Technical Marketing
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The EU -in or out - which is best for business?

David Brooks  15.06.2016

The referendum campaigning shifted ground last week to focus on whether membership or independence was best for business. And associated with this the question of immigration - is that beneficial or a drain on the economy?

The 'Remain' side had focussed strongly on the economy until then which they maintained would be in better shape by remaining in the EU with free movement of people an essential requirement for having enough people in the work force. The 'Leave' side had suggested that the EU and its fondness for masses of new legislation year after year was itself an impediment to business success, not to the global business so much as to the 99% of  the rest - the small and medium size companies who mainly traded in the UK.

Another argument sometimes brought up to illustrate the good works of the EU is that the continent has been kept  at peace for the last half century. Well if you ignore the Balkans,  Ukraine,   terrorist campaigns and European expeditionary wars in the Middle East, Africa, the South Atlantic etc, western Europe has not experienced anything on the scale of the two world wars of the 20th Century. It might be more realistic to recognise the key role of NATO - The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and in particular the major participation of the USA. Looking to the USA has been more the traditional role of Britain which has for centuries looked across the oceans for business and the USA is Britain's biggest export market. But if the EU  has been so successful in maintaining the peace, give or take local and regional problems, why  does Europe need its own army and why is this not being announced until after the referendum?

Why does the EU need an army when NATO already exists to provide security in the area? Who, what or where is the enemy against which the army will be deployed should the worse happen? A lot of questions at a time when the attacks are homeland terrorism requiring different response than a modern mechanised army. The French military seem alarmed at the plans for a Euro army and there are  reports of  Germany being secretly engaged on such a purpose. Of course this will not be admitted true or not, but this is exactly what happened after the first world war as warships, armour and air power were secretly built up. My parents generation lived through the results of this and the older generation instinctively still harbours concerns, so not surprising the older voters are showing the greatest tendency to leave the EU  before it is too late. Out of respect for the generation that gave so much to free European countries to regain their sovereignty and to ensure Britain remained free a vote to leave is the obvious choice. Hitler had a vision for Europe, for a few years in the early 1940s Germany ruled the continent. The EU has drawn up familiar sounding plans in their vision for Europe all the more disturbing  when the voters have scant knowledge of who is operating the levers of power. And what's more we can't vote them out of office. Controlling fishing and agriculture, determining the size of carrots and straightness of bananas is one thing. Controlling a Euro army is a chilling prospect.