In response to my previous post on 'Open Europe's Big Lie', an anonymous comment first stated:
At least we pro UK types are not traitors and quislings like you. People like you want to betray national democracy to the unelected crowd who rule the Empire (EU).Are you Oswald Mosley reincarnate?
I rather think that Mosley would be supporting the Eurosceptic side, rather than the EU. But I do NOT mean to suggest that any more than a tiny handful of Eurosceptics are fascists....
'Stuart' then commented:
Oswald "Europe a Nation" Mosley likely to be "supporting the eurosceptic side"? You're a bit mixed up there.Fans of the emerging EU State have some very nasty bedfellows in the foundation of their ideas.In supporting democracy and diversity on our continent I regard myself as a pro-European in the real sense. It is why I cannot support the EU political centralisation process which, in steadily undermining Europe's flexible, representative national democracies, is surely putting the stability of our continent at risk once more. After all, healthy democracy is the only sure guarantor of peace."Absolute national parliamentary democracy" is perfectly feasible. What is needed to enhance it are flexible, democractically-acceptable forums for international co-operation. Not out-dated superstate / integration projects like the EU.This simply isn't the 1950s any more.
This led me to investigate the political beliefs of Oswald Moseley -- which I will admit I am unfamiliar with. Some Wikipedia entries filled in some basic backgrounds, and linked me to some sort of 'tribute' site. Excerpts from two of the Wikipedia entries:
Europe a nation: [a Mosley idea from the 1950s-60s]
Europe a Nation consisted of the idea that all European states should come together and pool their resources (including their colonies) to work as one giant superstate under a system of corporatism. For Mosley, it was the only viable alternative to the prospect of individual European countries carrying on alone, whilst the growing global market continued to make them poorer. Autarky was, therefore, a central aim of Europe a Nation, with Africa retained in colonial status to serve the needs of the European people (explaining the occasional use of the term Eurafrika as an alternative name).
National Party of Europe:
The National Party of Europe (NPE) was an initiative undertaken by a number of far right parties in Europe during the 1960s to help increase cross-border co-operation and work towards European unity.
There is a summary of the party objectives there, but the full text of an agreed policy statement of the party can be found on the 'tribute' site, at http://www.oswaldmosley.com/archives/npe.html
The policy statement is as follows:
That Europe a Nation shall forthwith be made a fact. This means that Europe shall have a common government for purposes of foreign policy, defence, economic policy, finance and scientific development. It does not mean Americanisation by a complete mixture of the European peoples which is neither desirable nor possible.
That European government shall be elected by free vote of the whole people of Europe every four years at elections which all parties may enter. This vote shall be expressed in the election of a parliament which will have power to select the government and at any time to dismiss it by vote of censure carried by a two-thirds majority. Subject to this power of dismissal, government shall have full authority to act during its period of office in order to meet the fast moving events of the new age of science and to carry out the will of the people as expressed by their majority vote.
That national parliaments in each member country of Europe a Nation shall have full power over all social and cultural problems, subject only to the overriding power of European Government in finance and its other defined spheres, in particular the duty of economic leadership.
That the economic leadership of government shall be exercised by means of the wage-price mechanism, first to secure similar conditions of fair competition in similar industries by payment of the same wages, salaries, pensions and fair profits as science increases the means of production for an assured market, thus securing continual equilibrium between production and consumption, eliminating slump and unemployment and progressively raising the standard of life. Capital and credit shall be made available to the underdeveloped regions of Europe from the surplus at present expatriated from our continent.
That intervention by government at the three key points of wages, prices, where monopoly conditions prevail and the long term purchase of agricultural and other primary products alone is necessary to create the third system of a producers' state in conditions of a free society which will be superior both to rule by finance under American capitalism or rule by bureaucracy under communist tyranny. It is at all times our duty in the solidarity of the European community to assist each other to combat the destruction of European life and values from without and from within by the overt and covert attack of communism.
That industries already nationalised will be better conducted by workers' ownership or syndicalism than by state bureaucracy, but the system of the wage-price mechanism will, in full development, make irrelevant the question of the ownership of industry by reason of the decisive economic leadership of elected government, arid will bring such prosperity that workers will have no interest in controversies which belong to the 19th century.
With the creation of Europe a Nation as a third power strong enough to maintain peace, a primary object of the European government will be to secure the immediate and simultaneous withdrawal of both Russian and American forces from the occupied territories and military bases of Europe. Europe must be as strongly armed as America or Russia until mutual disarmament can be secured by the initiative of an European leadership which will have no reason to fear economic problems caused by disarmament as has capitalist America, nor to desire the force of arms for purposes of imperialist aggression as does communist Russia.
The emergence of Europe as a third great power will bring to an end the political and military power of the U.N., because these three great powers will then be able to deal directly and effectively with each other. The peace of the world can best be maintained by direct and continuous contact between these three great powers which represent reality instead of illusion and hypocrisy. The production of nuclear weapons will be confined to these three great powers until mutual disarmament can be secured.
That colonialism shall be brought to an end. A way will be found to maintain or to create in Africa states under government of non-European but African origin amounting to about two-thirds of the continent, and other states under government by peoples of European and Afrikaner origin amounting to about one-third. In non-European territory, any European who chose to remain should stay without vote or political rights. He would be in the same position as any resident in another country, subject to the maintenance of human rights within their own communities, by reciprocal arrangement between European and non-European territories. Conversely, any non-European remaining in European territory would have neither vote nor political rights, subject to the maintenance of the same basic human rights. Multi-racial government breaks down everywhere in face of the non-European demand for one man one vote which they learnt from the West and becomes a squalid swindle of loaded franchises to postpone the day of surrender rather than to solve the problem. Better by far is the clean settlement of clear division. Europe must everywhere decide what it will hold and what it will relinquish. The Europeans in union will have the power of decision. Today they lack only the will. We will hold what is vital to the life of Europe, and we will in all circumstances be true to our fellow-Europeans, particularly where they are now threatened in African territory.
That the space of a fully united Europe including the lands to be liberated by American and Russian withdrawal, the British Dominions and other European overseas territories, and approximately one-third of Africa is a just requirement for tile full life of the Europeans in a producer and consumer system which shall be free of usury and capitalism, of anarchy and communism. Within the wide region of our nation the genius of modern science shall join with the culture of three millennia to attain ever higher forms of European life which shall continue to be the inspiration of mankind.
What to make of this? I had no idea that there ever was a pro-European far right, for the simple reason that all the far-right groups that I know of in various Member States seem to be profoundly hostile toward the EU. And indeed you would expect that extreme nationalists would not like an organisation that reduces national sovereignty and facilitates immigration, etc. It is striking that this pro-European far right did not seem to enjoy any electoral success at the time, and certainly as far as I can see there are no traces of it today.
While I obviously don't agree with the policy platform of the NPE, I can see after reading it how a pro-European far-right policy can be envisaged -- their thinking being that it is a necessary evil (in their minds) to band together with some foreigners in order to more effectively exclude the less desirable 'foreigners' (some of whom, like black citizens, obviously aren't actually foreign, but of course the far-right don't see it that way).
The interesting thing is that just as there are pro- and anti-European wings of the more moderate shades of political opinion, and indeed of the far-left, there are/were both pro- and anti-European wings of the far-right. But it surely not suprising that the pro-European wing of the far right was unsuccessful and died out, because it was surely too much to ask for far-right supporters to compromise their 'ideal' of basic hatred of all foreigners in order to team up with some foreigners in order to exclude the remaining foreigners. These people are just too stupid and angry to grasp the subtlety of that argument -- which is why they are far-right supporters in the first place.
To get back to Stuart's specific comments, I could hardly be considered the 'new' Moseley since I entirely disagree with corporatism, autarky, kicking Americans out of Europe, shutting down the UN, or (in particular) reserving a third of Africa for white people or disenfranchising 'non-Europeans' who remain within Europe. Indeed, I doubt there is much support now for any of these views among the vast majority of people, whether they are Eurosceptic, Europhile or however they would describe themselves.
I also think that the NPE policy also would transfer too much power to the European level, although some Europhiles would support this. But since those Europhiles would not support key elements of the rest of the NPE policy, they should not be slurred by association.
Since the current EU, as it would be developed further by the Reform Treaty, hardly supports these policies either, I rather think that Mosely would be against it, and would therefore be considered a Eurosceptic. (I suspect he would also become a Eurosceptic anyway for tactical reasons, since a pro-European far-right position was just not viable). Could you really see him supporting, say, the new Article 10 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the Union -- 'In defining and implementing its policies and activities, the Union shall aim to combat discrimination based on...racial or ethnic origin'? Never mind the power in the current Article 13 TEC to adopt legislation to combat racial discrimination.
As for Stuart's statement that 'Fans of the emerging EU State have some very nasty bedfellows in the foundation of their ideas', you might as well say that Open Europe is a bedfellow of the French National Front, because both of them strongly criticise the EU. But that is a stupid argument, as Open Europe and the National Front have nothing else in common. Equally it is stupid to say that supporters of the Reform Treaty are bedfellows of the far right, for exactly the same reasons.
I was told the first day I joined a university debating society that the moment I compared my opponents to Hitler, I had lost the debate, because my opponents were undoubtedly arguing for some policy far short of a thousand-year Reich and the Holocaust. Stuart, that was good advice.
The only real bedfellows of Mosely are those Conservatives of the 1960s/70s who would have backed his idea of reserving a third or so of Africa for Europeans and Afrikaaners. But again, today's Conservatives would hardly back this view and should not be slurred by the association of their predecessors with some of Mosely's ideas.
Almost finally -- I was overstating the case in saying that pure national parliamentary democracy is not feasible at all. Rather it is vastly less effective than qualified majority voting at achieving shared objectives such as the single market and the protection of the environment.
Right, it is not the 1950s, but then again the EEC has profoundly changed since then by means of multiple Treaty amendments -- as Eurosceptics find it convenient to point out when they want to make the case for a referendum. The point still stands that an EU of 27 states will be ineffective at accomplishing its key objectives without a lot of QMV.
Finally -- all this is quite a detour from my original post, which solely concerned Open Europe's claim that the British opt-out from policing and criminal law which appears in the draft Reform Treaty was already present in the Constituional Treaty. Again, this assertion is utterly false -- but they have continued to make it. See Neil O'Brien's Guardian comment piece of 31 August:
....The government also argues that the UK will have "opt outs" from all the significant bits.
One problem with this argument is that they are the same "opt outs" that were in the original constitution - on which the government promised a referendum....
online at: http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/neil_obrien/2007/08/dodging_the_ballots.html