READER LETTER: Longevity is not a given

editorial image

History tells us that the amalgamation of countries never lasts forever. In the last 100 years, we have seen the dissolution of the British Empire, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and on a smaller scale the creation and splitting up of Yugoslavia. I would venture to suggest that the main cause of this is that humans naturally do not like being ruled by foreigners.

Consequently, the longevity of the European Union is not guaranteed and its lifespan might be quite short.

Its uninspiring history to date lends further credence to this idea. The European Economic Community (known as the Common Market) was created in 1957 and was based on some good ideas. However, it was clear from an early stage that each country had joined for what it could get for its own people.

Some countries were better than others at achieving their goals; for instance, some would say that the Common Agricultural Policy was based around providing the French farmers with a good standard of living. Over production was the result that led to the butter mountains and wine lakes that were the routine headlines of newspapers at the time.

The Common Fisheries Policy, together with the fact that some countries played by the rules whilst others did not, led to the decimation of the British fishing fleet.

The European Exchange mechanism followed in 1979 and was the precursor to the Euro.

Britain did not join until 1990 and hurriedly left on Black Wednesday ( September 16 1992) when the UK was losing money at a phenomenal rate. Even then, some people said we were wrong to leave but the British economy had a fresh start and we have since prospered.

The European currency came into being in 1999 and is based on a dream rather than sound economics. It is only possible for several countries to use the same currency if their economies are identical, which after hundreds of years of individual development they are clearly not.

It would seem that only politicians do not recognise this. The result is that certain countries in southern Europe are now nearly bankrupt. The future dream of amalgamating the countries of Europe into a United States of Europe is an equally untenable proposition.

The current state of the EU is diabolical and the latest news is that it is heavily in debt. The wider populous of Europe is tired of politicians advocating carrying on with this inefficient, inadequate, over regulated system and as a result are turning to more extreme political parties.

It has always bemused me that most polls over some 30 years have indicated the UK to be split down the middle between those that want to stay in and those who want to leave. On the other hand, a much higher proportion of politicians apparently want to stay in, and we have never had a government that wanted to leave.

This suggests that the politicians are trying to rule the residents of the UK rather than represent them.

All of the above leads me to the simple conclusion that the referendum vote has the wrong question on it. It should not read “Do you want to leave or remain?”; it should read: “Do you want to leave now, whilst Britain has the chance to become an independent country once more, or do you want to remain until the EU collapses with the biggest knock-on effect ever witnessed.”

MA McCormick

By email