Letter: EU makes no sense

WHY the EU is infuriating.

Recently, there have been a number of letters in the paper both pro and anti-EU, and both make statements that in my view do not really help the average undecided person in the street make up their mind. Therefore I have tried in the following paragraphs to present some simple facts on the major talking points that persuade me we are better off out.

Beginning with excessive regulation, what does this mean to Joe Public and small businesses in general? Here goes: Pythagoras Theorem 24 words, Archimedes Principle 67 words, US Constitution including all 27 amendments 7,818 words, EU regulation covering the sale of cabbage 26,911 words and the EU rule book the Acquis Communautaire is now 310 million words covering 715,000 sheets of paper, which is pile as high as Nelson’s column if stacked, and weighs over a ton.

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The bureaucrats have been busy, all 30,000 of them, pushing nations together by adopting legal processes that force them to accept rules and regulations they do not want or need. The UK has voted against EU rules on 72 occasions since 1996, each time it has been out voted. Negotiation with the EU is impossible!

Our financial deficit with the EU, this is that we are a net contributor to the EU i.e. we pay in more than we get back. On an annual basis this sum is the equivalent of 350,000 British people working full-time at average earnings transferring all of their money to the EU to give to other people in other countries. In population terms this number is larger than many cities, and approximately the population of Malta, one of the smaller states of the EU.

The next fallacy is that the EU has kept the peace in Europe, it is American military might through Nato, of which we are the second largest contributor, that has kept the peace. Nato was formed in 1949, eight years before the EU’s predecessor, the Common Market came into being in 1957. It is this nuclear umbrella covering Europe that kept Russia at bay when the best ordinance the rest of Europe could muster is a bunch of pea shooters. Becoming a closer trading partner is no guarantee of peace.

We are then informed that 34 of the top 100 FTSE CEOs have attacked Brexit, but what of the other 66? We are aware big business is an EU supporter; it can afford the lawyers and lobbyists that ensure high tariffs to entry into markets. Several of these people were from companies that paid more than £600,000 each to lobbyists in Brussels to get regulations written in a way that helps their business but not that of potential competitors.

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In a short letter, I cannot cover everything, but the much discredited CAP is a must comment, and the real problem here is highlighted in the name. It is simply not possible to produce a single policy to govern the activity of dairy farmers in Devon and Cornwall and those in South Wales as it is to deal with arable farmers in East Anglia and those in the Vale of York. Thus it is simply absurd to suggest that Brussels can produce a single set of rules to cover farmers from the tundra of Northern Finland to the arid hills on the outskirts of Athens and all points in between. Only surpassed by the inane rules within the CFP, just ask the fishermen in this country who risked their lives, and some who lost theirs, to earn a living and put food on the table of UK residents, and still lost their jobs.  

Finally and most importantly for me is sovereignty, the ability to run our own country, and may I just remind you that EU entry was only passed by 309 to 301 under Mr Heath. But I must take you back to Tony Benn, who was often heard to say that European Commission fails the test we must apply to those who have the power: “Who elected you? And how can we get rid of you?” Laws made in Westminster can be overturned by successive governments; this is not true of laws from Brussels. And Mr Corbyn is no lover of the EU, every time he has to speak in support he looks like a man sucking a sour cherry. Last week in addressing the British Chambers of Commerce he devoted precisely 56 words to the topic.

Kath Reeder, Valley Ward

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