Britain in Europe – A Referendum

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As the date for the European referendum in the UK draws ever closer, I get more and more agitated and the need to express my opinion gets stronger. I have been very lazy at posting any thoughts or pictures on my blog and it is only at times like this that I really feel the need.

I have tried, but Twitter and Facebook are just not enough to properly express thoughts that are so important. It is great to watch a programme on television and be able to comment,  albeit briefly, on the social media sites, but one is never given enough web space to properly express one’s feelings. OK, so here we go with Brandybutter’s thoughts on #Brexit.

We need to break free from a European bureaucracy that is going down the tubes. Economic forecasters are just that – fortune tellers and they are only interested in their own economic well-being. Forget the economics; the stock market, the economy and the Pound, will go up and down whether or not we are in the EU. What is more important is to regain our freedom, to be able to decide our own future, without unelected European bureaucrats trying to drag the UK into a United Europe. Make no mistake, that is the ultimate aim. There is no manifesto, no spoken target, but that is the ultimate pinnacle of European Union, a United Europe in which no one country can have any real influence. A haven for the unelected, a wasteful bureaucracy that spends all it’s time on making ever encompassing rules and regulations. This referendum is your only chance to establish our independence.

The UK is one of the oldest, most respected states in the world and should not allow itself to become embroiled in a failing union of European countries. I am old enough to have voted in the last referendum, in 1975, to remain in the EEC. (We were not given the choice to join.)  I did not vote to join a United Europe. At that time just over 67% of voters supported the Labour government’s campaign to stay in the EEC, or Common Market. We were not voting for a European Union. That is what has been forgotten.

Britain joined the European Economic Community in 1973 and hence the EU in the 1990s. But Britain never fully accepted the legitimacy of European control over British institutions in a way that other EU members did. It refused, for example, to join either the Schengen Area, which eliminates internal border controls, or the common currency. In the same way, you should refrain from further integration with Europe by voting Leave.

For a professional, informed opinion, I recommend The Spectator article http://www.spectator.co.uk/2016/06/out-and-into-the-world-why-the-spectator-is-for-leave/ which provides a very succinct view.

In February, the Prime Minister in a formal document, has claimed that he secured a new settlement to give the United Kingdom  a special status within the European Union, as well as setting the EU as a whole on a path of long-term reform. He claims that this settlement makes the EU work much better for the UK but there are still many ways in which it needs to improve. He says that the task of reforming the EU does not end with this agreement. What he does not say is that his agreement, is a proposal and  may not be formally approved in all respects. The agreement states – “The European Council agreed that, should the result of the referendum be a vote that the UK should leave the EU, the new settlement for the UK will cease to exist.” So he has not obtained any binding reform to Europe.  “The UK is stronger, safer and better off in a reformed EU.” The problem is that he has not reformed the EU.

The Prime Minister says Turkey will not join the EU for decades, but he does not have a crystal ball and it may only be 5 years or less before Turkish citizens will have the right to flood the UK. They are not interested in staying in France or Greece, they want the best – the UK. Do not allow them to overcrowd our small country that already has one of the highest population densities in Europe.

Germany is now realising that Angela Merkel set her country on the road to ruin with her invitation for an unlimited number of political refugees to stay in Germany. It was her invitation that sparked the worst influx of mass immigration to affluent Europe since the Second World War. How many lives were lost as a result of her rash words? How many Germans are now regretting the social problems overwhelming some of their cities?

Do not forget, Turkey is only one of many poor countries on the edge of Europe that will willingly sell their economy to Europe in order to take advantage of the wealth that they have not been able to generate on their own. Remember well that Greece took such advantage of it’s inclusion that it very nearly brought down the whole European economy. It was not a poor country before it joined the EU, but it took everything it could, allowed workers to retire early on silly pensions and failed to tax properly and subsequently caused the near breakdown of the European economy. The economic problems of Greece in Europe are still not resolved. So much for stronger in Europe!

Do not listen to all the politicians and business leaders who advocate remaining in Europe. They all have only one aim in life – to make as much money as possible as quickly as possible from you and me. They do not have any interest in the freedom of the individual or the freedom of nation states. They are money orientated, already rich and interested only in making more money. Listen to the chancellor’s rhetoric, the Prime Minister’s urging, they want only to make more money. Never forget, in every country around the world, politicians are rich. The USA is proud to announce that anyone can become President, but the truth is that there has never been a poor President.

My overwhelming thoughts concern our need to retain our independence and not to drown in the unelected morass of greed and waste that engulfs the gravy train of Brussels bureaucracy. The Prime Minister has exhorted us to remain in Europe on the basis that we are stronger in, that this “will be a once-in-a-generation moment to shape the future of our country. Whatever the British people decide, I will make it work to the best of my abilities.”  Who is he kidding?  He has not reformed Europe and Europe will not allow Britain to shape the future. He will not remain Prime Minister if Britain votes to leave. No wonder he wants us to remain!

Your chance to vote is this week. There is no more time. The future of Britain is in the hands of the British electorate for once and the politicians and the business leaders will have to wait on British common sense. The economy, your affluence and the value of the pound will continue to rise and fall, irrespective of whether we remain in or leave Europe.

Remember, you will not get the chance to reclaim Britain’s independence ever again. Once you relinquish our sovereignty, it will be gone forever. You will have voted for the European Superstate. No one mentions it but rest assured that is the ultimate dream of  the unelected Brussels bureaucrats. The bigger their empire, the bigger their salaries. The Prime Minister has proved that the UK cannot, in substance, reform Europe.

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I will be voting Leave the European Union and I hope the majority will also seek a better future for the UK free from interference from Europe.

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Scotland Decides the Fate of the UK

UK as flag

This is the last day before the Scottish referendum and I feel compelled to make one last personal statement.

There are 4.2 million voters registered to take part in the referendum on Scottish independence. There are approximately 42 million voters in the remaining areas of the United Kingdom.
If the people living in Scotland vote Yes they will have effectively brought about the end of the United Kingdom. Never mind what happens to Scotland, a Yes vote will affect 10 times as many people outside Scotland. There is something very wrong in that. Judging by the panic and despair in David Cameron’s voice over the last few days, he has finally realised the damage he has done to the United Kingdom by signing the Edinburgh Agreement. If the vote is Yes he will be forever known as the Prime Minister who allowed the breakdown of the United Kingdom and would have to resign in shame. No wonder he is worried.

A Yes vote will affect the rest of the UK, most obviously, the physical size of the country itself.  Without Scottish MPs the size and political make-up of Parliament will change. Sterling is up and down with the changing forecasts. How will our standing within the UN, NATO and the EU be affected? Will we be regarded as the Dis-United Kingdom?

Time to Decide

Time to Decide

I cant blame the Scots if they did vote Yes, after all Alex Salmond is promising a stellar future free of interference from Westminster. He may have overlooked to tell you that Brussels has an even greater reputation for interference as he glibly assumes that Scotland will be welcomed into the embrace of the European Union. He has given the vote to young school children in Scotland and appears to dismiss the possibility that they may leave Scotland as the reality of independence takes hold.  There is no point in listing the possible disasters facing an independent Scotland because those supporting the No vote have been there and done that and those supporting the Yes vote have chosen to extol Utopia. Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon appear to gloss over any difficulties put to them by the media.

Politicians? Bah humbug!

The only saving grace is that the decision is still too close to call and that there appears to be a considerable proportion of voters who are considering the long term advantages of Union instead of the idealistic fervour of the Nationalists. Lets hope common sense prevails and we stand united.

That’s my opinion anyway. Your comments are welcome.

 

The Scottish Referendum – Counting Down

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It is less than ten days to go before the people who live in Scotland vote Yes or No to the question – “Should Scotland be an independent country?”

To clarify my mind in relation to this situation, I found it necessary to set out a few facts.

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is an independent country.

Great Britain is the name of the island made up of England, Wales and Scotland.

England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland are not independent countries but the United Kingdom is. The Union Jack also known as the Union Flag, is the national flag of the United Kingdom.

Union Jack flag

The closer we get to this referendum, the more nervous I get when I hear on the television and in the newspapers that we are getting closer to a possible change in the make-up of the U.K. It appears that opinion is moving closer to a decision in favour of an independent Scotland.

So, the Scots get their chance to vote on whether to leave the United Kingdom. When do we, the rest of the United Kingdom, get our chance to vote on whether we agree with the breakup of the Union?

Has a minority been given the right to vote on a constitutional matter that affects the majority? Why did anyone think that an independent Scotland would affect only the Scots?

May we presume that if the Scots do vote to become an independent country, then we will then be given the chance to vote on whether we agree with their decision to proceed with the breakup of the United Kingdom. It is not just a case of Scotland becoming independent, is it?

Have I missed something in all the rhetoric leading up to this momentous event? Is there some procedure lined up to enable the majority to express their opinion on this matter if Scotland does vote for a change? Did someone forget to put the second stage in the process?

If not, why was it arranged that only the Scots should have the chance to decide the future of the United Kingdom? For surely that is what the vote is about? It is not just about Scotland. If they become independent, then we will no longer be the United Kingdom. How come the people of the United Kingdom don’t get a say in the breakup of our country, the United Kingdom? If it is not important to the rest of the U.K. why is the Prime Minister, his coalition assistant and the leader of the Opposition all spending so much time and effort in trying to persuade the Scottish voters to vote NO.

Hadrians Wall

A return to border control?

In addition, I don’t understand how Scotland can suddenly become an independent country when it is not a country now. It is is an internal division of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, just like England and Wales and Northern Ireland. How do you suddenly announce that oh, by the way, we are an independent country now. Can we please join the UN, NATO, the Commonwealth and the EU? And oh, by the way, can we keep Her Majesty the Queen and the English Pound.?

Hey! I’m no politician, expert, councillor or business man with vested interests, I’m no guru, just an ordinary citizen. I disagree wholeheartedly with the idea of Scottish independence because I believe in the old adage “United we stand, Divided we Fall”. I believe in democracy and the right of the majority. Giving a few people the ability to break up a union after 300 years does not seem right or fair. I can’t influence the vote but hope that everyone in England, Wales and Northern Ireland would prefer to see and remain in a United Kingdom.

A United Kingdom

A United Kingdom

There you go I’ve said it now. If you have got this far, thank you for your time.

“Pic and slogans courtesy of http://www.aForceForGood.org.uk”

 

Dark days

One of my favourite contributors was describing yesterday how the dark days of December were taking their toll on his ability to photograph the avian visitors to his garden. I knew exactly what he  meant. I find that no sooner is it light enough to see properly,  I prepare and eat some lunch while reading blogs, and then the light is fading again. With no sense of discipline, I have not been out for a walk, have only just managed the vacuum cleaning and it is already too dark to capture the robin on the bird table. This lack of sunlight always brings on a sense of melancholy for me. The shortening days remind me of the shortening years. Time does go faster you know as you get older and proves the point that time is a relative thing. A week spent abroad in some exciting new destination always seems shorter than a boring week at work. When you are ten years old, one year is a tenth of your life and when you are sixty, one year is, well just another year.

Nevertheless, we are soon approaching the shortest day, the longest night. Night merging into day which struggles to shrug off the gloom and all of a sudden, the sun seems to have got lost, lost somewhere behind that grey mantle of cloud. A week, that’s all and then Hallelujah! the days will start to lengthen again. Yes, I know it’s still the beginning of winter but we will have turned the corner and Christmas is full of light anyway; which gives me an opportunity to show my little contribution to the illuminations –

"Time is an illusion"

Is that the Dr back there?

“Time is an illusion” ― Albert Einstein