Paul Stainton: Got a problem? Blame Europe . . .

Peterborough Telegraph's Man behind the mic column by Paul Stainton, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire host - peterboroughtoday.co.uk
Peterborough Telegraph's Man behind the mic column by Paul Stainton, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire host - peterboroughtoday.co.uk
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There was a time that if you tripped over a fountain in Cathedral Square, you would get up, dust yourself down and let your mum put some butter on that bruised knee.

These days, before the blood has even dried, people are measuring the height of the paving slabs, taking photos, gathering witnesses and firing off a letter to the council, demanding thousands in compensation.

Our car insurance premiums are through the roof because every minor bump on the Parkway appears to cause whiplash and result in a nice pain free holiday on the Costa Del Sol for the “Survivors.”

“Signed up for some insurance you didn’t require?” “Failed to read the small print?”

“No problem, how much wonga do you want?”

“Have you burgled a house in the last five years and been injured in the process?”

“Then you should ring Stainton and Sons now for expert advice on how to play the system.”

There is more chance of Idris Elba winning an Oscar than there is of somebody actually taking responsibility for their actions these days.

Nothing it seems, is our fault anymore, someone else is always to blame and it’s usually Europe.

Can’t get a doctor’s appointment? Blame Europe. Too many people in the country? Blame Europe.

No money to patrol Central Park in the winter to stop it being taken over by drug addicts, drunks and people who appear not to have a toilet in their house? Blame Europe!

It’s easy to pass the buck for all of our woes on to our continental cousins but the truth is that they are not really culpable for many of them, despite what some politicians would have you believe.

I understand why Peterborough has become one of the most Eurosceptic places in the country and believe me if we were voting to leave Eurovision then my cross would be in the box already – Nobody needs another Bardot.

But the truth is that many of our present day ills were not caused by the French or the Germans and the only thing that the Dutch have to answer for is squeezing mayonnaise on their chips.

The financial misfortunes of this country were not triggered by Brussels, they were caused by the “old boys network” of bankers and politicians, by successive governments, whose financial mismanagement of the economy and laughably lax rules, left us little people to foot the bill.

Whilst we pay with lower wages and cuts to essential services, they carry on with ever bigger bonuses in the square mile and huge pay rises in Westminster – Over 11% in the last year!

There is no doubt that the scale and speed of illegal immigration and European migration caused huge problems for this city’s infrastructure and in some people’s eyes, it has been a huge negative. But again this is not the fault of Europe.

If Tony Blair and his pals had put controls in place, instead of spending their time daydreaming about some sort of multi-cultural utopia, then maybe people would be more tolerant and understanding than they are 
today.

When Tony promised tougher border controls in 2004, most people believed him as we did David Cameron when he promised to get net migration under 100,000 by 2020 – It’s currently over 300,000.

I know what to do – Blame Europe.