21 2 mins 8 yrs

Is there a irreversible momentum developing that will yet lead to the United KIngdom actually leaving the EU?

It is beginning to feel like that as the political class eventually are forced to catch up with the mood of the British people. Last week saw the UK Independence Party capture almost 24% of the vote in local council elections, sending a shiver through the spine of the acquiescent quislings at Westminster and now this…

The former chancellor of the exchequer, Lord Lawson, has called for the UK to leave the European Union.

Writing in the Times, he said British economic gains from an exit “would substantially outweigh the costs” He describes the EU as “a bureaucratic monstrosity” and added that after an association with Brussels of 40 years “the case for exit is clear”. Prime Minister David Cameron is facing calls to bring forward a promised referendum on the UK’s EU membership.

Cameron, of course, is deeply committed to keeping us locked into the EU and those foolish conservatives that look to him for REAL Leadership on this issue are kidding themselves. However change is coming, I think, and perhaps the people of the UK will finally get to speak on the issue of our continued membership of the EU and when they do, I think they will say a resounding NO.

Lawson is only stating the obvious and if anything he plays down the sheer horror of what the EU has come to represent but for all that his intervention is moderately helpful to those of us who have argued FOR YEARS we need out of this monstrosity.


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21 thoughts on “THE LEAVING KIND…

  1. Yeah, be great to get out now considering there’s a deal between Europe and the US coming soon! Then blighty can really be a third world country, out on the edge of Europe and on the outside of this trade deal. Very wise….! 🙁

  2. Do we have credible poll numbers on the percentage of British who would like to exit the EU?

    My understanding is that the current tariffs on trade between the US and the EU are nearly nothing – averaging 3%. That is itself a great trade deal. There is no good reason why a newly independent UK could not get the same deal.

    Even if the EU was angry at a UK that was leaving, it hopefully would not be stupidly vindictive towards the UK. Trade wars would help no one. And just as the UK would want continued access to the EU markets, the reverse would be true. The UK market for French wines and German cars is not small. There is no -good- reason why any trade relations had to change in a significant way.

  3. Whilst I like and respect the US I am under no illusions that the US will do what is best for the US, so I would expect the UK to look to the countries of the Commonwealth to (re)build trading links as well as the rest of the world.
    What did for us before was short term planning and industrial warfare. Poor management and bolshie workers.
    I think we are entering a new period of economic reality. Faced with the choice between a future as a European sink estate supplied by Europe or a future as an independent nation, doing what many other nations are doing, I’d go for independence.

  4. The EU cannot harm the UK on trade. Only London can do that (which it might well do in the event of us ejecting the EU).

    All we need to is maintain free trade with the block in terms of imports, which is the point of trade from either side. That’s enough. Exports are the price paid for importing what we want. If the EU erected barriers, effectively punishing Europeans, their loss. Of course, London probably would erect barriers too, which would be to completely miss the point of trade.

    It won’t happen anyway. Thousands of large exporters across Europe will not allow it.

  5. “It won’t happen anyway. Thousands of large exporters across Europe will not allow it.”

    So who’s benefitting Pete?
    The perception is that the UK takes far more in imports from Europe than we export there. Secondly though, the EU is ruinously expensive and is destroying the economies of the weaker nations. The EU was supposed to bring employment and prosperity tro the Europeans.
    I don’t see it. Do you?

  6. Agit8ed –

    Anyone who thinks that a supranational soviet can promote wealth needs his head examining. It cannot ever happen.

    Yes, the UK has a trade deficit with the other EU nations on the whole. It’s no problem. Let me be clear: trade deficits are no problem. I have tried explaining this but no-one reads anything anymore.

  7. If the EU erected barriers, effectively punishing Europeans, their loss.

    But a loss also to the companies that would have exported into the new EU, and to those who work for those companies.

    But again, if there is any common sense at all, there will be no unusual barriers and no need for any hostility.

    The UK would not be without leverage in any such negotiations.

    If the EU were to be hostile, they’ll first target the City of London, your unique moneymaker. But some of the chowderheads here might actually support that.

  8. The EU has targeted and is targeting the City. It wants a financial transaction tax, which would put a charge on every financial transaction, and would disproportionately hit the UK.

    It’s a piece of economic warfare, in effect, by our friends in Brussels.

  9. “Let me be clear: trade deficits are no problem. I have tried explaining this but no-one reads anything anymore.”

    That’s because trade deficits ARE a problem Pete.

    First of all men of honour should want to pull their weight.
    A productive, exporting economy creates work for its citizens.
    It is much easier to collaborate with other nations when they respect you and your skills/capabilities.
    It is easier to borrow money and attract inward investment.

  10. Agit8ed –

    The point of trade is what we get out of it, i.e. what goods we can get from whoever we trade with.

    Exports are simply a price we pay for imports. If we are exporting less, in order to get more of what others abroad are producing for us, then great. It’s the same as paying less for your food at the supermarket. You wouldn’t insist on paying more at the checkout, so why insist on paying more for your imports?

  11. Pete,
    for all the reasons I stated above.
    I stand to be corrected on this, but I believe that a healthy exporting economy is doing more than simply paying for its imports. Germany, China, India and Brazil amongst many others don’t seem to understand the point you are making.

  12. Agit8ed –

    A “healthy exporting economy”, assuming free trade is in force, is significant only in that it tells producers some people want to buy their goods. But really, it makes no difference to a producer whether his widget is bought by a foreigner or someone down the road, just so long as his widgets are desirable.

    Look, a balance of trade deficit is only one half of the equation, just one half of the picture. It’s a balance, see? So where we have a trade deficit we have corresponding capital flows to balance it all out. It all nets out to zero. This fixation with exports is mercantilist nonsense.

    Plus, this trade deficit idea is full of nonsense. For example, if IKEA build a store in the UK it will be investing money here and spending money here, both to build and operate. Yet all the money it invests here in building and operating stores will count as “trade deficit”.

    Forget the idea of trade deficits. They lead you up blind alleys and into nonsense arguments.

  13. This is going to be a defining moment in British politics. Cameron will fail to “re-negotiate” anything of significance, so the referendum will be yes or no to the current arrangements. And it seems that the answer is likely to be no.

    But leaving may not be a panacea for all problems. Norway has access to the single market, but in return it has to accept freedom of labour, which means that the Romanians will be just as entitled to go there next years as to the UK. If it leaves the club, the UK could be faced with the same offer, take it or leave it.

  14. Boy oh boy, I’d say no to that deal.

    For Norway, its especially stupid.

    They don’t make much of anything, and their oil and fish would be accepted anywhere.

    Put the thinking caps on and plot an exit strategy. You always have leverage, if you care to use it.

  15. Peter –

    Oslo chose that. Switzerland has access to the single market via its membership of EFTA and bilateral agreements with the EU.

    We can do exactly as the Swiss have done if we wish. In any case, the only advantage of the single market is what we can import from it, as I’ve tried to explain to Agit8ed. Simply leaving the EU and keeping inward trade free, whatever Brussels decides to do, would provide all the benefits we need.

  16. Outward trade is very important too.

    It is ridiculous to pretend otherwise.

    Your big exporters / job providers will not agree with that flawed analysis.

    You need to use the leverage that you don’t think that you have, but which you do indeed have.

  17. “Outward trade” is anything you sell, whether to a neighbour or someone abroad. Whether or not the buyer is abroad is irrelevent.

    When a New Yorker flogs something to a Texan, that’s a trade deficit for Texas with regard to New York. Quick Austin, Texas needs trade barriers with New York!

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