Only a few days ago William Hague stated in Parliament that this country would not join the euro in the lifetime of this parliament - a policy also enshrined in the LiberalConservative 'programme for government', although in January last year he was saying that the Tories would never take the UK into the euro. Ok, so we do not have a true Tory government but that begs the question: have we ever since 1992?
The ramifications and detail of Hague's statement was not 'picked up' by the media - but hey, this is our media and to expect them to actually notice or delve into what is behind any political statement would be like someone asking for the moon. For too long the media have written and reported on the UK's 'opt-out' of the euro and even Europa adopts the phrase. It is, however, worth noting that the correct phrase to use would be 'opt-in', a fact confirmed from the Europa statement in 2006 that:
"The United Kingdom may change its notification at any moment and introduce the single currency provided that it satisfies the following conditions:
- the UK Government and Parliament take a decision in this respect (with or without a referendum, depending on national law);"
Repeat: 'The United Kingdom may change its notification at any moment and introduce the single currency' - ergo it may 'opt-in'. It is also worth noting that the Lib/Lab/Con broke their promises of a referendum on the EU Constitution - aka The Lisbon Treaty - so it stands to reason that, being politicians, they can break another promise, but I digress.
Return to the comment made by Paul Johnson, on which I posted yesterday, that it is impossible to have a common currency without a common financial policy which in turn cannot occur without a common government. Under the Lisbon Treaty the 'euro', like 'ever closer union', is an aspiration resulting in a 'one-way' road leading to integration. As an aside, it is puzzling that the argument has not been made more of that the euro needs the financial strength and stability of having all members using the same currency - something no doubt which will be used when we are being '
urged' 'coerced' to join by our political elite.
But it will still be an 'opt-in' process!