1st October 2016
Established 1872. Online since 1996.

We’d be better off outside the EU ‘dictatorship’, argues campaigner

14 comments, , by , in News

A Euro “out” campaigner is spearheading a drive to send a clear message to the EU – that Britain is better off stepping away from the union.

Scalloway resident Scotty Van der Tol has put himself forward as the local representative of Leave.eu, the official campaign which favours Brexit in this summer’s EU referendum.

He hopes to gather like-minded people who will convince the electorate that EU membership is cumbersome and undemocratic.

Leave.eu wants to negotiate its own trade deals globally, citing an agreement brokered between Iceland and China as evidence of the potential opportunity open to a UK outside of EU influence.

It insists cheaper food bills, no membership fees and the lifting of regulation costs could result in each household being up to £1,000 better off each year.

Mr Van der Tol, who stood in the 2005 general election and for the council in 2007, under his previous surname Dyble, believes there is strong interest among the electorate in support of Brexit. He even goes so far as to describe the European union as “a dictatorship”, which people will want to leave.

“There’s interest there. I think most folk have an opinion on it,” he said.

He says the economic argument supports an EU departure, insisting the country is “basically neutering” itself by focusing too much on EU trade.

“The world is far bigger than the EU, and the world is expanding economically. The EU is decreasing.

“Fundamentally, the EU is not a democracy. It’s a dictatorship. It’s illegitimate in terms of democratic decision-making.”

Interest in the EU debate has been increasing, particularly since Prime Minister David Cameron brokered an agreement in Brussels – trumpeted by Mr Cameron and his supporters as a major achievement – which secured several changes.

Some observers feel the pro-European argument suffered a backfire when President Barack Obama warned Britain would be “at the back of the queue” when it came to trade agreements, should it vote to leave the union, with The Sun newspaper declaring most people would vote out following Obama’s so-called “bully-boy tactics”.

Mr Van der Tol believes the time has come to walk away.

“The EU from the very beginning was all about creating a single European state,” he said, dismissing the deal agreed with the PM that the UK was not on the road to deeper integration.

“The EU itself are all signed up to this single, European country. That’s the goal.”

He cited an analogy of a group of people boarding a plane to Japan, only to find once airborne that the plane was going “somewhere else”.

 

They haven’t got there by common consent. They’ve got there by rough-shodding over democracy. SCOTTY VAN DER TOL

Mr Van der Tol was less than convinced by the argument cited recently in this newspaper by the pro-Europe George Jacobson, who said EU membership had helped prevent war.

“If you look at the history of Europe since then – with Nato, the Cold War – the EU hasn’t prevented any wars. It hasn’t gone on to solve any wars, either. It was the Cold War that kept peace in Europe.

“The people who died in the Second World War died to remove dictatorship in Europe, and yet here we have an unelected president, with an unelected commission, with embassies around the world. They haven’t got there by common consent. They’ve got there by rough-shodding over democracy. They’ve had to go against democracy to get to that point.

“If you have these unelected dictatorships removing democratic [control] and running over democracy, the EU is more likely to be the cause of the next conflict in Europe, not the prevention of it.”
He said the UK had “not benefited” from EU membership.

“They talk about rebates and grants, but that is just a portion of our own money coming back to us.”
And the result come 23rd June?

“I think it will be close. I think, the people who want to leave are far more committed than folk that want to stay. Folk that want to stay are maybe not caring so much, but folk who want to leave are … They want out.”

He dismissed as “just a threat” calls within the SNP for a second Scottish independence referendum should Britain move to leave the European Union, adding First Minister Nicola Sturgeon “does not have the constitutional authority to call a referendum”.

“It’s not within her legal ability to do so.”

He added that, had Scotland voted to leave the UK, it would be leaving the EU.

“If we voted to leave the EU and, for some reason, the SNP did call a referendum then we would still be leaving the EU if we voted yes.”

AboutRyan Taylor

Ryan Taylor has worked as a reporter since 1995, and has been at The Shetland Times since 2007, covering a wide variety of news topics. Before then he reported for other newspapers in the Highlands, where he was raised, and in Fife, where he began his career with DC Thomson. He also has experience in broadcast journalism with Grampian Television. He has lived in Shetland since 2002, where he harbours an unhealthy interest in old cars and motorbikes.

View other stories by »

14 comments

  1. Robert Duncan

    I’m fairly certain Mr Dyble stood for election to the Council in 2007, and not to the Scottish Parliament.

    Reply
    • John N Hunter

      You’re correct Robert. Googling MR Dyble/Van der Tol reveals that this very paper did indeed report him as standing for the SIC in 2007. In 2005 he stood for the UK parliament.

      Reply
  2. David Spence

    I am sure, as many people are, what exactly is the pro’s and con’s of the EU, and what are the pro’s and con’s if we leave the EU, Mr Scotty Van der Tol ?

    Please try and sum up in plain English the above points.

    I would also like to know what Mr Scotty Van der Tol, answer is to the situation of thousands of people from Europe will face if the UK, decides to exit the EU? I am pretty sure Mr Scotty Van der Tol, realizes the impact such on the local economy could be, potentially, devastating to local businesses and their reliance on foreign EU workers in specific industries??????

    Yes, it is estimated we give the EU £350 million a week, but what does the UK, receive from the EU, in the same period? Many science, arts, entertainment and history institutes are very reliant on EU Grants to sustain and provide education.

    Mr Scotty Van der Tol, please try not to think that the ‘ Great Britain ‘ is great any more, because it isn’t. As for keeping our sovereignty and currency…………what has the rich and powerful (royalty mainly) done for this country, except to live a privileged, rich life style at the cost to the Tax Payer????

    Reply
    • Tom Walker

      If I gave you £10 and you gave me £4 of it back straight away, would you consider that a grant from you to me? If you told me that I have to spend that £4 of my own money on certain things, is that really a grant?

      I will add that over the past decade, we have been fined circa £650 million by the EU for errors in accordance to EU regulation:
      http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201516/cmselect/cmpubacc/730/73006.htm#_idTextAnchor008

      The £650m is enough to pay for 791 patients in NHS beds every day over the same time period.

      You also brought up the labour argument. There is no reason that we would stop hiring from Europe for skills that we need. This still happens with those from outside of the EU, and happened before the EU formed.

      The leader of the remain campaign, Lord Rose was asked “if Britain left the EU would we see an increase in wages for low-skilled workers in the UK?”

      Lord Rose replied: “If you are short of labour the price will, frankly, go up. So yes…. but that’s not necessarily a good thing.”

      If you believe that low earners should have a pay rise then vote to leave

      Reply
      • Johan Adamson

        So do you think that VAT would decrease if we no longer had to pay for the EU? Or would we keep the rate high to pay the deficit instead?

        We could obviously decrease VAT now as the rate is the governments choice (if we could afford it). I noticed restaurants in Holland only charge 6% VAT, that would save customers some money and allow staff to be paid more if prices remained the same (and they also still advertise ‘woman wanted’ very progressive and ignoring EU dictats).

      • Robin Stevenson

        I’m afraid that your simplistic scenario doesn’t really work like that with regard to EU membership Tom.

        You’ve simply pointed out what’s ‘bad’ without pointing out what’s ‘good’?

        If I gave you £10 and you gave me back £200 would you consider that a good thing or a bad thing?

        ‘The membership fee also includes an EU aid element, which Scotland is obliged to spend anyway if we don’t give it to the EU as part of the membership fee. This amounts to approximately £65.6m. So taking the net membership fee to Scotland of £275.2m and subtracting the private sector and the aid money benefit we find the net cost to Scotland of £97.6m and so it seems that for every £1.00 we pay to the EU for membership Scotland gets about £20.00 back’.

        ‘Project fear mark2’ seems to be alive and well.

        http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/new-research-eu-worth-2bn-per-year-to-scotland/

      • David Spence

        Tom, there is another factor you have not considered in your answer. This being this Governments agenda of privatization of all state services and functions, allowing the private sector (more than likely without any regulation) to, basically, extort, rip-off and con the majority of people whilst providing a ‘ half-baked service/product ‘.

        Despite vast opposition, this Tory Government is hell-bent on the privatization of the education system to this of, a rather pathetic comparison, changing LA schools to academies. Will this improve the education system ? NO!!!! Will this be a step backwards in our education system? YES!!!! Will profit, greed and the dreaded shareholder take greater priority in education? YES!!!!!

        Will the country be better of with a ‘ pay what you can afford education system (basically, a 2 or more tier education)??? NO!!!!!

        Will the cost of living go up if we leave the EU, and allow this Government to privatize everything???? YES!!!!!!!!!

        Is the Conservative Party representing the people???? 100% NO!!!!!!!!

      • iantinkler

        Scotland, if independent, simply would not remotely qualify for EU membership. The £10 billion deficit in its economy would be more than 3 times that allowable under EU joining protocols. Sturgeons and the SNP stewardship of the Scotland economy has reduced Scotland’s economic performance to make Greece look prosperous. Sad to see Scotland reduced so low as to be exempt from EU membership if outside the UK, a true economic basket case. Well done SNP.

      • Ali Inkster

        Johan you rightly point out that a club that is supposed to have everyone working to the same rules is anything but. So why stay in the club and continue to pay the membership fee?

        Wrobin you may believe that is true for Scotland (It’s not by the way) but the £billions in lost revenue from wir fisheries will never be made up by what is returned from the EU, and frankly I would rather earn my keep than stand with my hand out.

        David the factor you have not considered is it was your beloved labour in the seventies that set the ball rolling on privatisation as part of the bailout deal with the IMF. the same IMF that wants us to remain in the EU.

        So I will be voting Tavish 1 and Stockan 2 to deal with holyrood in the meantime. I will be voting out of the EU in June for the sake of democracy, and I will keep up the fight to get clear of the two other layers of useless corrupt bureaucracy in westminster and holyrood until we are finally free again.

      • Robin Stevenson

        Ali

        Saying something that is not right and ‘proving’ that it is not right, are two entirely different things?…. Which part can you find fault with the link I posted? Scotland being a member of the EU equates to a £2 billion pa benefit to Scotland’s economy.

        The £billions that you quote from lost fishing revenue, could you please show me where you got your figures from?

        I completely agree with you when you say “I would rather earn my keep than stand with my hand out”, which is the very reason why I vote for an independent Scotland. Are you quite sure you’re voting for the right party?

      • Tom Walker

        The problem with statistics is that they are never right! Here are some that suit my case.

        UK economic output would grow by 2%.
        Competitiveness would rise by 5%.
        Wage growth, in real disposable terms — up 1.5%.
        Both inflation and interest rates would grow to be in the range of 2-3%.

        http://uk.businessinsider.com/economists-for-brexit-economic-predictions-2016-4

        If you are trying to convince anyone that Scotland is getting more money from the EU than it gives, then how does it also pay for the massive support to Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain?

        The UK (with the few other wealthy nations) continue to pay to prop up many of these economies.

        Fisheries is another great example.
        “60% of the British fishing fleet has been deliberately scrapped under government programmes whilst other countries have built boats with EU grants to fish our waters.”
        http://ffl.org.uk/

      • Ali Inkster

        Wrobin we are allowed to catch just 13% of the quota issued by the EU for wir fish stocks the increase aone to Shetland never mind the scoti fleet should we share wir fish stocks with EU boats on an equal basis with that which we take from other EU waters would in itself dwarf the imagined £2 billion you claim scotland is better off. But I am really only concerned with Shetland and wir future so I would happily take control o wir seas in return for having to get a visa to visit turkey.

    • Ali Inkster

      David asks what the effect on local businesses would be should we vote out. Well as a local business owner who employs someone from the EU and will also be voting to leave. I can honestly say it will make little if any difference. EU citizens who are working will be able to get leave to remain while those who are out of work and claiming benefits will likely no longer receive those benefits. What will benefit all small businesses is the reduction in red tape that currently comes from the EU. What will benefit my particular business will be the increase in local boats and the increased wealth locally that will come with it.

      Reply
  3. Laurence Paton

    Its about time the politicians of Brussels had their gravy train brought to a halt. If you take the time to watch any of the many clips of debate within that parliament you will note it’s empty , 785 mep’s on £80 grand a year with near unlimited expenses and they hardly ever turn up ! Not that it would matter any way as it’s not a democratic parliament as the commissioners who are secretly voted in from within , not us the electorate, make all the decisions anyway. It’s not a free trade area if the membership fee is 50 million a day and nobody really knows exactly where that money ends up as it’s an institution that has never balanced the books in a transparent way. Then there is the millions of pounds worth of seafood which our fishing industry dumps every year to avoid prosecution ! You can look at the facts and they add up to vote to leave or you can listen to corrupt bankers like goldman sachs and failed politicians like Niel Kinnock , the champagne socialist who is now a multi millionaire. Choose to be deluded and vote to stay in.

    Reply

Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to editorial@shetlandtimes.co.uk for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.