Today we will debate the Treaty on Stability, co-ordination and Governance

 

               Yesterday William Cash MP asked the Speaker to grant an urgent debate on the draft inter governmental Treaty which Mr Cameron declined to sign for the UK last December. The Speaker heard his case. Many of us were in the Chamber signifying our suport for an early debate. The Speaker granted Mr Cash’s requests on its merits. The government declined to oppose the suggestion, so tomorrow we will have our three hour debate.

                 I was pleased he did so. Mr Cameron is soon off to another summit of EU leaders. It is important that he presses UK concerns. Whilst it is great news that we will not sign this Treaty, it is important that the 25 signatories do not seek to use EU institutions to enforce their proposed Treaty in any way that inflicts loss or duties on the UK.  The UK is raising legal questions about how such a Treaty of the 25 would work, given that the 27 are the custodians of the EU institutions and of the EU Treaties. Can they use the EU institutions at all, when two members of the EU have declined to accept this draft Treaty?

                   The debate needs to go wider than these important legal and constitutional issues. The truth is the Treaty of the 25 is in trouble. The French socialist candidate for the Presidency has said he wishes to renegotiate the Treaty. The re are rumours that incumbent President will offer a referendum on it. The Irish have now said they would need a referendum. Instead of this Treaty being a quick fix for the Euro, a rapid dash to stronger controls over Euro member budgets, it is in danger of becoming a long running constitutional saga which could help to unmake governments and thrust more antagonism between governments and their electors.

                    The draft Treaty, even with an easy passage, was never going to resolve the Greek crisis, for example. It is all well and good the EU or a group within the EU telling Greece to spend less and tax more, but they have been saying this for years and it has not happened. Saying it under some new powers in a new Treaty, and threatening to fine Greece if she does not comply, is bizarre. As Greece has run out of money and has to borrow so much from other Euro states and the IMF, she would have to borrow the money from them to pay the fine. How would that help?

                     Much of the ground in the draft Treaty is reminiscent of   the old Growth and Stability  Pact all Euro members were meant to follow. It is similar, but Germany claims there are new enforcement procedures and sharper focus to the fiscal union in the draft Treaty than in the existing Treaties for Euro members. It looks as if Germany’s insistence on greater clarification and enforcement of fiscal union rules will create more dislocation in the churning politics of Euroland. Meanwhile Greece has promised to have an economy growing every year from next year to 2020. If it does manage to do so, it will once again fail to hit the deficit reduction targets that it has promised to meet before.

                    The EU awaits nervously as private holders of Greek bonds make up their minds whether to accept the new much reduced terms for their bonds. They wait nervously to see if Greece can at last find policies which simultaneously cut spending, increase taxes and promote growth. They watch to see if the contagion might spread to Portugal. And now with baited breath they contemplate what the voters might make of their latest fiscal union ideas, given that it looks as if somewhere in the union a referendum will be held on it if the Treaty survives to ratification.

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57 Comments

  1. Mike Stallard
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    I am so glad that our representatives in Parliament will get a chance to put their point of view about the EU treaty. Whatever is said, and whatever conclusions are come to, it is so important that the people of Britain get a chance, through their representatives, to influence European decisions.

    In the papers we saw the awful pictures of what was once a European people (Greeks) queueing up in vast numbers for free food boxes. That could well be us Brits in a few years.

    The danger is that as things get scarcer and scarcer, more and more power will be leeched away into the Commission and Berlaymont (whether legally or not) and they will be desperately fighting for their own economic survival with more and more centralisation. Parliament could perhaps have a say in how they feel about this process?

    • Disaffected
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 11:19 am | Permalink

      Benedict Brogan wrote a piece in the DT today about whether the Tories could win in 2015. He mentions some key policy issues etc. He also gives a view about how Mr Osborne views the world based on polls etc. If Mr Brogan’s view reflects the thoughts of Messrs Cameron and Osborne I think either Mr Brogan is deluded or Messrs Cameron and Osborne are.

      As for this old chestnut topic, we saw Mr Cameron deny the country the EU referendum in October. This clearly provides the strongest evidence of his view on the UK inside Europe and to prevent the public from having a say as he knows the referendum vote would be to get out of Europe, but stay in the single market if possible.

      He has failed to reconcile any powers, quite the opposite more powers have gone to Europe, he has not stopped the Eurozone countries from using EU institutions and the Treasury has instigated legal action against the EU to prevent them taking the tax from the City- which he was going to negotiate and safeguard.

      Additionally, Mr Clegg promised a better EU referendum than the Tories before the election. Most right minded people have come to the conclusion that you cannot believe a word Mr Clegg says. We only saw this week another example concerning the NHS. First he approved of the bill, then changed his view and now he is still asking for amendments.

      So it logically follows you cannot believe a word either says on Europe. The civil service are running the show. Tory MPs wake up, you need to get rid of Cameron and force an election now. Do not count on the fact that he will beat Miliband. He could not beat Brown and he was far worse and widely loathed across the country.

      • Disaffected
        Posted February 29, 2012 at 11:27 am | Permalink

        John,
        Off topic, I read today that Mr Huhne will get a £17,200 tax-free severance payment for being forced to leave office. I thought Lib Dems were clamping down on people/business avoiding tax and undeserving bonuses. Why is Mr Cable not shouting about it? Secondly, why does he or any other minister deserve this??

        Westminister and the Lib Dems need to clean up their act before treating the rest of the public differently.

        • JimF
          Posted February 29, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

          Remember he’s “special”.

        • Bob
          Posted February 29, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

          This must be a mistake, you don’t get severance pay unless you’re severed.

          Chris resigned of his own volition.

  2. norman
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 7:04 am | Permalink

    These leaders don’t know what’s good for them – referendums, whoever heard of such rubbish. This is a time of crisis where firm leadership from an enlightened elite is needed, not democracy and the opinions of the grubby unwashed masses.

    Maybe the EU technocrats can send these misguided politicians a video tape of Berlusconi or the Greek chap, there are ways of dealing with people who call for referendums.

    Although who knows what the French will say after the election, no doubt some wizard wheeze will be found to reneg on their promise to the electorate.

    • lifelogic
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:27 am | Permalink

      I am sure they are working on “wizard wheezes” in order to renege even now.

      • Bernard JUBY
        Posted February 29, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

        François Hollande has conducted a high profile campaign with a major election promise and is serious about not supporting the Treaty. It woulkd be very hard for a newly-elected President over here to renege on such a promise.
        He’s the leading contender at the moment so it will be interesting to see what happens.

  3. lifelogic
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    I regret that despite Cameron’s “veto” I have no confidence that he will do the right thing in the end and feel sure he will cave in of fudge the issue. I wonder if he will even attend or listen to the debate?

    Off subject: I see that the Pope condemns as ‘immoral’ bio-science such as IVF as a threat to life. There are now millions of IVF children and parents why does he feel the need to attack this group in this pathetic manner. Is he really someone that our overseas aid budget should be funding as we did? What minority group will he attack next I wonder?

    • Disaffected
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 11:29 am | Permalink

      The veto that never was, was to pacify his backbenchers from causing trouble to ge the Uk out of the EU. It is reported he then sweetened them further by having them around for meals etc.

    • Mike Stallard
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

      I am a Catholic and I like the Pope. His work on the New Testament is blinding, actually. OK he looks a bit like Uncle Fester, but in this case, I believe, to my intense surprise, that he is right.
      Alone among church and political leaders, the Catholic Church has been bold enough to define what he means by marriage: a bond between one man and one woman to bring up children as Catholics.
      Sex is, of course, the process which initiates this process giving us a Mother and a Father just like the Holy Family.
      It is coherent. It is loving. It is very good for children. It even deals with the underproduction of kiddies in our rapidly declining numbers of Europeans.

      (words left out-ed) It also attacks Woman’s Hour and the Orthodoxy of the BBC and Guardian newspapers.

      That is another reason why I like the Pope so much too.

      • lifelogic
        Posted February 29, 2012 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

        I am concerned about the effect of his and his follower’s pronouncements on Aids and other issues and IVF is clearly here to stay and there are millions of them around so I cannot see the point of his stance on this.

        I am always in favour of questioning Woman’s Hour and the Orthodoxy of the BBC and Guardian newspaper but I do find Woman’s hour often very (unintentionally) funny.

      • Lindsay McDougall
        Posted March 2, 2012 at 11:37 am | Permalink

        I am a married man with four children, and an atheist. Are you telling me that the Roman Catholic church are the only defenders of marriage? Let us compare the way that religious people and atheists are treated in this country. Religious people can set up faith schools financed by the taxpayer. Were Richard Dawkins – to name but one – to set up a school in which the children were taught atheism as being the simple truth, do you think that he would receive any taxpayer funding? Atheists are threatened with Hell fire and damnation – don’t deny it; it is clearly in both the Bible and the Koran. It is said that these are God’s word or Allah’s word;(Atheists have a different view etc ed) Religious people have air time allocated to them to propogate their message. Can you imagine Richard Dawkins or Sam Harris being given a regular slot on the BBC to put across their arguements? Even on the side of his atheist buses, Dawkins was forced by the advertising standards authority to insert the word ‘probably’ into ‘There is no God’. Are any such constraints placed on religious propaganda.

        I won’t dwell too much on the reactionary role of the Roman Catholic church and Islam in science and social matters down the centuries. It is a truly black record.

        All in all, Mr Stallard, do or love the pope. And until atheists are treated with respect, we are going to get more militant.

      • Lindsay McDougall
        Posted March 2, 2012 at 11:41 am | Permalink

        Sorry, the last part of my reply got garbled. It should read:
        ……………… I do not love the pope……………….. (You probably guessed.)

  4. ian wragg
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    John, if you really think Cameron will do anything that is remotely in the interests of Britain then you must be deluded.
    He has already signalled that he won’t oppose the 25 using the institutions to police any agreement.
    No doubt decisions will be made on the workings of the (NOT) single market which will be detrimental to us.
    He is a raging Europhile and any pretence otherwise is rubbish.

    Reply: He placed a veto on the Treaty, and he has now allowed a UK letter to be sent saying we will not accept use of the EU institutions

    • Duyfken
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:12 am | Permalink

      It is apparent that Cameron acts according to perceived electoral advantage and rarely from principle. It is therefore necessary for EUsceptics in Parliament to hold his nose to the grind-stone and show what the consequences would be should he fail to see this through properly. A pessimist, I fear that which Brian Tomkinson outlines below will indeed come to pass unless Cameron is truly forced by his back-benchers.

    • lifelogic
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:30 am | Permalink

      We will see in the end. But he clearly is a pro EU, big state socialist at heart. His appointment of Lord Patten to the BBC trust is surely proof enough just on its own.

    • eddyh
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

      If you believe that, you would believe anything.

  5. A.Sedgwick
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    A very good use of Parliamentary time with a serious debate unlike the now useless PMQs. Mr.Cash and supporters are to be congratulated.

    Two points from your piece:

    “she(Greece) would have to borrow the money from them to pay the fine. How would that help?” So what’s new e.g. Network Rail gets fined – who pays – taxpayer and rail passengers.

    Perhaps I am missing something – if I held Greek bonds and was offered the choice of claiming default and an insurance payout or marginally more than zero staying with the Greeks – it is a no brainer.

  6. lojolondon
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    John, it is clear that the system is broken. Just like the old communist areas, the only people who are keeping the old system running are the apparatchiks who stand to benefit because they keep their job. Who would ever employ the Kinnocks, at a (high salary-ed) pounds plus generous expenses, plus a multi-million pound pension if it wasn’t for the EU?

    It is past time to cut this useless barge free, spend, invest or give back to taxpayers the £15Billion they suck out of us every year, drop ALL the red tape they gave us, and become free again, ruled only by Westminster.

    What is not to like?

    Reply: We are trying to get a referendum but as you know there is no majority for one in Parliament.

    • Bob
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 9:07 am | Permalink

      “Reply: We are trying to get a referendum but as you know there is no majority for one in Parliament.”

      If that were the case, then why would all the party leaders feel the need to impose a three line whip on the issue??

    • backofanenvelope
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:33 am | Permalink

      There is no majority in Parliament for a referendum. Just as there is no majority to get the government to produce a balance sheet of costs and benefits. We draw the obvious conclusions from this.

  7. AN Grey
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Mr Redwood,
    In your final paragraph you write about the nervousness of the EU. That lot are far too arrogant to be nervous. In comparison with how most of us fear for the future, they walk with a spring in their step and a song on their tongue. A real disconnect.

  8. alan jutson
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    Good at least to have a debate, but only one hour, for such an important subject. !

    Reply 3 hours

    • lifelogic
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:33 am | Permalink

      What time is the debate? 12.51-3.51pm

    • alan jutson
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:37 am | Permalink

      Reply -Reply

      Thats better, do you think Mr Cameron will attend and listen to some of it ?.

      May I offer my thanks to all those who are going to take part and argue the case for UK PLC against The EU.

  9. NickW
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    It was Germany and France who, in breaking the original fiscal rules themselves, paved the way for non compliance by anyone else. One is left with the impression that if, in future, Germany or France feel the need to break any new rules, they will do so (again), with impunity.
    Barroso and Rompuy are classical bullies who enjoy throwing their weight around with the small countries of the EU, such as Greece and Ireland, whilst letting France and Germany do whatever they want.

    Anyone with a functioning brain is able to see that what the EU needs is more flexibility to allow countries to adopt policies which suit their individual circumstances. A new, more rigid Treaty will make things much worse, and given that Germany broke the original rules itself, it will fuel the flames of acrimony and dissent between the European Member States.

    • Bob
      Posted February 29, 2012 at 9:12 am | Permalink

      The EU has an interesting approach to rules, procedures and referendums.

      Dan Hannan reminding them that rules are there to protect everyone, not just the majority:
      +++ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CR9CX5LayMY +++

  10. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    I predict a lively debate dominated by contributions from MPs who may be described as euro sceptics. Little of substance will be said against their views. Will this mean any change in the government’s attitude and actions? I fear not; business will continue as if the debate had never taken place.

  11. oldtimer
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    No doubt you, and/or others, will take this welcome opportunity to expose the ramshackle nature of the edifice, constructed on foundations of sand, that this Treaty proposes.

  12. Brian A
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    The success or failure of the Treaty of 25 is ultimately going to depend on the ability and willingness of Germany, and a few other countries, to make massive transfer payments to the poorer members of the Eurozone, i.e. a proper fiscal union. It seems that much of the German political establishment is fully committed to the EU project no matter what the cost to the people, so the question is whether the German electorate will allow the government to reduce its standard of living while propping up other countries. My guess is that they will not accept major transfers (memories of the costs of German reunification will not have faded), and the Treaty of 25 will fail despite the efforts of the polticians to present the Treaty as a means of disciplining errant members rather than as a mechanism for sanctioning future transfer payments.

  13. Martin
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Perhaps you and your friends could have quick look at the article by Miss Widdecombe!

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/feb/28/government-must-ban-animal-circuses

    Is this a case that when Westminster has the power it won’t act?

  14. Paul Danon
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    The heading says today, the body tomorrow.

  15. English Pensioner
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    Except for a few MPs, whom the media will call “rebels”, I suspect that all the debate will be is a re-iteration of the party lines, casting very little light on the subject.
    Oh for a real debate on the whole subject of the EU!

  16. Mactheknife
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    The fiscal conditions of the old Growth and Stability pact were ignored by….err…..Germany and France no less when they were in breach. EU bureaucrats were told to shut up and move along by the two governments.

    Greece is a finger in the dyke for the EU, but with any treaty now seemingly needing national referendums to become ratified, then effectively this is really the begining of the end for the Euro.

  17. Denis Cooper
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    Well done to Bill Cash for getting this debate, which was refused by the government when he first asked for it last Thursday.

    If anybody wants to read the latest text of the “fiscal pact” it is here:

    http://www.european-council.europa.eu/media/579087/treaty.pdf

    Contrary to Sarkozy’s recent misrepresentation that it runs to 200 or 250 articles, and is therefore an unsuitable document to be put to a referendum, it has 16 articles on 11 pages and is quite a quick albeit rather complex read.

    I hope that during today’s debate somebody will draw attention to Article 8(2), which in effect seeks to take the second paragraph of Article 260 TFEU and graft it on to Article 273 TFEU, something which could be done through an EU treaty change agreed and ratified by all EU member states but not by an extraneous agreement between some but not all EU member states.

    If that is allowed to stand then it will set two appalling precedents:

    Firstly, that the ECJ may fine an EU member state for something which is not an offence under the EU treaties and laws, but only an infringement of some other treaty or agreement outside the EU treaties.

    Secondly, that the ECJ may be granted, or invited to assume, a new power by just a group of EU member states, directly contrary to the basic principle of “conferral” which is supposed to underpin the EU and which is enshrined in the EU treaties as agreed and ratified by all EU member states, and in particular in Article 13(2) TEU:

    “Each institution shall act within the limits of the powers conferred on it in the Treaties”.

  18. Caterpillar
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    Good, well done Mr Cash.

    (Segue warning – whilst I do agree with JR’s previous excellent arguments that if UK left EU then trade would still continue, I am becoming more apprehensive about trade with Latin America. Is there sufficient response to Argentinian soft-power in Latin America e.g.
    http://www.buenosairesherald.com/article/94006/govt-urges-local-ceos-not-to-buy-supplies-from-uk
    http://www.buenosairesherald.com/article/93996/uk-gov%E2%80%99t-and-opposition-blast-argentine-ban-of-british-cruise-ships)

  19. roadrunner
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    The only debate that needs to take place is on wether or not Cameron should continue to lead the Conservative party or an election should take place to replace him with a conservative.Cameron has betrayed every tory voter and he can’t keep blaming the libdems he could have forced his will but I fear he is an appeaser.

  20. MajorFrustration
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    Could somebody plse put me straight on a few points. (1)Have the funds for 130bn bailout been banked? Or is it still just”talked about money” (2)If and when the bailout funds are passed to the Greeks (obviously under control) how are the monies to be used.?(3)Are Ireland Portugal and Spain contributing?

  21. Phil Richmond
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    Oh joy – the British people are going to be represented by David Cameron. Committed Europhile who managed to become leader of his party & country through lies & deceit.
    Im thrilled!

  22. Tad Davison
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    Oh what a tangled web they weave!

    And worst of all, the Lib Dems and all other brain-dead Europhiles would have more of it!

    Tad Davison

    Cambridge

  23. Atlas
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    I wish my (Conservative) MP would be supporting your moves…

  24. uanime5
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    Why is Parliament debating a treaty the Government has decided not to endorse? What benefits will this bring?

    Also the longer the problems with the Euro go on the longer it will be until there is a recovery in the UK. As most businesses are stocking piling cash, rather than investing, in case there are more problems in the Eurozone growth is likely to remain low.

  25. Barbara Stevens
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    Its about time some of the MPs elected showed some aligence to the people of this country for once. Cameron, who I feel cannot be trusted, will in the end give in on the question of EU institutions using the organisation available. He will probably give in to alot more as time goes on. Simply put, the people now see him as the person who does one thing and says another. Trust began to fail once the referendum vote was denied.
    Germany who are leading for this new treaty of the 25, make unrealistic challenges to the Greeks, who are broke, and we all know they cannot meet any of it. Fines cannot be paid if the bills cannot be met. Portuagal is now teetering on the same weakness as Greece, and Spain, better situated but still deeply in trouble. When will Barroso and the President of this inhuman mad house begin to see the reality of the situation. The latter who comes from Belgum who as had no government for over a year, what does this tell you about the EU? Still, with all this going on Cameron refuses to give us the democratic right to decide our own destiny. That is betrayal, and won’t be forgotton.
    Aside all this, we have cuts, deep and hurting while this government allows billions in foreign aid, 55 million costs for health tourists, and is trying to impose a Health Bill which the people don’t want and all the organisations who run it don’t. Cameron is signing his own death warrent for an election win with this bill. Drop it and it might restore some respect for him, it takes more courage to admit you got it wrong, than shoulder on with something the nation does not want. His he a fool or what?

  26. john w
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    John,thank you for delivering another fantastic speech today.It was good to see the eurosceptics building a good case.

    Reply: Thanks

  27. JimF
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    Perhaps enough of your bloggers can club together, buy Irish residency and vote the whole Euro thing away 🙂

  28. Bernard Otway
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    To Lifelogic,why do minorities of any kind need defending by you,especially in our country.
    In my opinion the majority is actually now the minority ,because the minorities have been given MORE rights by our political class than those enjoyed by the majority,it is like a reverse handicap system to golf.The equalities legislation has ACTUALLY Disempowered the majority WITHOUT their knowledge OR PERMISSION,it has been stealthily brought in over the last 15 years,NO different to what the Broederbond did to prepare for the 1948 National Party win in South Africa under D F Malan and H F Verwoerd which then installed APARTHEID,we now have that in this country where the minorities [each and every one of them] are now in the position enjoyed by the whites from 1948 until 1994
    except that embedded in the equalities legislation are draconian measures to stop people complaining against their disempowerment,by being charged with ISMS,and being ISTS
    or PHOBIC,the equality laws give certain groups in the majority 10 chips at the poker table of life and all others in the various minorities many more chips,the playing field is definitely NOT LEVEL.President Truman said “if you cannot stand the heat stay out of the kitchen” that applies here OR SHOULD DO. I personally nag nag and NAG anyone about this and by far the majority agree with me,a Polish lady today told me she thinks the British people are as SOFT as marshmallow,and would not now honour their treaty as we did in 1939.

  29. Martyn
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

    I suspect that Ireland’s days are numbered, if what Premier Enda Kenny said yesterday comes to pass i.e. “….acting on legal advice from Ireland’s attorney-general that “on balance” the fiscal compact requires a vote under the country’s constitution. “It gives the Irish people the opportunity to reaffirm Ireland’s commitment to membership of the euro,” he told ashen-faced members of the Dail”.

    In other words, a referendum. We all know what happens to a country that threatens the EU dictatorship, so no doubt the technocrats will soon descend onto Dublin to inject a sense of order into their affairs.

    Can it really be true, as some report, that the EU has quietly suggested that since the Greek politicians can’t really be trusted and with the forthcoming election many of them may no longer be in office and/or the new government might change direction, it would be best if the election were to be postponed for an indeterminate period of time? Democracy that ain’t, but I suppose there are certain precedents for such a thing happening in Greece, although this time it might arise from the blinding arrogance and pig-headedness of the EU management team….

  30. Mazz
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

    Just read your speech, John, and was very impressed indeed, thank you. Can be read here:

    http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/hansard/commons/todays-commons-debates/read/unknown/262/

    Reply: thanks

  31. Derek Emery
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

    It’s impossible for the EU ruling elite (Germany) to come up with policies that will give growth for the PIIGS because that would allow a full fiscal union. The rich parts give money to the poor regions that will never have their growth and wealth creation abilities. That what happens in the UK and the US where permanently poor regions for hundreds of years are given money with no thought of payback to stop them falling into abject poverty.

    Germany cannot do this because its public would never allow it. Neither Greece Portugal or others have the industrial infrastructure to generate growth.

  32. AJAX
    Posted February 29, 2012 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

    England should quit the EU.

  33. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 1, 2012 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    Having recorded the debate I got my wife to watch just your speech, and she agreed that it was excellent.

    Once again the Labour Shadow Europe Minister Emma Reynolds had nothing of value to say, and some of what she did say was untrue.

  34. Andrew Shakespeare
    Posted March 1, 2012 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    No update on the debate, Mr Redwood? I’m disappointed. Nothing on your or Douglas Carswell’s blog, nothing on Conservative Home, nothing in the politics or EU pages of the Daily Telegraph. In fact, nothing anywhere at all, so far as I can tell.

    It wasn’t much of a debate, evidently.

    Reply: I am posting my speech from yesterday

  35. Bernard Otway
    Posted March 1, 2012 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

    As per what Martyn said,what do people think Eamon De Valera would think or those that forced the UK
    to give EIRE it’s independance PLUS all the lives lost during the TROUBLES in Ulster since
    1969,they bombed us even here on the mainland ,and NOW they have meekly become a province of the EUSSR [or (etc-ed].I ask all my Irish relatives what on
    earth was all that rebellion and bloodshed for,all I get is a roll of the eyes and a shrug of the shoulders,HOW SAD !!!!!!!

  36. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted March 1, 2012 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

    It is becoming more obvious with every passing day that the EU is a nascent German European Empire. When Mrs Thatcher and John Major discussed the evolution of European institutions, most people in the EU member states of the time assumed that the choice was between widening the membership or deepening the integration. Germany wanted both and wanted power to be transferred from national parliaments to the European Parliament. The German political class cannot help itself. From the Teutonic knights through Otto Bismark, Kaiser Bill and Adolf Hitler to Helmut Kohl and Angela Merkel, the desire for a German Empire in Europe persists.

    This time, there is some hope that the German electorate don’t want it. Angela Merkel is clearly being constrained by her own people. They want a strong currency and to mind their own business. Hats off to that. It is not necessary for everyone else to be like Germany.

    Reply: There is of course no comparison between the approach of current democratic German governments and some of the past extremes.

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted March 2, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

      Granted, but it’s not much comfort. It appears that a fiscal union is to be formed of 25 EU member states, implementing German policies, to be followed in reasonably short order by political union (according to Germany). How on earth 8 non-Euro member states signed up to this is beyond me. For example, why did Poland and Sweden sign up?

      A federation of 25 member states on our doorstep would be a major threat to the security of this country. We simply cannot afford not to try to break it up.

  37. Anne Palmer
    Posted March 3, 2012 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    Can you tell me please if Mr Cameron is going to “Opt in” to Justice and Home Affairs?
    Allow EU control over UK policing and criminal law? And has he already opted in to
    “An Area of freedom, security and justice”?

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    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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