HOW MUCH ??? ***** !!!! …… So Mrs May has finally caved in and agreed a ’divorce’ bill of (at least) £40bn – £50bn. It’s even hinted there may be more to come and that the true figure might never be known. The UK should not be paying any money to the EU. They owe us; not just the £183bn surplus we’ve paid over the years, also the money they have lost us in fraud and damage to UK businesses through EU regulation. They need a free trade deal more than we do, so why on earth should we be paying them for the privilege ?
Mrs May has also agreed to keep the Irish Republic (EU), Northern Ireland and the UK in ’full alignment‘; the weasel-phrase that will be used by the EU to ensure that if Britain ‘leaves’ we do not really Leave. It’s significant that the EU is now pressing Mrs May to embed ’full alignment’ into UK law. She has also agreed to a situation unprecedented in international law, giving the European Court jurisdiction over EU citizens in ‘Brexit’ Britain, who will have exceptions to UK law that are denied to the indigenous population. No longer will we be one people under one law.
In another little noticed concession, Mrs May has quietly shelved plans to legalise 29th March 2019 as our ‘Brexit’ date. ’Negotiations’ can now be spun out beyond March 2019, with an unlimited ‘transition period’ to follow, well beyond the next General Election. Some may argue that these steps are a necessary price to pay, but they would be wrong. They are likely to be just the start of further concessions to the EU once trade talks begin. Britain should have the strongest of hands in any trade talks with the EU, but if Mrs May’s capitulations so far are anything to go by, it will be another sorry tale of national surrender.
Nor has any realistic work been done to prepare Britain for the possibility of ‘No Deal’ in March 2019 (something which looks increasingly more palatable than whatever deal the EU is minded to grant us). This has not gone unnoticed by the beady eye of Brussels, which senses weakness like a shark senses blood. Mrs May’s obvious eagerness for a deal at any price, means the EU will keep on upping the ante until we reach a situation where we leave in name only. This now seems to be the aim of the UK government too. No wonder Juncker doesn’t want to see her government toppled. Her supine approach makes the UK appear the ‘guilty’ party; receiving our ‘just punishment’ for having the temerity to defy the EU and vote to leave. Other countries will be deterred from following suit. Mrs May’s weakness does the cause of freedom in Europe no favours.
The events of 2017 have shown that the Conservative Party at Westminster has not got the courage, the unity, or the conviction to deliver Brexit as demanded by the 17.4 million ‘Leave‘ voters. The British people are stoic to a fault. But June 23rd 2016 was a massive wake-up call for many and their patience is wearing thin. As Mrs May’s problems with ‘Brexit’ multiply, increasing numbers of people are starting to look to UKIP again to give them a lead. As an audience member on QT in Barnsley (14th Dec) put it: ‘the ballot paper said ‘Leave’ or ‘Remain’ … It didn’t say now turn to Question 2; do you want a soft Brexit or a Hard Brexit ?’
Former Greek Finance Minister, Yanis Varoufakis warns that there will be no meaningful negotiations over a Brexit deal because the EU ‘loathes democracy’ and ‘clings to exorbitant illegitimate power…..’ ‘Brussels‘, he writes, ‘is a democracy-free zone. It is the nature of the beast to treat the will of the electorates as a nuisance that must somehow be negated…..’
Our new leader Henry Bolton OBE, is a steely character with a fine CV working in some of the world’s worst trouble spots. He is a proven organiser of personnel, systems and material. He gave a very good performance on QT (30th Nov); significantly the other panellists actually listened to him instead of pulling faces ! Henry’s quiet determination, his professionalism and the respect which his track record in public service commands, will bring a whole new audience to UKIP.
We also have a superb Education Spokesman in David Kurten AM. Those who heard him at the Torquay Conference will agree that he’s our best platform speaker since Nigel. Like Henry, David will bring a whole new audience to UKIP. In the New Year he’s on a national speaking tour to launch his new education think-tank (Heritage Council), visiting UKIP Societies at York, Essex and Kent Universities. Education is the most vital portfolio if we‘re to get our message across to youngsters, and David is the right man to do it.
The Irish Question Answered….. The 1923 Common Travel Area Agreement removed border controls between Northern Ireland and the Republic. This bilateral agreement still stands and is nothing to do with the EU. The agreement was re-affirmed as recently as 2011, by both British and Irish governments further to the 1998 Good Friday Agreement. It’s so important to the Irish Republic that they turned down membership of the EU’s Schengen Area in order to keep the Common Travel Area with the UK. Most of Northern Ireland’s ‘exports’ go to the UK. To keep Northern Ireland in the EU Customs Union (or the ‘single market’) will seriously damage this trade. Part of the UK will still be controlled by the EU and be subject to European Court rulings.
A Free Trade Agreement does not need the same rules and regulations to govern the internal market of each country. ’Regulatory alignment’ is the language of the Customs Union; a device to be used by the EU and Mrs May’s government, to keep Northern Ireland (and maybe the rest of the UK), in the EU’s ’single market’.
What an FTA does require is for goods exported to any country within the FTA to comply with the rules and regulations of the country of destination. If the UK leaves the EU Customs Union, this would involve some form of customs control between Northern Ireland and the Republic. However customs controls do not necessarily need ‘old-fashioned physical customs posts staffed by officers in peaked caps rummaging through consignments of imported goods‘. Modern technology has developed simple systems for the electronic pre-clearance of goods. There are a number of examples of ’frictionless’ and ’virtual’ borders’ between countries with different regulatory regimes (eg. Norway/Sweden, Canada/USA), trading freely with each other under FTA’s. These ideas are particularly relevant to the future of the Northern Ireland/Republic border.
Mrs May must make it clear to the EU that the Common Travel Area and Good Friday Agreements still stand. She should re-state forcefully, what is already in those agreements; that the UK does not, and will not impose any tariffs or restrictions on trade between companies based in the Republic and those in the North. Citizens from both sides can continue to travel freely. Bilateral talks should be held with Dublin on an Irish Free Trade and Border Agreement, without any malign interference from the EU. If the Republic wishes to impose the EU’s restrictions at the border, let them police the border with the North, impose tariffs, and then try explaining that to their population. Many of them might agree that they would be ‘Better Off Out’ too !
POSTCARD FROM MALTA …… The murder of Maltese investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia shocked many. In May she wrote ‘Organised crime has insinuated its tentacles into the highest echelons of government in Malta, using democracy for the purpose while undermining it thoroughly‘, and just before her death: ‘there are crooks everywhere you look. The situation is desperate’’ In the past 10 years, the island has played host to 15 mafia-style assassinations and car bombings. It is largely due to her investigative work that Malta is coming under increasing scrutiny for corruption, bribery and money laundering on an alarming scale.
On the face of it, Malta’s economy seems like a great success story. 45% of the island’s GDP comes from tourism. Half a million British visitors come each year for the various attractions of sun, sea, cheap booze and a widespread English-speaking culture. The island was ruled by Britain for nearly 150 years. There are strong historical links with the UK forged by the islanders courageous stand against Hitler’s forces during the two year siege of Malta; a key event in WW2.
Malta is about the only success story in the southern tier of the Eurozone, largely due to its low regulation, flat tax (top rate 20%), free enterprise, Anglosphere culture (similar to another success story, Gibraltar). Unemployment is just 4%. All Maltese enjoy free university education and free child care. The island has an efficient, modern, inexpensive public transport system. 25% of GDP comes from manufacturing, mainly pharmaceuticals, hospital products, printing, electronic engineering and assembly. All EasyJet and many Lufthansa aircraft are repaired on Malta. The world’s largest private banknote printers (DeLaRue) are in Malta and in 2018 will be the world’s largest printers of passports. The country is the world’s third largest for shipping registration, with a Mediterranean FreePort at Marsaxlokk. 23 foreign banks and financial institutions now have their HQ’s on Malta. 10% of the islands’ GDP now comes from operating Online Gaming franchises.
Malta may become the victim of its own success. Much of the island is terribly crowded (imagine the population of Southampton and Portsmouth packed onto the Isle of Wight). In the last 3 years, 40,000 migrant workers have arrived via Italy, some from sub-Saharan Africa. As the southern tier of the Eurozone implodes, these numbers are likely to rise sharply. Under the EU’s Schengen Agreement, there is nothing the Maltese can do about it. Cars on their roads are increasing by an estimated 46 a day; 15,000 over the next 10 years. One only has to look at the current traffic jams in and around the capital Valletta, to see how that will affect things.
Stories You Won’t Hear on the BBC ……
‘The BBC hates Brexit so much it has 4 times more pro-EU guests on its flagship politics shows than those who support Leave. Unsurprisingly this important piece of research (The Sun, 12th Oct), triggered a hissy fit in our publicly funded broadcaster. One reporter who asked its press office for a statement was even threatened with ’Twitter bombs’ (a form of online attack) if she dared to quote these statistics. Its aggression suggests it has something to hide. Yet the facts are there for all to see. They only confirm what most fair minded people have long suspected – the BBC is run by a pro-EU metropolitan elite which is out of touch with the majority …..’ (Miles Goslett, The Sun, Oct 13th)
‘BBC TV drama ‘Gunpowder’ was criticised for portraying terrorists in a sympathetic light. The series, written by Ronan Bennett, tells of the 1605 Guy Fawkes plot from the ‘perspective’ of Fawkes and ring-leader Robert Catesby. MP Andrew Rosindell said (fictitious) scenes of Catholics being executed in the first episode suggested the drama condoned the plot. ‘It seems the BBC is very happy for these characters – who plotted mass murder, to be portrayed in a very sympathetic light ….’ (The Sun, 23rd Oct)
‘ITV’s Robert Peston (former BBC economics editor), joins a growing crowd of ex-Remainers who admit that Brexit voters were right all along. It took considerable personal courage to admit: ‘When I discovered it wasn’t just me but my entire circle were out of touch with millions of people, I genuinely felt ashamed. This was the only opportunity millions of people were ever going to have to say to the people who run this place; ‘You’re not listening to us’. It was a massive wake-up call. I take my hat off to them. It was the right thing to do’ (Trevor Kavanagh, The Sun, 6th Nov)
BBC presenter John Humphrys has admitted that the BBC is out of touch with the population, recalling how its bosses were ‘absolutely stunned’ on the morning of the EU referendum results. He suspected the reaction to the vote ‘was markedly different from the feeling in the café round the corner’. ‘There’s a disconnect between the people who run the BBC and a large chunk of the population’ he added, (Daily Mail, 31st Oct)
The BBC is inundated by nearly 1,000 complaints every working day. The shocking figures come against the backdrop of a furious battle by the Corporation to keep details under wraps. They lay bare the level of public dissatisfaction over issues such as left-wing bias, offensive content and inaccuracy. The flood means that the BBC gets nearly 17x the number of complaints sent to OFCOM than all the other TV and radio stations in the UK combined .…’ (Daily Mail, 21st Oct)
The News Quiz ‘The BBC has been accused of stacking the Radio 4 comedy show with left-wing panellists opposed to Brexit. The programme came under attack from the public responding to the BBC’s own listener reaction show ’Feedback’, after licence payers claimed it treated those who voted Leave as if ’they’re completely stupid’. Feedback’s presenter Roger Bolton, has told Radio 4’s ’comedy commissioner’, Sioned Wiliam, ’Whenever the subject is raised, it is clear that the majority of jokes told are anti-Brexit’. Ms Wiliam has denied any bias….’ (Daily Mail, 18th Nov)
Tales From Europe ……..
POLAND …. Poland’s Lower House has voted to phase out Sunday shopping, to allow staff to spend more time with their families. The move was supported by the unions and the ruling Law and Justice Party, which supports traditional Catholic values. Sunday trading will be allowed for two Sundays a month from March 2018, once a month from March 2019, before being banned completely in 2020. The bill must now be approved by the Upper House and signed into law by the President … (Daily Mail, 25th Nov)
SWEDEN …… The Lutheran Church of Sweden has said its ministers should longer refer to God as ‘The Lord’ or ‘He’ because it displays a gender bias … (Daily Mail, 25th Nov)
AUSTRIA …. ‘The anti-immigration People’s Party and the anti-establishment Freedom Party have reached a deal, creating a new coalition to govern Austria for the next five years. The ground-breaking political alliance, sworn into office on December 18, is poised to catapult Austria to the vanguard of Western Europe’s resistance to mass migration from the Muslim world. Chancellor-elect Sebastian Kurz, 31, who won Austria’s national election on October 15 after campaigning on a promise to halt illegal immigration, will govern with Heinz-Christian Strache, 48, the Freedom Party leader, who has warned that mass migration is “Islamizing” Austria. Under the agreement, Strache will become the vice-chancellor; the Freedom Party will also take control of the ministries of defence, interior and foreign affairs….’ (Gatestone Institute, 17th Dec).
GREECE…. Passengers entering Germany from Greece have to go through special border controls until May 2018. George Anastopoulos described his humiliating experience: ‘Greece is literally out of the Schengen zone and their government is watching passively. The security measures provide for special quarantine for all passengers from Greece who land on German territory, where they are subject to strict controls in a special area within the airports. On arrival at Stuttgart, we were driven by bus to special check areas with long queues and hours of waiting. There were understaffed points for non-Schengen travellers, essentially for passengers from Greece only …. I felt ashamed, not so much for the ungraceful behaviour of the Germans, but for the absence of the slightest reaction from the Greek side. A government of slaves. I do not want to hear that the Germans are right because we do not guard our borders. It was not us who publicly summoned 800,000 illegal immigrants through Merkel’s policy and said ’let everyone come in and do as they please’ (greece.greekreporter.co/2017/11/17)
GERMANY ……. ‘Already 6% of the German population is Muslim. An international think tank has warned the numbers will only increase and predicted Europe’s Muslim population could double by 2050, due to migration and high birth rates among those who have already reached the continent. The Pew Research Centre forecast that if both regular migration and the heavy flows of refugees continue, this deeply Christian country will have the highest number of Muslims in the EU, amounting to 17.49 million people, or 20% of the population’ (Daily Mail, 2nd Dec)
‘The AfD’s success has changed Germany’s political landscape and has ushered in the end of the green consensus among mainstream parties. To ensure that the cost of energy remains low, the AfD advocates the continued use of nuclear and coal-generated electricity. It opposes the Energiewende, stating that “energy must remain affordable and should not be a luxury commodity.” Claiming that subsidies for renewable energy are only benefitting well-off families and green businesses, their manifesto promised the abolition of Germany’s renewable energy law (EEG) together with all green energy subsidies. A recent editorial of the Wall Street Journal concludes: “No wonder voters are in revolt ….. A new study from the RWI Leibniz Institute for Economic Research finds that 61% of Germans wouldn’t want to pay even one eurocent more per kilowatt-hour of electricity to fund more renewables.” (Benny Peiser, Global Warming Policy Forum, 20th Nov)
CZECH REPUBLIC ….. ‘The Czech ’Donald Trump’ has won the national legislative elections with 30% of the vote, leaving the governing Social Democrats in sixth place with 7.7%; the worst result in their history. With an estimated fortune of over £4bn, Andrej Babic has since 2011 used his wealth in a crusade to change Czech politics, while also serving as a government minister. Originally formed to oppose government corruption, his ANO (‘YES’) party has since come to oppose the Euro currency, EU federalism and mass migration …..‘ (Breitbart News, 21st Oct)
SPAIN …… The October referendum on Catalan independence undoubtedly reflected a majority view for independence from Spain. Although turnout was only 45%, this was mainly due to concerted efforts by the Spanish police to close down polling stations, destroy ballot papers and stop people from voting. In the circumstances it was remarkable that so many did manage to vote, and that the large majority were for independence. Undoubtedly there were many more supporters of independence who were unable to vote.
The elections on 21st December cannot be free or fair under international law, as many of the leaders of Catalan Independence are being held in jail. It will solve nothing, other than impose a puppet administration in Barcelona, further fuelling nationalist discontent.
BRANCH NEWS …… We’ve won great victories, but we know it isn’t over yet. We go on until our historic mission is completed. UKIP’s ability to affect events at Westminster may be limited at present, but let’s focus on what we can do locally, which is to tell the British people what is really going on. ’Out Now’ leaflets are available in bulk. Over 3000 have already been distributed in MDNP, but we need volunteers to do more. Fresh supplies are available, so contact the Branch Secretary if you can help.
UKIP Poole: Welcome to the new Committee elected at their AGM on December 8th: Chair: Alan Chilvers, Treasurer: Gerry Price, Secretary: Chris Ramm, C’tee Members: Janice Long, Colin Johnson.
Hurricane Irma: Our appeal at the UKIP National Conference raised £112 for the hurricane victims, adding to the £340 already raised by Pearline Hingston and UKIP Southampton (Test) branch.
Constituency Boundaries: The Boundary Commission have published their plans for the new parliamentary constituencies. They are not too different to our response to the consultation, with far fewer changes. The main body of Mid-Dorset and North Poole is intact. Canford Heath goes to Poole constituency, but we gain Blandford, the lower Stour Valley and Cranborne.
Poolebourne ‘Super-Council’; The government ‘are minded to approve’ arrangements for the new unitary Councils in Dorset, so it looks as if we’ll have unitary Council elections across Poole and Bournemouth in May 2019. We need UKIP candidates in every ward,so if you are interested in standing for your ward, contact the Secretary, Diana (01202-602427)
Cllr Mike Fisher – UKIP Gold Award We’re proud that Mike Fisher, a Mid-Dorset & North Poole member, has won a UKIP Gold Award. Since being elected for Alderney ward in May 2015, Mike has fulfilled his duties as a UKIP Councillor for Poole with great commitment and professionalism, winning the respect of people in his ward and also other Councillors, who value his wide ranging knowledge and experience. Mike always answers his constituent’s queries promptly and doesn’t finish his involvement until a solution has been reached. UKIP’s core values of self-reliance, patriotism, hard work and commitment to public duty are embodied by our Poole Councillor, Mike Fisher.
And Finally …… ’The worry has always been of rabid animals coming to the UK from the continent …… I‘m all for keeping rabid Eurocrats out of the UK‘ (Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, commenting on Barnier’s threat to block UK owners ‘pet passports’, 14th Nov)
MERRY CHRISTMAS & A HAPPY NEW YEAR TO OUR MEMBERS & SUPPORTERS
Don’t forget to check the monthly Dorset Digest
(obtainable via e-mail) for up to date bulletins
of ‘What’s On’ locally, as well as checking our branch website www.ukipmiddorset.org
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e-mail: email@example.com All items in this newsletter are personal views only and do not necessarily represent the views of the UK Independence Party Mid-Dorset & North Poole