Letters to the Editor

The Scotsman, April 1, 2017 | Go to article overview

Letters to the Editor


Don'tblameEU

Mrs J Thomson seeks to perpetuate the myth that all our laws, rules and regulations emanate from the EU, whereas by most estimates as little as around 15 per cent have any EU input (Letters, 30 March). Areas including heath, social security, social care, crime, defence and education are governed by the UK and its component parts and there is no blame attaching to the scapegoat EU for our misplaced austerity, inadequacies in our heath and care systems, benefit restrictions and failing education policies.

On the contrary, most EU regulations relate to trade, employment rights and climate, for which they are due much applause. It is doubtful if, left to its own devices, the UK would have been so enlightened.

Please, also no more about loss of sovereignity. The UK has remained a sovereign state as defined by international law -ifnot it would not have been in a position to withdraw from the EU entirely by our own actions. Ironically, by seeking to have a free trade agreement with the EU, the UK is likely to become less sovereign, as it will have to comply with regulations over which it will no longer have any say or veto.

GRAHAM HAY

Player Green, Livingston

Stand up forUK

Re: your 30 March editorial, I fail to see why Theresa May should not have emphasised the need for the UK's expertise and superiority inour continued cooperation on security issues. We are not supplicants begging for crumbs at the EU table; David Cameron tried that in 2016 without success, as EU leaders probably now regret. They themselves have not been backward with their warnings and threats since lastyearabouttheUK's future post-Brexit, such as their £50 billion exit fee demand.

To rebalance itin our favour, Mrs May should table inter alia: Germany's unpaid First World War reparations; its Second World War reparations never imposed by the UK; its debt waived in 1953 to strengthen its economy against the Soviet threat; its defence expenditure shortfall for decades of about 1 per cent of GDP; and its advantageous artificial exchange rate from a weak Euro versus a strong DMark.

She could also throw in the EU's savings ofunemployment and other benefits from their citizens working in the UK; its non-implemented quidpro-quo for the UK's reduced rebate agreed by Tony Blair; and its 45-year benefit from theUK's netcontribution, now around £10 billion annually.

After all, our tragic modern world was made by Germany, from its prime role in causing the First World War, destroying Russia's fledgling democracy and effectively the Ottoman Empire, through its creation of the USSR via Lenin's sealed train in 1917 (and therefore of Stalin's Gulag, Mao's China and Kim's Korea), to the further horrors of its Second World War aggression, destruction,demiseand aftermath. Sadly, the reparations actually paid by the land of Schiller, Goethe, Beethoven, Kantand indeed PrinceAlbert and others, can never offset the appalling legacy of their successors.

JOHN BIRKETT

Horseleys Park, St Andrews, Fife

The ink was barely dry on Theresa May's signature bidding farewell to the EU when the divorce proceedings turned nasty. By linking trade agreements with cooperation on security, the Prime Minister made a veiled threat to withdraw UK support for European security unless we got a favourable trade deal.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd has waded in and declared that it is likelythatthe UK will leave Europol unless a deal is made. Just in case we were in any doubt about the situation, she declared that "we would take our security information with us"ifwedid leave Europol.

Bypointingoutthat "we keep other European countries safe as well", therefore our information is important to them, Ms Rudd had to grudgingly acknowledge thesecurityand mutual benefits which the UK has enjoyed through its membership of the EU.

Too late. We're out, and our hitherto cordial relationship with EUleaders is rapidlycooling, thanks to Theresa May's attempts to keep the benefits of membership without the obligations. …

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