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Discussion > EU must be joking

When deciding whether we should be in or out of the EU, perhaps you should consider what von Rompuy said, in his acceptance speech for the EU presidency: “…this is a major step forward to world government.” If that doesn’t chill your bones, you already have ice for blood.

Apr 23, 2016 at 11:16 AM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

Radical Rodent
World government is well underway, the latest is the non-EU Paris Agreement. In or out of the EU it won't make a lot of difference to the end result as far as the UK is concerned. An even more remote governing elite.

I'm not sure that it isn't better to work within the EU to create more accountability and democracy there than be a lone voice crying in the wilderness or a small state governed by a very select elite who don't meet in the way the current first stage world council of the G8 or G21 do.

Apr 23, 2016 at 12:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

Sandy S. " a lone voice, crying in the wilderness "

I know the feeling.

Apr 23, 2016 at 12:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

There are plenty of international laws established, without the requirements of world government; all that is required is the agreement of the countries involved, hence the international regulations governing the airline industry, for example.

Working within the EU for more accountability will not work, I am afraid; it is what our “leaders” have been trying to do (or at least claiming to be doing) for most of our membership. The corruption is too entrenched for it to be wheedled out so easily, and few other countries show any desire to help. Perhaps the only way to resolve the problem that we have left is to leave; after the UK leave, the EU may well disintegrate further; while many of the elite in Brussels will suffer, most of us will feel little effect. I suspect that the EU is doomed, whichever we choose in June – our departure will trigger a slow demise; remaining will extend the life, but the end result will be more catastrophic and unpleasant.

Apr 23, 2016 at 2:35 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

SandyS on Apr 23, 2016 at 9:04 AM

Being in the EU and conforming to all its authorities means we cannot deal with the problems. In fact that is true elsewhere in the EU but few feel bothered, though they are increasing in numbers! The point of the rule of law is to stop bad behaviour, not just to punish those committing the crimes, for ever and a day! The criminal activity needs to stop.
As an example of the ineffectiveness that we have, an 'unpleasant' migrant, who was being expelled, abused a young girl and then said he couldn't be returned to his home country because he would be treated unfairly. He was allowed to 'remain'. So, a criminal offence leads to better treatment!

Isn't that just taking the micky out of our authorities and the taxpayers? There are many other ways of getting around the spirit of the law and, with the ECHR available, no wonder our authorities are unable to do what is expected.

Apr 23, 2016 at 2:47 PM | Registered CommenterRobert Christopher

Robert, there were methods used in the past to deal with unpleasant people when the law is ineffective. Shunning, should be even more effective today with modern communications and social media. No authorities can force individuals to speak to or even recognize those undergoing shunning.

Apr 23, 2016 at 3:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Alan Kendall

Apr 23, 2016 at 3:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

It is interesting to see how this subject divides us (and no use hiding that fact) however I find that with one or two exceptions; I still agree with the same people as usual.
My opinions on this are in line with:

Radical Rodent
Robert Christopher
golf charlie
Green Sand
mike fowle
David Jones
Steve Richards

One side of this argument is trying to make this choice (IN or OUT) far more complex than it really is. Who among us can justify arguing against freedom and democracy?

Apr 23, 2016 at 3:47 PM | Registered CommenterDung

Robert Christopher
Is your example a person who used Tony Blair's Human Rights Act in the UK or did they use the pre-EU Eleanor Roosevelt inspired European Convention on Human Rights to which UK acceded to the in March 1951

If the latter lay the blame at Sir Winston Churchill's feet, if the former then lay the blame at Tony Blair's and Sir Winston Churchill;s feet, The case against the EU is Not Proven.

<humour>If you are saying that you don't like any legislation inspired by Johnny Foreigner then that is your prerogative I suppose, or perhaps you haven't forgiven the French for Castillon and the German Navy for shelling Hartlepool?</humour>

Apr 23, 2016 at 3:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

If you think anything like the EU membership isn't highly complex then I recommend listening to half a dozen editions of BBC Radio4's The Moral Maze.

(Alan Kendall take note of a tip to the BBC)

Apr 23, 2016 at 3:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

Good of you Dung to identify "the usual.suspects", but why do you believe others argue against freedom and democracy? Categorizing those with different views as being opposed to those values is both wrong and somewhat insulting. Please note I still sit on the fence here.

Apr 23, 2016 at 4:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Sandy S. Thanks for the H/U but I do listen avidly each week. Some parts cause teeth grinding, others a triumphal raising of the fist.

Apr 23, 2016 at 4:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall


I did not say that the arguments were not complex, I am saying that they do not need to be complex. I am saying that freedom and democracy are what brexit is about and I ask how anyone can argue against that.

Apr 23, 2016 at 4:07 PM | Registered CommenterDung

Alan Kendall

If you argue for remaining then you are arguing against freedom and democracy. The EU is not democratic (which I presume you do not dispute) and without democracy there can be no freedom.

Apr 23, 2016 at 4:10 PM | Registered CommenterDung

I said I was planning to keep out of this discussion and I'm aiming to stick to that but I would like to draw your attention to an article in today's Times (sorry, it's behind a paywall) by Ed Conway, economics editor at Sky News.
If you can't get access there, I've blogged on it here with a couple of quotes if anyone cares to go and have a look.
My aim is not to convert anyone but to try, probably in vain, to get people at the very least to argue in the basis of the facts and not the myths.
To take one example highlighted by SandyS, how many more times are we going to have to explain that the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights are not the same thing. Leaving the EU will not make it any easier to deport those we would wish to.
To put it more bluntly than I normally would, the example quoted by Robert at 2.47 has bugger all to do with our membership of the EU and everything to do with the fact that we are signatories to the European Convention on Human Rights and the extent to which we fight (or more often don't fight) our corner when it comes to arguing Section 8.
Conway quotes several examples which debunk the myth that there is no room for manoeuvre when it comes to EU directives and reinforces the argument that I have made for years that the problem that the UK has is largely one of its own making.
As I said in my original post, "Read the treaties". And then ask why the principles of proportionality and subsidiarity apparently apply to everybody else and not the UK. The answer is, of course, that they apply to everyone. It's just that the UK for its own obscure reasons pretends that such principles don't exist and chooses to go the extra mile to prove what good Europeans we are while complaining about the burdens heaped upon us.
There is all too much myth and misunderstanding in play.

Apr 23, 2016 at 5:39 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson


I do not like to argue with you because I usually agree with most of what you say however now you are perpetuating yet another myth. Not everyone who argues against the EU is unaware of the problems caused by our own government.

Within the EU the laws are being made by unelected beurocrats and that remains true regardless of whether or not we abide by those rules.
Germany has taken command of 66% of the army of the Netherlands and 100% of their navy as the start of the EU armed forces.
The loss of our fishing grounds is not a figment of my imagination.
Get rid of the EU and everyone can see who is responsible for our problems (and vote against them).
I could write a hundred reasons here but I return to freedom and democracy, that is all that is needed.

Apr 23, 2016 at 7:52 PM | Registered CommenterDung

If Brexit comes then I sincerely hope you are not disappointed regarding freedom and democracy, history suggests you may well be.

I suggest you read Mike Jackson's comment very carefully, it reflects my beliefs regarding the EU and the UK.

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS


Once again I hate to argue with you but you are ignoring the obvious.
Neither you nor I know what will happen after Brexit however what we do know is that our future will be in our hands and ours alone.

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:11 PM | Registered CommenterDung

Cameron is the most enthusiastic pro EU lapdog in the country, visibly moving heaven and earth to keep us in. Cameron got nothing through his negotiations with the EU and that is what any UK government would get if they tried to reform it from within.
Merkel invited 1 Million muslims to go to Germany and after the Cologne rapes she tried to force the rest of the EU to take a share.
I want my country back for better or worse.

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:31 PM | Registered CommenterDung

Re-fishing grounds. Perhaps the poor deal in the original CFP is explained by: Fishing is a relatively unimportant economic activity within the EU. It contributes generally less than 1% to gross national product.

In a document produced by the Scottish Government regarding the new CFP there is this sentence

Across Scotland, perhaps surprisingly, fishing makes a very small contribution to GDP

Scottish fishing grounds got special treatment because the fishing industry and politicians made enough fuss. The CFP was reformed only recently and the new policy came into force January 2014. Now I'm not sure I recall any fuss being made by the UK government to improve the lot of UK fisheries during the negotiations for the new policy. In fact all I can recall is the campaigns by various people like Fearnley-Whittingstall to stop the throwing away of accidentally caught illegal fish. Pushing at an already open door.

What doesn't get much news coverage is the selling of UK fishing boats along with their quotas to foreign owners, mainly Dutch and Spanish.

There have been reforms to CFP in 1983, 1992 and 2002, I'm unaware of any efforts by the UK to get a better result for the UK fisheries.such as increased exclusive fishing limits.beyond 6 miles.

So I'll posit that the UK and fishing boat owners let the UK fishing industry down, just as has happened in many industries, for example steel.

The EU is not responsible for much of the above.

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS


Neither you nor I know what will happen after Brexit however what we do know is that our future will be in our hands and ours alone.

We might think so but the realist in me suggests this won't be the case.

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

There has been a migrant camp at Calais since before Merkel made her foolish invitation, which wasn't greeted with unadulterated enthusiasm here in France, the reason being that in this case the UK negotiated an opt out of Shengen and kept control of its borders. The French are not over the moon about the situation of having to look after several thousand people who want to be somewhere else.

With regard the the sharing proposed by frau Merkel it seems to have been met met with a universal "you must be joking". But is it a problem created by the EU or Angela Merkel aided by a weak Greece and and uncoordinated response. Just how brexit UK would change a great deal remains unclear to me.

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS


You do not need to convince me of the guilt of Cameron when it comes to industrial disasters in the UK, I am a believer !

What is the downside of reclaiming our sovreignty?
You tell me it is not the answer to all our problems, I agree but what are the downsides?

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:52 PM | Registered CommenterDung

I've spend enough time here tonight I'm off to do a bit of work on research into what the family call grandad's little boats. I'll return later for a catch up.

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS


I love France and most of its people (NOT Parisians hehe). If the French do not like our Shengen opt out then they should negotiate their own opt out.

Apr 23, 2016 at 8:59 PM | Registered CommenterDung