Professor Anand Menon of the University of Birmingham has responded to John Redwood’s article, Britain in Europe, published on the e-International Relations website. The text of Professor Menon’s criticisms can be found here, and John Redwood’s response, is reproduced below.
I thank Professor Menon for his apology and change of tone. He may not agree with my views, but they are sincerely held and based on a sustained argument and a view of how the world works. In a democracy it is best to meet such positions with courteous and well argued disagreement.
I am also delighted to learn that Professor Menon agrees with me that the Uk should not join the Euro, and wishes to rule out any idea of more political Union or the creation of a country called Europe. Like him, I think such a course wrong for the UK. Unlike him, I do think that is the direction of travel of many of our partner countries and the Commission. The language and centralising powers of recent Treaties underlines this point.
I do argue strongly for different and better policies from the EU. I want to see the end to the protectionist CAP, which puts up food bills at home and deprives developing countries abroad of markets for their produce. I want to see many regulations withdrawn, as they are not necessary to be able to trade with each other. They can limit competition, choice and innovation. I want to see lower taxes, which requires less government at all levels including the European one.
It is good to know that the Professor too, shares some of these aims. The problem is, I see no chance of achieving them in the near future given the attitude of the main political parties on the continent of Europe.