There’s a leaflet circulating in the East Midlands purporting to expose six “UKIP Myths”. The biggest myth, of course, is that UKIP ever said any of the things they claim. Let’s look at them one by one.
Myth #1: “We pay in money to the EU and get nothing back”. UKIP says no such thing. But we do say that we get only about half back of what we pay in. They give us back a little of our own money, they tell us what to do with it, and then they expect us to be grateful.
Myth #2: “We have to do whatever the EU tells us — they make our laws”. Of course they don’t make all our laws, and we never said they did. But the widely accepted estimate is that they make around 70% of our laws, and in most areas we have no veto. An official German government study said that Brussels makes 80% of their laws.
Myth #3: “Your family won’t be affected if we leave”. It certainly will be — and in a good way. UKIP wants to leave the EU because it will make us all better off. Currently EU policies are destroying jobs (think steel closures) and compressing wages for working people. Time to break free.
Myth #4: “Being in the EU stops us from trading with the rest of the world”. No it doesn’t. But it stops us making our own trade deals, with Commonwealth countries, with China, with the USA. Did you know that small countries like Switzerland and even Iceland have made their own trade deals with China? While we’re in the EU, we can’t, and the EU hasn’t.
Myth #5: “Leaving the EU will stop immigration”. No it won’t. We never said it would, and anyway UKIP doesn’t want to “stop immigration”. We just want to get it under control. In the EU, we can’t control the numbers, or our borders, and we are forced to discriminate in favour of unskilled Romanians and against highly qualified people from elsewhere.
Myth #6: “The EU has done nothing for the East Midlands”. No one in UKIP has ever said this. We know that money has come from Brussels to the East Midlands, and some of it has been spent usefully. But it’s not EU money — it’s our money. Every pound we get from Brussels costs the UKeconomy around £3. So after we leave, we’ll have more money to spend on schools and hospitals and scientific research and the other good things we all want to do.
This is typical of the attitude of UKIP’s opponents. They wrongly accuse us of saying rather daft things. Then they explain why they’re daft. But of course they’ve produced a gross caricature of what we actually say. The truth is, on all these counts, we’ll be Better Off Out.