Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Another Landmark in the EU's End?

Anti-German feeling is on the rise across France as the deadline for extending the reduced rate VAT for home improvements looms at the end of this month. Tens of thousands of over-regulated and heavily taxed small French businesses look set to go to the wall if the the German led opposition to the reduced 5.5 per cent rate rises to the full and normal 19.6 per cent.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

EU Constitution marches on

This is the text of Daniel Hannan’s speech in the European Parliament today. MEPs voted by a large majority to push ahead with the implementation of the constitution by 2009. ‘Mr President, Listening to this debate, I am reminded of Bertold Brecht’s lines: “Wäre es da Nicht doch einfacher, die Regierung Löste das Volk auf und Wählte ein anderes? ” [Would it not be simpler to dismiss the people and elect another in their place?] The peoples of two core, founding states have thrown your project out, my friends. I know it’s hard to accept rejection, but look at the figures. Fifty-five per cent French voters. Sixty two per cent of Dutch voters. Now you might try to argue that the voters have got it wrong; that they are suffering from what Marxists call false consciousness; that they need better propaganda, and that it is up to us, the Euro-elite, to take a lead. To which I say: do your damnedest. Current polls in the Netherlands show that 82 per cent of Dutch voters would now vote “No”: a tribute to the level-headedness of that brave people. But if you think you can turn them around, dear colleagues, be my guests. Doing so would at least prove your commitment to the democratic ideals you so frequently invoke. Far more outrageous would (be) to push ahead with the implementation of the contents of the constitution without popular consent. Yet this is precisely what you are doing. Look at the number of policies and institutions envisaged by the constitution that have been, or are being, enacted regardless: the European External Action Service, the European Human Rights Agency, the European Defence Agency, the European Space Programme, the European External Borders Agency, a justicable Charter of Fundamental Rights. None of these has a proper legal basis outside the constitution. By adopting them anyway, you demonstrate that you will allow no force, internal or external—neither your own rule book nor the expressed opposition of your peoples—to arrest the rush to political assimilation. You vindicate the severest of your opponents’ criticisms. In the words of my countryman Oliver Cromwell, “I beseech you in the bowels of Christ, think it possible you may be mistaken”.’

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Minette Marrin twigs English Democrats' threat

The following are some extracts from a column in today's Sunday Times titled 'England is waking up to the patriot game' by Minette Marrin, which may be read in full from this link.

Scottishness is a nail-biting problem for Brown. Generally speaking most people in England quite like the Scots, even though they seem to hate us. Surveys show we find their accents suggest intelligence and reliability. Politically speaking, however, this easy affection is disappearing fast, as Brown is well aware. Devolution in Scotland and Wales — fought for and introduced by new Labour — has much undermined our common sense of Britishness and fostered instead a new and rather irritable sense of Englishness in the South. Meanwhile Scots feel more Scottish and less British than at any time since 1707, according to some surveys, led astray, possibly, by films such as Braveheart.

More importantly the English public is at last beginning to sit up and take notice of the famous West Lothian question — the problem first identified by the then MP for West Lothian, that Scottish MPs at Westminster can vote and carry the Commons on domestic policies such as education and health that don’t affect them or their constituencies. The government has increasingly relied on the Scottish vote to push through purely English legislation, against English votes, and yet the reverse is not true; English MPs have no say over comparable Scottish affairs.

This is obviously unfair, as is the fact that more taxpayers’ money goes to Scotland, per head, for public services than in England, following the old Barnett formula. Devolution has only made this long-standing injustice feel worse.

In response, a feeling of English separatism is growing; the English hardly need Scotland and Wales and would be much freer and richer without them. It is not only those on the far right, now, who complain of the number of Scots at Westminster and their undue influence. Devolution as of now is plainly unjust. Scottish MPs are overmighty and a Scottish prime minister at Westminster, post-devolution, would find himself in a false position.

Remarkably slowly England’s voters are beginning to wake up to all this. The higher their perception of it becomes, the lower will be Brown’s chances of arriving at long last at the summit of his smouldering ambition. So he has to persuade us somehow that he is not all that Scottish at all. No, he’s British. We’re all British (though this leaves out the awkward position of the Northern Irish, who aren’t exactly British.) He might even fly the Union Jack. But these questions are not going to go away.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Gordon Brown twigs English Democrats' threat

Following on from our post of yesterday immediately beneath this comes this report in the Independent typical of many others. Readers of this blog will be too well informed and savvy to need to have pointed out the political imperative for Blair's presumed annointed to thus wrap himself in the onetime flag of the empire. Britain is of value at present because only as that entity can withdrawal from the EU be achieved - that goal, given the state of British politics, now looks increasingly remote with a pan-European anti-EU party appearing the best option to bring about a democratically inspired collapse of the present corrupt EU institutions and structures The Lib/Dems' leadership campaign is now warming up nicely with Simon Hughes replacing the always no-hoper Sir 'Ming' as the bookies favourite. Time remains for more contenders to step forward with one such an ex-MEP seeming to be presently presenting the best arguments to the non-tradtionalist party membership. Gordon Brown, Vapid Cameron and Simon Hughes being the prospective three main party leaders in the next general election (all probably then professing euroscepticism while accepting yet further sovereignty sacrifices) must surely provide a perfect launchpad for a new political force in the Westminster Parliament from England's constituencies...... Why else is Brown proposing a British Day?

Thursday, January 12, 2006

'Telegraph' twigs English Democrats' threat

The item in question may be read from this link and the following is the most pertinent quote: ..There is also the consideration that, should Sir Menzies or Mr Hughes win and Gordon Brown succeed Tony Blair, Mr Cameron will be the only English candidate for Prime Minister. Since when I wonder was the name 'Cameron' an indication of English descent? The embarassing urgency with which 'Vapid' David Cameron is pushing the Tories to become unrecognisable from New Labour and the frantic desire of the Lib/Dems to apparently occupy the now invisible middle-ground of British politics daily increases the need for new parties to become established both on the left and the right! If the Lib/Dems eventually choose a leader who drives the party to the former the English Democrats seem best placed to fulfill the role of the latter. Some UKIP. or eurosceptic Tory Euro MEPs unhappy with the continued membership of the EPP, might thenwish to consider becoming the European wing of the latter party. The local council elections in May could well set the scene!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Kennedy Quits

Britsih politics. which seemed destined for irrelevance following the election of Blair Mark II 'Vapid Cameron' to lead the opposition Tories, might INSTEAD now have some prospect for Democracy to work as intended. This Blog will now regularly comment upon the Lib/Dem leadership election where some interesting potential leaders are already being mentioned - as may be read from this link to Times Online. David Laws has a very unusual biography for a typical Lib/Dem I thought and, of course, as chronicled on my other blogs Simon Hughes has long been preparing his Englishness credentials!!!! With old party loyalties crumbling and the misgovernment of the two main parties over many decades becoming increasingly obvious - LiberaL CREDENTIALS MIGHT SOON BE JUST THE THING!!!!