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Seen from a Europhile standpoint, this is both logical and predictable. Destroying national states has been the longterm goal of the most passionate EU supporters all along.

We should expect to see further moves in this direction over the next few years. (East Anglia and Holland anyone?)

The constant ratchetting of powers away from voters and to the apparichiks of the EU will only stop when Westminster politicians decide to actually reverse it. Standing still is not an option; UK politicians have tried that repeatedly over the last 30 years with zero effect.

Unfortunately, the first symbolic step away from the path to a European superstate will be a massive gamble for whoever takes it. The BBC and many other opinion-formers will castigate the action as "extremist", "backwards", "juvenile", etc.

It is unfortunate that Eurosceptic cause has been badly damaged over the years by a variety of swivel-eyed nutters. This has given the Europhile media the opportunity to attack the messenger instead of the message.

What exactly is the point of this? Could a Europhile please explain? How does this contribute to the growth of our economy or our national security?

As far as I can see, this seems to be nothing more than a bid for extra cash from Brussels. Considering that we pay so much in, is this such a bad idea?

=="What exactly is the point of this? Could a Europhile please explain"==

A europhile COULD but certainly will not give the real reason. These cross-border regional proposals have been around for ages and in this instance the areas on either side of the channel have nothing in common at all. (Different languages, histories, currencies etc) The "point of all this" is the destruction of the nation state and the ever closer union the EU has always sought. Then Brussels will have nobody to argue with them at all.

We who are anti-EU in the party or in UKIP have said this for ages and have been called loonies for our pains. WE TOLD YOU SO, is our response.


It is people like Andy Mercer who describe those of us who have been warning about the EU for years as "swivel-eyed nutters" who have brought this confrontation aboiut, The only "swivel-eyed nutters" around are those who have been ostrich-like, denied what was plain to see, and stuck their heads in the sand. Thanks for giving away our country, Andy et al.

Ratbag: I am and have always been Eurosceptic.

My problem is that reasoned anti-EU arguments are ignored by Europhiles. Instead of trying to counter our arguments, they point to some of the loudest Eurosceptics, some of whom are very unpreposessing individuals. All they do is say: "Just look at the people who oppose the EU; do you really want to be linked to those nutters?"

The intellectual argument against the European Project is overwhelming, but it has largely been nullified by some over-exuberant Eurosceptics destroying their own case by their unattractive behaviour. It has been very depressing these last 20 years for a committed, but thoughtful Eurosceptic.

If Pickles says that we are so against it how come there was not a 3 line whip barring all Conservative Councils from participating?

Well Pickles where is the policy?

It is the same with SEERA. There is no co-ordinated policy, some councils have voted to abolish it and others have not.

exactly hf,New labour held only one referendum for a regional assembly and they got hammered, but they are all still there with tories sitting on them.
They do not need the nod from cameron to withdraw from them.They do not need a conservative government to abolish them.
They are in their rights to withdraw now.
Which leads me to believe cameron might renege on his promise to get rid of them.
Think EPP.NL now plan to go ahead and abolish councils in England,which was a requirement for setting up regional assemblies. If no political party will speak up, it will be people on the streets.

The Tories are the most anti-English party going. Even worse than the Lib Dems, the BNP, UKIP and New Labour.
They started the process of carving up England into spurious regions.
They are the most Europhilic Party too.
They took us into the Common Market on the worst terms imaginable. They signed away our border controls. They built the Channel Tunnel.
They have abandoned their natural electorate in England for the sake of the "Unions", both British and European. The electorate in England will abandon them in return.

The Sunday Express has an article entitled "The Frenchman who now rules British citizens" about this. The article doesn't seem to be available on-line.

Its account is somewhat inaccurate and exaggerates what is being done NOW, but of course as we all know one thing can lead to another - in fact as far as the EU is concerned ONE THING MUST AND ALWAYS WILL LEAD TO ANOTHER, not least because we pay eurocrats to constantly seek ways to further the treaty commitment to "ever closer union" and it's a condition of their employment that they do so.

There's a pamphlet about the conference on the website of West Sussex County Council. How shameful that a Tory controlled council should be doing this, and at public expense, and what does Eric Pickles have to say about that? Perhaps the Sunday Express should have asked him to explain how the Tory party can keep facing both ways on this.

Being typically glossy and pictorial it may be slow to download:


In connection with this article the Sunday Express is asking:

"Should we now pull out of the EU?".

To vote "YES", ring 0901 031 1511 or text SXVOTE A to 82100 .

Calls cost 25p from a BT landline. Voting closes at midnight tonight. Texts cost 25p plus network operator rate.

However, beware - I can't vote using our non-BT landline, as the company blocks all calls to 09 numbers to protect its customers from unwittingly running up huge bills, and I'm not going to chance using a mobile to do it.

There is now no intellectually honest eurosceptic policy position, other than Better Off Out ! Appeasement never works 1

Thanks for re-inventing the wheel. If you have only just discovered stuff like this you ought to visit the UKIP web sites more.
(Or is this just the same old trick to keep those Tory members sweet and on board?)

Conservative policy on Europe is to be in Europe but not ruled by it. What a joke

Andy Mercer, if Europhiles judge people on their personalities rather than the content of their argument, then attack Europhiles for that.

It is rather unpleasant to imply that Eurosceptics are "swivel-eyed nutters" just for, er, telling the truth...

Re Conservatives participating in Regional Assemblies, I have been told the chair of EERA (East of England) that they are staying in to "limit the damage".
Last month the Executive committee of EERA voted to triple the members allowance for positions of special responsibility, chairs of committees etc, thus make more people dependent on the Assembly and potentially unwilling to speak out for abolition.
The taxpayer's pocket was "damaged" by a futher £50,000 approx.
Regional Assemblies have statutory planning powers, what powers will these transnational assemblies have?

"Conservative policy on Europe is to be in Europe but not ruled by it. What a joke" Sure, it was a good joke eight years ago when Hague first came out with it, and we all rolled around laughing. But now many people are finding that both the joke, and their patience with the equivocating Hague, are wearing very thin.

I don't think Andy Mercer was referring to all Eurosceptics as 'swivel eyed nutters'John.That some certainly are does seem to me unarguable. I recently went to a Freedom Association meeting addressed by the excellent,understated Phillip Hollobone MP who was both moderate and reasonable arguing the case for Better Off Out.
The less said about several members of the audience the better 'though. Anyone who didn't immediately buy the case for immediate withdrawal from the EU was 'a traitor' etc etc

Sounds as if we should put Prescott out to grass ASAP before he does any more damage to our country.
And as for his son following him into Parliament??????????

The long pronounced mantra that all eurosceptics are "nutters" "sour little Englanders" "scaremongers" etc. is now wearing pretty thin, it is no longer "scare mongering" to declare that the European Commission is hell bent on wiping England from the face of the earth, it is no longer "scare mongering" to say that the EC is spending "English" tax payers money to further the cause of a one nation Europe. Spain, Gibraltar, Ireland and most of the recently joined East European countries have massive rebuilding programmes all festooned with the European "Flag", need I say who is paying for all this? Where is the European funding for the refurbishment of England's creaking infrastructure?. It's OK to spend Euros on "Regional assemblies" (strongly voted against in the one and only referendum afforded to the population of England), it's OK to spend Euros on brainwashing English school children into believing that Europe is good, England is bad. Legislation and regulations pour out from the commissions great maw and when they arrive at the door of the English legislature they are given only perfunctory perusal before being rubber stamped into English law, not so with our friends across the channel (sorry, Mer de la Manche)who pick and choose and decide which laws suit them and their countryfolk.England is slowly disappearing into the melting pot that is Europe and because we have been stripped of our manufacturing base, shipbuilding capability, steel making expertise, farming and fishing (to such an extent that we are no longer self sufficient) If nothing is done soon, it's good night Vienna and switch the lights out.

Andy M: WHAT "unpreposessing individuals" and WHAT "unattractive behaviour". It looks from here that you're having a fit of intellectual superiority. WHAT have you done with your "committed, but thoughtful Eurosceptic"ism all these years???

Others here are right. All over the country there are Tories selling us out to the EU (Cameron is one of them) . Amd Malcolm misses the point when he complains that people at a Freedom Association meeting were taking the view that "Anyone who didn't immediately buy the case for immediate withdrawal from the EU was 'a traitor'" The trouble., Malcolm, is that that is the unvarnishbed truth. Most europhiles accuse anyone who stands up for Britain as being a nutter.

Well this nutter says the only way is with the "Better Off Out" campaign and until Cameron or his successor graps that fact there will BE no future Tory government.

Some of us have moved on, sadly, some have not.

Has any country yet joined the EEC or EU after telling its voters how much they will have to pay into the EU ?

Or simply how much money will flow into their coffers from the EU ?

I will fight for an English Parliament, in order to preserve England as a nation, until the last breath leaves my body.

Don't forget it was John Major's governrment which sighned the Maastrict agreement which as described above is breaking up the UK.

Properity is outside the EU our EU masters want us locked in

You Cons make me laugh, you reckon your defenders of a nation but what have you done for England.
Wake up and smell the coffee, Unionism is dead and outdated. The Scots, the Welsh and very soon the English will all want self-determination and what do you guys do, still hark for the days of the Empire.
England needs a Parliament, the people of England must not be second class citzens, we should be allowed a vote on how we should be governed.
Every single one of you that has any love for England whatsoever needs to fight to save her otherwise England will be lost forever. Cameroon doesn't give a toss about us, he's just as bad as Blair and Fat John.
It must only be us English who decide our fate.

I say - Justice for England

In a very short space of time, the pin badges representing "Justice for England" have today hit the 3,000th sale figure.

Everyone should wear one!


Quite right in what you say Annabel! The thought of Prescott Junior makes me feel quite ill!!
Interesting to see all the UKIPPERS out in force yet again!

Ed Abrams, you're attacking THE WRONG UNION.

Disappointing as it may be to see supporters of the same cause arguing with each other about tone and language, it does illustrate a wider point on how reasonable opponents of the EU and everything it stands for may have fallen into a labelling trap.

Take “eurosceptic” (the noun) – is it really the opposite of “europhile”? It would be easy to define the term as “one who is sceptical about the benefits of the EU.” Spot the false premise – the assumption that the EU is beneficial and the corresponding need for the sceptic to justify himself. Far easier for a “lover of the EU” to justify the label simply by pointing to his opinion.

To illustrate the dangers of such twisting, let’s look at a short excerpt from a speech made in Lyons in 1971 in which the speaker included the sentence “It is as a European among Europeans that I claim to speak to you.” Was it Ted Heath, Anthony Barber or Geoffrey Rippon? No – Enoch Powell. The three preceding sentences: “The word ‘European’ has been appropriated to membership of the Community. Consequently those who advocate British membership have arrogated to themselves the style of ‘Europeans’ and describe their opponents as being ‘against Europe’. As I shall argue, if these labels have to be used at all, they ought to be transposed and the label ‘anti-European’ affixed rather than to those who wish Britain to accede to the Community than to those who oppose this.” Rather curious, perhaps, and possibly needing the full speech to be read, but still bearing a ring of truth 35 years later?

As to something more contemporary – “in Europe but not run by Europe” – is there not a case for showing that opposition to the EU is not based upon irrational hostility to foreigners by adopting a formula along the lines of “well disposed towards European nations and peoples, and ill disposed towards the political institution known as the EU”? No doubt this could and should be condensed into something much more succinct. What I have in mind is a formula with two positive sounding halves (just think of “tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime”), and by eliminating the “but” that first linked them, I may have stumbled across another example of the “and theory” much loved elsewhere here.

Excuse verbosity, but it beats slanging matches any day.

Ratbag: what have I done?

I gave up my career to enter local politics. When I joined the local conservative association, Labour controlled the county council, the neighbouring District Councils and had all the local MPs.

I campaigned hard, became Deputy Chairman (Political), and helped rebuild the local conservative organisation. In 2003, we took all the local District councils (33 seats out of 36 on one, and 26 out of 36 on the other.)

In 2003, I was elected a District Councillor, and in 2005 became Leader of the Council.

In 2005, we took the county council from Labour, and retook the parliamentary seats. I personally took a county Division that has been Labour since it was created.

During the 2005 campaign, I persuaded the local branch of the Fire Brigades Union to deliver 10000 Conservative leaflets.

All that time, I have been campaigning against the EU. (Do you remember the Save-the-Pound campaign? How many hours did you spend on it?)

Since 2005, I have sat on a regional assembly, hoping to abolish the thing. I have watched Euroscepticism repeatedly damaged by ill-judged behaviour and arguments.

What have you done?

Stephen, what on earth has the channel tunnel got to do with this?! Are you also intending to ban ferry services to the continent?! Close down airports with routes to Europe? It is comments like this that support what Andy Mercer said. Like Andy I am also Eurosceptic but agree with him that those opposed to the extremes of the EU have not run a good campaign,


Unfortunately being "eurosceptic" does nothing but sustain the EU superstate in place - and those driving this are making changes now within EU states (such as regionalisation and encouraging substantial transmigration) to more or less prevent the taking back of national powers.

There's only one position if we are to claim our country back: leave the EU.

Andy M: You said you'd been a eurosceptic for ages - I asked what you'd done. You recited other things you'd done for the party which were irrelevant. All you could come up with was two things: (1) sitting on a EU-formed regional assembly which is betraying your country and of which you should be ashamed' and (2) opposing the euro. Bully for you but it's hardly campaigning as the running was all made by non-Tory bodies.

As for me I campaigned non-stop from Maastricht (when Major and the Party betrayed our country) and ran my own high circulation free newsletter until it metamorphed into my own website till very recently. This took all my time and a hell of a lot of money.

You've proved that your euroscepticism is shallow if not non-existent.

Do Conservatives want EUro sceptic votes?

OT but I think it should be looked at


The EU wishes to promote UKIP and the BNP so they produce maps like this as a political gift. And it's not even Christmas.

Has Prescott lost contact with all aspects of reason? Can't he find a few French hookers to keep him quiet until he finally retires. Why not link up all the red light areas of europe into one super european red light zone - Shepherds Market, Le Bois De Boulogne, the Reeperbahn. Go for it Prezza. Why let Blunkett get all the breaks? Call it EUSHAG.

Does this man not know, it was the conservatives, who committing an act of treason signed us up to all this in The Maastrict Treaty in 1992. Is he saying John Major did not know what he was doing. Nay, Mr Pickles, he knew exactly what he was doing, selling his country down the river and was nicely rewarded for it, a job with the evil Carlyle Group. You in the Conservative Party think you can still pull the wool over our eyes and contiue to commit treason against us and HMS the Queen. Be gone with you,as the real patriots are hot on your tail gathering strengh every day. You people may think you can jail the likes of Kevin Hughes and get away with it, but stunts like that only brings more people into the BNP and increase their vote. AS YE SOW SO SHALL YE REAP.

The more I read about this regionalisation of our country the more I feel totally let down by our politicians.
England is a single nation and it needs to have its own English Parliament!

" you're attacking THE WRONG UNION."
Denis Cooper .

- I must say , I am coming to the reluctant conclusion that England needs not only an English Parliament - that is simple justice and equality after the 1998 Scotland Act - but also to take back well nigh total control of our external affairs from all agencies which have demonstated their antipathy to us . Preferably within The Union - I still think .
We know the EU have no time for us . What has also become extremely obvious over the last few years is the sheer level of racist and national dislike aagainst the English held at most levels of the British government and in all the British political parties .

Quite simply they don't like the English and don't want to recognise us or defend our interests . The opposite in fact . If you talk to just about any politician of any party about England- eg the English NHS -you are pretty well guaranteed to hear that same politician instantly break into
" Britain " mode in an attempt to airbrush England away and capitalise on some residual feeling for things British .
Their mindset is infuriating .

The British Union is dying before our very eyes . The only way to preserve it is with an English Parliament in a federal Union( not EVOEM , thats just an insulting stop gap ) on the same basis as the Scottish Parliament .
This needs to be done as a matter of urgency . It only needs one of the major parties to grab the idea and the others will follow . The alternative , ie that of continuing to ignore the massive constitutional injustice of " The Union " 2006 , is a steady and probably irreversible drainng away of English support for it - which is probably overestimated anyway .

Remember , an ICM poll of 07/06 showed 41% of the English polled as for complete English independence - and that's from a standing start with no publicity for the idea .

The Union is not rock solid . It is becoming increasingly fragile .

Typically the Conservative Party is avoiding telling its supporters and the electorate in general that this is what it really stands for and wants. This is what John Major signed up for in the Maastricht Treaty. The Tories are now tring to blame John prescott who is simply following Tory Party and EU policy.

David Cooper @ 19.07 - very well put indeed! Not verbose but well argued. I couldn't have put it better myself! And as you say, much better than slanging matches!

I consider myself to be a Eurosceptic but the over-reaction of some of the contributors to this thread is absolutely ridiculous.

I fail to see the necessity of this transnational regional assembly, but if the intent behind it is to promote closer co-operation to bring mutual benefits to the areas within its scope, then it may not be such a bad thing.

The Eurosceptic argument will not be won by the shrill jingoistic shrieks of those who see Eurofederalist conspiracy at every turn.

Just EXACTLY what are the Conservatives going to do about this matter? Just accept it and the destruction of our Country? The people will soon turn on ALL politicians when they eventually realise what these same politicians they have voted for, are up to. The vast majority of people do not want to have anything to do with the one State of European Union that churns out directives and laws day after day, arresting people through their laws until all have a criminal records. That is where the danger lies, and for those that do not realise that, they should not be in politics.

jake @ 22:30 -

"What has also become extremely obvious over the last few years is the sheer level of racist and national dislike aagainst the English held at most levels of the British government and in all the British political parties . Quite simply they don't like the English and don't want to recognise us or defend our interests ."

My take on this is that they don't like the British in general, but they especially dislike the English, and they favour the others to use them against the English.

Exactly right, Denis Cooper. We most definitely need an English Parliament to look after England's interests and to preserve England as a nation.

Justice for England. An English Parliament. Justice for England's pensioners, students and NHS patients. The preservation of our nation. NOW!!!!!!!!!!

Mr Cooper, no I'm not. I see and understand the evils of the EU and worry about what will become of us, we are already in the EU, the Cons, NL and the Fib Dems have all sold England down the river and that is why I am thousands of others are fighting for Justice For England.
When I have ever heard any Tory leader say he'll give us a free vote on EU entry. Mr Cameroon wants the EU just as much as Fat John and Scot Tony. Can't you guys see that.
The only chance we have of not going any further down the EU project is if England gets her own parliament. So please join the call for one, it's the only way of securing a FREE future.

To Ed, I would say, to have an English Parliament would be just another illusion for if the EU gets its way we will simply be Regions of the European Union, and to any Government of this Country in future, they must understand that the people cannot afford to pay for REGIONS AND A PARLIAMENT for the people are being "taxed" to death now. In any case, an EU Constitution (or EU Treaty of any other name), would automatically override any British Government, British Parliament or British Constitution. The Conservatives will also have to understand that there are a great many people that will only vote for a Political Party that will remove this Country from the European Union.It is therefore rather doubtful that the Conservatives will ever be in Government again. The people also recognise that this next election will also be the only "referendum" they are ever likely to get regarding the Constitutionalisation of the European Union.
Maybe politicians might, just might begin to realise that the British people have not spoken yet. I was hoping they would never have to.

When will 'unionists' realise that the UK is no longer 'united' as it has been for the past 300 years and as for the European Union - how will that ever work when people of different countries are treated differently?

Example: England has now been denied it's own Parliament (the only in the EU) for nearly 10 years. Scotland and Wales however have both been respectively granted their own forms of self Government.

The longer the Labour Government ignore and deny England it's own Parliament the worse the situation will get and before long there will be riots !

Christopher, the powers devolved to the Scottish Parliament are comparable to those enjoyed by county councils at their height in the pre-war period, before the process of centralising power got into gear. Scotland is no more "self-governing" now than Berkshire was then.


"The following is a list of reserved matters:[1]

constitutional matters
UK foreign policy
UK defence and national security
fiscal and economic policy
immigration and nationality
energy: electricity, coal, oil, gas and nuclear energy
common markets
trade and industry, including competition and customer protection
drugs law
Elections and the registration and funding of political parties
some aspects of transport, including aviation, railways, transport safety and regulation
employment legislation and health and safety
social security
gambling and the National Lottery
data protection
firearms, extradition and emergency powers
medicines, abortion, human fertilisation and embryology, genetics, xenotransplantation and vivisection
equal opportunities
treason and misprision of treason
regulation of time zones and Summer Time [2]"

In a CCHQ press release Eric Pickles MP, Shadow Minister for Local Government, said:

“This is the political equivalent of Frankenstein’s monster, a hybrid creation of John Prescott and European Union bureaucrats. Taxpayers will be alarmed that their hard-earned cash is now being spent on literally wiping England off the map and handing power to foreign politicians who they never elected. This Labour-EU project needs to be stopped before these transnational regions grab real power and funding. I fear that John Prescott’s legacy of unelected and unaccountable regional assemblies in England will be the blueprint for a new masterplan - further undermining England’s cherished local and national identities, and creating a European super-state via the back door.”
Now Eric Pickles MP, I would like to know exactly what the Conservatives are going to do about this. When was this debated in Parliament? Was a vote taken on this matter? How did the Conservatives vote?
Exactly how much money was allocated for this matter? When was that debated or a statement made about it?
If our Country of England is going to be carved up by a foreign government, our government over ridden by an alien Constitution, our hard earned money spent on the deliberate carving up of our England, do you, the Government and the Conservative Party just expect the truly sovereign people of this Country to continue to stand around and do nothing? Yours is the party that we all had hopes on that having taken us in to this European Community would have at least took us out of it. How we have been let down? We can only vote for a Party that will remove us from the old fashioned straight jacket that is the European Union, and if that choice is between UKIP or the BNP, then so be it. It will of course mean that the Conservatives will never get to become a Government again, for Labour will continue to give the rest of the Governing of this Country away. The people in the end though, will prevent that from happening.
We are living under the cloud that is the Labour Government a Government that has used the terrorism and terrorists to remove our freedoms and liberty in order to impose ID cards and other draconian legislation upon the truly law abiding citizens of this Country, acts that have allowed the terrorists to win.
You sir, can see what the EU is all about, do you really want to remain IN the Union and be governed by it forever, be a true EU citizen, give your allegiance to it? Please respond.

"Prescott and EU conspire to form new transnational regional assembly"

And I regret to say it was all a Tory idea - Ted Heath was the first to propose this to the other EU leaders.

What action are the Conservative taking regarding the proposal for Transnational Regional Assemblies (Arc Manche Assenbly?

The Conservative leadership should, by now realise that the European Union is to become one great State, and this, no matter how I look at the matter from the stance of the British Constitution, is illegal/unlawful and it places the Queen in breach of Her Coronation Oath.

You are also a Party, along with the LIB/DEMS and the Labour Government that wish to remain in the European Union. Is the destruction of your Country as a sovereign independent Country, the choice of the EU flag in preference to your own, its anthem to which all will have to stand, rather than God save the Queen, your loyalty to the European Union and each of us as its real citizens rather than the 'pretendy' EU citizenship we have now, and finally, is it not preferable to be free to do anything we like unless there is a law that say specifically that we may not, better than having a law that says we can only do something if there is a law that says we may?
Which do you want? Do you want to repudiate the EU treaties and have freedom, messy but according to Denning, it can be done, To repeal many of the laws Labour has brought in and put our Constitution to rights? Or remain in the Union and .................

This was published in my local paper in 1999. Where was the Conservative Party and all the rest then? If I knew about it THEN, why didn't YOU? The last two verses are fairly recent


To drain the English Channel is now a positive must,
For the “Committee of the regions” have repositioned US,
East and West Sussex, are now both one Region,
They’re joined up to France and their Foreign Legion.

I cannot be sure if we’ve “gained” part of France?
Or was it part of England that from US was lanced?
That part of Sussex will be mixed up forever,
C’est uncanny! C’est exactement mon dilemma!

The above was written in the year ninety-nine,
So why bring it back into the limelight again?
Is it to distract eyes from the evil dastardly plot
Of relinquishing the veto from JHA? Surely not?

Such treachery, betrayal the like never seen before,
A legacy Blair hopes we will live with evermore.
But Blair should remember, Britain is not HIS to give,
For in a free sovereign country Brit’s WILL fight once more, to live

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