Letter: Lessons to learn on Europe

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It is sad, even alarming, that we seem unable to learn the lessons of history.

Whenever or wherever there has been an economic depression in the past, working people suffer the most. Unscrupulous leaders take this as an opportunity to whip up a wave of Nationalism and Jingoism blaming the popular scapegoats of the time, immigrants, Europe, foreigners, gypsies, jews, strikers etc. This often strikes a chord with an angry public looking for simple answers to their problems. The extreme right wing parties grow.

Today we see calls for independence in Scotland, for Britain to leave the EU, for an English Parliament. Across Europe the right wing/fascist parties are growing, as are UKIP at home. All are looking to blame the usual targets.

The World is facing enormous problems, global warming, disease, poverty, massive inequality, a financial system that is on the edge of collapse.

History says that for peace and prosperity, we must not give in to these forces. Surely the only way forward is through co-operation. In the past, the opposite approach has often led to war.

There is so much gratuitous nonsense said about the EU. Even in this paper John Docker blames the EU for his car failing an MOT, referring disparagingly to ‘our friends in Europe’ forgeting that Britain has a say in these decisions.

It seems that little Englanders are that proud we won the last war, they are already looking forward to the next one rather than understanding what leads to conflict and avoiding it. How silly is it that our Conservative government have largely opted out of Europe’s policy making.

How silly is it that we are persuaded to vote for UKIP MEP’s to not represent us in Europe but still take their salaries. We then complain that the EU is undemocratic!

For those who feel angry about their situation today and are looking for someone to blame, please consider the following: There is a banker, working man and an immigrant. There is a cake cut into ten pieces. The banker takes nine pieces and says to the worker: “ You ought to grab your bit first before the immigrant does.”

Tony Anders

The Grooms Cottage,