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Source: (consider it) Thread: Shake it all about: Brexit thread II
mr cheesy
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£34 billion (if that was in any sense accurate) does not seem like a small amount to pay for export/import duties, tax and paperwork.

Of course, if we could find an export partner who would take our exports, not charge tariffs and not have high standards, we'd be in gravy. But, I submit, if that happened we'd almost inevitably have to sell cheap and therefore devalue.

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arse

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Rocinante
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Sorry if I'm being slow, but what is the significance of £34Billion ?
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mr cheesy
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That was an estimate of the cost to UK business of the extra export tarifs due to brexit.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/brexit-could-cost-the-uk-34bn-in-export-tax-and-other-trade-barriers-sajid-ja vid-says-a7068696.html

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arse

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Rocinante
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Thanks.

Our ambassador to the EU is saying that a new trade deal with the EU might take 10 years to agree, and then will need to be ratified by all the national parliaments.

Ye gods...a decade of hot air and red tape just to get back to not quite where we started. Still, it'll be a nice gravy train for civil servants and lawyers - it's an ill wind and all that.

"Might" is a loaded word - could be 5 years, could be 20. The uncertainty will be very damaging.

I too am starting to favour EFTA as the least worst option. But it won't satisfy May's Brexit headbangers, and so I can't see it happening.

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:

I think we should join EFTA. You get an emergency brake on migration, you get to make deals outside the bloc, the arbitrator is apparently qualitatively different from the EU*, its existing members have spoken positively about the possibility

I think at this stage (apart from staying in the EU) joining the EFTA would be by far the best option. However in order to do so the UK would need a, a completely different press to the one it has. b, a completely different Tory party to the one it has.

In further Brexit news, Lloyds of London plan to establish an EU base next year:

http://www.msn.com/en-gb/money/news/lloyd%e2%80%99s-of-london-to-establish-eu-base-in-the-new-year/ar-AAlAiJA?li=BBx1bGE

Key quote:

"The market will then seek regulatory clearance for the new subsidiary, which will be used to conduct business around the EU using the “passporting” system. This allows financial services businesses to conduct trade across the bloc from a single location."

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quetzalcoatl
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Talk of Brexit headbangers pulls me up short - how have we got to a place where they are so dominant, both in the media, and politics? Is it English nationalism, retro nostalgia for the Empire, racism, a shift to the right, a mixture, I suppose.

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no path

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Humble Servant
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quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:

I think we should join EFTA. You get an emergency brake on migration, you get to make deals outside the bloc, the arbitrator is apparently qualitatively different from the EU*, its existing members have spoken positively about the possibility

I think at this stage (apart from staying in the EU) joining the EFTA would be by far the best option. However in order to do so the UK would need a, a completely different press to the one it has. b, a completely different Tory party to the one it has.


Is that option on the table? The point of EFTA was a stepping stone on the way into the EU. Not sure it's an arrangement we'd be allowed on the way out.
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Sioni Sais
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# 5713

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quote:
Originally posted by Humble Servant:
quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:

I think we should join EFTA. You get an emergency brake on migration, you get to make deals outside the bloc, the arbitrator is apparently qualitatively different from the EU*, its existing members have spoken positively about the possibility

I think at this stage (apart from staying in the EU) joining the EFTA would be by far the best option. However in order to do so the UK would need a, a completely different press to the one it has. b, a completely different Tory party to the one it has.


Is that option on the table? The point of EFTA was a stepping stone on the way into the EU. Not sure it's an arrangement we'd be allowed on the way out.
Hardly any point now, as EFTA is a small club, consisting as it does of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and (up to a point) Switzerland.

Quite how the UK could join EFTA without joining the EEA is a mystery to me, and one which would require the agreement of the other members of EFTA who might feel swamped by the UK.

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"He isn't Doctor Who, he's The Doctor"

(Paul Sinha, BBC)

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Alan Cresswell

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# 31

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quote:
Originally posted by Humble Servant:
The point of EFTA was a stepping stone on the way into the EU. Not sure it's an arrangement we'd be allowed on the way out.

Since the 2020 election will almost certainly return more MPs on an explicit pro-EU platform than were returned in 2015 on an explicit anti-EU ticket, that will mark a big step on the road to the UK re-joining the EU. Might as well step straight into the line to join the EU and cut out some of the time before the UK rejoins.

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Don't Brexit if you haven't a scooby how to fix it.

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Callan
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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
quote:
Originally posted by Humble Servant:
The point of EFTA was a stepping stone on the way into the EU. Not sure it's an arrangement we'd be allowed on the way out.

Since the 2020 election will almost certainly return more MPs on an explicit pro-EU platform than were returned in 2015 on an explicit anti-EU ticket, that will mark a big step on the road to the UK re-joining the EU. Might as well step straight into the line to join the EU and cut out some of the time before the UK rejoins.
The most likely outcome is that the majority of MPs in 2020 will be from either the Conservative or the Labour Parties, both of whom accept Brexit. So they will have been elected on manifesto commitments to support Brexit and get the best deal possible.

Assuming, of course, that the whole thing isn't a fait accompli, at that point.

It would be quite funny, if the Lib Dems swept to power with the sort of majority associated with Mr Blair, or Mrs Thatcher, in their pomp if only to watch various eminent political commentators gibber with outrage but it doesn't seem terribly likely at this stage of the game.

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How easy it would be to live in England, if only one did not love her. - G.K. Chesterton

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Alan Cresswell

Mad Scientist 先生
# 31

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quote:
Originally posted by Callan:
quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
quote:
Originally posted by Humble Servant:
The point of EFTA was a stepping stone on the way into the EU. Not sure it's an arrangement we'd be allowed on the way out.

Since the 2020 election will almost certainly return more MPs on an explicit pro-EU platform than were returned in 2015 on an explicit anti-EU ticket, that will mark a big step on the road to the UK re-joining the EU. Might as well step straight into the line to join the EU and cut out some of the time before the UK rejoins.
The most likely outcome is that the majority of MPs in 2020 will be from either the Conservative or the Labour Parties, both of whom accept Brexit. So they will have been elected on manifesto commitments to support Brexit and get the best deal possible.
Unless there's a sudden dose of nous through government, by 2020 the UK will be somewhere outside the EU - of course, we're still waiting to find out where the government wants us to be, which will be different from where the Leave campaign might have thought we'd want to be, and almost certainly different from where a large number of Leave voters wanted us to be.

But, assuming the LibDems put in a manifesto pledge to work towards re-entering the EU, and the SNP still support Scotland being in the EU (I don't think either of those are unreasonable asusmptions) then there will be something like 50 MPs (possibly more) elected on a specific platform of working towards re-entering the EU. As you say, Labour and Conservatives are likely to both have a "work to get the best we can from being outside the EU" pledge, and probably won't mention rejoining at all - I think both parties are liable to fracture if there's another internal discussion about whether the UK should be in the EU, so it'll be ignored. Perhaps some pro-EU MPs will make a personal pledge to rejoin, maybe they won't.

But, that's still 50+ MPs on that assessment on a rejoin the EU pledge. Compared to 1 MP on a leave the EU pledge elected in 2015. I stand by my "more MPs committed to rejoin in 2020 than to leave in 2015" statement.

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Don't Brexit if you haven't a scooby how to fix it.

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Humble Servant:
Is that option on the table? The point of EFTA was a stepping stone on the way into the EU. Not sure it's an arrangement we'd be allowed on the way out.

There are some people who have pushed it option post exit based on a reading of the Lord Ashcroft poll that highlights the number 1 reason why Leave voters said they voted Leave here:

http://lordashcroftpolls.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Leave-vs-Remain-podium-rankings.jpg

Yes, it does diminish the second reason somewhat, but on a less cynical note there are some indications that a, a reasonable number of Leave voters were vaguely envisaging something somewhat like EFTA when they voted 'Leave'. b, support for a total-break goes way down if there are severe economic consequences for individuals.

However, in order to go down this road the UK would require good political leadership, a different print media and a different Tory party.

So it is probably all moot.

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by chris stiles:
I think at this stage (apart from staying in the EU) joining the EFTA would be by far the best option. However in order to do so the UK would need a, a completely different press to the one it has. b, a completely different Tory party to the one it has.

(a) is unfortunately true. Regarding (b) it is reported that a bunch of Tory backbenchers have demanded a meeting with Ms May to avoid a hard Brexit and since she has only a tiny majority there may yet be hope.

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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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Anglican't
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quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
quote:
Originally posted by Callan:
quote:
Originally posted by Alan Cresswell:
quote:
Originally posted by Humble Servant:
The point of EFTA was a stepping stone on the way into the EU. Not sure it's an arrangement we'd be allowed on the way out.

Since the 2020 election will almost certainly return more MPs on an explicit pro-EU platform than were returned in 2015 on an explicit anti-EU ticket, that will mark a big step on the road to the UK re-joining the EU. Might as well step straight into the line to join the EU and cut out some of the time before the UK rejoins.
The most likely outcome is that the majority of MPs in 2020 will be from either the Conservative or the Labour Parties, both of whom accept Brexit. So they will have been elected on manifesto commitments to support Brexit and get the best deal possible.
Unless there's a sudden dose of nous through government, by 2020 the UK will be somewhere outside the EU - of course, we're still waiting to find out where the government wants us to be, which will be different from where the Leave campaign might have thought we'd want to be, and almost certainly different from where a large number of Leave voters wanted us to be.

But, assuming the LibDems put in a manifesto pledge to work towards re-entering the EU, and the SNP still support Scotland being in the EU (I don't think either of those are unreasonable asusmptions) then there will be something like 50 MPs (possibly more) elected on a specific platform of working towards re-entering the EU. As you say, Labour and Conservatives are likely to both have a "work to get the best we can from being outside the EU" pledge, and probably won't mention rejoining at all - I think both parties are liable to fracture if there's another internal discussion about whether the UK should be in the EU, so it'll be ignored. Perhaps some pro-EU MPs will make a personal pledge to rejoin, maybe they won't.

But, that's still 50+ MPs on that assessment on a rejoin the EU pledge. Compared to 1 MP on a leave the EU pledge elected in 2015. I stand by my "more MPs committed to rejoin in 2020 than to leave in 2015" statement.

But this is all meaningless, isn't it? Assuming the Tories win big in 2020 and if Labour accept the referendum result, there will be between 400-600 MPs committed to Brexit. Which is rather more than the number of MPs openly in favour of Brexit at the 2015 election...

Of course, by 2020 the Lib Dems, who used to be in favour of a EU referendum before they were against it, may have switched back again / seen which way the wind was blowing and also accepted that Britain is going to leave the EU for good.

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ThunderBunk

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48% of the country rejected a concept that is about to seriously impoverish it, and yet you are content that this part of the country should have no representation anywhere? And this is pluralist democracy? Words fail me. We not live in a totalitarian mob rule - or at least not yet.

Brexiteers are behaving like Gollum - possession at all costs.

We are not willing to pay the cost of their infantile, paranoid maunderings and will not go down without far more of a fight.

[ 16. December 2016, 07:18: Message edited by: ThunderBunk ]

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Currently mostly furious, and occasionally foolish. Normal service may resume eventually. Or it may not. And remember children, "feiern ist wichtig".

Foolish, potentially deranged witterings

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Anglican't
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quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
48% of the country rejected a concept that is about to seriously impoverish it

I think around 52% of voters might disagree with that assertion.
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mr cheesy
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Which part? That they knew Leave was going to make us worse off (not sure anyone is seriously arguing no economic impact now) or that they wouldn't have necessarily voted that way I'd they'd known?

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arse

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Humble Servant
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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
48% of the country rejected a concept that is about to seriously impoverish it

I think around 52% of voters might disagree with that assertion.
52% of those who voted. About 42% of those eligible to vote and less than 25% of the total population of the UK. There is no clear result, and no mandate. Why do the politicians get away with repeating that mantra over and over and no one challenges them?
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Alan Cresswell

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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
But this is all meaningless, isn't it? Assuming the Tories win big in 2020 and if Labour accept the referendum result, there will be between 400-600 MPs committed to Brexit. Which is rather more than the number of MPs openly in favour of Brexit at the 2015 election...

No, it isn't meaningless. I think it can't be ignored that in 2015 no major party had any strong statement on Brexit in their manifesto - whether to stat or go. The exception being UKIP (who only managed a single MP with 12.6% of the vote). Just look at the other party manifestos and the message is clear ... all the major political parties are in favour of remaining in the EU.

Labour were strongly in favour of EU membership. "Labour believes that our membership of the European Union is central to our prosperity and security. ... we will re-engage with our European allies ... after five years of Britain being sidelined in Europe ... The economic case for membership of the EU is overwhelming."

The Conservatives, of course, had the daft idea of an in/out referendum. But also "We are clear about what we want from Europe. We say: yes to the Single Market. Yes to turbocharging free trade. Yes to working together where we are
stronger together than alone. Yes to a family of nation states, all part of a European Union".

"Liberal Democrats want Britain to remain a member of the EU because we are fighting for a stronger economy and British jobs. Being in Europe allows Britain to project strength in the world when negotiating climate change agreements, in trade talks with global players like the USA and China, and when introducing sanctions against countries like Russia."

SNP "we will oppose a referendum on membership of the EU. Being part of Europe is good for business and it supports jobs in Scotland and across the UK"

With the exception of the single UKIP MP, every single MP who votes in favour of any move away from EU membership or campaigns for leaving the EU does so against the express wishes of the electorate who voted for them under a manifesto commitment to remain in the EU.

If we fast forward to 2020, what are we expecting in the party manifestos? Assuming the most likely course happens and we leave the EU in 2019 the will obviously be no commitment to take the UK out of the EU. There will be a lot of statements about making the best out of the position the UK is in, which for Labour and Conservatives will almost certainly avoid any language which might suggest that this Parliament and government cocked it up big time in taking us out of the EU. I'd hope the LibDems and Greens will retain their positive position towards the EU and put that "making the best" statement within a context of leaving the EU being a mistake, and with a stated long term aim of reversing that and gaining readmission to the EU. The SNP, of course, will focus on Scottish Independence and that an independent Scotland would seek EU membership. UKIP, if they exist by then, will have a manifesto celebrating Brexit and committing to remaining outside the EU.

I'm not sure what can be denied about those likely positions. The exact form of "making the best of the situation" will vary, of course.

So, if as I suggest every LibDem, SNP and Green MP elected in 2020 is elected under a "seek to rejoin the EU" manifesto that will be a significant minority seeking readmission. And, none of the Labour or Conservative MPs will be elected on a specific "stay out" manifesto. Even now with three contested by-elections since the referendum we have had two MPs elected on taking the UK out of the EU and one opposed to that. A sample of four MPs is hardly significant, but if that was carried to 2020 and we get 25% of MPs elected on a rejoin the EU platform I would be delighted.

Of course, I'd be even more delighted if Theresa May went back to reread the manifesto she was elected under. And, stand by the Conservative Party position to be part of a family of nations within the EU.

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Don't Brexit if you haven't a scooby how to fix it.

Posts: 32006 | From: East Kilbride (Scotland) or 福島 | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
anteater

Ship's pest-controller
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Alan C: If I can heark back a bit.

quote:
Which pre-supposes that the EU needs to reform. The old maxim is "if it's not broken, don't fix it".
Depends what you mean by broken. Most pro-EUers see more need for reform that you, particularly with regards to the much discussed democratic deficit.

My current main bugbear is secrecy, where key decisions are taken by small groups behind impenetrable walls of secrecy, where the only outsiders who get to know what's going on are lobbyists with big expense accounts.

At least that's how I see the trilogue system as explained here and here, with the catchy headlines: "Where European democracy goes to die" and "Trilogues: the system that undermines EU democracy and transparency". A few selections:

quote:
Most of the legislation of the European Union (EU) is today adopted using an informal, non-democratic, non-accountable and non-transparent process. This mechanism is known in the EU bubble as “trilogues” or “trialogues”. Trilogues are a set of informal negotiations between the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union and the European Commission to fast-track legislation, with a view to reaching early agreements on legislation.
quote:
access to trilogue documents is often denied, as evidenced in EDRi’s freedom of information requests for the trilogue documents of the Telecoms Single Market Regulation (the regulation dealing with net neutrality in the EU), for example
quote:
trilogues are subject to undue and undisclosed external pressure. Lobbyists can get an insight of trilogue negotiations if they become friendly with the negotiators. What about the general public? Wouldn’t you like to also have access to documents that will likely affect your life?
Those from EDRi, admittedly a campaigning organisation, but according to their later report, even the EU Ombudsman sees a need for change. I can't imagine a system more open to corruption.

As Politico (q.v. supra) says:
quote:
A case in point is the Money Market Fund Regulation, which was agreed informally between Parliament and Council negotiators last month after five closed-door meetings. The proposal, which will affect a financial market in Europe worth a €1 trillion, must be rubber-stamped by a majority of the plenary in Strasbourg next month, even though only five or six MEPs were involved in the negotiations themselves.
But where Politico's article is the more interesting is that it does see trilogues as meeting a need, due to the cumbersome nature of the EU partiament, and the frequent trench warfare, which slow everything down. And now the sweetheart deal between the major voting blocks is breaking down, this will only get worse. Which makes it far from easy to reform it, as the secrecy is a consequence of the difficulty of getting nation states to agree on anything.

That, to me, is broken. And to be honest, post Brexit, I cannot imagine legislation on issues as sensitive as net neutrality being decided in closed sessions, which no way to get at any of the relevant documents. Final quote:

quote:
If I wanted to know what the ECR (European Conservatives and Reformists) or the EPP (European People’s Party) were cooking, I would call the lobbyists and they would often have the papers before the people in the room,” said Green MEP Sven Giegold, who is a member of the powerful Economic Affairs Committee. “If you drink with the right person, then you can get the information.


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Schnuffle schnuffle.

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Marvin the Martian

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quote:
Originally posted by Humble Servant:
52% of those who voted.

"Those who voted" are the only ones who matter in this context. If people, having been given plenty of advance warning of the vote and ample opportunities to participate, choose not to do so then it can only be assumed that they genuinely don't care which side wins.

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Hail Gallaxhar

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ThunderBunk

Stone cold idiot
# 15579

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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
48% of the country rejected a concept that is about to seriously impoverish it

I think around 52% of voters might disagree with that assertion.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good outbreak of pointless self-immolation. Not everything was set in stone by a single advisory vote.

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Currently mostly furious, and occasionally foolish. Normal service may resume eventually. Or it may not. And remember children, "feiern ist wichtig".

Foolish, potentially deranged witterings

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Sioni Sais
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# 5713

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quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
quote:
Originally posted by Anglican't:
quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
48% of the country rejected a concept that is about to seriously impoverish it

I think around 52% of voters might disagree with that assertion.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good outbreak of pointless self-immolation. Not everything was set in stone by a single advisory vote.
Too true. The vote on June 23rd was only the start of it. There are two years of negotiations post Article 50 simply (!) to leave the EU then many years of trade negotiations. I doubt it will have settled down before I am well into my dotage.

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"He isn't Doctor Who, he's The Doctor"

(Paul Sinha, BBC)

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by anteater:

That, to me, is broken. And to be honest, post Brexit, I cannot imagine legislation on issues as sensitive as net neutrality being decided in closed sessions, which no way to get at any of the relevant documents. Final quote:

I'm somewhat bemused with your line of argument. Yes, the lobbying and the lack of transparency you describe is unquestionably not a good thing.

OTOH it's far far more prevalent in a Westminster context (due to the centralisation of power/media/industry elites around London) where you often won't even hear that lobbying has occurred and where the Supreme Court are far more likely to go along with the wishes of the powerful than the ECJ (who at least have the corrective of a written rights document to rule against).

To mention two recent events; there is no record of what went on at the meeting between Murdoch and May: https://goo.gl/EQTv2C - of course the Minister in charge of implementing Levenson has a single Senior Advisor - who was formerly senior political correspondent at the Sun.

More germane perhaps to your example of net neutrality; the recent IPBill was drawn up substantially from the input of lobbying by the security services, who never had to put forward specific arguments around specific clauses, or have to justify these. The various Committees pontificated, decided that there were various areas of concern and published their reports, satisfied that procedure had been followed. The Bill itself passed largely unchanged, and still containing numerous passages that seem to have been written in deliberately in as vague a manner as possible.

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anteater

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Chris Styles:
quote:
I'm somewhat bemused with your line of argument
All I was arguing is that aspects of the EU need reforming, taking lack of transparency as a key example.

And I think the perception of the EU Parliament is at the core of the problem. People vary hugely on what they think of the Parliament, from those who believe it is truly makes the EU democratic to those who think it is a fairly useless gravy-train.

Part of this debate is the supposed role of the Parliament in debating and approving legislation. Some people believe that the EUP debates proposals from the Commission just like the UKP debates proposals from the UKGov. The significance of the trilogue process is that it shows this not to be the case.

And the reason for this is that the EUP is largely dysfunctional so that the effect of debate just results in a logjam where nothing gets through, because too many people are there to block it.

And, as the Politico article explains, this is why the EU has set up a device to avoid debate so as to fast track legislation by keeping everything secret and having very small groups of MEPs look at the legislation. And this is why, it will be hard to reform.

According to Chris Bickerton's book (and I did only recently find out that he is a Left Wing Brexiteer) 81% of proposals were passed at first reading by the Triloge method and only 3% ever reached the third reading where texts are debated in a plenary session of the EUP.

As regards your counter example of the IPBill, I will investigate further, internet security being my professional expertise (before I retired), but I would make two points:

1. Was the text of the Bill not submitted for debate by the UKP? If so, the two cases are different. Even if significant legislation was really debated by the EUP, I would assume a lot of prior lobbying would still take place.

2. Any legislation passed in the UK can later be repealed by the same UK parliament, so Corbyn's pledge to repeal any further union-limiting legislation brought in by the Tories is not an empty promise, as he would have that power, once elected. The EUP has no such power at all.

[ 17. December 2016, 16:15: Message edited by: anteater ]

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Rocinante
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Mrs May wants us all to unite after the Brexit vote:

PM's Xmas message

Well, my response to that is, give us something to unite around and I might consider it. So far, we have no plan, no vision, nothing except an increasingly desperate determination to say nothing about Brexit beyond anodyne Delphic platitudes.

Until this vacuum is filled I shall continue to regard Brexit as a national cock-up of the first water, and refuse to co-operate with it. In fact, I'm starting to wonder: if we ignore it, will it just go away?

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Alan Cresswell

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quote:
Originally posted by Rocinante:
In fact, I'm starting to wonder: if we ignore it, will it just go away?

I don't see that happening. If we are to get it to go away then we have to stand up and resist this nonsense. Even if the government keeps on demonstrating their inability to organise a piss-up in a distillery, sooner or later the rest of the EU is going to do something. We're in a limbo where in many instances the EU is working on an assumption that when Cameron stood in Downing Street 6 months ago and said "the UK is leaving the EU (oh, and I'm buggering off to let someone else sort out the mess I've created)" (very loose paraphrase) that was the start of the leaving process and the 2y clock started, while also waiting for the government to formally trigger A50. If there's no progress soon then the temptation for the rest of the EU to just cut us loose may be irresistible - ongoing uncertainty is probably as damaging to the EU as the extra costs of a hard Brexit.

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Eutychus
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quote:
Originally posted by Rocinante:
In fact, I'm starting to wonder: if we ignore it, will it just go away?

I agree with Alan.

To repeat something I keep saying, but am by no means alone in saying, from this side of the Channel it is quite staggering to see the extent to which the UK is largely behaving as if Brexit is purely a domestic issue which it can pursue at its leisure, while the EU27 sit meekly by to await the result of these ruminations.

This completely ignores the fact that the EU cannot be seen to be indulgent with the UK. To act thus would imperil the EU's future existence by orders of magnitude more than even the UK leaving does, because of the precedent it would set.

The Economist is hardly to be noted for its Europhilia. Last week its Charlemagne column reported that
quote:
European negotiators who think it is essential [for the EU27] to act as one are staggered to hear some [UK] ministers cling to the delusion that Germany's need to sell cars to British motorists will ensure that Mrs May secures a good deal.


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Rocinante
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My point is that we're not even treating it as a domestic issue. We're not doing anything. We're not following any sort of process to decide what we do next.

Mrs May knows that the moment she commits to a specific form of Brexit, she'll attract the wrath of half her party and the majority of voters, so she seems to have decided to wait and see what turns up. I'm sure she'd really like it all to just go away.

Such is the calibre of our politicians these days.

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anteater

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Rocinante: So what would you do if you were in May's position?

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Rocinante
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quote:
Originally posted by anteater:
Rocinante: So what would you do if you were in May's position?

Do my level best to persuade the EU to let us move to EFTA status and to make the transition as quick and painless as possible. They would, I think, be relieved that we've finally made a decision. Once agreement is reached, call a general election with EFTA membership as a manifesto pledge.

She would probably lose some MP's/votes to UKIP, but given Labour's travails and the fact that most people will just want this resolved, I think she should win comfortably.

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Alan Cresswell

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When she's been fighting allowing Parliament to have a say on Brexit, I can't see her letting the people have a direct say again. But, if she does, at least it will be a proper question on what future the people of the UK want, rather than the farcical non-question we had 6 months ago.

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anteater

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Rocinante:
Well we agree on that. But maybe I'm more prepared to accept this is a difficult goal to get to, so I'm more prepared to cut some slack. Partly, of course, because I want May to succeed.

It's hardly her fault that the EU won't countenance starting even preliminary discussions prior to article 50 triggering, and I think she is not delaying that unreasonably.

Plus she has to get this all through parliament. I can see why she can't trumpet (pun intended) on twitter. She needs, I suspect, to be as wily as Heath was in getting us into the EU.

Plus most people are of the view that May is, at heart, a soft brexiteer. It's just not that easy to actually achieve the outcome.

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Alan Cresswell

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quote:
Originally posted by anteater:
Plus most people are of the view that May is, at heart, a soft brexiteer. It's just not that easy to actually achieve the outcome.

I think she's a reluctant Brexiteer, she's been put in the impossible position of wanting the UK to Remain in the EU but feeling that politically that's not possible.

She's also been put in the almost impossible position of being the leader of a political party that was elected to power with a manifesto for remaining in the EU, but the recipient of a referendum result that has been interpreted as a clear call for a Brexit. And, to top it off she's expected to define that Brexit when those who actually wanted it couldn't be bothered to do it.

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Rocinante
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If May were to stop messing about, trigger article 50 immediately, and adopt a conciliatory tone in negotiations she would, ISTM, have a good chance of getting agreement to the EFTA option fairly quickly. Its in the interests of the rest of the EU for us to remain semi-attached, and it could be argued that this "half in, half out" solution best reflects the very close result of the referendum.

Going to the country with this soft Brexit offer would put the resurgent Lib Dems back in their box, and with Labour in disarray there will never be a better time for her to do it. She would only really have to worry about UKIP, the gutter press and her own right-wingers screaming about betrayal. That would be the time for her to show a bit of steel.

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Sioni Sais
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That leaves another problem, namely that the negotiations following the invoking of Article 50 only cover the political aspects of disengaging from the EU. Trade negotiations are a separate matter and I doubt that they will even be started in any meaningful way until the two-year Article 50 period is over and Britain is out of the EU. There's no way we are going to switch from being an "In the EU" state to an "In EEA via EFTA" state or anything resembling that overnight.

[ 24. December 2016, 20:41: Message edited by: Sioni Sais ]

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anteater

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Alan: As so often I largely agree, but with two reservations.

I do not believe she was as committed a remainer as you. She may now even be a convert, as I nearly am. As a minimum I think she needs to see enough positive in Brexit to pursue it with integrity.

Then (repetition alert) there is a lot of difference between a referendum to remain Tout court and one which promotes staying in a reformed EU with a promise of a plebiscite to ratify it, the result of which will be respected.

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Alan Cresswell

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quote:
Originally posted by anteater:
I do not believe she was as committed a remainer as you. She may now even be a convert, as I nearly am. As a minimum I think she needs to see enough positive in Brexit to pursue it with integrity.

True on the first point. She kept her head down in the referendum campaign, supporting Remain but largely absent from any of the campaigning. Her views on Brexit are, therefore, unclear. So, she may not be a committed remainer, but she certainly isn't an all-out Brexiteer.

As to the second part, I'm not sure she has any more integrity than anyone else in her party, possibly less. She's out for herself, if she's seeing something positive in Brexit it's positive for her, possibly for her party, but not the country.

quote:

Then (repetition alert) there is a lot of difference between a referendum to remain Tout court and one which promotes staying in a reformed EU with a promise of a plebiscite to ratify it, the result of which will be respected.

True, and as I've said repeatedly I have no objection to a referendum on a new EU treaty, or a defined plan for Brexit. But, that's not what we got. I know Cameron went through the motions of a new deal for the UK, but that barely amounted to tinkering with the trivial, certainly not a reformation of the EU.

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Ricardus
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The delay is Cameron's fault, not May's. Cameron was a moron and thought that as he would win the referendum, there was no need for the civil service to do any kind of impact assessment to study the probable results of Brexit for each department. Consequently, this is what the civil service is now having to do. If one is of the view that trade deals are immensely complicated, I don't see how it's unreasonable for May to want to be as well prepared as possible.

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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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Also, when people call for Ms May to commit to a specific form of Brexit, what are they asking her to do?

E.g. if she commits to something involving single market membership, does that mean she should accept membership at any price whatsoever? Or that if the price is unacceptable we should just crash out without a deal, revert to WTO rules, and not even consider any of the other options?

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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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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by anteater:
Chris Styles:
quote:
I'm somewhat bemused with your line of argument
All I was arguing is that aspects of the EU need reforming, taking lack of transparency as a key example.

Of course, and calls to reform any political system are relatively uncontroversial.

We are getting off topic here, but I think that the assumption that the EU is necessarily any less transparent than the UK is analogous to a belief in sympathetic magic.

quote:

1. Was the text of the Bill not submitted for debate by the UKP? If so, the two cases are different. Even if significant legislation was really debated by the EUP, I would assume a lot of prior lobbying would still take place.

So even in the case of legislation debated by the EUP you don't believe the debate actually counts, while in the case of the UKP you ignore any lobbying that may go on, the fact that legislation is drawn up by senior civil servants with direction from political advisors who often may either be lobbied themselves or have conflicts of interest which the regulatory body policing is unwilling or unable to stop. and that the legislation is often sufficiently voluminous or complex that the time allocated for debate is clearly insufficient. i.e the UK system works because it has labels for all the bits that are necessary for it to work (ignoring how it actually works).

[ 26. December 2016, 11:17: Message edited by: chris stiles ]

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Rocinante
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I have some sympathy with May. She has come into office in the most difficult circumstances of any PM since Churchill. She doesn't even seem to get this, though. She appears to think that she can finesse this car crash and get through it with everyone still loving her.

I appreciate that the task is monumnental,but she wanted the job! We desperately need some indication of direction of travel. If this is plausible and if the EU can be convinced we are sincere, I'm sure an agreement in principle could be reached reasonably quickly, details to be worked out later. This is all off-the-map stuff, so we are essentially working out the rules for a nation leaving the EU as we go along. The pre-written ones seem intolerably vague, which is contributing to the problem.

At the moment we're still at the stage of random people saying what we might do post-Brexit, see e.g. Mervyn Kings recent Pollyanna-ish comments along the lines of "Brexit could be great!". This is where we should have been about a year before the referendum happened. But I agree, this is mostly Cameron's fault. Can't say anything about that buffoon without getting hellish.

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Ricardus
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The problem is that a competent government and an incompetent government would probably seem to be doing largely the same thing.

If I am trying to sell a second hand car, it wouldn't make much sense to say things like 'Gosh I'll be really screwed if I don't sell this car' and 'Well my plan is to ask for two thousand but I'll accept fifteen hundred', so for similar reasons I think it's sensible for Ms May to keep shtum. On the other hand, she would also keep shtum if she didn't have a clue what she was doing ....

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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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TurquoiseTastic

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This "bargaining" analogy I find very difficult to understand. It's more like: "I want to leave this club, but maybe I'm hoping that I can still use the car park. BUT I'm not going to tell you whether I actually want to use the car park or not! That'll really fox you!"
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Alan Cresswell

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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
Also, when people call for Ms May to commit to a specific form of Brexit, what are they asking her to do?

The "bargaining" will have two main points. The opening position, what is initially asked for. And, there will also be a line that is as far as the government is willing to go (and, of course, the rest of the EU will have their own lines). Of course, it makes no sense in a negotiation to tell everyone what you will settle for, because you hope to reach a position that is better than that. But, you need to make an initial opening offer - what I want to see (what I've wanted to see for a year) is what the opening position for the Leave campaign would be. Because, the opening position that the government should already have on the table is what the people of the UK voted for.

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Ricardus
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But does it make sense to set out an opening position before negotiations have actually opened? Given that the opening position will by its very nature be somewhat optimistic, ISTM to invite six months of pretty much everyone who isn't in the Cabinet complaining about how unrealistic the plan is, while the EU devises its strategy to counter the proposals and the civil service review finds some new reason why the plan won't work.

Of course, if Cameron wasn't such a moron, negotiations would already have started, but that's not May's fault.

quote:
Originally posted by TurquoiseTastic:
This "bargaining" analogy I find very difficult to understand. It's more like: "I want to leave this club, but maybe I'm hoping that I can still use the car park. BUT I'm not going to tell you whether I actually want to use the car park or not! That'll really fox you!"

It's more like 'I'm not going to tell you how desperate I am to use the car park ...'

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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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Dafyd
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If instead of approaching the matter as a zero-sum negotiation with hostile opponents, we approached it as an attempt to work out a mutually satisfactory arrangement with our neighbours and trading partners, we might get a better outcome. But that seems a bit more magnanimous than anyone involved is capable of.

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Sioni Sais
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quote:
Originally posted by Dafyd:
If instead of approaching the matter as a zero-sum negotiation with hostile opponents, we approached it as an attempt to work out a mutually satisfactory arrangement with our neighbours and trading partners, we might get a better outcome. But that seems a bit more magnanimous than anyone involved is capable of.

Isn't that what the EU was all along? It was nowhere near perfect but I doubt we will get anything half as good.

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mdijon
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quote:
Originally posted by TurquoiseTastic:
This "bargaining" analogy I find very difficult to understand. It's more like: "I want to leave this club, but maybe I'm hoping that I can still use the car park. BUT I'm not going to tell you whether I actually want to use the car park or not! That'll really fox you!"

quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
It's more like 'I'm not going to tell you how desperate I am to use the car park ...'

Yes. As in "I want to leave the club, but I'd like to negotiate for some ongoing benefits, including parking, the occasional swim and coffee in the lounge. Some are priorities for me, some aren't. I'm prepared to pay. I'm not actually going to tell you what my priorities are so you know what your strongest negotiating position will be before we sit down to negotiate on it."

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mdijon nojidm uoɿıqɯ ɯqıɿou
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Alan Cresswell

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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
But does it make sense to set out an opening position before negotiations have actually opened?

Yes, it seems perfectly reasonable. Have the position described, then we would have an extended national discussion upon it culminating in the referendum. That would iron out a lot of rough edges, let everyone know what we want and identify those areas which will be difficult or even impossible. Then when negotiations start there's not as much left to discuss, and the mutually acceptable position in which everyone benefits (or, at least where everyone loses the least). But, that assumes you're working together rather than considering the process to be a confrontation between opposing sides each set on trampling everyone else underfoot.

It's a crap analogy. But, when buying and selling a house the seller usually has a price stated before negotiations start - with the knowledge that they would like more, but would be willing to accept a bit less. That opening position is advertised and well known long before a potential buyer puts in their offer and opens negotiations.

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