Wednesday, 1 February 2017

We must help the EU turn from self-destruction

A European customs union in which goods, services and capital can circulate freely is a pretty good idea. The power of Europe's 440m people as a trade bloc, the internal savings from lower frictional costs of trade and the spin-off advantages of a talking-shop at which representatives of the national governments meet to discuss trade matters are all powerful benefits of such a union of convenience. 

Unfortunately, what the EU has become is an unelected cabal of little men from small nations who want to be big. Maltese, Luxembourgers, Belgians and Dutch like the ability to talk on equal terms at France, Germany and the United Kingdom. Sadly, it has led to delusions - delusions that the EU can be a global superpower, and all it needs is an army to go with the flag and the anthem. Germany, the only member with the means to pay for this jejune fantasy, will only go along with it all whilst she is able to exploit the enforced poverty of all the nations of southern Europe that keeps German exports cheap. 

Tusk is one of Europe's little men who wants to be big. He is also literally a small man, with all the comedic chihuahua snappishness that comes with Small Man Syndrome. As the EU crumbles around him, all he can think of to say is "Everyone is against us. Therefore we must have even less democracy and a big army, now". Sadly, it is this sort of blind stupidity, remote from voters and the reality of democratic elections, remote from all modern reality in the make-believe Brussels bunkers, that will hasten the EU's failing. 

But it's neither in Britain's or Europe's interest to see it all crash. We must now work to turn the EU into what it should have been all along - a trade bloc that benefits its members, not a clumsy attempt at a Ruritanian world power run by the Mayor of Gozo. There's no point talking to fools such as Verhofstadt - they're all away with the fairies. We need to take a dialogue directly to the peoples of Europe's nations and plant the idea of a fundamental reformation of the EU.

24 comments:

DeeDee99 said...

Oh, come on .... the EU is never going to reform along those lines. They will take no notice of "the peoples of Europe" unless they start manning the barricades or rioting in the streets. And that's why they have the Eurogendfor.

It will either collapse slowly by other countries, which value their freedom, summing up the courage to leave one by one. Or it will implode under the weight of its own absurdities.

Weekend Yachtsman said...

Wise word Radders, I couldn't agree more.

Domo said...

"customs union"
I do not think people know what that means.

if you replace it with "Free Trade Area" you get all of the same benefits, with none of the drawbacks.

A Free Trade Area is what it says on the tin.
A customs union is a federal government, it has to be, its primary focus is on levying, collecting and spending import tariffs on goods and services from outside the block. There is no getting around it.

"But it's neither in Britain's or Europe's interest to see it all crash"
Its not in anyones interests, but it remains unavoidable.

The UK supports EUrope in two key ways, the first, is our outsized foreign trade is taxed by EUrope to fund EUrope, when we leave, that ends.
The second, is through import substitution. The import taxes are so high in some fields, or are simple blockades, that the UK is forced to buy inferior and higher priced goods from withing the Customs Union, when we leave, that ends.
We arent going to continue to pay taxes to the EU on our imports, which rips the heart out of the EU budget
We arent going to continue buying goods from EUrope on the scale we do now, we wont buy French Wheat when we can buy Canadian for half the price, we buy Italian Olive Oil when we can buy Tunisian for a third of the price, we wont buy German Processed Coffee when we can buy Kenyan for 83% less, and none of the EUropean industries that currently have a stranglehold on the UK market can survive losing that hold.

Poisonedchalice said...

The rise and rise of so-called "populist" parties and their membership is clear demonstration that EU member states are getting it wrong - but they don't see it yet. They will only see it when one or more of their heads of state gets his/her arse unceremoniously booted out of office. Think Cameron.

Peter wood said...

One wishes it could be so. The only way it may be is if the paymasters decide it; we await the necessary changes in the key locations, perhaps later this year. A new Council, who have the strength to dissolve the waste of space that is the EU Parliament and cabal of the Commission of 'small men'. Perhaps only pipe dreams...

Cull the Badgers said...

I fear you are turning into a politician, Your Majesty. It must be the thin mountain air. I much prefer when you vent your anger injustice; you make more sense, and we can decide our own remedies.

The EU is incapable of reform. Tusk is speaking not just for himself but the whole system. He is talking dangerous talk by saying the US is an enemy on a par with ISIS.

He and they want more EU, not less. Are suggesting there is a Gorbachev type figure who can bring the end to the EU's soviet union style approach and turn it towards freedom and the west? I think not. The EU must allowed to break up, not defended, and replaced with independent nations with free trade arrangements and groupings where wanted. The soviet union had to be ended, so must the EU.

G. Tingey said...

YES!

It is in fact, very sad to see what was the Common Market has become.
To do this, though we need to get rid of at least some of the "little men" - some are not too bad & may improve ( Verhofstadt ) but some need jailing ( Juncker )

How to do it, though?

Gordon the Fence Post Tortoise said...

" a clumsy attempt at a Ruritanian world power run by the Mayor of Gozo"

To use mildly archaic terms Verhofstadt is a plenipotentiary from an imperial court that has no emperor but does possess a diminutive wazir (Tusk).

The bureaucrats architecting the grand ambition (on fat, tax free salaries and expenses) require their sinecures to extend into perfect perspective.

An inoculation of reality is required so we can all get along peaceably with our lives. Will the politicians realise that unrestrained bureaucracy is never a good thing and that administration requires constant review and pruning?

Smoking Scot said...

Seems the USA will assist in that business of Germany being the only country that can finance many of these suck-it-and-see projects.

Trump's trade wallah thinks Germany's trade surplus is not good because it's using the Euro to compete unfairly and perhaps a tax on German products is justified!

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/01/31/euro-spikes-after-trumps-trade-adviser-tells-ft-that-germany-is-using-grossly-undervalued-currency.html

(I have to admit to being a bit iffy about their coming down hard on VW. Not just that they cheated with some diesel engines; rather the punitive penalties they've been required to sign up to. Seemed to me they've decided to hit them in the financial gonads).

And bang in the middle of a brutal winter, suddenly East Ukraine flares up. That was supposed to be the EU's really big trophy, or so the Baroness thought.

Still they may be able to botch a deal to reunite both bits of Cyprus; that being one reason why Tess winged it to Turkey after hand holding President T. Emphasis on may and botch.


Mr Ecks said...


Domo calls it right.

Piss on Customs Unions.

As if you could ever even keep it at that level. That is how the EU started remember? Power-seeking scum seek power. The rot would set in on day one.

All your customs plan would do Radders would be to start the whole mess again.

The sooner the EU is destroyed the better. The nations of Europe will have to pick themselves up and fry their own fish.

That Auastrian air isn't doing you any good Radders.

Dadad said...

All this has been proposed ages ago.
You need to read eureferendum.com every day. Search for 'European Economic Space' comprising the 52 nations of Europe.

Dave_G said...


If the structure, the politics, the apparatchiks etc of the EU were to disappear overnight what would happen?

Probably nothing.

The world managed without them pre EU, they'll manage just as well post EU.

And don't both to quote me 'peace' as a result of the EU. It was and may remain NATO that achieved that - but for how long?

mikebravo said...

The Eu is dead. Not gone, but the rot has set in and it's going to fail.

It always was a plan by technocrats to take over the running of our lives for their own egos. We all know the sort. MP's who think that they are elected to make the difficult choices that we are too ignorant to make for ourselves. We need their superior judgement and abilities to see into the future to plan for our otherwise stupid and deluded decisions.

All the while deciding that it is wrong to educate people on grounds of ability. Can't have the proles being educated. They would just make monumentally bad decisions. Don't want their ilk stinking up the halls of power.

The sooner that it is gone and nation states can go back making decisions for themselves, guided by the requirements of those that live and support their nation and people the better.

mike fowle said...

When I was young the Soviet Union looked to be there for the foreseeable future and could even expand its empire. So, no predictions about the EU, but I very much doubt it will continue in the same form for much longer.

Anonymous said...

Raedwald said:

'There's no point talking to fools such as Verhofstadt - they're all away with the fairies.'

Indeed they are, a more demented group of individuals you could not find this side of the First World War. So, so sure of themselves that in the face of a collapsing economy, and self-induced social chaos, they still dine and talk and dine and talk and dine and talk.

Raedwald again:

'We need to take a dialogue directly to the peoples of Europe's nations and plant the idea of a fundamental reformation of the EU.'

Ain't going to happen mate, the Brussels mafia would call that 'hate speech' and 'no platform' you. The European project is in fail mode. I give five years.

Steve

Dioclese said...

Remember EFTA?
So why did we need the EU in the first place?
Fuck all to do with trade, that's for sure...

rapscallion said...

Radders me old mucker, you are dreaming mate. It was never about customs unions or free trade areas, single markets, euros etc. It was always about building a United States of Europe. Read "The Great Deception" if you don't believe me.

They had the opportunity to reform when Cameron tried to get them to reform, yes I know he didn't go in with much, and came out with less than bugger all, but they should have realised that losing a member that was one of the top 3 contributors to their coffers was such a stunningly bad idea. But you know, as so often in European history their insufferable arrogance got the better of them, and now they really are up shit creek, negative paddles.

They've blown it, they've completely buggered up southern Europe, the Brits are off, the Frogs may well elect Le Pen, the Dutch aren't exactly cock a hoop about the whole thing and the eastern european countries recognise soviet methods when they see them. Oh yeah, and Trump kicks ass!

It's just a question of not if but when; and there is nothing we can do to help them - they're beyond help.

Budgie said...

The EU is unreformable. Forty years has shown us that. Which is why we voted to leave. And yes it is in our interests to see the EU, or any other European empire, crash. That has been UK policy for a long time, and for good reason. The EU is not just bad, it isn't safe either.

Anonymous said...

Oh Raedwald, they must be laughing their heads of at the likes.
As my mother used to say "what will be, will be".
Plato had it right with democracy and tyranny.
When TSHTF "which it will",all will be asking how it happened.
Europe is in the shite. Its going down fast. The only way to fight tyranny is with tyranny. That is why The Don has risen.Why UK, Oz, NZ have jumped ship.The danger is plain to see.
Corporal's in control of army's is never a good idea.Europe has never moved on since Napoleon.

anon 2 said...

A Pox on the euSSR and all its minions.

English Pensioner said...

My worry is that their arrogant attitude could lead to war with Russia.
From a Russian point of view, the EU is an empire on their doorstep, which has absorbed the old 'east-bloc' countries which might have been seen as a buffer zone, and were then trying to get the remaining countries in Russia's 'sphere of influence' to join in trade trade agreements and the like. To Russia, the EU probably looks like previous Empires, such as those of Hitler and Napoleon.
Once Brexit is complete, the EU will lose a major part of its funding and fortunately then the dreams of these little men will remain just that, dreams.

Budgie said...

One way to help the EU into oblivion is to support the petition to welcome President Donald Trump on a state visit to the UK. Fortunately Nigel Farage saw Trump as a winner before any other major UK politician, and gave him inside information on how dangerous and undemocratic the EU really is. The petition is at:

https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/178844/

G. Tingey said...

Budgie

Trump may not be a fascist, but some of his close friends & associate certainly are - Bannon, particularly.
As for proposing Falwell having anything to do with education (!)

What Trump certainly is ... is a loudmouthed arrogant bully who has never, ever had anyone say "NO" to him.
And it's probably too late for him to learn

Budgie said...

G Tingey, Calling people "fascist" simply because you disagree with them is sooo yesterday. It doesn't work any more.