What does Brexit look like

Yesterday we discussed the Remain campaign’s repetitive question, and the misleading answers they give to it though it should be for us to answer. What does Brexit look like? We have never suggested it looks like the Norwegian or the Swiss model, which they want it to be so they can knock those down.


We decided that we often tell them what Brexit looks like, and we should spend the next few weeks telling people again and again what Brexit looks like, because it will be a more prosperous, freer and  more democratic Britain that we create on exit from the EU. So here goes:



Brexit means taking control of our own money and spending it on our own priorities. It means offering that Brexit budget to banish austerity, spending £10bn more on what matters to us. It means  s an immediate and substantial improvement in the UK  balance of payments as our contributions to the EU stop.


Brexit means taking control of our borders, so we decide how many people to invite in to our country. It means a fair migration policy offering the same opportunities to  people from the rest of the world as from the rest of Europe. It means inviting in students to study, welcoming skilled and talented people into jobs where we need them,  accepting entrepreneurs and investors who want to create jobs and own assets in the UK. As Lord Rose of Remain has said it means higher wages as we cut the flows of EU migrants into low paid jobs.


Brexit means setting the taxes we want to impose. It means we can keep the corporate taxes we raise from big business, instead of losing £7bn every five years from European Court judgements making us send money back to those rich  companies. It means we can abolish VAT on domestic fuel to tackle fuel poverty, scrap the hated tampon tax and take VAT off green products and insulation materials.


Brexit means making our own laws without having to get the agreement of 27 other countries.


Brexit means restoring the UK’s influence in the world, as we regain our vote and voice on world bodies which the EU has taken from us. We will be able to negotiate our own free trade agreements with the fats growing economies of the world.

And Brexit means continuing to trade with the rest of the EU as we do today. As Lord Rose has said, after Brexit little on trade and  business matters will change. The rest of the EU does not wish to sell us less and realises they cannot impose new barriers to a profitable trade.


Brexit means a more prosperous, freer, more influential UK . Referendum Day can be  Independence day, the day we restore our democracy.

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  1. Lifelogic
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 5:17 am | Permalink

    Indeed as you say we will be more prosperous, more free. more responsive to change, better paid and a far more democratic Britain. In addition housing, the NHS, schools, road and infrastructure will be far less stressed. We will also me safer and have lower crime rates.

    We will also hopefully get a proper Conservative PM and Chancellor instead of these dreadful LibDim economic illiterates.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 5:27 am | Permalink

      It will however be a long path. The pro EU, civil service, Brussels, and the commons will not give in to the Brexit vote easily. They will renegotiate a better deal (it could hardly be worse) and tell the people to vote again.

      There is thus no reason for anyone to vote remain in this first referendum.

      • eeyore
        Posted April 14, 2016 at 5:51 am | Permalink

        My missis asks how long after the vote before we stop paying eurogeld. It’s a simple question, and one that many will ask. Is there a simple answer?

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:26 am | Permalink

          No, there are only some simple answers about when we would still be paying it, rather than when we would stop paying it.

          A vote to leave the EU will itself have no legal effect, we will still be in the EU and still paying eurogeld afterwards until such time as new treaty arrangements are finalised and are ready to take over from the existing EU treaties, with the two things – the existing treaties being terminated, and the new treaties coming into force – happening simultaneously, at exactly the same preagreed instant so that there will be no legal hiatus with neither applying.

          Depending on how the change is approached that could be a matter of months, or it could be the two years mentioned in Article 50 TEU, or it could be longer if it was decided to embark on a root and branch renegotiation rather than just settling the basics and sorting out a lot of ancillary matters over the following years.

          After that – well, JR, maintains that we will be paying no eurogeld at all, the Remainders falsely claim that we will be paying as much or more, while I think that we will probably still pay something but much less than now, and possibly most of what we will be paying will be paid direct to other countries out of the foreign aid budget rather than being paid into the EU budget.

          • eeyore
            Posted April 15, 2016 at 6:07 am | Permalink

            Denis Cooper & Lifelogic (below) – thank you for this. There is indeed something about the EU which adds complexity to all it touches.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:22 am | Permalink

          A very long time I suspect, surely at least the two years leave period, as a minimum. I do not even trust parliament to actually leave after the Brexit vote anyway.

          How on Earth can anyone move like Corbyn have the sense (as I did) to be against the common market in 1975 yet move to a position now in favour of it. This after all the complete disasters it has produced? No one else I know has moved that way. It is clear to me that it must only be because he wants to placate the trade unions and keep his
          party from disintegrating. I cannot see that his approach will work it surely is not genuine is it?

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted April 15, 2016 at 6:50 am | Permalink

            I reckon Corbyn did us some good, and his party some harm, with his speech yesterday, and especially with his statement that we don’t have too many EU immigrants.

          • Original Richard
            Posted April 15, 2016 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

            “How on Earth can anyone move like Corbyn have the sense (as I did) to be against the common market in 1975 yet move to a position now in favour of it.”

            Mr. Corbyn may consider the EU to be undemocratic, corrupt and dysfunctional but these issues are trumped by his wish for the UK to have completely open borders with the EU and eventually the World.

            Hence his willingness to campaign to remain in the EU alongside the corporates.

        • Hope
          Posted April 14, 2016 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

          Cameron on stage with Paddy Ashdown today would be a picture for the future as well. A lefty Liberal in heart and soul.

          Good to see Corbyn ahead of Osborne in YouGov poll for PM!

          Why oh why do not the Tory party get rid of Cameron? I also note he is still refusing to come clean about EU immigration numbers. It is. thought to be 5000,000 a year! He still persists in peddling lies that the borders are secure. If so why not come clean and give us the true facts.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted April 15, 2016 at 4:30 am | Permalink

            I assume you mean 500K PA. Cameron will not give us inconvenient facts if they are inconvenient to his agenda of burying the UK in the anti democratic EU and of using tax payers money to indoctrinate tax payers in lies.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:02 am | Permalink

        We should of course vote leave in the second referendum too, regardless of the deal, as they will never deliver any deal that is better than just leaving. Assuming the remain side do not stitch it up without a second referendum which is quite likely – Cameron/Osborne Libdem types are neither liberal nor in favour of democracy as we know, they, like the BBC, quite wrongly think they know best.

        Osborne even thinks he should decide on the wages of millions of people he know nothing about thus destroying countless jobs and growth. He also thinks he should have tax rates well about the Laffer point & help himself to people’s money to then waste it on endless nonsense, Things like the EU, sugar taxes, greencrap subsidies, HS2, Hinckley Point C, the Nothern Powerhouse, ever more complex taxation, poorly directed overseas aid, EU propaganda, endless bureaucrats, road blocking (with traffic lights, islands, bike and bus lanes), subsidising low paid migrants and endless other absurd lunacies.

      • Hope
        Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:43 am | Permalink

        All very good valid points JR. Now what are you and our MPs in your party doing to undermine Cameron and Osborne’s lies and to reduce the imbalance of their actions. 7/9/2015 EU minister stated no intention to mail drop or distribute leaflets, misleading or another lie? Cameron’s contempt and Flashman arrogance to Mr Rees-Mogg’s question, one more, highlights why Cameron must go. The rigged bias cabinet, the lies, deceit, failed negotiation and his failure to rule nothing out as a consequence. He should be leading leave based on his failed negotiations.

    • JoolsB
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:36 am | Permalink

      Yes, it will be an added bonus if Brexit means we can be rid of these two, Euro loving, England hating socialists. Whatever Cameron may think, there is no way he can cling on after a leave result and hopefully he will take Osborne with him.
      Let’s get a couple of real Conservatives in charge not that there’s that many to choose from in the party currently calling themselves Conservative.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:27 am | Permalink

        Indeed Osborne is even worse than Cameron with his incompetent management of the budget, hugely damaging wage controls, IHT ratting, endless waste, total failure to understand basic economics and his absurdly complex and high tax rates.

      • MikeP
        Posted April 14, 2016 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

        I believe our host JR should return to the front bench after such a sterling performance with this blog, and so should Liam Fox, who nails the whole Remain myth every time he speaks.

      • getahead
        Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

        It is my hope that a new Conservative party will be formed by the anti EU MPs of whatever origins. I would hope that most UKIP candidates would be elected under this new umbrella.
        The liberal Tories can go back to where they belong – with failure Nick.

      • Kevindavies14
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 6:53 am | Permalink

        Jacob Rees Mogg will do nicely!

    • Henry Kaye
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

      It’s unfortunate that the electorate includes so many younger people who have grown up under the EU control. They have no memory or experience of a different and prouder national history and they seemingly don’t have the intellect to identify what has been lost or the damage that is being done to our national culture and identity.

      • bluedog
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:08 am | Permalink

        Whilst completely agreeing with your general point, it’s always a mistake to insult those to whom you wish to sell an idea by calling them stupid.

        The demographics of the electorate would appear to favour Brexit if the normal election pattern holds good. Amongst those over 65, all of whom can remember Britain in the glory days before the night fell, 4/5 usually vote. In the younger demographics, say 18-35, only 35% vote. As the 60 plus group is the largest demographic in the country, if this entire cohort can be motivated the result could be very positive.

        It will then be extremely important to re-educate the younger voters so that they don’t regret what their elders have done. We don’t want a later government, say a Labour-Lib-Dim condominium, seeking re-entry to the EU, or such part of the EU as continues after its inevitable rupture.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

      I see that Cameron’s “priority in three letters” is deteriorating by the day. Hardly surprising given the the extra demands placed upon it by the 200K+ of net migration and given the dysfunctional way it is funded and it operates. A&W worst month ever it seems.


      It there anything Cameron has promised and has actually delivered? He did not even get rid of HIP packs completely, we still have the absurd Energy Performance Certificates and we still have £325K thresholds for IHT about 8 years after the £1M promise. He even said something about being “a low tax conservative at heart” clearly never in practice!

      Still he is a hero as he has finally delivered the referendum, clearly one in which he has sloped the pitch with voters money, but it will do.

      Brexit will surely win, the voters are not as daft as Cameron thinks they are.

      It is about seven years late and after his blatant ratting on Cast Iron promise but without Cameron we would never have escaped.

  2. Mick
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 5:31 am | Permalink

    What does Brexit look like
    One word “Heaven”

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:21 am | Permalink

      Not quite Heaven! Heaven in relative terms perhaps.

      The country will still be rather a mess. Thanks to endless years of socialists, Heath, Wilson, Major, Blair, Brown, Cameron and Osborne. It will still have a record peace time trade deficit, a massive PSBR, huge government debts, an absurdly complex tax system, dysfunctional banks, a bloated, over paid & largely incompetent state sector, a dysfunctional NHS that fails & kills thousands each year, many dreadful schools, a shortage of good housing, high crime rates with very few real deterrents, poor infrastructure, a BBC that drips the nation in endless lefty green crap and magic money tree economics and lots of other problems too.

      But it will be free and will have self determination again, it will have control of its destiny and its borders. We will have immigration on merit not open door to the EU. Above all the UK can choose how it wishes to correct all of the many problems above in the interests of the UK voters for a change.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      I know what it would smell like.

      Fresh air.

      A cool, spring breeze wafting through the windows on a sunlit morning.

      No. We wouldn’t be free. But just to know that millions of my fellow countrymen are neither stupid nor mad.

      Bliss !

  3. Dame Rita Webb
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:19 am | Permalink

    The control of the borders story is wrong. With regard to non EU citizens that can be controlled now and as we know that will not be fixed both before or after any exit. The only way we will see a change there is if there is a supression of the neo lib economic agenda. If you do not me believe me that immigration is all about keeping wage costs to the minimum go to to the “Crossing Continents” page on the BBC website. There you will find a program about immigration into Poland. Those construction workers that have not left Poland for the UK are now in severe competition from labour from all points east of the Ukraine. You are deluding yourself if you think things will get dramatically better with an exit
    unless the race to bottom economic policies change first.

  4. Ian Wragg
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:47 am | Permalink

    I read RN EUref blog and downloaded his tome. It sort of implies that it’s taken us 40 years to get where we are and it will take that long to revert to a self governing nation.
    This is why many disagree with that route.
    We have the same mindset with article 50. Some assume we are the guilty party in the divorce and will have to sit back whilst the other 27 stitch us up.
    We will be negotiating from a position of great strength and we need someone with balls acting on our behalf
    Sadly none of the cabinet or opposition fullfil this criteria.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:17 am | Permalink

      It won’t take 40 years to sort out the basics, enough to ensure that the doomsayers are proved wrong (again) and there is no economic shock leading to the global economic meltdown predicted by the IMF. That first step probably won’t even take the 2 years mentioned in Article 50. As for the rest, the non-economic parts and the various bells and whistles accreted over the past decades, that will take longer to gradually sort out and it’s conceivable that in 40 years there will still some odd laws which derived from our period in the EU and have never been repealed.

    • Original Richard
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

      After having followed Dr. North’s EUref blog for some time I do not believe that Dr. North wants the UK to leave the EU.

      Apart from the never ending criticism of everyone else supporting the Brexit campaign the constant and clever theme throughout the blog is that leaving the EU is too difficult and time consuming and that exit will make no difference to us anyway.

  5. Mark B
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:53 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    And slightly off topic.

    Yesterday I recieved my taxpayer funded government propaganda sheet. Three things I noticed:

    1. The arguments for remaining, some would call them lies, have not changed in years. eg 3 Million jobs lost etc.

    2. The only positive sited for remaining in the EU, is lower mobile tariffs when some of us journey onto the continent. Wow !

    3. They made a terrible admission in the last paragraph, under the heading; What happens if we leave?

    They state: “For Example, Canada’s deal with the EU will give limited access for services, it has so far been seven years in the making and still not in force.”

    I would like our kind host, and fellow readers to look at #3 and ask themselves; “What is the point of being in this club of nations ?”

  6. Antisthenes
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    They are the desired outcomes of Brexit but I believe we have to sell more than a dream we have to spell out how we get to the position that all that can happen. People realise it is not just a matter of taking the exit door out of a gloomy place into the sunshine. The door is locked and yes a vote to leave produces a key that fits the lock but once out there are many obstacles to overcome before we are truly free. The people need to know what those obstacles are and how they will be overcome.

    Guarantees on time and what will be our relationship with the EU be post Brexit. No one wants years of negotiations or an unsatisfactory deal at the end of them that leaves us little better off. Because that is what the stayers are saying is going to happen. Boris says the Canadian option but that leaves a lot to be desired as it does not allow complete freedom of trade or take into account the fact that our geography requires us to cooperate more closely with the EU on matters that are of special interest to us.

    There is not a template to use that covers our exit as Norway and the Swiss ones leave us still tied too closely to the EU and the Canadian one not close enough. Someone please produce a new one that shows how we can trade freely and cooperate with EU on things that matter to us without surrendering any of our sovereignty. Tricky as the EU has a one tracked mind as it cannot see any other way to do business with them in the way we do without them being heavily involved in our affairs.

    • bluedog
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:16 am | Permalink

      ‘..it cannot see any other way to do business with them in the way we do without them being heavily involved in our affairs.’

      But they will have no right to intervene. Large parts of the world trade with the EU without being members of the EU. These non-EU trading partners simply comply with EU specifications, just as EU and other countries selling goods to the US do so by complying with US specs. Not hard.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:22 am | Permalink

      As I recall Boris only said that some parts of the Canada deal were attractive. I wish he hadn’t said even that, as it has so easily been distorted.

  7. The Active Citizen
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    “A more prosperous, freer and more democratic Britain”

    What a wonderful way to start the day and complement the blue sky morning here!

  8. agricola
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    I do not doubt all you say about the advantages of Brexit. All I suggest is that in your exchanges with the electorate you make it easy to understand and as relevant to the person on the 39 bus as you can. Nigel Farage is excellent in this area.

    The government, Cameron and Remain have so far had it all too easy in trying to scare the electorate. You might consider describing what remaining in the EU could mean. If anything has the potential for being scary it is staying with this mad construct.

    In depicting Leave, keep it simple, keep it positive, and keep it credible.

    • John C.
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

      Keep it simple, keep it simple, keep it simple.
      Very, very few people sit and weigh up the pros and cons. Most have a gut feeling one way or another and want a simple argument to hang their desires on as they put the cross on the voting paper.

    • getahead
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

      The government, Cameron and Remain have so far had it all too easy because they have the backing of the euro-funded BBC from which most people get their information/propaganda.

  9. Ex-expat Colin
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    From a Labour Councillor in a W. Mids local paper:

    “Do we wish to work together with 27 other countries to secure the future of our country, to protect our economy, to fight terrorism, to work for social justice, defend trade unions, to help individuals reach their potential and defend democracy?”

    If you were seriously thick you would easily swallow that lot. And there lies the problem ..it will be swallowed and re spouted.

  10. fedupsoutherner
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    John, we had a dinner party last night and people around the table did not believe the figure of £10b over spend by the UK in the EU. I have just googled one of the Parliament sites and found the following:

    The UK’s net contribution to the EU Budget in 2015 is estimated at £8.5 billion, up from £4.3 billion in 2009 and down from £9.8 billion in 2014. It is forecast to fluctuate between £11.2 billion and £7.3 billion a year between 2016 and 2020.

    I am sure I have read on your site that we contribute nearer to £15b and get only around £5b back giving us a surplus of £10b. Can you clarify please? I know you have discussed this many times before but I have tried to look at past posting and quite frankly, because my internet connection is slow it takes a lifetime to download each page. I would like to be sure I know what I am talking about. Other sites seem to suggest we pay less too.

    reply Amy figures are the latest annual government figures. Remain uses an earlier year and often knocks off overseas aid spend as well

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:55 am | Permalink

      Only 26 pence per head per year, according to a leader writer for the Observer on the Sky press review last night. She’s obviously weak on arithmetic.

      There’s just been a new report from the House of Commons Library, perhaps you could email the link to your fellow diners:


      That has the following numbers for the UK’s net contribution, in £billions:

      2009 4.3
      2010 7.4
      2011 8.1
      2012 8.5
      2013 10.5
      2014 9.8
      2015 8.5 (forecast)

      JR has used the figures for 2014:


      “Various lower estimates for the UK’s saving from leaving the EU have been put about. Let me remind people where the £10 billion figure comes from. It is the last official ONS figure for a whole year, 2014, published in the Pink Book. It is based on the following figures … ”

      I think that’s fair enough, our net contribution in 2014 was £10 billion as a round number, and I certainly wouldn’t accept lower estimates like that cooked up by James Kirkup in his “EU Facts” at the Telegraph:


      He used the 2015 forecast and moreover he muddied the waters with “Payments to private organisations were worth another £1.4 billion in 2013”, and “Almost £1 billion of British money given to the EU is spend on international aid”, and that should be deducted because we would spend it anyway.

      That works out as £27 million a day as the UK’s net contribution to the EU budget, and as for the gross contribution I depart from some campaigners who quote £55 million a day because I think you have to take into account the rebate, and then it is “only” £40 million a day.

      After applying the rebate, it is close to £1 back for every £3 paid in.

  11. fedupsoutherner
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Could we dare hope in Scotland that our roads might actually improve? Our internet speed get better? Our transport links to England from the South West Scotland improve? These are things we discussed last night and everyone thought that Scotland and much of England was resembling some country from the 3rd world.

    Travel through much of Europe and the roads are much better. Spain, Germany, Ireland and France all have better roads than we do. I am fed up of travelling down the M6 to be faced with traffic jams and lanes cordoned off for miles with nothing being done on them. We need to start spending money on these things and quickly and hopefully Brexit might help that.

    • John C.
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      I agree fully, but we face the problem of density of population, and this will only get worse. rapidly worse, by the look of it, Brexit or no Brexit.

    Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    I do not see many MPs campaigning on doorsteps up to now for the EU, local elections or just about anything. Aren’t their hearts in it?

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:29 am | Permalink

      It could be connected with the availability of TV crews.

    • getahead
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps in their hearts they know that the EU is a busted flush.

  13. alan jutson
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Yes it means looking forward and doing what is Best for Britain.

    It means a complete sea change in thought and deed.

    It also means those who have campaigned for us to stay spouting lies and questionable statistics should have absolutely nothing to do with our leaving, neither should they take part in any further so called negotiations, they have proved beyond reasonable doubt, that they are prepared to sell Britain down the drain, and do simply not understand the difference between what is a good deal and what is bad.

    Thus the very first thing to happen if the result is a win for leave is to table a motion of no confidence in both Cameron and Osbourne, so that real patriotic people can be put in charge.

    • bluedog
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:24 am | Permalink

      A vote for Brexit is surely a vote to hammer down the last nail in the coffin that is Cameron’s reputation. If Cameron has a shred of decency he will resign on Brexit. The idea of Cameron leading Britain’s negotiations with the EU is quite surreal. Quite simply, the Brexit team has MPs who can do a much better job than Cameron ever could.

  14. Lesley
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    My British brain would like Brexit.
    My British body, resident in France, is being scared into Remain.
    What can be given as assurances for the likes of us? Have we lost the protection of our country as we had when we left?
    Are we to be treated as if it is our fault for leaving?

    • agricola
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:11 am | Permalink

      To the extent that you have a British Passport you have lost nothing in terms of protection. Sensible negotiation with the EU post Brexit should convince them that the interests of their citizens in the UK are equally as important as those of Brits living in the EU. I do not know what the economic impact is of Brits living in France, but speaking for myself living in Spain, it would be insane of the Spanish to interfere with the considerable economic benefit we bring to their country.

      Reciprocal health benefits across the EU are of equal benefit to the two million Europeans living in the UK as they are to UK citizens living in the EU. It is paid for by your country of origin I believe. There are many areas where it makes sense to cooperate and both sides would be very foolish to throw them out with the bathwater of political membership of the EU.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:23 am | Permalink

      I’m afraid to say it is your fault for leaving.

      Is the future of Britain to be determined by those who chose to leave her permanently ?

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:32 am | Permalink

      If we had a government with a shred of decency then they would be offering you some reassurance instead of trying to scare you into voting the way they want. Likewise all the citizens of other EU countries who have legally settled in the UK who will now be wondering what Brexit would mean for them, and possibly fretting about it; few of them will have votes to be won or lost, but that doesn’t mean that they deserve to be subjected to unnecessary distress as part of the government’s strategy.

      Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:05 am | Permalink

      If you are so terrified of the French authorities, French Institutions, French neighbours, French people, that you think them unutterably dangerous to your well-being without Britannia’s protection then you must return to the UK forthwith irrespective of a cross on a piece of paper. Crosses on pieces of paper handed out by priests during the Black Death in Europe did not save so many lives. It is unlikely they will eat you, unless cooked improperly

      • Lesley
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 10:20 am | Permalink

        Well that sounds very reasonable. Not.
        I know that our neighbours are and will be just the same, but it’s my British polititions that may change our pension increases, the tax treaties and health payments. Fair enough it’s happenend already on WFA , but I gather that expats are to be judged as less deserving of citizens because we moved. We appear to be classed as rats deserting a sinking ship. Like a lot of things, envy – of a retirement abroad.

    • Antisthenes
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:09 am | Permalink

      I do not believe Brexit would change your position one bit already in place bilateral agreements will continue and new ones forged. The French do not like us much but the EU says they must being free of that would be a big relief to them. They can start being rude to our face once again instead of behind our backs. 🙂

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:31 am | Permalink

      Of course it is not your fault. English people lived in France before the EU and will clearly remain there after Brexit.

    • acorn
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

      Interesting you should say such Lesley. From ex-pats in Lower Normandy the following questions:-

      1 Will my passport still work or will we need to replace it with an all UK version?

      2 Will the UK still allow dual nationality as it does now, or will we have to apply for separate French / EU citizenship?

      3 Property rental income. French residents are assessed for French income tax on their worldwide income. However, under the UK/France Double Tax Treaty rental income from a UK property remains subject to income tax in the UK and no double taxation (“Non-Resident Landlord” Scheme). Likewise for UK residents remitting rental income to the UK. Will Brexit change any of this?

      I have got a list of questions I can’t answer either. These ex-pats tend to know a lot more about the EU than Brits; hence, they ask much better questions about the de-merger.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 8:21 am | Permalink

        Well, you should easily be able to answer the first two questions with “yes” and “yes”. As for the third, if the tax treaty is outside the EU framework then why should it be affected by termination of the EU treaties?

        You can tell them that they have UK passports because they are UK citizens, it will say so inside, and the EC or EU bit is just an add-on as made clear in Article 9 of the Treaty on European Union:


        “Every national of a Member State shall be a citizen of the Union. Citizenship of the Union shall be additional to and not replace national citizenship.”

        As I recall when we moved from the old passports the new style passports were phased in as people’s passports came up for renewal or they got their first passport, and it would be sensible to just do that in reverse.

        As for dual nationality, I would entirely abolish that, but then I am not in charge and in any case people who already have it cannot be deprived of it except in extreme circumstances, so we will continue to have UK citizens who are also French citizens or are also Pakistani citizens.

    • sm
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      British people go to live permanently in non-EU countries – how do you suppose they manage?

      If your condition is so bad in France that you need British protection why do you stay there?

      Why would you be blame for whichever side wins in this Referendum?

      Perhaps you should try listening to your brain.

  15. Facts4eu.org
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    JR, a number of your readers were kind enough to post some warm messages of support on your site yesterday, for the work we’re doing in trying to get out ‘sound-bite’ facts for the voters. There were also some useful and constructive suggestions. We hope you’ll allow this quick, collective response.

    Ken Moore – please contact us as we loved all your ideas! Denis Cooper – your research is always excellent and we wish you’d volunteer! Graham Wood, you are of course right that enormous numbers of people are doing fantastic work on the ground, and are using leaflets created by Vote Leave and the other campaigns.

    Our interest is in the message getting through to voters, via whatever medium. Our point was about TV and the interviews of pro-Brexit MPs, which is impacting opinion on a daily basis in a drip-drip fashion.

    Thanks again for the messages of support everyone. Overnight we put up a piece about Jacob Rees Mogg’s PMQ and we back him up with a useful graph showing the reality: http://www.facts4eu.org/news.htm .

    Later we’ll be posting something about JR’s very positive piece above.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

      I would suggest (if you haven’t already) contacting all major Eurosceptic commenters to draw attention to your site, so that they may be better informed than they are during live debates. Bullet point rebuttals are most important.

      I have already forwarded your details to several.

      Thanks for the good work. And to Dr Redwood for his too.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 8:23 am | Permalink

      Still thinking about it …

    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Brexit will mean many former Labour, Trades Union and Lib-Dem elder-statesmen ( and of course women ) EU functionaries,and UKIP MEPs needing to work for a living.

    • Sue Doughty
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:48 am | Permalink

      They could always write history books recording the great mistake in world history that was the EU

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

      Indeed we should be able to halve the numbers of bureaucrats, lawyers, HR experts, health a safety experts, energy performance tester and the likes – people doing little of any use in government and many in the private sector too. Without EU laws the system can be far simpler and far better.

    • Bob
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

      That’s what sets ukip MEPs apart from the rest, they’re putting their country before themselves.

        Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

        Their knocks on doors in their fight for BREXIT is like the romantic flutter of the petals of Love-in- the-Mist compared with their thump thump thump like a Rent Collector’s thump on Rent Day in the private sector.
        By the way, away from such false poetics,has one seen a UKIP MEP knocking on any doors on estates saying “Sack Me from my job as MEP, Vote Leave” recently?No. And again NO.
        I could tell a real-life story about UKIP and, in the goodness of time I shall.

        • Bob
          Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:19 am | Permalink


          “has one seen a UKIP MEP knocking on any doors on estates saying “Sack Me from my job as MEP”


  17. Andrew Chapman
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    ‘And Brexit means continuing to trade with the rest of the EU as we do today.’ I’m 100% for Brexit, but this seems over-stated. Even Norway and the other EFTA-EEA countries, being outside the Customs Area, have to follow Rules of Origin, in a way we do not have to.

    Outside the Single Market, we would need an FTA even to avoid tariffs on goods, which is the easier part. How long would that take to negotiate. Personally, I think it could probably be done in the two years available under Article 50, but many say otherwise, so one has to give reasons for confidence in this.

    As for Non-Tariff Barriers in goods, and trade in services, it’s got to be somewhat harder outside the Single Market, I would have thought, just because one is no longer under the same obligatory rules and regulations as everybody else. That’s why nations go to the trouble of negotiating modern TFAs with their articles on technical conformity, mutual recognition of professional qualifications, and a host of similar matters.


    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 8:34 am | Permalink

      “have to follow Rules of Origin, in a way we do not have to”

      That needs explanation.

      However, I have reluctantly come to the view that to avoid disrupting trade (and according to the IMF thereby bringing down the whole world economy) we should stay in the EEA, and so the EU Single Market, just as a first stop on our journey back to being an independent self-governing country.

    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    Brexit will mean apples with taste in them, overhanging once again our country lanes

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:31 am | Permalink

      And warm beer and spinsters on bicycles and the thwack of leather on willow ….

        Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

        Denis Cooper
        I heard about spinsters. Not in connection with bicycles. Before my time. There are many spinsters now. No war. Still, they have kids.

      • Excalibur
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 6:08 am | Permalink

        And steam locomotives on preservation lines threading through the “lost England of thatched inns and civility”……

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      Hopefully so many apples sold in supermarkets seems to be nearly a year old and taste like they are too. Often they have better apples on trees overhanging their car parks, cherries and plumbs too at one supermarket car park I know.

        Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

        The Rape’s yellowy flowers are mighty pretty as one drives past fields in the countryside but their was a time when those fields were full of potatoes, peas, cabbages, brussel sprouts and on “Spud picking week” in Autumn many a kid’s summer pot belly and diabetes-potential were sweated out of him picking up taties from the farmers tractor’s wake into buckets with a booster for his pocket money, fit for a Lord.
        Balance, across the board in our land, has been lost

    • John C.
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

      I’m a Brexiteer, but I know very well that Brexit will not cure the deep-seated ills of this semi-democratic, entitlement-ridden country. Those who see Brexit as a cure-all are heading for disillusionment, even after a brief period of euphoria.

        Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

        John C:
        Well it will be a start. We British can get to know each other again and make jokes about one another: “There was a Scotsman, an Englishman, a Welsh man and an Irishman who walked into a pub and…” ( Told in a different way depending whether you are a Scotsman, an Englishman, a Welshman or an Irishman.) Now we are dumbed by Corbynophobia and other ailments twisting our tongues to say just about anything even a reverse after 40 years and saying the opposite. As versatile as a bad egg.

  19. Paul Cohen
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    Just recived my copy of “The booklet” 16pp A5 landscape printed in 4 process colours.

    As an ex MD of a printing company I would have expected it be printed on a 70gm2 paper which would have been appropriate for this sort of publication, giving a gross weight of 569 tonnes for 27,000,000 copies. However it is printed on an expensive paper weighing 160gm2, giving a gross weight of 1300 tonnes – so someone has tossed away about £439,000 extra of taxpayers money needlessly plus extra distribution costs.

    The publication was produced by Williams Lea, a subsiduary of Deutsche Post DHL, I wonder if it was printed in Germany? a UK printing company in their group in Livingstone being closed in February.

    • alan jutson
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:23 am | Permalink


      You mean they have cut down more trees than they needed to.

      What is the Conservative Party Logo ?

      Interesting last paragraph.

      If it was actually printed in Germany that would explain the rapid production of the leaflet with no advance leaks of information.

      From announcement to delivery was a very short timescale, me thinks this was planned a very long time ago and kept under wraps to avoid any challenge.

      Perhaps they thought the British workers cannot be trusted to keep it under wraps. ?

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 8:38 am | Permalink

      They’ve used the heavier paper so it doesn’t too obviously seem lightweight.

    • Know-dice
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      I also see the cost for design of this leaflet was apparently over £400,000 – this Government doesn’t have a clue about getting value for money.

      I would have expected a contract of this value to be advertised in the European Journal, so could well be produced in Germany.

      • alan jutson
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 12:34 pm | Permalink


        ” I would have expected a contract……..”

        Competitive tendering rules ?

      • Paul Cohen
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

        Whaat !

        That is an insane amount of money – I would have thought perhaps £20,000 tops. The design is just “Plain Jane”, nothing very taxing (sorry) or innovative there.

        • stred
          Posted April 16, 2016 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

          Perhaps some hacks can find out which firm was paid the insane amount to design the leaflet. Some big PR firms are helping to run the Remain campaign and have close contacts with government ministers.

          A nasty pong is hanging around this one.

  20. Iain Moore
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    Brexit will look like having a Government that we can sack if they get things wrong, not have to endure years if not decades of failing policies, because the sclerotic EU is locked into the past by the treaties that created it and incapable of reform.

    Mandelson in the Newsnight debate on the EU , said that the EU eventually gets around to accommodating change, well eventually is just not good enough in this fast changing world, by the time the sclerotic EU has called its summits and the EU bureaucracy has ruminated over the issue and compromises have been cobbled together, opportunities have been lost , peoples lives have been damaged and the compromised response is ineffective . This is no way to run a country, or to give us a future.

  21. JoolsB
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    I support Brexit wholeheartedly. I also support an English Parliament. I just wish your colleagues could show as much passion for justice for England and their constituents as they are doing for Brexit.

    • Dan H
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

      I personally would like to see devolution done in a proper and sane manner. Something like a regional parliament for each region, with constituencies each electing a representative for that regional parliament. When a national parliament is needed, simply combine all the regional representatives into one big national parliament.

      This has the advantage of reducing the numbers of politicians to a minimum, thus reducing the cost of the governing system. Granted, this will put lots of regional politicians out of their seats, but on the plus side the cream of the crop will be chosen for the eventual devolved system.

  22. Shieldsman
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    Mr Redwood I know you are one of the most sincerest of MP’s in wishing to leave the EU, I think it is just a pity you got caught in the Conservatives for Britain movement.

    Ian Wragg has it right Vote.Leave could never win the leave vote on their own.
    They have always been seen as the other half (now officially) of the Conservative Party, half heartily fighting Cameron and the real Tory Controllers that would never let him lead an out vote.

    Vote. leave was spun out of Business for Britain and Conservatives for Britain, so it is dominated by Conservative eurosceptic MP’s, an ex Tory and a couple of Labour MP’s to make it look an all party affair.

    It does have Boris, Michael Gove and others all wanting to be Prima Donna’s, but with no real knowledge of the workings of the EU. They are unable to forcibly present the truth that the PM did not reform the EU. There was no treaty change and without it the terms for the other 27 members remains the same.
    No doubt they will follow a similar leafleting campaign to the Government and the Better In group, they do not have a ground organisation. Then I suppose they could follow Cameron’s approach, go to a University and hand out T-shirts with a photographer handy.

    No a leave vote can only be won by the foot soldiers of Leave.EU under the GO umbrella and it is time you accepted that fact. You need to knock some heads together and go and talk to Aaron Banks.

    Reply Just get on with winning the referendum. I am very relaxed about Go pursuing its ground campaign and I have spoken at a Go event and am happy to help them further. I am also thought Vote.leave the most suitable team for the air war and they have won the nomination as I anticipated.

    • Paul H
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      Can you use whatever influence you might have with Arron Banks to dissuade him from the KamiKaze action he is rumoured to be considering? No-one is going to thank him for forcing the referendum to drag into the autumn and, IMHO, his actions will do great damage to the Leavers’ cause.

    • Sue Doughty
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:50 am | Permalink

      I already have a Vote Leave car sticker on board. Nobody else offered them. There is only one message and that is vote leave. Could be subtitled “fear not”.

    • forthurst
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

      “I am very relaxed about Go pursuing its ground campaign and I have spoken at a Go event and am happy to help them further. I am also thought Vote.leave the most suitable team for the air war and they have won the nomination as I anticipated.”

      Does Vote Leave have a ground organisation at all and are they producing literature for local distribution? They do have some good speakers who, however, are all Tories or ex-Tories, of whom some are not well regarded by leftwingers who nevertheless have not been brainwashed into abandoning their country and the security that it can offer. My experience of talking to such people is that they are conflicted because they have also been pursuaded that the Brussels regime has given them additional rights, unlikely in their view, to have been granted by an unconstrained Tory government which is also likely to revoke them.

      The dilemma for GO is that their capacity to invest further in their existing local campaigns with more materials has been artificially constrained by the £700,000 limit. On the other hand Vote Leave which has £7m to spend simply has to wait for invitations from the MSM; they need to consider, however, that should the Leavers appear by polling to be in the ascendent, their invitations might dry up whilst the level of vitriolic misinformation vomited by the BBC might increase by many decibels. So, Vote Leave and GO are not complementary because of the financial constraints on GO and Vote Leave are not a broad church. There is no cause for complacency and those who are blocking a merger of the two organisations in Vote Leave need to kicked out without delay because they are giving comfort to CMD and the Brussels regime.

      Reply Yes Vote leave is busy delivering leaflets and holding meetings all round the country

      • forthurst
        Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

        “Reply Yes Vote leave is busy delivering leaflets and holding meetings all round the country”

        I haven’t received one and have not heard of a street stall in the local area; this is the problem: some Conservative constituencies are Eurosceptic and some are very definitely not; in which case, Vote Leave’s coverage will be patchy at best, whereas the Leave campaign needs to have 100% coverage on the ground to be effective.

        Reply Why don’t you become the local organiser and get them delivered? Now is the time to do something to help instead of sniping from the sidelines

        • forthurst
          Posted April 15, 2016 at 8:42 am | Permalink

          “Reply Why don’t you become the local organiser and get them delivered? Now is the time to do something to help instead of sniping from the sidelines”

          I have already been actively campaigning for Leave and I and my colleagues are currently considering the presentation and distribution of vote Leave literature locally. I’m nor just a keyboard warrior.

          Reply Thanks and well done.

    • Richard1
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

      It is helpful of Jeremy Corbyn to point out that the EU now “is about more than business and free trade”, and that “there is a socialist case for the EU”. This will help some right of centre waverers decide.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 8:48 am | Permalink

        Also helpful that he doesn’t think we have too many EU immigrants.

        I think we have too many EU immigrants, but unlike some without necessarily disparaging any single one of them in any way at all. Only a small minority of the eastern Europeans are here to batten on the UK taxpayer and many people I know actually speak highly of most of them for their work ethic; primarily it is only a matter of the numbers.

        But what is done is done in that regard and it cannot be undone in any reasonable and just way, quite apart from other considerations such as the Vienna Convention, so we just have to make the best of it.

    • getahead
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

      Nigel Farage is an unafraid and talented speaker. He needs more recognition for his achievements. As does the Leave.EU campaign.

    • getahead
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

      Nigel Farage is an articulate speaker devoted to the cause. He deserves more recognition, as does Leave. EU.

      • getahead
        Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

        The system mucked me up.

    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:35 am | Permalink

    Brexit may mean Alex Salmond rowing over to the Isle of Skye, becoming a hermit and Nicola Sturgeon sleeping in a tent in Calais hoping for political asylum in France. Vote LEAVE comrades! Vote LEAVE!

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:53 am | Permalink

      Christopher, that would be a great scenario for many Scots too who want to remain in the UK and out of the EU. Most farmers want out. Nothing would please us more than if the whole SNP cabinet emigrated to their beloved EU areas.

    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    Brexit could mean a flood of money leaving Europe to the safer haven of the UK. This could very well push up the value of the Pound Sterling. Aside from guffaws from the REMAIN campaign to such a scenario, it is nevertheless a possible immediate outcome. Unfortunately the BoE has most certainly not anticipated such; has not made any provision for it happening. The BoE does not serve us well.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:41 am | Permalink

      Indeed, so how do we make money out of this Brexit vote. Still nearly 2:1 betting odds I see. But perhaps there are better ways to profit from it? Any suggestions?

    • hefner
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

      Just a thought: What about you, your chums and JR preparing to take over on 24th June? I look forward to such a thing. It could be called “just a bit after MidSummer Night” or something as poetical, with all the Cameron, Gideon, Salmond, Sturgeon, Ken Clarke, BBC stooges and other wet witches you would just have hunted, sent to oil-boiling full cauldrons, and all of them then replaced by pro-TTIP ultra-liberal “angels”?

      Then there would be paradise on earth, till the end of time at least on this island, rhaaaah, lovely!

      Unfortunately, by that time, I might have to tread the dirty dusty paths of continental Eeuuurooope. I am already sorry to have to move and miss such fun.

    • petermartin2001
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      It is not a problem. The UK govt has almost unlimited power to regulate the value of the pound downwards. If it wants, for example, the pound to be at parity with either the US dollar or the euro it simply directs the BoE to supply as many pounds as anyone wants to buy at those prices. Why would anyone want to pay more?

      This is what the big exporters always do to keep their current account in surplus.

      And this is what the UK needs to do ( but not necessarily at these ultra low levels) if it wants a surplus in its current account. I’d argue that was unnecessary providing that we all understand that if the UK is in debt as a whole then someone in the UK needs to fund that debt by borrowing.

      That really should be down to government. It is crazy to encourage the excessive borrowing we have seen in the private sector in the last 20 or so years. We’ve just about priced out an entire generation from home ownership.

  25. porow
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    “What does Brexit look like” (Your Article )

    This should be posted to every household – printed in very newspaper – sent to every
    small or large workplace – printed as a poster and put in every willing shop window – pub and private house.

  26. Know-dice
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    The utopian view of Brexit being put forwards needs to be balanced with the view that remain means more political union and ultimately joining the Euro, as Ted Heath had in mind. And being 1 of 28 gives us no say what so ever…

    With Corbyn’s speech this morning we shouldn’t link being in the EU with all the social policies that we have been subjected to over the last few years. All of these could have been implemented by the UK Parliament if we felt they would be useful in this country.

    That means we could have been selective as to what works for us and what doesn’t…

  27. John Bracewell
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:00 am | Permalink

    I agree with the view that the Brexiteers must spell out what Brexit looks like but it has, of course, 2 major drawbacks:
    1. The Remain side will counter each point and focus on knocking down the picture of Brexit and any made-up factors such as the Norwegian or Swiss models, that is painted. Especially since the Remain side have little positive to crow about except attributing everything that is good about the UK to being due to the EU.
    2. The other issue is that Brexit is in the future, so, the argument that ‘you can’t guarantee that will happen’, or, that is ‘how you think it will happen but don’t know’ can always be levelled at the Brexit view. To some extent, a view of life after Brexit is like trying to tell the future and that can always be attacked, because it is clearly unknown.
    The set of arguments that, as yet, appear to be lacking or not emphasised enough are those concerning what the EU will look like if the vote is to Remain. People are assuming it would be the status quo but clearly it will not. What is going to happen in the Eurozone? how will further Euro crises be abated? How will youth unemployment in the EU be tackled? What will ‘closer political union’ look like? When a federal EU (1 country) is created what will the government of that look like? Will that federal government give any thought to the needs of countries not in the new EU country created? Can the UK be part of the EU but not part of the 1 country to be created, or will the UK be left out of EU decisions even more than now? What is going to be done to turn round the failing economy of the EU and its falling trade with the rest of the world? What will the EU look like when it has to cater for 5 million or more people through having no borders? If the UK continues to be the target how many more economic migrants/refugees/asylum seekers will be allowed or illegally enter the UK anyway? What will that do to UK jobs, schools, health provision, housing?

    If life after Brexit is uncertain then it is also true that life after a Remain vote is equally as uncertain, so why does the Remain side not tackle that as well as calling for clarity about the view of life after Brexit. Perhaps the Brexit side should be just as vocal about the Remain side setting out what life after a Remain vote would look like as the Remain side’s call for a post Brexit view, since life after a Remain vote does not look at all rosy to me.

    • Bob
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 8:13 am | Permalink

      @John Bracewell

      “What will that do to UK jobs, schools, health provision, housing?”

      I think we already know the answer to that.
      – The so called NHS crisis is no longer a crisis, it has become the norm.
      – The new living wage will draw workers from the areas of the EU suffering high unemployment.
      – Demand for housing and schools will continue to outstrip supply as Germany grants EU citizenship to it’s recent arrivals from the third world.
      – The UK’s influence, already vanishingly small, with each new treaty and accession will disappear completely.

  28. Bert Young
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:22 am | Permalink

    Johns’ very positive views of Brexit are cogently put today ; they are the points that every household should receive . Yesterday I “returned to sender” another leaflet from the “remain” group ; today it was put back through my door – my address was on it ; again I will “return it to sender”.

    There is no doubt that the campaign is on and that the scaremongering has got across ; I regret that the debate on this issue is delayed in the HoC and that pamphlets have been released . The Electoral Commission have made its views known but have simply been ignored ; does the Cabinet Secretary have more sway ? and , if this is so , why should he ?

    The public deserve a non-biassed view from the Government and not one that states an opinion – one that has not been decided in the HoC . Perhaps this points to the most important aspect of John’s blog – we have lost our democracy . Today my very young daughter announced that she did not know what “it” was all about ; I’m afraid her view signals how many others think .

  29. oldtimer
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Excellent post. I have forwarded a link to my family.

    There remains the question, what is the price of such freedom?

    The reality is that no one knows. If it is indeed about one year’s economic growth, is that a price worth paying? Set against the risks and privations endured by those seeking to migrate to Europe from Africa, the Middle East or Central Asia it seems to me to be a trivial cost. The central issue is not the economics of the case but the freedom to control our own affairs.

  30. Jack
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:38 am | Permalink

    It also means we won’t have unelected commissioners telling us we need to impose ever-more austerity to comply with the fundamentally flawed 3% deficit limit. We’re not all like Germany with 8%+ trade surpluses, there’s just no way we can have a budget surplus and even if we did, we’d be in recession before you knew it!

    Though I don’t think Osborne is going to relent on his budget surplus attempt, but maybe we’ll get a new Chancellor who will introduce huge across-the-board tax cuts? Bringing back prosperity with high real wage growth, ~6%+ real GDP growth, etc, will rule out any chance of Corbyn getting near power.

  31. Kenneth
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    The BBC doesn’t agree with you, Mr Redwood.

    It spent a lot of our money to demonstrate that Brexit will look like Sealand.

  32. bratwurst
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Unfortunately knowing what Brexit looks like is irrelevant if there is no credible exit plan as without one the referendum is lost. Vote Leave has no plan, let alone a creditable one.

  33. Paul H
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    Presumably now that the official Leave campaign has received official designation, we can start to look forward to a well-planned campaign with hard-hitting messages – including a convincing portrayal of post-Brexit life and a plan for the transition period? So far it has all been very low key, which hasn’t bothered me unduly given the uncertainty over the campaign lead and the likelihood that only the last few weeks will matter (in fact, I think that the government’s Remain campaign may even be a little damaged by premature initiation). However I will be more concerned if punches are pulled because so many of the Vote Leave’s senior figures are Tories.

  34. Denis Cooper
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    That’s all very fine, JR, but as this chap says:


    “The two pivotal words of the EU referendum campaign are “could” and “how”. Every analysis of the consequences of Britain leaving the European Union are heavily reliant on the word “could”, or similar words like “might”. We will hear it endlessly right up until the vote. Brexit could mean this and Brexit could cause that. What it entirely comes down to is how we leave the European Union.”

    “What it entirely comes down to is how we leave the European Union”, correct.

    I have a granddaughter who likes Dora the Explorer. The standard formula is that Dora needs to find her way somewhere for some purpose and she asks us:

    “Who do we ask for help, when we don’t know which way to go?”

    to which we are supposed to loudly reply:

    “Map! Map! Map!”

    and Map jumps out Dora’s backpack, sings a little song*, says that he knows the way, and carefully explains the route she must take, step by step.

    In this case, he could be saying:

    “Dora needs to get from the existing EU treaties to better treaties with her neighbours that won’t involve her in their wild ride to political union. Well I know the way … ”

    That is what we need, JR, a map; and even if it turns out that we have to take a slightly different route at some later point at least we should know where to start.

    * http://www.songlyrics.com/dora-the-explorer/i-m-the-map!-lyrics/

    “If there is a place you got to go
    I am the one you need to know
    I’m the Map!
    I’m the Map!
    I’m the Map!

    If there is a place you got to get
    I can get you there I bet
    I’m the Map!
    I’m the Map!
    I’m the Map!

    I’m the Map!
    I’m the Map!
    I’m the Map!”

    [Repeat refrain (and indeed entire episode) as many times as may be desired]

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 11:47 pm | Permalink


      I’ve already given a map in the form of a schedule to achieve full Brexit by April 2017. It involves rapid unilateral repeal of the Lisbon Treaty, a proper divorce and the adoption of a Canada style trade deal, not a Norway or Switzerland style deal.

      Restoring the supremacy of UK law and stopping payments to Brussels can not be done nicely. If you read your history (or mythology) you will know the method by by which Alexander the Great untied the Gordian knot.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted April 16, 2016 at 11:32 am | Permalink

        But in reality nowhere near enough people would vote to replace the EU Single Market with an inadequate Canada style trade deal, at the potential cost of £92 billion a year and 1.6 million jobs lost as they are being told.

        • Lindsay McDougall
          Posted April 17, 2016 at 2:52 am | Permalink

          As I’ve argued above, those numbers are bogus. They would imply high tariffs, wheras the tariff levels on industrial goods in the EU-Canada deal start low and and are phased out over 7 years.

          Also, countries like New Zealand would welcome the chance to export food to us – and it’s cheaper than EU food.

  35. NickW
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    Brexit also means freedom from the perpetual worry and fear about demands for more money and the imposition of more rules.

    if Europe wanted us to stay in; why didn’t they offer us a better deal? Or did they believe that threats and lies would always be effective in gaining the desired result?

    If Europe progresses in the current direction towards fiscal and political union, (which its leaders have vowed to do), there will have to be an acceptance that the richer areas pay to support the poorer areas.

    Richer areas is us.

    So how much will our contributions go up by if we remain? Four times; ten times?

    What nasty surprise will be waiting for us as soon as (and if) we vote to remain? I note that everyone in the EU Government is keeping extremely quiet util our referendum is over. It will probably only be about four days before those who voted remain, (if that is the decision) realise that they have been duped by a Conservative reincarnation of Harold Wilson.

    Any moment now Cameron will appear in public wearing a Gannex raincoat, and smoking a pipe.

    • NickW
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:22 am | Permalink

      Remember that we no longer have sufficient sovereignty to prevent us being drawn into a fiscal and political union. It will happen if we stay, and we will end up paying far more.

      That is our master’s plan.

  36. behindthefrogs
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    BREXIT means that the cash strapped countries in Europe like Greece will be even worse off because they will no longer benefit from the UK net contribution. Perhaps the South East of England should similarly exit from the UK so that we are better off by not having to support the rest of the UK with our taxes.

  37. Sue Doughty
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    After Brexit farm payments will be made through the same offices in England, Scotland, Wales and NI using the same formula and the same amounts of money or more until reformed to suit our climate and markets.
    After Brexit university research grants will be administered and paid out through British offices in conjuction with industry as they always used to be, with the same amount of funding and more.
    After Brexit the highest court in the land will be the highest court.
    After Brexit the EU will try and place tariffs on French exports to Britain and then change their minds and drop the whole idea.
    After Brexit the UK and global economies will get more dynamic and productive, to the benefit of our pension funds because the EU has been holding a cold and heavy hand on it for years.
    After Brexit recruitment of scientists, dentists, doctors, nurses and other professionals will be much easier. I note most of my best doctors are not EU born, some Russian, some Egyptian etc.
    After Brexit Matra-Marconi need not relocate from France and can continue working as normal – there need be no fear for that industry.
    It will be a wide blue sky day.

    • stred
      Posted April 16, 2016 at 4:36 am | Permalink

      This is a very important post. Please repeat it.

  38. acorn
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    This referendum is short of numbers and there is huge lack of “due diligence” going on for this de-merger.

    Alas, I have given up trying to analyse the UK Balance of Payments spreadsheet for Brexit affects, so has everybody else, too difficult. https://www.ons.gov.uk/file?uri=/economy/nationalaccounts/balanceofpayments/datasets/balanceofpaymentsstatisticalbulletintables/current/balanceofpayments2015q4.xls

    Table C shows the somewhat large dependence on the EU side. The non-EU side is dependant on services as the only sector that makes a profit.

    Table H is Secondary Income, where the infamous (net) £10.6 billion EU payment turns up. You will see that the EU fee is only 44% of the fees, grants and giveaways we don’t expect to ever see again.

    We are going to have to crank up the import substitution, which will require a bigger budget deficit for starters and a government that leads private sector resources from the front. We are going to need a Winston Churchill type government; unfortunately, we don’t have one that comes anywhere near close.

  39. David Alan hardy
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    There is only one way to save our country and that as to be leave the eu let us make a better country to live and work in spend our money on things that will do good for us ( the people of this country ) and not send it to the eu

  40. Nig L
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    I saw yesterday a statement by the PM that Brexit wouldn’t necessarily mean a reduction in migration because we may have to concede the status quo in return for a trade agreement.

    May I suggest he is reminded that the trade balance in favour of the EC should be a strong enough negotiating point, and if he is already thinking of concessions to the EC and mindful of the pitiful concessions he ‘won’ last time, the Leave campaigners should make it very clear he should NOT be in charge of the negotiations nor George (I adore Christine Lagarde) Osborne.

    Equally as far as the amount we contribute, that you rightly identify to benefit us rather than ‘rebuilding roads’ in Romania, my instinct is that those two will make the excuse that the loss of our very large contribution will have such a negative effect on Europe’s economy that they will want to continue to pay in in return for some (overspun) unquantifiable benefits.

    If all this means DC having to move on, so be it.

  41. Dunedin
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    Superb! An uplifting, positive, and forward-thinking summary of Brexit -and an excellent basis for a “Leave Leaflet” (if leaflets are still in fashion!)

    A “Brexit Budget” is a great idea and would be a very powerful tool to show what could be done with the money we contribute to the EU.

    There has been quite a lot of comments (in TV/radio interviews and letters to newspapers) about “loss of EU funding” for various projects. It needs to be made clear that this is only UK contributions being re-cycled and funding would not be lost in the event of Brexit.

    Referencing yesterday’s article – the EU has sclerotic growth, a shrinking share of world GDP, and an unemployment rate around double that of the UK (and much higher if you look at youth unemployment). I don’t understand why the younger generations are so keen on remaining in the EU? Some youngsters may get to study or work in Europe, but the majority will probably find themselves at a disadvantage as they have to compete with EU citizens for jobs in the UK.

  42. miami.mode
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    Only Brexit will enable us to answer Tony Benn’s final question of 5 on democracy – how do we get rid of you?

  43. peter d
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    My question more to the point is if we leave do we stay in the scope of EEA or not?

    If we stay in EEA we leave the EU political structures (good) but still have to abide by EU regulations and accept free movement.

    I understand there will be a period of negotiation etc. but is this not the likely outcome?

  44. ian
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    This will be one of my last post today till after the referendum, with the start of brexit tomorrow and john needing more time for the campaign, he has better things to do than read through my drivel and also to leave more room for new people to post on this site.

    When I had to get out of my bed to start posting on this site, I had one aim and that was to bring democracy to this country and to my amazement it has happened with FREE PARLIMENT campaign, it not my job to tell people how to vote and I recognize that people love their political football teams of labour, conservatives, greens, liberals and ukip and also FREE PARLIAMENT requires some intellectual work and participation by the voter most of the year instead of one vote over 5 years, so for this reason take up of the idea could put a lot of people off because they like everything done for them and just like sit back and complain instead of putting in some work themselves, anyway my jobs done by having more choice for the voter with FREE PARLIAMENT.

    As for EUROPE, you have lost 3 million jobs in industrial and manufacturing and other skills which you need back and these jobs have been replace by retail and office jobs with most of them being low grade jobs all because of Europe..

    Then you have Europe immigration apocalypse etc ed

  45. ale bro
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    If Brexit really improved the UK democracy by having an elected second chamber, I would be all for it.

    However, Brexit isn’t offering any fundamental improvements to the democratic system in the UK.

    The democratic benefits Brexit constantly refers to are merely the repatriation of powers from a democratic system (EU parliament) to the UK government. I can’t see anything that would enhance the democratic process.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 9:35 am | Permalink

      It’s difficult to believe that anyone can think that the EU Parliament provides better democracy for the British than the British Parliament.

  46. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    A few question for you on the assumption that Vote Leave wins on 23rd June:

    – Are you prepared to force a change in the Conservative Party leadership?
    – Will the new leader be one who gets Her Majesty to appoint 500 Eurosceptic peers?
    – Are you prepared to repeal the Lisbon Treaty in order to avoid the two year delay?
    – Are you prepared to accept a Canada style deal so that Brexit happens quickly?

  47. David Edwards
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    I don’t know what to make of our PM? What is it exactly that he loves about the EU? I can’t figure it out. Is it party repositioning, leadership inheritance for George, is there an aspect of being influenced by other leaders? I just can’t work it out? The leaflet I received, that has been returned, with corrections, seems so weak that I can’t think he really believes in it. Particularly given that he has been euroscepric previously it doesn’t make sense. Help on this please.

  48. David Edwards
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    Regardless of the cause of our PM’s questionable enthusiasm for the EU, my concern is that it will rip apart what I think is the most sensible and progressive political party in the UK. Unless it is to be reconstituted under a different leader, the Conservative party may have a short life-span or may split from what might become the New Liberal party.

  49. Stu Saint
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    Good starting statement, kept up, glad Banks is going to whine not go legal, keep the positive message but remind constantly IN is NOT SAFE!

  50. George Lloyd
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    Like this paper, but feel it should include the regaining of out Fisheries, the loss of which has cost us thousands of jobs and trillions of pounds since 1975.

    • forthurst
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

      Yes, indeed. post Brexit, I look forward to going to the beach and seeing fishermen repairing their nets; watch, as I did as a child, as they all worked together to launch each others’ drifters for a night of inshore fishing; buy freshly caught fish rather than the fish stollen from our waters and sold back to us, stale and overpriced. When the lifeboat launches, instead of being a weekend sailor who imagines a compass rose is an alcoholic beverage or a hybrid tea, it might be for professional seafarers like fishermen whose calling had exposed them to the unforgiving sea and for whom the lifeboat service was created instead.

  51. F Lankester PhD
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    I’m afraid this catch-all won’t work. There needs to be a clear alternative otherwise Remain can score hits with the argument that Leave is all over the place and there really is a risk.
    The Norway option must be taken seriously because it preserves membership of the Single Market-which is key. If there is any perceived risk to the UK remaining in the SM then Leave will lose. DC’s arguments on N orway can be eestroyed and his judgement can be shown up as faulty because he and REmain keep saying that Norway pays the same as the UK, follows all EU rules and has no say. None of these things are true and they be easily shown to be false from official figures.

    Reply The single market includes free movement and payments in which we do not want. We want WTO plus trade arrangements which is exactly what we will get

    • forthurst
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

      “Reply The single market includes free movement and payments in which we do not want.”

      It also means that single market rules apply to all our economic activity, making us far less competive in our trade with the rest of the world and depressing that activity which is exclusively internal, when only about 11% of our production which is directed at the EU should need to be subject to their rules.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 9:37 am | Permalink

      JR, you need to read Richard North about “WTO plus trade arrangements”

  52. Gerard van Geleuken
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

    “As Lord Rose of Remain has said it means higher wages as we cut the flows of EU migrants into low paid jobs” Really? Over half of net immigration comes from outside the EU, and will presumably remain at the same level. So how big is the flow of EU migrants into low paid jobs exactly ? On average they’re better educated/trained than the native Britons, so perhaps they’re rather competing for well-paid jobs? In any case, there is no reason to believe that a Brexit will lead to fewer immigrants from the EU. Most likely, in return for access to the internal market GB will have to maintain the right of free movement for EU citizens.

    Reply Our trade us not at risk and we have no intention of continuing with free movement in EU contributions. 165 countries around the world trade with the EU without accepting either of these features

  53. Chris
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    Pleased to see that you are in The Guardian
    You receive some “stick” in the comments section, but, as a regular reader of the papers online, including the Guardian, I have noticed that a very large number of commenters are pro Brexit. I suspect that they were having a go at you simply because you are part of what they think of as the “austerity Party” and thus are associated with David Cameron and the Chancellor, who undoubtedly are not at all popular outside the Westminster bubble. I know someone who is canvassing in local elections in your constituency, and who has received many negative comments on the doorstep about both Cameron and Osborne, and the EU and immigration – and this from a traditional Conservative voters.

    • stred
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 10:00 am | Permalink

      The Guardian reader’s comments are an indication of the thinking- or lack of it- of its readers. The most recent comments allow simple personal abuse, without argument. One lady comments that your figures are incorrect because you had not allowed for payment for farmers, although the figure was clearly deducted, along with university payments. One comment was sensible. A reduction of university fees would have been welcome to the younger voter, who are very likely to vote remain.

      As regards the younger Remainers, a caller to Nigel Farage made the point that they seem not to understand that their chances of getting onto the housing ladder or getting a well paid job are lessened by the EU and free access to the UK. I recently spent a few days finding graphs and figures with sources and even superimposed the housing affordability over the net migration graphs. This showed clearly that for the past 20 years the two have risen together, with a lowering of the line due to mortgage rate fall after the crash. The net migration does not even include the probably much higher figure for those with NI number and living here but not recorded in samples.

      Another point made by the Remain campaign is that EU migrants contribute more in tax than they receive. The graph from UCL Centre from research and analysis of migration shows otherwise. It would be useful if these could be shown on websites which would then counteracts the glossy lie pack put out at our expense by the government and peddled by the Guardian and BBC.

      • stred
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 10:02 am | Permalink

        Caller to Farage. re LBC 8.30 today.

  54. margaret
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    I got the in pamphlet yesterday and with all flyers like pizza flyers , small business flyers etc it went straight into the waste. Busy people do not have time to attend to all the bits of paper and selling phone calls they receive. Bust people would become unbearably stressed and overloaded if they had to read all the stuff which is thrown at us through the front door. The TV is the best way to get the message across as this is where the majority get their information from . All locals I mention it to want out due to local change. Even the immigrants want to close the gates now.

  55. forthurst
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    I see that uncertainty about the Referendum is having an adverse effect on housebuilders’ shares; post-Brexit, there will be an end to never ending pressure on our farm land and house prices which is bad news indeed for those who profit from houseprice inflation and the rentier economy, like the Blairs. How awful.

  56. petermartin2001
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    Brexit wouldn’t be that much different from what we have now. Because the UK uniquely hasn’t adopted the euro, doesn’t peg its currency to the euro, and has no plans to do so any time soon, I would argue it isn’t truly a full member of the EU in any case.

    So the rational choice is to REMAIN and sign up to all that in, say, the next decade or LEAVE now.

    As the Americans like to say it should be a no-brainer.

    • Edward2
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

      But its not about money.
      It is about sovereignty and indpendence.

      • Know-dice
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:21 am | Permalink

        For some people it is about money, for some it’s about immigration, for some it’s about sovereignty and independence…

        I would agree with petermartin2001, that it makes no sense to vote Remain and not expect to join the Euro and full political union. There is no point in being on the periphery of the EU and think you have any influence whatsoever…

      • hefner
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

        Edward2, I would think that saying it is not about money but about sovereignty and independence is rather a curious view: I would think a majority of people have to check their bank accounts at the end of the month, have to think twice before making a large purchase, … have to plan their holidays (if they can afford them) not thinking of sovereignty and independence, but of money, have to make sure their future pension will be adequate (what about the impact of Remain/Brexit on pensions and the market on which a non negligible part depends).

        Do not forget that the sample of people on this blog is very unlikely to be representative of the UK Population at large.
        I am afraid that fuddy-duddy high minded concepts like sovereignty and independence are good to use in Oxford debating halls or in Parliament. They are not putting meat on one’s plate.

  57. Sean
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    Then why is any politician stupid enough to want to stay in. They must be wanting to stay in for their political career like Corbyn is pro Eu to keep his party together rather than the country.
    The leave Campaign need to make a lot of noise and make the stupid listen before we completely lose our country to the Eu money pit and hell hole.

  58. Denis Cooper
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:07 pm | Permalink

    Somewhat off-topic, I was interested to see that Poland is coming to the end of a 12 year transitional period during which the government could restrict sales of farmland to the citizens of other EU countries, as well as other foreigners, and it is having a national law passed to unilaterally extend that period for another 5 years, contrary to EU law:


    “Polish farmland bill may breach the EU law”

    My advice to the Poles would be: if you’re going to defy EU law and do this then don’t extend it for just 5 years but for an indefinite period, because it’s already been 12 years and that’s not been long enough, and it will certainly take a lot longer than another 5 years for Poland to catch up with the older and wealthier EU member states so that its farmland will no longer be seen as very attractively priced by rich foreigners.

    My estimate that it could take another 18 years of catching up for the per capita GDP in Poland to get up to about 80% of that in the UK, when the economic driving force for mass migration might start to fade away.

  59. acorn
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    JR, I, that is we, have come to the conclusion that you will be retiring at the next general election. Your stance on Brexit, will make you “persona non grata”, for the 2020 general election. We suspect your constituency Chairman has already had the call from central office. Hence, have you thought about starting a new, 21st century political party, based on modern monetary principals (MMT)? The possibilities for UK plc are, frankly, endless. 😉 .

    Reply My plan is to stand again. The Chairman of Wokingham Conservatives is also the vote leave organiser

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

      That must be music to many people’s ears!! Well done John.

    • Jack
      Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

      The possibilities are indeed endless, but with the current hopeless Chancellor our economy is growing at as measly 2% or so. When you take into account population growth, the per capita figure is more like 1% which is even worse.

      Is the current Conservative leadership happy with the way they’re discrediting capitalism by condemning the country to low growth? If our annual real GDP growth was closer to 10% and we had full employment in a market economy, I honestly don’t think Jeremy Corbyn would have a fraction of the support he currently enjoys.

      Yet the government goes on wasting our potential, constraining nominal growth by restricting money supply growth (deficit reduction), and putting the private market economy at great risk.

      • hefner
        Posted April 16, 2016 at 8:58 am | Permalink

        Annual real GDP growth close to 10% with full employment? I see the next such possibility to be likely in the first colony on Mars!

        • Jack
          Posted April 16, 2016 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

          Why? Ireland’s trade surplus has gotten large enough to the point where there’s enough spending in the economy to achieve 9.2% annual real GDP growth.

          China grew at 15% YoY too when state bank lending was growing at over 30% of GDP. Now their growth is closer to 7% as the newer western-educated politicians start to worry about the debt, but their state bank lending is still a high percentage of GDP and they’re also starting to realise that expanding the fiscal deficit in fact does work.

          We can continue with the austerity and limiting the deficit if you like, but don’t be surprised when the Chinese and others become richer than us.

          Final point: unemployment is a created by the state. It is unsatisfied demand for work that pays in the state’s currency. A monetarily sovereign government can always sustain full employment at all times. Whether the other real resources are available for there to be prosperity is another question, but with low enough taxes there should always be full employment.

    • Ken Moore
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

      It would be interesting to know how much influence Conservative HQ has on candidate selection and if they can ultimately remove mp’s that they believe are being unhelpful or ‘off message’. Is Mr Reese Mogg safe ?

  60. Eileen Lowe
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

    I would like to see the various “Out “groups under the one banner. We need to be united.

  61. The Slog
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

    It is becoming increasingly clear that the greater majority of the British Left still embraces INTERNATIONAL Socialism as an ideal – despite it’s appalling track record on human rights. Equally, the Camerlot Wing of the Conservative Party buys into globalist deals and multinational process….while insisting that it supports genuine capitalist renewal via entrepreneurial endeavour.

    Both these Establishments really want the same thing: top-down control of monopolistic manufacture and distribution. The idea of independent ideas, thought, nationalities, communities and exploration is anathema to them.

    I continue to applaud Mr Redwood’s independent voice, and Kate Hoey’s summation that “this referendum is about the people versus the élites”.

    I have finally reached the conclusion that whereas ideologies are rigidly systemic, philosophies are about the open possibilities for human beings. Generally speaking, Thinking Man makes discoveries, which systemic ideologies then try to crush. If the referendum is about nothing else, it is about ending the obscene power of belief systems.

    • Mitchel
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 9:22 am | Permalink

      @The Slog.Very true.Aldous Huxley in 1928 wrote “to the Bolshevist idealist,Utopia is indistinguishable from a Ford factory.”

      Corporatism and Bolshevism,two sides of the same coin.And where there is change/modernisation/revolution,there is always a financier in the shadows to encourage and facilitate it!

  62. Sean O'Hare
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

    Dr Redwood, although I am no longer a Wokingham constituency resident I do still take an interest in the area. It seems to me that your heart is in the right place, which makes it all the more surprising that you do not see the sense in maximising the leave vote by minimising the concerns of those worried about the jobs at risk if we were to leave the Single Market. As you have previously been involved in some difficult negotiations I also find it surprising that you reject the Norway option, at least as an interim step. You must know that a bespoke agreement just isn’t on within the 2 years allowed for under TEU Article 50. After 40 years of relentless integration we are not going to be able to leave overnight. It is going to be a lengthy process and this needs to be conveyed to the electorate along with an exit plan that lays out a realistic timetable.

    Reply Remain wants us to ask for the Norway model because it is flawed and would need negotiating under EU rules, exactly what we do not intend to do

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 9:48 am | Permalink

      Well, what do you intend to do?

      “Map! Map! Map!”

      • hefner
        Posted April 15, 2016 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

        Yes, what do you intend to do? A calendar please with objectives to be met , steps to be reached, with detailed deadlines and actual detailed figures on the extra spending.

        Otherwise I am afraid I have to conclude that over the last few months you have produced only the same rhetorical exercises (almost) every morning.

  63. Margaret
    Posted April 14, 2016 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

    Some from the Question Time audience still believe that the firms in the EU would stop trading with us if we voted out.

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted April 15, 2016 at 11:48 pm | Permalink

      Some of the Question Time audience believe that the moon is made of green cheese.

  • 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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