Sometimes not checking my e-mail works out rather well, as in this case it rather pulled together a few bits. The Telegraph tells us that Germany is desperate for the UK to not leave the EU. Presumably because if we do they’ll be left to pick up the bill for the Euro, but all the time we’re around they can pass some of it our way despite all the measures allegedly designed to stop non-euro members getting shafted by it.
I do love the comment Ms Merkel made:
“You can be very happy on an island, but being alone in this world doesn’t make you any happier,”
because obviously if we leave the EU then the entire rest of the world will stop talking to us and the rest of Europe won’t want to sell us anything or even buy anything from us. Nope if we leave the EU it’ll be as if we ceased to exist of something, mind if that were the case at least we’d not be involved in anymore wars on terror people in mud huts, oh and we could probably save money but not keeping soldiers in Germany. Something Ms Merkel seems to quite like, oh and of course there’s that 11% budget increase the EU wants whilst telling everyone else to cut their spending.
Not quite sure what Ms Merkel is worried about though given the response the government has made to those of us that asked for a referendum on Europe. If I were cynical I might suspect it was all an act to let Mr Cameron to look tough on Europe before caving in and doing what he’s told. After all when the response the government gives to over 18,000 people asking if they’d be so kind as to consider giving us a say on this whole Europe thing is roughly:
“shut up, we may give you a say if we sign any new treaties”.
The full response is as follows:
The e-petition ‘Referendum on the European Union’ signed by you recently reached 18,188 signatures and a response has been made to it.
As this e-petition has received more than 10 000 signatures, the relevant Government department have provided the following response:
The Government believes that membership of the EU is in the national interest of the UK. It is central to how we create jobs, expand trade and protect our interests around the world. The Government’s priority is dealing with the crisis in the Eurozone and making sure that the Single Market, which is one of the greatest forces for prosperity the continent has ever known and of immense benefit to this country, is not damaged.
The crisis in the Eurozone has intensified the debate in every country on the future of Europe and there is no exception here. Europe is changing, and we do not know what the EU will end up looking like at the end of this crisis.
As the Prime Minister has said, this Government believes that a choice between the status quo within the EU or leaving completely is the wrong question. But now that the European Union Act 2011 is in place the British people will have the final say, through a referendum, if any future treaty change results in a transfer of competence from the UK to the EU. This cannot happen without the express consent of the British people.
The activities of the EU have expanded over time, before the coalition Government established a referendum lock, and it is important to take stock of the impact of the EU on our country. In line with a commitment made to the British people in the Coalition Programme for Government, the Government recently launched a review of the balance of competences between the UK and the EU to assess the EU=E2=80=99s impact on the UK. Now is the right time to take a critical and constructive look at exactly which competences lie with the EU, which lie with the UK, and whether it works in our national interest.
The parties in the Coalition will have the opportunity to address issues such as referenda in their own manifestos at the next election.
You may also wish to read the Prime Minister’s Statement of 2nd July 2012 on the European Council at http://www.number10.gov.uk/news/prime-ministers-statement-on-the-european-council/
This e-petition remains open to signatures and will be considered for debate by the Backbench Business Committee should it pass the 100 000 signature threshold.
View the response to the e-petition here:
So we have that cast iron guarantee which can be ignored due to the wonders of self amending treaties and which isn’t binding on future governments, and is easily ignored by adding a clause to bills such as this one saying:
“That decision does not fall within section 4 of the European Union Act 2011 (cases where treaty or Article 48(6) decision attracts a referendum).”
almost as if they put a lock in place but forgot to actually well lock it.
In the meantime the EU who have been very quiet over Argentinia’s claims on the Falkland islands is vital to protecting our interests. The conflation between the single market and the Eurozone is quite slick, and the claim that the EU is one of “the greatest forces for prosperity the continent has ever known” would seem to not give much weight to the industrial revolution, the enlightenment or if we want to treat the continent as a whole the British or Roman empires. As to not knowing what the EU will end up looking like at the end of this crisis the riots spreading across the continent and the recent Europe4All poster would seem to provide rather a good hint.
So really don’t worry Ms Merkel as long as the the current parties remain in power the only way we’re leaving is by civil war and revolution.