Every time I’m in the chamber of the European Parliament, I have to listen to people stand up and talk about what a great success the EU has been.
But I’m not sure anybody saying it really believes it anymore.
It’s the same when I listen to John Major saying Britain is better off inside the EU than out. He is an intelligent man, so does he really believe it?
Okay, Sir John has to carry the shame of being the British prime minister who signed the Maastricht Treaty – and, you know, he signed it and then had to ask his civil servants to tell him what he’d agreed to – so of course he has to go on believing.
Otherwise he’d have to admit that when he signed that treaty he allowed the creation of the single currency, the ghastly euro monstrosity that has destroyed the economies of the EU’s Mediterranean members and left Germany – again – with huge political sway over the Continent.
He agreed to that in Maastricht and so much else that is now a burden to the UK and a curse to the entire EU.
That’s a lot for Sir John to be ashamed of.
So we can’t be surprised he is still singing with the true believers in the choir.
Only a matter of time
The fact is that Britain would be better off out of this European Union of economic failure, of mass unemployment and of low growth.
When the UK leaves – and the UK will leave, the only question is when – it can stop being Little England and go back to being Great Britain.
It can again be open to the world. It can become the opposite of the closed, insular EU.
An independent Britain can be out there doing our own trade deals, in our own interests, with countries that have growth rates of six, seven, ten percent a year. We would no longer be bound to an aging and increasingly arthritic trade bloc where growth of two and three percent is a heady ambition.
We will cease to be hemmed in by the European Union. Instead we will be open to the dynamic economies and peoples of our real friends in the Commonwealth. We can be trade and economic allies with Canada and Australia, with India and Singapore.
Of course we will still trade with all countries across Europe. EU membership is not necessary for access to the EU. Just ask Norway. Ask Switzerland. Ask the United States: The USA exports more to the EU than Britain does. So does China.
We want to live and work and trade in a Europe of democratic nations. But that is not what the elite of the EU wants.
The unelected elite of the Commission have hijacked the institutions of Europe by adopting a flag, an anthem, a president. They have made a fake country with the democracy drained out.
This fake country called Europe has just one accomplishment, the mad euro project which has driven tens of millions into poverty.
When the UK leaves the Union it can reclaim its heritage of global trade.
And independence will get us back a shedload of our own money.
At the most basic level, we will get back £55 million a day. For readers trapped in the deutsch-euro zone, that is €72m. It adds up. It’s £20 billion, €26 billion, a year.
Don’t believe the scare stories
With that kind of money, we could reduce the deficit. We could reduce corporation tax. We could have the most competitive and attractive business taxes in the Western world. We could get people working again by reducing income tax for those on the minimum wage.
So, if you ask, “Would the UK be better off outside the EU?” I’d say the answer is clearly: Yes.
Outside the EU we would get our money back. We would get our borders back. We would get our sovereign Parliament back. We would get our fisheries back.
We would get our own seat on the bodies that actually run the world, such as the WTO.
We would get back the ability to strike free trade deals. We could abolish tariffs on African produce and do more to raise living standards there than any amount of aid.
There are those such as Sir John who deny all that and say we can’t go it alone. Who say our global influence will decline because we are small.
Sir John and the others are wrong. While we stay bound to the EU, we are forced to sit silently mute at international trade negotiations as the EU officials negotiate for 28 member states but never for Britain.
And just to counter the scare stories that Sir John puts up to frighten people away from independence, I’ll tell you what won’t happen.
Wipe out the shame
Those 10,000 trucks a day coming in from the continent bringing goods into this country, they won’t stop coming.
The £25 to £35 billion trade surplus the rest of Europe runs with us, that’s not going to stop.
The idea that the EU will start a trade war with Britain is simply not credible. More, the Lisbon Treaty has three articles which lay a legal obligation on the EU to negotiate free trade with any member state which wants to leave.
So when Sir John says a UK outside the EU will lose its influence and damage its trade, the fact is that nothing like that is going to happen.
Leaving the Union will give us our country back and open a door to the world. It will wipe out the shame of Sir John and his Maastricht Treaty.