# What the EU costs us
There are so many figures being bandied around that if I give a pot pourri here, you can make your own mind up.
The European Union is costing Britain a staggering £106,000 a minute, a think-tank has revealed. As the UK teeters on the brink of what experts predict will be the most serious financial crisis since the Great Depression, the Government has surrendered £55.8billion to Brussels this year. £900 for every man, woman and child in the country.
This was made up of the Treasury’s £4.7billion net contribution to Brussels, plus a £3billion handout to other EU bodies, such as the European Space Agency and the European Investment Bank.
The controversial Common Agricultural Policy costs the UK an additional £16.8billion while the Common Fisheries Policy adds up to another £3.3billion. Some of this is paid direct to the EU, whilst being part of the policies means food on our tables is more expensive.
Finally, red tape imposed by the EU has cost British business about £28billion, according to statistics calculated by the European Commission’s vice-chairman Günter Verheugen.
Matthew Elliott, of the TPA, puts it at £118 billion a year. You can see his full breakdown at the end of the link. He does say:
Remarkably, even the EU itself has failed to produce any convincing figures to demonstrate the benefits of the organisation. Commissioner Gunter Verheugen estimated in 2006 that the cost of regulation to the European economy as a whole is £405 billion a year, while the Commission itself believes that between 1986 and 2002 the Single Market only brought benefits of £110 billion. Even after taking inflation into account, that means that the EU Commission itself believes the costs are three times larger than the benefits.
The EU’s policies on food production have been particularly disastrous. The Common Fisheries Policy has had a horrendous impact economically, socially and environmentally. Almost 100,000 jobs have been lost in fishing and dependent industries, leading to increased social security bills in devastated fishing communities. Because fishing boats are banned from bringing home fish that exceed their quotes, even if they are caught accidentally, 880,000 tonnes of dead fish are dumped into the North Sea every year. With the fish supply reduced by these quotas and by the radical reduction of fish stocks, prices at the till are increased to the tune of £4.7 billion a year – £186 a year per family.
Matthew Elliott, of the TPA, again says:
The same goes for the Common Agricultural Policy. A huge proportion of the EU’s annual budget is spent on dishing out subsidies to European farmers, whose sales are protected by tariff barriers which effectively tax much non-European produce out of the market. On top of our direct taxpayer-funded subsidy, the CAP costs the British consumer an extra £5.3 billion on their food bills.
Here is a page in which the TPA addresses its critics over its figures and they mention, in an aside:
That British farmers receive money under the CAP isn’t in dispute. The scheme clearly has both costs and beneficiaries and the report was an attempt at costing the scheme, not a cost-benefit analysis, though paying £10.3 billion for £3.9 billion in payments to farmers doesn’t sound like the best deal.
Critics who narrow the debate to just direct payments are not taking into account the whole nature of EU contribution. We pay to the EU and they pay back, to a lesser extent, along with a raft of stipulations and regulations.
It’s also what our money is paid out on. For example:
British taxpayers are forking out thousands of pounds to train more civil servants for European Union jobs, it emerged yesterday. Whitehall is training a batch of recruits to pass the “concours”, the European Commission’s annual entrance exams which start next month, in a bid to bolster Britain’s diminishing presence in Brussels.
The training marks the return of the civil service’s European fast stream, a variant of the accelerated development programme for bright Whitehall graduates. By 2011 a dozen participants will take part in the scheme every year. It includes language training and a five-month stint in Brussels.
Though the UK represents 12 per cent of the EU population, its citizens make up only six per cent of Commission staff. Britain is the least well represented country in the Commission by head of population, with the exception of newcomer Romania.
This could go on for dozens of pages, with example after exampe but this is a blogpost, not a dissertation. The bottom line is that there is a lot of what, to the British taxpayer, is a frivolous wastage of their own money for no apparent cost benefit to themselves, for example, the 6.8 billion wasted on Green Propaganda.
# Debt and control of nations.
Never mind that we are stoney broke, the arrogant unelected clown masquarading as our PM has just blown another £1.5bn of our money in an attempt to buy himself some international status:
“At an EU summit in Brussels, the Prime Minister offered to pay the money into an EU fund intended to help poorer countries to cut their carbon emissions.
The offer will make Britain the largest contributor. France and Germany each promised around £1.2 billion to the EU fund, which will be worth around £6.5 billion in all.”
Just so we’re clear, Brown has agreed that we will pay 23% of the EU total, even though we only account for 13.6% of EU GDP. In other words, we are paying 70% more than our fair share.
And what is this fund anyway? How will it be spent? How much will get eaten up in the EU bureaucracy? Which wibbletech companies will get the orders? And which African dictator’s Swiss account will benefit most? We know only too well what history tells us, but don’t hold your breath for answers from Brown.
I take the TPA to task actually for its per capita analyses – they cost for every man, woman and child – but what if you cost only for the UK’s dwindling taxpayer base? I’m sure the TPA does have the figures for this and it alters the picture significantly. And it’s not only the money itself and the regulations which come with it – it’s the whole constriction of what we can and cannot do these days – just how does one quantify quality of life factors like that?
An error many make is to blame Brown alone and true, he is to blame, in the sense of putting pen to paper and selling off Britain but it is the people he’s beholden to, the ones who call the tune, who are the ones we really need to call to account.
Dan Hannan gets into this with the EU bailout [and financial enslavement] of Greece.
# Sheer weight of regulation
The German Federal Justice Ministry replied that between 1998 and 2004, 23,167 legal acts were adopted in Germany, of which 18,917, or 80%, were of EU origin. This information was then used to extrapolate that 84 per cent of all German laws originate in Brussels.
However, a study carried out by the think tank Open Europe thought this was “probably a step too far” and was a function of Germany’s federal system, where a lot of laws are made by the powerful Länder. It took a different approach and one more interested in uncovering the cost of EU regulation rather than the quantity. Researchers sifted through more than 2,000 of the UK government’s impact assessments for regulatory proposals and found that 72 per cent of the cost of regulation over the last ten years is EU-derived.
It concluded: “In terms of absolute proportion, we estimate the figure to be around 50 per cent. This means that the EU now has huge regulatory powers. What’s more, in terms of relative impact – which is what matters – its powers over regulation exceed that of the UK government.”
Denis MacShane, a former Europe minister, has claimed that just nine per cent of UK laws derive from Brussels and based this on research by the House of Commons Library of the number of Statutory Instruments through which most regulations are now enacted. However, this ignored the fact that many EU rules take direct effect. The Lithuanian government, which has been counting since it joined in 2005, reckons the amount of laws affecting it directly attributable to the EU is about 30 per cent.
According to research by the TaxPayers’ Alliance (TPA), there are currently 16,980 EU acts in force and between 1998 and 2007 there was a net gain of 9,415 EU laws. In 2007, 3,010 EU laws became UK law, while only 993 EU regulations were repealed – a net gain of 2,017 extra laws.
The pace at which new EU laws were promulgated also increased at a record speed, with a net gain of over 2,000 new laws in both 2006 and 2007, compared to an annual average net gain of only 942 new laws between 1998 and 2007. Almost half of the extra 9,415 EU laws created in the 10 years to the end of 2007 were introduced in 2006 and 2007. Ben Farrugia, a policy analyst at the TPA, says: “Despite EU rhetoric about reducing regulation, it is growing at a record rate.”
The reason for the disparate figures is partly covered by IPJ’s explanation in Part 1, in the mechanism of Commission Recommendation. The EU aren’t stupid in this sphere – they know that the degree to which the EU controls the UK is a sensitive issue and that there is a vehement anti-EU lobby of significant proportions to be counted as a factor. It only takes the press to get onto press releases by the TPA or Bruges and the whole of the UK gets to see that.
# Directives do affect the UK
They do have a direct effect over here and more often than not, it is deleterious. Take equality legislation, for example.
The EU has instructed the UK to end exemptions to equality laws that allow religious employers to discriminate on the grounds of sexual orientation. This came via a “reasoned opinion” sent to the UK on Friday for “incorrectly implementing” EU rules prohibiting discrimination based on religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation in employment or occupation.
In there are the mechanisms of force which people ascribe to Brown but in fact stem from Brown’s masters who most certainly have the whip hand. Now, this post is not getting into the whys and wherefores of Christians and gays but it is getting into the element of force being used by the EU government to create a Procrustean one-size-fits-all population with a set of behaviours and beliefs approved of by Brussels.
In fact, it is not going too far to describe this as a form of mania for command and control and this comes out in the next section.
# EU run by communists
The goal of the EU can be partly seen by the political makeup of the people. Courtesy of Captain Ranty:
# The Bruderheist and the EU Army
It’s not just the communists or those with communist sympathies which is at issue here. IPJ asked a valid question which anyone of a generation older than us would identify with:
History repeating itself?….with a nation on the verge of economic collapse, a world in turmoil, the threat of outside agressors, imagined or not, and Germany once again has global ambitions…..but this time it already has Italy, France, Belgium, Holland and the rump of Europe with it.
RT: @BreakingNews: Germany supports the creation of a European army so that the EU can be a ‘global player,’ says its Foreign Minister.
The last paragraph says more than the story… here are the last two paragraphs:
“United Europe will only be secure if my generation, which has never experienced war, suffering or hunger, is strongly committed to European integration,” Westerwelle said.“And my generation has a chance to extend this cooperation model far beyond Western Europe, perhaps even to the whole of the European continent.”
Irresponsible scaremongering on our part?
Go tell that to Captain Mainwaring and Corporal Jones. There is support for this from another direction as well and that is the old Churchill quote from 1920:
It has been the mainspring of every subversive movement during the nineteenth century, and now at last this band of extraordinary personalities from the underworld of the great cities of Europe and America have gripped the Russian people by the hair of their heads, and have become practically the undisputed masters of that enormous empire.
The key element here is that it doesn’t matter which country in Europe or indeed worldwide is on the receiving end – there is an element “from the sewers” who want to destabilize it in order to bring their new society into play and this element is at the reins of power, e.g. Prince Bernhard. Those who can understand TPA figures but go all hazy when these sorts of things are mentioned are not going to understand that there is a spiritual, Thule society element to the thinking, not out of place with the Green thinking and the New Age IPCC Gore-Gaia claptrap – you might like to skim down this article and see what you think.
In this mix is Madame Blavatsky, Djwhal Kuhl, Lord Maitreya and that’s before we even start to look at the historical Venetian influence – the Lombards actually explain a lot.
Now let’s be clear here. One unsympathetic commenter said that this type of thing is right up my street. No, correction – it is right up their street and I am the scribe who is reporting what I’ve found, however it appears, good, bad or indifferent. Either way, there is a weird element in Europe, at the reins of power and manifesting itself in European wars from time to time.
The defence of the EU, based on the elimination of war in Europe, is one of the most cynical exercises in history because those elements just mentioned, who cause wars, have in no way gone away, they’re not all living in South America with Joseph Mengele, nor did they all go to America as part of Operation Paperclip. They are right there in Rome, Paris, London and in the forests of Bavaria and they are global in scope and socialist in nature, which brings us back to Nigel Farage.
Well may Baroso smile at that speech because he knows that people who once might have supported the EU sceptics, once they hear that sort of anti-communist rhetoric are going to turn away. That’s why NF was not interrupted. That’s why Baroso and cronies sat, bemused.
Was Farage wrong? Well, for pity’s sake, why would he have divebombed his political career over a maniacally held prejudice of his own? Wouldn’t it seem to be more the case that what he said might actually have held water?
The ’suggestion’ [has been made] that UK troops be used on the streets of the UK to help and supplement our overworked, beleaguered and undermanned Police & Security services.
This ‘policy’ is not new, in fact I wrote about this nearly a year ago, and drew a lot of fire as being a conspiracy nut for even suggesting that troops were being selected for operational use in the UK. [The] role of Armed Service Personnel is being obfuscated and muddled with civilian security.
Security Policies are now an EU competency, as ably shown by David Phipps here and explains the existence of the Military Committee of the European Union (EUMC) which was set up under Council Decision 2001/79/CSFP.
These policies are thrashed out and decided by groups set up by the European Commission, made up of vested Industry interests and unelected member states representatives. The European Parliament (the only elected body in the EU) is given a bit part and then only involved at an observer level.
This group for instance, the European Security, Research & Innovation Forum (ESRIF) has now released its final report, so if you want to see the future of Britain’s security, read this, not Cameron’s election manifesto.
On its website , ESRIF tells us:
ESRIF was set up and supported by the EU Member States and the European Commission together. Its members represented three different interest groups (“stakeholders”):
* Those that will use and apply the achievements of security research – knowledge, technologies and products (often large systems): European, national and regional authorities, police, fire brigades, all kinds of emergency organisations and first responders, private and public operators of critical infrastructure etc. (“demand side”);* Those that perform security research and turn its outcome into technologies and products: universities, research establishments, industry, including SMEs (“supply side”);
* And representatives of the citizens, often non governmental organisations or special think tanks, that are affected by both potential security incidents as well as the efforts to ensure their security (“civil society”).
Give a nice warm cozy feeling? To be honest, it gives me the creeps. It is the building of the new East Germany, using the latest technology for the total control of its population whilst using the spectre of terrorism, crime and paedophilia all rolled into one to justify the measures it proposes.
The website also tells us ESRIF members represent four stakeholder groups:
1. The security technology / solution demand side
* Authorities and end users in charge of civil security from the 27 EU Member States as well as from the countries associated with the 7th Research Framework Programme (FP7);
2. The security technology / solution supply side
* Representatives of industry, research establishments and academia with a particular security profile;
3. Civil society representatives
* Think-tanks, civil liberty organisations and other relevant experts;
4. The European representatives
* Observers from the European Parliament (EP) from relevant EP committees;
* European agencies and comparable organisations in the security and / or security research domain: EUROPOL, FRONTEX and EDA;
* the European Commission , in particular its Directorates General concerned with security and/or security research issues.
All members were nominated in spring/summer 2007 either by the EU Member States and FP7 Associated Countries (stakeholder groups 1, 2 and 3) or by the European organisations listed under stakeholder group 4.
It was agreed among them that ESRIF should have between 50 and 70 members in total. (view list of members)
Now, it is that member list that grabs my attention. Made up of those companies most likely to benefit from an increase in the level of sales of any security policies, and non elected members who are most likely to gain from the powers granted to state and auxillary bodies/companies who will implement and operate any security policies. No politicians, No elected personnel other than some EU Parliament observers.
So when Cameron and Brown, or even poor Clegg spout their latest security policies, plans for the police, the fire and ambulance services, increases in funding for private security arrangements, the UK Border police and the like, be assured that it is not their policy that they are selling you, its the policy of the Federal State of Europe, known to you and me as the EU.
To make it easy for the domestic politicians to lie to you, to tell you that the EU doesn’t run policy, what happens is this.
ESRIF delivered its final recommendations in autumn of 2009 and the Final Report was published in December 2009. As stated in its mandate, ESRIF will expire at the end of 2009.
Here today, job done, gone tomorrow. Within the European Commission structure there are several hundreds of these groups, (creating policy that is then translated firstly into Commission opinion, a rubber stamp vote through the EP, then into national law and sold locally to the public by domestic politicians as their own Party policy), groups that vanish as quickly as they came about.
# Home affairs and criminal justice
Dan can say it better than I can:
… in 1 minute and 12 seconds.
# The Security Forces
You might care to look into The Shape of Things to Come – the EU Future Group (Version.1.3) by Tony Bunyan: 50,784 copies downloaded. [Thanks, Statewatch for the following text - SW links are for each specific part]:
The report calls for a “meaningful and wide-ranging debate” before it is “too late” for privacy and civil liberties. The proposals set out by the shadowy “Future Group” set up by the Council of the European Union include a range of highly controversial measures including new technologies of surveillance, enhanced cooperation with the United States and harnessing the “digital tsunami”. In the words of the EU Council presidency:
“Every object the individual uses, every transaction they make and almost everywhere they go will create a detailed digital record. This will generate a wealth of information for public security organisations, and create huge opportunities for more effective and productive public security efforts.”
The Stockholm Programme is one way in which technology is being used for EU purposes. We’ve already mentioned the EDPS. This goes into it further. European governments and EU policy-makers are pursuing unfettered powers to access and gather masses of personal data on the everyday life of everyone – on the grounds that we can all be safe and secure from perceived “threats” but in fact it is going the other way.
The public have no idea on the size and scope of this database, and although the UK is not in the Schengen area, our police and security forces are fully tied into the SIS database.
The Schengen Information System (SIS) has “over half a million terminals located in the security services of the Member States”: The reference to “security services” refers to police, immigration, customs and internal security agencies.
See EU doc no: 13305/09 (see p3, pdf). This extraordinary figure of more than 500,000 access terminals is given in a Note from the French delegation bidding to house the planned Agency for large-scale IT systems. The previously known figure for the number of terminals with access to the SIS was given in 2003 when there were 13 member states with of access to the Schengen Information System (SIS) when the figures clearly surprised the Council of the European Union (the EU governments) who found there were: “125,000 access points !!!” (exclamation marks in original) (EU doc no: 8857/03, pdf)
Now there are now 25 Schengen member states. Moreover, the new SIS II system will allow access by all agencies to all the data held – under the existing SIS system data can only be access by agencies in the same field, ie: police agencies can only access police data.
Informal Justice and Home Affairs Ministers meeting in Toleda, Spain: EU-USA Joint Declaration on Aviation Security: Joint Declaration (pdf). In addition to covering body scanners and biometrics the possibility of an EU PNR (Passenger Name Record) database is raised again. The current proposal in the EU is for a PNR system which would record data on people flying in and out of the EU – not flights within the EU (EU doc no:5618/2/09, June 2009, pdf).
Press statement (22.01.10):
“The Vice-president of the European Commission and head of security, Jacques Barrot, stated that the Community Executive “is going to speed up its report on technologies and body scanners” and restart the project to create a common passenger name record (PNR) for Europe with “the urgency the ministers have undertaken to back this project”. The three politicians highlighted the contradiction in the exchange of passenger data with the United States but not between European States, “as if a terrorist could not catch a plane in Heathrow to travel to Madrid”, said Rubalcaba [Spanish Interior Minister]“.
Council of the European Union (27 governments) put pressure on the European Parliament to “fast-track” the EU-USA SWIFT (transfer of all financial transactions in order to counter terrorism) while the EU’s Article 29 Working Party on data protection and the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) express strong criticisms:
The EDPS concludes that the Interim SWIFT agreement “leave some dangerous lacunae”. The “necessity” is not demonstrated and for legal certainty and foreseability, “many important data protection elements are still absent or not clearly defined”; no limits are placed on the bulk transfer of data and: “Furthermore, sharing of personal data with other national authorities as well as third countries is neither clearly defined not subject to appropriate guarantees.. [and] many data subjects rights… are either disregarded or have no concrete and clear way to be enforced.”
The Article 29 Working Party observes that the scope of the definition of terrorism differs from that in the EU’s Framework Decision (2002); there has been do assessment that the level of data protection meets EU standards; and it questions whether any form of redress “will prove feasible/practicable for European citizens in practice.”
Where would you like to stop?
That might do for starters on the security industry within the EU and its ties with other security bodies worldwide. And for what benefit to the people? For protection from terrorists and one only has to look at 7/7 to see the anomalies in that.
Also, did you notice the overkill of documentation here just now? That was just a parody of the mass of documentation the EU brings down to shroud any decision in complexity and barrages of bureauspeak.
# EU police force
Fausty brings the Dan Hannan vid and the obvious question we all need to ask in this country:
1 minute 37 seconds only – can you spare the time to watch it?
# Neutralizing EU sceptics
As if we didn’t know, the EU’s plan is for ever closer union and an ultimate end to the sovereignty of nation states. The Germans are now pushing to recruit Cameron and neutralise the sceptics, ever fearful (and rightly so) that the UK’s scepticism will cause it to leave the EU eventually and destabilise the EU in the process.
In case the article “End of Sovereignty” disappears from the server, I’ve reproduced it in full, below:
German government advisors are insisting on concerted efforts to politically neutralize British EU-skeptics. As explained in a recent paper published by the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), the British Conservatives’ attitude will have a “decisive influence on helping to set the EU’s future radius of action,” because the ambitious possibilities in EU foreign policy making, opened through the Lisbon Treaty’s coming into force, will depend, to a certain extent, on London’s cooperation. It is expected that the elections scheduled in May will bring a government change – from Labor to Conservative.
The chairman of the conservatives, a flexible “Euro-pragmatist,” is taking a Euro-skeptic position because of the balance of forces within his party, according to the authors of the SWP paper, but he can be brought to oppose his party’s EU-critical wing. The main reason for British EU-skepticism is the fear of the loss of the country’s sovereignty.
This is not unjustified, as can be seen in the controversy around Greece’s national debt. The German chancellor is threatening Athens that the EU needs to consider whether it should impose an austerity budget on Greece – if necessary, even against the will of the elected parliament in Athens.
According to a recent paper published by the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), London should be more firmly integrated into EU foreign policy, if for no other reason, than for Britain’s political economic significance.
The authors explain that “Great Britain, the second largest economic realm in the EU, with London being a hub of international finances” could definitely not be ignored “because of its globally designed foreign and security policy.”
Because of the United Kingdom’s well known EU-skepticism, continental European countries have paid “little attention” to London. That was a mistake.
It would “behoove” EU members to insist on the British government’s firm engagement for Brussels after the Lisbon Treaty takes effect. Attempts should be made to gain influence on the Conservatives, since they will probably win parliamentary elections in the spring.
Because of the growing popularity of the EU-critical forces, the SWP describes the current development within the Conservative Party as “somber.” “The new generation of the Conservative parliamentarians will further strengthen the EU-skeptical camp.”
Therefore it will “sooner or later” be necessary to seek a closer integration into the EU. To achieve cooperation with the current party leader, David Cameron, is not out of the question. Up to now, his EU-skeptical statements have “mainly been out of consideration of internal party power struggles,” whereas he, himself, tends more toward “conservative EU-pragmatism.”
This has become clear already through his backing off from holding a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty. The SWP authors suggest that on the basis of this sort of “conservative EU-pragmatism” Cameron could “use his party leadership position, to place the [EU-skeptical - gfp] rank and file under pressure.”
Of course Cameron’s previous “failure to settle accounts with the hard-liners of his party sends a signal” even “to the dyed-in-wool optimists that there is still a lot of work to be done.” But it is worth the effort to attempt to continue to marginalize the EU-skeptics.
According to the SWP document, various extraneous circumstances are advantageous to this project. The paper points out that the possibilities of the British Conservatives influencing the European Parliament have been “weakened” since they broke off from the European People’s Party, forming a new group (“European Conservatives and Reformists”) this year.
The authors are also of the opinion that the US government, which is so important to Great Britain, is, under the Obama administration, increasingly seeing “Britain’s significance within the EU as a constructive rather than a conflict potential.” Therefore the conditions are not disadvantageous for taking action against the EU-skeptics.
One cannot avoid the task of forcing the EU-critical circles into retreat, because even if Labor – against all expectations – does remain in government, it can “not be excluded that the national viewpoint, will not come to the fore” – meaning the EU-skeptical tendency.
That is why, in any case, an “open debate” with and in Great Britain around the extension of EU activities must be initiated. The SWP authors’ suggestions concerning how this should be done remain non-committal and rather ambiguous.
The main reason for British EU-skepticism remains the fear that in the future the EU could usurp the sovereignty of the nation-states and blatantly rule the member states, even Great Britain from abroad, bypassing the elected national parliaments.
That this fear is justifiable can be seen in the recent developments in Greece. Greece’s national debt has reached about 120 percent of its BNP, which is twice what is allowed under the EU’s Stability and Growth Pact. Several EU states, including Germany, are exerting strong pressure on Athens to reduce the level of debts at all costs.
Whether this is a justified demand, is a matter of dispute. The Prime Minister of Luxemburg, Jean-Claude Juncker considers “the perspective being painted by some, as if Greece is on the brink of national bankruptcy, is at variance with my observations.”
Axel Weber, President of the German Federal Bank, on the other hand, demands that Athens impose a rigid austerity policy, that would also drastically cut salaries.
The German chancellor is demanding that Brussels should be granted new rights of intervention into central areas of national sovereignty, for such cases. If, for example, an elected parliament refuses to enact substantial cuts in wages, Brussels must have the power to order these cuts against their will. “National parliaments do not like to have things imposed,” observes Angela Merkel and demands “we have to discuss this type of problem.”
The extent of this sort of intervention, particularly affecting the smaller EU nations, placing them under de facto direct control of the EU hegemonic powers, in particular Germany, has been anticipated by the Greek Prime Minister Giorgos Papandreou.
According to Papandreou, the country’s sovereignty is under threat for the first time since 1974, through the external pressure on Athens to reduce its level of debts at all costs. In 1974 the military dictatorship in Greece was replaced by a parliamentary democracy. Papandreou added that Athens itself must institute the reductions demanded by Berlin and others. This is “the only way to insure that Greece does not lose its independence.”
 Martin Kremer, Roderick Parkes: Großbritannien: “Being nice to a sceptic?” SWP-Aktuell 66, Dezember 2009
 EU macht Druck auf Griechenland; Handelsblatt 10.12.2009
 Bundesbank fordert Griechenland zum Sparen auf; Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 10.12.2009
 EU verweigert Griechenland Soforthilfe; Spiegel Online 10.12.2009
 Bundesbank fordert Griechenland zum Sparen auf; Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 10.12.2009
# Failure to sign off the accounts
Tom Paine reported, in 2008:
The management of my firm would not survive one second if our auditors refused to sign off the accounts just once. Why should the incompetent leadership of the EU be in any better position? Did they steal the money that cannot be accounted for? Did they lose it? Did they stand by while others stole it? Whatever the facts (and if the auditors can’t tell you, I certainly can’t) they were responsible for it and they should answer for their failures. How can anyone take this institution seriously, when it cannot account for the money it takes from us, the taxpayers of Europe?
The EU is not concerned with its accounts – to whom is it ultimately answerable? If you say “the people”, then that is wide of the mark. So many pundits have sid that there is a democratic deficit in the EU, this was shown in Part 1 with the way they form legislation. They’re not in the least concerned with the people of Europe, as long as the money flows through CAP and countless other schemes which proportionally cost the British taxpayer billions.
Did I say they’re not concerned with the people? Oh, I was forgetting the surveillance society and the databases. Let’s take a look at those.
It’s not just the author of this article or a few dozen bloggers who are concerned:
Open Europe seminar: “Is the EU a threat to civil liberties?” Tuesday 23 February, 17.00 – 18.30, Brussels. Speakers include: Jonathan Faull, who has been Director General of the European Commission’s Justice, Freedom and Security department since 2003 and Tony Bunyan, Director of EU civil liberties organisation Statewatch. For more information contact Pieter Cleppe: +32 2 540 86 25 or email@example.com
# Captain Ranty’s reasons to be fearful
Captain Ranty has listed 52 reasons to be fearful of the EU. Sorry Cap’n but the readers will just have to go over to you to read them. This Part 2 has now gone on way too long.
Filed under: Politics & economics