27 Sep 2015

Open letter to Dominic Cummings, Business for Britain

On his blog yesterday, Dominic Cummings of the Business for Britain campaign, posted a piece about the latest bulletin issued by BfB.

In response to his piece I have left the following comment (awaiting moderation at the time of writing), which makes some important points that anyone interested in Brexit should know.

Hopefully Dominic will allow the comment through moderation and reply to it in due course.

UPDATE - My comment is no longer pending on Dominic Cummings' blog and seems to have been moderated out. I'm sure readers will draw their own conclusions.

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Mr Cummings, Business for Britain has only ever been interested in talking about what some business people want. It has never articulated anything concerning the interests of ordinary people or democratic principle being served by leaving the EU.

In fact, on that point, Business or Britain has never declared any intention of pushing for the UK to leave the EU. It has never advanced a single positive argument for leaving, save the commercial interests of a group of business people. The BfB position has always been to push for membership of a reformed EU. That remains the position on the BfB website. Are we to believe some kind of Damascene conversion is taking place?

The bulletin you seemingly endorse says, following the Five Presidents report, that EU plans, 'will leave Britain as a permanent second-class member state, subject to EU law but condemned to be constantly outvoted in the EU’s institutions.' This neatly describes a two-tier Europe. How is it that BfB claim to be opposed to this when its Chief Executive, Matthew Elliott, actively seeks just such a settlement, as made clear in his quote below?
'If the Government gets a two-tier Europe, we’re very much in.'
(Source: Evening Standard)
So when you talk of scaling up the campaign 'to hundreds of staff and thousands of volunteers' what exactly are these people going to be campaigning for? BfB and its team has offered nothing to people who want to leave the EU as a matter of democratic principle and there is nothing in your post that changes that. There is no rational reason for ordinary people to buy into anything Matthew Elliott is selling.

As for the cutting-edge technology required to support whatever campaign Matthew Elliott wants to run, are we to assume this will be sourced from the companies that Mr Elliott and his tight-knit friends Paul Staines, Jag Singh and Andrew Whitehurst set up for just such as campaign as this, with the potential for them all to benefit through ownership and/or consulting fees?