Although he wrote the following passage in 1909 about the United Kingdom and the question of Irish Home Rule, G.K. Chesterton might just as well have written it about the EU and UKIP. Enjoy:
union is no more a good thing in itself than separation is a good thing in itself. To have a party in favour of union and a party in favour of separation, is as absurd as to have a party in favour of going upstairs and a party in favour of going downstairs. The question is not whether we go up or down stairs, but where we are going to, and what we are going for? Union is strength; union is also weakness. It is a good thing to harness two horses to a cart; but it is not a good thing to try and turn two hansom cabs into one four-wheeler. Turning ten nations into one empire may happen to be as feasible as turning ten shillings into one half-sovereign. Also it may happen to be as preposterous as turning ten terriers into one mastiff. The question in all cases is not a question of union or absence of union, but of identity or absence of identity.
Chesterton, G. K. (2010). Heretics (255). Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
Chesterton wrote the above in the context of correcting the idea that older politicians like Gladstone were idealists whereas newer ones like Joseph Chamberlain were materialists. In fact, he noted, the real difference between them was that Gladstone thought of his ideals as things he would like to change reality to resemble, whereas Chamberlain thought his ideals simply described the way things were in any case.
Truly, there is nothing new under the sun.
The Czechs have given in. (Who can blame them? Not I.)
BUT they have betrayed Britain!
Shame! We wuzz robbed! Klaus knuckles under! Munich! Death! War! But….
Poor guy, what can he do? We are not ultimately his problem. Like they were not ours, in 1938.
We will have to look to ourselves. AND I don’t care what Cameron says or pretends to say or not say, about “referenda” and on whay terms, or means or does not mean, for it is quite irrelevant. Nothing will change unless individual Tory politicians in power are forced at gunpoint to do so and to yield to majority opinion and gracefully accede.
We have all known this, for many many years, which is why all the thousands and thousands and thousands of liberal blogs exist: we all pretend it is otherwise, but it is not.
In the early 1990s in the warm wet afterglow of Soviet-Imperialist dégringolade, I used to, while over there, tell my Czech and Slovak friends about the deceptive and only partially-visible undercurrents embedded in “the End of History”, and that “The Germans are Not Your Friends”. Happily I guess, they did not believe me for a moment about the Germans, for there are many German car factories in the Czech republic, employing thousands of Czech and Slovak workers, and turning out not Trabants but rather snazzy VWs rebadged as Skodas, and also a lot of Skodas. Rovers and MGs are now of course Chinese. This is probably for the best, and probably a good thing for us all, if all factors are taken into account. I also warned them about the post-Gorbachev-USSR, but that will be another future story, the end of which cannot yet be perceived.
In the meantime, a new threat to individual liberty and small-nation-self-determination has emerged. If you are here, you know all about it. It is called the EU. Now you must be told, if you are new here and also perhaps not a Subject of The Queen or even a citizen of the wider Anglosphere, that “the EU” was not what was originally being sold to us here. What was initially aggressively, and very, very, very submissively sold, as an “honest, Guv, this is a really really great train, you ought to be on it” thingy, to the British was a “Free trade Area” or “Common Market” – we should have got our hackles up at that already but didn’t. We already could have had free trade but it was supressed by the GramscoStalnists in power in the UK from 1945 to 1979. The Schumanno-Monnetia-Nazis thought we’d bite on “Market” and fail to notice the barbed tarantula-sting in the “Common” bit, and they were quite right. We were had.
It did help them of course, that in the decades involved we did have more or less perverted-GramscoFabiaNazi-collectivophile administrations: these saw the way things were blowing in Europe and the world, saw the nice food with olive oil and garlic and the lovely sexy girls and the warmer and drier and more predictable weather and the vineyards and the cheap sex, and jumped in, on our behalf but for them and not us. (Why else did upper-class women throw wine over Sit Ternece Conran at parties, as a punishment for selling glass Tuscan pasta-jars in Habitat for £3.99 so “everyone” could buy them?)
To the British Enemy-Class, the EU is about power, money, unaccountability for expenses, junkets to Bamberg (twinned with Bedford!), sex with expensive “escort girls” (and you can pass it through as “entertainment”, which it of course is) and “calling for harmonisation”. To British people who can afford it, the EU is about lovely, lovely, sexy food at “bistros” that we were “just passing”, not having to “change money”, sex with expensive British chavettas in Ibiza so you can chat them up while pissed, getting English beer in Benidorm, garlic to make everything taste of something, and being able to fly to Prague for “stag” “dos” for 99p return. Oh and “buying that really great farmhouse, to live off the land”….
All this of course is not what Europe was really about. Not even Jean Monnet, the Great buroNazi, envisaged that it would be that easy to defeat the Real Enemy. We did that ourselves. Europe, as in the “EU” is about recreating a Reich.
That’s why you have to keep voting until you give the right answer….until the Terror-Police are here which means you are relieved of having to vote, for the choice is the right answer or else to be killed. They are a little late with the Terror-Police, but I am sure this is being worked on even today.
Poor Vaclav Klaus, noble and intelligent chap that he is, cannot help us now. It is even the fate of his people’s principal politicians who mattered to be like that. How ironic and sad can you get? So. Either our history as a nation, and as the foundry-crucible of libertarianism, comes to and end here, or else something is done. There is no long-term strategic problem, as the history of Russia and the USSR has shown, in denouncing and repudiating things laughingly called “treaties”. We should look as a nation to our own interests. If we are a libertarian nation, then we ought to look out for our own interests even more fiercely, since we shall find ourselves under open threat even from those whom we once called our friends – as I have always warned and will continue so to do. There is no founding libertarian doctrine that says a nation state, once it has discovered itself either again or anew, ought to observe treaties that are inimical to its survival and which have been made by its predecessors.
Even Westminster says that no Parliament can irrevocably bind its successors.
So, well, there you are.
Shall we just go, now?
…to WW2 imagery, in the ongoing battle against the forces of slavery and theoretically-based compulsion.
But Daniel Hannan is correct that Cameron (if he wins the next GE which is at least a probability***) is not obliged, as the PM of a sovereign nation (whatever the EU-wierdos keep chanting) to :-
(1) Not hold a referendum on the “Lisbon Treaty”,
(2) Not treat it as the “scrap of paper” which it actually is,
(3) Go along with it.
It may be, as Sean Gabb often says: the EU is “a” problem, but not “the” problem, for British – and in particular English -liberals. But I am not so certain of an ultimately successful outcome for English liberty if the EU continues to act like a beacon for all our own home-grown GramscoFabiaNazis: it sits there, wordlessly “being” – and by merely existing, thus encouraging them from afar to perform more heinous acts and crimes here at home, against individual freedom than they ordinarily would, out of their merely ordinary wickedness.
I just spotted this which crystallises everything about Britishness and Irishness combined.
We even share an ocean, which is more than we do with the EU – sorry you buggers, the North Sea is ours. And our fish.
I would like to offer the Irish a referendum on rejoining England, when we will as England have left the UK.
And, eventually, we may defend the North Sea with boats. Like these ones here…I think the FrancoSpanioRussians will just try, er, to be elsewhere:-