March 3, 2020


The EU is blind to its own failing tactics (Douglas Carswell, 3/03/20, CapX)

Having spent much of my adult life campaigning to get the UK out of the EU, I have noticed a pattern of behaviour by the Euro establishment.

Each time the EU side has been presented with what you might call British concerns about the nature of our relations with them, they start off by failing to take us seriously.  Rather than address our concerns, the Brussels side seemed to expend its efforts into brushing them aside.

An obvious example of this was when Tony Blair, hardly a noted Eurosceptic, warned back in the late 1990s that the EU was overly centralised. Reform, he understood, would be needed to make the block become more competitive.

How did the EU establishment respond? Blair was fobbed off with the so-called Lisbon Agenda, which was supposed to be an ambitious reform initiative, but which saw no powers actually passed back to member states.

Something very similar happened a decade later when David Cameron asked the EU to help him win his referendum. Might the EU, he politely enquired, offer him something that might allow him to persuade the British electorate to vote to remain? They gave him nothing of substance.

No doubt EU negotiators saw this as a win. Sitting in Vote Leave's campaign office, when Cameron came back empty handed, we knew that what might be a tactical victory for Brussels was a strategic victory for us. And so it proved.

It's a simple case of a nation choosing sovereignty.

Posted by at March 3, 2020 12:00 AM