No Excuses

The Brexit Thread

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I think the masses are unfairly blaming the EU for situations that are not caused by the EU, merely responsible for managing such as globalization, refugees, etc.

Maybe.

I think most people are getting screwed, and so justifiably angry, though they're not always angry at the right people for the right reasons. Some of that anger manifests as xenophobic nationalism, which is certainly something we see with Brexiters and Trump supporters. I think that type of thing is deeply misguided and often hateful, but the anger I get.

I tend to direct my anger towards big bankers and multinational corporations, and I'm willing to bet they have undue influence over the EU, just as they do here.

Just to clarify, I was referring to the UK voters who voted to leave and then turned around and said "wait, what did we just do again?". Based on your posting history, ignorance is a not a word I would associate with you.

Fair enough, and I appreciate it, although I am sincere in telling you my knowledge of contemporary European politics is severely limited.

I think the absurdity part is where the argument falls apart for me. It's not hard to find similar plight replaying itself over and over as countries enter into more FTAs. On a macro scale, FTAs make sense. Trade partners give and take to maximize profitability and efficiency. I'm sure UK made concessions and received trade-offs both within the context of common fishery and in the context of total trading within EU. They were surely the beneficiary of having London be the hub of financial sector.

The big problem (that US must also grapple with) is how to deal with the sectors who lose out in FTAs. You could specifically provision for them in the agreements itself (e.g. - the EU provision paying fishermen to get out of the business) or the trade partner could deal with it (e.g. - UK could set up a compensation program for those hurt by the common fishery, banking on additional tax revenue due to benefits in other sectors to fund them). So many countries have signed FTA deals that benefit the wealthy without sufficiently providing for the common workers whose industries get displaced. Thus leading to anger of the electorate. But does that blame lie with EU or UK? Frankly, UK will still have to negotiate global trade agreements or they will get left behind. The horses have left the barn. Protectionist economic policies of the late 19th and early 20th century are not coming back. I think the efforts are better focused on addressing the disparate effect of globalization within individual countries rather than trying to stuff globalization back in the bottle.

Not for nothing, UK accounts for 11.5% of the gross tonnage of fish in EU. http://www.europarl.europa.eu/atyourservice/en/displayFtu.html?ftuId=FTU_5.3.9.html

They imported 700K tonnes and exported 500K tonnes in 2011. 2 of the top 3 importers were Iceland and China, who are not EU members, so it's not as if the common fishery policy is allowing other EU members to take fish that should have been caught by UK and then selling it back to UK.

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-17536764

I'm inclined to think FTAs are beneficial to wealthy financiers and international corporations and harmful to ordinary people, and so I tend to oppose them, but maybe you're right that the UK's membership in the EU makes no practical difference in the matter. It's hard to see what would make a difference in a world where the masses of people have so little power and the owners have so much. Like I said earlier, I think a lot of voters are doing the best they can with the knowledge and power they don't have.

I guess it's sui generis, but probably closer to a confederation than a federation? Certain seems to be grappling with lot of the same federalism issues that the founding fathers dealt with when forming the articles of confederation and the constitution.

I cited 2006 because that was the stats I had on hand. The comprehensive stat is that since 1999, 2,466 times for and 56 times against. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/eu-referendum-facts-brexit-immigration-trade-economy-fishing-leave-remain-what-will-happen-a7095046.html (See item 8)

So that would be 97.7%. Even without factoring in all the backroom brokering that would happen in any legislative process, that is a remarkably high rate of supporting passed legislation.

I'm not sure what requires consensus and what requires majority either. But certainly, it is not as if UK has been dragged to unwanted laws by the EU. Also, they have minority blocking where if the opposition represents 35% of the EU population, than the legislation is blocked. Simple majority doesn't rule.

Tax laws may be bewildering, alienating, and needlessly complicated, but they are typically not absurd. Could the tax code be cleaned up and simplified? Sure. Should the tax code deal less with special interests? Absolutely. But Kafkaesque? I have a question. Do you consider the US government Kafkaesque too?

Yes.

Maybe it's inevitable in this day and age, "the angst of postindustrial man under late capitalism," or some such thing. Still I could do with a lot less bureaucracy in my life, and I'm a liberal.

Would you advocate your state leaving the union?

No, but I fully intend to vote "none of the above" in the upcoming presidential election, and it won't be my first no confidence vote.

I guess you could say it's the act of protest that I respect, the willingness to do something other than what the establishment tells you to do. The proles have spirit, however misguided it may be.

EU government has a distinctly parliamentary flavor to it, no question about that. But is that enough to make it undemocratic? At the end of the day, not a single part of the EU government is not answerable to the democratic process. Didn't like your council rep? Make sure your country's government hears about it during the next vote.

As for the cabinet comparison, I don't think the people truly appreciate how much of the government is implemented by rulemaking by the various agencies and how much deference they are accorded in court. There is a reason why the two parties fight each other to the death every 4 years when Congress remains deadlocked year after year. The office of the presidency, with its control of the agencies of the federal government, has tremendous power to implement the agendas of the executive. Is the EU commission powerful? Absolutely. But, I made the comparison, not because I believe the EU commission is not powerful, but because I believe the US cabinet is commensurately so. At least EU commission can be removed by a legislative body.

I have a more fundamental question? Do you believe the parliamentary selection of a prime minister is undemocratic?

Don't know. It's hard to imagine it's much worse than our presidential selections though.

Do you believe the US government to be undemocratic?

The US government is deeply undemocratic. I'm quite confident in that proposition.

Look at it historically. Consider how democratic America has typically been for Native Americans, African Americans, women, people who don't own land, union workers. If you want more specific and more recent, you might consider the 2000 presidential election.

Or look at the present state of affairs. Washington is run by lobbyists and special interests, elections are decided by wealthy donors, districts are ridiculously gerrymandered, both of our parties support perpetual war and the erosion of our civil rights, neither of our parties oppose big banks or corporate interests, many of our territories deny citizens the right to vote, voters are suppressed in all kinds of devious ways, our media lies, our electronic voting machines are severely compromised, our campaign finance system is a mess, ghost voting is widespread, etc.

Maybe that's too far from the intent of your question, and the point is that our institutions are democratic, but of course they're not really.

The United States was made undemocratic on purpose. It's a Republic. Most obviously the Supreme Court serves the role of Plato's philosopher kings. This doesn't bother me so much, because I believe somebody has to prevent those in power and the mob from violating the rights of others. I could go for some better philosopher kings though, because I doubt all of ours know the meaning of "Liberty and Justice."

The electoral college bothers me too, but most troublesome is the two party system. There are a lot of Independents, Greens, Libertarians, etc. who have no voice in our government. People think the American voter is apathetic, but it would be closer to the truth to say he is impotent.

None of these are Athenian direct democracy, but I believe they are sufficiently accountable to the will of the people and therefore democratic. But, perhaps, you disagree.

There's the rub. I see governments doing the will of a small number of wealthy and powerful people. I'm inclined to describe the US government as more oligarchical and plutocratic than democratic, and I suspect the same is true of the EU.

I don't suppose any of that is very specific to the Brexit, but I think Brexit is a symptom of more widespread discontent and anti-establishment sentiment, which I think is justified. It's also frightening of course, a lot of the populist anger lacks direction, knowledge, and principles. Yet without it, what hope is there?

Edited by s0crates
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Oh, Nigel, economic historians will be pointing at least one arrow at you for the coming recession. Market traders sure as **** are.

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I guess you could say it's the act of protest that I respect, the willingness to do something other than what the establishment tells you to do. The proles have spirit, however misguided it may be.

The US government is deeply undemocratic. I'm quite confident in that proposition.

Look at it historically. Consider how democratic America has typically been for Native Americans, African Americans, women, people who don't own land, union workers. If you want more specific and more recent, you might consider the 2000 presidential election.

 

....

There's the rub. I see governments doing the will of a small number of wealthy and powerful people. I'm inclined to describe the US government as more oligarchical and plutocratic than democratic, and I suspect the same is true of the EU.

I don't suppose any of that is very specific to the Brexit, but I think Brexit is a symptom of more widespread discontent and anti-establishment sentiment, which I think is justified. It's also frightening, a lot of the populist anger lacks direction, knowledge, and principles. Yet without it, what hope is there? Our current economic and political systems are deeply flawed.

 

Didn't want to quote the entire post because it would be too long, but lots of great points.  I suspect if you and I compared our ideal perfect government, our versions would probably share a lot more similarities than differences (much to the chagrin of many I'm sure).  There are so many of your points that I agree about how the government has failed and is failing the people.  I'm just coming from a perspective of it can get so much worse than this and many so-called democracy has done so much worse than this.  Globalization, the out-sized influence of money in politics, and overt complexities of governance is throwing a real monkey-wrench in this radical experiment of democracy, but it is still so much better than lot of the other horrifying forms of government in human history.  I can respect a good protest vote too.  I just wish that this protest vote came after a lot more deliberation and careful thought, rather than as a result of being duped and riled up by irresponsible power-mongers.

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Buckle up. This ride is going to be rough. Very ugly. This is a business. People in Britain lost their minds. They and the rest of us are going to feel it.

Japan the Nikkei is blowing up...u idiots. This is a business! Leave ur feelings at the door. Immigrants and Isis....u got to kidding me.

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Can I live in rhe Aquitaine region and drink the finest wine all day?

Hail.

Sure, someone is remembering an away game in Bordeaux here ! :D

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Sure, someone is remembering an away game in Bordeaux here ! :D

You know that someone too well!

Find me somewhere to lay my head in Bergerac and I'll be French before you finish typing!

Hail.

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EU getting tough today.

 

https://www.buzzfeed.com/albertonardelli/european-officials-say-boris-johnsons-post-brexit-wishlist-i?utm_term=.twvRgawOB

European Officials Say Boris Johnson’s Post-Brexit Wishlist Is “Delusional”

 

Senior EU government officials have told BuzzFeed News that Boris Johnson’s promise of a post-Brexit Britain with access to the single market and none of the obligations are “delusional”.

 

The Vote Leave campaign leader used his weekly Telegraph column, published on Sunday night, to set out for the first time his views on what the Brexit deal would look like for the UK.

 

He said Britain would be able to access the single market without sending “a substantial sum of money” to Brussels. While British people “would still be able to go and work in the EU; to live; to travel; to study; to buy homes and to settle down”, he said, the UK would introduce a points-based immigration system that would estrict the number of EU citizens coming here.

 

“What can I say about BoJo’s column? It’s a little bit delusional. I don’t see how these suggestions could happen”, one senior European government official told BuzzFeed News on Monday.

 

Some have interpreted Johnson’s column as sign that Johnson and the Tory Leavers are aiming for a Norway-style model to continue to access the single market as a member of the European Economic Area.

“Cherry-picking is not on the menu. There is no freedom of movement of goods without the freedom of movement of people,” one EU official told BuzzFeed News.

 

“This is not about retaliation, nor is it just about the UK,” said another government official. “It is about the integrity of the EU, and the equal treatment of all member states. Any special treatment towards one member state would ultimately make the whole weaker.

 

“Countries such as China would rather trade with each member state bilaterally so Europe’s position is weaker than if it acts as a bloc.”
Another said: “You cannot decouple the four freedoms [movement of goods, trade, people, and capital]”.

 

That position is also shared across the four main eastern EU countries, Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Hungary. They have let it be known that continued full access to the single market would mean freedom of movement, and no restrictions on all the rights - benefits included - of their citizens in the UK. The four see this as a redline in any future negotiation.

 

There is a growing feeling in many European capitals that leaders of the Leave camp misunderstand the single market, and the principle of reciprocity.

 

https://twitter.com/AP/status/747471346209275905

BREAKING: Merkel, Hollande, Renzi agree no formal or informal talks before Britain triggers Article 50 to withdraw from EU.
12:47 PM

 

 

https://twitter.com/jamesmatesitv/status/747474935661092865

Italian PM Renzi: It's very important that we demonstrate to the people of the EU that democracy is not a game.
1:01 PM

 

https://twitter.com/AFP/status/747473052439568384

BREAKING France's Hollande urges Britain to 'not waste time' on quitting EU
12:53 PM

 

The last few days European officials were sounding conciliatory...I'm thinking they did not like some of the talk coming out of the UK yesterday and want to make sure they understand the EU is not to be played around with.

 

 

 

 

 

Oh right, and this is also happening:

 

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-eu-referendum-36639770

Brexit: Gibraltar in talks with Scotland to stay in EU

 

Fabian Picardo, the territory's chief minister, told the BBC he was speaking to Scotland's First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, about various options.

 

One possibility under discussion is for Gibraltar and Scotland, which both voted to remain in the EU, to maintain the UK's membership of the bloc.

Northern Ireland could also potentially be included in the talks.

 

"I can imagine a situation where some parts of what is today the member state United Kingdom are stripped out and others remain," Mr Picardo told Newsnight.

 

"That means that we don't have to apply again for access, we simply remain with the access we have today, and those parts that leave are then given a different sort of access, which is negotiated but not necessarily under Article 50," he said, referring to a provision in the Lisbon Treaty that sets out how a member state can voluntarily leave the Union.

Edited by visionary

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Well it's time for people to figure out that negotiation is not other side give and you take.

 

**** like that only work in magical political Trump land.

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The last few days European officials were sounding conciliatory...I'm thinking they did not like some of the talk coming out of the UK yesterday and want to make sure they understand the EU is not to be played around with.

 

Ding ding ding. 

 

The reality is that Britain will have to buy back into the single market by allowing free movement of people and cutting a check to Brussels every week. Except this time, they won't have a vote in the legislative branch if they trigger Article 50.

 

So congrats England, you just ****ed yourself out of the democratic voice you had in the EU, by falsely believing that you are now somehow "sovereign". It's why Boris Johnson has gone into hiding. He knows that chances are that he will be the bearer of bad news to all the people who fell for the Leave campaigns empty promises.

 

I am starting to think that this referendum result will be null and void. It makes zero sense to go through with this when the end result is that you end up in the same place but this time without a say in matters.

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Leave should probably just give the reigns to Farage, he seems less concerned about the fallout and problems than Johnson, who seems to see his victory as somewhat pyrrhic.  Johnson might be able to protect himself from total ruin if he lets Farage charge ahead.

 

Of course, Farage actually would go through with triggering article 50, while some of the other leavers might be reluctant to actually pull the trigger, so there might be some internal fighting there to come.

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Leave should probably just give the reigns to Farage, he seems less concerned about the fallout and problems than Johnson, who seems to see his victory as somewhat pyrrhic. Johnson might be able to protect himself from total ruin if he lets Farage charge ahead.

Of course, Farage actually would go through with triggering article 50, while some of the other leavers might be reluctant to actually pull the trigger, so there might be some internal fighting there to come.

No. Just....no.

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No. Just....no.

I'm not saying that's the ideal course of action, but rather, it's probably one of the only paths that doesn't immediately spell doom for Johnson, politically.  He needs someone else to be holding the bag.

Edited by DogofWar1

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I'm not saying that's the ideal course of action, but rather, it's probably one of the only paths that doesn't immediately spell doom for Johnson, politically. He needs someone else to be holding the bag.

You're aware that Farage is unelected and his party holds just a single seat in parliament? He may have a loud voice, but it is a minority one and much of the country is opposed to him, irrespective of how they voted last week. His party, which is far further along the right wing than the existing Conservative government had more members of European parliament than UK parliament. Those MEPs were notorious for not turning up. Empowering Farage would be an even bigger disaster for Britain.

Edited by my_friend_goo

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I never said it was a good idea, haha.

 

But if you're Boris Johnson, you've got to be weighing your options with regards to the option that kills your career the least.

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The reality is that Britain will have to buy back into the single market by allowing free movement of people and cutting a check to Brussels every week. Except this time, they won't have a vote in the legislative branch if they trigger Article 50.

 

Meh. The reality is the EU just lost 17% of it's income. It can try to play hardball but it needs income from England to survive.  Let's not pretend England does not hold most of the cards. 

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Meh. The reality is the EU just lost 17% of it's income. It can try to play hardball but it needs income from England to survive.  Let's not pretend England does not hold most of the cards. 

 

The EU as an economic bloc is significantly more stronger and able to withstand economic turmoil than the UK is on its own. 

 

Regardless, at best they can renegotiate trade deals with two countries (or the EU on its own) at a time according to trade law specialists. 

 

But of course, this entire campaign is about throwing out "experts" for feel good empty promises so believe what you will.

Edited by No Excuses

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I never said it was a good idea, haha.

 

But if you're Boris Johnson, you've got to be weighing your options with regards to the option that kills your career the least.

Probably a bit late for that. I'm not sure any of the realistically achievable options won't kill his career. Don't see him clowning his way out of this mess.

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The EU as an economic bloc is significantly more stronger and able to withstand economic turmoil than the UK is on its own. 

 

Regardless, at best they can renegotiate trade deals with two countries (or the EU on its own) at a time according to trade law specialists. 

 

But of course, this entire campaign is about throwing out "experts" for feel good empty promises so believe what you will.

Ask an expert and he'll tell you that Germany exports 8% of it's goods to England.  The trade deal will be swift.   Believe what you will, but it will get done. Will you be disappointed when it does?

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Ask an expert and he'll tell you that Germany exports 8% of it's goods to England.  The trade deal will be swift.   Believe what you will, but it will get done. Will you be disappointed when it does?

 

So EU is just going to give England access and open borders without needing anything in return because it needs the UK so much?

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Ask an expert and he'll tell you that Germany exports 8% of it's goods to England. The trade deal will be swift. Believe what you will, but it will get done. Will you be disappointed when it does?

Swift? Hah. Do you know how long trade negotiations take?

Ask an expert.

http://faculty.haas.berkeley.edu/arose/MR2Vox.pdf

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-eu-referendum-36078092

http://www.vox.com/2016/6/24/12024728/brexit-economy-economists-recession

No one is denying that the UK won't get trade deals done. But considering they'll spend likely close to 10 years at best getting themselves out of this mess and renegotiating all the trade pacts they had, that's absolutely terrible for their economy.

Again, ask the experts.

Edited by No Excuses

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Buckle up. This ride is going to be rough. Very ugly. This is a business. People in Britain lost their minds. They and the rest of us are going to feel it.

Japan the Nikkei is blowing up...u idiots. This is a business! Leave ur feelings at the door. Immigrants and Isis....u got to kidding me.

Nobody knows how this will play out. And anyone saying they do know it's going to be ugly or isolated or whatever... Should be ignored

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Nobody knows how this will play out. And anyone saying they do know it's going to be ugly or isolated or whatever... Should be ignored

This is the kind of anti intellectual thinking that brought the UK to where it is.

Ignoring warnings from economists and the financial markets in the face of overwhelming evidence seems to be a good recipe for how to tank progress and stifle growth.

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Here is a good look at the trade problem post Brexit and likely why the Leave campaign is now trying to take its sweet time.

http://www.economist.com/news/britain/21695544-it-would-be-hard-britain-negotiate-good-trade-deals-post-brexit-unfavourable-trade-winds

But what would The Economist know right?

 

Hopes of easy trade deals with the rest of the world also look illusory. Lawyers say Britain would have to replace all the EU’s 53 free-trade pacts, which would be hard with tough negotiators like South Korea or Mexico. Several big countries, including America, China and India, are negotiating new deals with the EU, from which a post-Brexit Britain would be excluded.

 

 

There are also practical problems. Because Britain has been in the EU for over 40 years, it has little experience of bilateral trade negotiations. The rules for exit say a trade deal with the EU should be done in two years, yet this is optimistic—the Canada deal took seven years and is still not ratified. Uncertainty over future trade pacts is a big reason why economists think Brexit would damage the British economy.

A former EU trade commissioner, Lord Mandelson, says free-trade agreements “do not come free, do not cover all trade and take ages to agree.” He adds that trade deals are “started by liberals but finished by protectionists”. His conclusion is that a post-Brexit Britain would end up with fewer and worse trade deals than it has now.

Edited by No Excuses

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