SPEECH AT ENGLISH DEMOCRATS' SPRING CONFERENCE, AT HUNTINGDON – 12TH MARCH 2016
Good morning Ladies & Gentlemen
Thank you to our organisers. We are gathered here near historic Huntingdon and also moderately near to the village of Tilbrook! We are also not far from the site of the Battle of Naseby which decided the first Civil War.
Oliver Cromwell, was one of England’s greatest men. He was born near here and grew up in the area. His uncle owned the Great House at Hinchingbrook (now the Huntingdon hospital).
Oliver went to Huntingdon Grammar School, the original building of which is in the centre of Huntingdon and is one of the best museums anywhere to see historical items from Cromwell’s life.
Here are some of Oliver’s famous sayings:-
“I was by birth a gentleman, living neither in any considerable height, nor yet in obscurity. I have been called to several employments in the nation-to serve in parliaments,- and (because I would not be over tedious ) I did endevour to discharge the duty of an honest man in those services, to god, and his people’s interest, and of the commonwealth; having, when time was, a competent acceptation in the hearts of men, and some evidence thereof.”
Cromwell on his personal fortunes:-
“no one rises so high as he who knows not whither he is going.”
If only our politicians thought like this:-
“i desire not to keep my place in this government an hour longer than i may preserve england in it’s just rights, and may protect the people of god in such a just liberty of their consciences....”
Cromwell to the first protectorate parliament, 22 January 1655.
We should all like this saying:-
We are Englishmen; that is one good fact.
Who could disagree with:-
A few honest men are better than numbers.
And this is perhaps the most famous of all his recorded sayings.
“mr lely, i desire you would use all your skill to paint your picture truly like me, and not flatter me at all; but remark all these roughness, pimples, warts, and everything as you see me; otherwise i will never pay a farthing for it.”
Another famous one is
“i had rather have a plain russet-coated captain that knows what he fights for, and loves what he knows, than that which you call a gentleman and is nothing else.”
Letter from Cromwell to Sir William Spring. Sept. 1643.
Cromwell said to one of the judges at the trial of King Charles I.1648.
“i tell you we will cut off his head with the crown upon it .”
Cromwell commented on the execution of King Charles I. Jan 1649 calling it
Oliver Cromwell has often inaccurately been accused of massacres of civilians in Ireland. After the storming of Drogheda.1649. The siege began on 3rd September and he had issued an order that no man found in arms was to be taken prisoner.
He said about the English Royalists jthat had been killed:-
“this is a righteous judgement of god upon these
barbarous wretches, who have imbrued their hands in so much innocent blood....”
Addressing the Rump parliament. April 1653. Cromwell famously said:-
“you have been sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go!.”
After his famous victory over a much larger Scottish Army at Dunbar on 3rd September 1650 he wrote:-
“God made them as stubble to our swords”
On the Constitution he said:-
“in every government there must be somewhat fundamental, somewhat like a magna charta, that should be standing and unalterable...that parliaments should not make themselves perpetual is a fundamental.”
Cromwell in a speech to the first protectorate parliament, 12 September 1654.
Cromwell’s last words which he said on the 3rd September this time in 1658
“my design is to make what haste I can to be gone.”
England was lucky in Oliver Cromwell who was the key figure in the post Civil War period but was not personally ambitious so he refused to be made King and he behaved more modestly and moderately, and dare I say more like the Englishman he was, than all too many others in his situation - like Napoleon, Stalin or worst of all Mao Tse Tung.
Turning to England and now; on Friday last week I was asked to do an early morning so-called “drive time” interview for LBC compered by Lisa Aziz and up against a Left-wing Republican called James from IB Times on the hot topic of the day which was whether the English Nation should be allowed to have our own National Anthem!
Having done these sorts of interviews on many occasions now over the last 15 years and always, upon mentioning one of the ‘E’ words (that is English or England!), always having been accused by whichever Leftist has been put up against me of being a “Racist” to have dared to mention it, I had the disorientating and dizzying experience of having this one say that he agreed that Jerusalem ought to be chosen as our national anthem. Also that the English Nation should be allowed to celebrate its unity and furthermore it was only right that we were allowed to choose our own national anthem! Ladies and gentlemen what do you think of that?
The discussion was brought on because a Labour MP, Toby Perkins from Chesterfield had a Private Members Bill being tabled that day for England to have its own national anthem. The Bill was supported by a Cross Bench group of Conservatives and Labour MPs. So at the heart of the Westminster Political Establishment and at the heart of the British Political Class there is starting to stir, at last, an awareness that England and the English Nation and the English People are now more than beginning to awaken to the fact that we are not being fairly treated.
On the other side there were people like the old Etonian MP for North Somerset, Jacob Rees-Mogg, still arguing against an English national anthem. The Rugby Football Union, the governing body of English rugby, came out against having an English anthem.
Also the revolting anti-English Greg Dyke, the Chairman of the Football Association, the ruling body of soccer. He is the man who once infamously said that the BBC was “hideously white”. Also various Tories and some Labour MPs were trying to undermine the Private Members Bill.
This is only one example of many others that I could pick where the English Question is now becoming more and more central and openly contested.
Ladies and Gentlemen what these developments show is that we are reaching the tipping point, we are getting to critical mass, we are getting to the key point that we have worked for all these years in our campaigning to energise English nationalism to become a force in British politics. I regard that as a potentially very optimistic sign for our future.
Before us on 5th May this year we have local elections and Police Commissioner elections. Let me just remind you about Police Commissioner elections. Being a Police Commissioner or PCC as the Establishment want to call them, that is a Police and Crime Commissioner, is actually a very significant job with serious executive power and a huge budget; with the ability to change the whole way in which a county police force operates and what crimes and investigations they prioritise. If we manage to get an English Democrat elected to the role of Police Commissioner we would be able to achieve a sensational change in the way that that part of the country is policed. I would therefore urge support for our Police Commissioner candidates and if you live in a county where we haven’t currently got a candidate and feel you might be interested in getting involved in this please do let us know. It is not too late.
We are going to hear more about this later and also about the London Mayoral election.
Then turning to the EU Referendum, in a mere 15 weeks, on the 23rd June we have the most important vote for the future of England. Those of you who follow my blog will have seen that I have been paying quite a lot of thought to it.
As I see it, the current opinion polls are evenly balanced with the majority at the moment slightly on the side of Remain. For those of us who want this historic once in a lifetime vote to produce an Exit result, we do need to find the right way of talking about this to persuade those people who are uncertain.
We have already seen that Project Fear has been unleashed by the Inners -although I have got some doubts as to whether Lord Stuart Rose of M&S will find his confirmation that Brexit would lead to higher wages will be quite as helpful for his cause as he may have hoped. He also said higher wages were “not necessarily a good thing”. Of course he meant for bosses of big companies and rich people like him!
There is also the structure of the referendum to consider. At the moment we are somewhat diverted by the fact that there are lots of arguments going on between the two leading rival groups who are trying to get Designation as the lead group. I think the way the discussions are being reported suggests that those leading these groups haven’t really worked out who ultimately controls the designation process. Technically that is the Electoral Commission. No doubt the Electoral Commission members themselves will be extremely conscious that they owe their appointments to the Government and will no doubt make sure that they do appoint, as the Designated group, the group which George Osbourne and David Cameron would most prefer to be appointed. The other groups, including our own group, will then be left to register as supporting groups.
At the moment it is being discussed as if it was a bad thing that there are so many groups, but the fact of the matter is that the In Campaign under the Act of Parliament under which the referendum will be held is not only allowed to spend £7m but also the EU can spend money too, whereas the Out Campaign is only allowed to spend £7m in total. The In Campaign also has the backing of the Government and the Civil Service and of big business so the playing field is very far from level. However individuals are allowed to spend up to £10,000 campaigning without registering with the Electoral Commission, but any registered campaign is allowed to spend up to £700,000. It follows that Out does need as many campaigns as possible to be registered so that we on our side can hope to match the overall spending of In.
I therefore think that our currently small campaign ‘Vote2Leave.EU’ may prove to be far more useful to the Cause of Out than anybody outside this room currently thinks.
As I mentioned earlier, I think it is also important to consider what arguments need to be deployed in order to maximise the chance of getting people to vote Out during the EU referendum.
Professor Matthew Goodwin has analysed some ways us Outers could win. Click here for the original article which has the charts to which he refers to >>> http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/brexitvote/2016/02/28/matthew-goodwin-examines-five-ways-the-outers-could-win/
The first question to consider is what is the current state of public opinion?
Professor Goodwin says that:-
Perhaps as much as 42% of the electorate are either unsure about how they will vote in the referendum, or fall into ‘soft Remain’ or ‘soft Leave’ categories. How can the Leave campaigns seek to win over these people?
Since David Cameron’s announcement that the referendum will be held on June 23, we have had a few new polls. What is the overall picture? In the Poll of Polls, the headline is Remain on 53% versus Leave on 47%. There really is everything to play for. We are exploring a different question: what are the most plausible scenarios whereby the Outers win?
We hear much about how they are the underdogs, but little about how their campaign could possibly deliver Brexit – based on research.
We now know that a large number of voters are ‘soft’ – people who are leaning toward Remain or Leave, but who readily admit that they could change their minds. In a recent YouGov poll of 4,000 adults it was suggested that as much as 42% of the electorate fell into this category or were Unsure about how they will vote. Much will depend on how successfully the Remain and Leave campaigns convert these voters. After all, the outcome of the referendum in Scotland was determined less by winning over the undecided than by convincing Yes voters to switch to No.
Here is how Professor Goodwin thinks Out could win:-
1. A populist anti-establishment revolt against threats to British identity
The research on Euroscepticism is clear about one thing – the more concerned that somebody is about threats to British identity, the more likely they are to back Brexit. This is reflected in a recent Chatham House briefing paper on the drivers of anti-EU attitudes – those who felt strongly concerned about the economic and cultural effects of immigration were consistently among the most likely to back Brexit. However, the key word is intensity.
It is also clear that Brexit is only a majority view among those who feel the most strongly concerned about threats to British identity. The first thing to say is that public anxiety over how the EU is seen to be undermining British identity is widespread. But it is also true that there is only majority support for leaving the EU among those who ‘strongly agree’ that the EU threatens Britain’s identity.
Even among those who only ‘agree’ about this threat to identity, Brexit lacks majority support, while those who do not feel culturally threatened back Remain in large numbers.
One possible path to Brexit, therefore, is to intensify this public angst over threats to British identity, pushing a larger number of people into the ‘strongly agree’ column. This is where the refugee crisis and net migration are especially important.
2. A populist anti-establishment revolt rooted in Englishness
This is the issue that we English Democrats are best placed to support.
Professor Goodwin says a different but related path to Brexit is a revolt against Brussels rooted more specifically in appeals to Englishness. This draws on research that shows that there is a very strong association between feelings of English identity and Euroscepticism. People who identify themselves as Leave voters consistently prioritise their Englishness over Britishness, whereas people who identify with Remain prioritise their Britishness over Englishness. Brexiters, therefore, may want to spend the next four months pitching to this English identity. On the other side, David Cameron would be well advised to avoid doing anything that might inadvertently fuel this Englishness (such as by reminding the English that they could free themselves from the Scots by voting for Brexit).
3. Open up a new flank – the National Health Service
There is a neglected but intriguing area in this referendum debate – the National Health Service. When voters were recently asked about the effects of Brexit on different areas of national life, such as Britain’s economy or global influence, the NHS was the one area where people appeared more convinced that Brexit might actually help rather than hinder. This shows the ‘net good’ effect of Brexit on the NHS (i.e. the percentage of voters who think the effect will be good minus the percentage who think it will be bad).
First, it is worth noting that the percentage of voters who think Brexit will have a good effect on the NHS is around twice as high as the percentage who think it would have a bad effect. Only the most committed Remain voters think that Brexit would have negative effects, while all other voters appear receptive to the idea that by leaving the EU Britain could invest more resources into its hospitals and improve public resources going through tough times.
‘Leave the European Union to save the NHS’, appears to be one line that might resonate.
That the Leave groups are targeting the NHS suggests that this finding has emerged in their own focus groups – and remember that the NHS is also cherished by the older, working-class voters who lean toward Brexit. This is why, when Labour was trying to contain UKIP last year, they devoted considerable effort to framing Nigel Farage’s party as a Thatcherite movement that wanted to privatise the NHS. Much will depend on whether Eurosceptics seriously go after this issue and how, in turn, the Remain camp responds.
A fourth way that Outers cross the line is by finding a messenger who can appeal to wavering voters and neutralise the ‘Cameron Effect’.
4. Cut through with a new messenger
Professor Goodwin says:- Make no mistake – David Cameron is a major asset for the Remain camp. The prime minister is, with the only exception of diehard Outers, the most trusted political voice in this debate. He will be able to make inroads into the soft Remain and soft Leave voters, and the Undecided, and we also find that Cameron might even help to mobilise middle-aged Labour and Liberal Democrat voters around the Remain flag. The Remain camp clearly know this, which is why Cameron is fronting almost every intervention. Given that Cameron is not an especially unpopular prime minister, this is a major hurdle that the Outers need to overcome. On the one hand they may be helped by the current position of Jeremy Corbyn, who at best appears like a reluctant passenger in the referendum debate. But on the other hand they are clearly going to struggle to reach across to the more moderate and risk averse voters. Finding a messenger who can do this and neutralise Cameron will be key. Boris Johnson playing a central, active and highly prominent role in the campaign is perhaps the only shot that Outers have.
5. Play the turnout game
Turnout is likely to be a major factor in Britain’s referendum result. The EU vote is not like the independence referendum in Scotland – there is no major groundswell of public enthusiasm. The issue of the EU has, traditionally, never excited the electorate. This introduces a risk for Remain and a potential advantage for Leave. What if the more pro-EU voters – the financially secure, higher income and university educated middle-classes, and the 18-30 year olds – decide that they simply cannot be bothered to vote?
This would contrast sharply to evidence which suggests that the Leave camp’s core followers – white pensioners – will be more determined to register their anti-EU views. At the general election last year it was widely believed that UKIP’s share of the vote would crash as polling day approached. That it remained static reflected the commitment of these diehard Eurosceptics. If Remain finds itself struggling to mobilise the young and financially secure professionals then the Leave camp, with a decent mobilisation strategy, could find itself pushing ahead on polling day.
6. Employ the winning formula
The past week has thrown considerable light on one central question: what pushes somebody from being a Eurosceptic into voting for withdrawal? There are lots of Eurosceptics in Britain – they are a clear majority.
But when it comes to the crunch only a smaller number are actually prepared to back Brexit. Why is this?
The new British Social Attitudes report has put forward one convincing explanation, suggesting that the Outers need to win two arguments. On the one hand, they need to mobilise the culturally threatened. But on the other they need to win the economic argument.
Put it this way, among voters who believe that the EU threatens Britain’s cultural identity AND are convinced that leaving the EU would improve the economy, support for Brexit is over 80%. But among voters who are only won over by the cultural argument but not the economic case, support for Brexit is only 40%. This is where the Outers could fall down – intensifying those cultural arguments, while failing to satisfy people who are more averse to the economic risks of Brexit. To win they will need to make headway on both of these fronts, but especially the latter.
So that is what Professor Goodwin advises us. I thought it was so interesting and informative that it was worth quoting extremely.
It is also worth mentioning the question of the EU’s ambitions to become a State. One of the frightening examples is the project to have an EU Army under the Command of the EU!
Also don’t forget that as of October, if we are still in the EU, then there will be in effect an easy almost open border with Turkey with no visa restrictions or the 76m mostly poor Muslim Turkish citizens that live there.
I was talking to my barber the other day who was telling me that around Chelmsford the biggest threat to his livelihood is the fact that there are now six or seven Turkish barber shops that have set up. The thought of an open border with Turkey was in itself enough to switch him to Out!
So I not only had a good haircut but also successfully canvassed him and all his family for Out. I urge you all to make the most of any similar opportunities!
For us English nationalists there is also the very interesting prospect that many of the likely outcomes of the EU Referendum will undermine the UK. In an extremely useful and interesting article Professor Rose of Strathclyde University sets this out and he has crunched the numbers for us:-
His heading is:-
Will the EU referendum trigger the break-up of the United Kingdom?
If England drags Scotland out of the EU, there will be trouble. But if Scotland keeps England inside, it could be double!
Here is what Professor Rose says: “On the night of the EU referendum, there will be three counts that matter. The first will show whether there is an overall British majority for staying in or leaving the EU. The second will show whether English voters are on the winning or the losing side. The third will show how likely it is that the United Kingdom will stay together.
That might sound drastic to some. But large differences in support for the EU among the different nations of the UK mean that many potential results are bad for the Union. Unless England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all agree in their answers to the referendum question, factions in each nation will be able to reject the result as illegitimate.
England contributes five sixths of the British electorate. To produce a UK majority for leaving the EU, regardless of the preference of other Britons, would therefore require 61 percent of English voters to endorse Brexit.
Opinion polls, however, show English voters tend to be more evenly divided, although often in favour of Brexit. Even if a British poll reported 51 per cent in favour of remaining in the EU, a majority of English respondents would be in favour of Brexit. This is because other UK nations are much more pro-European.
The National Centre for Social Research calculates that 55 per cent of Welsh, 64 per cent of Scots and 75 per cent of Ulster voters endorse the European Union on the basis of more than a dozen polls taken in the past year.
These numbers are also more stable than the equivalent figures in England.
So collectively, Scots, Welsh and Northern Irish voters will contribute about 11 per cent of the pro-EU vote. English voters would only have to add another 40 per cent to the UK total to create an absolute majority keeping the UK in the EU. But that would mean most English voters had endorsed leaving the European Union – only to have their wishes overriden by the other UK nations.
On the other hand, if 53 per cent of English voters voted to leave the EU, this would be enough to take the UK out of Europe against the preference of a majority of Scots, Welsh and Ulster voters.
The only result which would keep the UK united would be a narrow English majority in favour of remaining in the EU. In that scenario, all four parts of the United Kingdom were of one mind. For this to be true we would expect to see a UK-wide majority of more than 53 per cent.
On the basis of current polling, that is unlikely. Of 30 major British polls I have analysed, only ten reported a pro-EU majority so large that most English respondents agreed with their fellow Britons. An additional 13 polls showed majorities of up to 53 percent in favour of remaining in the EU, but such a narrow lead implies that most English people would be held in the EU against their will. And seven of the 30 polls actually showed enough English opposition to the EU to overpower the other nations' leads.
A conflict between Britain's nations on future relations with the EU would be a huge headache to the Prime Minister. Part of the argument for Scottish independence in 2014 was that England would no longer be able to "impose" decisions on Scotland. An English-led withdrawal of the UK from the European Union could trigger another referendum in Scotland on the linked issues of leaving the UK and joining the EU. That would confront the Westminster government with simultaneously negotiating the UK’s withdrawal from the EU and Scotland’s withdrawal from the UK.
Yet the opposite outcome – a UK majority to remain in the EU, and an English majority to leave – would also be a nightmare for Downing Street. Conservative Eurosceptics could denounce the result as illegitimate, but it would be politically impossible for the Eurosceptics to win a referendum on the issue of England withdrawing from the United Kingdom.
Even if a narrow English majority went along with other Britons and voted to stay in the EU, there could still be an absolute majority of Conservatives voting to leave. Determined Eurosceptics could then adopt Jeremy Corbyn's doctrine that the party leader should represent his party's members. This argument could be used as a weapon to extract promises of further anti-EU actions from Cabinet ministers wanting to succeed David Cameron as the next Conservative prime minister.
Whatever the feelings of English voters on the emotive issue of the EU, there is no escaping the fact that the outcome of the forthcoming EU referendum will be decided by the total vote of the United Kingdom. That is the price England pays for being British so says Professor Rose.
Here is a link to the original article>>> Will the EU referendum trigger the break-up of the United Kingdom? - Telegraph
Turning now to after the EU referendum. There is also a question mark over what happens to UKIP then. UKIP’s whole point has been to get an EU referendum and they and Nigel Farage in particular deserve greatest credit for getting it.
The large number of Conservative Ministers, MPs and Councillors who have supported Remain show, beyond all doubt, that the Conservative Party, left to its own devises, would never have given us a referendum. They are the Party which not only took us in under a false prospectus but also signed us up to various Federalist measures like the Single European Market and the Maastricht Treaty but are now mostly trying to keep us In. Perhaps, as Big Business loves the EU, it isn’t so surprising for the Party of Big Business to support the EU too?
But after the EU referendum what happens to UKIP?
Either we have voted to Remain and if so what is the point of the Party that sought a referendum? Or we have voted to Leave and again what is the point of the Party which sought a referendum? UKIP have also nailed their colours to the British Unionist mast.
So if Professor Rose is right then the next big question after 23rd June is not the European Union but the Union of the United Kingdom of Great Britain.
So Ladies and Gentlemen by the second half of this year we may be the Party that is front and centre on the key constitutional and national issue facing the English Nation.
That Ladies and Gentlemen is likely to be our moment of opportunity! Let us make sure that we are all ready for it! Who here is ready?
Thank you Ladies and Gentlemen for bearing with me.