Europe and the Conservative conference

Some in the media have already written the script for the Conservative conference – splits on Europe. It was a silly script to write during the Opposition years, when the Conservative party was happily united opposing the Nice, Amsterdam and Lisbon treaties, opposing the Euro and resisting more powers to Brussels. It is an even sillier script now we are united in offering the UK people a referendum on our membership, with all enjoying the freedom to express their own view on what is wrong with our EU relationship and how we wish to change it.

The good thing about the Conservative conference is it offers the government an opportunity to remind other members of the EU that behind Ministers lies a party and a country that is far from happy with our current relationship. We have alerted people to the growing political union on the continent, and how the UK needs a new relationship with that emerging union as we have no wish to join it. Today those who want to stay in the EU agree with many of the current Eurosceptic criticisms of the current EU. They do not defend the present borders and migration policy or our lack of control over our own borders. They do not defend the dear energy policy which is hitting our industry, the lack of trade agreements with India, China and the USA, the high bills sent to UK taxpayers for spending elsewhere in the EU, or the mass unemployment being created by the Euro in many countries of the Union.  They need to show us how the UK can negotiate a settlement from inside, as many of us are happy to leave to solve these problems once and for all.

Conference should be primarily about how we increase the prosperity of our country. It is time to explain and to develop the policies we need to offer home ownership to the many at affordable prices, to create more and better paid jobs, to rebuild industry and embrace new technology.

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57 Comments

  1. Mike Stallard
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 6:13 am | Permalink

    Mr Redwood, you know and we know (EUReferendum blog) that in 2017 we are going to vote on Associate Membership. We also know that we will have to swallow the assumption that sooner or later all Europe will be melded into the Eurozone.
    We will have to accept the four freedoms, the judicial system with Human Rights, the Directives, government by the unelected, arrogant Commissioners and the subjugation of our country into a “State”. It is all there in the several, very public reports which, no doubt, you have perused.
    Stop kidding around. Tell the truth. We are fed up with being lied to.

    I know you will not publish this. Just remember it that’s all.

    Reply. Ido not lie or seek to help the EU cause in any way. Wake up and support those of us who are trying to restore UK democracy

    • Sue Jameson
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 7:17 am | Permalink

      It is unfortunate that we are no longer in a position to trust the word of any politician, even one as respected as John Redwood. We have been lied to by our governments several times over the subject of the EU and our sovereignty.

      Cameron’s negotiations are so utterly obscure, it’s obvious to any fool he’s playing the “The long Con”.

      Trust is earned. As far as we are concerned, we are on own until you prove otherwise.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

        Indeed as you say “Cameron’s negotiations are so utterly obscure, it’s obvious to any fool he’s playing the “The long Con””.

        If you listened to his interview with Andrew (what would you like to impart to the nation next PM) Marr he failed to answer anything whatsoever. Marr let it all go, the “interview” was just a pathetic joke.

        It is perfectly clear that nothing of any real value will emerge from these secret negotiations.

    • Henry Kaye
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 9:25 am | Permalink

      Sorry, JR, but I share Mr Stallard’s misgivings. Too many years of double talk and, sometimes, downright lying to think otherwise.

    • Timaction
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      The Five Presidents report sets out the plans of the EU to create a Superstate that has always been their intention. Mr Redwoods Party and its Ministers and legacy parties are always lying and spinning the true intentions of the EU project. Just the other day we had Mr Hammond claiming if we left it would cost us economically! How? With a £12 billion net payment, billions more lost in unnecessary regulation, removal of the CAP, fishing industry returned, billions more in in and out of work benefits for migrants! Savings in our international health and education services. Everyone needs to know that we don’t have to be in the EU to TRADE with it. It is and always has been a political project for ever closer union to create a superstate by incremental stealthy treaty change agreed by ALL the legacy parties. Only UKIP tells the truth and is patriotic. The rest just lie.

    • forthurst
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      Associate Membership which would certainly not get my vote, would give us back agriculture and fishing; however, JR never seems to mention fishing which I find strange. Am I missing something? There are very many depressed seaside towns and villages around our islands that have lost their raison d’etre as a consequence of Heath’s treachery. Even without a harbour and a huge fleet of trawlers like Grimsby, seaside towns and hamlets would have had drifters which they would launch from the beach and provided fresh food and employment for the local economy and how can you have a seaside resort which can’t even offer freshly caught fish with chips?

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 9:10 am | Permalink

        Dear forthurst–Remarked here myself just the other day in response to John’s recent overarching opus, otherwise excellent as I said, that it was and is hard to see why he never mentions (and I almost want to hazard never has mentioned) our Fisheries and the CAP. Beats me why. John has other odd habits too such as promoting equality verging on identity which is relevant to the EU because I for one have no wish for the Continent to be homogenised with or become equal with us, no more than Canadians want to be Americans. And John will keep describing immigration in a strange and obviously euphemistic and certainly very annoying way.

        Reply I have in the past spoken and written a lot about the disaster of the CFP and CAP. Whilst they remain bad, they have done much of their damage now, and the argument has moved on to the other issues like migration, energy prices and the Euro. I do mot recall promoting equality to remove UK identity. You have made that one up.

        • Leslie Singleton
          Posted October 5, 2015 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

          Dear John–You have expansively promoted “equality” many times and once set on that path it is hard to place limits on it

          Reply Where and when? I promote getting rid of poverty. My speech at conference on this topic did not promote equality but promoting tackling poverty. I will write about it soon.

          • Leslie Singleton
            Posted October 6, 2015 at 11:15 am | Permalink

            Dear John–Inequality (a natural human condition if ever there were one), and reducing “poverty” (in any event usually based on some daft comparison with average) are two very different things

        • forthurst
          Posted October 5, 2015 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

          “Whilst they remain bad, they have done much of their damage now, and the argument has moved on…”

          Were we to exit the EU, would we be able to reclaim our ancestral fishing grounds from Brussels, yes or no? If yes, then how would it not be possible to engineer a renaissance of our fishing industry? Have we sold irrevocable licences to foreigners in the belief we would be too stupid to ever leave the EU? Wouldn’t regaining fishing be a powerful argument for leaving in the first place?

          Reply Yes of course we could reclaim our fishing grounds.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

        Indeed.

    • Mike Stallard
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

      Mr Redwood, I most certainly never accused you of lying and I do not want to give that impression. If I did I am truly sorry – I mean that.
      I was in fact thinking of “The Castle of Lies” by Booker and North, or the flat lies told at the time of the last referendum (1975) when we were led to believe that we were entering a common market and not a Democratic Federal Republic centred on the Eurozone.

      • matthu
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 5:14 am | Permalink

        How many Conservative Party MPs (other than known rebels) would be prepared to concede publicly that the British electorate have been lied to over the EU?

        Those that would not be prepared to do so, are evidently prepared to maintain the lie.

        Reply A more sensible question to ask them is will they be ready to vote for Out assuming we don’t get our democracy back in the negotiation. We need them all with us.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted October 5, 2015 at 5:55 am | Permalink

          Well we clearly will get nothing of substance back in these negotiations we are not even told what Cameron’s demands are. It seems Cameron will be happy if we can not pay benefits for a week or two after migrants arrive or other similar trivia.

          The reply you would get to your question is “we rule nothing out” which is just a way of not answering and saying nothing at all.

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted October 5, 2015 at 10:13 am | Permalink
        • matthu
          Posted October 5, 2015 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

          John,

          If you get offered a shade of democracy back that depends on your being able to form alliances with other countries in the EU before you are able to block a proposed EU law, I do hope you will find this unacceptable.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

      In another absurdly gentle interview (by the dreadful lefty, tedious, pro EU (and BBC think to his core Andrew Marr) Cameron was asked about his EU position. Cameron, as we have learned to expect, was as clear as mud on the issue. Pumping out his well used phrases such as I rule nothing out. On immigration he even suggested the UK had control of this already through our opt out of the Schengen Agreement. Is he really that dim? I think not. Without changes to the free movement of EU citizens this gives no meaningful control what so ever.

      He then went on to mutter about benefits needing to be based on contributions. Something he could do now anyway but has chosen not to. If he thinks this pathetic tinkering is going to be enough he is totally deluded.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted October 4, 2015 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

        The impression Cameron gave was that he would rather talk about just about anything than talk about the EU or the (claimed?) renegotiation. This approach just will not wash.

    • alan jutson
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

      Reply -Reply

      John

      More than happy to support your efforts on the EU.

      Afraid it is Mr Cameron who is not being consistent, and I simply do not trust him.

      Mr Corbyn rightly got castigated for saying he would not push the nuclear button at any cost, and thus scuppered the whole meaning of a deterrent.

      Mr Cameron has said he does not want to leave the EU, even before negotiations started, so he has likewise scuppered any real chance of meaningful negotiation or change.

      Yes I know we have a referendum, and thank you for your efforts on that score, but Mr Cameron I am convinced will try to pull the wool over the Nations eyes, in the hope that he can get his own way.

      I hope and trust the Nation can see through this duplicity, and will vote for out if the changes are not massive and real.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 5:57 am | Permalink

        The changes are clearly not going to be massive or even real. Cameron is not even asking for this.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 10:16 am | Permalink

        Yes, a good analogy. If you go into negotiations making it clear that you will not walk away whatever the outcome you might as well not bother.

  2. Lifelogic
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 7:19 am | Permalink

    When asked if he could see himself leading an out campaign Cameron said “If I don’t get what I want I’ll rule nothing out”. It is rather a shame that he will not even tell us what he wants other than in the vaguest terms, what progress is being made?

    The Tories should be doing what they can to get Osborne to stop his tax borrow and piss down the drain policies, his centralised wage controls, his further attacks on pensions, his absurd subsidising of pointless expensive energy, his over regulation of everything and the absurd complexity of the tax system, GARR and the many other damaging absurdities. The man is simply not a Tory in any real sense.

    Osborne is rather closer to Denis Healey with his 78% income tax rates + 15% investment income surcharge on top. Why are the Tory party letting him damage the recovery in these absurd ways?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 7:28 am | Permalink

      Now it seems Osborne want to give grandparents £140 pw maternity leave. One assumes it will be another cost, inconvenience and aggravation for employers. Rendering them even less competitive yet again. Get rid of this foolish, misguided man.

    • matthu
      Posted October 5, 2015 at 5:17 am | Permalink

      By ruling nothing out, Mr Cameron means that he might just recommend staying in the EU even if he fails to win any concessions at all.

      Reply Why would he do that and then lose the referendum?

      • Lifelogic
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 5:59 am | Permalink

        If he thinks he will lose the referendum he will probably rat on the promise in some underhand way.

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 9:20 am | Permalink

        Dear John–Please, as they say, Leave It Out. You know perfectly full well that he is going to prevaricate and all the rest (to put it politely) with God knows what consequences and is going to want to stay In no matter what. Personally I do not think the wretched and scarcely existent so-called Renegotiation will make much difference. It was just a means of holding the fort. Nobody but nobody trusts Cameron.

  3. oldtimer
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    The EU has, for the UK, become a threadbare idea with little to recommend it. Nevertheless the idea still appeals to some and, possibly, the Cameron/Osborne axis think that that some form of associate status will be enough to win a Remain vote. Whatever they come up with, it looks as though it will be a fudge with smoke and mirrors.

  4. Graham Wood
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    MS. Associate membership as you claim is as yet an assumption.
    Have you any evidence, or is your view mere speculation?
    We do not “know” we will vote on AM. Perhaps you have forgotten – the only options on a referendum paper will be remain or leave. Nothing else.
    Your assertion of JR lying sounds very odd for regular readers of his blog, who know full well his personal position as opposed to that of his leader.

    • Ian wragg
      Posted October 5, 2015 at 7:44 am | Permalink

      Graham. If you’ve read the Spinelli document you will see that it is essentially a slow train to the same destination. Merkel made it quite clear that a 2 speed Europe is acceptable as long as eventually all countries maintain the 4 freedoms

      This entails joining the Euro but with most of Eastern Europe having second thoughts this is looking increasingly optimistic
      Dave will come back waving his papers telling us he has negotiated AM and it is actually maintaining the status quo. But he will try and sell it as his own idea

  5. Antisthenes
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    There never was a need for the EU although the fears about stability in Europe and never again having to endure the wars that ravaged Europe and the world twice in the 20th century was indeed a considerable incentive to create it. However it became apparent that that instability that was feared most was being contained by the desire of all that it should be so. At that point pre-common market any idea that Europe should integrate politically should have been shelved. Setting up a common market to build a large free trading area was an objective that was eminently desirable and if with adding greater cross border cooperation between states as part of it then we would have a European trading and cooperation union and not as we now have a monolithic, bureaucrat, undemocratic and unaccountable level of government above our own. A government that is doing very much the opposite of what it was set up to do and at considerable cost in so many ways for the people of Europe (even the Ukraine has been destabilised because of it of course Putin can be blamed for much of it but the EU thick heads should have foreseen that poking a stick at a bear with Mafia type instincts would cause trouble).

    The EU is not needed and never was what is needed is a facilitating agency to encourage free trade and interstate cooperation avoiding political ideologies that deal only in fantastical Utopian ideas which the EU of course is.

  6. Kenneth
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    To me the INs and OUTs represent two very different philosophies.

    The INs believe in a grand settlement between large international groupings. They like to talk of ‘International Law’ and often cite the eu or the UN or other international bodies that are out of reach of the electorate. They often form alliances and make common cause with other unelected organisations such as pressure groups, think-tanks and charities

    The OUTs believe in democracy and self determination. They believe that agreements between unelected monoliths are out of date as soon as they are signed and are riddled with undemocratic political baggage. Instead they believe in free trade between individuals and companies, regardless of boundaries. They also believe in diversity and they respect other people’s cultures.

    Whereas the IN’s want a world where we are all think the same and do the same, the OUTs see the differences between us as healthy. This happy tension results in one country selling goods and services it is good at producing whilst buying goods and services that others do better. This, of course, follows the natural pattern of trading that humans have carried out for thousands of years.

    The INs, on the other hand, will stifle innovation, light-of-foot market responses and, instead, bog us down with large dinosaurs which are protected by regulations and are too slow to react to the market. What is worse is that they will take away our democratic ability to rid ourselves of them.

    It’s the dinosaurs versus the democrats.

  7. Alte Fritz
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    It is common ground that the EU case is, forty years on, much more tarnished. Hammer away at what they have failed time and again to get right.

  8. agricola
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    I suspect that what you say in para 1 will not lead to a discussion on the merits of the EU on the floor of the conference. Isn’t it time that your leader explained to conference and the country what he is re-negotiating and what he has achieved to date. Is his strategy to wait until the EU self destructs and then pick up the pieces he wants, whatever they may be.

    So what do the lovers of the EU like so much when they cannot defend all the items that the eurosceptics consider reason for leaving. I think the lovers, in human terms, are those who think they can change the behaviour of their partner, whereas the eurosceptics are the realists who know that it is an impossible dream from which they need to awake. I would add that it is hard enough to develop a relationship with one partner so 27 mistresses I would deem impossible if you are striving for harmony.

    There is so much about the EU that is the damp hand on achieving the prosperity you wish so we should settle for trade, friendship, and cooperation where of mutual benefit.

    Voting to leave is only the first step. Using the Iraq simile, we do not wish to win the battle and not to have considered the aftermath. Do not for one minute believe that, having lost on paper, the Europhiles will give up and crawl back in their holes. They will do all they can to dilute our departure from the EU. We who wish to leave must have a very firm plan as to how it will be done and what, where necessary, we put in it’s place. Your leader for sure won’t plan our departure nor will his Europhile civil servants , so you had better give it deep thought. I do not want the country to be left, on the morning after, to wake from it’s hangover wondering what next. I hope your leader and his acolytes have the grace to depart to the back benches or further.

  9. fedupsoutherner
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    Thank goodness for sensible MP’s such as yourself John. I heard today that the NHS has a £2bn black hole. Well, if we came out of the EU then this could be plugged at once.

    The EU is about making everyone a common denominator and taking away our national identities and we must not allow this to happen. I dread to think of the amount of money we are really giving to Europe when you consider not only the membership costs but the money we are giving to foreigners whose children are living abroad but who we have to pay to keep. Our taxes only go so far and they are stretched to the limit now. The more I hear about the EU the more urgent the need to come out and I think more people are coming over to that opinion too.

  10. Bert Young
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    It has already been observed and said that the likelihood of us being able to negotiate those terms with the EU – those that would be acceptable , are paper thin . This being the case , the most important objective at the moment is to get the various ” Out ” parties to work together .

    A campaign that is dis-cordinated is not the right way to win the public’s vote ; someone has to see the sense in bringing the UKIPs , the Eurosceptics and the disenchanted Labour factions together and fighting the referendum build up in a unified way . Obviously the front line speakers on the platform at the Conservative conference will not be stating their views on this ( although they really might want to do so ! ) ; it is in the fringe meetings and off-stage utterances that these views may be heard . This is the time for truth , guts and determination to show itself and set the scene for the march out of the EU .

  11. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    In the conversation on Europe perhaps the Conservative Party Conference can address a big lie on a par with EU Membership and its benefits:-
    “South Yorkshire came together and said we want these powers ” ( ie. Northern devolution ) Mr Cameron on BBC North/ Yorkshire as I write, who also says “Yorkshire has for decades sought devolution”
    We in Yorkshire nor anywhere in the north of England have ever in our whole history asked/demanded/wished/ desired devolution in any way shape or form. Not one jot.

  12. English Pensioner
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    Your summery in final paragraph in fact makes the case for leaving the EU.

    “Affordable Housing”. We are not building at a speed which will accommodate the influx of unwanted immigrants, let alone our own homeseekers. Outside the EU we could control our own borders and without the Human Rights Act we could deport criminals and unwanted immigrants. Then we would be able to house our own people

    “Create more and better paid jobs”. Again with the flood of immigrants, the lower paid among our workers will never get more whilst there are incomers willing to work for low wages. There is no incentive to innovate whilst low cost labour is available. History shows that much innovation has come from labour shortages; innovations on the land such as the steam plough, the tractor, the combined harvester all came because there was no labour to do this agricultural work.

    “Rebuilding industry”. Here we have major problems as we are short of engineers and skills. We once were the leaders in atomic energy, now we have to buy new reactors from abroad. The dear energy policy of the EU supported by the LibDems and the Greens has destroyed all activities requiring large amounts of energy, the latest being the steelworks at Redcar. Like it or not, you can’t produce steel or aluminium without using a vast amount of energy.

    We need to have differential fees for students at university; there are more media studies students and graduates than this country will ever need, why should the state subsidise their fees? On the other hand, we need doctors, engineers, scientists etc if we are going to revitalise this country, they should be offered reduced fees as an incentive, along with guaranteed pay levels that match our competitors who value UK graduates in these subjects.
    A genuine re-think is needed as to where this country is going; it can’t survive on service industries alone, we need saleable products.

    • Ian wragg
      Posted October 5, 2015 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      EP. There are about a thousand nett immigrants daily coming to Britain. 2000 gross. We would have to build 500 houses every day just to accommodate immigrants.
      It’s the same with creating jobs. It is completely unsustainable. Osborne whole growth strategy is based on increasing the population and ultimately impoverishing us. Etc ed I fear for the youngsters.

  13. Bob
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    Excellent work John. Keep calling them out.
    One of the lies I have heard the pro EU people say is:

    “If we were to “ditch Europe” that would indeed be frightening as its half our trade.”

    It isn’t. 90% of UK trade is WITHIN the UK. Much of the rest is with the Republic of Ireland.
    And of course ‘ditching’ the EU wouldn’t alter trade one little bit – unless the EU was in a particularly stupid mood and fancied another trade war to add to the one they are losing with Russia.
    People with mental illnesses often choose not to focus on the big picture and resist this as it fixes the problem. The Pro EU people talk about foreign trade in a similar manner.

  14. petermartin2001
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    “or the mass unemployment being created by the Euro in many countries of the Union……… as many of us are happy to leave to solve these problems once and for all.”

    There’s nothing intrinsic about the euro, as a currency, which leads to high levels of unemployment within the eurozone.

    The problem is caused by the rules of the ill-named “Stability and Growth Pact ” which places shackles on the ability of EZ governments to engage in the necessary kind of expansionary fiscal policies which are required to pull their economies out of recession.

    Many Conservatives want exactly the same policies for the UK, whether inside or outside of the EU. Why do they expect any different result? If strict limits on budget deficits in the EZ brings about double digit levels of unemployment , why do they think having a balanced budget will lead to prosperity, higher level of growth, and falling levels of unemployment in the UK?

    • forthurst
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 11:47 pm | Permalink

      “There’s nothing intrinsic about the euro, as a currency, which leads to high levels of unemployment within the eurozone.”

      The euro has been a disaster for the EU. What is intrinsically wrong with different countries with different mores having their own currencies?

      • petermartin2001
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 8:02 am | Permalink

        There’s nothing wrong with separate currencies. The EU worked better when there were separate currencies. But they’d have to be able to float and there would have to be no central interference in monetary or fiscal policy of member countries.

        However, the euro would work much better if the 3% limit on any government’s deficit was doubled or even slightly more than that. It’s fiscal austerity ie a yearning for balanced budgets which causes the problems.

    • Edward2
      Posted October 5, 2015 at 8:05 am | Permalink

      Even if individual Eurozone Governments borrow and spend more and more it will have little positive effect when their currencies are set at the wrong rate due to Germany effectively controlling the currency.
      Unable to float or adjust their rates of interest or their money supply poorer nations cannot escape from their depression.

  15. Gypsy Rose Lee
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

    I can see those green shoots , even though winter is upon us.. Those new international trade agreements are causing a lot of jealously with the other member of the Eurozone. They have seen us get out of the potential super state and are picking up courage to do the same thing.

  16. Peter Stroud
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    You are generally correct regarding the Conservative view on the EU, and our membership of it. Also we rank and file members of the Conservative Party, praise David Cameron for agreeing to try to negotiate a looser relationship with the union. However, I would be happier if the prime minister would state clearly, and unequivocally that he will advise that we leave the EU, should he not be granted his demands by Brussels. I listened to his discussion with Andrew Marr, this morning, and all he would say was that he would rule nothing out. But he would not mention Brexit.

  17. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

    Seen the TV coverage of the Conservative Party Conference today. You were talking to your selves rather than anyone in the world outside. Declaring Mr Corbyn is anti-semitic is without foundation as far as any reported incidents and utterances I have heard about. Being against Israel’s position politically and militarily is not racist. Such accusations are equivalent for a MP of some standing at a Labour Party Conference saying Mr Cameron is a Nazi.So much for Mr Gove who is silent about Mr Putin declaring time and time again that The West and the UK “Are our partners”. In Mr Gove’s logic this could mean the Conservative Party Cabinet are sharing homes and beds with the Russian Politburo and have relationships, nudge-nudge.
    Mr Fallon said that it was very bad Mr Corbyn referred to Hamas and Hezbollah representatives as “friends”. Mr Fallon should get Intelligence reports on Mr Martin McGuiness of Sinn Fein and the late Mr Ian Paisley Leader of the Democratic and Unionist Party who became such good friends that people thought of them like “brothers” and “inseparable” “always laughing and joking with each other”.
    Both Mr Fallon and Mr Gove should perhaps be reminded that British soldiers were stabbed by the now Israeli’s and, as British Army tradition has it: “In the back” The British Army does say “We will remember them ” . So Mr Gove and Mr Fallon can dress up in their ties and sing the national anthem completely forgetting why they are singing it.

  18. miami.mode
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    On BBC News this morning they had a programme on the EU in which it was admitted that many exports from the UK to Europe were actually destined for other parts of the world and were merely on a stopover in such ports as Rotterdam.

    Surely there must be some official figures indicating a more precise breakdown of the ultimate destinations of exports and thus put to bed the “3 million jobs” etc and spike the argument of the Europhiles.

  19. Denis Cooper
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

    Best to stay in the safe zone, lest you experience some of Corbyn’s “kinder politics”.

    Why is that the extreme left is allowed to resort to violence and intimidation and that’s seen by much of the media as OK, “legitimate protest”, but if the English Defence League wants to hold a peaceful march that is automatically condemned as “fascism”?

    Some idea that English should not be permitted to defend themselves?

    • Anonimous
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

      Denis

      Violence and intimidation pays in Britain.

    • petermartin2001
      Posted October 4, 2015 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

      I’d hope that the Conservative delegates would take some time to look around Manchester. It should be quite safe! It’s quite an improvement as I remember it in the 60’s and 70’s. It is a Labour city though , 22 Lab and 5 Con MPs in Greater Manchester

      The Tories have never been on the right side of history as far as most Mancunians are concerned. It goes back as far as the time of the Peterloo massacre of 1819, when then as now, the city was mired in economic recession! The inhabitants of Manchester were poorly represented in the Parliamentary system, and a meeting called in St Peters Sq to campaign for a wider democracy was attacked by the cavalry leading to many deaths and injuries.

      It may not be entirely fair to blame the present day Tory party for the actions of the Earl of Liverpool (the Tory PM of the time) but nevertheless there is strong folk tradition of the Tories as the ‘enemy’ which does explain some of the potential hostility that may be experienced by delegates in Manchester. That explains the voting pattern of working class Mancunians. They’d never ever consider voting Tory, at least not in any significant numbers, but many will happily vote UKIP even though UKIP are to the right of the Tories both socially and economically.

      • Edward2
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 8:11 am | Permalink

        Nice to know you think its the 1819 Peterloo effect that makes some in Manchester vote Labour.
        The normal cliche claim of the Left is that its all “thatchas” fault.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted October 5, 2015 at 10:07 am | Permalink

        No excuse whatsover. We had an election, the Tories won, just, while Labour lost quite badly, but these thuggish, anti-democratic elements on the left are unwilling to accept that outcome and wait for an opportunity to reverse it next time. Their behaviour is not yet as bad as the Nazis and the Communists in Germany during the 1930’s but heading in that direction, and we all know where that rejection of free and peaceful public debate and democratic process, and the resort instead to violence and intimidation, ultimately led them. And I doubt that most of these protesters were local Mancunians anyway, more likely full time agitators gathered from across the country, with many of them living at the expense of taxpayers.

        • petermartin2001
          Posted October 6, 2015 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

          Denis,

          There’s a lot of lefties in Manchester! It’s not just the poorer areas that are solidly Labour. The constituency of Withington consists of quite prosperous areas like Didsbury, Chorlton and Withington itself.

          Yet the Labour vote at the last election was 54%. The Lib Dems were second with 24% and the Tories third at 10%.

  20. libertarian
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

    Anyone else notice that Peter Van L has gone missing since his fellow Dutch colleagues collected enough signatures to petition the Dutch government on a referendum over EU powers and more federalism. It seems his story about sweetness and light re the Euro and EU in his own country wasn’t what he thought it was, The Germans aren’t too happy either.

    Its all coming unraveled. Seems the German car manufacturing miracle was built on dubious grounds, Merkel is losing the support of the average German and refugees allowed into Germany haven’t exactly been behaving themselves.
    The EU border control rules have had a tank driven through them and the Eurozone is still floundering. Youth unemployment in Southern Euroland is approaching 60% , that mixed with 100,000’s of unemployed refugees arriving is going to crash everything.

    Meanwhile in Barcelona, the regional government election was won by a large majority of Catalonia Separatists.

    Its all coming unravelled . Don’t think we need to wait for a referendum, lets just leave now before the whole thing crashes around our ears

    Reply Conservatives promised a referendum, not immediate exit.

  21. forthurst
    Posted October 4, 2015 at 11:19 pm | Permalink

    “Cameron is also saying that the SAS is to be ‘beefed up’ to take on ISIL.”

    Brilliant idea. Put them through the Johnny Rambo training course then any one of them could win the war in 90 mins.

  22. petermartin2001
    Posted October 6, 2015 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

    “How do we make then understand that?”

    You’ll (meaning all Tories) can do that if you do what you promised you would in your election manifesto. If Tory policies are successful and create well paying jobs for all who want to work, as used to be the situation in Britain, with the opportunity of affordable home ownership for those who want to take on that commitment, why would there be any lack of understanding form the majority?

    If you also protect the NHS, as you you said you would, and provide for a good education system, that will stand you in good stead too. There will always be arguments over privatisation but I don’t see too many banners carried by the left protestors calling for wholesale nationalisation of everything.

    But if these promises aren’t kept, as I suspect they won’t be after new cuts take effect and the economy starts to slump again, the hostility will only get worse. The excuses of the Tory leadership that the slump was caused by world events, like the coming crash in China, or the failure of the eurozone just won’t wash!

  23. Margaret
    Posted October 8, 2015 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    Speech By the RH Hunt, talked about the personal , caring approach in the NHS, which is just what we need. I know Drs who care so much about their patients that they leave post it’s on the Nurses desk to say they are concerned about a patient and to follow it up. I am inclined to say ‘ bless their cotton socks ‘yet we do need this sort of sharing of information.. NB without the condescending context.
    Meryl Streep was talking about the female problem on BBC1 and made a good case for women who are not alpha females and males. She commented that men have traditionally not been interested in the problem as it was not their sexes problem. Doesn’t that say it all ?

  • 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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