The Freedom Association and Better Off Out have just published their snappily-titled annual "Balance of Competences Review", which looks at the EU's effect on the UK's place in the world. This link will take you to your very own free copy for download. Even if you are already sceptical of the benefits to the British people of EU membership, I think you may be shocked.
Did you know for example that, as reported in the Freedom Association's newletter today;
Since 2000 the European Union has given the Assad Regime over £1 billion. The money, given to promote such things as "good governance," "social reform" and "economic reform" have obviously all failed - to the detriment of the people of Syria and the international community. However, this revelation was ever the more startling as the United Kingdom did not participate in some of these schemes. It raises further questions over the extent of UK influence within the EU, when programmes fund unsuitable regimes without explicit UK support.
You might very well say that, but you might also note that while Britain did not "participate" directly, as one of the few consistent net contributors to the EU budget*, it certainly contributed financially. Nor is this a "Britain vs the rest" issue. Few taxpayers in any EU country would support having their money given to President Assad. This is an actually an example of the sort of idiocy that is inevitable when a significant proportion of GDP is taken by force and spent by people who do not have to work or risk their own capital to earn it. Our argument here is not with the other peoples of Europe. It almost never is. It's with the bunch of unethical parasites who are living on all our backs.
We cant even be blamed for choosing wrongly. We have no opportunity to elect EU officials. Yet sadly, even when we do theoretically have a choice in our own countries, it's only between different groups of people attracted to the job of taking money by force from their fellow-citizens. Is it any surprise that such a job description attracts the ethically-challenged?
You might naievely expect a government or inter-governmental institution to adopt the approach of a responsible board of a commercial company. Every penny of taxpayers' money expended should be measured against the anticipated benefits to be gained for those taxpayers, just as a board should serve the interests of its shareholders. Sadly, that's a poor metaphor for government. A company's board is dealing with money volunteered by investors who have lots of other choices. A government or treaty organisation is much more like a criminal gang dealing with extorted money. Looked at from that perspective, it's no surprise that the attitude is "easy come, easy go" and "why not give a cut to the gangsters in the neighbouring parishes if it helps to smooth things over". An EU official or politician in any EU country has far more in common with President Assad than with a productive citizen.
To someone with such a mentality, if some money is wasted so what? There's plenty more where it came from. So there always will be until the whole scam collapses or the peoples of Europe make it clear that the inferred "consent" of the social contract is a nonsense and that these actions are not in our name. That's not easy to do, particularly given the corrupt astroturfing shenanigans in which the EU gangsters indulge. But the tough message the British people have just forced their government to give to the people of Syria - that it's up to them to sort out their own corrupt rulers and the cavalry is simply not coming - applies just as much to us.
* This table is based on EU data and the situation is therefore of course far worse than stated. It ignores Agricultural levies and customs contributions, for example, and Britain's share of the former will be massively disproportionate given the superior efficiency of our large, capital-intensive farms. It also ignores administrative costs.