Tag Archive: EUReferendum

EU to lay down the law?

In an article which appeared yesterday in the Daily Telegraph Philip Johnston wrote that Chris Grayling, the Justice Secretary, told a Commons select committee hearing last week that he is fighting a concerted attempt by the Commission in Brussels to “Europeanise” our legal and justice system. One can but presume Grayling is referring to this press release of 7th October, which in turn refers to this two-day forum and this speech by Viviane Reding, Vice-President of the European Commission, EU Justice Commissioner.

It is possible that the remarks by Grayling are but an attempt to dramatise, for political effect, something that is a long way off – and in any event this article by Johnston would appear to be a re-hash of an article that appeared in the Daily Mail last month and upon which Richard North, EU Referendum, commented.

However, that something is afoot, as they say, cannot I believe be denied; especially bearing in mind the two-day forum being held on 21/22nd November at the Assises de la Justice – a forum on EU justice policies – which seeks to generate ideas which will contribute directly to shaping the European Union’s justice policy. Among the speakers will be Joshua Rozenberg, Ms M. Mcgowan QC (UK), Barrister, Chairman of the Bar Council of England and Wales; and Lord Mance (UK), Justice of The Supreme Court. Also it should be remembered that Barroso wrote to Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament on 11th September, in which letter, among possible initiatives was listed A Communication on future initiatives in the field of Justice and Home Affairs policies.

Today sees the European Commission adopting its work programme for 2014 which will set out the key new initiatives for 2014 and will also highlight the priority items for adoption by the co-legislators before the European Parliament elections in May 2014. A press release and the work programme have been promised following adoption and it would be surprising, to say the least, were there to be no mention of Justice and Home Affairs contained therein.

It is necessary to repeat that, as Richard North wrote, at the moment all this is but an aspiration of the Commission and that were it to be pursued to its logical end then an IGC would have to be held as it would involve ‘treaty change’ and a referendum in the UK.

Open Europe – Economical with the actualité (again)

Open Europe has published a ‘report’, according to the press (FTTimesTelegraphSunMail and Express), but which is actually a briefing note  stating that the top 100 EU regulations cost the UK economy £27.4 billion a year – and that the costs outweigh benefits in a quarter of cases.

Reading this briefing note one is led to believe that all EU law originates from the EU, when this is not the case – and that this is not the case is also conveniently ignored by the newspapers mentioned above. Is everyone in Open Europe and the media unaware that the CODEX Alimentarius Commission, created in 1963 by the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation and World Health Organisation is responsible for creating food standards? Is everyone in Open Europe and the media, totally unaware of the origin of banking regulations?

That Open Europe invariably talks through an orifice normally used for an entirely different purpose is confirmed, if ever there was any doubt, when they consider that the recent recommendations made by the Government’s ‘Business Task Force’ is a good start in the aim to cut ‘red tape’. These recommendations were totally torn to shreds by Richard North over at EUReferendum; and for Open Europe to ignore the points made only reinforces the impression most of us have: that most of the time Open Europe know not about that which they pontificate – which is understandable really when one  realises they are but a mouthpiece for a Prime Minister who also lacks any real understanding on ‘matters Europe’.

If Open Europe is considered an expert in its chosen field, then one can be forgiven for recalling the words of Benjamin Stolberg who reportedly said: An expert is a person who avoids small error as he sweeps on to the grand fallacy.

Just saying……..

Update: Richard North has gone into this briefing note in far greater detail, hence there is little point in my repeating the ‘expert’ errors of Open Europe, other than the comments I made in the second paragraph.

Yet another vacuous political comment

Not for the first time, this one comes from Mark Wallace writing on Conservative Home about the suggestion of Guy Lodge, IPPR, for compulsory voting – backed by a fine for failing to so do.

Wallace also believes that Lodge is correct when he writes that low turnout among young voters is a slow crisis of democracy, which crushes the validity of Parliament and raises popular disaffection more and more at each election. In decrying a crisis of democracy Wallace fails to acknowledge that to have a crisis of democracy we first need to have democracy; neither does he acknowledge that the only validity of Parliament which that institution may have is that which we the people grant it – and the majority of that which it now has, we have not granted.

Another error Wallace commits is that he maintains a healthy democracy has high participation of the people, yet fails to acknowledge (again) that the system of representative democracy under which we live does not lend itself to nurture any participation of the people. Why should there be any participation by the people when they can only voice an opinion once every five years and in the intervening period have no say on that which is foisted upon them?

The article by Wallace continues with a condemnation of the vast alienation of Parliament’s sovereignty to quangos and to Brussels, without any explanation of how this has come about. Is he aware of the background to this – and about which Richard North has written? If he is, then why not mention said background; if he is not then why the hell am I wasting my time reading that which he has written?

Wallace continues that the political parties, not the people, need to change their behaviour – sorry Mark, but both need to change their behaviour. Parties need to accept they have no divine right to govern, that they have no right to 5-year dictatorial rule; and the people need to be informed that they do not have to endure such a situation, that there is another way that exists providing a form of democracy which results in the situation wherein they are the masters and not the servants – and that to maintain that status which is rightfully theirs they do need to take an interest in that which happens about them.

It is but a demonstration of the fact that our political elite, the media and our political commentators – and in respect of those three one has to ask in whose pocket is who – that while we are presented with articles such as that of Mark Wallace, to which I have linked, the public are not best served, are deliberately misled and misinformed and are thus being “led by the nose” under the “commentariat” of those who have not a clue, really, about that which they write.

An that is democracy?



The news you won’t hear from the MSM

Richard North, EUReferendum, writes about the latest offering to the world of a love child and it appears that not only do we have a surfeit of bastards but the bastards are multiplying.

David Cameron has written his latest “love letter” to the remaining – and dwindling – members of his party; and yet again one has to ask just who is this “We”? Perhaps if he and other political parties did not interfere so much in our lives, we would indeed be able to get on in life and be more willing to work hard.

He is also of the opinion that life outside the EU would not be disastrous for Britain, but ponders if that is what we really want. Once again, just who is this “We”?

Iain Martin reckons that Nigel Farage is on the verge of pulling off a remarkable coup. As Allister Heath writes, the only thing Nigel Farage has pulled off is to promote himself as a Knight in Shining Armour riding to the rescue of our nation with a bag of policies full of more holes than a colander.

Eric Joyce has obviously reached his cell-by-date.

The Politics Home front page today has an article headlined “Cam + Clegg committed”; if only they were, along with MilibandE.




To get to the “nitty gritty”….

Autonomous Mind suggests that it has long been argued that Labour, and to a lesser extent the Lib Dems, have been waging a class war in this country. But hang on AM, is that not true of all political parties under this warped system of democracy under which we live? Even Ukip has not been exactly “up front” with us. His article continues:

“The British people have never been asked for their permission to consign the independence of the United Kingdom to the dustbin.  They have never been asked if they consent to more than 75% of the laws and regulations by which they are bound to be created by alien bodies overseas.  They have never been asked to approve the wholesale export of billions of tax pounds to Brussels to be spent in the way special interests and other nations see fit.  They have never been asked if they want our borders torn down to enable millions of foreign nationals to set up home here and take advantage of benefits and infrastructure to which they have never contributed a penny of funding.”

As Richard North, EUReferendum, notes, quoting Paul Goodman:

“…The matters that most move the British people at the ballot box”, he claims, “are the meat, potatoes and two veg of British politics: the economy, hospitals, schools and crime – plus, of course, immigration”. Notwithstanding that these issues are all, to a greater or lesser extent affected by our membership of the EU…”

If the meat and two veg of British politics are those mentioned then when has the effect of the EU been spelt out to us? It has not!

If one is “honourable” then logic surely dictates that that prefix, when used as a form of address, means that one tells the truth, unpalatable as it may be. So why do we, the people, continue to fund a group – to the tune of £10million plus per annum – for which the title “honourable” is but a misnomer?

If as AM suggests it is necessary to increase participation in politics, then the political class have two options – either they tell the truth and level with us or they stand in front of a brick wall and face the consequences.



Wanda Maddocks

I notice that Richard North, EUReferendum, has posted on the story involving this lady, Wanda Maddocks, following an article by Autonomous Mind some hours earlier. The fact that there is no link to the original article, especially from one who believes that “linkage” is an important element in blogging, is a tad worrying – but I digress.

“Secret courts” are nothing new, especially where child protection cases are concerned, as Christopher Booker invariably reports in his regular Sunday Telegraph column. It is not unusual in such courts that parents are unable to question the “evidence” produced by local authorities and reporting restrictions on such courts are commonplace.

And all this is enacted by our “representatives” without any recourse to what we think should happen is but an example of why representative democracy is “shot to hell”.

Just saying……………….

The keep talking about it……

…..but nothing seems to happen – what a surprise.

 The series of articles in the European media, all reporting that there is a call for a change in the method of government, continues with an article in La Republca by Nadia Urbanbati. As may be surmised from the title of the newspaper this article is mainly about the problems in Italy – but the problems mentioned; the crisis of parliamentary democracy and that in political parties. the dysfunctionality of its democratic methods – the agreements, the cross-party compromises, political parties are weak and getting weaker, that there is an erosion of legitimacy, and and an erosion of structures and leadership, together with credibility and authority as well are all also relevant to the problems experienced in the United Kingdom.

Why it is necessary to have someone with authority and authority in order to control his/her party and thus govern, escapes me. Why we need a group of people to order our lives and our country, also escapes me. I note that Richard North, EUReferendum, has had another “pop” at Nigel Farage and Ukip – justifiably so in that he and his party are but another believer in representative democracy, something not mentioned by him and it is a point that surprises me bearing in mind his similar belief in direct democracy. They are, however, the only “game in town” if the stranglehold of the Lib/Lab/Con are to be broken. The fact that he and they have not “thought through” that which they propose is a worrying problem; presumably the penny will drop with him and them in due course – but I digress.

What is also obvious is that besides the stranglehold the the Lib/Lab/Con appear to have on our nation and which needs to be broken, so too does that of the media who propagate that which is fed to them by their political and quango/ngo contacts. That is where the internet and Twitter can be used, via the Harrogate Declaration – more to follow on this, hopefully by the end of the week.


The forthcoming local elections

Richard North, EUReferendum, has posted the result of an opinion poll that has appeared in The Observer showing the standing of the parties based on those intending to vote. Andrew Rawnsley, writing in the same newspaper, warns of the Ukip effect, while Janet Daley, Sunday Telegraph, writes about conviction and aspirational politics.

That so many words can be expended on an event that has no meaning whatsoever by Rawnsley and Daley without either of them acknowledging the meaningless of said event really does beggar belief. Rawnsley makes the point that voting intentions in local elections invariably do not provide a pointer to that of general elections. – but one has to ask does that even matter? Daley meanwhile writes about the conviction and aspiration of the wrong section of our society, namely the political elite.

Leaving to one side the point that Richard North makes about local government being but puppets of our national and supranational governments, surely the important question is why voters even bother to consider lending their support to parties that have, in the past, each failed when assuming any form of government – be that local or national.

When will the proverbial penny drop with the voters that both the political and democratic systems are not fit for purpose? Likewise, what is the point in voting for yet more failure?

Just asking………….



Refuse disposal

Richard North, EUReferendum, picks up on new research from the Local Government Association (LGA) about the rise in landfill charges, quite correctly pointing out that the reason for this tax being levied in the first place is to force local authorities to meet EU targets under the landfill directive. A link is provided to a post from Raedwald who points out that there is no market for much of the waste which does not go to landfill, but is recycled.

It is also worth reminding readers of another well-researched post from Raedwald on the subject of landfill which concludes with the finding that there is no shortage of landfill in the UK – which is another elephant in the room that never gets mentioned.

Never mind that polar bears seem to be on the increase – so too do damn elephants!

Drugged and misjudged

Christopher Booker’s column today leads with a disassembling of the polar bear declining myth and has been commented upon by, as usual, Richard North, EUReferendum. Further comment would therefore be superfluous, other than to add that, when considering the “luminaries” in our society, no doubt Sir David Attenborough’s reputation is not the only one that has been built on the skill of others.

Virtually hidden away in the related links section of the on-line version of Booker’s column is another article detailing yet another scandal in the child protection racket so beloved by our “caring” social services. One’s immediate reaction is that the mother in question lost her appeal on what might be termed a legal technicality – but then who am I to judge?

Of course, as I discovered, it is pointless contacting one’s Member of Parliament (see posts for the beginning of November 2012 – righthand side bar) as my concerns were brushed aside in what I can only term a most patronising manner. That the subject of children’s social services and their behaviour, together with that of the courts, is not higher up the scale in the list of public concern, especially that of parents, is a tad mystifying – after all, who is to say that you, as a parent, might not the next victim?

Parts of the country have, this morning, had varying amounts of snow – which makes a welcome change from the fog of deception that we suffer on a daily basis.


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© Witterings from Witney 2012