The UK made a net contribution to the European Union of about £199m a week last year, according to new official figures. The amount was the second-highest in the past decade and an increase of £13m on the previous year. The figures were released more than a month after the UK voted to leave the European Union, with one of the key issues being the cost of membership. A bus used by the Leave campaign had a slogan on it saying “We send the EU £350m a week”, but the Remain side said the figure was misleading because it did not take into account the money the UK received in return – in the form of rebates and payments to the public sector.
The UK’s net contribution to the European Union rose last year to almost £200 million a week. The figure, a key issue in the EU referendum campaign, was the second highest in a decade. During the referendum campaign Brexiteers were criticised for putting a slogan on the side of a battle bus that stated: “We send the EU £350 million a week.” Supporters of the Remain campaign said that the figure was misleading because it did not take into account the money the UK received as a rebate or payments made to the public sector.
Speaking to Polish television, a former member of Poland’s counter-terror police and an academic expert on information warfare and terrorism have articulated their concern about the intellectual and spiritual collapse of European civilisation, remarking it is “at the end of its existence”. Former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBS) officer Jacek Wrona and military history academic Dr. Rafał Brzeski were guests on the Polish TVP Info programme discussing the Munich shooting in which nine were killed, and were forced to conclude it was a symptom of the end of European Civilisation. Information warfare expert Dr. Brzeski rejected the suggestion in German media that the Munich killer — an 18 year old Muslim — was mad, pointing out the killing had “an element of planning”, reports wPolityce.
AFTER Britain leaves the EU, could Denmark be the next country to break away from the European bloc? The EU referendum result has sparked calls for a Dexit, a Danish exit from the EU. The right-wing Danish People’s Party (DPP) renewed their calls for a vote over Denmark’s membership of the EU in wake of the Brexit vote. DPP leader Kristian Thulesen Dahl, said the “EU has made its bed” by underestimating the growing Euroscepticism across Europe. He said: “I also believe Danes should, of course, have a referendum on whether we want to follow Britain or stay in the EU.” The Red-Green Alliance (RGA) – the most left-wing party in the Danish Parliament – has also echoed the call for a EU referendum.
COULD the Brexit victory pave the way for Sweden to leave the EU as well? Eurosceptic parties in Sweden are pushing for a Swedish exit from the EU, which has been dubbed a Swexit. Sweden’s right-wing anti-immigration party – the Sweden Democrats – have renewed calls for a UK-style referendum on EU membership. Mattias Karlsson, who leads the party in the Swedish parliament, has said: “With Brexit, I think the tide has turned. “We can see that a larger proportion of the Swedish population are increasingly Eurosceptic and in favour of leaving the European Union.” Göran von Sydow, deputy director of the Swedish Institute for European Policy Studies, said Sweden’s Left Party was also pushing for EU reform and renegotiation.
DEFIANT Jean-Claude Juncker has insisted he will not quit despite growing anger over his performance and a bitter power struggle with Angela Merkel. The EU Commission chief confirmed he has “no intention” of resigning from his post, even though a growing number of the bloc’s nations are furious with his handling of recent crises. In Germany, Chancellor Merkel – the EU’s most powerful elected leader – is known to be fed up with his increasingly erratic behaviour and has resolved to oust him from his high-powered job as Brussels’ top bureaucrat. Juncker has also lost the support of much of eastern Europe with Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary making open and public calls for him to resign. But in an interview with French newspaper Le Soir the EU chief, whose all-powerful role puts him in charge of Brussels lawmaking, insisted the criticism is only making him more determined to cling on.
The European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, says he keeps a little black book containing the names of people who have betrayed him. For years Mr Juncker’s devotion to the cause of EU integration has irritated Eurosceptics and national leaders who want to curb the EU’s powers. Mr Juncker told the Belgian daily, Le Soir, that he called his book “Little Maurice”. “It’s where for 30 years I’ve made a note when someone betrays me.” He did not reveal who was named in it. He insisted that he did not bear grudges, and the book “doesn’t have many entries, because people rarely betray me”.
European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker has revealed that he keeps a little black book containing the names of his political foes. And following his clashes with Nigel Farage after the Brexit vote, it seems likely the former Ukip leader’s name is at the top of the list. Although he didn’t reveal the names inside, Mr Juncker admitted that the book is called ‘Little Maurice’. But he insisted the book ‘doesn’t have many entries because people rarely betray me’, and that he doesn’t bear grudges. ‘It’s where for 30 years I’ve made a note when someone betrays me,’ he told Belgain daily Le Soir. ‘The book’ name comes from a common German expression: The bitterness of little Maurice. In Luxembourg, when someone was irritating me, I would say, “Careful, Little Maurice is waiting for you”.’
BRITISH MEPs have gone into legal disruption mode as they try to lessen the impact of EU mandated laws ahead of the country’s exit from the EU. And according to reports politicians are plotting for a “safe landing” as they try to parachute out of the failing European administration. In recent weeks a number of the country’s 73 MEPs have objected to legislation that effectively attempts to reshape the British constitution by introducing laws that would impact the financial sector. They are trying to minimise the impact on British interests as the European Parliament gets ready to reconvene in September. But their attempts to stand up for the British public who voted to leave the union have not gone down well with a large swell of socialist groups.
A cross-party coalition of unelected members of the House of Lords is plotting to block, delay or “revisit” the European Union (EU) referendum result. Baroness Wheatcroft, the former editor-in-chief of the Wall Street Journal Europe and business editor of The Times, sad it was “imperative that we don’t press the button on Article 50” in an interview with The Times. She advocates a second referendum – as “there is an argument that at some stage people ought to be given an opportunity to think again” – and believes unelected peers have the right to “delay” any attempt by the government to trigger Article 50. Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty is the official divorce mechanism from the EU, which would guarantee the UK leaves the block within two years if triggered.
A TORY peer has suggested that the House of Lords could delay or even derail the process of leaving the EU. Baroness Patience Wheatcroft argues it is “imperative that the House of Lords don’t press the button on Article 50” – the step that will kick off Brexit talks. There is currently dispute over whether the Government needs to secure Parliamentary approval before triggering Article 50 of the EU rulebook. Lady Wheatcroft told the Times: “If it comes to a Bill, I think the Lords might actually delay things. I think there’s a majority in the Lords for remaining.” Asked whether she would back a move by peers to delay Brexit legislation, she said: “Yes I would. “I would hope, while we delayed things that there would be sufficient movement in the EU to justify putting it to the electorate, either through a general election or a second referendum.”
Conservative peer Baroness Wheatcroft has said the Lords could withhold approval of Article 50, the mechanism for leaving the European Union. There is currently some disagreement over whether Article 50 would need to come before Parliament. But former journalist Baroness Wheatcroft said if it did, “the Lords might actually delay things”. The government has previously stated that Article 50 could be triggered through use of the royal prerogative. Speaking to The Times, the former editor in chief of the Wall Street Journal Europe and the Sunday Telegraph said that she hoped delays in the Lords of any potential Brexit legislation would lead to a second referendum. A legal challenge on whether the government can trigger Article 50 without the authorisation of Parliament will be heard in the High Court in the autumn.
Downing Street has stressed that Theresa May believes everyone should be “getting behind” Brexit after a Tory peer suggested the House of Lords could delay the UK’s exit from the EU. Patience Wheatcroft, a former newspaper editor, said she felt it was “imperative that we don’t press the button on article 50”, telling the Times that she hoped delays in the Lords of any potential Brexit legislation would lead to a second referendum. A legal challenge on whether the government can trigger article 50, which marks the start of exit negotiations, without the authorisation of parliament is set to be heard in the high court in the autumn. Lady Wheatcroft said she did not want the Lords to stand in the way of Brexit at the moment but added: “However, if it comes to a bill, I think the Lords might actually delay things. I think there’s a majority in the Lords for remaining.”
Death threats, a brick through a window and one lawmaker even installing a panic room in her office; less than a year after Britain’s Labour elected socialist Jeremy Corbyn leader on a promise of ‘kinder politics’ the party is mired in civil war. The brutal infighting threatens Labour’s 116-year existence and risks leaving Britain without a strong opposition party for years to come, just as the government goes about negotiating the country’s exit from the European Union. Britain’s June 23 EU referendum brought simmering tensions within Labour to the boil, resulting in a leadership challenge. On one side are hundreds of thousands of vocal grassroots loyalists who are fiercely protective of Corbyn’s left-wing principles. On the other are most Labour lawmakers, who say he did not do enough to prevent Brexit and is not a capable leader.
The race for the Labour leadership turned nasty on Sunday as John McDonnell accused Owen Smith of wanting to split the party. In a bitter war of words, Mr McDonnell turned on Jeremy Corbyn ’s rival for failing to condemn “plotters” looking to tear Labour apart. The Shadow Chancellor, who is chairing the Jeremy for Labour campaign, said: “If Owen truly wants to unite our party like Jeremy Corbyn does, then he needs to denounce those who are plotting to divide it. “If he continues to refuse to denounce those calling for a split, then members will think he is simply trying to scaremonger them to vote for him by his talking up of threats from a minority of MPs supporting his campaign who are plotting to split our party in Tory newspapers, while at the same time refusing to denounce them.”
There is no doubt that UKIP, as the party that brought about the referendum and played a huge part in the Leave side winning, has a great future ahead of it. But the party is in need of huge reform. When I think back to our creation in 1993, having followed on from the Anti-Federalist League, I never thought this would be more than a method of protest. Or perhaps, at best, a political pressure group. Events conspired. Jimmy Goldsmith’s Referendum Party spent lots of money in the 1997 General Election, raising the profile of the European Union as an issue in British politics. Our first breakthrough came when three of us, including myself and Jeffrey Titford, were elected as Ukip MEPs in the European Parliament in 1999. The angry grassroots comprising of lots of World War Two middle-ranking officers suddenly had elected representation.
THE Sun is calling on the Government to bring back our famous dark blue passport — as a symbol of the UK regaining sovereignty from the EU. We want a pledge from No10 to reintroduce the true blue, ditched in 1988 for an EU-approved burgundy passport. Patriotic MPs are rallying to our campaign for the rebirth of the dark blue UK passport — to show our pride at being a fully independent nation again. Tory MP Andrew Bridgen said: “A country’s passport is a symbol of its sovereignty. “As we get our sovereignty back, I’m looking forward to getting my British passport back too.” Fellow Tory Andrew Rosindell said: “It’s a matter of identity. “Having the pink European passports has been a humiliation. “I totally back The Sun’s campaign. “When I was first a parliamentary candidate, I was asked if I could bring in any bill what would it be — and I wanted to bring back the blue British passport.” Conservative MEP Daniel Hannan, a key Brexit figure, said: “Bringing back the blue passport would symbolise that we are once again British subjects and not EU citizens. “It would be a visible sign that we are an individual country.” Home Office minister Robert Goodwill last week said there were “no immediate plans” for changes to the UK passport’s format or colour.