Saturday, 3 March 2018


Chunks of the Labour Party, or at least Chuka and the chuckusins,see the Single Market, Brexit without Exit, as the way to do what the electors want while staying in the EU. It may be a solution for vested interests and business groups who know better than the people what’s good for the people, but Labour Single Marketeers must beware .Staying in the Single Market means abandoning much of what Labour needs to do to make Britain solvent.

Labour believes in open trade. The Single Market means agricultural protection and the concealed protectionism of pay to play as countries like Norway must pay big fees to finance marble palaces in Brussels

Labour  wants to create jobs. The single Market drains them as Germany accumulates growing surpluses at the expense of deficit countries ,like Britain, running a £60 billion trade deficit on top of membership charges..

Labour  opposes tax races to the bottom. The Single Market  allows countries like Ireland and Luxembourg to offer dirty tax deals to companies making their profits in Britain.Free movement of capital is freedom not to pay tax where its due.

Labour’s voters dislike excessive immigration.The Single Market institutionalises the free movement of Labour

Labour proposes industrial policy, aid to investment  and regional policy to rebalance the economy.The Single Market prohibits state aids to industry and  bans regional employment premiums.

Labour wants to boost demand to put people back to work. The Single Market drains it away to finance our big contributions and our trade deficit.We’re forced to borrow to pay both.

Labour wants to boost trade with the rest of the world. The Single Market allows no separate trade deals with other countries.

Labour wants to stop British companies falling into foreign control. Our huge trade deficit forces us to sell them  to fill the gap, and the Single Market negates national controls.

Labour believes in aid to help the poorest of the poor. The Single Market insists that much of our aid goes through Europe’s inefficient and corrupt aid system and requires cohesion funding  to subsidise the transfer of British jobs to East Europe.

Labour believes in democracy. The Single Market enthrones plutocracy and requires second ballots on votes against it.

 All this may be attractive  for Labour MPs whose Euro-enthusiasm is stronger than their social democratic priorities.Right wingers could see it as ruling out Corbyn-McDonnell policies by putting a Blairite straight jacket on the economy. Yet it’s more difficult to see why a party dedicated to rebalancing that economy and boosting jobs would benefit from it. Idealists are always a little naive, but Labour ones should put the interests of Labour’s people above their euro-enthusiasm.

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