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Thread: UK Declares Independence From The EU!

  1. #221
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    Brits are now voting with their feet.......

    Friend in Berlin just filed for German citizenship. Office told him they'd had 10 Brits a day, every day, for the past two weeks.

  2. #222
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    Ahem........

    Oxford Academic @OUPAcademic
    "The whole campaign was, to some extent, a case study in how not to do democracy"

    http://oxford.ly/29aDNZI


    Post-truth, post-political, post-democracy: The tragedy of the UK’s referendum on the European Union


    By Matthew Flinders
    July 3rd 2016


    I used to cringe at the title of John Keane’s magisterial book The Life and Death of Democracy because of my belief in the innate flexibility and responsiveness of democratic politics – there could be no death of democracy. Now I’m not so sure. There was something about the tone and tenor, the fear and menace of the whole referendum campaign that was somehow tragic. It was a dismal debate but the central defining characteristic was its rejection of basic facts, cold analysis, objective assessments or expert projections. ‘‘People in this country have had enough of experts’’ Michael Gove, one of the leading figures in the campaign to get the UK out of the European Union, responded when asked to name one leading economist or financial institution that thought leaving the EU was a good idea for the UK. It was ‘post-truth’, ‘post-fact’, strangely almost ‘post-political’ in the sense that emotive arguments concerning ‘control’, ‘power’ and ‘sovereignty’ were blended and set against ‘the other’ in the form of ‘immigrants’, ‘foreigners’, ‘European bureaucrats’, etc. The political calculation on which the Brexit campaign was based was alarmingly simple: ‘emotive claim + identified folk devil = ‘leave success.’

    But the critical issue is not so much the actual result, but the complete failure of the political system to be able to cultivate a balanced and evidence-based public debate. Democracy was deceived and the public duped because the debate simply never got beyond the level of clichéd sound bites. It created heat but not light, smoke not fire, and noise but certainly no music. This was an argument that was made in several arenas and with increasing concern as the referendum date drew closer. In its report published at the end of May 2016, the House of Commons Treasury Select Committee complained that ‘‘The public debate is being poorly served by inconsistent, unqualified and, in some cases, misleading claims and counter-claims.’’ It added, ‘‘Members of both the ‘leave’ and ‘remain’ camps are making such claims.’’ But the standard of public debate did not improve, and the former Prime Minister, Sir John Major, felt forced to state publicly that he was ‘angry about the way the British people are being misled.’ He argued that Vote Leave were running ‘a deceitful campaign…They are feeding out to the British people a whole galaxy of inaccurate and frankly untrue information.’ Such claims resonate with a public letter signed by over 250 leading academics that suggested that the level of misinformation in the referendum campaign was so great that the democratic legitimacy of the final vote might be questioned.

    The final vote has now been taken and it is being questioned exactly due to this widespread concern about the veracity of the (publicly funded) information provided to the public by both sides of the campaign.

    Within hours of the referendum result being announced the blame games had begun with Nigel Farage admitting that the claim that £350 million a week could be saved by leaving the EU and invested in the National Health Service was ‘a mistake.’ The fact that 17 million members of the public had voted to leave the European Union in the wake of a campaign that had consistently featured this promise seemed almost trivial. (But possibly not to the millions of people who were at exactly the same time causing the government’s official public petitions website to crash with their demands for a second referendum.)

    My argument is not therefore with the outcome of the referendum or how each and every person acted when they picked up the rather grubby little pencil in a generally grubby little voting booth and marked the crisp clean voting slip with a simple cross. My argument is with the architecture of politics and its inability to stop politicians spreading falsehoods and lies, its failure to enforce truthfulness.

    Democratic politics tends to be slow, cumbersome, inefficient, hard to understand, and quite simply messy for the simple reason that democratic politics is an institutionalized form of conflict resolution that must somehow satisfy a vast array of competing demands. This was Bernard Crick’s simple argument in his Defence of Politics. Many of the arguments leveled at the European Union by the Brexit campaign therefore contained nuggets of truth – its institutions are inefficient, somewhat remote, and its decisions are frequently what economists would define as ‘sub-optimal’ – but nobody was ever trying to argue that the European Union was perfect, especially not the Remain camp. But the simple fact is that in the context of 28 very different member states these ‘problems’ or ‘weaknesses’ with the European Union can equally be viewed as the strength of the project in the sense that shared decision-making prevents conflict and generally directs shared resources towards shared risks. But the democratic arguments were always secondary to the economic arguments and even in this regard all that was achieved was an unedifying public spectacle in which politicians engaged in slurs and counter-slurs, claims against counter-claims, and deceit-upon-deceit. Turkey was not about to join the European Union, a European Army was not about to be unleashed, and of the £350 million that the UK pays in to the EU each week it receives well over half of this money back.

    And yet playing ‘fast and lose’ with the truth can’t be placed at the door of just one person or side of the campaign. The whole campaign was, to some extent, a case study in how not to do democracy. But there is a dimension of the debate that has not yet been brought to the fore in relation to why the Remain campaign seemed so lackluster and the Brexit campaign so vigorously populist – the pressure of the status quo. The simple fact was that our membership of the European Union acted as a systemic pressure or brake on the claims that the Remain camp could make. Working relationships with European partners had to be retained. Leading figures in the Remain camp were therefore bound by the rather Procrustean realities of political life which left their concessions and pledges appearing rather limited and dry, especially when compared to the rhetoric of the Brexit leads. It was democratic politics in the sense of ‘the strong and slow boring of hard boards’ – to paraphrase Max Weber – against the populist burning of political bridges.

    But the problem with populism is that it draws support on the basis that the world would be such a wonderful place if we could simply remove the cumbersome demands of democratic politics. In recent weeks just about every modern ailment has been placed at the door of either European bureaucrats or immigrants (generally both) and a simple solution offered – Brexit. In making such a political offer to the British public Messrs.’ Johnson, Gove, and Farage have raised the public’s expectations to the extent that far-reaching failure is to some extent arguably inevitable. What’s interesting from the autobiographies and memoirs of former presidents, prime ministers, and leading politicians is that electoral success rarely brings with it emotional confidence. Of course, to the outside world it is smiles and celebratory handshakes all around, but inside the dominant emotion is generally one of dread and a sense of foreboding. ‘What have I done?’ ‘How can I ever deliver what I have promised?’ are the questions that keep new leaders awake at night. In this context John Crace’s commentary on the hours after the referendum result was announced in Vote Leave’s headquarters takes on added meaning. ‘‘Boris and Gove were looking equally stunned. Neither had either expected to win or Cameron to resign, and what had started out as a bit of a game had become horribly real.’’ Crace wrote, ‘‘[Michael Gove] looked like a man who had just come down off a bad trip to find he had murdered one of his closest friends.’’

    But the truth is that the biggest risk arising from the EU referendum is neither territorial nor economic, its not even demographic or legalistic — it’s the rise of a form of post-truth politics in which performance and personality matter more than the facts. For the large part the EU referendum was a truth-free zone, a post-political referendum of fairy tales, fantasy, and fig leaves. Dishonest before the truth means that democracy has been deceived, the public duped.
    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 07-04-2016 at 07:08 PM.

  3. #223
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    After Brexit, EU proposes tougher tax rules on trusts indirectly or actually directly aimed at the City......
    http://reut.rs/29jXzCY

  4. #224
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    Standard Life suspends trading in its UK property fund after Brexit vote

    Standard Life shuts property fund amid rush of #Brexit withdrawals

    https://www.theguardian.com/business...it-withdrawals

  5. #225
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    BREXIT campaign was based on lies, but then again most political campaigns are. When democracy equals populism, democracy fails. The alternative in the digital age is no democracy. 16 brits a day seeking German citizenship sounds like brits already working in Germany, it doesn't sound like a mass exodus.

  6. #226
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    Outlaw 09…

    It is difficult to keep up with the posts on this thread, however, with respect to the linked articles, I see little insight and more of a foolhardy attempt to predict the future two-years hence as well as continued debating of the entire Brexit campaign as if there had not been a referendum. It is done, and if Cameron’s successor reverses course, which is very well possible, it would be anti-democratic and merely confirm that Brussels has co-opted the London financial and political class.

    I have asked you before, and I will ask you again: if you are correct that Brexit will prove to be a disaster for the UK, and England in particular, that the EU can replace the British economy either through internal development or new markets, and that the UK was a thorn in the side of European unity due to its opt-outs and obstructionism, is Brexit not beneficial for the EU?

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    …you have not paid much attention to the UK actions inside the EU since they actually joined the EU....most of all the EU Commissioners at one time or another have openly complained that with every major economic/political decision UK wanted their own version
    Then the Eurocrats should be jubilant that the troublesome UK is leaving and they are free to continue their project.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    … I seriously doubt you yourself can even recite those reform adjustments...or can you?
    Apparently it wasn’t enough now was it? Again, good riddance to the UK, no?

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    You honestly are trying to sell me the London Bridge are you not...
    I believe it’s spoken for. The real question is: what are you trying to sell me? You are an American living in Germany and unaffected by Brexit. In contrast, Brexit has impacted me adversely both professionally and personally, and yet I consider this a temporary nuisance and not worth overturning democracy for.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    …Then my friend you do not live in the UK...
    Perhaps. Perhaps not. But my opinion of the EU was formed prior to the Brexit campaign. Again, your distance from the issue hasn’t prevented you from taking a strong interest in it, has it?

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    ...we can replace all funding loses by using the EU fees we pay...THAT one was equally disproved RAPIDLY within 24 hours by even UKIP
    The numbers show that the UK contributes 75% to more than 100% more to the EU in fees than it receives in EU spending. What was challenged was the assertion that the fees work out to GBP 350 million on a gross or net basis and the suggestion (“let’s” is not a policy) that the entirety of the savings could be directed to the NHS, which as Farage noted will be up to the government to determine.

    Both the Leave and Remain campaigns glossed over the nuances of EU membership and used propaganda, including scare tactics. Unfortunately, your posts parrot every single Remain argument and you seem more interested in demonizing the Leave campaign rather than in discussing how to move forward.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    The GBP is still at the lowest all time record point in it's life time...
    Do you mean against the USD? Are you forgetting April 1984 through October 1985? Again, you ignore the GBP/EUR and GBP/JPY pairings, which I discussed in my earlier comments, as well as the USD’s recent strength vs. almost all other currencies.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    ...you are really hung up on Turkey in many of your comments as where many from Leave...BUT here is something that you did not hear when Turkey was used as an argument by say UKIP which is/was a major Leave driver...
    Turkey is of no interest to me, other than my view that it should be expelled from NATO and that it not be allowed to join the EU. Perhaps several years ago it seemed probable that Turkey was due for EU membership, and certainly the German press was wary, but now it seems far off.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    ...did you vote for the new incoming Tory government NO you did not.
    The British people elected a majority Conservative government and gave Cameron a clear mandate to carry out the EU referendum which was promised years ago. It is Cameron’s prerogative to step aside in favor of another leader. The British people do not elect their government: they elect their governing party.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    ...AND what compensation if any flows back to UK to assist in this devilment process and WHAT flows back to the UK as damages for forcing the EU to rewrite their laws and regulations….AND there will be damage claims calculated by the EU.....as now the 27 will present the UK a possible list of damages for their efforts as well.
    The UK is not asking for money from the EU. It is exiting it which will save it money. If the EU presents a bill to the UK for damages incurred by distracting the Berlaymont from its daily work on ensuring that the Muslim RPG-7/AK-47 outdoor market in Brussels also doubles as a safe space for cross-dressing migrant youth who want to question why there is a need to be gainfully employed, then I assume it will be ignored. It will nevertheless be the most amusing thing Her Majesty has read in many years, to be sure… 

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    AS does it always happen in all divorce proceedings there are two sides to the same story and the UK has apparently totally forgotten that in their rush to Leave....
    It is not a divorce. A divorce would be Scotland or Catalunya or Flanders. You are basically conceding that the EU’s consolidation of supranational control makes Brexit akin to secession.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    You are as a worker allowed to look for work in other EU nations as labor is a commodity as Marx once stated...
    Why are we quoting Marx? Why can’t non-EU workers look for work in the EU then?

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    BUT this is what you do not get....even if unemployed and you move IT DOES not get you social benefits in another country
    Did I not post a reply on this? From my view, the issue is that the UK has an incredibly generous and welcoming system with regard to migrants and refugees, as with Sweden and Germany, and that because it is a target, the EU’s failure to stop migrant flows means that it is acting as a conduit to the UK. If the EU had standardized welfare benefits, than migrants would feel as at home in France, Serbia or Poland as the UK. In reality, they are flocking to Germany, Sweden and the UK because of domestic rather than EU policies, although the collapse of EU borders has created a crisis.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    ....the EFTA does not have say a EU Rural/Low Income Development Fund...CHECK the tariff structures of the EFTA vs EU single market...
    The blog calculated the difference and to my knowledge EFTA tariffs were eliminated in '77. As the UK pays roughly double what it receives in EU spending, then there will be plenty of money to be allocated to rural development and Wales.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    Your overall problem as it was with many Leave voters is you voted with emotion...
    Thank you for explaining me to myself. The Remain side made their case and lost. This should be a wake-up call to the EU to sort itself about, but they will no doubt circle the wagons and double down on deepened integration.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    BUT this is my complaint about all your comments....the Leavers evidently were in fact complaining bitterly about ...the long term effects of "globalization"...THAT my friend is "poor governance" which is not a problem of the EU but of the Brits....
    Well, the EU set itself up as a driver of globalization with that extra bit of continental self-righteous sure to raise hackles in England. I’ve never agreed that the EU is to blame for everything, and in fact I squarely placed the blame for UK immigration issues on British policies from the post-war era. I get the feeling that you do not read my posts…like this one.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09
    …that so called real UK auto industry was built on EU/international investment premises that they would be actually in the EU... ..where will then these same multinationals go......simply across the Channel with both investments and plants....
    Maybe. Maybe not. 45% of UK cars produced are exported to the EU, a substantial proportion to be sure, but not the raison d’etre that the UK produces cars.

    If Brexit weighs on British car manufacturers and EU farms, one might expect an amicable agreement...

    Part of the issue of German success is cultural. German labor relations are much more cordial than in say the UK or US and Germany has been quick to embrace automation, whereas in the UK and US unions have resisted it for decades. Another issue is that the Euro’s value has been dragged down since the financial crisis and by debt and unemployment crises in the PIGS group of EU economies. We all know that the Deutschmark would be much higher than the Euro and therefore weigh on German exports. In that respect, backstopping profligacy in Greece and the other sick men of the EU is part of the cost of doing business. As for the Germans’ ambivalence to contributing more to the EU or receiving over 1 million migrants, this is more to do with the Germans’ post-war guilt and shame and desire to make amends than it is about net benefit.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 07-04-2016 at 11:38 PM. Reason: 3,657v

  7. #227
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    Default Moderator at work

    Just checked in here and the tone has changed somewhat. I am temporarily closing this thread till AM local time to enable a pause and a review.
    davidbfpo

  8. #228
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    Default Moderator adds - thread stays closed

    This week long thread has had 226 posts and 3827 views.

    The Forum is not a political discussion board, but rightly the UK's decision to Exit the EU was raised and has been debated - with a few posts on the possible impact strategically.

    As readers can tell opinions are divided on the UK's decision and can at times become heated.

    So on reflection this thread will remain closed for now. Should the situation change in the strategic sense it will be re-opened.
    davidbfpo

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