Let’s blow the bloody doors off Brussels! Sir Michael Caine urges Britain to leave the EU because ‘you cannot be dictated to by faceless civil servants’
Hollywood star Sir Michael Caine said today he is ‘certain’ Britain should leave the EU – spawning a series of supportive memes from politicians and the public.
The Zulu and Batman star said he would vote for a Brexit because the UK ‘cannot be dictated to by thousands of faceless civil servants’ in Brussels.
David Cameron was asked about it in Prague today – but would not be drawn on the much-loved actor’s words saying: ‘Everyone will have to make up their own mind’.
Ukip leader Nigel Farage today welcomed his call for a Brexit and said: ‘Let’s blow the bloody doors off’ – a famous Caine line from the Italian Job.
Many more posted classic lines and pictures from his long career celebrating his intervention.
MEP Daniel Hannan used a picture of the 82-year-old clutching a shotgun in Get Carter with the caption: ‘My name is Michael Caine and I’ve had enough of being told what to do by faceless Eurocrats’.
Others praised ‘Britain’s greatest movie star’ for his ‘straight talking’.
Sir Michael piled pressure on David Cameron today as he called for a Brexit.
He said: ‘Unless there is some extremely significant changes, we should get out.’
The actor also dismissed claims that Britain would struggle without the economic power of the EU, saying it could be ‘scary’ but Britons would ‘work harder and try harder’ to be a success on our own.
Mr Caine’s intervention is a huge boost for the Out campaign and his is the biggest name to speak out in favour of cutting ties with Brussels.
Sir Michael told the BBC: ‘To me, you’ve now got in Europe a sort of government-by-proxy of everybody, who has now got carried away.
Pressed on his preference, he said: ‘I sort of feel certain we should come out.’
Pro-EU campaigners might be right that Britain could ‘fail’ outside the EU, he suggested, but insisted the country would recover.
‘Well, OK, so you fail. Get better, work harder, try harder and you’ll be a success. But you cannot be dictated to by thousands of faceless civil servants who make these rules.
‘Then they argue about it financially but we buy more from them than we sell to them.’
Sir Michael, who has said in the past that he has no fixed party allegiance and voted for Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair and David Cameron, said his rise from a working-class background to Hollywood millionaire gave him a rare perspective.
‘I’m a middle-of-the-road politician. I have been poor, I have been on the dole, I have worked in factories and I am a multi-millionaire, I have paid heavy taxes. So I know every problem from every angle and not many people are like that.
To me, you’ve now got in Europe a sort of government-by-proxy of everybody, who has now got carried away. I sort of feel certain we should come out
‘The last time I queued up for benefits, Sean Connery was two guys in front of me.’
In a wide-ranging interview the 82-year-old also said that he would star in a film about the Hatton Garden heist ‘in an instant’.
A film about the raid is reportedly in the works, with scriptwriter Simon Cluett hinting that he would like to bring Sir Michael, Terence Stamp or Ray Winstone on board.
Sir Michael, 82, said: ‘I read the paper today about the Hatton Garden robbery, and everyone’s suggesting that I do the film with Ray Winstone. And I would do it in an instant.’
The Hatton Garden Safe Deposit raid saw valuables including gold, diamonds and sapphires worth up to £14 million stolen when the gang of ageing burglars drilled their way into a vault at the heart of London’s jewellery quarter. The thieves were aged 75, 67, 58 and 75.
Sir Michael gave his backing to Tory policy in 2010 when David Cameron launched plans to sign up teenagers for civilian national service.
The Tory leader said every 16-year-old would get the chance to join a National Citizen Service, which will send youths from all backgrounds on summer camps to train them for community projects.
In a coup for the Conservatives, Sir Michael – who was once a teenage gang member in South London – said the programme could help ‘save’ members of Britain’s ‘forgotten’ young generation.
As Sir Michael calls for a Brexit, here is what David Cameron’s key MPs have said on the EU
Iain Duncan Smith: Welfare Secretary
‘I will fight with all my strength to defend the British people’s right to govern themselves. Conservatives want to build a New Europe — not a single state with its own currency and constitution, but a Europe of sovereign, enterprising nations.
Powerful views: Welfare Secretary Iain Duncan Smith (left) and Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond (right)
‘I am for free trade and political co-operation. I am against the euro and European government in principle.’
Philip Hammond, Foreign Secretary
‘The status quo is simply not acceptable. [It] is not in Britain’s interests . . . if the offer by European partners is nothing, no change, no negotiation, I am pretty clear what the answer of the British people in the referendum is going to be.’
Sajid Javid: Business Secretary
‘[Leaving Europe] isn’t something I’d be afraid of . . . Currently costs outweigh benefits. Unless we get major reform, nothing’s off the table.’
‘If the British people decide they want to leave the European Union . . . I’d embrace the opportunities that would create.’
Business Secretary Sajid Javid (pictured left) has said [Leaving Europe] isn’t something I’d be afraid of’ while, in August 2015, Home Secretary Theresa May questioned what the EU’s free movement policy had become
Theresa May: Home Secretary
‘When it was first enshrined, free movement meant the freedom to move to a job, not the freedom to cross borders to look for work or claim benefits.
‘Yet last year, four out of ten EU migrants — 63,000 people — came here with no definite job whatsoever. We must take some big decisions, face down powerful interests . . .
‘The numbers coming from Europe are unsustainable and the rules have to change. Free movement rules don’t just mean European nationals have the right to reside in Britain, they now mean anybody who has married a European can come here almost without condition.’
Priti Patel: Employment Minister
‘Euroscepticism has cemented itself as the prevailing view of the public towards the EU. The British public have had enough of the unaccountable decision-making processes and the hideously expensive, out-of-touch Brussels bureaucracy that have defined the EU. The status quo of EU membership is simply not an option. The British public want less Europe and more Britain.
‘The British public want our political leaders to say “No” to the unaccountable, federalist European agenda which has led to the widespread failures of the European Union we face today.’
Employment Minister Priti Patel (left) said in June 2014: ‘The British public want less Europe and more Britain’, while Justice Secretary Michael Gove (right) has expressed his frustration at Britain’s position with the EU
Michael Gove: Justice Secretary
‘I’m not happy with our position with the European Union. But my preference is for a change in Britain’s relationship. My ideal is exactly what the majority of the population think, which is that the present situation is no good, to say that life outside would be perfectly tolerable. We could contemplate [leaving], there would be certain advantages.’
Boris Johnson: London mayor
‘Would London flourish outside [of the EU]? Yes of course it would . . . I recall the prophets of doom who said that the City would collapse if we didn’t join the euro, remember that — they said [the City] would dissolve under a giant plague of rats. Absolute rubbish. There is every reason to think, if we got the right free trade deal, that we would flourish . . . I think the price of getting out is lower than it’s ever been.’
Boris Johnson, the mayor of London (left), is adamant the capital would ‘flourish’ outside of the EU. Leader of the Commons Chris Grayling has made it clear he sits on the Eurosceptic wing of the Conservative Party
Chris Grayling: Leader of Commons
‘I’ve made no bones about the fact that I sit on the Eurosceptic wing of the Conservative Party . . . If the British people decide to leave, then we leave. This is a strong country and we will prosper whatever the situation is.’
Penny Mordaunt: Defence Minister
‘William Hague [then Foreign Secretary] argued that there is some good to come from Europe, but any good you care to name . . . could be achieved without the mass of ills that have come with it.’
Defence Minister Penny Mordaunt (pictured left) and Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers (right)
Theresa Villiers: Northern Ireland
After the Government handed a contract which could have safeguarded 3,000 UK jobs to a German firm: ‘We are bound by European Union rules, which mean . . . we are not permitted to take into account the location of the factory in determining which bid is nominated. That is a consequence of our membership of the EU.’
Justine Greening: International aid
‘Free movement of labour was never meant to be an unqualified principle, irrespective of how it worked on the ground. We need to see action taken in relation to negotiation with the EU.’
International Development Secretary Justine Greening has said: ‘Free movement of labour was never meant to be an unqualified principle’. Action needed to be taken in relation to negotiation with the EU, she added
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