Remain or Leave?

I’m firmly on the side of going forward with Europe. Being part of something greater, that has real ability to change the future for the better, and which has a solid democratic and inclusive culture. Best you know that about me, as it’s a deeply help belief.

Old enough to remember Little England in 1973, I reject the petty nationalism and zero-sum thinking that lies behind Brexit. Diligent enough to have read proper economics and to know that there are no ‘good’ Brexit scenarios for me or my children. Environmentally aware enough to know that the people pushing Brexit have an established history of destroying the planet for their own profit, and leaving the rest of us to pay the clean up bill. Experienced enough in international financial fraud investigation and offshore banking to know that the people funding Brexit are very bad and nasty people indeed who care only for grabbing everything they can and running aways somewhere tax free and sunny. Old enough to recognise when politicians of any colour are flat out lying to me.

Fundamentally, no one has offered me anything factual that might change my mind. I hear cult-like speeches filled with marketing phrases and ideology. Not facts. I like facts. I also like the Precautionary Principle, which says that we should have a lot of very reliable and corroborated evidence before making an irrevocable change to our nation. Ideology is for ideologues and dogmatists. It is no way to run a society. 21st Century evidence based Politics is a serious matter, and anyone who wants to revert to the political methods of the 1700s is regressive, and probably seeking to mislead us.

There are too many lies, and too many shadowy influences to list here, and others do a better job of investigating them than I ever could. Even if we were to assume that the Referendum had any democratic validity, which we probably cannot safely assume, it as Advisory to the Government. The role of Government was and is to assess the choices on the evidence and decide for the good of the entire nation both now and for the future. This, both major parties have signally failed to do.

The EU is growing as fast as any developed nation. Developed nations grow slower than developing ones, and they grow in different ways; not by exploiting low paid workers, not by mining ever scarcer resources, not by starting heavy industry, and not by having high birth rates. Developed nations grow by delivering services, by innovation, by intellectual property, by art and culture. The EU excels at these.

Immigration is not only good for the UK, it is essential. (The only evidence that immigration is bad is for a tiny group of the very lowest paid seasonal workers in very small areas, under 0.1% of the workforce, and benefits can fix that.) Immigrants build more homes than they occupy, create more hospital beds and service than they use, are more likely to be teachers than take school places, and pay far (far!) more in taxes than they take in benefits.

The UK has never ceded any element of its Sovereignty. That’s not how the EU works: it is like a club. Just like a club. And, just like a club, its members have benefits while they freely chose to follow its rules. The EU club committee is far more democratic, far more communicative, and far more transparent than the archaic nonsense that we call Parliament in the UK.

That club has ways to solve disputes among members. Like any club. The mere existance of the European Courts of Justice and ECHR should be a source of immense pride to all of us. After all, we wanted them, and we helped create them. The alternative methods of dispute resolution are … dreadful to contemplate.

There is no ‘Kalergi Plan’, or EU Superstate. Both of those are imaginary horrors used to scare the foolish. The Lisbon treaty effectively put an end to any idea of a Federal EU Superstate. Sadly very few UK citizens bothered to read it against the corpus of laws that give it meaning.

Peace in Europe for 70 years has enabled Trust between nations for 70 years. The truth of economic growth in developed nations is that almost all of that growth is because of enhanced trust and predictability.

Throwing that away to please a minority seems unwise.

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