Monday, 16 March 2009

Dr Crippen Will Never Get So Far Again With New Labour's E-Borders. But Do We Care?

Membership of the European Union is not popular in the United Kingdom. Its one saving-grace was the ease with which Europeans (including us) could move about their half continent; holiday, spend more of their time here and there, settle elsewhere, return home. Most of us are fond of our former Roman Empire fellow citizens. We have a lot in common. But because England Won the War and the rest, by definition, lost it, subjecting national decision-taking on foreign relations, political forms, cultural norms, (and a generalised bolshiness in the face of central authority), meant we only wanted to be on good terms not employee relations terms, with the European Union.

That saving grace has just been wiped away. Try to get off the British Isles and we are required to register 24 hours in advance our name, address, age, gender, civil status, destination, travelling companions, credit card details, length of absence, and Angels cannot begin to imagine what else.

This is not happening in Schengen - the core of the European Union. Florence airport is a bus stop, without oyster cards tracking where Angels fly. If we cannot travel freely and anonymously round Europe; if the Roman Empire runs, but not for us, what is the point of European Union membership at all?

What is the point of Bloomsbury if the Stasi sit in St Pancras?


Nomad said...

My travel plans for this summer have just performed the perfect U-turn. I would rather spend my cash elsewhere than be subjected to this nonsense.

I have been warning for ages that the station will be closing shortly....

hatfield girl said...

Well it's shut now Nomad, as you warned. Shortly it will normally take 24 hours to get an exit visa. That's what all those practice queues for the last couple of years at so-called security checks in the airports have been about. Getting large masses of travellers used to being let through one by one. Or stopped arbitrarily for infringement of unknown regulations.

it's either banned or compulsory said...

I came across this topic on a couple of bloggs and thought they were being all ironic n stuff.
Is this really serious ? I can't just taxi up to my lovely local airport and buy a ticket on spec to Amsterdam or wherever takes my fancy ?

What does the EU have to say about this restriction on the free movement of goods and people ?

Anonymous said...

How long, I wonder, before 24 hours' notice becomes 72 hours, then becomes a week, then "at the discretion" of someone?

Such powers, of course, will be used only in the most serious, exceptional cases.

As we've heard so many times before.

Odin's Raven said...

How long before they work it the other way, and only allow the entry or return of pre-approved persons, before planes or ships bound for Britain will be cleared for departure?

Will the EU be checking and reporting your actual movements abroad to ensure they do not differ from what was approved?

hatfield girl said...

Raven, when the order to open the crossing points into west Berlin was received the Stasi were stamping Anulled on the papers of people from the east and stating that if they left they could not return. Of course that lasted for only a few hours as Germany is one country, but denying re-entry was trialled and some, with reponsibilities in the east, turned back.