Friday, 9 December 2011

Glad, confident morning again – thanks, Dave!

I may have given the impression in a post two days ago – and in many others – that I believed David Cameron to be a spineless, whey-faced crypto-communist who couldn’t wait to sell out his party and his country so that the Lib-Dems would keep him in power and he’d still be welcome to strut his stuff at top table in Brussells.

Of course, nothing could have been further from my mind. The big boys made me do it. Someone else wrote those things and posted them in my name. I wasn’t even in the country at the time. The cat ate my homework.

Thanks to the Polish workers who congregate under my bedroom window for a nice, jolly, noisy chat over a fag each morning before they recommence knocking the hell out of the house two doors along, I was up in time to catch the Today Programme. I never listen to it normally, but it was already on when I settled down to flick through the Daily Telegraph. Menzies Campbell was on. At first I presumed he was trying not to crow about whatever sleazy deal Dave had eventually signed with our French and German masters – but the tone was wrong. And what Campbell was saying didn’t fit that particular scenario. Then there was the Telegraph cartoon by someone called BOB (possibly the unfunniest cartoonist in history – and yes, I’ve seen Steve Bell’s work) showing Cameron as a terrified kamikaze pilot heading to his death as Sarkozy and Merkel are borne to safety in the EU hot air balloon. Er...

I went online – and just managed to stop spraying my morning tea all over the MacBook in astonishment.

For the first time in 21 years a Tory Prime Minister had done something that made one’s heart swell with pride and hope and sheer unalloyed pleasure. I immediately relayed the news to my wife, who was pleasantly surprised, but may have been slightly less excited than I was about Dave telling the German Chancellor and Marshall Petain to do one. “He must have read your blog,” she commented, but I’m not absolutely convinced she meant it.

No wonder the Today presenters sounded so annoyed. French officials were evidently spitting mad as well. Any action which succeeds in angering those two anti-British groups simply has to be right for Britain.

The BBC, the Guardian and the rest of the Liberal-Left media will now go into overdrive. If the pound dips against the Euro, or the FTSE nosedives, or if the Eurozone disintegrates, it will be the fault of Cameron for behaving like the  typical Tory Little Englander they always knew he was beneath that buffed, shiny, posh-boy exterior. If, on the other hand, things start going better for the British economy (unlikely, I know), it will be a result of typical Tory beggar-thy-neighbour selfishness. (If Cameron had come back waving a piece of paper signalling capitulation, he’d have been painted as a typical Tory back-slider who had been forced to do the decent thing by his enlightened Lib-Dem partners.)

Of course, now we can look forward to the TV docudrama describing how Cameron reached the decision to say “No! No No!” I really want to know! (There's already speculation that William Hague being on hand might have strengthened his resolve - but having doubted the PM for so long, I'm prepared, for once, to give him sole credit: after all, his Churchillian/Thatcherite posturing has turned into Churchillian/Thatcherite behaviour.)

The other thing to look forward to is the denizens of the City showing their gratitude in the traditional manner by awarding themselves even more grotesque salaries and bonuses, refusing to lend money to other banks, and ripping off their customers and clients as usual. Some things never change.

But let’s forget all that for a moment and applaud a British Prime Minister who has – at last – put his own country first.

Sorry, old boy!


  1. Reality is back. And this time, she's serious.

  2. It's going to be a merry Christmas.

  3. The EU's military power has just halved.

    What is the likely reaction of:

    (a) the US

    (b) Russia/the CIS

    (c) China?

  4. I've never had a particularly high opinion of David Cameron, but he really has shot up in my regard this time. He actually showed some genuine courage and principle, when he must have been under a lot of pressure to act in line with the rest of Europe. He clearly made the right decision to keep Britain out of the melee and avoid ultimately being dragged into the quagmire of Euro zone politics. Most markets seem to have reacted positively

  5. Weather forecast: the UK will be lashed by 165 mph gales of funk money leaving continental Europe.

  6. Population report: E26 regulations will lock down people and legal persons on the continent with regulations crushing enterprise. Every entrepreneur worthy of the name will move to the UK. Leaving behind ... the rest.

  7. Alex Salmond isn't stupid.

    Scottish independence from England was always predicated on instantly giving up that independence and joining the EU.

    Not any more.

    Scottish independence just went back another 30 years.

  8. Until yesterday, nothing would have diverted the IRA, RIRA and CIRA from blowing up British troops.

    Today, they may find a little time for EU installations. The Republic has been utterly dignified in getting on with a 30% cut in public spending. At least they had their low rate of corporation tax to fall back on. If and when that gets harmonised, they've had it. There will be resentment. And that means Semtex.

  9. This isolation business. Isolation today, compared with yesterday, when every other EU leader used to sit in summits hanging on every word of David Cameron's as he exercised his unencumbered influence, ... maybe not.

    No, one man's isolation is another man's liberation.

    With that clearing of the cobwebs, the return of clear vision, the liberation of reality reasserting itself, perhaps the effect will be felt more broadly? Will all government policy now start gradually to be made more ... intelligently?

  10. Chaps, the BBc has surpassed itself today. Their reaction was like that old Day To Day episode where war is declared and the studio goes bonkers. Political Correspondent Norman Smith's mien at lunchtime was like that of a man reporting a terrorist atrocity in London. And here's the start of their current online article: "David Cameron has defended his decision to block an EU-wide treaty change to tackle the eurozone crisis, despite warnings it will leave the UK isolated." Defended? Why does he need to defend it??? He just declined to set off on the maiden voyage of the Titanic II - and you'd think he'd been caught in possession of child pronography! "Despite warnings"- from who? Oh yes, the usual dreary collection of left-wing Euro-fanatics who can't wait to give away everything this country has fought for the past 200 years - i.e. enslavement by a European superpower. Why are these people so keen to become slaves? Why do they so hate the idea of this country being governed by the the people who actually live here? Why do they trust France and Germany??? Eurofanatics are just very odd people!

    There was ghastly tic of a Lib-Dem MEP on earlier in a terrible bait (Chris Davies?) being terribly rude about Cameron - apparently unaware that his own party is currently part of the Coalition government.

    What also seems to have escaped the attention of all these left-wingers (as it always does) is that the majority of Britons want to leave the EU. Why doesn;t this give them pause for thought? Oh, yes - I'd forgotten - in Europe, the rule is that the voters are utterly irrelevant.


  11. Live: EU summit:

    1331: The President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, has told a news conference that the changes to the EU will take place in two steps. Firstly, he said, there would be rapid confirmation from participating states as to whether they wish to be included in the new "fiscal compact treaty". Then, following further negotiations, the treaty will be signed in early March, possibly even sooner. He defines the fiscal compact as "about more fiscal discipline, more automatic sanctions, stricter surveillance".

    more fiscal discipline, more automatic sanctions, stricter surveillance, ... mmmmmmmmmmmmm, love it, more.

    1356: The majority of BBC News website readers in the UK who have been getting in touch with us today believe David Cameron made the right decision - here is a selection of your views...

    ... you ignorant peasants

  12. The son and heir tells me that I've got it all wrong about Ireland.

    Merkel and Sarkozy are quite happy, apparently, to allow Ireland to carry on levying its low corporation tax rate. That is perfectly consistent with the new doublespeak concept of harmonisation.

    It's just in uncountries like the UK where harmonisation has to retain its old meaning.

  13. God but that George Osborne is stupid, the Guardian keep telling us. Faced with a mushrooming budget deficit, what does he offer us? Austerity. Nothing but austerity. Where's the plan for growth, eh?

    Meanwhile in the rest of the EU, faced with a mushrooming budget deficit, what do Merkel and Sarkozy prescribe? Austerity. Nothing but austerity. "More fiscal discipline, more automatic sanctions, stricter surveillance", as Herman Van Rompuy says.

    And what does that idiot David Cameron go and do, asks the Guardian? He only goes and isolates us from this brilliant plan, that's what.

    No, they do these things better on the continent.

    On the continent, they've got technocrats. They know what they're doing. For example, we learn from the Telegraph that the ECB has already bunged the banks a few hundred billion Euros, see Eurozone leaders deluded if they think this 'sticking plaster' treaty can solve the debt crisis.

    It hasn't worked. The banks still won't lend.

    So, to avoid a credit crunch, the ECB have, more or less surreptitiously, told the banks they can lower their capital adequacy ratios, Basel and Basel II and any other negotiated international agreements the technocrats don't like can go hang, in other words.

    That'll help. As long as there isn't a run on the banks. Which is unthinkable, see Eurozone banking system on the edge of collapse.

    It's Christmas. Why can't we have technocrats?

  14. I get irritated about cheap jibes at Petain. Yes, he was head of a collaborationist regime [he was 85 in 1940], but he was also one of the great generals of WW1 [his handling of Verdun in 1916 and quelling of the army mutiny in 1917 was exemplary]. Remember the good things about people, as well. There is nothing good about the clown Sarkozy.

    David Moss. Ireland. Bertie Ahern was the Prime Minister from 1997 to 2008. Seeking to explain the financial crisis, he actually said "Lehman's was a world investment bank. They had testicles everywhere."

    His successor Brian Cowen [more importantly, the finance minister 2004 - 2008 when all the damage was done] was thus described: "He is not an obvious leader of Men. His movements are sullen and lumbering, his face numbed by corpulence, his natural resting expression a look of confusion" [Gordon Brown?]. See "Boomerang" by Michael Lewis.

    The EU is a stratospherically crap construct, but its crappiness grows out of its individual constituents. Sensible and sober countries like Norway and Switzerland have done a skillful balancing act. In fact,they have learnt from the way Great Britain behaved in the 18th & 19th Cs.

    I have to go. My broker from Credite Suisse is on hold. Good Luck.

  15. Sarah Montague apologises over Father Christmas blunder

    Radio 4's Today programme presenter Sarah Montague has been forced to apologise to parents and children after claiming that Father Christmas does not exist.

    Parents and children?

    Never mind the wretched parents and children, there must 26 inconsolable members of the EU crying themselves to sleep right now.

    Bang go Sarah Montague's chances of taking over from Baroness Ashton (if she exists).

  16. It is incredibly important that the UK have a seat at the table. Otherwise, how can we make our voice heard? How can we have any influence?

    That is the stance of the Lib Dems and the Guardian and, you would imagine therefore, of Nick Clegg.

    But is it?

    Apparently not:
    Clegg absent as Cameron defends his European veto

  17. I have been asked to pass on the following email:

    Vid (if I may)

    Senti. Good view from the top of the lamp-post. Thus I cast some light on the matter.

    Look old man (124, pushing 125, a testament to the powers of that Norwegian yoghurt), you have to decide whether you're a Leavisite or a curate.

    To a Leavisite, M le Maréchal was bad, tout court. The successful handling of Verdun will be attributed to good advice given to him by one of his staff officers, and putting down the mutiny to French awe in the face of authority. Because it can't have been him. Because he was bad.

    And to the curate, he could be good in parts. (Like you?)


  18. David Moss. Please pass on this message to your chum:

    " Ciao,Benito. Come va? Two things:
    1. No, Vidkun is fine. "Vid" implies a familiarity I do not necessarily feel.

    2. As I lack the gift of prolixity I cannot begin to describe Petain's role at Verdun here. Instead I recommend Alistair Horne's book "The Price of Glory". That should also put you right on the Mutiny as well.

    3. Yes, his role in the Vichy Government was shameful, but nobody is wholly bad, tout court. Winston Churchill in the period 1940-41 was a very great war leader and his subsequent dangerous and gruelling trips to Russia and his dissuading the Americans from a premature invasion of North West Europe should have earnt him a George Cross or two. But do Gallipoli, the invasions of Norway and Greece, the intolerable interference with the army in North Africa, the despatch of the Repulse and the PoW to Singapore without air cover,the willful ignoring of the the 14th Army in Burma and the hurtful refusal to recognize Bomber Command with a campaign medal after 55,000 aircrew lost their lives detract from his greatness. I suggest not.

    I thought it was only Englishmen who invoked this tired old curate's egg nonsense.

  19. On a point of detail, Moss, the view is not so bene from the lamp post when you are hanging upside down with a rope tied round your ankles.

    Not that I'm complaining or anything.

  20. Vidkun, you say "I thought it was only Englishmen who invoked this tired old curate's egg nonsense". There, you have it in one. Benito tells me that where he is, he is surrounded by Englishmen ...

    As that wise old owl Jean-Paul said – l'enfer, c'est les Anglais.