This morning's Indy has been very clever, it's front page (pictured) has fifty reasons to love the EU, where number fifty is "Lists like this drive the Eurosceptics mad". Now, as a sceptic of both rampant europhilia and rampant euroscepticism I have to say there is another reason that lists like that drive people mad. It is, quite simply, because chucking a mismatch of subjective and often factually inaccurate stuff on the front page of what claims to be newspaper is bollocks.
Take for example the number one spot on the list, "The end of war between European nations". The European Union didn't do that at all. It was American aid, through the Marshall Plan, and the strength of the strategic alliance of NATO that brought peace and stability to Western Europe. What's more the statement should be caveatted with the words "so far". You can't predict the future.
Number four of the lists say "The creation of the world's largest internal trading market". The important word in that sentence is "internal". What it actually did was create the single largest protectionist trading bloc on the planet which is killing Africa's ability to trade on an equal footing whilst subsidising inefficient European farming.
And let's not spend to much time considering the rather amusing and inherent inherent contradiction between number 16, "Europe is helping to save the planet with regulatory cuts in CO2" and number 23, "Europe's single market has brought cheap flights to the masses, and new prosperity for forgotten cities".
Anyways, I'm not going to fisk the list (which would be very easy) because that will just get me labelled as a eurosceptic and europhiles will point at number fifty and say "see!", I can leave the fisking to DK and Trixy. What I wonder is when will the Independents' habit of palming off op-ed as news on it's front page end?