Farewell to Mr Miliband

The departure of David Miliband for the USA is a wise move for the Labour party. As David is said to believe, his continued presence would add to speculation against his brother and allow all sorts of stories to run about disagreements, splits, and fraternal unhappiness, whatever the truth of it all.

I never thought Labour elected the wrong Miliband as their Leader. For all his abilities and charms, David Miliband had one fatal flaw in someone wishing to lead the UK. He remains a convinced Europhile. I like to think that the UK is now such a Eurosceptic country that anyone serious about leading it has to show a willingness to challenge the current EU orthodoxies, and talk about a new relationship for the UK as Euroland hurtles towards greater union. David Miliband is stuck in the past over the EU vision.

Rumour has it that Ed Balls has had to battle against David Miliband over Labour’s stance on the EU. More pragmatic and hungrier for power than David Miliband, Ed Balls has sought to move Labour away from unthinking support for all things European. Ed Balls after all wanted Labour to join Conservative rebels to vote for a smaller EU budget, an argument he won. There could also be pressures from within Labour to match Mr Cameron’s offer of a referendum on our membership of the EU in the next Parliament.

The pound was only safe and the Euro defeated in the UK when those of us pressing to keep the pound secured a pledge of a referendum before joining from both Conservative and Labour leaderships. It was the cross party support for such a move that made the pound safe. Mr David Miliband’s withdrawal from the fray is an important loss for the out of date Europhiles, unwilling to see that the new Euro government emerging is something the UK cannot be part of. Now Mr Ed Miliband has the chance to offer a new deal with the EU to reflect the growing impatience with the curreent EU here in England. Is he able to take that chance? Does he now see he is liberated to take his Europhile party nearer to the healthy and sensible scepticism of most UK voters?

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60 Comments

  1. Mike Stallard
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 6:48 am | Permalink

    The trouble with all the Labour party – and I go on their websites – is that they really don’t stand for anything much except more, more, more from the government. Europe is, honestly, hardly mentioned. They did see UKIP but it soon vanished.

    • Disaffected
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 10:58 am | Permalink

      Today also marks the carbon tax introduction by Osborne and the Lib Dumbs which will put thousands of people into fuel poverty, it is predicted that business will be forced to move abroad because of a nonsensical EU directive and Cameron’s love for ineffective and very expensive wind mills. Quite ironic when you consider JR’s comments about the EU. Cameron and Co equally support the EU project/superstate or he would have done something about it.

      £1.3 billion increase in contribution this week for 2013 budget and there is nothing Cameron can or will do about it- this is our money, taxpayers’ money that will have to be borrowed and paid back with interest. I note he is not in the press crowing about it.

      Stop trying to tell us differently JR it does not wash. Look at Cameron’s action to date, his record, U-Turns and failed cast iron guarantees. Empty words JR, pure empty words.

      Lisbon treaty ring a bell with you? EU arrest warrant? 3,000 regulations and laws this year? Gay marriage? ECHR changes he promised? EU defence force? Today the introduction of carbon tax and the closure of coal fired power stations. Economic madness. If not the EU influence, do you think it should be examined whether there are any alternative or family influences to produce so many wind farms? Based on economics, energy security, national interest or people suffering from fuel poverty it does not make any sense whatsoever. Could you explain the government’s position to us please.

      The only person to speak out against the EU in Cyprus was a religious leader. Has Cameron denounced the lack of democracy that took place over the deal, namely the deal was not allowed to be voted on in the Cypriot parliament? Did he influence the IMF, if not, why not?

  2. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    David Miliband is a Blairite and an intelligent man. He would have been the ideal person to lead the party , but the unions thought that they could manipulate Ed more easily.I did not think that Ed would perform as well as he had.
    Who I wonder believes that we are actully in a federal union and who believes that the word community makes any difference to the’ in through the back door’ banking union.
    All the nations in the EU are far too different to ever make a superstate. The history full of war and strife has been quelled to some extent , but with the outright competition and WW1 and WW2 still fresh in the memory of many it is not going to work. If it hangs on with a toe in toe out union for many years, then and only then will the European union be successful.
    I wish Dave Miliband all the luck in the world. If I were younger and could leave this Country into employment and a warmer weather pattern , I would do the same.

    • Sean O'Hare
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 10:32 am | Permalink

      New York? Warmer weather pattern? I don’t think so!

    • A different Simon
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 11:34 am | Permalink

      “He would have been the ideal person to lead the party ,”

      He might have been able to lead the Labour party but he is not a statesman and neither was Blair .

      Neither Labour nor the Conservatives have anyone between them capable of being P.M.

      As for democracy , the elite have every horse in the race except one – UKIP .

      The TUC is as much as part of the British establishment as the CBI and I detest both , particularly the CBI .

      How can an organisation which claims to represent British industry by in thrall to the new green religion and have as it’s director John Cridland , a boy who has never done a real job and went there straight from university .

      As Mike Stallard points out , Labour don’t stand for anything any more . What must their forbears think of their trusteeship of the welfare state ?

      David Milliband might have been able to lead them but could he have given them a direction and thus a raison d’etre ?

    • uanime5
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

      WW1 and WW2 still fresh in the memory of many

      WW1 was 1914-1918, while WW2 was 1939-1945 so the vast majority of people in the EU won’t have any memories of it beyond what they were taught in school. Also for some countries WW2 had little effect on them because they were neutral, such as Spain and Portugal.

      • Edward2
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

        You are being boringly pedantic again Uni.
        Many people living today still have very fresh experiences and memories of the two world wars passed down to them via stories of their loved ones who fought and sometimes died to keep us safe and free.
        History also makes the past very real for many of us, if not you
        It just needs a little IQ and a bit of imagination.

      • Trevor Butler
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

        I’m 55 – My Great grandfather fought in the trenches at Somme and survived – My grandparents fought in the second world war and my parents were children who lived through this conflict – I grew up in the shadows of the memories of these conflicts – I will never forget what they did and survived. My children have been told the stories so that they too will never forget – Europe is, and always has been, this country’s enemy – I pity these poor, stupid politicians who think they are so clever as they are going to repeat history…

      • margaret brandreth-j
        Posted April 2, 2013 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

        I am 61 and had parents who told many stories of the wars, my grandparenets also did. I was rationed food wise as a kid and a
        i worked in post war institutions. There are many people still alive beyond my age.

    • margaret brandreth-j
      Posted April 2, 2013 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

      I would go to go to America , which is not New York ..it spans many lines of latitude.

  3. Lifelogic
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    Well clearly it seems Ed is more likely to develop into an EU Skeptic than is Cameron who seems genetically incapable of it. But Ed is the voice of the state sector unions, the last thing the country needs. The UK already has twice as many state sector workers as are needed and they are already paid 50% more than the the tax payers who fund them all.

    Ed and David are both dreadful but so are Cameron, Clegg and the IHT ratter Osborne.

    What is needed is:- someone who believes in leaving the EU, real UK democracy, a much smaller state, cheaper, non religious energy and fewer regulations everywhere. Where are such people?

  4. Peter van Leeuwen
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    Isn’t there a hint of wishful thinking in all this? Maybe the UK public is only as eurosceptic as it was in 1972. Five years is a very long time, if a referendum can even be held that soon. I think it unlikely that the three “sleeping giants” (US government, City and CBI) will change their wish for Britain to remain part of the EU and will in time exert some influence on the ultimate decider of UK public opinion – the media. Besides, how safe will the pound be in five years form now? This small currency in a country with a oversized banking sector? Who will come to its
    rescue in these speculative times? 🙂 Finally, how different will a new relationship be? If anything the EZ members aren’t hurtling towards a new treaty, and treaty change would be what would give Mr. Cameron some power to make a new deal. In the meantime though, let´s make the impending Brixit work for us on the continent, as it adds a risk premium to any investment in Britain for the next five years.

    • Brian Tomkinson
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:45 am | Permalink

      Peter,
      We can always rely on you contributing from your europhile fantasyland. Your surname isn’t really Mandelson is it? We don’t want to be members of a totalitarian regime and governed by them, however much you do, or whatever the US government, the City and the CBI may say. The implied threats and nastiness, so typical of those who are blind to the faults of the EU, do nothing but strengthen our resolve to throw off the yoke of this vile regime.

      • wab
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

        “The implied threats and nastiness.”

        The only implied threat and nastiness is in your comment, not Peter’s. (And that goes for most of the anti-EU bile spewed in the commentary on this website.) Indeed, to claim that the EU is a “totalitarian regime” is the real “fantasyland”. The EU is a democracy. The fact that you don’t like the policy of the EU is no reason to claim it is not a democracy. I don’t like most of the policies of the current UK government. I’m not going to claim it is a “totalitarian regime” though.

        Of course the citizens of the UK should be allowed to decide whether to withdraw from the EU. But if the UK does withdraw, the Little Englanders who currently like to blame the EU for everything will soon enough find out that “the fault lies not in our stars but in ourselves”. Really, does anyone seriously think that Cameron, Miliband, Clegg or (god forbid) Farage have any clue how to run a country well?

        • Brian Tomkinson
          Posted April 2, 2013 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

          When you don’t like the policies of the UK government you can vote to change the government (although just now there isn’t much difference between the 3 main parties in parliament) but you cannot do that in the EU.

      • uanime5
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

        Brian given how the UK voted in 1972 it seems that the people do wish to be part of the EU. You’ve also ignored that many companies wish to remain in the EU because it is beneficial to them and are unlikely to support the UK if it leaves the EU.

        • Brian Tomkinson
          Posted April 1, 2013 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

          There was no vote in1972. If you mean the referendum in 1975 when the question was ‘DO YOU THINK THE UNITED KINGDOM SHOULD STAY IN THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITY (THE COMMON MARKET)?’ most people accepted the lies of the politicians who said it was all about economics when in fact it was all about surrendering our powers as a self-governing country.

      • James Matthews
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

        Yes. Peter is a bit of a puzzle. Why is a Dutchman so concerned about the suggestion that Britain might leave the EU? Does he haunt Norwegian and Swiss political blogs telling them that they should join? It is not as if we are advocating that the Netherlands should leave. Does he perhaps fear that if we do leave the idea might catch on? For the moment I am going with the Mandelson pseudonym theory.

        • Peter van Leeuwen
          Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

          @James Matthews: It’s very simple, James. I’ve got over 30 British family members and I take a keen interest in my family in law’s fate.

          • James Matthews
            Posted April 2, 2013 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

            Ahh I can now understand your concern Peter. If leaving the EU turns out as badly for Britain as you predict your thirty in-laws might seek refuge with you. A fate few would wish to contemplate. That said, if your wife is British perhaps she is the one who should be making the comments.

    • oldtimer
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 9:43 am | Permalink

      No one, as you put it, “will come to the rescue” of the pound “in these speculative times”. The UK has to find its own salvation, inside or outside the EU, by spending within its means and regenerating the enterprising spirit that it once possessed. So far it has failed to do either. I am unconvinced that it can be achieved through “ever closer union”.

      Nor am I convinced by your belief that the investment risk premium only applies to the UK, and not to the Euro zone. It is clear that the EZ is a very lop-sided economy with a clear divide between the northern members and the southern members. How this imbalance will be resolved is unclear to me. Do you have a practical solution to hand?

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

        @oldtimer: with regard to the pound I was only pulling your leg. I will confess that the EZ troubles are worse and take longer than I had expected, but, in spite of the human hardship, there is a marked increase in competitiveness in the South EZ, which may attract investment and over the longer term decrease unemployment. By now the world is convinced that the EZ will not break up, so investing in e.g. Spain will ensure access to the Single Market and working within the single currency. Feable banks may constitute some risk, but a EZ banking union will likely deal with that before long (too optimistic?)

  5. Old Albion
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    An interesting slant on David Miliband. But what i found more interesting was this sentence which i copied and pasted.

    “Now Mr Ed Miliband has the chance to offer a new deal with the EU to reflect the growing impatience with the curreent EU here in England”

    Are you suggesting there is a different ‘impatience’ in England to that in the rest of the (dis)UK?
    More importantly, are you suggesting there could be a different EU deal with England, to that for the rest of the (dis)UK?

    Reply I understand Scottish nationalists, who have a majority in the Edinburgh Parliament, want to remain in the EU on current terms.

    • Old Albion
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:49 am | Permalink

      How can Scottish nationalists remain in the EU on current terms, with England on new terms. Without seceding from the (dis)UK?

      • uanime5
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

        Well since Scotland is having a referendum in 2014 about remaining in the UK this may give them a chance to remain in the EU on different terms to the rest of the UK.

        • Peter Davies
          Posted April 2, 2013 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

          They would have to apply to join the EU – if they are capable of being self sufficient goodness knows why they would want to do that – I would go for the EFTA option and EU free trade

  6. alan jutson
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    From what is reported, I think his leaving was the only way to try and heal/smooth over a family fallout over politics.

    Good luck to Mr David Miliband in his new career if that is what it is, what I cannot understand is the size of his huge reported salary, and the suggestion that the UK taxpayer donates over £100 million to this charity, no matter how so called worthy its cause.

    • alan jutson
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:49 am | Permalink

      Guarantee Ed Miliband will join the referendum offer before the next General Election, that is why Mr Cameron is silly to postpone it until after 2015.

      If Cameron held a referendum in this term, or at least secured its holding in law, then he would get far more support and votes at the next general election, and at least stand a chance of being re-elected.

      The way Cyprus citizens have recently been treated has woken many people up, who were not aware (or did not care) of the creeping power of all things EU.

      If Mr Cameron does nothing before the next General Election, then I am sorry to say, prepare for a long time in opposition John.

      • Normandee
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 9:31 am | Permalink

        Red ed has to be careful, will calling a referendum throw a shadow on his next step down the “(EU ed) path way to the heaven of power and untold riches.”

      • uanime5
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

        What the Cypriots have woken up to is that allowing the banks to create infinite amounts of money to lend to everyone isn’t a viable plan for a healthy economy.

        • Edward2
          Posted April 1, 2013 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

          That is complete nonsense Uni.
          Cyprus banks didn’t get into difficulties lending huge sums to their own people at all.

        • cosmic
          Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

          As I recall there was a local property boom which left a few manageable problems, but the reason Laiki was bust and Boc was shaky, was investment in Greek bonds.

          No doubt they assumed that Greece being part of the Eurozone, they were a sensible investment.

  7. M Davis
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    I should think Ed Miliband will feel far more relaxed and able to follow his own convictions without his brother being there breathing down his neck. Now, if only Ed Balls would find a lucrative job somewhere a few thousand miles away, not to mention a few Cabinet Ministers!

  8. Kevin R. Lohse
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    In British politics, Europhilia is not considered a flaw,let alone fatal, as our own Dear Leader’s continued survival proves. David’s fatal flaw is a lack of,”Bottom”. his inability to tighten the noose round Gordon’s neck is what finished his political career.

  9. Ben Kelly
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    Good riddance, the disappearance of an apologist for his own priviledged position is welcome. Those in power who feel guilty about their or their parent’s achievements punish all who aspire.

    The fewer lefty “do as I say not as I do” apparatchiks we have in public life the better we will all be. I include Bob Crow with his large pay package and social housing domicile in that together with others of his ilk.

    • lifelogic
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

      At least Bob Crow is sound on the EU I understand – with his “No to EU – Yes to Democracy” stance.

      • Jon
        Posted April 1, 2013 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

        I think thats his spin speak for no to anyone that disagrees with him, the democracy part is a red herring. He wants full blown socialism without democracy but it has to be his version of socialism.

  10. APL
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    “For Tweedledum said Tweedledee had spoiled his nice new rattle. ”

    So Tweedledum is off to America, good for us but too bad for the USA!

  11. John B
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    It would be nice if Moribund Snr were the advanced party.

    The late Patrick Moore, shortly before his death, expressed his wish that our political leaders (such as they are) all be loaded aboard a rocket and sent on a one way trip to Alpha Centauri, but for me the USA would do.

  12. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    It highlights the abject paucity of political talent when the departure of Miliband attracts so much publicity. He won’t be missed. As for Euroscepticism in the Labour party I suggest you look nearer to home first. Cameron cannot be daccurately described as one as he has declared his intention is to keep the UK in the totalitarian regime known as the EU. Or is this your idea of an April fool story?

  13. Normandee
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    Milliband D’s Europhillia was entirely based on the Kinnock Syndrome, he has now replaced that European sinecure with an american one. What we see is the all too frequent truth about most politicians, self agrandisment and self enrichment regardless of how rich they were when they started.

  14. oldtimer
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    This is an interesting view. No doubt Ed Miliband`s mind will be focussed on the potential threat offered by UKIP, I understand that UKIP have said they will be targetting Labour seats. I would not be at all surprised by a shift in the Labour party position on a referendum on Europe. Whether anyone should or will pay any attention to what any of the party political leaders say on this subject is entirely another matter.

  15. Richard1
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    David Milliband was ostensibly the better choice as leader having greater charisma and TV presence. But he would have been fatally undermined by his close association with the decision to pursue the war in Iraq, the greatest error in British foreign policy since Munich. (It is astonishing that no-one, not a politician, a civil servant nor an intelligence officer has yet been brought to account for this disaster).

    It is possible that by 2015 Ed Milliband could also be fatally undermined by his association with the Climate Change Act, an unfolding disaster as people realize its threat to living standards and even to guaranteed availability of power. The Conservatives should position for this, with both Labour and the Libdems clearly associated with wind farms and other absurdities driven by official fear of global warming.

  16. Bob
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    First time they mistook London Bridge for Tower Bridge, now they’ve got David Miliband instead of Rowan Atkinson.

    You couldn’t make it up.

  17. Peter Stroud
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    With due respect I suggest Miliband major had many more than one fatal flaw. His failure to oust Brown, ie cowardice was probably his major fault. Thank The Lord, because he p
    might have made life even more difficult for David Cameron in 2010 had he led Labour. But he has shown gross stupidity on a number of occasions. Closing the FCO Library. Going to Russia with the chief scientific advisor and claiming the snows on Kilimanjaro were melting due to Manmade climate change. And having to be corrected by Russian scientists who corectly pointed to defoliation as the cause. Then, of course, he led the early stages of the climate change act. But we have to be careful here because our leader and most of the parliamentary party thought it a good idea.

  18. Terry
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    John, can you provide an explanation as to why Mr Cameron wishes to delay his promised EU referendum until after the next General Election?

    Surely there cannot be any good reason for the delay? If he is fully committed to doing so. The electorate have been already been let down by Blair and Brown with their reneged promises and the PM missed a wonderful opportunity to present one as soon as he entered number 10. The anticipated result would have given him much ammunition to fire at the EU bureaucracy. Instead, he dodged the issue and we are left worse off for showing our leader’s weakness. Public resentment over this is amply demonstrated in the Polls.
    It is abundantly clear that to order a referendum this side of 2015 would go a very long way to securing him a Conservative victory, so I ask , “Why the delay”?

    Reply: the Lib dems do not agree to a referendum so it cannot be Coalition policy. The idea is to win a Conservative majority, negotiate the best deal available,and then let voters decide whether to accept the deal or leave.

    • Bob
      Posted April 2, 2013 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

      “the Lib dems do not agree to a referendum”

      At the time of the Lisbon Treaty vote in the HoC the Lib Dems abstained because they wanted nothing less than a full in/out referendum.

      Have they changed their minds? or was it just a cynical stunt that they knew would result in the Labour signing the treaty anyway?

      reply They have clearly changed their minds – I suspect they wanted an In/Out last time only because the Conservative opposition was sponsorngn an amendment to get a referendum on Lisbon, as we promised, and they did not want to run the risk of helping us win that in case there were enough Labour rebels.

    • Terry
      Posted April 2, 2013 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

      Thank you for the reply. However, it serves to show just how much influence the LibDems have in the Coalition, when they categorically deny the electorate the right to have their say. And that is despicable.

  19. Edward2
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    His departure gives us an interesting glimpse into the lifestyles at the top of the nice cosy world of international charities.
    Funded usually by the EU or the UN or over generous national Governments like ours , they are given a hundred million or so to spend each year on worthwhile projects.
    Decades ago already wealthy worthies would do the simple job of spending this money for nothing, but now we see politicians and quangocrats getting six figure salaries.
    This is why I only give to charities where all the money collected goes directly to the cause.

  20. Christopher Ekstrom
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    From the tone of this post it seems you are in no don’t about Cast Irons’s coming defeat in the next election: the dear chancer stood on principle just once (“no lurch to the Right”) & it will cost him. In Bizzaro World Mr. Ed Milliband may just be the final nail in the Euro’s coffin.

  21. Bert Young
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

    I thought your blog today was your most outright expression of the EU so far , and , your insight into the top political mafia very revealing . I certainly agree that any future leader will have to subscribe to a much hardened attitude toward the EU with a referendum on our relationship in the next two years . Whether Cameron is the man is extremely doubtful . UKIP have thrown down the gauntlett and offered a wisp of hope . There is much substance behind the possibility that the Conservatives will come to some sort of arrangement with them .

  22. badgerbill
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    It has nothing to do with the Labour Party that he is leaving but the fact that Paulo Di Canio has been made manager of Sunderland FC! It was one way of getting rid of David Miliband and his £125,000 a year salary.

    He did nothing for the club or the Labour party and lacked the bottom mentioned earlier.

  23. Denis Cooper
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

    The pound is not safe while we remain in the EU.

    The standard Tory narrative consistently ignores the fact that under the present EU treaties the eurozone must expand to take in all of the present EU member states apart from the UK and Denmark, and similarly it must take in all new EU member states, and unless that expansion of the eurozone is stopped and preferably reversed then as time goes by the UK will become increasingly isolated within an expanded EU but outside the euro, and eventually a future UK government of whichever party or parties will decide that this is no longer a tenable position.

    Also ignored in the Tory narrative is the fact the so-called “referendum lock” law, the European Union Act 2011, is not only riddled with loopholes but has been left exposed to normal repeal by a future Parliament, without any attempt at entrenchment, and so it would be foolish to assume that a future government would have to hold a referendum on whether to scrap the pound.

    It would only need the inclusion of words such as “notwithstanding any provision of the European Union Act 2011” in the Bill for the UK to adopt the euro and opponents could whistle for their referendum.

    Reply It is this narrative of ever closer union and a bigger and stronger Euro zone that has oed the Conservative party leadership to agree we need to negotiate a new relationship that keeps us well out of the political and monetary union.

    • Mark B
      Posted April 1, 2013 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

      John Redwood MP said, “…. we need to negotiate a new relationship that keeps us well out of the political and monetary union.”

      I have said this before on this, and many other blogs, you CANNOT have a renegotiated relationship with the EU. I am sorry Mr. Redwood MP but this is fantasy politics. The EU does not want to renegotiate, it is happy the way things are going. ie Ever closer union.

      Until both you and the rest of the political class wake-up to this fact the better. I know and you must surely know that an increasing number of people are slowly coming round to my and others way of thinking.

      Reply If you are right then I assume the UK electorate will use the referendum that follows as the opportunity to vote us out altogether. I think many electors do want the government to see what deal they can get first before deciding.

  24. Denis Cooper
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    Slightly off-topic, zerohedge has a nice post about the real size of the Cyprus “rescue”.

    It’s easily found by putting its title into google:

    “Guest Post: How Big Is The ‘Bailout’ Of Cyprus (Hint: Trick Question)”

    “Most publications talk about the 10B or 17B Cyprus bailout. Let’s take a pop quiz on the right answer:

    (a) 17B Euros (89% of GDP)

    (b) 10B Euros (52% of GDP)

    (c) 2.5B Euros (13% of GDP)

    (d) -3.0B Euros (-15% of GDP)

    (e) -7.5B Euros (-39% of GDP)

    Now let’s work through the answers, in steps … ”

    “I would grade (d) or (e) as correct answers. But I don’t see any version of the numbers where Cyprus is not a net creditor to the EU bailout regime, as opposed to a net beneficiary.”

  25. Paul
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

    John, I’m fairly sure the British people are more concerned with issues such as jobs, energy and fuel prices, housing and welfare reform. Most of these issues are obviously hindered because of our membership of the EU but that message is not getting across clearly enough. UKIP is slowly starting to solve that problem. The fondness D Miliband has of the EU is hardly relevant and would not influence the average voter. E Miliband, Clegg and ”all my heart and all my soul” Cameron are equally as committed to the EU. Despite promising an in/out referendum the polls clearly show Cameron is on course for a heavy defeat in 2015. The EU is not an issue for most voters – they may not like the EU but they accept it.

    Reply: Not so. Mr D Miliband is very pro EU, would disagree with Cameron’s negotiate and decide, and would not offer people a referendum. Mr E Miliband may shift on these matters now he is free of his brother’s advice.

  26. Christopher Ekstrom
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

    More grasping for straws, Mr. Redwood. Only Bonnie prince Cast Iron could have PUT HIMSELF & YOU in this situation. No “lurch to the Right”? Right: enter Mr. Bean; Prime Minister.

  27. cosmic
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

    I can’t see what the fuss is about.

    I always saw the Milibands as non-entity professional politicians, indistinguishable from numerous others, and I doubt they would have got as far as they did without accidents of birth.

    The fact that one of them has bailed out, is comparable to Louise Mensch bailing out, and of as much consequence.

  28. Winston Smith
    Posted April 2, 2013 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    (Personal attack on David Miliband over allegations that have been discussed elsewhere and I do not have time to check-ed)

  29. william
    Posted April 13, 2013 at 5:37 am | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts about debt settlement program.
    Regards

  • About John Redwood


    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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