Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tory to UKIP to Tory

Well if Churchill could defect back and forth, why not David Campbell Bannerman? Who, I hear you ask. Oh, errm, well, he is the chap who lost the UKIP leadership election to Nigel Farage (here, here and here) and .... errm .... he is an MEP and .... well, that's about it. That, in a way, is the problem that UKIP has and much of the blame can be laid on its Leader. Mr Farage has, over the years, ensured that nobody from his party is known outside that party. Not, in my opinion, a happy state of affairs but I am not in UKIP.

Meanwhile, Mr Campbell Bannerman has been welcomed back into the Conservative fold whence he started years ago, even serving a stint as Chairman of the Bow Group. According to William Hague, our fairly useless Foreign Secretary,
Mr Campbell Bannerman would make a "valuable" contribution to their work.

"The Conservative Party is bringing in people who want to work in the national interest to sort out Britain's problems," he said.
What that might mean is anybody's guess.

Mr Campbell Bannerman himself has
said he had been "impressed" by David Cameron's leadership while UKIP was beset by "internal fighting" and was not a "credible" political force.
Well, he is half right. Mind you, while his opinion on UKIP may be one many of us are in sympathy with, his view on the European Union remains the opposite of that held by the Conservative Party. They do not believe in withdrawal or, for that matter, in anything but agreeing to every deal proposed in Brussels.

Meanwhile, some readers might like to have a look at this article published in the Guardian less than a year ago:
Cameron has spent the last five years ditching Conservative policies on Europe. Even though his party urged people to "vote blue, go green", he rescinded Tory policy to unilaterally leave the common fisheries policy and stop the environmental disaster caused by nearly one million tonnes of dead fish being thrown back into the sea every year. The party leadership used the coalition talks to "bury the Tory right" and end the campaign to renegotiate British membership of the EU. Cleverly, these U-turns were done during the phony war over Tory membership of the trans-European group of MEPs in Brussels (the federalist European People's party).

Within its first month, the coalition abandoned the UK hedge fund industry by barely lifting a finger to block the EU hedge fund directive. In last week's budget, the Chancellor declared Britain was open for businesses. But if the EU gets its way in regulating alternative investment funds, then the Treasury will lose billions in revenue. Zurich, New York and the far east will benefit as hedge fund managers leave to places where they can do business without being told who to deal with and where to bank. The Conservatives didn't have plans for regulating hedge funds to this extent in their manifesto, so why are they so keen to let the EU do it for them?

January's VAT hike would be mostly avoidable if we didn't have to pay the EU a net annual membership contribution of £6.6bn. Or is it that we need the hike to pay for the new contribution the UK will make in 2014 – a staggering £10.3bn? None of this was mentioned recently by Osborne.
Quite a cogent piece. The author? One David Campbell Bannerman. Oh what a difference 11 months can make.


  1. Still Vague Hague is promising to fight the EU Foreign Service, or whatever it calls l itself these days. Strange really since we have all known for ages just what it was for, and presumably both his boss and him knew as they agreed to it. Very weird!

  2. You echo my own views entirely, Helen. The question is what can be done about it...

  3. The latest copy of the CIB newsletter (dropped through the letterbox yesterday) includes an article slating the coalition's record on the EU. Guess who the author of this piece might be!

  4. Weeellll, I can think of a few names. Well, maybe one as to who might have written that article. ;-)