UK group flexes at anti-democracy

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 16, 2004

On Sunday, a small group of freedom-loving Brits, the United Kingdom In dependence Party, scored amazing gains in the European Parliamentary elections, winning almost 20 percent of the vote.

The ranks of the once-tiny party were swelled by those who are getting increasingly disgusted with the anti-democratic, socialist and appeasement-oriented bureaucrats who run the European Union.

It has been my pleasure and joy to work with the UKIP during the past year, honing its message into a single word: “NO” – which aptly states its members’ desire to resist further homogenization by the largely socialist activists of the European Union.

Email newsletter signup

The dictates of the European Union, headquartered in Brussels, have gradually eroded British independence. The EU has increasingly sought to control every aspect of economic life through regulations issued by civil servants, accountable only to themselves. Socialist policies lose at the polls – but the EU bureaucrats seek to roll back the Thatcher-ite reforms in Britain and force high tax and strict labor laws on all the nations of Europe.

Recently, for example, the French and Germans who lead the European Union demanded that the Eastern European countries – who have just joined the union – raise their corporate tax rates to match those legislated in Paris and Berlin so as to avert a drain of corporate resources to Eastern Europe.

The very weakness of the European Parliament is eloquent testimony to the scant value the EU places on democracy. For example, its members are not permitted to introduce legislation. They may only vote “yes” or “no” on the regulations proposed by the unelected EU bureaucracy. (The British people voted in the European Parliamentary election on Thursday of last week, but Brussels declared that the U.K. could not count the votes until Sunday when the other members had their elections. Exit polls were similarly verboten).

For years, Britain has grumbled about the economic diktats from Brussels. But when the European integrationists recently sought to adopt a new constitution, creating a common foreign and defense policy for Europe, they went too far, arousing the ire of the man and woman in the street in the U.K.

At first, Prime Minister Tony Blair announced that he would accept the new constitution without a vote of the people. But weeks before the UKIP surge, he was obliged to back down and promise a vote.

This upheaval in Britain has important implications for the United States. Our most valued ally is facing a mortal threat to its freedom. And while Blair stands tall in the battle against terrorism, he has been uncommonly willing to see future British foreign and defense policies sublimated to the European consensus. The Conservative Party, which one would expect to be the bastion of British independence, refuses to countenance U.K. withdrawal from the EU and, as a result, has lost all bargaining power with the Brussels bureaucrats.

Bismarck said that whenever somebody appealed to him to do something in the name of Europe, he noticed that it was something they dared not ask in their own name. So it is today. The socialists and anti-democratic bureaucrats who predominate in the EU dare not squelch British independence directly, so they are seeking to coat it over with a binding Europe-wide nation committed to largely French and German policies of appeasement, high taxes and government regulation.

The voters of Britain have arrested their nation’s journey down this slippery slope and freedom is the stronger for their efforts.

Dick Morris was an adviser to Bill Clinton for 20 years. Look for his new book, Rewriting History.

Copyright 2004 Dick Morris, All Rights Reserved. Distributed by Cagle Cartoons, Inc. Call Cari Dawson Bartley at (800) 696 7561 or e-mail: email for Dick Morris is

RESTRICTIONS: Dick Morris’ columns may not be reprinted in New York City, in Washington D.C., and in media owned by the AOL Time Warner