Iris Binstead is the sterling editor of SOS, Save Our Sovereignty. We have published SOS newsletters for several years because they are a thorough indictment of the European Union and a warning about international plans for our rights and liberties. Iris has gathered reports from stolid news organs such as the Telegraph and the Times and from evidence-based individuals and organisations into one critical mass. She is not a flamboyant headline writer; rather, a circumspect one. We have changed her discreet headlines to reflect the grim and shocking realities of her reports. We will return soon with happier news about an extraordinary craftsman. This news had to come first.
TORY EUROPEAN POLICY - BROKEN PROMISESSOS was about to be sent to the printer when Mr Cameron announced the Conservatives’ new policy on the European Union following the signature by President Klaus of the Czech Republic to the Lisbon Treaty, thereby removing all obstacles to its ratification. Two years ago Mr Cameron gave a 'cast iron guarantee' that the Tories would hold a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty. Yesterday, 4th November 2009, he reneged on that promise. According to the Daily Mail, 5.11.09, Mr Cameron pledged that Britain would ‘never again’ allow new powers to be handed to Brussels without a public vote. He also said that any attempt to scrap further British vetoes without another treaty would require an Act of Parliament. He promised that the Tories would pass a UK Sovereignty Act which would establish the primacy of British law in certain areas. Barry Legg, Chairman of the Bruges Group, said: "Yet again a British politician has broken his promises on Europe. Yet again a would-be Prime Minister has promised us that if we elect him, everything is going to be different. And yet again, not one plausible detail is offered as to why….With his contemptuous surrender, David Cameron has provided Brussels with the icing on the Lisbon cake. They have nothing to fear from this man and they know it."
The Daily Mail, 5.11.09, further reported that the Tory leader promised to start negotiations (which he admitted could take years), to repatriate powers on human rights, employment and criminal law, but said that he did not wish to rush into a massive Euro bust-up. Writing in that same paper, Edward Heathcoat Amory, a special adviser to the former Major government, warns that the bust-up, which Mr Cameron wishes to avoid could very well happen as it hard to see how our (so called) European partners could be persuaded to grant such concessions. Stephen Glover wrote that the Tory leader was presented with an historic opportunity to prove his mettle and show the kind of man he really is, although, even armed with the result of a referendum he might not have succeeded in negotiations to change Britain's relationship with the EU. The Daily Express, 5.11.09, quotes Nigel Farage, Leader of the UK Independence Party as saying that renegotiation of EU powers was impossible and that Mr Cameron was trying to deceive people. According to Leo McKinstry writing in the same paper, Mr Cameron's promise to protect British sovereignty and give the public a say on any further transfer of powers to the EU may be meaningless as the supremacy of British law has already been undermined.
BULLYING THE IRISHThe Irish people were bullied, bludgeoned, frightened and lied to by the EU elite and their own government in order to make them reverse their NO vote of last year. As Professor Anthony Coughlan of the National Platform EU Research and Information Centre stated: "This result does not have political legitimacy, whatever the voting percentages amounted to, because of the fraudulent and undemocratic way in which the referendum was run …." He said that the limitless money provided for the Yes side by Brussels, European parliamentary parties, the Irish Government and private business firms was ten times as much as that received by the opposition. The campaign was massively unlawful and breached Ireland's referendum law. It was illegal for the European Commission to intervene and the country's statutory Referendum Commission failed to carry out its function under the Referendum Act. It was their duty to explain to the citizens how the proposed constitutional amendment and its text would affect the Irish Constitution. It was illegal under Irish law to receive donations in a referendum from sources outside the country and yet there was part funding of posters and press advertising by political parties in the European Parliament. Also, the Irish Government unlawfully used public funds in circulating to voters a postcard with details of so-called "assurances" given by the European Council. They followed this with a brochure containing a tendentious summary of the provisions of the Lisbon Treaty and other material. Professor Coughlan said there were breaches by the Irish broadcast media of their obligation under the Broadcasting Acts to be fair to all interests concerned in their coverage of issues of public controversy and debate.
A video available here shows people coming in and out of Cork City Hall, unaccompanied by the Garda or any other security organisation, carrying ballot boxes from centres all around Cork. Boxes were delivered to polling stations up to 48 hours before they should have been; they are not supposed to be delivered before 7.0 am The spokesman on the video said he went inside the polling station and found no security whatsoever, and could have interfered with the boxes without being challenged. Hans Vogel, writing on the Russian newspaper Pravda's website, (Pravda.Ru, 7.10.09) believes that the vast difference between the recent ballot and that of the previous referendum indicates that the vote was most certainly rigged. . .
LISBON TREATY INVALID & UNCONSTITUTIONALAccording to the report which appeared here, four concerned individuals applied to challenge by Judicial Review the validity of the 28th Amendment to the Constitution Bill (2009) because of irregularities. All were refused ex parte. The Attorney General had indicated that Ireland was not able to ratify the Lisbon Treaty unless there was a successful referendum and an amendment to the Irish Constitution. These cases are now being formally appealed to the Supreme Court. In order to justify a second Irish referendum, the EU agreed to give Ireland separate guarantees on abortion, defence, etc. In fact, the Irish voted on exactly the same treaty as they had voted on previously. Speaking in the House of Lords, (Hansard,2.7.09) Glenys Kinnock said that the guarantees will become binding in international law when they are translated into protocol at the time of the next accession. According to the Campaign for an Independent Britain, 27.07.09, the House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee has said that these guarantees make the Brown Government’s 2008 ratification of the Treaty invalid.
THE LISBON TREATY CONTAINS HITLER'S CLAUSEThe Lisbon Treaty, WHICH IS INTENDED TO LAST IN PERPETUITY, contains an amending clause, similar to the Enabling Act passed by Adolf Hitler in 1933, which means that there will be no need for any further treaties. The EU will be able to take any powers it requires with the minimum of consultation. THIS WILL BE THE END OF DEMOCRACY IN EUROPE. (Ed)
Now that the last obstacle has been removed and even before the ratification of the Treaty, the EU is going ahead with plans to turn itself into a global power. A document has been drafted conferring a full 'legal personality' for a new European diplomatic service. (Daily Telegraph, 19.10.09). It is worth noting that Germany was unable to ratify the Lisbon Treaty until a ruling was given by its Constitutional Court that the Treaty complied with the German Constitution. This ruling was given subject to passing a law which gave the German Parliament powers to screen EU laws. Britain also has a Constitution which our government appears to ignore unless it suits them, as was the case recently when it used Article IX of the Bill of Rights 1689 in the Parliamentary Standards Act 2009. An important paper entitled 'Our Common Law and Right' is appended to this newsletter.
PRESIDENT OF THE EU COMMISSION - A POLITICIAN WHO LIKES TO CROWOn 16.9.09, José Manuel Barroso, who had just been re-elected as President of the Commission, promised to bind EU states even closer, fight 'national egoisms' and push ahead with further integration. He stressed that he will be promoting a pro-EU agenda. Despite reservations about the extension of EU powers, the Tories backed Mr Barroso for a second term as President. (Daily Telegraph, 17.9.09) In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, 16.9.09, Mr Barroso claimed that Britain is learning to love the European Union and the economic crisis had prompted Eurosceptics to 'think twice' about their hostility to Brussels. He said: "Even Eurosceptics understand that without a strong European Commission we cannot ensure respect for the single market". Roger Helmer, Conservative MEP said: “The idea that we cannot trade without the EU is absurd. As more daft rules come out of the EU, such as the ridiculous ban on light bulbs, they are piling more straws on the camel’s back."
ICELAND'S ADVANTAGEA poll published by Capacent Gallup in the Icelandic daily Morgunbladid, 20.08.09, has found that a majority of 48.5 % is opposed to joining the EU against 38.6% in favour and 16.9% undecided. According to the Daily Telegraph, 27.7.09, the krona has fallen by half against the euro and, although nothing is cheap prices are affordable. Alcoa has raised aluminium production to record levels and both metal and fish are being exported. Iceland had the obvious advantage of not being in the euro.
ABANDON HOPE - EUROPEAN ARREST WARRANTGraham Watson, Liberal Democrat MEP, is apparently proud of having guided the European Arrest Warrant (EAW) through the EU Parliament. In his letter to the Western Morning News, 13.10.09, he says that all countries of the EU are signatories to the European Convention of Human Rights, Article 6 of which states that all persons have a legal right to a fair trial. He also says that British courts were empowered to refuse extradition. Not true.
In the recent case of Andrew Symeou at a High Court appeal hearing under the EAW, the appeal judges could not consider the prima facie evidence which was explicitly not allowed. According to Gerard Batten, UKIP MEP, who sat through the hearing, contrary to what Mr Watson says courts have almost no power to refuse an extradition, except on the narrowest of grounds that did not apply in this case. The identification evidence against Mr Symeou was completely contradictory and there was clear evidence that the Greek police had fabricated witness statements. Two of Mr Symeou's friends had been beaten and mistreated in order to extract statements incriminating him. These statements were immediately repudiated with British consular officials when the witnesses were released from police custody. The appeal judges referred the appeal to the House of Lords who refused to hear the appeal on the basis that it was not in the public interest.
British courts have been stripped of their power to protect British citizens from unjust arrest and imprisonment if they are subject to a European Arrest Warrant. Habeas Corpus, our most basic protection under the law, has been removed and any one of us can be sent to prison in any European country provided that the correct form has been completed by a foreign court official. According to Christopher Booker writing in the Sunday Telegraph, 25.8.09, the Home Office has admitted that the number of people extradited annually to EU countries under the EAW is likely to increase from about 500 to as many as 1,700, many for minor offences. As Mr Booker says, what makes this European Arrest Warrant doubly offensive "is the craven servitude to which it reduces British courts, which are required automatically to comply with it".
IMMIGRATION - AN UNDERHANDED PLANAccording to the Daily Mail, 24.10.09, huge increases in immigration over the past decade were a deliberate attempt to engineer a multi-cultural Britain. Ministers hoped to radically change the country, but senior labour ministers were reluctant to talk about this policy in case it upset the white working class – their core voters.
The Daily Telegraph, 21.10.09, reports that the government has lost track of 40,000 illegal immigrants. These immigrants should have left the country six years ago but might still be here. Now it has been learnt that we may be forced to take more asylum seekers under the EU common asylum plan to harmonise immigration across the 27 EU states. The EU has stated that it would like the allocation of asylum seekers to be 'proportionate' to the population so that each country 'shares the burden' of asylum applications. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/eu/639933) According to the Daily Express, 21.9.09, Jacques Barrot, the EU Justice Commissioner, wants to scrap a rule that immigrants should take refuge in the country in which they first enter the EU, so that Britain can be forced to take in the thousands of migrants from the Calais camp known as 'the jungle'.
SURVEILLANCE -YOU ARE BEING WATCHEDAccording to Eurofacts, l6.10.09, the European Commission is spending millions of euros of taxpayers’ money on projects designed to provide continent-wide surveillance and information sharing in order to snuff out quickly any deviation from what Brussels decides is acceptable behaviour. The EU is spending €2.5 million of taxpayers' money on CCTV cameras on SAMURAI – suspicious and abnormal behaviour monitoring – for monitoring people and vehicle activities at airports, railway stations, football stadia, etc. They are spending €3.2 million on a project called ADABTS to standardise concepts of abnormality in regard to health issues and automatically detect these abnormal behaviour patterns in crowded places. Then there is INDECT costing €10.9 million, which aims to develop the registration and exchange of operational data, processing of information and supporting the operational activities of police officers.
A new EU Intelligent Transport System (ITS) raises concerns about citizens' privacy. It is aimed at tackling road congestion by collecting data for freight and passenger transport and is said to collect potentially sensitive information, such as driving habits and journey details. (Euractiv, 24.7.09)
ID CARDS - WHAT'S NOT TO DISLIKE?Delegates to the Labour Party Conference cheered when they thought Mr Brown had announced that he had cancelled the ID scheme. According to NO2ID Newsletter, 9.10.09, he did not. He said the scheme would be 'voluntary'. Anyone agreeing to 'volunteer' for an ID card will never be allowed to leave the system and people will be compelled to ‘volunteer’ if they wish to apply for any official document, such as a passport. Manchester has been designated as a 'beacon city' in the hunt for 'volunteers'. According to Mail On Line, 6.8.09, the ID card issued to foreign nationals is similar to those being issued to British citizens. Inside the card is embedded a microchip detailing name, date of birth, physical characteristics, fingerprints, etc. The Identity Card Act, introduced by Labour in 2006, states that the National Identity Register, which is the backbone of the scheme, could contain 50 separate categories of information about the individual. The cards are supposed to be unforgeable, but Mail On Line demonstrated how a forgery could be made in minutes using a mobile phone and a laptop computer. According to Gerard Batten, MEP, the UK Independence Party's spokesman on Justice, nine council workers were sacked for snooping on the personal records of celebrities and friends held by the National Identity Scheme databases, demonstrating how easily the system can be abused.
'AN INSTRUMENT OF OPPRESSION'The first paragraph in the summary of the proposed EU Directive on Equal Treatment in employment and occupation (2000/78/EC) reads as follows: 'Combating discrimination is a major challenge for the European Union. The Union is founded on the principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, as well as rule of law. Hence the EU must take all measures necessary to combat discrimination of all kinds, notably as regards employment and the labour market'. Unfortunately, according to Christian Concerns for our Nation (ccfon), 29.9.09, this EU directive against discrimination could have the potential to silence Christians for fear of being sued for 'harassment'. Ccfon is concerned by the vagueness of the definition of 'harassment', which will make it easy to bring an accusation, and the alarming shift in the burden of proof on to the accused to demonstrate that the person alleging harassment did not, in fact, perceive offence. This directive will have a negative impact on freedom of speech, freedom to speak to non-Christians about the Gospel, academic freedom and the freedom of religious groups to deliver public services. According to EU Observer, 4.8.09. Catholics are alarmed by this proposed law and believe that atheists could attack galleries for showing religious art and witches could claim the right to use church bells. The Daily Telegraph, 4.8.09, reports that Roman Catholic bishops have warned that this equality law is an 'instrument of oppression'. It is expected that the Council of Ministers will vote on this directive, which is aimed to curtail discrimination on grounds of religion, disability, age or sexual preference in social situations not covered by existing labour law, in November this year. In the meantime, the Daily Telegraph, 17.8.09, reported that the Foreign Office is to fund equal rights activists in countries with a record of homophobia.
EU BUDGET INCREASES TAXPAYER PAINMEPs have voted to increase the EU budget from £106 billion to £116 billion per annum from 2010. According to the Daily Telegraph, 26.10.09, this will increase Britain's contributions by £5 million a day to £45 million a day. More than two thirds of the budget goes to the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and "structural funds". Britain has a rebate to compensate for the high cost of the CAP, which mainly benefits countries such as France, but many MEPs want to phase out our this rebate, part of which was surrendered by Tony Blair during the UK's presidency of the EU in the hope of reforming the CAP. Marta Andreason, UKIP MEP and former Chief Accountant for the EU Commission, speaking in the EU Parliament, said that it was unbelievable that in these times of financial and economic crisis, the European Commission proposed an increase of almost 5% for the 2010 budget. What was worse was that, at its first reading in July, the Council put forward a reduction of almost 2% on the preliminary draft budget. Marta asked whether this was the way in which the Parliament wanted to bring the budget closer to the people. She said that the UK had many other priorities in which to invest its money, particularly now that the Commission had warned that Britain was in danger of going bust due to its high level of national debt.
QUANGOS - CUSHY JOBSAccording to the Daily Mail, 26.10.09, more than 1,000 unelected public bodies were given over £90 billion of taxpayers' money during 2007/8, an increase of £13 billion over the previous year. This cost every household £3,640. The government says that there are 800 quangos, but a survey by the Taxpayers' Alliance has identified 1,152, employing 534,000 people. There are now so many quangos that their jobs often overlap.
ALTERNATIVE INVESTMENT FUND MANAGEMENT WILL DEVASTATE PENSION FUNDSMarta Andreason, the UKIP MEP and former Chief Accountant for the EU Commission, has told the Institute of Economic Affairs that the only way to fight the proposed directive was for Britain to leave the EU. She said that the EU Commission played the most important role in the process and that, even if amendments were taken on, the Commission could always override them. According to the Daily Telegraph, 5.8.09, The European Union's proposals to regulate hedge funds could cost pension funds as much as €25 billion (£21.3 billion) a year. This figure was arrived at by research by the Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA). The trade body warned that the cost of leverage restrictions, increased compliance costs and the impact of being restricted to European funds could decrease investor returns on hedge funds and private equity by as much as 2.5%. It was thought that the European pension fund industry presently had €1 trillion allocated to alternative investments. The increase in costs could have a seriously detrimental effect on pensions of all Europeans. London was the home of 450 hedge funds, or about 80% of the European total, but the industry was also dominated by American players.
The Financial Times, 21.9.09, reported that hedge funds contributed approximately £5 billion in tax revenues to the Exchequer last year but the proposed EU rules could cause many funds to move overseas.
NORTHERN ROCK - DROPPING LIKE A ROCK ON THE HEADS OF TAXPAYERSIn order to stop this bank failing, it was supported by the government at a cost to the taxpayer of £14.4 billion. .According to the Daily Telegraph, 4.8.09, Northern Rock made a £724 million loss in the six months to June this year as its bad debt soared to £602 million. The price for being allowed by Neelie Kroes, the EU Competition Commissioner, to continue to support Northern Rock was a 'significant reduction of its market presence'. The Government has decided to split this bank into two parts – good and bad assets. The bank's loan book is being reduced from the pre-crisis level of £100 billion to £20 billion in order to ensure that its state support does not give it 'an unfair competitive advantage'. [It is understood that this will cost the taxpayer a further £8 billion. (Ed)] RBS and Lloyds are expected to have to close a number of branches and shed 3,700 staff (Financial Times 3.11.09)
EU REGIONALISATION AGENDA – SEIZING HOMES, DOWNGRADING LISTED BUILDINGS, DAMAGING THE COUNTRYSIDE AND ESTABLISHING DRACONIAN POLICE POWERSUnder the heading of Local Elections I reported in the July 2009 issue of SOS that the Liberal Democrats were instrumental in pushing through the unitary authority for Cornwall against the wishes of 80% of voters who were given the opportunity of expressing an opinion. According to The Cornishman, 14.6.07, results of surveys carried out by Penwith, Caradon, Carrick and Kerrier Districts produced a resounding ‘NO’ to a unitary authority by 89%. Because unitary authorities are part of the EU regionalisation agenda, a unitary authority for Cornwall was imposed on the county - [typical of democracy EU style! (Ed)]
As of March this year the statutory powers of the South West Regional Authority have been transferred to another unelected quango called the South West Councils, on which sit councillors from local South West councils. The constitution of the new quango is almost identical to that of the SWRA and there is a background staff of over 70 people working at delivering the EU programme of regional government.
The Times, 30.10.09, reports that draconian police powers, originally designed to deprive crime barons of luxury lifestyles, are being extended to use against the public by councils, quangos and agencies. Officials will have the right to search homes, freeze bank accounts and confiscate property. This measure, which is being promoted by Alan Johnson, the Home Secretary, is expected to come into force in a few days. It is an extension of the Proceeds of Crime Act and will be pushed through by a Statutory Instrument, so will not be debated in Parliament.
A report in the Sunday Telegraph, 1.11.09) states that planning changes could cause the destruction of thousands of listed buildings and large areas of the countryside. The Government is said to be proposing to downgrade protection on old buildings and those in conservation areas in order to 'benefit developers' and 'reduce the number of applications for planning permission rejected on heritage grounds'. The professional body which represents town planners described the proposal as 'unfit for the purpose'.
According to EUObserver/Brussels, 7.10.09, there are now to be 'macro-regions' which, by 2014, could get their own funding. The pilot scheme for 'macro-regions' is the Baltic Sea Strategy, which will comprise several member states featuring a common geographical characteristic. This could be followed by a strategy for the Danube region, an Alps region and a Carpathian mountain region, as well as others. Discussions are taking place as to whether the money will be managed by the Commission, existing structures or a new body.
DEFENCE – STARVING OUR SOLDIERSIn the newsletter of July 2006, I reported that the UK Government was committed to spending tens of billions of pounds to equip our forces to play their part in the EU Rapid Reaction Force. In so doing our soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan were being starved of proper resources. The situation has changed very little and our forces in Afghanistan are still suffering from lack of essential supplies. According to the Sunday Times, 23.8.09, ministers have suppressed an official report which revealed that soldiers' lives were being put at risk by 'endemic failures' at the Ministry of Defence. The report stated that to-day's projects were £35 billion over budget and arrived five years later than expected. The Financial Times, 20.8.09, stated that Government ministers had ordered a shake-up at the Ministry of Defence because auditors were unable to find £6.6 billion worth of equipment, which included vehicles, weapons and radios required by our troops. MOD's poor record-keeping suggested that officials had been taking important resourcing decisions without knowing where billions of pounds of equipment was located or whether it was in good condition. According to the Western Morning News, 4.9.09, the head of the EU Military Committee, Henri Bentegeat, a four-star general and former Chief of the Defence Staff at the Elysee Palace, said that the traditional NATO alliance is at risk from the competing efforts of the European Union's own defence policy. He told MEPs that the two defence arms, comprised mainly of the same member states, sometimes overlapped their efforts to the detriment of both organisations.
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