Sir Edward Heath

Edward Heath

It’s been quiet lately. But I found this quote by the late Sir Edward Heath, which deserves to be read by everyone interested in this subject. It was in a speech at Chislehurst Grammar School on 25 April 1975, at the time of the referendum campaign.

“The anti-Marketeers are also living in a dream world when they talk about sovereignty. They see sovereignty in terms of the textbooks rather than the real world. What does national sovereignty mean in plain English? It means the freedom to act effectively in our national interests and in the individual interests of our people. And the reality is that we can act more effectively in all our interests if we work together and pool our sovereignty with others. It’s rather like the strength of a family. Members of a family conform to certain basic general rules of behaviour because they know that they are stronger, economically and socially, as part of the family than they could ever be as individuals. Of course a country, like an individual, can decide to go it alone. And in theory at least, they may appear to have more freedom. But freedom to do what? Free to buy what you want but too poor to afford it. Free to say whatever you like – but too weak for anyone to listen. This is the sovereignty and the freedom that the anti-Marketeers dangle before you but it is a sham sovereignty and a fictional freedom…”

This blog entry first appeared on www.yes-campaign.net. The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of Federal Union or of the Yes campaign.

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