Britain is no longer the sick man of Europe. You could be forgiven for thinking otherwise given the miserable, defeatist Remain rhetoric. It is the Eurozone that is sick. Sacrificed for the dream of a single European polity.
France has erupted into riots and social upheaval over some very modest labour market reforms, Italy has a long term stagnant economy stuck in debt deflation and struggling with a banking crisis, Spain has an extremely vulnerable economy, Greece is in a state of utter desolation, youth unemployment is critical problem across the EU. The euro will continue to hamper the recovery of southern European countries, leaving Greece, Italy and Spain unable to devalue in order to make their exports more attractive.
On a variety of economic measures Britain consistently performs among the best EU nations. Our economic growth is set to be the best in western Europe; our unemployment rate is half that of France and Italy and a quarter of that in Spain. Yes, Britain’s economy is vulnerable to an economic downturn too; we are not out of the woods yet. But this referendum has raised the question of why we are not looking across the globe at the wealth of opportunities that it offers us? It is a parochial mindset that thinks we must be entirely focused on the stagnant economies of the EU.
David Cameron seemed to think he was making a good point by telling us we sold “more services to Luxembourg than the whole of India”; this told me that we desperately need to diversify, engage with the global trading system and break from our parochialism mindset. We need a dynamic trade strategy and to global outlook; we should be helping to jump start the global trading system and pursue agreements all over the world with our newfound agility and right of initiative.
It is not just good luck that sees us performing so well. The suffering of European economies is the fault of the EU, we are doing better because we have fought to prevent the EU binding our economy to theirs as much as is possible while still being a Member State. It is because we opted against the euro, despite the grave warnings of our politicians and the economists backing them up as they do now. Across the EU, unemployment is high because of inflexible labour markets created by the “social chapter”. An economic model that excluded such a huge number of people from employment isn’t benevolent; it’s disastrous and fatally misguided. Britain thinks differently, we look to create an environment in which jobs will be created.
Every time that Britain has confidence in itself to trust its own instincts and go its own way and say no to Brussels; we have been better off for it. Every. Single. Time.
The idea that we should stay in the EU to push our agenda is deluded. Juncker has told us today there will be more negotiation, there will be no reform. As for the idea that we can promote our economic philsoopy onto other Member States, what mandate do we have for that? If the French wanted a Liberal economy they would vote for it. As would the Italians. We should lead by example as we have always done. By being with Europe, but not of it. A prosperous, liberal, independent and democratic nation helping to shape and inspire Europe.
Despite David Cameron, George Osborne and the Remain campaign talking down this country and demeaning us in every way possible the British people should not be persuaded that we owe our past and future prosperity to a sclerotic, crisis-struck EU. We are not the sick man of Europe, we are not a finished country that has to accept subordination to make its way in the world.
Don’t let our weak, duplicitous, manipulative defeatist rulers stop you believing in yourself or your country.
We are still an influential power able to make its mark in this world. Militarily, diplomatically, economically and politically. We have highly sought after expertise in every single field. We are global cultural superpower. We are still a leading voice and great influence in all of the major international organisations; that is under threat by the EU, we mustn’t be be usurped and marginalised on the international stage.
Britain is known for liberty, democracy, effective governance and a world leading constitution and rule of law. Why are we exchanging this in favour of being a vassal state in an undemocratic technocracy? The EU has removed our right of self-governance and hollowed our institutions. It is time to take that right back and begin to rebuild.
It’s a scandal and an embarrassment that our leaders want to surrender our ability to govern ourselves and that they are willing to try and crush our spirit and foster a sense of defeat and dependency in a proud people.
Defy them. Vote to leave the European Union.
This post was published by the author 22 June 2016 https://thescepticisle.com/2016/06/22/we-are-not-the-sick-man-of-europe-anymore-we-are-still-a-country-to-be-reckoned-with-vote-for-independence/