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Schadenfreude: Is the British Prime Minister actively preparing for an exit from the European Union?

David Cameron wants to be able to control immigration from the rest of the EU, writes Schadenfreude, our secret correspondent in Brussels.

Comment: since free movement is one of the cardinal principles of Union   there is no chance of qualifying it. Something is being done about “benefit   tourism” and more is possible, but not the principle of free movement.

It would require Treaty amendment, ratified by all EU members, some after referenda. This is not on.

Cameron exaggerated the issue of back payment of the UK’s budget contribution.

Comment: The public was led to believe that this was a monstrous imposition, whereas it was the consequence of an arrangement to which the British Government had agreed (… but apparently failed to recognise when it came into force).

Cameron says that the (former) European Commission had become “too bossy”.

Comment: He did not offer examples. They would have been cases where the Commission fulfilled its task of overseeing respect for the provision of the Treaties.

Cameron is promising a “new settlement” with the EU.

Comment: the content of the new deal is tantalisingly obscure.

Since Conservative Europhobia is strong it would have to include something   about “restoring democracy” and in particular about a role for the UK Parliament in the adoption of EU laws – which would mean all Member states’ legislatures having the same power. This is a recipe for paralysis.

But let us be fair and wait for the prospectus.

Cameron will predictably stir up a new outcry against the new Commission’s  proposals for the next EU budget.

Comment: You do not win elections by giving Johnny Foreigner your money. And the United Kingdom Independence Party is breathing down his neck.

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