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The UK and the European Union - in or out?

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The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Thu Oct 13, 2011 3:09 pm

EUROSCEPTICS & UKIP CANNOT ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS

In the late 1980s the nations of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) began to seriously contemplate joining the EU, there were many reasons for this, but they included the realisation that it was the only way forward for trade and prosperity, in the case of Sweden it was also the fact that several large companies made it clear they would relocate if Sweden stayed outside the EU.

Current EFTA members: Iceland - Lichtenstein - Norway - Switzerland

EFTA members who joined the EU: - Austria - Denmark - Portugal - Sweden - United Kingdom - Finland

In 1994 the European Economic Area was formed (EEA), this was a compromise organisation for those members of EFTA who did not or could not join the European Union, joining the EEA meant access to EU markets, but the deal also meant accepting EU rules, even though these states were not / are not EU members.

THE QUESTION TO THE EUROSCEPTICS IS THIS: After leaving the EU, would the UK be free of all EU rules, regulations, directives and laws?

And the straighforward answer is: NO  and here is why:-

A meat production company in Lincolnshire is close to signing a multi-million pound deal with a European supermarket chain, just before the two managing directors take out their pens to sign the agreement, the boss of the supermarket chain pulls out a list of conditions.

The list of conditions consist of EU rules, unfortunately Britain has left the EU and unless the British meat producer conforms to EU standards the deal cannot go ahead, the rules cover everything from animal welfare, temperature control, employee rights, labeling, weight, moisture content and hygiene.

So no matter what happens in the future, the UK will always have to accept EU laws

Think of Norway as an example of a European nation outside the European Union, Norway is a member of the European Economic Area ( the EEA ), and as such has to accept into law virtualy every EU rule, regulation, directive and law, furthermore Norway has had to sign up to many of the EU treaties.

Norway has no say and no vote on any of the EU legislation which it accepts, and this is exactly how Britain would end up, inside the EU the UK influences legislation, it does have a say, and it does have a vote, unlike Norway.

A FREE TRADE AGREEMENT "JUST LIKE SWITZERLAND" [ Nigel Farage ]

According to UKIP, the future under them would be simple, all we need to do is leave the EU and sign up to a new free trade agreement, and the future would be bright  Very Happy, but a free trade agreement ?, lets look at that word "agreement", an agreement is not one sided, it is between the parties that make the agreement, and lets face facts here, the EU will call the shots, not Britain.

The European Union is not going to change its rules to cater for a single nation of 60 million, especialy when that nation has left the EU but still wants all the benefits of belonging, namely trade.

I am afraid that under such circumstances, Germany, France, Italy and the rest would say "our way or not at all", the best solution by far is to simply remain within the EU and go forward into the future together.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by gator on Thu Oct 13, 2011 4:15 pm

So EU is the future is it? I wonder what the Greeks and the Spanish et al think about that. I wonder why the Germans even considered joining EU so they could pay for Greeks to retire at 50 while the Germans can't retire for at least a decade later.
 
And it's all supposed to be equal is it? IMO, when someone talks of the EU being the ONLY way forward, grab your wallets and run - run real fast - and far away.
 
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by ROB on Thu Oct 13, 2011 4:21 pm

The EU is the future
For Germany and France, for sure, and perhaps for their lap dogs that have no choice in the mater, like Belgium, the Netherlands, Greece, and even Italy.

For the United Kingdom of Great Britain et al., the EU (European Union) is, I fear, actually the UU (Unholy Union) which seems swiftly becoming the UUKU (Un-uniting the United Kingdom Union), signaling the downfall of all that the noble and beloved United Kingdom had become as we entered the second half of the 20th Century.

Critics of the United Kingdom look to its uneven history, focusing upon its faults, with never a thought as to the far greater faults of its critics, including (1) Germany, which gifted the world with Adolf Hitler, Goering, Himmler, and "the boyz), along with their pet project, the eradication of Jews from the face of God's earth, which they believed thy owned (they didn't succeed, "exterminating" only six million of the eighteen million Jew then in existence), and (2) France, which gifted the world with capitulation to the Nazis and formation of the supreme puppets, Vichy France, the "authorities" of which commanded French troops and ships to fire upon Allied troops and ships during Operation Torch.

I prefer to focus on the strengths that, for awhile, exemplified decency and justice in an indecent, unjust world, including the Royal Navy's world ocean-wide enforcement of the UK slave trade ban, and the British bulldog of a man that, in a famous editorial cartoon, stood strong and tall, fist extended to the sky as German bombers overhead as their vile cargo exploded all about him, a grim snarl on his face, shouting to the heavens, "WELL, ALONE THEN!"

I thank God for y'all. I thank God that my country fought for its freedom from the country that taught us what freedom is all about. I thank God that my political-cultural heritage is British. I thank God that my political-cultural heritage is neither German nor French.

Don't get me wrong; I recognize that Germany and France are allies. The United Kingdom is far more; the United Kingdom and its citizens are friends. Period.


Last edited by RockOnBrother on Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:30 pm

The EU would be much improved if they found a cheaper way to run it.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Thu Oct 13, 2011 6:34 pm

The 20th century history of the United Kingdom is a different subject, though it does have relevance to today, particularly in respect of our relationship with others, in particular Europe, Canada and the Commonwealth, and of course the United States.

Rule with your heart and be romantic

The Americans who sent us the hardware in 1940 to fight a war, the Canadians who kept us fed in times of war, remember Dieppe, Juno, Utah and Omaha, General Wolfe and The Maple Leaf Forever.

And we should remember these things because they are so important, men died fighting for a free and democratic Europe, free from tyrants and misery, not just European men but American and Canadian men.

Times change, things move on, after the second world war Winston Churchill made a famous speech in which he declared he had a vision of a united Europe, he spoke of a Europe of co-operation as against conflict, he said that if united, Europe would be a powerful force for good.

Common sense dictates that a united Europe makes sense, what is the point of 27 nations all bordering each other indulging in self interest instead of mutual interest, there is no logic in 27 different currencies when there could be just one, the word "united" is a positive word, whereas the word "border" means division, a negative concept.

The sadest part of joining the European Union almost 40 years ago has got to be leaving our Commonwealth partners and friends behind, and I can afirm that this is a sentiment felt by many British people, particularly older people and those that remember the second world war.

And the biggest trading partner of Canada ? - its neighbour, the United States, this should tell you something


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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by ROB on Thu Oct 13, 2011 8:52 pm

Witchfinder,

You’ve conveyed so much in the few words you’ve posted.

witchfinder wrote:
The 20th century history of the United Kingdom is a different subject, though it does have relevance to today, particularly in respect of our relationship with others, in particular Europe, Canada and the Commonwealth, and of course the United States.

Rule with your heart and be romantic
Paying attention to your heart often reveals truths hidden deep within of which you were either unaware or had forgotten. One such truth is mentioned below.
witchfinder wrote:
The Americans who sent us the hardware in 1940 to fight a war, the Canadians who kept us fed in times of war, remember Dieppe, Juno, Utah and Omaha, General Wolfe and The Maple Leaf Forever.

And we should remember these things because they are so important, men died fighting for a free and democratic Europe, free from tyrants and misery, not just European men but American and Canadian men.
We were in it together. Fighting as brothers and forming a trans-national brotherhood that remains strong today. Ask an American serviceperson if you don’t know this. I have done so, on more than one occasion, and the expression of brotherhood with British, Canadian, Aussie, and NZ troops has caused me to quietly weep more than once.

One of those I asked was US Navy; he traveled to and visited numerous countries during his career, a major portion of which was during the 21st Century. I asked him in which locales he felt safe and “at home”, amongst friends. This is the entire list:


  1. Adelaide, South Australia;

  2. Victoria, British Columbia;

  3. Vancouver, British Columbia;

  4. Portsmouth, England;

  5. Gibraltar;

  6. Diego Garcia, British Indian Ocean Territory (except for BIOT police, who disallowed bar-b-que-ing and feasting upon coconut crabs).



Notably absent were allies whose countries he visited, like Italy, Spain, Greece (all EU countries). and especially Japan. Wonder why?

Remembering history, 6 June 1944 was by and large British, American, and Canadian, with all brothers-in-arms interdependent upon one another. Please never forget these brave men noted here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normandy_Landings#British_Second_Army

Also, lest we forget, 15 September 1940, the day the world changed, the day the beast’s defeat became inevitable, the day that inspired these words, spoken by a round man with a cigar wearing funny hats and caps, “Never have so many owed so much to so few.”

I am one of those many. I owe so much to those few, the courageous RAF aviators who flew sorties until they couldn’t fly anymore, then flew again, and again. The German armada was airborne, Hurricane aviators and Spitfire aviators were aloft guarding their island home, and the round man asked his air marshal. “Where are the reserves?” The air marshal replied, “Sir, there are no reserves.”

Listen to the voice that inspired decent men and women worldwide to stand firm in absolute opposition to the evil which threatened to consume the planet:

 

 
witchfinder wrote:
Times change, things move on, after the second world war Winston Churchill made a famous speech in which he declared he had a vision of a united Europe, he spoke of a Europe of co-operation as against conflict, he said that if united, Europe would be a powerful force for good.
Aware of that profound speech, I am unaware of Sir Winston Churchill calling upon his beloved island home to surrender its currency and/or its sovereignty, to anyone, at any time, for any reason.

Two examples of the European unity of which he spoke are the United Nations and NATO, one conceived as a more-or-less mutual benefit organization, the other functioning as a military alliance, neither of which requires member nations to surrender currency or sovereignty.

I understand Mr. Churchill calling for a European Union modeled upon that concept; sovereign nations, working together for mutual benefit while surrendering neither sovereignty nor currency.

Sir Winston Churchill was visionary, not foolish.

I thank God that your currency retains this funny-looking doo-dad (£) as its prefix. I thank God that “God Save the Queen” remains its national anthem. I thank God that, among pennants and flags, the Union Flag retains its pre-eminence in Sir Winston’s island home.

witchfinder wrote:
Common sense dictates that a united Europe makes sense, what is the point of 27 nations all bordering each other indulging in self interest instead of mutual interest, there is no logic in 27 different currencies when there could be just one, the word "united" is a positive word, whereas the word "border" means division, a negative concept.
I agree (se above). Just don’t surrender your currency or your sovereignty.
witchfinder wrote:
The sadest part of joining the European Union almost 40 years ago has got to be leaving our Commonwealth partners and friends behind, and I can afirm that this is a sentiment felt by many British people, particularly older people and those that remember the second world war.
We forgive y’all. Just come on home, where you friends are, anytime.
witchfinder wrote:
And the biggest trading partner of Canada ? - its neighbour, the United States, this should tell you something
Yep. I think it’s mutual, and that’s cool with me.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by astra on Sat Oct 15, 2011 10:02 pm

A meat production company in Lincolnshire is close to signing a multi-million pound deal with a European supermarket chain,


Since "Mad Cow"disease, Continental, cosmopolitan consumers have turned their backs on British Produce - even cheese is still having a "Hard" time now!

I think we should stop purchasing German Anti-Freeze (er that should be Hock)

It is to be noted that the British Merchant Marine, has been run down and scrapped all in the face of "modernisation" but really the ploy was to strangle us and make us DEPENDANT on foreign shipping companies and crews
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat Oct 15, 2011 10:33 pm

It's not easy to see how the Euro can survive in the face of Greece's inevitable bankruptcy. That affects every other Country in the Eurozone, and it also affects Britain even though we are not in the Eurozone. Two of Britain's largest Banks have exposure to BILLIONS in unpaid loans to Ireland.

Other factors are peripheral to that simple imbalance.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Sun Oct 16, 2011 10:42 am

IF the Euro did fail, and I am convinced that it will not, then it would not be because the Euro itself is a bad idea, it would be because a good idea has been implemented and run badly, or incorrectly.

The European Union is a new concept that is run in a similar way in which many federal nations are run, but the people of Europe and the people who run Europe are unsure as to exactly what the European Union is, or what we are aiming for, and thats the big problem.

Take for example the home state of RockOnBrother, many people in the state of Texas are Texans first, and Americans second, and like all US states, or Canadian provinces, they have their own legislature, their own laws, their own local tax rates and ways of doing things.

As they exist at present, the individual states of the Eurozone are one step away from been more or less the same as Texas, one major ingredient missing is the ability to raise taxes by the Eurozone, or by the European Union, or to have some ability over taxation and expenditure in both the whole area, and in individual states.

There exists a strong economic correlation between the Eurozone members via the shared currency, the central bank and via strong trading links, not to mention all the other links, like common regulation, frredom of goods, people, business and capital, the natural thing to do is take this to the next stage.

Whats wrong with a single currency instead of 27 different currencies ?

WHY - is it such a bad idea to have a United Europe ?

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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Oct 16, 2011 5:19 pm

If only pious hope were enough.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by Shirina on Sun Oct 16, 2011 5:30 pm

Take for example the home state of RockOnBrother, many people in the state of Texas are Texans first, and Americans second, and like all US states, or Canadian provinces, they have their own legislature, their own laws, their own local tax rates and ways of doing things.

The problem here is that, using your analogy with Texas, the original 13 colonies were essentially carved out of the wilderness, and aside from the Native Americans, there was no existing culture that separated or divided those 13 colonies. Given that the rest of the US states were settled mainly by former members of those 13 colonies, the "American" culture spread to the new states, as well. That includes Texas.

Texas tends to fancy itself as more independent than other states simply by virtue of having been an independent country for a brief time early in its history, but they are still as American as any of us. They do not practice a different religion, speak a foreign language, have different styles of dress, or any of the other things that makes Texas different from any other state. In other words, when you visit Texas, you know you're still in America despite some minor differences. Traveling between North Carolina and Pennsylvania, for instance, there is not any notable difference between these two American states. The customs, the language, the religion, the dress, and the culture are still largely the same no matter where you go in America.

Now, with Europe, that couldn't be further from the truth. If I traveled the same distance in Europe as I would traveling from North Carolina to Pennsylvania, I would experience half a dozen nations, half a dozen languages, half a dozen cultures, and half a dozen unique and separate histories. European nations might all be "Western" in nature, but each of them have very long and very sovereign histories and distinctly different cultures. In fact, over the last thousand years, just about every European nation fought a war with every other European nation.

Even in America, racial, cultural, and religious differences cause a lot of division and tension. There are hate groups that STILL target blacks and Jews; there are many people who don't like Muslims; some revile Latinos due to illegal immigration; there is a massive resentment toward the gays. I could argue that, in some circles, even Europeans are disliked due to their socialist policies. These tensions exist despite us all being American (well, except for the illegals), and it happens because, let's face it, humans as a general rule are uncomfortable with people who are too different from themselves ... and this is under a united flag, government, history, culture, and system of laws.

Now, extrapolate that onto Europe and you can probably see the problem of a united Europe. Nations on that continent have been independent and sovereign for a thousand years and few, if any, nation will want to give that up. It is unlikely that the British will want to pay for the Greeks, the Germans won't want to pay for the French, the French won't want to pay for the Italians, etc. etc. Uniting Europe will take more than erasing boundaries from a map, establishing a universal currency, and electing a PMOE (Prime Minister of Europe). It will take an entirely new mindset that won't exist for at least 3 or 4 generations - and perhaps not even then.

America itself might, to this day, be a zone of tiny squabbling little nations if Britain had not unintentionally united the original 13 colonies against it. Even then, we had our share of loyalists to the Crown, and less than a 100 years later, the Civil War was fought when half the country wanted to break away. The Soviet Union suffered a similar fate as this once massive nation split into its component parts.

So, while I'm not saying a united Europe would be a bad idea, I'm doubtful that it would be a workable one.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by jackthelad on Sun Oct 16, 2011 7:21 pm

You can't compare the United States and a United Europe, America has one currency and one main language, the dollar and English. I don't know how many countries there are in the European Union, ( i don't give a toss either ) but they all speak a different language. Not all use the same currency, i still want us to keep the sterling, and sod the euro. I suspect the Germans are now wishing they had kept the Mark.
American states have fought against each other once, what is now known as the American civil war, where as the British has fought agains Germany and France numerouse times. Spain don't like us very much either, we sank their Armada, ( i suppose they like the British tourists though ) .
There too many cultural differences for us to be compatible as well, also when it comes to the world trouble spots, Europeans don't want to know, they will leave it the British and Americans to sort it out with the help of the Canadians.
Nato has sent troops to Afghanistan, but the troops are mainly British, American and Canadian.
We where better of with our Commonwealth friends and the Americans, at least they where there in times of trouble. I voted against the Common Market, i would certainly vote against any more intergration with Europe, i don't think it can work. They are already interfering with our laws, telling us what we can do, or can't do.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by ROB on Sun Oct 16, 2011 8:53 pm

Witchfinder,

Everything that Shirina has stated is absolutely true, and if I could say this in a stronger fashion, I would. You've referenced Texas and the US federal system, the Canadian federal system, and, by implication, the Australian federal system. All of these are totally unlike the European Union today and anything the European Union has even the most remote possibility of becoming in the foreseeable future.

Shirina estimated three or four generations before certain socio/political/historical aspect which prevent European unity could be worked out. Given that twenty years is normally considered one generation, I believe it would take just a few more generations than five; in my view, it would take at least twenty-five generations, or five hundred years.

Each of the three federal systems traces their socio-political-cultural history back to Runnymede. Notice that the American Revolution, which indeed united the thirteen united States (lowercase and uppercase intentional) the colonists, Englishmen, Scots, Welshmen, and even Irishmen, all British (some Scots might disagree), all understood within their inner souls that a king is under the law rather than superior to the law. All understood within their inner souls key concepts of English common law, including the presumption that, in order to find a person guilty of a criminal offense, such guilt must be based upon evidence presented at trial which establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

That concept, which we, as in y'all (British citizens), Aussies, Canadians, Kiwis, and Americans USV take almost for granted seems not to play a key part in, for instance, the Italian legal system, which I hesitate to call a justice system. The same seems true of the French system, at least as exemplified by the legal systems of former French colonies in our neck of the woods.

Notice one exception to this common socio-political-cultural heritage, Quebec, which has been a thorn in the sides of Canadians my entire cognizant lifetime. Second hand testimony available to me from several disparate sources known personally to me coalesces around the sentiment that Quebecois "just don't get it." I would posit that they can't get it, because they possess a different "national" history which divides them from every other Canadian (even Acadians). The same might have been true of Cajuns (Cay-ZJOWNS), except they're far too damned independent to kow-tow to French arrogance.

So you have all Aussies speaking the same socio-political-cultural language, all Canadians (except Quebecois) speaking the same socio-political-cultural language, and all Americans USV speaking the same socio-political-cultural language. These are, of course, generalizations, but they're generally true, as is this last generalization, that each of these federal republics (de facto or de facto/de jure) speak similar socio-political-cultural languages. Thus, along the longest land border in the world, Canadians feel comfortable in America USV and Americans USV feel comfortable in Canada. When I'm in Canada, I know I'm in a foreign country, but somehow it's not so foreign.

witchfinder wrote:
The European Union is a new concept that is run in a similar way in which many federal nations are run, but the people of Europe and the people who run Europe are unsure as to exactly what the European Union is, or what we are aiming for, and thats the big problem.
For reasons outlined above, the EU is entirely dissimilar to three of the only federal systems worth emulating, each of which (Australia, Canada, America USV) consists of sovereign state governments united under one sovereign federal government.
witchfinder wrote:
Take for example the home state of RockOnBrother, many people in the state of Texas are Texans first, and Americans second
Nah, buddy! Texas is my native county, no just my home state, and I'm Texan through and through. As for the United States of America, if you don't know by now that I'm American (USV) through and through, you "ain't been payin' attention, son", and, in the inimitable words of Bugs Q. Bunny, Esq., it could be said of you, "He don't know me very well, do he?"

Allow me to introduce myself: "And I know you will give consideration, shall we perish unjust or live equal as a nation, this is My Country", Curtis Mayfield.

 

 
 
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Oct 16, 2011 10:37 pm

Proud to be different.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Mon Oct 17, 2011 11:57 am

REFERENCE: THe cultural make up of the United States

Society in the United States consists of people of many different backgrounds, races and cultures, the dominant white, European people are German, British and Irish, though there are many thousands of American families who hang on to their Italian culture, Dutch, Polish, Norwegien and French cultures.

In Canada there are nationwide celebrations for Burns Night in January, for Mardis Gras in Quebec, there are Hindu Diwhali celebrations and in some areas the 12rh of July is marked as Loyal Orange Day, the Chinese new year is a big deal in some citys, and how could I not mention St Patricks Day.

The idea that 27 different nation states cannot co-exist and co-operate in a federal group is nonsense, it is simply a mindset, a silly, old fashioned Conservative way of thinking, you might believe that you cannot be a fellow citizen with someone of a different faith, a different coloured skin, but your wrong, you can.

You can - we can - we can together - there is no such word as cant

This is the 21st century, things are not done in the same way they were in the 18th century, the world is very different, people get accross the Atlantic in 8 hours, not 8 weeks, people have friends and relatives on the other side of the world, people in England or Canada know what a Sikh man looks like because they probably know one.

The European Union as a modern, evolving economic and political entity is the first of its kind, it has evolved not through some great battle like at Yorktown or on the plains of Abraham in Quebec, but through ideas and will, from the ashes and ruins of the Second World War to 2011, it has come a long way.

When we talk about differences, I say this "Diversity is Strength", what would Mr Spock of Startreck say if we told him that people whos mother tounges were different cannot work together, I believe he would reply by saying "your assumption has no rational basis".

















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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by astra on Mon Oct 17, 2011 12:21 pm

you can we can

where is the PUBLIC will for all of this

The Troughites are having a swill er swell time in strasbourg and brussels and frankfurt and london and paris Caps left out deliberately.


YOu just have to look at the history of the Cantons in Switzerland to see a turbulent past, Germany has always been a warlike nation, then we will start on the headbanging we had on the Anglo Scottish Borders for 400 years.

The Politicos want it, but they are NOT asking the people - WHY
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by GreatNPowerfulOz on Mon Oct 17, 2011 2:09 pm

Personally, I don't see any correlation between a union of European countries and the United States; the countries of Europe have existed (for the most part) as sovereign countries for centuries or longer. The states which banded together to form the U.S. were really in their infancy in terms of "autonomy" and banded together as a means of survival more than anything else.

I see the E.U. as someone's grand idea of turning Europe into a version of the U.S....I don't really see it working out too well in the long term. The U.S. was born of a specific "moment" in time...I don't think it can be duplicated in Europe simply because the framework for the principals coalescing isn't even remotely comparable.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Oct 17, 2011 5:21 pm

Tribalism is alive and well in most parts of the world.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by ROB on Mon Oct 17, 2011 6:56 pm

Witchfinder,
witchfinder wrote:
REFERENCE: THe cultural make up of the United States

Society in the United States consists of people of many different backgrounds, races and cultures, the dominant white, European people are German, British and Irish, though there are many thousands of American families who hang on to their Italian culture, Dutch, Polish, Norwegien and French cultures.
You are confusing culture with socio-political culture; the two are independent of each other. Note that "brothers", as used below, is gender inclusive.

I share my socio-political culture within my American USV brothers, no matter their cultural origins. You've mentioned German, British, Irish, Italian, Dutch, Polish, and Norwegian, all of which I am culturally aware, since I'm half-German, half-English, half-Scot, half-Irish, half-Italian, half-Dutch, half-Polish, half-Norwegian, and half-a-whole-lot-more cultures. Here's what you've missed; the people of each of these disparate cultures share a common socio-political culture which is neither reserved to its culture of origin nor passed on genetically to succeeding generations.

I'm also half-Mexican, and I share a socio-political culture with Americans USV who are culturally Mexican. Conversely, both "Mexican Americans USV" and I wince at the socio-political culture just south of our border. Here is an illustrative anecdote.

An American USV, the cultural heritage of whom I was not made aware (we spent our conversational time discussing the incident which I'm sharing her with you), since he was unable to secure scholarships for an American USV medical school education, decided that he would enroll in a Mexican medical school, at which tuition was exponentially cheaper. I don't remember the specific city, but it was a medium sized city a significant distance removed from the American USV border. He shred a second floor apartment with a fellow medical student, a Mexican from that locale. The apartment had a balcony which looked out on the street. Directly below the balcony was a sidewalk.

One morning, the American and his roommate got into an argument. The American left for class; upon returning to his apartment, he noticed that all of his belongings had been thrown from the balcony to the sidewalk. He went up to his apartment, confronted his roommate, who told him straight out to his face that he, the roommate, had indeed tossed the American's belongings from the balcony to the sidewalk.

The American called the police, an almost automatic reaction, given his socio-political culture. The police arrived, assessed the situation, arrested the American USV medical student, and took him to jail. Seven months later, he was released to the custody of his parents, immediately left Mexico in their company, has never returned, and plans on staying out of Mexico for the rest of his life.

Let that "sit" a moment, and then find the answer to "what happened" at the end of this post.

witchfinder wrote:
In Canada there are nationwide celebrations for Burns Night in January, for Mardis Gras in Quebec, there are Hindu Diwhali celebrations and in some areas the 12rh of July is marked as Loyal Orange Day, the Chinese new year is a big deal in some citys, and how could I not mention St Patricks Day.
I also share many aspects of my socio-political culture with my Canadian brothers, no matter their cultural origins, among which aspects are certain fundamental presumptions, certain almost innate understandings, that overarch not only our disparate cultures but also our disparate nationalities. For instance, had the American USV medical student been enrolled in a Canadian medical school and celled the police because his roommate had tossed his belongings from the balcony to the sidewalk, what do you think would have happened?

Go a bit further and place the American USV medical student in a British, Australian, or New Zealand medical school. What do you think would have happened?

witchfinder wrote:
The idea that 27 different nation states cannot co-exist and co-operate in a federal group is nonsense, it is simply a mindset, a silly, old fashioned Conservative way of thinking, you might believe that you cannot be a fellow citizen with someone of a different faith, a different coloured skin, but your wrong, you can.
"The idea that 27 different nation states cannot co-exist and co-operate in a federal group" is neither "nonsense", nor "simply a mindset", nor "a silly, old fashioned Conservative way of thinking."

Going from last to first, I'm not a "Conservative", since that political party doesn't exist in America USV.

There's noting inherently "silly" about "old fashioned"; in fact, during the seventies and eighties, Jody Riders sporting "old fashioned" cars ("replicars") regularly swept young, pretty ladies off their feet by simply driving by in "old fashioned" replicars whilst attired as you can see in the video.



The phrase "simply a mindset" diminishes the overarching power of mindsets. The socio-political-cultural mindset of the Mexicans involved in the incident described above resulted in the American’s seven month incarceration. That's not simple; it's profoundly complex.

Last but no least, the "idea that 27 different nation states cannot co-exist and co-operate in a federal group" is not "nonsense", it's truth. You may view truth as nonsensical, as you desire, and truth will remain truth. You may view truth in any way you choose, and truth will remain truth.

You debate well, and for that I give you your "props", but truth, my friend, cannot be created by winning a debate.

The rest of the story.

The American violated an unwritten, inviolate rule; he reported the padrone's son to the police. That' was a "no-no" in that Mexican locale. Accordingly, he was arrested, on whatever specious charge might have been convenient, and immediately hauled off to jail.

Upon being notified of their son's incarceration by Mexican officials, his parents, being a bit more cognizant of Mexican socio-political culture that was their son, left the US (San Diego, I believe) with a virtual satchel-full of money (not on their persons, of course) and set out to free their son. Bribe after bribe led them to jail after jail; for seven months, each jail had just "happened" to have sent their son to another jail moments before the bribe crossed the hands of that local police commander. Finally, they beat the corrupt officials to the punch by sneaking up on the last official and bribing him before he had a chance to transfer their son. As soon as heir son was in their "custody", they made a bee-lone for the nearest border crossing.

Along with their son, neither parent has ever returned to Mexico.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by ROB on Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:01 pm

oftenwrong wrote:
Tribalism is alive and well in most parts of the world.
Including the European Union.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by astradt1 on Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:19 pm

since I'm half-German, half-English, half-Scot, half-Irish, half-Italian, half-Dutch, half-Polish, half-Norwegian, and half-a-whole-lot-more cultures.

So you are at least four people, that answers a lot of unasked questions.......
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by ROB on Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:48 pm

astradt1 wrote:
since I'm half-German, half-English, half-Scot, half-Irish, half-Italian, half-Dutch, half-Polish, half-Norwegian, and half-a-whole-lot-more cultures.
So you are at least four people, that answers a lot of unasked questions.......
Which "unasked questions?"

Also, your math is a bit off. Or is it "maths are a bit off" in the UK? As an American USV ex-physics student (until I came to my senses), I studied math, also called mathematics, but I'd never heard of "maths."

Back to your math (or "maths") error, you're a bit stingy. I'm also half-Mexican (as mentioned in my post), half-Greek, half-Swede, half-Argentinean, half-Cantonese, half-Taiwanese, half-Mandarin, half-Szechuan-ese, half-Hunan-ese, half-Thai, half-Indonesian, half-Vietnamese, half-Indian (real Indian), half-Japanese, half-West African, half-Ethiopian, half-Tex-Mex ("Texian", "Tejano"), and one and a half Texan.

Calculate that, my math-pernicious brother (or "maths"- pernicious brother), and you'll find that "four people" is selling me kinda short.

Now add that up, and "y'all come back now, y'heah?"

(Note to serious scholars hereon: Did y'all know that Scotsmen and Irishmen sacrificed their lives for Texas and Texans at the Alamo?)
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Tue Oct 18, 2011 12:52 am

Dear RockOnBrother ( and all who are interested )

I am European because I was born in the geographical area called Europe, and also because my ancestory and genes are viking, anglo-saxon, celtic or one of the other European tribes or races, and I am European because my language has its roots in ancient Britain, Latin Europe, Saxony, old Norse and other old European regions like Gaul.

A close examination of the genes of most British people will reveal the true European nature of who we are, but it goes much further than that, the history of England or Scotland is closely related to the history of Spain, France, Holland, Portugal and the rest of Europe.

What I am trying to say is that Europe is a place, it has an ancient cultural identity, we as nations of Europe are linked via a common identity, and someone after the Second World War had the good vision and forsight to realise this fact, and so here we are today in a union of Europe.

Nations like the UK and France have been friends and they have been enemies, but most of all they are neighbours, and both nations in different ways have been responsible for the birth of the United States of America and Canada, all western civilisation is basicly European.





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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by ROB on Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:19 am

Witchfinder, my Celtic brother,
Witchfinder wrote:
Dear RockOnBrother ( and all who are interested )

I am European because I was born in the geographical area called Europe, and also because my ancestory and genes are viking, anglo-saxon, celtic or one of the other European tribes or races, and I am European because my language has its roots in ancient Britain, Latin Europe, Saxony, old Norse and other old European regions like Gaul.

Using your criteria, I am European because (1) my ancestory and genes includes Celtic, and (2) my language has its roots in ancient Britain, Latin Europe, Saxony, old Norse and other old European regions like Gaul.

As you can see, such terms as “European” lose their divisive power when precisely applied.

Going a bit deeper, my command of English is matched only by my lack of command of any other language except perhaps Spanish, in which once upon time I could communicate to some degree. English as one’s first language is a shared trait of many who share the socio-political-cultural heritage of which I’ve spoken in previous posts.

As far as genealogy, depending upon what percentage of your bloodline is Celtic, I may be more genealogically Celtic than you. As an proud Texan and American mongrel, I neither dwell upon, nor have I dwelt upon in the past my specific genealogy, preferring instead to dwell upon and celebrate my cultural “genealogy”, which includes my socio-political-cultural “genealogy”, the genesis of which I assign to a particular signature (may have been an “X” or some other mark) upon a certain parchment (or whatever) in a certain meadow called Runnymede in 1215 AD.

Just for information, unless y’all are at least half Celtic, the Irish (and possibly Scots-Irish) genes hanging out in my body wherever genes hang out might render me more Celt than you and many of your English mates. But again, that’s just blood (and genes); the stuff laying about in my head is of far greater significance to my identity than the stuff laying about in the rest of my body.

Witchfinder wrote:
… the history of England or Scotland is closely related to the history of Spain, France, Holland, Portugal and the rest of Europe.

Time-and-space-wise, yes, but y’all (British) diverged socio-politically when y’all decided to put your king in his place, i.e., under the law rather than superior to the law. When Peter the Great visited Britain and consulted with you king, he was clueless as to why your king couldn’t do any damned thing he wanted to in his own damned kingdom. He didn’t “get it”, just as Germans, Italians, French, and Spanish, among others, don’t “get it”, as evidenced by: (1) first the Kaiser then Uncle Adolf in Germany; (2) Mussolini in Italy; (3) Napoleon, Napoleon Jr. (or whoever), the twenty-eight-and-a-half French Republics, and Vichy France in France; and (4) Franco in Spain. All of these despots, despotic regimes, and the cavalcade of French Republics, were present in the 20th Century.

Meanwhile, your democracy, you “constructional monarchy (Lord knows your constitution is unwritten and complicated), and your de facto republic have continued evolving unabated towards liberty and justice for all. God knows y’all aren’t perfect at it, but you do “get it”, and you continue to be a beacon of real democracy in our troubled world.

As a Texan and an American USV, I know that it would be a lonely, hostile place without y’all’s company, and the company of your primary Commonwealth brothers, Canadians, Aussies, and Kiwis.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Oct 18, 2011 12:50 pm

The EU is nothing if not about money, and the Nation with the mostest is currently POLAND (not the one you thought of first), which is currently enjoying real prosperity while continuing to make preparations for adopting the Euro as its currency.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Tue Oct 18, 2011 1:58 pm

The whole world is diverging together because the speed of travel and communication is so fast, and because different nations in different parts of the world are at different stages of development, labour and skills are moving around like never before.

The United States has a history of taking some of the best brains and scientists from Europe, and today in the UK our medical industry would cease to function without Asian workers, in Germany the construction industry would suffer serious labour shortages if it were not for Turkish migrants.

Last Christmas I ordered some chocolates on-line from a company in Delhi to be delivered to a friend and her husband who live in that city, the following day the chocolates were delivered to their door, I sometimes wonder what my grandmother would think if she could come back and see the world now.

As the world converges closer together, the rules on travel, trade, work and business have to keep up with demands and with the direction the whole world is heading, and as a result the world has seen the emergence of trading blocks, common trade areas, common currencies and customs free zones.

Here in Europe we are way ahead of the game, but dont be fooled into thinking that it is not happening elsewhere because its happening all over the world - the Gulf Co-operation Council - NAFTA - Economic Community of Central African States - ASEAN free trade area - to mention a few.

The days of single nations trading alone with their own set of rules and regulations are numbered

The United States and the United Kingdom trade with each other not via a US-UK trade agreement, but via a US-EU trade agreement, or possibly or partly through a NAFTA-EU trade agreement, American goods imported into the UK must comply with EU standards and regulations.

Business, trade, capitol and people have free movement within the EU, this has a direct knock-on effect on a whole host of other areas, such as employment laws, regulations governing health and hygiene, infact just about anything you can think of - fat content of meat pies, temperature of fish process plants, water content of chicken, grades and quality of steel or aluminium etc etc.

Trade within the EU is truly free because we have a level playing field

If you go to your local pub in the UK and buy a gin & tonic, that gin will be served to you as a 25ml measure, or in multiples of 25ml, and the same measure is standard in France, Germany or Finland, my driving licence looks exactly the same as a driving licence issued in Latvia, Sweden or Portugal because they are standardized.

People in Britain are enjoying the convenience of the Euro, people who enjoy touring around Europe no longer have to keep changing their money, someone travelling on the Eurostar train to Paris, then onto Austria can keep the same coins and notes to spend in both countries.

Here in the UK, most shops and businesses will now readily accept the Euro, many cash registers now have the capacity to deal in the pound and the euro, this is particularly so in Northern Ireland where thousands of Irish people from the republic cross into the UK for shopping.

The EU is a bloody good idea, its a sensible creation and it will continue to evolve, it will never alter the fact that British people eat Yorkshire pudding, Greek people drink Ouzo, or that Germans enjoy Saurkraut, and it wont mean that Finnish people have to learn German, or that Greeks have learn French.

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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by tlttf on Tue Oct 18, 2011 7:41 pm

Sorry witchy, for your beloved uber europe, also the single currency to work requires a common government with common goals for all the nations effected. As none of them (bar Germany, guess where that would end) have the foggiest idea of work ethic, it's a failed experiment. Sticking with them as trading partners used to work. Why do we have to pay money to a failed experiment, is it becoming like the NHS super computer, where money is continually thrown at it?

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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Tue Oct 18, 2011 8:55 pm

tittf

The only area of common government the EU requires in order to make the euro work effectively is in economic and fiscal areas, most of it is in place - a European central bank, European parliament, council of finance ministers and various EU funds.

There is no reason why different states cannot sing from the same hymn sheet, yet have different priorities, all that is required is for a set of parameters to work within, yes it will take away SOME choices for individual states, but mostly choices that have led to this sovereign debt crisis.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Oct 18, 2011 11:03 pm

There can never be a winner while every Country is playing control games.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by tlttf on Sat Oct 22, 2011 9:43 am

Why should a nation that insists on working until 65(minimum) support nations that can retire comfortably at 50-55 on superior pensions. Unless parity is in place across all member nations it's a failed experiment.

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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by astradt1 on Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:21 am

Yes I often wonder why that is when we are constantly being told by the Anti-EU lobby that Britain is RULED by EU laws????

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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat Oct 22, 2011 11:31 am

It's convenient for all the politicians involved, that they can blame "Brussels" for so many things.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:38 am

THE ARROGANCE OF THIS EURO-SCEPTIC GOVERNMENT

Once again Britain is on the sidelines, part of the outer circle instead of been a part of the inner circle, there is consensus within most of Europe on what to do now, and the way forward for the EU and in particular the Eurozone, but as per normal, British Conservatives are pulling in the opposite direction.

This weekend, Mr Sarkozy lost his temper, he told French newspapers that "I am sick of reading about advice given to the Eurozone members by Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne".

As the Eurozone members met to discuss the Greek problem and plan for a strategy for the future whereby this crisis would not happen again, Mr Cameron was meanwhile going around claiming that he had got safeguards to protect Britains "national interest" - what a bafoon.

This is not about "national interest", its about the interests of the whole of Europe, how could any leader be so selfish and arrogant, but then again this is the Conservative Party.

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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:16 pm

QUOTE: This is not about "national interest", its about the interests of the whole of Europe

A noble sentiment, but how many people are so altruistic? Many believe that Charity begins at home, so that anything which adversely impacts on the family is to be suspected. I happen to believe that membership of the EU is ultimately to Britain's advantage - but not at any cost.

All 27 members of the EU will be looking after their own interests first, and anyone who thinks differently hasn't been following events since 2008.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by tlttf on Mon Oct 24, 2011 6:28 pm

So Sarkozy in the name of a unified europe wants the rest of us to bail out the French banks to cover their losses in Greece. Now that's united in the name of France.

Why shouldn't Cameron have an opinion about the euro witchy, after all we pay more than the French to uphold the f*cking thing!

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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:25 pm

So we have the result of tonights House Of Commons (UK) vote on the EU referendum, a total of 111 MPs have voted in favour of a referendum on EU membership, at this early stage annalysts believe that around 80 Tory MPs have rebelled against David Cameron and the party whip.

Apart from anything else it does not bode very well for the coalition

And although it may gladden the hearts of Euro-sceptics and those opposed to EU membership that there are so many Tory rebels, in reality what it realy does is send a signal that the UK is not sure whether it wishes to be in or out of the dream for a unified Europe working together for the good of all Europe.

Even if the government had lost the vote, and MPs voted for a referendum, it would split both houses of Parliament, it would split the coalition government, split the nation and the argument and debate would never go away.

The UK needs to decide whether we are in it or not in it, and if we are European, and if we are to be in it, then we should be in it hook line and sinker, there should not be a half in and half out situation, we need to make up our minds once and for all.

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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:02 pm

QUOTE: we need to make up our minds once and for all.

Actually, we don't. Successive British administrations have delicately followed the principle of "divide and rule". We can play Europe at its own game indefinitely as long as we can continue to confuse them by raising and lowering our knickers at the right times.

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The European Union and Great Britain

Post by Republic Saviour on Fri Oct 28, 2011 1:01 am

Looks like Great Britain is escaping the carnage in Europe by not taking the Euro as the national currency.
Is there any concern in Britain that you are not part of the discussion of saving southern Europe from default, leaving it to Germany and France to save everything?
 
Why is Britain not part of the discussion? You are in the European Union.
Is there any discussion in Britain that you should have some say in the situation?
Or do you have input, and we do not hear about it here in the U.S.A.?
If maninland Europe has an economic collapse, it will effect Britain tremendously, or are you planning to buy everything up twenty five pence to the Euro?
I see your stock market does get banged around by the problems all over Europe, so I cannot imagine not having input into the fray.
Any thoughts?
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by witchfinder on Fri Oct 28, 2011 11:44 am

Hello and welcome to the forum Republic Saviour

Is there any concern in Britain that you are not part of the discussion of saving southern Europe from default, leaving it to Germany and France to save everything ?

There are two tiers of discussion or involvement when it comes to the debt and economic crisis facing southern Europe, the second tier consists of all the states of the European Union, but the first tier, and the most relevant group are those nations within the EU which use the Euro as their currency.

The UK / Britain is part of the second tier, the outer circle is one way of describing it, because we are members of the European Union, but Britain is not part of the inner circle ( The Eurozone ), the first tier, due to the fact that we chose not to adopt the Euro.

The major economies within The Eurozone ie Germany and France therefore take the lead role, but particularly Germany, though it has to be said that what happens to the Eurozone has major implications for the whole of the EU and the wider world.

The 17 economies of the Eurozone are directly linked via a shared currency and central bank, and the deal hammered out this week by the Eurozone states will mean that those 17 economies will move even closer towards an economic "superstate".

The remaining ten EU members who chose not to adopt the Euro will become a kind of "second division" of the European Union, and though what happens within the Eurozone will be of vital importance to this second division, they will have little say or influence over it.

I believe that I am safe in saying that most British people do not want to ever adopt the Euro, these people tend to be of the right of politics, Conservatives, generaly speaking the pro-Europeans tend to be mostly Liberal minded people, of the left of politics.

My own personal opinion is, and always has been, that the Euro makes a lot of sense, and that 27 neighbouring states all doing trade with each other with 27 different currencies is crazy, I am convinced that the Euro will be a success, and that one day the UK will be part of it - sooner or later.



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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

Post by oftenwrong on Fri Oct 28, 2011 12:46 pm

".... the Euro will be a success, and that one day the UK will be part of it - sooner or later."

Unless by that time we've had to learn Chinese.
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Re: The UK and the European Union - in or out?

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