The deindustralisation of Britain

There was a desperate need for a different political party long before the issue of participation in the European project became prominent, in that our political class had completely abdicated its responsibility to place the interests of the people and of the nation before pursuing their own personal ambitions. When the idea of creating a genuine, democratic party opposed to membership of the EU was first mooted I remember that the reaction, even from those supposedly supportive of withdrawal, was that of horror, as they knew that the cosy arrangement by which only the three main parties would ever win elections would be under threat and that concerned them more than the fate of the country. Far worse they had already ceased to look at what was best for the long term future of the nation, preferring to concentrate on the short term, and on selfish benefits for themselves.

A recent development within the economy has highlighted possibly the most important matter which now threatens us. While the closure of the Redcar steel works and the further job cuts in the industry elsewhere are tragedies for the working class of already depressed areas it is also a symptom of a greater disaster for our country, namely the ongoing deindustralisation of Britain. The country which invented the tank and the railway now rely on others to supply them, the great shipbuilding yards are silent, we import most of our energy supplies, where once we had massive coal mines, and later were in the lead in the development of nuclear power, something we now lack the skills to expand. As we watch from the sidelines other nations developing space technology how many people realise that there is still a British satellite in orbit, launched by a British rocket in 1971, or appreciate that in the period after the war it was Britain that led the world in advanced airplane technology.

The list of British technological achievements cancelled by idiotic politicians goes on and on, from Blue Streak and Black Arrow rockets, cutting edge aeroplanes such as the Saunders Roe SR177 and the TSR-2 and of course the nuclear industry. How often do we hear of British inventions, not supported at home, which are then successfully developed abroad. Even now NASA is experimenting with a space drive designed by Roger Shawyer, a British aerospace engineer, which, should it work, would totally transform space travel. Of course it may just be a pipe dream but British governments would never approve funds to try such ideas, preferring to spend it on membership fees to the EU instead.

I am well aware we cannot support all industries that are in trouble, otherwise we would be subsidising the manufacturers of hansom cabs, but I also remember how, when I was studying economics many years ago, there was a concept that now seems to have been abandoned, namely that of strategic industries, which must be preserved for reasons other than purely financial ones. On the economic front we now rely on financial services, something which the developing countries of the world will provide for themselves once their economies mature, and, in the event of another conventional war, we would go down like wheat before the sickle, being reduced to throwing stock certificates and derivatives (whatever they are!), at enemy ships and armour.

Those responsible are the politicians who, on the right, make a God of the free market, refusing to help indispensable industries when they are in trouble, while on the left are prepared to sacrifice our economic strength in pursuit of politically correct goals concerning the myth of anthropological climate change, something rightly ignored by China and India, or an illusory single European state, where our needs will be provided by our dear partners, a laughable idea.

When approached by my wife, the daughter of a Teesside steelworker, on their views relating to the issue of the steel industry the Labour party responded, and I quote "the Government must act now to relieve the pressure on the industry, including by working with the European Commission and the Chinese Government". This shows either a terrible naivety as to the nature of the EU or a deliberate attempt to obfuscate.

In the letters column of the Daily Telegraph of the 27th October 2015 the chairman of the Lib Dem EU referendum campaign said, and again I quote "being part of the EU strengthens Britain's position. The EU has already imposed tariffs on cheap Chinese steel imports. Using the full weight of the EU - by far China's largest export market - will make it easier to push for a fairer deal". This claim is so ridiculous that it defies parody. As any who knows anything about the EU could tell them the idea that the British government could, right now, intervene to save Redcar, would be a non-starter, as the European Commission would immediately ban such an action as anti competitive. Does it never occur to these people that, were we to be the independent country we were before joining the European project, we could do precisely as we wished to protect our vital industries and the jobs of our own people without reference to the interfering bureaucrats of Brussels.

I know that those who have joined UKIP from the right of the Conservative party will not agree with my opinion but I believe that spivs on one side and ideological fanatics on the other have undermined the industrial strength of this country which, in my lifetime, had, inter alia, the largest marine fleet in the world, and still possessed the necessary industry to sustain us during wartime emergencies. Short term considerations and political dogma have been given priority over the vital requirements of Britain and we shall all pay the price eventually, unless those who really care about the nation and its people take the place of the current political class.