Currently due to the ineptitude of half our political class and the party-advantage seeking of the other half, the UK is on the back foot in its negotiations with the EU. That must change. Essentially the UK’s offer to the EU should be this:
‘You have the right to organise yourselves in a political union if that is your wish but it is not ours. We are willing – and wish – to co-operate and trade with you as friends and equals. We are not, however, coming to you as a supplicant for favours. Therefore;
1. We shall not tariff you if you do not tariff us.
2. We shall recognise and treat as acceptable goods and services that comply with your regulatory standards if you similarly recognise and treat ours.
3. We shall respect your laws when we are in EU member states and we expect you to respect ours. You make your laws and we’ll make ours. UK courts and UK courts only shall have jurisdiction in the UK.
4. We shall give equal rights to all EU citizens already living in the UK including British Citizenship should they wish to apply for it and we expect the same rights be accorded to UK citizens living in EU member states.
5. We shall not impose onerous restrictions on EU citizens wishing to come to the UK as tourists or as self-supporting workers and we expect the same of you. We shall not, however, automatically provide benefits and housing to those who come here who are not self-supporting, until they have paid taxes into our economy for a reasonable period, and we shall regard it as reasonable if you do likewise.
6. We shall, through NATO, continue to defend you. In return, we shall expect that you do not make economic warfare against us as you currently propose so to do. We cannot, however, undertake to defend in a real war those who seek to make economic war against us in peacetime.’
Essentially the EU’s current position is this:
‘We’ve built this thing and it’s horrendously expensive to run. Without you, we’ll all have to pay more, because it won’t get any cheaper. We won’t employ any fewer Eurocrats and they won’t take a pay cut. We won’t get any more efficient or democratic. No chance! This is the way it is, like it or lump it. If you leave, we’ll punish you, even if it means cutting off our nose to spite our face, even if it means making German car workers and French winegrowers unemployed. If you stay, nothing changes. Except that we’ll federalise all debt to bail out the bankrupts. Again. And again. We’ll also federalise all taxes. Oh, and one more thing. We have the ambition to throw our weight about with an EU army. (Sorry Ukraine – it was our fault for provoking the Russkies and as a result, they got a strop on and invaded you – well, can’t win ‘em all!) Your armed forces will be under a unified command. A bit like Hitler pulled in the Romanians and Hungarians and Italians. You get the idea?’
Ours is the more logical and honourable position. We can chicken out or tough it out. I’m not chicken. We must tough it out. Eventually logic will win. The EU will either save itself by reverting to being a trading bloc or it will be imploded by its own insane imperialistic ambitions.
Last December I sent a letter to every MP in the UK’s House of Commons. It answered all the phoney arguments and scare-stories put about by the Remain camp. The answers are as valid today as they were then. I love my country. In co-operation with others, we can forge a new Europe, but it has to be one in which the people have a real say. in the EU as it is presently constituted, they do not. Some say “Stay and reform it from within.” Sadly, that is impossible. The EU has immunised itself from democracy and is impervious to reform. Reform is not in the interests of those calling the shots. Here’s my Brexit letter –
20 December 2017
The Undermining of The Referendum Result
I am not one of your constituents but I hope you will take the time needed to read this. I am writing to every MP in the House of Commons.
On Thursday 23 June 2016 the British people voted to leave the European Union. Never in British history were so many votes cast at a single election for one person, party or issue. They voted to leave in actuality, not in name only, in actuality. They voted to have the UK run by politicians they can elect and/or throw out. They voted against having the UK run from abroad by commissioners in whose employment they have no say, and likewise no say in the ending of their employment. The Eurocon-artists point to the European Parliament and tell us we’re represented there by MEPs. In reality MEPs have minimal power. The only real function of the EP is to camouflage the undemocratic character of the whole enterprise and to thereby con the people of Europe. As a campaigner with The Motorcycle Action Group of the UK since 1982, an early member of The Federation of European Motorcyclists from 1988 and the founder of its expanded successor The Federation of European Motorcyclists’ Associations in 1999, I worked with numerous MEPs over the years. It was obvious to me from the start, however, that in trying to sway the Commission via the Parliament, the inequality of arms was all but insuperable; we were opposing ants to tanks. I long ago lost count of the number of times MPs and MEPs told me that they had no power to prevent whatever was the latest attack on motorcycling; whatever it was it came from Brussels and there was nothing they could do about it. The net result is that today the motorcycling community in Europe is a pale and aged shadow of what it was when I started riding, denied new entrants by successive driving licence directives that have made motorcycling unaffordable for the greater mass of young would-be bikers. You may not care about motorcycling – you probably don’t – but its near-destruction is typically symptomatic of what happens when an activity is regulated to death.
And regulation, we all know, is the only real product of the European Commission.
I now briefly set out my response to the arguments advanced against Brexit since the vote.
“It was an advisory vote – we don’t have to leave.”
No, it wasn’t. Yes, we do. MPs such as David Lammy were trotting out this line immediately after the vote. Nobody but nobody voted on the basis that it was ‘advisory’. The arrogance and dishonesty displayed by those such as Lammy is staggering. What if the vote had gone the other way, to remain, and the government had sought to take us out of the EU anyway. Would they have said “Oh that’s fine, it was only an advisory vote; the government has the right to ignore the public’s ‘advice’ and take us out anyway”? Like hell they would.
“We should have a second referendum.”
This is the standard EU-con when a national electorate tells the Eurocrats to get stuffed. Yeah, we know, we’re meant to vote and keep on voting until we get it right, until we’re worn out and demoralised and apathetic, and after that we’ll never ever be allowed to vote again. Who do they think they are conning? It might have worked before on the Danes and French, Irish and Dutch, but we’re not mugs.
“We should have a second referendum because Boris & Co lied about the millions that would supposedly go to the NHS.”
Did they lie? Probably. Did Osborne, Cameron, Clegg & Co lie for Remain? Definitely. Has every British government lied about the EU to get us in and keep us in? Absolutely. I do not know of a single Leave voter who was swayed by the promised millions. We are not fools. We know that politicians are all liars at least some of the time, a few of most of the time, but none – that I know of anyway – to be fair, lie to us all of the time. We’re even smart and realistic enough to know that sometimes we need them to lie in the country’s interests. So, get real. Nobody voted out for the money. We voted out because we want to live in a truly free truly democratic country where we elect those who govern us, simple as. We weren’t conned in the referendum and they can’t con us now either.
“We should have a referendum on the final deal.”
After the ‘advisory vote’ and ‘let’s have a second referendum’ try-ons, I thought I’d seen the high-water mark of Remainiac con-ology, but then this one was dreamed up. If there’s the promise of a ‘referendum on the deal’ then that incentivises the EU to play the hardest of hard balls with the UK. If the Remainiacs get their way on this then the only deal on the table will be a lousy one, and they know it. I know it’s not parliamentary language to call an MP a traitor but any MP who supports the ‘referendum on the final deal’ is just that. Those advancing that argument aim to undermine our country, weaken it and place it at a fatal disadvantage. Anyone who tries to so con the British people as to help Juncker and cronies crush and imprison us, is a traitor pure and simple. If any are so arguing in good faith however, which I doubt, then then they are just too plain stupid to be let anywhere near power. If the UK were to now try a U-turn to stay in the EU then we would find he worst terms imaginable being imposed on us indefinitely. We would be in the position of the husband who leaves his wife and then goes crawling back, begging for a reconciliation. For the first time in history the UK would have committed an act of mass national cowardice. Nobody would take it seriously ever again. If we fail to follow through on Brexit, what will keep Argentina out of the Falklands, or Spain out of Gibraltar?
“The remain vote must be respected.”
How? By us staying in the EU? By us nominally leaving whilst still being in effect governed by the Commission but with even less say than the pitiful ineffective fig-leaf of representation that full membership confers? It’s like saying the non-Conservative vote must be respected by a Labour PM remaining in power after losing an election or vice-versa. How about respecting the will of the people, the ones who got the majority? We won. Respect the decision that was taken. Get us out, completely and totally, no more kow-towing to Brussels, no more EU court jurisdictions, no EU law in the UK, just UK laws made by UK elected politicians.
“We’ll be less secure against terrorism.”
So, let’s say MI5 rumbles a terrorist plot to crash a plane into the Eiffel Tower. Because we are a civilised nation, because we seek to create a world in which all peoples benefit from the rule of civilised law, I would absolutely expect our security services to notify and co-operate with its French counterparts, and all other relevant agencies, to prevent that attack, and I have every confidence that the British Government, of whatever party, would require and lend that assistance. So, what then would our current EU partners do? Would they keep quiet and let it happen simply because we have left their club? That would be a very uncivilised, unintelligent and unfriendly act, tantamount to an act of war itself. Is that what Juncker & Co are threatening us with, that they will insist EU member nations are complicit in acts of war against us? If not, what are they saying? International co-operation on security matters of mutual interest has never, hitherto, been dependent on membership of a super-state. We have co-operated with the US for the last hundred years without us needing to become the 51st state. If the EU wants to co-operate in the future it should always find a willing partner, but not a subject, in the UK.
“Brexit will weaken the economy.”
Maybe it will, maybe it won’t. Maybe it will be weaker in the short term and stronger in the long term. A lifetime of studying politics, economics, and history, has taught me that economic conditions are transient and utterly unpredictable. Political change on the other hand can be very predictable and long-lasting indeed. Dictatorships once established may eventually fall, but it can take a very long time – sometimes multiple lifetimes. The Soviet Union lasted 69 years but the country is still not a democracy 26 years later. 68 years after the Chinese revolution, China is no nearer democracy. What I do know about our economy and every economy, is that the more people you have making regulations, especially if those people are lifelong inhabitants of the politico-bureaucratic bubble, many of whom have never had a proper job, the less likely that economy is to be competitive.
“We’ll have less clout in the world.”
We are a small nation that punches above its weight for multi-various reasons. The wide usage of the English language, the respect in which English law is held and the degree to which it has been exported, and cultural institutions, in particular the BBC, are but a few. We shall have to take whatever comes in an ever-changing world, whether we are in or out, and we shall have to deal with it. Personally, in life and business and politics I’ve always found that over-planning is always a mistake because events soon render all plans obsolete. Napoleon said “No plan survives contact with the enemy.” Mike Tyson put it rather more prosaically as “Everyone has a plan until you punch them in the mouth.” If there is one big thing, however, that we do need to do as a nation to improve our chances for the future, it is to educate future generations of children better than we currently do and to provide remedial education for the large sections of the adult population that left the education system having achieved standards far below those of which they were capable, and which our country needs in a workforce. That subject would need a long essay on its own however so I shall not write more on it here.
“Jobs will be threatened. Some will be lost and others exported out of the UK.”
Yes, they will. And this has been the case for the entire 44 years that we’ve been in the EU. Likewise, new jobs will be created in the UK and others will be exported to the UK. This is the nature of economics. It is dynamic and ever-changing and as already noted above, economic conditions are transient and in reality, utterly unpredictable.
“We won’t be able to get the workers we need from abroad.”
When we leave we can decide who we let in. It really is that simple. If farmers need pickers and can’t find them in the UK I really don’t see any UK government denying visas. So, are the Remainers saying that Juncker & Co won’t allow EU workers to come to the UK? I don’t think so. More scaremongering. Again, who are they trying to con? I don’t have a problem with people coming to the UK if they come here to work and support themselves. If, however they are simply coming with a demand to be housed and fed ahead of our own people then that is a problem. We need to be able to control our own borders and choose who we let in and other countries need to be able to do the same. It is right and noble to help others with their problems, but if their problems become our problems then nobody is helped. It is not immoral or racist for a country to look first to the well-being of its own citizens. That is, in fact, what every other country in the world does and if we don’t do the same then our people will finish last. When a school is suddenly faced with having to teach 20 or 30 or more ethnic groups, as some now are, none of whom have English as a first language and some of whom have no English at all, it is axiomatic that the native British children’s education will be diluted unless proportionately greater resources are directed their way. We know that where state schools are concerned, that does not happen. Those with the wherewithal to have their children privately schooled can afford to say “Let all come”, but the less well-off, who do not have that choice, suffer. The same is true in housing. A Swedish friend of mine, a social democrat to her fingertips, related to me how her 35-year old son had waited years for the Swedish equivalent of a council house and was due to be housed imminently, but then suddenly found his waiting time back in the years again as their community had been required to house hundreds of ‘refugees’. Again, the elite make feel-good decisions for which the poorer pay.
“We’ll lose the ability to trade freely.”
The Remainers say we have free trade in the EU. In reality we don’t. If trade depends on us paying protection money it is by definition not free, and protection money is in effect what we pay at the moment and what the EU is continuing to demand. Likewise, the EU restricts the basis on which we trade with the rest of the world. We need to offer the current EU members an alternative vision of real free trade.
“Brexit threatens workers’ rights.”
Why must this be so? It’s a fallacy. Britain led the world in creating the template for trade unionism. Like the vast majority of Leave voters, I am absolutely in favour of workers’ rights and in any case, the body of EU law is being ported over into UK law. If anyone tries to repeal the bits that benefit workers we can fight it line by line. That is democracy. We can’t do that with anything Brussels imposes.
“Brexit threatens environmental protections.”
Refer to the previous paragraph. All the same answers apply. These are typical of woolly-minder Remainer con-ology. In the Guardian on 11 January 2013, Simon Sweeney, lecturer in international political economy at York University wrote –
At last we may get a debate on Britain’s relationship with Europe (Guardian Leader, 11 January 2013). What did the EEC/EU ever do for us? Not much, apart from: providing 57% of our trade; structural funding to areas hit by industrial decline; clean beaches and rivers; cleaner air; lead free petrol; restrictions on landfill dumping; a recycling culture; cheaper mobile charges; cheaper air travel; improved consumer protection and food labelling; a ban on growth hormones and other harmful food additives; better product safety; single market competition bringing quality improvements and better industrial performance; break up of monopolies; Europe-wide patent and copyright protection; no paperwork or customs for exports throughout the single market; price transparency and removal of commission on currency exchanges across the eurozone; freedom to travel, live and work across Europe; funded opportunities for young people to undertake study or work placements abroad; access to European health services; labour protection and enhanced social welfare; smoke-free workplaces; equal pay legislation; holiday entitlement; the right not to work more than a 48-hour week without overtime; strongest wildlife protection in the world; improved animal welfare in food production; EU-funded research and industrial collaboration; EU representation in international forums; bloc EEA negotiation at the WTO; EU diplomatic efforts to uphold the nuclear non-proliferation treaty; European arrest warrant; cross border policing to combat human trafficking, arms and drug smuggling; counter terrorism intelligence; European civil and military co-operation in post-conflict zones in Europe and Africa; support for democracy and human rights across Europe and beyond; investment across Europe contributing to better living standards and educational, social and cultural capital.
This is the classic Euro-con: They make out, firstly, that none of this could have been done without EU membership. As I have already pointed out however, the UK led the world in workers’ rights and it and other countries were passing measures on environmental protection long before Britain joined the EU. Secondly, they make out that all such measures will automatically be rolled-back and/or lost if we leave. Again though, as already pointed out, EU is being ported wholesale into UK law. Thirdly they tell us about all the ‘funding’ projects get from the EU, whilst conveniently forgetting that we handed over that money to the EU in the first place. Net of its £4bn rebate, the UK pays the EU £13bn a year. Of that the EU then spends £8bn in the UK. In other words, it costs us £1.63 to get £1 back. Lastly they tell us that all these supposed ‘benefits’ that only the EU could ever have brought make it worth accepting the dictatorship of the Commission. This is the worst most insidious lie of all. Freedom is NEVER worth giving up, for any amount of money.
When I read such drivel, by a supposedly learned lecturer, I am so glad that I did not waste my time and money going to university, to be so misled by such an idiot, especially one so gormless as to think that paying £1.63 to get a pound back is a good deal.
“Interest rates will rise.”
Yes, they will, whether we are in or out. When Bank of England base rate is 0.5% you don’t have to be an economic genius to understand that rates really only have one way to go, because the downside potential is minute. When I started work aged 16, in January 1980, it was for a company that was writing 15% mortgages. Six months later we were writing them at 17.5%. Rates have been all over the place in my lifetime and we cope. That’s what we British do – we cope. Rates will rise but there’s no reason for the rise to be steep or sudden or to the levels of the 1980s. Again, more panic mongering. Again, who do they think they are conning?
“The City of London will lose its dominant place in European finance.”
Whenever a change is mooted that the very rich and powerful dislike, this is always portrayed as an inevitable consequence. Financial institutions locate according mainly, to where they can a) find the skills they need; b) general stability and the rule of civilised law (e.g. no daily riots and/or bombs going off and no kleptocrats in power). London meets these requirements and will continue to do so. So long as a business-friendly environment is cultivated – and no, that does not mean a tax-haven – then I do not see London playing second fiddle to Frankfurt anytime soon, whatever Goldman Sachs might say.
“Scotland will leave the Union.”
Maybe, but I doubt it. I love Scotland and the Scots. I believe in the United Kingdom and I hope Scotland remains a part. If it votes to leave though, it should be let go. I don’t think the Scots are that stupid, however. A small vocal minority, who’ve overdosed on Buckfast and re-runs of Braveheart, may scream for independence, but the vast majority of Scots are smart enough to know that dumping Sterling for the Euro would kill the Scottish economy. A truly independent Scotland would need its own currency for a start. It could not print Bank of England Pounds, because that’s called forgery, despite the Scottish Nationalists being too dumb to work that out when they had their last referendum. Any Scottish ‘Pound’, or whatever they called it, would have to float against Sterling like any other currency. Weighed down by its share of the national debt and the SNP’s inclination to buy popularity with other people’s money and lacking the subsidy it has hitherto enjoyed under the Barnett Formula, it would more likely sink.
“There should be a quadruple lock.”
David Lammy MP voiced this one the morning after he lost. It would be as logical to say that there should be a ‘lock’ on a city basis, or a town basis, or a village basis. I’m sure Mr Lammy could go on developing every greater multiple-locks until he found one that served the Remainer purpose. Why doesn’t he just ask for a Lammy-lock so that nobody in the UK can do anything without his personal approval?
I think that takes care of all the main arguments against Brexit I’ve heard so far. I now turn to the Remainer backlash that has gone on ever since June 2016.
The day after the Referendum I was told that my vote should not count because of my age. I was then 52 with, statistically at any rate, 35 years of life before me.
Next, I was told that my vote shouldn’t count because I’d not been to university. Well, it’s a fact, I haven’t. I started work at 16 and ever since I’ve been subsidising university students with my taxes. For 24 years I was an employee and for the last 13 I’ve been an employer, all taxes duly paid. I don’t have a degree but, miraculously, I’ve never been unemployed and have managed to start a business from scratch, run it at a profit, and create employment and wealth.
Next, I was told I wasn’t “decent” according to a caller to BBC Radio Leeds on the morning after the Referendum. Leeds as a whole was “decent” apparently, for recording a (small) Remain majority, so by implication those of us who voted were not “decent”.
Next, I was told by some hysterical Remainer harpy that I was personally responsible for the murder of Jo Cox MP. I kid you not. She told me this during a BBC Five Live debate at Media City Manchester.
Next, I was called a racist and a ‘little Englander’. Actually, I joined the Anti-Nazi League in 1977 aged 14 and my views on race and immigration have not changed much since. As for being a “little Englander”, as noted above, I founded the Federation of European Motorcyclists’ Associations – FEMA. I always believed that our best chance of success in FEMA would come through co-operation with our overseas counterparts, and so it proved, but to co-operate with each other, we never needed to tell our individual member organisations how to run their affairs in their own countries.
The abuse and vilification of Leave voters has continued unabated for 18 months. Recently the Remainer Twitterite @JamesKPatterson incited others of his ilk to destroy my business by trolling it. Such are the progressive, liberal, democratically-minded university-educated, bright young things of the metropolitan elite who hate us and smear us as thick, not-decent, racist murderers. Why? Just because we voted. That’s right – voted. V-O-T-E-D.
We know we weren’t supposed to win. We know that if the politicos had thought there was any real chance of it happening, we’d never have been allowed the Referendum. They stacked the deck. Osborne threatened economic Armageddon. The BBC from the Dimblebys down did its bit. Cameron blew a small fortune in publicly funded pro-Remain propaganda. But after all that, they still lost. We, the people, won. Ever since though they’ve been trying to rob us. It’s as if Plymouth Argyll FC beat Manchester United in the FA cup and instead of being presented with the trophy bedecked with dark green and white ribbons, they were told to come back in a year’s time, while in between times the big clubs got together to find ways of reinterpreting the rule book to say that Manchester United really won after all.
Now we’re getting a bit fed up. We’re not worn down, we’ve not been beaten into a state of apathy and we’re not giving up. We are not unreasonable. We didn’t think there’d be a vote and that would be it; we didn’t expect to be out of the EU on the Friday morning the result came in. We did, however, expect that all our politicians – all of them – would accept the result and work together, flat out, for a good result for our country. Instead, all we’ve seen, from all quarters, is an ongoing attempt to undermine the result, steal our victory and lock the UK in the EU. Instead of helping us escape they’re helping the Eurocrats build a stronger prison to keep us in. They’ve become like Colonel Nicholson in Bridge on the River Kwai.
We know they’re trying to rob us but we’re not letting them get away with it. If, however, by some great feat of conmanship, they do manage to either keep us in the EU or else take us out in name only, with us still paying into the EU budget and the writ of EU law running here, they should just do us one last favour and vote themselves out of existence, close down Parliament, sack the Sovereign and hand all power to the Commission in name as well as in fact, and not insult our intelligence by inviting us to vote any more for paid robots with no actual power.
I return to where I started: On Thursday 23 June 2016 the British people voted to leave the European Union. I call on you and every MP to work now in our country’s interest, to take us properly out of the EU and the single market. If you want to call that a ‘hard Brexit’ then so be it, because ‘hard Brexit’ translates as ‘strong Brexit’. A ‘soft Brexit’ is no Brexit at all.
Leaving is not a leap in the dark, but it is a great leap, and you can’t leap a chasm in a number of short hops. The disunity and party-advantage seeking in which you are all currently indulging can only give aid and comfort to those who seek to do the UK down. Be assured, the electorate will not forget or forgive it. We won, fair and square. Whatever party you are in, you should now get behind the government, just as Attlee and the rest got behind Churchill in 1940, work for the good of the country and deliver the outcome for which the electorate voted.
Neil F Liversidge