EU power keeps on growing

 

The UK has battled to keep its banking and financial system out of EU regulation and taxation. We have been assured that the EU will not impose taxes on us against our will. We have been assured the UK will not have to be part of any future Euroland bail out. The UK government negotiated an opt out for UK banks from some of the regulations the EU requires of others. So far so good.

11 member states of the EU plan to press ahead with a Financial Transactions Tax despite the opposition of the UK and a majority of the member states. They will seek to impose this on some business in London as well as on business in Paris and Frankfurt. This week we read of legal advice concerning the UK’s partial opt out from banking regulations. The EU is  now claiming that banking is part of the single market, so the UK cannot opt out.

The federal ECB and ECJ continue in  their quest to harmonise and control most of EU life. The ECJ is often unhelpful to carefully crafted exemptions and opt outs which UK governments have successfully negotiated. It should make us doubly wary of what the EU might offer when the renegotiation gets underway. One of the issues in the negotiation must be the issue of trust, and how to avoid the Court overruling us when it suits them to do so.

The City has been a longstanding friend of the EU, believing it will increase its business reach. Now the City is increasingly in the front line in dispute with its new regulators and masters. The EU has taken a different view on remuneration, proprietary trading, short selling, the Financial Transaction Tax and banking regulation than many in the City wish. Will this start to change City enthusiasm for continued membership on current terms. The City will not disagree with the EU on the things that matter to more voters, but if the City ceases to be such a cheerleader for the EU it might make a difference to others in the debate.

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125 Comments

  1. ian wragg
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    The benefits of the city is overstated. All the supposed receipts to the government were wiped out during the crash when the taxpayer nationalised all the losses. It seems that all the bonus payments continue regardless whilst we take a massive financial hit.
    The ECJ is very anti British and will do anything to hamstring our businesses.
    What still puzzles me is how can Germany be building dozens of lignite fired power stations when we are still being forced to shut our coal fired stations down and then giving China control of our nuclear power plants.
    Politicians are a disgrace who continue to destroy our country because they have no idea how to run anything and will interfere in all aspects of life putting the needs of Britain last. Opposition looms large.

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted June 22, 2014 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

      Yes, indeed. We must never forget that the price that Gordon Brown’s government payed for RBS and Lloyds shares (£66 billion) was DOUBLE what they were worth in 2012. That was £33 billion of your money and mine flushed down the toilet.

  2. Mark B
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:58 am | Permalink

    John Redwood MP said;
    “The EU is now claiming that banking is part of the single market, so the UK cannot opt out.”

    Technically they are correct. The free movement of Services & Money is pert of the EEA but, the EEA does not cover taxation. So there is room for dispute. Its about freedom of movement, not taxation. Also, if the EU can therefore regulate and tax our Banks, it can also raid our Bank accounts like it did with Cyprus, can it not ? Worth thinking about.

    “One of the issues in the negotiation must be the issue of trust, and how to avoid the Court overruling us when it suits them to do so.”

    This is absolute tosh ! The ECJ only interprets the laws that Member States have to abide by via their treaty obligations. And there will be no ‘meaningful’ negotiations because, to have something concrete, you will need a treaty change. And before that, you need a treaty convention etc. None of this is even remotely on the horizon. Keep peddling the myth if you want to, few are going to believe you.

    “The City will not disagree with the EU on the things that matter to more voters, but if the City ceases to be such a cheerleader for the EU it might make a difference to others in the debate.”

    The ‘City’, whatever that is, does not give a fig about the EU or voters. It cares about itself and works in its own interests. If the EU is in its interests, it goes along, if not, it relocates. Same with any business – follow the money.

    The EU is bankrupt ! It needs cash, lots of it. The German’s do not want to finance it, much less print money for it. So they tun to our ‘useless idiots’ and see a big fat juicy cash cow. I leave the dear reader to fill in the rest.

    • Jerry
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 10:42 am | Permalink

      @Mark B: “And there will be no ‘meaningful’ negotiations because, to have something concrete, you will need a treaty change. And before that, you need a treaty convention etc. None of this is even remotely on the horizon. Keep peddling the myth if you want to, few are going to believe you.”

      Maybe, maybe not, the Lisbon Treaty does have a self amending clause, this has already been used by the eurocrats during the Euro crisis. The real question is if there is any will to accommodate the UK, if the EU needs us (without the cash cow called the City of London) more than we need them then there will be but I’m in agreement with your last paragraph when saying that…

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

        “Maybe, maybe not, the Lisbon Treaty does have a self amending clause, this has already been used by the eurocrats during the Euro crisis.”

        Maybe you’d care to enlarge on that interpretation of events.

        My interpretation is that the member state governments agreed to breach the EU treaties to preserve the euro intact, as later admitted by Lagarde, and then at Merkel’s urging the member state governments agreed to amend Article 136 TFEU in order to provide a secure legal base for a permanent bailout facility, the European Stability Mechanism, which treaty change was then approved by the national parliaments.

        That latter process was not the Lisbon Treaty somehow amending itself, and nor was it the Lisbon Treaty being amended by “eurocrats” in general but specifically by the political leaders of the EU member states with the support of their respective national parliaments, including our Prime Minister and our Parliament.

        And the Act of our Parliament to approve that EU treaty change, despite Cameron having gained nothing substantive in return for agreeing to it, may be seen here:

        http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2012/15/contents

        “European Union (Approval of Treaty Amendment Decision) Act 2012″

        • Jerry
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

          Dennis, take a look at this, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Lisbon#Revision_procedures, note the sub-section “Simplified revision procedure”. In the context of the UK renegotiations, we are hardly going to be asking for an increase in EU competences of the Union – in the context of the Euro crisis the EU wasn’t technically increasing its competences, just clarifying some of the rules relating to the ECB – I don’t see anything that would stop the Lisbon Treaty being amended following any UK renegotiations.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

            That wikepedia entry told me nothing that I didn’t already know from looking at the actual treaties, and it confirmed that your claim:

            “… the Lisbon Treaty does have a self amending clause, this has already been used by the eurocrats during the Euro crisis.”

            was incorrect.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

            @Denis Cooper: Oh I see, we are dancing on a pin about the language used, sorry if I’m not as legalistic and long winded as you are. The fact is there are two methods to change the Lisbon Treaty without having to create another treaty (the self amending clause) which is what many eurosceptics seem to think.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 9:54 am | Permalink

            Jerry, you need to gain a better understanding of these things before you start deriding other people for their ignorance. The Lisbon Treaty is not “self-amending”, if you put a copy into a filing cabinet and come back to look at it some months you won’t find that it has changed itself. Any amendments made are made by the human beings leading the national governments with the approval of their national parliaments and in some cases with the approval of their national electorates in a referendum. Article 48 TEU on revision of the treaties provides routes for them to do that, through either the ordinary revision procedure or one of the simplified procedures. The amendments may take the form of a major new treaty to amend the existing treaties, as in the case of the amending Treaty of Lisbon and before that Nice and so on back, or they may take the form of a new protocol added to the existing treaties, as in the case of the minor treaty change to allow three surplus German MEPs to keep their seats legally rather than illegally, or they may take the form of a decision, as in the case of the treaty change to provide a legal base in the treaties for the establishment of the European Stability Mechanism. In addition there are “passerelle” clauses which permit the EU leaders to make changes, for example transferring certain decisions from unanimity to qualified majority voting, if they all agree to do that and no national parliament objects. In no case does the treaty amend itself, it is amended by the national leaders and the issue is what degree of control the national parliaments and/or peoples should be able to exercise over their national leaders when they are operating within the EU. That is why the European Union Act 2011 lays down what the control must be in our case not only for treaty changes through Article 48 TEU but also through the clauses listed as passerelle clauses, see sections 28 -30 in the Explanatory Notes here:

            http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2011/12/notes

            You can get it right, or you can choose to mislead people.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

            Still dancing I see Dennis

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted June 22, 2014 at 7:27 pm | Permalink

      No, no, no, no! No Treaty signed by a UK government is for ever and no UK parliament can bind its successor. There is absolutely NOTHING to prevent the UK government repealing our Acts of Accession to the Maastricht, Nice, Amsterdam and Lisbon Treaties unilaterally on day 1 after taking office.

  3. Peter van Leeuwen
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:01 am | Permalink

    It would seem rather obvious that with financial services in a single market, no unfair competitive advantages should go to any country, and as such not to the UK either. Cameron already tried to get special City treatment at the December 2011 summit and was defeated. It is not about a court being anti-British but about providing a level playing field to all. In a single market for financial services the City stands to gain a lot, already being such a massive financial hub. However, further opening of the single market to all financial services is far from completed. From within the EU a stronger lobby could bring this about it would seem to me. That would make it interesting for the City to have the UK remain an EU member.

    • libertarian
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:40 am | Permalink

      Peter van Leeuwen

      Its only obvious to someone in the dark, wearing blinkers and detached from reality. Finance, banking and trading is a GLOBAL business and most of the top 20 firms aren’t European at all. There ISN’T a single market for financial transactions.

      The markets are run out of major hubs in London, New York, Hong Kong and Zurich. The EU isn’t even in the game.

      You really ought to get out from your liitle European bunker and discover the world

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 10:30 am | Permalink

        @libertarian:
        Do I notice a hint of emotion (exasperation) here?
        Global and local don’t exclude one another. There happen to be several banks in this village and a tank station in the street, even though oil trade, gas trade, arms trade, commodities trade and even the trade in smartphones, cars, software products and many others can be seen as global. The City tries hard to open up the single market further. Why would they do that?
        Staying away from banking and trading (leaving it to the big boys like you) is like putting once trust once again on those who couldn’t prevent this recent huge financial crisis, and didn’t even see it coming.

        • forthurst
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

          PvL “Staying away from banking and trading (leaving it to the big boys like you) is like putting once trust once again on those who couldn’t prevent this recent huge financial crisis, and didn’t even see it coming.”

          …unless they were directly involved in engineering it, according to your fellow Dutchman :

          “Derivatives, Or: How The Money Power Created The Greatest Depression:

          Let us first reestablish that recessions and depressions are caused by deflation. Here’s the graph showing the money supply over the last few years, courtesy of Shadowstats:

          (Graph here of M1,M2,M3 over last ten years to be found on “real currencies wordpress” website)

          Let us analyze a little what this graph shows. M3 is the main issue here. This is because it is the widest definition of the money supply, including long term deposits and several other forms of liquidity, including some derivatives. M3 is most telling about what is happening in the shadow banking system.

          In the first place, M3 is first shown in red, then in blue. This is because Greenspan ended Fed reporting of M3 in 2006. An unbelievable scandal, off handedly done away with as a cost cutting measure.

          However, we can clearly see the malicious intent here, because Greenspan was just hiding what he knew what was already starting: a massive inflation, followed by a legendary crash in M3.”

          http://realcurrencies.wordpress.com/2014/06/15/derivatives-or-how-the-money-power-created-the-greatest-depression/

      • JoeSoap
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

        Yes but when the City has to compete against the Far East like those of us in manufacturing rather than rely on government goodies (royal mail floats, complex legal cases, London-centric property deals) then perhaps the chickens will come home to roost in this game. Does the UK government give equal competing rights to overseas insurance, banking and legal opinion as it does to outsourcing manufacturing?
        maybe the eu has a point.

  4. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:14 am | Permalink

    I thought the EU believed in economic liberalism , although with it’s executives swearing allegiance to the EU’s policies there must be a lot of tension there, as perhaps you and your party would feel with differing view.

    If I were trading with my own money and not depositors money ,I would feel annoyed at restrictions, especially if in the long run it would benefit the depositors.

    • A different Simon
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

      Look at the restriction that disposals of International equities held in self invested stocks and shares ISA’s need to be settled in Sterling .

      A nice 2% earner for the financial services industry on the currency conversion for next to no work expended or risk taken .

      Just like so many of the regulations which are supposedly there to protect retail investors or to ensure that people don’t exceed their lifetime tax-free limit which are in reality just a sop to insiders .

  5. Mike Stallard
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    “The main task of the EBA is to contribute to the creation of the European Single Rulebook in banking whose objective is to provide a single set of harmonised prudential rules for financial institutions throughout the EU.” (Europa website.)

    I have been re-reading M. Barroso’s Humboldt Speech. I was going to get some proof quotes out of it. Actually they would be too long. But the whole idea is for “More Europe” and this definitely includes banking and extending the Eurozone to all countries within the Union, although he very guardedly admits that the UK is a special case. (For the moment?)

    What worries me is this: has anyone else been following M. Barroso’s speeches, where we are allowed a brief glimpse of the thinking behind all those secret meetings? Mr Redwood, you seem surprised at this banking development. That worries me.

  6. Lifelogic
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    Cameron will roll over, allow the EU to tickle his tummy and ask them how much more of our money they need – one assumes. When will he finally wake up to this economic and power war by other means when will he finally do something other than issue more vacuous words that he does not mean?

    • Hope
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

      He will be out office by this time. It will matter not what he thinks, not that many us of us believe anything he says.

      I seem to recall Cameron made rude remarks before the EU elections about Farage when Farage claimed he felt uncomfortable on the tube. The latest survey figures overwhelmingly agrees with Nigel, so where does that put Cameron? Even Lamont wrote sensibly about immigration, again where does that leave Cameron thinking that we are all fruitcakes and closet racists. Can all the country be wrong and racist?

      Osborne made a pathetic comparison with Thatcher today about cutting taxes, Islamic fundamentalism etc. He is really deluded if he thinks people will believe him after his track record to date on any of the issues he raised. The EU does not like nation states and the current Tories have welcomed every aspect to rid our nation of its culture, customs and beliefs ie wearing cross in the work place, translation services, equal opportunities babble that is the opposite of equality etc. Baroness Warsi was recently reported to have addressed a public meeting in Urdu! How does this promote integration into the British way of life or does her actions further promote a Balkanisation of a mixed communities? The same for police in Page Hall, Sheffield learning to speak Roma? Once more, a problem Cameron failed to recognise and failed to do anything about.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

        I suppose you should define what racism is before you start accusing people of it. Like most words is has a different meaning to different people, it is now just a term of abuse used for anyone the left do not like.

        Mr “Morally Repugnant tax avoidance” Osborne with his IHT (£1M ratting on) and his 299+ tax increases, his attack on private pensions and his pissing of cash down the many drains of green crap, the pigis loans, the EU, poorly run overseas aid, a dysfunctional in three letters N H S (1000 deaths a month is it), HS2, a hugely bloated over paid state sector …….. This pointless waste all looks very “morally repugnant” to me. Why is he doing it?

        • Hope
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

          My understanding is that you only have to perceive an act to be racist for it to be recorded as a hate crime, including a third party.

          As Dennis rightly pointed out above, Cameron w happy to let the EU countries break treaties to save the Euro, change the rules and got nothing in return. Would you trust him to negotiate your behalf? The same person who gave the Lib Dems 50 percent say in government having only 9 percent of the seats. Some negotiator!

        • Bazman
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

          Maybe you could tell us what pointless waste means to you? As we have found out it means any education or infrastructure run by the state if paid for by the state, his is different. The companies and landlords leaching of the stater are entirely private and would exist without the state anyway. Private state owned companies are good as long as they are no owned by the British state. Nurses, police, immigration workers are all overpaid as they are paid by the state. Private are not as they are paid by private companies via the state at greater cost. All state paid for activities should be stopped and the gap filled by the private sector. Can’t pay as it is to expensive is to bad. Earn more, but not from the state. Unless you are a foreign state owned company. Are you able to follow this?

      • bigneil
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

        Regarding the comments of Mr Cameron about Mr Farage – and his supporters – -As Mr Cameron has now seemingly changed his tune -and apparently his policies with the recent “teach Britishness” – whereas we were all labelled racists for bringing up the problem facing us – -now that Mr Cameron has altered his tune – -is he now calling HIMSELF a racist? – or is the term only for others?

      • Excalibur
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 12:37 am | Permalink

        Thank you, Hope. During the Chinese premiers visit a few days ago, it was announced that visas for Chinese nationals wishing to visit Britain would be relaxed. They would follow generally the conditions pertaining in Europe under the Schengen agreement. We owe the Chinese after selling them short in Malaya and our failure to accept HK nationals holding British passports. What has not been publicised at all as far as I can see is that the relaxed immigration requirements would also be extended to India. etc ed

  7. A.Sedgwick
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    This why so many of us old Conservatives are voting Ukip. Cameron and those MPs who think any serious renegotiation is possible may as well manifest that a British team will land on Mars before 2020.

    Cameron blew it in 2010 by reneging on a Lisbon referendum and unless he manifests an in/out referendum in 2015, forgetting this renegotiation fantasy, he will fall short again, but this time into political oblivion.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:42 am | Permalink

      Renegotiation is just a fantasy another long grass strategy. Cameron blew it when he threw the last election with his cast iron ratting, green crap and left wing, high tax, big government agenda. He has done nothing to rectify the position for the next election he might even have lost Scotland at this rate.

      He is clearly more interest in getting China to fund his HS2 folly and having William Hague & Angelina Jolie doing photo ops than anything real.

      • Hope
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

        Do not forget the importance of including plastic bags in the Queen’s speech.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

          Indeed plastic bags that is real the issue facing the nation! A true World statesman!

          • Hope
            Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

            He followed Brown on this one!

      • JoeSoap
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

        So that weird photo op didn’t make you feel proud to ne British?
        Shame!

    • Jerry
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 10:57 am | Permalink

      @A.Sedgwick: “Cameron blew it in 2010 by reneging on a Lisbon referendum”

      No he didn’t, although he might have blow it by entering a coalition and thus removing any possibility of having an In/Out referendum instead, which by then any vote on the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty would have been in effect.

      Cameron made it very clear at the time of the pledge that any referendum on the Lisbon Treaty was dependant upon the Treaty having not having been ratified by the UK Parliament before hand. Weasel words for some perhaps but the facts non the less.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

        David Lidington being torn to shreds by Andrew Neill:

        http://blogs.independent.co.uk/2013/01/28/camerons-public-plot-to-stay-in-the-eu/

        “DL: No what David Cameron had said on Lisbon was that if it had not come into legal force by the General Election we would hold a referendum to decide whether the British people –

        AN: Actually his famous Sun articles where he said this he did not put that caveat in.

        DL: He had said very consistently –

        AN: He had not put the caveat in.

        DL: He and William Hague as Shadow Foreign Secretary had said very consistently that the referendum was linked to whether Lisbon has come into force or not, and when it did, when every country had ratified it and it came into force he and William Hague made very public statements to say that that matter was now closed and we would take things forwards on different –

        AN: No, we’ve been through the cuttings and nowhere did Mr Cameron make it clear that he was only talking about a situation where Lisbon hadn’t become law.”

        • Chris
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

          I understand that it was also quite clearly expressed by Cameron, with no provisos, on the Conservative Party website.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:30 am | Permalink

            @Chris: Even if that was so, the logic of such a pledge should not have needed spelling out, why people are (still) arguing the toss about this shows only two things, either these people are using it as a political brick-bat against people they want to discredit or they really are not as bright as they think they are!

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

            No, Jerry, the “cast-iron guarantee” in the Sun article was unqualified, and no doubt it would be and was taken by readers as being unqualified, and then under pressure Cameron retracted.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

            @Denis: What the Sun printed</b. is their business, and if they misunderstood or spun it incorrectly then that is their problem to, not Cameron's. As I said, anyone who actuality understands EU process would know that once ratified the Lisbon Treaty could not be unratified, even more so once enacted.

          • APL
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:24 pm | Permalink

            Denis Cooper: “the “cast-iron guarantee” in the Sun article was unqualified,”

            And it wasn’t a coincidence Cameron chose the Sun to publish his lie in. The paper that claimed it was ‘The Sun wot won it”, is a very significant paper for the leader of a party that wants to gain a majority in Parliament.

            Whether you like the Sun or not, worship or hate Murdoch, Cameron knew he was going to be read by a very significant ( and probably one of the least discerning, but perhaps most patriotic ) Tory voting demographic.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 9:59 am | Permalink

            Jerry, it was not the Sun reporting or misreporting what Cameron had said, it was the Sun obliging him by printing an article that he and his colleagues had prepared and which appears with him as author and over his signature.

            This latest “the Sun didn’t print what he had written in his article” excuse is just about the most pathetic so far.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

            @Denis (and others). You seem obsessed by what was printed in the Sun, not by what Cameron actually (has) said in person (on radio or TV interviews or indeed in the Commons) nor the legalistic logic of the whole situation, you can’t be that ignorant so I can only assume that you wish to throw brick-bats whilst hoping no one will notice, only trouble is that the only people you are convincing are those already converted to an anti Cameron cause, no one else. Carry on preaching to the converted is you must!

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 22, 2014 at 6:58 am | Permalink

            So what you are implying is that Cameron put in an article to be attributed to him as its author and to appear over his signature, but the Sun printed something different while still attributing it to him as author and putting his signature at the bottom. Isn’t it a bit strange that he didn’t complain about that at the time? Well of course he didn’t, because it is just a load of twaddle you have come up with to try to excuse Cameron from giving an unqualified “cast-iron guarantee” to the public through a mass circulation newspaper and then retreating from it over the following few weeks.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

          Exactly there was no caveat in the Sun statement, and anyway it was needed even more if it came into force not less. That blatant ratting, his left wing modernising agenda, his green crap agenda and Clegg on TV (on an equal basis) were the reasons he chucked the last sitting duck election.

          And was is Osborne’s excuse for ratting on IHT? Not even now promised for next term, just forgotten about – not that they will have another term at this rate.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

            What is Cameron’s excuse over the “in three letters N H S” too. Virtually nothing has been done to improve it at all. Some priority – plastic bags are clearly rather more important.

            How do you tell if a politician’s lying – they move their lips?

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

            Ah, but although it’s perfectly true that Cameron made an unqualified “cast-iron guarantee” of a referendum in an article attributed to him and published over his signature, apparently that counts for nothing because he chose to have it published in the Sun. If it had been published in the Times then maybe it would have counted for more, maybe Jerry wouldn’t then be denying that he made that promise. Of course now we have to wonder about the precise status of Cameron’s recent articles in the Sunday Telegraph, whether Jerry thinks that newspaper is of sufficiently high quality for those articles to count for at least something. Maybe that would be less than if Cameron had got those articles printed in the Times, but much more than if he had only got them printed in the Sun.

        • Jerry
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

          @Denis Cooper: “AN: Actually his famous Sun articles where he said this he did not put that caveat in.”

          Oh right, so we should take the word of of a printed newspaper cutting, and the insistence of an ex editor of the same newspaper group rather than the comments made in several live or unedited interviews on both radio and television.

          Even if Cameron did not explicitly explain to the Sun readership EU process, it was clear to anyone who did have an understanding of EU process (and the Lisbon Treaty) that once ratified the Lisbon Treaty could not be unratified by a member state and then remain a member, due to the need for all current and future members to ratify the Lisbon Treaty. Do you really think that the rest of the EU member states would have stood back and allowed the UK to in effect unravel the entire EU institution?!…

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

            Don’t be silly, Jerry, it was Cameron’s own article published over his signature, and I still have a copy of it, and while he could easily have added a few words such as “provided the treaty has not come into force” he didn’t.

            Of course the UK instrument of ratification for the Treaty of Lisbon could have been revoked; instead Cameron tried to pretend that it no longer existed.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

            @Denis: I though you said it was published in The Sun, not direct from Conservative Party Central Office…

            I am also sorry that you obviously have no clue as to how EU process works, never mind how the Lisbon Treaty works, by the time the LT could have been unratified it was enacted, thus any unratifiying would have been a caused a Brexit! I have never said that the UK could not have had a In/Out referendum, nor has Cameron, but that is not what he pledged.

            Carry on dishing out the brick bats though, the only person you are hurting is yourself as they keep bouncing back against that brick wall of common sense and logic.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 10:21 am | Permalink

            It was published in the Sun; HIS OWN ARTICLE, attributed to him, was printed in the Sun OVER HIS SIGNATURE.

            “I am also sorry that you obviously have no clue as to how EU process works, never mind how the Lisbon Treaty works, by the time the LT could have been unratified it was enacted, thus any unratifiying would have been a caused a Brexit!”

            I am sorry that like Cameron you are prepared to try to take advantage of the widespread ignorance of the general public on the technicalities of treaties, and moreover like him you are prepared to resort to rewriting history.

            The argument that it is impossible to have a retrospective referendum on a treaty which has already come into force is shown up as false by the simple fact that we had just such a referendum in 1975.

            There was absolutely no reason why we should not have had a referendum in 2010 after the LAST general election, if Cameron had won, in which referendum he could have asked us whether we wanted to accept the treaty changes embodied in the Treaty of Lisbon, treaty changes which he said he opposed; and if the answer had been “No” Cameron would have been in the same position then as he now claims he wants to be in after the NEXT general election, of seeking renegotiation of the treaties so that the EU would become more acceptable to the British people.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

            @Denis: “It was published in the Sun”

            Go ask someone in Liverpool if The Sun can be trusted to print the unabridged truth [1]. The fact that something is printed in a newspaper proves nothing. Even less so when there are unedited recordings of the same pledge being given to other media outlets, even if they do have added clarification for those who failed to understand the legal implications of an already ratified Treaty.

            @Denis: “I am sorry that like Cameron you are prepared to try to take advantage of the widespread ignorance of the general public on the technicalities of treaties, and moreover like him you are prepared to resort to rewriting history.”

            That is rich, it is you and your fellow brick-bat throwers who are trying to rewrite history, even quoting a daily newspaper that take advantage of the widespread ignorance of the general public on a daily basis to do so. Stop trying to rewrite the legal bases of the EU if not the UN and international laws!

            @Denis: “There was absolutely no reason why we should not have had a referendum in 2010 after the LAST general election, if Cameron had won”

            Very true, but he didn’t win a clear majority did he (thanks to UKIP), having to co-exist with just about the most europhile political party in the UK, and as I’ve said before, any referendum would have to be a day facto In/Out question by 2010. It could not have be a referendum on the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty as it had been ratified (and come into effect), understand yet?

            This has now become a circular argument…

            [1] I think I am safe in that John, considering that the newspaper has already admitted their error and apologised.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 22, 2014 at 7:14 am | Permalink

            “It could not have be a referendum on the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty as it had been ratified (and come into effect), understand yet?”

            I’ve always understood that Parliament is sovereign and can order that a referendum be held on anything it likes, so unless you are now denying the sovereignty of Parliament – which would not surprise me – clearly there could have been a referendum on whether the British people wished to accept the amendments to the EU treaties embodied in the Lisbon Treaty, even though that amending treaty had come been previously be ratified by the UK and had come into force.

            Which Lisbon Treaty still exists as a treaty, a separate legal document, and may be read here on the EU’s website:

            http://old.eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:12007L/TXT:EN:NOT

            “Treaty of Lisbon amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community, signed at Lisbon, 13 December 2007″

            Despite Cameron’s pretence that it no longer existed.

            As Cameron said that he was opposed to that package of treaty amendments it would have been expected that he would campaign on the side of “no”, rejecting that treaty; and if the outcome had been “no” he would have had little choice to do then in 2010 what he now promises to do in 2015 – seek a renegotiation of our treaty relationship with the other EU countries.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

        No he did not, his escape fig leaf was the absurd claim that a treaty is no longer a treaty once ratified (it is just part of EU law). This clearly is simply B*** S***.

        When David Cameron promised the British people a referendum on the Lisbon treaty, there were no caveats, no footnotes, no time limits. He offered a “cast-iron guarantee”, and to the readers of the Sun, no less: there would be a vote on Lisbon.

        Clearly once ratified the vote is needed even more not less! The man clearly deserved to be history. Miliband will be worse but better than watching the ratter rat again.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

          “deserves to be history”

        • Jerry
          Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

          @Lifelogic: “No he did not, his escape fig leaf was the absurd claim that a treaty is no longer a treaty once ratified (it is just part of EU law).”

          How many nuns can you see dancing on the pin head?

          Indeed, just part of EU law, a Treaty that required unanimity of all 28 member states, what is moire, not only had the UK parliament ratified the Treaty but the Treaty had come into effect before the 2010 UK general election, ho-hum…

          “He offered a “cast-iron guarantee”, and to the readers of the Sun, no less: there would be a vote on Lisbon.

          Sorry LL, you might like to take the printed word of a newspaper with past form of printing what it thinks the readership want to hear, never mind having a very on-off relationship with both of the two major political parties in the UK over the last 40 years, but I do my best to listen to either live audio/TV interview broadcasts or at least recordings of such interviews broadcast as if live (in other words with little or no significant editing).

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 10:27 am | Permalink

            It was Cameron’s own article; to say that we shouldn’t have believed it because it was printed in the Sun is scraping the barrel, but in any case if that is your argument then why do you think we should believe anything in any of his other articles that he has had printed since or has printed in the future? Do you suppose that if he authors an article printed in the Guardian, as he has done more than once, then that would be more credible than if he had exactly the same article printed in the Sun?

          • Jerry
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

            Denis, the printed word will always loose out on credibility to the unedited spoken word, why do you think politicos clamour for the live broadcast interview.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 22, 2014 at 7:18 am | Permalink

            Pathetic, Jerry, you demean yourself while doing nothing at all to exculpate your party leader who does not deserve such undying loyalty from you.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 22, 2014 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

            Dennis, resorting to personal abuse does your argument no good what so ever.

            Anyone with a clue knew that once ratified the only way to unrecertify the Lisbon Treaty would be to leave the EU, that is why there was such a rush by the EU to get the blasted thing ratified by all 28 member states before someone like Cameron could come along and derail the whole thing (again).

            I’ve always had you down as an intelligent person, someone who could see the whole picture, so I can only conclude that you are indeed throwing brick bats to bolster an agenda.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 23, 2014 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

            On your logic Cameron’s projected renegotiation of the EU treaties must also lead to the UK leaving the EU. The only difference being that it would be five years later than it would have been if Cameron had stuck with what he had said about the total unacceptability of the Lisbon Treaty.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

      “Cameron blew it in 2010 by reneging on a Lisbon referendum”

      Cameron blew it for the first time in October 2007 when he allowed himself to be pressured into retracting the unqualified “cast-iron guarantee” of a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty he had given in the Sun on September 26th 2007, and then he blew it for a second time in June 2008 when the Irish had voted against it and he had the chance to reinstate his unqualified pledge of a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty if it wasn’t declared to be officially dead, and then he blew it for a third time on November 4th 2009 when he announced than after two years of threatening “we would not let matters rest there” he would in fact let matters rest there and swallow the Lisbon Treaty whole as a fait accompli, a decision which the Tory MEP Daniel Hannan has condemned as follows:

      http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/danielhannan/100269924/eurosceptics-are-in-danger-of-losing-everything/

      “That decision was a terrible error, and probably cost the party an absolute majority the following year. I thought it unconscionable, and resigned from the Euro front bench in protest.”

      While also trying to pretend that the treaty no longer existed anyway.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

        Exactly the man is contemptible.

      • Jerry
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

        Denis the facts (details) are somewhat different, please deal with the facts and not the writings of someone who has their own agenda, in fact in my opinion the MEP in question should be kicked out of the Tory party, let him go and try his luck in UKIP…

        I hope I don’t get modded for saying that!

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

          The facts (details) were and are as I have stated them, and are not changed by your attempts to rewrite history.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

            @Denis: What ever…

  8. Jerry
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    What are you saying John, it sounds to me that you might be starting to have doubts over Cameron’s prospects for renegotiation!

    “This week we read of legal advice concerning the UK’s partial opt out from banking regulations. The EU is now claiming that banking is part of the single market, so the UK cannot opt out.”

    I am becoming increasingly reminded of that old phrase, when hunting something down, “Softly softly, catchee the monkey”, if the EU is now saying that Banking is a part of the single market one has to wonder if they really didn’t know this all along – we British are far to trusting, no, gullible at times it would seem, and where the hell were our own highly paid civil service lawyers and experts etc?

    “Will this start to change City enthusiasm for continued membership on current terms.”

    More importantly, to the current residents of Downing Street, will they carry on supporting a broadly pro-EU party, or will the events of 25 years ago play out in reverse, or perhaps just jump ship like some did 20 years ago…

    Interesting, if dangerous times, it would seem.

    • Hope
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

      The opting in of the EU arrest warrant tells you all you need to know about Cameron’s negotiating skills and how to claim powers back from the EU.

      • Jerry
        Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

        @Hope: Actually it tells us nothing, except how tightly his hands are tied by being in a coalition with the party that pushed not only within the EU parliament for EWA’s but also at Westminster – in this respect, perhaps it would have been better for Cameron to have formed a coalition with Labour in 2010 as there seems to be as many Labour MPs against the EWA as there are Tory…!

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted June 20, 2014 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

          If Cameron and May don’t want to opt back into the EAW there is no way that the LibDems could force them to do so.

          • Jerry
            Posted June 20, 2014 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

            @Denis: Other than threatening to force a general election that is!

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted June 21, 2014 at 10:28 am | Permalink

            So?

            We need a general election anyway.

  9. formula57
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    The City and indeed the financial industry worldwide has had in the UK a very good friend for many years and whilst gratitude has by no means always been short, it might care to reflect on which side its bread is buttered.

    Your point about the durability of opt outs applies also to the actions of future UK governments. Recall, as many of us do with bitterness, Blair’s relinquishing of a good part of Margaret’s hard won rebate for this country, treacherously on the promise but never the eventual fact of proper CAP reform.

  10. Gina Dean
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    ENOUGH. All parties have given away rights of this proud country. They all are saying we should be be more patriotic. Where is the patriotism that they should be showing to us the people of the UK by bowing the knee to the EU. With the new rules coming in in November which will make it much more difficult for the UK to leave, why wait for the referendum in 2017 when we are in charge for 6 months. It’s time to give notice that we will be leaving NOW.

    • Jerry
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 11:09 am | Permalink

      @Gina Dean: “With the new rules coming in in November which will make it much more difficult for the UK to leave”

      Gina, I think you mean an orderly exit, under the basic UN rights to self determination the EU can not stop any country and its peoples from leaving “Le Club”, even without invoking Article 1.2 of the UN Charter any country can effectively leave the EU by simply refusing to pay the membership fees and any fines.

      I do agree that these November rule chances are going to make it more difficult for the UK government & MEPs to achieve what is best for the UK.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

      “With the new rules coming in in November which will make it much more difficult for the UK to leave”

      No, the changes to the QMV methodology will not do that; QMV only comes into Article 50 TEU because the country which is withdrawing negotiates with the other countries for an agreement to apply after it has withdrawn, and those other countries use QMV to decide their common position during the negotiations. It is impossible to predict even whether the new system for QMV would be likely to lead to a more or a less favourable withdrawal agreement for the UK, but it will certainly not prevent us leaving.

  11. Horatio McSherry
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    John, there will be no real renegotiation of any kind; there can’t, be otherwise it makes a complete mockery of the who EU idea. Yes, there’ll be the harsh words in the press from one leader to another threatening this and that, and maybe a door will be open here or there if only x, y and z, but PR nonesense is all it’ll be. Even Mr. Carswell has given up on the negotiation line.

    Get Juncker in; encourage him to push on faster and louder and to keep hurling those insults at the British.

    • Hope
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

      Judging Junker by his previous comments he will be happy to (dissemble ed) so the public will not know what is happening.

      • Vanessa
        Posted June 20, 2014 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

        Hope – Juncker will not be the next President. The EU loves to play to its audience, it is actually “theatre” If you read EUReferendum you will see that Merkel also does not want Juncker and someone else will be parachuted in at the last minute so the “actor” Cameron can jump up and down and say how powerful he is and what influence he has.

        So predictable it is laughable.

        • sm
          Posted June 21, 2014 at 11:27 pm | Permalink

          Except the velvet glove is rather threadbare.

  12. Roger Farmer
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    With the exception of yourself and perhaps around one hundred other MPs, when are you going to notice the fire in the engine room. The dithering incompetence in government beggars belief. If they were a platoon of soldiers under fire they would all be dead by now.
    “If the City ceases to be a cheerleader for the EU it might make a difference to others in the debate.” I read that as, the City might stop pulling Cameron’s strings and allow him to hold this long awaited referendum to release us from strangulation by the EU. You are a banker and should be close to the argument so please lift the lid on what has been happening. Time for you to put party loyalty in question.
    My point is that there must be some form of conspiracy going on below the parapet because all the business of re-negotiation has always been a complete none sense. It was never a logical tactic given what the EU has become. The Swiss or Norwegian way is the only one that adds up.

  13. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    JR: ” EU power keeps on growing”
    How can that be when the three main parties in Westminster keep telling us there should be a referendum before more powers are transferred to the EU? There is even legislation to make this possible. The trick of course is that they then say this applies to treaty change and, guess what, all these changes take place without such treaty change – quelle surprise! That is why none of them can be trusted on the EU; they are all signed up to continuing UK membership come what may.

    • Hope
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

      No significant power change. That is why change by stealth is so important.

  14. Iain Moore
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    When they came for the fishing industry, the City stood by and did nothing.

    When they came for agriculture, the City stood by and did nothing.

    When they came for our Parliamentary democracy, the City stood by and did nothing.

    Now they come for the City , they want us to help them out. Well as the City has flogged off pretty much everything for a fast buck, where our Country has been seen as nothing more than a hindrance to their money making schemes, and where everything has been reduced to short term profits, how much are they going to pay us to save their sorry hides?

  15. Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Dr. Redwood,

    On 15 June, when you posted on the economy, I asked you a question about your attitude to calls for discussion on what is known as the Bradbury Pound. Since you did not reply, I repeated the request for an answer on a later post, to which you replied that answers to questions required more time than you had been able to give to the matter.

    Since your post today relates specifically banking matters and some time has passed since my original request, may I now expect an answer to my question?

    John Wrake.

    Reply Yes, but when I have time to study and consider it. The Bradbury pound is not about the happen and is not a live debate in government, so it is not a priority for me.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

      When the Bradbury pound was issued by the Treasury the Bank of England was still a privately owned bank; since the Bank is now owned by the Treasury there is no point in the Treasury creating confusion by issuing its own new currency when it can simply get the Bank to issue more of the usual currency.

  16. Iain Gill
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    We should all take a lot less care about what the City thinks. This line of argument is dodgy. Many of our biggest problems result from decisions made with pressure from the City.
    Sure Europe is a problem, but so is immigration, so is our economy becoming unbalanced towards financial services and away from many other areas we need to succeed in. The people should have a lot more say, and the city a lot less.

  17. Aunty Estab
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    What would happen if Cameron was to find some backbone and tell the EU we’re not imposing this tax? If they try to impose fines and we won’t pay ,what can they do? Expel us? Complete fantasy I know but it’s nice to dream sometimes.

  18. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    Yesterday on the BBC website but hardly commented on: “China’s banking leader rejects fears over British exit from EU – The head of China’s CCB Bank tells the BBC’s Kamal Ahmed that it doesn’t matter if the UK is in or out of the EU”
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-27913698

  19. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    On many of these matters we should just say ‘No’, refuse to recognise the jurisdiction of whichever EU court it is, and just see what happens. What have we got to lose?

    • bigneil
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

      If France gets told they can’t deport someone, they deport them, then get fined and don’t pay the fine. WE get someone to deport, EU says no – we then give them and their family a free life till they drop, never having to work, seeing the rest of us going to work, to pay taxes -just so they can doss here for ever. We should deport -and stick two fingers up to the EU.
      We are the only country who rewards foreign criminals, rapists and murderers with a free life on the taxpayer, for destroying someone elses life.

  20. Cliff. Wokingham.
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    Perhaps our dear leader needs to make clear to the EUSSR that, we will call a referendum if there is a new treaty which gives greater powers to the EUSSR but also, that we will hold a referendum if more power is given to the EUSSR through the courts of the EUSSR……Yes I know, all pigs are fed and cleared for take off.

    • Jerry
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 11:26 am | Permalink

      Cliff. Wokingham. “the EUSSR”

      Who is the “EUSSR”, I’m familiar with the USSR, but that ceased to exist around 20 years ago?

      The Term EUSSR is meaningless, even Wikipedia simply defaults to “Euroscepticism” [1], so you seem to be asking for the government to make it clear to eurosceptics that if greater powers are give to, or the ECJ rules in favour of, Eurosceptics then it should call a referendum! Not really what you meant, I suspect. :)

      I do with some people would drop the silly, meaningless, language, if you mean the EU then just say so…

      [1] not actually using the term “EUSSR” within the text of the article

  21. Bert Young
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    The City is strong enough and bold enough to do as it thinks best ; individually and as a group of financial services , it is professionally and effectively directed , internationally competitive and regulated; it is , unfortunately, subservient to a political leadership that has lost its way and respect . If we could be just like the French and turn our backs on the things we don’t like and don’t want , it would be fine – the City could then get on with what it does and not have to look over its shoulder . Our leadership must get us out of the maelstrom of Brussels and put us back into clear blue water .

    • A different Simon
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

      Bert Young ,

      “it is , unfortunately, subservient to a political leadership that has lost its way and respect . ”

      Wouldn’t the evidence suggest that it is the political leadership which is subservient to The City and not the other way round ?

  22. acorn
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    There can be no doubt now that the great recession of 2008, that was caused by an out of control dodgy financial “products” trading system, began on Wall Street and in the City of London. The deregulation of everything in those two places, resulted in globalisation; securitisation and uncontrolled capital inflows into one country generated by debts in another country.

    The vast majority of what city spivs do has no public purpose whatsoever, it is mere casino gambling and wouldn’t be missed by the real economy if it were shut down tomorrow. Very little of it aids income generating productive investment. The UK is currently suffering from speculative capital inflows far in access of anything to do with balancing the Balance of Payments accounts.

    The BoE in a Working Paper (Feb 2011) said: “In highly developed mortgage markets households can pledge a larger fraction of their house as collateral, which results in higher leverage. If households are highly indebted, they are more sensitive to changes in the value of collateral. We find that the propagation effect of securitisation is stronger for capital inflows than for monetary policy shocks.

    The response of housing variables to capital inflows shocks is larger and longer lasting in countries where securitisation is allowed.

    A potential explanation is that mortgage-backed securitisation allows international investors to invest directly into domestic mortgages. The run-up to the present crisis was characterised by a housing boom in most OECD countries.

    Our results suggest that capital inflows coupled with innovations in the mortgage market tend to have a greater effect on the housing sector than monetary policy. This implies that countries with more developed mortgage markets, a high degree of securitisation and more competitive and less regulated banking sectors should be wary of large external imbalances and work towards their reduction.”

    The obvious answer is to stop the securitisation of mortgage debt. Accept that “high frequency trading” with computers is actually “insider trading” and most “derivative” products create systemic risks to the real economy. All the foreign currency trading needed for REAL global commerce, can be done in four days trading. For the rest of the year the FX market is, by far, the world’s biggest casino.

  23. Richard Jenkins
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    The Weald and Downland Open Air Museum is worth a visit. It contains about 50 buildings of historic interest. Sometimes it has been possible to transfer a building to the museum in its complete form, on a low-loader trailer. That would be a significant transfer of a building.

    On the other hand, if a building cannot be transferred whole, it can be dismantled, and transferred brick by brick for re-assmbly. Then the question arises, after how many bricks has a substantial transfer of the building been made?

    Every day, a little brick of power is transferred from the UK to the EU. Who will cry, enough?

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

      That would be one question; another would be why the owner has employed a succession of caretakers, but apparently can never find an honest steward who would prevent the museum taking bricks against his wishes.

  24. Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    “The ECJ is often unhelpful to carefully crafted exemptions and opt outs which UK governments have successfully negotiated.”

    Mr Redwood, surely our withdrawal from the ECJ would be part of our new settlement with the EU.

    Bad judgements from the ECJ do not arise if we are not part of it.

    I am concerned that some may take your comments the wrong way and assume you will continue to accept rulings from foreign courts when you lobby for our renegotiation terms.

    Can you assure us that you will campaign to rid us of these courts?

    Reply I have made very clear that the new relationship I want means leaving the Treaties which make us subservient to the ECJ

    • Mark B
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply

      And the only way to do that, is by invoking Article 50 of the Lisbon treaty, forcing the EU to renegotiate.

      Irrespective of whatever the out come of any referendum, if it is ever held, the EU is not compelled to listen to the UK’s demands.

      You and your leader are just stringing people like, Kenneth along.

  25. stred
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    The EU is not alone in devising ways of extending taxes into every area possible. Mr Osborne liked to be seen as helpful to pensioners by allowing them to take out their pension pot and invest or spend it as they wished, rather than having to hand it to the insurance companies for a very poor return. It has been revealed that any pensioner taking advantage of this generous offer will have to pay income tax on their savings. The amount taken out will be added to pension income and will possibly run into the higher tax band if a small pension pot of say £25k is taken out.

    As someone who would have made a competent Chancellor, could you tell us why pensions saved, taxed when invested by insurance companies and incurring charges which reduce them to a joke,- can now be considered as income when withdrawn and taxed as such?

    Reply The Treasury view is that the pension contributions attracted tax relief when paid in to the scheme, and enjoyed tax privileges on the investments in the scheme, so there should be tax on pension income when paid out. The main point of pension tax relief was always tax deferral.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 10:22 am | Permalink

      Correct John. I would also point out that under the previous system pension annuity payments were also taxed. The new system is far better and more flexible – in practice you would phase taking money from your pension pot over many years to avoid paying higher rate tax on it.

    • bigneil
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:16 pm | Permalink

      what about all the foreigners who have come here, with no intention of ever working, so never contributing. They come here to live on our benefits, so what happens when they reach “retirement” age -even though they will have never done anything to retire from? -No contributions – -but they will get other benefits to make up for it – -quite clearly – -if these people are NEVER going to work then they will be a financial drain for ever – and the numbers coming in are unstoppable because we are open to the EU. We are pouring millions down the drain. IT HAS TO BE STOPPED.

  26. Edward2
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 10:14 am | Permalink

    The financial services industry is seen by European and UK politicians as the next best way to generate further huge sums in tax, having reached almost the limit with levels of VAT, income taxes and capital gains taxes.
    Their gravy train must be kept rolling and their ever increasing and largely wasteful spending paid for.
    “Bankers” are currently an ideal target for the ruling elites, having spent the last few years making this industry out to be the pantomime villain.
    For the UK, in the long term, this could be especially damaging if several big players up and move to China or USA and base their operations there instead.
    Its not like a big car company, it can all be moved and set up working somewhere else more welcoming in just a few days.

  27. stred
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    Thanks JR for a quick answer. You could say that the Treasury view is that they would rather grab as much as they can. If they defer income tax in order to encourage taxpayers to save for their old age, then change the rules to tax the investments, and finally encourage the mugs to take it out and pay 40% income tax, their ‘view’ will result in more money to pay their own pensions and allowances.

    And it will be so helpful to be able to grab the cash straight out of the pensioner’s bank account. Thanks Os. Would you like us to vote for you?

  28. Bryan
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Having heard for decades from politicians of all persuasions that it is better to remain in the EU and reform it/change it from within, and having little if anything other than more authority given to the unelected commission during that time, I am afraid that I cannot get excited about a possible referendum in 2016 or 17 or whenever.

    If it ever happens the dice will be so loaded to staying in as to make the exercise irrelevant.

    The economic case for staying in is poor; the influence case for staying in is poor; the trading case for staying in is abysmal, we have an ongoing balance of trade deficit of tens of billions of pounds; the cost to the UK taxpayer is high; the impact of our MEP’s and the so-called parliament is a farce (just watch their proceedings from time to time!); for more read previous blogs by Mr Redwood etc. No sane Board of Directors would run their business like that.

    So why do our political leaders like Mr Cameron and his chums, Mr Miliband and his union pals, and Clegg and his green rabble continue to promote membership?

    What do they know that they are not telling us? Or what is in it for them?

    If somebody out there knows, please tell.

    • Jerry
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

      @Bryan: “If [a In/Out referendum] ever happens the dice will be so loaded to staying in as to make the exercise irrelevant.”

      Why will it, unless the internet is censored how could it be?…

  29. Atlas
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    John it is not just the Institutions that are making power grabs. Just consider the wrangle over Junker where the EU Parliament is making its own bid. So much for the wording of all these Treaties.

  30. Iain Gill
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    I see Canada is starting to deal with the ICT visa issue properly, not like the folk running the country here…

    http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/resources/manuals/bulletins/2014/ob575.asp

    some obvious things we should learn from

    – an ICT applicant would be required to demonstrate, on a balance of probabilities, a high degree of both proprietary knowledge and advanced expertise.

    – as the specialized knowledge will not be readily available within the Canadian labour market, and cannot readily be transferred to another individual, a Specialized Knowledge worker must not receive specialized training by other employees such that this would lead to the displacement of Canadian workers.

    – a wage floor set at prevailing wage levels will establish a baseline for the assessment of an application.

    Why don’t you recommend our glorious leaders learn from this?

    • APL
      Posted June 23, 2014 at 6:33 am | Permalink

      Iain Gill: “Why don’t you recommend our glorious leaders learn from this?”

      Canada is an independent country, Cameron’s administration is only pretending to be.

  31. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Good to see that despite the best (worst?) endeavours of the Conservative party to stop them, UKIP has formed a new group in the European parliament. So much for our host’s oft repeated pleading that EUsceptics should not attack each other – that seems to be a one-sided arrangement. Further evidence, if any were needed, that the Conservative party is not EUsceptic and will do all it can to keep the UK imprisoned in this anti-democratic foreign organisation.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

      And the Tories will be sitting with foreign parties they previously condemned as unsavoury and unacceptable, as well as the German AfD contrary to the wishes of Cameron’s supposed great ally Merkel, so it has all backfired badly.

  32. BobE
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    Recommission Didcot .
    Start mining UK coal, whatever it takes to get it going again.
    If we don’t the middle East will put the lights out when we loose control of the oil. Or we will become totally reliant on Putin.
    Can’t any of you see the endgame in this energy struggle?
    Bob

  33. Posted June 19, 2014 at 2:22 pm | Permalink

    Dr. Redwood: reply to your reply posted at 8:18 on 19 June, which reads:- “Yes, but when I have time to study and consider it. The Bradbury pound is not about the happen and is not a live debate in government, so it is not a priority for me.”

    A profoundly disappointing statement.

    My original question to you about the Bradbury Pound included a statement that a number of approaches to M.P.s on the subject have been met by a wall of silence and it was in that light that I addressed the question to you.

    Your present reply indicates that because no one else in Parliament is willing to discuss the matter, you too, will not discuss it. To say that this silence is the cause of your lack of interest in the matter is a slap in the face to anyone who questions a matter which you have decided to ignore.

    Your willingness to offer a reply when you have had time to study and consider the matter, which you state is not a priority for you since it is not under discussion at present and is not about to happen, is a blatant excuse to ignore my question. How can it be a matter for discussion if our so-called representatives refuse to speak of it?

    Are you, acknowledged by many as an expert on the economy, telling me that you unable to discuss the Bradbury Pound, until you have had time for research and consideration of actions by H.M Treasury as recently as the start of World War I?

    Do you take a similar attitude to Fire Precautions in your home, which you will not consider because the rest of your family don’t discuss the matter and a fire is not about to happen?

    To say that your reply is disappointing is a major understatement, since the reply, coming as it does from someone who has held a post as a Minister in a previous Conservative Government, demonstrates a degree of contempt for the voter which is truly breath-taking.

    John Wrake.

    Reply You are the only voter to ask me and as far as I know you are not my constituent. If you are a constituent then please send your address and I will reply promptly. I have to set priorities for the use of my time related to the agenda in Parliament and the wishes of my constituents.

    • Mark B
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

      John Wrake

      You have raised my interest. Not what you intended or hoped, I know but, at least yo have raised the issue and made others aware.

      For what little it is worth, thank you. I shall do some research of my own.

    • margaret brandreth-j
      Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

      For goodness sake John Wrake , you are privileged for John to let you have a voice of dissension on HIS blog site. Please let him decide what he has time for.

  34. Denis Cooper
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    “We have been assured the UK will not have to be part of any future Euroland bail out.”

    Well, if it once again involved the IMF then we would be part of it.

    Moreover Article 122(2) TFEU which was abused on previous occasions has not been amended so that decisions in that area would once again require unanimous agreement, as they did before Blair allowed it to be changed to qualified majority voting through the Nice Treaty.

    On the other hand Article 136 TFEU has been amended with the intention of providing a secure legal basis for the establishment of the European Stability Mechanism, and so it is less likely that there would be the need to abuse Article 122(2) TFEU.

    Cameron failed to ask for any other treaty changes in return for his assent to that change to Article 136 TFEU, formalised as European Council Decision 2011/199/EU of March 25th 2011:

    http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2011:091:0001:0002:EN:PDF

    As pointed out by the Tory MP Mark Reckless on October 24th 2011, Column 36 here:

    http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201011/cmhansrd/cm111024/debtext/111024-0001.htm

    “The Prime Minister tells The Daily Telegraph today that we should use any treaty change to shore up the euro to get powers over employment and social policy back, yet on 25 March, he agreed to precisely such a treaty change, but did not ask for anything in return.”

  35. Mark
    Posted June 19, 2014 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

    It ought to be diminished.

  36. Posted June 19, 2014 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

    Dr. Redwood,

    Thank you for your reply to my comment at 2:22 p.m. on 19 June.

    I confirm that I am not one of your constituents. I have addressed my question to you on the understanding that you are an economist with a background in the City of London (an expertise which my own constituency Member lacks) and would therefore be likely to be able to contribute positively to a discussion on a matter which, though it may have passed un-noticed by the voters of Wokingham, has been raised by others to their constituency Members, none of whom has seen fit to answer questions or raise the matter themselves.

    I would like to think that a politician of your stature and experience would not ignore a voice simply because it was solitary. According to the story by Hans Christian Andersen, it was one small boy who first stated “the King has no clothes on”.

    I hope that you will reconsider your decision not to answer my question.

    John Wrake.

    • Jerry
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      Mr Wrake, oh do please put a end to this, Mr Redwood does his best to indulge us on his blog, but his time is not limitless.

  37. Posted June 20, 2014 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Margaret brandreth-j at 8:15 p.m.:- “For goodness sake John Wrake , you are privileged for John to let you have a voice of dissension on HIS blog site. Please let him decide what he has time for.”

    Are you suggesting that John Redwood posts a blog without inviting comment? Is he not equally privileged to have others take his posts seriously and bother to reply? Are his posts just opportunities for self-congratulation to show how clever he is?

    I was not aware that a blogsite such as this was intended as an advertisement.

    I suggest you have another look at the definition of sycophancy.

    John Wrake.

    • Jerry
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

      If I might take a liberty;

      John Wrake: “I suggest you have another look at the definition of sycophancy.”

      Might I suggest you have a look at the definition of “rudeness”?

      Mr Redwood must be just about the most approachable (internet wise) MP there is [1], and I’m sure that he does often take note of relevant opinions and ideas expressed by people on these blogs, even though few of us are of his ‘flock’ – and I say this as someone who has had my own disagreements with him, over what he wishes or feels able to publish, so I’m no “sycophant” as you so elegantly put it.

      As for his blog, most replies Mr Redwood receives are on-topic and if not they do not demand that he drops all other work just to research an answer a question that is – let’s face it – a rather “left field”, he gave you an answer, get over it, or move to Wokingham!…

      [1] many MPs use Twitter but that medium only goes so far

    • margaret brandreth-j
      Posted June 20, 2014 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      You are over valuing your contribution .

  38. Posted June 20, 2014 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

    Jerry at 3.05 p.m. 20 June:

    I think it is a liberty, since, so far, I had not addressed any comment to you, so have been unable to accuse you of sycophancy, as you charge. In any case, I think that you confuse directness with rudeness.

    I have not asked Dr. Redwood to drop all other work to research the subject of my question. I did suggest that I find it strange that an economist with years of experience should need extended time to research a matter of material historic economic fact.

    Dr. Redwood is perfectly at liberty to refuse to answer my question on his private blog and does not need you to spring to his defence. Despite your protestation, he has not answered my question, but instead has provided reasons for not doing so. My last comment was a polite request for him to reconsider that decision.

    John Wrake.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted June 21, 2014 at 10:40 am | Permalink

      I have provided you with an answer to chew over:

      When the Bradbury pound was issued by the Treasury the Bank of England was still a privately owned bank; since the Bank is now owned by the Treasury there is no point in the Treasury creating confusion by issuing its own new currency when it can simply get the Bank to issue more of the usual currency.

      There are those who stubbornly refuse to accept the plain fact that the Bank of England was privately owned but is now publicly owned; that is the erroneous thinking which is necessary to underpin demands for the Treasury to issue its own currency into general circulation.

  39. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted June 21, 2014 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    I have just returned from a conference by a well known drugs firm . A well organised pleasant, affair with very good speakers . The conference was well supported by pro Europeans who brushed off English/British speak and who are content to travel from country to country to spread their word.

  40. Posted June 22, 2014 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    The Mario Draghi ECB June 5, 2014, Announcement of NIRP and TLTRO, and the June 21, 2014, Press Conference Statement calling for a surrender of some sovereignty, … … come to represent the important assertion of a unified experience, and serves as an early statement in the long process to establish Eurozone economic governance, where diktat provides seigniorage, that is moneyness, replacing democratic nation governance, and the seigniorage of economic choice.

    This inquiring mind asks will there be a Brexit? The UK has its own currency, and may be able to detach from growing German and Brussels control. John Mauldin communicates that Brexit Is But A Matter Of Time. Sooner or later the UKIP will take control in an act of sovereign self preservation. As elites gather to Harpsund, Sweden to decide who will be the next EU president, a firestorm is brewing as the consummate socialist insider Jean-Claude Juncker anointment is being challenged by our friends in the UK. David Cameron can read the numbers and the UKIP shot across the bow has stiffened his spine in resisting the irresistible force of elites driving the process of gathering power to the central government in Brussels.

    Reply Mr Juncker does not regard himself as a socialist – he is the centre right pro EU candidate

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood has been the Member of Parliament for Wokingham since 1987. First attending Kent College, Canterbury, he graduated from Magdalen College, and has a DPhil from All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has been a director of NM Rothschild merchant bank and chairman of a quoted industrial PLC.
    Published and promoted by Thomas Puddy for John Redwood, both of 30 Rose Street Wokingham RG40 1XU
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