A City of London boss has slammed the campaign to remain within the European Union (EU) as “Orwellian,” spinning “Alice in Wonderland propaganda.” He has called on Britons to vote to leave, arguing we have a “duty to protect ourselves” against the dangers of EU membership.
The City of London has so far been seen as backing a vote to remain within the EU, thanks to figures such as the Bank of England’s Governor Mark Carney who in March warned that a Brexit posed the biggest risk to Britain’s financial stability.
More recently, the ratings agency Standard and Poor’s threatened to downgrade Britain’s credit rating should it leave the Union – although it added it might downgrade Britain even if it stays within the bloc.
But Michael Petley, founder and chief investment officer of the ECU Group, one of the UK’s leading currency managers, has bucked the trend.
“Think what you will of the merits, or otherwise, of the UK remaining in the EU, the individual arguments for remaining are clearly all converging in on us in a carefully co-ordinated and brutal policy of draconian control by propaganda, misinformation and intimidation,” he has written in an article for The Telegraph.
“In classic Orwellian style, we have been subjected to wave upon wave of highly subjective opinion, dressed up as “facts” in an attempt to herd the British public, like cowering lemmings, into line.”
He has mocked the Prime Minister David Cameron for advising Britons to remain within the EU, despite failing to secure any meaningful reform of Britain’s membership deal in a much-touted renogiation.
“David Cameron himself clearly identified a number of key, woeful deficiencies in the construct and machinations of both the EU and the eurozone in his January 2013 Bloomberg speech.
“Three years on and, despite having given Brussels fair warning of an electoral pledge to hold an in-out referendum, what has changed exactly in the EU or eurozone? Nothing. Nichts. Rien. Niente. Nada.
“And so it is perhaps with more than a little sense of incredulity that today we are expected to fall for Alice in Wonderland propaganda “setting out the facts”, extolling the virtues of our “special status” in a “reformed” EU and warning of the terrifying dangers and consequences of leaving this outdated, unreformed, and increasingly uncompetitive project.”
The UK has been pushing for reform for decades, Mr Petley points out, and yet time after time the UK is outvoted in the Brussels institutions and her wishes rode roughshod over.
He adds: “To those calling on us to remain in the EU and use our “considerable influence, vision and leadership” to help reshape and evolve it into a cutting-edge modern economic powerhouse, I simply ask: “Upon what basis can you realistically expect to achieve something that has manifestly eluded us for the past 25 years?””
Musing on why the British are now “being told that it is critical we stay trapped in this relic of the past,” he suggests: “Could it be, perhaps, that a dawn of realisation is upon us and that the power hungry elite are scared that the UK’s democratic voice of reason might act as a catalyst for a long overdue end to the European policies of simply unconscionable failure?
“Perhaps we should not be surprised by the torrent of verbal intervention and the fanciful nature of the Remain protagonists’ claims.
“As the president of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, an arch believer in a federal Europe, says:
““When it becomes serious, you have to lie.””
Consequently, Mr Petley urges the British public to “rise above all this fog and see it for what it is.
“[W]e have an overarching duty to protect ourselves the best we can against the inevitability of a eurozone collapse and the overwhelming surge in migration into the UK that EU enlargement promises.”
His intervention comes as more than 100 city executives signed a letter backing a Brexit vote.
Highlighting threats from within the EU, including “the euro, a project doing damage to the social and economic fabric of member countries, including high youth unemployment,” they conclude: “Assuming good political leadership and an effective regulatory environment, we believe that the City is most likely to strengthen its lead as the world’s largest international financial centre, and continue to make a major contribution to the UK economy and employment, outside the EU but with continued access to its capital markets.