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Source: (consider it) Thread: Purgatory: EU: in or out?
OddJob
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If we do leave then at least it should stimulate debate elsewhere that should be happening about the EU's purpose. I'm staggered that other countries don't have sizeable neo-UKIP movements.

I'm sure we could be leaner and fitter without the EU, but would multi-nationals think that way? After all, cheaper labour in poorer British regions should have resulted in more jobs being created there in recent decades, but the reverse is often true in practice. Free market decision makers are often sheep-like rather than rational.

We're all swayed by our own perceptions, and as others have said, an objective view with reliable facts is hard to find.

Some of my colleagues justifiably see the EU as huge benefactor to our public sector employer. The extra bureaucracy it creates is a price well worth paying, in their view. My view is the polar opposite. I run a commercial business within the same organisation, selling entirely to UK customers. For me, international trade is an irrelevance and the EU brings no benefits. Yet because it's within a public body, my business is clobbered by bureaucracy that our private sector competitors can sidestep. Some EU-inspired legislation, such as that governing public sector procurement, is scandalously counter-productive.

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Doublethink.
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Ideally, we should be looking at what is good for our society as a whole - rather than just our own particular situation. Especially if we want to weigh up the costs and benefits of leaving.

Is your situation typical, are most businesses in the UK unaffected by international trade (do you really use no internationally traded goods - i.e. would your overheads not be affected if those supplies went up in cost) ?

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All political thinking for years past has been vitiated in the same way. People can foresee the future only when it coincides with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome. George Orwell

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Honest Ron Bacardi
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Oddjob wrote
quote:
I'm staggered that other countries don't have sizeable neo-UKIP movements.
They do, principally far-right parties. The Beeb had an article today on just this - - here.

[ 13. November 2013, 21:55: Message edited by: Honest Ron Bacardi ]

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Anglo-Cthulhic

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Doublethink.
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I am not sure UKIP isn't a far right party - just with extra spin and media savvy. After all, Godfrey Bloom ...

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All political thinking for years past has been vitiated in the same way. People can foresee the future only when it coincides with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome. George Orwell

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Anglican't
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quote:
Originally posted by Doublethink:
Roma have been in Britain for centuries. And interestingly, they have never fought a war with us or mounted a terrorist campaign - nor did we ever invade or wholesale exclude them.

On the other hand, they are not white.

But what cultural, social, historic, economic and geographical ties to the UK does a Romany who has spent all his life on the outskirts of Bucharest have?

[ 13. November 2013, 22:34: Message edited by: Anglican't ]

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Ronald Binge
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
The Republic of Ireland has external border controls in the same way that the UK has, doesn't it? If Britain withdraws from the EU the CTA will remain in effect. I don't see the problem.

The problem comes with allowing non-EU citizens into the EU, and then on to other EU countries. The Irish going to the UK is fine - it's UK citizens entering the Republic which is the problem. The EU frontier is right there, whatever bilateral agreements might be in place. The Irish won't want stringent border controls between Ireland and mainland Europe, so they'll just have to put them in the north of the island instead.
Irish trade goes to and from the United Kingdom and also the mainland of Europe, we actively welcome GB and NI visitors, and most of us have personal connections across the island of Ireland and in Great Britain.

Consequently what you have suggested as an Irish response to the UK leaving the EU is pure conjecture and doesn't reflect Irish interests in any way. Any demented idea that we will somehow lash up a border across Ireland isn't going to happen.

[ 13. November 2013, 22:40: Message edited by: Ronald Binge ]

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Ronald Binge:
Consequently what you have suggested as an Irish response to the UK leaving the EU is pure conjecture and doesn't reflect Irish interests in any way. Any demented idea that we will somehow lash up a border across Ireland isn't going to happen.

The RoI/NI will be an external EU border, not an internal border. You may not have a choice as to what you want - the EU border agency may simply impose a solution on you.

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Jay-Emm
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quote:
Originally posted by Ronald Binge:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
The Republic of Ireland has external border controls in the same way that the UK has, doesn't it? If Britain withdraws from the EU the CTA will remain in effect. I don't see the problem.

The problem comes with allowing non-EU citizens into the EU, and then on to other EU countries. The Irish going to the UK is fine - it's UK citizens entering the Republic which is the problem. The EU frontier is right there, whatever bilateral agreements might be in place. The Irish won't want stringent border controls between Ireland and mainland Europe, so they'll just have to put them in the north of the island instead.
Irish trade goes to and from the United Kingdom and also the mainland of Europe, we actively welcome GB and NI visitors, and most of us have personal connections across the island of Ireland and in Great Britain.

Consequently what you have suggested as an Irish response to the UK leaving the EU is pure conjecture and doesn't reflect Irish interests in any way. Any demented idea that we will somehow lash up a border across Ireland isn't going to happen.

They're going to be caught in the middle (if not careful)
If our reason to want to be out of Europe is because we don't want hordes of people who couldn't even be bothered to be born here coming over then we won't want Europeans moving to Ireland then from Ireland to England.
The Russians may have built a wall when we complained about immigration but I can't see Europe going to the extra effort (and I can imagine [us being the same in] vice versa).
If they are going to be stopped it has to be on the boundary from mainland-europe to Ireland, from the republic to northern Ireland or from northern Ireland to England. The latter will lead to effective reunification and (as we've assumed a Ukip Britain*, that won't go down well), the other two force you to decide who to annoy.
The other alternative is for England have some kind of immigrant catchers (and really put on the reich, rather than the isolationist approach).

Of course it's possible that we have some kind of decision to come out of Europe without that issue following. But I can't see it lasting.

*hence why I've put england, elsewhere.
[edited for slight clarification]

[ 13. November 2013, 23:10: Message edited by: Jay-Emm ]

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Anglican't
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Could Ireland leave the EU along with the UK?
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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
Could Ireland leave the EU along with the UK?

Given the long history of peaceful cooperation between those two countries, I'm sure all the UK would have to do is ask politely. [Roll Eyes]

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Humani nil a me alienum puto

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An die Freude
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quote:
Originally posted by Ronald Binge:
quote:
Actually, speaking of borders, why not put up one anyway, seeing as the Danish are raising one against Germany, and the French and Italians are bordering up against one another? Not sure the EU is really more of a guarantee there.
Why? For the fun of it? Have you any understanding how this corner of the British Isles actually works?
Frankly, I don't have an idea. My point was to say that the EU is rather irrelevant when it comes to borders these days, seeing as how Swedes smuggle tonnes of food into Norway every day without any checks, but that the French and Italians check each other increasingly, and the EU stands idly by in both cases.

From what I hear, the main problem with the UK leaving the EU is that no one knows how it would be done in practice, since nobody planned for it. For such an immense bureaucracy as the EU, that's likely to create plenty of jobs for civil servants for at least a decade to come. Stimulus package, anyone? (And most likely Brussels will agree to make the UK pay all fees that come with this process, to set a good example for the future.)

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Anglican't
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quote:
Originally posted by Crœsos:
quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
Could Ireland leave the EU along with the UK?

Given the long history of peaceful cooperation between those two countries, I'm sure all the UK would have to do is ask politely. [Roll Eyes]
Britain and Ireland now have excellent relations. Britain and Ireland joined the EEC at the same time. The EU isn't popular in Ireland at the moment. If the UK were to leave the EU, is it so far fetched that Ireland might decide to follow suit?
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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
Britain and Ireland now have excellent relations. Britain and Ireland joined the EEC at the same time. The EU isn't popular in Ireland at the moment. If the UK were to leave the EU, is it so far fetched that Ireland might decide to follow suit?

Why would they? That's a serious question. What's their motive? Given how incredibly important international trade is to the Irish economy, why would it make sense to react to one of their biggest trade partners (the U.K.) cutting off free trade relations with Ireland by cutting off Ireland's free trade agreements with just about everyone else it trades with? Why is that a good move, from an Irish perspective?

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Anglican't
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I was just speculating.

But I disagree that a British withdrawal from the EU would result in the end of free trade between the UK and Ireland. I see no reason why it wouldn't continue.

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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
I was just speculating.

But I disagree that a British withdrawal from the EU would result in the end of free trade between the UK and Ireland. I see no reason why it wouldn't continue.

Good question. How many non-EU countries does the U.K. have free trade agreements with?

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Crœsos:
Good question. How many non-EU countries does the U.K. have free trade agreements with?

As I suspect you know, one of the features of joining the EEC was that the UK could no longer sign bilateral free trade agreements with other nations - all such arrangements had to be made by the EEC (and now EU) as a whole.

I think most of those who favour Britain's exit from the EU would anticipate either joining EFTA or negotiating similar free trade agreements. You can find a list of Switzerland's free trade agreements here.

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Doublethink.
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
quote:
Originally posted by Doublethink:
Roma have been in Britain for centuries. And interestingly, they have never fought a war with us or mounted a terrorist campaign - nor did we ever invade or wholesale exclude them.

On the other hand, they are not white.

But what cultural, social, historic, economic and geographical ties to the UK does a Romany who has spent all his life on the outskirts of Bucharest have?
Well, quite a lot with the existing UK Roma community for a start. Then there is all we share in common with Europe anyway - e.g. WW11 the Roma were particularly badly effected by the holocaust.

My point being if we are happy to have the Irish it isn't about foreigners coming and taking our jobs is it ? Because cultural ties or not, if you believe immigration disadvantages us then it won't magically absorb less jobs just because the immigrants are Irish. (Though the UCL study I cited above suggests immigrants are in fact a net economic benefit to the UK.)

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All political thinking for years past has been vitiated in the same way. People can foresee the future only when it coincides with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome. George Orwell

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An die Freude
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quote:
Originally posted by Doublethink:
quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
quote:
Originally posted by Doublethink:
Roma have been in Britain for centuries. And interestingly, they have never fought a war with us or mounted a terrorist campaign - nor did we ever invade or wholesale exclude them.

On the other hand, they are not white.

But what cultural, social, historic, economic and geographical ties to the UK does a Romany who has spent all his life on the outskirts of Bucharest have?
Well, quite a lot with the existing UK Roma community for a start. Then there is all we share in common with Europe anyway - e.g. WW11 the Roma were particularly badly effected by the holocaust.

My point being if we are happy to have the Irish it isn't about foreigners coming and taking our jobs is it ? Because cultural ties or not, if you believe immigration disadvantages us then it won't magically absorb less jobs just because the immigrants are Irish. (Though the UCL study I cited above suggests immigrants are in fact a net economic benefit to the UK.)

I think a decent counterpoint could be constructed from the fact that wage standards are so similar between Ireland and the UK that immigration will only affect the market in a marginal way, and society will be affected in a lesser way or at least a more familiar way. The main "problem" with Polish workers is not their looks, they are even whiter than Scandinavians and Brits in general. It's that they work twice as hard at half the pay (in Sweden at least). Try saying that about the Irish. [Biased] That affects the markets to some degree, and hands power over to the capital-holders and away from the working class.

[ 14. November 2013, 06:57: Message edited by: JFH ]

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the giant cheeseburger
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
The Republic of Ireland has external border controls in the same way that the UK has, doesn't it? If Britain withdraws from the EU the CTA will remain in effect. I don't see the problem.

The problem comes with allowing non-EU citizens into the EU, and then on to other EU countries. The Irish going to the UK is fine - it's UK citizens entering the Republic which is the problem. The EU frontier is right there, whatever bilateral agreements might be in place. The Irish won't want stringent border controls between Ireland and mainland Europe, so they'll just have to put them in the north of the island instead.
You're confusing membership of the EU with membership of the Schengen Treaty free travel zone which is not entirely dependent on EU membership. The UK and Ireland are not part of the Schengen zone, and instead they have a separate open borders arrangement called the Common Travel Area which is merely a bilateral agreement between the two countries concerned.

The Schengen Treaty rules do require that passport checks are made when entering/exiting the Schengen zone from/to a non-Schengen country for the purpose of verifying visa compliance. This is why people travelling from France to the UK (or Spain to Ireland, or Germany to Australia, etc) have their passport checked when leaving the last Schengen zone country.

New members of the EU are required to also join the Schengen Treaty and the Euro common currency, which could be complex if Scotland secedes from the UK. A post-secession Scotland would have an either/or choice between the trade benefits of EU membership and shared borders/currency with the UK, certain other EU members with potential separatist regions would be lining up to ensure post-secession Scotland would only get a "full" EU membership that includes the common currency and the Schengen Treaty.

Schengen Treaty membership for post-secession Scotland would mean open borders with other Schengen zone countries (i.e. flying to/from Frankfurt would be just like a domestic flight) and mandatory border checks on the Scottish side when entering/leaving Scotland to/from non-Schengen countries like Ireland and the UK - whether the UK would also enact checks on their side of the Schengen frontiers at Carlisle and Berwick would be up to the UK to decide.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by the giant cheeseburger:
You're confusing membership of the EU with membership of the Schengen Treaty free travel zone which is not entirely dependent on EU membership.

Nope. Not confused at all.

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pererin
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quote:
Originally posted by Ronald Binge:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
The Irish won't want stringent border controls between Ireland and mainland Europe, so they'll just have to put them in the north of the island instead.

Irish trade goes to and from the United Kingdom and also the mainland of Europe, we actively welcome GB and NI visitors, and most of us have personal connections across the island of Ireland and in Great Britain.

Consequently what you have suggested as an Irish response to the UK leaving the EU is pure conjecture and doesn't reflect Irish interests in any way. Any demented idea that we will somehow lash up a border across Ireland isn't going to happen.

I think the mainland Europe thing is significantly over-egged. Look at Ireland's import figures: 38% come from Britain and 14% come from the USA (so that's a majority from just two countries). The continent's mixed in with China, Switzerland, Japan, Singapore, and Canada.

The difficulty comes for Ireland, should Britain leave the EU, in achieving what's good for Ireland without looking like West Brits.

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balaam

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It's not that simple.

Some countries contribute more to the EC than they pay out.Others are nett receivers.

Ireland is a receiver. Should the UK leave it would still be good financially for Ireland to be in the EC despitethe UK and USA together making up over 50% of it's trade.

As for UK membership, Much of the EU finances goes through London: The London stock exchange is larger than Frankfurt. So despite the UK being a nett giver to The EC, it would be financial suicide to leave.

To the man in the street this would mean a UK recession on leaving. Do you want your standard of living to go down?

On financial considerations alone it would be madness to leave.

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leftfieldlover
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Basically, we are part of Europe - albeit an island just off the mainland - and I would like us to stay part of the EU. The USA is all very well, but the only common ground seems to be language. Sounds simple, but I feel European.
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An die Freude
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quote:
Originally posted by balaam:
As for UK membership, Much of the EU finances goes through London: The London stock exchange is larger than Frankfurt. So despite the UK being a nett giver to The EC, it would be financial suicide to leave.

To the man in the street this would mean a UK recession on leaving. Do you want your standard of living to go down?

On financial considerations alone it would be madness to leave.

It's not that simple. For example, Germany and France are pushing for taxes aimed mainly (at 95 % IIRC) at the finance sector in London. Similarly, once the Euro crisis resurfaces and the bill is to be paid, I am not so sure being attached to the overarching institution is of that much use. Personally, I see plenty of use in other forms of regional cooperations, but I think this one is beyond salvation from its own bureaucratic and antidemocratic weight.

[ 14. November 2013, 09:09: Message edited by: JFH ]

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fletcher christian

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posted by Anglican't:
quote:

The EU isn't popular in Ireland at the moment.

Lol. Yes, for the moment. In another five minutes we will have changed our mind because we're fickle like that. But on a deeper level we have a self understanding as being European, so much as we might complain (a national past-time), it's unlikely we will ever leave it unless something truly awful happens.

I suspect Ireland will be the least of the UK's worries - not that it has ever worried about it before. When Scotland gains its independence and joins the EU, will you erect a border then?

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by the giant cheeseburger:
You're confusing membership of the EU with membership of the Schengen Treaty free travel zone which is not entirely dependent on EU membership.

Nope. Not confused at all.
No, the cheeseburger is right. Iceland and Norway are Schengen but not EU. Ireland and Britain are EU but not Schengen and the open border is a separate treaty that would not, legally at least, be affected by EU withdrawal.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by fletcher christian:
posted by Anglican't:
quote:

The EU isn't popular in Ireland at the moment.

Lol. Yes, for the moment. In another five minutes we will have changed our mind because we're fickle like that. But on a deeper level we have a self understanding as being European, so much as we might complain (a national past-time), it's unlikely we will ever leave it unless something truly awful happens.

I suspect Ireland will be the least of the UK's worries - not that it has ever worried about it before. When Scotland gains its independence and joins the EU, will you erect a border then?

Aiui Ireland has a choice - Schengen or Britain. Scotland as a new EU member would be obliged to join Schengen. The rest of the UK would then have to accept an open border with Schengen via Scotland, or else erect controls.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by the giant cheeseburger:
You're confusing membership of the EU with membership of the Schengen Treaty free travel zone which is not entirely dependent on EU membership.

Nope. Not confused at all.
No, the cheeseburger is right. Iceland and Norway are Schengen but not EU. Ireland and Britain are EU but not Schengen and the open border is a separate treaty that would not, legally at least, be affected by EU withdrawal.
[Confused]

But the RoI/UK border would be an external EU border, and neither country is party to Schengen. The border controls would be hopefully more like entering France from Switzerland than entering Greece from Turkey, but all those little back roads would surely have to go.

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Anglican't
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But Switzerland is part of Schengen, isn't it?
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An die Freude
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
[Confused]

But the RoI/UK border would be an external EU border, and neither country is party to Schengen. The border controls would be hopefully more like entering France from Switzerland than entering Greece from Turkey, but all those little back roads would surely have to go.

I imagine it would become something like the Swedish border to Norway: 7 customs stations along major roads, but all other roads open, meaning . Customs only stopping suspicious-looking cars. From what I hear, all along the 1500 km border, the forest is cleared in a 10 m wide alley marking the border, together with yellow marking stones at regular intervals. Here's a picture. Whereas the infrastructure in Northern Ireland is likely to be more developed than in the outbacks of Sweden, it's not hard to find small backroads into Norway on for example Google Maps.

I know the UK is not a member of the Schengen treaty, but I assume they'd work out some sort of treaty to make it easy. I also expect the French to put up a customs station in the middle of the Euro tunnel and charge £100 visa fees/entry.

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Anglican't
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I've um'd and ah'd about EU membership for a while, but the final straw came for me when I watched Paddy Ashdown on Question Time.

I recall, about a dozen or so years ago, Paddy Ashdown said that if Britain didn't join the single currency the pound 'would be like a cork bobbing on the ocean between two ocean liners'.

When he appeared on Question Time a year or so ago, he said that if Britain left the EU she would be like 'a cork bobbing alone on the ocean'.

That's when it struck me that the people who advocate Britain remaining inside the EU are more often than not the same people who advocated Britain's entry into the single currency and who claimed that many terrible things would happen if we kept the pound.

As it turns out, we were probably better off keeping the pound than joining the single currency. These people have cried wolf once. I'm not minded to give them a second chance.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
But Switzerland is part of Schengen, isn't it?

In which case that was a terrible example for me to use... [Hot and Hormonal]

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Anglican't
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
But Switzerland is part of Schengen, isn't it?

In which case that was a terrible example for me to use... [Hot and Hormonal]
To be honest, I only know that because I had a quick look on Wikipedia when the topic came up. I'm surprised, actually, at how big the Schengen area is. I thought more countries had opted out than just the UK and Ireland.
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Ronald Binge
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quote:
Originally posted by JFH:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
[Confused]

But the RoI/UK border would be an external EU border, and neither country is party to Schengen. The border controls would be hopefully more like entering France from Switzerland than entering Greece from Turkey, but all those little back roads would surely have to go.

I imagine it would become something like the Swedish border to Norway: 7 customs stations along major roads, but all other roads open, meaning . Customs only stopping suspicious-looking cars. From what I hear, all along the 1500 km border, the forest is cleared in a 10 m wide alley marking the border, together with yellow marking stones at regular intervals. Here's a picture. Whereas the infrastructure in Northern Ireland is likely to be more developed than in the outbacks of Sweden, it's not hard to find small backroads into Norway on for example Google Maps.

I know the UK is not a member of the Schengen treaty, but I assume they'd work out some sort of treaty to make it easy. I also expect the French to put up a customs station in the middle of the Euro tunnel and charge £100 visa fees/entry.

Even at the height of the Troubles the hundreds of "unapproved roads" could not all be sealed off. The Irish border goes through fields, streams, mountains and in at least one well known case right through the centre of a a town. I can guarantee you that it will not be the Irish side seeking to erect any barriers and Northern Ireland's executive, will not want barriers to trade and movement between Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and Great Britain. Northern Ireland has one UKIP assembly member. Good luck with that again.
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An die Freude
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
I thought more countries had opted out than just the UK and Ireland.

I've been wondering whether it was ignorance or spite that made the Brits such inconveniences when it comes to travelling. The jury's still out on the causes of the disaster that is Heathrow.

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Anglican't
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quote:
Originally posted by Doublethink:
My point being if we are happy to have the Irish it isn't about foreigners coming and taking our jobs is it ?

While the Irish might be technically foreign on some level (i.e. citizens of a republic that isn't a member of the Commonwealth, etc.) they just aren't, are they? They used to be fellow citizens, they travel here, they vote here. As far as I'm aware they enjoy virtually the same rights in Britain as the British do.
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Ronald Binge
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
quote:
Originally posted by Doublethink:
My point being if we are happy to have the Irish it isn't about foreigners coming and taking our jobs is it ?

While the Irish might be technically foreign on some level (i.e. citizens of a republic that isn't a member of the Commonwealth, etc.) they just aren't, are they? They used to be fellow citizens, they travel here, they vote here. As far as I'm aware they enjoy virtually the same rights in Britain as the British do.
Ireland Act 1949. Legally we are not foreigners. Which is why, despite not being fond of the EU I am trenchantly opposed to anything that would limit the rights of any of us in Britain or Ireland to free movement in each other's jurisdiction.

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
[Confused]

But the RoI/UK border would be an external EU border, and neither country is party to Schengen. The border controls would be hopefully more like entering France from Switzerland than entering Greece from Turkey, but all those little back roads would surely have to go.

What I'm trying to get at is that if it's possible to have an open border between an EU and a non-EU state - such as those negotiated under the Schengen Agreement - it should be possible to create a similar border between the UK and Ireland.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
[Confused]

But the RoI/UK border would be an external EU border, and neither country is party to Schengen. The border controls would be hopefully more like entering France from Switzerland than entering Greece from Turkey, but all those little back roads would surely have to go.

What I'm trying to get at is that if it's possible to have an open border between an EU and a non-EU state - such as those negotiated under the Schengen Agreement - it should be possible to create a similar border between the UK and Ireland.
And I think the point I'm trying to make is that that's fine if you're entering the Schengen agreement. My understanding is that the UK wouldn't touch it with a bargepole, so even if the UK and the RoI came to a bilateral agreement, the UK would have to also come to an agreement with the Schengen group, that wasn't Schengen, or alternatively, have a stricter border regime somewhere. And that would be between Ireland and the continent, if it wasn't between the UK and Ireland.

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the giant cheeseburger
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
[Confused]

But the RoI/UK border would be an external EU border, and neither country is party to Schengen. The border controls would be hopefully more like entering France from Switzerland than entering Greece from Turkey, but all those little back roads would surely have to go.

There's no such thing as an "external EU border" though, you've made it up on the fly. The only thing which makes a non-Schengen border control between two EU member states any more meaningful than the useless trivia of an "external NATO border" or "external FIFA border" is that the shared EU passport format can be useful for organising traffic flow through the immigration facilities at a large airport.

The only reason that border controls would need to be set up between the UK and Ireland would be if one acceded to the Schengen Treaty and the other didn't. Countries acceding to the Schengen Treaty are obliged to revoke all their other open border agreements and set up controls at what you would call the "external Schengen border."

It could get a bit awkward if Scotland secedes from the UK and, after secession, decides to apply for EU membership. Unlike those countries which were EU members before the Schengen Treaty commenced which were able to "opt out" of Schengen, countries which apply for a new EU membership are required to accede to the Schengen Treaty and work towards joining the Eurozone as a condition of their EU membership. This would certainly apply to Scotland (a number of other EU members would be keen to veto any special treatment being given to a secessionist state) which would lead to Scotland complying with their treaty obligations and setting up border controls at Gretna and Berwick if the UK did not accede to the Schengen Treaty at the same time.

quote:
Originally posted by JFH:
I know the UK is not a member of the Schengen treaty, but I assume they'd work out some sort of treaty to make it easy. I also expect the French to put up a customs station in the middle of the Euro tunnel and charge £100 visa fees/entry.

There are already border controls as part of the Eurotunnel operation. People using Eurostar passenger trains clear them at their station of departure or a mid-journey stop, and people taking cars or trucks on Eurotunnel shuttle trains clear them at the shuttle terminal.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by the giant cheeseburger:
There's no such thing as an "external EU border" though, you've made it up on the fly.

Dear TCG,

When the official EU page on immigration into the EU uses the phrase "external EU border", eg

quote:
You will enter the EU via an external border when you come from a non-EU country to an EU country. You can enter the EU by air, land or sea.

You can only cross the EU's external borders at designated border crossing-points and during formal opening times.

I get to ignore everything else you say, and strongly suggest that everyone else follows suit.

regards,

Doc Tor

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An die Freude
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I think the thing is that most EU external borders are to countries of dubious administrative development, such as Ukraine, Russia, Belarus and Turkey. In many cases, these are borders that would be checked intensely no matter whether or not the country was part of the EU or not. However, Switzerland and Norway are both part of the Schengen area and have historically peaceful and calm borders, as well as administration that keeps decent records of the people, rendering the bordering (and the rest of the) EU countries less worried about trouble coming from there. I dare say that that is likely to become the case with the UK as well.

ETA: That quote from the EU website is evidently proven wrong by the Swedish-Norwegian border, which is ridiculously easy to cross and lacks many border checks. It's a Schengen country, but on the other side of an external border of the EU as well.

[ 14. November 2013, 19:20: Message edited by: JFH ]

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:

That's when it struck me that the people who advocate Britain remaining inside the EU are more often than not the same people who advocated Britain's entry into the single currency and who claimed that many terrible things would happen if we kept the pound.

There are plenty of pro-europeans who are simultaneously anti-euro - or who pointed out that the Euro was unlikely to work without a common fiscal policy and strong fiscal transfers between regions.

Just because a particular politician uses a particular argument incorrectly in one scenario doesn't make that particular argument universally incorrect.

The 'Brussels red-tape' etc. would be exactly the same were we part of EFTA rather than the EU, except that we would no longer be able to influence it even in a small way. Of course we could go down the bilateral road, but we would be economically poorer for it - not massively so, but enough to notice. The raw trade figures don't highlight the 10/20% of trade that goes on primarily because Britain is an Anglophone member of the EU (and therefore a natural place for a lot of overseas business to head quarter).

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Anglican't
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quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
There are plenty of pro-europeans who are simultaneously anti-euro - or who pointed out that the Euro was unlikely to work without a common fiscal policy and strong fiscal transfers between regions.

Just because a particular politician uses a particular argument incorrectly in one scenario doesn't make that particular argument universally incorrect.



It seems to me that many of the politicians who advocated entry to the Euro make exactly the same arguments in relation to the EU, except that they substitute 'EU' for 'Euro'.

I accept that there are some pro-EU, anti-Euro politicians. David Cameron is one of them.

quote:
The 'Brussels red-tape' etc. would be exactly the same were we part of EFTA rather than the EU, except that we would no longer be able to influence it even in a small way. Of course we could go down the bilateral road, but we would be economically poorer for it - not massively so, but enough to notice. The raw trade figures don't highlight the 10/20% of trade that goes on primarily because Britain is an Anglophone member of the EU (and therefore a natural place for a lot of overseas business to head quarter).
I don't quite follow you here. If we were in the EEA but not the EU, why wouldn't we still have this 10-20% of trade that occurs because we're an Anglophone member of the EU? On your argument the British government wouldn't be able to influence red tape, etc. but an American company, for example, would still have access to the European market from Britain.
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An die Freude
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I have to pose a somewhat tangential question:
How many here actually believe that the EU will function remotely in the same manner should the third largest member, one of its largest givers, leave?

From my standpoint, it seems it will affect the situation for the Scandinavians (traditional allies), drastically change the balance of North vs South Europeans, change the argument that everyone who matters is in the union (with >10 % of the population leaving!) and call into question the feasibility of a united Europe, which has always been one of the EU's strongest arguments for its existence.

Would these and other similar effects really pass unnoticed within Europe, or would they be met with reforms changing the inside of the EU making it something else than it is today? (By the way, whoever can define conclusively in less than ten words what it is today wins a cup of coffee at a café in Brussels or possibly Stockholm.)

To me, the turmoil due to the never-ending Euro crisis seems likely to worsen should the basic idea of a united Europe crumble, and a worsened such situation would likely have strong effects on the political situations in Italy, Spain and even France, thus taking Germany with it. So frankly, I'm not convinced by those saying the Brits are solely voting on whether to be included or excluded from Brussels - it's a way greater issue than that, bearing potential historical weight somewhat similar to the Yalta Conference.

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Cod
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by the giant cheeseburger:
There's no such thing as an "external EU border" though, you've made it up on the fly.

Dear TCG,

When the official EU page on immigration into the EU uses the phrase "external EU border", eg

quote:
You will enter the EU via an external border when you come from a non-EU country to an EU country. You can enter the EU by air, land or sea.

You can only cross the EU's external borders at designated border crossing-points and during formal opening times.

I get to ignore everything else you say, and strongly suggest that everyone else follows suit.

regards,

Doc Tor

In strict legal terms, TGC is absolutely correct - there is no such thing as an "external EU border", only a border between a country that is an EU member and another country that isn't. It is a term of administrative convenience. Similarly, "EU law" just means law of a member state made under an authority legally delegated by a member state to Brussels, and "EU citizenship" just means an incidental benefit conferred on a citizen of an EU member state.

The UK and ROI are sovereign states, regardless of their membership of the EU and their borders are their own business to determine.

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Ronald Binge
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
There are plenty of pro-europeans who are simultaneously anti-euro - or who pointed out that the Euro was unlikely to work without a common fiscal policy and strong fiscal transfers between regions.

Just because a particular politician uses a particular argument incorrectly in one scenario doesn't make that particular argument universally incorrect.



It seems to me that many of the politicians who advocated entry to the Euro make exactly the same arguments in relation to the EU, except that they substitute 'EU' for 'Euro'.

I accept that there are some pro-EU, anti-Euro politicians. David Cameron is one of them.

quote:
The 'Brussels red-tape' etc. would be exactly the same were we part of EFTA rather than the EU, except that we would no longer be able to influence it even in a small way. Of course we could go down the bilateral road, but we would be economically poorer for it - not massively so, but enough to notice. The raw trade figures don't highlight the 10/20% of trade that goes on primarily because Britain is an Anglophone member of the EU (and therefore a natural place for a lot of overseas business to head quarter).
I don't quite follow you here. If we were in the EEA but not the EU, why wouldn't we still have this 10-20% of trade that occurs because we're an Anglophone member of the EU? On your argument the British government wouldn't be able to influence red tape, etc. but an American company, for example, would still have access to the European market from Britain.

Or from Dublin. I think we could ride out the mock outrage from the Express etc. as they never respected us in the first place, while they get excited about being able to chuck kids up chimneys again.
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Eutychus
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quote:
Originally posted by Ariel:
This is not the Common Market that we signed up to in the 70s

I'd like to come back to this.

I recently heard the observation that when it joined the EU, the UK did indeed think it was joining the Common Market, that's how it was referred to (I am old enough to remember!). The interest for the UK has always been about trade.

Among the founding states in continental Europe, though, a huge reason for the European Union was the spectre of World War II and the thought "never again": trade was seen as a means to a higher end.

It has taken me many years of living in France to realise what a difference being a theatre of WW2 has made to the national psyche compared to the UK, and many more to understand how different it makes the perception of the EU.

Another thing I have realised through my job is how bad the EU is at communication and publicity. People don't understand its mechanisms, and perhaps more importantly, don't appreciate the funds that go into various projects across the EU - including in the UK. What they may also not appreciate (in both senses of the term) is that such cross-border projects are deliberately designed to foster a common, European culture among the EU's managerial elite...

[ 16. November 2013, 06:31: Message edited by: Eutychus ]

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Eutychus:
What they may also not appreciate (in both senses of the term) is that such cross-border projects are deliberately designed to foster a common, European culture among the EU's managerial elite...

It's deliberately designed to destroy national differences and individuality and unite the whole continent into one nation. Yes, I've been saying that for years. It's why I oppose it.

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Eutychus
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I can understand that and I'm not saying it's an unequivocally good thing.

But my experience is that seeing WW2 photographs of soldiers from the occupying army standing outside the local equivalent of Marks&Spencer (which has barely changed since), in a place you call home, offers a chilling realisation that there are more ways than one of trampling on national identity.

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Let's remember that we are to build the Kingdom of God, not drive people away - pastor Frank Pomeroy

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