Further to my previous post, a vote to leave the EU, based on the hope that this will enable us to control our borders and stop immigration from eastern Europe, will have disastrous consequences for our democracy.
People who voted to leave for that reason will be disappointed and will feel let down (again) by politicians who will be unable to keep their promises. This will almost certainly lead to a rise in right-wing extremism and a real threat to our democratic system.
Why are the Remain Campaign not making a major issue of the Brexiters most effective but false argument – control of immigration?
The main reason the Brexit campaign is making progress is because they are convincing people that leaving the EU would give us control of our borders and allow us to exclude east European immigrants. It will do no such thing.
Even Brexiters admit that if we leave the EU our economic survival will continue to depend on access to the European free market. That means we will have to join the European Economic Area, just like Norway and Switzerland. A condition of that membership is acceptance of EU rules on migration (and some other things). The result would be that we would have less control, not more, over immigration policy. Instead of being one of the biggest EU countries making any changes to the rules, we would be outsiders, bound by rules in which we have no say at all.
Since I wrote the piece below various things have changed (for the better).
First, some of the various party views have changed, mainly, it seems, as some of the details have become better known, especially the secret courts by which corporations could sue governments over policies which hit their profits.
Second, some European governments (notably but not only France) have declared their opposition to the proposals, so there is a good chance it will all be cancelled.
Third, it has become clear that if we leave the EU our present UK government are quite likely to conclude a similar deal with USA, so leaving the EU would not solve the problem and might well make it worse.
This treaty is being negotiated in secret between the EU and USA and amounts to a complete corporate takeover and an end to effective democracy. This link is the best explanation of the problems with it that I have found so far:
I note that 38 Degrees have also started a campaign against it. See: https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/ttip-leaflet-action.
Of the UK political parties, this promised disaster is supported by Labour, Tories, LibDems and UKIP, and opposed only by the Green Party and the Scottish and Welsh nationalists. Mussolini would have loved it.
While I would be reluctant to see us leave the EU (although it needs a lot of reform), if this goes ahead I would regard it as sufficient reason in itself to do so.