We answer the Daily Mail question: ‘Who will speak for England?’
Today’s Daily Mail leads with a question: ‘Who Will Speak for England?’
The question writer turns to history to see if figures from the past can answer the burning question.
Today the Mail asks a question of profound significance to our destiny as a sovereign nation and the fate of our children and grandchildren. Who will speak for England?
It’s a question inspired by one of the most dramatic moments in the history of Parliamentary democracy. The date was September 2, 1939, the day after Hitler invaded Poland. Tory PM Neville Chamberlain had just made an ambivalent statement to the House, proposing no immediate action.
On his backbenches, anti-appeasement stalwart Leo Amery was incensed. As Labour’s deputy leader Arthur Greenwood rose to reply for the Opposition, the Tory MP bellowed across the floor: ‘Speak for England!’
And Greenwood did just that, voicing anger over the premier’s reluctance to honour Britain’s treaty obligations to Poland. Bowing to the mood of the House, Chamberlain declared war on Hitler the next day.
The Mail should realise that all is not lost. Someone might just make a peep for Albion. After all, on January 1934, the Mail was all for Hitler:
As we cry ‘Let’s Bomb Brussels!’, the article continues:
Nobody is suggesting there are any parallels whatever between the Nazis and the EU.
They are. See above.
Indeed, the Mail would argue that one of the Union’s great achievements, along with Nato, has been to foster peace in Europe.
PEACE! We all vant ein leetle peace! To quote Mel Brookes:
I don’t want war. All I want is peace. Peace. Peace!
A little piece of Poland/ A little piece of France /A little piece of Portugal /And Austria perchance…
But as in 1939, we are at a crossroads in our island history.
What happened to “Nobody is suggesting there are any parallels whatever between the Nazis and the EU”?
For in perhaps as little as 20 weeks’ time, voters will be asked to decide nothing less than what sort of country we want to live in and bequeath to those who come after us.
We want a country of patriots!
Another question soon follows:
Are we to be a self-governing nation, free in this age of mass migration to control our borders, strike trade agreements with whomever we choose and dismiss our rulers and lawmakers if they displease us?
Ian Hislop nips in and tells us:
“… the Mail is owned by the Rothermere family. What did your Dad do? The current Lord Rothermere’s father loved Great Britain so much he went to live in France as a tax exile.
“He then passed on the nom-dom status to his son who doesn’t actually pay the normal amount of tax despite owning a newspaper that’s owned through various tax companies in Bermuda.”
Or will our liberty, security and prosperity be better assured by submitting to a statist, unelected bureaucracy in Brussels, accepting the will of unaccountable judges and linking our destiny with that of a sclerotic Europe that tries to achieve the impossible by uniting countries as diverse as Germany and Greece?
Do we want to live in Ibiza?
The Mail then bashes the Tories and the BBC.
So we ask again: who will speak for England (and, of course, by ‘England’, like Amery in 1939, we mean the whole of the United Kingdom)?
Is this any clearer?
— Stewart Bremner (@stewartbremner) February 4, 2016
Will Scotland? The Mail thinks the question so burning it asks Scots: “Why do teenage girls send explicit pictures to boys?” Answer: The EU makes them do it.
Maybe migrants can speak for England – after all, they love it enough to come here?
With a tsunami of migrants flooding across Europe, can such tinkering with the small print really be enough… here is nothing in Mr Cameron’s draft deal that will make one jot of difference to the numbers pouring in.
Who speaks for England?