One of the Conservative Party's highest profile celebrity supporters has urged David Cameron to "kill Ukip stone dead" by committing the party to a policy of seizing back key policies from Brussells [sic], telegraph.co.uk can reveal.
Frederick Forsyth, the best-selling author, set out his plan in a major speech at a "Better Off Out" meeting of the Campaign for an Independent Britain at the week-end.
Ah, yes; Freddie is a patron of the Better Off Out campaign (which, incidentally, I emailed to add my name to after Lance-Watkins's comment but, alas, my name has yet to appear) and I am sure that he yields to no one in his determination to take us out of the EU.
Mr Forsyth urged Mr Cameron to "talk softly but carry a big stick" when dealing with Britain's future as a member of the European Union.
The author of the 'Dogs of War' and 'Day of the Jackal' said the Tories could neutralise the threat from the United Kingdom Independence Party (Ukip) by announcing plans to regain key powers which have been ceded to Brussels.
Repatriating powers would please the Right of the Tory party "and it would kill Ukip stone dead".
The problem is, Freddie, is that the reason UKIP exists is because the Tories have never shown any urge to be EUsceptic. And even when they have talked the EUsceptic talk, they have significantly failed to walk the EUsceptic walk. Given Letwin's reponses to me, do you think that this is going to change?
Wake up, Forsyth! Wake up and smell the fucking coffee, you fuckwit! We aren't in happy, happy fiction-land here.
He continued: "That's a million votes - and most of them are ex-Tories, disgruntled, disillusioned. If you can call back a million missing Tories who vote Ukip, you are in Downing Street."
Mr Cameron's recent speech in Brussels last month sounded like he was "musing aloud about regaining powers given to the EU".
Well, Spam has been musing over a lot of things, he just hasn't committed to any of them.
Mr Forsyth continued: "I don't think David is a brave man. He is frightened, nervous, timid. He goes over to Brussels and says all these things. He did say he wanted to cherry pick.
"Was he musing aloud, making a serious proposition? If he was, was he making a serious proposition? If he was, did he realise the seriousness of what he was saying?"
More importantly, did he realise the impossibility of what he was saying? Remain within the EU and cherry pick the bits that we wanted to adhere to?
First, why on earth would the other countries let us do it? And, second, in that case what is the point of remaining in the EU in the first place? Why not adopt UKIP's policy of leaving completely and then negotiating a trade deal?
If the Brussels refused to re-negotiate on the basis of a complete reform of the relationship, then Mr Cameron should not hesitate to take Britain out of the EU, Mr Forsyth said.
If I can whistle O Flower Of Scotland twice then, as far as I am concerned, Bill Gates should give me £10,000,000,000 but it isn't going to happen, Freddie, you silly sod.
"If you said 'we would like to propose the repatriation of six sovereign powers; we want the British to control our borders, our courts, our fisheries, our agriculture, our human rights and our trading policies, 80pc of Brits would agree," he said.
Yes, Freddie, they would. Unfortunately, most of them, owing to the conspiracy of silence by our politicians and the laziness and venality of our press, don't realise that we don't realise that we do not control these areas anyway.
But much of this is simply not up for renegotiation; borders, control, fisheries, agriculture and trade are enshrined in the Treaty of Rome, the founding Treaty of the EU. Human rights (that part under EU control) resides in the Treaty of Amsterdam. Courts?—I don't know, off hand but they'll be in the
And what, precisely, would that leave in the EU's control anyway?
"I want the Conservatives to sit down and think what powers would we like to be repatriated. Just name them.
"Then say 'if we are not taken seriously we would be required to withdraw subsidies'. Before doing it, we would ask for the British people for their opinion."
Yes, well, all of this would be very nice, but I fear that many of the British poeple are just as timid as you say Cameron is, Freddie-baby. What they need is reassurance that we can survive outwith the EU—indeed, that we can prosper as we have not done in 35 years.
The cross-party Campaign for an Independent Britain believes that Britain should withdraw from the EU and seeks to create informed debate on this issue, based upon accurate analysis of the very real costs of the UK's continued membership.
Fuck me, who wrote that last sentence? Are they hiring management consultants instead of journalists now? It may be that the Campaign for an Independent Brtiain are indeed doing so, but so are UKIP, Civitas, the ASI and about a million other institutions. Those of us who have read their reports have generally concluded that, economically, we lose out massively.
So, can we leave yet?
UPDATE: it has been suggested that I have not been entirely fair to Freddie, and that the pro-Tory Telegraph might actually have been twisting his words. So I think that it's only fair to highlight some of the comments made.
David B. Wildgoose:
This time you're not actually being fair DK. You need to read his article in the Jan/Feb 2007 issue of Freedom Today, (the Freedom Association magazine).
In it he points out that the next election will be very close, and that individuals should declare openly that they will only vote for a candidate who will give them a referendum on the EU. If enough people make that declaration then the party machinery will make the calculations and realise that whoever guarantees such a referendum will win, and whoever refuses it will give the election away.
I presume that this speech is following the same logic but aimed directly at the Tories.
From what I heard from those present at his speech, the Telegraph completely twisted his words for their own purposes.
These kind of unchecked attacks on BOO patrons are really not helpful, particularly from those who seek to get their names added as supporters!
An apology is due to Freddie I'd say.
This sounds similar to FF's address to the Bruges Group, which can be read—and listened to—here.
Actually it seemed to me to be a constructive suggestion and doable.
He starts from the surely reasonable premise that we can only be taken out of the EU by a government in power. THis will not be UKIP but could be the Tories.
His attitude towards Cameron and the COnservative Party is basically grab them by the short and curlies and their hearts and minds may follow.
As many potential conservatice voters should declare that they will abstain (or vote UKIP) unless the Tories promise a referendum on repatriating one or two key powers.
If they don't promise this, then they don't get into power. Simple as that. No Red Boxes and ministerial Rolls. We just have to put up with Brown for a few years.
He also warns against the referendum question being the nuclear option, "In or Out?". With the BBC and much of the MSM spinning for all they're worth, that might be risky.
If the referendum question was, say, "Should we repatriate our fishing, immigration policy, and courts" and it got an emphatic yes, then that would increase the leverage of the EU-sceptics.
Of course these things are enshrined in treaties and we could not expect all the EU-states to agree to a renegotiation. There would have to be essentially unilateral action backed by sufficient political will.
Whether that would be forthcoming is another matter, but a good referendum result would surely be worth getting?
Alternative practical suggestons?
I will have a read of his speech when I get a second, and see what I think. The point still stands about the Tories, I am afraid. They are not fucking EUsceptics, and my conversation with Letwin, who is Tory head of policy, shows that really quite clearly.
The Tories have stuff all intention of leaving the EU and as long as our "partners" know this, we have no leverage. I would love it if Cameron grew a spine—wouldn't we all—but I just don't believe that it's going to happen. Look at the regulations that Cameron has introduced about electing MEPs, where the sitting—and overwhelmingly pro-EU (bar Roger Helmer)—MEPs get priority on the lists.
How about we get a petition together to persuade him to at least hold a referendum? And what do you want to bet that Cameron will ignore that just as he has ignored the protests about his move to the middle ground?
And, in the name of FUCK, if Cameron is so EUsceptic, why doesn't he just announce a fucking referendum? Oh, that'll be because he's a fucking federalist, keen to give away even more of our powers in the Environmental arena. The man's a fucking prick and a EUfederalist prick at that.
But, believe me, I'd love to be proven wrong.