Ruth Lea has written for this morning’s Sun about the launch of Global Vision – "a campaign group calling for a new approach to Britain’s relationship with Europe." A leader in The Sun certainly gives Global Vision’s aims a warm welcome:
"Instead of an “ever closer union” demanded by Euro-fanatics, Britain needs an “ever LOOSER union” so that we can continue to prosper and grow without the dead hand of Brussels round our necks."
Ruth Lea’s article makes a convincing case for a "more modern relationship" with Europe – with less British subsidy of the Brussels superstate and less entanglement with its regulatory web but I’m not convinced she is adding anything new to the debate. We already have the Bruges Group, the Better Off Out campaign working with elected officials and political activists, there’s Bill Cash’s European Foundation and, for intellectual leadership and with a record of running good campaigns, we have Open Europe. I’ll stop there. We all know that there are a number of other Eurosceptic groups. When I first heard of Ruth Lea’s initiative – some months ago – I had understood that it was going to be a cross-party campaign for leaving the EU altogether. It has backtracked from that and is now looking a lot more like Open Europe.
I’ll wait and see what Global Vision becomes
(can’t yet find a website for it) and where it chooses to sit on the Eurosceptic spectrum. I certainly hope that it doesn’t become another worthy think tank churning out research papers. If there is a weakness within Britain’s conservative movement it is that there are too many think tanks and not enough campaigning organisations. If Global Vision is to succeed it must be more like the TaxPayers’ Alliance and less like the Centre for Policy Studies (the directorship of which is Ms Lea’s day job).
Related link: The growth of right thinking