Wednesday, June 27, 2007
What the Tories seem to have forgotten is that what the British public values most are steadiness under fire, intellectual integrity and rock-solid consistency. What a leader stands for is almost secondary to the issue of trust.Heinlein once wrote that if a politician can demonstrate sincerity & a command of the facts they are most of the way there. Nobody doubts the intelligence & command of facts that Brown has - I think he should struggle at all costs to maintain sincerity & to separate himself from Blair's lack thereof. Such PMs are rare - Thatcher, Atlee & perhaps Churchill. Lloyd George started with a reputation for sincerity & lost it.
When voters mutter to each other about a party leader ‘Say what you like about what he believes, at least you know where you stand with him’, the electoral battle is all but won.
Try saying that, first about Mr Cameron and then about Mr Brown.
Now she says, in my view correctly, what is wrong with the new EU Constit... er treaty.
If a nation cannot take the foreign policy measures needed to defend itself, if it can no longer decide to whom it will grant the right of citizenship, or exercise its own historic values of law, justice and liberty, it is no longer an independent nation at all.The last point in particular is vital & has been barely reported. A document which contains the mechanisms of its own alteration is a constitution whatever you call it. All 3 parties have made promises to have a referendum on an EU constitution (even though Bliar originally promised it was merely a "tidying up exercise" which, though not in exactly the same words, we are being told now. She believe that Brown should immediately drop the treaty or at least submit it to a referendum. I would not go as far as her on the first part since the people of Britain have the perfect right to give away their sovereignty if they wish, but is dead on on the the referendum, if he wishes to keep a reputation for integrity.
And even worse than all of this is the outrageous provision by which this treaty can be amended in future without the need for any further treaties.
So we are not merely signing away all the powers listed in this treaty; we are also surrendering our ability to thwart any future attempt by Brussels to extend its power over us yet further in any way it might decide.
Prime Minister Brown should simply refuse to countenance it at all. Indeed, how could any Prime Minister committed to upholding democracy do otherwise?
That should be Mr Brown’s own, absolutely non-degradable red line. After all, if he accepts this treaty what will his first Cabinet be other than a transparent charade? What is the point of selecting a new Foreign Secretary, Home Secretary or any other minister if they are to be merely ciphers of Brussels?
If Mr Brown puts this constitution to Parliament and in addition refuses to hold a referendum, he will not merely forfeit the voters’ trust at the very start of his premiership