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Legacy of rule

THE Tory Malcolm Harbour MEP describes his party’s policy on Europe as being ‘clear and unambiguous’ and yet in his letter (News, July 17) he seemed unable to bring himself to mention the embarrassing division that is opening up between the British Tories and the mainstream Christian Democrats (EPP) that prevail in most of Europe.

THE Tory Malcolm Harbour MEP describes his party’s policy on Europe as being ‘clear and unambiguous’ and yet in his letter (News, July 17) he seemed unable to bring himself to mention the embarrassing division that is opening up between the British Tories and the mainstream Christian Democrats (EPP) that prevail in most of Europe.

Although your correspondent does at least appear to support EU membership, Mr Harbour claimed that job creation, science and technology will only be achieved through ‘an open policy Europe’, yet it should be remembered that before Britain actually joined the European Community along with Ireland and Denmark many British Conservatives accepted that EFTA was an inadequate alternative.

I recognise that we have to accept the strictures from the current crisis, plus the fact that Britain has a rather clapped out manufacturing sector to export its way out of trouble. Secondly, many consumers are burdened by debt - the average household now owes more that 170 per cent of a year’s income in comparison with less than 140 per cent in America and little more than 100 per cent in the euro zone.

Even if the eurosceptic Tory Party attempts to put the entire blame for the global crisis on to Labour it’s as well to remember that they were in power much longer period throughout the 20th century than any other political party - and they can not evade that legacy.

Graham Rea, Queens Road, Yardley

 

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