Baroness Ludford: A Farewell Note

Baroness Ludford in a typical pose

Baroness Ludford in a typical pose

In Strasbourg, I often attend meetings of the Kangaroo Group. I admire their commitment to free trade, while rejecting their passion for European integration (they don’t seem to see the contradiction between the two objectives).  I get to learn a lot about current developments, while enjoying the opportunity to wind them up on issues close to the UKIP agenda.  In fact I think they rather appreciate having the occasional contrarian intervention, to add a little spice to their usual bland diet of consensus.

Yesterday (Wednesday) we heard about the Commission’s plans to harmonise the protection of trade secrets across the EU, and for once the approach was incremental, using established practice from many member-states and recognising that some areas which might be difficult to harmonise (like criminal sanctions) were best left to national governments.  For once, it didn’t look like a power-grab.  I commended the Commission on its unusually modest and reasonable approach, and suggested that on these terms, a future British government after Independence Day might even wish to cooperate, although on strictly voluntary and inter-governmental terms.

This, of course, was a deliberate wind-up.  The idea that the UK may well leave the EU is slowly gaining ground in Brussels, and naturally I do all I can to promote it.  My intervention was greeted with a certain amount of nervous laughter.

But of course the idea that Britain might leave the EU is anathema to most British MEPs, and especially to the Lib-Dems.  The noble Baroness Sarah Ludford MEP reacted with fury.  Ignoring protocol – in such events we all speak through the Chair – she burst out “And why do you think they would talk to us at all?”.  Normally I too stick to the protocol, but this was too much.  I responded: “If you don’t know that, Lady, you have no business to be here at all”.  (The use of the term “Lady” in this context was neither ironic nor discourteous – she is, after all, a Baroness).   I immediately Tweeted: “Memo to Sarah Ludford: The reason the remnant-EU will still talk to us after Independence Day? We shall be their largest export customer!”

And I sent her an e-mail: “You ask why the EU would want to discuss trade issues with the UK after Independence Day.  I suspect you know the answer perfectly well – at least you ought to.  But let me spell it out.  The UK is, and will remain, the largest export customer of the remnant-EU, bar none.  The largest in the world.  So they will have no alternative but to cooperate with us.  Don’t you worry.  Those smart guys in Munich will still want us to buy their BMWs”.

Consider for a moment.  The EU already has in place a Free Trade Agreement with Korea (I had dinner with a delegation from the Korean National Assembly yesterday, and will be meeting them again today).  Korea’s GDP is $1,130 billion.  The EU is negotiating a free trade deal with Canada (GDP $1,820 billion).  The UK economy is bigger than either ($2,435 billion).  And it’s a lot closer.  And, as I said to the Baroness, the UK is both the EU’s largest customer, and its largest net customer, in the world.  Bar none.  The idea that after we leave, the remnant-EU would turn its collective back on its biggest export customer is simply absurd.

Baroness Ludford stands as an example of the way that Europhiles in general, and Lib-Dems in particular, allow their passionate obsession with the European dream to stand in the way of common sense.  In a previous life, I spent a number of years running businesses in Korea, and I am happy to be a member of the European parliament’s interparliamentary delegation to Korea (which is why I met last night’s visitors).  But I look forward to the day when an interparliamentary delegation from the European parliament comes to Westminster, to visit a neighbouring but independent Britain.  Maybe Baroness Ludford (wearing her House of Lords hat, and no longer her MEP hat) will be there in Westminster Hall to greet them.

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28 Responses to Baroness Ludford: A Farewell Note

  1. Anyoldiron says:

    Now THAT Roger, Is what I call “Straight Talking”!

  2. David says:

    I like all you say Roger, you do a great job.

    David

  3. Neil Craig says:

    The Pseudo-Liberals are, on this as on so many other subjects, beyond being capable of reasoned debate. This is not entirely their fault but the fault of our state owned media who ensure they can put their points without ever having to face serious debate.

  4. DougS says:

    The Lib Dems really are beyond the pale.

    I don’t believe that there is any red tape directive that they wouldn’t delight in implementing – and profusely thank the unelected Eurocrats that imposed it on us. They just can’t understand why everyone doesn’t swoon with happiness at everything EU.

    They take delusion to a new level.

  5. Ex-expat Colin says:

    Here’s some bent talking with a bit of olive oil/cistern fixing and heil hitler (almost) thrown in. From Dan Hannans blog in the DT today (Is this the worst campaign video ever made?)

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/danielhannan/100255166/is-this-the-worst-campaign-video-ever-made/

    I get the feeling the people of the EU will be reduced to that of the lowest common denominator listening to this person (he has an obsession he says!). Belgium never struck me as a place of much interest (flat/scruffy etc) and there is some line of Belgian succession amongst the E Commision Presidents – it is a concern really, amongst the many other concerns

    Mr Farage let the EU Greek guy have it in no uncertain terms on the 15th. Wasting EU money he it appears…oh and thats it is it? Worth every penny and broadcasts much common sense.

  6. George Morley says:

    Nice one Roger !

  7. Jane Davies says:

    I’m seeing institutions are going to be needed when Britain leaves the EU so the delusional and brainwashed can be looked after until they regain their senses. We may have to be prepared to provide long term care for some who will never be cured. Please allow funding for these ‘care homes’ in the national budget Roger.

  8. Me_Again says:

    You not publishing my post then Roger?

  9. Me_Again says:

    Excellent Roger.

    But WHY, WHY, WHY, WHY are you pieces of trade information like this, something along the lines of :-
    After we leave…….
    “The UK is, and will remain, the largest export customer of the remnant-EU, bar none. The largest in the world. So they will have no alternative but to cooperate with us. Don’t you worry. Those smart guys in Munich will still want us to buy their BMWs”.

    Every UKIP branch should have that statement sent them. We all accept that the trade will continue but I didn’t know we were their BIGGEST customer? If I don’t then lots of branch members will not. Our leaflets should have it plastered all over them, it’s more important than immigration.

    This is priceless, a perfect answer to the idiots that drone on about loss of trade. Why hasn’t any UKIP big wig said this on TV/radio/mass media of any and all kinds?

    I am getting quite angry just sitting here thinking of the missed opportunity……unbloodybelievable.

    • Me_Again says:

      Worse still, I can’t make sense of what I meant to say on the first line! And that’s before a glass of wine.
      I meant to say something like ‘Why are pieces of trade information like this [then your quote] not shouted from the roof tops by all of our media mouthpieces, leaders, distributed to branches etc.

  10. Me_Again says:

    Humble apologies, I hadn’t pressed the send button.

  11. Chris Browne says:

    Lady L is probably more worried about her career and pension, and no doubt is a Fabian.

  12. Jane Davies says:

    Roger I know this is off message…but you really need to do something about this idiot or UKIP will be a laughing stock.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-oxfordshire-25793358

    • Me_Again says:

      IF what is reported is true, then she’s absolutely correct. How the hell are we to convince people we’re fit to govern with bible thumpers representing us?
      Yes he’s entitled to religious views [but we must have some sort of damned limit on how extreme] but this guy is taking the p*** surely?
      I have no problem with him being in the party -just but representing us?

    • Me_Again says:

      It’s all over the bloody papers now. Which pillock invited him to jump ship and join us.
      We are always so good at foot shooting. Now we get the votes of gay bashers and the God squad and lose loads of sensible folks. Brilliant. Both barrels straight at the toes. Their branch chairman needs a quiet word…….

      • Neil Craig says:

        The point is that this guy was a Tory and presumably had the same opinions then. It just wasn’t something the state owned “balanced” broadcaster ever thought worth even a word of reporting.

        It is impossible to stop people joining the party (& a good thing too) – all we can do is to point out when reporting is done not by the “balanced” news reporting the BBC is legally required to engage in but propaganda smears by state owned media. Anybody open to reason can see that we are being smeared and over the long term that discredits those in power not us.

      • Me_Again says:

        Neil the point is that he had made no secret of his reason to leave the tory party, I think we should have not let him auto-become a UKIP councillor. He could have had a probationary period as an independent or stayed independent until election time.
        Do we just accept anyone who’s backside points down and can eat with a spoon? Don’t we have any in that branch who could say ‘Hang on a mo’, let’s be a bit careful here’. He apparently made those ridiculous statements a year ago so its not new news is it?

      • Neil Craig says:

        Fair point – if they actually knew he was an idiot at the time they should have been careful.

        Although the date also reinforces my point that what we are seeing is not new reporting but deliberate propagandising and censorship by the state owned, legally “balanced”, news output. BBC state censorship on party lines ought to be many thousands of times more “newsworthy” than the (old) spoutings of an ex-Tory.

      • Me_Again says:

        Totally agree but we are so good at not seeing the lamp post because we are staring at the tits….

    • catalanbrian says:

      They are already. That is the problem with holding lunatic views. Others laugh at you.

      • Me_Again says:

        At some time in the near future one hopes that your views will be considered lunatic.
        I refer you to Leonardo Da Vinci’s novel ideas regarding orbits of the sun and planets, of his notion that machines could fly. While we’re at it, that bacteria cause stomach ulcers.
        All such ideas were considered lunatic by Luddite ideologists like yourself, however in the fullness of time…….

  13. catalanbrian says:

    But stomach ulcers can be caused by bacteria! Nothing Luddite about considering that to be true.

    • Me_Again says:

      You should learn to read. I was using it as an example of unbelievers. For 20 years or so the Aussie who espoused the notion that ulcers were caused not by stress but by bacteria, was ridiculed, called a LUNATIC by even peers. BUT he persisted and proved the existence of helicobacter pylori. Anyone who disagrees with him is now the lunatic.

  14. Jane Davies says:

    Where are you Roger? We need your view on this blatant pot stirring by the BBC and the rantings of an idiot who is spouting garbage at the expense of UKIP’s reputation. Throwing him in the Tower would be a start!

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