“I have never understood why public opinion about European ideas should be taken into account.” Attributed to Raymond Barre, former French premier and European commissioner
For us this quotation accurately, honestly and succinctly characterises both the original and the current attitudes that underpin the whole European Union project. From the Home page we discuss in some detail the aspects of the EU that are built on this foundation. The whole is a castle built on the sands of elitist disdain for the peoples of Europe and their democratic regimes.
We know that it is not possible to build a flourishing community that both requires and disdains the active participation of its citizens. To win active participation democracy is required: if democracy is disdained then autocracy is required. The EU is an autocratic regime imposed with, it has to be said, the consent of elected representatives of its members. We argue that the British people should withdraw their cooperation and deny their leaders the consent required to continue membership of the EU.
An organisation founded on contempt for its members cannot be reformed. Re-colouring the logo on a bulldozer doesn’t make it a bus. A European community would be a good idea but the idea has to start from respect not from contempt. A democracy can seem messy and unreliable to those in charge but, as has often been said, all the alternatives that have been tried are worse. This includes the EU which, like any other autocratic regime, is unaccountable and unremovable, by design.
In the light of the Brexit referendum, more efforts are being made to use ‘correct’ political language. However, the consistent attitudes glare through the insincerities. Nothing significant has changed since the project was first conceived by Jean Monnet in the 1920s. Apart from his honesty, Monsieur Barre is representative of his successors.
The European Union is not an innovation, it is a reformation; an attempt to return a part of the world to an imagined state in which it was properly managed. Increasingly, commercial, social and financial innovations are coming from other global organisations, such as the Council of Europe (see Europe versus EU) and are based in respect for, and an understanding of, changing circumstances and cultural forces. The EU has taken on some of these ideas, belatedly, and decided that they need to be expressed as uniform laws and regulations rather than as standards or recommendations that need democratic legitimacy before they can be implemented.