By The Sceptic Isle
In the last ITV debate, Nicola Sturgeon boldly claimed that European Union Member States are independent countries. Amber Rudd backed her up and presented the EU as a “pooling of sovereignty” while Angela Eagle said that we only give up a “little bit” of sovereignty for the benefits of membership. This is a fundamental dishonesty at the heart of the Remain campaign.
Pooling sovereignty is an inaccurate and misleading term. This is not about pooling sovereignty but surrendering it to a higher authority. It is a squalid lie to compare the EU to NATO, the UN or any other intergovernmental organisation designed to facilitate cooperation between nation states. The EU is a supranational organisation that subordinates national governments; Member States are not independent countries, they are vassals.
The EU is a government with all of the institutions of a state. It has an executive body in the European Commission, a legislature in the European Parliament and the Council of the EU and a judiciary in the European Court of Justice and a central bank. These institutions are already powerful and the direction of travel is for increased power and influence.
This is not a choice about being in a “club” of democratic nations but whether we wish to be in a united state ruled by a supreme government. We are deciding whether to be governed by an unelected and unaccountable Executive and an EU Council that we don’t elect in a meaningful sense and cannot remove. We are deciding whether to be subject to an imperial European Court of Justice that claims supremacy over our courts without the right of appeal.
Severe diminishment of our sovereignty
The Lisbon Treaty, which was imposed on us without a democratic mandate, represented a severe diminishment of our sovereignty. The ECJ is given dominion over vast areas of criminal justice and home affairs, foreign affairs, social affairs, immigration, defence and commercial matters – all underpinned by the binding Charter of Fundamental Rights.
The EU is gradually dissolving Britain as a nation state and draining our institutions of everything that makes them independent and democratic. As Mark Leonard, formerly of the Centre for European Reform said in 2005: “Europe’s power is easy to miss. Like an “invisible hand” it operates through the shell of traditional political structures. The British House of Commons, British law courts and British civil servants are still here, but they have become agents of the European Union.”
EU competencies are ever expanding. Since the UK joined the EEC in 1973 there have been nine major treaties; each of which have expanded the power of its supranational institutions. In between every great leap forward are countless incremental steps torward for the “ever closer union” central to the European project. With every legislative proposal, with every ECJ decision, with every claim of competency on an international body, the EU subjugates us further. This isn’t about the odd bad regulation; this about interference in every single area of government.
It is utterly risible to pretend we are an independent country. The subordination of our institutions of government means everyone from the Minister, to the MP right down to the councillor is restricted and working within parameters that are not conducive to new ideas and innovation. It prevents them governing properly and bringing about change for the people who elected them.
Moreover, the EU has exclusive control of our trade policy, fishing policy and agricultural policy with rapidly increasing power over policies for energy, environment, transport and telecommunications. Not mentioned nearly enough in this debate is how we are bound by the EU’s position in international organisations and international conferences meaning we have no independence on the world stage and are gradually losing control of foreign policy too.
Then people wonder why there is a dearth of talent in our political system and why it is sliding into mediocrity. This is a direct result of having outsourced government and relegated our system to that of a provincial administration. You get the politicians you deserve and attract the talent and personalities befitting of a phoney Parliament and powerless Town Halls.
Little wonder our political parties are now utterly unrepresentative and rotten to the core. They have lost a sense of purpose. We are lumbered with arrogant, self-interested and elitist rulers content with the last vestiges of long lost power and responsibility that tell tales of a formerly great and proud country that defended its independence fiercely and pioneered democracy, liberty and justice. Now we are a colony administered by willing supplicants and careerists.
Considering their diminished power to bring about change, is it any wonder they concern themselves with micro management and interfering in things that are none of their business? If we vote Remain the EU’s control over us will only increase and as the serious business of Government takes place in Brussels our politicians will look to use their rapidly diminishing powers to restrict our freedoms. They’ll regulate what we consume, what we say and what we do in our leisure time because they have lost so much of the serious responsibilities that politicians of self-governing nations have.
As globalisation leaves us behind we will be more parochial and navel gazing than ever before, forever obsessed with Europe, and fretting over inevitable integration and blind to the wider world. Our political discourse will continue to degrade. Meanwhile the real political talent that wants to influence policy and set the international agenda will emigrate to a self-governing country or go work for a UN body or some other cog of global governance.
A Remain vote could well be our ultimate defeat. Our final submission to rule by a distant, supranational government. For 43 years the EU has extended its power into every area of our governance, purchased the loyalties of civil society with subsidies and mentally subjugated our people with its revisionist history and propaganda. Its invisible tentacles have worked into every one of our institutions and hollowed them out, leaving behind husks that prevent the people from realising they have been subjected to a postmodern invasion.
That is the best way to describe Britain. We are not an independent country; we are a husk. We are a decaying museum of former glories. Without most of the British people understanding or realising it, we have witnessed an inglorious revolution facilitated by collaborators in our own government. This revolution has left our buildings and institutions standing but has crushed the spirit and ideas of our civilisation and superseded our laws and traditions.
Brexit will not solve all of these problems in an instant. Britain will still not be democratic enough and our political system will still be dysfunctional. We will still have the same politicians. But it is a powerful gesture and a necessary first step. Our only hope of real, meaningful change is if we leave the EU. It unlocks the potential. It is a clear message that enough is enough. Remain is an endorsement of the fetid status quo.
It is time for a peaceful counter revolution.
Thanks to The Sceptic Isle for this excellent article.