Entries Tagged 'Policy' ↓
August 22nd, 2011 — Policy
There is quite a big fashion now for chavs to own a Staffordshire bull terrier. As if owning a dog known for its aggressiveness will make up for their own inadequacies. Before they made the even more aggressive American pit bull terriers illegal there was much interbreeding so many of these dogs are mongrels of both varieties of terrier and the authorities don’t have the resources to genetically test them all.
A walk I regularly take passes near some social housing and I regularly see these dogs taking their owners out for a walk. There is always dog poo on the ground, in an area where children play, because these people don’t have the moral compass to take responsibility for their own actions. The council put up a couple of dog poo bins but these were promptly vandalised, as you would expect from these people.
And of course these dogs attack people. They are badly trained and naturally aggressive. In fact many owners try and train them to be more aggressive to further make up for their own inadequacies. A bit like owning a bigger flick knife. Each year the number of these attacks go up and when they attack children they make quite a mess, often disfiguring them for life. Occasionally these stories make the paper but they are much more common than the reportage.
The amazing thing is that the dog owners are not held responsible when their dogs attack people. The British law just holds the dog responsible, which is plainly wrong, especially when the owners of these dogs typically take responsibility for nothing in their lives, they were bought up under socialism where everything is always someone else’s fault. It wouldn’t be surprising to see the BBC and the Guardian blaming the bankers for the dog attacks, they blame them for everything else.
What we need is much stricter control of dog ownership with every dog chipped and licensed to an individual owner who pays a realistic annual license fee. And everything that a dog does wrong should be the fault of the owner with criminal proceedings taken against them when appropriate. And if an owner gets caught twice not picking up the poo the dog should be put down and the owner banned from buying another one for life.
August 15th, 2011 — News analysis, Policy
We live in a country which embraced the disease that is socialism after world war 2 and it has been the ruination of the country. Today the dead hand of the state extends to more than half of the economy. No wonder we are rapidly being overtaken by countries which were in poverty just a couple of decades ago. And one of the worst consequences of socialism is the creation of a dissolute feckless underclass. When working for a living is optional there are many who will choose to become parasites and live off the state, creating babies as an income source. The Blair and Brown governments made the problem much worse by throwing money at it. They were too stupid to realise that state money was the cause of the problem, not the solution to it.
Here are some examples of where dependency culture has gone badly wrong.
Moira Pearce, 34, has three sons and seven daughters by four different men and has never worked. She receives more than £30,000 a year tax free from the state (you and me) but wants more so has applied to local charities for help.
Gary Bateman, 46, and Joanne Shepherd, 36,live in a free 5 bedroomed house and receive more than £30,000 a year tax free from the state. Joanne Sheppard has 12 children by three men and has not worked for 19 years since she became pregnant with her first child aged 17. Mr Bateman has been out of work for as long as he can remember.
Anita Hull 38 and her unemployed partner Steve Dalton 46 live in a large detached house with nine of their 13 children. They have not worked for 20 years and receive £38,324 of our money every year tax free. Recently they bought a £1,700 60 inch plasma television.
Unemployed 24-year-old Keith MacDonald has had seven children by seven different women and has never paid a penny towards looking after them. The cost of looking after his offsprings costs the taxpayer about £60,000 a year.
Carl and Samantha Gillespie and their 12 children live in a detached 8 bedroom period house with a garden and its own driveway in a desirable area of Newbury, Berkshire. This is paid for by the taxpayer, as is the £44,000 a year they receive in benefits because, obviously, they are unemployed.
A 21 year old man with learning disabilities is flying to Amsterdam to have sex with a prostitute. All paid for with taxpayers money. His social worker says: ‘Refusing to offer him this service would be a violation of his human rights.’
Many, many more similar cases can be found here.
It is pretty obvious that socialism and the welfare state has broken our society. Hard working people are expected to pay half of what they earn to the state in taxes, and the state then squanders that money by encouraging a feckless underclass who have no intention whatsoever of contributing to society. To these people all that they can see is their entitlement. And they always want more as you can read in the articles linked above.
Britain is bankrupt due to the profligate and out of control spending of Gordon Brown. It is only the timely election of the coalition with their sensible budgetary policies that have stopped us going the way of Greece. Yet we are still spending billions on a welfare state that is massively abused by many of its recipients.
The only answer is to get rid of the socialism, shrink the state and adopt libertarian policies. This is what all the successful countries in the world have done. In China, supposedly a communist country, the state is just 20% of the economy. This leaves 80% to get on with making money, no wonder their economy is growing so fast, soon they will be richer than us. The people listed above would find life very different there.
July 29th, 2011 — News analysis, Policy
If I went to my local newsagents and inserted some hard core pornography pictures into the children’s magazines that are for sale there I would pretty soon find myself talking to a couple of angry freemasons at the police station. Yet I run several family friendly forums and blogs and every day they are attacked by people trying to post hard core pornography on them. And if I went and complained about this to the freemasons at the police station they would just laugh.
We live in an age where those in authority have very little idea about what goes on in the real online world.
Then there are the Nigerian (and their imitators from other countries) email advanced fee (also called 419 fraud) con artists who blast out hundreds of thousands of emails, with the expectation that one or two per thousand will end up as gullible victims (they have now turned their attentions to using dating websites for their illicit trade). Research in 2006 reckoned these scammers were getting £150 million a year out of the UK with the average victim losing £31,000. And nobody ever gets punished.
Next come what the news media call hackers. Irresponsible, immature adolescent kids who think that it is fun to run amok on the internet breaking into all sorts of websites and causing massive damage. The children that do this are not hackers, they are not clever enough to be hackers. They are just vandals who use readily available software to exploit known security weaknesses and they are known as Script Kiddies or Skiddies. The programmes they use include Low Orbit Ion Cannon (LOIC), Metasploit, ProRat, Sub7 and many more. What they don’t realise is that their activities do immense harm to the internet as individuals and organisations lose trust in it, holding back what people are prepared to use it for.
Real hackers have the ability to bring a country to a halt and they have done precisely this on two occasions, both times from Russia. In 2007 the Estonian government removed a Soviet era statue from Tallinn which prompted the Russian hackers to attack. So powerful and sustained was this that virtually the whole internet for the whole country had to be closed down. Then in 2008 Russia invaded Georgia (they are still occupying a lot of that country) and once again the internet was used as a weapon, many websites were attacked and it ceased to function.
Even without overt hostility, hackers can cause immense damage to a country, entering websites with stealth and removing commercial and government secrets, this is already happening right now on a massive scale and the Chinese have even admitted that they have a government cyber warfare unit.
Against this background we are enormously under-prepared. Virtually all malicious online activity goes unpunished and we are massively vulnerable to concerted attacks. We have seen the damage that the Script Kiddies can do, imagine if intelligent, educated adults with serious malicious intention started attacking us online, it would bring much of the country rapidly to a halt.
What is needed is a cyber command, alongside the existing army, navy and air force. Its job would be to maximise our defences against cyber attacks of all kinds and to maximise our offensive cyber attack capabilities so that we can smite our enemies. An all out attack on the Libyan online infrastructure would have shortened the current war there and saved lives.
July 21st, 2011 — Policy
A press baron
This whole phone hacking saga has brought the ownership, and therefore the political power, of UK media to the fore, and quite rightly so. For far too long far too much undemocratic power had been vested into too few hands. We need wider media diversity with a far broader range of views and that means far wider media ownership. Obviously for some the Main Stream Media (MSM) is now an irrelevance as they pluck their news eclectically from the interwebs, but for the vast majority this is not the case and looks to remain thus for a while. The proverbial man on the Clapham omnibus does not have the time or the inclination to go hunting for the truth.
Firstly we need to differentiate between media that are purely entertainment and those with a news and current affairs content. All the entertainment channels we can forget about for the purposes of this discussion, unless the SNP set up a TV channel with continuously streaming Braveheart or Labour do the same with Mr Bean.
Basically one owner (and this includes the BBC) should be allowed to own all the following:
- One national TV channel with news and current affairs content.
- One national radio station with news and current affairs content.
- One website with national news and current affairs content.
- One daily newspaper with news and current affairs content.
- One Sunday newspaper (as long as the daily doesn’t publish on Sundays) with news and current affairs content.
- As much and as many purely entertainment outlets as they want.
Local media are another story and really need hammering down on. Currently this is dominated by the institutionally left wing BBC with their huge number of local radio stations and the Labour subservient Trinity Mirror with 240 regional newspapers. It is difficult to keep up with local events without having socialist dogma forced into your head. Therefore all local news and current affairs media should be returned to local ownership and control, so as to properly represent the interests and needs of their audience. So the ownership rules should be:
- One local radio station with news and current affairs content, as long as no national media are owned.
- Plus one local newspaper as long as no national media are owned.
The next problem involves content. One person could generate news and current affairs that suited their political agenda and then pass it on to several likeminded people to use in their separately owned news channels. So you could have diverse ownership without having plurality of content. So we need content rules. Perhaps 90% of all news and current affairs content to be internally generated, with exceptions for straight newswire stuff.
Then there are the non daily national newspapers, The Economist, Private Eye, Spectator Magazine etc. These carry immense power out of all proportion to their readership numbers because the quality of their content is vastly higher than that of the daily media. These should be limited to one title per owner in addition to their other national media.
At the same time we need to lift the rules forcing broadcast media to be politically neutral, this is ridiculous, why shouldn’t they be the same as print and online media? Lifting neutrality would foster plurality and lead to far wider and healthier debate.
The above proposals are common sense, they would work, we would have a far healthier media for them and the power of any one organisation or individual would be severely limited.
July 14th, 2011 — Economics, News analysis, Policy
As regular readers will know the public or state sector of our economy is parasitic on the private sector, where all the wealth is generated. Not only that, the state sector is only about half as productive as the private sector yet is more highly paid. And the activities that the state sector undertake are centrally dictated instead of being driven by the market, which makes them even more inefficient. Currently, thanks to the gross ineptitude of the last Labour government, the state sector has ballooned to become over half the British economy, an immense burden on the private sector who have to earn the money to pay for it. Especially as the last Labour government borrowed like crazy to pay for their profligacy. Debt that interest has to be paid on and which needs to be paid back.
The current government is trying to cut public expenditure whilst increasing taxation in what is a vain attempt to balance the books. They have been very timid, merely rolling back a few years in expenditure terms. This is because they are fearful of making things worse with an unemployment led recession. They need not fear, the private sector is employing new people faster than the public sector is losing them. There are always jobs for good people and still plenty are arriving here from Eastern Europe and finding jobs.
Now the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) says that we are headed for big trouble. State expenditure is still far, far too high. Government debt as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is currently under 70%, in itself this is a shocking figure and is the heritage of Gordon Brown’s economic mismanagement. However it is forecast to rise to 107% by 2060. As a nation we are peering over the edge of a precipice and are heading for a situation far worse than that of Greece. Nobody is big enough to bail us out.
It is a simple matter of fact that the less a state is involved in an economy the more successful that economy is. 100% state control, as in the old Soviet Union, is a recipe for disaster, whilst a state that is 20% of the economy, as in China today, is a recipe for booming wealth. You only have to look at the vast success of Hong Kong and Singapore over the last 20 years to see the benefits of a small state. This is what Britain needs, a huge cutback in the size of the state which would allow the private sector to grow and generate lots of wealth. Here are some policies:
- Repeal legislation that costs money to implement. Especially political correctness and health and safety laws. Let people go back to using common sense.
- Break the monolithic health service up and make it a competitive market funded by insurance, with a government safety net.
- Increase personal taxation allowances so people who work pay far less, pay for it with an increase in VAT, so people spend less.
- Introduce compulsory workfare for the unemployed. If they don’t turn up and work they get no money.
- Minimally enforce European legislation, instead of gold plating it as is now the case. Go back through previous European legislation and pare it down to the bone.
- Increase retirement age again towards 70 for the state pension and for public sector pensions.
- Wage freeze the massively overpaid sectors of the public sector, GPs, policemen and firemen for instance, till inflation brings it back to where it should be.
- Massively liberalise planning permission, especially on the ridiculous greenbelt. Expand the national parks to protect our real countryside.
- Reduce the legislative burden on business. Make it as simple as possible to start and run a business and so generate wealth.
- Get rid of employment protection legislation. Free up the labour market so people are doing the right job in the right place for their abilities.
- Build a huge brand new airport east of London with fantastic infrastructure. The lack of this is immensely damaging to our country. European competitors are now better connected.
- Instigate a massive cull of national and local government. De layer management and institute wage caps (very many senior local government officers are outrageously overpaid). Close down entire departments.
- Concentrate education improvements on the bottom 50%, so we generate a workforce that is employable.
- Massively increase criminal fines, especially for career criminals and confiscate their goods to pay the fines. Only imprison those who are a menace to society.
- Do not give any state aid whatsoever to economic migrants who have not contributed to our economy. Significantly raise the bar for asylum seekers. There are billions of people in the world who probably currently qualify.
- Prune our armed forces back to our real needs. Do we need all those tanks in Germany, warships scattered around the world etc etc? Build big volunteer reserves for emergencies. Cull senior officers by at least 75%. Don’t fight other people’s wars.
- Re-jig the rules of the dependency culture so it doesn’t pay to join a dissolute underclass. Especially stop babies from being used as an income stream.
- Close down the disability gravy train except for the relatively few who are genuinely incapable of work.
Depending on your political viewpoint you may think that some of these are radical. But we will see many of them, there is no alternative.
May 19th, 2011 — News analysis, Policy
A little bit of the Chinese Army
Nick Clegg has recently come in for much unfounded and uninformed criticism. People don’t seem to understand that in a coalition you can’t keep your election pledges because of the compromises that you have to make with the other members of that coalition. If we ever have to suffer the horror of proportional representation and the consequent endless coalitions then election pledges will become meaningless, everyone will feel free to ignore them and blame it on the compromises they had to make.
What Nick Clegg has done is to bring power beyond their wildest dreams to the Lib Dems and over the last year he has used that power to rope in the worst excesses of certain sectors of the Conservative party. However there is a fundamental problem in that the Lib Dems are a party of protest, they are the anti- party. Government is entirely different to being in third party opposition, it is about having policies and implementing them, it is about being a pro- party. Some Lib Dem politicians and very many Lib Dem supporters haven’t got their head round this yet.
But one area that Nick is being spectacularly stupid is the NHS.
The NHS is desperately in need of reform, it is woefully inefficient and not very good at what it does, as anyone who has used a different first world health service will tell you. This has been pretty much universally accepted by all politicians. One problem is its sheer size, the third biggest organisation of any kind in the world after the Chinese army and the Indian railway system. It desperately need breaking down into more manageable chunks. And the good performance of those chunks in delivering excellent health care can only be achieved with a market.
Markets have been proven by mankind over thousands of years to be the best way of delivering goods and services efficiently. We have already established on this blog that the private sector working in a market is about twice as efficient as the public sector working without competition. So a properly reorganised NHS could deliver its existing service for half the money, or deliver twice the service with its ring fenced budget.
But the only way to have a market is to compete on price, otherwise it is not a market. It is only by price competition that you force organisations to be efficient and deliver value for money. And Nick Clegg doesn’t want this. He is thus utterly missing the central benefit of the proposed reforms and if it goes ahead as he wants then it just won’t work. He somehow thinks that delivering health services is “special” yet airlines are special in working in a highly safety critical industry yet they compete on price, as do many other industries that are somehow “special”.
And then we come to profit. Some misguided people seem to think that it is wrong for private suppliers of healthcare to earn a profit from doing so. Why they think this is totally beyond me. Profit is earnings and those earnings are the reward for doing a good job. If a company risks its resources to compete in a market to provide excellent service at the best possible price then they deserve all the profit they can earn from doing such a good job. The more excellent they are the more profit they will make. And if they are inefficient they will make losses and go out of business, to be replaced by better run businesses. This is exactly what our NHS wants and needs.
So there you have it: free market capitalism, competition, efficiency, profits. Exactly the medicine to create a superb NHS. Anything else is a criminal waste of taxpayers money.
May 11th, 2011 — Policy
Give us £100
Everybody knows what happened when the police were given stop and search powers for anti terrorism purposes. They abused it on a prodigious level, comparatively rarely using it for the purpose it was intended for. They also took upon themselves the confiscation of memory cards from the cameras of law abiding people who were minding their own business in public places.
These are the same police who, with no good reason, killed Ian Tomlinson and Jean Charles de Menezes. In fact 333 people have died during or immediately after police custody during the past 11 years, including Sean Rigg, Habib ‘Paps’ Ullah and Smiley Culture, without any officer being successfully prosecuted. These are the same police who illegally imprisoned thousands of innocent people by kettling them with no food, water or sanitation.
Yet now they are going to be given a massive new power that will inevitable be used in an arbitrary manner. They are going to be allowed to give on the spot £100 fines for “careless driving”. This will be entirely subjective, based on the judgement of the police officer. No judge, no jury, no due process. This is bringing the criminal justice system into further disrepute.
Of course there are many rogue drivers. I often see people smoking whilst driving and texting whilst driving is commonplace. But this is no excuse for taking away our historic right to due process.
May 4th, 2011 — Policy
Scottish Parliament Building
I have explained already here why the proposed Alternative Vote (AV) voting system is a bad idea. In fact even its chief proponent, Nick Clegg, described it as a “miserable little compromise”. So do we need reform and if so what system would be best?
The critics of First Past the Post (FPTP) say that it disproportionately favours the big parties and that small parties do not get the representation that their voters’ support deserves. It is a winner takes all system. The critics of Proportional Representation (PR) say that it achieves exactly the opposite, that small parties end up with disproportionate amounts of power as they act as king makers in coalition governments. And certainly real world experience in countries like Israel and Germany support this view.
So what the Economist is proposing is a hybrid voting system where some of the seats are FPTP and some are PR. To bring a balance that in government would be a fairer reflection of the voters intentions than either system can provide on its own.
It just so happens that the hybrid system is already in use, by the Scottish Parliament (Pàrlamaid na h-Alba). Here 73 Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) are elected by FPTP and 56 by PR. The Economist, based on the experience in Scotland, thinks that these proportions are not quite right and that a fairer system would be 80% FPTP and 20% PR.
Certainly to me this looks like a far fairer and more workable reform than those proposed elsewhere.
March 30th, 2011 — Policy
Currently in Britain we have around a million NEETs (youths not in education, employment or training) which are a direct result of our education system failing to prepare these people to be of any productive value to society and of the socialist dogma that has blighted our society since 1945. Meanwhile many hundreds of thousands of Poles and other Eastern Europeans come here and have no problem finding jobs, working hard, contributing to our society and paying the taxes that pay for these NEETs. But then the Eastern Europeans have far more useful skills and, most important of all, a far better attitude.
Our current, socialist, welfare system is engineered to reward failure. This is it’s defining function, people get paid whether they work or not. The current Coalition reforms are just playing around at the margin, they still leave a system that allows those who don’t want to work to live off the state acting as parasites on those who do want to work and do want to contribute to society.
We have created a feral, dependency underclass to whom making a baby is seen as a way to boost their income. These people often have successive generations who have never worked, they just exist to leech off others. And the youths hang around in city centres and housing estates wearing their expensive shell suits and with their sociopathic attitudes conduct vast numbers of low level crimes that blight the lives of millions.
There is a better way. Instead of the state paying people to do nothing we should pay them to do something. This is called workfare and it is an absolutely brilliant policy. So good that many other countries have adopted it with outstanding success. Here are just a few of the advantages of making the unemployed work:
- Taxpayers can see that they get some value for money from paying their taxes.
- The unemployed gain the disciplines and attitudes necessary to prepare them for a proper job in the real world.
- It removes the feral, feckless youths from our town centres and street corners.
- Crime will be reduced because those who now commit many of them would be otherwise engaged.
- The very many who are fiddling the system by working in the black economy whilst claiming benefits will be forced to desist.
- It provides a labour force to make our world better. Picking up litter, removing graffiti.
- It would also provide a work force for much of David Cameron’s “Big Society”.
- Their work could fill gaps created by reductions in government spending.
- It would give claimants a sense of pride and accomplishment in their work, possibly for the first time in their lives.
As you can see Workfare is a fantastic alternative to our current stupidity of just throwing money at people to do nothing. So why don’t we have it? The answer is that the disease that is socialism is so deeply embedded in our society that we no longer do what is sensible and right. Instead we follow left wing dogma, no matter how idiotic and costly it may be.
Finally there is a form of workfare called military conscription, but that is a whole different story.
March 28th, 2011 — Policy
It is pretty uncivilised that unliberated, Victorian, repressive and prudish legislation is still enforced in this country, whilst in more enlightened countries with the legacy of our legal code, like Australia and New Zealand, commercial sex has been legalised. It is also strange that prostitution has been made illegal here by criminalising all the activities around it, such as soliciting, kerb crawling, keeping a brothel, pimping and pandering, instead of making the act itself illegal.
If a lady wants to charge for sex then she should be allowed to, it is none of the state’s business to try and prevent her.
Legalising prostitution would have the following advantages:
- The state would be able to collect income tax (and even VAT from very successful girls) from licensed sex workers.
- Regular health checks would be part of the licensing regime.
- Nuisance prostitution would move away from residential areas.
- It would be easier to control under-age, illegal immigrant and enforced prostitution.
- Organised crime would be less likely to be involved in the business.
- Feminists would be happy because the current laws repress women.
- It would free up police time to go after the leftie “anarchists” who periodically run amok in London.
- The state would be handing rights back to people that they shouldn’t have taken away in the first place.
- Socially dysfunctional men would have a sexual outlet.
- No more criminalising of women who are not criminals.
We are one of the few western democracies that still tries to repress the world’s oldest profession. The example of many other countries tells us that we are doing more harm than good, the current situation is just plain silly.
February 19th, 2011 — Policy
Following on from A simple solution to many of our national problems, here is a straightforward idea that would sort out a lot of problem areas in one go. These areas are financing secondary education, the benefits and unemployment system and the pension system. The idea is, quite simply to bundle them all together in a personal lifetime fund, administered by a choice of private companies. Then totally get rid of the current systems in these areas.
The core of the fund is that throughout the individual’s entire life their employer will pay a minimum percentage (say 10%) of their salary into the fund. This could come from the employees gross pay or the employer could finance it. Paying a higher percentage would be optional. These contributions would be invested in the personal lifetime fund where they would earn income and accumulate.
But unlike the current system the fund could run a negative balance if necessary. So a person could use it to pay for their secondary education, then when they start work the 10% pays off the negative balance and then gets it positive.
Likewise if a person becomes unemployed or disabled, their benefits would come from their own fund. If they are unemployed or disabled for a very long time their account goes negative.
At retirement age the fund is crystallised to provide a pension, just like current personal pensions.
The government would still be paying though. They would pay the scheme companies interest on accounts that ran negative, they would also pay when someone died with a negative balance and they would still need to provide a minimum safety net for those who reach retirement having been unwilling or unable to create an adequate fund.
The advantages of the personal lifetime fund are huge:
- People would take responsibility for their own lives.
- State interference in the individual would be massively reduced.
- It allows markets to work so the most efficient use is made of resources.
- People could choose when to retire and how rich they wanted to be in retirement.
- There would be a massive disincentive to being unemployed, because you would be paying your own unemployment pay.
- Huge layers of bureaucratic state apparatus would be removed, allowing the people now employed in it to return to the private sector and contribute to the economy.
- It would create huge investment funds that would greatly enhance our economy and create growth.
The government could start this tomorrow and pump prime the accounts of people dependent on their age, this would be a non inflationary form of quantitative easing. Existing private and company pension balances would be transferred in. Public employees pensions would be transferred in.
As I have described it this is not perfect, it needs tinkering with and tuning. But the basic concept would transform British society for the better.
February 7th, 2011 — Policy
Just now William Hague, our Foreign secretary, is very aggrieved because the undemocratic European Court of Human Rights is telling us Brits that we have to give convicted criminals who are in prison the vote, whereas traditionally we have not done so as the removal of the franchise is seen as part of the punishment. So who are these Europeans to tell us how to run our own country when we have our own democratic sovereign parliament and our own rather grand judicial system? The answer, this time, is the 47 state Council Of Europe. But just as interfering are the 27 state European Union. So what is going on here?
These powerful European institutions were put together for a number of reasons: to stop us having periodic wars, so we can match American global power, as a united front against the evil of Russia, to foster trade and economic growth, to help less advanced European nations and to further co-operation in many areas. And you have to say that it has worked.
However there is a major, fundamental philosophical problem. Just what are we trying to create? This has a very simple either/or answer. We are either, by creeping federalism, trying to create a European superstate or we are setting up inter government institutions to enable the objectives of the last paragraph to be achieved. The problem is that different European countries have different views on this, those views change from time to time and the populations of countries often have the exact opposite view to that of their politicians. So the whole project is like a headless chicken.
If the independent nation states are going to retain their own sovereignty then a lot of the federal institutions that have been set up are just an immense waste of money and should be immediately disbanded. This includes the European Court of Human Rights and the European Parliament (one of the most useless institutions ever invented). If we are going to become a federal superstate then we should by open about the fact and plan for it properly, not try and get there by dishonest stealth as is currently happening.
Many see the federal superstate idea as being at best badly flawed, the majority of the Conservative party is against it. Do we really want to be told what to do by a federal state dominated by southern Europeans, do we really want Greeks and Romanians telling us Brits how to run our country? The good news is that the current financial crisis in the Eurozone has set back the federalist agenda enormously.
And the federal superstate idea ignores the reality, with the internet people are far better informed, with less wars there is no need for big armies, with huge international trade and travel the world is a more fluid and a more realistic place. So the tendency in Europe is the opposite of federal superstate. Spain has split up into semi autonomous mini countries, the Czech and Slovak republics divorced amicably, Belgium is on the point of fracturing and the only reason that Scotland and Wales aren’t independent yet is that they are both totally reliant on handouts from English taxpayers. In the recent banking crisis an independent Scotland would have been worse off than Greece or Ireland.
Obviously the European Union is a good thing, but they still have a long way to go on the simple things before they address the big one of becoming a federal superstate. There are still far more restraints to free trade than there should be and these take many forms. My wife was for many years a successful general practitioner in Latvia, which has a medical system far superior to the NHS (not difficult), yet she is not allowed to do the same job in the UK, despite passing all the relevant English language tests.
What is needed with Europe, and something that has been conspicuously absent, is a bit of honesty. The politicians should sit down and decide the whole sovereignty issue once and for all. They need to agree across all the states of Europe and they need to tell us voters, who they represent, what they are doing and where we are going. Then we can vote them out at the next election if we don’t like it. Once this is all decided then we need a plan of action to get there.
Personally I would like the nation states to retain their sovereignty, for all the expensive and unnecessary federalist institutions, like the European Parliament, to be disbanded, and for the inter-government body (the EU commission) to apply itself to removing all the remaining trade barriers. Also it would be nice if Scotland and Wales were independent within Europe, then they could be paid for by the European tax payers instead of the English taxpayers having to carry the full burden.