I would have thought that, if confident in their appraisal of the EU, then our political leaders would be falling over each other to demand a ‘cost benefit analysis’ (CBA). But all is quiet on the CBA front. I wonder why? A CBA finds all the positive factors of a situation and then gathers all the negative points. The negative is then deducted from the positive. P-N = CBA. The difference gives a picture of whether the proposal is a good one or not. I can’t hear a Liberal Party voice above the silent mode. I’m pondering!
Our leaders are forever telling us of the economic benefits of being a member and warn of the catastrophic consequences of pulling out. Well, do a CBA! Would industry really shut down? No! It’s a big lie! Norway, Iceland and Croatia all have an agreement with the EU. They are part of the European Economic Area (EEA). Norway has 70% of its trade with the EU and all financial services are covered by the EEA agreement. All EEA countries have “equal access to the internal market”. Also the EEA allows members to live, work and study anywhere in the EU. So what is the entire hullabaloo about?
Once again our leaders feed us the tale of the need for influence. Since we joined in 1973 have we had a great deal of influence? Or are we constantly bemoaning the fact that the EU continuously impose their rules on us? What is really at stake is: jobs for the boys, MEP’s, commissioners, the gravy train, the junkets and the seat at the big table. The latter is the key, ‘the seat at the big table’; they want to sit with the big boys. Just like a kid at school. Most in the UK just want to govern themselves and to maintain our way of life, our culture. Why should we pay vast sums of money just to let our leaders feel important? Powerful without power!
The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is another sink hole into which vast sums of our tax revenues are poured without empirical data to support the spend. According to Wikipedia, agriculture and regional spending remain, “materially affected by error”, which is an euphemism for unaccounted for. A quick reminder of the costs of CAP to the consumer comes from, Delia Grybauskaite, EU Budget Commissioner who says, people pay, “… two or three times more for food than we would pay without the policy”. Telegraph Nov: 2013
Two straightforward quotes that demand some very serious answers and not the usual piffle that characterizes our political leaders. Where has all the money gone? Whose pockets are laden with our tax revenues? Organised crime, local politicians, someone is making a handsome living but it’s not the ordinary consumer. It is essential that the cost of living is cut by a complete overhaul of CAP. Sorry, but I can’t hear Ed Miliband, Labour Party leader. Did he say anything? Raise even an utterance?
Check out my distaste for the imperious Human Rights Act (HR) on this site. HR should be peripheral but it has come to dominate the political landscape as though it was a panacea for all that is unjust in human society. It is certainly not a panacea as it threatens to usurp democracy as the decision maker. In number, the cabal of Judges is less than the Politburo of the old Soviet Union. However, they will wield considerable power if left unchallenged. That is anathema to the democratic principle. Democracy is by no means perfect, but a Politburo is too draconian to contemplate. Such dictatorial power is what the HR was set up to prevent.
An equal bastardization of the original HR is the ‘living instrument’ (LI) which transcends all logic. It permits the Judges to decide the political philosophy that the millions that constitute Europe should follow. The LI must be scrapped. Anyone who actually believes in democracy must view the demise of LI as a prerequisite. What is of real concern is that none of our political leaders have mentioned it. Transparency breeds trust not hidden agendas.
HR has spread through every aspect of our lives. It has left the majority of the populace bemused by the decisions taken. It has also left that majority feeling isolated and powerless. The majority are treated like an ignorant mob; the lumpen-proletariat of society. The only recourse open to them is revolution!
There has been a hue and cry about the cost of the EU with many arguing that it must engage in a severe cost-cutting exercise. Getting rid of one site would be a worthwhile initial step. We don’t need Brussels and Strasbourg. However, Philip Whyte researcher at the Centre for European Reform suggests, “They are right that the structure is crazy. There is a huge appetite for reform of that, but cutting the budget will not help”. (Channel 4 news) He may be right as the EU has a built in financial agreement that its budget increase by inflation year on year. Nonetheless, any Government body must have room for restructuring; it comes with the territory as they over employ in good times.
A huge bureaucracy is a dampening thing; it masks itself behind a mirror of worthwhile work on behalf of the people. It generates its own purpose for survival and becomes an old boy’s network where decisions are shuffled around in a maze, borne of incompetence. Where, lacklustre personalities clamber to the top of the greasy pole by means of sycophantic homage. Where back-covering and back-stabbing is the daily routine. A bureaucracy has a deadening effect on initiative, but mounts a revolutionary barrier to examination or change.
We must stop politicians from treating the people as the lumpen-proletariat. The more power they sequester in their Tower of Babel the greater the danger of despotism for the generations of the future. Make democracy work!