No, don\’t fall for this EU scam

A group of senior politicians in Brussels is to propose “second-class” EU status for Britain in a dramatic shift in thinking by the strongest supporters of a united Europe.

They are to suggest that the UK should become an “associate member” under plans which would result in it staying in the EU’s single market but being stripped of its commissioner in Brussels, MEPs, and its right of veto in the European Council.

No, no, no.

Describing what associate membership status would look like, he wrote: “Participation in the EU institutions would be limited. In the case that the UK opts for associate membership based on trade and the single market, retention of a British judge at the Court of Justice would be eminently sensible, but the case for a British Commissioner would be less convincing.

Unh, unh.

This doesn\’t work: because damn near anything can be smuggled in under Single Market rules. The taxation of corporations for example. Whether or not to reduce the use of landfill (no, seriously, the actual route by which landfill use is controlled is single market rules. Holland can\’t use landfill because to do so is to rediscover the North Sea. Therefore everyone must reduce landfill use in order to preserve fair competition in the single market.). Insurance and annuity laws for men and women: sure, at the moment they\’re under equity rules. But they could as easily come under single market ones. REACH is currently about the environment. Easy enough to put it under single market.

And don\’t forget: we\’re talking about an entire continent that believes that a single market requires rules and regulations about everything. That civil, Roman or Napoleonic law thing.

It\’s actually this which is precisely the thing we want to escape. That ever growing encrustation of barnacles on the ship of state.

We desperately need to leave the Single Market. And then come back with a trade deal for it: in which we say that sure, your gaff, your rules. So anyone wanting to export to the EU will have to obey single market rules. But the other 80% of our economy shall be free of them for our gaff our rules.

The Single Market, viewed as a free trade area, is just great. The Single Market as it is, a highly regulated and bureaucratic institution, is exactly what we want to escape. Which means that we really do not want to take this offer.

After all, look who is proposing it: the Union of European Federalists. They wouldn\’t be suggesting it if it meant that we actually would be free of them now would they?

4 comments on “No, don\’t fall for this EU scam

  1. It is interesting that even the EU is starting to see that British membership is not on the whole good for either side. If they want to federate, well, it would be bad for us, but not such a big deal. We can stay in and get the worst of both worlds, or we can get out and let them go to Hell their own way.

    Good to see Britain is such an irritant – and I suspect such a popular irritant across the EU – that they are finally thinking of getting rid of us.

    NAFTA is looking better all the time.

  2. I’ve made this point before, but civil/Roman/Napoleonic law does NOT require rules and regulations about everything any more than common law.

    Civil law defers to statute, common law defers to precedent. Both systems have their advantages and disadvantages, and in real life there’s a great deal of blurring between the two.

    This is not a stick with which to beat the EU.

  3. in a dramatic shift in thinking by the strongest supporters of a united Europe.

    Awww, how sweet. They still think people care. The original purpose of the EU – to stop centuries of war – is pretty much null and void now.

    How did the ideal of free trade across borders turn into a protectionist empire? (If you’re in you can trade. Everyone else, stay out.)

    While we’re at it, what about NATO? Still around? What’s their purpose now exactly?

  4. “This doesn’t work: because damn near anything can be smuggled in under Single Market rules. ”

    A similar effect defeats the intended use of the US Constitution, limiting Congress to enumerated powers, by having any number of things smuggled in under “regulation of interstate commerce” (“To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes”), and forget the Tenth Amendment. Another ploy is to make federal funding for one thing conditional on passing legislation about something else (that might at best be tangentially related).

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