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Reader believes Brexit lies and mistruths

I am impelled to reply to Ashley Smith (Letters, October 30) who rants about the EU and then goes on to repeat lies and mistruths he chose to believe.

For instance – our environmental credentials have improved since we joined the EU. We had to clean up our act and not pump raw sewage onto beaches, etc. Extinction Rebellion has nothing to do with this and is aimed at saving the planet.

The EU is more environmentally friendly than the UK could hope to be. Coal power stations closed in Germany, for instance, the country achieving 90% renewable energy.

Brexit (21629799)
Brexit (21629799)

The horsemeat scandal. Perhaps Ashley is unaware an abattoir owner supplied horsemeat instead of beef. His manager forged receipts stating the horsemeat was beef. They were both fined.

As to steel workers. The EU wanted to apply tariffs on cheap imported steel, so as to protect our steel industries. To avoid these tariffs, the Indian company, Tata, bought British Steel as a step in the door of the EU. Cameron vetoed the tariffs and they never came about, so Tata had no need for what they bought, failed to invest, and closed the plant.

What actually happened was the opposite of what Ashley claimed. Where on earth is he getting his misinformation from?

Our trawlermen – before we joined the EU, we were happy to fish some species into extinction. Quotas were brought in once we joined, to ensure we can still get the species we enjoy eating.

Farmers are NOT forced to live transport animals abroad. And as for ‘meagre subsidies’, as the song goes “I’ve never seen a farmer on a bike”.

However, once we leave the EU and farmers have to apply tariffs on what they want to export, there might be a bit of a run on bikes as many have warned they will go bust.

Free movement means I can go to live, travel, get a job, get healthcare in any of the member states.

Jobs? There are jobs for those who want to work. School places and benefits, again NOTHING to do with the EU. If school places are short, blame Tory austerity and under-funding.

Benefit cuts – again, if he sat and thought, perhaps he might see that benefits have nothing to do with the EU.

As a soldier’s daughter who grew up mostly in Germany, then coming back to England only for a couple of months between postings, I got to compare my standard of living, there and here, pre-EU. Then I became a soldier’s wife, responsible for shopping and feeding my family.

When we got posted back to England, pre-EU, what a shock I had as I couldn’t afford most of the food, meat, butter, fresh vegetables, I’d been used to buying.

Then we joined the EU and, when I next went shopping, I was gobsmacked to see a queue and a sign in a shop window stating “EU butter, rationed to two packs per regular customer”. Why were they queuing? Because it was almost half the price butter was normally. Almost overnight, prices of food came down and eating better was within the budget of everyone.

Once tariffs come in and sterling plunges further, the cost of imported food will rise sharply.

Some have told me “if you don’t like it here, why don’t you leave and go to live in the EU”. That’s a bit ironic since, if we leave, some narrow-minded xenophobes will have removed that option for me and anyone else who’s enjoyed the freedom to live and travel and work elsewhere.

Pam Thompson,

Tydd St Giles.

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