A dose of EU realism that the BBC seems keen to play down

Very curious.  Tuning in to Radio 4’s Today this morning, a little earlier than usual, I was able to hear a short interview of the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schultz.

While Richard has published a full transcript of the interview on EU Referendum, the words alone do not come close to conveying the bombastic and intolerant nature of the man.  But even that does not detract from the dose of realism Schultz injected into the confused morass of verbiage that passes for discussion about the fantasy of negotiated reform of the central pillars of the EU itself, or the in-out referendum that could not possibly be delivered with a treaty negotiation almost certainly well in train.

Perhaps this explains why even though the audio of the interview is contained deep within the UK pages of BBC online, it is not written up or commented upon anywhere on the BBC’s News page, Politics page, or even the Europe page.  It has to be searched for in the God-awful search engine on the site.  It has become the broadcast equivalent of the embarrassing ginger haired stepchild, being kept firmly out of sight, never to be discussed or mentioned again.  Which as I say is very curious.

Schultz was refreshingly realistic.  From his assertion that governments and heads of states such as David Cameron, Angela Merkel, Francois Hollande and Nickolas Sarkozy, declare themselves to be the government of Europe, yet it is Schultz’s beloved parliament that comes in for media and public criticism; to the satisfying moment where Today’s pisspoor token asian female presenter, Mishal Husain, was slapped down for talking of the UK’s ‘relationship’ with the EU with Schultz saying…

The United Kingdom is a member of the European Union so to speak about relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union sounds as if the United Kingdom would not be a part of the European Union. It is the United Kingdom Government which is a co-legislator in the Council of Ministers. There are 72 members of the United Kingdom as law makers in the European institution, the UK is part of Europe so this description, our relationship with Europe sounds to me strange.

This is a point made repeatedly on this blog, so it’s nice to see it challenged, albeit by a federalist opponent.  One point Husain made that was useful was that MEPs are very well-paid parliamentarians and voters in the UK generally have absolutely no idea who their MEP is.  Schultz dodged this, choosing instead to compare turnouts here with the higher ones in Germany.  But as Political Betting just happened to point out today, we have a nonsense voting system in Euro elections that is designed in the interest of parties and their whipping systems, not voters.

But Schultz did not duck away from the main message he wanted to get across, his vision for the EU after Barroso.  It was a clear message for David Cameron, Open Europe, the Fresh Start Group and the likes of the self serving Matthew Elliott, who all seem to think the EU can be brought to heel and made to reform to suit their deluded vision of an EU – where the political is replaced by the economic.  Schultz wants:

… to fill the gap between citizens and between member states in the European Union. That some have an enormous profit and others pay. And, because I’m speaking with BBC, the United Kingdom as a full-fledged member of the European Union. That would be my vision, a United Kingdom which is taking part in the development in a common Europe and not speaking about a specific relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom.

No reform agenda in sight. Economic carrots dangled to maintain political power seeping to Brussels.  There is a disconnect between what Cameron and his front organisations think they can ask for and get, and what the EU mandarins are prepared to give.  At some point, sooner rather than later, reality is going to bite and the UK’s political class is going to realise it is powerless unless it accepts the one option it has always rejected out of hand – leaving the EU.  Small wonder the BBC, having chosen to put Schultz on before the bulk of their Today audience tunes in, has chosen to bury this story as deep as they can.  It doesn’t fit the establishment narrative.

11 Responses to “A dose of EU realism that the BBC seems keen to play down”

  1. 1 Barrie Singleton 16/01/2014 at 9:47 pm

    It is no happenstance that third rate lawyers gravitate (sink) to the level of party politics. Lawyers pride themselves on being removed from morality, right/wrong, or service to humanity; they are about presenting whatever data is available as proof of this or that, to achieve a win. It is a weird mental stance which serves the lying, cheating, deceiving party politician well. It is far from the attributes we hope to find in the choice of spouse of our offspring! This is the Age of Perversity. It is now so well established that even ‘Good Man’ is purged by our Mammonised culture. Where no good man arises, there will Evil flourish. And with Good Woman Mammonised to ‘WoeMan’, who will ‘raise good men’?

  2. 2 Furor Teutonicus 16/01/2014 at 9:58 pm

    XX President of the European Parliament, Martin Schultz.XX


    And that sais it all, really.

  3. 3 cosmic 16/01/2014 at 10:07 pm

    What I find interesting is that on many points there is complete agreement between continental euro-critters such as Schulz and UK withdrawalists.

    The ‘relationship’ the UK has with the EU is that it’s a member. The only different relationship is not being a member. There is no way the treaties are going to be rewritten to specifically exclude the UK on all sorts of important points. There will be no picking of the cherries from the cake.

    There’s also complete agreement that the EU is a political project.

  4. 4 DICK R 17/01/2014 at 8:07 am

    Bizzarely is only the EU lovers in the UK who pretend it is anything but what it actually is !

  5. 5 Pogle's Woodsman 17/01/2014 at 9:58 am

    …’It doesn’t fit the establishment narrative.’…

    At the risk of sounding like a conspiracy theory loon, I concur. The more this goes on the more convinced of it I am. Elsewhere on the WfW threads I referred to this as the ‘artificial horizon’. There is an agreed scope, and nothing outside it can be exposed via the traditional dying MSM. i.e. Witness the extraordinary debate over the preposterous ‘letter of 95’ as discussed on Channel Four News last Sunday evening.


    Lower menu – ‘Should the UK veto EU powers?’

    ‘Extraordinary’ not in the traditional refusal to scrutinise Cameron’s incoherent position, but in that, the practical millisecond that the ‘Norway’ mythology is raised, the debate is subject to immediate shutdown my Frei permitting the LibDem guest to close down any possibility of Jenkins giving a reply. (A LibDem of course – naturally no Labour guest will appear on a pro-EU platform publically, but I would doubt one was even requested to appear…)The speed of the intervention, and the absolute persistence of the interruption was little more than a phenomenon. And as far as the programme technique goes – what’s the point of bringing on a guest – Jenkins – who is in the epicentre of that days’ controversies, and then ensuring he cannot speak? Is it simply to publically butter him with the establishment orthodoxy?

    Yes. Something is going on, and ‘they’ barely bother to conceal it now.

  6. 6 Brian Lloyd 17/01/2014 at 10:33 am


    Ive been trying to trace his antecedents ,parents and grandparents on how thet helped dearAdolph he seems one of them to me

    can you help please



  7. 7 graham wood 17/01/2014 at 11:18 am

    “The United Kingdom is a member of the European Union so to speak about relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union sounds as if the United Kingdom would not be a part of the European Union.”

    Schullz is right, and there is an irrefutable logic in his statement – as this blog and Dr North have constantly pointed out. To follow the logic it can be rightly claimed that the case for “renegotiation” can no longer be made, for that process was last completed during the IGC for the Lisbon Treaty.
    (We) the UK government agreed the terms and we continued membership on that basis. Thus the only alternatives are
    1. To request that the existing treaties be amended to accomodate, as yet unknown, “reform” requests by the UK government. (This we know is a non starter and neither the EU Commission itself or the other member states will agree to a unilateral revoking of treaties already agreed.) Or….
    2. Leave the EU and then renegotiate trade terms from the outside.

    I do not normally follow Conservative Home but an excellent post there by “itdoesnotaddup” reveals why the Tory negotiate plan, followed by a mythical referendum is a complete sham. He says:

    “If Cameron was serious about negotiation there would be a section in every government department detailed to establish the lines it wishes to take, with options for public comment and recommendations. There would be an EU renegotiation department at the FCO, staffed with the ablest diplomats. There would also be an EU renegotiation officer in every embassy in every EU capital, tasked with seeking support for renegotiation around the EU.
    However, by believing it is purely a matter for the Parliamentary party, Cameron is ignoring the reality”

    Indeed so, and none of these will happen IMO, and once again serious moves for discussion re negotiation will be quietly ignored as the real business of a general election campaign gets under way in 2014/15.

  8. 8 Derek Buxton 17/01/2014 at 11:20 am

    I not that the “Political Commentato”, Rees Mogg has entered the fray. He comments in the “Faillygraph” that we should make the EU more democratic. He is totally unaware of the purpose of the EU.

  9. 9 Edward. 17/01/2014 at 1:33 pm

    There are 72 members of the United Kingdom as law makers in the European institution, the UK is part of Europe so this description, our relationship with Europe sounds to me strange.

    Insurmountable odds?

    Hmm, to blame the EU entirely for all of Britain’s problems – is missing the point by some distance. The inter linkage and interaction of many of the UK governmental departments and our ‘men in the EU’ is unseen but astounding and there are frequent and very regular cross border meetings on all sorts of topics – it must be noted that, the UK can shape EU laws.

    Can it be put like this, by some distance our UK-EU apparatchiks are busily and wholly engaged with le grand projet, so busily engaged that it seems we could be perceived, to be more pro EU than some, if not all of the others.

  10. 10 Adam West 17/01/2014 at 3:57 pm

    Stepping back from the UK centric propaganda our politicians put out, I wonder if something similar is happening in other European countries like France and Germany.

    Is the present Conservative stance on renegotiation, reform and repatriating powers mirrored in other member states, and forming part of a larger battle of wills between the European Council, the European Commission and the European Parliament?

  11. 11 Furor Teutonicus 17/01/2014 at 4:43 pm

    XX I wonder if something similar is happening in other European countries like France and Germany.XX

    Don’t know about France, but here in Germany the anti E.U message appears to be breaking through. To the extent that “Altenativ für Deutschland were showing higher in the pre election polls than any of the partys that had the votes fixed for them so they would win.

    (How can a party constantly reach 80 and 90% approval rating in the polls, but get less than 5% of the vote!?)

    And they are only one of many….which is the basic problem.

    If they could get their heads out of their arses and work together, then we would be out of the Fascist republic of Europe in an eye blink.

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