Category Archive: David’s Musings

2014
11/26

Category:
David's Musings

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Fighting back

We all know that Members of Parliament will only respond to matters raised by their constituents, citing parliamentary convention as their reason for so doing. However they do, whether ministers of state or not, from time to time make statements through various forms of the media – and via the internet – on important matters; said statements being directed, in effect, at the electorate at large. I would contend that course of action makes it extremely difficult for them to hide behind parliamentary convention when contacted by a member of the electorate who may disagree with any statement and who is not one of their constituents.

Richard North has written about the Europhile fightback that appears to have begun, citing various statements made by Members of Parliament and those in certain Europhile organisations, such as Briitish Influence.

It is my belief that any statement made by anyone, but especially a politician, that contains any element of being economical with the actualité (or in plain English is a lie) should be challenged at the earliest opportunity.

As a result I have emailed Laura Sandys using her parliamentary email address:

I am well aware of the parliamentary convention whereby Members of Parliament maintain they can only respond to constituents on matters raised with them; however, from time to time politicians make statements through the media – and via the internet – which are, in effect, directed to the electorate at large and thus are liable to question by any member of the electorate.

Therefore I wish to question the content of an article published by European Movement, dated 24th inst, on which you are nominated as a contact. (http://ymlp.com/zjXID0).

That article states that:

Furthermore, leaving the EU would relegate Britain to an arrangement were [sic] we will have no influence over the rules that govern our biggest market.”
 
Further in the article you are quoted, stating:
 
“Patterson offers a false options that excludes Britain from the top table……”.

Were the United Kingdom to join EFTA/EEA then, like Norway, this nation would partake in over 200 EU Committees; and in this respect I would refer you to the EFTA website, from which:

“Decision shaping is the phase of preparatory work undertaken by the European Commission to draw up new legislative proposals. The Commission has an exclusive right of making proposals for new legislation but is obliged to call on advice from external sources when so doing. The EEA Agreement contains provisions for input from the EEA EFTA side at various stages before new legislation is adopted. Input can take the form of participation by EEA EFTA experts in EC committees or the submission of EEA EFTA comments.” (http://www.efta.int/eea/decision-shaping) and:

“According to the EEA Agreement, the EEA EFTA States have the opportunity to contribute to the shaping of EU legislation at the preparatory or pre-pipeline stage by participating in the Commission’s experts groups, committees and other advisory bodies. As the initiator of EU legislation, the Commission is responsible for the preparatory work leading to draft proposals. For this purpose, advice is often sought from experts of the Member States. EEA EFTA States’ influence on the shaping of legislation is significant at this pre-pipeline stage, as the EEA Agreement provides for extensive participation by EEA EFTA experts in the preparatory work of the Commission.” (http://www.efta.int/media/publications/bulletins/EFTA-Bulletin-October-2011.pdf).

You write about Brussels being the ‘top table’ – just how many times do Europhiles, such as yourself, have to be told that Brussels is not the ‘top table’?

Where the World Trade Organization is concerned, we all know that, within the EU, trade policy is an exclusive competence of the commission (http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/policy-making/); subsequently we also know that in dealing with the WTO, the framework for negotiations is decided at EU level by consensus, and we are then represented at the WTO “top table” by the European Commission (http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/eu-and-wto/).

As you must be aware the WTO situation is not unique; take for example the World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations – known as WP.29 and held under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Council Europe (UNECE) – where we have no direct membership and our interests are represented exclusively by the European Commission. (Oddly, Norway, which has no automotive industry, sits as a member of this body in her own right.) Or take the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (on which Norway again has her own seat), which jointly manages the fisheries in the region, where the UK interest is represented by the European Commission and where we are not even parties to the enabling treaty, the EU having taken over our seat. On both bodies Norway has a voice in the formulation of standards and decisions which are then handed down, in the form of dual international quasi-legislation for implementation by governments and trade blocs.

The point has to be made that it is from this dual international quasi-legislation that the majority of the bulk of the Single Market regulation originates, making the EU no more than an intermediary player, processing standards agreed elsewhere, over which it has no direct control – at which point it becomes obvious that a seat at Brussels is not one at a top table.

You are also quoted as saying:

“There are too many false prospectus being put to the public.”

David Cameron is on record as stating: “How can we sensibly answer the question ‘in or out’ without being able to answer the most basic question: what is it that we are choosing to be ‘in or out’ of. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newsvideo/uk-politics-video/9820375/David-Camerons-Europe-speech-in-full.html)

I have to ask how can the electorate make an informed decision when you – and others – are economical with the actualité, or in plain English lie to the electorate?

I suspect the irony of your statement about false prospectus being put to the public  totally escapes you.

I would therefore suggest that your response to this communication should contain an apology for misrepresenting the facts; and that that apology should be made public.

I look forward to your reply in due course.

David Phipps

and replied on the British Influence website to the press release in which Peter Wilding is quoted:

I wish to question part of the statement attributed to Peter Wilding; namely:

“Norway [.......] adopts all relevant EU legislation (but with no input in formulating it) [......].”.

This statement is yet another example of someone being economical with the actualité, or in plain English lying.

Norway does not adopt all relevant EU legislation, as witnessed by EurActiv reporting:

“For more than a year, the European Commission has complained that Norway, a country which is not an EU member state but has access to the single market via its membership of the European Economic Area (EEA), has put extra taxes on imported goods from the EU and failed to implement more than 400 directives, effectively obstructing the EU’s single market.” (http://www.euractiv.com/innovation-enterprise/norways-government-turn-keeps-ob-news-5); coupled with the fact that under Section 102 of the EEA Agreement Norway has what might be termed a veto, something that, as you no doubt know – or should know – they employed on the Third Postal Directive.

Norway does have input into the formulation of EU legislation; and in this regard I would refer you to the EFTA website, from which:

“Decision shaping is the phase of preparatory work undertaken by the European Commission to draw up new legislative proposals. The Commission has an exclusive right of making proposals for new legislation but is obliged to call on advice from external sources when so doing. The EEA Agreement contains provisions for input from the EEA EFTA side at various stages before new legislation is adopted. Input can take the form of participation by EEA EFTA experts in EC committees or the submission of EEA EFTA comments.” (http://www.efta.int/eea/decision-shaping) and:

“According to the EEA Agreement, the EEA EFTA States have the opportunity to contribute to the shaping of EU legislation at the preparatory or pre-pipeline stage by participating in the Commission’s experts groups, committees and other advisory bodies. As the initiator of EU legislation, the Commission is responsible for the preparatory work leading to draft proposals. For this purpose, advice is often sought from experts of the Member States. EEA EFTA States’ influence on the shaping of legislation is significant at this pre-pipeline stage, as the EEA Agreement provides for extensive participation by EEA EFTA experts in the preparatory work of the Commission.” (http://www.efta.int/media/publications/bulletins/EFTA-Bulletin-October-2011.pdf).

Where the World Trade Organization is concerned, we all know that, within the EU, trade policy is an exclusive competence of the commission (http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/policy-making/); subsequently we also know that in dealing with the WTO, the framework for negotiations is decided at EU level by consensus, and we are then represented at the WTO “top table” by the European Commission (http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/eu-and-wto/).

As you must be aware the WTO situation is not unique; take for example the World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations – known as WP.29 and held under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Council Europe (UNECE) – where we have no direct membership and our interests are represented exclusively by the European Commission. (Oddly, Norway, which has no automotive industry, sits as a member of this body in her own right.). Or take the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (on which Norway again has her own seat), which jointly manages the fisheries in the region, where the UK interest is represented by the European Commission and where we are not even parties to the enabling treaty, the EU having taken over our seat. On both bodies Norway has a voice in the formulation of standards and decisions which are then handed down, in the form of dual international quasi-legislation for implementation by governments and trade blocs.

The point has to be made that it is from this dual international quasi-legislation that the majority of the bulk of the Single Market regulation originates, making the EU no more than an intermediary player, processing standards agreed elsewhere, over which it has no direct control – at which point it becomes obvious that a seat at Brussels is not one at a top table.

David Cameron is on record as stating: “How can we sensibly answer the question ‘in or out’ without being able to answer the most basic question: what is it that we are choosing to be ‘in or out’ of. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newsvideo/uk-politics-video/9820375/David-Camerons-Europe-speech-in-full.html)

I have to ask how can the electorate make an informed decision when Peter Wilding – and others – are economical with the actualité, or in plain English lie to the electorate? Perhaps I might suggest that the response from Peter Wilding to this communication should contain an apology for misrepresenting the facts; and that that apology should be made public.

I look forward to his reply in due course.

David Phipps

and contacted Nick Clegg, using the form on his website, in response to his quoted remarks in the Independent;

Dear Mr. Clegg,

I am well aware of the parliamentary convention whereby Members of Parliament maintain they can only respond to constituents on matters raised with them; consequently I write to you in your position as Deputy Prime Minister, who I maintain is answerable to me as a member of the electorate; coupled with the fact that from time to time as a politician you make statements through the media which are, in effect, directed to the electorate at large and thus are liable to question by any member of the electorate.

In this particular instance I wish to take you to task for a statement reportedly made by you in the Independent (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/exenvironment-secretary-owen-paterson-urges-pm-to-serve-notice-to-quit-eu-9880719.html)
in which you state, on the subject of Norway vis-a-vis her membership of the European Union:

“Norway has to abide by all the rules, pay into the coffers, accept people crossing across the European Union and has absolutely no say on how the club is run at all.”

Norway may well have to abide by all the rules, but as EurActiv reports:(http://www.euractiv.com/innovation-enterprise/norways-government-turn-keeps-ob-news-532741)

“For more than a year, the European Commission has complained that Norway, a country which is not an EU member state but has access to the single market via its membership of the European Economic Area (EEA), has put extra taxes on imported goods from the EU and failed to implement more than 400 directives, effectively obstructing the EU’s single market.”;

coupled with the fact that under Section 102 of the EEA Agreement Norway has what might be termed a veto, something that, as you no doubt know – or should know – they employed on the Third Postal Directive.

Norway does have ‘a say’ on ‘how the club is run’, sitting on over 200 EU Committees; and in this regard I would refer you to the EFTA website, from which:

“Decision shaping is the phase of preparatory work undertaken by the European Commission to draw up new legislative proposals. The Commission has an exclusive right of making proposals for new legislation but is obliged to call on advice from external sources when so doing. The EEA Agreement contains provisions for input from the EEA EFTA side at various stages before new legislation is adopted. Input can take the form of participation by EEA EFTA experts in EC committees or the submission of EEA EFTA comments.” (http://www.efta.int/eea/decision-shaping) and:

“According to the EEA Agreement, the EEA EFTA States have the opportunity to contribute to the shaping of EU legislation at the preparatory or pre-pipeline stage by participating in the Commission’s experts groups, committees and other advisory bodies. As the initiator of EU legislation, the Commission is responsible for the preparatory work leading to draft proposals. For this purpose, advice is often sought from experts of the Member States. EEA EFTA States’ influence on the shaping of legislation is significant at this pre-pipeline stage, as the EEA Agreement provides for extensive participation by EEA EFTA experts in the preparatory work of the Commission.” (http://www.efta.int/media/publications/bulletins/EFTA-Bulletin-October-2011.pdf).

Together with David Cameron, you also maintain that a seat at Brussels is one at the ‘top table’.

Where the World Trade Organization is concerned, we all know that, within the EU, trade policy is an exclusive competence of the commission (http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/policy-making/); subsequently we also know that in dealing with the WTO, the framework for negotiations is decided at EU level by consensus, and we are then represented at the WTO “top table” by the European Commission (http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/eu-and-wto/).

As you must be aware the WTO situation is not unique; take for example the World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations – known as WP.29 and held under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Council Europe (UNECE) – where we have no direct membership and our interests are represented exclusively by the European Commission. (Oddly, Norway, which has no automotive industry, sits as a member of this body in her own right.) Or take the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (on which Norway again has her own seat), which jointly manages the fisheries in the region, where the UK interest is represented by the European Commission and where we are not even parties to the enabling treaty, the EU having taken over our seat. On both bodies Norway has a voice in the formulation of standards and decisions which are then handed down, in the form of dual international quasi-legislation for implementation by governments and trade blocs.

The point has to be made that it is from this dual international quasi-legislation that the majority of the bulk of the Single Market regulation originates, making the EU no more than an intermediary player, processing standards agreed elsewhere, over which it has no direct control – at which point it becomes obvious that a seat at Brussels is not one at a top table.

David Cameron is on record as stating: “How can we sensibly answer the question ‘in or out’ without being able to answer the most basic question: what is it that we are choosing to be ‘in or out’ of. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newsvideo/uk-politics-video/9820375/David-Camerons-Europe-speech-in-full.html)

I have to ask how can the electorate make an informed decision when you – and others – are economical with the actualité, or in plain English lie to the electorate?

Both the first and last sections of your quoted statement are factually incorrect and untruthful; and I would therefore suggest that your response to this communication should contain an apology for misrepresenting the facts; and that that apology should be made public.

I look forward to your reply in due course.

David Phipps

and commented on the post by Open Europe:

It has been argued previously that Article 50 could be used to trigger a full renegotiation of the terms of the UK’s membership within the EU. However Paterson’s proposal is more straightforward – he wants to immediately start to negotiate Brexit terms in 2015 so that a clear proposition is on the table for the 2017 referendum. That may have the benefit of providing the clarity that has so far been lacking in the ‘out’ case – but has three obvious drawbacks. (of which #1 is):

  1. What happens if the other EU states do not wish to negotiate prior to a referendum outcome – they cannot be forced to.

Er, once a formal application under Article 50 is lodged, they have a choice?

As with my attempt to take on David Cameron in debate on the question of Norway and her relationship with the European Union, I do not hold out any hope that the emails above will receive any response – however I felt it about time that the fight was taken directly to such disingenuous politicians and their sycophantic followers.

 

 

 

 


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Open Europe – holed below the water line?

When Owen Paterson, in his speech today, highlights the ‘power’ of Norway vis-a-viz that of the United Kingdom where the setting of global standards is concerned, Open Europe decides to reproduce a blog on the subject of Article 50, posing the question of whether that article is a trump card or a joker.

One can only ask which idiot persson (no, it is not a typo) allowed the following once again to appear:

  • A Norway-style deal – effectively single market membership but with no formal political influence – is likely to be rejected by EU partners and is in any case a bad deal for the UK as it amounts to “regulation without representation”.

Never mind April Fool – more like November Fool, methinks.

Update: In an article about Paterson’s speech Open Europe today write:

 It has been argued previously that Article 50 could be used to trigger a full renegotiation of the terms of the UK’s membership within the EU. However Paterson’s proposal is more straightforward – he wants to immediately start to negotiate Brexit terms in 2015 so that a clear proposition is on the table for the 2017 referendum. That may have the benefit of providing the clarity that has so far been lacking in the ‘out’ case – but has three obvious drawbacks. (of which #1 is):

  1. What happens if the other EU states do not wish to negotiate prior to a referendum outcome – they cannot be forced to.

Er, once a formal application under Article 50 is lodged, they have a choice?

 


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Just level with us – please? (2)

In one respect this post contains a ‘mea culpa’ on my part as earlier I wondered what Owen Paterson’s speech would contain; intimating that I hoped it would not be similar to other Eurosceptic speeches containing nothing but ‘waffle’.

At last we now have a front-line politician acknowledging that the EU is but a law-factory churning out decisions made by global bodies, coupled with the fact that membership of the EU is not necessary to trade with the EU but that membership of the EEA is; and that, contrary too what Cameron would have us believe, Brussels is not the ‘top table’.

It is also refreshing that also, at last, a politician has acknowledged that by attempting a move to EFTA/EEA membership, allowing time for a fresh ‘arrangement’ to be formulated (as proposed by FlexCit) is the way to proceed; and at no detriment to British business.

What our media will make of Paterson’s speech – and how much publicity they will give it – at the time of writing is difficult to prophesy; however if the Daily Politics programme today is any guide, it will be a tad dismissive. Jo Coburn obviously had not read Paterson’s speech exhibited by her general demeanour towards him.

Paterson’s suggestion to David Cameron that he invoke Article 50 is, I would suggest, a forlorn hope with Cameron’s already stated belief that we should retain our membership of the European Union – and with that statement Cameron has already ‘boxed himself into a corner’.

He has also done that with his response to my dossier when in his reply he wrote: I am afraid that I cannot agree with a number of the points that you make in your report; and as readers will know, in my response to his reply I asked him with which did he agree. (As an aside, not one comment picked-up on this point – neither did any other eurosceptic blog – which makes one wonder if anything is read and digested – but I digress).

As a final thought on the subject of how much coverage Paterson’s speech will receive in our media I do not hold out much hope as the relationship twixt our political class and the media – and vice-versa – is a tad insidious, to say the least.

 

 

 

 

 


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Wasting news

It has been said elsewhere that nothing is ‘news’ until our media decide to inform us of it – unfortunately why the Telegraph decided to regurgitate news that is 4 months old heaven knows, especially as the Mail ‘covered’ the story at the time together with the FT even earlier.

On 2nd July the EU issued a Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Directives 2008/98/EC on waste, 94/62/EC on packaging and packaging waste, 1999/31/EC on the landfill of waste, 2000/53/EC on end-of-life vehicles, 2006/66/EC on batteries and accumulators and waste batteries and accumulators, and 2012/19/EU on waste electrical and electronic equipment.

Setting to one side the question of fines and Eric Pickles assertion that he would fight the new proposals and what he termed the re-imposition of bureaucracy via the back door of Europe, if one actually reads the Proposal one cannot but be struck by the Stalinesque idea of targets and plans. As an example, consiider the following (Article 3:9)

Member States shall take measures to prevent food waste generation along the whole food supply chain. The measures shall endeavour to ensure that food waste in the manufacturing, retail/distribution, food service/hospitality and household sectors is reduced by at least 30% between 1 January 2017 and 31 December 2025.

The idea that it is possible to legislate with a view to limiting food waste in the hospitality sector, let alone in the household, beggars belief.

Of course this Proposal will be presented by the EU as part of their ‘REFIT’ programme, simplifying and cutting red tape; unfortunately, had the media (and Eric Pickles) bothered to do their homework they would have seen that the EU was but complying with UNECE ‘requirements’.

 

 

 

 

 


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Just level with us – please?

In the Sunday Times today we see an article (£), authored by Tim Shipman and Marie Woolf, headlined: PM: I’ll ban benefits for EU immigrants.

This article also contains news that Owen Paterson, in a speech tomorrow at Business for Britain, is to: challenge the prime minister to formally set out ahead of the general election how he would quit the EU; according to, the article reports, a source familiar with his thinking (one wonders just who that might be – but I digress). The article also contains a quote from John Redwood, which repeats an oft-made demand, that: I want Britain to take back control of its own borders and welfare system and the best way would be by agreement with our European partners and by clarificatory legislation in the UK, to amend the 1972 European Communities Act.

Comment ahead of Paterson’s speech would be pointless as it would rely on conjecture, consequently one must wait for the text; however I would suggest that unless Paterson hints at how he would extricate this country from the EU – and his plan for so doing – then his speech will be no better than that of any other supposed eurosceptic politician. It is all very well stating that invoking Article 50 would concentrate minds in Brussels, but invoking that Article is a ‘one-way-street’; and there seems little point in so doing unless he has a plan. It is reasonable to assume that if Paterson is requesting Cameron to set out how he would leave the EU, then so should Paterson.

As for Redwood, one can only sigh at what appears to be his naivety. Leaving to one side that it is now well known that EU law has primacy not only over national but also constitutional law, just what is it that this man does not understand about any amendment to the four freedoms and that any such amendment of them would require treaty change. In any event the repetition by politicians that Parliament is sovereign will not be solved by ‘cherry-picking’ the return of some aspects of the powers ceded. Until Parliament has regained total control of its ability to decide all laws within its territory, it never can consider itself sovereign.

While one can sigh at Redwood, it is also possible to sigh at the electorate to a certain extent. In today”s Sunday Times there is also a report of a poll carried out by YouGov between November 20-21 which posed the question: Which are the most important issues in deciding your vote at the next general election. Questioning 1,970 adults they found that 44% said the economy; 41% immigration; 38% health; and 22% Europe. But then when one considers our political class have gone out of their way to keep the electorate in the dark about our membership of the EU (and democracy per se) it is little wonder that the most important issue garners such little attention.

 

 


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Purely as an ‘aside’………

We all know that politicians love to jump on a bandwagon, while extremely quick to negate adverse publicity – but:

Ed Miliband’s attempt to escape from the adverse publicity about the faux-pas committed by Emily Thornberry – and it was a faux-pas’ – is pure spin:

In view of which one can only suggest that he ‘spins’ on something that he is very prone to raise

Raised-finger

 

 


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Transparency

Earlier today Frans Timmermans , who up-to-date readers will know is Juncker’s ‘Right-Hand-Man’, tweeted the following:

Gov’ts (sic) used to say to public “trust me”; public now says “show me”. We at @EU_Commission want to show: we’ll be transparent about meetings.

to which I responded:

Transparency: does that mean full minutes published of all EU Council mtngs & EU Commission mtngs?

in response to which, as one might expect, only silence has resulted.

I raise this (bear with me) as an interesting article has appeared on EUobserver about European Commission long-term plans to create an entirely new EU boarder (sic) guard service with an independent command and control centre.

The article to which I link states that: while details are scant, a EU source said setting up such a supra-national border agency that goes beyond the remit of the current EU border agency Frontex would be twenty years in the making. It continues that: a commission financed feasibility study completed over the summer has put forward a three-phase approach in creating the so-called European System of Border Guards

Each successive phase (a summary of said phases is contained in the EUobserver article) is a step forward in centralising control and surveillance of the EU’s borders to an agency manned by EU personnel, which is independent from the respective national authorities.

The EUobserver article also states that Member States, in a June council meeting, had backed the idea of having an EU-wide border guard system to enhance border controls and surveillance. Presuming I have located the pertinent EU Council Conclusions (those of 27/28 June) they actually state: in the context of the long-term development of Frontex, the possibility of setting up a European system of border guards to enhance the control and surveillance capabilities at our external borders should be studied (page 4).

As a matter of record, where the EUobserver article quotes the remarks of EU migration commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos speaking about the creation of a European System of Border Guards in the speech delivered at the European Security Forum 2014, the text of what was said can be seen here.

Currently the UK has an opt-out of the Schengen Area, yet attention is drawn to the words of the EU Council Conclusions quoted above: at our external borders should be studied. With both the Conservative and Labour Parties intent on opting back into aspects of the European Arrest Warrant, the question has to be asked: just when would they decide to opt back in to some aspects of a EU-wide border guard service?

To return to the aspect of ‘transparency’ with which I began this article, Frans Timmermans is obviously all for it – as is David Cameron. Did he not, in the Foreward to the Coalition Programme for Government, write:

And we are both committed to turning old thinking on its head and developing new approaches to government. For years, politicians could argue that because they held all the information, they needed more power. But today, technological innovation has – with astonishing speed – developed the opportunity to spread information and decentralise power in a way
we have never seen before. So we will extend transparency to every area of public life. (emphasis mine)

After every European Council meeting, a Prime Minister has to give a report to the House of Commons on that meeting, informing the House of what was discussed. While the UK is not part of Schengen, should his report to the House on the 30th June not have contained the fact that the possibility of setting up a European system of border guards was to be studied?

So much for extending transparency to every area of public life.

 


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David Cameron vs Captain Euro

One is forgiven for thinking that this storyline is stretching things a tad ; lets face it, it would not take one minute of intensive coaching – Cameron has been trying to sell us the idea for years now.

Not only does Captain Euro indulge in the myth that David Cameron is an anti-federalist but also maintains that the Norway Option is not an Option, repeating the lie that that country has no voice over the formulation of EU law.

Then of course we have Juncker and the British Question (misquoting Winston Churchill).

and so this crap continues; which leads one to question the level of intelligence of those at whom it is aimed.

 

 

 

 


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Ed Miliband’s ‘Klass’ warfare

Ed Miliband started his party’s PR meme with his dogma about equality viz-a-viz the rich and the poor – and it seems we now have another case of the ‘biter bit’. In what may well become a soundbite of the 2015 General Election he was confronted by what may be termed a ‘Klass Act’:

Ed Miliband: The NHS is crying out for resources, we’ve got to make it more efficient, but let’s be frank about this, we’ve got to face the fact that the NHS is going backwards under this government, and it can’t survive with just the resources that it has.

Myleene Klass: But why? Aren’t there other options to save the NHS? Is that your only option? You might as well just tax me on this glass of water. You can’t just point at things and tax them. You need to have a better strategy and say ‘why is the NHS in this mess in the first place?

Here is a clip of the exchange:

But is that not what all governments do: point a finger at something – and tax it?

Governments of all hues are continually on a search for more money to fund their grandiose programmes as they have no money of their own. Ronald Reagan famously summed up all governments views on raking in money:

If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.

For example, because governments do not ‘understand’ immigration per se and that you can’t throw open a country’s borders and not suffer adverse effects where public services are concerned (health, education and welfare costs), the only recourse remaining to government is more taxation to pay for the increased uptake.

Unfortunately governments have now enmeshed themselves in so many treaties and agreements that their hands are tied – to the extent that even if they wished to escape those constraints, to so do would be a complex exercise. Couple that with the fact that, as I wrote yesterday, to solve a problem one has first to identify the root causes of that problem – and governments appear to have no wish, nor ability, to even begin that process – what we now have is an ever increasing cost spiral.

One day the penny will drop with the general public that not only are our problems due to placing idiots, whose only claim to fame is the possession of a PPE, into positions from which they run the country, but also to the ramifications of Parkinson’s Law – so admirably explained here (and which is a ‘must read’).

Governments continually inform us that their wish is to cut taxation, yet governments love spending money – in which case logic dictates that the second negates the first and therefore the first is an unachievable objective. There is only one way in which taxation can be cut (and brought under control) and that is when the penny does drop with the general public and they embrace the idea of ‘Referism’.

 


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A politician jumping on another bandwagon?

Today being the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, EU Commissioner for Transpor Violeta Bulc has pledged to make road safety a priority in EU transport policy. Not too sure how she is going to do this as, for example, speed limits currently are a competence of Member States – but hey, who knows what is in the minds of a politician; bearing in mind of course that any aspect of transport is an EU competence?

True to form we have Shadow Roads Minister, Richard Burden, posting this article on road safety and how any Labour government would re-impose ‘controls’ on the basis, he maintains, that what gets measured gets done. Really? Were not ‘controls’ in place at Stafford Hospital or in Rotherham; and in the latter example children did ‘get done’ – but I digress.

Just under a year ago Mary Creagh, then with Burden’s brief, had ideas of her own – ideas which only told half the story. Since then wp.29, working under the auspices of UNECE, have introduced measures of their own to increase HGV safety – yet Creagh, who should have been aware of those developments, makes no mention of them, thus leading us to believe that some of them would have been an initiative of her party.

The EU has already legislated about various aspects of road safety. as can be seen here; and as stated above it would seem that they may well intend adding to their powers.

 

 

 

 


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