on 6 October 2012
When an employee repeatedly takes the wrong decision or chooses the one which causes the greatest damage to the company, his superiors normally will decide to terminate his contract. When a government of a sovereign state within the Eurozone facing high debts in 2010, was ordered to make vicious austerity cuts to be bailed out with further funds - pushing up in turn the debts further, and its people protested, the government replied to the European Union they could not go along with their terms and needed to consult its electorate through a people's referendum. The outcome was the government was immediately forced to resign, and its parliament was obliged to vote in one more favourable to the Union's Commission under a former head of the European Bank, Lucas Papademos. That occurred in Greece in 2011. In Italy TV magnate Silvio Berlusconi was pushed out when he chose to resist in November 2011, and was replaced by former European Commissioner, Mario Monti. In both cases the will of a nation or of its people was deemed irrelevant; it is the will of the Union and its Commission. Change the date and a word and the ex Commissioner and ex banker might have been called Gauleiter, and the Union would have been part of the creed of ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer.
When a referendum goes the wrong way as happened in Denmark in 1992 or Ireland in 2001 and 2008 they ignore the result, and demand a new vote under new electoral rules. When the Czech President Vaclav Klaus decided to withhold signing a treaty, he was threatened with impeachment.
When they can't get their way the Eurocrats shout in unison as Orwell's sheep might have chanted in Animal Farm a pointless double-speak refrain "hopeless disorder produces prosperity is a virtue, order produces divisions and war, which is a crime, and the holocaust which is the biggest past crime".
In Southern Italy and Sicily there are powerful criminal organizations which demand protection money from businessmen; they then provide these clients favourable financial terms when moneys are not forthcoming from the banks. From time to time, however, they go back to them, demanding their share in the benefits.
As the Union has no belief in the will of the people of the sovereign states - they say the people are misinformed, and their states are "populist" or "nationalist"- comparable empty terms of abuse spread about deviants like "counter-revolutionary", "socio-fascist", "collaborationist" were used by the old Stalinist CP of the Soviet Union, they turn to their clients, those organizations who are in their pay and receive valuable financial sponsorships. Dan Hannan surprises everyone when he lists departments in local authorities, regional government, and national civil servants, in addition to traditional lobbies: Oxfam, Christian Aid, the WWF, Green Peace, the European Trade Union Congress, in the purse, and where no senior member of an association finds paid holidays, school fees, tickets to important concerts or sporting events an incentive for having their palms greased, they set up front bodies. When the Commission needs to receive support for any of their ideas they turn back to the clients, and pronounce the people, or more precisely their people have spoken: the monkey has danced to the organ grinder.
The reality is that there is no prosperity in terms of GDP within the EU. In 37 out of 38 years of Britain's membership, Britain has been in trade surplus with all the countries of the world except for the EU, where previously it was in surplus everywhere. The EU continues to languish in recession and out spends what it does not have. The Commonwealth countries, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, Britain's former food basket, instead, which in 1972 were described by "Grocer" Prime Minister Ted Heath as dying, are surging ahead.
Heath always lied to the British electorate, and when General De Gaulle twice vetoed Britain's proposed membership in the 1960s, Hannan believes, it was not for historical Franco-chauvinist jealousy of its maritime neighbour, but because he believed Britain would not benefit Europe nor itself- an amazing new revelation to British readers. He hints that Heath stupidly accepted the worst terms possible for Britain, including loss of fishing rights to the Mediterranean members simply to ingratiate himself more in the eyes of his continental brothers, and as penance for not joining immediately in 1956 when the Treaty of Rome was first signed, and the decision to include English as an official language arose because the Irish and not the British negotiators had insisted it among its conditions. However, Hannan dismisses the traditional myth that Britain had previously been anti-Europe in favour of its pro-Atlantic stand by repeating that both Churchill and Attlee had both strongly supported European recovery from 1948.
Worse, while Hannan emphasizes that the EU current response to Eurozone crisis is to institute greater European integration, he fails to state that in Greece and Italy more of the failed policies will lead to a further closures in small and medium sized companies and higher unemployment, as well as a 20% rise in suicides among businessmen, the basis of their nation's development, perhaps with the trend spreading everywhere around the continent eventually even affecting the ever dominant Germany, as it would sound like scare mongering. Why not admit it here when many journalists in the pay of populist editors prefer to censor such tales not to worry the unaware people? No -let them eat cake, people should be fed on "human interest" pseudo-pornography and kidnapping stories, rather than touch on real events.
The author stresses that both Switzerland and Norway gain greater benefits than most EU members without having all the obligations to fulfil. He offers the reader with the obvious solution, as the first step in the transformation of the Union itself, and more in line with what De Gaulle himself may have dreamt, by suggesting secession as the greatest gift to give Europe.
The question he unfortunately does not entertain is what is to come of the Nomenklatura, the Eurocrats, those parasites who live for the system. That I suspect is not part of his solution to the doomed marriage, only to the doomed Union which merits another pamphlet.
Certain reviewers here have suggested ordering copies for our national politicians. With what they earn that idea sounds quite barmy! Politicians could buy 50 copies for their constituents. Besides, several politicians are either already in the pay of the European Union or if are Liberal Democrats believe wholeheartedly in it, so presenting them with such a gift would not be any different to giving a visually impaired person an ordinary copy which he cannot read or an individual with perfect sight a copy in Braille which he won't be able to understand. In either case it is very unlikely that they will read it, much less gain pleasure with the details of the stories. Indeed, the information provided will easily surpass the discomfort level of unpleasantness.
It should be read, by journalists, by teachers, and by trade unionist representatives as people will turn to them for advice. As the book is too good to be allowed to given away freely to all during a referendum a few copies should be purchased by every secondary schools; others made available to those who desire them at public and private offices including post office and the Citizen's Advice Bureau. It a book that should read, studied and debated at home, at work, and in society meetings. The people must learn and decide, not the politicians; they must set aside party affiliations and tell the politicians and their government of the day when the time comes if they are to stay in, or come out of the multi-headed monster which Heath conned us in joining.
Dan Hannan says there is always life after departure. It will be based on our needs. The government will have to fight and advance them with determination in the manner Britain was so good in obtaining for centuries, only this time the government won't be making those demands with one hand tied behind its back. If they fail, they will be voted out - that which the Greeks and the Italians were forbidden to do. We will be carrying the flame of democracy, and then the listening Europeans will be there to follow.