Letter: As others see us
Thursday 17 June 1999
Too often the European Union is presented as something of concern mostly to big business which, rather than empowering us, makes us feel helpless. Unfortunately the development of the European Union has never actively involved the people of Europe - reform has been driven by a small elite.
This was never clearer than at last week's elections, where the European dimension was ignored at the expense of domestic issues, and the elections to the world's only multinational parliament became 15 different opinion polls on the 15 member governments - tests they largely failed.
The solution is properly to involve people in European politics, to have better information on where power lies, to encourage more aspiring politicians to see their future in Europe and to close the democratic deficit in Brussels. For the people of Britain clearly to see their future in Europe, the barriers to their involvement must be broken down.
The creation of devolved assemblies, reform to local government and developments in Europe mean that we are in the process of re-negotiating where power exercised in our name should lie. It must be clearer where different powers lie, for if we don't understand what we are voting for, why should we bother?
Director, Charter 88
TV review Nick Hewer, the man whose eyebrows speak a thousand words, is set to leave The Apprentice
Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites
TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Peter Lik: The self-proclaimed 'fine-art photographer' whose work sells for millions
The best underrated Christmas movies from Love, Actually to While You Were Sleeping
Grace Dent on TV: The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies was a beautifully shot, immensely considered drama
The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies, review: Jason Watkins is brilliant, but real victim Joanna Yeates is reduced to a footnote
Marilyn Manson denies involvement in shocking Lana Del Rey rape video
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food