The Fresh Start Group has today published what they have called a “Manifesto for change” which includes a Foreward penned by William Hague, the brevity of which is most marked. Richard North, EUReferendum, has dismissed this tome by the FSG as being not worthy of comment – a judgement with which it is hard to disagree. It is not necessary to progress far into this document in order to see why that view is held.
The first paragraph and the start of the second to the Introduction sets the tone:
“The status quo in the European Union is no longer an option. The Eurozone is facing up to the inevitable consequences of the financial crisis, and is moving towards fiscal and banking union. This is not a path that the British people will go down, and together with other non-Euro members of the EU, we must articulate and negotiate a new and different relationship for ourselves whilst remaining a full member of the EU.
Our ambition is to build on the success of the single market. We want to ensure the EU institutions protect and deepen the single market. We also want to protect British sovereignty, ensuring that the British Parliament can decide what is best for Britain………”
Being a full member of the European Union entails accepting the status quo, of the Acquis Commauntaire wherein a power once ceded will never be returned, so how wee “george and rea” believe they can claw back powers as part of this new and different relationship and still remain a full member, beggars belief.
It is indeed laughable of these two clowns – and those who have signed-up to their beliefs – that they feel the need to protect British sovereignty which, because of our membership of the European Union – no long exists. Sovereignty, something that ensures a country can make decisions for itself, can only exist in its entirety and is not something that can be carved up into pieces, handing some elsewhere. A country either has sovereignty or it does not – there are no half-way stages.
It is pretentious, to say the least, that Leadsom wishes to ensure that the British Parliament can decide what is best for Britain. Since when, as with sovereignty, has Britain been theirs to do with as they will? Is not the sovereignty of Britain and what is best for Britain a decision of the British people?
On pages 5 and 6 of this document comes the totally false Norway/Switzerland repetition about those countries having to accept legislation with no say in the formulation of same:
“The benefits of the single market, to UK exports and to FDI, are generally accepted to be the reason Britain entered the EU and the main reason for our remaining a member. If the UK decided that, overall, the benefits to EU membership were outweighed by the costs; there are three alternative models of trading with the EU that have been considered, but found wanting:
- Joining the European Economic Area (as for Norway)
- Negotiating a series of FTAs (as for Switzerland)
- Negotiating a new Customs Union (as for Turkey)
Norway, Switzerland and Turkey have preferential trading arrangements with EU Member States but are subject to bureaucratic rules of origin (though only in agricultural products in the case of Turkey). Most importantly, their trade with the EU relies on accepting or complying with many EU regulations over which they do not have a vote.”
and this document is offered for our consideration and asks us to treat it seriously? Presumably Hague did read it before allowing his Foreward to be used? In which case, in view of the blatant untruth on page 6, just how the hell does he consider it to be “well-researched”? It is noted that the situations of Norway and Switzerland viz-a-viz their relationship with the European Union were dismissed as: “found wanting”. Really?
The final page to this serious-not piece of work contains a vote of thanks to those who contributed – but unfortunately appears to have an omission, a word which I have inserted on their behalf:
“The Fresh Start Project would like to thank those who have contributed so much [crap] to this manifesto, in particular:
Gutto Bebb MP, Nick de Bois MP, Therese Coffey MP, George Eustice MP, Mark Garnier MP, Chris Heaton-Harris MP, Gerald Howarth MP, Andrea Leadsom MP, Charlotte Leslie MP, Tim Loughton MP, David Mowat MP, Neil Parish MP, Priti Patel MP, and Dominic Raab MP.”