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Thursday, October 27, 2005

Awkward Buggers Win

The media is full of the Damascene conversion of Our Dear Leader, a man who had liked to pretend to be tough on Europe.
TONY BLAIR sought to mend relations with France before the European Union summit at Hampton Court today with proposals that would boost Europe’s global competitiveness and promote European integration.
Note the reason for his change of mind, is the need to mend fences with France. Ignore the fact if you will that boosting Europe’s competitiveness whilst promoting European integration, is akin to boosting beer sales whilst promoting sobriety. The key is mending fences. Who cares that Chirac drove a bulldozer through those fences, with the determination of Jose Bove in a McDonald’s invasion. Who cares that Chirac did so, because he was weakened by the referendum result and needed to shore up the domestic front. The result is that we lose. Losing always hurts, but to give in to yobbish and uncouth behaviour for the sake of good relations, has rightly been a despised idea since the time of Ethelred the unready. So what do we give up in exchange for good relations with the National Equivalent of a football hooligan?
Mr Blair also urged EU leaders to agree to a paper at today’s summit, which calls for more co-ordination of tax policies.
The thickest of the red lines is now a faint pink dotted one.
A common immigration policy to attract foreign talent.
A somewhat strange offer, from the point of view of those who had thought that the borders had already been surrendered. I suppose it means it can still get worse.
He proposed a European Research Council to boost spending on research and development.
No reduction of CAP to pay for it though.
He reiterated his support for a globalisation fund to help workers who have lost out to competition from developing economies.
In brief, in exchange for the arrogant French President being nice to him for a few days, TB has given up many of the things that he swore were not up for discussion. Once again, the Awkward Buggers win.

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