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Saturday, December 03, 2011

When pragmatism trumps ideology

Whilst the Conservative backbenchers are all about grabbing powers back from Brussels, the Prime Minister does not have the luxury of being able to indulge himself in such self-gratification. That is because the UK economy is intimately tied to the Eurozone and if the single currency goes under then we will be plunged back into recession.

Thus, today's Independent reports that David Cameron will after all, put the urgent need to secure a rescue deal for the euro ahead of his own instincts and the demands of his MPs.

In many ways this is a reflection of his own weakness in Europe. Britain has declined to join the Euro-club and Cameron is perceived to be hostile to it, so why should other leaders suffer lectures from the British Prime Minister? Cameron knows that submitting a long shopping list to the talks would get short shrift from the other 26 EU members.

What is in doubt is how far Cameron will go to help the Euro survive. He is already viewed with suspicion for promoting austerity at home but precisely the opposite abroad. Now we have Jacques Delors, who was one of the architects of the single currency, arguing that the project was doomed from the start because those countries who set it up tried to have their cake and eat it.

Delors argues that the euro came into existence without strong central powers to stop members running up unsustainable debts, an omission that led to the current crisis. In other words, if you want to fix it then the member countries need to move closer to fiscal union and give up much of their economic independence.

At the momennt it looks like France, Germany and the other countries would not be prepared to countenance these sorts of changes. Will Cameron welcome such a development when the British economy is so dependent on the financial sector rather than real manufacturing jobs. A new European Central bank leading to a more secure and powerful Euro could see a lot of that business go to the continent.

These are not happy times for a Euro sceptic Prime Minister, looking over his shoulder at a rapidly growing group of disaffected Tory MPs.
What happened to your post about patients put onto the 'Liverpool Pathway' often without consulting loved ones?
You are confusing me with somebody else
Sorry Peter ... you are correct; confused you with Glynn Davies, how could I do that? Oh, the shame. ;-)
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