Thursday, May 12, 2011

Plan of action?

What? I hear readers of this blog cry. She has a plan of action? Well, that's a turn-up for the books. And so on. Well, it depends on what you mean by "plan" and, indeed, by "action". Certainly, the cry "something must be done" is not a particularly sensible one unless one has some idea of what the something aims to achieve. Any action is better than none is one of the most dangerous concepts in the world and is much loved by politicians and their acolytes as they all assume that action, any action will bring in votes and support.

Anyway, first a short discussion. Recent conversations have convinced me of two things: one is that an in/out referendum would be as big a disaster as I had always assumed and the other is that there is still an enormous amount of rubbish being talked about the EU, Britain's role in it, how we are to extricate ourselves from it and what is to be done afterwards. The two items are not unconnected. It is because of the second one that the first remains true: the kind of rubbish that is produced by so many on what is over-generously described as "our" side will lose us an in/out referendum as sure as eggs is eggs. Our only hope is that David Cameron is not actually bright enough to realize this.

There has been a great deal of discussion after the victory of the NO side in the AV referendum about lessons to be learned from that campaign for the campaign for an in/out EU referendum and for the one during it. It is when we start discussing the actual referendum campaign that matters become complicated. For there is a reluctance on the part of people and organizations, supposedly on the "right" side of the debate to speak openly about what is involved. Instead, they hide behind expressions like "against the EU", "against Europe", "don't like what is happening", "want to change things".

All of that is meaningless in terms of a simple message that we can send to the electorate were we to have a referendum.

At least one of those organizations that bleat about being against the EU and critical of so many things will, according to its present Director, "campaign for big changes", should there be a referendum on our membership. Ahem, is that IN or OUT?

Then there is the media. The BBC will, of course, make sure that the IN message predominates and the OUT message is presented by the most ridiculously ignorant people they can find. But what of the other outlets? (I am talking about the MSM.) Will those who are calling for a referendum to "give people a say" necessarily campaign for Britain to come out of the EU? Will newspapers, say in the News International group, who produce criticisms of the EU, of the bail-outs, of the CFP, of many other things, necessarily say that the only way is to come out and rebuild our own system or will they wring their collective hands and moan about the need to reform things, explaining plaintively that we can do so only by remaining in the "club"? And that's just people, media and organizations that are supposed to be on "our side". The other side has not even started their well-funded, well-organized, well-rehearsed campaign. At present we have pitchforks and rusty shotguns against their artillery and machine guns.

That brings me to my second point: the unspeakable nonsense one hears about the EU and Britain's position in it. That extends to the complete ignorance of such matters as to how the situation can be changed and what is to happen afterwards.

So, sadly, there is nothing for it: the subject of the EU cannot be abandoned by this blog, much as I would like to, and, indeed, it has to be re-positioned as one of far bigger importance than I would like it to be. Not that I propose to abandon all other subjects because I have no desire to become one of those people who think there is nothing in the world than that poxy organization but the new(ish) cry must be: the people must be educated. Let's face it, by the time even a reasonable level of that education will be achieved, the EU will probably have fallen apart and we shall be left with a huge mess as we are not preparing ourselves for that contingency.


  1. Excellent post Helen if I may say so. I have long feared the possible (probable!) outcome of a referendum once the BBC et al had got to work, even though I thought a referendum was our only realistic hope of freedom. If the bald facts are presented rather than lies (3 million jobs at stake if we withdraw etc) then our side should win. But presentation is everything.

  2. There is little that affects your freedom and ours more than the slow destruction of our nation state and the move towards one EU system of Law, police supporting the state rather than the individual; the state sacrificing the individual for "the greater good" etc etc.

    Our Common Law is based on individual rights. EU Corpus Juris is based on State rights. One cannot exist within the other.

    ": the subject of the EU cannot be abandoned by this blog, much as I would like to, and, indeed, it has to be re-positioned as one of far bigger importance than I would like it to be"

    So the EU is of "far bigger importance" than anything else, as far as freedom is concerned.

  3. Just want to say I agree totally with Alfred. Nothing has a greater impact on our freedom than the EU. Whilst I enjoy reading all posts by Helen and Richard I take particular interest in those relating to EU affairs.