Return EU to a trading bloc as planned

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From: CE Hallas, Cubley Rise Road, Penistone, Sheffield.

IT is quite obvious that the edifice we know as the European Union is falling apart, for some time cracks have been appearing – rather like the flats here which were erected in the 1960s, and although the builders have been rushing to repair the damage, the pieces are falling off faster than they can be dealt with.

How do you think the EU will deal with the situation? Do you think that if Greece is given a bailout the country will look any different in a month, a year, or five years?

Where is the capacity for recovery, the competitive industry, the leadership?

Countries like Greece, Spain and Portugal can never be competitive when such high proportions of their populations are either unemployed or state workers. How can this situation be changed in the foreseeable future?

I think one solution is to cut them loose, let them leave the euro and find their own level, and perhaps their salvation.

Europe began as a trading bloc which I firmly believe is in all our interests but the quotas and, of course, the monstrously mad decision to throw good fish back into the sea.

We are hamstrung by human rights regulations concocted by meddlers who wish to interfere in every aspect of our lives and incidentally, as a by-product, create new posts and new departments for themselves.

And what about the ridiculous movement of the European Parliament to Strasbourg every month in order to please the French? Gilbert and Sullivan couldn’t have concocted that one, and we, the Great Britain we once were, meekly go along with it.

However, last week the passage into law of the European Union Act ensures that no further powers can be taken from Britain without a referendum. This is a major step and a step which I see as a concession from a weakened EU which now needs all the friends it can get, at whatever price.

Now is the time to make our views heard. Personally I’d like to return the EU to the trading bloc we once envisaged, a free trade Europe as politically it has been, and is, a can of worms.

Of course you might say: “Ah, but it’s kept the peace for 50 years.”

Have you ever heard of Nato?

From: Jack Kinsman, Stainton Drive, Grimsby.

WHEN is this two-faced coalition going to give us a referendum on getting out of the dreaded EU?

We Brits are paying millions of pounds in fines for not carrying out ridiculous EU diktats on time. The latest insanity to come out of the EU, after the fiasco of all British sportsmen and women wearing the EU logo on their sports kit, is instructions to force Britain to pay full pensions to other EU nations. Please note that not one penny – sorry euro, has been paid into our British pension scheme. This has been brought forwards under the European Human Rights legislation.

Is this Government of the UK completely governed by the EU? It certainly looks like it.

From: Nick Martinek, Briarlyn Road, Huddersfield.

WHAT is looming on the near horizon is a United States of Europe (USE). The EU has always grabbed more power in a crisis. It will be no different now as Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain (the PIIGS) edge closer to financial ruin as a result of the euro. The USE will enable a common fiscal policy which will alleviate the euro’s problems.

The crucial moment for us will be whether or not the UK is hustled in to the United States of Europe and the euro as a result. Economic and monetary union and a United States of Europe go hand in hand so we would have to be fully in, or fully out. We know where the Tories, Labour and the Lib Dems want us to be: in. They have said so many times.

Once a country loses its financial independence, like Greece and Ireland nearly have done, on top of all the other losses of sovereignty to the EU, it is finished. Let this not be the final chapter in the existence of the UK.

Making fun of an old idea

From: Christine Simpson, Laverton, Ripon.

I LOVE to read Ian McMillan’s memories of his past, especially of family life which often rings true to my upbringing.

His column (Yorkshire Post, July 16) gave an amusing recall of him having to say “please may I leave the table” at the end of a meal in the 1960s.

My husband and I were children of the 1950s, and it was an unspoken rule in both families that no-one left the table until all had finished, but when our children were small in the 1980s, we also were of the “please may I leave the table” ilk.

Our son, by the time he got to about 14, was, like Ian, replicating the drunken slur of “please may I leave the table”, and even now in his 30s when he comes for a meal we still get it, sometimes as a joke.

I do enjoy his column but I personally don’t think he was right in saying it was an archaic rule that children had to do this, it was simply teaching them basic good manners, and far better than everyone just getting up and drifting off at a tangent when they had finished.

Perhaps this old-fashioned idea should be encouraged rather than made fun of.