* Europe is not a perfect system by any stretch of the imagination and needs serious reform. There are concerns over how it runs, the powers it has and how it conducts its business but the solution isn't in a bail out which is ultimately what will probably occur if a referendum is to happen.
If you needed complicated leg surgery so that you could walk would you not do it or would you lop the leg clean off and live without?
It sounds an extreme metaphor but it is true.
Europe provides the opportunity to work together on many matters that effect all of the member states. International crime, human trafficking, trade agreements, economy, the environment. All of these things need a continent consensus.
Before the European Union each state would carry on independently and states such as Germany, France, even the UK would seek to assert themselves over smaller states or influence them, but in the EU all of the states are equal in rights. Germany's plans for the Euro recovery were to be stalled by the Slovakian parliament!!! Had that happened 80 years ago then "Gun boat diplomacy" or sabre rattling would occur now there is debate amongst equals.
Together we are stronger and more democratic. Yes, the system needs change but we can be part of the solution rather than the problem.
President Sarkosy has been quoted as telling David Cameron off for criticising the Euro and advancing Britain's interests;
"We're sick of you criticising us and telling us what to do. You say you hate the euro, you didn't want to join and now you want to interfere in our meetings."
He has a point. If we bail out of the European Union they don't have to deal with us at all, they can negotiate trade agreements and decide Continent wide issues without consulting the UK and we could get some seriously bum deals! Surely it is better to be a part of the situation?
* The timing of the debate and the three line whip.
David Cameron has said that;
"I don't think this is the right time to legislate for an in out referendum. I think this is the right time to sort our Europe's problems, sort out the Eurozone problem,. defend our national interest and look to the opportunities in the future to repatriate powers back to Britain."
True, and something I completely agree with.
Two of the three Medway MPs (Mark Reckless of Rochester and Strood and Tracey Crouch of Chatham and Aylesford) are set to vote against the Government wishes. No word has been heard from Rehman Chisthi in the local media.
Mark Reckless is quoted in the KM [24-10-11 Medway Messenger page 2] as saying;
|Mark Reckless and Tracey Crouch|
Again true, but a referendum at this time would not be fair and open and therefore not constructive. You shouldn't make decisions when you are angry or if your judgement is clouded and this is one such time, the Euro collapse would cloud everybody's judgement.
The good news for Europhiles is that even if the debate comes out in favour of a referendum it doesn't mean that one has to be instantaneous, in fact they can wait until 2015, they would just have to carry it out.