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Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

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Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Mon Jun 27, 2016 2:36 pm

First topic message reminder :

The UK has only ever held three nationwide referendums. The first two - in 1975 and in 2011 - gave very clear results. The third one has not done so. For every 17 people who voted to leave the EU, 16 voted to remain.

Ed Miliband was opposed to holding this referendum, which was more about placating the right-wing of the Tory Party than any 'national interest', and in any case, referendums are only advisory. Parliament is sovereign; after all, isn't that what Brexit supporters campaigned for? As 450 of our 650 MPs want us to remain in the EU, why don't they use their sovereignty to reject the referendum result? (It's also become evident that many Labour MPs believe their 'sovereign' opinions carry more weight than the views of the vast majority of their party's members.)

The Brexiters also campaigned to 'restore democracy' to the United Kingdom. What is 'democratic' about forcing Scotland, Northern Ireland and Gibraltar to leave the EU against the will of the majority of their voters? This constitutional disaster is the result of a reckless and irresponsible response by a weak PM to the divisions in his own party.

A despicable campaign of xenophobia and lies, including TV broadcasts which should have been banned by the Broadcasting Standards Authority, hoodwinked 51.9% of the 72.2% who voted into supporting Brexit. It's hardly surprising that millions of people have now signed a petition for another referendum, but that's not the answer. Referendums are an abdication of the responsibility which voters give to MPs when they elect them. What is needed is for 450 of those MPs to stand up for what they believe, exercise their sovereign power, and refuse to ratify the 2016 referendum result.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Sun Aug 07, 2016 11:55 pm

What Brexit do we want? The one Leavers promised

From an article by Hugo Dixon:-

"Brexit is going to be bad. So there’s a temptation to campaign for the least bad form of Brexit. This is a mistake. No Brexit is a good Brexit – except in Leavers’ dreams. Rather than spending energy to ameliorate the Brexit terms, we should demand the Brexit that Leavers promised. We know it’s impossible. But that’s not our fault.

So what do we want from a Brexit deal? Single market access, control of the rules that govern our trade, £350 million a week back from Brussels, free movement for our people, full protection of the rights of British citizens living in the EU, no change to the Irish border, no independence for Scotland and a seat at the top table on EU foreign policy.

If the government can deliver all that, brilliant. If it can’t, we don’t want Brexit at all.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Penderyn on Fri Aug 12, 2016 2:53 pm

The difficulty is that nobody in his/her right mind supported Brexit, and they knew they would never have to be responsible for the result. The only answer is to see what deal is on offer and put that to the vote, AS OPPOSED to the previous settlement.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Sat Aug 13, 2016 1:40 pm

Philosopher AC Grayling on why Parliament must resist Article 50

"Those who say that Parliament can note and learn from the outcome of the 23 June referendum, yet not choose to take the UK out of the EU, are accused by those who supported Leave of being ‘anti-democratic’. I have heard from a number of MPs who will oppose Brexit in Parliament. I have heard from a number more who say they would like to oppose it. I wish to demonstrate to these latter that to treat the outcome of the referendum as binding on them is precisely undemocratic, and that the interests of the nation and its future lies in their exercising their responsibility to oppose Brexit if that is what they believe is right for the country.

In an election, electors confer temporary and revocable license on representatives to attend Parliament. Electors can change their minds; anything done by a government can be recalled at the next election. A referendum is a far different thing. It does not result in the temporary appointment of representatives. It is one-off.

The UK’s EU membership is far more complex and far more consequential than almost any other item of government business. Is it to be settled on a simple majority of those who vote (not, note, a majority of the electorate as a whole, still less of the people as a whole – more precisely, just 37% of those entitled to vote)? Emphatically, No: this is precisely why we have representative democracy. This is why Parliament cannot resign its sovereign powers and its responsibility in the matter, regarding them as over-ridden by a referendum explicitly designated as advisory only
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Aug 14, 2016 10:31 am

Tory Prime Minister Anthony Eden pressed the Self-destruct button in 1956 when he launched an invasion of the Suez Canal, and Cameron has followed tradition with his own version of the Charge of the Light Brigade shaped as a referendum whose outcome was unpredictable.

A disinterested observer will no doubt have been amused at the subsequent wriggling on both sides of the argument in which grown men seem to think that the UK can have its cake and eat it too.

Any power internationally that Britain might enjoy henceforward will be the power which Europe and the rest of the world allow us to have. Though we can presumably still send a gunboat to express a point of view from time to time.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Penderyn on Sun Aug 14, 2016 1:48 pm

Not to Liechtenstein, which will be about our mark now.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Tue Aug 16, 2016 11:38 pm

Theresa May’s Swiss holiday will show her just how bad Brexit could be

From an article by Ian Birrell:-

Switzerland demonstrates with stark clarity the core issue that will define May’s time in Downing Street: how to resolve the conundrum of having open European borders for goods and services, but closing them for people. Just as in Britain, the problem was presented to Swiss politicians by a referendum focused on immigration, after economic success lured a flood of foreigners. One in four residents were born abroad: people such as British bankers, German teachers and Italian doctors. Although not an EU member, the country is signed up to the Schengen pact on free movement. And this led a right-wing party to exploit concerns over public services and wages by pushing a ballot to stop “mass migration”.

The Swiss People’s Party, by a tiny majority, was backed by voters in February 2014. But the EU does not permit cherry-picking of rules. So Brussels instantly fired a warning shot by blocking Swiss universities from research projects, and students from exchange programmes. The Swiss government made up funding shortfalls, just as Philip Hammond, the UK chancellor, promised to do at the weekend – but enforced isolation in such a dynamic global sector had a damaging impact, with an estimated 80 top academics already spurning jobs.

Now there is a possible escape route, with the requisite 100,000 signatures collected for a fresh vote to reverse the earlier referendum. So as she tramps along those gorgeous Alpine paths, could there be a better place for our prime minister to contemplate the future of her own country?


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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Sun Aug 21, 2016 12:49 pm

Brexit X-men: how the PM’s key negotiators are coping

From an article by Toby Helm:-

The issue of the UK and the EU single market in goods and services is critical. Before the referendum, May strongly suggested the UK should remain a member in the event of Brexit. Thus far, however, the May government has been unable to give clear and consistent answers on the single-market question, because the Tory Party and the cabinet is split and the complexities are only now being grasped. Senior UK diplomats have been shocked by how little leading Tories in government – including Johnson – understand about the workings of the EU and its single market.

“It is staggering”, said one top UK official, “they have not even got to base one in terms of knowledge”. Charles Grant, director of the Centre for European Reform in London, says some “very senior” people in the UK government are deeply ignorant about the single market, and adds that only now are the Brexit-backers beginning to grasp the difficulty of what faces them. “I think that two months down the line the senior Brexiters are beginning to realise that the whole process is going to be a lot more complicated, time-consuming and boring than they had imagined before, when they had presented it all as black and white. They are beginning to realise that this will occupy most of the energies of government for the next five to 10 years.”


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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by sickchip on Sun Aug 21, 2016 5:06 pm

They are beginning to realise that this will occupy most of the energies of government for the next five to 10 years.”
Meanwhile our economy will continue to tank, and another recession is on the cards......at which point a fickle, and frustrated, electorate, may look for a new kind of politics/government - you know, like what Corbyn could offer if he wasn't being annihilated by the tory PLP - who clearly don't want a Labour government unless it is a Blairist Nu Labour government.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Sun Aug 28, 2016 10:09 am

Theresa May 'acting like Tudor monarch' by not giving MPs a Brexit vote

From an article by Nicola Slawson:-

The PM is allegedly planning to prevent MPs from voting on the decision to leave the EU before Article 50, the legislation that will trigger the UK’s formal exit from the bloc, is triggered. There has been a post-referendum debate over whether the result is merely advisory, as the Act that created it did not specify whether the result would be binding. Some have argued a vote should be held in Parliament to ratify the result. 'The Daily Telegraph' reported that May had been told by government lawyers that she did not need parliamentary approval to trigger the procedure, but she could face legal challenges over the decision.

The vast majority of MPs – up to 480 – and most peers in the House of Lords have supported remaining in the EU. Some reacted to the news with anger. Owen Smith suggested May would avoid a parliamentary debate because there was not sufficient support for Brexit. David Lammy tweeted that the plans were a “stitch-up”, adding that “in our democracy, Parliament is sovereign and must vote ahead of any decision to Brexit”.

Shadow international trade secretary, Barry Gardiner, said: “The logic of saying the PM can trigger Article 50 without first setting out to Parliament the terms and basis upon which her government seeks to negotiate – indeed, without even indicating the red lines she will seek to protect – would be to diminish Parliament and assume the arrogant powers of a Tudor monarch. Parliament cannot be sidelined from the greatest constitutional change our country has debated in 40 years.”


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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Sun Aug 28, 2016 3:37 pm

Opposing Brexit is not undemocratic

In the referendum on 23 June, 51.89% of those who voted opted to leave the EU. That was just 37% of the electorate, and they voted to end our 43-year membership of the largest free trade area the world has ever known. The vote came at the end of decades in which British readers of Tory tabloids were drip fed anti-EU propaganda, decades in which very few of the benefits of EU membership were ever aired.

The referendum campaign was a disgrace for a supposedly modern democracy. Osborne made absurd predictions about what the economy would be like in 2030 if we left the EU, even though his forecasts during the last six years rarely lasted three months before being discredited. He then threatened voters with a ‘punishment’ budget if they dared to vote for Leave. Cameron also played his part in damaging the Remain cause by conjuring up a figure of £4,300 a year, by which every family was going to be worse off if we voted Leave.

However, nobody on the Remain side posted a bare-faced lie on the side of their battlebus, or quite managed to plummet the depths of the Leave campaign, which saw Farage’s remake of a Nazi poster and scaremongering that “Turkey is joining the EU”, coupled with the nonsense that 75 million Turks were likely to migrate to Britain in the near future. I’m fairly sure that very few voters had any real idea about how the EU works or what it does, but along with immigrants it made a useful scapegoat for those left behind by 35 years of neoliberalism to blame for their predicament. I know that some people voted Leave in the hope of getting rid of Cameron. That worked, but the rest of their dream – that the Tory government would collapse and Labour would sweep to power – was never going to materialise.

Whatever reasons, however fallacious, that people had for voting was their right, I can hear you saying. And yes, in a general election that certainly applies, because after a few years, if their expectations haven’t been fulfilled, they can change their minds. A referendum on the magnitude of making a great constitutional change such as leaving the EU is a different matter entirely, it’s a one off. When, in 2013, and to appease the rabid right in the Tory Party, Cameron promised to hold an in-out referendum, Ed Miliband was right not to do likewise. As Chris Patten, a former Tory minister, said in 2003: “I think referendums are fundamentally anti-democratic in our system and I wouldn't have anything to do with them”.

When Cameron called this referendum, there were no conditions, just a simple majority would suffice. Nick Clegg told us recently that Cameron was so certain that Remain would win he thought there was nothing to worry about. There was no requirement for every country within the United Kingdom to agree to Brexit before it could happen. 62% of those who voted in Scotland chose Remain, so how can they be made to Leave? In their independence referendum in 2014, the Scots were told that if they wanted to stay in the EU they needed to vote No. There was no requirement for a certain percentage of the entire electorate, say 50%, to vote in favour of Brexit before it could happen. (Cameron was happy to seek to impose such a condition on trade union ballots). Even my local cricket club requires a two-thirds majority before any changes can be made to its constitution, yet it appears that something so much more important can be decided by just 37% of the electorate!

Then we come to the matter of who was and who wasn’t allowed to vote in the EU referendum, an issue which, as the result was so close, could well have affected the result. We know that a majority of those aged under 50 who voted opted for Remain, but those who will have to live with the consequences for the longest of all – 16 and 17-year-olds – weren’t allowed to vote, even though they had done so in the Scottish referendum. Britons who have lived abroad for more than 15 years weren’t allowed to vote; Commonwealth citizens who live in the UK were. Irish, Maltese and Cypriot citizens resident in the EU were allowed to vote, but not any other of the EU citizens who are working and paying taxes here; whatever happened to “no taxation without representation”?

However, the biggest issue of all is parliamentary sovereignty, which was so important to so many Leave supporters. In the 2015 general election, at least 450 of the 650 MPs elected were pro-EU. In a so-called representative democracy, they are required to do what they think is in the best interests of the UK. Before this country joined what was then the EEC, the European Communities Act of 1972 was passed by Parliament. So shouldn’t an Act be required to be passed before we leave? It was also an Act of Parliament which made the recent referendum possible, and the briefing document which preceded it is very interesting. What is also interesting is that the document now appears to have been removed, or at least moved, a trick with which Tories have become closely identified in recent years.

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As I hope you can see, the issue of what is or isn’t ‘democratic’ is a lot more complicated than the close result of a referendum, recklessly called by a weak former PM who was scared of his own backbenchers and UKIP.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Aug 28, 2016 5:36 pm

The "Brexit" vote on the referendum in June was the inevitable consequence of Britain not joining other European nations in adopting the Euro in the Millenium year.

Just sayin'
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Thu Sep 01, 2016 8:28 am


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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Sep 01, 2016 5:18 pm

The Law of Unintended Consequences is likely to be operative for at least the next five years.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Mon Sep 05, 2016 11:44 pm

It’s not a fool’s errand to try to keep Britain in the EU

Extracts from an article by Hugo Dixon:-

"Fighting to stay in the EU may seem a hopeless cause if you look at the political situation today. But what if a significant number of leave voters change their minds? After all, we were all lied to during the campaign. Brexiteers told us that Britain sends £350m a week to Brussels and that Turkey is scheduled to join the EU in 2020, when neither is true. They promised we could have our cake and eat it – access to the single market, control of our laws, no budget contributions, an end to free movement and so forth.

On her way to the G20 summit, May refused to endorse some of Vote Leave’s pledges – a points system to control migration, no more contributions to the EU budget, and an extra £100m a week for the NHS. Meanwhile, the Japanese government warned that its firms may shift activities from Britain to the EU.

The failure to make any positive case for EU membership was one of Cameron’s many sins. We need such a vision if we are to persuade the electorate that we should stay in the EU. We also need to show that many of the genuine problems that troubled leave voters – stagnant wages, crowded schools and GP surgeries, not enough homes – are the fault of our government, not the EU.

Under the so-called referendum lock legislation passed in 2011, voters have to authorise any treaty that replaces the existing EU treaties. A Brexit deal is likely to involve a new treaty. A clever lawyer could say this would replace the existing ones. If this argument holds water, we may have a new referendum whether May likes it or not.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:19 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]  Hugo Dixon

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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Phil Hornby on Tue Sep 06, 2016 12:57 pm

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"If we're talking lookalikes..."
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Sep 06, 2016 7:53 pm

William Ewart Gladstone in a career lasting over sixty years served as Prime Minister four separate times, and served as Chancellor of the Exchequer four times.

Interesting comparison.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Tue Sep 06, 2016 11:14 pm

Japan's Brexit note to Britain

"There are numerous Japanese businesses operating in Europe, which have created 440,000 jobs. A considerable number of these firms are concentrated in the UK. Nearly half of Japanese direct investment intended for the EU in 2015 flowed to the UK ... we strongly request that the UK will consider this fact seriously and respond in a responsible manner to minimise any harmful effects on these businesses.

If Japanese financial institutions are unable to maintain the single passport obtained in the UK, they would face difficulties in their business operations in the EU and might have to acquire corporate status within the EU anew and obtain the passport again, or torelocate their operations from the UK to existing establishments in the EU.

Companies can't survive without flexible immigration that allows the acceptance of highly skilled professionals in the banking and other sectors, the acceptance of workers for the construction of power plants, and gives serious consideration to the appropriate visa procedures for foreign workers.


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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Thu Sep 08, 2016 3:50 pm

It's perfectly sensible to want a second EU referendum

From an article by Bo Rothstein:-

The result of a referendum should neither be seen as set in stone nor as having absolute democratic legitimacy. In fact, it is easy to come up with examples where it is clear that majorities have been completely and utterly wrong. In political philosophy, this is known as the 'epistemic problem of democracy'.  Simply put, political legitimacy is not only dependent on a decision getting support by the majority. In addition, the epistemic theory of democracy points to the need for the decisions to also be in some sense “true” and “right”. Decisions need to be “true” in the sense that they are not based on what is known to be factually wrong.

The leave side won because they promised something that does not exist. The idea that the UK could leave the EU but still have access to the single market without paying into the EU budget is a clear fantasy. Similarly, the idea that Britain will get access to the EU market but say no to free movement of labour is also pure fantasy – the likelihood that countries such as Poland and Romania would not veto such a deal is zero.

The slogan “Brexit means Brexit” is thus meaningless because no one knows what a Brexit alternative will look like. This is the downside of referendums, namely that it is too easy to win if you launch an alternative that is a mirage. Real politics is about taking responsibility for making difficult choices between far-from-perfect “real-world” alternatives. When the leave side finally produces a deal that instead of offering magic specifies the actual conditions under which the UK will leave the EU, there should be a new referendum.


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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Phil Hornby on Thu Sep 08, 2016 4:10 pm

One of the most depressing features of this whole mess is that we shall be assailed for years with the bigots and brainless who advocated leaving the EU trying ( totally unconvincingly) to assert that the eventual 'deal' we get is actually a good one for Britain and fully justified our departure.

Few, I suspect, will be heard to utter words along the lines of : " We were wrong to suggest that everything would be better and we made a huge mistake based on flawed beliefs and aspirations"...
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Penderyn on Thu Sep 08, 2016 7:20 pm

I think they are more likely to try the old line of 'We were betrayed'.    "All we wanted was Christmas every day and two suns, and the majority was for it - but have we got it?   The 'experts' strike again!'"
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Fri Sep 09, 2016 12:09 am

AC Grayling’s five reasons why the UK must ignore vote

1. The referendum was held under the terms of the (poorly drafted) 2015 Referendum Act as an explicitly advisory referendum only. From the numbers involved, it provides no mandate to take the country out of the EU. For: 51.9% of those who voted, in a turnout of 72%, represents 37% of the electorate.

2. 76% of MPs and 85% of Lords are in favour of remaining in the EU, presumably because they think the best interests of the UK are served by so remaining.

3. Parliamentarians subvert our representative democracy and our constitution if they choose to treat an advisory referendum as usurping their duty and the sovereignty and duty of the Parliament in which they serve.

4. The extended period of uncertainty which faces the UK is already damaging the economy, with great risks to the financial and services sectors, manufacturing, and specialist sectors such as higher education and scientific research and development.

5. Those who were for Remain had a clear idea of why they were so. But those who were for Leave had many and various contradictory and paradoxical reasons. There was no single, informed and prepared view; there was mere demagoguery and sentiment, and much of that sentiment was xenophobic verging on racist.

For a massively consequential constitutional change, nothing less than a two-thirds majority should be mandatory. The voting age should have been 16, since the younger generations are the most affected. British ex-pats should not have been disenfranchised for living abroad for longer than a certain period: that is an assault on their right as nationals.


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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by oftenwrong on Fri Sep 09, 2016 12:32 pm

Demanding a recount when you don't like the result of a plebiscite suggests a society poised at the top of a slippery slope into anarchy - but who's counting?
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Phil Hornby on Fri Sep 09, 2016 1:18 pm

I suppose there has to be a limit to re-visiting the outcome of the verdicts of voters or else we may find ourselves having to decide when it ceases to be safe to ignore the vote which took place after previously ignoring the vote which ignored the earlier vote...
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Penderyn on Sat Sep 10, 2016 12:52 pm

The problem is not that a majority of voters said they wanted to leave the EU but that they were not asked to give a sensible alternative. Everything suggests that they would really have rejected any alternative actually available, and that they should, therefore, be allowed to reject such alternatives in a vote.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Sat Sep 10, 2016 2:53 pm

Penderyn makes a very good point. On 23 June, the 51.89% of the 72.2% who bothered to vote took a leap in the dark, with no idea of what might come next – and they still haven’t. Will it be the model followed by Norway, or Canada, or Switzerland, or Turkey? Or will we just follow WTO rules?

When Australians were asked to vote in 1999 on retaining the monarchy, they were given an alternative – a president appointed by two-thirds of their parliament. Because the alternative didn't appeal to some people, the vote went in favour of retaining the monarchy by 55-45. Had the question just asked if voters wanted Australia to become a republic, without spelling out what would happen if it did, the result might well have gone the other way. Similarly, with our referendum on voting reform in 2011, voters were clearly told that it was a choice between FPTP and AV. Had the question just been about abolishing FPTP, without offering an alternative, the result could have been different.

Our EU referendum was also flawed because it made no requirement for all parts of the UK to agree to a change to the status quo, it didn’t require a supermajority (such as two-thirds), and it was strangely discriminatory about who could or couldn't participate. Some British citizens living abroad weren’t allowed to vote, but Irish, Maltese and Cypriots resident in the UK were, yet not people from the other 24 EU countries who are working and paying tax here. And 16 and 17-year-olds, those who are going to have to live with this decision longest, weren’t allowed to vote, even though they were in the Scottish independence referendum in 2014.

Quite frankly, referendums are divisive and rarely settle anything. They should be avoided in representative democracies, and the suicidal result from 23 June should be binned. For more about why referendums are a bad idea, please read:-
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Thu Sep 29, 2016 11:25 am

This time last Thursday, I was stuck on a train in Germany for nearly two hours because it was unable to get into a station as a result of an electrical fault. During the delay, I had a conversation with several Germans, all of whom were incredulous about our EU referendum result. One man pointed out that young Brits are 75% in favour of staying in the EU, yet the referendum was held after most students had left university (where many of them had registered to vote) for the summer, and that the Glastonbury festival was being held at that time (meaning many young people weren’t at home to vote). They all seemed very knowledgeable about our flawed referendum.

Now we’re being told that the work involved in negotiating the UK’s exit from the EU will occupy Whitehall and Westminster for least a decade, and cost a fortune…..

Brexit negotiations could cost taxpayer tens of millions of pounds, says report

From an article by Patrick Wintour:-

Turf wars by ministers seeking to control the Brexit negotiations are wasting valuable time and may cost the taxpayer tens of millions of pounds in additional civil servants, a report by the respected Institute for Government claims.

In the first detailed examination of how Whitehall is being restructured to cope with the Brexit talks, the report says the cost is approaching £65m, largely due to the need to hire 500 extra civil servants.

It adds that the triple departmental structure of splitting responsibility “risks creating fragmentation and incoherence. A lack of clarity about roles and responsibility of the new departments has caused distractions and delayed work on Brexit”.


For the whole article:-
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Penderyn on Thu Sep 29, 2016 1:11 pm

As happens with so many politicians, Mrs May has taken on the job of meeting other people's lying and impossible promises in the real world. It is a mugs game, and, if we put the fear of God into a few of our own traitors and tories, offers us a huge chance to take over from all these liars.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Fri Sep 30, 2016 10:53 pm


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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by boatlady on Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:31 am

lol!
Also the experts we're going to have to import to make sense of Section 50 when May finally gets herself going
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Sun Oct 02, 2016 10:49 pm

Apparently, the referendum was illegal according to EU law.... Shocked

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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Tue Oct 04, 2016 2:30 pm

Pro-EU Tory rebels reveal their plan to fight Theresa May's 'harsh Brexit'

Conservative Group for Europe rejects 'total abandonment and total recklessness'.

A group of Tories have vowed to be the resistance to what it dubbed the ‘harsh Brexit’ now apparently planned by Theresa May. The Conservative Group for Europe set out its stall ahead of the Brexit talks, pledging to fight the economic damage it fears from severing links with the single market. An 80-strong reception at the Tory conference in Birmingham heard an impassioned call to fight back from senior Conservative MP Neil Carmichael – who joked that the referendum result had driven him to drink.

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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by sickchip on Fri Oct 07, 2016 4:59 am

We shouldn't forget the referendum vote was 52% leave - 48% remain.....not a massive majority win for the Brexiteers. There also appears to be many people who are now regretting their decision to vote leave, and others who didn't vote who wish they had have. Despite this narrow victory we have a running commentary from politicians, pundits, media, and commentariat that invariably comes from a stand point that invokes the view that the great majority of British people want this; and that Corbyn declaring he still supports free movement of people demonstrates he is somehow out of touch with the whole of the UK.

Given the small margin of difference in the vote, and the fact that almost 50% voted remain - and with evidence suggesting some who voted leave would change their vote now if they could, wouldn't it be more reasonable, and in line with the nations wishes, to opt for a soft Brexit.........or do 48% of the people who voted count for nothing? A soft Brexit would seem to me to be a far better representation of the wishes of the whole nation - rather than giving the slightly bigger child the full bag of sweets and telling the other child they get nothing.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by oftenwrong on Fri Oct 07, 2016 9:54 am

Alas, Britain jumped out of the Balloon on June 23, and the World is "waiting to see whether our parachute is going to open."

What parachute?
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Fri Oct 07, 2016 1:46 pm

One of the letters in today's 'FT':-

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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by sickchip on Sun Oct 09, 2016 10:35 pm

Theresa May has dismissed cross-party demands from pro-EU MPs for parliament to be given a vote on any moves to exit the single market.

The prime minister authorised a statement on Sunday saying that such a move would be an attempt to “thwart the will of the British people”, after it emerged that former Labour leader Ed Miliband has held talks with some Tory MPs about a possible alliance over Brexit plans.

So she's quite prepared to ignore the will of 48% of the British people and go ahead with a 'hard' brexit.
What a silly and foolish PM she is. The fact that she is leading what is to all intents and purposes an unelected new government with a new agenda, and won't allow parliament to have a say on this, demonstrates her total disrespect for democracy.

And: Of course, by the time we actually leave the EU, 1m Brexiters will have died and 1.5m 16 and 17 year olds will be eligible to vote.

Since the latter wish to remain in the EU by a ratio of 6:1, the demographic will have entirely changed.

Hypothetically, it would be interesting to see the results of another vote in a years time. The government may end up forcing Brexit through, even though we as a nation might have changed our minds and don't actually want it.

This Prime Minister doe NOT represent the will of the British people at all. She's an unelected dictator.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by Ivan on Mon Oct 10, 2016 8:59 am

sickchip. Good post, one of several from you recently.   

Under the British system of representative democracy, the leader of the party with the most number of MPs in the House of Commons has, since 1924, always been the PM. Since Tory MPs chose her, Theresa May is entitled to the job. Where her legitimacy can be questioned is in the fact that she appears to head a new government with new policies, not a continuation of the one which scraped into power, probably with the help of some election fraud, in 2015. If she wants to tear up the manifesto on which the Tories were elected, shouldn’t she seek a fresh mandate?

One of the reasons many misguided people gave for voting to leave the EU was “to restore sovereignty” to the UK. It was a silly argument – if we hadn’t still had our sovereignty we couldn’t have held the referendum or now be planning to leave the EU. In the UK, Parliament is sovereign, and that’s presumably what Leave voters were seeking to safeguard. So it seems ironic that an 'unelected' PM is refusing to accept the sovereignty of Parliament and is refusing to allow MPs a say on exiting the single market. She also needs reminding that under the British system of representative democracy, referendums are ‘consultative’.

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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by boatlady on Mon Oct 10, 2016 11:01 am

However we look at it, the current political situation is a total b*ggers muddle
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by sickchip on Mon Oct 10, 2016 2:58 pm

Good post, Ivan.

I am reasonably optimistic that PM May and this 'new' unelected Tory government are not going to get away with this. Pressure, and questions, are beginning to be asked of her......from business, mps, media, and various commentators. Some criticism is beginning to head in her direction.

This was a referendum that 'consulted', and gauged, the mood of ALL British people - not a contest where the winner takes it all. Clearly if 48% voted against leaving, it is reasonable to suggest we, as a country, are not in the mood for a 'hard' brexit. MP's need to start speaking up and realising it is wrong to ignore entirely 48% of the British voters. Any Brexit deal needs to try and recognise, represent, and reflect wishes the whole country - not just half of it.

I'd like to see some Brexit debates rebooted on various TV news/topical programmes now......now that we are all more aware of the lies/deception that took place in the campaigns, and more aware of the implications for our economy / jobs. Repeat the debates now with studio audiences and a show of hands.

Let's keep applying the pressure. The narrow margin of difference in the result of the referendum does not justify this government riding roughshod over parliament and half the nation, and forcing a potentially catastrophic 'hard' brexit through.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Oct 10, 2016 5:15 pm

British voters should be clamouring for electoral reform. The current system could ensure Tory rule for the foreseeable future, so they aren't going to change anything unless there is a popular outburst.




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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

Post by sickchip on Mon Oct 10, 2016 10:50 pm

oftenwrong,

When people start seeing the price of goods going up, and their pockets are hit, there may well be public outcry about the harm / effects of Brexit.

Price rises of goods are already being reported, petrol is due to go up, and I imagine we will see hefty rises in our utility bills within the next year (all our energy supplies are foreign owned).

I think the whole nation, not just parliament, might begin to reconsider what Brexit means and see that the UK has shot itself in the foot and cut our nose to spite our face; and the brazen liar Theresa May will be forced to change her current autocratic plans.

The whole Brexit campaign was a sham, a con, built on lies and manipulation, and in my view this renders the result invalid as a mandate for brexit because people voted without being properly informed, or aware, of the consequences. We are only now beginning to find out something closer to the true impact / meaning of brexit........and we haven't even left yet. The debate needs to be reopened with the arguments from both sides put again in this more honest context.

I don't know if the public have the wherewithal to clamour for electoral reform; but they will clamour about services/goods becoming more expensive when many of them are already struggling as it is.
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Re: Open letter to the UK's 450 MPs who support membership of the EU

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