Boris - sovereignty 2a
Democracy

Sovereignty is inviolable: it belongs to the people, not to Parliament

 

Sovereignty ultimately belongs to God, but in a liberal democracy it is the people – or ought to be the people – who, as members of civil society, work toward the temporal good of the whole by applying human thought and discernment to the matter of governance, so that government is an organic, responsive and accountable relationship. Some Christians believe that sovereignty has no national borders; that it is enhanced when ‘pooled’; that coerced cooperation is politically justifiable because global concerns may be better addressed by those who know best and understand most. Such is the view expressed here by Lord Deben and his son, Ben Gummer MP:

Deben and son

Other Christians believe that sovereignty not only stops at national borders; it belongs inviolably to the inhabitants of the democratic nation to exercise for the benefit of the national economic order and social development in such matters as health, education, defence, the environment, and so on. Such is the view expressed here by Boris Johnson:

Boris - sovereignty 1Boris - sovereignty 2Boris - sovereignty 3Boris - sovereignty 4Boris - sovereignty 5

Christians engaged in nation-building must, of course, guard against nationalism, but national aspiration and the desire of the people to be in control of their destiny do not necessarily lead to xenophobia, apartheid, ethnic cleansing or war. Only the most pessimistic apprehension of human nature believes that the sovereignty of the people must somehow be constrained, because, collectively, the mob is dense, defective and incapable of choosing goodness and life.

The powers that be are ordained of God‘ (Rom 13:1). It is not the task of the Church to perfect the social order, but who, apart from a fallen people, may hold the elites to account? If those who rule do not govern by popular consent, what is the moral democratic basis for their governance? May not the elites be dense, defective and incapable?

  • Hugh Jeego

    Sovereignty by its very nature implies power. If I am sovereign in some area of my life, I have power in that area. If I give up power over some aspect of my life, then I have lost sovereignty in that area. By regaining sovereignty I necessarily regain power. If the UK regains sovereignty over it’s own laws, then it has power to make and change those laws.
    It’s not rocket science. Sovereignty is the attribute which gives power.

  • Notforinfants

    Deben and Gummer epitomise chaotic thinking. They are either grosly ignorant fools, or wilful enemies of their country, understanding little of the basic principles of government and democracy.
    Daniel Defoe (himself never a truer free-born Englishman) well summarises the situation (EU hegemony over the UK) unless and until it is reversed:

    ” The government’s ungirt* when justice dies,

    And constitutions are non-entities:

    The nation’s all a mob, there’s no such thing

    As Lords, and Commons, Parliament or King.

    A great promiscuous crowd the Hydra lies,

    Till laws revive and mutual contract ties.

    A chaos free to choose for their own share

    What case of government they please to wear.

    If to a king they do the reins commit,

    All men are bound in conscience to submit:

    But then that king must by his oath assent

    To postulatas of the government:

    Which if he breaks he cuts off the intail,

    And power returns to its original.

    (True-Born Englishman, II 806-19)
    *i.e. rendered powerless

  • Notforinfants

    ‘ grosly’ typo for “grossly”

    • James60498 .

      You should just be able to Edit it. On my connection there is an Edit button next to Reply for any posts that I have made.

  • bluedog

    Well said, Your Grace. It is easy to confuse power and sovereignty, and it should be clear to even the thickest elitist that Britain has surrendered its sovereignty to the point of being powerless. Hence Cameron’s unseemly prostration before the leaders of faraway lands about which we know very little.

    But the battle for Britain’s freedom is being given unexpected piquancy by the emergence of Boris as a British patriot. Is this Boris’ finest hour? Will a habitual clown suddenly get serious and live up to his potential? Cameron will be praying for an own goal that may not come.

    • James Bolivar DiGriz

      “Boris as a British patriot”
      On another blog today someone described Johnson as a Turk born in New York.

      That is, IMO, somewhat harsh but does illustrate the point that he seems to care 100% for himself and not at all for anyone or anything else.

      Gove, as a friend of Cameron a loyal MP & Minister, kept quiet on the EU until he was free and then clearly and cogently stated his position.

      Johnson, with no constraints, flapped about in many directions (but mostly pro-EU ones) then waited until, it seems, there was advantage to him in changing direction, and did so in a mealy-mouthed manner. He says he is for Out but won’t speak for that position against any Conservatives nor share a platform with Farage*.

      * Nor with Galloway which is more understandable.

      • Anton

        Boris Johnson is the man who said after 7/7 that if the Quran really did say those warlike things then it was unacceptable; then, when he needed Muslim votes, started going on about how proud he was to have Muslim ancestors. He is the man who, in a TV programme about religion (who gave him that platform?), spoke of how Jesus “was said to” have done various things in Jerusalem (events from the four gospels) but how Muhammad did make a night journey there (ie, Johnson spoke of it as fact), as the Islamic scriptures relate.

        This comment is not about Brexit, but do not trust Boris Johnson.

  • Uncle Brian
  • Maalaistollo

    After a long gestation period, Gummer’s famous BSE burger seems to have taken effect, with the burgers of the fathers being visited upon the children.

  • Anton

    Sovereignty increased by being in? Has John Selwyn Gummer been reading Orwell?

    • carl jacobs

      He means that Britain outside EU will have sovereignty to make its own decisions but will be too weak subject to resist forces beyond its control. It’s the same argument Unionists in the UK make to Scotland. Essentially the argument is that Britain is too small to control its own destiny in any meaningful sense. It is therefore a disguised argument for the complete political integration of Europe. Everything must be subsumed into the whole.

      The argument actually makes good sense – if you are dealing with 13 states of common heritage. It doesn’t make any sense in terms of Europe. The outcome of such a process would look like Austria-Hungary writ (very) large.

      • Anton

        Then let him use words that say what he means.

        (I’m not disagreeing with you.)

        • carl jacobs

          I imagine he wants to be heard to say “You must be inside the EU to have some voice in controlling the EU. Otherwise this great unstoppable force of history will impose itself on you.” But I suspect the opposite is true. Britain leaving the EU could trigger its disintegration.

          The EU is like a U-Boat somewhere down around 200 meters and slowly descending. The crew is hearing lots of sounds of strain from the hull, and they are very afraid.

          • Anton

            By the way Carl, do you take this seriously – David Stockman, a senior economic adviser to President Reagan ie not a mad blogger, and the respected Breitbart site, are reporting that the Saudi military exercise currently on for 3 weeks in the north of that country is a multilateral force indistinguishable from one that would invade Syria through iraq. Putin seems to think it too, based on his PM’s comments (reported below) about not starting a world war. This would be a Sunni/Shia spat, but with Russia backing Assad the consequences could escalate easily. See

            http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/operation-northern-thunder-prelude-to-saudisunni-invasion-of-syria/

            and

            http://www.breitbart.com/national-security/2016/02/12/saudi-deployment-to-syria-final-and-irreversible-objective-is-removal-of-assad/

          • carl jacobs

            No one is going to fight a world war over Syria. No major power has a stake worh the risk. As a matter of fact, it would be good if the US took its forces out of theater altogether. The Russians, the Turks, and the Saudis can all do what they want without our involvement.

            The Saudis will stay far away from the Russians. They won’t threaten Assad. This is symbolic

          • Anton

            WW1 began over a small issue too, but I hope you are right and thanks for the info.

          • carl jacobs

            But there were great power Interests behind the decision for war in 1914. Serbia just lit the fuse.

          • Samuel

            Dude

            The Europeans have already said they won’t fight in a Russian – Turkey shootout. Enough said . My wife is Jewish, but half French and half Russian. Thank the almighty she makes love by the French side and makes war via the Russian one.

          • Uncle Brian

            Britain leaving the EU could trigger its disintegration.

            Does anyone in the EU, apart from the Brits themselves, really believe that? One of the things that emerged quite clearly from Dave’s latest round of “negotiations” in Brussels is how serious some countries are when they say the EU will be better off without us. The French, in particular, have been saying for years, at least since the Thatcher era, if not earlier, that they’ll be delighted to roll out the red carpet for Britain to walk away on, provided it promises never to come back.

            I suspect, though of course at this distance I can’t prove it, that one of the reasons why Dave came away with such a weak deal is that the French, among others, sincerely want the “Leave” ticket to win the referendum in June.

          • The Explorer

            Very interesting point. Given that de Gaulle vetoed the entry of the old enemy in 1963 or whenever, I imagine the French would be delighted at British departure.
            One query, though. Peter Hitchens, on a journey in Spain, noted new roads/railways that Spain itself couldn’t afford. So, he asked himself, which EU nations paid for it? Did we, when some of our own roads need attention? If the EU is about the redistribution of wealth, then are we putting in more than we are getting back? So if we pulled out, the contributor nations would have to shell out more for the struggling ones. That is one reason why other countries might want Britian to remain. Another is that it sets up tremors of discontent. The Basques might start stirring again. Or Corsica. Or whole nations themselves, never mind nations within nations.

    • David

      Maybe, maybe not, but he likes wind farms.

  • James60498 .

    Thanks, sarky!!

  • carl jacobs

    Only the most pessimistic apprehension of human nature believes that the sovereignty of the people must somehow be constrained, because, collectively, the mob is dense, defective and incapable of choosing goodness and life.

    That’s exactly what the Founding Fathers thought, and that’s exactly why they constructed the US Constitution the way they did. That’s why the American Revolution succeeded whereas the French revolution dissolved into the Terror. The American Revolution proceeded from a realistic appraisal of human nature. I can still remember my Political Science Instructor in College discussing the negative view of man revealed in the Federalist Papers.

    Democracy of any kind is an inherently unstable form of Gov’t that can very easily blow itself to pieces.

    • Anton

      You might have mentioned Plato!

      • carl jacobs

        I don’t remember any Plato in the Federalist Papers. Are you perhaps confusing this “Plato” with Publius?

  • Notforinfants

    This says it all! Boris and Angela share a joke.

  • Christians engaged in nation-building

    No one would argue that Christianity played an important part in shaping the English nation over the centuries. It is equally unarguable that, since the war, the churches have played an important part in demolishing the nation through their support for the policies of Third World immigration and diversity. You would have thought the likelihood of Christianity falling to Islam would give the churches pause but no: the churches have bought the argument that the world would be better without white nations and are now engaged in nation-wrecking.

    • carl jacobs

      Christianity transcends race. This easy equation of “Christian” with “white” is nonsense.

      • Anton

        If he’d written “Western” instead of “white” I’d have given him an uptick.

      • @ carl jacobs—Thank you for pointing out that Christianity is practised by all races. However, the only Christian nations that have been singled out for population and faith replacement are those inhabited by whites.

        • Ivan M

          In practical terms you are correct. No.Christian Church in the East feels compelled to support migration of any kind. Being kind to the stranger and encouraging migration when the tools for success are available everywhere, are two different things.

      • The Explorer

        What he’s getting at, I think, is Susan Sontag’s assertion that “the white race has been the cancer of human history”. Susan Sontag may not have derived any of her views from the Church, but the liberal Church has undoubtedly derived some if its views from Susan Sontag.

        • carl jacobs

          Idiot Leftists who live in the West, thrive in the West, are protected by the West, judge everything by Western standards, explicitly universalize Western norms, and want to see the whole of the world fashioned after a Western vision – cosmetically diversified of course. And yet they say “the white race has been a cancer.” What they mean of course is that the West is insufficiently devoted to idiot Leftism.

          As if there was any other kind of Leftism besides idiot Leftism. Well I guess there is also malignant idiot Leftism. Those are Leftists with the courage to pull the trigger.

        • Ivan M

          She was upset about the Nixon era B-52 bombings. Gotta give her a break.

    • David

      Please don’t conflate the institutional Churches with the essence of Christianity.
      In some ages there is an approximate congruence, but lately I’ve seen little more than an exceedingly loose resemblance of what should be a good fit. This is because the hierarchies of the Churches are sadly, often more concerned with institutional matters than the Gospel. Indeed many of them allow their liberal-left political views to cloud, if not often lead, their diluted forms of Christianity.

      • @ David—I make a distinction between Christianity and the churches. It’s inevitable that running the churches becomes an end in itself; it happens in all organizations and it doesn’t bother me. What does bother me is that England’s denominations decided to betray the English.

        • David

          Understood.
          and,
          I can agree with that position.

        • Ivan M

          They did not decide to betray the English. It just came with the job. In economics this is known as the “tragedy of the commons”. They find the person they help to be polite, hard-working and in need of a job. The person finds that he can live on a low salary in London by scrounging and skimping. There is no malice involved. But when a few millions arrive in this fashion they certainly rock the boat.
          The problem is once again that the costs are sociialised but the benefits are privatised.

          • @ Ivan M—By the mid-1940s, the Establishment had decided that Britain was to be multicultural. The most generous interpretation is that the churches merely acquiesced in that decision but their undiminished enthusiasm for race and faith replacement suggests otherwise. Basically, the churches are in the hands of evil bastards.

  • David

    Indeed ultimate sovereignty belongs to God.
    But until Christ’s return we Christians have a duty to encourage rule by a system of sovereignty that produces law reflecting, even if only loosely, Biblical precepts. Such Biblical precepts were revealed to us for human flourishing.
    Our English Common Law has been, since the time of The Bishop The Venerable Bede, and the first Christian Anglo-Saxons, shaped to reflect, albeit imperfectly, Christian understandings of justice.
    But not so with the EU’s vague, Napoleonic Code based system of justice, reflecting Humanism. This secular creed and belief system, that refuses to even acknowledge, in an intellectually honesty way, the Christian origins of its own manufactured, and ever shifting, uncertain system, for deciding which groups and which rights take precedence over other groups and rights, is simply the power tool of the very elites that intend to enslave us all, bending European populations to its semi-totalitarian systems for thought control. It is simply not the match of our uniquely just, fair and even-handed system of law.

  • Findaráto

    I see financial pundits in the City put the chances of Britain leaving the EU at 35%. And that’s with Boris Johnson’s support.

    I’m no longer even slightly worried about a Brexit. All that remains is to figure out how to take advantage of the short period of market uncertainty that’s going to weaken Sterling briefly until even the most stubborn Brexit supporter has to admit that we’ll be staying in.

    • Anton

      If a week is a long time in politics, how long is four months?

      • Findaráto

        Long enough to let Boris Johnson’s brazen careerism become apparent to everyone. Long enough for opinion polls to show a consistent and substantial majority in favour of staying. Long enough for employers to make it clear to their workforces that the single market is where job growth lies.

        The more time goes by, the more apparent the folly of a Brexit will become. On polling day only the hardened xenophobes and dogmatic isolationists will still think it’s a good idea.

        • The Explorer

          “Long enough for employers to make it clear to their workforces that the single market is where job growth lies.”
          And which workers do you predict will be doing the bulk of those jobs?

          • big

            Polish?

        • Anton

          Weird description of people who believe in free trade…

          • Findaráto

            Free trade works both ways. We’ll be free to trade with whoever we like, but they’ll also be free to trade with whoever they like. And surprise, suprise, their primary goal will be to trade with Europe, not with us.

            An enormous market of 300 million as opposed to a relatively puny one of 65 million. Who’ll get the best deals? Who’ll borrow at the best rates? Whose currency will be the most stable? Who’ll have the greatest influence?

            It won’t be Britain, or rather England, because there won’t be a Britain any more. Free trade isn’t as free as you’d like to think it is. Size carries all before it. Look at the US. Look at China. A minnow like England won’t be able to compete, and in trying to do so will have to make huge sacrifices in terms of real earning power for its citizens. Sterling will have to plummet in order to make it competitive, so no more foreign holidays. Fewer imports. Fewer exports as rising commodity prices put the means of production beyond the reach of English companies trying to trade in Sterling. The Euro will become England’s default currency for international trade and Sterling will buy less and less of it as time passes.

            Even oil-rich Norway acknowledges the problems of existing on the periphery of the EU. And what’s bad for them will be catastrophically worse for us

            But luckily none of this will come to pass, because won’t leave. Of that I am sure.

          • The Explorer

            Look how badly Switzerland’s doing.

          • Merchantman

            I looked up their economic trends and they are doing substantially better than the Eu and probably ourselves.
            They have few natural resources and do have to make a substantial bribe to the bandits in Brussels to have free trade with the EU. Probably have many friends in Italy, France and Germany whereas we have relatively few.
            Looking at Switzerland the current fall in the pound is a nonsense. The risk will be if its too strong with eventual Brexit.

          • The Explorer

            Yes, Iwas being sarcastic. Findy was ignoring the successful example of non-EU membership.

          • Findaráto

            The Swiss economy relies on a high tech industrial sector and banking. It attracts foreign capital and high net worth individuals with extremely low income tax rates, which is acceptable to Swiss public opinion.

            Try to do the same in Britain and see how far you get. Even our existing non-dom arrangements are extremely contentious and socially divisive. Extend them and you’d virtually guarantee a socialist tax and spend renaissance.

          • Anton

            Fairly soon there won’t be a Euro any more, or open borders.

          • CliveM

            “A minnow like England won’t be able to compete, and in trying to do so will have to make huge sacrifices in terms of real earning power for its citizens.”

            Excuse me why?

            “Sterling will have to plummet in order to make it competitive”

            Again why? Whats the correlation here?

            “Fewer exports as rising commodity prices put the means of production beyond the reach of English companies trying to trade in Sterling”

            Commodities are already traded in US dollars. What aspect of being part of the EU enables us to buy commodities cheaper? We don’t purchase as a group, so there are no ‘bulk’ purchasing benefits.

            “The Euro will become England’s default currency for international trade and Sterling will buy less and less of it as time passes”

            Rubbish. The Euro will not become a default currency. It has tried to do so since it was created and has completely failed. How would a failing currency, which is held in little confidence by the money markets be a default currency for anyone out with the EU? If we needed a ‘default’ currency, which I dispute, it would be the Dollar.

            As we would be able to float our currency, remove some of the more costly EU directives and avoid accepting each and every un costed EU directive, we would be able to maintain our competitiveness outside the EU. Indeed we would improve it.

          • Findaráto

            Apart from an initial wobble,
            the Euro has largely maintained its value throughout the financial crisis. Sterling lost value during the Scottish independence debate, and is losing value now. Four months of debate about Britain’s place in the EU will destabilise it further, although as it becomes increasingly apparent that Britain will stay, things will probably calm down as polling day draws closer.

            All this goes to show that small isolated currencies are extremely sensitive to market speculation. Does the name George Soros mean anything to you? It should, but people obsessed with vanity projects have a tendency not to remember anything that undermines their overinflated view of their own importance.

            Sterling’s only importance in the world is as a hedge currency against the Euro. In times of stress for the Euro, Sterling benefits. In times of strength, it plummets. Despite predictions of doom and gloom and millenial catastrophe, the EU has endured the financial crisis, and as all economies are cyclical, prosperity will return. And when it does, England on the outside will struggle. Devaluation will be its only weapon. A weak pound will buy fewer of the Euros (or dollars) needed to supply industry with the raw materials of production, and although this may be partially offset by lower labour costs, the net result for the English will be falling incomes and decreased purchasing power.

            Britain in the 70s was the poor man of Europe. An independent England in the 2020s will be no better off. Even if it manages to negotiate a free trade deal with Europe, it will still have to comply with all European legislation in order to sell into the Single Market, in Euros, on Europe’s terms. Ask the Norwegians how that works. You won’t get a very a enthusiastic reply.

            At the end of the day, much of this argument is academic. Britain will remain in the EU. Everything points to a comfortable victory for the in campaign. But the zealots and xenophobes on sites like this one will continue to deny this right up until polling day. As you’re also Christians and therefore used to pretending that your fantasies are actually real, this should surprise no-one. It certainly doesn’t surprise me.

          • Anton

            American banks have been recapitalised since 2008. British ones, somewhat. European ones, scarcely. The markets think that Deutsche Bank is currently the weakest link and are pecking at it to see what will happen. Probably not much, but when the next general crisis occurs Germany will prioritise bailing out its own banks over bailing out the Mediterranean’s banks and that is a treaty violation that will finish the Euro.

            Calling the pound a “small isolated currency” is simply a demonstration of ignorance. The pound is backed by the 5th largest national economy in the world and a land where there has not been a military pitched battle for more than 250 years.

          • Findaráto

            Sterling is the currency of a second tier former imperial power. What’s left of our empire costs us more to administer than it brings in in revenues. The Commonwealth nations that once provided us with a captive market have been drawn into the economic and political orbits of the US and China. At home devolution has weakened our once rock-solid sense of national identity and left us with a country on the verge of breaking apart.

            Britain is not as great as it used to be. Unless you think that Barratt ‘burbs punctuated by historical theme parks are great, of course. And then there’s London, where the rag-tag and bobtail of foreign oligarchs and shady characters congregate to spend their largely tax-free incomes on garish homes and flashy cars.

            Of course once Britain is no longer part of the EU, they’ll all scarper and take their money with them. The real estate bubble will burst, house prices will tumble and millions of Englishmen will find themselves trapped in the misery of negative equity. Foreign banks will up sticks to Frankfurt taking lucrative financial sector jobs with them. You get the picture, but you refuse to acknowledge it…

          • Anton

            I think your first sentence is intended to sting, but it is you not me who mentioned the Empire and I do not waste time in Victorian explorers’ clubs longing for its renaissance. If by second tier you mean not the USA, Russia or China then you are correct, but Britain is still the 5th largest economy on earth and can look every other nation in the eye. It’s high time that housing prices fell and normal people could afford them; think of it as a much needed redistribution of wealth.

          • Findaráto

            I mean second tier in every sense of the phrase.

            The Empire didn’t just cease to exist politically. There used to be a Sterling Zone made up of all the Commonwealth countries that pegged their currencies to the pound. Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, among others, all used currencies named after and pegged to Sterling. Now they use currencies based on the US dollar, and even called dollars – or Rand in SA.

            Not only have the political ties that used to bind us been severed, but the whole economic basis of the Commonwealth has shifted away from Britain towards the US, and is now shifting again as China starts to become the dominant world economy.

            Britain’s economc influence once reached to the furtherest parts of the world. Now it goes no further than the borders of the EU. And even then it’s only peripheral. Sterling is no more than a hedge currency used by traders to bet against the Euro. The relative growth of our economy compared to the rest of Europe has kept it high, but the political instability of the next few months will take a heavy toll on it as investors flee to safer options.

            Whether Britiain stays in the EU or not will heavily influence the pound’s long term value, and if there is a Brexit, its value will plummet. Investors hate uncertainty, and what could be more uncertain than the economic future of a divided country that’s just burned its bridges with its largest and closest trading partners?

            As I’ve already said, I do not believe Britain will leave the EU. But if it does, Sterling will suffer and as a result a newly independent England is going to have a hard time servicing its debt on the international money markets. The cost of borrowing will rise significantly, which along with foreign capital flight will have a devastating effect on the housing market and the economy overall.

            While you might be happy to see house prices plummet, the economy will not be. It doesn’t matter if a house will cost half tomorrow of what it costs today. If you don’t have a job to pay for a mortgage, or if the interest rate is so high that you’re paying as much per month for your cheap house as you would have when prices were higher but interest rates much lower, you lose out considerably. Paying as much or more for something that’s dropping in price will stall the property market completely and we’ll have a Spanish-style property bubble on our hands. And who’s been suffering the most in Spain? Not millionaires, but ordinary working people trapped in a nightmare of negative equity in a falling market.

            If that’s what you wish on your fellow Englishman, it doesn’t seem like a very Christian attitude to me.

          • Anton

            Do you perchance have a mortgage to service? You are looking at the situation exclusively from the viewpoint of those who do and totally ignoring the increasingly impossible costs to the next generation of getting on the housing ladder in the first place.

            I interpret the rest of what you say, some of which I agree with and some of which I don’t, simply as an attempt to needle. I am well aware of what happened at Bretton Woods and I recommend Benn Steil’s book on the subject.

          • Findaráto

            Millions of people do have mortgages to service and if they think a Brexit will increase their monthly outgoings while undermining the long term value of their investment, they’ll vote to stay in. That’s what will sink the out campaign. All this rhodomontade about independence and self-determination is largely coming from the aged and well-off who no longer have mortgages and so can afford to take whatever risks they like and still keep a roof over their heads.

            And no, of course I don’t have a mortgage. The very idea! Who in his right mind would go to a bank and ask to buy money well over the odds to pay for an overvalued and substandard pile of bricks and mortar (and plastic these days) worth, in material terms, a fraction of the asking price?

            Only a fool would buy property on credit these days. If it goes down in value, which is looking increasingly likely considering the stupid prices houses are fetching at the moment, if you have borrowed money tied up in an unsaleable property, you’re in big trouble. And that’s what will happen to the English if they leave the EU. Millions of mortgages under water. A recipe for economic disaster. I might not be directly concerned, but I’m concerned enough for my neighbour not to want to see him ruined just to satisfy the vainglorious and xenophobic desires of lunatic nationalists.

          • Anton

            I never said that Brexit would necessarily improve the situation of aspirant first-time buyers; I was pointing out that you were neglecting their interests in favour of the older generation who owned their homes. I agree with you that now is not a good time to get on the housing ladder. I disagree with you about Brexit and about the financial future of an increasingly strained Eurozone in which there is economic but not political union. I too have concerns about the British economy but have no wish to be part of a bigger disaster.

    • sarky

      The city is a microcosm and is pretty much divorced from the thinking of the rest of the country. If they are saying there will be no brexit, then I will start planning my leaving party.

      • Findaráto

        You’ll be celebrating a defeat then. The City always gets what it wants. It wanted Scotland to stay in the Union, and Scotland stayed. It wanted a majority Conservative government, and we have a majority Conservative government.

        Democracy is about persuading people to vote a certain way. Money talks. And people listen. When faced with a solid wall of financial pundits all advising us to vote to stay, most of us will vote to stay. Only the dogmatically driven will vote to leave, and they’ve always been a minority.

        • The Explorer

          “The City always gets what it wants.” Did the City want a London in which, through immigration, the children of those born outside the UK now outnumber the children of native-born Britons? The Assyrians had that sort of policy towards the capital cities of the nations they conquered.

          • Findaráto

            The City doesn’t care where you were born. It just wants to make a profit.

            And ridiculous comparisons to ancient civilisations that bore little resemblence to our own interconnected modern world are utterly meaningless.

          • The Explorer

            On the contrary, the slave ships applied the Assyrian principle to great effect. If you couldn’t speak the language of the person chained beside you, planning revolt was more difficult.

            Pythagoras’ theorem about the square of the hypotenuse is not invalid because it was discovered long ago.

          • Findaráto

            So that’s why we have so many foreign immigrants, is it? A dark plot by the European Global Lizard Illuminati to prevent the masses from rising by making them incapable of understanding each other.

            And here I was thinking that only your God used such underhanded tactics. But no! In your fevered imagination we’re all victims of evil despots determined to grind us underfoot. Must be why Christianity seems so real to you.

            For my part, I have no intention of dignifying such paranoid ravings, amusing though they are, with any more of my time. And you shouldn’t want to waste any more time with me either. You only have four months in which to wallow in conspiracy theories before reality sets in. Find someone else who shares your delusions (there are plenty on this site) and wallow away together. Once you’ve worked yourselves up to fever pitch, you probably won’t even notice when Britain votes to stay in Europe. You’ll be beyond mundane fact. Lost in a world of illusion. And the rest of us will look on in pity, and humour you until senility silences you, and then whatever your relatives decide to do with you is their business.

            Make sure to steer the conversation away from Switzerland, won’t you? And if you wake up one morning in a strange room with someone you don’t know speaking to you in a heavy Swiss German accent, just keep repeating “nein! nein!” and don’t drink the KoolAid…

          • big

            Great.

          • The Explorer

            There is now a government scheme (I saw details about it on the One Show this evening) that Pakistani women must pass a language test or they might lose their right to stay in the UK. Somebody has perceived a problem.

          • Ivan M

            The City socialised its cost and privatised its profits as is said about this type of bankers. Generally the average worker in high finance, is a person with few scruples. What else can you be if your profits come from looking for the greater fool to pass your “investment” onto? To let the finance industry set the agenda is the height of folly.

          • Samuel

            Dude

            If that’s the case, the UK doesn’t need the EU?

          • big

            If they work for little,then yes.

          • The Explorer

            True. Both main parties like immigration. Labour sees future Labour voters. Tories see cheap labour.

        • Well the City has a shock coming to it . If we stay in the EU the City will be massively diminished under EU tax rules. Frankfurt will become the new City. German banks with negative interest rates in charge of a cashless system able to control all the money and all the people all of the time.

          • big

            This sounds very similar to what Andy Haldane is proposing,a cashless society.

        • sarky

          I think you underestimate the level of contempt for the city.

    • The Explorer

      If any of the pundits you mention helped create the financial crash of 2008, I wouldn’t set too much store by their predictions.

      • Findaráto

        Time will tell. I know what I’ll be betting on though.

        I wonder what will be more enjoyable. Laughing all the way to the bank when Sterling recovers as initial fears of a Brexit recede in the face of solid support for Europe? Or the wailing and the gnashing of teeth of hardline out campaigners as they lose spectacularly on the night?

        The money, probably. Defeat for the out campaign will be such a foregone conclusion by polling day that it will be hard to take much Schadenfreude in the wimperings of the beaten and deluded zealots who still support Brexit.

        Long before then Boris will have done an about turn. On the day he’ll hail the victory of the in campaign as if he’d never thought anything else was possible.

        Mark my words.

        • chiefofsinners

          Let us all mark these words. For soon they will be deleted.

          • The Explorer

            If we paste them into our own posts as an aide memoire, it won’t matter if they are deleted.

          • carl jacobs

            Or you could ignore them and hasten the onset of LinusFall.

          • The Explorer

            But then we have them to hand when he appears with the same old stuff in his next persona.

          • Who may already have made an appearance. Jack is monitoring the situation.

          • The Explorer

            Hello HJ.
            Your expertise in Linus spotting is most reassuring; and, as usual, you are a stage or two ahead if me.
            Since Linus is as able as I am to read any answer you give, say no more for the moment.
            PS: I take it you have seen the conversation on the previous thread (quite a long way down if you haven’t) in which the source for Findarato denies being also the source for Lienus and AA, but thinks those two might be you?

          • Jack did not see that discussion but is certainly flattered that he has been considered as the possible creator of Lienus and AA. It clearly isn’t our Frenchy. He would never laugh at himself.

        • The Explorer

          “The money, probably. Defeat for the out campaign will be such a foregone conclusion by polling day that it will be hard to take much Schadenfreude in the wimperings of the beaten and deluded zealots who still support Brexit.”
          Carl’s U- Boat analogy down below (appropriately) is a good one. There are ominous sounds of hull stress. A depth-charge explosion (such as a British exit) would almost certainly start a leak; but even without that, continuing descent into the depths might cause a fatal inflow that sends the boat to the ocean floor.

          • Findaráto

            Americans always predict disaster for every ship but the one they’re sailing in. The Good Ship America is unsinkable, but Europe’s going down, and Russia too, and as for that darned Chinese junk…

            Europe’s still here. So is the Euro. All the predictions of doom and gloom have come to nothing. “Wait until tomorrow, then it will all fall apart” is what every doomsayer in the history of doomsaying has ever said. And then tomorrow dawns and nothing happens, so they push their predictions forwards another day, and then nothing happens again.

            Crying wolf long enough and nobody will listen to you any more. Europe is solid and the noises you think you hear are the sound of your own disappointment that not even the worst financial crisis in living memory could bring it down. That’s the reality of where we are now. What do you offer? Ifs, buts and maybes, nothing more.

          • The Explorer

            “Americans always predict disaster for every ship but the one they’re sailing in.” Try looking at the comments on a blog like ‘American Thinker’. Plenty of doom and gloom. Plenty of respect for the rise of China (and the number of once-American jobs absorbed.)

            “And then tomorrow dawns and nothing happens.” You’re right. The Wall Street Crash of 1929 was pure illusion. Jewish fears in the 1930’s and 40’s were quite unfounded. Israel today knows that its safety is assured: it could dismantle Iron Dome tomorrow. The bright Marxist future dawned, and nothing happened to the hundred million victims of communism.

          • carl jacobs

            The best argument I have heard against Brexit is that the EU is coming apart anyways, so why get the blame for triggering its implosion. Greece isn’t over yet. And there are other Greeces on the horizon.

            Not saying it’s dispositive BTW.

          • carl jacobs

            I like U-Boat analogies. “Silent Hunter” is the greatest game ever. There is nothing quite like stalking a convoy in a VIIC Boat.

        • big

          Great!

          • The Explorer

            Is that your new name?

          • big

            “Great” yes it could be,thanks for that.

        • Samuel

          Dude

          You weren’t the chap that suggested investors should hold onto all those Greek bonds , before they got a haircut? Any other investment tips?

      • Ivan M

        They stood by while it happened. That should count for something.

  • IanCad

    Hang power! Self-determination above all else.

  • len

    We do not truly value our freedom until we have lost it.The EU has been stealing our freedom by degrees by deception for years.Wake up before its too late and escape from the downward pull of this gravitational moral abyss or freedom(especially if you are a Bible believing Christian) will be just a distant memory.

  • chiefofsinners

    It is the argument of the tyrant: you gain your power and freedom by giving it to me. It was written over the gates of Auschwitz by the last would-be ruler of Europe.

    We need a phrase to counter the sound bite of the remain campaign: ‘a leap into the dark’
    The best I can think of so-far is ‘a leap into the ark.’

    • Anton

      Brexit is a leap OUT of the dark.

      • chiefofsinners

        Leap into the light. Leap at the chance. Leap ye lame for joy.

    • sarky

      ‘A journey starts with a single step’

  • Inspector General

    Sovereignty – that personal state of inner freedom which when taken as a whole, is the national barometer of contentment.

    The Inspector has no idea where Pete Townshend stands on the EU, but he did write a marvellous tune in the 1970s…

    Today, there are no shortage of messiahs pointing and the people are leaving the temple in droves…

    And yes, freedom is in the air, and can be tasted…

    ♫ I’m free, I’m free
    And freedom tastes of reality
    I’m free, I’m free
    And I’m waiting for you to follow me

    If I told you what it takes to reach the highest high
    You’d laugh and say, “Nothing’s that simple”
    But you’ve been told many times before
    Messiahs pointed to the door
    No one had the guts to leave the temple

    I’m free, I’m free
    And freedom tastes of reality

    I’m free, I’m free
    And I’m waiting for you to follow me

    • TrippingDwarves

      “And the beards have grown longer overnight”

      A different song, but no less prescient.

    • Anton

      More to the point, he also wrote “Won’t Get Fooled Again”.

      • Hugh Jeego

        Indeed, meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

    • Ivan M

      Follow Pete Townshend where ? To become Methuselah? Smash guitars? Stairway to heaven made of bong hits?

      • Anton

        Do he and Daltrey dare sing the line “Hope I die before I get old” nowadays?

        • Ivan M

          What a drag it is growing old – Rolling Stones

  • Inspector General

    This morning, your Inspector listened in stupefied disbelief to some clown on BBC Radio 5 beg all those who would listen to him to vote to stay in. His reasoning as follows: We should push towards a population of 70 million at the earliest as the Treasury’s future anticipated economic growth of 10% is dependent on all those migrants rushing into dear old crowded England to achieve said growth for us. What the idiot didn’t let on, or most probably, was completely oblivious to, was that with the 10% population surge that would involve, you would need to expand the economy by 10% just to stand still. In fact, not to achieve a 10% growth would mean harder times ahead for all.

    Another thing these ignorants keep quiet about is that the infrastructure – housing, schools, health, transport, electricity generation, water and sewerage – CANNOT easily grow by 10% to accommodate the newbies. But if you do manage to poke an opinion out of them using a sharpened stick, they’ll tell you that those problems are not insurmountable!! Quite unlike giving the EU the old heave ho…that, it seems, is quite beyond the pale.

    We have 4 months of these wicked liars coming up. One trusts you will kick them to the floor as you come across them…

    • The Explorer

      A few years ago I saw a programme, I forget which now, with another idiot walking round the Lake District and saying of course Britain isn’t overcrowded: look at all the empty space. I really believe it didn’t occur to him that the whole country couldn’t be covered with houses. But unless you’re going to import absolutely everything (to keep pace with the people you’re importing) you need forests (wood being a component of the new houses you’ll be building) and forests need space. The population has to eat. You need houseless fields for sheep and cows and wheat.

      • Old Nick

        Round us it is the best agricultural land that gets built on – because it is flatter.

        • The Explorer

          Less food available for more people. Will something Malthusian eventually kick in?

    • Murti Bing

      Similar stuff on Start the week – Paul Mason I think said the north needs workers and the middle east is full of unemployed young men, so let’s get them up to the north and start them working.

      One can only wonder.

      Then there was a woman who has just written a book about EDL and other such groups but couldn’t answer even the most basic questions unless they were asked through the lens of racism. Worth listening to for the comedy value at least.

  • TrippingDwarves

    How about we strip out all the political and economic arguments for Brexit and just look at this one: Mojo?

    The trouble, possibly, with the whole concept of the European Union as it now stands is that it strips countries, perhaps not even voluntarily, of their will to live, their drive, their verve, their panache! In other words, their mojo. If Europe is sinking, it is not because the whole idea is wrong, but more because the individual parts have simply lost their reason for being part of it, and their natural ability to be themselves. Certainly I feel this to be the case in the UK – gives us back our government and you give us back our identity, our sense of being.

    If I may be a little blunt here, I think Bojo understand Mojo.

    Could I be right?

  • jsampson45

    The EU, the single market and immigration are to a large extent separate issues. As it is, we will be choosing which godless government governs us. Not much of a choice. Brexit would need to be a means to an end, but what end? See, however, Flexcit.

  • CliveM

    Hmm from what I saw on TV with regards Cameron’s statement to the Commons, this has got personal. I suspect that if Cameron wins the vote, this will be one ‘rebel’ not certain of getting a cabinet seat in the ‘great reconciliation’,

    • Aran’Gar

      It wouldn’t matter. Boris is playing a long game with this, he thinks it shall end with him in 10 Downing St.
      My only fear is that he won’t do anything more than make the motions for the Out campaign. I fear his heart isn’t really in it – but merely cold calculation, and though that is better than nothing it isn’t what we need.

    • len

      It seems Boris is in favour of’ coming out’ so that he can’ go back in’ with better terms?. Probably why Cameron said there will be only one referendum.

      If Boris is ‘sitting on the fence’ he may well find it collapses under him?

      • Anton

        The Boris I know has no trouble sitting on the fence (he’s a friend’s cat).

      • CliveM

        Yes a strong whiff of trying to face both ways.

  • Uncle Brian

    The Steerpike blog at The Spectator questions Dave’s sense of timing:

    Independence Day 2 is to be released in UK cinemas the day after the referendum — on 24 June. This means that for weeks in the run-up to the vote there will be billboards and adverts promoting ‘Independence Day’. In the trailer for the film, the public are informed: ‘today you will once again be fighting for our freedom’.

    http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2016/02/has-cameron-scored-an-own-goal-eu-referendum-clashes-with-independence-day/

  • Boris has taken Churchill’s advice and chosen the open sea.

  • The Explorer

    Napoleon’s enemies thought he was done for when they put him on Elba. Then he made a comeback.

    In the same sort of way, we need not assume we would be allowed to leave the EU simply by voting in favour of doing so. Politicians may not be as charismatic as Napoleon, but they are as resilient and slippery. 1992, and the Danes voted against Maastricht, and were bullied into changing their minds. 2008, and the Irish voted against Lisbon, and were bullied into changing their minds. 2016, and the British voted against EU member ship and were bullied into…?

    • len

      The future of the UK is too important to leave it in the hands of ‘slippery politicians’ .
      Power has been stolen from the people of the UK by unscrupulous charlatans/AKA ‘slippery politicians’ and needs to be taken back before it is lost forever.

      • The Explorer

        Agreed. A majority vote to leave would be an interesting test of how strong democracy actually is, and whether the will of the majority would actually be allowed to prevail.

        • Anton

          Then time to adapt some of the words of La Marseillaise.

          • Uncle Brian

            A long song, Fondle Up A Tree.

        • IanCad

          Disagreed! We should not be ruled by plebiscite.
          Our representatives should not be bound by the whims of a fickle and ill-informed electorate.

          • cacheton

            But you cannot force people to inform themselves can you.

            How about a small test on entering the polling station? Questions like ‘Who is PM?’ ‘Who is the leader of the opposition’ ‘What parties do these two belong to?’ ‘Name one EU country which does/doesn’t use the euro.’ ‘Name an EU country whose government is right/left wing’. How many people would still be allowed to vote after answering all correctly? About, dunno, 30%?

          • IanCad

            Voter qualification should be a requirement.
            Probably a better test would be to multiply any two digit number by a single one, in say; thirty seconds.
            As smarts increase, so could the digits.

          • Anton

            If you pass that test, you get one vote and an option on a harder test for two more votes, but if you fail it you lose all your votes; and so on iteratively. Now that would be an entertaining voting system.

          • cacheton

            Nope, some people are highly intelligent but just can’t do maths. The test would have to include something other than maths.

          • Anton

            Last of those is a matter of opinion…

          • The Explorer

            Scylla and Charybdis: corruption versus ignorance.

          • James60498 .

            It’s better to leave it to a bunch of power seeking/ power crazed professional politicians the majority of whom have never done a real job and who bow and scrape to their leaders in the hope of getting a junior ministerial job and climbing “the greasy pole”?

            No thanks.

          • IanCad

            That’s why we need voter qualification.

          • James60498 .

            Sorry. I had replied to you on the basis of your original post which referred to politicians making the decisions. It was only after making that reply that I saw your voter qualification comments.

            In theory of course that’s a good idea and I could see it having a positive effect. No doubt it would start off as straightforward. What’s 25*17 etc.

            But then the danger is, who decides on the abilities required? Who decides on the questions?

            If it’s Cameron or one of his cronies

            Is it right that two men can marry each other?
            Is Islam a peaceful religion?

            Get one of those wrong and you don’t get to vote. You are incapable of seeing the truth.

            Be careful what you ask for. What you get may not be what seems like a good idea at the time.

    • preacher

      I agree with you about not assuming that we would be allowed to leave without a fight & we should not think the outcome is a foregone conclusion as that could lead to losing by default ” If you snooze, you lose – if you sleep, you weep “. We must not allow ourselves to be bullied. This may be the only chance we have for generations to leave this sinking, leaking hulk before it plummets to the depths. If we show weakness we can be sure the vultures of the E.U will swoop as they fear they may be robbed of their prey.
      Napoleon did make a comeback, but Wellington stopped him at Waterloo. The result is up to us. We should consider the fact that the future of our children & grandchildren is also at stake, as well as our own.
      Future generations will judge us by our actions & decisions next June. Once the cell door is slammed behind the prisoner, it’s too late to re-consider.

      • The Explorer

        Between 1979 and 2011, Britain paid in £228 billion to the EU and received back £143 billion. With updated exchange rates, that represented an £85 billion donation to Europe. Understandably, the EU vultures would not want to allow that sort of sustenance to slip from their claws.

        • preacher

          Absolutely ! Hard cash speaks volumes, what could we achieve with £85 Billion now ?.

          • cacheton

            £85 billion over 32 years, that’s £2.656 billion a year. That would not even cover the current overspend in the NHS.

          • Anton

            What were the figures for the most recent year: money paid to EU, money got back from EU, NHS overspend for 2014 or 2015?

          • cacheton

            Don’t know. preacher seemed to think we would immediately find ourselves with £85 billion to spend if we left the EU, I was just doing some maths which he had apparently not deemed necessary.

          • preacher

            The £85 Billion was quoted by Explorer as a Donation ! not the full amount ( £228 Billion ) in plain English a Loss ! – a bad gamble ! not really rocket science !.

          • The Explorer

            I believe that the NHS overspend for 2015 was £1.6 billion. So £2.656 billion would have covered that comfortably.

      • IanCad

        Napoleon lost but so did we. The infantile metric system is with us yet.

    • Anton

      We just stop paying the EU membership fee. What will they do then, invade?

      • The Explorer

        Fine us. Then lend us the money to pay the fine.

        • Anton

          Fine by me.

          • The Explorer

            Bertrand Russell has an amusing account of how the Treaty of Versailles panned out. Germany could not pay its war reparations with manufactured goods, because they conflicted with the manufactures of the victors. Germany did not have the money to pay the fine, so the victors loaned Germany the money and charged interest. When Germany could not pay the interest, it resorted to inflation as a solution. The rest ifs history.

          • Anton

            Underlying that was the paradox that Germany had to be a flourishing industrial economy to afford the reparation to France, and the last thing France wanted was a strong Germany again.

            Yet France suffered dreadfully on its own soil. The interesting question is: What settlement should have been made?

            Germany had been unified for less than 50 years and maybe it should have been broken up again. That certainly worked better after the next war it started.

          • The Explorer

            Absolutely. Prussia by itself was containable, but Prussia as leader of a united German superpower has dominated European politics ever since, and still does.

          • Anton

            It is, but it takes Russian involvement and that is problematic nowadays. Europe’s Big Five during the 18th and 19th centuries were Britain, France, Prussia, Austria and Russia.

          • Ivan M

            The Germans just refused to pay that is why they inflated the debt away. They could not export either as all the wartime economies were looking for export led growth. It was an insoluble dilemma.

          • The Explorer

            It was an insoluble dilemma arising from a lunatic treaty. Trying to reduce the size of Germany by pitting Germans under the control of Poland, Czechoslovakia, Romania or wherever was bound to fuel German nationalism and an attempt to reclaim its people: which is exactly what happened.

          • Ivan M

            Yeah but the Germans were the losers right? And the war was not even fought on their territory. The French lost two million people and found their country destroyed. I don’t blame the French for wanting exacting revenge.

          • Dreadnaught

            That’s what gave Hitler the platform for WW2.

          • Ivan M

            There is always that.

          • The Explorer

            Don’t forget the part played by Woodrow Wilson in framing post-war Europe.

          • Anton

            Did they inflate the debt away? Was it denominated in Marks or Francs?

          • The Explorer

            The debt (as opposed to the interest on the debt) was 132 billion gold marks.

          • Anton

            Thank you; but what exactly was a “gold mark”? You can inflate the mark by printing it but you can’t print gold.

          • Ivan M

            They cheated it was supposed to “gold” marks but they started printing like crazy to keep up employment. The French became enraged by this.

          • Anton

            So a goldmark was a Mark backed by gold and then Germany started printing unbacked Marks? I’m not surprised that the French were unhappy and I agree that they were entitled to major reparation. Ludendorff had the largest castle keep in Europe (Coucy, in Picardy) blown up during the final retreat for no tactical reason and no other reason than pique, it seems. Yet only the strong Germany that France dreaded could afford the reparations that France wanted. Perhaps Germany, federated for less than 50 years in 1918, should simply have been broken up again.

          • Ivan M

            Mrs Thatcher was not happy about German reunification in the 90s but it was the will of history. No point fighting against this sort of thing if you have little at stake.

          • The Explorer

            Don’t know, off hand. Also, I believe repayment was to be in three tranches A, B and C. There was secret agreement among the negotiators to let Germany off having to pay C. C was just to fool the British and French public. But that’s not mentioned by Russell, and I don’t know enough about it to say without doing some background research. I found out about it when I was reading up about Woodrow Wilson, and I’m hazy about the specifics.

          • Ivan M

            The amount was successively reduced but still the Germans could not or would not repay.

          • The Explorer

            Thank you.

  • len

    See the scaremongering from IN campaigners is swinging into action all seems very negative stuff? . Some Uk`s firms are beginning to wonder if their supply of cheap labour from eastern Europe will be cut off when the Brexit happens?.

    • The Explorer

      It might even stimulate the British education system to revise itself and produce products as employable as Eastern Europeans.

      • cacheton

        This is a question one never hears anything about. Why do we not have enough home grown nurses, builders etc here already? Is it because all the unemployed people do not have the skills, or the will, to do certain types of work? Why not?
        How sustainable is the situation we are in where we constantly need to import workers to do work which British people consider to be beneath them? I cannot see how that can be sustainable.

        • The Explorer

          Perfectly put.

        • Dreadnaught

          So you think the doctors and nurses we need are to be found in the ranks of the million or so ‘unemployed’? – don’t talk daft.
          We lost the grip on self sustainability when we ditched polytechnics and night schools for Mickey Mouse easy access to a ‘Uni’ for all mentality.

        • Mike Stallard

          Professor Parker wrote a book about this. It costs £20.00 and is unavailable at my local library.
          He ventured to criticise the Welfare State…

          • The Explorer

            Why is it unavailable: because of the cost or because of the criticism?

          • steroflex

            For me – both.
            But I understand that he has ben no platformed and blacklisted for his views too.

          • The Explorer

            Thank you.

        • IanCad

          What work is beneath the British worker?
          All work is noble. Problem is, the entry level jobs so important to school leavers are being taken over by the somewhat more skilled foreign workers.
          Try getting a job picking potatoes in Lincolnshire if you’re not a native.

          • cacheton

            I think many Brits do not see ALL work as being noble.

          • The Explorer

            Some Brits don’t see any work as noble. For that, I blame the education system, which, in its loonier manifestations, reasons thus: work is somehow linked to capitalism. Capitalism is evil. Therefore, work is evil.

          • Anton

            Not all work is noble; excessively hard work is a curse (Genesis 3), and prostitution is not noble.

        • Ivan M

          Nurses who do the grunt work – cleaning shit, caring for old people etc are available at the price the consumer is willing to pay only if you import cheaper labour. It is what the market decides.

        • Anton

          They’d find the will if the alternative were hunger.

      • len

        I have a bit more faith in the British people to overcome obstacles (even our education system) once free of the bureaucratic machine which is the EU?.

  • Mike Stallard

    I do not think the Social Contract works without God at the top actually.
    Human rights make a lot of sense when you believe they are the gift of God. To go against them, you are going against your Creator. That is logical and it makes a lot of sense.
    Without God, human rights become the gift of the (European) government. That means they can be abrogated (euthanasia, abortion, extradition) at will.
    Shame we have not stuck up for this simple proposition.

  • cacheton

    Any more undecideds here?
    I realise that one of the reasons I would not want to leave the EU is that I do not trust that it really is the people or rather the politicians we have elected who are in charge. It is large corporations. The City, finance. Isn’t it unbiblical to be agreed to be ruled by those? The EU does provide a minimum of regulation and environmental protection which is not in the interests of big business, and therefore would be scrapped if we left. Also I think inevitably we would get closer to the US, no thanks.
    But I am attracted by smaller, more autonomous etc aswell.

    • Mike Stallard

      “I realise that one of the reasons I would not want to leave the EU is that I do not trust that it really is the people or rather the politicians we have elected who are in charge.”
      Sorry, I do not follow this argument. Does it assume that the EU is not governed by lobbyists? Does it assume that the French and German bankers have no say? Or French farmers or Spanish fishermen?
      Unfortunately we have no means of finding out since the Commission works in secret and it is unelected.

      • cacheton

        When I say I do not trust that …. I am referring to the UK, not the EU. I know the EU also has the interests of big business at it’s heart, but it does also have some safety nets. Following the 2008 crash UK banks had to make at least a few changes, without the EU they would have done nothing at all as the UK government turns a blind eye and ear to whatever they get up to.
        Basically I do not feel safe (or ethical) living in a country which is governed by an unbridled financial sector.

        • Anton

          Fiat currency enforced by legal tender laws is the original sin of finance; then the banks lend our money to others but the banks, not us, get the collateral in the event of default. That goes on in Britain, Europe and the USA.

          • cacheton

            Either I have misunderstood you, or – NO, the banks do not get the collateral in the event of default. Default is not allowed to happen when the financial sector is what the whole country is based on, so the taxpayers have to prevent it by bailing them out. One or 2 banks have gone bust abroad, not here.

          • Anton

            I was talking about default of those who receive loans from banks, not bank runs and defaults of banks.

            There’s not enough taxpayer money in existence to bail out the banks next time.

          • cacheton

            I have no doubt Cameron’s government will have no problem finding bailout money.

            If governments created money rather than private banks, the problem would be solved. The banks create the money they lend you out of thin air, and charge you interest on it. This does not work. http://positivemoney.org/

          • Anton

            They’d print it!

  • Dreadnaught

    I think the UK will remain in the EU post the costly and disruptive impending referendum we don’t really need. The media and no doubt the public in general, will find the Dave vs Boris Punch and Judy Show, far more engaging than the real subject: the future of Europe and the UK’s future role – well they would wouldn’t they?

    On that premise, there is so much that can be done with the integrity of UK as the spearhead to instigate changes that reflect the individual contribution value of the 28 as a part of the whole enterprise. The EU has grown out of all manageable proportion to be effective and functioning as envisaged. I think it is unlikely that it will survive another twenty years. We know that it is highly undemocratic, unaccountable and wide open to corruption and sooner or later mass public opposition will crystallise and force changes for reform by shrinking or dissolution.

    NINE of the thirteen most corrupted countries in the European Union are new member states.

    First there are the 13 most corrupt countries in the EU : Greece, Bulgaria and Romania (3.8 out of 10); Italy (4.3) ; Latvia and Slovakia (4.5) ; Lithuania and the Czech Republic (4.9) ; Poland (5, the same as the global average) ; Hungary (5.1) ; Malta (5.2) ; Portugal (5.8) ; Spain (6.1).

    The following are the 14 EU-27 member states who are the least corrupt: Estonia, Slovenia and Cyprus (6.6 out of 10); France (6.9) ; Belgium (7.1) ; United Kingdom (7.7) ; Austria (7.9) ; Germany and Ireland (8) ; Luxembourg (8.2) ; Finland and the Netherlands (8.9) ; Sweden (9.2) and Denmark (9.3).

    Focus on these sort of details and more, and maybe we can actually achieve bolstering our nation status as a global player and honest broker.

    http://www.diploweb.com/Corruption-remains-a-challenge-for.html

    • cacheton

      Who needs corruption figures when tax dodging is legal. If aiding tax dodging figures were included in those Luxembourg and Malta would slip down spectacularly. So would the UK.

      • Anton

        It’s not dodging if it’s legal. Our tax system is too complex and taxes are too high.

        • IanCad

          Right! No such thing as dodging if it’s not prosecutable.

          • Uncle Brian

            Tax evasion, tax avoidance. Tax avoidance is something governments don’t like but the only thing they can do is try and close the loopholes so that taxpayers won’t be able to get away with it again next year

          • Anton

            Best way to close the loopholes is not piecemeal so as to make the system more complex, but to make it much simpler.

        • Dreadnaught

          And being out would fix all that? Oh wait a minute, this isn’t the topic HG posted on is it.

          • Anton

            Unless His Grace requests that a branch off the main discussion be pruned, I see nothing wrong with widening the subject.

          • Dreadnaught

            Carry on then, I’m out.

      • Ivan M

        Hahaha if I. Could I would have upticked you twice.

      • Dreadnaught

        What has tax dodging to do with the topic?

        • Ivan M

          Corruption index my friend. Why go around bribing officials when it is built into the system from the start.

          • Dreadnaught

            Your point was tax dodging – who how when where would be a start of an interesting exchange but shed little light on whether UK is better off out or in the EU. Will being ‘out’ be a remedy to the tax dodging?

          • Ivan M

            Okay no it will not be a remedy.

    • Anton

      Changes for reform will come not from mass public opposition but from political crises, as we see in finance (the next Greece will be a Mediterranean country too big for Germany to bail out) and the refugee issue making Schengen unrealistic.

      • Dreadnaught

        What bigger crisis is there for politicians than a popular uprising? I’m thinking of the Poll Tax revolts.

        • Anton

          None except military invasion, but how likely is popular uprising?

          Schengen and the Euro are two of the EU’s biggest planks and they are both on their way out as it is.

  • From a Christian perspective, Brexit can only be a good thing.

    If the EU had been a bloc of Christian nations working for mutual benefit and defence, they might have been a light to the whole world. But the EU is an alliance of anti-Christian governments with dangerous ties to the Muslim world, beholden to its enemies, contemptuous of the rights of ordinary citizens, and ruled by unelected officials determined to stamp out all traces of Christianity from Europe. It is also increasingly anti-Semitic.

    Christians, already a minority in much of Europe, will shrink to insignificance, as the freedom to worship and witness are undermined, and the numerous benefits that Christianity has brought Europe lost and forgotten. Brexit could be the last escape route, which might hopefully lead to the toppling of the whole edifice. This must surely be an answer to prayer.

    • dannybhoy

      What has to be investigated is why the leaders of Western Europe seem hell bent on gambling the future of their own native cultures by embracing the (unproven) philosophy incorporating Equality, Diversity, Inclusion and Multiculturalism.
      There are plenty of ‘alternative’ news websites showing the consequences of unquestioned and unquestionable immigration.
      Here’s one..

      here’s another from Calais..

      from Germany..

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=71lY56LshWA

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8boRtBL6zc
      From Finland..

      This is not to promote sensationalism or hatred, but to ask the question, why is the mainstream media keeping all these incidents out of the news?

      • Anton

        Because it’s infected by the same disease.

      • The Explorer

        Thanks for these. The camera can lie, but I don’t think these do, or the many others like them.

        George Orwell said that different eras had totalitarian weapons and democratic weapons. The musket was totalitarian because only the rich could afford it, but the longbow was democratic because it was easily made.

        The cameras of the mainstream media are totalitarian because they can be used to not record the truth, but the cameras of mobile phones are democratic because they record what those in power would rather we did not see.

        The Internet is the greatest democratic weapon of all: it is often our only access to what is really happening

        • dannybhoy

          We can all acknowledge that those who are of an extreme right wing persuasion would want to sensationalise what is happening.
          But for me the interview with the German bus driver encapsulates the dilemma faced by decent working people, motivated by Christian or humanistic principles and wanting to help, yet find themselves attacked by the very people their government told them they should help! and struggling to make sense of it..

          The point is that the Western world operates under various interpretations of democracy, and yet those democratically elected leaders are knowingly putting their citizens and societies at risk – for what?

      • It is obvious that there is no such thing as a free press anymore. The mainstream media might vociferously demand that its freedom – to filter information, distort facts, malign people and manipulate events – remain unrestricted, but they are no longer trusted and their impact on public opinion has diminished.

        The alternative news sources might be prone to exaggeration, but we have no choice but to turn to them for information that the media chooses to hide.

        • dannybhoy

          I don’t like smart phones much, but the fact is an awful lot of events are captured this way and posted on youtube or similar.

          • The Explorer

            Open to abuse., of course: violations of privacy.

        • The Explorer

          I would not believe the evidence of any alternative news source taken singly, because the context is not always clear, and there could well be an agenda. But when one has seen enough of them from Italy, Greece, France, Germany, Sweden, Denmark and Finland, common themes do emerge.

          And it is obvious why those responsible for the problem would wish to conceal the consequences. Presumably, they hope that these are just teething problems that will go away in due course.

          • Too often, the mainstream media might give you a very diluted version of events and you are forced to turn to alternate sources to gain a fuller picture.

      • patrick wagner

        “To break your enemy you must first strip him of his cultural identity.” [Simon Schama – A History of Britain]

        • dannybhoy

          Now that is very powerful. It fits in with the teachings of Antonio Gramsci.
          http://infed.org/mobi/antonio-gramsci-schooling-and-education/
          and the Frankfurt school..
          http://www.schillerinstitute.org/fid_91-96/921_frankfurt.html
          I quote..
          “The cultural shift away from the Renaissance ideas that built the modern world, was due to a kind of freemasonry of ugliness. In the beginning, it was a formal political conspiracy to popularize theories that were specifically designed to weaken the soul of Judeo-Christian civilization in such a way as to make people believe that creativity was not possible, that adherence to universal truth was evidence of authoritarianism, and that reason itself was suspect. This conspiracy was decisive in planning and developing, as means of social manipulation, the vast new sister industries of radio, television, film, recorded music, advertising, and public opinion polling. The pervasive psychological hold of the media was purposely fostered to create the passivity and pessimism which afflict our populations today. So successful was this conspiracy, that it has become embedded in our culture; it no longer needs to be a “conspiracy,” for it has taken on a life of its own. ”

          How very true.

  • Anton

    The London and Frankfurt Stock Exchanges have just announced that they are in talks to merge. This is obviously designed to make Brexit harder and the timing is a dirty trick.

    • The Explorer

      Following up the story – thanks for the news – it seems that it will not be a merger of equals if it happens. Deutsche Boerse would end up with a controlling stake of 54% of the new company

      • bluedog

        In any partnership involving Germany the Reich is the senior partner. It s the natural order of things.

        • The Explorer

          Yes of course. London is a German city waiting to happen.

          Although Haeckel admired Darwin enormously, he thought Darwin had got it wrong in one crucial respect. Darwin said the highest point of human evolution was represented by the upper-class Englishman. He should, of course, have said the upper-class German.

          • Anton

            It is this blog, of course.

    • dannybhoy
    • It’s step one on another attempt at take over.

    • CliveM

      We are too dependent on the Money Markets anyway. It sucks up our brightest and best (best educated anyway) and makes recruitment harder for industry. Instead of producing, currently there is more money to be made in legal financial scams, it will be no bad thing to change this.

      • Anton

        I don’t like the City either, but it brings in 1/3 of our revenue and winding it down should not be done in one go.

        • CliveM

          And it wouldn’t be if it was taken over. At best (worst?) it would a slow decline.

          An additional benefit is the London would lose influence over the rest of the U.K.

          • layreader

            And this announcement (about London and Frankfurt merging) has been made at least three times before. Nothing happened then. Even if it happens finally, it can hardly be a deliberate timing.

  • sarky
  • CliveM

    Whatever happens, even with an out vote, the day after the referendum, the UK will still be a fully paid up member of the EU. There is a lot of talk about how the UK will ‘punished’ for leaving the EU. How it will have to negotiate a trade treaty and how the EU will ensure that it is as penal as possible. But a thought occurs to me, why would the EU want to delay the exit of a country desperate to leave, who has little stake in the future of the institution and indeed may feel free to act in a way that only suits its own interests and as long as the UK acts in a legal way, there is nothing the EU can do about it.

    Or so I believe?

    In which case, no ‘reasonable’ trade treaty, wield veto at each and every opportunity. Don’t allow a new budget to be passed, veto it. If the EU tries to change the UK’s ability to act this way, it will need a treaty change, veto it.

    The EU may want to play hardball, but will it want as a continuing member one that is bent on leaving and feels it owes the EU nothing?

    It is in both parties interests to be reasonable, but lets not pretend that only one of the parties holds the aces, it doesn’t. The EU will want us to leave in as smooth and quickly a means as possible. It will be in their best interests to aid it.

  • Something is niggling at me about the names of the leave campaigns, the fact that politicians can’t be trusted, the manipulative, Machiavellian and shifty ‘genius’ of Dominic Cummings and his sidekick Mathew Elliot who are the group of softies calling themselves Vote Leave of course means it’s one thing to vote to leave, but they won’t actually leave when the time comes. Whereas those more genuine have called themselves more honest names like Leave.EU and Grassroots Out really do mean it. I hope the Electoral Commission will choose a genuine out group.

  • chrisH

    We are Christians are we not?
    Acts 17.26 clearly says that God appointed and ordained our borders…or boundaries as called in the KJV, The only one to bother with here.
    The United States of Europe was tried by Hitler, and the European Union is a Catholic dream of social justice and solidarity speechifying that any Chomsky or Alinsky acolyte would recognise.
    No questions at all-vore In, get Cologne and get Calais withing five years…and you`ll STILL have to deal with the fallout when France and Italy go bust in two years time.
    Get out now-would rather have my leap in the dark now at sunset-than wait for the ship to list at 1.45am and plunge into the icy waters with no say in how to soften the fall.

    The EU even wrote Christianity out of its constitution, and craves Islamic rule. It has not had its won accounts signed off in 21 years…and it persecutes Christians and mocks justice for its own satanic purposes.
    I am not a fan.

    • The Explorer

      I agree that there are Catholic dreams in there (hence subsidiarity), and memories of the Holy Roman Empire, but surely there are other visions in there as well? The dreams that Chomsky and Alinsky acolytes would recognise are surely not Catholic visions: except insofar as Marxism is parasitic for its beliefs on Christianity?

      • chrisH

        Recall Paolo Friere and his social gospel, and sense that the likes of Pope Francis took up much of this agenda by stealth, seeing as it is unlikely to ever be supported by a democratic mandate.
        And yes sir…Marxism co-opted the green movement when it collapsed in on itself in 1989-91…and has certainly infiltrated the catholics…and, to be fair, Chomsky and Alinsky are clear-the like of Francis are gulled, and need to check their bibles and their heritage.
        Reckon we lost Catholicism into the EU Project, and Pope Benedicts scalp finished the Catholic Church as an intellectual force for good.
        I`m a bit more nuanced, but-to be frank-the only way any church will listen if you sail as close to abuse and caricature as is polite and biblical.
        Good site this-am enjoying reading about the collapse of Christendom and the Roman Empire…the schism between Western Europe and the Eastern Orthodox , the reasons and the triumph of Islam as a divided continent prostrate itself before the barbarians and the Musselman.
        All sounds rather familiar eh?

  • Lienus

    We used to ‘ave sovereignty in France. We sorted it out with a guillotine. Since then we have never been violated. Only by Nelson, Germany (3 times), and Muslim extremists. Also by Findarato on a Saturday night, but zis was consensual.

    I plead with you Ros bifs. Do not vote for Brexit, get with the Germans and annexit. Get with the French and circumflexit. Get with Lienus and homosexit!

    • Allosexuels admirateur

      Yoo av don it now! Findy as ad a crise de colère and stoolen Lapin. Ee as lost eet. Not Lapin. Is cerveau.

      Je suis désemparé

      • The Explorer

        Lapin a la moutarde. Not a doubt of it. Findy’s a jealous type. You’ll be next.

  • prompteetsincere

    After Cameron’s shot-gun wedding of ‘We the People’ to the EU, the tie that was intended to bind, dowry could only be afterthought.

  • IrishNeanderthal

    I’m horribly confused. I feel that we should stay, but that we must leave.

    • patrick wagner

      If you want to pay for another layer of beauracracy and the tax that comes with it vote to stay. If you feel that council tax, income tax, vat and westminster tax are enough already, vote to leave.

  • patrick wagner

    “Structural sin may well be identifiable as an entity, a force for evil, apart from the sinfullness of any one individual.” [Charles Elliott]

  • Paul Muad’dib

    Sovereignty lies with the people? Is Boris having a laugh? Ever since the Rothschild clan invented the current international system of corrupt privately owned central banking they have proven time and again that Mammon rules the world. Any goy insect – Napoleon, Abraham Lincoln, Adolf Hitler, J.F. Kennedy, to name but the most obvious – that dares stand in the way of the machine is crushed. Nobody from Britain is on our list of dissenters because Great Britain has been a proud lackey of the Rothschild Empire since the Napoleonic War.

    You’re all intelligent readers, so here’s a question for you: What percentage of Britain’s national income is paid to the Rothschild machine every year in interest? This figure will never be mentioned on the TV or in the press – I wonder why? You do understand, of course, that ‘money’ is merely an IOU from the government to the Rothschild bankers, the issuing of currency is the issuing of debt. Incidentally, the ‘money’ that the Rothschilds so generously lend the state is, of course, fiat money, i.e. conjured from thin air.

    Since the Rothschild Empire controls both the pound and the euro it looks a bit like we’re contemplating leaping out of the frying pan into the fire.