Last Friday was weird! I woke up after the office part at 6.30 turned on the hotel TV and was so amazed at Cameron’s behaviour that I quite forgot to logon to my computer. By the time I’d stop watching the gogglebox, my computer had been hacked. Coincidental or ominous?
I guess “guess” is the operative word, Last night I was at an excellent debate on the subject of this morning’s blog. If there was a consensus, it was that Europe is in a lot more trouble than Merkel and Sarkozy are letting on.
If we consider the posturing from Froglet (think the French taunting from the Holy Grail), then Merkel and Cameron probably view Sarkozy and Clegg in much the same light – as short-term partners and long-term irrelevancies.
The annexation of Europe by Germany shouldn’t come as much of a shock. Think Italy gloriously driving into battle with its tanks in reverse, France collaborating its way to its own demise, Britain retreating to Dunkirk and hauling up the drawbridge and the whole shooting match falls into place. In practice the map of Europe looks pretty much as it did in 1940.
But I digress. The principal feature of Germany’s solution is to impose a massive economic contract between countries that establishes an maintains a status quo based on sound economic management Teuton style. This is a model based on insurance and contract law. It has nothing to do with the British version which depends on banking and trust law.
The Germans will drive through Solvency II because the likes of Allianz and the other German insurers are determined to impose the German system of pensions on Britain. Watch out anyone who proposes social solidarity, you will be crushed by the Solvency II jackpot and that includes you, Danish master trust, you Dutch CDC and especially you British Occupational Pensions.
If you don’t know what the SolvencyII threat is, read this excellent article in Pensions Insight which reckons the bill to final salary pensions in the uk will be £100bn
Frankly I am pro-Europe if Europe is a genuine union of nations, but the domination of Europe by Germany is not a prospect that I’m prepared to stomach. If that makes Cameron the new Churchill then so be it. He seems to think that’s what he is so hand the man a cigar and get him a haircut.
Of all the guesses that I heard last night, the one that resonated was this.
Cameron had no option to walk away. The time for appeasement was over and war has been declared. What will follow will be a phony war until the blitz commences. Whether the blitz is about Solvency II or one of the other 48 outstanding financial issues, Britain will be forced to put up or shut up. We will not shut up and Europe (Germany) will kick us out of the Union or at the least declare us member non grata.
We’ve got to work pretty hard to make sure that we cn stand on our own two feet and that means strengthening our ties with our allies overseas. We are going to have to play the long game with the BRICS and the US and in truth the biggest guess is whether we can, once again, pull through because we are Great Britain.
As a Liberal, I never thought I’d find myself writing like a Tory, abandoning my European committment. But that’s how I feel this morning.
Europe will, given half a chance, screw up our pensions. I don’t want that to happen. Well done Cameron for digging in your heels.