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Friday, 11 January 2013

British self-interest

As far as the US is concerned, sacrificing the UK for the sake of European stability is a good bet. America is quite happy to drain the UK's national wealth into the imploding Eurozone, to use our armed forces to provide the backbone to a Euro army, give up our independence to lessen the chances of the US having to intervene in Europe ever again, militarily or otherwise. And of course New York has long coveted London's status as the international financial centre. France wants all of this too, plus the UK's counter-balancing effect on German dominance. The Germans want our money; without the UK, the task of financing the continent would fall disproportionally on Germany, placing her at an international competitive disadvantage.

So before Cameron has even delivered his keynote speech, the international arm-twisting is already building up. You can be sure of one thing and one thing only, though; none of the 'advice' we will receive, and ever more forcefully receive as we move toward making a decision, will be based on Britain's own interests. We can therefore safely disregard as misleading all the arguments against a new European relationship as made from beyond the shores of these isles. 

And of course will come the veiled threats and leaks, that the US will not share the most sensitive intelligence or defence secrets with the UK (she doesn't anyway), that the international corporations will desert our shores (not if we maintain the tax advantages and open access to European markets), our trade position will worsen (in fact it's more likely to improve with the freedom to negotiate new bilateral trade agreements), that we will lose our place in the world (or lead the Commonwealth to global pre-eminence). And of course the EU will use their billion pound budgets to distort public opinion. Against all of this we must stand steadfast, never deflected from making an epochal decision on the basis of one factor alone - British self-interest. 


Ian Hills said...

Brilliant post!

Anonymous said...

I thought that a nation that was in as much debt (proportionately) as the USA, would be little more contrite.

If a debtor defaults, the remedy is often re-possession, and as I understand things, the USA's biggest creditor is the People's Republic of China. So, on balance, I reckon that the USA might be better off joining in with a political union with that country...

...You know, like Tibet.

Barnacle Bill said...

Too true Raedwald.
Also as bloggers we should regard it as our duty to Queen and Country to expose these falsehoods and threats for what they really are.
There can be no more bargaining with these traitors.
We will be a better and stronger country for all once the chains and shackles of EU serfdom are broken free from.

Ann Idea said...

Bill, It would be a helpful start if we could get all these damned foreigners - whose basic loyalty to the UK must be a bit dubious - out of our political system and restrict MPs to being British born persons born to British born parents (both of them) as used to be the case for recruitment to the civil service in the 1950s.

DeeDee99 said...

Well said Raedwald.

We must never forget that no other country has OUR interests at heart.

We must also never forget that large swathes of the British Establishment also don't have OUR interests at heart - particularly in Westminster.

And Big Business is only concerned with its own interests.

G. Tingey said...

WHY is "big business" so "Pro-EU" (or grovelling to, if you prefer)?

Given the successful status of both Norway & Switzerland IN Shengen OUT of the EU, why don't they like it?
Especially as our EU membership is costing us (& them - who want to make bog profits - don't they?) between £8.5 & 10 billion a year, every year.

Something doesn't stack up here - what is it?

Anduril said...

"without the UK, the task of financing the continent would fall disproportionally on Germany, placing her at an international competitive disadvantage. "

Hm, put aside the motives behind American or German comments, but how exactly is Britain going to pay for the rest of the continent having in mind this: "Public sector net borrowing (PSNB – annual deficit) was £121.6 billion for 2011/12 or 11.% of GDP"?

This year does not look much better either. So, again, who exactly is going to pay for whom?

Anonymous said...

I have long learnt that, outside of my parents, no one has my interest at heart. OK, maybe my teachers did (and I include my apprenticeship in there).

I am, by nature, a trusting person but I find that I have to steel myself when faced with line managers telling me that something will be good for me in my job, or indeed parliamentarians doing the same with my life. Then there are the bankers, the corporates, the quangos, the various "agencies" all of which seemingly having my best interests at heart. Wow, lucky me eh?

So the chances then of some foreign country's leaders persuading me that they are "only doing this for my own good" is feckin well zero.

We, and only we, have our best interests at heart!

Coney Island

hatfield girl said...

Leaving the European Union is becoming almost impossible without a committed political movement and a party standing for election to do just that; a party that has a fully developed set of policies for life outside the Union as well.

A referendum on the single issue of leaving the Union is not enough, particularly within a country institutionally and politically ill-adapted to referendums as a means of policy determination.

Ukip has identified a movement base but is not an adequate party. The party that stands out as ideal for leaving is the Conservative party, and a growing section of it present, too, in the Commons, needs every possible level of support individual voters can offer it. After all, it won't take any longer to grow support for that than the constant waiting for eventual renogotiations and a referendum not on leaving but on staying, under slightly different terms, years from now.

Anonymous said...

France, Germany and the USA have always pushed, harried and cajoled to manipulate the EU to get what they wanted, the EU has always acted in the interests of the above nations.

It is not about time, that the political claque started thinking about what is actually best for Britain?
Fuck the EU, the world and its leader [Obummer] in Washington, it is time to act in our own narrow selfish interests - just like everybody and every other nation does.

Anonymous said...

@hatfield girl...

I tend to agree, but your choice of best party is hilarious...

This is the party that has lied and cheated its way through the last sixty years of EEC/EU history, it has always been in favour of huge corporate business, and those same businesses (that have absolutely NO loyalty to a nations people) regard the workforce as the movable bit, they can't control the price of raw materials and logistics, but they can bully and cajole the price of a mans labour by either relocating manufacturing, or relocating workers.

The CONservative party is the party of big business, the Labour party is the party of big unions...

The party that you dismissed, is the only party in the UK that champions the small business that this country is famous for... You know the people that employ 70% of those that don't work for the government.

UKIP does and always has had a full political agenda, which though not well developed (for obvious reasons), is purposely obscured by those that fear the danger of a political party that actually represents the aspirations of the middle class.

hatfield girl said...

Ukip has no parliamentary representation, and an unattractive leadership and political image. It may be the fault of an orchestrated poor press but it is a block to any hope of Ukip being the party that leads the UK out of the Union.

There are 50 or so Conservative backbenchers determined to move the Conservative party in the right direction. Which is easier: starting from an organised faction with a base in Parliament or starting from a movement without a single seat and little hope of gaining one? If you accept that leaving the EU requires a wholesale political programme and party supported by a movement to deliver it, then the starting place must be within the Conservative party or in alliance with parts of the Conservative party. And if a coalition can be built between the pro-EU Conservatives and the Libdems presumably a coalition can be built between the anti-EU Conservatves and Ukip conservatives.

You most certainly are more familiar with the arguments than am I but a referendum is a blind alley because of its narrow focus, manipulability, and the need for a spectrum of non-European Union policies to convince voters of the benefits of leaving.

Anonymous said...

Hatfield Girl - you are playing just another variant of the "Vote Conservative, or Labour get back in"

It's about the direction of travel - Labour and the Tories are going in exactly the same direction (maybe at slightly different speeds), and the Tory leadership, especially Cameron, is determined to take us into further European integration.

UKIP may be fruitcakes, but they are my bloody fruitcakes, and I think the relentless hysterical pressure that's coming from Obama, the EU et al. will inspire the British via their infamous bloody mindedness to embrace UKIP more strongly.

As for your 50 Tory backbenchers, they're about as useful as tits on a bull...

Dave_G said...

@ Hatfield Girl

Increasingly the people of this country want OUT of the EU, not a renegotiated position within - which is the best-case scenario for the Lib/Lab/Con offerings. Unless the Conservatives offer a strong 'out' option then they have no hope of gaining popular support. UKIP, even if they DON'T gain power will, at the very least, be able to influence any subsequent Government policy - and that MUST include a exit option.

Anonymous said...

Apparently some German MPs think we should stay in because the EU will soon make up only 4% of the world's population and we need to stick together.

So 'on our own' we would be just 1% then, hardly any difference and at least we could play the downtrodden minority card!

John M said...

I find it slightly amusing that there are Americans who keep bringing up the subject of sharing of intelligence with the UK when in many ways it is the Americans themselves who are very reliant on our co-operation to even acquire that information.

I feel sure that American intelligence would be greatly impacted if, say, a decision were made to close Menwith Hill...

G. Tingey said...

Or the US told to eff off & leave from Ascencion Island & Diego Garcia?

My question STILL has not been asnwered...

It costys the nation including the aforementiond Big Business between £8.5 & 10 billion a year, for, apparently, nothing.
Whya are they in favour of it, then?
It does NOT stack up - something is missing.