Tag Archive: European nion

Attempting the impossible

Any attempt at the art of reasoned argument by one not having a brain can only be doomed to failure – so will someone please have a word with Andrea Leadsom? In the last of three tomes about the European Union and the repatriation of powers by the United Kingdom one can only come to the conclusion that this woman is tome-deaf to anything else but her personal ambition to climb the greasy pole.

Leadsom writes about the “democratic deficit” where the EU is concerned; that it is real and considerable, and it markedly reduces the control which British voters exert over whole swathes of their everyday lives, continuing that the only way to give them back the control they need, and are entitled to expect, is through significant institutional reform. Reading that, one’s first thought is that she has failed to engage brain – until one realises that in her case there is obviously nothing with which to engage. Do we not suffer that same democratic deficit and therefore should not we have significant reform of our system of democracy to return the control of our political class to us and to which we are entitled? In fact it is pertinent to ask of Leadsom whether she actually understands the meaning of the word “democracy”.

The repetition of the “Red Card” idea whereby national parliaments could veto Directives is but an echo of the call made by William Hague a few weeks ago; a call which is also an echo of the suggestion by Gisela Stuart in 2002. It is no more than a further example of one of Cameron’s talking puppets repeating the renegotiation/repatriation of powers meme – and it ain’t going to happen, which if Leadsom knew anything about matters EU she too would acknowledge.

Should the United Kingdom cease its membership of the EU there is an “after”, likewise were one singe power repatriated there would be an “after”. As with the former, so with the latter – and not one politician of the Fresh Start Project has attempted to answer the question: what happens after. In this regard it also appears obvious that Leadsom has not read the House of Commons Library Research Paper 13/42; because had she, she would not have written the drivel that has appeared today.



That Speech – further brief thoughts

A little noticed fact today was the irony of David Cameron pleading to HMV in Brussels for the return of powers – and doing so the day after a report was published calling for yet another power, namely press regulation, to be handed to Brussels. Our good Lord does indeed have a sense of humour!

Mary Ellen Synon has a short article in the Speccie, one headed “The EU renegotiation pantomime” (most apt) from which:

“I asked Pia if she could describe for me any existing mechanism under present treaties by which Britain could claw back powers which have already been surrendered to the EU. She gave only a brief reference to treaty change, then refused to take a follow-up question. Yet giving a follow-up is the usual procedure.

I wasn’t surprised. What the Commission won’t come out and say – because it would hand another weapon to eurosceptics – is that it is legally impossible for any EU institution or EU member states to hand back powers to Britain, even if they want to.”

One can usually rely on our Mary Ellen to ask awkward questions. Far be it for me to dirgress and ask why Nigel Farage is not shouting this fact from the rooftops……

Rumour has it that Cameron, to reassure Brussels that contrary to what they may hear he is still deeply in love with them, is to issue a remake of this Harry Nilsson song, from the refrain of which: “I can’t live, if living is without EU……….”

Update: just noticed this superb line in Chapman & Co (Daily Mail). Discussing various Tory MP’s reactions to Camerons speech:

“Andrea Leadsom, leaderene of the loyalist Fresh Start group – the ‘Gis a job, Dave’ tendency – says it was ‘very good’.”


The Green Party obviously needs to ‘reid’ the Lisbon Treaty

The following letter appeared last night in the Norwich Evening News:

(click to enlarge)

Reid and his party want decision making de-centralised, something which is completely at odds with the idea on which the EU is based, namely ever closer union and centralised control. He wishes to change the relationship twixt the Commission and the European Parliament, a suggestion that would not change one iota the imposition of laws with which we in this country disagree. As is to be expected, Reid mentions the environment; air pollution, dangerous climate change and pandemics stating that these need to be tackled internationally – which they can be without a country being a member of the European Union.

Reid mentions the fact that his party came within 1% of having an MEP in the East of England. This statistic can be viewed from two perspectives, namely (a) the electorate did not like the manifesto on which the Green Party stood or, (b) that the intelligence of the electorate in the East of England should be seriously questioned.

Lastly Reid mentions this ‘good neighbours’ crap, where membership of the European Union is concerned, that all politicians and wannabe politicians cling to – and in so doing exhibits his and their total lack of understanding about the meaning of the word ‘democracy’.


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Parallel universes

At the European Council, François Hollande and Angela Merkel remain divided on the issue of ECB supervision of European banks. Meanwhile, in the Greek capital, the growing number of violent attacks on immigrants mounted by neo-Nazi activists of the Golden Dawn party is met with indifference by the country’s political class. Recently Greek MP Eleni Zaroulia, who is the wife of the leader of Golden Dawn, Nikos Michaloliakos, and a member of the European Council’s commission on equality and non-discrimination, described immigrants as subhuman in a speech to parliament.

“Brussels…” “Athens…”

Born in Switzerland in 1952, Peter Schrank worked as a freelance cartoonist and illustrator in London for 20 years, before moving to Suffolk in 2002. He regularly publishes cartoons in The Economist, The Independent, Basler Zeitung and the Sunday Business Post. Honoured in the British Press Awards in 2000 and 2004, in the year 2000, he received the Ranan Lurie Political Cartoon Award, which is granted by the United Nations Correspondents Association.

Ack: Presseurop.

More Cameron ‘waffle on EU membership?

Isabel Hardman comments on the possibility that Cameron may make a ‘major speech’ on this country’s membership of the European Union prior to the meeting of EU leaders in December, following the disclosure of this by Nick Robinson to whom she links.  In her article Hardman also quotes a statement from Bernard Jenkin, one given this morning on Radio 4.

As we all know, many criticisms are made that politicians are out of touch with the people – and the comment by Bernard Jenkin only serves to illustrate that point. What he wants, or does not want; and what he thinks the British people want, or do not want, is neither here nor there. For Jenkin to lament that more and more EU law means our democracy counts for less (when have we ever had ‘democracy’ – but I digress); that we are now faced with a very, very fundamental change in the character of the European Union; and that we risk being dragged along in the slipstream of ‘le projet’, begs the question where the hell he has been or in what universe he has been living for the past 40 years.

The accusation that any lack of intelligence and reasoning is limited to our political class is blown out of the water as Hardman demonstrates that that lack is also prevelant among jounralists. She writes that Cameron needs to address in that speech what his negotiating position is on a new relationship between Britain and Europe, while noting that he had earlier been taken to task for disclosing his negotiating position beforehand. Is not Cameron, addressing in a speech his negotiating position on any new relationship, committing the same error again? Doh!

That a Member of Parliament and two journalists can also ignore the important matter of Clause 50 in any negotiating process is beyond belief.  This one aspect alone demonstrates that the trust we place in one section of society to ‘govern’ us and in the other to ‘inform’ us is indeed misplaced.

We are not just being ‘screwed’, we are well and truly being f****d – and very hard at that!


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