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Thoughts while listening to Newsnight – “principled stands” not being taken

I’ve had BBC2 TV’s Newsnight on while doing other things, and two little overhearings reached out and grabbed my attention.

First, someone called, I think, Mark something, of, I think they said, csn.com (but it can’t have been that because csn.com doesn’t seem to exist), talked from Johannesburg about how George Bush should have gone to this Earth Summit beano and taken, quote, “a principled stand in favour of free market capitalism”, unquote. You don’t usually hear language like that on the BBC, which I suppose is the fault of people like me for not contriving to be on it enough. Most “principled stands” over here are for things that are bad. Mark Something is, inevitably, an American, and his point was that George W, by remaining silent about, e.g. his real opinion of “global warming”, he leaves it wide open for a successor US administration to cave in to the Transnazis. Quite right.

And the other soundbite that got my attention was from Home Secretary Jack Straw, saying in very grand looking clothes in the middle of a very grand looking speech that the European Union now “creates the impression that power is draining away from” … and then it was either Westminster or national parliaments generally, I didn’t catch which.

“Creates the impression.” I love that.

Everywhere else in Europe they know that power is draining away from national parliaments, and those who favour this, as the majority of people who matter do, say so. They know it’s happening and they’re for it. Only Britain’s pitifully mendacious European Unionists still bash away with their ever more obviously lying lie that Europe is fine because it isn’t going to change anything. We’re just going to, you know, huddle together a little.

In the long run, it could cost them the entire argument. Britain is half-joined to the EU already, and this is already having huge consequences which Britain’s Parliament can do nothing about unless it is willing to contemplate non-membership. Yet at no point in the last five decades have any big arguments in favour of what is actually happening actually been put to us, because the pro-EU line was and still is that this stuff never would happen and is still not happening.

Which means that the British people might, any decade now, decide to get out of the thing. Except that: our anti-EU politicians are no better. They don’t say what they think either.

No “principled stands” can be heard from either side.

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