Posted by: secretperson | March 10, 2008

Happy Commonwealth Day

On which the theme is Climate Change.

But how long before it is scrapped and replaced with EU day?

Our integratrion with our continental neighbours has had the effect of weakening our ties with our Commonwealth friends. Yes it grew out of Empire, but that doesn’t mean it couldn’t be a force for good in modern times. Unfortunately whereas the protectionist EU is seen as modern and forward looking the Commonwealth is not. The possibility of a worldwide trading network, with large countries such as Canada and the enormous and growing India, is blocked by EU law, which only allows EU trading relations.

The latest manifestation of this is the scrapping on the ancestry visa. Philip Johnston writes about this in the Telegraph. Cracking down on this form of immigration, for the children and grandchildren of Britons who moved to Commonwealth countries is to be scrapped, presuambly as the government looks to appear tough on immigration. And of course we are not allowed to be tough on EU immigration so must look to be extra harsh on those outside the EU. I oppose mass migration, but if there is to be any it should be on the merits of those involved, and I think an ancestral and cultural connection to these lands, as well as a fluent grasp of the English language would be a plus.

One of the benefits I will admit to the EU is the incentive it provides to former Eastern Bloc countries to reform and act democratically. Though this may be at the risk of imposing one size fits all solutions to certain problems it seems to have been a success. A strengthened Commonwealth could also give incentives, in terms of beneficial trade for example, and put pressure on places like Zimbabwe and Pakistan, which need more sorting out than Poland or the Czech Republic did.

Many of the EU supporters assume opponents are insular and isolationist. In fact it is possible to have an internationalist outlook and oppose the European club for that reason only. To those who call us xenophobic, surely an immigration system that favours Europeans, and therefore implicitly Whites, could be considered racist. For those who laud the free market across Europe, why does that need to be to the exclusion of those outside? We are told we must be part of an EU bloc to compete with China, America, Russia and India, but we have historic ties that could be exploited to work with India and America.

On this day, Commonwealth day, I believe it is worth thinking internationally. Millions from across the Commonwealth came and fought and died in European wars. They are ignored in a European Union supposedly there to stop those wars happening again. The bad done by the Empire should not exclude the possibility of the Commonwealth doing good. A looser relationship with Europe could mean a better relationship with the rest of the world. New Labour and friends love all things new, because they are new, but if we ignore strong bonds that exist, simply because they are old, we ignore a great potential for cooperation on a world scale.

Happy Commonwealth Day.



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  2. To hell with the EU. I hope everybody had a lovely Empire Day, especially Her Majesty and all the royals. Long live England!

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