David Cameron’s European Union referendum fudge (your report, 15 January) is designed to ensure that Britain stays in membership on whatever terms, which means the status quo.
The EU is built on a foundation of successive treaties binding the member countries ever more strictly by centralising more powers from each. These changes are irreversible. Cameron’s timetable alone will ensure that there will be nothing worthwhile left that is reclaimable in terms of membership conditions. That, of course, is his intention.
This timescale is also back to front, equally deliberately. Cameron patronises us with the suggestion of a later referendum on whatever deal he may achieve in repatriating rights to the British people.
In any genuine democracy, we would be awarded this right of consultation on the acceptability – to us, not Europe – of his proposals, before he presents them to the EU for acceptance. In any case, we are the ones who should be suggesting which changes are acceptable.
If Cameron’s “major speech” in the Netherlands on Friday fails to outline at least the general areas in which he intends to “insist” on change, then we might as well tell him to forget the whole thing. He should make it clear also that failure to achieve his “demands” would lead to UK withdrawal.
I’m delighted to read another of Alex Orr’s letters championing Scotland’s ever- closer integration into the European Union (14 January). For those in the SNP, Alex included, the glass is always half full on Europe.
They fail to see fallacy in the term “independence within Europe”, given that the EU fails to grant Scotland sovereignty over any major areas of concern.
Furthermore, as a member of the executive committee of the European Movement in Scotland, Alex fails to highlight that to leave the UK would mean the loss of opt-outs in many areas of policy, including our currency, our borders and in the area of freedom, justice and security.
Mr Orr’s claim of Scottish independence within the EU is a logical fallacy not worthy of an idle chin pinch. Scotland will be independent when it can fully control its borders, its money supply and the free movement of people within its territory.
It will only be able to maintain that freedom when ruled by people elected to propose and repeal its own laws and to defend its land and shore against aggression.
We live on an island. We want independence from the EU, as an island nation united through our own will and not by foreign treaties.