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My Challenge to You, Mr Gove

21/04/2016 10:56

Dear Mr Gove,

I listened to you speak with respect and fear in equal measure this week. Your oratory skills are impressive and at times, your rhetoric is certainly convincing.
The problem is, I just don't believe WHAT you're saying.

You say that we can take back control of trade. That we can spend the money we give to Europe on schools, hospitals and even save the UK steel industry. And all we need to do is vote OUT on the 23rd June.

You say that the Chancellor George Osborne has done his numbers on the back of a fag packet this week and is just trying to use fear and fear alone to make us vote for the status quo...

(As an ad man I have always had my doubts about the power of using the fear factor to influence human behaviour. It certainly doesn't work when you're asking people to spend their money, but maybe it does work when you're asking them to vote for their future?)

Maybe fear just sticks with us a little longer than euphoria. And the memory of its impact lives a little longer in the synapses.

But. My belief is that Project Fear is a construct not of Remain, but of Leave. Is it scaremongering to warn children to take care when crossing a busy road?

'Project Fear' suggests a confected fairytale. Remain, we are urged to believe aren't in the business of road safety, but that of Hans Christian Andersen.

However, the alarm bells are being rung not simply by George Osborne, but everywhere you care to look. By eight US Treasury Secretaries, by the G20, by every leading head of state, economists, trade unions, by international institutions and almost unanimously by business.

When confronted with this list, I was enlightened by your reply:

"We've got supporters too you know?"

Like, the former Chancellor of the Exchequer. The former Director General of the CBI and the former owners of a couple of once successful British businesses.

I'm sure they're comfy up there in those ivory towers painted in red, white and blue. But where are your supporters that have real skin in the game today? The ones still getting their hands dirty rather than just counting their money earned in years gone by?

This whole EU Referendum debate is just a giant squabble between the left and right of your party. It isn't about economics. It's about ideology.

So here's my challenge to you Mr Gove. Line up some of those supporters running businesses like mine today who truly believe an OUT campaign is best for Britain and I will be willing to hear them out...

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