Nick Witney, Brexit to Nowhere: The Foreign Policy Consequences of “Out”, European Council on Foreign Relations, ECFR, November 2015. www.ecfr.eu; Robin Niblett, Britain, Europe and the World: Rethinking the UK’s Circles of Influence, Chatham House: The Royal Institute of International Affairs, October 2015. https://www.chathamhouse.org/publication/britain-europe-and-world-rethinking-uk-circles-influence
Prime Minister Cameron’s letter to Donald Tusk the President of the European Council, dated November 10, 2015 has started the ball rolling on the more public discussion of the UK’s renegotiation of its relationship with the EU. The letter is entitled “ A New Settlement for the United Kingdom in a Reformed European Union.” It has four major components: economic governance to ensure that further integration among members of the Eurozone does not jeopardise the Single Market for those outside the currency; competitiveness to express the UK’s support for a single digital market, a capital markets union, EU trade deals with the US, Japan, China and ASEAN, as well as EU commitments to reduce regulatory burdens on firms and to boost competitiveness; sovereignty, involving an opt out for the UK regarding its existing commitment to “ever closer union”, an enhanced role for national parliaments, and real progress on implementing the EU’s verbal commitment to subsidiarity; finally, there is a section on the current concern about immigration.
Reactions have been varied: MPs in favour of Out effect dismay; Chancellor Merkel is reported as saying that a deal is doable; Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament, questions the legality of some of the proposals; Dublin welcomes the letter’s content. The Danish Prime Minister’s comment about the letter fairly encapsulates the response among member states: Cameron’s letter forms a “good basis for concrete negotiations”, but the process would be “difficult”, Lars Lokke Rasmussen tweets. “I hope, he adds, we will succeed because we need a strong UK in EU.”
At the start of the negotiations, prospects look good for a successful negotiation, followed by an In referendum victory. The Opinion polls show a solid majority for the Ins since mid 2014, though polls record large swings over the longer term. More to the point, the bookmaker, PaddyPower gives 1:4 in favour of the Ins. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/eureferendum/11617702/poll.html
In the autumn of 2015, furthermore, the Outs would have to agree that the UK has done very well as a member of the EU. The UK ranks No 6 out of 189 in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business index; 10 out of 140 in the World Economic Forum’s competitiveness index; its outward stock of foreign direct investment is second only to that of the US; it is the world’s 9th exporter, and is the fifth largest economy in the world in terms of nominal gdp, and the second in the EU. As an earnest of its commitment to internationalism, the UK pays £60 billion per annum for aid, defence and the EU. London is the leading global financial centre, ahead of New York, according to the Global Financial Centres Index . Not bad for a country which is accused of flirting with “isolation”. http://www.longfinance.net/images/GFCI17_23March2015.pdf
BREXIT TO NOWHERE.
Both reports under review are firmly Ins, and both emanate from think tanks. Not surprisingly, both are rather cerebral. That does not prevent Nick Witney, in his Brexit to Nowhere, playing on the fear factor for all it is worth. Brexit damages the EU and the UK; it would trigger Scottish independence and civil war in northern Ireland. As the UK fragmented further, so would the EU. Scottish independence and Ireland’s unity would put wind in the sails of the Flemish and the Catalans. An Out win would encourage anti democratic forces across the continent, by which Witney presumably means Marine Le Pen as President of France. The lady considers reviving France’s auld alliance with Russia, and Putin is on friendly terms with Hungary’s Viktor Orban, who has good words to say about dictatorships. In November, the conservative, patriotic, Eurosceptic Law and Justice party swept to victory in Poland’s parliamentary elections. Were Brexit to occur, the contempt in which the EU is held by the dictators of the world would be magnified, and the divisions within the RestEU would widen, he argues.
On matters of trade, Witney points out that UK firms trade around the world, and on better terms as members of the EU bloc, than if the UK was on its own. No independent European nation can hope to exercise real influence on the world stage by itself, particularly under existing global conditions where the multilateral governance structures set up with UK backing in the 1940s are in trouble: the Doha trade agenda has been on hold for some time now. Voting rights in the World Bank and the IMF reflect the world of the 1950s, not that of the 2020s, where China, India, Brazil, Russia, or Indonesia will, through all predictable travails and tribulations, continue their rise as powers on the world stage.
In this world of rising powers, less committed to the liberal international institutions which preserved the UK’s global influence for so long beyond Empire, what Witney describes is a more ferocious mercantilism at work. In place of trade agreements predicated on the principle of most favoured nation treatment, (Country A makes generous concessions to Country B, and those concessions are available to countries C,D,E, F and so on), there is a global race to substitute a cat’s cradle of bilateral and regional trade agreements. Free Trade Agreements, much favoured by the Outs, are no such thing, he rightly points out: they are toughly negotiated “fair” trade agreements where countries negotiate hard on intellectual property rights, market access, and standards. The idea that the UK could somehow forge more advantageous economic relations with the rest of the world on its own is a triumph, writes Whitney, of hope over reality. As for the idea of turning to Commonwealth markets as an alternative to the EU, it is, he says, pie in the sky. India wants trade deals with the EU, and Australia looks to Asia for markets, and to the US for security.
In terms of European security, the UK Outers, Witney asserts, are also backward looking. President Obama’s “pivot to Asia” is no more than a policy recognition that the world is changing shape. The lessons from US interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq are that the US has to husband scarce resources, draw back from interventions around the world, and adopt an off-shore policy stance, while focusing more on the key bilateral relationship of the twenty first century between the US and China.
In this broader scheme of things, when Washington thinks about the transatlantic relationship, it does so no longer in NATO –centric terms, Witney maintains. Having the UK bang on about NATO is therefore not welcome. Rather, Washington looks to the EU to “take up the slack”, to spend more on security through actions in Africa, the Mid East and in restraining Russian adventurism in Europe. For the UK to weaken the EU by retreating into “isolation” would be exactly the wrong way to keep the US interested in Europe.
Similar lukewarm attitudes towards the UK are present in European capitals, he records. On balance, Witney sees member states preferring that the UK stay: each has their own sets of reasons, Germany and The Netherlands appreciate the UK as a free trade ally; France dislikes “Anglo-Saxon” influence, but sees the value of the UK as one of the permanent members of the UN Security Council. They will negotiate to ensure an In victory, not because of warm feelings to the UK so much as out of fear of Brexit. Scarcely a ringing endorsement of faith in the EU project.
RETHINKING THE UK’s CIRCLES Of INFLUENCE.
Robin Niblett goes over much of the same terrain, but in rather more conceptual vein. The UK, Niblett, argues has to revise its perception of the country’s position in the world: taking Churchill’s three circles, the Commonwealth, the United States and Europe, as paradigm, he proposes a vision of the UK surrounded by three concentric circles of influence: the inner circle is the EU; the second circle incorporating the security and economic relations with the US; and the third circle consisting of the UK’s other key bilateral and institutional relationships. All relationships are important, but a foreign policy that prioritizes Europe as the inner circle, is likely to prove the most effective, he maintains, all the more so as the US is pivoting to the Asia Pacific. His proposal is that the EU provide the strong geopolitical base to a UK foreign policy that thereby ensures its prosperity, protects its security and projects its interests.
The UK, writes Niblett, faces three challenges: intense international competitiveness; growing insecurity in a leaderless world where the US is reluctant to lead; decaying structures of international governance. The UK is well enough set to confront these challenges, as one of the best connected countries in the world. But its prospective partners on the world scene are less interested in the UK. India, for instance, is interested primarily in relations with the US, while buying its planes from the French. The US gives priority to its relationship with Germany in Europe and is deepening its security relationship with France, while Washington shows frustration at the UK’s emphasis on global relations, and in particular is concerned that the UK, in its bid to attract Chinese investment to the UK, has gone soft on Beijing.
For the UK to be economically successful, Niblett urges, it needs to think of the EU as constituting Britain’s inner circle. Only by working through EU institutions, and with the UK’s neighbours, can the UK effectively seek to manage the changing global context. The key for the EU’s enduring relevance to the UK economy comes down to size, he argues. Alone the EU has the clout to credibly speak as an equal with the great powers of the moment in matters of trade and market access. The trade barriers that matter now are not tariffs, but non tariff barriers, and only by offering access to the EU’s large internal market, Nisbett implies, are countries like China, India or the US ready to reciprocate.
While acknowledging the structural weaknesses and flaws of the EU, Nisbett is in effect arguing the same as Witney that Brexit is a journey to nowhere. The UK, he concludes, has to commit to be a leading member of the world’s principal civilian power. It is wrong for the UK to consider that it can act alone as a flexibly intermediary in an increasingly competitive and networked world.
But then he adds two addenda:
- as a non-Eurozone member, the UK position need not be marginal. The country’s leadership would have the opportunity to use the UK’s economic size, diplomatic skills and networks and broader capabilities to play a leading role in defining and leveraging more effective EU-wide policies on trade, energy, foreign affairs, security and the single market.
- Going forward, shifting the country’s Eurosceptic perception of its place in the world to a more EU-centred outlook will be the most difficult but the most important challenge for British politicians in the coming years.
Inshallah, So Gott will, Ojala, would be the fatalist’s rejoinder.
My observations on these two interesting contributions to the debate may be summarized in a few key words: fears of fragmentation of the UK and the EU; the question of size in international affairs; the degree of autonomy or free hands which sovereigns have in international affairs; the EU as the UK’s prior geopolitical base; the idea of a hub in a networked world economy. The latter is the key to the UK’s foreign policy, I will argue.
Fears that an Out win in the UK referendum would fragment the UK and contribute to the rise of nationalisms in the EU are quite justifiable. Xenophobia has been on the rise around the world, exemplified by Putin’s Russia, Modi’s India, Abe’s Japan, and Trump in the US. Europe is not spared. The behavior of the Scottish cybernats during the Scottish referendum is a case in point, as is the virulence of the Flemish independence movement or the Catalan nationalists in Spain. Yet it is worth pointing out significant nuances.
In the case of the UK, there is no doubt that the SNP has stated, and may be expected, to be pro In. But it will be interesting to watch whether the SNP is for In at any price, or In for a reformed EU, ie in effect joins Cameron. What is quite apparent from opinion polls is that the SNP has to tread carefully on the subject: a recent Survation poll finds that 51% of people polled across the UK would vote to leave; and 49% would vote to stay. http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/13649438.Poll__Scotland_faces_leaving_EU_despite_most_Scots_wanting_to_stay/ In Scotland, Ins and Outs are the other way round. In other words, given the margin of error to which polls are liable, Scots barely differ from the broader UK population’s attitudes on the EU. To which must be added the oft repeated, but questionable, point that Scotland is more to the “left” than Rest UK, where polls show that voters for left leaning parties are much more pro In than voters for right leaning parties. Left leaning parties(Labour, the Lib Dems, Plaid Cymru, the SNP), to retain credibility, are going to have to mount a sound response to arguments that as presently structured the EU generates mass unemployment: in France, consistently high unemployment since Paris committed to the Euro in 1992; and mass unemployment in Portugal, Spain, Italy and Greece since the outbreak of the crisis, now five years ago, in 2010. Defending the EU’s record in terms of growth and employment will be an unenviable task.
Their approach to this will have to be in the direction of staying In, in order to reform the EU-again Cameron’s position. As opinion polls suggest, this position finds a lot of support: YouGov finds that the arguments which people find the most convincing for being In refer to the value of having influence over EU policies, access to EU markets, the fact that people like me can work and retire on the continent, and that being in is a magnet for inward direct investors who seek a pro business platform to access EU markets. The Out arguments that most convince people, YouGov reports, refer to spending EU budgetary contributions at home and getting control again over borders. https://yougov.co.uk/news/2015/09/22/eu-referendum-state-public-opinion/
Whatever the balance maybe between these two opposing sets of arguments, what will be crucial to the Inners will be to demonstrate that the EU is open to reform-not marginal reforms, but deep reforms that place the continent once more on a growth and employment generating track.
Both authors in their own way emphasise that what matters in a globalized and networked economy is size and clout. On its own, they agree, a medium sized European power like the UK can effectively influence EU affairs to its own benefit, but that its autonomy in international affairs beyond Europe is so limited as to be insignificant. Let us take these two propositions one by one.
The UK can effectively influence EU policy to its own benefit.
I would argue that in the present constellation, the UK has very limited influence to get the EU to reform in such a way as to return it to a growth-oriented and employment generating club. This is not because the UK’s position on Euroland issues is marginal. Nor is it because the UK could compensate for not being in the Euro by playing a “leading role” in pushing EU-wide policies on trade, energy, foreign affairs, security or the single market. It is because there is no agreement on the major question of how to get Euroland’s economy back to growth.
This was not the case at the time of the “1992” programme in the mid 1980s. The UK successfully championed the programme, with the enthusiastic backing of Prime Minister Thatcher; but the internal market was not the objective of President Mitterrand or Commission President Jacques Delors. Delors had been Finance Minister in March 1983, when the Bundesbank in effect dictated to the French government what its economic policy alternatives were. Delors never forgot: his consistent objective from there on out was to abolish the Bundesbank, and to create a European Central Bank. The internal market was a means not an end. When it became obvious that Delors wanted monetary union, requiring a federal European state, Thatcher declared her opposition in the Bruges speech of August 1988. But it was too late: the bandwagon was rolling.
To put it bluntly, the broad consensus in “Brussels” in favour of “ever closer union” has effectively resulted in what is widely recognised now as a disaster of the first order, described by many as the worst economic policy decision since at least the second world war. There is little recognition of this in “Brussels”. Rather, the Brussels crew has paddled the collective Euro canoe joyfully up the river. So convinced were the canoe’s crew in the early decade of the millennium that their craft was travelling fast in the right direction, that they metaphorically threw away the paddles. Then came 2010. Now, the roar of the Niagara Falls is coming ever closer, and ever louder, and the canoe’s crew is finding outward composure, to convince financial markets that they are on the right track, ever more difficult to sustain. At this point, the canoe analogy may be profitably dispensed with.
The problem facing UK Inners is that Euroland is in deadlock: it is an understatement that our authors make to admit that the EU has flaws and structural problems. Germany is for a move to a European fiscal pact which entrenches balanced budgets across Euroland. France and Italy on the other hand are for a Transferunion. There is no hope of the latter in the foreseeable future; France is extremely reluctant to sign up to the former. Growth in southern Europe is therefore only possible, given the absence of currency adjustments, through wage compression. But that is in a context where Germany is running a chronic current account surplus rising now to 7.8% gdp, implying that to gain competitiveness, wage compression in southern Euroland is going to have to be even more severe. I do not envy left leaning party spokespeople the task that faces them of credibly arguing that a UK reform agenda for the EU will have much effect. There is an argument, but it sits more comfortably with centre right parties: by staying in, the argument runs, we will promote more market in the EU. That is a red rag to Marine Le Pen’s bull. In any case, more market would have to be accompanied by more flexible labour markets. We are light years from that, and southern Europe is many, if not light years, away from emerging from mass unemployment, mass emigration, and the radicalisation of national politics. Euroland’s future is not in UK hands; if it were, things would be much better. We would have a flexible, messy European mosaic of interdependent states, bumbling by at high levels of growth and employment. But that is a counterfactual dream. Euroland is in the hands of those who have created the disaster.
The UK’s autonomy in international affairs beyond Europe is so limited as to be insignificant.
It is definitely the case that the structure of world affairs is changing, that new powers are emerging on the world scene, and arguably that the most important bilateral relationship in world affairs is that between the US and China. It is also true that the EU remains the world’s prime emporium, richer than any other part of the world, with the largest stock of foreign investment around the world by a very long way, and the major market both for China and for the US, whether via trade or via local production of US corporations in Europe. Europe collective corporate footprint in mainland China is massive; China’s corporate footprint in Europe is small, but growing. In aggregate, the EU is a giant, and being part of it is a position that garners a lot of support in the UK for the reasons already mentioned.
Both authors subscribe to the view that the UK gets a better deal in negotiations about market access as a member than it would were the Outers to win. The examples are cited that the UK can trade all over the world, that the EU has more than a 100 trade agreements around the world, and that it is negotiating trade opening deals all the time with the US and with the rising powers. Deals, for instance, have just been signed with South Korea, Australia, Canada and Singapore.
At this point, the Inners should be invited to pause for breath. If ever there were middle size countries in the world, and all doing very well think you, they are Korea, Australia, Canada and Singapore. And Singapore is definitely not middle sized, but a tiny if formidable city state. They are all self governing countries. In fact, Australia is once again talking about becoming a republic. Singapore, with a per capita income 30 times less than that of the UK in 1960 at the time of independence, now has per capita income twice that of the UK. Canada’s neighbour is none other than the US. Both Australia and Canada are raw material exporters, and therefore prone to the vagaries of the global commodity cycle. Both are regularly in the top ten countries in the various rankings available on the internet. Singapore generally leads the world pack. It does not “pool” its sovereignty with anyone as the price to trade and do business with them. Nor do Australia, Canada, or Korea. So why not the UK?
One answer given by our authors is that a policy of free hands for a medium sized European country like the UK is pie in the sky. Much better to make the first circle of UK foreign policy the EU. Only with its geopolitical hinterland in the EU can the UK make a difference on the world scene.
This is a weak argument. As the German Constitutional Court stated in its opinion about the Lisbon Treaty, the EU is no more than an alliance of sovereign states. It follows that as sovereigns, they have the power to determine policy in their own interests. Anybody observing Germany since 1945 would have to admit that ex post it can be said to have had a very clear vision of its own interests, notably that it should be embedded in European and Atlantic multilateral organisations. The reasons for Germany agreeing, with clear reservations as the Constitutional Court has made clear, to favour the EU policy institutions are specific to Germany, and in particular to its relations with France. Equally, the arrangements for international cooperation made by Korea, Canada, Singapore or Australia are specific to their own historical and geographic contexts. All sovereigns in the world society of states, to use Hedley Bull’s terminology, have autonomy to make policy. Germany, for instance, had free hands to renounce nuclear energy, thereby becoming more dependent on Russian gas or German coal. Germany definitely used its autonomy in the form of Chancellor Schroeder to state in August 2002 that Germany would in no circumstance back US policy in Iraq. By contrast, it may be argued, the UK has been very reserved in the ways it has deployed its autonomy to make decisions in its own interest: a case in point, is UK agreement to sign up to China’s AIIB, despite noises of disapproval emanating from Washington. As soon as the UK signed up, other EU member states jumped on the AIIB bandwagon. The point is not that a policy of free hands is undesirable; the question is how are sovereigns to use their privilege, in what context and at what cost? Free hands is what sovereigns have.
Niblett makes a strong argument for UK foreign policy to chose the EU as its geopolitical base from which to project influence on to world affairs. This sounds right at first sight: The EU has a massive presence in world affairs. But it also has severe logistical problems. Both authors mention the flaws and structural problems of the EU, but fleetingly, en passant. I consider by contrast that these problems are deep seated, and relate to the fundamental flaws in the EU project.
To put it succinctly, the EU lacks deep consent. By deep consent, I mean not the fluctuations of public opinions recorded by the pollsters, but the traditions, customs and habits in which the peoples of Europe are steeped. In their present form, these traditions, customs and habits are embedded in their nations or states of nations, as Spain calls itself. They are evident, for instance, in France’s suspicion of all things “Anglo-Saxon”, or in Germany’s lesson from 1945 that “nie wieder” will war emanate from Germany soil. This is expressed in cuts in German military spending, or in a proclivity to seek agreement with Russia even when Putin has flouted the most elementary principles of the Europe house, as spelled out in the Helsinki agreements of 1975. There is very little likelihood indeed that the EU will “take up the slack”, as Witney argues, from the US and confront the realities of its own security. If the EU states ever do so, they will only do so on the grounds of their own patriotisms. Sending European troops to die for the President of the European Commission is pie in the sky: on matters of life, death and sport, the nations of Europe continue to be the abodes of passions.
Indeed, the authors, each in their own way, are clearly aware that the UK’s perceptions of itself are deeply rooted, and the EU perceptions of the UK likewise. Nibletts’ suggestion that UK politicians seek to reconcile the UK’s traditional attitudes to the EU as it is is a task that no ambitious politician would be advised to undertake. Kenneth Clarke, for instance, has spent something like half a century, most of that in the forefront of UK politics, seeking to do just that. Reluctantly, he has had to come around to recognize that, in his life time at least, the UK will not join the Euro. To put it another way, politicians have a more mundane task than seeking to reverse the thousand or more years of history, which pervade the minds of voters. I lived for forty years in France, and came to the conclusion that it made life much more pleasant to talk about the latest recipes from Le Coq en Or, than to talk politics. Friendships, I concluded, can be made on a personal basis, but they are likely to be challenged if you venture to question deeply held beliefs.
Translated into mundane politics, that means that Europe has to be treated as it is, as le grand Charles (de Gaulle) used to say. It is only a slight exaggeration to observe that French people consider that Albion is perfide. That is what they are taught at school. They are also taught at school that France won the second world war with the help of the Americans. You don’t have to search too long to hear the view that the UK’s half-way house position in Europe is intentional: it has all those opt outs, plus access to the single market. So why should it muscle in on our intimate counsels: why not encourage the UK to leave, as former Prime Minister Rocard has suggested, so that, presumably, France can carry on its policy of merger with Germany.
The answers to this proposal are equally traditional: the French do not want to merge; Germany now is much less keen on merging; and the UK remains, as it has been for centuries, a key component of the European polity. Other EU member states may be lukewarm about the UK, but as Niblett rightly argues, they do not want Brexit. And for very good reasons: they like to have the UK in to help the balance of power in Europe, that balance of power which EU institutions were designed to replace. That dream too has evaporated. The liberal dream of international institutions super-ceding blood and passion nations remains just that: a dream. Germany’s dominance in the EU coincides with the return of Europe’s traditional balance of power. This does not necessarily mean a return to Bismarck’s Europe: it just means that EU politics runs that bit more through Berlin, and that bit less through “Brussels”. But if poorly handled, we could return to a Bismarck Europe in a world where Europe was no longer central to it. see my: https://storybookreview.wordpress.com/2013/02/08/the-euro-crisis-and-german-primacy/
There is one other point worth making about the argument that the EU become the geopolitical base for UK foreign policy . Europe is not the UK’s geopolitical base: France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland or Sweden are in charge of their own geographic space. Indeed, it is worth pointing to the origins of this use of geopolitical phraseology, in the writings of Mackinder and Haushofer from the early part of the century: geopolitics in its rawest form saw geography without the politics. In the post 1945 determinism that became such a staple of UK thinking on foreign policy, politics was the problem and geoeconomics and geopolitics the solution. Geoeconomics expressed admiration for large markets, efficiencies, big corporations, and managers. Geopolitics expressed ambitions for European states and peoples to be merged into a world power. The barrier to this, as E.H. Carr wrote in Nationalism and After, was nationalism. His book was written in 1945, after Europe had been convulsed by a racial, ie pan-national, war. The theme echoed down the decades, and came to its full expression in the 1972 UK Act of Accession, which clearly defined the attitudes of the Inners of the time, that the EU was supranational. Niblett’s reference to the EU as the UK’s geopolitical base puts him squarely in this tradition.
So where does this leave our comments on the two papers? The Outers are correct to point out that the EU project as conceived is way out of date. The key concept of the 1950s was “integration”; the key concept of the twenty first century is “networking”. Being a hub in a network is how UK foreign policy may consider conceptualizing itself. The network is global. The hub is the UK. You can have your three circles if you will. But what matters is that the UK hub operate effectively; to do that, it has to be rooted in the consent of the people of the UK. It is not, and the reason for that is the false terms on which the UK acceded to the EEC/EU in 1972. Officially, the UK subscribes to a supranational view of the EU, whereby EU law overrides local law. Germany does not. Germany is now more sovereign than the UK, but remains a member of the EU. Germany is relatively at ease in the EU; the UK is not.
That should come as no surprise. After 1945, anchoring the constitutional democratic state in Germany was the permanent concern of successive German leaders . The permanent concern of UK supranationalists, the true heart of the UK In group, was to supercede nations, starting with the UK. The paradox is that to reconcile the UK public to the EU, all that the UK government has to do is to revise Section 2.1 of the 1972 Accession Treaty, stipulating that the Crown in parliament is sovereign, in other words that the buck stops here. Europe is an alliance of sovereign states, cooperating together for mutual benefit, and most definitely not rooted if its every action seeks to whittle away the democratic right of citizens to make their own laws. The 1972 Act of Accession by its own terms betrayed the trust placed in it by the UK electorate. That is why the UK is an awkward partner: a very large chunk of the UK electorate want their country back, as Nigel Farage has been granted the political space to repeat and repeat.
To be precise, Cameron has no need to renegotiate. All that needs to be done can be done at home, just as the base for UK foreign policy is its UK territory, the solidity of its institutions, the loyalty they evoke, the dynamic of the UK economy, and the energy of its people.Everything else is nebensächlich: both these contributions make for an interesting read. They are both for In. But they do not address the fundamental issue of consent. They are definitely in the undemocratic mainstream tradition of thinking about post 1945 UK foreign policy.