The EU, TTIP and the UK Parliament

A number of Conservative MPs tabled an Amendment to the Queen’s speech . This is an unusual but available means to require the government to do something that Parliament wants but the government has omitted from its programme. It could also be used to seek to drop something from the programme.

The amendment Peter Lilley proposed requires the UK government to protect the NHS from the EU’s proposed trade with the USA, the so called TTIP. Many think the present version of the TTIP would allow overseas healthcare companies to come in and compete against the NHS, and many disagree with such a development. The government seeks to assure them that this will not be the case. The Labour opposition and the Conservative MPs moving the amendment point out that if the government has already secured the objective there can be no harm to them in accepting the amendment. It looked as if the government took this line and accepted it, but subsequently it appears the government would prefer the Conservative sponsors to drop it. They are unlikely to do so. Maybe the government wants to resist the amendment because they know it is not in their power to deliver what is asked.

This is a rare and important development. Because Conservatives were prepared to pick up a Labour worry about something from the EU, itself an exceptionally rare event to find a Labour EU disagreement, there is at last some debate about an important matter which is an EU matter and no longer in the power of the UK Parliament. As I pointed out yesterday, the UK has moved from being governed by a fanatically pro EU Labour government for 13 years who rarely disagreed or stood up against EU proposals, to being governed by a grand coalition of Labour, Lib Dems and Conservative Ministers on all matters EU. This grouping has sought to carry on rushing everything the EU wants through the Commons without proper debate or explanation. They have been successful in taking the oxygen of publicity away from those MPs who have regularly turned up and opposed important EU driven matters. Because Eurosceptic Conservatives have rarely had enough votes to threaten the EU consensus, most media and journalists have chosen to ignore what we have been saying.

Now we have united to offer a referendum to voters we are having to compress the missing 18 years of lost debate on all matters EU into a few weeks. Too many voters have no idea of just how much power and sway the EU has over us, because the mainstream parties and much of the media have conspired to tell us little power has passed and the UK can still govern herself. Now people are at last realising that we do not control many of our laws, taxes, budgets, foreign policies and the rest.

Vote leave is always being challenged to set out why Out is better. That is an easy task, and this site has done a lot of that in recent weeks. More difficult is we also have to explain just how undemocratic and unfair things currently are for UK people, and just how much worse they can get if we vote to remain in a thoroughly undemocratic, expensive and often wrong headed organisation.

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  1. Dame Rita Webb
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 5:19 am | Permalink

    Mr Lilley’s actions are the best news I have heard this week. Anybody who thinks that the introduction of US private healthcare companies into the NHS is a good thing needs to think again. Remember that the third most common cause of death in American hospitals is negligence. They also should check out the dispute mechanism, if they have a grievance against one of them, as outlined in what is known about TTIP so far. A lawyer, even if he is doing your case on a “no win no fee” basis, will be unable to help you.

    • libertarian
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

      Dame Rita

      Whilst I agree in principle with what you say and like you I do not wish to see US healthcare companies running the NHS.

      However. Negligence as a cause of death is also a speciality of the NHS too, with Mid Staffs, Maidstone & Tun wells and many many others . A further £108 million has also been paid by the NHS to settle individual negligence claims in the last 2 years

      • Dame Rita Webb
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

        Just to keep things balanced do a bit of googling on how much one well known provider of medical care pays out in negligence awards and then proportion that out in comparison to what the NHS delivers.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

          That, I suspect, is rather more to do with the absurd US litigation system and the size of awards than the actual prevalence of negligence in the US. The NHS has an appalling record of negligence and neglect. Even feeding and watering patients seems to be beyond them.

          What is needed is a system with far fewer lawyers and bureaucrats and far more doctors, nurses, engineers – people who actually do productive things.

          • Dame Rita Webb
            Posted May 22, 2016 at 7:47 am | Permalink

            No the healthcare provider I am talking about is British. You may have even used them yourself

        • libertarian
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

          I’m not defending US health care or the very litigious US legal system

          But as someone with a close affiliation to the wholesale slaughter perpetrated by my NHS trust you aren’t going to use that as an excuse.

  2. Lifelogic
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 5:24 am | Permalink

    Why out is better is very clear indeed. We get a democratic government that we can remove and one that therefore tends to act in the interests of UK voters for a change.

    Listening to Lord Patten of Barnes (on Any Questions last night) explains so much of what is wrong with the UK. He seems to have learned nothing from his stay in Hong Kong. He even seems to want a new NHS tax with extra taxes for smokers, drinkers and fat people. Do they not already pay more tax on their cigarettes, alcohol and their extra large dinners?

    The Libdem/Lord Patten/BBC/Cameron/Osborne/academia/state sector agenda of more taxes, more EU, open door (totally non selective) immigration, subsidised green crap and an ever more bloated state is wrong and hugely damaging to voters and the economy.

    Can we govern rather more for the 80% who do not work for the state sector for a change?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 5:37 am | Permalink

      Needless to say Lord Patten is in favour of the complete disaster & virtual monopoly that is the appallingly dysfunctional and incompetent NHS. I suppose he thinks the thousands of pointless deaths are a just price worth paying.

      • Dame Rita Webb
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:23 am | Permalink

        You have said that you left the UK around eight years though you never tell us exactly where you have gone to. Please can you tell us what is so good about the healthcare system that you are now using? If its the Swiss or Austrian services (one of the most efficient ones in Europe) they have an emphasis on prevention rather than cure, using the methods you object to in your first comment of the day. Incidentally why should the rest of us tolerate scarce resources being allocated to people who are stupid enough to smoke or drink to excess?

        • Lifelogic
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

          I suspect that the people who smoke or drink too much must save the state in the end, mainly by dying early in pensions & benefits. Anyway they do pay a lot of taxes & duties every time they drink or smoke. The problem is that NHS removes any moral hazard and makes others pay to encourage the feckless & reckless. It also kills any competition by being free at the point of rationing and incompetence.

          Just because an idea is widely supported by lost of people (Cameron the Libdems, Labour and the BBC) does not mean it is wrong. But it is often a very good working assumption.

      • Hope
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:28 am | Permalink

        The World Health Service is exploited by all citizens in the EU and further a field at the expense of the U.K. Taxpayer. Perhaps the EU sees it as another EU resource, a price worth paying? Remember Cameron’s dull advert for it in the Olympics?

        Patten was booted out by the public and given a life time income by other politicians. First given a job in the EU, then the Lords and chair of BBC. I was against hereditary peers but when you see the likes/ standards of him I now would want them any day of the week rather than PM appointed dull cronies given a life time income.

        We read today a ……… convicted ……. murderer who faked being a Kosovan refugee living off benefits and provided a four bed house in Croydon is fighting deportation with legal aid. How much does this cost us in public services i.e. Health, housing, criminal justice, immigration etc. Another day another May failure demonstrating why she should be sacked. We are not safe in the EU with Cameron, Osborne and May any where near power. They are impoverishing and

    • getahead
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

      “The Libdem/Lord Patten/BBC/Cameron/Osborne/academia/state sector agenda of more taxes, more EU, open door (totally non selective) immigration, subsidised green crap and an ever more bloated state is wrong and hugely damaging to voters and the economy.”

      Voters as in net tax-payers LifeLogic.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 22, 2016 at 4:33 am | Permalink

        It even damaged the net claimants hugely, trapping them into living off government (other taxpayer) handouts, rather than learning how to work.

  3. The Active Citizen
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 5:28 am | Permalink

    Many of us are delighted that 25 Conservative MPs stood up to be counted over the Amendment. Very pleased, but not surprised, that you were one of them. This is an important issue to any who have studied the limited information about TTIP. (Given the secrecy in which it has been cloaked by the Brussels elite.)

    “…we are having to compress the missing 18 years of lost debate on all matters EU into a few weeks. Too many voters have no idea of just how much power and sway the EU has over us.”
    This is a large part of the problem and doesn’t seem to have been understood within Vote Leave’s basic strategy from the beginning.

    “Now people are at last realising that we do not control many of our laws, taxes, budgets, foreign policies and the rest.”
    I disagree I’m afraid. We’re losing the TV battle on a daily basis and radical action is required to address this, with less than 5 weeks until the vote.

    There’s a good Saturday Editorial about this on this morning.

    • Hope
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:37 am | Permalink

      Only 25 is disgusting and shows what remnants of the Tory party is left! It is far from a Conservative party. Tim Mongomery wrote a piece about it sometime ago. The Cameron project is changing the Tory party tvo a liberal/socialist party, all left of Centre. Montgomery resigned from the party as a result of this. JR’s article yesterday admitted and further supported and/or confirmed what some us said before the last election that there is not any difference between the LibLabCon cartel. It is a shame he and like minded MPs did not join UKIP. There is no other centre right party. Hitchens has written about this for some time.

      Reply If I and other like minded Conservative MPs had joined UKIP we would not have been elected as MPs and would not now be having the referendum we succeeded in getting the Conservative party to propose

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

        The only way to power, given the FPTP electoral system, is for the sensible wing of the Tories to regain controls of the Tory Party.

        • Hope
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

          JR is wrong and should have confidence in his ability and support. Nothing would please me more than to see him as chancellor or Foreign Secretary. He would stand a better chance being promoted by Corbyn.
          JR made it clear yesterday there is a cartel operating for the benefit of the EU. Your only other choices were Green, who also favour EU rule or UKIP. There was no other party. If it was not for the threat of UKIP getting Tory votes and UKIP winning the European elections there would not be a referendum.

          JR is wrong to think think he got the referendum. Cameron ignored his MPs, his party, his associations and supporters to deny us a EU referendum previously. It was UKIP. I too would like JR, David Davis and a few others, but the facts show they are a tiny minority left in the Tory socialist party. Montgomery resigned because of it. Cameron declared he was the heir to Blair and that he was a liberal conservative, whatever that means. One thing for sure he is not a conservative and he is certainly not Euorsceptic as was claimed again yesterday.

          reply Conservative MPs persuaded Mr Cameron to offer the referendum, because his leadership was being questioned and the number of votes against him was growing. I could only help secure the referendum by being a Conservative MP

          • Lifelogic
            Posted May 22, 2016 at 4:35 am | Permalink

            The only way is for the sensible wing to regain control of the Tories. UKIP will never win any real power in the short to medium term.

      • Hope
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

        That is fanciful thinking. JR and his few colleagues are the remnants of the past not the future of the party. If JR and his colleagues had the courage Cameron would be history. JR made it clear previously Cameron has the support from the majority of his MPs. Therefore even JR recognizes that he and the few are the last obstacles of she past. The new career arrogant nasty left wing bunch of MPs have taken over the Tory party. Please wake up. You are clinging to straws. If you want real change vote for it and make it happen. Immigration cuts across all political lines of loyalty, UKIP will be you only choice. I accept the calibre needs to be increased hence why JR is wanted.

        • bluedog
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

          UKIP is a dead end. Even Farage has repeatedly failed to be elected and if a party cannot put its leader into the Parliament, what hope has it. You are wrong to say that Dr JR and his colleagues are remnants of the past. There are younger MPs who are just as committed to Brexit. Look at Pritti Patel, Penny Mordaunt, Dominic Raab and Michael Gove, all younger that JR, IDS and Co. Not sure where one places Jacob Rees-Mogg who is in a league of his own, but sought after for opinion.

          The Conservative Party is a British political franchise of great importance and must be retained as a British conservative party. It is essential that the party does not become captive to a majority of Europhile progressives who seek the abolition of Britain. Each generation has to learn old truths for itself, and one benefit of the referendum campaign is that the validity of the both the EU and the UK models is being tested as never before. Time will tell.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:38 am | Permalink

      I expected that we would lose the TV and radio battle, and not just with the BBC. It doesn’t matter how good your arguments are if you’re not invited to present them in a broadcast, or you’re invited to present them but you’re cut short before you can do so, or your arguments get edited out from what is broadcast, or you can present your arguments but they are promptly contradicted by a presenter, who has the last word, or you can only broadcast your arguments when hardly anybody is tuned in. This is why revolutionaries always set out to take over the TV and radio stations!

    • stred
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

      Excellent pictures of Mrs Lagard and Mr Carney.

      • stred
        Posted May 23, 2016 at 7:13 am | Permalink

        on facts4eu

    • getahead
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

      If you are a BBC watcher you will think that the EU is a sensible democratic organisation that looks after our interests and those of our European brethren.

      Who would have thought that if Remain wins it will be thanks to Eastenders.

  4. Lifelogic
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 5:33 am | Permalink

    Osborne is now saying property prices will fall if we leave the EU! He is clearly getting very desperate. This is the man who is taxing property investments and tenants to the hilt with his huge stamp duties, his absurd attacks on legitimate bank interest costs, his 28% capital gains taxes and the daft, green crap, totally OTT building regulations.

    Anyway, might not cheaper houses be rather a good thing for many and for our international competitivity?

    The huge bonus of a Brexit vote is we will surely be rid of this socialist, wage controlling, economically illiterate, tax borrow and piss down the drain socialist chancellor.

    • Hope
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      It would be good if house prices fell a bit. The demand for housing could be reduced if Cameron/ Osborne stopped their mass immigration policy at 800,000 per year. EU telling the UK to build more houses. If the Euro was not causing havoc to millions of people across the Eurozone they would not be here looking for work and using our public services! A concept not hard to grasp really. However, if you are building one country from 28 where all are equal and the same then mass immigration is the way forward to rid each nation of its cultural and national identity. In short Camerona no Osborne are acting as traitors to our country and are still fulfill the deceit set out in the FCO paper 30/1048. If treason was still an offence they would be guilty.

      • Jagman84
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:32 am | Permalink

        It still is an offence but since the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 became law, the maximum sentence for treason in the UK has been life imprisonment. Thank you for that Mr Blair!

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:50 am | Permalink

      We waited 23 years (after Major buried the Tories with his total and utter ERM and other incompetence). Then, when (thanks to Miliband and Sturgeon) the Tories finally do get a small majority, all we get is socialist J Major style leadership from Cameron and Osborne.

      EU loving, ever higher taxes, endless green crap, central wage controls, pension and landlord mugging, IHT & serial ratting, socialists. Also running a huge PSBR and a record peace time trade deficit, open door EU migration and dismal “public services” like the NHS, roads, the police and schools.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:51 am | Permalink

        – dismal, overloaded and rapidly deteriorating.

      • getahead
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:44 pm | Permalink


    • Denis Cooper
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:58 am | Permalink

      It’s another Treasury analysis, and given their fine record for economic forecasting you can’t really argue with it. I do wonder whether the civil servants sleep easily at night knowing they have prostituted themselves for the sake of keeping us in the EU.

    • stred
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:05 am | Permalink

      He has already caused areas in the posh bit of London to have a price fall of 10% by taxing. March saw a rush to beat BTL taxes and a sudden reduction in mortgages after. Now BTL landlords with higher borrowings are selling up after more taxes and regulation. Expect a further drop, rippling out from London as usual. His dire prediction is largely his own making. A reduction in immigration and more house building may help further but not for years.

    • graham1946
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:21 am | Permalink

      How can property values fall when there is a huge disparity between supply and demand? Osborne seems not to even understand this simple immutable law about markets. Yet this is our Chancellor, in charge of the nation’s finances. It is of course another lie, another scare tactic, not based in fact, yet no-one contradicts him. It is more likely values will fall if we stay in, as the EU are already sticking their oar in as to how many houses we must build and what land to concrete over.

      The Leave crowd are putting up a very mediocre show. We need some hard hitting bullet points the public will understand, not all the nonsense over TTIP, trade deals, (which we don’t need to do anyway, half the world trades without them). We need to know what MEP’s are being paid and what for. What are the EU officials getting (apparently 10,000 get more than the PM and pay 8 percent taxes) Remind people we are paying for all this – all the others except Germany suck on the EU teat paid for by us and it will only get worse as the EU finances sink ever lower. Stay in and we are going to pay for Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy as well as all the old Soviets bloc.. Nigel has tried on Question Time, but that is a limited audience of people interested in politics and in any event, they won’t give him proper air time. Looks like the Leave campaign is going down the pan and our hopes of freedom with it, unless someone gets a grip and starts talking about things the public can understand.

      • getahead
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

        You`ll probably need to get the BBC on side to put across all your very valid points Graham.
        You could of course encourage people to read the Daily Express.
        What I`m saying is that it is no good slagging off the Leave campaign if you are reading / watching the wrong media channels. Which I accept, most people (females?) do.

  5. stred
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:00 am | Permalink

    The sooner overseas or better still local firms come in to provide a cost controlled and regulated choice of diagnostic and special treatment clinics, giving us a choice and improved chance of survival, the better for the patient. Other countries such as France have this system and it works well. We would have to have permission from NHS doctors and bureaucrats of course, who would spend a proportion of our contributions on allocation rather than letting us choose and then reclaim on a national insurance scheme. The objection to TTIP is the sneaky way that US law is introduced, allowing big firms to sue EU countries if they have a change of policy and they lose profits.

    • Dame Rita Webb
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:37 am | Permalink

      Private diagnostic and special treatment clinics are already inside the workings of the NHS. However with the reputation some of these companies have for customer service outside the NHS, you should be careful what you wish for. Remember they are “for profit” organisations so that should guide you as to what their primary motivation is when you are under the knife..

      • stred
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:00 am | Permalink

        Every area of France has a choice of private diagnostic clinics which are regulated and work very well. The difference is that patients don;t have to ask permission and wait while the system decides when and if.

      • Tom William
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:07 am | Permalink

        If we are discussing “profit” please do not suggest that the NHS is immune to profit.

        Two years ago my wife had cataracts in both eyes and was reduced to reading on a Kindle with enlarged script. The NHS (not a surgeon, merely an eye “specialist”) assessed her by a short test and, when she confirmed she could drive, said she did not need an operation yet. She then went to a private, and highly respected, eye surgeon who said the cataracts were advanced and she needed an immediate operation. The same surgeon also works for the NHS.

        I subsequently discovered that NICE had, with little publicity, raised the
        bar about a year previously to save money. Anyone not able to fund two private operations (by insurance or otherwise) would have had to get steadily worse.

        Is that equitable? There are several other areas where NICE can decide whether or not to proceed on financial grounds.

        Having said that there are many areas where the NHS does waste money. Inconsistency is inevitable in a huge organisation like the NHS.

      • libertarian
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

        Dame Rita

        I will remember they are “For Profit” and if you had the slightest clue what that meant you would realise that on the whole being for profit normally results in a BETTER quality of service in order to ensure that they have customers, clients and patients in future.

        Every organisation on the planet no matter what its make up should make a profit , that is an excess of income over expenditure. Failure to do that results in a diminished service, lack of investment and vastly increased borrowing costs and eventual collapse. Careful what you wish for

        We have 3 centre of excellence hospitals where I live specialising in neurosurgery , Oncology and Cardiology . All 3 are private

        • Richard1
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

          Isn’t it best that the money we pay out in taxes for the NHS is spent in the most effective way possible, even if that means a US healthcare company getting business? Could be I haven’t picked up why sensible MPs such as Peter Lilley & JR are against it – but I’d welcome an explanation.

          reply We fought an election promising to protect the NHS as it is and we intend to keep our word

          • libertarian
            Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:33 pm | Permalink


            The private sector is absolutely no better at running the NHS than the public sector. US Health Companies with the right to sue the NHS for loss of earnings are NOT the way forward. The breakup of the NHS into small locally managed and funded units is.

        • Dame Rita Webb
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:07 pm | Permalink

          I will file that comment next to the one when you told me how much debt student nurses rack up during their training.

          • libertarian
            Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:31 pm | Permalink


            Oh OK what you mean in the you got me there file that you keep.

            Or are you seriously still saying Nurses are the only degree students that dont leave Uni with a debt… Yeh ok

          • libertarian
            Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink
          • Dame Rita Webb
            Posted May 22, 2016 at 7:52 am | Permalink


            You made your erroneous comment about student nurses before Osborne abolished their bursaries.

          • Qubus
            Posted May 22, 2016 at 11:31 am | Permalink

            Student nurses wouldn’t rack-up any debt if they didn’t have to go to university in the first place. If a student nurse must go to university for three years, then they should spend another two and become doctors.

          • libertarian
            Posted May 22, 2016 at 1:35 pm | Permalink


            I did indeed comment before he announced the ending of bursaries for some student nurses , I told you why it was going to be hard to find student nurses in the UK in future. If you recall we were debating why so few training places etc and importing trained nurses from abroad. If you were paying attention I was saying that fewer people were applying for training places as the student fees were prohibitive. ( The bursary places were full!!)

            You ought to pay more attention to my predications about employment in the UK, its my specialist subject

        • graham1946
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

          Utter tripe, Libertarian.

          How can a service such as the NHS which does not make a charge for its services make a profit? It is what is known as a public service. It is paid for by all for the benefit of all. Like all public services, such as defence which makes a profit for individual suppliers, but that is entirely different. It cannot make a profit for itself. Some things are cost centres, not all are profit centres. It is not necessary for all organisations to make a profit, but should be run efficiently which can be done with the right leadership, which is of course not political leadership.
          America, land of giant corporations and the profit motive spend nearly twice as much of their GDP on health care as we do with a much worse service than we have, with most of their population being unable to afford to be ill.

          What is wrong with our NHS is that it is a public service, being run incorrectly with politicians ideas of internal market trading which creates waste and it will ultimately be offered up already paid for by the public over many years, bundled up ready for the big corporations to jump in and cream it off.
          We’ve seen what privatisation does for instance to power supply – just a massive increase in charges and profits, mostly sent abroad, no provision for the future of supply, no improvement in the product or how it is supplied – in fact record complaints every year and a great doubt as to whether we can keep the lights on in the not too distant future.

    • graham1946
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      It’s already happening. Eighteen months ago I had a major operation and as my General Hospital could not cope with doing it within the time limits, I had it done in an Australian owned private hospital. I now need to have further consultations and again I cannot get an NHS hospital appointment at all so have again been referred to the same private hospital. I see the same consultants as the NHS hospital provides, but just the building is different. The Consultants are presumably working in their own time for extra money.

      Recently I have had various diagnostic tests and these have been done by private firms.

      These people are obviously making a profit so how this can be financially more beneficial than doing it in house amazes me. It seems that since 2010, when in my experience the NHS worked rather well, it has been re-organised and run down so that in my opinion the Tories can say it is not working and can fully privatise it. God help us if insurance companies get involved. As you get older, they increase premiums to get you to leave their health schemes and life insurers regularly either increase premiums substantially or reduce the benefits contracted. Don’t get old is the best advice. The NHS is woefully underfunded – we are way down the league table and are about 2 percent of GDP short of the European average, even though we keep importing people at the rate of half a million a year and the money should increase yearly on this basis alone. Investment per head of population must be falling despite any lies the government may spout about maintaining it fully. It all seems intentional and back door privatisation is going ahead full steam.

  6. Antisthenes
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:05 am | Permalink

    Ironic the one thing the EU is proposing that is good for our health service as opening up the NHS to competition is the tonic needed to improve the service and everyone is rallying around to oppose it. Understandable the left is against it but those on the right that is baffling unless there is an ulterior motive. A motive I suspect that is not particularly an honourable one.

  7. stred
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:18 am | Permalink

    Re. explaining the waste and lack of democracy, I emailed the full Brexit the Movie to my indoctrinated state educated offspring but they have not viewed it. The extent of the indoctrination from our Green/Socialist Worker dominated teachers and lecturers is not appreciated. This generation does not have a knowledge of the way democracy here works or that having an occasional meeting of ministers does not make the EU democratic. They think the EU Parliament can make law and they think all the Green laws which don’t work are wonderful. They believe that sea levels have risen already and lands are sinking beneath the storm waves caused by the 1 deg C rise in temperature in 100 years.

    They think we are zenophobic old loons and that they will not be able to travel to Europe if we leave, that their friends in the EU will not be able to come and that marriage between the two will be impossible. It would be a very good idea for Leave to make it very plain that this is not the case. If it were to be put online with a musical backing this may help. Just sending the written word is unlikely to be noticed.

    If they choose to abandon our long history of democracy, it will be this generation that suffers- not ours. As the saying goes, if they want a polished turd, give them……..

    • Hope springs
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:09 am | Permalink

      Ditto re off spring. The message needs to come from peers or peer media.
      Re last para of todays missive above, no need for the intricacies of the case. The case is right, its propaganda winning the case for remain.

      Show 1984 , Brave new world etc.
      The film with the sunglasses, put them on see reality ( forget the name)
      Freedom curtailed by brainwashing the masses.

  8. Denis Cooper
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:19 am | Permalink

    To be honest I don’t know whether the NHS needs stronger protection from TTIP.

    Opponents say that it would threaten the NHS, while the government denies that and claims there is already perfectly adequate protection built into the draft treaty.

    I do know that the projected economic benefit of TTIP is trivial, a one-off addition of 0.6% to GDP. I know that because the EU Commission and the UK government have said so; in the latter case it is only necessary to divide their claimed £10 billion gain in GDP by the present UK GDP, which is presently around £1800 billion.

    The fact that the government have been brazenly exaggerating that potential benefit, which would be equivalent to the natural growth of the UK economy over one average quarter at its long term trend growth rate of 2.5% a year, and then putting it forward as a powerful reason to stay in the EU, and even getting Obama across to warn us that we would be making a terrible mistake if we missed out on that – get to the back of queue – suggests to me that we would be very foolish to trust the government on any other aspect of TTIP, including its possible effects on the NHS.

    But the other point I will make is that if we stay in the EU then even a special Act of the UK Parliament would not be enough to guarantee protection of the NHS from TTIP, because if at some point in the future the EU’s Court of Justice came up with a judgment about the interpretation of TTIP which would clearly damage the NHS the UK government would nonetheless be obliged to get our domestic law changed to conform with that.

  9. Mick
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:31 am | Permalink

    What a bloody hypercric Cameron is, he won’t do a face to face debate with a blue on blue, and now he’s saying answering questions from voters is “better than the slightly phoney atmosphere of debates with pre-scripted lines”.
    He didn’t have that opinion when he went head to head with Brown/Clegg
    The guy is a total looser and the sooner he’s gone the better this country will be
    That’s my rant for the day but the guy makes my blood boil

    • bigneil
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      Try to keep calm. The NHS can’t afford to give blood pressure treatment while they are busy spending millions on anyone, from anywhere on the planet, who turns up, demanding treatment ( with free translators ).

  10. Ian Wragg
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    TTIP the agreement to which we aren’t even represented. The second largest net contributor to EU funds but excluded from negotiations.
    France will most likely veto any agreement seen as not to their advantage.
    Getting 28 states to agree is probably impossible so a direct agreement from the end of the queue for Britain after Brexit.

  11. Ian Wragg
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    Yesterday a newspaper from Brussels on Brexit. A ukip event in the market place and Leave EU leafleting all over town.
    Daily updates from leave alliance in my in box. Absolutely nothing from Voteleave who have £7 million of my taxes.
    Seems Elliott and Cummings are working for Dave.

    • Dame Rita Webb
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      Driving around here the only advertising hoarding I have seen, from either the leave or remain camps, has come from Voteleave. Whats more surprising it was on a farmer’s land who I would presume will be voting to stay in case his subsidies (aka welfare payments) should disappear.

      • DaveM
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:48 am | Permalink

        DRW – most Cornish farmers want out. Devon is split about 50/50.

        • Yosarion
          Posted May 21, 2016 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

          Its only the Agri Barons CAP in hand, who strip this Green and Pleasant Land, who want to stay in the EUSSR

      • libertarian
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

        Dame Rita

        The NFU supports Remain. 60% of Farmers in recent poll support Leave 30% remain, rest undecided

      • bluedog
        Posted May 22, 2016 at 9:10 am | Permalink

        No surprise. Most farmers are by nature socially conservative and British patriots. Land-owning farmers exercise limited sovereignty and tend to understand instinctively the loss of sovereignty incurred through membership of the EU. While they are more than happy to game the EU subsidy system (why not?), you would find that they would be very sceptical about the long term viability and benefit of such a racket.

    • Brian Tomkinson
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:51 am | Permalink

      I agree, the official Vote leave group has from the outset seemed more concerned with their own position and the future of the Conservative party than leaving the EU. They have diluted rather than co-ordinated the ‘Out’ message. Anyone who has attended a meeting addressed by Farage will have no doubt that there is no one more knowlegeable, inspiring and articulate on the EU. Rather than welcoming him they have positively rejected him. This referendum should be above petty party politics; it is far more important.

      • Tom William
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:09 am | Permalink

        Possibly true, but Vote Leave does have better leaflets and a better website.

  12. agricola
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:52 am | Permalink

    No denying what you say is true John. have you any way of telling how wide an audience your diary reaches. Those of us who contribute are largely the converted, so all we do is support and maybe expand the argument.

    During the next month our case needs to get to the electorate at large. As most of them seem to go around with their heads bowed to telephone/computers, are there means to communicate with them, and get all aspects of the message over.

    Then of course there are two page spreads in the national newspapers. They won’t all cooperate , but many will. It must be hard for an editor to find subjects of substance on a daily basis. I sense that even the BBC, who dine at the EU table, have begun to get the message. The Jeremy Paxman programme on the EU was a refreshing step in the right direction. Brexit should start demanding air time under their own control to put the leave case.

    • miami.mode
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

      agricola. I often tell self-proclaimed Europhiles to look up Tony Benn’s 5 questions on democracy, but, of course, they really need to have a basic knowledge of how the EU government machine works to make sense of them.

  13. Denis Cooper
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:04 am | Permalink

    Off-topic, I was watching Sky News last night and I was taken aback when it mentioned that the main channel for “vital” EU funding for the arts in the UK, Creative Europe, had disbursed just £9 million. Are these luvvies innumerate? They want to keep us in the EU for the sake of getting £9 million back from the EU, about 0.05% of the taxpayers’ money we pay in?

    Well, I read a somewhat different figure in the Telegraph this morning, but the point remains that these people are very easily and cheaply bought by the EU:

    “The arguments put forward by the Cumberbatch tendency are laughable. The Creative Europe fund, which claims to have supported 228 UK cultural organisations with grants totalling £30 million, is spending our money, a fraction of the £350 million a week that Britain gives to Brussels.”

    And that still holds if even you take our net contribution as £188 million a week instead of that questionable £350 million; our gross contribution to the EU is £52 million a day, our net contribution is £27 million a day, and these twits really think that it’s a good deal to get back £30 million a year?

  14. Mike Stallard
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    On Conservative Home, Lord Ashcroft’s revelations about Joe Public make depressing reading. The words ignorant and muddle spring to mind. Only those on the payroll and those who are ignorant seem to support the EU. The rest of us – look at the comments above – are firmly against staying in as junior partners in the Eurozone (Five President’s Report) slightly below Eire and Cyprus.
    The Labour idea – you would hardly believe this! – seems to be that we should stay in Europe to reform TTIP!
    It is beyond parody.

  15. bluedog
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    The significance of the revolt by 25 Eurosceptic MPs will not be lost on Cameron, although the irony may be. For the first time, with the help of Labour, Cameron’s own party has used the Parliament to censure him implicitly and in effect, to veto his plans. It goes without saying that the ability to deny is very different to having the ability to control, but it is a step in the right direction.

    It is to be hoped that this revolt will embolden those Eurosceptics in the Conservative Party who did not take part. As yet the party machine has not denied the Whip, or seemed to have taken any other action. This being the case, the revolt can be regarded as a complete success. Cameron’s power within the Conservative Party has been challenged and proven to be a mirage.

    It only remains to remove Cameron from the office he already seeks to surrender. Why allow Cameron a free option to govern until 2020? It makes so sense at all.

    The Conservative Party is better served by certainty of leadership. The nation would be better served by the sacking of Cameron before 23rd June.

  16. Richard1
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:34 am | Permalink

    Free market Conservative MPs are at one with Labour in wanting to insulate the NHS from potential competition – that is, the possibility that the money extracted from UK taxpayers for healthcare provision might be allocated to non-NHS providers who offer a better service for the money……I must be missing something, could someone explain what’s going on?

      Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:51 am | Permalink

      Could be a judo-type-move.The Labour Party with no other punch in its repertoire will continue slogging out NHS< NHS< NHS irrespective all other considerations; in fact, no consideration whatsoever for any one or any thing other than getting its elite into cushy power.

      • Jagman84
        Posted May 21, 2016 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

        If you can literally control life and death, via the NHS, what other control do you actually need. This is the reason why Call-me-Dave’s favourite organisation, Common Purpose, infest the health sector.

    • libertarian
      Posted May 22, 2016 at 1:39 pm | Permalink


      Free markets are not remotely the same as awarding public sector contracts to private companies. The NHS is a closed market , therefore it is about service delivery and cost cutting . The major outsource contractors have performed no better than the public sector before it, neither are operating in free markets

      • Richard1
        Posted May 22, 2016 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

        NHS trusts should be able to purchase services from the most competitive providers. Patients need to be able to shop around. We need competition in healthcare provision as we need it everywhere else.

  17. MPC
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    I agree with you Mr Redwood that more and more people are beginning to understand the full extent of EU powers, but equally agree with some contributors here who are worried about the effectiveness of the Vote Leave campaigning. I was struck by this after attending a referendum debate last night – Gisela Stuart did a very good job of arguing for Brexit and the Remain arguments were rather vague, around things like ‘how will we continue to recruit good academics and artists from Europe’ and ‘there’s no guarantee that we’ll be able to negotiate effective trading arrangements’.

    So to counter the accusation that ‘Vote Leave cannot confirm what out looks like’ why don’t we turn it around and set out in writing – and publicise in the media – each Remain argument with a counter to each, and badge it as our optimistic and realistic picture of the future. So the ‘recruitment of specialists’ argument – counter by we have no reason to discourage this, far from it, and we’ll commit to setting up a simple streamlined system to continue to allow this, including flexible permissions to remain up to say 5 years for work on important specialist academic research programmes, and subject to renewal (perhaps evidencing some non EU countries that show good practice in this regard). ‘Trading arrangements’ – we’ll be in the same position as the other 160 countries that trade with the EU and aren’t members and don’t have free movement, etc.

    I know some of this is on the Vote Leave website but it’s bit ‘dry’ and few waverers will delve into that.

    Here’s hoping also we’re preparing effectively to counter Christine Lagarde’s next set of ‘evidence’ for Brexit economic disaster 4 days before the referendum!

  18. agricola
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    TTIP is a double edged sword and maybe not the answer to the needs of the NHS. All health services across the EU are different from each other so one size fits all is likely to cause problems. If TTIP with Remain is sold as a threat to the NHS then that could be no bad thing. Maybe on Brexit, unilateral agreements with selected US companies could provide some beneficial options. Such agreements would at least be totally under our own control, which will not be the case within the EU. It could also put an end to the fatuous back of the queue Obama statement.

    Agreements could be on aspects of the NHS. Providing they are there to enhance the free at the point of need I see no problem. I have always thought that there is a vast saving to be had in the area of drug and consumable purchasing. Additionally a saving in accounting for their use. My own fleeting experience of the NHS suggests that there is an enormous waste. Probably because the NHS in this area is far from professional. A close look at the automotive industry would show the way. Because of it’s professionalism we get cars these days that are far superior to thirty years ago and at relatively low cost. There is much for the NHS to learn, and if patient outcomes could parallel this performance it is a win win situation.

    The most important aspect of approaching such an agreement is to detach it from the political. It is no place for the ill informed, “Save our NHS” level of intellectual input, such as we are seeing in Yorkshire on the subject of fracking. We seem, in the UK, to have an infinite capacity for breeding Nimbies and Luddites.

  19. Elsey
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    The government is lying. TTIP will end any vestige of UK sovereignty and turn us all into serfs of big business. There will be no protection for the NHS, no protection from Monsanto and no protection for any public services at all. The aims of TTIP are entirely anti free trade, anti democracy and anti human.

    • bluedog
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

      This is just rubbish. If you do some research you will realise that Monsanto of the US is currently subject to a take-over bid by Bayer AG of Germany. You may need to re-direct your antipathy.

      In addition, the US does not regard Investor-State Dispute clauses as critical to a free trade agreement, they are simply trying it on. With the recent Trans-Pacific Partnership FTA, the Australians and NZ walked out of the deal for three months until the US withdrew ISD clauses. The TPP has now been ratified by all parties and excludes the contentious ISD clauses.

      Of course Aust. and NZ are sovereign nations and can do this sort of thing without inhibition. The UK is handicapped in that the EU is its negotiating agency. If the hysteria in EU circles about the TTIP is lasting, there is no prospect of the TTIP in any form. A post Brexit UK would get there quicker.

  20. Shieldsman
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    The current Government led by David Cameron and assisted by George Osborne and the BBC are bringing the Government and politics into disrepute. They are attempting to sway the result of the referendum by saying we are the Government and we know what is best for you so vote to remain in the EU.
    Wild unsubstantiated claims are being made on behalf of better stay in Europe.

    The economic doom forecasts have no sound basis, think of a number and enter it into your model. It is scaremongering guesswork.

    House prices have reached an unsustainable level based on demand, high price of land and rock bottom mortgage rates fixed by the Bank of England. Ever rising prices shuts off first time buyers, purchasers moving up to more desirable residences still have to borrow more. So for the vast majority of people, lower prices would let wages catch up and have more disposable income.

    What the Government is attempting is akin to gerrymandering in favour big business and those on the EU gravy train.

  21. Ex-expat Colin
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Talking about Health…and the NHS burden due to smoking tobacco.

    The EU has forced the Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) upon us (20/5/16)…with the aid of some in Govt etc. Its about limiting tobacco smoking but not banning it. It also damages vaping which is a critical way out of smoking. Tobacco needs to be banned, but they avoid that and create other problems with regard to vaping.

    Matt Ridley and Martin Callanan in the HoL are moving to over turn it. Can I ask that this site shows the following link which asks people to contact any Lord in an effort to help Matt and Martin.

    Details of what to do and how to do it are here:

    Thank You…its also one in the eye of the EU if over turned and that is very important!

  22. JJE
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    It should be interesting to see how you debate the potential impacts of a proposed treaty when you can only know the details if you sign a strict confidentiality agreement not to tell anyone and travel to Brussels in person to view the text in a secure closed room.

    Has anyone from the House of Commons been to Brussels to see it?

    From the rumours I have heard the concerns being raised are well founded and TTIP would prevent the NHS operating under state ownership as that would present unfair competition to private health providers. Mr. Cameron previously said he wanted to put a rocket under the negotiations to get this treaty agreed and implemented as quickly as possible.

  23. DaveM
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    It’s good news that this happened, and hopefully it’ll happen more frequently; if so it may go somewhere towards restoring a bit of faith in politicians. After all, don’t we have a FPTP system so that MPs actually represent their constituents rather than just following a party line on threat of total ostracisation? (possibly a made up word!)

    Maybe when the referendum reared its head each constituency should have had an online referendum to direct their MP which side to take. I suspect there would be a lot more MPs in the Leave camp if that had happened.

  24. acorn
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    Good piece at Global Research. “The Collapse of the European Union: Return to National Sovereignty and to Happy Europeans?

    • acorn
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:53 am | Permalink

      Crikey!!! they are all at it. Today is a good day to be anti EU; anti TTIP and anti anything that smells like it slithered out of Washington DC. Spread the word. The web is doing a better job for the leave campaign, than the official leave campaign!

      “Across Europe, senior political figures and national parliaments have started to take very visible steps backwards from TTIP in response to the controversy and unpopularity of the deal. Cameron is in a trickier position as he has vocally positioned himself as both an originator and a champion of the deal.”

    • Jagman84
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

      I have read that article and it also mentioned a set of negotiations even more secretive than TTIP. Namely TiSA, the ‘Trade in Services Agreement’. TTIP may have an exemption for Health services but TiSA would be the sting in the tail where, quote,
      “Privatization of all public and social services, like health care, education, social security systems, pensions, transportation, postal services, telecommunication, water supply and sanitation, solid waste disposal – and more, would all be subject to buy-outs by transnational corporations.”

  25. oldtimer
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    There is a revealing article in Conservative Home today here:

    It refers to the activities of an organisation, SECEN, run out of the offices of the Beaconsfield Conservative party by the local Conservative party agent. He claims that it is a “virtual” presence and nothing to do with the Conservative party!

    As someone who lives in the constituency and as someone who has signed up to help Vote Leave but with no contact to date and an absence of leaflets to distribute, I do wonder if someone is running an effective operation to frustrate the Leave campaign.

  26. Bert Young
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    No institution including the NHS is immune from operating difficulties ; managing size is no easy matter . The key to management efficiency is the quality of direction , effective delegation and first line supervision .

    The NHS needs to be re-evaluated to determine how regional differences exist and whether a Central Organisation is the best means of direction and control ; I don’t believe that the involvement of outside services – international or local , pose a threat to the way things are run ; they should always be cost effective and only employed if they raise the standard of medical practice . All activities are always capable of change and improvement ; the important thing is the judgement that is made before such services are engaged . The practice of medicine has always benefited from international co-operation and I trust this will be encouraged in the future .

    I abhor the interference of the EU in the running of this country and I would always object to it whenever possible . I don’t believe that there is a quality in the EU organisation that can benefit and add anything to the running of this country and I give my wholehearted support to those MPs who raise their voices and make our objection known .

  27. Colin Hart
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    What say will we have over TTIP? Will it have to be ratified by our parliament? If not, it says everything about loss of control.

    Sorry about the NHS but in its current form it is financially unsustainable anyway. Beveridge and Bevan never envisaged a free at point of delivery health service that provided so much for so many.

  28. Dennis
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    It is always being pointed out that the trade deal between Canada and the EU took 7 years, was it?

    Does this mean there was no trade at all during this period? I think not but what is the actual case?

  29. Paul H
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    The thing is, so much of the Leave argument being presented is simply preaching to the choir. I hate to say it, but the leave side is losing the battle because:
    1. the establishment media is practising soft bias, which is hard to prove; and
    2. the Vote Leave campaign is simply being screwed up by incompetence and ego – in particular by the toxic, needy, bizarre behaviour of a certain individual at the centre of it. It also doesn’t help that Boris Johnson appears to be spearheading it, since he is rather more effective in print than at oratory.

    In support of 1., I have lost count of the number of articles on the Today program which devote much time to someone’s statement in support of Remain and its reasons, followed by a single-line quote from Vote Leave amounting to “it ain’t so”. The recent “luvvies’ letter” is a case in point. Notwithstanding point 2, I am sure that a more coherent rebuttal would have been issued, but it all comes down to what gets selected to go on air.

    Another example: in any other context the “smoking gun” letter, finally proving that Cameron was lying to the country and to the HoC when he claimed that he ruled nothing out, would have been all over the BBC.

    And we now know that John Whittingdale’s proposals for the BBC are extremely tame, presumably leaving it happy to scratch Cameron’s back on the EU.

    Before the last election you claimed that a vote for the Conservatives was the only hope for a referendum to get the UK out of the EU, and that a vote for UKIP was therefore wasted. I remember posting a comment along the lines that Cameron would give us a sham, rigged referendum, and that this would be much worse than no referendum since it would be used to close the issue down. Maybe I will wake up on June 24th with a pleasant surprise, in which case I will offer you my humblest apologies.

    My only other hope is that buyer’s regret, which will set in swiftly after a Remain vote as the EU starts flexing its muscles again, leads to a strong showing for UKIP as Cameron’s perfidy becomes more evident. But it is probably a forlorn hope, not least because I am not betting against the European establishment moving against the “far right”, “extremist” movements emerging across the continent and the likes of UKIP being swept up in that. I am not usually given to apocalyptic feelings, but I sense that we live in dangerous times which are being totally underestimated by most people.

    Reply Electing a Conservative government was the only way to get a referendum on offer. Just help us use it to get us out! The other side are allowed to campaign as they wish – we need to show why they are wrong and we are right.

  30. Atlas
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:03 am | Permalink


    I’m glad you supported Lilley’s amendment.

    There is something fishy about this TTIP for which a bit of exposure to the fresh air is needed …

    Posted May 21, 2016 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    TTIP is not understood by voters. The US will wish something in return for any NHS protectionism.
    Speaking of protectionism, a free press, a free media is needed here.
    Of course the Social Media has become twisted and biased too. At the moment because of the internationalist nature of its users, we can still get some of what’s happening in Europe. Pretty ugly stuff. If what is happening in European states were happening here we would already have left the EU.

    Many parents here wave goodbye to their kids at various stages, university, the odd short-lived romance, but what if your kids hoppit to another country which you can’t even afford to visit? No, there is a side to this EU certainly not discussed or understood here. A very human side , in the gift of the poet.Evidence of the total ignorance, vile British media, amoral politicians, is the repeated boasts of:-
    “Our NHS has many thousands of EU citizens working in it. If they were not there our NHS would collapse. ”
    Not one single thought. Not one single mention. No implication seen for the health of the “NHS”‘s of the countries from whence those workers came.
    A bit of imagination by UK voters would tell them that tens of thousands of would-be patients in a number of EU countries not being treated, even badly.
    The Labour Party thinks Healthcare is such a vote winner that it crows about it at every opportunity. EU nations have such politicians too.
    Better leave the EU while we can. We WILL leave. Better rip the sticky-plaster off quickly, it hurts less.

  32. Nig L
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    All good stuff as usual but what are the Leavers messages? For goodness sake stop intellectualising and agree some simple big hitting messages that people can relate to and remember, a la Dr Goebbels , repeat them ad nauseum which is what Remain are doing. someone needs to grab hold of it because at the moment, from people purporting to be this country’s leaders, it is very poor.

    Work out how much we would save, EC contribution, plus red tape, plus cost of migration etc as an amount per tax payer and you have a slogan ‘Vote leave and you will save tax of £…..

    Vote Leave Protect our Borders, Keep terrorists out
    Vote Leave Get our Fishing industry back
    Vote leave get rid of EU legislation
    Vote Leave get rid Brussels interference etc

    Every speech should have a ‘vote leave’ hook/tag so people can remember it.

    Reply Vote leave does just that and I have been out helping deliver and canvass the message this morning. Please help us and use the Vote leave materials.

    • DaveM
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 4:14 pm | Permalink


      In an ideal world I would like Vote Leave to pay for a 45 minute slot on BBC1 on Saturday night, around the time of the Queen’s official 90th Birthday celebrations, and get Juncker to stand in front of a camera and explain exactly what the EU’s ambitions are.

      Failing that, how about billboard posters with pictures of him and other prominent EU fanatics with quotes like “when it gets serious we have to lie”. That might hit home a bit.

    Posted May 21, 2016 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    Human conditions in each EU state is deteriorating rapidly. Check it out with appropriate hashtags. Personal testimonies of 140 characters per tweet beat most Sunday papers excluding The Sunday Telegraph, naturally.

    Headlines here in this country, largely devoid of free speech and expression,- more particularly, thought, “Rise of the Extreme Right in the EU”, are lies. It is the “Rise of People in the EU” .Most EU countries excluding of course Latvia, have Universal Suffrage. Many of the so-called Extreme Right parties are not in fact right-wing, that is traditional-Conservative at all.

    What I am saying is that the the Labour Party here and the Left in Europe have let down their own rock-solid base. Personalities and threads of political thinkers are taking their place.
    Our dark and largely worthless media lacks any prole vocabulary to describe an anti-EU fight which philosophically and historically should be a Socialist fight but remarkably isn’t.
    Reason: the Labour Party and its associated parties in Europe have lost, sacrificed or plain abandoned all lineaments. Grown obese with salary and power, their subcutaneous fat flobbers throat-stoppingly over their communicative protuberances. Their red flags now, but suppurating bedsores.

  34. Denis Cooper
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    I’ve just been reading an article by Justine Greening in which she says:

    “That’s why Margaret Thatcher set about getting the Single Market in place – so that British companies could get on with competing – and they have done that very successfully, which is why we export so much to the rest of Europe.”

    No mention there that this works both ways, whatever makes it easier for us to export to the rest of the EU also makes it easier for them to export to us; and they have actually done that MORE successfully, so that we are running a chronic, massive trade deficit.

    And the overall benefit of the Single Market for the UK economy? About 1% of GDP.

  35. Dunedin
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    How will TTIP affect other government departments – such as Defence? Will any other departments need to be protected against TTIP?

    Posted May 21, 2016 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    Decades ago a prominent UK trades unionist and Labour Party wallah ( His name does not matter, is deceased, cannot fight back ) presiding over a dying and now virtually dead industry got an EU post in the line of business of his union’s membership.

    He made a couple of TV soundbites later by way of available means of combat,as the last outlets of the industry were closed with even more massive job losses. Certainly former immigrants to Bradford, Dewsbury Huddersfield and Halifax plus many more thousands of born and bred British workers were rendered jobless for quite a time with family-splitting results to themselves and to local support business people ranging from vegetable market traders to more labour-intensive sophisticated business concerns.

    No-one from the media or other political parties, noticeably, questioned “What did this man achieve, given that he did not appear to be a dishonest man, that is: what did he achieve with all the best intentions to either stop redundancies or closures or set the scene for a renewal of the industry?
    In fact his EU role was meaningless, pointless. Our media should look at each and every Gravy Train job of the EU and make a study …not of their job description but exactly what they do and award them points as with school pupils…rate their performances from Minus 100% top Plus 100%. We don’t care about their attendance or voting record. We need to know when they won. How many victories have they given us, each.

  37. They Live
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

    We’ve had enough warnings of it over many,many years from left and right but those who have tried to put it out there have been called conspiracy theorist, loons. Go back to Orwell or Huxley or even before.

  38. Jane
    Posted May 21, 2016 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    I have read up on the subject, whichincludes academic studies, conflicting legal opinion, trade union opinion, joint statement issued by US and EU negotiators, Full Fact Org etc.

    This is my appraisal and I recognise I am not in agreement with others who have contributed and those who have not bothered to read up on what TTIP will mean for EU states.

    A reminder that the last coalition government tried to turn the NHS into a regulated market and widen scope for entry of private providers. I am for this as loathe state provided monopolies. Healthcare is inconsistent across the country and many people have to cope with poor provision and service. Competition is the only thing that will bring up standards. I say this having lived in other EU countries where patients have choice of providers and where health care outcomes are far superior to that provided by the NHS.

    Every trade deal that the EU has negotiated comes with solid guarantees to ensure that EU governments cannot be forced to privatise or change who delivers a public service. EU member countries have to ratify TTIP and further it has to be ratified by all countries as well as UK Ministers who could use their veto. Also MPs can delay implementation.

    I find it astonishing that members of parliament would believe that France for example would permit the US to be involved in any healthcare provision that was publically funded or subsidised by the State. I do not believe Secret courts would interpret legislation in favour of the US as indicated by the Unions. I also believe that the labour party firmly believes that the NHS is not safe in tory hands as and TTIP permits governments to decide or change providers which is why they are opposing TTIP. As to those tory back benchers perhaps one or two are worried. However, I am left with the feeling that they will do anything to hurt the PM and make his life difficult. I like others am aware that many conservative MPs do not like the PM. This is interesting as it is because of the current leader that the conservative government are in office. He is more popular than his party and appeals to many labour voters who are on the right of their party. I also think the referendum campaign has caused serious divisions. Somehow the leave campaign believe that they should have the same funding etc as the government who are there to represent the interests of the country and to provide information to the electorate. Mr Cameron is a formidable opponent – this is not liked either. Unfairness has been claimed but having listened to all sides I have heard nasty comments from both (IDS and BJ) in particular. I do listen intently to Mr Gove as he is not nasty and offers cogent argument and indeed Mr Farage too. So the vote against TTIP has not persuaded me that it is for the good of the NHS that would benefit from more competition but for political purposes. It is all about the EU and damage to the PM – awful…..

    Reply. I Disagree.It was all about whether you give foreign companies a new treaty based right to sue our government or not. The failure of the EU to share texts and allow proper democratic debate about the draft treaty is a good example of what we dislike about this powerful and secretive organisation.

    Posted May 21, 2016 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    Because it makes me feel better. It’s cathartic. Writing so many Comments on here. The alternative is standing at the corner of my street on an EU orange box. Spouting. With my good-looks and extremely popular personality, Juncker would very quickly be just the name, possibly, of an old WWII bomber. Such rapid political change could damage the very fabric if the body-politic. So I’ll wait instead until the 23rd June and vote,also saving myself the cost of oranges.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

      Anyway, it might be illegal for you to stand on an orange box to spout, it could count as “working at height”.

      “These Regulations give effect as respects Great Britain to Directive 2001/45/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council … ”

      That’s unless you’re a politician, when you would be exempt, like Blair was exempt from the Working Time Directive:

      “He adds that he works such long hours that he is probably breaking “some directive or other”.”

        Posted May 21, 2016 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

        Denis Cooper
        When I speak on politics I am automatically working at a height.

    • forthurst
      Posted May 21, 2016 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

      “The alternative is standing at the corner of my street on an EU orange box. Spouting.”

      No, the alternative is manning a street stall and shoving leaflets through letter boxes; there are still plenty of people who are perplexed by the hyperbolic messages they are receiving from all directions and need guidance to help clarify their thinking. Stop admiring yourself in the mirror and get out there.

        Posted May 21, 2016 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

        I don’t admire myself in the mirror. Just going by what everyone says. But I take your point. Like Oscar Wilde is alleged to have said: ” I never listen to what others say about me, I should feel so conceited.”

  40. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted May 24, 2016 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

    Many of the bills in the Queen’s Speech have been trailed as Labour friendly, in order to bolster the Labour vote for Remain – as if it needs bolstering.

    Conservative MPs are not obliged to attend debates on or vote for any bill that is not in the Conservative Party’s manifesto. After all, Messrs Cameron and Osborne are high priests of the manifesto doctrine. So Conservative Eurosceptic MPs should be out there campaigning to Leave. Tell the Whips to go to Hell and let Labour MPs pass Labour friendly bills.

    Reply We have been on a one line whip for the last four Parliamentary days.

  • 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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