The EU Referendum: A Quick Fix?   2 comments

On 23rd June, following David Cameron’s renegotiation of the terms of UK membership, the British electorate will vote in a national referendum on whether to leave or remain in the EU.

Veteran anti-establishment socialist and host of Sputnik on Russia Today, George Galloway, gave a surprise speech to Grassroots Out on Friday 19th February 2016:

“Nigel [Farage] and I agree on hardly anything at all. But we do agree at least on one thing…It is the demand that Britain should be an independent, sovereign, and democratic country and that means leaving the European Union!”

He got a rapturous applause. Some people weren’t so happy he was there and they shouted out “anti-Semite” or “pro-Russian traitor” or any number of inanities. But George Galloway turned up to speak at what was a largely UKIP-type event, which is undoubtedly progress.

I want to see an alliance of anti-Political Class and anti-neoconservative people on the Left and on the Right. That seems to me to be one of the most important and realistic strategic aims of those of a broadly libertarian inclination. Only that way can you bring to an end the Cameron-Blair consensus.

If this EU campaign leads to that, it will have had a useful function. In 2003, the Conservative Party removed Iain Duncan Smith as leader to usher in Michael Howard, the caretaker leader who smoothed the way for the Blairite David Cameron. Cameron has hollowed out the party, with free thinkers no longer given positions of importance, and with its annual conferences highly stage-managed and business-like. Men of quality, especially Cameron’s leadership rival David Davis, were side-lined and an appeal was made to Liberal Democrat supporters instead of traditionalist conservatives.

If this takeover was to be reversed, I’m not saying I’d re-join the party – the froth of day to day party politics is little more than entertainment for the cynic – but it would mean a much better Government. It would also mean a much better Conservative Party and an end to the post-Blair consensus. However, if Mr Dave is succeeded by George Osborne, who apparently calls Blair “The Master”, we won’t have the seen the end of that consensus.

This is what I’d like see: an end to Cameron’s premiership; the Conservative Party close to committing fratricide; and ultimately a realignment. If we really want “our country back” then we need the neoconservative Political Class people like George Osborne to be side-lined in much the same way as David Davis has been. In short, as well as Brexit, we need a Conservative Party run by conservatives. That will require a similar leadership election in my old party to that of the Labour Party’s election of Jeremy Corbyn last year.

If we get all of this, then the leaders of the two major parties will be men who have some respect for the British Constitution. Yes, Jeremy Corbyn is a socialist. But he is in broadly the same tradition as Tony Benn. Jeremy Corbyn has respect for the old procedures and institutions of the British Constitution; he sometimes pulls Mr Dave up in Prime Minister’s Question Time or in debates on the former’s non-observance of important conventions. If we were to have men of substance running both major parties in Westminster, then British politics might once again become worth engaging with.

All of this is more important than whether or not we leave the EU. Let’s not forget that Parliament is sovereign. This merely consultative referendum demonstrates that. Parliament can take us out of the EU if our executive wants it to. The EU has no power of its own, being a cartel of various European states “pooling” their sovereignty. Therefore, the enemy is not in Brussels, but in Westminster.

Of course we should leave the EU; there would be many incidental benefits. We would rid ourselves of a number of environmental, socialistic, and pro-corporate regulations and directives and so on. But the chief benefit of leaving the EU would be to reveal the naked Emperor in Westminster. Our own Political Class would become more visible and they would have to search around for another way of covering up their own policies.

We will have to be vigilant if we leave. We cannot glibly and complacently assume that if we leave the EU, people like Nigel Farage will be elected to Parliament and form the next Government. It won’t happen. If we leave the EU, we shall have the same Political Class and the same Government, and what is more, these traitors will be free from any restrictions that the EU does indeed impose upon them.

It’s all very well saying that leaving the EU is a Good Thing if you – wrongly – think that the UK Supreme Court under Lord Neuberger and the Westminster Parliament dominated by the Heir to Blair, and all of our other corrupted institutions are run by fundamentally good people. Our political parties, too, would still support Open Door immigration. In fact, Cabinet Eurosceptics and indeed Nigel Farage himself argue that one reason to leave the EU is so that we can receive even more non-European migrants!

David Cameron wants to stay in because the Political Class has not yet found another fig leaf to replace the EU and so be ready for a nasty campaign. We know how effective he is at winning a General Election with virtually no policies at all, or with policies he has no intention of implementing. We also saw in the 2011 AV Referendum and the 2014 Scottish Referendum just how sly he and his colleagues can be. He will use every trick in the book to discredit the opposition.

It would be very sad indeed if, while fighting a referendum which we may not even win, and which may ultimately be a waste of time, effort, and money, that anti-neoconservative, anti-Political Class Leftist-Rightist coalition did not emerge, or if Cameron emerges unscathed. If the result is an “In” vote, it may have all been for nothing.


2 responses to “The EU Referendum: A Quick Fix?

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  1. Pingback: PETER HITCHENS: Tory Establishment ‘Vote Leave’ Doesn’t Want To Britain To Exit EU | The Libertarian Alliance Blog

  2. I’m for staying in myself, yet its an interesting point you raise about the potential rise of what you call a “anti neoconservative, anti-political class Leftist-Rightist coalition”. I would however question if there are any serious political groups on the Left who would really throw in with the Leave campaign.

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