The ridiculous European Parliament vote over the opt-out to the Working Time Directive and its various implication have been relatively well covered in the media (with the exception of the BBC, whose luminaries still do not understand the difference between the European Council, the Council of Minister and the Council of Europe).
Nevertheless, I cannot resist quoting one of our own MEPs, a Labour chap by the name of Stephen Hughes, elected probably on something like 10 per cent of the available vote and the Labour employment spokesman.
Disdaining the fire-and-brimstone class war rhetoric of his French Communist colleague, Jacky Henin, Mr Hughes pompously explained why he wanted to make the British (and European) economy uncompetitive and drive up unemployment in the private sector:
“We don’t want an opt-out. We want a proper balance between work and family life in Britain as in every other member state of the EU.”Obviously he has missed the fact that a large proportion of the working force in other member states of the EU is spending more time with its family than it would like because there are no jobs to go to.
In any case who is this MEP, whose idea of work is to sign in and disappear, to tell us what the proper balance is between anything? This tells you all you need to know about our rulers in Brussels, whether they are British or other, whether they are in the Commission or the Parliament. Come to think of it, the Commission and its minions are more likely to come up with sensible comments than those wastrels in the European Parliament.