The bizarre energy of the UK and world establishment to keep the UK in the EU

If only the world establishments used as much ingenuity and energy to make the world economy better as they use to try to keep the UK in the EU. As we know, unfortunately, the establishment has a very bad record. Its judgements about the wisdom of the European exchange Rate Mechanism, the Euro project, the way to establish democracy in the Middle East, the Iraqi war, policy towards the Ukraine and much else have been dreadful.

Far from raising living standards and promoting peace. many of their interventions have made things worse. The main governments and Central Banks failed to require sufficient cash and capital in banks prior to 2007 and then tightened too much to bring on the crash of 2008. These same institutions now want us to believe them as they make wild allegations about what might happen if the UK became an independent country again.

Clearly the Remain side are rattled, as they are ransacking their address  books of the rich and powerful and expecting many to come to their aid with endorsements. I’m not sure why they think endorsements from unpopular foreign Investment banks will win over voters, nor why they think foreign governments saying they find it convenient for them if we stay in should sway UK voters their way. The orchestrated extremes of their claims leads many to doubt them altogether. Why does it matter so much to them? If it is good for the rich and for the foreign banks, maybe it is bad for the rest of us.

 

Money is often at the bottom of it. Large corporates like the EU more than small businesses on average, because they can influence the EU to give them the rules and regulations they want to entrench their positions. The EU institutions and other governments want the UK to stay in because we pay an important slice of the bills and the salaries of EU officials. The USA wants the UK to stay in to try to make the EU more US friendly.

At the beginning I was a bit concerned about the weight of establishment opinion. As I now watch them making ludicrous claims and all working together I think many in the public will think it is some kind of plot. None of them consider what we could do if we took back control if our own money and spent it on our own priorities. None of them understand the need to make our own laws and decisions if we are to restore our democracy and reconnect voters more with government.

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127 Comments

  1. David Price
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:58 am | Permalink

    They may appear to be idiots but there are more of them and they have the louder voices to sway the undecideds.

    To counter this the Leave community need to provide a very clear basis for confidence. I don’t expect certainty but I do expect the spokesmen to be on the top of their game, have a thorough grasp of their material and work with all groups involved in Brexit. To convince people that they are utterly capable of dealing with the inevitable uncertainties.

    You need to have strong words with Boris, and Hannan for that matter.

    • Richard1
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:27 am | Permalink

      I always think Daniel Hannan is very articulate. Boris is better at the written piece and is not sufficiently on top of his facts to carry a tough interview or debate.

      I think the Leave line of ‘how dare you’, ‘it’s a conspiracy’, ‘they’re all wrong’ etc re world leaders’ interventions on this issue is a mistake. After all Brexit is naturally an uncertainty at least in the short term, and if you’re in a boat alongside us you’d prefer we don’t make any waves by rocking ours. In the case of the US it probably is in the US’s best interests that the UK stays in the EU, it makes the EU more Atlanticist and free market oriented and probably provides some extra economic stability. We should accept that Obama and others are saying what they think is in their interest and in ours. And then come up with reasoned argument why it might not be in our best interest.

      • Hope
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

        JR, we read today that Liam Fox has written to Heywood asking why no contingency planning has taken place if the UK chooses to leave the EU. Another reason why your party needs to get to grips with sacking Cameron. He is not needed and will not be around at the next election. He has no intention of leading the UK out of the EU, he said so. His current narrative is that the UK would still be imposed to have freedom of movement in return for staying in the single market. No one in their right mind would want him to negotiate anything on the UK’s behalf. He overwhelmingly failed at his attempt to renegotiate with the EU, that is if he ever tried. None of his substantive alleged objectives did not even reach the negotiating table the rest so watered down to be meaningless. Irrespective of the result your party needs to get rid of him. The Tory part are now squarely back to where Major left off,reports of sleaze every day, no substantive reform of Westminster promised by Cameron seven years ago, self interest before public interest, claim one thing when doing it himself, criticize others tax avoidnace when he knew his father was at for himself, completely untrustworthy. Cameron does not believe in self democratic government. Is there anyone left in your party who believes he is a Eurosceptic, a declaration which helped him to secure the leadership of your party.

      • forthurst
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

        “We should accept that Obama and others are saying what they think is in their interest and in ours.”

        Why would they be concerned with our interest when they were stating their interest? Why should their interest and ours coincide?

        • A different Simon
          Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

          “Obama and others are saying what they think is in their interest”

          Exactly , THEIR interest .

          This is not necessarily the same think as the U.S.’s interest or the American people’s interest .

          That sums up the gulf between the common man and the political/media/banking global elite .

      • David Price
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

        I don’t accept that Obama and others are concerned about our interests at all, it is they who need to justify their position and prove it is in our interest, after all they would demand the same. US interests may well be served by us providing an Atlantic perspective but it also dilutes our ability to compete directly with the US.

    • @Jerontius
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:33 am | Permalink

      DP, You make my point for me. The whole “debate” so far has been very thin on substance and large on tribal hooting. Unfortunately this piece by Mr Redwood is also a hoot: mere grievance and complaint. Zero substance. He can get away with this because the other side is just as bad.

      • Martyn G
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        You say “The whole “debate” so far has been very thin on substance and large on tribal hooting”. Did you not notice JR’s closing comment?
        “None of them consider what we could do if we took back control if our own money and spent it on our own priorities. None of them understand the need to make our own laws and decisions if we are to restore our democracy and reconnect voters more with government”.
        Depending perhaps on your definition of ‘hooting’, it is hard for most of us, I suspect, to see those words as ‘hooting’, because it sums up a democratic as apposed to the EU dictatorial way of governance.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:58 am | Permalink

      Dear David–What about the inevitable positive certainty that we would be a normal country again? I think Boris and Hannan should be praised and encouraged to carry on, indeed intensify, their wonderfully invigorating approach

      • David Price
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 11:38 am | Permalink

        I applaud them taking up the Brexit cause and wholeheartedly support their work but given the aray of “authorities” and “experts” arrayed against the position we can not afford infighting nor getting important facts wrong (“£350m for NHS”). Vote Leave won the position on the basis they work with all other groups engaged in this, not just a few politicians and lobbyists in Westminster. It is not a personal career enhancement vehicle for the few, it is a matter of crucial importance for us all.

        For a start I would like clarity on their position concerning the mooted second referendum.

      • Hope
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

        The reality Hannan is intelligent and advocates cogent arguments and destroys myths by the remain side, Johnson has so much charisma it hardly matters what he says because people in their droves like him. Cameron will not touch either in debate or like ability factors. That is why Cameron showed his Flashman side to the Tory supporters, associations, MPs and anyone else who does not agree with him. Pompous, arrogant and totally untrustworthy.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:31 am | Permalink

      The out spokespeople are far from perfect, but not very much competition from the dreadful remain supporters – Corbyn, Soubry, Darling, Alan Johnson, Osborne, Rudd, Cameron, Edwina Curry, May, Hammond, Fallon, Greening, Morgan, Greg & Ken Clark, Heseltine, ….. what a dire list of lefty career politicians.

      It seems Whitingdale has bet £1000 that Cameron will remain on post a Brexit vote! Is Whitingdale a good judge of anything very much one wonders?

      Also it seems that Christine Lagarges pays no tax on her salary.
      All in it together once again is seems, with special tax laws for politicians, bureaucrats and other largely incompetent establishment figures and other parasites!

      http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/anger-over-christine-lagardes-tax-free-salary-7801028.html

      Reply The IMF say they pay the salary net of tax to ensure parity between employees from different countries.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:33 am | Permalink

        No wonder the establishment want to keep the gravy train of tax payers money flowing largely into their pockets.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

      The arguments for Remain and Brexit can be simplified:

      Remain fears that the economy will suffer.

      Brexit fears loss of sovereignty.

      I would explain the risk of both thus:

      – a strong economy can be recovered with sweat and toil

      – sovereignty can only be recovered with blood

      And

      – a damaged economy on Brexit is by no means a certainty

      – loss of sovereignty by remaining is absolutely certain

      • HK1
        Posted April 18, 2016 at 12:09 am | Permalink

        My view: it’s a mistake to describe the Brexit position as being about sovereignty, which is a rather theoretical concept that appeals more to Brexiteers than others. Preaching to the converted, if you like.

        I’d put it more as about democracy. The same thing as sovereignty, perhaps, but almost the entire population believes in democracy, and it is a pragmatic idea. We can all see that, over time, countries do best if they can vote at elections to change their lawmakers, to throw out those passing laws they do not like. This is something that being in the EU makes impossible.

        • Anonymous
          Posted April 18, 2016 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

          HKI

          Indeed. Arguing on sovereignty is tricky – because of the “What is British ?” question whenever anyone says they want to protect their culture and nationality.

          “Protect what, exactly ?”

          The respondee can’t answer it without sounding racist. This is the intention behind it. It is a trick question designed to entrap. The questioner is usually some hapless person asking it because they think it is the sophisticated position to hold – I’d like to meet the person who originally asked it though, to see what their agenda was.

          Thus the major part of the Brexiteer’s defence is neutralised. He is made to feel guilty for thinking that his culture deserves to be preserved over others.

          “But your culture is now so diverse, any culture within it has a right to claim to be British.”

          Thus, when everything can be called British then nothing is British anymore.

          By destroying our nationalism (only ever a problem with the Germans, which the EU was designed to keep in good temper) they destroy our claim to sovereignty.

          This has all be essential in creating one nation under the EU made up of indistinct people deprived of their own culture and made to feel wicked for demanding it back.

          The answer to this question is simple. It is the rare occaision I will answer a question with a question. Ask them “What is not British then ?”

          And if there is nothing British then there is no Britain and there is no sovereignty.

          Anyone can come here and claim to be British (and they are) and this movement of population does not stop until our civilisation is as poor, war ravaged and corrupt as the 3rd world.

          The issue is mass immigration.

          It is this that caused the pressure for a referendum and – like it or not – we cannot forget it in the coming weeks.

      • peter davies
        Posted April 18, 2016 at 11:19 am | Permalink

        My argument would be that for economics to flourish you need 2 things above all else:

        – security
        – proper democratic accountability with institutions that are run in the interests of the people they are supposed to serve

        The EU offers neither of these and will continue to suck more power and money from us if we stay.

        I am starting to wish I took my opportunity of emigrating years ago, there are so many so called expert opinions preying on peoples ignorance with sound bites I fear we will lose this referendum.

        I fear things will not end well for us all if we stay in the EU. Should the disasters of the ERM, the Euro, Our Energy and Fishing Industries and Schengen not give us the warning signs to stay away?

  2. Mark B
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:07 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    It is very easy to assume that more people think like we do, when in truth, they may not. So it is good hear the opinions of people who do not frequent guest books / diaries such as this. Generally, people are ambivalent about the EU. They tend not to like it but, because they do not think it adversely effects their lives they tolerate it. The greatest hurdles the OUT Campaign must overcome, is the one of ignorance, which has been a deliberate policy of ALL UK governments, apathy and general lack of knowledge / answers to basic questions.

    It is not enough to just keep debunking myths and lies of the Inners’ but, to inform and to educate the people about the EU and its ultimate destination. People need to understand exactly what ‘IN’ means to them and their loved ones. They need to understand that there are a great many benefits to leaving and joining the rest of the world.

    As someone once said; ”We only have fear to fear itself”

    • Graham
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:40 am | Permalink

      I agree.

      Too many are lazy (or stupid) to understand the issues and will fall under the ‘fear’ rollercoaster – dragging us all down with them.

      Sadly I have no confidence that my fellow countrymen will vote for freedom.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

        Fear not they will despite Cameron’s absurd propaganda leaflet of lies and the overwhelming bias of the BBC and others in positions of power. CAMERON has baked the wrong horse as is usual for a Libdims.

        If they do not they deserve what they will get – anti-democratic serfdom.

    • Mitchel
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 9:25 am | Permalink

      @Mark B,or as Solzhenitsyn wrote :”One man dies of fear,another is brought to life by it”

    • peter davies
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      and the EU is deliberately set up like that. Drip feed powers to the centre playing a really long game and paying off the right people with career perks and big fat tax payer funded salaries and pensions

      The worse thing is our own Civil Service and Political Class are complicit.

  3. Lifelogic
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:25 am | Permalink

    I feel confident the vote will go for Brexit, surely a majority of UK voters are confident enough to think we can control our own affairs and borders rather better then the EU and EU courts would control them? Especially after forty odd years of being a complete disaster at everything it has touched.

    As you say the establishment has a very bad record indeed, they tend to indulge in “group think” and the establishment (as a group) are completely out of touch with reality. The establishment tend to have a vested interest in ever more bloated government, ever more taxation and evermore central control. This as they are so often the beneficiaries either in terms of jobs, exercising control, or in terms to inside information and influence over the rules.

    If we actually get a Brexit post the Brexit vote is a different question, the establishment will not give up easily. At least we should get a sound replacement for Cameron and Osborne.

    The establishment (and even Corbyn) even keep telling us that Catastrophic Global Warming is the greatest threat to the Earth. Yet we have had non of the predicted warming since 1998, and nothing very significant before that. There is no scientific reason to assume that positive feedback mechanisms will causes any runaway effects, quite the reverse, as we see in the actual measurements. The reasons are the same, the establishment want control and an excuse for ever more top down control.

    It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong. Richard P. Feynman

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:33 am | Permalink

      Good to see that Sir Ian Botham is urging Britons to quit ‘corrupt’ EU calling on Britain to “stand proud” by voting to leave the European Union and branding the 28 member bloc “a racket”. Also saying money sent to the EU “gets swallowed up by greed and corruption.

      A pretty good summary.

      True this also happens at Westminster level, regional levels and at local authority levels but the less, top down, suffocating, misguided & parasitic government we have the better and getting rid of the EU is a very good start indeed.

      • Anonymous
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

        I’d rather celebs weren’t involved at all. Whichever side they are on.

        What the hell has Angelina Jolie done to qualify herself as global ambassador ? Apart from be an actress etc ed.

  4. Elsey
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:27 am | Permalink

    Whereas the UK government’s foreign policy towards Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and Syria have been a total success. No refugees fleeing from NATO inspired war, no flood of terrorists, no ruined nations. Obviously our gang are an example to the world.

  5. Antisthenes
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:32 am | Permalink

    The establishment is illiterate in so many areas. Few understand economic and social realities and live in the fantasy world where money grows on trees and believe that government has the answer to everything. Where as you point out neither is true and both beliefs cause more harm than good. Only on the right of the political spectrum do you find establishment figures who understand reality like Margaret Thatcher did and actually do more good than harm.

  6. alan jutson
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:33 am | Permalink

    Unfortunately John the broadcasting media have swallowed this hook line and sinker, giving little opportunity for anyone in the leave camp to make comment against even some of the more ludicrous claims, or picking on lightweights to try and defend them.

    The old fashioned newspapers are a little more balanced, but the population by and large are lazy when it comes to anything political.
    From my limited experience the public say they want facts, but are too lazy to find them, you simply have to guess at the facts they want and shove it in their face.

    Whilst June 23rd is not very far away, it will be a long hard slog argument to get there, and the leave side simply have to keep on producing positive news, as well as being able to make the rather more outrageous claims look as stupid as they are to discredit the remain camp.

    Keep up the good work.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:57 am | Permalink

      I watched the Sky press review last night, as I usually do, and by the end I’d decided to complain about the sheer bad manners of some loudmouthed left-wing woman who constantly talked over and tried to shout down Toby Young, who could barely start to say anything before she interrupted – and with the Sky presenter not only allowing her to do so, but also chipping in himself in the same way.

      But this morning it seems that there’s no need for me to complain as plenty of others have already done so, directly,
      Not that it will have the slightest effect.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

        Women do seem to be able to get away with interrupting more easily than men do I find. The chairman often being far too polite to tell them to get lost or just shut up for a few seconds.

      • Anonymous
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

        I complained to the BBC some while back that David Dimbleby had allowed a member of the audience to scream at Toby Young that he was both a racist and a sexist.

        I felt pretty sure that as Chair he had a responsibility to call order in the debate.

      • Andy
        Posted April 18, 2016 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

        She was rude, but the presenter seems to have a problem with Toby Young. He was worse last week, butting in and not really allowing Toby to make his point.

  7. stred
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    There is a vast amount of money tied into EU policies, and these big businesses do not want to see profits disturbed. They profit from carbon trading, new biofuels, huge untried and very expensive offshore wind, interconnection of energy, uneconomic railway projects, expensive environmental and regional projects like the Glossop and Stonehenge tunnels, and they need cheap labour- as Lord Rose let us know about their concerns.

    The Danish thriller about a Wind Energy racket was on last night. Follow the Money. Highly recommended.

  8. agricola
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:45 am | Permalink

    Based on their totally dishonest and inept approach to keeping us in the EU, I would rather see their talents kept well away from our economic well being.

  9. Lifelogic
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Large Corporation love the EU. This as the more regulations they pass they more smaller competitors they push out of business. The large corporations are on the inside track and can and do pay insider “consultants” to help slope the laws and the pitch in their favour.

    All very much against the interests of the public, small business and the consumer.

    • Liz
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:52 am | Permalink

      The EU discourages enterprise. Would Google, Apple, Amazon etc.even have got off the ground anywhere in Europe? All the EU wants to do is to try and tie these companies up in regulations and taxes. It does not even ask itsellf why the digital revolution of the past 25 years or so largely stems from America and Europe has contributed very little except for constantly complaining that these companies do not pay their fair share of taxes in Europe.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

        Indeed the EU and government in general. Especially the sort we get in the EU.

      • Jagman84
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

        The original American settlers fled Europe to avoid such oppression. Unfortunately, their free enterprise is constantly being stifled by big Government and most lately, the latest Democrat party ‘puppet’, Barak Obama.

      • libertarian
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

        Liz

        Absolutely spot on, a great post

    • JoeSoap
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:26 am | Permalink

      Indeed, 3 million lobbyists’ jobs depend on the EU!

      • Lifelogic
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

        Indeed that is probably about right. Parasitic jobs every one of them. All paid for by consumers or tax payers.

  10. Brexit facts4eu.org
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    You raise interesting points as usual, JR. This question of why the majority of the establishment and overseas leaders are all lining up behind Mr Cameron’s Leave campaign is one which needed confronting. Voters will be curious, if nothing else.

    We’ll be publishing a fact box about this shortly, and will use a quote from Page 2 of your excellent article.

    In the meantime there are 3 interesting news items we published overnight – one of them amusing in a ‘dark humour’ way! http://www.facts4eu.org/news.htm

  11. A different Simon
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    It has certainly been revealing and we’ve seen the establishment for what they are .

    Whilst Mr Corbyn’s volt face is shocking , what is even more surprising is that a large segment of the masses will vote to leave .

    Some are just too stupid to see that the EU is a corporatist construction and are taking wishful thinking to the extreme .

    They want to believe that the EU cares for workers rights and are prepared to overlook what the EU has done to Greece , Italy and others and the unemployment rate across the Euro-zone .

    Others , even when they see the undeniable facts choose to ignore them .

    Brexiteer’s have to accept that a lot of Briton’s (and not just middle class progressives) have no love for the UK and will bite off their nose to spite their face by voting to remain .

    For some of them , this will be vengeance for perceived or actual mistreatment by the British establishment .

    There are plenty of examples of this . Govt working in tandem with predatory banks to enslave people in debt . Refusal of Govt to seriously discuss pensions for private sector workers.

    I suspect that in part this is a classic good cop (EU) , bad cop (UK) confidence trick .

    OT , it’s completely wrong that anyone other than British Citizens can vote in this referendum .

  12. Richard1
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    Of course if world leaders and institutions are united in the view that Brexit would be a global economic shock, presumably they will lean very heavily on the EU in the event of a Brexit vote to force a proper renegotiation with the U.K. With a view to a second referendum. This might give us a chance at a Switzerland type deal whilst remaining nominally ‘in’ and still having the famous ‘seat at the table’.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

      Apparently not; apparently if we vote to leave the EU then it will be global economic Armageddon and no world leader will lift a finger to prevent it.

    • Jagman84
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

      The best solution is for the EU ‘table’ to be consigned to the bonfire. A Europe of free and democratic nations is the only way forward.

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

      Oh dear. Can’t you accept that we want a total divorce, and not to have to contribute to the EU budget?

      And can’t you realise the EU is Hell bent on becoming a Federal European SuperState that is effectively a German Empire?

  13. Denis Cooper
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    Well, JR, I’m afraid you’ve just been contradicted about the ease with which the UK government will be able to strike a new trade deal with the other EU countries for after we have left the EU. Not only by Schaeuble, who will presumably have a close involvement with the negotiations, but for good measure by Regling, who fewer people will have heard of but who is the head of the ESM that was set up on the legal basis of that EU treaty change which Cameron simply gave to Merkel back in the autumn of 2010, who will have little or no involvement:

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/4a365a04-03fe-11e6-9b51-0fb5e65703ce.html#axzz4645XPF1j

    “Wolfgang Schäuble, Germany’s finance minister, has warned British chancellor George Osborne that Berlin would be a tough negotiator if the UK votes to leave the EU.”

    “His confirmation that Germany would not readily agree to an easy trading relationship with Britain after Brexit undermines the Leave campaign’s argument that the UK would be able to secure preferential EU trade deals without freedom of movement of people or the need for Britain to contribute to the EU budget.

    The German finance minister, who is known for his unyielding negotiating positions, told German media that he wanted the UK to remain in the EU and did not want to inflame the British debate. But he added that if Britain were to leave, the process would not be easy.”

    Now I don’t say that I believe this; I don’t for one moment, as I don’t believe that the German government is actually stupid, even if it might be inclined to be vindictive and it is not necessarily trustworthy – arguably a less xenophobic attitude than that now being displayed by some members of the UK government – but the fact is that Osborne has got his German counterpart to issue him with this public warning, and the FT is taking it as read that he means it and passing that on to its readers, and to the rest of the media, so there needs to be a satisfactory, convincing, rebuttal.

    Reply I have asked the Germans what new trade barriers they want and got the answer none.This looks like a put up job.

    • Know-dice
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 11:09 am | Permalink

      “Wolfgang Schäuble, Germany’s finance minister, has warned British chancellor George Osborne that Berlin would be a tough negotiator if the UK votes to leave the EU.”

      That’s pretty much what you would expect as a public statement at this stage of the campaign.

      It’s poker and we know that Cameron and Osborne are not good at that 🙁

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

      Obviously it’s a put up job; but the fact remains that Schaeuble has not only a name but also a recognised and important official position, and the media accept that he has the the power to lay down the German government’s conditions for the continuation of our trade without any interruption or new impediment.

    • Trevor Butler
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      “Screw you we don’t want your Beeners” would probably change the attitude instantly…

      • Trevor Butler
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

        I meant beemers…

    • ian wragg
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

      Dave and Gideon must be worn out constantly phoning these cowboys to come up with scare stories. I wonder if Wolfgang consulted BMW, Mercedes or Siemens about his “tough” negotiating position.
      Bring on the tariffs they will be the losers and they will soon be consigned to the bin.
      It is indeed puzzling why the great and good are so worried about us Brexiting. Are there some skeletons they would sooner not be found.
      I see Stephen (who) Crabb has written a doomsday piece for the Telegraph. I think Roger Bootle in the Business section is more on the money.

      • Mitchel
        Posted April 18, 2016 at 9:30 am | Permalink

        Almost certainly written for him(Crabb),rather than by him.

    • Mark B
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply

      Agreed.

      But any German minister needs to be remined that, if they prove to be difficult to trade and that trade is dependant on German jobs, he or she will undoubtedly be persuaded to step aside.

      The Germans have more to lose than us.

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 1:27 am | Permalink

      Just ask Herr Schauble whether he likes to eat his German motor cars with or without sour kraut.

    • Andy
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

      Well we can start with 6% tariffs on German cars. Sure they will love that.

  14. turbo terrier
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    Very good post John

    It always has and always been about the money. One only has to look around the UK and see the impact having an energy system not fit for purpose that has been bought about by large companies aided by incompetent politicians taking full advantage of the ridiculous subsidies that were offered under the guise saving the world from AGW.

    It is the same across all the major sectors of the economy large companies and organisations all in their own way wagging the tail of government and the fear for them when we leave is, that a new way of doing business will have to be adopted hopefully driven and supported by politicians that understand the markets and the business. Everything will have to change over time but it will take people with vision on both sides of the fence to achieve what this country is really capable of outside the chains of being within the EU. Why should the big companies want change they are too cosseted and always if they do not get their own way can resort to lobbying the EU and get things more to their liking. Sadly they all talk a good act but when it comes to the effect of some of their actions they turn a blind eye to some for some, the real issues in this country. Fuel debt, poverty and food banks. It will be so much to everyones benefit I feel when businesses all have to deal with only one master, at least who when they get it wrong they can be elected out and be seen to be fully responsible.

  15. agricola
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    Perhaps, without realising it, the referendum campaign has put all the great and the good on a leadership course. Not only is it showing them to be wanting, but our eyes are being opened to the weaknesses of the system we live/exist under.

    Conveniently we have had Panama, a spotlight on US tax havens, Luxembourg and Lichtenstein corporate tax bases, Blair and Cameron’s legal tax arrangements, all indicating how a small but significant number conduct themselves while we the proletariat slave away to be milked every day. It is those we have entrusted with political power who have written the rules that enable this differential in approach to taxation.

    My conclusion is that, even if technically legal, the world of corporate and individual taxation is (unfairly helpful ed) to those who can afford it. Often, as we have seen in the past , aided and abetted by the very organisation that supposedly oversees fairness in taxation in the UK. The challenge of any future government, and those who take part in it, is to simplify and clean up the whole rotten business, lest we create a second Greece.

  16. bluedog
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    The Establishment are in danger of peaking too early, or should that read ‘panicking’,Dr JR. It’s over two months before the big day and we are already hearing utter gloom on an increasingly bizarre range of topics. Nobody likes to hear a perpetually depressing message. Let them make their run now, the electorate will be bored silly by 23rd June and as usual, a lot of decisions will be made at the polling booth.

    It will be interesting to see if there are any more high profile defections from the Establishment ranks. There must be some individuals of integrity who are finding the lies and misrepresentations distasteful. Cameron is in his element of course.

    Press commentary will be of critical importance in the last week, and one presumes that Leave have that well in hand. Confident abstractions should be the order of the day, talk of ‘sunlit uplands’, and ‘but westward look the land is bright’, and that reassuring staple, ‘turn again for the open sea’. Important of course not to talk in cliches and Boris had just the right mix of humour and provocation in Manchester.

  17. mike mckeary
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    Money is often at the bottom of it?

    I would say money is always at the bottom of it
    if one studies all the wars and the reason they
    begin. Its all to do with human behavior which
    never changes.
    cheers m

  18. Alan
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    Or, just maybe, it is Boris Johnson, Nigel Farage, and George Galloway who are wrong.

    Maybe all the experts are right. Maybe the Bank of England, the Treasury, and the IMF understand more about money and economics. Maybe Mr Obama and Mr Cameron understand politics better.

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

      The definition of an expert is a drip under pressure, and one notes plenty of them in the financial markets. The simple fact is that with an open economy and a floating exchange rate, nothing will go wrong. The only risk is a structural obstacle to prosperity like a tariff war with Europe. But if you look at the major trading nations who successfully trade with the EU without tariff wars, there is no reason why the UK cannot do the same by joining them.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

      You’ve forgotten Karren Brady, also classed as an “expert” in a leaflet which has been sent to me through the post. But I’m not sure people trust “experts” any more.

    • oldtimer
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

      The so-called “experts” have been wrong at least as often as they have been right. They do not possess any monopoly of wisdom. The “fog of war” (politics by other means – Clausewitz) extends to politics more generally, and to the economic and social spheres too as anyone who has been engaged in business enterprises will know. These predictions and assertions about future doom following Brexit are tendentious guesswork. Their guess is no better than your guess or my guess about that future. The issue is who will be in control of the response to the changing, but unpredictable future that lies ahead – an elected UK government or a bureaucratic EU.

    • ian wragg
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

      Maybe not.
      Another EU funded troll.

    • getahead
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

      No, they are just part of Tony Blair’s “modern world”.

    • forthurst
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

      Maybe your hypothesis would have carried more weight if you had nominated organisations with a track record of getting things right far more often than wrong.

  19. Denis Cooper
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    This is worth a read:

    https://euobserver.com/migration/133085

    “The migration crisis is like the euro crisis because the solution is for member states to cede more power to the EU, Germany’s defence minister has said.”

    ““When we introduced the euro, we didn’t have the heart to tell our people … that we’d have to build up new financial infrastructure and to partly give up national sovereignty where finance is concerned to the European level.””

    ““I have the same feeling about Schengen and Dublin,” she added, referring to the EU’s internal free-travel area and to its asylum laws.”

    • Andy
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

      Problem is if you have to build deeper financial intergration etc and your second largest member is not a part of it how do you manage that ? The only solution I can see if for a new form of membership to be created that allows integration for some and yet preserves the rights of the others. Call me Dave’s rubbish ‘deal’ doesn’t do that no matter what he might say. Either that or you split the EU in two, with integrationists in one EU and nones in the other.

  20. amelinixon
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Not really bizarre objectively. People like security, they stay with what they know even though it may be bad for them; jobs that make them ill, relationships that hurt them politicians who work against them. I would love to see a new adventure, energy to make it work, to stand up on our own two feet and feel that we can make life better. The question is, do other people feel any of this? I am not laying bets that we will leave the EU, there is a lot at stake for many people but then everyday reality is not secure and politicians dishonest and manipulative, will this be enough to push people to an independent UK? If people are without the means to make things better for themselves maybe they will take the plunge to break the tedium of poverty near poverty and lies. It was enough for the the pioneers who went to the USA.

  21. JoeSoap
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    You now have some idea of the feelings amongst UKIP people sensing a LibLabCon conspiracy. Thanks for being on the right side of the fence this time.

  22. Shieldsman
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    I do not think Elliott and Cummings have made a very good job of informing and presenting the facts of EU membership.
    Cameron is getting away with the lie – ‘I want to stay in this reformed European Union’
    Where is it, has anyone found it?

    Christopher Booker has an interesting article – Why global governance is making the EU irrelevant. The point he makes is that the EU on trading and regulations is an unnecessary middle man, strip that out and you are left with an overbearing political union.

    The Adam Smith Institute expands on this with – Stuck in the middle with the EU, by Roland Smith.
    The UK does not need the EU to perform the wholesaler role for the majority of
    Single Market regulation that now falls within the ambit of global organisations
    and through Brexit, can also shorten the chain of accountability between UK
    government and global market governance.

    Outside the EU, Britain would have a much louder ‘say’ on regulation, standards and rules that affected it—our voice is often muffled, distorted, and ignored
    when heard via the EU, which is increasingly becoming just another player in a
    multilateral world. The UK can be a powerful player in its own right.

  23. JoeSoap
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    Cooper-Balls just rubbishing Corbyn’s proposals for an EU-wide minimum wage adjusted for economic conditions on Marr. I never understood what it meant anyway.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

      EU-mandated national minimum wages, not the same in each member state in cash terms but calculated to provide a standard, identical purchasing power.

      The basic problem with that idea being that the workers in some countries are a lot more productive than the workers in others, hence the great disparities in per capita GDP across the EU; and while that is not necessarily the fault of the workers but rather very largely for historical reasons it does mean that on average workers in one country, let us say Poland, do not necessarily merit the same purchasing power as those in another country, let us say the UK.

  24. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    JR: “None of them understand the need to make our own laws and decisions if we are to restore our democracy and reconnect voters more with government.”
    Clearly the estabishment have no regard for democracy. Anyone who wishes to see the UK imprisoned in an anti-democratic foreign organisation like the EU can have no concern about maintining democracy. In fact, quite the reverse is the case as they want us subsumed in this odious corparatist organisation.

  25. William Long
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    The thing I find most bizarre about the very good point you point you make is that if it is so important for us to remain in the EU, why did not these same people put more pressure on the EU mandarins to do a better deal with Mr Cameron? He had of course sold the pass in advance by making it clear that he would want to stay in, whatever the outcome of the negotiation, but even so, he would have been helped by the knowledge that so many institutions thought our remaining in was essential.
    I cannot help noticing that Mr Cameron and the Remain camp now seem to have gone totally quiet about the negotiating coup he supposedly achieved. They have probably realised that little in it was binding and do not want anyone to be reminded of that.

    • Know-dice
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      That’s why even if you are a Remainder, you should vote Leave the first time around…

  26. formula57
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    Alas, I think the Remain side approach is astute enough. It relies upon voters doubting their own understanding in the face of incomplete and misleading explanations and then opting for the supposed safety of what we have now over the unknown of what we might have. Echoing in the background of voters’ deliberation will be the pronouncements of the IMF, the Bank of England, foreign leaders, and with luck some temporarily well-regarded celebrity from show business who all suggest the UK can only find a decent future within the Evil Empire.

    It is tragic since if we do opt to Remain, the Evil Empire will not wish for a repeat scare and so will stealthily take measures to bind the UK and the rest even more firmly within its ranks such that leaving becomes impossible – just as the poor wretched Greeks found when they thought they might have a go at saving themselves.

    Yet I think that the EU will eventually go the way of all evil empires so that this referendum is only about the timing of exit and the cost and dislocation that the UK will suffer when it happens.

  27. miami.mode
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:44 am | Permalink

    …..Large corporates like the EU more than small businesses on average, because they can influence the EU to give them the rules and regulations they want to entrench their positions……

    Surely this was never more true than through the rise of diesel engines in cars throughout the EU to combat CO2. This would now appear to have caused more problems than it solved due to the impact on air quality.

    • Jagman84
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

      Unleaded Fuel produces PM2 particles that are far more lung-invasive than the PM10 emitted by Diesel engines. Neither are ideal regarding air quality but there are no economical, mass-market alternatives at present. Zero-emission wind turbines only exist through obscene levels of subsidy. True electric cars merely move the pollution elsewhere.

      • bluedog
        Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

        ‘True electric cars merely move the pollution elsewhere.’

        Yes indeed, and the majority of them are coal-fired. When one considers the transmission losses in getting electricity through the grid to the power-point that charges the car, the aggregate energy cost could be quite embarrassing. There are probably a few good research papers on this that were conveniently buried some time ago.

  28. Lifelogic
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:47 am | Permalink

    Why does Andrew Marr not ask Emmanuel Macron the French Minister of the Economy, Finance and Industry questions about the dire state of the economy in France and indeed much of the EU?

    Did the question not occur to the hapless Mr Marr?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

      Hapless, hugely over paid, absurdly left wing & a Trinity Hall, English graduate.

      BBC think to his very core with little understanding of science, human nature, economics, numeracy or indeed anything much. A hugely wet what would you like to say next interviewer.

      Rather like nearly all the others BBC interviewers.

    • James Matthews
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

      Andrew Marr always conducts helpful (often leading) interviews to anyone with anyone in the Remainder camp.

  29. Antisthenes
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    The referendum is going to be won on perceptions not facts. The stayers want the perception to be that those who govern and influence us are backing remain in. So it is the great and good for remain in and those who oppose it are lesser mortals who are not idolised or respected (unduly in many cases)because of the office they hold .

    People too often base their beliefs not on what is said but who said it. Even say a pop star will be believed before a Boris, a John Raymond or a Michael Gove or at least their utterances will be given just as much attention. How we overcome that I do not know. Boris and Nigel Farage do make up for it a bit as they both have some celebrity status. Against the likes of Obama arguably the worst American president ever they cannot hold a candle. It is I am afraid a David and Goliath contest but on this occasion I do not believe David is going to win.

    • Mitchel
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 9:36 am | Permalink

      Helen Mirren (in a totally different context!) made a perceptive observation in an interview the other day-it’s not about what is right or wrong anymore,but about what is cool or uncool,fashionable or unfashionable

  30. turbo terrier
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    If ever there was a better advert for leaving the EU, it was listening to the French Economy Minister today on the Marr show ably supported by Ms Cooper.

    Same old same old.

    No imagination and vision.

    The EU are terrified that with us going the whole project will slowly but surely unravel.

    Cannot come soon enough

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

      Exactly.

  31. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    4th paragraph:

    “Large corporates like the EU more than small businesses on average, because they can influence the EU to give them the rules and regulations they want to entrench their positions.”
    A machine being built. Complex.Almost each cog of the growing EU regulatory scheme looks good and positive. When the machine finally fits the last of its innocuous cogs then we will find large corporates have no opposition.
    Smaller outfits will not have the money for legal departments to sort out compliance. Of course they will not be able to compete on wages or even dream of employing staff in line with legal requirements. Note* all good individually worthy cogs in the machine but in total interconnecting ramification of stamping on any smaller competition unable to comply and making impossible the initiation of small businesses past stage one.
    In everyone’s experience:-
    At the sides of roads. The union flag fluttering atop tiny temporary huts or kiosks no bigger than a double garage. Serving tea, coffee and rudimentary cheap sandwiches. Disappearing flags. The Good Cog Maker of the EU imposed so many costly regulations only the Corporate and increasingly monopolistic Truck Stops in the shape of fast food outlets we all know can afford to be in business selling rather more expensive food.

    Why do most of the Labour Party support the growing and nasty machine of the EU: It means control in the absolute from above on all of us.

  32. stred
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    The Marr show had him being ever so nice to the young French economics minister this morning. Perhaps theBBc pay him so much just because he never asks awkward questions.

    Today, he compared Emanuelle Quequechose to Tony Blair as a compliment! Then he was asked about how we would be made to pay tariffs or pay the same and allow free movement. No mention of 2how would you explain that to French farmers when the dumped all the veg and cheese on your doorstep”. Then onto Hinkley Point. Could he please confirm that they will build it for us. Oui. Jolly good. And keep quiet about it being double the cost of rival builders, why do EDF engineers want to redesign it, why is it the only reactor in the world that has not been made to work, how are the claims against the poor Finns going, why have they ordered their next one from someone else, and will we ever get the money RBS lent you to buy the site and old station back? Rien.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

      Yes, the first two German demands are:

      1. If you want to continue to trade with the EU countries you must accept that the entire population of the EU will continue to have the legal right to move into your country.

      2. If you want to continue to trade with the EU countries you must be willing to pay a large annual fee for the privilege of running a massive trade deficit.

      Imagine that it was the Chinese laying down these conditions.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps the BBC pay him so much just because he never asks awkward questions.

      Exactly, nor any sensible questions or questions from the rational right, that way he gets to interview Cameron & Osborne, who would not dare to face a sensible interviewer such as Andrew Neil.

  33. forthurst
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    Our membership of the EU has been a disaster for our country. We were obliged to turn our backs on our old friends of the Commonwealth whose trade we have lost and who in the meantime have come under alien influences which have damaged them as much as we have been damaged by similar forces. In just over a hundred years we have come from being the most powerful country in the world to a eunuch whose laws are controlled by the Brussels regime, much of whose industry is owned and milked by foreigners, whose financial centre is dominated by foreign banks whose propensity for fraudulent behaviour is inbuilt in their DNA, and whose foreign policy is controlled by congenital warmongers who have obliged us to risk the lives of our forces and security services in furthering the interests of some of the vilest people on the planet.

    Of course foreigners including international organisations, most of whom neither like nor respect us would like us to remain eunuchoid and beholden to their mostly ill-considered whims, and whose ‘friends’ they determine for us as they determine our ‘enemies’. However, this should encourage us to use every means to regain our manhood as a nation by voting for Brexit so that we can determine once again who are friends or enemies are and who we wish to trade with, based on our vital national interests. In order to achieve this we must defeat the liars who serve alien interests and would keep us constricted in the Brussels regime’s deadly embrace until the life force has been totally extinguished and our nation has ceased to exist.

  34. Bert Young
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    The large international companies wish to keep their networks under tight control and view “Brexit” as a hindrance . Many are USA organisations who view London as a safe and convenient place to live and work ; they fear that the EU will tighten strings and make their operations more difficult . What they fail to embrace is the blatant fact that Europe needs us far more than we need them ; this condition is more likely to result in more influence from London rather than less and so enhance the position of international operators based here .

    Another feature is the threat of Frankfurt absorbing much of the activities of the City . Again this is a diminishing threat because there is no evidence that Germany will release its surplus to increase its influence ; so far the position the German Banks have taken has been viewed as a hindrance to the unity of Europe . The IMF have drawn attention to this weakness citing the impossibility of Greece and the other Southern countries to fit into a disciplined and controlled relationship .

    The English language is another important anchor point in the dynamics of international operations ; the control and regulatory practices that exist in the City also play a vital part in the way large organisations operate – recently Standard Life announced that it would move to London if it was handicapped by the emerging influence of the SNP . Overall large companies have nothing to fear if we “Exit” ;they might well have more to gain .

    • forthurst
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

      “Another feature is the threat of Frankfurt absorbing much of the activities of the City .”

      Nobody wants to go and work in Frankfurt.

  35. oldtimer
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    You have nailed it. It is all about the money. And the UK electorate is paying through the nose. It is us, the UK electorate, versus them, the world of Bilderberg Man.

  36. Denis Cooper
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    The front page of the Sunday Telegraph has some little-known minister predicting economic catastrophe, bringing misery to millions, if we vote to leave the EU:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/04/16/britain-faces-economic-rupture-if-we-leave-eu-says-government/

    And as intended that terrifying message is being relayed across all the other mass media, including the broadcast media.

    My point would be that if the UK leaving the EU did trigger economic disaster akin to the 2008 banking crash then likewise that disaster would not be restricted to the UK, indeed for what it is worth we have the word of the IMF on that, page xiii here:

    http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/weo/2016/01/pdf/text.pdf

    “In the United Kingdom, the planned June referendum on European Union membership has already created uncertainty for investors; a “Brexit” could do severe regional and global damage by disrupting established trading relationships.”

    So if the governments of the other EU member states wish to avert that severe “regional” damage which would affect their countries as well as the UK – even more so, in some cases, as overall they have a trade surplus with the UK, and therefore even more jobs at stake – and if other governments around the world also wish to avert that severe “global” damage, then they must be prepared to act to ensure that the “established trading relationships” are not significantly disrupted.

    And what exactly is the practical obstacle to that, apart from the German elite, and to a lesser extent the elites in some other EU countries, being determined to use trade as a weapon to enforce their geopolitical ambitions, and therefore insisting that they won’t want to continue to trade with us as now, the “established trading relationships”, unless the entire population of the EU retains the automatic right to come and live in our country, and unless we continue to pay them for the privilege of running a chronic trade deficit?

    When Obama comes across he would do better to tell the German government to change their ridiculous line, just accept the fact that the British people do not want to join them on their “wild ride to political union”, not allow politics to over-ride economics – as they did about the euro, with such disastrous results – and be prepared to agree to the UK still being a part of the EU Single Market even after it has left the EU, without any fees, rather than telling the British people that they should not vote for what they really want.

    • acorn
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

      Victory in Europe Day, V E Day, was celebrated on 8 May 1945 to mark the formal acceptance, by the Allies, of Nazi Germany’s unconditional surrender during WW2. (words left out ed)
      Anyway, this is how I, that is we, are stacking the chips on the green baize.

      1 Brexit will hit the Pound every which way in the first few months; don’t panic.
      2 Brexit will hit the Euro, may not be fatal because the Euro is a much bigger currency than the Pound, (15 to 1 in cash terms alone).
      3 The US Neo-Cons need the EU to be its forward command centre in Europe against, who else but, the Russians. The US arms manufacturers are bigging up, again, the Cold War, to keep those Federal Dollars pouring into their profits.

      If I were running the Leave campaign, I would be hitting Club Med (Portugal; Spain; Italy and Greece) with a “Come-and-Join-Us” campaign. The five of us could rip up the EU Treaties for arse paper and start a new EFTA / EEA (the nine non-Euro EU States would probably join us).

      Knock down the EU and the World can start getting back back to a “my nation my currency” situation. A world where your currency value is a measure of your countries share price, just like any other corporation. A world where we might all be able to (neutralise the influence of ed)the US Neo-Cons, send them home and get some peace for a few years, at least.

      As my Dubai friends tell me ” There would be no ISIS (Daesh) if there had been no Iraq invasion”.

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

      Please tell me in simple words – for I am a simple man – how having trade with Europe that is slightly less free, trade with the rest of the world that is slightly more free, having more control over our own laws, and ending our payments to the EU, is going to cause any sort of economic disaster anywhere?

  37. Jack
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 10:09 am | Permalink

    The key failure after 2009 was to impose austerity and basically re-enforce the pro-cyclical nature of the private sector. The financial crisis was a nominal crisis, not a real crisis. The real resources didn’t just suddenly go away, it was the lack of spending (demand) that brought the economy down.

    Also higher capital requirements don’t even really help, unless you want a fully public banking system then you can set the requirement to 100%. But then you effectively rule out private sector money supply growth, and the government will need to run much larger deficits to make up for it (which is politically impossible right now).
    So I’m all for restoring our democracy and sovereignty, but we need to make sure we get it right and not just carry on with the austerity measures and high taxes as before.

    • acorn
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

      10 out of 10 Jack. The UK problem, similar, but not as huge as the EU problem, is the lack of spending by both the private sector; and, the public sector. Only the government sector machinery, can recognise when there is a deficit in spending and a need to increase government spending to compensate for the lack of private sector spending. That is, if you don’t have a plan to destroy the public sector, Conservative Party, Neo-liberal style.

  38. graham1946
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    The problem ‘Outers’ have is lethargy of the public and have to work twice as hard as the ‘Inners’ to convince people. The status quo is very seductive, with no thought required and I can see that on 23rd. June, if it is a nice warm day, with the birds singing, the undecideds may well think that things are not too bad, lets not rock the boat whilst being blissfully unaware that the status quo is not on offer. What we will get is full blooded integration at an increased tempo, the sidelining of democracy in the UK as Parliament will have no real function and the danger of the referendum has always been that if lost, we will have no answer to the charge that the British people want it, just like 1975, regardless of the lies told and being a second time around will carry more weight.

    Every interview on radio or TV the ‘Inners’ always say the ‘Outers’ have no vision and cannot tell us what Brexit looks like, whilst not offering any vision of their own and specifically ignoring the actuality of what will happen. We need to find a simple bullet point way of showing what Brexit will be, highlighting the advantages without all the talk of bililateral trade arrangements, Section 50 or whatever, which makes the average person’s eyes glaze over. I know, JR, you will say that it already exists but it is not evident to me that it is in the voters’ faces. Hopefully, this is because up to now, apart from the first couple of weeks, no-one really gives a damn but the tempo will/must pick up as voting day looms. Presumably the papers will be carpet bombed with our ads. and telly and radio similar. Now the campaign has started proper, we can keep a watch for bias in the Public Service Broadcasters and remind them forcefully of their legal duties of impartiality.

    Lets hear how the 10 billion saving can be put into the NHS for specific things, not just the black hole or tax cuts or whatever, or a one off windfall bonus to all citizens to spend on what they like, tell how we can decide to cut/abolish VAT (even if the government won’t actually do it). We cannot afford to lose this referendum so we must find something of substance to rock the boat and not follow Queensbury Rules. Politeness will lose the vote.

  39. Paul Cohen
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    The main plank of the Remain Group are the continual “Better in a reformed EU” statements, however this is so vague as to be meaningless. Mr Cameron’s odyssey around the EU capitals earlier this year was obviously not the success he had been hoping for, evidenced by his reluctance to elaborate on it. The content of the “Remain” booklet is mostly alarmist drivel.

    The danger in the event of a decision to remain is the further erosion of our sovereignty to the position where we reach a tipping point, and any recovery of sovereignty will become impossible. The EU are impervious to reform as they have said many times, so we had better be sure just what we are being offered and how binding these are.

    On a lighter note Nigel Forage’s speech at the EU Council recently was a lesson in voluble,
    and effective speaking, just to watch C Juncker squirming was reward enough.

  40. Vanessa
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    Rather than being “….at the bottom” MONEY is at the TOP of everything now. Don’t be hoodwinked that they (the establishment and bankers) could care less about Britain and how we are governed but their money and how much is the ONLY thing they care about.

    Every reason to put a spanner in their works and vote OUT!

  41. NickW
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    Mandy Rice Davies coined the immortal phrase,”Well he would say that wouldn’t he”, (on being told in Court that a member of the nobility had denied an impropriety).

    That phrase is one which needs to be born very much in mind when interpreting the words of those who would have us believe that the world would end if we dared to leave the EU.

    Let me give you an example.

    Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of England worked for Goldman Sachs for thirteen years.

    Mario Draghi the President of the European Central Bank worked for Goldman Sachs 2005-2011

    The words, “Well they would say that wouldn’t they”, apply very much to the opinions expressed by Mark Carney, The Treasury, and Goldman Sachs itself.

    Not to mention the Kinnoch family whose EU roles (have paid them good money ed)

    And Nick Clegg, who being in receipt of an EU pension is, (as is everyone else who has ever worked for the EU), contractually barred from making any comment detrimental to the EU.

    And then there are all those politicians whose career plan B involves joining the EU gravy train.

    Almost without exception those who favour us remaining in the EU are benefiting, have benefited, or hope to benefit from EU largesse, whether in money or from favourable influence.

    (Words left out ed)

    Follow the money.

  42. They Work for Us?
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    1. It is reported in the Sun Tel that a report on the full impact of immigration on infrastructure, schools, health provision etc is being deliberately held back so it will not be published in time for June 23rd. .(can’t our MPs take this on to get it published of course someone might leak the contents)

    2 Similarly it has been reported the the EU is holding back the issue of regulations and directives until after June 23rd. (Can’t our MEPs find out what is in the pipeline)

    3 The Chilcott enquiry into the Iraq War is not to be published in time for the referendum.

    There must be scope for lists to be compiled (and articles written) of things the Executive don’t want you to know for fear it will affect your voting and getting the information out.

  43. NickW
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    It is disturbing the way any negative news items about the EU have dropped out of the media.

    If you live in Australia, you can read about migrant riots in Paris,

    http://www.news.com.au/finance/economy/world-economy/shocking-video-shows-hundreds-of-migrants-brawling-as-paris-metro-station-trashed/news-story/791a19624d67744d36d09e45b8876ee3

    but you will have to look hard to find any coverage of this in our UK media.

    We are discovering the truth about how our own media is nothing more than a propaganda tool for the establishment, controlling public opinion and subverting democracy.

    How will the media re establish the trust it has lost?

  44. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    Many people in the world establishment have large salaries and work for institutions that are in part financed by UK taxpayers. So let ask a few obvious questions. Does the UK benefit from the existence of:

    – the IMF which exists for the benefit of creditors not debtors and whose CEO is an agent of the European Union and protector of the Euro?
    – the UN which does not keep the peace?
    – the G7, G8 and G20 which have expensive meetings at luxuty locations requiring lots of security and produce no useful output?
    – A foreign Governor of the Bank of England who has pronounced 4 contradictory triggers for raising interest rates and acted on none of them?
    – the NIESR, which produces forecasts that the private sector also produces?
    – the OECD, which does precisely what?
    – international conferences on climate change which gather at expensive hotels and spend a fortune on food, limousines, air conditioning and copies of their vast reports?

    There is a lot of waste and surplus jobs in the world but the waste that never gets commented on and never gets chopped is the waste at the top. And that are little lot are our embrionic World Government, the great hope of mankind!!

  45. Gina Dean
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    Would it be possible to some time to give us some idea what the consequences would be for the EU if we leave. At the moment its all doom and gloom for the UK.
    There has to be more to this than we are being told.

    Reply They lose all the money of our contributions. The good news is they need mot lose any export opportunities, as we are happy to carry on trading as at present!

  46. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

    A story in the Daily Telegraph of Friday 15 April is headed “Britain obliged to accept EU law, says ‘says report No 10 does not want you to read'”

    The 96-page paper, which was published without fanfare, was described by Brexit campaigners as the ‘Government report No 10 does not want you to read”. Dominic Raab has commented on its content (the supremacy of EU law over UK law in all its sordid glory).

    I’d like to download an electronic version of the report from the Internet. Can anybody help?

    • Chris
      Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

      Also an article on this in D Express:
      http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/661253/eu-european-union-britain-dominic-raab-referendum-government-report-supreme-court

      Have looked for actual report but cannot find on google. You could email author of Telegraph article, or even D Raab. Usually Christian name, dot, surname @ telegraph.co.uk?

    • Lindsay McDougall
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 1:57 am | Permalink

      Found it. It’s an HM Government publication entitled “Rights and obligations of European Union membership” and dated April 2016. It’s a 98 page pdf file, but that includes a front cover and a back cover so I guess that’s where the 96 pages come from.

      It is downloadable and is a bit more readable than the entire Lisbon Treaty or the 5 Presidents Report. Chapter 2 – How the EU works – contains an explanation of EU law, competences and Directives and the ways in which Member States have to comply with them. There are also many other chapters which together lay bare how much power we have given away.

      If any of you have friends who are wavering on how to vote in the EU Referendum, download this document and e-mail it to them. It’s not Vote Leave propaganda. It’s straight from the horse’s mouth.

  47. They Work for Us?
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    Roger Bootle sums up the reasons big business supports the EU and says that they are only qualified to comment oh how Brexit would affect their businesses. They are not qualified to advise on other peoples businesses or on constitutional matters.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/04/16/what-could-save-the-eu-now-the-answer-might-lie-in-the-shockwave/

    He also states that our leaving would be a good thing for other EU countries and dismisses Scottish threats of leaving the UK

  48. CHRISTOPHER HOUSTON
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    Off Topic, a shade

    Why is it that migrants or at least temporary European EU residents here in the UK who under EU law are allowed to vote in our Local Elections are said by the Labour Party to vote Labour in the main; yet, in their own countries of origin..Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia they elect Far Right and Right parties which are not only anti-immigration but (have views on who to allow in ed)
    Is there something about the Labour Party that attracts East European extreme right-wingers? What can it be? Mr Corbyn does have a typical Leninist/Trotskyist beard but surely no-one goes by whiskers and a Lenin-type floppy flat cap.

  49. agricola
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

    Some while ago I suggested that Parliament needed to get it’s head around the proliferation of drones. There is an air safety aspect as well as a terrorist angle. From the latter’s point of view it is a low cost way of causing mayhem over central London with little chance of detection.

    Well now it is reported that a BA flight into Heathrow has collided with one. When you consider how Concorde was down with a piece of debris on the runway, it does not require much imagination to work out what a drone could do even without a small explosive device attached.

    The security services really need to start talking to the CAA and then telling Parliament what needs to be done. Start taking it very seriously before a real disaster occurs.

  50. Ken Moore
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    It’s patently obvious to any right thinking person that getting out of the Eu is the best option…unfortunately our PM is no such thing.

  51. Simon
    Posted April 17, 2016 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

    > None of them consider what we could do if we took back control if our own money and spent it on our own priorities.

    I’m undecided, and this is the point which concerns me the most – I’m not sure that the government’s priorities are necessarily more in line with my views (as a fairly left-wing scientist in academia) than the EU’s.

    So to John, or anyone else who would care to answer: what specifically do you think the differences would be in how that chunk of money is used (whether it ends up being somewhat more or less)?

    Reply It will be spent in the UK instead of abroad so our economy is boosted and our balance of payments improves as we no longer have to send that money overseas.We can argue over how to spend it but however it will all boost the UK generally

    • peter davies
      Posted April 18, 2016 at 11:30 am | Permalink

      Simon

      If you spend tax payers money in the UK rather than overseas, it creates activity in the parts of the economy, some of which comes back as tax receipts. Send it overseas and you hit a double whammy, nothing back and JRs balance of payments issue which weakens the economy.

  52. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted April 18, 2016 at 2:09 am | Permalink

    Following Boris Johnson’s comment that America wouldn’t dream of giving away its sovereignty in the way that President Obama, by requesting that the UK remain in the EU, wants the UK to do so, Liam Fox and an American official from the Clinton era were interviewed on this very subject.

    Liam Fox repeated what Boris had said, whereupon the American official more or less said “But we’re a big country and you’re a little country, so the rules are different.”

    The effect on me is not to be afraid and respectful but to wish for a Republican victory in November. You wouldn’t get that kind of nonsense from Donald Trump.

  53. Phil_Richmond
    Posted April 18, 2016 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    My question is what are the Brexit Conservatives going to do on after the referendum? I hope they will remove Cameron & Osborne and take back the party!

  54. Phil_Richmond
    Posted April 18, 2016 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    Imagine if the EU is vindictive and imposes tough sanctions on our businesses. We retaliate by hitting the German car industry and French agriculture. What happens next?
    In Germany Merkel and her government are removed over night.
    In France 1 million French farmers march on Paris & Brussels. I don’t think there is enough lamp posts and rope available for what they would do to the buteaucrats!

  55. Mitchel
    Posted April 18, 2016 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    Yes and how welcome his comment on Syria(having just visited the place and met Assad)regarding the “70,000 moderate rebels”-just the big,fat,war-mongering lie we always knew it was.

  56. d. J. Fullwood
    Posted April 18, 2016 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

    Mr Redwood,
    Is there any chance that you will take over the leadership of the Brexit campaign, Please!!!

  57. adam
    Posted April 20, 2016 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    Of course the referendum is a waste of time, our system is not Direct Democracy.

    We ought to vote leave, juat to demonstrate that the EU project is not about to be derailed by a referendum. Advocates will just demand another vote.

    But supposing they don’t for whatever reason, our entire political establishment is pro EU, i have no ideas what the leave campaign think they are playing at, maybe just creating a sham debate, but they don’t represent any actual party except maybe UKIP. So even if we do vote leave and they allows us to begin to leave, it will create a constitutional crisis. A cries which very much benefits the EU and not our system of government.

    100 years ago every intellectual in the Western world thought the Soviet Union was the future and that we should join and abandon our past civilisation. Thankfully the Soviets never gave us a referendum on joining them.

  • 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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