EU referendum

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EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on April 19th, 2016, 8:53 am 

I think the government are downplaying how disastrous leaving the EU could be. Notice, none of the scenarios set out by Osborne, address the IMF's prediction of severe regional and global damage. 6-10% loss of GDP is serious enough for Britain - but that's given any one of three reasonable scenarios, if all goes well post-brexit. But what if it doesn't go well? We would definitely enter into a two year negotiation, and trade deals take many more years to negotiate than that. Meanwhile the UK economy would be marching on the spot, falling behind with every passing day. Our former customers would find new suppliers, establish new trade relationships. We'd be the pig that pulled its snout from the trough - unable to get back in, because its not in the interests of all the other pigs to let us back in. And how would this impact people - jobs, wages, mortgages, pensions?

Think about George Soros - and the ERM crisis of 1993. There will be big money betting against the UK economy and currency. In the event of Brexit, it's difficult to foresee how a currency crisis, followed by a massive devaluation of the pound will be avoided. That will have a knock on effect for everything else - wages will stay the same but be worth less in real terms, interest rates and mortgages will rise, while pensions fall in value. Oh, we'll be more nimble all right. Unencumbered by wealth, we'll be as nimble as your average Indian or Chinese labourer! We should take this opportunity to put this issue to bed, and in future adopt a more constructive attitude in our dealings with our European partners.

Don't Leave it to chance - Vote to Remain in the EU.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby Eclogite on April 19th, 2016, 12:46 pm 

The situation is complex. I am contemplating, on polling day, entering the polling booth and standing quietly until an official asks me what I am doing. I shall reply, "What time do you close? I haven't made my mind up yet."
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Re: EU referend

Postby ronjanec on April 19th, 2016, 4:21 pm 

uninfinite » Tue Apr 19, 2016 6:53 am wrote:I think the government are downplaying how disastrous leaving the EU could be. Notice, none of the scenarios set out by Osborne, address the IMF's prediction of severe regional and global damage. 6-10% loss of GDP is serious enough for Britain - but that's given any one of three reasonable scenarios, if all goes well post-brexit. But what if it doesn't go well? We would definitely enter into a two year negotiation, and trade deals take many more years to negotiate than that. Meanwhile the UK economy would be marching on the spot, falling behind with every passing day. Our former customers would find new suppliers, establish new trade relationships. We'd be the pig that pulled its snout from the trough - unable to get back in, because its not in the interests of all the other pigs to let us back in. And how would this impact people - jobs, wages, mortgages, pensions?

Think about George Soros - and the ERM crisis of 1993. There will be big money betting against the UK economy and currency. In the event of Brexit, it's difficult to foresee how a currency crisis, followed by a massive devaluation of the pound will be avoided. That will have a knock on effect for everything else - wages will stay the same but be worth less in real terms, interest rates and mortgages will rise, while pensions fall in value. Oh, we'll be more nimble all right. Unencumbered by wealth, we'll be as nimble as your average Indian or Chinese labourer! We should take this opportunity to put this issue to bed, and in future adopt a more constructive attitude in our dealings with our European partners.

Don't Leave it to chance - Vote to Remain in the EU.


The personal comments that I have read from many people in the Uk from various publications are: "The EU is going under, get us out while there is still time!" "We don't want to stay under Merkel's thumbs!" "If we stay in, we will be forced to take in untold numbers of immigrants from Turkey, the Middle East, and Africa!" "Look at what has happened in Sweden, France, and Germany!""Get us out!"

As an American outsider just trying to understand this, you present another very interesting side of the story that I was not aware of uninfinite.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on April 19th, 2016, 11:26 pm 

Eclogite » April 19th, 2016, 5:46 pm wrote:The situation is complex. I am contemplating, on polling day, entering the polling booth and standing quietly until an official asks me what I am doing. I shall reply, "What time do you close? I haven't made my mind up yet."



I wonder how many people are the same. It's a complex question, and one most people, I suspect, haven't paid a great deal of attention to. If their main source of information is the news media, it's very light on eu news - and then, only when it's a negative story. I had a pro-eu politics tutor at university - who encouraged us to see the benefits of membership of the eu, and they are not inconsiderable, particularly in relation to globalization. I'm not sure I could sell you on the united states of europe idea - but voting to leave could be disastrous for the UK. People think it's going to halt immigration - and they couldn't be more wrong. There's freedom of movement in Europe, however, government could have stopped international migration. Yet non-eu migration continues well above eu migration to the UK.

https://fullfact.org/europe/eu-migration-and-uk/


The Leave argument is a big fat racist worm - on a very rusty hook; because after brexit, government will tear up the european rule book, including workers right and environmental protections, the working classes are going to get stamped on hard, while business gets a huge tax break, so that UK plc can compete with the low wage economies in China, India, Brazil and Russia. Here's what Gove said today:

''Britain would be able to trade in the European Free Trade Zone that stretches from Iceland to Turkey - this includes countries like Bosnia, Serbia and Albania''

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-36074853

How is Britain going to do business with Bosnia, Serbia and Albania? By paying people Albanian wages - and they won't even see this big rusty hook until July 24th - when they already caught on it. My considered advice is to vote to remain in the EU, and encourage your friends to do the same - because this is a one way street to a very bleak future.
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Re: EU referend

Postby uninfinite on April 20th, 2016, 12:28 am 

ronjanec » April 19th, 2016, 9:21 pm wrote:
uninfinite » Tue Apr 19, 2016 6:53 am wrote:I think the government are downplaying how disastrous leaving the EU could be. Notice, none of the scenarios set out by Osborne, address the IMF's prediction of severe regional and global damage. 6-10% loss of GDP is serious enough for Britain - but that's given any one of three reasonable scenarios, if all goes well post-brexit. But what if it doesn't go well? We would definitely enter into a two year negotiation, and trade deals take many more years to negotiate than that. Meanwhile the UK economy would be marching on the spot, falling behind with every passing day. Our former customers would find new suppliers, establish new trade relationships. We'd be the pig that pulled its snout from the trough - unable to get back in, because its not in the interests of all the other pigs to let us back in. And how would this impact people - jobs, wages, mortgages, pensions?

Think about George Soros - and the ERM crisis of 1993. There will be big money betting against the UK economy and currency. In the event of Brexit, it's difficult to foresee how a currency crisis, followed by a massive devaluation of the pound will be avoided. That will have a knock on effect for everything else - wages will stay the same but be worth less in real terms, interest rates and mortgages will rise, while pensions fall in value. Oh, we'll be more nimble all right. Unencumbered by wealth, we'll be as nimble as your average Indian or Chinese labourer! We should take this opportunity to put this issue to bed, and in future adopt a more constructive attitude in our dealings with our European partners.

Don't Leave it to chance - Vote to Remain in the EU.


The personal comments that I have read from many people in the Uk from various publications are: "The EU is going under, get us out while there is still time!" "We don't want to stay under Merkel's thumbs!" "If we stay in, we will be forced to take in untold numbers of immigrants from Turkey, the Middle East, and Africa!" "Look at what has happened in Sweden, France, and Germany!""Get us out!"

As an American outsider just trying to understand this, you present another very interesting side of the story that I was not aware of uninfinite.



Thank you for your very kind comments. It's true the EU is experiencing difficulties with the Euro - across 19 member states with different economies, but I think the fact that five of the ten richest countries in the world (make that 4 if you exclude the UK) are in Europe, is overlooked. The industrial and economic strength backing the currency is incredible - 500 million people, not quite so well off as many Americans, but with a more even distribution of wealth.

Merkel is Germany's Chancellor, as you are probably well aware, and also you may be aware the UK has a bit of a history with Germany. I wouldn't say it's in the fore-front of anyone's mind, but there's some sort of residual antipathy, and not a little jealousy that Germany has overcome being twice defeated militarily, and overtaken us economically within two generations.

Immigration is the bait dangled by the Leave camp - but it's a lie. There's a sense we're over-crowded, but that's because we haven't built any houses for three decades - not because of immigration. 87.2% of the population are white British - but the way people go on you'd think it was 50/50 ...and still they come!

Sweden, France and Germany? I can only assume you are talking about terrorism and related offences. Mostly, those terrorists were 'home grown' - like your San Bernadino killers, lived here for years - well integrated into society, and then just go mad. Even if leaving the eu would stop immigration, which it won't - it wouldn't stop terrorism. It's a different issue - the Leave camp are playing on... one might even say hijacking!

My hope for what comes out of this is that it settles the question of the UK's relationship to the EU for good - and we can play a more constructive part in the EU in future. I'm not suggesting we join the Euro - or sign up to a United States of Europe just yet, but in my view the only way we can deal with big blocs like the US, China, India - is as a member of the EU. Everyone else is banding together, and the UK is the only country in the world trying to get out of a trading bloc. It's crazy. Wish us luck, and thanks again.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby Lomax on April 26th, 2016, 5:53 pm 

It seems to me an irony that a racist immigration policy should be criticised largely from a xenophobic perspective, and defended largely by cosmopolitans; a brain surgeon from India has to do more to gain UK citizenship than a bartender from France does. What's egalitarian about that?

The original Leftist critique of EU membership, insomuch as there was one, was largely a concern about sovereignty and authoritarianism. The union's restrictions on freedom of speech strike me as bothersome, and in Germany we see what Merkel thinks about such freedoms. Of course withdrawal won't change the fact that we have archaic blasphemy laws, libel laws, and absurdities like the Official Secrets Act, but that's no reason to keep stacking up our unfreedoms.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby Eclogite on April 27th, 2016, 5:02 am 

This is an indirect reply to uninfinite's response to my short post. It doesn't address the points he makes, but was triggered by them.

When I am asked what nationality I am I reply, pedantically, I am English, I am Scottish, I am British, I am European, I came Out of Africa. Consequently I am predisposed in favour of European organisations that promote unity on the continent. I have been pro-Common Market and its subsequent expressions, since the failed attempt to join in the 1960s.

But I am also a left wing, tree hugging, freedom seeking liberal and I find the undemocratic and bureaucratic nature of the EU to be distasteful and increasingly dangerous. My inclination has been to aim for reform from within, but I now wonder whether it might not be better to bring the whole thing crumbling down. Can this be encouraged by the UK's departure?

I see a possible comparison with the League of Nations: a good idea that didn't work out. The UN is not perfect, but it has done much better than the old League. The same might be true of a reconfigured Europe. Of course, the risks involved in such a course are immense, but so too are the risks of continuing on our present course.

As to the arguments relating to immigration, I dismiss those as the ramblings of small minded, frightened individuals. And the economic arguments, while important and substantial, are largely short-term and based - ultimately - on rather unattractive focus on personal greed.

If only there were a third option on the ballot paper, related in some way to what I would think of as the Expanded Guy Fawkes option.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on April 27th, 2016, 8:27 am 

Any viable future requires greater cooperation - not just the UK in Europe, but around the world. It's happening in some respects and not in others. Business is so much better at cooperation than politics, and I wonder why we can't just have a more business like approach - putting aside all the purely political bullshit, and getting on with the job pragmatically, on the basis of mutual self-interest.

The reason, it seems to me - is that in politics, power is viewed as ownership of areas of responsibility; such that if we cede authority to the EU on national defense, just as an example, we are less powerful. But is this true? Arguably, an army pooling the resources and talents of 28 member countries would be more powerful - and what's the difference, to me as a citizen, if that army is managed from Whitehall, or from Brussels? The only difference to me as a citizen is that I'm protected by a far more powerful army.

Further to this line of reason, what difference does it make to me if welfare and tax laws are made in Brussels instead of in Whitehall? I'm not going to like them, wherever they are forged. Government of either stripe is distant and unaccountable - so why should I care that these laws are forged in Britain, by British politicians - and why should I pay the premium for this privilege, over and above more generous arrangements that might be had as a consequence of pooling power and resources across the EU?

Thus, I too would like to see a third option on the ballot paper - not a choice between leaving the EU and remaining a proverbial spanner in the works. I'd like to be able to choose European Citizenship, as a democratic means of achieving a United States of Europe. But no. We've never had a ballot on whether we should cooperate more, and obstruct less. For a second time in 40 years we get an in or out vote, but the degree to which we obstruct the business of the EU has always been a matter reserved to our power hungry representatives to decide - and to complain of. On hearing such complaints - I always wonder, who's interests are they serving? It's not in my interest that laws are made by a political elite in London - but is posed in terms of some nebulous concept of national sovereignty, to disguise greed for political control. And I ask myself, what is this national sovereignty? Can I eat it? Can I spend it in the shops? Is it necessary that we can have better standards of living than Europe - or so that we can work longer hours, get paid less and taxed more, eat low grade sausage meat, sat on dirty beaches, choking on foul air?
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Re: EU referendum

Postby TheVat on June 3rd, 2016, 3:51 pm 

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/03/world ... rexit.html


Recently, Britons were appalled at the news that a German comedian who went on television and recited a rude poem about Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish president, is to be prosecuted under a German law prohibiting the insulting of foreign leaders. As a way to thumb its nose at both Germany and Turkey, the influential right-leaning Spectator magazine started a “President Erdogan Offensive Poetry” competition, inviting readers to submit anti-Erdogan limericks.

The winner was Boris Johnson, the former mayor of London and leader of the Brexit campaign, who implied in his poem that Mr. Erdogan was overly fond of goats. Announcing the winner in the magazine, Douglas Murray, who organized the competition, said the existence of the poem (and of Mr. Johnson) showed Britain’s superiority over Germany, which is part of the European Union, and Turkey, which would like to be.

“I think it a wonderful thing that a British political leader has shown that Britain will not bow before the putative caliph in Ankara,” he said. “Erdogan may imprison his opponents in Turkey. Chancellor Merkel may imprison Erdogan’s critics in Germany. But in Britain we still live and breathe free.”
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on June 3rd, 2016, 5:22 pm 

Braininvat » June 3rd, 2016, 8:51 pm wrote:http://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/03/world/europe/britain-eu-brexit.html


Recently, Britons were appalled at the news that a German comedian who went on television and recited a rude poem about Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish president, is to be prosecuted under a German law prohibiting the insulting of foreign leaders. As a way to thumb its nose at both Germany and Turkey, the influential right-leaning Spectator magazine started a “President Erdogan Offensive Poetry” competition, inviting readers to submit anti-Erdogan limericks.

The winner was Boris Johnson, the former mayor of London and leader of the Brexit campaign, who implied in his poem that Mr. Erdogan was overly fond of goats. Announcing the winner in the magazine, Douglas Murray, who organized the competition, said the existence of the poem (and of Mr. Johnson) showed Britain’s superiority over Germany, which is part of the European Union, and Turkey, which would like to be.

“I think it a wonderful thing that a British political leader has shown that Britain will not bow before the putative caliph in Ankara,” he said. “Erdogan may imprison his opponents in Turkey. Chancellor Merkel may imprison Erdogan’s critics in Germany. But in Britain we still live and breathe free.”



Amusing article - rubbish poem by Johnson. How about this instead:

What a terrible bird is the Erdogan,
if his prisons hold more than his dogma can!
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on June 3rd, 2016, 8:57 pm 

Or how about a haiku:


Turkey's leader,
is he traditionally,
a giant turkey!
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 5th, 2016, 3:36 am 

Is immigration the main issue really??

Economically the UK is not exactly destitute right? Does the EU want us? I think yes! If they want us thay means we have value. The question is simy in the long term will the UK be better off or not. Does the UK need to be in the EU in order to benefit both the EU and the UK as an independent nation?

I remember a similar dispute about joining the euro years ago ... doom and gloom if we didn't join. I am for political indepence.

As for the side issue of immigration it makes sense to allowed skilled workers into the UK. I don't see an issue with allowing short term non-skilled workers in the UK. By short term I would mean allowing work visas for a set number of months (nothing wrong with welcoming a foreigner to experience the UK and gain a little money before returning home!).

I sometimes think Europeans think Europe can be the US. The comparison is plain silly.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on June 5th, 2016, 9:04 am 

BadgerJelly » June 5th, 2016, 8:36 am wrote:Is immigration the main issue really??

Economically the UK is not exactly destitute right? Does the EU want us? I think yes! If they want us thay means we have value. The question is simy in the long term will the UK be better off or not. Does the UK need to be in the EU in order to benefit both the EU and the UK as an independent nation?

I remember a similar dispute about joining the euro years ago ... doom and gloom if we didn't join. I am for political indepence.

As for the side issue of immigration it makes sense to allowed skilled workers into the UK. I don't see an issue with allowing short term non-skilled workers in the UK. By short term I would mean allowing work visas for a set number of months (nothing wrong with welcoming a foreigner to experience the UK and gain a little money before returning home!).

I sometimes think Europeans think Europe can be the US. The comparison is plain silly.



Silly or not, it's a comparison that's often made. And when it is we find that the GDP of the EU is larger than that of the US. So, what will the UK gain from being independent of the largest economy in the world?

Further, the UK is the world's 8th largest tourist destination, with 35 million visitors per year. In order to implement this system of work visas, we would have to leave the EU, then set up border controls at every port, and stop all those people and question them to determine the likely-hood they are genuine tourists. It would require massive amounts of infrastructure, delay every plane, train and boat coming and going, and if that only took 10 mins per person, that would be 650 years of man hours per year.

We could probably achieve much the same effect by introducing identity cards, and requiring they be produced to access public services - health, welfare, housing, employment, banking etc - thus making it basically impossible to be an illegal immigrant. But it would have to be a European identity card - because of the free movement of people rules within the euro area.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 6th, 2016, 1:05 am 

The UK will gain more indepence and more responsibility.

650 new jobs? Not really a huge problem, not a major issue. Where did they pull those numbers from anyway?

There are countries not in the EU which have border control. It sounds to me like you are making it out that it is an impossible task to police borders efficiently. Last time I checked there were border controls already in place? If I travel from the UK to France I require a passport. If I go to any country I need a passport and a visa.

I do not see immigration as a reason for leaving or staying in the EU. I see the issue as being if the EU says the UK must do this or that or pay this or that then the UK has reduced independence and reduced responsibility.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on June 6th, 2016, 3:50 am 

BadgerJelly » June 6th, 2016, 6:05 am wrote:The UK will gain more indepence and more responsibility.

650 new jobs? Not really a huge problem, not a major issue. Where did they pull those numbers from anyway?

There are countries not in the EU which have border control. It sounds to me like you are making it out that it is an impossible task to police borders efficiently. Last time I checked there were border controls already in place? If I travel from the UK to France I require a passport. If I go to any country I need a passport and a visa.

I do not see immigration as a reason for leaving or staying in the EU. I see the issue as being if the EU says the UK must do this or that or pay this or that then the UK has reduced independence and reduced responsibility.


By that logic, why don't you go live in the woods? You'll be utterly independent and entirely responsible. You won't be able to flick a switch and have someone else generate electricity so you can have light or heat. If there is light or heat, it will be by your doing alone - and just imagine how proud that will make you! If there's food it will because you scraped it off a rock, stuffed it in your mouth and swallowed before you could taste it. Whereas, I'm having pizza, fries, coleslaw and a bottle of coke delivered to my home - where I'm going to sit watching TV - and stuffing my face, all made by someone else. I don't even know who. My TV is Japanese, my food Italian - maybe made by an immigrant. What do I care? I think a lot of my electricity comes from France via the HVDC Cross-Channel Interconnexion.

Cheers!
(Oh yeah, American beverage!)
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 6th, 2016, 3:58 am 

Huh?

I was being serious. I guess if you want to joke around on your thread that is your choice.

There is a difference between isolation and independence.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby TheVat on June 6th, 2016, 10:02 am 

I thought Finite was employing reductio ad absurdum, to make a serious point about possible downsides to independence.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 6th, 2016, 11:02 am 

If the UK leaves the EU and it is impossible the UK to have any trade relations with EU countries then I guess my position on leaving the EU would be swayed.

From my limited understanding I do not think leaving the EU means severing all ties with EU countries politically.

Like I said I do not equate independence with isolation which I gather is what Finite was insinuating.

If the move is made purely out of xenophobia or anti-xenophobia then I am worried about it because I honestly don't regard immigration as a huge economic issue. What are the economic benefits of leaving the EU long term? Is it a justifiable move? Is it too big a risk? If the nation suffers initially and it doesn't work out for the UK can it not return to a status quo?
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Re: EU referendum

Postby TheVat on June 6th, 2016, 11:24 am 

As a Yank, my ignorance of these issues is vast and all-encompassing. Hasn't your sceptered isle always had immigration issues - pesky waves of Celts, Picts, Saxons, Angles, Vikings, Romans, Normans....and then, later on, various immigrants from Commonwealth nations?

I will say, in my role of meddling ignoramus Yank, that any system built on the notion that borders can be controlled and safeguarded is suspect. You Brits do have the comfort of a border that is nature-made, being entirely surrounded by water....though this sense of enmoatedness seems especially fragile, given that human beings can actually swim from the nearest continent. Joking aside, I have wondered if a nation as densely populated as the UK (well beyond it's ecological carrying capacity, by almost any method of computation) faces considerable peril if the petroleum runs out. I think there might be ecological reasons to stop immigration, but of course any such reasoning, no matter how lofty its origin, will be instantly politicized and racialized. Well, I hand this back to those who actually know what they're talking about.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby ronjanec on June 6th, 2016, 12:27 pm 

You should still vote, but it probably doesn't matter what your average Brit wants or how he votes in this referendum: TPTB Lefties will probably figure out some way to fix the election here in favor of "Remain", like they probably just fixed the very recent election in Austria with the after Election Day postal "vote counting" :)
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 6th, 2016, 1:46 pm 

I would seriously love to hear about possible economic benefits for the UK beyond short term projections. Some negatives have been mentioned already. Just looking for some positives.

Brainvat -

I think the generally held belief is that the Picts are the closest thing to "native".
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on June 6th, 2016, 2:32 pm 

BadgerJelly » June 6th, 2016, 8:58 am wrote:Huh?

I was being serious. I guess if you want to joke around on your thread that is your choice.

There is a difference between isolation and independence.



If you want to talk seriously about isolationism - let's talk about trade protectionism, tariffs and their contribution to two world wars that began in Europe. But I was making the point, in a rather amusing way I thought, that functionally - we are not independent. The world is becoming increasingly inter-dependent at a very basic level - and should not the politics reflect the fact?

Currently, the UK has a seat at all the top tables in an emerging economic superpower that will be bigger than the US or China. The UK is seen as the gateway to Europe for a lot of countries, because English is the world's lingua franca. Political integration around the Eurozone 19 is going to happen because it's necessary to stabilize the Euro. The UK can remain outside the Euro - but in the European Union; with a say on all the important decisions going forward - and acting as a gateway to Europe. Or we can Leave, and have no say, and no role, in what will be the world's largest economy.

Further, Christine LeGarde of the IMF warned of 'severe regional and global economic damage' as a consequence of the UK choosing to Leave the EU. If that happens, the UK will be despised. It will become a pariah state on the borders of an economic superpower for generations to come - like Cuba, but without the year round sunshine.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on June 6th, 2016, 2:58 pm 

Braininvat » June 6th, 2016, 4:24 pm wrote:As a Yank, my ignorance of these issues is vast and all-encompassing. Hasn't your sceptered isle always had immigration issues - pesky waves of Celts, Picts, Saxons, Angles, Vikings, Romans, Normans....and then, later on, various immigrants from Commonwealth nations?



All true Brainvat, but you missed a few:

1 Antiquity
1.1 Roman Empire
1.2 Anglo-Saxons
1.3 Scots
1.4 Irish
2 Medieval
2.1 Vikings
2.2 Normans
2.3 Romani
3 Early modern
3.1 Huguenots
3.2 Indians
4 Modern
4.1 Indians
4.2 Africans
4.3 Germans
4.4 Russian Jews

In light of this, you have to wonder what the Leave campaign's anti-immigrant wing are so terribly worried about. Their rhetoric is really quite alarming. Sure, there's a problem with housing, and increased pressure on public services - but then build more houses and increase public services from the increased profitability of companies and tax revenues generated by migration. Further, if we weren't almost allergic to the EU - we could have a European Identity Card to access public services - making it virtually impossible to be an illegal immigrant. Instead, the Leave campaign want us to commit some political form of seppuku - a term we understand because the world is vastly more interconnected and inter-dependent than ever before. It's so bizzare, it would be funny if it weren't so serious.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 7th, 2016, 2:31 am 

There are literally no economic positives in the long run if the UK leaves the EU?

I just find it hard to believe the government would put this to a referendum if they considered it a no win situation on one side. It makes no sense.

I do think the masses are stupid and I do think many people will vote based purely due to immigration. If the government is smart enough they may have considerd this and are actually banking on the public voting to leave the EU in order to aquire a positive economic outcome in the long run.

That is my thoughts on the matter but I have yet to see anyone put foward a positive reason for the government to take such a gamble. I find it puzzling so I ask what are the possible benefits (I am purposefully ignoring immigration because I think its a Trojan horse.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 7th, 2016, 5:25 am 

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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on June 7th, 2016, 4:21 pm 

BadgerJelly » June 7th, 2016, 7:31 am wrote:There are literally no economic positives in the long run if the UK leaves the EU?

I just find it hard to believe the government would put this to a referendum if they considered it a no win situation on one side. It makes no sense.

I do think the masses are stupid and I do think many people will vote based purely due to immigration. If the government is smart enough they may have considerd this and are actually banking on the public voting to leave the EU in order to aquire a positive economic outcome in the long run.

That is my thoughts on the matter but I have yet to see anyone put foward a positive reason for the government to take such a gamble. I find it puzzling so I ask what are the possible benefits (I am purposefully ignoring immigration because I think its a Trojan horse.


It's difficult to explain how this came about - because it has to do with the mood of the country in the run up to a general election. Make no mistake, there are some die-hard's that have been pushing for this referendum for years and years, as a form of overblown patriotism. They've always been considered a little eccentric - but there are particular pressures driving global immigration into Europe and the UK at the present time, the war in Syria, unemployment in Europe, adding to the usual trickle of economic migration we get from the mid-east and Africa. It became noticeable, that the shops and such were changing - and the fear factor was introduced by terrorism, such that this lunatic fringe found itself in a sudden and unexpected ascendancy. It was a strange thing to behold - and no-one knew where it was going, but it kind of went viral and for a time everything was UKIP, UKIP, UKIP - who were not at all shy about putting the immigration agenda forward, while maintaining a pretence of not being a racist party - nudge nudge, wink wink.

With a general election coming up, David Cameron's fear was that UKIP would split the Conservative Party vote, and let Labour into power. So, he promised an in/out referendum on the EU (which famously has rules on the free movement of people) in order to 'shoot the UKIP fox.' He hasn't reneged on that promise - even while Cameron himself strongly advocates remaining in the EU. So yes, it must seem odd - but we live in strange times.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby Lomax on June 7th, 2016, 10:08 pm 

BadgerJelly » June 7th, 2016, 7:31 am wrote:I just find it hard to believe the government would put this to a referendum if they considered it a no win situation on one side. It makes no sense.

Bear in mind that what's good for a nation isn't necessarily good for its elected representatives. Besides uninfinite's accurate point about appeasing UKIP, I think David Mitchell's analysis is right:

David Mitchell wrote:Cameron has structured his whole career around avoiding this question – around continuing to lead a party that’s divided on the most important decision about the country’s future. All because he worked out that, if the subject of the EU was properly debated by the Tories, the party would split and it would be harder for him to become prime minister.

He can avoid the risk of being blamed for splitting his party in making the wrong decision, by leaving the decision to others.

BadgerJelly » June 7th, 2016, 7:31 am wrote:I do think the masses are stupid and I do think many people will vote based purely due to immigration.

The Left of the 1930s and 40s had a slogan: "Fascism means war". It doesn't just mean that fascism intends war, but that it invites and necessitates it. The first official slogan of the American Libertarian Party was "there ain't no such thing as a free lunch". It's not just Friedman's way of explaining opportunity cost, and it's not just a literary reference - it's an injunction to reconsider the very way economics works. The old slogan "No Gods, No Masters" eloquently marks the crossroads between anarchism, socialism and antitheism.

I hope this is not too long winded a way of saying that, if even the electorate is too stupid and unprincipled to make this call, it doesn't say much for the politicians we elected in. The best either seems to be able to produce is "Vote Leave" or "Vote Remain". Inspiring.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 8th, 2016, 1:09 am 

My point about the masses was that if my computer is broken I listen to someone who knows about computers and believe their opinion even though I am not qualified to know they are worthy of being listened to.

Should I believe that the PM is more interested in being PM than the country? Difficult to decide. I can imagine being in such a position of power and influence would make you see the general public as being more stupid than you are, as well as it being a psychological truth of human nature en masse and basic sheep mentality.

One thing for sure is the more broad the debate the better the knowledge of the electorate.

I have been looking for some definitive positives economically. There do seem to be a few mentioned in the link provided above, but they are outweighed by the negatives. I cannot find anything that points to a long term positive outcome.

If I was going to vote I'd be doing some much more serious research.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby uninfinite on June 8th, 2016, 2:44 am 

Lomax,

I would like to see David Mitchell's remarks in the context in which they were written, but I cannot find them in this thread. Could you possibly post a link?

I agree with the slogan 'fascism means war.' Fascism is war - a war of the state against the people. Just about all the political structures we've built up over the past 70 years have been to avoid the return of fascism - to establish human rights, workers right and so on, while at the same time, living standards have risen exponentially - and yet if people are still sufficiently dissatisfied to invite this monstrous philosophy back into their lives, then they really are stupid!

Badgerbelly,

It's noted in sociological theory that as individuals we have an increasing dependence upon professionals in order to negotiate areas of an increasingly complex society, we know nothing about. This does, as you rightly note - raise the question of the integrity of those professionals; from builders from hell, through doctors, lawyers and accountants, through to Prime Ministers. However, on this question, the sheer quantity of opinion from well informed people in politics, business and academia - stating that leaving the EU could, and would very likely be catastrophic for the UK, undermines that question.

If you don't trust your doctor's view, you might get a second opinion - but if you then get a third, fourth, fifth and sixth opinion from highly qualified professionals all saying the same thing, and still don't believe it, (which the Leave Campaign refuse to do) then surely the problem is with them.
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Re: EU referendum

Postby BadgerJelly on June 8th, 2016, 4:18 am 

Guess I have some research to do. Turns out I cannot vote now. Guess I can ask my friends and family what they are doing though.

My priority is to try and get people to move focus away from immigration. Everything I read does suggest I was correct in my assumption that it is not really a valid reason for leaving or staying in the EU.

How is the media coverage in the UK at the moment? Is it a big talking point or are they trying to sweep it under tue carpet? Is it, like I cynically assume, to a large part concerned with immigration?
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