The attraction to Membership of the EU is not something that can or should be easily dismissed. It is highly deceptive.
We have been continually sold solutions to gatekeeper issues that sound very simple, are usually highly appealing and play to the idea that being part of the EU is a one-way street to improved quality of life for everyone involved.
The problem is that behind those gatekeeper issues, such as the Working Time Directive of the Social Chapter, sit many knock-on effects and consequences that are not talked about but will almost certainly impact many areas of life and business that actually make lives for many if not most much harder to live.
Again, it’s a case of idealism hurting the many whilst glorifying the ideas of the untouched few.
The nature of the relationship with the EU and its forerunners that the UK was obliged to sign up to when it became a Member means that the many rules that follow as the result of opening the door to one of these ‘big ideas’ simply get created in Brussels and then rubber stamped by our own Government and our Civil Servants.
The reality of Law and Rule Making in Brussels is that we and our Parliament get no say. Rules and Laws created in the EU are simply sent across the Channel and then imposed.
So in the case of something like the Working Time Directive and the Employment Laws that surround it, the impact on our businesses of rules made by bureaucrats that have no understanding of running or managing businesses is to restrict working practices very tightly. The result is that businesses can becomes less profitable, less productive and for employees it might well mean less opportunity in every sense possible – that’s it they don’t actually lose their jobs.
This nanny-state management is actually representative of undemocratic coercion at best.
It is probably already a lot worse and would get increasingly so, if for any reason we were to end up having to Remain.
We should never hesitate to dream about creating a world which is better and works fairly and without prejudice for all.
But this is itself a dream with many steps to get there and there is the practical reality of how the real world works standing in the way before any journey can be planned to get there, or the downside of forcing this idyllic upside will hurt a lot more people than it will ever help along the way.
The EU and its direction for the future is based solely on impractical idealism.
Yes, the UK needs powerful aspiration for something better for all.
But the journey to our future must at every step be based on practical reality and understanding of how the world and human behaviour actually works. Nothing more.