I know some of our European friends are quite shocked to find out that we will be probably voting to leave the Eu. So I thought I'd write them an explanation why I'll vote Leave.
My Dear European Friends,
So, how has it come to this?
In 1973 I voted to join the Common Market. I was (and still am) a passionate supporter of a European Free trade area. I love Europe and I love my European friends and work colleagues.
So it is with sadness that I have to tell you that on the 23rd July I will be voting to leave the Eu. This is not a snap decision. I have agonized over this decision for a long time.
I feel I owe you an explanation, so here's why.
The most precious gift possessed by the peoples of Europe is Democracy. It is almost trite to remind you that millions died from all around the world to preserve it and promote it. Now, at last, all European countries are (to a greater or lesser extent) democratic.
Perhaps though, we should not forget that many of the countries in the Eu were, until quite recently, dictatorships. Over half of the countries in the Eu had totalitarian governments within the last 70 years. Maybe that explains the lack of rigour in your demands for democracy within the Eu itself.
That to me, is a very big problem.
Above all else, for me, the lack of democratic accountablity with the Eu is the reason to leave.
Tony Benn was hardly my favorite politician, but he beautifully summarised it as follows:
"...one can ask five questions:"
1. "What power do you have? "
2. "Where did you get it?"
3. "In whose interests do you exercise it?"
4. "To whom are you accountable?"
5. "And, how can we get rid of you?"
He then pointed out that
"Anyone who cannot answer the last of those questions does not live in a democratic system."
The Eu legislature is un-elected and unaccountable. Only the un-elected commission can propose legislation.
True - there is a fig-leaf of democracy in an elected Eu Parliament. But this is an emasculated talking shop. It cannot instigate legislation, which has to be the prime reason for any parliament. The Eu Parliaments powers are for all intents and purposes, little more than the UK House of Lords.
This is wrong.
But worse than this, is the way the Eu bends democracy to breaking point in order to get its way.
Several times treaties have been legitimately and democratically rejected by national referenda. On each occasion the Eu has instigated a fear campaign and forced another referendum within the country concerned to reverse the decision. (See earlier Post here)
Even worse they can (and have) deliberately overthrown democratic decisions. The worst and most flagrant example of this involved the defunct Eu Constitution and the subsequent affront to democracy called the Treaty of Lisbon.
I'll just remind you how this shocking anti-democratic coup took place.
The original Eu Constitution was vetoed by two referenda in France and Holland. Further referenda vetoes were certain.
Consequently the Eu Constitution (per-se) was dropped.
A victory for democracy?
By sleight of hand the Commission resurrected the constitution.
They replaced it with the (deliberately) unintelligible Treaty of Lisbon. It is unintelligible because it is in essence a set of line by line amendments to existing treaties. They are amended to reflect the content of the vetoed constitution.
As an amendment to existing treaties, the Treaty of Lisbon did not require countries to exercise a referendum. Only Ireland held a referendum. They vetoed the Treaty of Lisbon. Undeterred, the Eu Oligarchy forced a re-run. After a scare campaign the result was reversed.
Democracy was defeated. The ruling Eu Oligarchy ignored the true wishes of the peoples of the Eu. They imposed their Eu Constitution.
Such actions demonstrate a total contempt for democratic rule.
So I simply cannot stand by while an already remote, elitist Oligarchy turns into a dictatorship. My country, my children and my grandchildren deserve better than that.
There is sadly far, far more.
The appalling treatment of African nations,
Debilitating uncontrolled immigration and emigration.
The advanced planning for an Eu "army"
The shocking underhand and undemocratic actions taken in the Ukraine.
Then there is the stinking cesspit of Eu wide cronyism and corruption.
For 40 years all political partys in the UK have tried to deal with these issues. But the unelected self serving Eu elite studiously stone-wall reform and ignore requests to change.
We can do no more.
So there it is my friends. We have to say good-bye.
Maybe the shock of the UK leaving the Eu will get things get sorted out. If the corrupt Eu Oligarchy is brought to heel maybe we can again have a closer relationship. But not with things as they are.
I do hope we can remain friends.