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4 Oct, 2010 05:04

Conference questions UK’s links to EU

On the fringes of the Tory Party conference that kicked off this week in Birmingham, England, euro skeptics met to question the country’s relationship with the EU as well the country’s erosion of civil freedom.

Dubbed the Freedom Zone, the event follows a week of Europe-wide day-of-action when some 100,000 people gathered in Brussels alone to protest austerity measures as a response to the European debt crisis.

Participants of the meeting also discuss the “overbearing” nature of the EU and the future of its relationship with the UK under the coalition government.

Conservative Member of Parliament Philip Davies believes that what we are witnessing at the moment is the collapse of the Eurozone.

“You can't have countries with different economic circumstances all being forced into the same interest rate,” Davies told RT. “We've seen what happens then to countries around the world, and then you get civil unrest, because countries can't use typical fiscal measures to try and dampen down or stoke up their economy.”

Harry Cole, a political blogger present at the event, says Freedom Zone includes “some of the brightest minds” of the Conservative and Independent Parties, while shining a light on issues ignored by the main conference participants.

The last thing [the Conservative Party] wants to talk about is Europe,” Cole said. “So, it is vital that Freedom Zone is able to have these discussions. We’ve got some of the best experts… People who have devoted their lives fighting the EU are gathered here.”

Some of those present at the meeting will talk about the erosion of civil liberties, which includes the excessive use of CCTV surveillance and, in extreme cases, microchips.

Alex Deane from Big Brother Watch says academic studies have proven that the wide use of CCTV surveillance in Britain is unwarranted.

The Campbell collaboration did a [study] of all reports into CCTV…and none of them suggested that it made us any safer, except for a marginal increase in safety in car parks,” Deane said. “And for that marginal increase, we have sacrificed enormous amounts of money and a great deal of privacy.”

Paul Staines, a political blogger for Guido Fawkes, firmly believes that private individuals have a right to privacy.

“But if you are in public life and you take public money, then the public has the right to know everything about you, particularly if it involves money,” Staines told RT.

Douglas Carswell, a Conservative MP, believes that Ireland currently demonstrates the folly of having a pan-European policy.

“Ireland just had her monitoring policy and her interest rates set in the interests of a whole Europe, rather than in the interest of the Irish economy – and the car crash that we see is the consequence,” he said. “The lesson we need to draw from this is that for Europe to do well, we should not be a Europeanizing policy, we should be allowing member states to set more and more of their own policy.”