This is a view that I have come to fairly recently; three years ago I went to Brussels and at the time I would have described myself as being relatively ‘pro EU’. I believed at the time that, whilst the union has its problems the benefits of staying in outweigh them.
However, particularly over the last year, my view has changed. These days, I am pro-Europe and anti-Brussels. I like Europe – not the European Union.
I have pretty much ignored most of the campaigning that has been going on recently; I’ve not watched any of the debates. The campaign groups on both sides have been using the fear factor to scare people in to voting ‘their way’.
So why am I voting out?
Not long ago I believed that we were too integrated in to Europe for us to leave.
After the election last year, the PM renegotiated with the European Union for Britain to get a new deal.
The problem was that this negotiation was weak and Britain got nothing of any substance. In fact, we probably got worse than we had before!
Did Europe think that a British exit from the union was a real possibility? I think perhaps not, otherwise, they’d have given us a good deal.
A vote to remain is not a vote for the status quo. The European Union will see a vote to stay in as a mandate to push forward schemes which do not suit Britain. Our power to say “no” to Europe would be reduced.
We all know the European Union wants us to take the Euro! We all know the bureaucrats of Brussels want ‘ever closer political union’ in the quest for a federal Europe.
I would not vote to leave if I did not believe that the UK can still be a great country outside of the European Union: Britain is a strong country. The markets might react in the immediate aftermath of exit, but we’ll be fine.
Immigration? The Leave campaign make it out to be a massive problem. It’s not. My issue with the free movement of people principle is that we’re in a period of globalization now.
Why should it be more difficult for someone from Brazil to come and work here than it is for someone from Spain?
If I was an employer, I wouldn’t care what country workers come from: all I would want is someone with the right skills. Let’s come out of this European thing and we’ll introduce our own immigration rules that suit US. We want people with the right skills. We should not be turning people away based on their passport.
It’s this globalization thing that means we need to be able to make trade deals with who we want: not with just ‘the select few’ as dictated to us by Brussels.
I’m not going to throw loads of figures out there, because they mean nothing to me.
- How much does the European Union cost us? No one really knows. Everyone has a different answer!
- How many million Turks might come to Britain if Turkey joins? God knows! The estimates I’ve seen have been plucked from thin air.
- What percentage of our laws come from Brussels? Depending on what newspaper you read, anything from 76% to 7.6%!
Things will be tough at first if we choose to leave: of course they will. But outside the EU, we can make our own mistakes. But we’ll be making our own trade deals, making our own laws, deciding ourselves where the money is best spent, and we can take advantages of the freedom not having Brussels tell us how bright our lights, how powerful our hoovers or what shape our bananas can be.
Within the EU, we’ll just trundle along as we are now: not losing much, not really gaining much either.