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UK. EU. Yes? No? Referendum 23 June.


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16 hours ago, zekekelso said:

The winners in post-European Britain will be all the sick kids and elderly helped out by the extra  £350m a week in funding NHS will get.

Exactly. And the people living from food banks because of the Brussels yoke. In other words: Rupert Murdoch and his gang.

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Johnson's leadership campaign has so far cost £130bn

I yet have to recover - yesterday, I was honestly depressed about the result. While it was apparent that the Leave camp might win for weeks, I regained my old hope that reason (and therefore, the Rema

On 30/04/2017 at 6:35 PM, Ripley said:

It's becoming pretty clear that the EU is united in its determination to make the whole process of Brexit very painful. I respect them for it and no doubt it's deserved. But - I can't really see any kind of positive relationship being in place at the end of this divorce process. There's a real danger that attitudes will harden and the EU will be increasingly thought of as a threat. There doesn't seem to be anything positive or worthwhile to be gained for the UK. I hoped for more but even as a devout remainer I feel defeated even before negotiations begin. Perhaps it would be more painful but easier just to walk away rather than go through this humiliating charade? 

It's never a comfortable position to find oneself agreeing with Nigel Farage, but I thought he was absolutely right in his assessment of Jean-Claude Juncker's speech in the European Parliament the other day. While I have little confidence in the British government at the moment, there's little doubt in my mind that the negotiations would be helped significantly by Mr Juncker and Michel Barnier engaging their brains before making the kind of ill-judged remarks we have heard from them recently. It may be easy to look for others to blame for the situation we are in now, but Messrs Juncker and Barnier, in my view, would serve the peoples they claim to far better if they properly understood why we voted to go instead of making their own Project Fear phrasebook.

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The whole mess is unfolding precisely as the unnecessary nightmare I always knew it would be. The so-called EU negotiators (Barnier and co) understandably don't feel inclined to do any serious negotiating with the UK at all and are just content just to sit back and adopt a stance of punishing the UK with sneers and threats (Barnier and Juncker).  The UK government on the other hand is running around like a headless chicken trying to make some sort of order and sense out of the grotesquely irrational decision it has made. What  a wonderful next couple of years we can all look forward to! :rolleyes:

I've always despised Conservative politicians but now I hate and despise them even more for plunging us all into this unnecessary and costly mess with their anti-EU rhetoric culminating in Cameron's disastrous referendum . Has any European nation been so ill-served by its politicians lately as the UK??? :angry:

 

 

 

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On 16/09/2017 at 12:21 AM, Mainad said:

The whole mess is unfolding precisely as the unnecessary nightmare I always knew it would be. The so-called EU negotiators (Barnier and co) understandably don't feel inclined to do any serious negotiating with the UK at all and are just content just to sit back and adopt a stance of punishing the UK with sneers and threats (Barnier and Juncker).  The UK government on the other hand is running around like a headless chicken trying to make some sort of order and sense out of the grotesquely irrational decision it has made. What  a wonderful next couple of years we can all look forward to! :rolleyes:

I've always despised Conservative politicians but now I hate and despise them even more for plunging us all into this unnecessary and costly mess with their anti-EU rhetoric culminating in Cameron's disastrous referendum . Has any European nation been so ill-served by its politicians lately as the UK??? :angry:

 

 

 

The problem with that apparent attitude from Barnier and Juncker is that it feeds into exactly the kind of narrative the anti-EU lobby have been seeking to create, accurately or otherwise, for years. They are allowing themselves to be perceived as trying to bully us and that impression is unhelpful on two fronts. First, it only serves to harden attitudes on both sides and make "negotiations" that much more difficult. But, even more seriously than that, it undermines the efforts of those British politicians who are still trying to argue the case for any continuing EU membership, if indeed that is what they want. As much as I have sympathy with the idea of a second referendum, I don't see how there is a hope in hell of achieving that when you see Barnier and Juncker behaving as they are.

If we have been ill-served by our politicians, and let us not forget it was we, the people (though neither you nor I personally) who took this decision, then I don't think you can solely blame the Conservative party for that. Labour, in particular, has to take its share of the responsibility, not just for its attitude to the EU question when it was in government but its failure to persuade its supporters to back the Remain side in sufficient numbers. I will still argue with anyone who is prepared to debate it with me that it is unfair to blame David Cameron for calling the referendum, because he is the only political leader we have had in the last quarter of a century who was willing to try to settle the European issue once and for all. His error, and that of those around him, appears to have been to fight the EU referendum on similar lines to that of the Scottish independence referendum which they very nearly contrived to lose as well.

 

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20 hours ago, arwebb said:

First, it only serves to harden attitudes on both sides and make "negotiations" that much more difficult. But, even more seriously than that, it undermines the efforts of those British politicians who are still trying to argue the case for any continuing EU membership, if indeed that is what they want.

Because this has never happened before, it's absolutely essential for the EU that negotiations be as difficult as possible. Any nation thinking of leaving must be made painfully aware of the sheer effort required to resume life outside the bloc.

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1 hour ago, JMarkSnow2012 said:

Because this has never happened before, it's absolutely essential for the EU that negotiations be as difficult as possible. Any nation thinking of leaving must be made painfully aware of the sheer effort required to resume life outside the bloc.

Even if there is an element of truth to that, and one might have thought that would have been apparent before now, I would still argue it is a stance that carries significant risk to the EU's own long-term future. What we heard from Mr Juncker last week not only feeds into the Eurosceptic narrative I referred to previously, but potentially fuels similar movements in other countries as well. There are clear lessons for the EU to learn about how it contributed to the Leave vote but it is equally clear its leaders do not wish to learn them.

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10 hours ago, arwebb said:

Even if there is an element of truth to that, and one might have thought that would have been apparent before now, I would still argue it is a stance that carries significant risk to the EU's own long-term future. What we heard from Mr Juncker last week not only feeds into the Eurosceptic narrative I referred to previously, but potentially fuels similar movements in other countries as well. There are clear lessons for the EU to learn about how it contributed to the Leave vote but it is equally clear its leaders do not wish to learn them.

The EU contributed to the Leave vote by having perceived disadvantages which are inevitable in a multinational bloc. What it needs to do now is demonstrate very clearly that those perceived disadvantages are far outweighed by the advantages of membership.

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They don't need to demonstrate anything. All this will become perfectly clear when Johnson's £33bn lie comes home to roost. I find it hard to be concerned about Junker when we have a cadre of liars and opportunists at the top of our so-called government.

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LOL..the problem is not the Barnier/Juncker attitude now. It is still clear that the UK needs the EU (single market) more than the other way round. So why should the EU make life easy for the indeed „headless chicken“? The leavers brought it all on themselves with their lies and propaganda, and instead of „taking back control“, they still try ti pin their inevitable failure at Brussels. Cowards.

As a side note: the EU has many faults, but running away and then demanding beneficial treatment will not solve anything.

As a further side note: Labour‘s role pre-referendum was abysmal, so they seem quite the hypocrites too, including St Jeremy.

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Oh, and one funny thing: On FB I saw an outraged leaver complaining about Danish fishing demands in return for a better deal and wanting to send the navy „like we did with Iceland“. I happily pointed out that the UK lost that „war“ with Iceland ;-) Poor guy is now on blood pressure medication.

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1 hour ago, StefanMUC said:

LOL..the problem is not the Barnier/Juncker attitude now. It is still clear that the UK needs the EU (single market) more than the other way round. So why should the EU make life easy for the indeed „headless chicken“? The leavers brought it all on themselves with their lies and propaganda, and instead of „taking back control“, they still try ti pin their inevitable failure at Brussels. Cowards.

I don't think you'll find much disagreement about the Leave campaign here, certainly not from me. But the point I'm making, and I make it as a Remain voter, is that they are allowing themselves to be seen in a way that feeds into exactly the kind of narrative that you describe and I don't see how that helps anyone. While I am heartened, from what little bit I have read of Mr Barnier's response to Theresa May's Florence speech today, I think I'm still in the same position I was when I wrote a column on this a few weeks ago of not trusting either side.

1 hour ago, StefanMUC said:

As a side note: the EU has many faults, but running away and then demanding beneficial treatment will not solve anything.

It does indeed, which is why I feel the apparent desire to press ahead with closer integration as though nothing has happened is just not sensible. We can blame Leave campaign falsehoods, anti-establishment feeling, "Little Englander" mentalities and concerns about immigration all we want. But to do so, however much truth there may be in any of those themes and others, without considering how the EU itself contributed to the Leave vote does not make for a full analysis. As for the negotiations so far, I'm sure I'm not alone in having no real idea what the British government's aims actually are. Regardless of whether or not that's a symptom of internal Cabinet wranglings, it's pretty bloody depressing to watch.

2 hours ago, StefanMUC said:

As a further side note: Labour‘s role pre-referendum was abysmal, so they seem quite the hypocrites too, including St Jeremy.

I argued in the immediate aftermath of the referendum that it was really won and lost in pre-dominantly Labour areas and I stand by that. While I have some personal sympathy for Jeremy Corbyn as someone else who supported Remain despite Eurosceptic leanings, he did not do anything like enough, as the leader of the main opposition, pro-Europe, party to make the case.

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Its all very depressing and I think it was inevitable it would be acrimonious. Barnier is just doing his job trying to deal with a line up of deluded idiots on the British side. Junker on the other hand took the vote personally - his legacy as commission president is permanently ruined. He is bitter and out for revenge. If he was a bigger man he would try to be magnanimous and offer a grander vision that maybe the brits could live with - some kind of looser relationship. The trouble for the brits is that as much as we don't have a clear idea of what our future relationship should be, the EU doesn't know what it's future is. Macron and junker may make big speeches but the fact is there,s not a consistent view from the EU members about the future direction. On that big question successive UK governments have been fairly consistent - we want a trading relationship with limited cooperation in other areas such as immigration. 

Note sure what the future holds but as a country of 66 million and with the largest security apparatus in Europe we can't be ignored. The UK will be a thorn in the side of the EU for decades to come. Even if we are economically weak our existence outside the EU we will be a constant reminder of the EUs short comings. If we recover economically we will be a constant alternative pole for other disgrnuntled EU members to run towards. If I was the EU I would be trying a lot harder to forge a better relationship and offer some way for the UK to stay in the fold. The current appearance of unity in the EU is based mainly around extracting money from the UK. If the UK walks away from the negotiations and the money stops in 2019, the budget adjustment process will erupt into a massive fight and that unity will be shown for what it is. The UK has more to lose by walking away but I think people are underestimating the impact that will have on EU unity.

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10 hours ago, JMarkSnow2012 said:

A bit less than that without all those pesky EU immigrants :mellow:

I can't envisage a situation where the UK government would deport 3 million EU immigrants. They are needed and it would utterly destroy relations with indivual EU members never mind the EU itself. Even UKIP don't want that. There's little evidence to suggest all EU nationals would leave anyway. On current projectsions the UK is set to become the largest country in The EU 28 by 2040 with a population of 77 million. I think that rate of population growth is part of the problem for many Brits when it comes to immigration. 

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43 minutes ago, Ripley said:

I think that rate of population growth is part of the problem for many Brits when it comes to immigration.

Yes, but it's also a long-term problem for the state. The have-your-cake-and-eat-it scenario would be plenty of young adults coming into Britain to do needed work, then leaving again after a few years to be replaced by more young people. Workers who stay eventually become retirees, giving us a population Ponzi scheme ...

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On 05/10/2017 at 7:46 AM, Ripley said:

Note sure what the future holds but as a country of 66 million and with the largest security apparatus in Europe we can't be ignored. The UK will be a thorn in the side of the EU for decades to come. Even if we are economically weak our existence outside the EU we will be a constant reminder of the EUs short comings. If we recover economically we will be a constant alternative pole for other disgrnuntled EU members to run towards. If I was the EU I would be trying a lot harder to forge a better relationship and offer some way for the UK to stay in the fold. The current appearance of unity in the EU is based mainly around extracting money from the UK. If the UK walks away from the negotiations and the money stops in 2019, the budget adjustment process will erupt into a massive fight and that unity will be shown for what it is. The UK has more to lose by walking away but I think people are underestimating the impact that will have on EU unity.

That's an absolutely crucial point and it feeds exactly into my thoughts about how the EU is not conducting these negotiations well at all either. While there are some European politicians with whom I think we can do business, it seems increasingly clear Mr Barnier, as well as Mr Juncker are not among them. Barnier's been talking more rubbish today. If he spent more time engaged in sensible negotiations rather than trying to bully us through the media, maybe these negotiations would be going a bit better.

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14 hours ago, arwebb said:

That's an absolutely crucial point and it feeds exactly into my thoughts about how the EU is not conducting these negotiations well at all either. While there are some European politicians with whom I think we can do business, it seems increasingly clear Mr Barnier, as well as Mr Juncker are not among them. Barnier's been talking more rubbish today. If he spent more time engaged in sensible negotiations rather than trying to bully us through the media, maybe these negotiations would be going a bit better.

Ripley was right to highlight the damage Brexit will do to the EU- and the greater damage a long-term successful Brexit will do to the EU. What incentive does anybody in the EU have to be nice to the UK about Brexit?

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On 11/10/2017 at 2:00 PM, JMarkSnow2012 said:

Ripley was right to highlight the damage Brexit will do to the EU- and the greater damage a long-term successful Brexit will do to the EU. What incentive does anybody in the EU have to be nice to the UK about Brexit?

I think if the EU is reasonable and accommodating now then the prospect of the UK returning in some guise in future cannot be ruled out. If there's a bitter split, then the prospect of changing public opinion will disappear. No deal will push the U.K. to consider membership of NAFTA which would flood the U.K. market with American cars and products that the European companies would not be able to compete with. Trade between the EU and UK would deminish drastically in the medium term and the UK would have less and less invested in maintaining good EU relations and security, beyond NATO. It would be a deep and permanent split. Of course the U.K. would be very deminished too in the medium term, but it's inevitable that things would rebalance and in the longer term the UK would recover and that is the real problem for the EU. Medium term punishment and effect will cause real damage in the longer term.

I can feel the hostility building in the UK towards the EU. People are starting to view the EU as something threatening and unreasonable. Even those who voted remain like myself.

 

 

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38 minutes ago, Ripley said:

No deal will push the U.K. to consider membership of NAFTA which would flood the U.K. market with American cars and products that the European companies would not be able to compete with.

What, America is just going to make Korea and Japan disappear from the face of the Earth?

 

Oh, wait ....

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I‘m sorry, but I can‘t hear it anymore. If the EU is so unaccomodating and will suffer so much once the UK is out for good, why is Davis even still boarding the plane to Brussels? Just jump off the cliff and get it over with - paradise is waiting.

I read today that German industry (which was hoped by leavers to push Merkel for a soft Brexit to save their UK exports) has the paramount goal of keeping the single market within the EU intact. They don‘t seem to regard the UK as highly as (sone in) the UK do. 

So, actions instead of words, that charade must end.

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Your quite right. Most intelligent people fully realise that paradise is not waiting post brexit. I'm thinking of what could happen if the EU remains as inflexible as it is now. The regional geopolitics will be very uncomfortable for the EU in the longer term. Britain will be forced to reposition itself and the new arrangements are likely to be a lot less comfortable for the EU than a close trade deal would have been. Imagine the UK sitting in glorious isolation while the EU squabbles amongst itself, lurching for one crisis to the next trying to negotiate budget cuts and increased contributions with countries like Denmark, Poland and Sweden. While at the same time they're being cajoled in to deeper and deeper integration. It's unlikely to end well and the UK will be a permanent reminder of an alternative. That's what the EU needs to place at the forefront of its mind. As soon as the the U.K. walks away there will be an economic hit - the arguments in the EU will just begin and will go on for years.

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On 12.10.2017 at 8:20 PM, Ripley said:

I can feel the hostility building in the UK towards the EU. People are starting to view the EU as something threatening and unreasonable. Even those who voted remain like myself.

 

 

I wonder what the EU should do that this feeling isn't building up in the UK?

The UK voted to become a third country for the EU - this will have consequences - the EU is 'just'  the bearer of bad news and therefore much easier to blame than to look onto the source.


 

 

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