Why so many people dislike the EU elites

The UK referendum contains within it a battle between the haves who enjoy the golden privileges of office and access to the corridors of power in Brussels, and the have nots, the rest of us who have to pay the taxes to keep them going and follow their rules, however unpalatable.

In a functioning national democracy public opinion can force changes to policies and decisions that are unpopular. This present government has rightly been required to abate its cuts to disability benefits and to alter its stance on tax credits. It is now coming under pressure to stand up to the EU and big business over some of the undesirable features of the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership which they are negotiating, mainly behind closed doors with too little transparency for the rest of us.

When governments do not listen enough to public opinion, and when they mess up the economy and life chances of the citizens, they get swept from power in an election. Revenge is sweet for the long suffering public, and hope swells as a new team is chosen.

The problem with the EU is it does not respond to public opinion in the same way. Nor can we remove the Commissioners by popular vote. The EU blundered on for far too long with its Exchange Rate Mechanism., causing recession. That meant lost jobs, lost businesses, a house price crash and much other damage.

Then the EU decided to do the same thing all over again to Euro member states. The long deep recessions in Greece, Spain, Ireland, and Portugal were made worse by savage austerity cuts which no sensible democratic state would have embarked on. The election of anti austerity parties and even governments in member countries did not deter them from their chosen course.

The EU is determined to destroy a large amount of EU industry by its very dear energy policies, making so many firms uncompetitive on world markets.

The EU refuses to listen to UK public opinion when we make it clear we want to control our own taxes and spend our own money o n jobs and public services in the UK.

It is high time right and left combined to renounce the EU’s austerity economics, renounce their unwarranted interference in our budgets and taxes, and renounce their harmful fishing, energy, agricultural and other policies that have cost us jobs and lost us businesses.

We want out democracy back. The EU’s bad model is fuelling anger and more extreme parties across the continent in frustration at the way it will not listen, mend its ways and leave more to national democracies to manage and handle.


  1. Dame Rita Webb
    May 20, 2016

    “The EU is determined to destroy a large amount of EU industry by its very dear energy policies, making so many firms uncompetitive on world markets.”

    Eh? Is it not your government, which since 2010, has continued to give the UK the highest petrol prices in the whole of Europe? What about landing industry and the consumer with rip off prices from the planned station at Hinckley Point? Why are windmills continually popping up all over my manor? These are all things that are determined by Westminster and not Brussels.

    Incidentally, I first came across the term “life chances” when I was studying sociology in the early 80s and never heard it used again, until it popped up in the Queen’s speech the other day. It obvious now where Cameron and his “conservatives” get their ideas from.

    1. Dame Rita Webb
      May 20, 2016

      Speaking of the Queen’s speech. Which genius thinks that the development of driverless cars and a “spaceport” is vital to fulfilling the needs of the British people today? You usually get these crackpot ideas near the end of a parliament not just over a year after winning an election. So who is really out of touch and clueless Dave or the EU Commissioners?

      1. Denis Cooper
        May 20, 2016

        Well, the development of driverless cars is not unconnected to the EU, as shown by a quick google search:


        I note this in particular, from earlier this week:


        “Car industry frustrated by Commission ‘disorganisation’ on driverless vehicles”

        Whether the involvement of the EU with this is good or bad in practical terms I cannot say, but it is certainly there.

        1. Dennis
          May 20, 2016

          If driverless cars become widespread what happens to the car insurance industry? How many of their employees will become redundant?

        2. NickW
          May 20, 2016

          In the US they are working on driverless heavy goods vehicles with the potential to destroy millions of jobs.

          There comes a time when the impact of technology is wholly destructive; the only consumers left with any money will be the 1%.

          The 99% will be chasing the 1% with pitchforks.

        3. Hope
          May 20, 2016

          Junker’s reported response in the paper today if the UK voted to leave the EU: Deserters will not be welcomed with open arms. The same man who said last week we could not eat at the same table. It is our taxes that pay for his effing food and to use the word deserter after the millions of UK citizens who died to save EU citizens from Hitler is nothing short of a disgrace and a very good reason in itself why we should vote to leave! I do not want to pay taxes so tax avoiding Dave can send my money to an ungrateful turd like him. Enough.

          1. Hope
            May 20, 2016

            Today the papers report the conviction of a Romanian youth for killing a British citizen and receiving 2 and half years for beating him to death! His held for twelve months! Safer in the EU! How many more British citizens need to suffer horrendous deaths at the hands of EU citizens before May resigns or is rightly sacked? Reports and videos of rioting immigrants in Geek refugee camp attacking police.

        4. Anonymous
          May 20, 2016

          I wonder which company is lobbying for driverless technology. Like lobbyists lumbered us with diesel because of TDI technology – that proved to be wrong (and unachievable) too.

          To enable DT to work roads have to be dug up and cables laid. Like the road network needs that !

      2. Hope
        May 20, 2016

        Fifth Carbon Budget to be implemented by PRO EU RUDD of the Tories. Tory manifesto to support Climate Change Act. Dame Rita you are correct. David trying to pass blame elsewhere over the steel industry, tell the EU to go and do one. These are our workers.

        Today we read that Grayling saying the EU wants us to build more houses for immigrants rather than cut the numbers coming here! 800,000 each year covered up by the Tory Government. Cash for questions and changing the Union Bill by Cameron. We read today the “independent” experts making the slogans on the remain leaflet actually came from he Treasury! Does purdah apply? All these deceptions are led by Cameron. The Tory party have the answer: boot him out along with May and Osborne. The underhand, dishonest methods undertaken by Cameron is not fair nor balanced i.e. immigration figures covered up, cash for questions, misleading parliament he ruled nothing out when he was engaged in something completely different. It demonstrates he was not acting in good faith in his alleged negotiations. I certainly will not accept a remain outcome with this sort of behaviour.

      3. Lifelogic
        May 20, 2016

        Indeed I assume we will get the spaceport and automated cars well before we get a proper 5 runway Heathwick hub airport, or even another runway.

        Also yet another promise of a Bill of Rights, you simply cannot trust a word that is put into the Queen’s mouth by this lot. They still have not kept Osborne’s IHT promise of 8? years ago – are are not going to it seems despite lying that they are doing.

      4. stred
        May 20, 2016

        Politicians who like driverless cars also like the EU because it is voteless politics. We cannot be trusted to do the right thing. We need automatic rule and must obey zee orders.

        1. eeyore
          May 20, 2016

          Talking of anti-populist elitism and de haut-en-bas attitudes, Guido tells us that the EU now wants to put quotas on Netflix and Amazon Prime: http://order-order.com/#_@/Kjmw3MpJmNfamg

          Were I but 80 again I might know what these strange beasts are. But young people know, they have referendum votes, they are addicted to entertainment and they are, we’re told, mostly Remainers.

          In those circs Guido’s slogan “Vote Brexit, get Netflix” looks a winner to me. In all seriousness I beg to commend it to Vote Leave.

      5. stred
        May 20, 2016

        The spaceport really is one of the most amazing elitist policies ever. Mr ( pro) EU Branson will have to charge fares in tens of thousands for flights going about 60 miles just into space and the passengers will then be able to take their seatbelts off and drift weightless for a few minutes- just like we can do now by flying an aircraft down at acceleration of gravity. In order to get there the spaceplane will be slung under a 747 and then use a load special fuel, originally to be a NoX mixture to reach 3-4000mph. They are planning orbital flights too. re wiki

        The BBC news asks ‘what makes a good spaceport site’ and apparently good weather and not near housing are important. No mention of why the US spaceports are in New Mexico and Florida, the EU in a French colony and the Russians as far south as they can find- the extra speed from the Earths rotation being rather useful.

        Remember Concorde? It went up high enough to see the Earth’s curvature and the edge of the atmosphere. It had to be abandoned because it used so much fuel that even the elite could not afford it. The plane put much more CO2 into the air too. In fact one part of government is urging us to fly less in today’s economical planes and taxing fight so much that we are going to Europe to avoid the tax.

        So it might be questioned why the elite of the UK would not be happy to fly south to a spaceport on their infrequent space jaunts, rather than missing the 1000mph boost from foggy Scotland. How much has it cost so far and who is lobbying?

        1. stred
          May 20, 2016

          oops- taxing flights

        2. Dame Rita Webb
          May 20, 2016

          You can just imagine Cameron, if he was a bit older, getting all excited about the Sinclair C5 being in his eyes the equivalent of Ford’s Model T. JR how do you compare this week’s Queen’s speech to the one at the same stage of Mrs Thatcher’s second term?

        3. bluedog
          May 20, 2016

          Given the unreliability of Branson’s rockets, one somehow doubts that even the elite will volunteer for self-immolation. The whole idea of a space-port seems just another tax-payer funded white-elephant.

    2. Gary C
      May 20, 2016

      I am inclined to agree, in particular Cameron has and still is allowing the EU to take over.

  2. Lifelogic
    May 20, 2016

    Indeed the EU is fuelling anger and more extreme parties across the continent in frustration. It clearly will end very badly. The EU Elite are absurdly out of touch with the real world and real people’s lives.

    If the UK really does vote to remain (due to the tax payer funded indoctrination from the Government and the BBC) it will just get worse and worse. Do the people of Britain really want to be governed by non Britains that they can never remove. People who are so out of touch with Britain, the real world, competitive business, farming, fishing, economics and indeed real science? People whose main interest is in their personal jobs, their pensions, expenses, their special tax regimes and in gathering more & more unaccountable powers to the centre. People who aim to to make all of Europe exactly the same in the one size fits all top down, socialist, agenda.

    The complete opposite of Majors great subsidiarity lie.

    In the words of Rule Britania:- “Britons never, never, never shall be slaves” or will they perhaps just meekly vote for it?

    1. Tad Davison
      May 20, 2016


      Just watched the Paxman programme on the EU, and he confirmed what many of already know that it was mainly the Tories who led us to the present mess, but that we were also lied to by Labour’s Harold Wilson in 1975.

      For me personally, this is getting very acrimonious. I am thoroughly sick and tired of Tories who once described themselves as ‘Eurosceptic’ just to get elected, then turn their coats at the first opportunity and bow to a foreign master. Many a personal relationship has been placed under a great deal of tension of late, and I will never again afford them the same level of respect, commitment, and unwavering support that I have in the past.

      Yes, there are still some good people in the Tory party, but there are a lot of bad ones too. Cameron is a rattle snake. His duplicity, and that of others like him spells doom for that once great institution. The only way for them to repair the damage done, is to not to rely upon placemen and yesmen, it’s to have decent, honest, and patriotic people who put the British people first, rather than themselves.

      It will be interesting to see what becomes of the inquiries into election expenses, especially where it is felt that the extra ‘attention’ to certain places was just to keep UKIP out of Westminster.

      Cameron doesn’t mind scaremongering to get his way. I can’t wait to see the back of him and his kind.

      Tad Davison


  3. DaveM
    May 20, 2016

    The EU has coerced national governments into handing over huge lumps of taxpayers’ cash in order that it can appoint itself as a European government, assuming powers which people never consented to them having. And the “EU” consists of bureaucrats who have done this while said taxpayers have been getting on with working and so on. At least if a group of people take power by force then go on to reward their supporters they earn modicum of respect.

    Saw the first half of QT. I doubt the BBC will venture there again. I’ve never seen so many Outers on a QT. The Outers on the panel comprehensively – in my opinion – destroyed the Inners, in spite of Yvette Cooper’s best efforts to shout over everyone and Farron’s leftist liberal rhetoric. Even Dimbleby contributed to debunking the Remain campaign’s dodhy economic speculation and ‘facts’.

  4. Mick
    May 20, 2016

    Your right on being kicked out by the voter Mr Redwood, Cameron as used all his rabbit s out of the bag but there again he’ll probably be in Brussels with a nice desk job, just been reading about more celeb lovies wanting to stay in the dreaded eu, just shows how thick they are stating the eu funds there causes, muppets it’s our money or don’t they get that, on another note I watch Jeremy Paxman on BBC last night, I was really surprised the bias BBC allowed it because it was mainly eu negatives ?

  5. Mark B
    May 20, 2016

    Good morning.

    You cannot blame the EU for dear energy prices. Our own government gold plated EU legislation and our parliament voted it in. The current government maintains the expensive and damaging Climate Change Act and, until that is repealed we cannot save ourselves from ourselves.

    I wounder if many people actually know that the EU is in fact our government let a lone the names of the various Presidents. And this is because both our government and media refuse to discuss this matter openly and responsibly, preferring to reduce it to posturing soundbites and trivia. We are not mushrooms and do not like being treated as such.

    OUT !

    1. Richard1
      May 20, 2016

      Indeed you cannot blame the EU for energy policies. German industry is being hampered by home grown energy policies, and so is the UK. Milibands climate change act was supported by the Comservative Party with very little dissent.

      1. stred
        May 20, 2016

        The Downing Street bossy boots and their supporters could be re-named the Commisservative Party. The party of more regulation and more law from the elite. The alumni of EU university, such as Clogg, try fool us that a regulation is not a law and should not be counted as such. The clue is in the name and the punishment if the rule is not obeyed.

    2. Dame Rita Webb
      May 20, 2016

      No power still remains in Westminster not Brussels and the quicker you remember that the less disappointed you will be if Britain votes out. Consider the following:

      The banking crisis 2006-08 was caused by Brown’s “light touch regulation” (Osborn is on record as saying it was not light enough

      The decision to get involved in Iraq and Afghanistan was also taken in London not Brussels

      We can control (but cannot be bothered to) who comes into the UK from outside the EU

      Getting out of the EU is only the start of the massive repair job that this country needs. The next step after that is a clearing out of the current political class.

    3. Iain Moore
      May 20, 2016

      “You cannot blame the EU for dear energy prices. ”

      But you can blame the EU for giving politicians protection from accountability, no better shown by the Tata steel plant closure, where we never found out who watered down the anti dumping tariffs for Chinese steel , the British Government or the EU, both said it was the other who were the problem. In the US , where the buck stops with their President , they know exactly who had stuck on 500% tariffs.

      Politicians are a pretty slippery breed in normal circumstances, they can say to your face with utter conviction how they believe with all their heart about an issue, then explain to you with the same conviction and sincerity why they are implementing policies that achieve the opposite. Having the EU is a Governments dream organisation, for the electorate can never find out where a policy originated, or who is to blame, and that is a fundamental corruption of accountability. HS2 , Steel tariffs, Energy policies etc are all lost into the unfathomable relationship the Executive has with the EU which is all done behind closed doors so that we can never find out if Cameron and Osborne sold out our steel industry.

      EU supporting politicians may not realise it , but to restore our democracy from the contempt with which our Parliament is held we desperately need to get out of the EU.

  6. now please
    May 20, 2016

    A group decided some time back that Globalism/One World Power call it what you will was the way to be, The group didn’t tell the rest of us. The group consider themselves wise and good and more intelligent than the rest of us.
    So it’s up to the rest of us to prove them wrong and be quick about it.

    1. Tad Davison
      May 20, 2016

      Not easy when they hold all the aces. And I suspect all of us know who that group is. It was dangerous for democracy then, and it is even more dangerous now.


      1. Anonymous
        May 20, 2016

        Our Ace cards neutralised. Dare not even mention Hitler or bananas over the next few weeks.

  7. David Price
    May 20, 2016

    I only caught a snippet of Paxman’s program last night where he asked Clegg his view on our loss of Sovereignty in the EU. Cleggs response was that our Sovereignty has not been lost but “extended/enhanced”.

    For me a key test of sovereignty is the ability to say “no” and act on it. We are not able to do this with EU impositions so we do not have sovereignty.

    Clegg’s attitude to this country is just one reson why I dislike the EU, it’s elites and it’s useful idiots.

    1. Know-dice
      May 20, 2016

      Clegg was awful,


      as 1 of 28 we will/are implementing regulations that are not in this country’s interests, how is that good, democratic or right.

      Paxman’s program clearly shows that those that have been assimilated into the EU gravy train and way of doing “business” have been totally brainwashed in to actually believing the rhetoric that they constantly spout.

      And the “luvies” today “leaving the EU will affect creativity”…bull :->

      More likely their second homes and extravagant lifestyles…

    2. oldtimer
      May 20, 2016

      This was typical Clegg sophistry wrapped up in his own attempt to sound clever by seeking to redefine the meaning of straightforward English words.

  8. bigneil
    May 20, 2016

    Hopefully enough people will see the EU for what it is on Referendum day. And may other countries follow. it is just a group of unelected dictators “living it large” from destroying nations. Hope Juncker etc get what they deserve – no matter how painful.

  9. Cheshire Girl
    May 20, 2016

    I see from the Daily Telegraph today that almost 300 ‘luvvies’ from the ‘creative arts’ industry are ‘warning’ of the disaster to befall us if we leave the EU. As we know, these people, with their enormous wealth and privilege, are shielded from the downsides of our membership.

    All this kind of thing does, is make me more determined than ever to vote OUT !!

    1. Lifelogic
      May 20, 2016

      If the BBC & the lefty luvvies like something it is bound to be a bad idea that will harm everyone, especially the people they claim to be helping.

      Luvvies work with emotions not logic, reason or arithmetic. They always like to sound “nice” regardless of reason. But the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

      As we see in Venezuela.


      And as we will see here, should Corbyn ever get into power. It is bad enough under the socialist, wage controlling, tax borrow and waste – Osborne and Cameron.

    2. oldtimer
      May 20, 2016

      There are plenty of well off people who think this way. They can afford the costs of a well heeled lifestyle and enjoy the access to cheap labour to do the jobs they do not want to do that the freedom of movement rules provide. They are oblivious to the malign implications of the way the EU operates. I call it the Marie Antoinette tendency, the “Let them eat cake” cast of mind if anyone complains about those implications for the people of Greece or elsewhere.

    3. Mitchel
      May 20, 2016

      Three quarters of a century ago,the luvvies of their day were telling us how wonderful Stalin’s workers paradise was with George Bernard Shaw telling anyone who would listen he had never eaten better than in Moscow(at a time when the Ukraine was starving).

  10. agricola
    May 20, 2016

    There is a disconnect between the people of Europe and the” EU Elites” because the people did not put them there and cannot by democratic means remove them. Apart from the above they are not seen as the most charismatic or successful candidates in Europe. The Bilderberg placeman Herman van Rumpuy was rightly seen as having the ” Charisma of a damp rag and the appearance of a low grade bank clerk.”

    I see the EU as Bilderberg in practice, relatively anonymous, definitely not elected, and having it’s own secretive agenda for the World as they wish it. For those who are interested you will find them well delineated in Wikipedia. They include royalty, politics, military, financial institutions, corporations, academia, and the media. In terms of UK membership of Bilderberg you will see ample examples of their disdain for the opinions of the electorate and the pursuit of the Bilderberg aim.

    Some members may have the good of the World at heart, others less so, but collectively they are even less accountable than the EU, which I see as one of their experiments on the ground. For some there is no time for us the drones of the World, dismissing democracy and accountability with a disdainful sneer. On 23rd June we have the opportunity to retake democracy and give them pause to think again.

    Last night I watched the all too rarely seen Jeremy Paxman on BBC1 on the subject of the EU. Well balanced and refreshing among much of the nonsense we are being fed.

  11. alan jutson
    May 20, 2016

    Is it my imagination or are politicians and Governments in general, trying to wrestle more and more control from the people as the years go by.

    Governments now do not seem to be satisfied with just managing the basics, they actually now all seem to want to invent and control vast vanity projects to leave a so called legacy in their name, but which usually means the huge debt is in ours.

    Politicians now seem to be trying to manage our daily lives with ever more regulation and control.

    In decades past if people wanted to leave a legacy of some sort, they did so with their own money, they were call philanthropists, a few may have been politicians but the majority were successful businessmen, the very people who generated wealth not only for themselves, but our Country and employment for thousands of its citizens.

    Some politicians now seem to loath such people.

    Strange World we now live in.

    The people will revolt eventually as politicians who have never lived in the real World and who insulate themselves from it, become less and less liked.

    Those who are successful simply move (or move their wealth) to another Country where the
    rules are less onerous or where choice is greater.

    If politicians want to leave a legacy then do it with their own money, if they want to put something back into society, then do some charitable work on an unpaid and voluntary basis like some of their citizens.

  12. Antisthenes
    May 20, 2016

    Monet decided from the off that the EU would have no democratic accountability and that it was to be technocracy. A very powerful mix one that is bound to not work in practice for anyone other than those running it. Too many believe state monopoly can do better than any other system to provide us with good governance and everything else we need. Demonstrably that is not true as every government that has employed that system from the USSR to Venezuela ends up in ruin or at least leaving it’s country and citizens impoverished.

    If we remain a member of the EU then we can look forward to suffering the same fate as all countries and institutions do when there is a democratic and competitive deficit. It seems madness to me that we are repeating the same mistake as all socialist regime make and expect to have a different outcome. Einstein warned us that we should not follow that path. No doubt many do not even recognise the fact that the EU and even some of our government is run on socialist lines. The EU in nearly everything and in the UK we have the NHS and Network Rail to name a couple all doing exceeding badly.

  13. Ian Wragg
    May 20, 2016

    The Paxman show Who Rules Britain was suprisingly even handed and informative.
    None of the great and good on the EU payroll could see anything wrong with the lack of demos or the Soviet style commission dictating rules which get passed unchallenged into domestic law.
    The EU is the testing ground for world government.
    Pity its made such an arse of it.

  14. Denis Cooper
    May 20, 2016

    But overall my dislike of the EU elites is no greater than my dislike of the UK elites.

    OK, I’m a nationalist and I resent being told what to do by foreigners, but that is balanced by my knowledge that it is our own politicians who are allowing this to happen.

    When Cameron and Hollande stand together on a platform and threaten us with Jungles across south east England if we vote to leave the EU then my resentment is mainly against Cameron, who quite obviously asked Hollande to join him in doing that.

    But when Merkel succeeds in preventing us and everybody else across the EU apart from the Irish having our say on her rejigged EU Constitution, her “Reform Treaty” aka the Lisbon Treaty, then my resentment is against her just as much as against Brown , and also against Cameron for caving in on his long expressed opposition.

    When it comes down to it there are now pan-EU, transnational, in fact global, elites and the UK elites are just local parts of them; it is the EU “club” for them, and they can all gather for the “family photographs”, say “cheese”; and that is one powerful reason why they are viscerally opposed to leaving the EU, just as I am viscerally opposed to staying in it.

    1. Mitchel
      May 20, 2016

      Our elites still have the imperial reflex but with our empire gone,they are content to be the second tier of someone’s empire-and have you pay for it.

      All the great Empires from the Roman to the Russian have done it ;co-opt the local nobility into your power structure and they become yours.

    2. Anonymous
      May 20, 2016

      I dislike the Elites (especially the celebrity elites) because none of them – not ONE of them – will bear the costs of what they propose.

      Their ideals are always paid for by other people.

      I would have far more respect for themselves if they led by example and impoverished themselves to the level that they want us to be at.

  15. John Bracewell
    May 20, 2016

    On Paxman’s program about the EU, he asked a few people including Nick Clegg about the loss of sovereignty by being in the EU and was given the reply that sovereignty had been pooled or enhanced. It is clear that the majority of our laws originate from the EU Commission, our judges in the UK Supreme Court can be overridden by the EU Court of Justice, the UK can be fined by the EU if the EU passes such a judgement on us, the UK has to hand over extra budget money when the EU says so, these and other examples are not compatible with being in control of our own policies, actions and government. The UK has therefore not pooled or enhanced our sovereignty, we have already lost a substantial part of our sovereignty, to think or say otherwise is plain wrong and misleads the voters in the referendum. To regain our full sovereignty and control of the government of our country, the only course of action is to vote to Leave the EU on June 23rd.

    1. Yosarion
      May 20, 2016

      The best comment of the night came from Portilo on this week, he said that it was Heseltine in Cabinet that insisted it was OK for interest rates to go from 10% to 15% to keep us in the ERM that caused a huge recession. only a few weeks ago he was still saying he would join the Euro.
      The man must be a agent for another land, because his loyalties do not seem to be towards England.

      1. rose
        May 20, 2016

        And look at his synthetic rage at Boris: “obscene” etc when Boris was just discussing the old Roman empire and various people’s attempts to recreate it.

  16. Denis Cooper
    May 20, 2016

    I think the problem with the EU is not just its failure to respond to public opinion, but that there is no single EU public and therefore nothing that counts as EU public opinion.

    As the judges on the German constitutional court put it in one of their verdicts:


    there is “no uniform European people”, just “the peoples of the European Union”, plural, “which are constituted in their Member States”.

    In their view, which I believe is correct, there is no pan-European “demos” which could form the basis for a pan-European “democracy”; therefore in my view the EU, which as they put it “continues to constitute a union of rule founded on international law, a union which is permanently supported by the intention of the sovereign Member States” should give up all pretence of “democracy” and instead accept that being run by “diplomacy”, like other international organisations established by treaty between sovereign states.

    1. Mitchel
      May 20, 2016

      On a closely related issue there was a very good discussion on RT’s Crosstalk this morning about the Americanisation of International Law;how,thwarted by the Russian and Chinese vetos on the UN Security Council-and not wanting to be bound by international law itself-the US is now manifestly seeking to impose its domestic law internationally as global judge and prosecutor.

    2. Anonymous
      May 20, 2016

      Denis – I have sent an email to the EU S&D Party asking them how I can join them and campaign for them in my local constituency (a test.)

      No response yet. From the S&D Pary website I can see no way of joining them as I might the Tories but there are links directing visitors to a job application page.

      I was amazed to find that there are three major EU Parties – each comprising of several hundred MEPs from various states.

      I can be forgiven for not knowing as I am not an EU enthusiast.

      One would, however, expect anyone voting to Remain in the EU to be able to say which if them they align with and who their leaders are – discussing the subject at least as knowledgeably as they would their own tri-party system.

      Most people voting Remain have any idea of what they are voting for nor what they are getting in to.

      1. Anonymous
        May 20, 2016

        Group MEPs
        Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists & Democrats (S&D) 190
        The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) 89
        The European Free Alliance Greens (Verts/ALE) 58
        The European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) 56

        Actually 4 major parties with Conservative members in the EU well outnumbered.

  17. oldtimer
    May 20, 2016

    The Brussels bubble is even bigger and better funded than the Westminster bubble. Martin Durkin drew attention to its lifestyle in his recent film, Brexit the Movie. He also brilliantly exposed the insidious influence of the directives and regulations that govern more and more aspects of our daily lives.

    I thought that Jeremy Paxman`s BBC documentary last night added the useful explanation of the difference between Directives (up to national governments to implement) and Regulations (immediately effective in law without further let or hindrance). Regulations are the wedge that is destroying the last shreds of democratic accountability. Furthermore, because it is all cooked up within the Commission, the process is wide open to manipulation and influence by outside interests. Foremost among these are:
    1 big corporations that can afford to lobby hard, and
    2 NGOs and pressure groups, including the notorious sock puppets (search the term on the IEA website if you are unfamiliar with it).

    No one seems to know just how many regulations there are. I have not the slightest doubt that many of them are a result of lobbying by these two groups. Their aims are obvious.

    For the corporates it is to eliminate the competition of SMEs and start ups that cannot afford the costs of regulatory compliance. The consequences for the rest of us are higher costs, slower innovation and the stifling of competition. If you ever wondered why the big corporates love the EU, this is a prime reason. They are also ready, willing and able to team up with the second group, the NGOs, if there is money to be made; the global warming scam provides endless examples from subsidised wind farms to carbon trading.

    For the NGOs it is the promotion of single issue pressure group causes without the proper scrutiny that parliamentary processes as we know them would provide. The consequences are ill considered and sometimes harmful regulation. The outstanding contemporary example is the EUs promotion of diesel as a car fuel (now at last recognised to require means to control NOx emissions) at the expense of petrol (because of the alleged problems of CO2). To cap it all, one of the EUs biggest businesses, the VW Group has been charged with falsifying its test results by the use of a cheat device in its diesel powered cars in the USA. The cost of this scandal to VW will run to many billions of euros.

    It is a tangled web, hidden from public view or public scrutiny. It is a world of the power of the unelected and the unknown. And as we all know power corrupts.

    1. acorn
      May 20, 2016

      I could be forced to give you a big wet kiss oldtimer. But; I would suggest you have a rethink on your climate change position; just like I had to do a couple of years back. The number crunching being done in my peer group; is, I have to admit, somewhat convincing.

      1. oldtimer
        May 20, 2016

        The climate change agenda has everything to do with propaganda and political control. It has resulted in some extremely foolish legislation to subsidise inefficient renewable energy schemes – even the late Professor McKay, DECCs science advisor said they were daft and ineffective.

        The earth’s climate is a non linear, chaotic system; as such it is not amenable to comprehension or claimed certainties by the kind of analysis that is applied to it by the propagandists. Besides, CO2 is an essential plant food. The reported rise in CO2 to c400ppm has, in all probability, contributed to the greening of previously barren deserts. If it dropped to below c150ppm then plant life would be threatened.

        1. stred
          May 21, 2016

          Re plant food. Increased leaf area detected all over except some deserts. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/04/160426162610.htm

  18. Tim L
    May 20, 2016


    As much as I dislike the ‘elites’ of the EU, they owe their very existence to an even more useless class of elite; OURS!

  19. Chris S
    May 20, 2016

    It is certainly true that the Brussels elite have never listened or even taken note of changing opinions within the electorate of member states. Indeed we have clear evidence of them having positively ignored the outcome of past general elections, including most damagingly those in Greece, as well as referenda in France, Ireland and The Netherlands.

    Junkers and Co simply carry on with business as usual. Nothing can be allowed to disturb the drive towards a US of Europe despite the fact that a clear majority in almost every member states is against the idea.

    The recent referendum in The Netherlands and Cameron’s treatment has demonstrated that nothing has changed in this respect.

    We should not be surprised at this. From the moment the Euro was created they knew that it would be essential that they make good on full fiscal and economic integration. From the beginning without doubt, those calling the shots in Brussels knew that the project would fail without it, yet they also knew that there was no appetite for it among voters and many politicians in member states.

    Those in charge in Brussels thought, wrongly, that the single currency would bring countries and their citizens closer together, public opinion would shift and they could safeguard the project by taking over full control of the economies of every Eurozone member state before the whole thing fell apart,

    Sitting in a glass and steel tower in Brussels, isolated from reality, this must have looked to be a workable solution. The fall back position was obviously that, should there be no agreement on a single budget controlled from Brussels ( or rather Berlin ), they could eventually force it through against the real wishes of the people when the project started to unravel.

    This is the position we are in today yet the very opposite has occurred. German domination and the obvious subservient position of France and the other EZ member countries has caused conflict and disharmony beyond anything the Brussels elite could imagine was possible.

    Merkel has made things far worse by her appalling treatment of Greece and her very own migrant crisis, the single most damaging act by any European politician since Hitler invaded Poland in 1939.

    The voters around Europe now know that full fiscal integration inevitably means financial and therefore also real political control from Berlin. In that respect Boris was right.

    Given the rise of the Right all over the EU, Brussels must now know that the only way full fiscal integration can now be achieved is in the face of an obviously approaching economic collapsed.

    To sell it they will have to demonstrate that the only alternative, a leap into the unknown brought about by a rapidly approaching break up of the Eurozone, can be portrayed as being potentially far worse.

    In other words, lose your ability to make decisions for yourselves and thus your sovereignty or face the loss of the Euro, the near certainty of economic collapse or at best, a very uncertain future.

    Sounds very much like the blueprint Cameron borrowed to use for Project Fear, doesn’t it?

  20. Peter van Leeuwen
    May 20, 2016

    “and the have nots, the rest of us . . .”
    Mr. Redwood, the “have-not” ? 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Reply I have never had a penny from the EU myself, no job, no sinecure, nor am I seeking one. The gilded elite drift from job to job within the EU or in EU funded bodies.

    1. Ian Wragg
      May 20, 2016

      PvL awakes from his slumber after monitoring all the anti EU blogs.
      We’re watching you he says.

    2. Anonymous
      May 20, 2016

      PvL – I’ve never – not for once – thought that we’d be leaving the EU (though I’d love for Britain to do so.)

      The one very great benefit that a Remain result will bring for me is the ultimate proof that the EU was a very bad idea – I don’t think anyone in Britain will be in any doubt about that in the next couple of years.

      I shall be the best European I can – having failed in my exhaustive attempts to convince others that they should have voted Leave.

      I shall do whatever the EU wants me to. At any stage and under any leader. Literally anything.

    3. stred
      May 20, 2016

      Peter. The EU@s environmental NGOs are forecasting much larger sea level rises because of all the CO2 the Germans are pumping out now that Mrs Merkel is burning lignite. Will Holland be going for higher dykes or managed retreat? If the latter, will many of you be requiring NI numbers and will you use ferries to come over or fly?

  21. formula57
    May 20, 2016

    Congratulations and thanks to you, Peter Lilley and colleagues for obliging the government to protect the NHS from the EU-negotiated Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Well done!

  22. Roy Grainger
    May 20, 2016

    Just on TTIP, I think it is dead anyway – Trump is 100% opposed to it. On the Democrat side Clinton is having to edge towards Sanders who is also 100% opposed, so whatever the election result it is unlikely to be passed in USA. Then what ?

    I still expect the Remainiacs to win here, at least then those of us in West London will have the entertaining prospect of the EU in one of its several guises scuppering Cameron’s plan for a new Heathrow runway (one of many announcements he’s postponed until after the EU vote).

    1. Denis Cooper
      May 20, 2016

      Anyone who has listened to Cameron over the past three years, without stopping to think about what he was claiming, might assume that it would be a tragedy if TTIP didn’t go through. Similarly, it would be a tragedy if we voted to leave the EU and so foolishly rendered ourselves ineligible to share in its huge economic benefits, instead being shoved to the back of the queue for any similar bilateral deal with the US. In fact on the EU’s own projection, and therefore that of the UK government, TTIP would be economically trivial, a one-off addition of about 0.6% to UK GDP, which on the long term trend growth rate of about 2.5% a year will increase by that amount in just over one average quarter.

      And likewise with the EU Single Market, which has probably added about 1% to our per capita GDP – with about 2% having been added to the collective GDP of the EU member states, according to the EU Commission, but with the UK having benefited much less than some other countries, for whatever reasons.

      Imagine that person A offered person B a 1% increase in his income, provided that B signed a document handing over control of many aspects of his life and moreover paid A an annual fee for managing his affairs, and also paid costs which could be as much as or many times greater than that 1% benefit. That is what our politicians have done to us, by getting us entangled in the EU Single Market.

  23. Bert Young
    May 20, 2016

    I too watched the Paxman programme and , reading between the lines , have no doubt about how he will vote . Those interviewed who were within the ranks of the Brussels corps , were , clearly , an ineffective lot and offered little substance to the existence of its regime ; I came away from all the interviews telecasted believing that the EU is a load of expensive nonsense and that it should be disbanded .

    The loss of our sovereignty is the trump issue of my concern and I regret that the case for making it clear to the public is still badly co-ordinated by the “Leavers”. Every day that passes without a dynamic approach to the public is a day wasted ; the “Brexit” polls are not encouraging reading .

    1. DaveM
      May 20, 2016

      They’re not, you’re right. Cameron – some may argue – won the last election on Crosby’s advice of hammering on constantly about the economy, and he’s doing the same now. Vote Leave needs to start DOING something. It is full of, and asaociated with dozens of charismatic and popular figures. It needs to dismantle Remain’s short-term economic speculation and start pushing sovereignty. Start making known the ambitions of the Five Presidents’ Report with regards to centralisation of everything, particularly foreign policy and use of our national assets for the EU’s benefit. Vote Leave could be winning easily yet they’re throwing away a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to extricate us from the USE.

    2. rose
      May 20, 2016

      But when a Brexit speaker gives a speech it isn’t reported. It isn’t printed in the papers and it isn’t broadcast.

  24. Phil Richmond
    May 20, 2016

    I dont dislike the EU elites. I despise and I hate them! How I feel about your “great” leader and his scheming quisling friend in No.11 is unprintable!!
    Question. Why is Dan Hannan not playing a more featured role? He routs the Remain idiots every time he debates them.

    1. Walterb
      May 20, 2016

      Dan Hannan , what a brilliant debater.

    2. Chris S
      May 20, 2016

      I can’t understand that either.

      We went to Romsey to see him speak a year or so ago and he was brilliant.

      He speaks with greater clarity than Boris and even Michael Gove. ( I do wish both of them would drop the £350m a week claim though. The real figure of £175m is more than enough ).

      If only Dan would become an MP he would be one of the greatest orators at Westminster.

      Surely a future party leader ?

  25. Atlas
    May 20, 2016

    I enjoyed Paxman’s programme. I think he came as close as he could to saying that staying in the EU is not worth a row of beans.

    The basis of the EU can be seen in Plato’s “Republic” – so this type of EU thinking has a long pedigree.

    What I find difficult to understand is why peoples from other non French/German countries in the EU want to be bossed about by these Empire builders.

    Any thoughts Peter?

  26. graham1946
    May 20, 2016

    According to the papers today, Cameron reckons he is a ‘proud Eurosceptic’ even after all the scares, threats of world war etc.

    This man is seriously unhinged, yet the Tories allow him to continue being PM, (at least until the end of June) when hopefully the decision will be taken out of their sycophantic hands. Lets hope for more reasons than leaving the EU the public will see sense and vote out, even if it is just to get rid of this incompetent fool. If we vote ‘In’ how long will it be before then men in white coats visit Downing Street?

  27. Kenneth
    May 20, 2016

    The eu elites may well be a benevolent bunch right now. I don’t think many of us know.

    The problem, though, is when, sometime in the future, they take more powers for themselves, aided by politicised courts and their chums in the large corporations and the media.

    That is, sometime in the future when Parliament is no more than a council ‘rubber stamp’ chamber.

    And them, so it goes that the Euro will be introduced to the UK via majority voting.

    Then, all UK VAT will be appropriated by the eu followed by the rest of taxation.

    In our desperation will we need to ask our armed forces whose side it is on?

    If we vote to remain there may be dark days ahead.

    Once we have given away our democracy and sovereignty, we may never get it back.

    This referendum may be the last chance before we give away Great Britain.

  28. William Long
    May 20, 2016

    In this post and the preceding one you articulated so clearly all the great concerns about the EU. They make it seem crazy that anyone who believes in democracy and liberty ( without which equality and fraternity are impossible) should vote for continued EU membership. I despair though at the ‘Leave’ campaign’s seeming inability to put the message across.

  29. lojolondon
    May 20, 2016

    Dear John, the BBC has been tremendously partial already, during the run up to the referendum – last week they hosted ‘Remain’ adverts on their international service, every day there is constant pro-EU propaganda, now Question time last night – Four ‘Remainders’ and only one representative for ‘Leave’. I very much doubt that next week they will host four people who favour Brexit and just one who favours ‘Remain’ , just to redress the balance in the interests of impartiality.
    I do hope you will be able to raise this with someone who can do something about the situation?

    Thanks –

    1. Glenn Vaughan
      May 20, 2016

      Didn’t you see the Paxman programme broadcast last night?

      He did a brilliant demolition job of pro EU propaganda such that it becomes hard to imagine how any sane person could vote to remain after watching it.

    2. Yosarion
      May 20, 2016

      I think it would be advised for someone at Vote leave to look at every Regional News program after the 10 o’clock news Thursday, down this neck of the woods there was a Student given four minutes on the Remain offensive, I have read the same happened in the NW, seems to be organized

  30. Dunedin
    May 20, 2016

    “In a functioning national democracy public opinion can force changes to policies and decisions that are unpopular” – yes indeed, but as you pointed out yesterday “we are governed by a grand pro EU coalition” of MPs from right and left. When so many politicians think the same way, how are the voting public going to force these changes?

    Politicians are often out of step with public opinion on a range of issues including the EU, immigration, and law and order. But until the big parties put up more parliamentary candidates who reflect public opinion we will be stuck with these liberal-left “group-think” politicians.

    OT – speaking of liberal-left group-think, I am not at all happy to be funding the BBC for another eleven years.

  31. rose
    May 20, 2016

    The elite broadcaster and Sky are keeping news out of the picture at the moment. What can we do about this? There is rioting in Rennes and at Calais; rioting in Athens and at Idomeni etc. and we are not told. There is an election coming up in Spain which is not being covered. We are not being told what is happening in Germany or Sweden. This is an elite which says it wants us to be at one with the continent.

    All we get is constant brainwashing to stay in the EU and to take in limitless numbers of “child refugees”, i.e. mostly young men who have abandoned their women and children and old folk. This crazy policy will encourage criminality and unbalance populations in Europe and the continents they have come from.

    1. The PrangWizard
      May 20, 2016

      Maybe we should take to the streets too, the arrogant elites are lying to us and attempting to frighten us, they have no interest in what we think, they are only interested in continuing to ride the gravy train.

      (Words left out ed)

      They acted quickly enough after the poll tax riots.

      reply Law breaking us not a good idea and is not recommended by this site

  32. Mick
    May 20, 2016

    Just been watching the Daily Politics and it had that Lucy Thomas woman on and pig ignorant to keep interrupting Frank Field, she kept on spouting that the eu migrants were contributing billions to our accomany, am I missing something here but if we don’t have them here the people on benefits could do the jobs so we don’t pay them billions in benefits , and also it would relieve the pressure on housing/education/NHS, it’s not rocket science

    1. Roy Grainger
      May 20, 2016

      It’s a simple point but if we left EU we could still allow millions of low-paid migrants to come here if we wanted.

    May 20, 2016

    Off Topic:
    Missing Flight MS804.

    A regular civilian flight.Viewed on civilian radar without interruption. In a very busy maritime zone. Surrounded by military bases, aircraft and ships guarding the Turkish and Greek shores. A NATO hotspot. An EU hotspot.

    So, next time the UK Parliament has one of those frightfully intense “Committee Room” interrogations, they can perhaps singly or in groups invite the numerous spokespeople from NATO, including the Heads of it,-various EU Security spokespeople, the UK Minister of Defence and ask them :-

    Why on this occasion didn’t the combined NATO and particularly the EU Security cooperations, not know immediately where the wreakage of the flight is located and the precise reason it went down given they are so adept at shooting down Russian bombers moving just 10 miles over a Turkish peninsula of Turkish territory and can spot an inflatable dingy carrying migrants at 500 miles.
    Oh and were the nearby British Military bases on their May Bank holidays? Are they still on holiday? What were the location of EU-nation and NATO ships, also civilian fishing, passenger and private vessels? How many migrant inflatables spotted the plane?

  34. Denis Cooper
    May 20, 2016

    Apropos the “Sovereignty Bill”, omitted from the Queen’s Speech and so kicked into the long grass, this was actually promised by Cameron on November 4th 2009 as a dollop of “jam tomorrow” compensation for his abject cave-in over the Lisbon Treaty:


    One might have thought that more than six years would be plenty of time to work out what should be in it, without “rushing forward” as Stephen Crabb put it.

    But long before that, in fact almost exactly ten years ago, about six months after Cameron had become party leader, the Tory MP Bill Cash put forward an amendment to a Bill which would have authorised ministers to disapply EU laws, and he managed to get official party approval for that proposed exercise of Parliamentary sovereignty.

    The vote on that amendment was Division No. 239 on May 16th 2006, here:


    “New Clause 17


    “Motion made, and Question put, That the clause be read a Second time: –

    The House divided: Ayes 136, Noes 318.”

    Among the senior Tories who were prepared to vote for that when the party whips told them to vote for it, despite any legal or constitutional reservations, were:

    Dominic Grieve, who later became Attorney-General
    Jeremy Wright, who is the present Attorney-General
    David Lidington, now Europe Minister
    Theresa May, now Home Secretary

    Oh, and Stephen Crabb himself also went through the “Aye” lobby.

  35. Keep focussed
    May 20, 2016

    We cant answer everything. The most important thing for the next few weeks is the referendum and raising awareness of the everyday voter so he can make up his own mind.

  36. NickW
    May 20, 2016

    The EU’s aversion to democracy is due in large part to the fact that the Senior EU posts usually go to the electoral rejects from National Governments.

    Van Rompuy
    Verhofstadt to name but a few.

    Being electoral rejects also suggests that they have second rate abilities, which is born out by the disaster they are inflicting on Europe.

  37. Jack
    May 20, 2016

    Germany’s trade surplus has just surpassed 9% of GDP in the ECB’s latest statistics. This is the reason why the German government can run a balanced budget with ease, they’re taking advantage of other countries’ deficit spending.

    Yet the EU Commission wants the Greek government to run a primary surplus (before interest payments) of 3.5% of GDP! This is absolute insanity, Greece has a trade deficit so the only way to run a government surplus there would be to totally drain the private sector of its savings (private sector deficit). And that would immediately trigger a massive economic collapse (and ironically the government deficit would explode again).

    Government Deficits – Net Imports = Net Private Saving

    Or put another way: Government Deficit = Non-Government Surplus

    The largest depressions in U.S. history have all been preceded by the largest budget surpluses. Greece, just like Britain, needs more private sector net financial assets (government debt), not less!

    May 20, 2016

    So many people dislike EU elites partly because they are faded politicians who previously did have a democratic mandate to be up there with the stars but since, have no claim to be part of the elite other than they are part of the elite. Famous for being famous one could say except they are not famous and in many cases were never famous.

    Whole dynasties, families of not-quite-made-it politicians from nation states. A kind of Second-Hand Prize handed out by Prime Ministers sometimes via Governmental Party tribal area voting. More or less guaranteed electoral voting in their favour where the much frowned upon EU idea of democracy still holds some kind of sway.

    Not that I advocate such,… but historically such people either because of in-breeding develop haemophilia either symbolically or actually or, are eventually taken out, lined up and shot squealing: “Why, I’ve done nothing wrong?” (Should ring bells but they are never heard, until its too late.)

    May 20, 2016

    At this point in history, the EU elites are not actually known by the so derogatorily labelled “Common Man”. Many polls and on-street questioning by TV journalists have shown that the vast majority of people cannot name but one single leading light of the EU.
    When they reveal themselves, how will they do it?
    Will, what has to be a fronting individual say: –
    “Here I am. I am your completely unelected Leader.” ( But he will probably be able to point to generations of his family who had similar unelected roles in the EU. ). A kind of Herr Emperor, but again, this time, with EUROYAL Family.
    It will all end badly failing a successful Leave vote. Like a Romanian Presidential dystopic fairytale. Perhaps I’m being too Ceaușescueque but one imagines a Juncker hopping clumsily out of the bowels of a tank looking to the skies for an expected but fatally delayed military helicopter.

  40. Roy Grainger
    May 20, 2016

    Odd, isn’t it. Safer in the EU ?

  41. agricola
    May 20, 2016

    I , as no doubt many of you have been watching the progress of Donald Trump in the US primaries. Because he seems to stand out from most of the other contenders I decided to learn more.

    The first thing I discovered is that he is staggeringly wealthy, all of which has been self generated. A very successful businessman. For good causes he can be very generous, especially where he has perceived local politicians to be screwing up.

    Second, he is not a politician, and is not seemingly beholden to anyone. His election campaign has been self financed, so there will be no grateful payoffs at the end of it.

    His driving force as stated is the re-birth of the USA, and the employment and motivation of her people. I find this all quite refreshing despite his occasional lapses of self expression. Pretty mild when you consider the behaviour of some of his predecessors.

    I do not think people in the UK have realised it yet, but we could have another Ronald Reagan on our hands. He too was underrated until he got to the White House, after which he transformed the World for the good. If Donald Trump can do for the USA what he has done for the world of real estate I look forward to his arrival in Washington where the local Jeremy Heywoods can look forward to lively times.

    May 20, 2016

    The Leave Campaign should immediately start an international Short Story competition, open to all in the world, for the best futuristic short story on the consequences of a Remain vote.
    A prize of a fully paid holiday for one, with spending money, anywhere in the world outside the EU.
    As many very amateur writers, I’m writing mine now. I will not give the game away entirely when I say it is a pity what is going to happen to Mr. Cameron. But he’ll get used to his job on the farm, in time.

  43. stred
    May 20, 2016

    Recently on this blog the opinions of a Mr Phillipe Legrain were mentioned. He is a yougish economist who advised the Commission and thinks that large scale immigration is a great benefit to the UK. Today we read that the EU thinks we should build 800k more houses. Perhaps they believe the NI figure rather than airport questionaires.

    An article dated 2008 in the Guardian by Mr Legrain was put on by DC and in it the benefits of immigration included a GDP/head rate of 2.2% pa in the previous 5 years.

    According to the graph by ONS-ABMI-IHXW GDP and GDP/head (sent by email to JR), GDP/head in 2005 was 6500 and this rose to 6800 in 2008. This is a 4.6% rise or 1.5% pa. Growth after his article fell of a cliff and fell from 6800 to 6400. After the crash it then rose from 6400 to 6800 and now it is back above the previous high but slowing. The GDP/head was therefore 6.25% over 6 years or about 1%pa.

    But the GDP itself fell from 420000 to 395000- a fall of 6% and then rose after the crash to 450000- a rise of 13.9% or about 2%pa. The units are not given on the graph.The graph can be easily found on the education site- economicshelp.com.

    It is sad to note that after his article, Mr Legrain was chosen to help the Commissioner and that his opinions are still believed by some EU bureaucrats and possibly some in the Treasury, who always include large scale migration in their very long time doom forecasts, used to scare the gullible.

    1. Denis Cooper
      May 21, 2016

      2.5% a year is the long term trend growth rate since 1956:


        1. stred
          May 21, 2016

          The economicshelp graph is just below the graph featured. Most of the graphing shows how the increased population in the UK results in much lower growth/head and remember the ONS must be using their own figures and not the much larger NI and NHS figures. If these were used the Growth would be even less.

          1. Denis Cooper
            May 21, 2016

            The growth rate varies, and quite widely, but it says:

            “GDP Annual Growth Rate in the United Kingdom averaged 2.47 percent from 1956 until 2016”

            As for per capita GDP:


            UK population in 2016 = 65.1 million
            UK population in 1956 = 51.3 million

            % increase since 1956 = 27%

            Average compound rate of increase since 1956 = 0.4% a year.

            Therefore, the average rate of increase of per capita GDP over that period can be taken as 2.1% a year.

  44. Denis Cooper
    May 20, 2016

    I’m seriously wondering why on earth the eurocrats decided that the EU Constitution should have an Article I-60 starting with the words:

    “Any Member State may decide to withdraw from the Union in accordance with its own
    constitutional requirements”

    which of course is now in the EU treaties as Article 50 TEU.

    Yes, I’m aware of the explanation that a chap called Spinelli said that the EU should not be “a prison of nations”, as recounted for example here:


    and here:


    But why introduce a procedure for a member state to make a voluntary withdrawal from the EU, when you not only don’t want it ever to be used – fair enough – but will treat any country which does use it as if it was an escaped prisoner – not fair enough.

    We’ve had Stephen Kinnock threatening us with a “punishment beating” if we dare to vote to leave the EU, but then he’s only a eurofanatic Labour MP. More importantly we’ve had the President of the EU Parliament Martin Schulz warning that if we leave other countries might also have “escape referendums”; we’ve had the German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaueble letting it be known that Germany would not readily agree to an easy trading relationship with the UK; and we’ve had Christine Lagarde, who was a minister in the French government at the time of the Lisbon Treaty, telling us of the IMF belief that the economic consequences of leaving the EU would be worse than the Great Crash of 2008, the Great Depression or the First World War; and if we hadn’t already picked up just how much these people hate and despise us now we have the President of the EU Commission Jean-Claude Junker referring to “deserters”


    “British ‘deserters’ will face the consequences, warns EU’s Juncker”

    Why put an exit clause into the treaties if you intend to cause as much harm as possible to any country which chooses to make use of it, and even though you will inevitably harm yourself at the same time?

    And why also put in a provision like Article 8 TEU, which starts:

    “The Union shall develop a special relationship with neighbouring countries, aiming to establish an area of prosperity and good neighbourliness, founded on the values of the Union and characterised by close and peaceful relations based on cooperation.”

    if you have no intention of respecting that article for a neighbouring country which happens to be an ex-member of the Union?

    If our lovely “European partners” are not actually stupid, spiteful and untrustworthy then they are making a very good pretence that they are, and why should we want such people having a large hand in the government of our country?

    So perhaps one of the Remainders would like to tell us: are these eurofanatics really stupid, spiteful and untrustworthy, or are they just pretending?

    1. Chris S
      May 20, 2016

      I would not want to be a member of any club that treated members that chose to leave on anyone who to leave as deserters.

      We should be constantly asking Corbyn that he is supporting an organisation that treated his fellow socialists in Greece so badly.

  45. matthu
    May 20, 2016


    I wonder whether you could please comment on what it actually means in practical terms that the government has accepted an amendment lamenting the fact that they had not included a bill to protect the NHS from TTIP in its programme.

    Does this oblige the government to do anything about it, such as introducing a bill at any stage to protect the NHS from TTIP? if not, what is the worth of this amendment in the event of a Remain victory (or indeed in the event of a Brexit)?


    Reply It means they should carry out Parliament’s view

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