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Devon Malcolm

Brexit

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11 minutes ago, David said:

If you don't like the 'Tory lot, then vote for someone elsÔĽŅeÔĽŅÔĽŅÔĽŅ.

That's the beauty of democracy.

 

I thought if I didn't bother voting I could just complain that democracy doesn't work and we should throw it out of the window, like you do with your MEP vote?

Coincidentally enough I was reading this old thread earlier. The similarity between David's lack of ability to back up anything he says and Dynamite Duane's pathetic grasp of facts is quite telling, although not surprising:

 

Edited by Chest Rockwell

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1 minute ago, Chest Rockwell said:

I thought if I didn't bother voting I could just complain that democracy doesn't work and we should throw it out of the window, like you do with your MEP vote?

You could do so if you wished, that's your right. I've stated my opinions on the EU, but if as a nation we'd voted to remain then I'd have had to accept that as the democratic choice of the people, in the same way as I had to accept Scotland turning down the chance to govern itself entirely as well.

It doesn't mean I would have to like it though, does it? Just the same as the majority voting to leave the EU isn't a decision you have to like. Feel free to complain away, there's many who've been doing just that.

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21 minutes ago, David said:

Because, as I've stated already, none of that really matters to me. I want a more decentralised system where the people who are charged with making the decisions that affect a country are the very people who have been elected to do so.

It's really as simple as that.

So you want a more centralised, national controlled political system at the hands of possible economic collapse and people losing their jobs. Ohhhhkaaay

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8 minutes ago, Chest Rockwell said:

The similarity between David's lack of ability to back up

I'm not quite sure how I'd go about "backing up" a belief in democracy and decentralisation of power? It's simply something that I believe in, and something that I'd support. I'm not trying to convince anyone else that it's the answer, I'm just throwing my opinion into the mix with all the others, which is how it works, right?

Are there benefits to being in the EU? Absolutely. For me especially there are tons of benefits. But personally I'd be willing to forego many of those benefits if it meant a more democratic, decentralised way of doing things.

It's the same when the Scottish independence referendum was coming up, we had pro-UK campaigners telling us that we'd be worse off financially and so on. Again, this is something many independence voters were willing to accept if it meant a more decentralised and democratic system, with Scotland's elected government taking over many of the decisions that were made in London.

The vote came and went, it didn't go how the pro-independence side wanted it to, but that's the opposite side of the democratic process, you don't always get what you want.

I believe we should have a system in place where each individual country is governed by its own democratically elected government, and where they shouldn't have to hand over any of those decision-making powers for membership to any clubs. 

It's possible to have a Europe that works together without having the likes of Jean-Claude Juncker at the helm, or Nigel Farage pulling a wage. 

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Just now, westlondonmist said:

So you want a more centralised, national controlled political system at the hands of possible economic collapse and people losing their jobs. Ohhhhkaaay

No, I want a more decentralised political system, governed by people who have been democratically elected by the people they represent. 

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17 minutes ago, David said:

I'm not quite sure how I'd go about "backing up" a belief in democracy and decentralisation of power?

No, it's backing up things like 'the UK government wouldn't bother to fight against an EU army' and 'We can't get change by being in the EU', which are two things, amongst a few, that you have been challenged on and then ignored entirely, or washed over with an argument based entirely on emotion and not facts or precedence. Could we get some evidence for your view on both of those please that is more than 'because I think so'? 

Edited by Gus Mears

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33 minutes ago, David said:

Are there benefits to being in the EU? Absolutely. For me especially there are tons of benefits. But personally I'd be willing to forego many of those benefits if it meant a more democratic, decentralised way of doing things.

It's possible to have a Europe that works together without having the likes of Jean-Claude Juncker at the helm, or Nigel Farage pulling a wage. 

It sounds like your perfect solution would be, therefore, to have the UK as part of the EU, in some sort of hugely powerful position of authority with multiple vetoes, able to mould the EU towards the sort of organisation we want it to be.

I wonder how we could ever get to that position? :confused:

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4 minutes ago, Gus Mears said:

No, it's backing up things like 'the UK government wouldn't bother to fight against an EU army' and 'We can't get change by being in the EU', which are two things, amongst a few, that you have been challenged on and then ignored entirely, or washed over with an argument based entirely on emotion and not facts or precedence. Could we get some evidence for your view on both of those please that is more than 'because I think so'? 

Okay, well, the EU army idea has picked up serious momentum due to Trump's actions, hasn't it? None of that was really a factor when David Cameron was in power. Times have changed, and we're now seeing the US getting stroppy on their commitment to NATO, and they've withdrawn from the 2015 nuclear deal.

This has basically led to the first actual serious discussions from both France and Germany that an EU army is required, which they'll say is needed now to supplement NATO and cover any lessening of US commitment.

Basically, Trump has given those who favour such a move all the ammunition that they need, and I'm not sure if the British would have stood against it, and risked being branded as the nation who helped weaken NATO, who were simply "US and Trump lapdogs."

In fact, I'm fairly certain that as long as the Germans and French spin it as being a move against Trump they'll win a lot of support for it that simply wouldn't have been there otherwise. 

You can't seriously believe that there's not more of a chance of this EU army proposal going through now than there's ever been?

As for my belief that we can't change the EU by being a part of it, those very changes would cause weakening of the EU's power, which isn't something that the EU as a whole are going to go along with. It just isn't going to happen. With the above-mentioned situation it's blatantly obvious that the EU is in no mind to wind back any of its power.

If anything it's more intent on increasing its power and establishing a United States of Europe, with Trump as their excuse for doing so.

2 minutes ago, Loki said:

It sounds like your perfect solution would be, therefore, to have the UK as part of the EU, in some sort of hugely powerful position of authority with multiple vetoes, able to mould the EU towards the sort of organisation we want it to be.

I wonder how we could ever get to that position? :confused:

Well, you maybe need to read what I'm saying again because that's not the case at all.

I don't want nor care for vetoes or increased power within the EU, I want those who make the decisions being held accountable by the people of Europe, not just the UK. I want the people of Greece to have more of a say when the EU makes decisions regarding their situation, the people of Italy, Cyprus and so on.

Sitting back and saying "well, I'm from the UK and my government have more clout in the EU, so I'm happy enough" isn't really my way of thinking. That's the "I'm alright Jack, fuck the rest" type of attitude that sees a party of cretins like the 'Tories win power.

The attitude of many that we should have stuck with the EU because we were part of the big boys alliance with France and Germany, and to fuck with the likes of the Greeks, Italians, Cypriots and so forth isn't one that I share.

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41 minutes ago, David said:

Okay, well, the EU army idea has picked up serious momentum due to Trump's actions, hasn't it? None of that was really a factor when David Cameron was in power. Times have changed, and we're now seeing the US getting stroppy on their commitment to NATO, and they've withdrawn from the 2015 nuclear deal.

This implies that Trump's election and subsequent actions would have altered David Cameron and the entire Conservative Party's views on a European army to such an extent that it would have stopped us vetoing it. The chances of that being true are infinitesimal, due to political and ideological issues I mentioned originally. 

This has basically led to the first actual serious discussions from both France and Germany that an EU army is required, which they'll say is needed now to supplement NATO and cover any lessening of US commitment.

Yep, mostly fair.  Though France have been, to a greater or lesser degree, keen on this since De Gaulle. Jean Monnet was trying to do this all the way back when the ECSC was set up. 

Basically, Trump has given those who favour such a move all the ammunition that they need, and I'm not sure if the British would have stood against it, and risked being branded as the nation who helped weaken NATO, who were simply "US and Trump lapdogs."

This argument rests upon the view that some combination of Trump and being branded an American lapdog or someone who weakened NATO would be so unpalatable to the UK government, that they instead would decide to pool resources in an EU army; something that is resounding unpopular with both the UK electorate, the government and a parliamentary majority. It is an argument, albeit one divorced from reality. 

In fact, I'm fairly certain that as long as the Germans and French spin it as being a move against Trump they'll win a lot of support for it that simply wouldn't have been there otherwise.

You can't seriously believe that there's not more of a chance of this EU army proposal going through now than there's ever been?

This bit isn't to do with what we are debating about. I asked why you think the UK government would not have vetoed it. Also, it again skirts over the issues of unanimity voting, even with the massive assumption we wouldn't have vetoed it. 

As for my belief that we can't change the EU by being a part of it, those very changes would cause weakening of the EU's power, which isn't something that the EU as a whole are going to go along with. It just isn't going to happen. With the above-mentioned situation it's blatantly obvious that the EU is in no mind to wind back any of its power.

This is a bit of a mess logically. You tangibly can change the EU by being a part of it on big decisions because of unanimity.  We would have had a veto of this stuff had we remained in the EU. It doesn't matter if 'the EU as a whole' feels like doing x, y or z if we had a seat at the table, because we had a veto over many decisions, including those around pooled sovereignty. The EU needs unanimity to do this sort of thing (substantive treaty change) , not majority decision.

 

Edited by Gus Mears

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I'd also argue that Trump being president is an argument for remaining in the EU, not leaving. Not only because it gives us that veto over the decisions you're convinced the EU are making as a reaction to Trump (which you have a say in, that's what the MEPs you don't vote for are there for), but because while a vote to leave the EU is a huge risk at the best of times, it's an even bigger risk when our biggest non-EU trading partner is governed by an isolationist and erratic president.

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29 minutes ago, David said:

Sitting back and saying "well, I'm from the UK and my government have more clout in the EU, so I'm happy enough" isn't really my way of thinking. That's the "I'm alright Jack, fuck the rest" type of attitude that sees a party of cretins like the 'Tories win power.

The attitude of many that we should have stuck with the EU because we were part of the big boys alliance with France and Germany, and to fuck with the likes of the Greeks, Italians, Cypriots and so forth isn't one that I share.

Except on all those key matters that require unanimous approval that effectively give all member states a veto.

The EU could have thrown Ireland under the bus a long time ago to satisfy the economic interests of the larger members (which is essentially what key Brexiters assumed/hoped would happen).  They are yet to do so.

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The thing is, I'm not saying that my way is 100% bullet proof. How could I? This is a process that's unprecedented, isn't it? I don't think anything like that has happened with the EU before?

The truth is, no one really knows how it's going to go until we're a good few years into the post-EU era, and even then a whole lot more depends on how the British public vote in the years to come.

Do I have faith in the current Government? That they're the people to lead this situation? not at all, I didn't vote for them. But I don't think this opportunity would have come around again any time soon, so there really wasn't an option to say "let's stay in, and vote differently if and when a more sensible government are running things."

I've heard the numerous arguments from so-called "Brexiteers" or whatever the fuck they're called these days that tend to centre around immigration for the most part. For me, that wasn't a driving force. 

My main priority is that much of what I believe centres around the decentralisation of power. I look on the consolidation of power in the hands of fewer people as a bad thing, and others may disagree, which is fine. I enjoy reading counter-arguments and other opinions, and believe it or not, I do take on board much of what certain posters say. 

Only a fool would discount the opinions of others entirely, and while I have no doubt there's a fair bit of shit-talking going on in the paid section as I type this, rest assured that I don't share that same sentiment about your views and opinions. i'm not as small-minded, I'm open to hearing from everyone.

From a short & medium term economic standpoint I agree pretty much with what most of you think, but again, it comes down to your own level of what you're willing to accept, and as someone who does a lot of travelling and spends as much time living in Europe and beyond as I do the UK on a yearly basis it will hit me hard. I expect it.

But, I'm personally willing to accept that if it means the long-term decentralising of power within Europe.

 

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23 minutes ago, David said:

The thing is, I'm not saying that my way is 100% bullet proof. How could I? This is a process that's unprecedented, isn't it? I don't think anything like that has happened with the EU before?

Is this your response to my above points about the likelihood of the UK using a veto over an EU army and the compelling evidence that they would have? That anything can happen? Is there any more evidence than this and the things you mentioned in your earlier post? 

David, I genuinely don't have a problem with you being pro-Brexit. I do have a problem with arguments like this where you barely address points of substance and entirely fair criticisms of your opinion (and then only do so after I post things like 'can you answer the actual question'), before posting, frankly, a lot of waffle that's barely related to those entirely fair criticisms. It's not really debate, it's opinion-spew. 

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2 minutes ago, Gus Mears said:

Is this your response to my above points about the likelihood of the UK using a veto over an EU army and the compelling evidence that they would have? That anything can happen? Is there any more evidence than this and the things you mentioned in your earlier post?

Unfortunately, we don't know how the UK would approach the idea of an EU army, do we? We know how they would have approached it in a pre-Trump world, but today? No one can say for sure. Especially with Trump possibly causing the weakening of NATO.

4 minutes ago, Gus Mears said:

David, I genuinely don't have a problem with you being pro-Brexit.

I'm not pro-Brexit. We all know what the term "Brexit" has come to represent, and that's not me. I'm anti-EU. There's a difference.

5 minutes ago, Gus Mears said:

I do have a problem with arguments like this where you barely address points of substance and entirely fair criticisms of your opinion (and then only do so after I post things like 'can you answer the actual question'), before posting, frankly, a lot of waffle that's barely related to those entirely fair criticisms. It's not really debate, it's opinion-spew. 

As much as I don't like doing this, your views on why the UK would veto an EU army could be described as "opinion spew," as they're based on the actions and views of a UK government who don't face the world we live in today.

It's a different time, with different challenges. Why do you think the French and the Germans have seized upon this particular moment to try and push this idea through? The time is right for them to do it, and if the UK were to speak up against it we'd likely see it framed as us going against what is good for NATO in a world where the US are pulling support.

Your belief that the UK would veto an EU army in a year or so if we'd voted to remain is no more credible or fact-based than my view that they wouldn't.

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