1) What is Euroscepticism?
The word makes it sound like it’s people who are sceptical of this idea of a United Europe but who have yet to make up their minds, perhaps. That’s why the word ‘eurorealist’ is being used more and more by younger people.
But for the ease of understanding and perhaps to keep it easier for the media, it’s come to mean people who don’t trust the EU and want to change our relationship with it. Thus it doesn’t just include people who want to withdraw and replace our relationship with a free trade deal but people who perhaps think that we can remain inside and renegotiate treaties.
2) What do Eurosceptics think the UK’s relationship with the EU should be?
Well, once again that rather depends on the definition and the different clauses in that. I can only answer for me in that I want the UK to withdraw from the EU and replace the current situation with a free trade deal and friendly relations with our neighbours. Fundamentally, I do not want the UK to be a second class European country, I want her to be a first class global one and that can’t happen whilst we remain in the EU.
3) Wouldn’t withdrawing from the EU damage the UK’s international standing?
Quite the reverse. Right now, we don’t even have a seat on the World Trade Organisation. How is that any good for our international standing? Of course there are other things which could help such as stopping pointless, costly wars which maim and kill our young men and women but we should be out there dealing with the world, not with a group of countries who are introspective and have a declining influence.
4) How much do you think Euroscepticism in the UK will be boosted by the current Eurozone crisis?
The figures already show a trend which was on the increase has just had a real boost. Before the EU was something that was ‘over there’ and it was all to easy to ignore the every day effects it has on our lives, particularly with a political class and media happy to perpetuate that. But now it’s all over the news, it’s costing us money and of course we’ve seen two democratically elected governments kicked out and replaced by ones which the EU considers to be suitable. Whatever you think of politicians like Berlusconi or, say, Gordon Brown when he was Prime Minister – and what a disaster that was – the people had the choice to kick them out through the ballot box. That’s what this country did. I’m sure if we were ever given the option on voting for the EU leaders they’d be surprised at the reaction from the people who they prefer to ignore.
5. Has David Cameron’s veto made a difference to UKIPs support and Britain’s long term future with the EU?
I was pleased with David Cameron’s insistence that there be no new Treaties which would not provide safeguards. However I do not think that any Treaty which grants more power to the EU is in the country’s interest nor do I give much value to ‘safeguards’ or ‘red lines’. The simple fact is that the EU wants to put a stop to these Anglo-Saxon ways of international finance as they are ‘not British’ and indeed the desire to control, regulate and fundamentally ban hedge funds was proposed in the European Parliament by a German MEP in 2006.