Fainting in Coyles
An occasional letter from the Heart of Euroville

Thursday, June 03, 2004  

Excellent article in the Scotsman on Richard Cobden by Peter Clarke
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Clarke reminds us that today is the 200th birthday of Richard Cobden.

By the sheer power of argument, temperate but passionate, courteous but deadly, Cobden broke the power of the landowners and opened up the British markets to free trade. Which also makes him the father of globalisation.

This noble man is more than a whiskered, respectable Victorian. He offers a model to those rascals seeking election to the parliament that perambulates between Strasbourg and Brussels who invite our interest this week. I’m clear he would urge them to abandon their futile lives and demolish the malignancy of the Commission. If the Corn Laws were evil, what adjective fits the Common Agricultural Policy? The CAP is an iniquity whose poison is spread over the third world.

Well quite. As it goes on what was revlutionary about Cobden then and his ideas bnow, was that he wanted free trade, but was preppared to have it unilaterally. Rather than hanging around waiting for consensus, just do it. The result, immediately food became cheaper and Britain's economy soared.

Would that thinkers and politicians today had the same drive pashion and foresoight.

posted by Eliab | 12:04 pm
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