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Britain's Political Poltergeist


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#1    questionmark

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:28 PM

Spiegel said:


Britain's right-wing conservative movement is making life difficult for Prime Minister David Cameron. The UK Independence Party wants to lead the country out of the EU, and its approval ratings are higher than ever. As the pressure mounts, Cameron has been at pains to outline a clear stance on Europe.

Nigel Farage is the kind of politician who apparently needs an opponent to bring out the best in him. Right now, that role is being played by a cushion. Sitting on a sofa in a London hotel lobby, Farage alternately slaps the cushion with the palm of his hand and punches it with his fist as he talks about how he intends to stir up British politics.

Farage is the leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP), a right-wing conservative movement that aims to lead Britain out of the European Union.

For months now, his proposals have put the government on the back foot -- and this has rapidly increased his party's popularity among voters. Recent surveys show UKIP polling around 15 percent, which would make it the third most important political force in the country, after the Conservatives and the center-left Labour Party, yet ahead of the Liberal Democrats.

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#2    shaddow134

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:33 PM

Why take some powers back from Europe?Why not just quit?

Have a referendum Mr Cameron and be done with it....

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#3    Norbert Dentressangle

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:42 PM

I would be very interested if someone could come up with a nice concise list of just what are the advantages & disadvantages of being in the EU. Without being coloured by any political prejudice either way. People say that, for example, "80% of the UK's trade is with Europe", but are they trying to say that that would cease if the UK was not a Member? I mean, surely there's plenty of trade with Europe from China, Japan, the Middle East, even on occasion the US of A. Why should trade with Europe decline if the UK ceased to be a member? What are the other advantages, if any? being able to get bailouts from the EU Central Bank? I think we've seen that there are strings attached to that, such as that it then gives the EU, acting in the interests of Big Powerful countries, the power to quite shamelessly bully smaller countries.

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#4    Yamato

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:53 PM

Cameron doesn't want to quit entirely because it wouldn't be "right for Britain".   I wonder why.  Because quitting one's obligations would be bad politics and might invite others to quit their obligations in kind, maybe?  The UK wasn't wholehearted about membership in the EU anyway when they kept their currency independent of the Eurozone.

Bailouts for your own country are one reason to want to be in the EU,  Having one's taxpayers on the hook for bailing out a foreign country is a big reason not to.  

Nigel Farage is fun to watch, I'll give him that.


Edited by Yamato, 07 January 2013 - 03:14 PM.

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#5    questionmark

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 03:55 PM

View PostLord Vetinari, on 07 January 2013 - 02:42 PM, said:

I would be very interested if someone could come up with a nice concise list of just what are the advantages & disadvantages of being in the EU. Without being coloured by any political prejudice either way. People say that, for example, "80% of the UK's trade is with Europe", but are they trying to say that that would cease if the UK was not a Member? I mean, surely there's plenty of trade with Europe from China, Japan, the Middle East, even on occasion the US of A. Why should trade with Europe decline if the UK ceased to be a member? What are the other advantages, if any? being able to get bailouts from the EU Central Bank? I think we've seen that there are strings attached to that, such as that it then gives the EU, acting in the interests of Big Powerful countries, the power to quite shamelessly bully smaller countries.

Some of the advantages evaporated with the Euro, others Britain never wanted in favor of a contribution rebate (pretty short sighted as without it most of the North-Eastern industry could have been transformed with EU subsidiesinstead of dismantled). So the fact of the matter is that Britain certainly is not in the same advantageous position it was 15 years ago.

What the Tories think is that they can turn back the clock, a very dumb premiss. The train left the station and has no reverse gear.

The power has shifted in the EU, and not to Germany or France but to the whole of the Euro countries (which is why the Euro politicians are going as far out of their way as they can to keep the zone together),

So, at the end of the day it will be in or out. A little in will lead nowhere.

Edited by questionmark, 07 January 2013 - 03:56 PM.

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#6    Norbert Dentressangle

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 04:05 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 07 January 2013 - 03:55 PM, said:

Some of the advantages evaporated with the Euro, others Britain never wanted in favor of a contribution rebate (pretty short sighted as without it most of the North-Eastern industry could have been transformed with EU subsidiesinstead of dismantled). So the fact of the matter is that Britain certainly is not in the same advantageous position it was 15 years ago.

What the Tories think is that they can turn back the clock, a very dumb premiss. The train left the station and has no reverse gear.

The power has shifted in the EU, and not to Germany or France but to the whole of the Euro countries (which is why the Euro politicians are going as far out of their way as they can to keep the zone together),


So basically it is just the possibility of handouts (with plenty of strings attached)? .It seems that the main advantage of the EU is to the EU itself, which has ambitions to be a power bloc to replace the Eastern Bloc, and challenge the global dominance of whoever might be currently globally Dominant. So it's all about power politics really then?

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#7    Br Cornelius

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 04:23 PM

View PostLord Vetinari, on 07 January 2013 - 04:05 PM, said:

So basically it is just the possibility of handouts (with plenty of strings attached)? .It seems that the main advantage of the EU is to the EU itself, which has ambitions to be a power bloc to replace the Eastern Bloc, and challenge the global dominance of whoever might be currently globally Dominant. So it's all about power politics really then?
Trading blocks generally favour all constituent member. Trading tariffs come into play if you are outside of the zone.
The main advantage for the members is that your neighbour cannot undercut your market by offering lower products standards and working conditions (within limits it can - but those limits are very constrained) or dumping toxic wastes on their neighbours rather than treating them at home.

The main advantage though is when large transregional negotionation are happening. A small country has very little barganing power unless it has the dirty on its neigbours (think of Switzerland) - its much easier for a trading block to define the trading arrangements with a country like America than it is for a country like Ireland on its own. Such negotiations are always about an issue, but consist of multiple clauses introduced to favour one party over another, these are generally preditory of the smaller nations assets.

Then there is the intrinsic resistance of a large currency against preditory currency speculation and manipulation.

The main problem with Europe is that it doesn't have a sufficiently well coordinated economic policy which allowed for many of the perifery states to borrow at unsustainable levels and get themselves into dire trouble.

Br Cornelius

Edited by Br Cornelius, 07 January 2013 - 04:25 PM.

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#8    questionmark

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 04:25 PM

View PostLord Vetinari, on 07 January 2013 - 04:05 PM, said:

So basically it is just the possibility of handouts (with plenty of strings attached)? .It seems that the main advantage of the EU is to the EU itself, which has ambitions to be a power bloc to replace the Eastern Bloc, and challenge the global dominance of whoever might be currently globally Dominant. So it's all about power politics really then?

It is more than that. With the EU money Britain could have kept being the industrial power it was until the 40s, it would have had the ready made markets to sell above its own requirements with free access. Yes,it would have come at the price of helping the other European nations to develop, but that just would have broadened the markets making more business.

That was not what Mrs. Thatcher had in mind for the future but she wanted Britain to go the dead end way of becoming a Services Economy. So she insisted on the rebate.The rest is known.

When Britain joined under Wilson the idea was to strengthen the country and compensate for the lost colonies. The Tories had a different idea.

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#9    Br Cornelius

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 04:30 PM

The Tories were involved in a push back in the class warfare which the unions started under Labour. A product of a class ridden culture which most of the European countries managed to avoid.
Stupid short sighted policies on both sides of the political fence.

Br Cornelius

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#10    Yamato

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 04:37 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 07 January 2013 - 03:55 PM, said:

Some of the advantages evaporated with the Euro, others Britain never wanted in favor of a contribution rebate (pretty short sighted as without it most of the North-Eastern industry could have been transformed with EU subsidiesinstead of dismantled). So the fact of the matter is that Britain certainly is not in the same advantageous position it was 15 years ago.

What the Tories think is that they can turn back the clock, a very dumb premiss. The train left the station and has no reverse gear.

The power has shifted in the EU, and not to Germany or France but to the whole of the Euro countries (which is why the Euro politicians are going as far out of their way as they can to keep the zone together),

So, at the end of the day it will be in or out. A little in will lead nowhere.
Britain is not in the Eurozone.   I'm not sure what the basis is for "the train left the station" is because they're not even on the train.

Farage speaks eloquently about democracy and Greece in particular at 1:08 of the video above.  As members of the EU, Brits like Farage can get an audience about Eurozone problems while putting these immature and unelected European elites in their place.  The EU has no authority to determine monetary policy in the UK, and thank goodness for the UK once we listen to our share of Nigel Farage.

"The power to declare war, including the power of judging the causes of war, is fully and exclusively vested in the Legislature.  The Executive has no right, in any case, to decide the question" ~ James Madison
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"To deny people their human rights is to challenge their very humanity.   To impose on them a wretched life of hunger and deprivation is to dehumanize them." ~ Nelson Mandela
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#11    Br Cornelius

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 04:45 PM

View PostYamato, on 07 January 2013 - 04:37 PM, said:

Britain is not in the Eurozone.   I'm not sure what the basis is for "the train left the station" is because they're not even on the train.

Farage speaks eloquently about democracy and Greece in particular at 1:08 of the video above.  As members of the EU, Brits like Farage can get an audience about Eurozone problems while putting these immature and unelected European elites in their place.  The EU has no authority to determine monetary policy in the UK, and thank goodness for the UK once we listen to our share of Nigel Farage.
Questionmark is generally accurate in saying that the UK deliberately ran down its industrial base and marginalized itself as a EU member as a matter of Tory policy. The UK has got far less out of the EU than they could have - and it was entirely deliberate on the part of the UK government.

There is absolutely no reason why the UK couldn't have been as powerful an industrial powerhouse of Europe as the Germans - they started out with all the same advantages. They should absolutely never have gone in with the attitude they had - but the ironic thing is that the greatest Tory leader of the last 100yrs (Churchill) was the man who set them on the path to membership.

Br Cornelius

Edited by Br Cornelius, 07 January 2013 - 04:55 PM.

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#12    questionmark

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 05:04 PM

View PostBr Cornelius, on 07 January 2013 - 04:45 PM, said:

Questionmark is generally accurate in saying that the UK deliberately ran down its industrial base and marginalized itself as a EU member as a matter of Tory policy. The UK has got far less out of the EU than they could have - and it was entirely deliberate on the part of the UK government.

There is absolutely no reason why the UK couldn't have been as powerful an industrial powerhouse of Europe as the Germans - they started out with all the same advantages. They should absolutely never have gone in with the attitude they had - but the ironic thing is that the greatest Tory leader of the last 100yrs (Churchill) was the man who set them on the path to membership.

Br Cornelius

In fact, much of the German and French industrial power came from taking advantage of the demise of Britain's.

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#13    stevewinn

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 07:00 PM

BI tell you what Great Britain one of the worlds oldest and richest economies still in the top five or six of world economies not bad for a country with such a small landmass. The questions which should be being asked is  - why should the United Kingdom be part of the EU? what do they offer us? very little is the answer. and the closer we move towards a federation the less they offer.

Take the Eurozone, its now been proved beyond all doubt it would have been a total disaster if we'd have ditched the £pound and joined the €Euro. this we do now know. no ifs' or buts'

the same pro EU members on here back in the day were vehemently banging their drum saying it would benefit the UK to become a Eurozone member and they were wrong but they wont even acknowledge this, and still to this day they wont admit they were wrong. why should we trust their judgment?

just like now when they continue to bang the drum how remaining a EU member is beneficial - they were wrong before and they are still wrong today. The United Kingdom would be well advised to plot its course setting out our own time frame and to our advantage a political stratergy which will see the UK leave the EU before we are consumed . at this moment in time the eurozone is a disaster. and the political body responsible (EU) is not far behind only saved from total disaster by the national sovereignty which currently remains but is ironically under threat directly from the EU.

at the end of the day, the choice is clear. do you want to remain a independent nation? or become a member state in a larger federation. the goal of the EU is simple, they want a federation, with a single currency, central bank, and in time a single government.

as someone has already quoted Winston Churchill - i will to. 'We have our own dream and our own task. We are with Europe, but not of it. We are linked but not combined. We are interested and associated but not absorbed'  'if Britain must choose between europe and the open sea she must always choose the open sea'

We joined the EU for trade and trade alone, we turned our back on our family and friends the Anglosphere, mainly Australia, New Zealand and Canada and most of the English speaking world, which with hindsight was wrong, and what for well for financial stability its no secret the UK economy weakened due to fighting in world war two, it didnt help when we stood alone against Nazi Germany, taking out loans selling parts of the empire - territories - yet we burdened ourselves with debt fighting the good fight for the benefit of the whole world. but getting out of Victory what Germany got out in defeat.

the EU or common market helped our economy, it brought stability but at a price, we put ourselves at a disadvantage one which we still haven't recovered, but with each passing year and with further EU integration the benefits the EU first brought have been diminishing. the time is fast approaching, - the EU has lost its relevance to the UK. and that is why the people are now wanting out. when the clear majority can see sense the writing is well and truly on the wall.

the UK will leave the EU, and the EU will continue on. we have no reliance on the EU for our future.

Edited by stevewinn, 07 January 2013 - 07:03 PM.

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#14    skookum

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 07:58 PM

Great Britain's exit from the Europe is becoming as certain eventuality as Greece's exit.

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#15    Norbert Dentressangle

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 08:42 PM

View PostBr Cornelius, on 07 January 2013 - 04:45 PM, said:

Questionmark is generally accurate in saying that the UK deliberately ran down its industrial base and marginalized itself as a EU member as a matter of Tory policy. The UK has got far less out of the EU than they could have - and it was entirely deliberate on the part of the UK government.

There is absolutely no reason why the UK couldn't have been as powerful an industrial powerhouse of Europe as the Germans - they started out with all the same advantages. They should absolutely never have gone in with the attitude they had - but the ironic thing is that the greatest Tory leader of the last 100yrs (Churchill) was the man who set them on the path to membership.

Br Cornelius
So going into the EU with the attitude they had was the reason for the UK's industrial decline, then? It couldn't have been anything to do with the postwar Labour govt.'s mania for nationalising everything in sight, and the consequent hopeless uncompetitiveness?

Edited by Lord Vetinari, 07 January 2013 - 08:44 PM.

Life is a hideous business, and from the background behind what we know of it peer daemoniacal hints of truth which make it sometimes a thousandfold more hideous.

H. P. Lovecraft.


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