BREXIT Vote Is About The Supremacy Of Parliament: Ambrose Evans-Pritchard On Why He Is Voting For Britain To Leave The European Union; And Why He Is Right To Do So
Ambrose Evans-Pritchard is one of my favorite writers and he is always worth reading. He has an Op-Ed in today’s (June 12, 2016) edition of London’s The Telegraph explaining why he is voting in favor of Britain leaving the European Union (EU). He begins: “With sadness, and tortured doubts, I will cast my vote as an ordinary citizen for withdrawal from the EU.”
“Let there be no illusion about trauma of Brexit,” he writes. “Anybody who claims that Britain can lightly disengage after 43 years enmeshed in EU affairs is a charlatan, or a dreamer, or has little contact with the realities of global finance and geopolitics.”
“Stripped of distractions,” he argues, “it comes down to an elemental choice: whether to restore the full self-government of this nation, or to continue living under a higher supranational regime, ruled by a European Council that we do not elect in any meaningful sense; and, that the British people can never remove, even when it persists in error.”
For many Britains who favor leaving, or are leaning that way, Mr. Evans-Pritchard writes that “it has nothing to do with payments into the EU budget,” which he calls “a trivial amount.” Rather, he argues, “we are deciding whether to be guided by a Commission with quasi-executive powers, that operate more like the priesthood of the 13th Century papacy, than a modern civil service; and, whether to submit to a European Court (ECJ), that claims sweeping supremacy, with no right of appeal.”
“It is whether you think the nation states of Europe are the only authentic fora of democracy, be it in this country, Sweden, the Netherlands, or France — where Nicholas Sarkozy has launched his presidential bid with an invocation of King Clovis, and 1,500 years of Frankish unity,” Mr. Evans-Pritchard wrote. “My Europhile Greek friend Yanis Varoufakis and I both agree on one central point,” he adds — “that today’s EU is a deformed halfway house that nobody ever wanted. His solution is a great leap forwards, towards a United States of Europe, with a genuine parliament holding an elected president to account. Though even he doubts his dream.” “There is virtue in heroic failure,” he said.
“I do not think this is remotely possible, or would be desirable if it were; but, it is not on offer anyway,” Mr. Evans-Pritchard writes. “Six years into the Euro Zone crisis, there is not a flicker of fiscal union: No Euro bonds, no Hamiltonian redemption fund, no pooling of debt, and no budget transfers. The banking union belies its name — Germany and the creditor states have dug in their heels.”
“Where we concur,” he writes, “is that the EU as constructed is not only corrosive, but ultimately dangerous, and that is the phase we have now reached as governing authority crumbles across Europe. The Project bleeds ther lifeblood of national institutions, but fails to replace them with anything lovable, or legitimate to a European level. It draws away charisma, and destroys it. This is how democracies die.”
“They are slowly drained of what makes them democratic, by a gradual process of internal decay and mounting indifference, until one suddenly notices that they have become something different, like the republican constitutions of Athens, or Rome, or the Italian city-states of the Renaissance,” says Lord Sumption of our Supreme Court.
“It is a quarter century since I (Mr. Evans-Pritchard) co-wrote the leader for this newspaper on the Maastricht summit. We warned that Europe’s elites were embarking on a reckless experiment, piling Mount Pelion upon Mount Ossa — with a vandal’s disregard for the cohesion of ancient polities.”
I refer you to Mr. Evans-Pritchard’s June 12, 2016 article in The Telegraph, for his full argument.
I agree with Mr. Evans-Pritchard; and, the last polls in Britain indicate those who favor leaving the EU are now a majority and gaining momentum. Subordinating one’s sovereignty to an outside entity is not possible — at least in the long term — when free peoples value their own sense of identity. All politics is local, as former Speaker of the House Tip O’Neil used to say.
Bernard Connolly, and Oxford educated British economist who was present at the birth of the EU and partly responsible for where we are today, wrote a book in 2014, ‘The Rotten Heart Of Europe: The Dirty War For Europe’s Money,’ is a sobering and realistic assessment of the pitfalls and odious consequences that plague the EU today. In his book, Mr. Connolly contends that, “the monetary union — which is at the heart of this grand Euro experiment — is rotten to the core.” he adds, “this destructive pursuit is making the economic situation in Europe worse than it would otherwise be; and, this “forced harmonization is engendering ‘distrust, ridicule, resentment, contempt, and even hatred, among and between the people’s of the European continent.”
“We have an elitist, bureaucratic, corrupt, authoritarian, repressive leadership on one side, and a demoralized, lost generation (youth unemployment) on the other, who see an ‘unaccountable, undemocratic, illegitimate, and ultimately repressive super-state, that is digging Europe and themselves into an even deeper hole.” Not surprisingly, he sees ultimate failure for the EU, and even disaster — the longer those in charge in Europe pursue this feckless endeavor. A toxic cocktail that even ‘smells’ bad.
POTUS Obama advocates that Europe embrace a collective; at the expense of self-government and individual liberty. The EU is not a concept that we would embrace here; and, isn’t going to continue to be embraced across the pond in my view. I believe Britain will vote to leave the EU, and the end to this ‘grand experiment,’ will begin its death dance towards the dustbin of history. V/R, RCP