Letter: The constitution and the economy

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Sir: Those who oppose Maastricht are at a disadvantage because they seem to have nothing to suggest in its place. That we have had an adverse balance of trade with the Community since 1974 cuts no ice with manufacturers who are concerned only to promote the interests of their own companies. Nevertheless, the fact remains that to stay a member of a club in which one is consistently on the losing side is bound to damage the national interest, whatever individual industrialists may say.

I would therefore like to suggest that we take a less committed look at the situation. It seems to me that we could do a lot worse than withdraw from Europe altogether with a view to becoming the 51st state of the USA.

We should then be dealing with people who share much the same language, who have consistently shown themselves on the side of peace and with whom we have enough in common not to worry too much about difficult treaty and defence obligations. As regards trade, the Americans might well welcome enthusiastically the idea of a Hong Kong in Europe.

Yours faithfully,


House of Lords

London, SW1

22 February