Who wants to leave the EU?

The latest polling on the EU is worrying for all those who think with one referendum we will be free. AFter a long period when those wanting out have exceeded those wanting to stay in by at least 10% and sometimes by 20%, the current polls show Out and In tied around 40% each.

It implies that the continuous false propaganda from a handful of senior business people at the CBI that membership of the EU is crucial to jobs and future prosperity is having some impact. The arguments that Germany and the others would not wish to lose their profitable exports to us and would come to a sensible trade arrangement with us do not get a sufficient hearing. The BBC is ever ready, along with some other media, to run and re-run the tired old arguments that we would lose 3 million export based jobs the day we left, without ever pausing to see how absurd this idea is.

The German Finance Minister himself has said Germany would want a trade agreement with the UK if we voted to leave. Of course they would, as their large exports of cars to us would otherwise be at risk. If Germany needs tariff freee access to our car market, as she clearly does, she would have to grant us continuing tariff freee access for our vehicles to the EU, the one demand our UK based motor manufacturers legitimately make. I find it odd that anyone thinks this would not happen.

Polling does also show that people are worried by the free movement of people, and apprehensive about further mandatory border easing in January next year. Whilst a large majority dislike this policy, it is curious that at least at the moment in the wider polling it is not sufficient reason for more to want to vote for Out.

It all goes to show that the UK can only reliably have a new relationship with the EU which is much less intrusive and frees us to have our own borders, energy and criminal justice policies if a government wins the election that can negotiate such a new deal, or can demonstrate that such a negotiation is not possible and that exit is therefore our best option. Today, with no negotiations allowed, the public is by no means united in simply wishing to leave.

Several of you will now doubtless wish to shoot the messenger, or attribute false motives to me. I merely report political reality as it is. You need to understand it if you are going to help extricate us from EU control.

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200 Comments

  1. lifelogic
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:07 am | Permalink

    Indeed the UK will never escape the EU. The appalling bias of the BBC, bought politicians, the CBI and some large companies, EU funding “inducements” and propaganda, the special tax rules for EU bureaucrats/MEPs and similar payments have surely destroyed UK democracy now. Why bother with wars when politicians are so much cheaper to buy without a shot being fired?

    Even if we had a referendum and voted to leave it simply would not happen too many Cameron types. We would be told to vote again for a revised deal, just like the Irish, French and the CoE on female bishops.

    Cameron was the last chance and he ratted on everyone and gave the last election away. He is clearly now history as is very richly deserved.

    Ed Miliband will clearly be rather worse but only slightly. It is a price the UK will have to pay get your money out now seems to be the message. It is surely better than having to watch Cameron given another term and then just to rat again as he clearly would with all his heart and soul.

    Has Cameron thought of any reasons not to become a Greater Switzerland yet but with sea ports? The only reason seems to be that the EU will gang up on the UK if we did, but they do that far more effectively with the current EU arrangements anyway. By forcing absurd regulations, costs, taxes, open borders and daft expensive energy on to us.

    • Hope
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 10:58 am | Permalink

      The problem with JR’s view is that he takes a poll as red when it suits and dismisses when it is not. Secondly, people do not believe that any of the current parties will lead the UK out of the EU other than UKIP. It is not difficult to understand no one believes or trusts Cameron. Remember he said that helping borrowers more than savers is morally indefensible. He wanted a culture at the centre of the economy to save save save not spend spend spend. When is this going to happen? Announced today Osborne on another tax raid with the Lib Dems cheering all the way. The list of failed promises and U Turns would take too long to cite. However the public recognises a con man when they see one. UKIP is the only choice from Miliband’s Old Labour and Cameron’s New Labour. I honestly think Clegg stands a good chance of loosing his seat in Sheffield.

    • zorro
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

      Let us see what the polling figures look like when voters see what begins to happen in the UK on a larger scale post Jan 2014…. The economic arguments/implied threats proffered by the euro enthusiasts are perennially weak. Let us see what Cameron brings to light to try and muddy the waters. He might try and bring about a new party like the National Liberal Party…..See I know why John was not keen to join UKIP! Perhaps that’s what the Tories need. Doubtless JR’s application will be in the post. Who could pass up the opportunity of joining a party that Michael Heseltine once stood for!

      zorro

    • Bazman
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

      Do you ever read the comments to your…… posts. If you did you might be less inclined to keep posting the same nonsense, though I doubt it.

      • libertarian
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 12:01 am | Permalink

        Bazzy

        It doesn’t stop you posting your nonsense so why should it him?

        Oh I forgot you’re a socialist don’t do as I do do as I say. Ram it

        • Bazman
          Posted November 20, 2013 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

          Show us some non agency jobs libtard. Real jobs advertised by real companies. Any will do.

          • libertarian
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

            Well Bazzy boy there are 11,000 jobs plus here all in Cambridgeshire area to start with. http://www.indeed.co.uk/jobs?q=&l=Cambridge

            I guess (words left out ed) you are incapable of typing the word jobs into google. Trouble is you cant win as what you spout is easily provable drivel. There are 100,000’s of full time well paid jobs offered by employers all over the UK. Then again someone who thinks that a person is both a right wing fantasist and a libtard at the same time is obviously seriously lacking in the reality department. Ram it

      • Bazman
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

        Unlike you and dodgit I can stand by my comments. You two seem to be unhinged from the actual reality of many situations. In your case their is no shortage of jobs for everyone regardless of place of residence and skills. They are all in effect to choosy or just idle. As if. Lifespogic believes that it is possible to live a peasant lifestyle in the UK. Fishing and gathering wood. In between bartering at the local market with rabbits and fish caught at leisure. What a pair.
        The most laughable point is that in any survival situation you like most of the right whiners would not last the day maybe some time if you had to live off your own fat and not the lands though…LOL!

        • Edward2
          Posted November 20, 2013 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

          There is of course the old saying Baz, that if you were to take all the money off the rich, they would have it back again within the year.

          Don’t underestimate the skills and determination of those that have a talent for commerce.

          • Bazman
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:47 pm | Permalink

            Or being con men and spivs in a crony capitalism fantasy. In the main. Yours?

          • Edward2
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

            You suggest illegal practices, but I alluded only to much hard work, skill, talent,employing others and making a profit.

            Sorry about the last word Baz I know its a very rude word for you.

        • libertarian
          Posted November 20, 2013 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

          Baz
          See there you go again spouting the same old drivel and nonsense over and over again. i’ve provided you umpteen links and reports and statistic sites to support the fact that there are plenty of jobs to go around all over the country.

          So thank you for proving my point

          • Bazman
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

            Non agency jobs. A cause close to my heart. Can you meet the challenge as you say Libtard and can you read?

          • Bazman
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

            Read previous points and stop hiding behind your delusions as well.

          • libertarian
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

            Baz

            I can read, I can and have now posted an answer 3 times. So whats your problem? Can’t or wont read the response? Or are you just completely switched off to reality?

            There are 100,000’s of employers with jobs that aren’t employment agency contract or temp jobs. By the way there’s absolutely nothing wrong with employment agencies jobs I just chose to respond to the way you tried to set the question. I still found over 20,000 full time jobs at all levels and all skills in Cambridgeshire where you live. I’m not posting anymore of them as you never read them and Mr Redwood does in order to vet the links & its not fair on him.

            You have zero credibility, zero engagement in the real world, zero understand of employment and less than zero ability to engage in meaningful debate.

          • libertarian
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

            Bazman

            Here’s a link see if you can get someone to read the report to you. Its about the fact that permanent jobs and wages have RISEN the fastest since 2007 yet its harder to find people to do the work.

            http://www.business-money.com/announcements/demand-for-permanent-staff-grows-at-strongest-rate-since-july-2007

          • Bazman
            Posted November 23, 2013 at 8:38 am | Permalink

            As I have pointed out to you before the logic of a right wing(er) in denial. It will be interesting to see how your fantasies are going to pan out in the real world as my current contract has come to an end. The employers are going to offer me the jobs on the Indeed website you show? A site I am very familiar with.Not going to happen and never has. In my line of work all agencies on fishing expeditions on this site. The job centre one despite its shortcomings is more realistic.
            Are you actually telling use that there is no unemployment in the UK only people who do not want to work? Is that your point. Took a bit to draw you out, so is that what you are telling us? There is no unemployment and wages are rising? It seems so, but in reality wages are lower than they where a decade ago. All evidence points to this and your fantasy is just that. No if and no buts.
            Male full-time employees in the private sector have experienced the biggest fall in real wages, with their earnings now worth less in real terms than a decade ago.
            The ONS said the fall could have a number of causes. “This may be because of pay freezes for people who remain in the same job, or it may reflect changes in the composition of jobs that people do, with some high-paid jobs being cut as the economy adjusts following the shock of 2008-09 and more low-paid jobs being created,” the ONS said.
            “The ‘average’ earnings outcome for UK employees as a whole is probably the result of a combination of pay freezes and economic restructuring.”
            All these EU countries will also be full of shirkers and scroungers too.
            http://www.iiea.com/blogosphere/the-eu-unemployment-infographic?gclid=COH4mfK7-roCFSbkwgodMQ4ApQ
            Now we have established your stance we need to disassemble your right wing fantasy of the deserving poor who need to be forced into work for that is what you are saying like your poster boy Duncan Smith. The problem with right wing dreamers is they fear the open ground as they will be squashed by their own mean minded fantasies. Ram it.

          • libertarian
            Posted November 23, 2013 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

            Bazman

            I hit a nerve then by the look of your rant. As I’ve told you stop telling me what I think, you don’t know and youre always wrong.

            Yes there are another 23,000 local jobs on the Job Centre Plus website. Now we get to the nub you tell us you cant get any of them. Why would that be then? Maybe you aren’t any good at your job, maybe you have the wrong attitude? Maybe you just don’t bother to look.

            YOU claim there aren’t any jobs then YOU claim that agencies pay £100’s to advertise jobs that don’t exist as a fishing expedition. I laughed for nearly 10 full minutes at the sheer brainless stupidity of that statement. What on earth would be the point of that if you are right? Ha ha ha ha

            (Abuse deleted ed) As your entire debating style consists of posting myths and untruths and then abusing everyone who disagrees you never learn. As I’m bored with your waffle and not that you ever bothered to ask I will tell you my take on unemployment. By the way you can keep on keeping on pretending there aren’t any jobs but as its both what I do for a living and what I do on a voluntary basis for a number of charities I can continue to prove you wrong for as long as you like.

            My beliefs about unemployment are:

            There are 1.31 million people claiming JSA

            There are a further 1 million NEETS ( 16-24 year olds )

            There are plenty of jobs for everyone in terms of numbers However.

            A lot of people lack the right skills, sometimes as basic as reading and writing.

            A lot of people have health issues
            Some people have Alcohol related problems
            some people have Drugs related problems
            Some people have criminal records are ex offenders

            All of the above groups find it very difficult to find work, but charities such as mine and others exist to help these people into meaningful jobs.

            A large number of those claiming JSA are only doing that temporarily whilst they look for work, which they eventually find

            A lot of people ( such as yourself it seems Bazman) have the wrong idea about how to go about the job search process and therefore struggle to find work

            The NEETS tend to have problems based on 2 factors

            University graduates struggle to find work because they believe the politicians that a university degree is a guarantee of a high paying job, this is in fact total nonsense . However a number of graduates have expectations that are way in excess of reality and therefore don’t apply for jobs that they feel are beneath them.

            NEETS without qualifications are stuck in the experience trap. ie they cant get a job because they don’t have experience but they can’t get experience because they don’t have a job. This is where the agency market is so important as virtually anyone can get temporary agency work ( i myself worked as an agency temp many years ago and both my sons have too ) this is how one builds experience in order to quickly get a permanent job.

            A lot of unemployed people just don’t know what kind of work they want and are unaware of their own skills and talents and they end up applying ( badly) for the wrong job and getting repeatedly turned down.

            There are also groups of people who just don’t bother to look as they believe people like you Bazman who tell them there aren’t any jobs so they give up too easily.
            The smallest group of unemployed are those people who choose to live on benefits rather than get a job.

            I can find anyone a job who wants one. I work as a volunteer for a charity that finds work for ex offenders with mental health issues, probably the hardest group to help, yet we manage to fid them jobs.

          • Bazman
            Posted November 24, 2013 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

            In essence what you are saying that it is the fault of the unemployed for being unemployed and having to high aspirations or in some cases no aspiration. There is in effect more jobs than employers especially at the lower end of the market. If only people wanted to find work they could. It is true that many are short term unemployed going around a revolving door of short term employment often through parasitical agencies used by companies to avoid employment legislation. The idea that this leads to a permanent job is laughable in most cases. Often they are just filling a gap.
            Now the anyone can find a job attitude may be true in some parts of the country, but finding one that pays more than benefits is very difficult for a person with a family. Reducing benefits is the wrong answer. They don’t’ choose’ not to work like some sort of career choice as you want us to believe. In some parts of the country there is no work or no work for most men. They in effect live without a job. Wife works as a cleaner or in a shop the husband works on the black for a few quid for people with jobs. Car repair, gardening etc. They cannot get a shop job or the like as all the jobs are taken often by the woman. There is not enough work. You are seriously telling me there are more jobs than people? Really without the relevant skills or qualifications? Do you seriously think that I would take a shop job or the shop would actually give me the job over someone which there are thousands with shop experience all their lives? It’s not a problem so don’t tell me I’m crying about it. I do not have to do this work. I saw the lie of the land years ago and made sure of that. I’m just making the point.
            You seem to think that anyone can do any job which is not real in modern industry and they should even take a job that costs them money either by benefit cuts or travel expenses. Tell us why they should? Leads to a permanent job? Would that job be worth doing for financial reasons or just to help an employer and as I have said before self respect is over rated. Maybe the young offenders decided a life of crime would be a good career choice as a large majority chose not to be literate giving them a ticket to prison?
            Ram it.

          • libertarian
            Posted November 27, 2013 at 12:16 am | Permalink

            Yes Bazman thats exactly what I’m saying

            If only people had got themselves the right skills, if only people knew how to apply for a job properly, if only people applied to the jobs that suited them then YES there are enough full time, well paid jobs for everyone.

            Two thirds of your drivel post expressly once again fails to acknowledge what I ACTUALLY said and to once again wrongly tell me what I ought to think. Well no matter how many times you pathetically trot out the same rubbish, it ain’t so. Nowhere have I called for benefit cuts, NOWHERE did I say that most people were feckless. You clearly didn’t read my post. The whole stuff you bothered to type out in crayon about skills I actually addressed in one sentence.

            Now why do you think in the face of ALL the evidence you just ramble on posting the same discredited nonsense over and over again.

            You obviously have a big issue with agency work and you also told us that agencies don’t do anything to earn their money. Seeing as the average agency mark up is 20% why not quit your agency job, find your own contract ( you told how easy it is to do this) and gain yourself a 20% pay rise???

        • lifelogic
          Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:46 am | Permalink

          I am sure I would be quite happy living on the dole, shopping at charity shops, sending my kids to state schools, growing veg, a bid of barter here and there, fixing my car/scooter/house and some voluntary work & collecting firewood and reading. Many working are no better off anyway and have far less time to themselves. So long as I lived somewhere reasonable that is.

          • Edward2
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

            Im told Chelsea is nice!
            But you are right Lifelogic, getting a balance between work, family, friends, hobbies and generating enough money to pay for it all is a tricky job.
            Sometimes you start your own business and it ends up taking you over.
            Many who have never run their own company think the main motivation is a greed for money but for most I have met, that is not the prime motivation.

          • Bazman
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

            So long as I lived somewhere reasonable that is. There is the problem and of course you would need enough cash to fund it..No sink estate for you.

  2. Brian Taylor
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:34 am | Permalink

    The political reality in my opinion is not enough voters take an interest in the situation concerning the EU, most of my friends are not aware of how the EU work nor are they confident that David Cameron and the Conservative party Ministers have the backbone for the long process that would be required to negotiate that new arrangement that would give us back control of our Borders,Justice system and regulations on Energy and jobs.
    David Cameron has already said he would like to stay in so we have no hope of him invoking Article 50 which would Require a negotiation on our relationship with the EU.
    Therefore unless those MPs and others who want this country to have this new arrangement UP there game and convince those at the top and fight back against the BBC and the CBI etc,then us mere voters are STUFFED!!!

  3. lifelogic
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    I note the EU commission are being very helpful over Gibralta too.

    Spain has been cleared by European officials for increasing security along the Gibraltan border and causing up to six hours of delays. The European Commission ruled that Spain hasn’t broken any EU laws by imposing the stringent checks.

    • Martyn G
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 10:09 am | Permalink

      Indeed. Just imagine, however, how the EU would treat the UK if we, too, imposed stringent delaying tactics at our porous borders! We’d be on the receiving end of EU savage criticism before a week passed by. Not that our sclerotic border farce people are any longer capable of doing such a thing even if commanded to do so, because of course they are led by the PC and human rights brigades.

    • Hope
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:00 am | Permalink

      And the court cases to save the UK financial transactions from the EU is still on-going. It goes on and on.

  4. Arschloch
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:49 am | Permalink

    I do not mind living in a “common market”. I can even stomach the odd edict out of Brussels about how bent a banana can be before it goes on sale in the shops. However you need to remind Clegg, Cherie and Co where to shove their their human rights legislation. The over educated need to sit down and carefully read any “o” level text book on British history. We do not need their laws because we have got on quite well for 100’s of years with an unwritten constitution and our own Bill of Rights. Though I bet there are quite a few MPs who believe that you can buy a copy of the constitution on Amazon. Euro HR legislation may be handy for those countries that have the guillotine and the gestapo in their history. However I want to be sure that when I walk the streets they are free of rapists, murderers and muggers that are here because they have “the right to a family life”.

    • Arschloch
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:55 am | Permalink

      Oh yes and the HR lawyers have a very confused picture of what constitutes a “normal family life”. The mother of the child, unmarried of course, usually lives up in the North miles away from the poor persecuted one. No wonder with definitions like this this country is in a state of collapse.

      • Vanessa
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

        It is a shame that the judiciary are now controlled by Brussels and our truly fair rights as English-born (English Bill of Rights 1689) is shoved into a black hole but it is still relevant and is impossible to repeal.

        Common Law is so old that it is written in nature. They cannot repeal that !

    • lifelogic
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:01 am | Permalink

      Euro HR legislation seems to be mainly designed with the interest of Lawyers (and the odd criminal) in mind and at the expense of everyone else. Rather like the employment laws.

      This is not too surprising as it was largely designed and interpreted by lawyers.

      • Bazman
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

        Your fantasy employment laws again that you cannot tell us which ones, except for the one that people cannot be hired without a contract or sacked for anything?

        • libertarian
          Posted November 20, 2013 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

          Baz

          Give over you’re making yourself a laughing stock now. Three times you’ve been given a list of the EU employment regulation that harms job creation .

          • Bazman
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

            Three times? Where? The Daily Mail is not a reliable source.

          • libertarian
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 7:57 pm | Permalink

            That just proves you never read any of the evidence linked Bazman

            I didn’t use the Daily Mail as a source. Twice I posted a list of the damaging regulations and one other poster also posted a similar list. I’m beginning to suspect that you are Dave Spart

          • Bazman
            Posted November 23, 2013 at 11:25 am | Permalink

            Which regulations? Do tell us again and you you do use the Daily Mail as a source though. Take a look. No unemployment and to many regulations and bone idle people. Are you serious?
            http://johnredwoodsdiary.com/2013/11/04/minimum-wage-living-wage-and-minimum-income/#comments
            Why are there so many East Europeans in employment and so many British unemployed. The British are lazy? Come out and tell us. Don’t be shy. LOL!

          • libertarian
            Posted November 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

            Bazman

            Are you completely incapable of following a logical thread? You bounce around like a demented Tigger all over the place to avoid facing up to reality.

            I as I said have NEVER referenced the Daily Mail or any other newspaper in providing a list of EU working regulations that hold back business and therefore more job creation. I don’t need to reference the Daily Mail as I’m a very successful businessman ( 8 businesses at last count) therefore I get to deal with these regulations on a regular basis.

            As you had to trawl all the way through these threads to show a completely UNRELATED post that did reference the DM why didn’t you just go and find the posts with my lists in. I’m begining to suspect you are a bit unstable and have lost touch with reality.

            You seem to have a thing about your fellow workers being lazy benefit scroungers, I haven’t said any such thing.

            Why are there so many East Europeans working in the UK, because they apply for and get the jobs that you assure us don’t exist….how bizarre. Maybe its all a conspiracy to make you look stupid?

          • Bazman
            Posted November 24, 2013 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

            Why do you think the East Europeans are all in the main able to work and find jobs here and the British are not able to compete with them libtard?

        • stred
          Posted November 21, 2013 at 10:40 am | Permalink

          I heard recently of two cases where the Human Resources Departments of publicly funded employers were enforcing the law. When interviewing prospective assistants, managers and other professionals are barred from asking whether the applicant has any history of mental illness or plans to become pregnant. In both cases the result had been the inability of the newly employed person to work full time or effectively. One case had been subject to claims for unfair dismissal lasting three years, as the employee was often too ill to turn up at the Tribunal. If this happens to a small business it can be disastrous. It leads to the existing staff having to work, often unpaid, to cover.

    • matthu
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:20 am | Permalink

      Not just the HR legislation, but the Charter of Fundamental Rights threatens to have an even bigger bearing on life in the UK – after we had all been assured that we had secured an opt out.

      The Charter contains some 54 articles divided into seven titles.

      Consider just the second title:

      The second title covers liberty, personal integrity, privacy, protection of personal data, marriage, thought, expression, assembly, education, work, property and asylum.

      Wow – and I have yet to see Ministers commenting on this new development.

      http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/douglascarswellmp/100245631/court-ruling-shows-that-eu-renegotiation-is-a-myth/

    • uanime5
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

      The UK’s history is full of torture and persecution, so we haven’t done much better than other EU countries. Let’s not forget that after 9/11 the UK introduce laws that allowed anyone accused of terrorism to be held without charge for an indefinite periods of time. Something that only ended because the courts ruled that it broke several human rights.

      • zorro
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

        ‘The UK’s history is full of torture and persecution’……Get a grip please, you go from the sublime to the ridiculous. Compared to other countries, generally our history has been free from lawless strife compared to other countries.

        It’s also not true that anyone accused of terrorism could be held without charge. There was/is a legal process. Blair’s attempt to bring in a 90 day period was voted down. I agree that the supervision of the intelligence services needs revisiting, and that the ‘War on Terror’ is a convenient excuse to exercise certain policies (foreign and domestic) which would not be possible otherwise….

        zorro

        • sjb
          Posted November 22, 2013 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

          @zorro
          Under s23 Anti-Terrorism Crime and Security Act 2001, several men were detained for years without charge. If you go back a little further to the 1970s nearly two thousand were interned without trial.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

        You seem to think that because a person is against the EU’s charter on human rights, that they are against human rights in total. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I want our people to have human rights – protected by a human rights bill of our own.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

        Give us a clue – who was in power in the UK in 2001?

      • Edward2
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

        Uni,
        You constantly run the UK down, which is my choice of residence.
        A nation which I love for all its imperfections.

        Please tell us what your favourite country to live in is, and why.

        • Edward2
          Posted November 22, 2013 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

          No reply.
          As Baz would say…what does that tell us?

        • Bazman
          Posted November 23, 2013 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

          My personal choice would be Monaco were I hear all badly dressed people are sensibly put in prison, but as an international jet setter which I’m sure you are edward it means a lot. I mean we gratefully accept having you choose our country as a place of residence and I’m sure you would accept the keys from us to our small island. If you could spare a couple of quid for the services as poor as they are it would be great. If however you do not want to, all taxes are at your discretion. Have a pleasant stay.

          • Edward2
            Posted November 24, 2013 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

            Strange you chose the country offering one of the lowest taxation arrangements for its residents the whole world Baz.
            A haven for rich capitalists.
            You sure a dedicated class warrier like you would be happy there?

          • Bazman
            Posted November 24, 2013 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

            I wouldn’t actually live there with all those aged stiffs. It would be worse than the Isle Of Man. Good God no! I would just rent a concrete box and have my address there as everyone else does. Why would I want to listen to old film stars and musicians boring me with past glories in between stuck in traffic? Absurd.

          • Edward2
            Posted November 25, 2013 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

            No reply from Uni still.
            I’d wager Venezuela, even with its toilet paper problems. or Cuba maybe.
            North Korea and Russia probably too hard core.

            PS last time I was there Monaco was full of racing drivers, pop stars and page 3 look alike East European glamour girls.

  5. Steve Cox
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 7:00 am | Permalink

    Something very odd is going on. It’s not just these latest EU poll numbers that don’t make immediate sense (unless the British electorate has taken leave of its senses) but the fact that Labour are 8 points ahead of the Conservatives in the polls. As one commentator put it in an article this morning, “Could it be that the question underlying politics at the moment is not, in fact, why Labour is doing so well, but why the Conservatives are doing so badly?”

    • lifelogic
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:08 am | Permalink

      Indeed and the reason the Tories are doing so badly is clearly Cameron. He incompetently lumbered them with the Libdums and anyway he clearly is one. He believes in staying in the EU (regardless), paying 3 times the true cost for energy (for an absurd religion), exporting jobs, more endless regulation everywhere, gender neutral insurance, HS2, benefit tourism, and over tax borrow and waste everywhere.

      So we might as well just have Ed Miliband and let the Tories sort themselves out for a while.

      • Hope
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 9:56 am | Permalink

        Cameron said he was a liberal conservative. Boles still thinks there is a deal for the Tories to become a sort of Liberal National party. Look at those Cameron surrounds himself with and his advisors and you will not see the likes of JR or Norman Tebbit. He has still not grasped the nettle that the Tory support has halved under his liberal modernisation agenda. Boles wants more, however the sane conservative public wants a Conservative party which they have come to realise will not happen with Cameron, UKIP appears to be offering what they want and no one trusts Cameron. JR likes polls, the one today suggests that even Cameron joined Clegg Labour would still have a huge majority. Cameron is driving the Tory party over the cliff. Oh for a Steve Harper.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted November 24, 2013 at 7:22 am | Permalink

          Indeed but who is Steve Harper I shall look him up?

      • Bazman
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

        How much is the true cost of nuclear (Lifelogic ed)? Gone a bit quiet on that one haven’t we and it would be interesting to find out the true cost of fracking in this country. A dirty and expensive process? Have you watched C4 Dispatches yet on energy bills? If not why not? Will it spoil your fantasises? Harrumph?

        • Edward2
          Posted November 22, 2013 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

          The biggest fantasy Baz is you thinking we can have a low carbon UK without nuclear being a major part of the mix.

        • libertarian
          Posted November 23, 2013 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

          The EU has ordered the closure of a perfectly functioning nuclear power station where I live, with the loss of 9,000 dependent jobs. Are you in favour of that Bazman? A yes or no will do.

          • Bazman
            Posted November 24, 2013 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

            Which power station and I will see if it requires a yes or no answer.

    • Timaction
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      I think you are right about the polls being distorted. Baroness Ashton, unelected grand poo pa of the EU is married to the man in charge of YouGov. To see the latest actual results from Council elections on ConservativeHome would indicate a significant change in voter activity away from the traditional three.

      Reply Yougov undertake professional polls with proper samples – I don’t think personal relaitonships affect how they do their work.

      • TT
        Posted November 21, 2013 at 10:13 pm | Permalink

        I was watching the 2nd episode of the old House of Cards political series. Francis Urquhart gets a young pollster on board who says, “you tell me what answer you want and I can get people to say it with the right questions”, not an exact quote but you get the gist. I certainly think that these thinks can be manipulated. Yougovs credentials of neutrality don’t look good on paper!

        Funnily enough they were banging on about the EU then too!

    • stred
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      The pro EU and Warmist cause is greatly helped by the bias towards the young, who have been thoroughly indoctrinated by the education establishment. The older antis are disappearing and being replaced. My own offspring emerged from a good university with a first in Business Studies and, unable to find a job, he headed off to the EU to teach English. I noticed he was not washing his cup all day and reusing it. This was in order to save Mother Earth’s water.

      Labour is taking voters from the LibDems, who have alienated yoof by ratting on uni fees and pink middle classes by taxing and withdrawl of child benefit, amongst other measures which also annoy conservatives who have turned to UKIP. They are also taking voters from the Greens.

      Where I live inthe constituency of Mz.Lucas, the Green council seat went to Labour in a by election. Their anti car policies, such as reducing parking, bus lanes and 20mph limits on wide dual carriageways have had their effect. The Greens had not realised that many Labour voters need cars and vans and are just as peed off as anyone else. They also managed to upset the binmen who were not pleased with plans to lower their pay in order to equalise with female staff. Greens are trying hard to gain support where they can and, in the last edition of Greenleaf, there are pro gay articles and a picture of Mz Lucas walking along the front with Councillor Phelin McAfferty behind a poster (etc ed). I would not be surprised if she lost her seat, even though the Labour candidates are almost as looney left as the Greens.

      • stred
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

        The poster behind Mz Lucas is in fact ‘a social network for lesbians nationwide’. The green council has also’ recently launched a Transinclusion Toolkit for Schools to improve support for transgender young people’. etc ed

      • lifelogic
        Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:51 am | Permalink

        to equalise with female staff doing a totally different job!

  6. Peter van Leeuwen
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    I cannot see the CBI research as “false” and I seem to remember they looked at seven different parameters of UK membership, not just the risk to jobs when leaving. The three, still sleeping giants (Business, City, US) all agree that the EU works as a multiplier for Britain’s global influence.
    How is the Conservative Party ever to remain united when some will want to leave come what may, while others see that actual EU reforms will take place, making it more “palatable” for the UK to remain an EU member. NB, the Netherlands has always has a clear interest in having the UK in the EU and would be an ally for various reforms, but if the price gets too high (remember Cameron trying to get privileges for the City in December 2011) the EU would leave the UK.

    • Hope
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:05 am | Permalink

      The price is too high for the UK. The EU takes a lot and gives little in return. No thanks it is not what the citizens of this country thought they were joining. No citizen in the 27 nations voted for the bureaucrats. I cannot invisage anyone in the UK voting for a former Portuguese communist to be leader. Was’ t one of the polls conducted by YouGov whose president is married to Baroness Ashton? No one believes polls from this source.

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

        @Hope: Just before I bid you farewell as UK, let me remind you that the European citizens did directly elect their MEPs (comprising the European Parliament) and also voted their governments in (comprising both the ministerial Councils of the European Union and the European Council), these being the most powerful EU institutions. We don’t directly elect judges, do you??? We don’t directly elect the president of the ECB, do you elect the president of the BOE? The European Commissioners, referees over treaties that they didn’t make, have been proposed by democratic governments and vetted and accepted by a democratic European Parliament. It all beats British democracy with its ling-long hereditary legislators, but EU democracy still has a long way to be improved, which is being worked on. Make sure that you are better informed in your next referendum please.

        • Hope
          Posted November 21, 2013 at 9:18 am | Permalink

          As I said no citizen from any of the 27 nations voted for the two most important institutions in the EU. No democracy to the people who pay they ages and bills of the feckless. You must do better Peter in promoting the legitimacy of the EU with weasel words. What citizen voted for Baroness Ashton?

          • Peter van Leeuwen
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

            @Hope: the two most important EU institutions, as said are the European Council (heads of governments) and the European Parliament. To think otherwise is not understanding the workings of the EU. It was up to the UK how they wanted to select which became Lady Ashton. Don’t accuse the EU of that please, look for improvement in your own country if you didn’t like the way she was selected.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

      Peter – you (I think) fail to take into account some factors.

      We live in a globalised economy. We are competing with countries with lower wages, lower housing costs, lower living costs and lower costs of doing business – because they do not have to comply with all the social and health and safety costs (etc. etc.) of doing business in the EU.

      The EU is slowing going down the pan – becoming more uncompetitive by the day and relying on governments (including, of course, ours) borrowing colossal sums of money just to pay their bills. Youth unemployment is 50% is some of the Southern European economies. This cannot go on forever. Sooner or later people will rise up.

      The Euro is a doomed experiment. The economies in the Eurozone are too disparate. The sticking plaster will come off sooner or later. This will cause, at least for a while, chaos.

      Whether we will, or will not, lose some jobs is academic. We are going to struggle if we stay in the EU. We, at least, will be masters of our own destiny if we leave.

      What annoys me is that the EU should have been a fantastic thing. Free trade and shared values between countries and economies at a similar stage of development. But those like Van Rumpoy and Barruso are destroying it with their obsession in building a Federal, single, state.

      I’ll be sorry to leave the EU. I really will. But I’ll be voting ‘Out’ any chance I get.

      • Bazman
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

        We are to compete with second and third world countries on living standards and health and safety as well as income? Do tell us how that will work in the UK. Could be tricky living on less than a quid a day even for Duncan Smith.

        • Edward2
          Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

          By earning a living using our brains not our hands is the quick answer Baz.
          We need high value, small volume, high tech, high fashion products, to sell to the world.
          Which is why we need a highly paid, highly skilled workforce, using highly automated machinery to earn a living.
          If we do not go down this path then your image of a race to the bottom UK could happen.
          Allowing in millions of mainly unskilled workers is not going to help.

          • Bazman
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

            This is all true, however how will the wealth be shared or will it not be? Must be one.

          • Edward2
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

            Ah Baz you have hit on the biggest real debate of our age.
            In a decent society like ours here in the UK, I hope there will be a fair distribution of the spoils.
            Progressive and competitive taxation with an efficient Government which lives within its means whilst protecting the vunerable.
            Now all we need to do is to define fair.

          • libertarian
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

            Baz

            You ask how will wealth be shared? Easy the wealth will be shared amongst all the people who contribute. Perfectly possible by the way for anyone to buy shares in companies and to earn a share of the wealth generated. Society benefits from the huge amount of tax collected from wealth generators.

          • Bazman
            Posted November 23, 2013 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

            The wealth will be shared? Even among the feckless and unemployed by taxation? Sounds like communism. Why should they get anything as they do not contribute. Should their living standards not be going down to reflect this and incentive them?

          • Edward2
            Posted November 25, 2013 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

            The wealth is already being shared Baz.
            The richest 1% pay 12% of all income tax.
            So the unemployed get their money from the taxes these rich pay even now.
            Fair would you say?

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

        @Mike Wilson: Mike, you describe this as though having to leave a ship that will sink or even blow up anyway. Though I respect that, I do not agree. I think you underestimate the will and determination on the continent to make it work (the EU) a determination Britain has underestimated more often. (the first time in the 1955 withdrawal from talks, when it thought that “it” could never work, losing its influence in the Treaty of Rome in the process). €6billion for the European Youth Guarantee is still far too little, but it shows that at last EU leaders are waking up to the unemployment crisis. Van Rompuy and Barosso only carry out what heads of government want, and it depends on the heads of government to continue showing determination.

      • Hope
        Posted November 21, 2013 at 9:18 am | Permalink

        Well said.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

      Indeed, Peter, a Dutch minister has come forward with some totally bonkers, and totally worthless, proposals for reforming the EU, as applauded by the think-tank Open Europe here:

      http://openeuropeblog.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/the-dutch-are-emerging-as-europes.html

      And you can see my response there too, ending thus:

      “Never mind these bonkers proposals from the Dutch government; what we in Britain need is a national veto on each and every EU proposal, and nothing less than that will do.”

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

        @Denis Cooper: Thank you Denis, I had already read your OpenEurope comments. I got this image of a Robinson Crusoe singing “Rule Britannia”, because in practice, not even Switzerland or Norway have the power to “veto each and every EU proposal” . . . unless you’d call Cameron’s decision in December 2011 a “veto”, a veto that didn’t prevent the decisions going forward. You may think of Robinson Crusoe Britain as “sovereign”, I see him as helpless. What matters is influence, and in the EU the UK would have more influence than outside of it.

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

          Once again I have to remind you of the promise made to the British people at the time of the 1975 referendum, in the official government pamphlet delivered to every household:

          http://www.harvard-digital.co.uk/euro/pamphlet.htm

          “The Minister representing Britain can veto any proposal for a new law or a new tax if he considers it to be against British interests.”

          Say what you like, but nothing less than that will do.

        • Leslie Singleton
          Posted November 20, 2013 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

          PvL–You like to go on about “influence” but so far from it being important I for one couldn’t care less about it, no more than (eg) Canada cares about influence over the USA. We just want to rule ourselves like other countries, that’s all. We get fed up reading the nonsense that emanates from your side of the Channel, the latest about the continuing farce of Strasbourg.

          • Peter van Leeuwen
            Posted November 20, 2013 at 11:02 pm | Permalink

            @Leslie Singleton: Individual may not care about influence but businesses and politicians do care, understanding possible consequences. If you’re fed up reading, it may have to do with the material you read and I don’t envy you (the British) for a moment about the quality of information provided to you.

        • lifelogic
          Posted November 21, 2013 at 9:00 am | Permalink

          “What matters is influence, and in the EU the UK would have more influence in than outside of it”

          Well not if we are outside we can make agreement if and when we wish to, if we are inside we simply have them forced upon us by the rest and the unelected bureaucrats who often have totally different interests. Bureaucrats main interest is to regulate and licence everything merely to increase their power base and pay scales.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

      PvL–As the saying goes, Is that a threat or a promise? Good Riddance.

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

        @Leslie Singleton: I am not in a position to either threat or promise, I just drew a parallel with the incident at the December 2011 EU summit, when Cameron was left by the other heads of government, although Cameron claimed in vain to have vetoed them. In other words, if the price is to high the rest of the EU would go on regardless of Cameron. This is unlikely to happen, I predict that there will be a deal, but no preferential treatment for one country.

    • libertarian
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      Peter,

      The EU would leave the UK ? You really are deluded. I wish it were true but the EU would never under any circumstances kick out the UK, they cant afford it. We are one of their main export markets, we pay a lions share of EU costs, we control the worlds financial markets. Wake up and smell the coffee, its the 21st century the era of big/centralized is over

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

        @libertarian: So tell me, when exactly are China and India going to break up in small pieces? For the rest, I refer to my reaction to Leslie Singleton.

        • libertarian
          Posted November 20, 2013 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

          Peter

          Why should China and India break up into small pieces and what has that got to do with anything said here?

          As I’ve told you many times the UK is perfectly capable of standing on its own feet. It has trade agreements with the commonwealth that is a far bigger and wealthier collection than the EU and does not require surrendering sovereignty to an unelected dictatorship.

          • Peter van Leeuwen
            Posted November 21, 2013 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

            @Libertarian: in future, please read your own contributions:
            ” its the 21st century the era of big/centralized is over”

          • Bazman
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

            The UK could just be one big employment agency for the rest of the world libtard each of us having our own workforce?! LOL!
            Where are your non agency jobs paying a living wage in any occupation and trade? Takeaways? Self employed cleaners? What if all the jobs are taken in their area? Get a bus and if no bus drive or a taxi? Really?

          • libertarian
            Posted November 22, 2013 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

            Peter

            I know what I wrote, its you who fail to understand. The big to which I refer is the artificial, the Multinational conglomerate business such as RBS, the EU and other large bodies and organisations. Whilst China and India are fairly large countries they only stand out because both of them have huge populations.

            But yes all of Europe and the world there are large numbers of separatist factions springing up.

            Your inability to see what is unfolding is indicative of the blinkered approach of most centrists assuming that things will stay static and never change. All around you radical change is happening yet you cant see it. I guess thats why I’m a successful entrepreneur and youre a bureaucrat

            Reply I thin k China now also stands out for its very fast growth rate over a number of years, propelling it to second largest economy already.

    • yulwaymartyn
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

      @ peter. Interesting what is going on in Germany now. The new coalition CDU-SDP will be more pro EU than CDU-FDP was in my view. Merkel very much preoccupied with domestic policies at present, minimum wage etc. Shroeder making noises about the UK acting as a break and an obstacle to further banking union and further integration. Quite correct of course. So uncomfortable few months ahead and the euro elections of course will be a disaster unless the centre right parties can get their voters to the polls. So what are we waiting for? EU/US free trade negotiations to progress more quickly than expected I think. First Canada a few months back and then US.

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 11:09 pm | Permalink

        @yulwaymartyn: EP elections will give a big win for eurosceptics, but that is all part of democracy. I see no harm there. It may show the EU members and institutions that they have to do a better job. It he new German coalition will turn out more EU-friendly as expected, that is not a bad thing for helping to tackle the enormous problems in Southern EU-members.

  7. colliemum
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    You write: “[….] it is curious that at least at the moment in the wider polling it [‘further mandatory border easing in January next year’] is not sufficient reason for more to want to vote for Out.”
    There are two reasons for this.
    One is that the question of immigration, or ‘further mandatory border easing in January next year’, as you write, has been deemed unsavoury to talk about in public. You must be aware that those who do dare mention this have been called racist until, well, last week when former Labour politicians (Mr Straw and Mr Blunkett) mentioned the unfortunate consequences.
    The other is that the various polling companies are owned and run by the same Westminster denizens (‘YouGov’ being a prime example) and are thus part of the establishment which does not want us to leave the EU and which is doing their utmost to keep us in, well supported by EU money.

    As long as politicians and media keep being so coy about how far-reaching already the EU directives have been in our daily lives (rubbish collections, for example, or HS2 …) the pro-EU establishment will keep on telling everybody that people are not interested in the EU and we might as well stay in.

  8. Robert K
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    I do.

  9. ROJ
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:09 am | Permalink

    Mr. Redwood – you do indeed report political reality. Another reality is that the only worthwhile negotiation with the EU would be one preceded by an Article 50 notice of intention to leave the EU. Even if the end result of such a negotiation were to be the withdrawal of notice to leave, having obtained satisfactory revised terms, only giving notice of leaving would have any chance of bringing the EU to a sensible negotiating position. The most basic understanding of how negotiating works shows this to be the case.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      It should be understood that Article 50 TEU makes no provision for a country to revoke the notice that it intends to leave the EU.

      That article can be read starting on page 43 here:

      http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:C:2010:083:0013:0046:EN:PDF

      In the absence of any such treaty provision, if a country changed its mind about leaving the EU then there would have to be an ad hoc agreement between all the countries on how to deal with that situation.

      The least likely outcome would be the other countries agreeing that the UK could stay in the EU on new terms which had been negotiated and agreed for after the UK had left the EU.

      More likely, some would say that as the UK had initiated the procedure for its withdrawal then that process should be completed, while others might argue that the whole thing should be dropped so the UK would stay in the EU on the existing terms, and others might say that they’d also be prepared to let the matter drop provided that the UK made one or two concessions, such as relinquishing its special euro “opt-out” and agreeing to join the euro at the earliest opportunity.

  10. Old Albion
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    I would like to know who gets ‘polled’ on this question. It sure isn’t me or anyone i know.
    My own feeling is the (what was once known as) working class are massively in favour of leaving the EU.

  11. Richard1
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    The reason big business is broadly pro-EU is because there would be many uncertainties to exit. The ‘Outs’ will have to get much more granular in explaining the practicalities of how life would be: how would companies with integrated European supply chains be sure of continued tariff-free flow? How would the EU-wide VAT reclaim system work? Would existing EU standards be automatically adopted in the UK? etc. These questions can all be answered – but there do need to be detailed answers.

    The nervousness is understandable and won’t change until the details are addressed coherently.

    • JoeSoap
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      You can find solutions such as they exist in Switzerland and Norway.
      We would however be in an advantageous position due to
      Size and greater GDP
      We are an island
      Universally understood language
      More attractive to skilled migrants to arrive at our option

      Our disadvantage is that we have, basically, useless arty lefties running the show. Europe has its lefties too, but at least a portion of them understand science engineering and medicine.
      We therefore need an overhaul of our democratic system as well as extricating ourselves from Europe. That’s what Cameron, even in his wildest Eurosceptic moments, won’t offer.
      It s also why we need another force in uk politics.

      • Richard1
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 10:21 am | Permalink

        I think its more fundamental than the education of who’s in power. There are sound-minded people with Arts degrees, and no degrees, and fools with science degrees. what matters is policies, in particular limiting the size of the state, low tax/GDP, low debt levels, minimising interference and regulation, open markets. Eastern Europe under communism was replete with engineers (trained to quite a good standard). That didn’t stop it being a basket case.

  12. Alan Wheatley
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    I am disappointed that the EU IN/OUT debate seems to be conducted solely on the basis adding up the material gains and losses and using the net figure to determine our future. Clearly these matters are important, but they are not the only important matters.

    For me the key thing is “who governs the UK?”. I do not want to be a part of the United States of Europe. I want to be British, governed wholly by the British Parliament.

    And that way we will also do better as to our material gains and losses.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

      Especially when the net benefits of the EU Single Market are so small, just one-off increases in GDP which in total amount to no more than the increase in our GDP which would occur anyway through natural growth over a few average years.

      Put into that proper context, it turns out that our politicians have been willing to sell our birthright for a ridiculously small mess of pottage.

  13. oldtimer
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    I think you are right in your analysis. Whoever controls the propaganda machine has a great advantage. No doubt that is the reason why the EU slips money to the BBC to promote its causes.

    • matthu
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:24 am | Permalink

      The EU won’t confine itself to using the BBC as a mouthpiece.

      There is no doubt that it will be issuing propaganda in every other way, such as defining what should be taught in schools, when the flag should be flown, what government policies may not be criticised, which groups may or may not get EU funding, what should be celebrated and what not …

      • lifelogic
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

        Indeed.

  14. Alan Wheatley
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    A key part of a winning OUT vote in the referendum will be to sell the future outside the EU. It will not be good enough to simply say the cons of being in the EU outweigh the pros.

    We need a vision of the UK outside the EU that is more appealing than that of remaining inside. This should be an easy sell, but no one seems to want to make it.

    • Sean O'Hare
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 10:54 am | Permalink

      Richard North together with Lord Tebbit and the Bruges Group have made a good attempt:

    • miami.mode
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

      Alan, I agree wholeheartedly with you.

      When trying to sell something it is essential to say what you have to offer and not just rubbish the opposition.

      However misguided he is, see how Alex Salmond is always pushing what he feels are good points and his opponents are then left to catch up. He is setting the agenda.

      Unfortunately David Cameron seems to be of the opposite persuasion and consequently he will not push for an ‘Out’ vote

      • Oddjock
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

        Alex Salmond is not misguided, he is doing EXACTLY what he was elected and mandated to do, and doing it well. That makes him fairly unique in politics. All of these in/out EU arguments can be used as reasons for Scottish independence, the arguments are basically the same, that Scotland wants to make its own decisions based on what is best for the Scottish people.

        • Max Dunbar
          Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:09 pm | Permalink

          Boris Johnson could equally say that he is doing what is ‘best for the London people’. Does that mean that London should be separated from the rest of the UK as well? Why would Londoners wish to be dragged down by the north of England never mind the economic basket -case of Scotland? – Because you need to look at the bigger picture, the national interest and the fact that we live in a democracy where you do not always get your own narrow selfish way.

  15. alan jutson
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    Many of us on this website have always suggested that the BBC and large business will champion our continued membership, and that the EU will probably fund a huge keep in campaign with disinformation.

    Given the above I do not understand why politicians of all Parties do not speak up louder, when their policies for the UK are frustrated by EU treaties, rules or regulations.
    We cannot even have a Budget we want and need, or set own tax rates without conforming to EU rules.
    Present rules on free movement of people is proving a disaster, that will get even worse after 1st January this year.

    Problem is the majority of the people are simply not interested in politics enough to look beyond the headlines.

    One real real hope is for UKIP to win massively in the European elections next year and take all the seats, perhaps then the present set of MP’s and Party leaders will wake up to the fact that most people rather like Mr Farages straight and uncomplicated talking on this subject.

    Somehow John, you and fellow EU sceptic members have got to get together with one voice on this, to try to get some real air time, and debunk the myths that are being set out for continued membership as is.

    • alan jutson
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      Perhaps weu could find some old news footage of both Mr Heath and Mr Wilson of what they told us, the electorate, about the common market before we voted, and compare them to the actual reality now.

      That would be interesting !.

      • Bob
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

        @Alun Jutson

        find some old news footage of both Mr Heath and Mr Wilson of what they told us, the electorate, about the common market before we voted, and compare them to the actual reality now.

        I think you’ll find that the BBC have misplaced it.

    • arschloch
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:15 am | Permalink

      As far as I am aware the bar room bore has yet to confirm whether his one man band, sorry “party”, is one that is into “hard money” and is not just as much into money printing as the rest of them. Until you get something as basic as stopping the debasement of sterling the EU is just a side show. Without repeating the malign effects of QE, remember nobody in Frankfurt is robbing savers of a decent return or forcing everyone to pay inflated prices for energy related commodities. You may be wasting your time waiting for salvation with UKIP

      • libertarian
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

        Arschloch

        And pray tell us 1) What is hard money in this day and age 2) Which other country uses it

        • Bazman
          Posted November 22, 2013 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

          Quality vodka. Used in any country as currency.

  16. Bob
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    The polling will be affected by the massive inflow of migrants from the EU.
    This is how the likes of David Cameron aim to keep the British under EU control.
    His referendum promise is intended to allow time to replace more emigrating Brits with immigrants from the EU to secure his desired result if a referendum is ever held.

    The BBC as ever will continue the propaganda campaign funded with £3.5 billion extracted every year from the British people to undermine their own culture and identity.

    There really is only one party who will put a stop to this treachery, and it’s not the LibLabCon Party.

    Reply And how will UKIP end it when they have no MPs? What have their Euro MEPs done to get us out?

    • lifelogic
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:28 am | Permalink

      To reply: Indeed UKIP will not help now, even if they do come first in May 2014 with Cameron third. But Cameron’s Tories will not either, they simply cannot win without some UKIP deal and a minor miracle. Even if they did Cameron is just the same as Clegg in his heart and soul, despite his Cast Rubber Promise.

      His fake promises will not help him in 2015. To win in 2015 we need promises of cheap non religious energy, lower taxes, smaller government, no HS2 and free trade only with the EU. But these from someone who could be trusted.

      Alas there is no one in the wings who could win the support of the largely Libdem Tory MPs and the electorate.

    • James Matthews
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      Reply to Reply. The assertion that only the Conservative Party can reform/get us out of the EU is a bit of a recurrent theme on this Blog. It may even be correct. The problem is that hard experience has taught the electorate that this is only going to happen after the party suffers electoral meltdown through being outflanked on the right. If and when that happens it may (just may) come to its senses by listening to natural Conservatives rather than the rootless “middle ground” and/or come to terms with a fairer electoral system which would allow both the Conservatives and other parties to be represented at Westminster in accordance with the overall number of people who vote for them. One thing is for sure though, it will only do the right thing when it has exhausted all the other possibilities.

      Meanwhile, at the next general election many more of us are determined to vote for the parties which best represent our views rather than tactically, to keep out the parties we most dislike. The results will be interesting.

      Reply And they could be self defeating. Europsceptics will only win if we unite.

    • Bob
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 10:35 am | Permalink

      @Mr Redwood
      UKIP’s whole raison d’être is independence for the UK.

      “…they have no MPs…”
      So you keep telling us, but then that’s what we’re working hard to correct. Obviously the fptp system makes entry difficult for new parties, which is why LibLabCon have remained unchallenged for so long.

      What have their Euro MEPs done to get us out?
      What have your MEPs done to get us out?
      Let’s face reality, the EU Parliament is a façade, the real power lies with the Commission – so that remark is beneath you.

    • colliemum
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:39 am | Permalink

      Reply to reply:

      John – how can MEPs “get us out of Europe”?
      AFAIK, getting us out is a task for 10 Downing Street, not for MEPs.
      If there’s a pathway for MEPs to ‘get us out’, please tell us what that is, thank you.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply. We have to hope that UKIP will have a significant number of MPs after 2015. That is our only hope. Your party offers no hope.

      Your position on a referendum is incoherent. You won’t even say what it is you want to renegotiate and your leader has said he will lead the campaign to stay in regardless of the outcome of a negotiation. Really, your party is treating the electorate with utter contempt. You must think we are all idiots.

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

        When I write ‘you’ I mean ‘your party’.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply: Nobody can run before they can walk. One can’t reasonably expect UKIP to make a massive impact and sweep the board without building up momentum first, and in politics, that can take a while. People have to learn who UKIP are, and what they stand for, and as that message steadily gets out there, the people are learning how sneaky and duplicitous the other three parties have been in the past. They are thus right not to want to trust them in the future.

      And that pains me, as I would argue for, and canvass for the Tories as I saw myself as one of them. It is a natural human reaction to bitterly resent being conned and lied to by people in whom they have placed their trust.

      I’m another who has never been canvassed for my opinion whether we should stay in the EU or get to hell out of it, which is quite unlike an election where actual votes are cast and counted, so I tend to view these opinion polls as a guide only.

      A straw poll tells me something completely different. Apart from rampant, intransigent lefties, or mad hatter Lib Dems whose pro-EU arguments either collapse as soon as they are tested, or can’t even make a case in the first place, I struggle to find anyone who is actually in favour of Britain’s membership – full stop!

      I had an e-mail from the Bruges Group yesterday, outlining the ‘Norway Option’. Again, this has been met with a lot of falsehoods and misinformation by the pro-EU media machine, but I urge everyone to look it up (sorry, I’m not posting a link) because it clearly shows how the UK could go it alone and prosper in the process. It won’t please the socialists or the centralists who can’t see any further than the end of their noses, but their inability to see the bigger picture should not impede those of us who can.

      If UKIP can make an impact in the Euro-elections next year, and even some in the BBC say it is theirs, that COULD force the hand of the other three parties. They will have to acknowledge the will of the people, clearly expressed, in a true poll of public opinion.

      I will make this bet with everyone though. We might think we have already seen all the dirty tricks in the book, you wait ’til the pro-EU camp realise they are in danger of losing the battle – you’ll see something then!

      Tad Davison

      Cambridge

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

      As you know, JR, even if the EU Parliament were to vote unanimously for the UK to leave the EU it would make no difference, the UK would still be in the EU.

      Unlike our own Parliament it is not a sovereign body, but can only exercise such powers as have been granted to it by the sovereign member states through their treaties; and it has always been clear that the primary role of UKIP MEPs is to use their status to inform the British people about the EU and further the case for withdrawal; unlike the MEPs of some other parties, who like to make a show of attempting to mitigate the damage to the UK, while knowing that such attempts are almost always doomed to be futile gestures when all the UK MEPs combined have only 10% of the votes in that transnational assembly.

      Reply Parliament can make itself sovereign again by repealing or amending the 1972 Act.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

        Reply to reply: A most interesting and telling comment.

        Every time the UK government signed a new EU treaty, we were given categorical assurances that our own parliament would still remain sovereign. So where did we actually cross the line, and which of the politicians is guilty of the deception?

        No wonder people are so bitterly opposed to Westminster politicians and have so little faith and trust in them!

        Tad

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

        Parliament has never ceased to be sovereign; as Lord Justice Laws said in his judgement on the Metric Martyrs case:

        “Being sovereign, it cannot abandon its sovereignty.”

        The problem is political rather than legal, that the British people have not yet fully understood that a great majority of the MPs they have elected lack any will to exercise the enduring sovereignty of Parliament on their behalf, and indeed some number of them don’t even believe in it anyway.

    • Tom William
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

      To be fair, what UKIP MEPs could actually DO is zero, other than be critical and publicise what is wrong (and publicising themselves does help!)

    • Bryan
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

      As you know Mr Redwood, MEP’s are mainly there to rubber stamp what the EU Soviet tells them to.

      Much the same as our Parliament for a huge chunk of our laws.

      UKIP or any other UK party has to be in majority government to begin a process of withdrawal.

      Hence we shall still be governed by the EU long into to the future, at least anyway until it collapses under the weight of its own repression of the masses.

    • Tom William
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

      As the European Parliament has very few powers, what could they have done apart from making publicity/enlightening the public about the EU. Come to that, what have the Conservative MEPs done (apart from Daniel Hannan)?

  17. Anonymous
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    The in/out vote may well be tied at 40% but those concerned with the EU immigration issue will be much higher than that – including many of the 40% who are EU supporters.

    It will be interesting to see whether or not Mr Cameron stands up to the EU over the derestriction of Bulgarian and Romanian migration this coming January. Is the policy to wait to see whether or not the scare stories are true and put an emergency stop on it then ? Or is it going to be Nick Clegg’s policy of “We accept there will be problems but it’s down to our people to help newcomers to assimilate.” ?

    Yes. In the longer term it is most likely that we will find ourselves in the situation where we remain within the EU whilst trying to negotiate ourselves a better position – at a snail’s pace. In the meantime nothing is being done about the rapid and dramatic transformation taking place in our country.

    The left (and their lawyers) are being gifted ever more ‘disadvantaged’ minority groups with which to empower the welfare state and neutralise the Tory party. That 40% pro EU support is likely to increase – and the anti diminish as natural Tory supporters emigrate away from EU control.

  18. Douglas Carter
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    For any Government to fight a Referendum on the basis of remaining in the EU, or leaving it, at some point surely it’s going to have to come up with a definitive identification as to what the EU actually is?

    It will mean a pretty tight definition of where the EU is now with regard to how powers and competences are surrendered and how and why the EU is used as the mediator to address those political aspects. It will also need a fairly clear indication as to what the EU is eventually intended to become. Idiotic, empty and meaningless phrases such as ‘a work in progress’ or ‘together for a better future’ don’t actually hold water and only a fool or a blatant liar would attempt to sell the EU to the electorate in such pitiful terms.

    For example, over the decades the various electorates have been assiduously assured that there will be no United States of Europe, and that flies in the face of the absolute manifest fact that senior EU staff have asserted that the project will definitively progress to that specific such a body, and that ‘courage’ will be needed in bringing it into being. ‘Courage’ usually the prime euphemism for ‘ignore your electorate’. The most recent source – to my current knowledge – being J.M. Barroso only scant days ago, with that precise appeal. But he’s by no means the first to elicit the sentiments.

    John – you have an unusual degree of influence in this debate due to your personal political record. Would it not be unreasonable to seek such an unambiguous political and legal definition of today’s EU, tomorrow’s likely EU and what membership will actually mean in terms of democratic representation, and to seek those things from this Prime Minister? If we’re going to remain in, or leave, I’d say on fundamental principle that the Government must advise us with clarity and accountable accuracy what it is we’re actually members of, and what it will, and what it will not become. And if they assure us of what it will not become, that the electorate will be presented a means by which to veto attempts elsewhere to overturn that assurance.

    Reply I am urging the PM to make a speech soon setting out what he thinks the Eu will become, and what kind of relationship we want with it after negotiations.

  19. ferdinand
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    In due course there will probably be a clear listing of the reasons for leaving in the hands of the electorate. They will have an opportunity to decide. Enoch Powell said that normally the people get it right. Let’s hope so.

  20. Bert Young
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Most of the large businesses in the UK became internationally organised (“globalised”) a long time ago so , come what may concerning our membership of the EU , their activities , organisation and markets will remain the same . The CBI is the voice-piece of large companies and is bound to reflect the existing set-up ; it has not been asked to comment on how the large companies would be affected were we to pull out ; its assumption is the organisations will remain the same with a reduction in the part of their European sales . The inter-change of design , staffing , production efficiency and pricing has never been commented on by the CBI ; it is not privy to the thinking and strategies of Senior Management and the Board Room ; it is therefore not able to accurately say what would happen . These organisations will always optimise what is the best way to reach their markets ; the underlying driving force will always be cost and efficiency of labour , price of materials and the logistics of delivery . The UK ranks so highly in these aspects very much under-pinned by design capability and financial support ; the nett result really is little change to our overall economic picture , but , a great deal more determination and effort put into any changes forced upon us . We will not suffer by pulling out of the EU ; we will re-establish identity , pride and , above all , the ability to make decisions without having to submit to unnecessary outside controls .

  21. David Hope
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    The vested interests are huge. From the likes of Clegg and his wife enjoying EU work to all the big corporations who love a bit of regulation to keep out the competition. It’s not going to be an easy or fair fight.

    However with help like that of Sykes in any referendum and the fact the outs are on the right side of the argument, and the EU’s willingness to keep grabbing more powers, it is very winnable still

  22. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    We are going over the same old ground again and again, but we cannot do anything about it unless it is pressed as the important issue in parliament and given more public awareness. People lose their fervour: a referendum discussion needs to take place just before it is possible, then strike whilst the iron is hot.

  23. Mark B
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    John Redwood MP said;
    ” . . . or attribute false motives to me.”

    Well, I will confess to have my doubts, given the curious ways in which you censor certain things ;o) eh! You do indeed talk a good game, and your past voting record supports your position but, overall, you must see that the ‘renegotiation of powers ‘ that your leader seems to think can happen, won’t.

    And as for the polls well, it all depends on how the question(s) were framed and who they asked. As the immigrant community continues to grow, it is more likely that researchers will encounter these people and express their views in pro-EU terms.

    The question that must be asked to every man and woman of voting age is thus:

    “Who do you wish to govern the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland”
    1) The UK Government
    or
    2) The European Union.

    If you were to ask this question and debate the matter of membership on this and not on one of economics, than I think you will find a slightly more positive, form a Eurosceptic point, answer.

  24. Neil Craig
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    The correlation between the degree of state ownership of broadcasting and authoritarianism, corruption and failure in government is established beyond dispute. Britain has the worst performing economy of any English speaking nation and the most monopolistic and propagandistic state news broadcasting monopoly in the developed world.

    For the past few months we have seen the heavy guns of BBC propaganda lying turned on the eurosceptics and UKIP and it is clearly having an effect.

    Until the BBC is destroyed Britain cannot be called a democracy.

  25. Dan H.
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    OK, let us look at what might happen in a negotiation with the EU based on past experience. The Irish had a referendum on the treaty of Nice, then a second one when the first went the “wrong” way. I can confidently say that there has never been any instance of a member state successfully gaining concessions from the EU. Losing them without gaining anything yes, but never actually demonstrably winning in any meaningful manner.

    This is because the EU is effectively an empire by stealth. The whole point of the EU is to subsume and replace the governments of member states; that is what the EU regionalisation programme was all about, dividing EU member states up into small, easily-governable chunks that were too small to revolt against the centre. Fortunately for us, this vital work was put in the trusty hands of John Prescott, who proceeded to expensively do not very much at all thus scotching this cunning plan (he really deserves a knighthood for this, provided that it is made completely clear that the knighthood is reward for being a useless waste of space).

    Negotiating with the EU is a waste of time. Firstly because they never cede power, and secondly because the EU is on the verge of extinction from bankruptcy, internal insurrection and from Germany leaving because the EU doesn’t suit German interests. Britain trying to win crumbs of power back is counter to EU needs at this time; the EU at this time needs to look well nigh invincible and extremely inflexible in order to keep Club Med from defaulting on their debts (as was the habit of deadbeats like Greece) and simply staring down their creditors.

    No, the only way on this one is to have the referendum, and simply leave. Stop paying the danegeld, re-introduce border controls and start deporting the economic migrants; we can sort out labour problems by cutting benefits later, but first we need to resume our sovereignty.

  26. David Jarman
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    “Who wants to leave the EU?” – Everyone who’s educated and knows whats going on.

    • Bazman
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      Such a comment by default counts you out Dave

      • David Jarman
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 11:27 am | Permalink

        You’re absolutely right I want out! How astute of you.

  27. forthurst
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    I watched the latest ‘Venture Capital’ show, ‘Free trade or hostile takeover’ on RT.com; the first item concerned the proposed EU-US trade treaty. If it is anything like as bad as represented on the programme, we should all be very seriously worried.

    It suggested that US corporations are seeking to have untrammelled access to EU markets and any attempt to block or restrict their products or services on environmental or health or other grounds would result in the corporations appealing to secret tribunals which could impose massive fines or imprisonment on individuals or fines on countries on the basis of lost ‘expected profits’, assessed entirely by the corporations themselves. Apparently, the deal would be ‘worth’ $150 billion in both directions. The EU is apparently seeking to reistate our beef trade lost through the BSE epidemic as well as cheese and restrictions on other items.

    I cannot see that loss of our sovereignty to US corporations would be a good idea in principle. Nor do I believe that US corporations who have bought the US Congress in order to sidestep responsibilty for proof of safety of their products or responsibility for consequential losses to individuals or the environment should be able to impose the same on us here; however, I lack confidence in either the competance of EU negotiators or their goodwill, or those of our present government.
    Capitalism may be the best way of serving markets, but it’s unwise to overlook its ultimate purpose and give it an entirely free rein.

  28. Leslie Singleton
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    John–You are giving your opinion of political reality and I do not doubt you believe it and that that is how it looks from where you sit.

    BUT for what you say to have any meaning to us who want OUT 1) The Conservatives have to win outright in 2015 AND THEN 2) Cameron has to deliver (ie doesn’t find a way of sliding out), AND THEN 3) Despite the BBC and the Clarkes and Heseltines of this world the vote is for OUT, AND 4) Cameron doesn’t find a way even then to stay in.

    Just for grins suppose each is 50% likely. On that basis, just to get some sort of idea, the overall probability of OUT is 6%, call it 10%. Obviously this is a pretty hopeless calculation (on a par with those for HS2) but I think it shows that the route you espouse in unlikely to get us where we want to be.

    This is not good enough. I think there is more chance via UKIP just like that nice Mr Sykes says. Many of us, and I suspect you yourself, think it almost certain that UKIP will come first next year and then surely all bets are off. It passes understanding how the other parties could then resist the demand for an immediate referendum (or immediate election??) and, if they tried to, UKIP would win seats in 2015 when prospects for OUT would become a lot rosier because the Conservatives would have no choice to come to an accommodation with UKIP.

  29. Roy Grainger
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    There is no chance at all of getting an OUT vote in the referendum with the current circumstances, just like the last time the forces arrayed in favour of the EU, from the BBC to the leaders of all three major political parties will persuade the swing voters. The only scenarios which would produce an OUT vote would be a major EU financial crisis at the time of the referendum, or another country electing to leave first and provoking an EU constitutional crisis, or a strong anti-EU leader being elected by the Conservatives. Other than that, we will stay in but pack the EU parliament with UKIP voters.

  30. David Price
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    The only polls that matter would be a national referendum and a general election, neither can come soon enough.

    I don’t trust these opinion polls as much because the sample size of 2000 or so cannot be truly representative (the Yougov poll on staying in the EU in January 2013 was of 1912 people). I have never taken part in any of these polls and I know of no-one who has, these agencies could be making everything up simply to try and influence the electorate, who knows …

  31. English Pensioner
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

    Big companies want to stay in the EU, because that is where they trade, are making a big mistake. EU consumption is mainly stagnant, whereas that in the rest of the world is growing. But it suits them because are in a position to put pressure on the faceless bureaucrats to introduce regulations from which they benefit – just look at the company which is now the biggest supplier of garden chemicals in your local garden centre, it’s not British! Ditto new trains ! So they are mistaken, some are not getting the business in this country, let alone in the rest of the EU.
    But I think immigration will be the main factor in the next election as this affects people directly. Unlike many people I do not regard the majority of the unemployed as “Benefits scroungers” and I believe they would like to work. When they see immigrants coming and taking jobs that they could do, because immigrants are happy to be paid the minimum wage, they could turn to UKIP at future elections, particularly in the north where many would never, ever, vote Tory!

  32. John Wrake
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    Mr. Redwood,

    I have no interest in shooting messengers or attributing motives, false or true, but to claim that you are simply reporting facts is disingenuous in the extreme.

    You are not just a bystander reporting unpalatable facts which critics do not understand. You are a participant.

    Your reply to Bob at 8.49 that UKIP can have no influence as it has no M.P.s indicates that you are firmly wedded to the idea that only Political Parties can influence events. I refute that. It is individual men and women who institute change. Bob was writing about the treachery which marks the actions of government at present and that treachery is condoned by the Official Opposition and it is condoned by those in all the Parliamentary Parties who do nothing to stop it.

    If UKIP can do nothing because they have no M.P.s, where are the Conservative and Labour M.P.s who could do something in their place, if only they stopped confining their activity to votes which they know will achieve nothing.

    If you belong to a Party which you truly believe is acting against the long-term interests of the British people; If you belong to a party which is acting unconstitutionally; if you belong to a Party which is acting in a way that offends your conscience, why do you remain a member?

    There is nothing more likely to bring about change than if you and others like you were to resign your Party’s Whip and sit as Independent Members.

    Your charge against UKIP MEPs is that they have accomplished nothing to get us out of this unholy and corrupt organisation. What have you and your fellow-Eurosceptics done, despite having a larger group of MEPs and membership of the House of Commons? The answer is precisely nothing.

    I agree with you that I, as a voter, have a part to play, not just at election time, but in my conversations with my family and my neighbours, seeking to spell out the implications of doing nothing, but I look for leadership from those in the great councils of the nation. At present, that leadership is missing.

    John Wrake.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      “Your reply to Bob at 8.49 that UKIP can have no influence as it has no M.P.s indicates that you are firmly wedded to the idea that only Political Parties can influence events”

      Agree. It is patently obvious that UKIP are wielding considerable influence, Cameron would not have promised a referendum otherwise, and Labour would not be wittering on about immigration. There are plenty of unelected pressure groups who have enormous influence, the IPCC climate change bunch for example.

  33. Alte Fritz
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    How we remember ‘Jobs for the boys’ in 1975 (maybe the girls did not count then). I, for one, would not shoot the messenger today. Memory of 1975 is too deeply engrained. We had then all the arguments then about freedom, nationhood and democracy and they failed. If we cannot point to negotiation with results or which has failed, then we will not have a case which will be sharp enough to pierce the wall of lies behind which the EU enthusiasts shelter.

  34. Ken Hall
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    I hope that you read these comments and will respond to the question at the end of this comment, Mr redwood.

    I understand the tory strategy of offering real and credible renegotiation, and when that is inevitably blocked, then only after our serious attempts at reform are publicly rebuffed, rejected, quashed by the inflexiblity of the profoundly anti-democratic EU, then the only logical option, which a clear majority of voters would agree with, would be to withdraw from the EU entirely…

    Yes I understand this strategy, and all things being open, honest and accountable, it would be a good one. However, given Cameron’s track record on the EU, (profoundly for retaining EU membership and offering only pathetically weak negotiation positions), How on earth can we TRUST this strategy?

    My fear is that Cameron will actually, (on a nod and a wink), secure an agreed renegotiated reform which seems to give us almost everything we want, then to put that reform deal to a referendum. I think based on that agreed reform, and due to the barrage of propaganda and vile fearmongering and lies, he will win the IN vote. Then and only THEN after the referendum, Dave will allow that reform to be vetoed by other member states. Critically, the Europhiles will have secured their ‘Stay IN’ result in that referendum, and no other referendum would be permitted on any subsequent reform treaty deal. We would have been tricked into voting to remain IN the EU and in the Lisbon timetable for eventual total integration, under a future labour/liberal coalition.

    The EU does have precedent in this area, as the French and Dutch both vetoed the legal framework for the EU as described by the Constitutional treaty. The Constitutional treaty was then rejected and replaced by the Lisbon Reform Treaty which amended all the earlier treaties (without a referendum in this country or in France or in the Netherlands), to create an IDENTICAL legal framework which the Dutch and French had already rejected. They are now living under the exact same legal framwork in practice, which they had BOTH rejected in referenda.

    How on earth can you settle these very real conserns, Mr Redwood? How on earth can we trust Cameron to deliver what the voters of this country want, instead of what the pen-pushing, chair-warming bureaucrats in Brussels dictate?

    Reply There are two protections against a bad negotiation and recommendation by the new government – one , a large number of Europsceptic Conservative MPs would not accept a poor negotiaiton outcome, and two we all get a vote to vote for Out anyway. I don’t see a better offer that is at all likely to win in an election.

  35. Acorn
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    The turn out for the EU elections drops every time they have one. It was down to 43% in 2009 from 62% in 1979. The UK stays around mid thirties but did drop about 4% in 2009. I think there is a general loss of interest in the project; 500 million people have realised they were sold a pup.

    So UKIP could spin the EU 2014 election into a primary election for the UK 2015 general election turning it into an EU in/out referendum. UKIP means out; Lib-Lab-Con means stay in. It would be a s**t or bust play for UKIP mind you, and I don’t think they will make the numbers required in either election to change anything in the UK.

    How about we rebuild the old EFTA group? Just as a single trading market for goods and services using as many common technical specs as possible to keep the prices down and corner the world’s export markets with brute force and quality. It wouldn’t need a common passport or a common currency, but we would pledge to try and get as many people back to work in any member country as we collectively can, particularly youngsters.

    Alternatively, we could encourage insurrection in all EU states and stop paying any EU bills; starve the buggers out of Brussels, Luxembourg, Strasbourg and Frankfurt.

    JR, start working on a plan to break-up the Euro and the ECB. Come to think of it, I think I have got some Pesatas in the loft from the old Benidorm Pub crawls. Ah, those were the days, fluids coming out of every orifice. 😉 %-) :-### .

  36. peter davies
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    The lie is tying the political element (EU) in with the trading element (EEA) which in itself gives members free access to the ‘single’ EU market. I have heard the Swiss example which is wrong because Switzerland are not a member of the EEA.

    This in itself should be enough to ensure that any of the cars built in the UK will continue to be exported to the EU without tarrifs or quotas.

    As you say we need an honest debate and to strengthen the trade argument it might be worth working out the transhipment element of UK exports which are counted as EU trade figures (which are not idenfitified by the NAO) but are merely using the big ports in the Netherlands for onward shipment overseas.

    I still can’t believe so many are naive enough to believe the 3 million jobs that are spiouted from politicians mouths – especially since Blair’s WMD claims which were repeated over and over at every opportunity.

  37. Narrow shoulers
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    These poll numbers are unsurprising when one takes the sound bite and repeated “truth” about the EU from the “innies”.

    Those wishing to leave really need to dispel such lies.

    1. 3 Million jobs will be lost
    The BMW and EDF response should be used here (loudly and repeatedly).

    2. Each immigrant contributes to the economy on average.
    To offset the £56 per week JSA that is being paid to an unemployed Brit or youth missing the opportunity to become a worker an immigrant must earn £7,500 than the tax free allowance per year. This is before any housing or tax credits are awarded to them. This is the equivalent of £8.2 per hour or greater than 50 hour working weeks at minimum wage. I find that unlikely. The duty on alcohol, fags and petrol they pay would only offset their use of infrastructure payments at that wage. This is before factoring child benefit and school places (£4,500 per pupil plus £1,300 pupil premium next year) are take into account for those who bring or have families here.

    3. Influence is greater as part of Europe.
    Really – Milliband influenced the whole world over Syria by doing the right thing not as a European initiative. Influence is about positioning. We used to be good at it.

    4. Peace in our time.
    Have any countries which enjoy McDonalds outlets within been to war with each other yet? This statistic may be out of date but trade is more likely to bring peace than shared diktats.

    The Out campaign rely on people’s sense to win but that is insufficient, the arguments must be made.

  38. DrJohnGalan
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    As a follower of the global warming scam as well as the EU scam, I see the main problem with blogs like this is that they reinforce the illusion that most people care. Those who contribute here (or on Watts Up With That, Bishop Hill or Jo Nova) are generally like-minded, whose views are occasionally spiked by a strongly opposing stance.

    The vast majority of people could not care less. They do not even see that the so-called democracy that exists in member states of the EU is largely symbolic. The fact is UK voters have no choice: Lib=Lab=Con on global warming and the EU. That there is only a small percentage of things that our politicians are still able to decide on is not appreciated by most. A real choice, such as recently offered in Australia, is not remotely possible in our neck of the woods.

    The purveyors of more government, more windmills / solar panels will carry on in their corrupt and self-seeking way because the majority of people do not know (or want to know) what they are doing. Those still small voices that try to put an opposing view are slowly being snuffed out. For anyone who has not read it, Terry Smith’s final blog post is well worth a few minutes:
    http://www.terrysmithblog.com/

  39. Atlas
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    No, John, I don’t have a problem with people like yourself talking “truth to power”. I must say I don’t like the message though! Never mind that though, if Churchill had not stood alone against the (appeasing) Lord Halifaxes of this world then we (and Holland to name but one other) would all be regions in a Nazi Greater Germany. The problem with Cameron is that he is a manager and does not inspire like Churchill did. Can you see Cameron giving a ‘blood, sweat and tears’ speech and inspiring the public? – ‘fraid I cannot. If the Conservatives are to win a majority in the General Election then they need somebody who can convince those sceptical voters who have moved to UKIP to return.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

      There are indications that over the past 18 months or so UKIP has pulled support away from both the Tories and Labour, and to comparable extents.

      For example if you look at the opinion poll charts here:

      http://www.electoralcalculus.co.uk/polls.html

      they are not consistent with the idea that UKIP is only attracting support from the Tory party.

      I think that anyone who looked at those charts free from any preconception that UKIP only takes support away from the Tory party would more likely conclude that the “UKIP up” and “Both Labour and the Tories down more or less in parallel” general trends must mean that UKIP has started to extend its appeal across the political spectrum.

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 8:03 am | Permalink

        Yes. Remember that during the last referendum there was a strong anti-EU sentiment amongst some white working-class Labour voters and the NO campaign was supported by far-left Labour figures like Tony Benn and Michael Foot and some union leaders – things are not that different now. There are also some robust anti-immigration views in that same demographic. Given this I expect plenty of Labour voters in the North will see UKIP as their only alternative if they decide not to vote Labour.

  40. uanime5
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    It implies that the continuous false propaganda from a handful of senior business people at the CBI that membership of the EU is crucial to jobs and future prosperity is having some impact.

    It could also imply that those who wish to remain in the EU tend not to vote in polls about leaving the EU unless there’s actually a prospect of leaving the EU. This would explain why in 1974 the no vote polled more than yes but in 1975 the yes vote received far more votes.

    It would be interesting to know if the number of people responding to these polls has increased.

    The arguments that Germany and the others would not wish to lose their profitable exports to us and would come to a sensible trade arrangement with us do not get a sufficient hearing.

    Given that China and the US currently have tariffs on their exports, despite selling more to the EU than the UK, I doubt that the UK will receive special treatment.

    If Germany needs tariff freee access to our car market, as she clearly does, she would have to grant us continuing tariff freee access for our vehicles to the EU, the one demand our UK based motor manufacturers legitimately make. I find it odd that anyone thinks this would not happen.

    Well given that neither Japan nor the US have a tariff free access to the EU, despite all the car they buy from Germany, the UK will probably be treated the same way.

    It’s misguided to believe that the UK will have special access to the EU’s market after leaving the EU while at the same time being able to disregard all EU law when no other country is allowed to do this.

    • matthu
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

      If tariffs are imposed, that would be a price worth paying for freedom to pursue uninhibited access to other world markets and better democratic accountability in our own country.

      Bring it on!

  41. The PrangWizard
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

    What would you do about the BBC? You know it cannot be relied upon to be fair and balanced, you agree it is a biased and campaigning organisation.

    If you believe the State should have a Public Service Broadcaster do you think it as I do that it should be financed out of general taxation? Do you think as I do that today’s BBC has far outgrown its original remit? Do you think the State should be involved in providing entertainment and sports coverage?

    And on the EU, I visited Malmesbury Abbey yesterday as I wanted to further my interest and knowledge in promoting English heritage and identity. Athelstan, the first King of England is buried somewhere on the site and his effigy is inside what’s left of the Abbey. As I studied the building plan one of the guides asked me if I had worked out what was where and when I advised him what I was looking for and why he said ‘you must be one of those who wants us out of the EU’. I didn’t realise I’d given myself away quite so obviously and after I said I was, he asked wasn’t I worried about all those jobs that would be lost? He clearly was and believed most fervently that it would happen, but he was more that just that – he was so much a Euro-enthusiast that he said ‘as an engineer I think we should admire all the early European engineers and thinkers, they were superior to our own, Faraday and so on were not a patch on them’. I don’t know who he was referring to as I don’t know much about engineers and engineering, and I didn’t ask. But a lost cause there Mr Redwood, we’ve gone so far that some prefer to express a dislike of their own countrymen’s achievements when talking about the EU.

    Should we not make a more decisive and better cause for withdrawal? Not a ‘new relationship’, it’s too woolly a phrase, it can be made to mean anything, when you use it you are forced to explain it. It is a great shame that your party cannot bring itself to say ‘out’. I don’t think you will change your leader’s mind or get your party to change – I don’t think he can be trusted in any event. Just how strongly do you want out, not enough to resign on principle it seems. I’m never quite sure where you stand, I’m left with the feeling that’s it’s on the fence, cruel as that may seem to you.

    Those who want out should be saying we want out, unequivocally, – that would certainly require a ‘new relationship’ and set a negotiating position for withdrawal. So supporting the Conservatives is not for me. But I have my own problem with political reality, the English Democrats are not going to form the next government, but I support them anyway.

    Hoping to negotiate some changes, and then staying in is not the answer, even if we get all you say which is unlikely, as we will be back again in ten years with same old gripes because further integration will have taken place against our wishes. More attempts at being reasonable will then ensue and round and around we will go.

    And I read this morning that the Church of England is on the point of collapse. Now there’s a surprise. Lack of leadership, lack of principle, lack of courage.

  42. Bryan
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

    We are Germany and France’s largest export destinations, or so I have read recently.

    We have a huge balance of trade deficit with the rest of the EU, and have had for years.

    There is no way that the EU would jeopardize this if we left.

    Our balance of trade with the rest of the World is broadly neutral, or maybe positive.

    Those insisting that we stay in must have a non-economic agenda. It would be nice to know what it is?

    • yulwaymartyn
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

      Your last paragraph:

      I think some British people don’t trust their governments; they feel entirely the opposite to how you probably feel. They are a minority.

      They remember how a prime minister went to war in Iraq on the most spurious of reasons and they remember how one of the largest demonstrations in post war Britain had absolutely no effect. They remember too that yet again a British prime minister recently tried to enter the country into yet another military conflict. They also remember that yet another British prime minister took the army to a conflict half way around the world and got away with it.

      They don’t like the House of Lords and think it undemocratic. They don’t like the Privy Council and resent that it meets behind closed doors. They think the House of Commons and in particular PMQ’s is a pantomime and a falsehood which only serves Westminster politicians.

      They don’t like the adversarial nature of English law and they would wish for the commons to be an oval shape and not the present design which they think increases conflict and reduces concensus.

      They don’t trust British human rights records and legislation and think that there should be a higher body that can dispense verdicts away from the country of origin.

      They don’t like the British education system and point to the privileged nature of private schools and point out that the UK has the highest rate of teenage pregancies in Europe. They don’t like the British attitude to alcohol in our towns and cities on a saturday night.

      Some of them don’t want to do low skilled work for little reward.

      They don’t like the first past the post system. They feel excluded.

      They don’t trust the United States. They think the US carries out all kinds of rendition flights, eaves dropping, etc and remains a dodgy ally at the best of times.

      I think they would see themselves as more European in outlook than British and believe that the EU is their natural home.

      • libertarian
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

        Martyn

        Some of what you say is true unfortunately a lot of it isn’t and thats typical of pro EU fanaticism . The UK does NOT have the highest teen pregnancy rates in Europe Bulgaria and Romania are both far higher and ireland is only just marginally behind.

        The European court of Human Rights recently failed to impose US style political advertising on the UK by just one vote.

        There are 15 ( yes FIFTEEN ) European countries that consume more alcohol per person than the UK

        We remember how a British PM took us into an illegal war and how the EU did nothing

        We remember that the EU keeps telling us that it bought about peace in Europe but during one of the most terrifying wars in Europe ( Yugoslavia) the EU did nothing

        You are wrong the vast majority of people prefer habeas corpus and trial by jury

        We may not trust the USA but we equally distrust the French and Spanish too so not sure what point you’re making there

        Yes the house of Lords is undemocratic but if you think that the EU is any different you are deluded.

        I agree FPTP isn’t much cop, but at least its avote we don’t even get that with the EU

        If people see themselves as European, and that EU is their natural home why are they living here? Are they completely stupid?

        So I think your list is a wishful fantasy and not much more

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 8:06 am | Permalink

      Easy, The EU enshrines for all time a “progressive” agenda in many areas which cannot be changed by the UK parliament – so it effectively locks-in a majority for the braodaly liberal/left agenda favoured by the leaders of all three main political parties.

  43. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    It is senior back benchers like yourself, Mr Redwood, who are in the best position to argue for OUT, or at the very least a substantial recovery of powers.

    If the CBI is not representative of British business, spell out who is.

    If the BBC has a ‘research’ arm that is substantially funded by the EU, and has a dogmatically pro EU chairman, let the public know about it. Ask why the BBC should not be privatised and forced to accept advertising.

    Identify the source of most of the ‘red tape’ so disliked by business. It arises from Directives issued by the EC. These in turn result from the ever extending EU areas of competence and QMV, which have been explicitly and progressively authorised by the Maastricht, Amsterdam, Nice and Lisbon treaties.

    Challenge the EU’s right to have so many areas of competency. The UK has no roads linked to the continent, we drive on the other side of the road, and we have precisely ONE railway link to Europe. So why is transport an area of EU competence. There are some changes to the UK structural gauge that would help long distance railway freight, but these could by authorised by the UK government – unless, of course, we want to hold out our begging bowl.

    Give chapter and verse of the way that the European Court almost invariably rules in favour of the EU whenever it is in conflict with a Member State over an issue of sovereignty.

    Say what bad effects the Working Time Directive has had on the EU economy and NHS, especially junior doctors not being allowed to work the hours that they want do when striving hard to better themselves.

    There are a thousand and one other bad things to expose. How about creating a Eurosceptic News highlighting a different problem each week? We can’t just leave everything to Christopher Booker. I think that a constant barrage of legitimate anti EU propaganda between now and 2015 would have a profound effect.

    • TT
      Posted November 22, 2013 at 1:14 am | Permalink

      totally agree………………well said

    • sjb
      Posted November 22, 2013 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

      Lindsay McDougall wrote: Say what bad effects the Working Time Directive has had on the EU economy and NHS, especially junior doctors not being allowed to work the hours that they want do when striving hard to better themselves.

      “[…] it is still possible for doctors to work longer hours by signing an opt-out clause. The [BMA’s] Junior Doctors Committee believes that this option should be retained only for those doctors who are able to determine their own working hours.”
      Source: http://bma.org.uk/practical-support-at-work/ewtd

  44. Antisthenes
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    I do believe that getting a sufficient majority of voters to leave the EU was going to be problematic as generally people are adverse to change. Anyone who has run a business knows that all to well. It does not help when lies and obfuscation by politicians, the media, vested interests and bureaucrats are allowed to go unchallenged. I do not think that these evil practices are anything new there has always being those in society who will use them to gain their ends but I wonder if society has now so degenerated that it is now much more wide spread. Euro-skeptics best chance I believe lies with treaty changes that must sooner rather than later come about because of the increased pace of integration caused by the euro crisis. That may offer a better opportunity than a referendum but who knows with those with influence and favour membership of the EU as it stands and in the direction it is being taken being quite happy to lie and cheat to gain their ends and too many of the voters gullible to those lies and very much in ignorance of the true nature of the threat to their prosperity, well being and democratic rights.

  45. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    JR: “It all goes to show that the UK can only reliably have a new relationship with the EU which is much less intrusive and frees us to have our own borders, energy and criminal justice policies if a government wins the election that can negotiate such a new deal, or can demonstrate that such a negotiation is not possible and that exit is therefore our best option.”
    You and we know that the first part of that quote is not achievable, and that the second part is the only realistic possibility. You and we know that now. Why therefore do you keep up this pretence that Cameron is going to achieve some meaningful renegotiation when you and we know right now that this is not possible? My only explanation is that, sadly, you put your party’s interests before those of your country.

  46. matthu
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

    If UKIP becomes the largest UK party in the EU parliament, it should become easier to force the other political parties to take notice.

    Labour might feel obliged to offer a referendum option of their own.
    Conservative Eurosceptics in parliament might feel inclined to slow down other debates until we get a proper debate on the merits of being governed by th EU.

    We might start with questions being raised about the implications of our being forced to abide by the Charter of Fundamental Rights – and what that means for any future asurances about having negotiated new opt-outs.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

      Some exchanges about that in the Commons today.

      I won’t offer a link to them, because by tomorrow the temporary link will have been replaced by a new permanent link, but this is part of what Bill Cash said:

      “Does my right hon. Friend acknowledge the scale of the problem with which he is now faced, both constitutionally and practically, which would lead to the bypassing of the Government’s proposals for a British Bill of Rights and the repeal of the Human Rights Act, a policy that I established when I was shadow Attorney-General and which lasted until the coalition Government came to office? Does he appreciate that the import of Mr Justice Mostyn’s ruling opens the floodgates to a tidal wave of charter-based legal action, at enormous cost to the British taxpayer and businesses, and raises a fundamental clash between Westminster supremacy and the claims of the EU and the ECJ in respect of sections 2 and 3 of the European Communities Act 1972 that goes beyond mere renegotiation? Does he on behalf of the Government recognise that the amendments I tabled to the Lisbon Act—the European Union (Amendment) Act 2008—which the then Government voted against and the then official Opposition and the Lib Dems would not support, although 48 Conservative colleagues did vote for them, would have put our exclusion from the charter beyond any doubt? Will he therefore agree to support my proposal for urgent legislation as follows: “Notwithstanding any provision of the European Communities Act 1972, nothing in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union shall be binding in any legal proceedings of the United Kingdom and shall not form part of the law applicable in any part of the United Kingdom and that this Act reaffirms the supremacy of the United Kingdom Parliament”?”

      Of course there was no substantive answer, just waffle.

      Reply I supported Bill Cash’s stance at the time and still do so.

  47. matthu
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

    You say: It all goes to show that the UK can only reliably have a new relationship with the EU which is much less intrusive and frees us to have our own borders, energy and criminal justice policies if a government wins the election that can negotiate such a new deal, or can demonstrate that such a negotiation is not possible and that exit is therefore our best option.

    This may not be sufficient if the PM is unwilling to contemplate withdrawal from the EU following a referendum that rejected his negotiated position, and Cameron is just such a PM.

    I don’t think Cameron (or many of his MPs) quite appreciate the full extent of his credibility deficit with the electorate, one which will be exposed.

    Why should the electorate trust Cameron any more than Heath when he comes to explain what he has negotiated on our behalf?

    Let’s have Cameron stand up and explain to the electorate how they were purposefully misled by the Conservative government of the day at the time of the last referendum – and try to convine them that he doesn’t intend to do that again.

    Why should the electorate trust Cameron’s assurances any more than the grand assurances we were given about an opt-out from the Charter of Fundamental Rights at the time of The Lisbon Treaty – an opt-out which we are now told amounts to absolutely nothing at all?

    Let’s have Cameron explain to the country why it was unnecessary to hold a referendum on the merits of Lisbon Treaty because certain vital opt-outs had been obtained, why those opt-outs have now in fact failed, and why his newly negotiated position is so much more iron-clad and able to provide greater protection than ever before and will not be negotiated away in future.

    Why should we take any future assurances about the outcome of our government’s relationship with the EU at face value?

    This government has sought to stifle public debate about every EU issue every step along the way. cameron is even trying to keep Nigel Farage out of any future televised parliamentary debate (presumably since the EU is such a minor issue it makes sense only to listen to the three major parties). If they were at all serious about persuading the public of the merits of remaining in the EU they could easily mandate that there would be an annual public debate every year (which TV would no doubt fall over themselves to televise) focusing on the advantages and disadvantages of being governed by the EU rather than by our own government. I suggest one-on-one debates with one Europhile vs one Euro-sceptic.

    None of this will happen, because Cameron would far rather keep the electorate in the dark about the EU and what it means for democracy and our way of life.

    So it may be a better ploy simply to wait until the EU itself tries to implement a revised treaty – which undoubtedly it will have to – and allow the electorate to reject that. That would provoke a more immediate crisis than a referendum on Cameron’s secret negotiation, the full implications of which he is unlikely ever to reveal to the electorate.

    Reply If Mr Farage were to be in the election debate so would you have to invite the party leaders of all the parties that do have MPs in the current House, which would make the debates very difficult to manage with each person getting very little time to say something or to be cross examined. I don’t see how that works.

    • matthu
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 9:50 am | Permalink

      “… you have to invite the party leaders of all the parties that do have MPs in the current House”

      This doesn’t follow at all.

      We need to identify the most important issues likely to be faced by an incoming government over the next few years and ensure that we have people to represent both sides of the debate and who represent a sizeable proportion of the electorate.

      We don’t need tokenism, particularly when they are all aligned.

      Reply You do not understand democratic politics – who decides that UKIP’s issues matters, and the Greens issues do not matter?

      • matthu
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

        2nd reply: If UKIP’s issues did not matter, Cameron would not be planning to hold a referendum, would he? Yet I guess we will all see next May whether UKIP’s issues really matter to the electorate.

        Assuming that they are shown to matter at the polls next May, I simply want someone on the stage prepared to talk about the desirability and practicality of exiting the EU, not three people waffling about being inside the EU but not being ruled by the EU.

      • matthu
        Posted November 20, 2013 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

        You suggest that I do not understand democratic politics.

        I only ask under whose auspices successive governments have been giving away our democratic rights to the EU, all the while claiming that they were not doing so, that various treaties were only “tidying up exercises” and the like?

        And now claiming that the people are incapable of recognising the most important issue of the day. Who the hell are MPs to decide what should be debated and what stifled?

  48. Paul
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

    The only way this country will vote to leave the EU is if UKIP continue to gain support. They need to get stronger – next year’s European election will be crucial. The support of Paul Sykes is great news. All those who want the UK out of the EU should vote UKIP and hope they win to further rattle the rotten old parties. The fact is that if Eurosceptic MPs think, as they should, that leaving the EU is vital to regain control of our contry in the future and to make it successful in the future, then they should move across to UKIP – help us become a more dominant force in UK politics. Conservatives often criticise UKIP – we may have no MPs yet, but we are doing more to drive this debate forward and influence public opinion to want an EU exit than the Conservatives ever have or will do.

    Reply Not so. It is us Eurosceptic Conservatives who battle this week by week in the Commons, and who persuaded Mr Cameron to make the Bloomberg speech, the first time since 1975 that a PM has said the relationship needs to change the public deserve an in/Out referendum. That was us, not UKIP.

    • matthu
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 9:55 am | Permalink

      The question is: what changed enough of your own minds to bring this about? because you did not have enough support in 2010, 2011, 2012 …

      What changed enough of your minds was the emergence of EU as an important issue in public awareness. This came first, and was not driven by MPs and in fact came about despite the best attempts of all three major political parties and the mainstream media to stifle public awareness of the issues.

  49. yulwaymartyn
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    Governments are like people. They can feel slighted just as individuals can. I find it astonishing that those wishing the UK to exit the EU do apparently not see that the remaining EU countries would exact reprisals out of spite which may not have any reflection upon the immediate financial interests of that country.

    First up will probably be the French. British agricultural exports threatened and challenged every step of the way by patriotic French farmers. Local people cheering, the mayor shrugging his shoulders. The local department promising a full enquiry etc and nothing happens … until the next time.

    This spreads to British cars and other exports. It becomes fashionable not to buy British. The French government protest at the actions of a few irate locals but nothing happens. It becomes fun to export to the British but even more fun to stop and prevent their exports.

    • libertarian
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

      Martyn

      This is deluded nonsense . The French already do that kind of thing anyway !

      According to the EU fanatics on the continent we would be mad to leave so why do you think they would harm their own livelihoods to exact spiteful revenge? What an odd train of thought you have. Revenge for what? Not wanting to be in their club? What did they do to Greenland when they left?

      You appear to acknowledge that a tit for tat embargo would hurt them more than us , so why would they do that?

      What is it with EU fantasists that they fail to understand business so comprehensively? What is it that says that prevents you understanding that VW, Merc, BMW, Renault, Peugeot, Citroen and Fiat sell vastly more cars here than we sell there?

      Do you think the French and Spanish fishing fleets would get the hump with us and refuse to play? Telling us we can jolly well keep our fishing grounds and stop allowing stuff into their nets.

      I think that your post is the most childish and preposterous set of reasons for not leaving that I’ve read so far.

    • Tom William
      Posted November 21, 2013 at 9:09 am | Permalink

      And then we would stop importing French milk, for a start, and revive our own dairy industry.

  50. Anne
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    I see absolutely no point in contributing financially to or voting for anyone to become an MP or member of any British Government that can only obey the orders of Foreigners. Especially now that Mr Cameron has divided the Nation and Country of ENGLAND into REGIONS of the EU. Scotland, is already classed as an EU Region, as is Wales.

    The people simply cannot afford to continue paying £billions to a foreign Government and those in our two Houses of Parliament, one stuffed to the roof. One or the other must go. However, before our own is destroyed, all in that wonderful building in London should be aware that our Common law constitution FORBIDS ANY OF US encouraging or PAYING FOREIGNERS TO GOVERN OVER US OR MAKING LAWS, DIRECTIVES AND REGULATIONS, EXPECTING US TO OBEY THEM ALL. Our Constitution forbids that and most of all we are mindful of our solemn Oath of Allegiance to to the British Crown and its Wearer, as are all those we have elected to sent to Govern this Country according to its Constitution that so many gave their lives for-to keep- in 1939-1945.

    If our Government does not realise where their loyalty truly lies, the people have every right to take matters into their own hands and according to law, for they may not encourge foreigners in any way-even financially- in the Governing of this OUR Great Country. It is indeed the people’s Country for they are the ones that have to fight for it and to keep it and their unique way of life. They may well use and rightly so, the General Election in 2015 as the REFERENDUM they have been denied. As they know all too well now, there is no point in voting for any of the Three major Political Parties that want to remain in the EU-forever. The EU is already planning for the future at least as far as 2050. That you can see for yourselves.

  51. Phoenix One UK
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

    Open Letter to John Redwood

    19 November 2013

    I have been an anti-EU activist for over a decade, and started with promoting the “Referendum Party” in 1997. Do you remember them? A party with just one objective, to give the British people an EU in/out referendum. If they won they would immediately give the British people a referendum then call an early election for British people to decide which party they wanted to govern the UK.

    I also promoted UKIP on number of occasions, and did the same for MPs (cross-party) like you. Note I am not a member of any political party nor have I ever been affiliated with one.

    Moving on, I have a crazy idea for you and other MPs (cross-party) to consider. It is also an idea that would rock the nation. Are you ready for it?

    1 It is not enough for any party to acquire a majority at any election to govern; they must also retain a majority to govern. Should any governing party – even with coalition – fail to retain a majority in Parliament, i believe you will find the Prime Minister would be compelled to call an early election.

    2. How many MPs are prepared to put country before party and cross the floor to UKIP even on temporary basis?

    Think on it.

    Regards
    Phoenix One UK

    Reply The answer is none. Of course rebel Conservatives could combine with Labour to bring the Coalition down, but looking at the national polling that could produce a worse answer, not a better one on current polling, so why would any Conservative try to do it? A Eurosceptic Conservative MP changing to UKIP does not increase the Eurosceptic votes in the Commons at all so it would be a futile gesture which simply meant that MP no longer had good access to Coalition Ministers, and no longer could debate with them what the Conservative whip should say.

    • matthu
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 10:25 am | Permalink

      Reply to JR:

      But if enough Conservative MPs did this immediately before the next EU MEP elections in 2014 … would there be any requirement for further access to Coalition Ministers?

      Cameron would have to call an election very likely to coincide (if you timed it well) with the swelling in support for Eurosceptism already predicted.

      Is it your view that he could delay that election?

      Reply There would only be an election if a majority of MPs wanted one, so in the very unlikely scenario you portray Labour effectively would decide whether to hold the election or not. I can ssure you Conservative MPs are n ot about to defect to UKIP, because they see absolutely no point in doing so. We need federalist MPs to defect, not Eurosceptic ones!

    • Phoenix One UK
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

      May I remind you that the people elect MPs not political parties? They elect MPs to be their voice in Parliament.

      May I further remind you of three line whip all major party leaders imposed on MPs to oppose an EU referendum, a fact that attracted national headlines. In short, the major party leaders – including Prime Minister Cameron – told MPs how to vote. Note every MP was elected by their constituents to be their voices not deprive them of that voice, and that includes both the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister.

      With regard increasing the Eurosceptic vote, I never even implied it would. I used UKIP as best platform given the press it receives, but the same could be accomplished by going independent or forming another splinter party. Doing so would reduce the government majority compelling cameron to call an early election, and reason for doing so would be clear to all.

      As for what the polls show, I know what they and the timing for such an action should it be adopted could not be better. The Conservative party are not doing as well as they would hope, and Labour is not doing much better. As for Lib Dems, forget them. They are toast.

      As for debating with Collation Ministers are concerned, I believe all of Britain if not world seen what that achieved.

      Regards
      Phoenix One UK

  52. Max Dunbar
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    We have still to get our own house in order and unity restored within the UK. A unified command wins battles, a fragmented one loses them. Without that you can forget challenging the EU or leaving it.

  53. Leslie Singleton
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

    Well blow me down–vetoed again. Presumably this time you didn’t like my mentioning UKIP but who knows? I’ll also tell you that what with Boles’s utterances I genuinely feel sorry for you and the Conservatives if you and they think that what he said is going to help the Tory cause.

  54. cosmic
    Posted November 19, 2013 at 11:34 pm | Permalink

    “Several of you will now doubtless wish to shoot the messenger, or attribute false motives to me. I merely report political reality as it is. You need to understand it if you are going to help extricate us from EU control.”

    Talking of political reality, you may have been against EEC membership in 1975, the Conservative Party was not, you may be against EU membership, the Conservative Party is not.

    So we have a Conservative PM saying that IF he gets back in, he will offer a referendum after he’s negotiated for something or other, and he’ll recommend that we stay in. No doubt his recommendation would be full backed by the BBC. Cameron isn’t neutral about the EU, he’s enthusiastically for it.

    It all looks like a tactical feint by a party that has no intention of seeing the UK leave the EU.

    Those that wish to extricate us from EU control certainly have a problem, and I submit that the Conservative party are and always have been, a part of the problem, not part of the solution.

    • Bob
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

      @cosmic
      The LibLabCon Party are the problem.
      Ted Heath signed us up.
      Wilson’s government held a referendum based on an entirely false prospectus.

      And all the time the LibDems cheer them on.

      They’re all in it together.

  55. Edward.
    Posted November 20, 2013 at 12:31 am | Permalink

    It all goes to show that the UK can only reliably have a new relationship with the EU which is much less intrusive and frees us to have our own borders, energy and criminal justice policies if a government wins the election that can negotiate such a new deal, or can demonstrate that such a negotiation is not possible and that exit is therefore our best option. Today, with no negotiations allowed, the public is by no means united in simply wishing to leave.

    Yep, but we’ll have to wait and see if the Tories can make true with their promises Mr. Redwood, if the last 40 years is anything to judge them by, then there’s not much hope at all – recognizing and excluding the editor of this blog and some notable others.

    On another note, if by some miraculous happenstance – Britain, was able to extricate themselves from this dreadful Socialist union which is become a pan European social experiment and given to enacting every baneful Frankfurt School precept and all under the guise of UN agenda 21. Indeed, the Germans would have to negotiate a trade deal solely with Britain [who else do we need?]
    I live in an area which must have a Teutonic shading or, a bias – observing almost countless motor vehicles shuttling and revving around this manor are of German manufacture. Beyond doubt, the Germans would have to negotiate favourable terms with Britain if we were outside of the clutches of the EU.

    Veritably, we need the Germans but they need us more.

  56. petermartin2001
    Posted November 20, 2013 at 4:14 am | Permalink

    The decision to stay out of the Euro a decade or more ago was probably more important that EU membership itself. Thankfully the Labour government managed to get that right but they may well have not done so without the help of the Conservative opposition at the time.

    The logic of the present situation should be that the UK stands aside, ie leaves the EU, and lets the Eurozone countries get on with it and solve their problems as best they can. If they can solve them, the Eurozone will effectively have to function as a single country. A kind of United States of Europe. If they can’t, it will be just a matter of time before the EU falls apart.

    Either way, leaving the EU, but wishing them well, is the best option for all.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 10:22 am | Permalink

      We should not be wishing into existence a new country, a European federation, which legally must eventually encompass the whole of Europe apart from the two EU member states which have treaty opt-outs from ever having to join the euro, the UK and Denmark, and any countries which stay outside the EU. As the Danish political class want to get Denmark into the euro, and as the Norwegian political class want to get Norway into the EU with the legal obligation to then join the euro, basically it would develop towards us and the Swiss still being outside that new single country and everybody else being in it, from the western shores of the Irish Republic right across Europe including the Balkans and into the Caucasus and possibly in the end Turkey as well. And at some point in the future a UK government of whichever party or parties would declare that our position was no longer tenable and so we must also join the euro, with all the federalising laws that the present UK government is urging on other countries while pretending that they would never apply to us, and if it seemed too risky to put that to a UK referendum then there would be no UK referendum.

  57. John Wrake
    Posted November 20, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    So many of the comments on this post are concerned about a referendum on EU membership – when – how – the possible result, and the arguments constantly turn on whether a democratic government or democratic M.P.s have the power or the will to oppose the status quo, or to do anything outside the traditional rules of procedure.

    the New Testament parable of the mote and beam comes to mind. So let us establish a few facts.

    Democracy refers, not to politicians or parties, but to the people and their rule. In our case, that rule has been established as the rule of law and the law is defined as Common Law and is described in the foundation documents of this nation. They are the written parts of our Constitution which predate Parliament in some cases and are always superior to Statute Law.

    That Constitution has been unlawfully denied by the words and actions of treasonous politicians over many years and of all three main political parties. Some are malicious, wishing the destruction of the nation and the lawful power of the Sovereign, working for other forms of government despite their oaths of allegiance. Others are ignorant of the historic Constitution which defines our nation as a Constitutional Monarchy.
    Yet others are careless of such things, wanting only power and influence to further their own thoughts and ambitions.

    Some undoubtedly seek to serve the nation with honesty and probity, but friendships and misplaced loyalties tie their hands. Unhappily, they are a minority.

    The people are being deceived, they are being cheated of their rightful possessions, some of those who protest are unlawfully assaulted – all contrary to Common Law. Power has been ceded to foreign authority, contrary to the Constitution.

    Where are the leaders prepared to say ‘Enough is enough. We must return to the Rule of Law’
    and make the moves that show they mean it.

    John Wrake.

  58. Antisthenes
    Posted November 20, 2013 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    In my previous comment I talk about the lies coming from the europhiles and not being challenged. So for those UKIP supporters where is UKIP they when it is most needed. They are the most important body that people will listen to on the anti-EU side but I observe that they are not to be heard when the europhiles make what are obvious scaremongering statements. Nigel Farage should be savaging their deceitful utterances and showing them up for bullies and liars that they are. If UKIP were to man up but then Farage does not do detail and his party does not appear to either he could turn the tide towards euro-skepticism at a stroke. All Farage does these days is prat about immigration which is not the battlefield that europhiles are waging the campaign on but the economics of membership using wildly inaccurate figures in which to do so. If (many ed) immigrants arrive after January next year then that will be an argument for then if they do not then UKIP’s argument now will look very lame and much credibility will be lost.

  59. The PrangWizard
    Posted November 21, 2013 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    I’ve just read Douglas Carswell’s piece about student loans to Romanians and the refusal of a student loan to an English student ( he says British of course), because she lived in Germany for a while. He seems to think the Tory party ought to become an EU ‘outist’ party. Do you believe it is time for you, Mr Redwood, to become an outright ‘outist’ too? There is no middle way in all this. Have faith.

    Reply I voted for Out last time we had a vote. What part of No do you not understand?

  60. Christopher Ekstrom
    Posted November 26, 2013 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to “conservative” MODS like Cast Iron Cameron & Spock Redwood!

    UKIP is the only truly English political party!!!

  61. Hardey Leone
    Posted May 27, 2014 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    JUST leave now. Maybe you are doing ok but the UK is in poverty. This EU thing has not worked out. 10 years on and it has never been so bad. Get out!

  • 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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