Saturday, January 14, 2012

The price of Cameron's "Veto"

As Myles Neligan's article in Reuters shows, the UK is already beginning to pay the price for David Cameron's Brussels histrionics last month. After the EU Summit in December Cameron returned home to a hero's welcome in the popular press and the House of Commons. This was always a bizarre combination of xenophobia and myopia.

Forget how you feel about Europe for a moment. You are a member of a cricket club which is part of a league. Your captain or manager goes off to the league committee meeting, where he presents a list of demands expressly designed to give advantages to your club, based on the characteristics of your ground and your players' skills. The other clubs ask him if he is willing to negotiate on any point and he refuses. The league then decides to change the way it works leaving your club technically still a member but with no fixtures for the coming season. Do you welcome your chap back with applause or do you call him a blithering idiot who has relegated your team even before they have played a single match ?

As the debate on Solvency II regulation for the insurance industry shows,Cameron has failed to protect the financial sector he loves so much and isolated the UK in the process. So much so usual for Tory blinkered nationalism, but for me the shame is that Nick Clegg let it get to this point.

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