From the UKIP party conference: A referendum stitch up

As last week’s revelations about Hillsborough so tragically illustrate, public authorities and governments are quite prepared to doctor the record and rewrite the truth when it suits them.  Most people call it lying!  And such is the Orwellian control of so much of what we are told that, as Liverpool supporters have just discovered, it can be decades before the truth is dragged out of the political class.

There is no subject on which this is truer than Britain’s membership of the European Union.

Whether it is Whitehall suppressing key papers or the British government – both Labour and Conservative are guilty – issuing misleading statements and using weasel words, we now know that the whole truth and key information has long been suppressed.

In a pamphlet, I am publishing today, I am trying both to expose the lies of the past and show that it could be about to happen again – with equally disastrous consequences for the future prosperity of the British people.

All the evidence – including regular opinion polls – suggests that over half of us want to leave the European Union.  Even more of us want a referendum to give us the chance to have our say.

But the British and EU elites do not share this view.

As a UKIP MEP, I know how the political class operate – and co-operate – in both Brussels and London. They only want to allow us referenda which produce the ‘right’ result – the outcome that suits them.

Faced with public opinion, I believe they are going to try to pull off an old trick.

In 1975, the British people were led to believe that they were voting to stay part of a “Common Market” or free trade area.

They were not. They were being deceived.  Harold Wilson’s government claimed in public that “no important new policy can be decided in Brussels”.   But, behind the scenes the Foreign Office had already told his government that “Community law” would “prevail over conflicting national legislation”.  The Conservatives and Liberals of the time co-operated in the deceit.  For, the statements cannot both be true.  They are contradictory.  And, we now know, unsurprisingly and to our considerable cost, that it is the “censored” one – the one they withheld from us – that is accurate.

What we were in fact voting for was to remain in a customs union – what the Germans call a ‘zollverein’. In the nineteenth century the establishment of the Zollverein was the first step to German unification – which in turn led to two world wars.

In the EU, being part of a zollverein/customs union means everything has to be harmonised i.e. made uniform – and that is what the European Union has now been busily doing for decades.

It results in unending new laws and regulations which eventually form a unified legal code enforced without distinction across the entire population of over 500 million people.

It gives rise to:

• pan-European environmental regulation

• continental-style social legislation

• common employment law

• uniform company & corporate law

• economic governance

• unrestricted immigration,

• resultant welfare costs …

The list is endless.

And all this to be part of a Union:

• with which we run a trade deficit when we run a surplus with the rest of the world.  The UK’s trade deficit with the rest of the EU is circa £50 billion,

• which grows relatively poorer as each new member joins (just wait for Turkey: the Con/Lib coalition and Labour all want to add over 70million largely Moslem Turks), and

• which is ever less important in terms of world trade as growth switches to such countries as Brazil, China and India.

For the privilege of having to implement all these regulations, the United Kingdom has to pay the European Union a gross contribution of more than £50million per day?

I do not believe any sane person can think it value for their taxpayers’ money!

Moreover, the “Common Market” – always an unofficial name – is very simply a road towards a far larger and, to me, more sinister goal: European economic and political union, the creation of a United States of Europe.

I already have evidence that the political class, covertly backed by its EU counterparts, are trying to mislead us again.  They suggest that a straight ‘in or out’ / ‘yes or no’ question should be replaced by a complex question which appears to offer a third way: continuing as part of the Single Market without full political union.

In short, a recycled version of what we thought we were getting in 1975.

But just like then, there is no third way. My booklet explains why it – and any apparent renegotiation of terms whilst we are still a member – is, and can only be, a mirage, designed to mislead.  It tells how and why the way the European Union is constructed literally makes such an arrangement impossible.

In all fairness to the EU elite, I have to admit one thing about them. They have not and have never tried to hide it: a binding commitment to ‘ever closer union’ was in from the beginning and has been constantly repeated ever since.

But the same cannot be said of the British establishment: ever since the membership and referendum debate of the early 1970s right up to the present day it seeks to conceal this fundamental commitment.

I do not believe this particular leopard is about to change its spots – and, no matter whether the Prime Minister claims to be blue or red!

We are committed by Treaty to make progress towards an ever closer union whose currency is the Euro.  Until the Treaties are repealed by British law, this is a statement of fact.

What I am afraid of – as we increasingly win the argument about how the UK’s membership is damaging rather than beneficial – is that, like the manipulations of some 19th or 20th century dictator, they want to ignore the law and the treaties, appear to renegotiate, come back claiming to have got “not all we want but enough”, fix the wording into a leading question(s) giving them endless ‘wriggle-room’ and win a referendum all over again – by fraud.

In contrast with nearly 50 years of lies and half-truths from successive governments, I believe you the public – the people who really matter – are entitled to be told the truth.  That is what I am trying to tell in my booklet – and this article.

Nigel Farage is leader of UKIP.

Read the full UKIP policy document here

%d bloggers like this: