February 8, 2021

MAGGIE, OF COURSE, HAD IT RIGHT:

British Euroscepticism: a brief history (Toby Helm, 2/06/16,  Observer)

Margaret Thatcher had campaigned to stay in the EEC in 1975, four years before becoming prime minister, and signed the Single European Act in 1986. But she came to despair of the European project. Her Bruges speech of 1988 became a template for a new generation of Tory sceptics. It was not given to put the country on course for an exit, but to limit Europe's ambitions. "To try to suppress nationhood and concentrate power at the centre of a European conglomerate would be highly damaging and would jeopardise the objectives we seek to achieve," Thatcher said. Tory Eurosceptics were inspired. Increasingly, they believed the original vision of a trading area had been supplanted by Franco-German ambitions for political and economic union. As the centre of gravity shifted in both main parties, Labour under Neil Kinnock embraced a social Europe, albeit with resistance from unions and the left. Thatcher's increasingly strident scepticism put her at odds with key members of her cabinet, including Michael Heseltine, and hastened her downfall.

The free flow of goods and people is the only area where nations need to surrender some sovereignty.  
Posted by at February 8, 2021 12:00 AM

  

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