MEDIA OPINION: The Leftist EU mindset.

The UK Left sees the EU as the perfect launch vehicle for its cultural coup

This piece represents no more than extracts from two media, with suitable comments. Sorry about that, but there’s more to life than just sources offering scoops. What the two articles I’m reviewing here offer is an unconsciously unique insight into the psychology of the European social democratic mind. The first is from Der Spiegel – on the subject of why it’s so important  to save the EU. The second is from the New Statesman – on the subject of today’s piece about immigration at the Daily Mail.

Below is the gem I’ve extracted from Der Spiegel today. Stressing the ‘enormous benefits we take for granted’ of the EU, this influential German mouthpiece says:

‘Paradoxically the success of the EU is also one of its biggest obstacles. People have come to take many of its achievements for granted, so much so that that perhaps they would only notice them if they ceased to exist. One only need imagine an EU in which passport controls are reintroduced at borders, there are no longer reliable food safety regulations everywhere, freedom of speech and of the press no longer exist under today’s standards (which Hungary is already violating, thereby exposing itself to strict scrutiny), and Europeans traveling to Budapest, Copenhagen or Prague, or even Paris, Madrid and Rome, are forced to exchange money and keep track of exchange rates. The notion of Europe as our home has become second nature to us. Perhaps this explains why we are prepared to jeopardize its existence so carelessly…’

Pause for hysterical laughter.

This is the same EU which has ignored every referendum ever held about what its citizens want. And as for border controls….anyone noticed any difference? I have: they’re even more invasive than they used to be. Food safety regulations?!? Scraping the barrel there somewhat. And anyone noticed the Spaniards or Italians taking any notice of them? Anyone think that before those regulations, we all had regular bouts of food poisoning? How long ago was there ecoli in the sprouting beans from, um, Germany?

This does point up one enormous difference between us and the mainland EU members: they take it seriously as a massive improvement to their lives – ask any French farmer; we see it as more bureaucracy, a melange of scheming troughers, and bloody expensive. But if Der Spiegel can publish this sort of bollocks, then it must be pretty convinced that its readers concur with the general conclusion.

Does the fact that we Brits don’t agree with this kind of naive idealism make us somehow eccentric and cynical? I think not: it loops back into a backwards remake of the old Monty Python sketch, as in ‘What have the Brussels Sprouts ever done for us?’

Bailout costs. Yes, but apart from that. £85 billion fee costs per annum. Yes, but apart from that. Anti City of London regulation. Yes, but apart from that. A trade gap of £55 billion. Yes, but apart from that. Bonkers Human Rights legislation. Yes, but apart from that. Massive net migration into an already overcrowded island nation. Yes, but apart from that….

The chaps and chapesses on the Progressive wing and a prayer of life still think the EU – and the more of it, the better – is just what the doctor ordered. My suspicion that you’d have to be mad to think that is borne out by a piece in today’s online New Statesman. Jumping on the obvious scaremongering of the Dacre Mail’s lead item about the immigration figures today, George Eaton points out triumphantly that the Mail piece is misleading. But the fact is, having done so, George fails to grasp that the net migration into the UK still feels unacceptable to real people.

This the weird thing about the soft Left: because a multicultural sardine tin strikes the average Guardian reader as being close to nirvana on Earth, it never occurs to them that 5.7 million net immigrants is far too many for a faltering economy already unable to employ upwards of 2 million people.

But the real cracker in the piece is this one below – stated out loud and ooooh, ever so bold, on the subject of the Mail’s right to exist:

‘One can only conclude that the paper’s journalists are either extremely stupid or extremely cynical. Mendacious journalism of this sort, designed to encourage the worst prejudices of the Mail’s readers, does not deserve to be tolerated.’

Thank you for that, good Doktor Goebbels. We shall be closing down this wicked newspaper forthwith, and sending copies of Eaton’s New Statesman drivel to the Culture, Media & Sport committee. I’m sure Louise Mensch will cheer it to the rooftops.

33 thoughts on “MEDIA OPINION: The Leftist EU mindset.

  1. The final last straw for the English electorate,sick to the teeth of subsidising the Celts,and the whole Brussels based wealth redistribution system( we contribute, they take) may come in an unusual manner.My money is on a European intervention,during a hard fought Ashes series,outlawing the use of a ball weighing 5 and 3/4 ounces, delivered at speeds of over 90 mph, on a pitch of 22 yards, in a game lasting up to 5 days,with no guaranteed result,with rules not approved by Brussels.

  2. It’s funny, isn’t it, how the left and the right both swing towards totalitarianism when push comes to shove.

    Nearly fifty years ago a friend of mine was a rep for a drug company. He called one day on Dr Shirley Summerskill, daughter of Edith and soon to be a Labour MP. She wasn’t pleased to see him. ‘When we get elected,’ she told him, ‘your sort will be the first to go.’

    I also remember seeing a film clip of Jeffrey Archer, asked a hard question during his campaign to be Mayor of London. The same thought came immediately to his mind. ‘Don’t worry,’ he said, ‘after the election you’ll be the first go.’

    Sadly, of course, Jeffrey never made it to Mayor. A trumped-up perjury charge intervened.

  3. “And as for border controls….anyone noticed any difference? I have: they’re even more invasive than they used to be. ”
    John?? You travel to France, which, like most of mainland continental Europe (all except Romania & Bulgaria BUT including Iceland), is signed up to Schengen. That’s why I have to stand in the rain or snow queuing up to show my passport when I go to Sweden, Germany, Spain, Italy or France from England but not when I travel from one to the other. I know very few Brits have ever heard of Schengen. But I know you have so where does this “more invasive” come from – at least if you’re talking about a German Der Spiegal p.o.v.?
    Haven’t got my NS yet so can’t/won’t comment re Maily Dacre points.

  4. The Grauniad readers are blasé about immigration because they are rarely (thus far) affected by it. The people who are affected still vote Labour because they don’t think about it/they’re thick/their fathers always did/they would sooner take out their own spleen with a blunt pen knife than vote Tory.

    Ref: Herr Goebbels – these National Socialists have plans for dissenting voices should they ever regain office. “We believe in Free Speech, BUT…” (never understanding that the first four words may only ever be followed by a full stop, not a comma and then a list of various exceptions and codicils).

  5. I remember travelling through the leafy lanes of Britain when the only animal with a black face was a sheep. I remember travelling through the Pyrenees,coming to the customs post separating France from Spain which was a deserted wooden hut,and that was before the EU. Petrol was 22.5p a gallon in the UK and girls wore skirts. Spike milligan was still sane and this recession had just started.

  6. I live in northeastern Italy, and thanks to the Schengen agreement, border controls with Austria and Slovenia, which used to be very bothersome indeed, especially in the summer holiday season, have disappeared altogether.

    On the matter of the EU, has Britain benefited in any way at all from membership, or has the whole thing been a completely unmitigated disaster for the UK? A few years back, I drove with some Japanese visitors through northeast England (mainly County Durham) and we kept encountering very fine new roads that were built, according to the large signs that were displayed along the roadsides, with EU money. Then of course there’s the matter of access to the single market, thought to be important by a significant number of British businessmen.

    I have a suspicion that if Britain were to leave, Britain would suffer an awful lot more than the rest of the EU would, the British contribution to European affairs these days being confined mainly to a continuous negative and ineffectual whining from the sidelines that many of us could well do without.

    • “…has Britain benefitted in any way at all from membership, or has the whole thing been a completely unmitigated disaster for the UK?”

      Doubtless someone can point to some benefit that membership has given Britain, but overall it’s been an unmitigated and expensive disaster.

      Why could your own government not negotiate trade agreements with other European countries?
      Why could your own government not negotiate relaxed border controls with other European countries?

      What do you pay them for?

      Why is it that European countries require another gigantic, unelected, corrupt, expensive socialist buearocracy to overlord us and spew out Directives all day long whilst its overpaid unelected crats dream up ever more ways to redistribute wealth to the equally corrupt socialist ClubMed countries which have now brought the EU to the brink of bankruptcy and collapse of the euro?

    • Roads? WE paid for them, and miles of the bloody things in Spain, Greece, et.al.

      The only thing of importance to many British businessmen is profit. They would sell their granny for that; the small matter of flogging off their nation’s sovereignty is a mere bagatelle.

      The “.. continuous negative and ineffectual whining from the sidelines that many of us could well do without…” – words fail me. If you don’t like voices that are raised in quite reasonable debate – esp. on the minor matter of not getting the EU’s accounts signed off for the last canteen years because of the endemic corruption – then ask us to leave. If we were asked (via that cast iron guarantee -remember that Dave?) then the majority of British people would vote to be off. Which is why we will never be asked, and why, Snr Triestino, you will be stuck with us for the foreseeable future… or until the house of cards collapses under the weight of the stupidity, graft and sleaze represented by the phrase “the European Union”

    • Roads built via EU funding sourced from the UK & redistributed by the burdensome EU bureaucracy minus administration costs. If we had paid for the roads directly we would have also saved on the signs praising the EU.

  7. ”Labour promised vote on EU’

    DAVID CAMERON
    Writing exclusively for The Sun

    Published: 28 Aug 2007

    I’VE got a couple of simple questions for Gordon Brown.
    What makes you think you can break your promises to the
    British people?
    And what makes you think you can change the way our country is governed without asking the British people first?

    There’s a simple answer to both questions: Arrogance.
    And when it comes to Europe, arrogance is what we’ve seen
    from Labour time and time again.
    It’s the arrogance that says: “We, the powerful elites,know best.”
    It’s the arrogance that puts more and more decisions in the hands of bureaucrats that no one’s ever heard of and no one can ever get rid of if they do a bad job.

    And it’s the arrogance that Gordon Brown displays when he
    says we don’t need a referendum on the European constitution.
    Labour’s last Election manifesto could not have been
    clearer on the EU constitution.
    It said: “We will put it to the British people in a referendum, and campaign wholeheartedly for a Yes vote.”
    And just two months ago, Gordon Brown said: “The
    manifesto is what we put to the public. We’ve got to honour
    that manifesto.

    “That is an issue of trust with me and the electorate.”
    Now he’s done a massive EU-turn…..

    AND NOW!!
    cameron writes..
    I bet you’ve got a couple of simple questions for ME!!.

    What makes you think you can break your promises to US the
    British people?
    And what makes you think you can change the way our country is governed without asking US the British people first?
    There’s a simple answer to both questions: Arrogance.

    And when it comes to Europe, arrogance is what you’ve seen
    from me time and time again.

    It’s the arrogance that says: I, the powerful elite, know best.”

    It’s the arrogance that puts more and more decisions in the hands of bureaucrats that no one’s ever heard of and no
    one can ever get rid of if they do a bad job.

    And it’s the arrogance that I display when I say I don’t need a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty.

    The CONservative’s previous Election manifesto could not have been clearer on the EU constitution.

    It said: “We will put it to the British people in a referendum, and campaign wholeheartedly for a No vote.”

    And just two years ago, I said: “The manifesto is what we put to the public. We’ve got to honour that manifesto.

    “That is an issue of trust with me and the electorate.”

    He went on to say…

    “I think this kind of shameless arrogance is the big
    cancer eating away at trust in politics.

    Who can be surprised that people have less faith in
    politicians if they break their promises so casually?

    Why should anyone bother to vote if the real decisions
    that affect our lives are made somewhere else?

      • I am afraid you are doing a disservice to plankton – low life or otherwise when you compare them to the governing class of the last 40 years (at least !)

        Sadly the last 20 years of that has been the dead scum floating to the top of a fetid stagnent puddle of dogs p1ss ! No change in sight either if the general X factor befuddled public has to be relied upon to change anything. Has anyone else noticed that every single country seems to have exactly the same TV programs fed to the mass braindead, ad nauseum and the same results from their ‘honourable elite’ are in evidence (effluence) in these very same countries.

        I should not judge others as I know I am obsessive about what is happening. One has to wonder what my own future holds as my contempt for the irrepairably ignorant spills out into real life.

        Gimmee Soma – in vast quantities please !

  8. From the comments so far, I take it that there is very little if any support for the proposition that what we need is not the complete abolition of the EU, but a better EU – one that far more closely corresponds to what the majority of the European people actually want.

    On matters such as the democratic deficit, the euro, the dangers of fiscal union, and the stupidity of needless over-regulation, it’s not just the British who feel aggrieved with the EU but many continental people, too. But as I understand it, the view on the continent is that the central achievements of the EEC/EU, and especially the single market, are well worth preserving, and that the benefits of the European countries pulling together outweigh the disadvantages.

    It seems to me that things went badly awry with the Lisbon Treaty, which marked the widening of the democratic deficit (from that point on, the Eurocrats really got the bit between their teeth) and which brought in its wake fundamental problems such as the obsession with geographical expansion and the imposition of the single currency. Moreover when in some countries the Treaty was rejected in what should have been legally binding referendums, the said referendum results were overridden by Brussels.

    Why not scrap the Treaty (the terms of which are in any case blithely broken by the ECB and the member states on an almost daily basis), abolish the euro, put a freeze on geographical expansion, go back to where we were before 2000, and start all over again, building on the lessons we have painfully learned over the last 12 years or so?

    If that’s not radical enough for you, then yes, you will have to leave. But in that case, where would you go? A British-dominated EFTA is finished as a serious concept, and America has other things on its mind. Strike out on your own in a hostile world? Maybe, but total independence could turn out to be a far more challenging business than you might suppose.

    Better, surely, not to throw out the baby with the bathwater but to stay, for the time being, and work hard for what you really want from the EU.

    • You seem to be doing a u-turn on your own views of the EU.
      Giant socialist organisations like the EU cannot be “reformed” into what people want. I know of no example in history where this has happened.

      The only practical solution is to shut it down and start again with people who don’t have totalitarian political agendas. That would mean producing a new proper EU Constitution, not the endless pages of rubbish produced by an unelected Frenchman which became known as the Lisbon Treaty when many national populations revolted against it.

      But I repeat: there is no reason whatsover why European countries cannot have a series of bi-lateral/multi-lateral agreements to provide an effective Single Market and border controls which suit them etc. No giant corrupt socialist bureaucracy is required to do any of that.

      • No U-turn, I assure, you. I continue to believe in the wisdom of preserving the EU, but in a different form from today’s. Actually, I sense that you and I are not so far apart in our thinking, especially on the need to introduce “a new proper EU Constitution”, as you term it, something on which we both seem to be in complete agreement.

      • @Triestino: good luck with trying to reform the EU into anything that remotely resembles a lean and competent organisation where totalitarian socialist agendas and corruption are NOT the order of the day.

        How many lifetimes would you like to achieve this?

      • Triestino, the EU has supplied a secure niche for too many toughers, grafters and obsessive legislators, that scrubbing it clean would be like cleaning the Augean stables. Better to start from scratch with clear limitations on powers and financial transparency.

    • “Better, surely, not to throw out the baby with the bathwater but to stay, for the time being, and work hard for what you really want from the EU.”

      Sounds absolutely wonderful, as most fantasy does, but in reality we can’t even have an impact on our government beyond voting against them and we are not about to get an opportunity to do that in relation to the EU.

      • Sounds a touch defeatist, if you don’t mind me saying so. And if you’re right, then the UK has not so much a problem with the EU but a vast difficulty concerning the highly imperfect state of its own version of democracy.

        As for the number of lifetimes it would take to achieve change (Bankrupt Taxpayer), don’t underestimate the potentially salutary effect of one big shock to the system. A sudden collapse of the euro – by no means impossible – would concentrate EU minds wonderfully, and would surely cause at least some soul searching and some search for radical improvement.

      • @Triestino
        “Sounds a touch defeatist, if you don’t mind me saying so.”

        Absolutely, but it is based on observation of what is and what is not possible, over too many years to be ignored, by me at any rate.

        Those who wield power in the EU are well aware of the contempt in which they are held by those of us with a healthy distaste for greed, corruption and incompetence. But they still continue ever onward in the face of this contempt, increasing their power and their wealth. In this respect they are wholly indistiguishable from successive UK governements. However, in one important aspect they are different and that is that they can only be impacted upon, by a collective of governments acting together to bring about forced solutions.

        I can’t see any candidates for such a move, and a single country deserting from it will accomplish nothing that will improve the EU, but just might be able to restablish some useful measure of control over itself.

        I’d settle for that.

      • @Jwoo, posting of August 26, 2011 at 11:40 am

        Sorry to respond here, out of sequence, but being a computer dimwit, I still haven’t got the hang of the reply button that infuriatingly keeps coming and going…..

        At the moment, the most interesting country in the EU, it seems to me, is Germany, where over 40 percent of the population are against the euro, over 60 percent are against bail-outs, and where an increasing number of decision makers (possibly including the members of the German Constitutional Court – we shall see in September) feel that any further centralization of policy-making within Brussels will threaten the integrity of the German Constitution. For Germany to leave the EU would of course be science fiction, at present anyway, but if Germany were to take a strongly independent and sceptical stance, as it seems to be beginning to do at present, the EU would have to take notice – otherwise it wouldn’t survive.

        The notion of the EU as a totalitarian superstate, whose constituent parts cower in terror at the monstrous tyranny of the jackbooted Brussels gestapo (and where dissidents are taken off in the middle of the night, tortured, and shot) does seem to me a trifle overdone. It’s just possible, not least because of the resurgence of nationalisms within Europe within recent years, that the power of Brussels may have already reached its zenith, and is now beginning to decline.

      • Well I can agree with most of that and especially:

        “The notion of the EU as a totalitarian superstate, whose constituent parts cower in terror at the monstrous tyranny of the jackbooted Brussels gestapo (and where dissidents are taken off in the middle of the night, tortured, and shot) does seem to me a trifle overdone.”

        It seems to me that they have perfected the art of slithering and sliding their entirely slimy and dishonest way to everything that they have done and do. It is entirely nauseating that so many in governments not only tolerate it but appear to aspire to it. That is, the EU and the EU ways.

      • @Triestino: “As for the number of lifetimes it would take to achieve change (Bankrupt Taxpayer), don’t underestimate the potentially salutary effect of one big shock to the system. A sudden collapse of the euro – by no means impossible – would concentrate EU minds wonderfully…”

        Which may explain why the ECB & Co are pouring €billions into propping up the euro…

  9. We are not signed up to schengen yet it would appear that the only people who do not suffer the inconveniences of our border controls are the illegals. Customs in the uk are only around to ensure that the british general public do not get to benefit from the free trade which was the whole point of us joining in the first place. Revenue comes a far far higher step up the ladder of importance than benefits to the people in free trade as far as government is comcerned.
    When the eucj ruled in favour of gordon brown and against the british public avoiding excessive taxes – the single possible benefit for the people was destroyed !

  10. @ Bankrupt Taxpayer
    August 26, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    “Which may explain why the ECB & Co are pouring €billions into propping up the euro…”

    Quite so. It’s very hard to see the ECB surviving, certainly in its present form, without the euro. The vested interest that the bank has in the euro must be colossal: lots of very big salaries and senior positions are at risk, as well as a potentially huge loss of face – and then there’s the future of that fancy building in Frankfurt. No wonder Monsieur Trichet looks so green about the gills whenever the euro comes under strong pressure.

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