I’m Saying Remain in Europe

I’m Saying Remain in Europe

Don’t think about the Referendum on 23rd June, think about the 24th, think about the day after and what will happen to the UK government, who will be running it if we vote Leave?

The European referendum is not about Europe it is about British politics, a battle for the Tory party and leadership of this country. We are being hoodwinked into thinking this is just about staying in or leaving Europe, about a ‘flood’ of immigrants all wanting to take our jobs and benefits. It isn’t.

It is about who will lead the country on June 24th.

Close, but you’re not Getting my Vote

A couple of weeks ago I was getting close to a Brexit. I have felt for a very long time that a natural breaking up of the UK and Europe was likely, so now seemed like the right time for us to cut the bureaucratic ties with our near neighbours.

However, I couldn’t quite cross the line and my main concern was the people running the Leave campaign. They just don’t seem like the type of people who have our best interest at heart. Which is strange, because that is what they keep telling us.

Have a look back in time. Michael Gove, Boris Johnson, Iain Duncan-Smith and Nigel Farage have never put forward policies that benefit the majority, their love is not for humanity but for rules and regulations, making sure people are in their place, that the old ways are held up as the best way forward. Then changing their mind as the political mood takes them.

They are all great talkers, they inspire with their words but they are to the right of David Cameron and George Osborne and that is why I am voting Remain. I don’t want my vote to bring in a far-right Government.

Common Sense is Taking a #Brexit

Whatever the result of the Referendum, the Tory party will tear itself apart. Traditionally they stick together for the sake of power but this time, it has gone too far. The simmering disquiet over Cameron’s style has been laid bare by weeks of Euro Campaigning and the knives will be out, even if he wins.

If he loses, then Michael Gove, Boris Johnson and Iain Duncan-Smith take over the helm of the ship and we’re all in for a rocky ride. If you thought Europe was incompetent and out to do us wrong, you wait for these three amigos to join the cabinet, tear your NHS down and introduce policies that will make a Brussels bureaucrat look positively jolly.

Marr and Preston were the Tipping Point

My conversion came on the morning of Sunday 12th June. On the BBC Andrew Marr was interviewing the Prime Minister, David Cameron and asked him that if he lost would he be able to implement the policies that the leave campaign were proposing. It wasn’t the answer that made me change my mind but the realisation that the Government would have to move to the right if #Brexit was the outcome.

Meanwhile, on ITV we had Peston, another show about politics that had an excellent chart detailing the air-time politicians had been given by the media.

peston-table

It was a wall of blue, right wing thinkers and the only left wing representative was Jeremy Corbyn. Not only was it a sign of our binary media and their inability to present ideas but that the main story was the Conservative party.

If Corbyn had been recommending Leave I would have followed, but he wasn’t and I was always curious about that. How could someone, that I saw as a great example of future politics, be so keen to go in the opposite direction?

The Logic of In

Well, now I understand, although I can see some logic in wanting to stay in Europe. Yes, we could try and reform the EU from the inside instead of running away, but from my position that looks unlikely. Europe is too big and there are too many self-serving politicians to reach a reforming consensus. However, it is far better to keep the right wing wolves out of Number 10 and deal with Europe when you have a stronger hand.

If we leave Europe we’ll end up with something much worse, a new government, and all because our minds were clouded by fears about immigrants, economic crisis and a large bribe that doesn’t really exists.

This new Conservative government will be either more right wing, or one that is forced to call a general election as its party is uncontrollable. Corbyn for PM by the Autumn anyone?

Celtic Coast land in Europe

In May 2009 I was the compare for ‘Saints Aid‘ a music event set up by the fans of Southampton FC to help save their club.

I was originally invited to help with an event in the car park but due to other engagements the original compares couldn’t make and so I was taken off the bench and trust into the limelight. It was great fun and headlining that night were Southampton’s Coast.

So it seems fitting that in the week that Southampton went up into the Championship, Coast also had something to celebrate…

Last week we mentioned good things happening to the Southampton based celtic-rock band Coast.

It was an understatement.

The tide is definitely coming in and they are about to launch themselves upon the good folk of northern Europe.

Not only are they playing festivals in Denmark with acts like the Kaiser Chiefs on the same bill but tracks from their second album ‘The Turning Stone’ are being played on national radio.

Add to that a corporate gig for their label in Cologne on June 11th, where they are playing to 10,000 people just before two major international acts take to the stage, and you can see a lovely pattern emerging.

Naturally singer and songwriter Paul Eastham is more than delighted: “We’re over the moon. Last year we entered a competition to support one of those acts and came fifth. This year we’re being invited to play with them! Its a massive turnaround.”

Their latest album is released tomorrow, Saturday 7th May, and with Warner Brothers ordering 5000 copies to sell in Germany I was curious if Paul felt under pressure to succeed in the UK.

“It is happening at a slower pace here rather than in Europe, which is good as I want to get a couple of years touring under our belts before we target here. But the grass roots support is fantastic.”

Europe’s gain might be our loss but keep your eyes peeled for their next show here as Coast are about to land.

First published in the Southern Daily Echo May 6th 2011