Well, the “buttering up” soon turned to “threats”……

I debated whether to update my preceding post but decided that van Rompuy deserved one of his own. He too, I have subsequently discovered, has also been in London today and speaking at the same event as Ollie Rehn.

The Guardian has an article about van Rompuy’s speech, coupled with one that appears on yahoonews – and if you can bear it, you can view van Rompuy’s speech here. – although you will have to suffer about 3/4 minutes of The Foy Boy. While the entire speech is worth listening to, his remarks regarding the position of the UK vs the EU starts at about 14:00.

van Rompuy talks about having a compass and knowing the direction in which the European Union wishes to travel, while having a dig at those who say it is a train journey without a destination. The only problem is that we in Britain don’t particularly like the direction the compass is pointing – nor the stations through which we are passing.

By conceding, in his speech, that Cameron would be able to discuss the changes he was seeking at an EU summit, while appearing to rule out any fundamental revision of British membership terms, Van Rompuy has in effect told Cameron not to even bother going to Brussels to “renegotiate” – so shall we “cut out the middle man” and just get on with an in/out referendum?


4 Responses

  1. Sue says:

    Yes, lets. I seem to remember reading somewhere though, that in order to create their “ever closer union” there would have to be some treaty changes?

    • cosmic says:

      The Tory line is that treaty changes will be necessary and Britain will hold them up unless concessions are made, such as repatriated powers.

      However, it’s all a bit thin.

      It’s been made clear that the treaty changes are years off and the EU will not allow Britain to use them as leverage to pick the cherries off the cake. If they did it would cause a cascade of demands.

      The EU is larger and more formal than it was in the early 70s so the scope for bogus concessions as Wilson claimed, just isn’t there. Even then it was superficial, no treaty changes.

      The other factors are whether the Tories will be in a position to do any of this and how serious they’d be. A negotiating position which rules out exit pretty much says you are not serious, and if you don’t get what you ask for you’ll put up with what you’ve got.

      From the point of view of Eurowithdrawalists and Eurofederalists, Cameron’s position is hogwash. It’s just another gesture to string Tory eurosceptics along and it’s looking increasingly threadbare.

  2. Dave H says:

    I’d say it’s more like an M25 journey than a train journey.

  3. john in cheshire says:

    I think that the analogies the EU communists use need to be either ridiculed or countered with perhaps some that are more appropriate. In history, I’m sure that there are more apposite events than train journies. Maybe Lenin and his gang of thugs is too obvious, but Genghis Khan or mohammed and his bandit gang, devastating mecca, medina and many other lands? We are not on a journey to salvation, rather it is the train of cattle trucks to Treblinka.

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