Tory Election Manifesto should include a commitment to a referendum on Scottish Independence



Comment by Anthony J Sargeant

I empathize with my Scottish friends who want Scotland to become an independent self-governing country. What I then find difficult to understand is that the SNP, who are demanding a second referendum in anticipation of securing a ‘Yes’ vote for Scottish Independence, are doing so with the express aim of then joining the EU.

There is no logic in this position because this would mean becoming independent from one Union only to become a very small province within the much larger European Superstate project. With a population roughly equivalent to Slovakia the Scots would be entitled to about 12 MEP seats in the European Parliament out of the total as set by the Lisbon Treaty of 751: That is about 1.6% of the total MEP seats.

Compare that with the nearly 10% of seats that Scotland has in the House of Commons (59 out of a total of 650 – that latter figure being made up of 533 English, 59 Scottish, 40 Welsh and 18 Northern Irish). Even that 1.6% would depend upon the EU principle of “degressive proportionality ” continuing in the future  (basically giving small EU countries more seats than their population warrants on strict proportionality – and by the way don’t you just love the labyrinthine ways and terminology of the European project?).

1.6% voting rights (equivalent to Slovakia) does not sound as if Scotland would have very much influence or independence as the EU political project moves towards ever closer political, social and financial integration.

Furthermore as a new state applying to join the EU Scotland would, like all other new applicants, have to agree to join the Eurozone and adopt the Euro as currency.

Inevitably this would require a further surrender of independence and control since the Scottish economy and financial affairs, and therefore ultimately all social and political policy, will be determined by the European Central Bank based in Germany.

Now nobody would suggest that Scotland is the equivalent to Greece, but the Greek experience is a salutary one. The ECB in its attempt to preserve the Eurozone has required Greece to adopt extreme austerity measures leading to widespread poverty, emigration of its young people, and starvation in the countryside. A pattern echoed in other poor EU countries.

The European Central Bank is based in Frankfurt. At the moment its President is Mario Draghi who was previously head of the Italian Central Bank (the Italian economy being such a wonderful success story – irony) but much more to the point he was Managing Director of Goldman- Sachs International : The very bankers consulted by the EU to assess the Greek Economy when it applied to join the Eurozone and who reported back that everything was fine and to “go ahead” let Greece join the Eurozone. Goldman-Sachs were alleged to have directly conspired to hide Greek debt using so-called ‘off-market swaps’.

In this context and to urge further caution it is interesting to note that in order to join the Eurozone Greece was restricted in the amount of olive oil that it could export to the EU (because Spain and Italy wanted to preserve their preferential markets). The curious result is that Greece then sold their ‘above EU quota’ to Israel, who then resold it to Italy who then incorporated it (quite within the byzantine rules) into processed “Italian” Olive Oil.

There is no question but that on joining the EU Scotland would have to give up any rights to control its enormous and valuable resource which is its wonderful fisheries leaving them open to the depredations of Spanish super-trawlers which routinely land above quota catches in Spain without effective control and with resultant destruction of the sea bed and fish stocks in Scottish waters. The loss of independence and therefore the ability to control a sustainable fisheries policy for the benefit of Scotland would be an economic as well as an environmental disaster for Scotland.

So with a role equivalent to Slovakia in an EU parliament dominated and largely controlled by the Germany economy, and understandably geared to the benefit of Germany, Scotland would have no real independence. Scotland like the other small European “Provinces”  would have little direct control over its economy (“Provinces” because the aim clearly stated by the EU is for further integration and central control – thus loss of nationhood). There might still be a Scottish ‘Parliament’ in Holyrood but that would become the equivalent of a Parish Council meeting in the village hall commenting on planning applications but with no actual power.

In conclusion I do wonder what those brave Scottish Military personnel who suffered and died to defeat German domination of Europe in two World Wars, the last in my lifetime, would make of a surrender of their precious nationhood and independence to a German dominated European Superstate – The 4th Reich by any other name.

But, if I were Teresa May I would not hesitate. I would include in the Tory Manifesto for the upcoming UK General Election an absolute commitment to hold a second referendum on Scottish independence in the lifetime of the next parliament. The Scottish people can then decide for themselves whether to become independent from the United Kingdom – and if they so decide many, including myself, would wish them well.

I just hope that they do not then seek to surrender that new found independence to a German Hegemony in a European Federated Superstate


If I were Theresa May ……


In the light of the European Parliament and the increasing belligerent and bullying approach of the EU politburo and their confederates it seems that any ‘negotiation’ with the EU will be prolonged and futile.

Thus Anthony Sargeant reflects that ….. if I were Theresa May ….. I would have the courage to call an early general election with a manifesto pledge to leave the EU with immediate effect. I have no doubt that she would achieve an impressive victory, if only because British people do not take kindly to bullying and threats.

The consequence of immediate withdrawal would probably be very positive for the UK given the precarious position of the EU and Euro economies (Greece is yet again on the brink – desperately trying to find an agreement with its creditors – aka the European Central Bank – aka Germany) – but Portugal, Italy, Spain and others are not much better off – even if hidden from view. In many EU countries there is massive youth unemployment rising above 30%.

On leaving the EU the UK  can immediately open negotiations with the rest of world on such free trade deals as seem beneficial (even, dare one say, deals with the EU – which as a net exporter to the UK might quickly think this is a good idea). In the meantime WTO rules and their tariffs are not as significant to exporters as fluctuations in exchange rates as James Dyson has pointed out.

But trade is not the real point – the real point is British Sovereignty. That is having control of our own destiny. As Karl Popper famously observed, the point of western democracy is not that you necessarily get the government that you want, doing what you want, but that at the next election you can get rid of them – unfortunately this is not true of the un-elected EU politburo in Brussels.

Who, for example, voted for Jean-Claude Juncker as head of the European Commission? A former Luxembourg Prime Minister who in that role and in a little known secretive EU committee vetoed any attempt to limit cross-border tax avoidance. Then you might ask why are Amazon and other multi-national companies located in the tiny principality of Luxembourg? to the benefit of guess who? Jean-Claude Juncker and Luxembourg (which has the second highest GDP per capita in the world after that other well known democracy Abu Dhabi). A position that at the very least might be considered hypocritical and at another level verging on corrupt.

But anyway and in addition to controlling our own destiny the UK would no longer be a cash cow sending money to Brussels to support a political project which is out of date and frankly, after 60 years, out of time. A political project which is now, in all but name, a German controlled European Superstate – the Holy Roman Empire revisited (which was the 1st Reich for those who know the numbering system of the 3rd Reich – NB the Weimar Republic was classified as an ‘interim Reich’ so it did not count).

And then finally Scotland –  …… if I were Theresa May ….. I would also put into the manifesto a pledge to have an immediate referendum on Independence. It would be the honourable thing to do.

A referendum would give the Scottish people a chance to review the situation and make their own decision about the future. One understands the emotional and sentimental appeal of Independence for a proud nation. A nation which it could be argued has made a disproportionately large contribution to the historic Union. Without Scottish engineers, philosophers, artists, writers and others the United Kingdom would have been a much poorer nation.

In addition there has been the contribution of Scotland to the UK military over many years and many wars. In my lifetime the ‘United Kingdom’ stood alone and thereby rescued Europe from German tyranny and genocide, but only after massive sacrifice of UK military and the civilian populations  (including my maternal grandparents killed in the London Blitz). Who can forget the Scottish piper at El Alamein, or on the beach on D-Day?

So, ……if I were Theresa May ….. ,  I would commit to a very early referendum on Independence for the Scottish people. They deserve no less. If they choose to leave the historic Union and become an independent country one would wish them all speed and so very many thanks for their massive contribution to the United Kingdom over many years of the Union. Of course, and in passing, one would hope that they would not then vote to lose the independence they chose by becoming a minor province of a dysfunctional European Superstate controlled by Berlin through Brussels – a 4th Reich in all but name.

The future of the Euro and the EU – Does Scotland want to join this – I sincerely hope not – if you vote for independence stay independent.

  • Anthony Sargeant forwards this warning to all of his Scottish friends with whom he sympathises with for wanting Independence

  • Mervyn King warned that the project is doomed, is it time for the Eurozone to be broken up?

Ruth Lea, economic adviser to the Arbuthnot Banking Group, says Yes.

The Eurozone was always primarily a political project, a major stepping stone to the “ever closer union of the peoples of Europe,” but one with the profoundest economic consequences. Members have no control over their interest rates, their exchange rate or, indeed, fiscal policy. And, as we have seen in recent years, many Eurozone members have paid a bitter price for their loss macroeconomic sovereignty. Under the austerity cosh and with no ability to devalue their currencies, growth has disappointed and unemployment rates remain alarmingly high in Greece, Spain (albeit partly-recovering), Italy and Portugal. Looking ahead, there is no reason to believe the policy situation will fundamentally change. Fiscal discipline is entrenched and unremitting and, contrary to speculation, there are no signs that Germany will ever agree to a fiscal transfer union in order to support the weaker countries. The Eurozone simply lacks the demos and “solidarity” to enable the currency bloc to work for all. It’s time to break it up.


‘Here-today and gone-tomorrow politicians’: The EU, Brexit and Francois Hollande


“Here-today and gone-tomorrow politician” is a jibe levelled by Sir Robin Day on a BBC television interview with Sir John Nott in 1982. But it is as relevant today with respect to any number of European Politicians. As a letter to the Daily Telegraph makes clear when commenting on the posture of the President of France (at least till the next election) Francois Hollande in respect of Brexit.

Hollande is quoted as saying that Britain “will have to pay a heavy economic price” for leaving the EU. The letter writer, M. Wood-Wilson, points out that this shows breathtaking arrogance. He goes on to point out that:

“France has a youth unemployment rate of 39%; Italy 43%; and Greece 50%” (he does not even mention Spain or Portugal). “France and Italy have immense government debts of €2 trillion each, which they cannot repay unless their economies grow significantly, which is unlikely while they remain in the eurozone. The EU needs all the trade it can get. We buy more from the EU than it does from us. For EU politicians to ride roughshod over their electorates and punish Britain in order to hold their failing integrationist project together is to vindicate Britain’s decision to leave”

The “here-today and gone-tomorrow politicians” jibe applies equally to Angela Merkel, Alexis Tsipras, Matteo Renzi, etc etc. All of whom will very soon be voted out of power by their respective electorates.

The problem is that the EU project has grown ‘like topsy’ from an economic community into a monster of a political project which is anti-democratic and dysfunctional and can only work by enforced integration into what has become ‘Fortress Europe’. The only Federation of states that faced a slightly similar challenge and still survives is the USA  – but that only happened after a bloody civil war. But the major difference is that in Europe the Nation States have long and distinct histories and cultures.

How long before the youth of Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain rise up against the austerity imposed upon them by the EU politburo and the vested interests of the Northern Nation States?

The EU Politburo – Anthony J Sargeant asks, “How many can you name?”


Harriet Harman a politician in the remain campaign was asked by Andrew Neil on the Daily Politics television programme to name these men (all men note!) who run the EU.

She could not name one of them – but she is not alone – that failure is just symptomatic of the undemocratic and dysfunctional nature of the EU political project.

The great danger for the future is that the EU Superstate Project, if it continues on its present trajectory, will collapse into civil strife and war as nation states seek to reassert and control their national identities. There have been numerous attempts to create a European superstate since the Roman Empire itself collapsed – all ended in tears.

The United States of America only stayed ‘United’ after a long and very bloody civil war resulting from the differing economies of the northern industrialized states compared with the agricultural southern states.

One can see a similar and inevitable division opening up across Europe as poorer countries simply provide cheap migrant labour to industrialized countries like Germany while losing control of their own destinies (some of those economies are already effectively controlled or determined by the EU-Germany).

Far from a break-up of the EU Political Project leading to World War III, as David Cameron has ludicrously suggested, the much more likely scenario is that the undemocratic and dysfunctional EU Project which is already causing a resurgence of far right Nationalistic sentiments across European ‘States’, will lead to demands for secession, civil strife and war. How will the EU control and impose its will on a small poor state within the future ‘EU Nation’ if there are riots and demands for secession?

Will the EU, like the Soviet Union in its Eastern European Empire 1945-1989, seek to impose control by sending in the tanks?

The EU will collapse in disarray as poor countries are squeezed by Brussels ’till the pips squeak’


Anthony J Sargeant comments : this is just a foretaste of the ‘United States of Europe’ civil war which could mirror that in the United States of America in 1861-65 in which economic differences led to over a million casualties.

The UK staying in the EU will not save Europe from this fate but add to the further consolidation of the differences between rich and poor across Europe leading to disaster. It is time to abandon the undemocratic and out of date EU political project and engage with the cultures and people of the wider world in a spirit of collaboration and mutual respect and not prop up an inward looking “Fortress Europe”.



David Cameron is desperate -“World War Three will break out if we leave the EU”


The scare tactics of the remain campaign have reached new farcical and frankly insulting heights with David Cameron’s latest pronouncement suggesting that if we left the EU then World War III  would break out in Europe. In his speech he conjured up images of row upon row of white War Graves Commission headstones in France and elsewhere which would be added to as ‘brave British boys’ had to go to war to ‘save Europe’.  Along with images of the Panzer divisions which would once again roll across the frontiers occupying Greece and other recalcitrant countries who refused to toe the EU-Eurozone line on tax and austerity.

Actually of course Germany has already achieved what the the Kaiser and Hitler failed to do, which is to dominate and control most of the European continent in support of their economy which would struggle without foreign labour and without the moderating effect on the Euro of the desperate failed economies of Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy etc.. If the Germans had to return to the Deutsche Mark they would find it difficult to sell their high quality but expensive Deutsche Mark priced exports in the world markets.

That aside one might also return to another of the oft cited images about the EU which is to point to the example of “The United” States of America. Imagining that somehow a disparate groups of countries with different languages and cultures will coalesce into the ‘United States of Europe’ – which is the ultimate destination aimed at by the EU political project.

In that imagined scenario there are two serious flaws. One is that far from being a liberal and embracing image it suggests an inward looking ‘Fortress Europe’: Whereas many liberal minded people would rather have a ‘world view’ that reached out to other cultures and countries across the globe in a spirit of mutual respect and collaboration. The second, and perhaps more frightening, flaw is that the United States only remained ‘United’ after a bloody Civil War (the root causes of which were economic – albeit related to slavery). In the American Civil War of 1861-65 there were over a million casualties. Far from the EU being a source of harmony and peace in Europe it is more probable that the deep economic divisions between the (necessary) perpetuation of rich and poor ‘states’ (because they would no longer be sovereign ‘countries’) in Europe would eventually erupt into some secessionist ‘civil war’ just as it did in the USA in 1861.