British businesses are not the only ones suffering from Cameron’s attempted blackmail over Europe. It seems government officials themselves are getting so worried about the UK’s under-representation in the EU institutions that they are buying pseduo-advertising space in the Guardian to try and reverse the trend:
British officials have played a crucial role in shaping the EU in the past. We have seen generations of talented British people driving the creation of the single market, EU enlargement, trade policy, competition policy, and much more [â€¦] Yet fewer and fewer British people are going for jobs in the European institutions. The start of a new round of recruitment for the Commission is a vital opportunity to reverse this trend.
This is all well and good, but do they really not get it? Of course having talented UK staff working in the heart of the European Commission is in the national interest. But it’s hardly a surprise that this is suffering, given David Cameron’s isolationist posturing in speech after speech on Europe. Why would this country’s best and brightest be interested in a career which their own prime minister wants to cut short in a couple of years’ time on the basis of a bizarre and arbitrary set of demands?
One slightly desperate advertorial in the Guardian can’t reverse years of toxic rhetoric from the Tories. If I were Mr Fraser, the author of the piece, I’d be banging my head against my desk in despair every time Cameron steps up to the dispatch box.