender, or will they again satisfy their hunger for independence?

Why the EU is putting pressure on Switzerland

The EU’s harrassment of Switzerland covered here and here, because it refuses to stop offering low personal and business tax rates, is put into context today with the news Brussels is dusting off old plans to introduce a common consolidated corporate tax base (CCCTB) across member states.

Not content with its objective of directly charging VAT on our purchases instead of letting member states collect the money and pass it on to Brussels, the EU now wants to set a common minimum rate of corporation tax to prevent countries such as Ireland setting competitive rates to attract business to its shores.

The pressure being applied to Switzerland is a concerted effort by the EU to eradicate a ‘local’ tax competitor that could host companies desperate to avoid the EU’s elevated minimum tax rates in a geographically convenient location. The EU measure would spark a stampede of businesses to the cantons if the last democracy in western Europe doesn’t play ball.  It’s a high stakes game worth billions of Euros.

The EU is a customs union with no interest in free trade or competition.  A more accurate description for it would be a bullying, anti democratic tax union. The UK has no place being part of this destructive bureaucratic cabal. Ironically, on the day this news has come out the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Owen Paterson, is saying the province’s corporation tax rate should be cut from 28% to attract business to the country – exactly what the EU is trying to put a stop to.  Yet in another breath he will be telling us how beneficial our EU membership is.  It is rank hypcorisy.

No doubt the proposal, which is being met with the usual initial resistance from France and Germany before being accepted by them wholesale after a few concessions, will have senior Conservative politicians sucking on their teeth, planting Eurosceptic sentiments with unthinking cut and paste merchants in the media and expressing anger at this unacceptable interference in British affairs – before meekly surrendering all competence to Brussels and declaring there was no alternative.

Costs will be driven up and consumers will find themselves paying more for goods and services, but the mass sleepwalk will continue as our media tows the party line in return for ‘access’ and fails the public by not exposing the real state of affairs that would have the people in rebellious mood.

That Conservative Euroscepticism in action

Following on from yesterday’s post rubbishing James Forsyth’s news story in the Mail that suggested ‘constantly being told what you can and can’t do by Brussels is driving Ministers and No 10 deeper and deeper into the Eurosceptic camp’, a timely reminder of the depth of that Conservative Euroscepticism in the Conservatives’ favourite rag.  Click on the image below to enlarge then read the text beneath it and ask yourself, does this look like a Eurosceptic Conservative at his wits end with frustration on the verge of calling for an in-out referendum on EU membership?

And when clicking through on his image this is ‘Conservative Eurosceptic’ Foreign Secretary, William Hague’s introduction to the EU Civil Service recruitment section:

5:20PM GMT 25 Jan 2011

“Whatever you think of it, the EU is incredibly important to Britain. Whether you’re angry about red tape from Brussels, interested in what it means for British business, excited about the opportunities it gives young people to work in other European countries or wondering what European countries can achieve on the environment or international crises, you are bound to have an opinion on it.

“If you care about any of these things you should think about working in the EU’s institutions – the EU’s Civil Service. We want to see bright and ambitious British graduates taking up that opportunity. We need people involved who can bring a British point of view and expertise to the EU’s work.

“That’s why I’m backing this campaign for UK graduates to look at the EU’s Civil Service as a career. It could give you the chance to help the countries of Europe shape the European Union’s future direction. If you’re concerned about big policy issues, want to learn about international negotiations or fascinated by European cultures and languages, you may find the job you’re looking for with the EU.

“So do browse this site and leave your contact details if you’re interested in receiving further information on working for the EU’s Civil Service.”

The words quisling and sell out spring to mind.  How ironic the date that page was last updated, 25th January 2011, was the same date the Egyptian people began their effort to throw off undemocratic rule with a protest in Tahrir Square.

The Swiss Resistance continues

It is interesting to note in EurActiv that the European Union claims it and Switzerland have ironed out their differences to move ahead with a process aimed at simplifying ‘without delay’ the complex network of bilateral agreements governing EU-Swiss relations.  But as always with the EU, things are not how they seem.

For according to swissinfo.ch nothing new was achieved. The Swiss Foreign Minister, Micheline Calmy-Rey, has made clear in her statements the EU position is that Switzerland must make concessions on its sovereignty in order to retain and improve access to EU markets.  However she has been quoted as saying:

Switzerland will never agree to be a de facto member of the EU when it is not taking part in the decision-making process. It is out of the question for Switzerland to adopt community law automatically.

Switzerland is not an EU member state.  It is an independent, sovereign nation comprised of cantons which are effectively states within a Swiss federation.  As such the cantons have an unrivalled degree of autonomy over taxation and legislation and are democratically accountable to their populations – something the EU bitterly resents.  So it is outrageous that the EU position as explained by José Manuel Barroso is that the EU:

… wants a more comprehensive agreement and automatic acceptance by Berne of changes to EU legislation, which the Swiss say would go against the principle of sovereignty.

It is like China saying it has changed a law and so, because Japan is a trading partner, Tokyo must automatically accept it and follow suit.  And that because China levies higher taxes, Japan must do the same instead of offering people and businesses an alternative that allows them to keep more of their money.

While a good number of Swiss politicians and diplomats are attracted to the idea of being part of the EU because of what’s in it for them, for the Swiss people the prospect of losing self determination is a price not worth paying.  Their resistance continues.  As is the case the world over, the interests of the political class are not the same as the interests of ordinary people.  What is saving the Swiss people from the EU are their democratic safeguards, something the people of EU member states have sat by and watched their political class subvert and dismantle.  Let’s hope the Swiss can prevail where our disengaged populace has so far failed.

Soak the taxpayer

It takes stories such as this to really get home to people how our interests are not the interests of those who govern us.  We learn in today’s Belfast Telegraph that:

Northern Ireland’s taxpayers could end up footing the bill for millions of pounds in EU fines if spending is cut on key areas of the environment, the RSPB has warned.

The RSPB is warning that swingeing cuts proposed in the DoE draft budget could damage vital work aimed at delivering a host of EU directives including the Marine Strategy Framework, Water Framework, Birds and Habitats, Bathing Water and Environmental Noise.

Dressed up as concern for the taxpayer, the warning below from RSPB NI director Dr James Robinson is nothing more than an exercise in vested interest, preserving the financial largesse his organisation wants lavished upon it:

“Failure to meet these directives puts us at a very real risk of massive infringement fines from Europe, with a direct burden placed on local taxpayers and potential impact on our future block grant from Westminster,”

Taxpayers must foot the bill for the activities of the RSPB and others as mandated by the EU, or they must foot the bill for fines imposed by that alien entity that rules us without our consent. Either way, the taxpayer loses. In a democratic countries the electorate can vote out its government if it doesn’t approve of policies like these.  But this is the UK in 2011, ruled by Brussels and the fifth columnists in parliament, and devoid of democracy.

Put the faux Conservative party out of its misery

Stepping back a couple of days, Conservative MP for Wellingborough, Peter Bone, wrote a scathing review on ConservativeHome of the Government’s shenanigans in stifling debate on the insipid European Union Bill.

Bone eviscerates the claims of Europe Minister, David Lidington, who gushed that the Bill would get intense scrutiny and that it was the most radical piece of legislation about the EU since 1973 thus:

Perhaps the Minister for Europe should have said in his ConservativeHome article:

“This week the new European Union Bill will be rushed through the House of Commons, with as little scrutiny as possible by MPs. Its details will not be debated and rightly so. The EU Bill is the most irrelevant and unimaginative piece of legislation on how we handle the EU since Britain joined the then EEC in 1973.”

Bone’s amendment – asking for an in/out referendum on the European Union if certain criteria were met – never saw the light of day as the Whips stifled scrutiny and put up patsies to talk out the time alloted to debating the Bill.  This was David Cameron’s Euroscepticism in action.  Having cast adrift his promise to repatriate powers he is now ramming through meaningless legislation that will do nothing to stem the flow of power from the UK to Brussels.

That there are so few comments on such an important subject on the ‘home of the Conservative grassroots’ should tell people all they need to know about the emasculated state of the party membership.

The Cameron Conservative party will not deliver its promise to repatriate power from the EU and it will cravenly dodge any attempt to ask voters to give a democratic mandate for continued EU membership or withdrawal.

Its members, usually so vocal on important matters, are sitting in embarrassed silence as promise after promise is shown to have been broken. The illusion of power in Westminster matters more than doing the right thing by the people of this country. The Conservative party is led by a fraudulent hypocrite and cannot ever be trusted to honour its pledges.

We were promised power would be devolved to the people. But EU membership – the critical state of affairs that influences nearly every aspect of this nation’s governance – is kept off limits and completely invalidates the pledge Cameron had no intention of keeping to. He is all spin and empty rhetoric. He says what people want to hear but has no intention of delivering on it. He instructs his Whips to prevent his pre election promises ever becoming reality.

If the EU is a subject that matters to you and you want Britain to be sovereign and to run its own affairs, it is time to accept voting Conservative is incompatible with your aims. If you want the British people to deliver a mandate for staying in or getting out of the EU, don’t expect the Europhile Cameron and his circle to deliver a referendum – they are determined to remain loyal to Brussels, not the British people. The Conservative party is no longer conservative.

It is time for a new political force to represent the vacant centre right, one that not only talks the talk on democracy but walks the walk too. One that believes in genuine equality and meritocracy. One that will reject the nannying ‘nudge’ mentality and actively reduce the scope and power of the state so individuals can realise greater personal freedom.

One that restores the representative nature of politics and eradicates the this self serving elective dictatorship that refuses to honour its promises and treats the people of this country with contempt.

It is time to put this rapidly declining faux conservative party out of its misery and provide a genuine alternative for conservative minded people to support. It is time for genuine conservatives to say ‘no more’, to stop feeding the voracious cuckoo chick in their nest and establish a new home characterised by honesty and integrity.

Reaching the end of the line

Last week’s post here, ‘The Rules of the Game Have Changed‘ sparked the most debate yet seen on this blog.

The reluctant and deeply saddening acceptance, that if democratic means and lawful protest continue to fail to make the political class accept the will of the people we should be prepared, as an absolutely last resort to take direct action, has now been echoed in a hard hitting piece by lawful rebellion practitioner, Captain Ranty.

There is undoubtedly a sea change taking place in this country. Among people I speak with and commenters on this blog patience is wearing thin at the political class’ arrogant and self serving refusal to put our our interests first, in the manner they are duty bound to do. If they will not relinquish then we will need to take power back.

It is profoundly depressing, but people who have respected the law all their lives are reaching the end of the line and recognising that by playing by the rules the politicians have put in place we are unlikely to achieve the necessary change. The politicians bear sole responsibility for this. As Captain Ranty puts it, we are ‘stupid no more’. One can only hope that it never comes to direct action. But if it does, many people who have resolutely disagreed with direct action in the past are now saying they will take it as a last resort.


Enter your email address below

The Harrogate Agenda Explained

Email AM

Bloggers for an Independent UK

AM on Twitter

STOR Scandal

Autonomous Mind Supports