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Blackleaf

The Euro is a trap

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Why the non-Euro countries - Britain, Sweden and Denmark - should keep their own currencies.

Free-Riding on the Euro

Anthony de Jasay (A British-Hungarian economist)

In most places around the world, it is still usual that parents look after their small children and grown children look after their elderly parents. The looking after is unpaid work and is not counted in the national product. Sweden has passed that stage. In Sweden, the lookers-after look after other people's small children and elderly parents, while their own small children and their own elderly parents are looked after by yet other people. The state pays everybody for the looking after. The total of this pay is added to the national product. It also gets added to the budget deficit unless taxes have meanwhile been increased.

It is a commonplace that Sweden runs what is probably the world's most extensive welfare state, and suffers from the absurdities that welfare states usually generate. It is tempting to blame the obtuseness of the electorate for voting with absolute consistency, in election after election, for the extension or at worst the maintenance of the welfare system and a sharp egalitarian bias in tax policy at the cost—a cost most do not recognise—of reduced material wealth.

It is arguable that with its high level of education, exemplary civility and admirable technological leadership in many fields, Sweden should be much richer than it is. Nevertheless, it is also true (though less of a commonplace) that if they really must have a welfare state, the Swedes manage it less wastefully and more intelligently than most. Since the reforms put in place over the last few years, the country's overall economic performance has improved markedly. Moreover, while until the late 1990s Sweden's "social" spending as a share of national income was the highest in Europe, this share has since been reined back a little and is now exceeded by that of France whose welfare system is not quite as comprehensive, but is more wasteful.

Sensible Sweden has now taken a sensible decision; in a referendum on 14 September, it has by a majority of 56 per cent rejected the proposal to adopt the Euro as its currency. Two things are remarkable about this outcome. One is that government and opposition, large corporations, the media and all the chattering and scribbling classes have joined forces in a sometimes quite frantic campaign for a "yes" vote. Outlandish claims were made about how the Euro will speed up economic growth and reduce the cost of living,—the exact opposite of what has happened in the Euro-zone since its formation. The electorate has remained deaf to these extravagantly un-Swedish promises. Nor did dire threats of being "shut out of Europe" impress it.

The other remarkable feature of the referendum was that according to the pollsters, the chief reason for rejecting the common currency was the fear that as a member of the Euro-zone, Sweden would be obliged to curtail its welfare system—a misperceived threat if ever there was one. However, the upshot is that Sweden is staying out, Denmark is less and less likely to reverse its earlier rejection of the common currency, while the present British government's ambition to persuade the country to adopt it looks for the time being utterly hopeless.

Maybe the Euro is rejected for all the wrong reasons, but the choice is probably right: the Euro is a trap. It is an unintended one, but no less cunning for that.

Each member state of the Euro-zone is caught between two alternatives: to engage in fiscal free-riding or to be the sucker, the victim of free riding by the others. The reason is easy to grasp. When a country has its own currency, fiscal profligacy carries its own punishment. Interest on the national debt rises more than proportionately to the debt, both because the country's own capital market gets overstretched, and because the risk attaching to its currency increases. Default on the debt and devaluation of the currency (coming after a flight into inflation to water down the debt), though perhaps still remote, start looking less improbable. The repercussions render a loose fiscal posture more and more difficult to hold, and in due course tend to impose some discipline on the government.

As a member of the Euro-zone, the same government running a large deficit is spared most of these disciplinary consequences. No member country, with the possible exception of Germany, is big enough in the zone as a whole, for its deficit financing to represent a significant strain on the zone's capital market. Currency risk subsists only relative to currencies outside the zone, in practice only the dollar and the yen, but it is eliminated within the zone; there is no Greek Euro and no Spanish Euro, so one cannot weaken relative to the other. Fiscal irresponsibility by one country still has adverse consequences for the zone as a whole, but only a small fraction of them is borne by the irresponsible country in question, with the bulk spread over all the other member countries. This is the classic breeding ground for free riding.

Under these circumstances, fiscal vice is not punished but fiscal virtue is. Today, Spain maintains a balanced budget, while both Germany and France are running deficits that hover around the mark of 4 per cent of GDP. According to all serious forecasts, their deficits will exceed 3 per cent of GDP for four years or more in a row, not dipping below that level before 2066 at the earliest. One result is that Spanish borrowers have to pay higher medium and long rates of interest than they would do if Germany and France also had balanced budgets. This is not to say that budget deficits are always evil if some of their negative consequences are shifted to other countries, as they in fact are in the Euro-zone. In the short run, occasional deficits may be justified—or would be if they were not habit-forming. However, it is clear that in a Euro-zone-type arrangement, defence against the free riding of others consists in becoming a free rider oneself.

Where the markets do not automatically provide deterrents to overspending, can "constitutional" rules do so? Germany, with its strong anti-inflationary, sound-money leanings has tried to inject such rules into the Euro-zone when it got its partners to adopt the so called "growth and stability pact", as part of the Maastricht treaty. The rule sets an upper limit of 60 per cent of GDP on the national debt and 3 per cent of GDP on the annual budget deficit of Euro-zone countries.

The debt limit has no "teeth"; in fact, the average share of the national debts of the Euro-zone countries is now 71.5 per cent of their GDP, with Italy and Belgium the chief offenders with over 100 per cent and both France and Germany now over 60 per cent and rising. The deficit limit has "teeth" but very weak ones. The offending country is summoned to take remedial measures, and if it fails to bring its deficit down to the limit, it may be fined. However, few observers seriously believe that the Brussels Commission would dare to fine an influential member country, nor that the fine, if by miracle it were imposed, would change that country's fiscal policy. To make doubly sure, a strong movement is now afoot to take the "rigidity" out of the pact.

If the pact is not kept when it is not convenient to keep it, what remedy can the Euro-zone find against fiscal free riding that looks capable of undermining the Euro? In the United States, the vast bulk of public spending is decided in Washington at the federal level. The states might have an incentive to free-ride, but have little or no scope to do so. In Europe the central budget is only about 2.5 per cent of the member states' combined GDP, and each member state has both incentive and scope to free-ride at the expense of the rest.

The conclusion is obvious: to throttle back fiscal free riding by the member states and protect the Euro, taxing and spending decisions have gradually to move from the states to Brussels. Whatever it may be called, in practice it means a move towards a move towards a more politically centralized Europe—a move the new European constitution, now in the final negotiating phase, would surreptitiously facilitate.

www.econlib.org . . .

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agree, but Euro's don't want opinions from the states. They'll figure it out for themselves.

I'm really suspicious of Belgium, but have been asked why before. I don't have any research on it, just a gut feeling something's rotten in Den... Brussels.

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Posted (edited)

Europe is on the path to it's inevitible unification.... question is, will it be able to stay that way and for how long even after it'll consume gunpowder barrels such as the Balkan states and Turkey.

Edited by Erikl

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not sure going into Europe is a gd idea myself and i def. don't like the thouht of having the Euro instead of the pound dontgetit.gif

i reckon Europe would never last, we fight too much as it is!

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Great topic.

Euro is perhaps seen as the competitor to the US dollar. But to economically try to put all countries to some sort of equal level to fit it to the Euro- system is insane and dangerous.

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same currency's gotta be bad mellow.gif wot happens if the economy crashes in a country? i don't know much about economics, but wouldn't it lead to terrible inflation?

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Dont worry about it, Britain will probably enter the Euro one day, but not for years yet. Blair's majority might not be big enough to push it through and public opinion is heavily against it.

I haven't made up my mind yet...

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Blair will get it through if he really wants to mellow.gif the prob at the mo is we don't have much political say. after all, can u really differentiate THAT MUCH between our parties? Lab's jst turning into a milder form of the Cons and the Libs are so busy trying to score points off Blair that they don't really know wot they're doing. As for the Tories, change ur leader and maybe i'll think about it...

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Blair will get it through if he really wants to  mellow.gif  the prob at the mo is we don't have much political say.  after all, can u really differentiate THAT MUCH between our parties?  Lab's jst turning into a milder form of the Cons and the Libs are so busy trying to score points off Blair that they don't really know wot they're doing.  As for the Tories, change ur leader and maybe i'll think about it...

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That is already in the prosses,and remember the Tories had a majority of 600.000 votes in england ,so dont think blair will be able to push it throw as easy as you think

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Blair already said he wasn't going to bring up the Europe issue in general as a main one, it is too risky.

I don't agree with you when you say Labour are turning into a milder from of the Conservatives. The cons party split years ago over Europe and has yet to recover fully. Labour took the middle, realising they were far too socialist to be elected, they dropped Clause 4.

The Cons are pitiful in my opinion.

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Blair already said he wasn't going to bring up the Europe issue in general as a main one, it is too risky.

I don't agree with you when you say Labour are turning into a milder from of the Conservatives. The cons party split years ago over Europe and has yet to recover fully. Labour took the middle, realising they were far too socialist to be elected, they dropped Clause 4.

The Cons are pitiful in my opinion.

633554[/snapback]

Lets hear why you think they are pitiful,inyour opinion yes.gif

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So many reasons! These are just some of them...

1) Their awful public image

2) The fact that they actually lose votes to UKIP and the BNP, but not Kilroy just yet...

3) Their scare tactics

4)They called the Prime Minister of England, a position that demands and deserves respect no matter what happens, a liar. Children mimic the posters and ask their parents if the PM is a liar...

5)Michael Howard and David Davis- right wing ish and Euro skeptics

6)Michael Howard is a vampire

7) Their policies; Labour and the Lib Dem's saw that their budget would not have worked out unless money for operations etc

8)Their choosing of Ian Duncan Smith, ex leader of their party.

There are many others, but I haven't looked over their policies recently.

I realise some of these points are more valid than others...original.gif

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So many reasons! These are just some of them...

1) Their awful public image

2) The fact that they actually lose votes to UKIP and the BNP, but not Kilroy just yet...

3) Their scare tactics

4)They called the Prime Minister of England, a position that demands and deserves respect no matter what happens, a liar. Children mimic the posters and ask their parents if the PM is a liar...

5)Michael Howard and David Davis- right wing ish and Euro skeptics

6)Michael Howard is a vampire

7) Their policies; Labour and the Lib Dem's saw that their budget would not have worked out unless money for operations etc

8)Their choosing of Ian Duncan Smith, ex leader of their party.

There are many others, but I haven't looked over their policies recently.

I realise some of these points are more valid than others...original.gif

633570[/snapback]

1)An image should not win you votes ,its your policys,people that vote for a party because of an image are **** holes

2)Labour lost more votes than all the parties(every one else gained,some more than others)

3)And labour never scared any one into believing not joining the Euro and the European constitution was not scare tactics(he also scared the whole of Britain that we had to go to war ,remember WMDs)

4)Whats wrong in being called a liar,when you are one thats what i would call the truth

5)Right wing-ish and Euro sceptics,,,,,thank goodness they are,remember when the votes were counted Howard had 600.000 more votes than blair in England,i think that tells you some thing about being a Euro -sceptic and right wing policys

6)Being a vampire is not a crime,its only when you SUCK the nation dry and call it stealth tax ,know thats what i would call a crime

7)Untill a party gets into power and tries it ,know one can say 100% it wont work,know one has a crystal ball

8)And Labour have never had any one in power they wished later they had not,come on every one in life makes mistakes

If you want to give me more examples you are more than welcome

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1) You are right, but that's how politics works now. I believe Labour policies to be significantly better, they actually realise asylum seekers are human. Unlike one big hitting Con who one recently said they should all be held on an island for processing.

2)Labour didn't lose enough votes to lose. The main reasons Labour lost votes is because our people always got angry and bored with a government that stays in, look at the cons in the 70s-80s. People turned to cons because they wanted to give labour a 'bloody nose', not because they liked them.

3)I am glad we went to war, it was right as Saddam was/is mad and killed thousands of his own people. The cons said they would have gone regardless of anything. We need Europe. Thousands of jobs are dependent on it and so is our economy. Hague did so badly because he was so anti-Europe- no-one really cares that much about it. He thought people did and wasted too much time and effort on it

4)Tony Blair never lied. Goldsmith told him the law was legal, the chief weapons inspector told him there were weapons and so did our secret service. Given all this evidence I cannot blame him for going to war, he should have done anyway. He never lied, he had bad intelligence. So did the chief weapon's inspector...

5) I don't think it does, it just shows how people were angry with Labour, they don't really care about Europe that much- referring back to how Hague lost the election so badly.

6)Oh, sorry I forgot about Howard's great ideas- lets cut everyone's taxes and increase spending on everything-oh hang on, that doesn't work does it...

7)It would not have worked, they would have had to get money from somewhere.

8)Not as bad as Ian Duncan Smith, who was finished within months. He demonstrated how much of a mess the con party was still is.

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u say people who vote for image are arseholes, true, but i'm afraid that's wot most peeps do original.gif they're all rather naive i'm afraid and as 4 Lab being a milder form of the Cons... if u look back at the late 1800s/ early 1900s i think u might see some similarities!

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The main reason against the Euro is that it will be bad for the economy. I mean, look how the economies of France and Germany, in particular, are in a mess. Low growth, 10-12% unemployment. It's the Euro that's caused it. Last year, France's economy grew only about 1.9%. Germany and Italy's economies SHRANK. However, Britain grew by 3.8% and will still outperform the countries of the Eurozone this year.

Another reason against the Euro is the fact that many Eurozone countries, despite having older populations than Britain, have less stored away for pensions than Britain has. Britain has more money stored away for pensions than Germany, France, Italy and Spain COMBINED. Because of this, if Britain joined the Euro, we would have to bail out their crumbling pension systems by funding them with taxpayers' money -

Pensions

Key points

The Eurozone countries face a crisis because they have rapidly ageing populations and unfunded public pension liabilities. Britain is better off, both because our demographic position is much stronger, and because our pension savings are more than the savings of Germany, France, Italy and Spain put together.

If under the Maastricht criteria borrowing is restricted, then Eurozone governments will have to choose between massive cuts in spending or large tax rises. For example Italy could either cut government purchases by half, or increase income tax by about 28 per cent.

If we were locked into an economic union we might be forced to pay for their bankrupt pension systems.

The Eurozone countries have made few genuine moves towards pension reform.

“Pensions payments could easily turn into a vicious circle. If pension spending were not reformed, but led to higher deficits, some countries would not respect their obligations under the growth and stability pact; which in turn could lead to inflationary pressures; which in turn would result in the ECB having to set higher interest rates with negative impact not only on investment, but also on growth and employment, which are the basis of sustainable pension systems…Clearly the reply to these questions - pay more, work longer, get less, is not an easy message to sell” (Internal Market Commissioner Frits Bolkestein, speech on “defusing Europe’s pensions timebomb” 6 February 2001).

2. Total Pension Assets

Year 2000

Country

$ billion

% GDP

France

$ billion - 64.1

% GDP - 4

Germany

$ billion - 294

% GDP - 13

Italy

$ billion - 250

% GDP - 20

Spain

$ billion - 29.1

% GDP - 5

UK

$ billion -1444.5

% GDP - 101

Source: William Mercer European Pension Fund Managers Guide 2000

3. The extent of the effect on debt

The UK’s current national debt is equivalent to about £5,000 per person. If one added to that the per capita burden of our unfunded pension liabilities, the total debt burden in the UK would be some £9,000 per person. But if we took on also our share of the total unfunded pension liabilities of the EU, that figure would increase to some £30,000 of debt for every man, woman and child in this country. The adoption of a single currency would entail the adoption of a single ‘balance sheet’, but the extent of unfunded pension liabilities in certain of our European partner countries casts serious doubt upon the long term sustainability of their finances” (House of Commons Social Security Committee, “Unfunded pension liabilities in the European Union” 1996).

Why Britain would pay for the Eurozone’s pensions if we joined EMU

The euro lobby have claimed that the “no bail out clause” in the Maastricht treaty would mean that we could join the euro without being affected by the Eurozone pension crisis. In reality, if we joined Economic and Monetary union we would be made to pay for their pensions in several ways. We would either be forced to pay directly to prop up failing economies or pay indirectly via the interest rate.

“As the UK’s outstanding public pension liabilities are substantially below those of other EU members, there would be a risk that if the United Kingdom joined a single currency British taxpayers could be called upon to help finance the pay-as-you-go pension obligations of other EMU members, or suffer the consequences of being tied to interest rates on the single currency that were forced up by the market pressures of financing certain counties’ inherited pension commitments” (House of Commons Social Security Committee “Unfunded pension liabilities in the European Union” 1996).

Another possibility is that a group of the countries with the most severe generational imbalance could pressure the European central bank to pursue a looser monetary policy to “inflate away” the debt. This effectively passes the debt on to the private sector of the whole currency area (seigniorage) by allowing the government to pay for goods and services while reducing the real value of the money.

www.no-euro.com

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1) You are right, but that's how politics works now. I believe Labour policies to be significantly better, they actually realise asylum seekers are human. Unlike one big hitting Con who one recently said they should all be held on an island for processing.

2)Labour didn't lose enough votes to lose. The main reasons Labour lost votes is because our people always got angry and bored with a government that stays in, look at the cons in the 70s-80s. People turned to cons because they wanted to give labour a 'bloody nose', not because they liked them.

3)I am glad we went to war, it was right as Saddam was/is mad and killed thousands of his own people. The cons said they would have gone regardless of anything. We need Europe. Thousands of jobs are dependent on it and so is our economy. Hague did so badly because he was so anti-Europe- no-one really cares that much about it. He thought people did and wasted too much time and effort on it

4)Tony Blair never lied. Goldsmith told him the law was legal, the chief weapons inspector told him there were weapons and so did our secret service. Given all this evidence I cannot blame him for going to war, he should have done anyway. He never lied, he had bad intelligence. So did the chief weapon's inspector...

5) I don't think it does, it just shows how people were angry with Labour, they don't really care about Europe that much- referring back to how Hague lost the election so badly.

6)Oh, sorry I forgot about Howard's great ideas- lets cut everyone's taxes and increase spending on everything-oh hang on, that doesn't work does it...

7)It would not have worked, they would have had to get money from somewhere.

8)Not as bad as Ian Duncan Smith, who was finished within months. He demonstrated how much of a mess the con party was still is.

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1)Asylum seekers should not be allowed to walk the streets untill their documentation hes been verified and the true reason for being here checked out,so i to think they should be put some where untill all of the paper work has been done,who knows who they are

2)There were two main reasons that labour won,Scotland and Wales bailed them out and look how Scotland has been paid back,the poorest country out of britain,the second is how labour have set up the voting system

3)It doesnt matter what other parties leaders said,it was all down to one man Blair,he coned the nation and what ever way you want to get out of it yopu cant,we dont need europe,as you have read on many threads britain is in control,Europe needs us to bail them out of a mess they cant get out of them selfs,a mess they have made by not doing their figures and charging full steam ahead ,watch the EU countries voting no in the comming future

4)Goldsmith is in blairs pocket,the whole idea that blair had 100% intelegence about WMDs and acted on it is a farce,Blair was making plans a year before the intelegence reports were given to him to go to war

5)what can you say about hague wacko.gif

6)Lets talk about blairs pledge before he was elected for the first time,we will not put up taxes,he then goes and does it,several times

Then just before the second election,We will not put up taxes,he then goes and puts up taxes,know he has been elected for a third time i wonder if he will put up taxes thumbsup.gif

7)?

8)I dont kid my self that the torie party needs a kick up the ****,and know doubt it will get one or they will never win another election,getting a young mp into power with fresh ideas will be the making of the tories and the down fall of labour

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Posted (edited)

look how Scotland has been paid back,the poorest country out of britain

As opposed to what the Torries used to do...using us as a dumping ground for toxic waste, among other things huh.gif

The fact is, the Torries sickened me to my stomach with the last campaign...outright, and transparant lies. It was absolutely sickening to see them actually using pensions, trying to trick the old and vulnerable into voting for them, and doing it with outright lies.

"We'll put more police on the street! We'll shorting waiting lists! We'll increase pensions! And we'll cut taxes!"

....and pay for it with what? huh.gif The torries are, in my veiw, currently among the most disgusting parties on the planet.

Edited by Seraphina

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1)Yes, they certainly should carry paperwork and be checked out, but the conservatives are saying they will place an absolute limit on immigration-a very big cut compared to now. This means that people fleeing from oppressive regimes and gangs will be sent back home to die.

2) I hope you are joking about the voting system. The conservatives love the first past the post system. If we changed our voting system the conservatives would never get in, it would always be a lib dem labour coalition. If are referring to the way the boundaries are set up, then this has now changed in many areas.

3)Yes we do need Europe, maybe not to a massive extent, but we do need it. We rely on it for our economy's sake and for thousands of jobs across the country. It has also stopped farmers from destroying all of the countryside and growing or producing way too much of something.

4)As would have the conservatives done... Blair had so much intelligence from credible source, as did the chief weapons inspector...that he decided to go to war-rightly.

5) What do you mean, 'what can I say about Hague?' I thank him for contributing to the massive defeat the conservatives suffered in 2001.

6)Inflation changes, we need taxes. Oh sorry, I forgot about the great cons tax cuts. Yeah cut all our taxes and increase spending, that would work really well... thumbsup.gif

7)As in you can't cut taxes and then increase spending. There isn't that much bureaucracy...

8) Labour have to lose sometimes, all parties do. Yeah you will be waiting for a long time if you want a young conservative leader. I am guessing they will choose david davis...a big mistake. The cons have to realise they need to get in touch with people, not scare them. With Gordon Brown taking over, Labour will gain many more votes. Probably not enough to win a 4th term though.

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1)Yes, they certainly should carry paperwork and be checked out, but the conservatives are saying they will place an absolute limit on immigration-a very big cut compared to now. This means that people fleeing from oppressive regimes and gangs will be sent back home to die.

Absolute tripe.

A vast majority of current "assylum" seekers are economic refugees...they're not heading to the UK because they're in danger (unless for some reason one of the many western European countries they had to pass through to get here was after their blood), they flee because the government bends over backwards to give them the cushiest treatment in Europe.

I have absolutely no objection whatsoever to drastically cutting down the number of assylum seekers allowed into the country. In fact, the public opinion has been very much turned against assylum seekers lately, thanks largly to the way the labour government seems to have worked under a "come on over, and we'll bend over for you" system. They won't be turned back to torture and death, as the bleeding hearts love to tell us...they'll instead head off to France, or Germany, or somewhere else that will take them in.

The UK currently takes on far, far more than the rest of Europe and, quite frankly, it can't continue to do so.

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How is it 'absolute tripe'? I said that imposing a much smaller limit would mean people dieing and that is true. You have inferred from what I have said that I think all asylum seekers are running from war etc. I never said that.

If the cons had their limits imposed then some asylum seekers fleeing from oppressive regimes would return home and be murdered.

That is the truth.

You are naive if you think the cons limit would not mean some asylum seekers being turned home towards death.

No, the country has turned against them because of the Conservative scare tacticts mostly. It makes me laugh when people in south east England moan about 'bloody theiving immigrants', when they have problably never met an immigrant.

They help our economy and most definitely our NHS. I believe that the number should indeed be cut before a serious problem does arise.

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Or, thanks to the fact that we would be doing background checks to make sure the most legitimate cases were granted assylum, we would not have so many economic refugees choking up the cap, now would we? tongue.gif

Christ, I certainly don't want to see the Torries in power, but I do think tighter control needs to be enforced on the assylum issue. The bleeding hearts are so fond of telling us all these nightmare scenarios that, quite frankly, simply aren't realistic. We are not the only country in Europe that could offer shelter to these people, and we shouldn't be expected to act like it.

No, the country has turned against them because of the Conservative scare tacticts mostly. It makes me laugh when people in south east England moan about 'bloody theiving immigrants', when they have problably never met an immigrant.

Actually, the country has turned against them because of the labour governments ridiculously PC attitudes...where we've basically gotten to the stage that you can only be prejudiced if you're white, born in this country, have a job, and are over the age of sixteen. It doesn't hurt if you're law abiding too...Political correctness seems to really love criminals, because after all, "they're just a victim of their background".

Anyone else can say or do anything they want in or about this country, and pretty much get away with it. We're sick and tired of people like Hamza saying what he does (and you know, it wouldn't be bad if he was the only one) and the government, our government, actually PROTECTING him. All the while he's talking about rising up and murdering all non-muslims in the UK.

It's all gone mental. The government has made no effort to control the assylum seeker issue, and it's all going to read boiling point sooner or later. Without some kind of limitations being put in place, this is going to end up a very messy business indeed.

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Or, thanks to the fact that we would be doing background checks to make sure the most legitimate cases were granted assylum, we would not have so many economic refugees choking up the cap, now would we? tongue.gif

Christ, I certainly don't want to see the Torries in power, but I do think tighter control needs to be enforced on the assylum issue. The bleeding hearts are so fond of telling us all these nightmare scenarios that, quite frankly, simply aren't realistic. We are not the only country in Europe that could offer shelter to these people, and we shouldn't be expected to act like it.

No, the country has turned against them because of the Conservative scare tacticts mostly. It makes me laugh when people in south east England moan about 'bloody theiving immigrants', when they have problably never met an immigrant.

Actually, the country has turned against them because of the labour governments ridiculously PC attitudes...where we've basically gotten to the stage that you can only be prejudiced if you're white, born in this country, have a job, and are over the age of sixteen. It doesn't hurt if you're law abiding too...Political correctness seems to really love criminals, because after all, "they're just a victim of their background".

Anyone else can say or do anything they want in or about this country, and pretty much get away with it. We're sick and tired of people like Hamza saying what he does (and you know, it wouldn't be bad if he was the only one) and the government, our government, actually PROTECTING him. All the while he's talking about rising up and murdering all non-muslims in the UK.

It's all gone mental. The government has made no effort to control the assylum seeker issue, and it's all going to read boiling point sooner or later. Without some kind of limitations being put in place, this is going to end up a very messy business indeed.

634861[/snapback]

Good to see you back Sera?

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I disagree with you on the main reasons for rising anger against immigrants. I believe it is mostly down to people who see the negative effects, and tory scare tactis e.g 'are you thinking what we're thinking?' No.

Our asylum situation is no where near boiling point, it was all blown up last election by Howard as a gamble to topple Blair- he failed. However, I do believe something has to be done before the situation becomes too dangerous e.g. terroists. Some people say the threat is exaggerated, it may well be as thinking of these terroist groups as well organised elitists. However, something needs to be done to protect our country, limits might not be the best solution to combat this. If we are not careful in the many years to come, we could end up like the Netherlands...

The Monster Raving Loony Party came up with a good solution to the problem- only allow asylum seekers over 85 and with their parents, into the country... grin2.gif

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Our asylum situation is no where near boiling point

The fact that so many people think it's a key issues suggests the asylum situation IS very much at boiling point. Public opinion is so strong on this issue, one way or another, that the level of threat is irrelevant...the fact remains that something needs to be done about it.

'are you thinking what we're thinking?' No.

That slogan implies that the Torries actually think on occassion huh.gif That's just plain false advertising.

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