I am no fan of elitist bureaucracy, but I am not a euro-sceptic. I am convinced the European Parliament and the civil service around it is close to the best available compromise for this part of history.
Without getting too starry-eyed about it all, I would especially prefer the European Parliament to continue to exist. Without it, european economic strategy would be negotiated between civil servants supporting national cabinets in treaty-making, using opaque and unaccountable processes. The Parliament gives us a real opportunity for scrutiny – and a democratic veto through our elected representatives – on each European policy issue, which change-by-treaty would not give us.
If we want a Europe where treaties like ACTA and TPP are the democratic norm, scrap the European parliament. If we want all the change that happens to be done in whatever the post-tobacco equivalent of smoke-filled rooms is, scrap the European Parliament. And, for the benefit of the raving right in the UK, if you want the UK’s primary trading market to be controlled invisibly via undocumented and unaccountable negotiations between the political lackeys of plutocrats, vote for the UK to “leave” the EU.
This is not to say it’s got everything right, but scrapping it or withdrawing from it passes control back to unaccountable treaty-negotiating mandarins and the corporate lobbyists who direct them. Britain can’t leave Europe. But it can choose to longer have a say in how it works.