Daily Debrief May 25th

29 days to Independence Day!

Migrant crisis returns

Under a headline “Is this why Cameron is dodging TV debates?”, the Mail reports that the migrant crisis is back with a vengeance, after Italian authorities picked up 2600 migrants in one night (and, of course, brought them to Europe – doing the traffickers’ job for them). The paper makes a direct link between the migrant crisis and Cameron’s reluctance to debate the issues.  He has no answers to the open borders question, and he knows it’s a key issue.

“Brexit surge leaves pro-Brussels politicians very worried”

An interesting comment from the BBC’s Nicholas Watt on Newsnight: he says that pro-Brussels politicians are “very worried” about what he calls the “Brexit surge”. Certainly the weakening opinion polls seem way out of line with our experience on the ground and on the doorstep, where it can be difficult to find voters who want to Remain.  Here’s hoping that Mr. Watt has called it right.

IFS warns of “more austerity”

I had thought better of the Institute of Fiscal Studies, but they’ve chosen to join the establishment chorus in Project Fear, warning that Brexit could lead to “two years of austerity”.  Perhaps they’re trying to out-bid Osborne’s “year of recession”.

The fact is that all these diverse warnings are based on one assumption – that the Pound will devalue.  There is absolutely no reason to suppose that this will happen – and if it does, the reason will quite simply be that major figures have spent months insisting that it will happen.  If this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, a heavy burden of blame will lie at the doors of No 10 and No 11 Downing Street.

We need to understand that the EU is all about costs, not benefits.  The direct EU budget costs.  The regulatory costs.  The costs of the Common External Tariff, which increases prices on imports.  The vast misallocation of resources (for example on the EU’s wind farm obsession).  And the benefits?  Clearly there is a trade benefit in duty-free market access.  But since the EU is the UK’s largest export customer, and the UK will be the EU’s largest export customer, there is an overwhelming economic imperative that trade should continue.  Which is why we can be sure that we will get a free trade deal with the EU after we leave.

Britain’s aid budget rises 144% in ten years

The Daily Mail suggests that we in Britain are becoming “the mugs of the world”, as we continue to hose ever more borrowed money around (frequently to countries that don’t need it, like India and China).  Other papers also carry the story. We are burdening our grandchildren with debt so that our politicians can do gesture politics and “virtue signalling” on a grand scale.  It’s easy to be generous with other people’s money.  When will our politicians come to their senses?

Generals for Brexit: “Britain will be forced to join EU Army”

A group of military top brass makes a strong case that Britain’s armed forces have been weakened and made less effective by EU membership.  The Express quotes a line from the Lisbon Treaty which talks about a duty of “on-going structured military cooperation”, and argues that this amounts to a commitment to an EU Army. I have no doubt that the ECJ would interpret it in those terms – this is the way that “ever closer union” comes about.  So when Cameron tries to redeem his pledge that we’re exempt from “ever closer union”, the reply will be “But you already signed up to this measure at Lisbon”.

The Mail also carries the story. Interestingly one of these generals is Sir Michael Rose, whose name was included (despite his strong reservations) in an early pro-Remain letter.

Universities urge students to vote to Remain

Several major Universities have written to students urging them to vote for Remain, apparently in breach of Electoral Commission rules requiring bodies with charitable status to refrain from campaigning.  It’s quite clear that they have European funding in mind.  And extraordinary that they can’t understand that we will have more money to invest in education and research when we stop sending £10 billion a year (net) to Brussels.

“Youth appeals from both sides fail”

Under the headline “Who EU kiddin?”, the Metro reports that campaigns aimed at young people by both Leave and Remain have backfired.  Remain has produces a right-on video (“Get votin so you can keep workin. Keep Chattin, keep Roamin, Keep Ravin””). This is rightly seen by young people as a mite patronising.  On the other hand the problem cited for the Leave campaign seems less serious – Alesha Dixon pulls out of a scheduled concert appearance.  A pity, but not a game-changer.

“Breakthrough on Greek Debt Deal”

Or as my old mother used to say, “Pull the other one”.  The EU institutions are desperate to postpone the next Greek debt flare-up until June 24th.  So right on cue, we have the assurance that a new tranche of debt has been agreed (remember this will never be repaid, so it’s deliberately misleading to call it a loan).  The EU and the IMF appear to have agreed to “debt forgiveness” (this means writing it off), but the devil is in the detail – no one has agreed when, or how much, or who takes the hit.  This story will run and run (until the €uro breaks up).

Hinkley C crisis deepens

City AM reports that the crisis over the new nuclear plant at Hinkley C has deepened. They’re saying that there is “zero probability” that the plant can be completed by 2025.  There is even some doubt that French contractor EDF can finance the deal, since the cost may exceed its capital.

And the link to Brexit?  There are many reasons for the crisis in the UK’s nuclear industry, starting with the failure of governments over decades to maintain a nuclear programme, and Gordon Brown’s catastrophic decision to sell Westinghouse (he made a bad job of selling our gold reserves, too).  But the hopeless regulatory uncertainty surrounding EU/UK energy policy has created a climate in which investment in major energy infrastructure ranges from difficult to impossible.  Hinkley C appears to be moving to the impossible end of the scale.




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30 Responses to Daily Debrief May 25th

  1. foxbarn says:

    When will the Brexit camp ‘get it’??? The campaign does NOT peak on June 23rd but THIS WEEKEND when the postal vote forms go out; that’s why Cameron and Co have boosted the lies this week. Sign this petition now: https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/a-new-public-holiday-to-celebrate-uk-independence-day/manage

    • Anyoldiron says:

      We will NEVER forget. 11.11.2013.

      So many gave their lives for us
      Fighting in two World Wars,
      Yet when “Peace” came at last
      We ask, “What was that war for”?
      Where is that peace we fought for?
      Did we pay to give it away
      To foreigners once more to govern us?
      Did the people ever have a say?

      We were asked once in 1975
      To remain in the then EEC,
      But what is it now in 2016
      It is nothing like we thought it would be.
      Our Common Law Constitution
      Ignored and deliberately cast aside,
      A new Flag and EU Anthem
      That no Brits can truly abide.

      Yet according to our Constitution,
      We must be free to govern our selves?
      To betray those that gave their lives for us
      Would be like living in a permanent Hell!
      We are forbidden to obey foreigners
      Our Constitution makes that quite clear,
      It is time for us to set ourselves FREE.
      By the REFERENDUM Governments fear.

  2. tjames@doctors.org.uk says:


    could i make the point that our contributins £11-12 billion a year nett mean that we have a tariff of around 7% on eu trade

    • John S Churchill Jnr says:

      Mad isn’t it when trade weight tariff are under 5%? And all the political CRAP on top!
      Crap is an electronics acronym for Continuous Random Amplitude Pulses!

  3. Dung says:

    According to the French government, they are assuring us that France ‘will’ commit to the Hinckley Point project, Hmm who is lying to us, the French or our own government?

    • MIKE MAUNDER says:

      I would not quote odds on either of them being truthful !

    • John S Churchill Jnr says:

      I can’t see how guaranteeing the future price per KwHr is not a form of State Aid. Doesn’t Austria argue along these lines? While European Parliament agree the terms, I think the ECJ would rule otherwise. So why has it not done so?

  4. David says:

    The Chinese are building power stations by the dozen, why cant we. Answers on a pinhead please.

    • MIKE MAUNDER says:

      We can make them, but at a prohibitive cost. Pinhead accepted !

      • Graeme Chegwidden says:

        Why would it cost the Chinese so much less to build a nuclear plant on the opposite side of the planet than it would cost us to build it? What do they know that we don’t? Do they have a secret supplier of cheap raw materials? Are they going to send 10,000 voiceless Chinese workers over here to build it at £4 per hour? And once its built who will control it??? Us? The EU?

      • catweazle666 says:

        “Why would it cost the Chinese so much less to build a nuclear plant on the opposite side of the planet than it would cost us to build it?”

        Brown envelopes.

  5. Ex-expat Colin says:

    French Nuclear about to start strikes…interconnector anyone?

    As regards the polls showing wide Remain lead…that will be phone polling. Online polling shows a slight lead and near 50/50. Either way it is left to the day but nobody on the Leave side should feel weakened by phone calls to a few mates,…I mean multiple mates.

    • MIKE MAUNDER says:

      I have an 8’x 4′ placard in my front garden, opposite a W/M Club. It is not pretty, it is supposed to keep the referendum upper-most in the mind, with VOTE LEAVE as the sensible option. So far I have had to raise it afresh 7 times. Maybe the remains don’t have any placards, and go about at night pulling ours down ! Does this not show how bereft the remains are with arguments and ideas ? I have thought that a vote should be the property of people with a reasonable I.Q. level. Perhaps, Colin, we are down to making multiple calls to all those that we know !

      • Ex-expat Colin says:

        Nigel Farage used the word “bully” near me in Dudley recently referring to bullying mates/friends etc Yes, yes, yes. Handwringers up in arms….I mean hands.

    • Graeme Chegwidden says:

      Paris hit by nuclear strike? God help us!

  6. Ex-expat Colin says:

    Christopher Monckton on Jeremy Vine show today (BBC). Expat in Spain moaning about no vote (15yr rule) and paying tax in both UK and Spain….no tax without representation. The expat is voting IN though because isolation likely arises….she says. And she lived there in Franco days, so something worked then?

    • Graeme Chegwidden says:

      If they left, forever it seems, why would they want to have a say in what happens here? Do they get to vote in a Spanish referendum when it happens?

      • Jane Davies says:

        “If they left, forever it seems, why would they want to have a say in what happens here?”
        Because they are still taxpayers and should still have the right to vote if for no other reason than that. I live in Canada, coming up for ten years now, but I still hate to see my country of birth being ruined by self serving career politicians, I still have all my family living in the UK and I care about my country and where it is headed. My family, like many others lost everything to Hitlers bombs on London, my Dad and Granddads fought for the freedom of what was once Great Britain. Just because one lives elsewhere does not wipe out all that personal history. I would like to return one day, but if the UK remains in the EU I may think long and hard about that. I may be across the pond but I’m voting out, it’s my right to do so (for another five years, anyway).

  7. Ex-expat Colin says:

    When will all this cr*p stop? European Taxpayer Identification Number

    “The EU is laying the groundwork for new, centrally planned National Insurance-style numbers for every taxpayer in Europe. The proposal was passed by the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee last night, and chillingly calls for a ‘European Taxpayer Identification Number’ to keep track of every EU citizen”.


    • foxbarn says:

      Don’t worry, Mr Cameron has it all under control: http://youtube.com/watch?v=A8su2vCq950

    • Graeme Chegwidden says:

      Why would anyone be surprised at this? There will be an EU ID card too in the not too distant future. Even a subcutaneous chip implanted in each of us. Combine that with the centralised army, a single centralised banking system and lots of other centralised functions, many of which are already in place, This has all been on the cards since Schumann and Monnet – its in the founding documents of the EU. Its the whole point. Conquest by stealth.

      What bothers me most is WHY our politicians are taking us deeper into it. Either they don’t know or understand what they are doing, which means ignorance or stupidity, or they are doing it in full knowledge and complicity, which means something a million times more sinister. If the latter then I doubt that they would let a little thing like a referendum get in their way…

      I wonder what Roger Helmer would tell us about that!

      • John S Churchill Jnr says:

        They are either Fools of Knaves “ForKs”

      • foxbarn says:

        Good post Graeme but I have no answers.

        Though I must add a question, why do people keep counting down the days to the referendum? The postal vote goes out in a few days but the ‘out’ camp haven’t yet realised.

  8. So what will the toothless Electoral Commission do about the universities breaking the law? At a rough guess, nothing.

    • Graeme Chegwidden says:

      They’ll set up an inquiry after the referendum. Just like they do with “voting irregularities”. They’ll string it out until nobody cares any more.

    • John S Churchill Jnr says:

      What about Op Ed pieces in newspapers? I think they should be regarded as adverts, and at the commercial cost, shown on the Spending Accounts come the reckonning. If overspent, the votes are void. I plan to follow up on this idea.

  9. John S Churchill Jnr says:

    “… Lisbon Treaty which talks about a duty of “on-going structured military cooperation”, and argues that this amounts to a commitment to an EU Army. I have no doubt that the ECJ would interpret it in those terms – this is the way that “ever closer union” comes about. ”

    It is for this reason that we are not safe from being forced into the Eurozone. If someone brought a case to the ECJ, I reckon it would deem our opt out inconsistent with the treaty. Not many know that the ECJ is charged to rule in favour of ECU. I’m glad you do and have made the point.

  10. John S Churchill Jnr says:

    “… he made a bad job of selling our gold reserves, too”

    Will we get our gold back that the Maastricht treaty dictated we should contribute into the pool?

    You read it here first!

  11. Pingback: Daily Debrief May 27th | Roger Helmer MEP

  12. Pingback: Britain will “find our way” even if the country votes to leave the European Union, says Cameron |

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