This is the movie to watch
Preface by Pam Barker | TLB staff writer
I discovered this highly informative yet humorous movie embedded in a great article by Alex Newman of New American, the link to which I’m going to post right here. Newman gives a great review of the film, including what it fails to include, and needs nothing added: http://www.thenewamerican.com/world-news/europe/item/23228-pro-brexit-movie-masterfully-exposes-eu-horror-show
Below the movie (scroll down) is a loose transcript of this well-made 1 hour 10 minute film which outlines, among other things, how the elitist-minded EU has been deliberately designed as a mystifying, complex, expensive and truly massive bureaucracy, which has usurped national sovereignties. It also explains why Britain would be a lot better off in terms of economics and trade if it goes it alone. First, some useful quotes from the film:
We’re being asked to give up the right to govern ourselves. What are we being offered in return that could possibly be worth it?
What really matters is you should have the power to remove the people who govern you.
– Janet Daly
This is the single most important political decision any of us will make in our lifetime.
– Nigel Farage
I think this is the last chance that we’ll be able to vote on EU membership when we still have a recognizeable identity as Britons.
– James Delingpole
Basic questions: What is the EU? How does it work?
Where is the EU? Brussels, Strasbourg and Luxembourg have heaps of EU buildings full of directorates, ministries, councils and commissions. It’s confusing.
How does the EU work? Few people except the insiders seem to know this. Yet there needs to be transparency in a democracy. People are supposed to be in charge in a democracy, so they have to know how the EU system works.
How is an EU commissioner appointed? It’s difficult to know who does what and why, and who is answerable to whom. It’s kafkaesque.
The EU, which imposes laws on 28 countries, is made up of 7 main institutions, which include the European Council, the Council of the European Union, the Council of Europe, the Court of Justice of the EU, the European Commission and the European Parliament. Few people seem to understand the difference between these various bodies and why they exist.
There are FOUR presidents of the EU, not one. There are also lots of commissioners for this and that.
Is the mystery of the EU workings deliberate? Perhaps. It was devised to make sure that the great mass of the people could no longer control government.
Who is running the EU? Ordinarily, a voter knows this and can make up his/her own mind on whether to keep that person in power.
The EU is not accountable to its citizens
Do they have accountability to the citizens? No. In the EU, the Parliament is not in charge. MEPs cannot propose legislation, try to get it passed or repeal a law. The unelected EU Commission does that. The MEPs have no power at all; they simply do what they’re told. Our votes for them are pointless.
Once something is passed into EU law, there is nothing any citizen can do to try to change that law.
Those who are appointed, not elected, have all the real power. EU officials have the power to legislate, not the MEPs in the European Parliament. Laws are debated in secret by these unelected people.
British democracy runs on the principal of taxation by representation: citizens decide that they are taxed, how much should be taken from them, and how it should be spent. Citizens then have a right to remove representatives who don’t do what they want.
In the EU, however, you are taxed without having a say in it, by people you haven’t elected and can’t elect. This is taxation without representation.
The EU isn’t undemocratic – it’s ANTI-democratic.
The politicians are personally motivated to stay in Europe
For the politician or bureaucrat, it’s power without accountability. And when politicians finish their political careers, they can have lucrative, permanent jobs with the EU. So politicians are motivated to stay in Europe because of this.
EU politicians and bureaucrats are not accountable and are well paid for being so. It is an enormous gravy train paid for by the taxpayer that is very comfortable. 10,000 officials or 20% of those at Brussels are paid more than David Cameron, the British Prime Minister.
EU officials get allowances for relocation, their households, personal entertainment, private healthcare, their families, and private education for their children. MEPs get a vast array of allowances and on top of that have voted themselves a lower rate of tax.
EU largesse vs. the hidden costs
The EU purchases the loyalty of the intelligentsia, local arts groups, opera companies, cultural groups, NGOs and lots of charities. They buy opinion with the public’s money. And it likes to advertise its generosity.
Yet if you are a citizen in the Northeast of England, for every pound you get through EU projects, you have to pay 2.30 pounds in tax.
Britons are told they’ll have greater influence in Europe if they join it. In reality, however, certain people’s livelihoods and national influence have been lost.
In the northeast of England, which used to have an immense fishing industry, the local fishermen have lost the means to make a living since the formation of the EU.
Britain has lost power with EU membership
When Britain joined the Common Market, it lost control of its fishing grounds. When quotas were imposed, other countries lobbied for their fishing rights and the British government was powerless to stop it. Local fishermen couldn’t fish in their own waters anymore. Only the Icelanders and Norwegians have robust fishing industries and these countries are not in Europe. In fact, the EU has been paying British fisherman to destroy their boats to leave the industry while giving fishing rights elsewhere.
Europe has taken control over British affairs, in other words. It has not gained influence but lost it. Britain has voted against 72 measures in the EU Council and been defeated 72 times. Just what ‘influence’ can it be said to have?
The European attitude vs. the British
It’s a huge cultural difference: Europeans tend to believe in having a class of wise, experienced public-spirited experts who run everything in the interest of all. Britain has always been sceptical of this approach.
British people are attached to their independence. When serfdom still existed in parts of Europe, Britain was pioneering technology, industry and trade worldwide.
During WWI, the British government set up new ministries to regulate many aspects of life as well as sectors of the economy – it was a watershed time. Afterwards, the government regulated most aspects of the economy which crushed the spirit of initiative.
Regulation increased during WWII and was never relinquished. Most areas of life had boards of experts to advise citizens on everything – clothes, food, children’s toys, heavy industry, etc. Britain became extremely state-controlled, perhaps the worst in Europe. The economy , trade and commerce, prices, even supporting failed industries were all heavily regulated from above by the politicians. Bureaucrats controlled the economy which served to sink it.
Meanwhile, Germany did things differently. The war had decimated Germany; only East Germany got some Marshall aid. One of its Ministers of the Economy famously scrapped the controls inherited from the Third Reich and went against the tide. He created the conditions for successful, thriving manufacturing which produced a dynamic and innovative economy. Industrial production soared. Meanwhile, shortages and rising prices were dominant in the UK; in Germany, all consumer goods fell in price and were widely available. Rationing was abolished in Germany. It became a powerhouse in Europe and the 3rd biggest economic power in the world.
The Common Market – the perspective of the intelligentsia
Six European countries joined initially. Trade barriers were abolished among them. In the 70s, Europe seemed more competitive and thriving than the UK.
The architect of the EEC was Jean Monnet, who had been steeped in the bureaucratic, big state tradition of France. He had helped to set up the bureaucratic post-war economy in the UK, which had failed.
The EEC was more than a trade deal. It demanded more power and money from member states, and its administrative structure grew. It was a burgeoning bureaucratic machine. University-educated people ran it and benefitted from it. It served the cultural and political elites.
The view of the cultural elite tends to be that everybody else needs them to run their lives and give them the correct values. There is an immense snobbery and belief in intellectual elitism built into the EU project. It’s a view that treats ordinary people as subservient.
EU over-regulation – promoting the interests of corporations
The volume of regulations has grown immensely under the EU, which has meant that few people actually understand the literal piles of regulatory books produced. The EU itself can’t say how many laws there are that govern every detailed aspect of our lives.
As an example, there are laws governing pillow cases, sheets, duvets, bathrooms, toothbrushes, mirrors, breakfast bowls, coffee, etc. It sounds absurd but multiple laws around these items exist.
EU regulations are everywhere, and for business start-ups, this creates a minefield of regulation compliance. It’s an expensive process and can destroy a small or medium sized business which fails to comply.
Big Business loves the EU because it destroys small competition through excessive regulations.
Lobbying is intense on behalf of the corporations, which attempts to manipulate regulations to suit the big companies. And it protects companies from having to raise their standards because the tariffs, quotas and regulations do away with the ‘threat’ of genuine competitiveness. It’s pure protectionism. Trade barriers are only erected because worthwhile competitors exist!
Customers in turn suffer because the protectionism costs money which is passed onto them. Europeans tend to pay much more for their products, such as food and drink which cost up to 10-20% more.
A Euro steel producer, for example, would welcome tariffs to make incoming steel more expensive, but consumers have to pay much more and these costs are passed along to other industries. Everything costs more because of protectionist practices.
For example, the EU is a handicap to the competitiveness of Tate & Lyle sugar refiners in London. The EU restricts who they can buy raw sugar from and puts import tariffs on the incoming sugar and other goods. So there are fewer producers to bring in the raw sugar to drive their business. Protectionism for companies inside the EU thus costs the companies much more and renders them far less competitive. Increasing costs and EU regulations have reduced Tate & Lyle’s employees and output.
Solid, competitive businesses such as Tate & Lyle become less competitive because of the desire to protect inefficient companies. It also costs the national economy significant sums every year when an individual company loses competitiveness and money.
The EU has slid from free trade into crony capitalism and protectionism. Consumers pay more for inferior goods; industry has higher costs; it also hurts the firms who are protected. Competition forces companies to improve their game and their revenues. Thus the EU has ended up with a failing economy.
The EU has become an economic basket case with little to no growth and high levels of unemployment. Every continent is outgrowing Europe; it is the world’s declining trading block. The EU is still continuing to control the economic situation through increasing regulation, harmonisation, top-down control and central direction, yet we know these don’t work.
The EU elite carries on regardless of criticism and decades of economic decline. But the larger European population is beginning to rebel. Right-wing, popular nationalism is on the rise, and Britain could be dragged into a situation it doesn’t need.
EU promises of security and prosperity are clearly false.
Is the UK too small to go it alone?
Let’s look at Switzerland, which doesn’t belong to the EU.
Switzerland has free trade agreements with many countries around the world. It’s a very successful exporting nation and one of the most prosperous countries in the world.
83% of working age people work, which is much higher than the rest of Europe. It has one of the lowest levels of unemployment in the world and lower than all the countries in the EU.
It is home to many major companies that compete internationally – Nestle, Novartis, Roche, ABB, etc. Zurich is also a major financial centre.
The GDP per head is one of the highest in the world. Swiss tax rates are lower but levels of income equality are higher ; the salaries are higher, too. This without the help of the EU.
In the EU, the top-down system determines what everyone must do. Switzerland has a constitution and is democratic. Referenda are called by the people, not the government. There isn’t an elite that controls everything. Politicians and bureaucrats are forced to respond to the public.
Its economy is one of the least regulated in the world. The culture believes in destroying regulations and restrictions, and being independent.
Don’t we need a trade agreement to do business?
There is no need for trade agreements with other European countries if you leave the EU. Why should trade be organized by the politicians?
It’s perfectly possible to trade with a country without having a trade agreement in place.
China, the US, Russia and India trade with the EU without trade deals being in place.
The UK could go it alone
But the EU will insist on a trade agreement. Why? The EU is desperate to keep trading with the UK. German industry needs the UK as a market to the tune of 16 billion+ euros every year. The UK is the biggest market for the rest of the EU.
Historically, UK trade has been falling with the EU while increasing around the world. So the UK doesn’t need the EU economically.
In fact, being part of the EU in terms of trade cuts you off from the rest of the world. UK trading hands are shackled by being in the EU. Being free of the EU would permit the UK to create its own trade deals. So prosperity can increase by being outside of the EU.
To create more prosperity, the right to govern ourselves must be won back.
The Brexit vote on June 23 is offering Britons this choice:
Do we want to be governed by an organization which we don’t understand, run by people we don’t know and haven’t elected, who have the power to impose on us laws that we haven’t debated and have little or no chance of blocking or repealing?
We shouldn’t be handing over more money and more power to the EU every year.
Basically, it’s people vs. the Establishment, vs. the Elite.
With general elections, you can change your mind every 4 years. This time, the decision is for keeps.
It’s time to regain our freedom and independence, and how we determine our own lives.
What price freedom?
What really matters is you should have the power to remove the people who govern you.
– Janet Daly
About the contributor
Pam Barker is a TLB staff writer/analyst based in France. She has an extensive background in the educational systems of several countries at the college and university level as a teacher and administrator.