A fork supper to rescue our democracy

Over fish pie, beef pasta,pork with rice and a vegetarian flan, Wokingham Conservatives talked of how we can restore our democracy as it falls within the growing grasp of the EU.

Hilary Pollock produced a great menu with choices for the hungry campaigners on Saturday evening. As we got to gips with apple and blackberry crumble, or apricot pie or chocolate roulade, there was general agreement that we need a new relationship with the EU.

Now France and Germany are pressing so hard to complete a policical union, members supported the Prime Minister in saying “No” to the UK being governed from Brussels in the same way, and in saying the institutions of the EU should not be used to achieve the closer union of the 17 members of the Euro.

There was general support for Andrea Leadsom MP’s call for an incoming new government after a General Election to be able to repeal EU legislation in the UK which that government does not think is good for our country. There was general agreement that we need powers back, and a new relationship that restores democratic freedoms lost through the past government’s signature on the Nice, Amsterdam and Lisbon Treaties.

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  1. Paul Danon
    Posted January 8, 2012 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    Nice, Amsterdam and Lisbon are surely irrevocable, unless we invoke the last treaty’s article 5o on withdrawal. Repatriation of powers is also impossible under the acquis communautaire, the union’s ratchet-effect; don’t those who speak of such repatriation peddle false hope? I suppose we could propose a treaty which gave us back some of our sovereignty, but it would be unlikely to be supported by all the 26 other member-states.

  2. witteringwitney
    Posted January 8, 2012 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

    “There was general support for Andrea Leadsom MP’s call for an incoming new government after a General Election to be able to repeal EU legislation in the UK which that government does not think is good for our country. There was general agreement that we need powers back, and a new relationship that restores democratic freedoms lost through the past government’s signature on the Nice, Amsterdam and Lisbon Treaties.”

    Nice statement, Mr. Redwood – but how exactly can that be accomplished? In the Lisbon Treaty are you able to point me to the clause that permits repatriation of powers? How, exactly, is it intended to get this ‘new relationship’ with the EU? Methinks that Andrea is ‘swinging the lead, some’?

    Please do not submit that what is wanted can be achieved by ‘negotiation’ – we both know that that ain’t going to happen. If you believe it will, then please set out your reasoning?

  3. He's Spartacus
    Posted January 8, 2012 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    Don’t be coy, John.

    What about Maastricht?

    I applaud your desire to restore our democracy and sovereignty but please, be straight with us and admit to your own party’s past errors.

    Moving the apostrophe on “government’s” one space to the right would do the trick.

  4. i albion
    Posted January 8, 2012 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    Time to withhold our payments surely that’l larn em. And demand to have a look at the “books.”

  5. Nick
    Posted January 8, 2012 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

    We need to rescue democracy and take it away from politicians.

    There is no difference between the EU and Westminster.

    For example why have over 200 peers managed to walk through walls and evade having their passes recorded (like everyone else) to claim expenses?

  6. Jools B
    Posted January 8, 2012 at 11:44 pm | Permalink

    Like charity, democracy begins at home and as well a referendum on the EU, I would like to see the English Question resolved, something to the Conservative’s shame, they won’t even talk about which is why after a lifetime of voting Tory, I will be voting UKIP come the next election.

  7. Antisthenes
    Posted January 9, 2012 at 6:07 am | Permalink

    What else was on the menu pie in the sky and magic mushrooms? Laudable sentiment but hardly practicable a unilateral declaration by the UK will be meaningless and will not be endorsed by other member states of the EU. What the UK would be demanding would be tantamount to a rejection of the federalisation of the EU which now appears to be the sole goal. Now is the time to act by the time of the next election the EU landscape will look quite different. France and Germany have embarked on a course of action that is pushing states into ever closer union and at the same time ensures the neutering of EU member states apart from theirs. The UK is the biggest threat to France and Germany’s dominance of the EU and up to now they have been adept at keeping that threat in check. Cameron’s stance at the summit was a reminder of that threat so now everything is being done by fair means and foul to negate that threat once and for all. If a stand is not made now the opportunity will be lost for ever the euro crisis is destabilising the EU but the crisis will not go on for ever it must come to a head soon and any bargaining chip the UK has will be lost. However this crisis is resolved it is going to lead to very many weakened states that will give europhobes the ammunition they need to complete the single state project.

  8. Frank Salmon
    Posted January 9, 2012 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    The raison d’etre of the EU is to shackle all members with the same legislation and social benefits so that no country can me more competitive than another. To put it another way, each country has to be equally uncompetitive. That is why we cannot repartiate powers.
    Unless we leave the EU.
    Typically, the principle of equal uncompetitiveness can be broken only by the EU’s scheme of subsidies, which gives further advantage to uncompetitiveness in specific areas of agriculture and industry. Among the biggest net contributors to this is Britain.
    Hence, we are one of the EU’s biggest supporters of uncompetitiveness and subsidy and I suggest we make our leave at the earliest opportunity….

  9. Bruce Neeves
    Posted January 9, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    I shall follow the Quebecois and Scots: vote for the nationalist party in the local Parliament, and the party offering most to protect my interests in the next highest parliament. So for me it will be Tories for Westminster and UKIP for Brussels. I guess I’m not the only one!!

  10. BobE
    Posted January 9, 2012 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

    If this government gives more power to the EU then it will prove that Turkeys really do vote for christmas as our parliment becomes less and less in control.
    In three years time I have no choice but to vote UKIP. Sorry.

  11. Alan Wheatley
    Posted January 9, 2012 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

    The “new relationship” needs spelling out for it to be more than a superficially attractive snappy phrase. Lets hope when we see it we like it, and we also like the plan to get us there.

  12. Barbara Stevens
    Posted January 9, 2012 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

    I agree, Mr Redwood and if there is a pertition we can sign let us know, everything helps. I want to see many things repealed and this nation taken back to what it was. Especially the Human Rights Act which is open to abuse by many an being used for personal gain. We have the Race Relations Act, which I believe as increased racial hatred not stopped it. Being forced to do something always makes things worse. We were alright for centuries before this act, we don’t need it. As for the EU, I would prefer complete withdrawal and trade links only, and a renegociating of our relationship with Europe. We are fine, standing back and looking in, the world is out there to trade with we do not depend upon Europe at all. We need to rethink the way we do things, and most of all, we must retain the whole of the UK as one nation to be most successful.

  13. Tom William
    Posted January 10, 2012 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    The two generals you quote, “support” and “agreement”, have been wanted by many Conservatives for years. But the commander in chief , as soon as he gets his baton, always ignores them.

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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