Britain leaving the E.U.

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Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Sun Oct 14, 2012 1:18 pm

There is quite a lot of political discontent with the UK being in the E.U. and many mutterings about leaving it, having a referendum, re-negotiating terms etc. Looks like this decision will be on the agenda at some point in the future.

The public have always been mislead about what being in the E.U. means, so we don't really know much about the realities of what is involved.

There is a difference between saying the UK should never have joined, and leaving now. The UK is so changed by many years of being in the E.U., would the UK be able to stand alone as an independent country now, or, is it changed beyond repair? Cool

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Guest on Sun Oct 14, 2012 2:58 pm

Of course it could stand alone, whether it would want to is another question.

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Sun Oct 14, 2012 6:12 pm

Well yes it could, but it might be a confusing and complicated time. Re-discovering common sense and being responsible for our own rules laws and decisions might take a bit of getting used to.

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  johnb on Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:16 pm

How well Britain could stand alone would depend on how amicable the exit would be.

The company I work for is Swiss owned and has major manufacturing sites worldwide. Everyone cites Switzerland as the country to justify independence, but laws (and borders - Switzerland is part of Shengen) are harmonised to such an extent that you cannot seethe join.

I would say this is now a non-issue. We are in and might as well make the best of it.





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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:00 pm

I'm not sure if it's a non-issue. Complaint and dissatisfaction with our being in the E.U. have increased the last few years, the longer the UK is in, more problems come to the surface. Those problems don't go away, we just learn to live with them.

It may just be political posturing, but there does seem to be a build up of political focus, and it may become more a real issue in a while. Still, unless there is a genuine in / out referendum, I suppose we, the public, will just be swept along with whatever the mysterious 'they' decide. cyclops

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  johnb on Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:54 pm

It's okay talking about problems, but what problems would we have, and have had if we had been outside the EU this last 30 odd years.

Remember that Norway has much more oil than we do, and a much smaller population. Switzerland has a historical claim to be the world banking capital. BOTH these countries have had to change to accommodate the Common Market to which they do not belong, both implement 80% - 90% of EU legislation automatically - incidentally those areas our Tory party would have us derogate from.

These are the bits the anti EU brigade do not tell you.
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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:53 pm

Who can say what problems the UK might have had if it never joined the E.U.? There are plenty of 'bits' the pro and antis don't tell us, the whole issue of the UK in Europe and the implications have always been hidden from the UK population.

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Atlas on Mon Oct 15, 2012 1:05 am

The Germans and the French have a thing about 'federation' which I find most disturbing. The USA is a federation of 'States' of which, should this come about, Britain would be one of a block of 26/27/28 similar 'States' in a Federated Europe. Looking at the USA, from which most of the original population, excluding the indigenous Indians, most of the people were of the same language and culture, there are still many differences which the Federal Government in Washington have to grapple with and not always with great success. The same cannot be said of a 'United Europe'. Indeed the latest debacle with the Euro - the common currency - has shown just how disparate the present situation is amongst its followers. Just how unmanageable would a Federal Government in Brussels be given such similar situations? I see this country on the outside looking in (similar to JohnB's of Norway and Switzerland). For me that would be the best on offer at this particular juncture. - - - Perhaps in another hundred years or more it may be possible. But not now.
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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Irishman on Mon Oct 15, 2012 9:58 am

Worst thing that could ever happen to the UK leaving the EU, ( you don't know what you've got till you lose it) simples!

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Mon Oct 15, 2012 12:31 pm

It's very much a matter of individual perception, whether being in the E.U. has been a good thing for the UK. We have never been given real facts, just sort of quietly led into it.

We have lost a lot of ability to run the country as we would like, trying to extradite foreign criminals for instance has cost a fortune and proves almost impossible, so we have to share our space with some very nasty people.

From what I know, the economic side of it isn't much good for us. The only argument for being in the E.U. that makes any sense to me is that we do it as a charitable act to help the 'European project', but is that misguided?

However, leaving it after being in for so many years would be a huge re-arrangement. My guess is that we will re-negotiate terms in the next few years.

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  johnb on Mon Oct 15, 2012 12:49 pm

For information;

Although most of the USA population was of European origin, of the white population, about 30% are of German speaking origin. There is a sizeable population of Italian speaking orign with various Scandinavian nations also well represented. english speaking is the largest group (just) but the decision to have the USA English speaking was more about a universal lingua franca than about majority bragging rights.

USA is EU writ large.
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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Atlas on Tue Oct 16, 2012 1:17 am

Indeed johnB. My concern lies more towards the disparities in the 'bloc'. As with some Southern States in the USA the economic wealth and opportunity will always mean Washington rules - regardless. How would you see the economy's of France and Romania or Greece and Germany assimilate or even grow close towards a parity of wealth distribution? Federation is meant to accomplish that - and I don't want to be any part of it whereby it means weakening our own economy and individual freedoms as part of that process. Call me a shell fish if you want. I just don't think I owe it to western Europe. I think we have always given enough this past 100 years.
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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Tue Oct 16, 2012 10:45 am

Historians are still puzzling over exactly why the British sent armies to fight in the trenches in world war one. Yes, the Germans had to be stopped, but the strategy to do that seems to have been a series of errors.

http://www.heardfamilyhistory.org.uk/photogallery/photo26003/Rochdale.jpg


Last edited by cyfrifia on Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:28 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Atlas on Wed Oct 17, 2012 1:05 am

Quick answer - to curb or neutralise the German Kaiser's power and it was better to fight over in France and Belgium with the addition of their armies than wait for both those countries to crumble (as they would have done) and try to stop an invasion of the British Isles (as was planned by the German High Command pre-war plan). A lot more besides but that's the gist.
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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:31 am

The first world war was probably the biggest, most miserable and worst war that ever happened, except perhaps for world war two. Explaining it doesn't really lend itself to a quick answer. Your explanation is fairly well accepted, Atlas, the narrative tends to be slanted, the first casualty of war, as always, is truth.

With the massive British casualties, if politicians and generals of the time could have forseen what their decisions would lead to, they might have made different decisions? Considering how many were killed on the Somme, it appears people at the time had little understanding of what was about to happen, but once it did it became apparently unstoppable. There are different ways of understanding the nature of that war and the sequence of events, but it was such a colossal disaster that if we accept the logic of the given narrative, it concludes that European politics and perhaps humanity itself is unavoidably auto-destructive.

Adolf Hitler fought for some years in the trenches of world war one, and saw very many of his fellow soldiers blown to bits around him. It's thought by some of his biographers that the trauma made him insensitive to death on a massive scale. World war two seems to have sprung out of the ashes of world war one in a continuing sequence of events. The country and the world we live in now is shaped by those events, and I think we still don't properly understand them. it's very difficult to know the truth about history in any case, but certainly the facts often don't come out until many years after the event. In the case of world war one, it was too massive and traumatic on so many levels as to hardly make sense of it at all.

The strategy of sending British troops to France in their millions, to be slaughtered as it turned out, remains questionable, in terms of British interests and of defending Britain, did it really make military, or any other, sense?


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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Irishman on Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:30 am

Each war is directed on the basis of technology at the time, the First World War was so bloody because it relied on numbers, and it was seen as numbers war because of the tools available. Many wars before then may not have seen such numbers killed but they were just as bloody if not worse.

In today’s technology with the tools available no one would have to leave the room and much of the world could be wiped out.

Sending the troops to France back then was the only way a war could have been fought with the technology available at that point in the timeline, so the tools of the trade (Armoury) dictate how a war is fought. I’m talking about world wars more than the short bits in-between.

As for sense, well wars are never sensible no matter what the circumstances, we were at war with America, Germany, Japan, France, in the past now look at us, was it worth it?

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Wed Oct 17, 2012 12:05 pm

Was it worth it? Is the question.

And not an easy answer. Something of a puzzle with WW1.

A bit easier with WW2. If the world hadn't fought back against the Germans and the Japanese, we might not be here to talk about it at all. The condition both cultures were in at the time was of a belief in racial superiority and a programme of killing or enslaving everyone else in the world with great cruelty, it's hard to imagine what the world would be like now if they had won. Arguably, yes, WW2 was worth it. So we cannot say that wars are never worth fighting.

It would be interesting to have seen an alternative strategy for WW1. If Britain had not sent troops abroad to defend France, but simply defended Britain, perhaps the German armies would have found an invasion of Britain to be not worth it, and gone off to invade sunnier climes. Greece perhaps. WW2 may never have happened.

A lot of the question is about how Britain sees itself. As a country that looks after it's own interests and people, or as a world power and police force, and the balancing act between the two. If we look back on Empire and say 'oops' we shouldn't have gone out and invaded all those countries, sorry about that, it follows that we should mind our own business these days. Or, is there still a sense that Britain owes something to the world, and is obliged to help out Europe and send troops to fight dictators and oppression around the world?


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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Irishman on Wed Oct 17, 2012 2:28 pm

When you see the world as your empire then butting into the business of others is seen as your right, as in fact Britain still does to a point, even though the empire has down sized greatly.

Wasn’t completely confirmed that Hitler ever wanted to come near Britain, certainly before we declared war on Germany he had other things on his mind but there are some things you can’t sit around and watch happen in this life. Even in the very early stages before starting his invasions there was a great deal of evidence of his treatment of the Jews. Just on the basis of what he was doing too them it was a good call from Britain.

As for some of the latest wars we’ve took part in or are taking part in they were based firmly on lies, Iraq certainly was. To date we have caused the deaths of more people in Iraq than even Saddam could have done in a lifetime and was he the only bad dictator around the world, well I could think of a dozen or so even worse than him we have left to get on with it but of course he had all the oil and when America says jump Britain asks how high.

Some would say it was a good thing to do getting rid of Saddam, indeed the people of Iraq may not agree, it was always them who would pay the price of Saddam’s removal and they will continue to do so for many years to come.

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  UP THE DALE on Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:12 pm

Well said, Irishman.
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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  teamplayer2 on Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:17 pm

Anyway at the end of the day the Euopean Union has failed and in one heck of a mess. Time for us to pull out along with other like minded countries and start again if they can. I think it is time to stop spending money in Europe and spent the taxpayers money on ourselves, like helping the health service.
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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Atlas on Thu Oct 18, 2012 12:43 am

Irishman wrote:When you see the world as your empire then butting into the business of others is seen as your right, as in fact Britain still does to a point, even though the empire has down sized greatly.

Wasn’t completely confirmed that Hitler ever wanted to come near Britain, certainly before we declared war on Germany he had other things on his mind but there are some things you can’t sit around and watch happen in this life. Even in the very early stages before starting his invasions there was a great deal of evidence of his treatment of the Jews. Just on the basis of what he was doing too them it was a good call from Britain.



Quickly ---! Someone posted the Generals of the day couldn't forsee the 'deaths' of WW1. # Doesn't take a genius to look at history and trench warfare - American Civil War. Crimea and Boer Wars - all resulted in mass killing when the trench system became a necessity. They could and should have 'known' the consequences. No excuse for arrogance and stupidity.

Irishman. Correct. Hitler had no designs on an invasion of the British Isles until the prospect became available in June 1940. He was however a 'land' tactician and greatly mistrusted the seas and having to cross armies over them. Which was why, when the opportunity arose he turned away from 'Lion' and went after that which had been the main reason for the war - to take the 'East'. Whada mistakea t' makea. Laughing
Iraq was a balls-up. Again the arrogance of politicians and Generals led to lamentable under-estimations and 'deafness' towards those advisors who knew better. They were told the possible consequences and choose to ignore them. That's what comes of over-confidence - sadly - people die.

I don't advocate cutting ties with Western Europe. I want what we voted for a 'Common Market'. Nothing more. Nothing less.
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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:13 am

You must be thinking of what I said earlier, Atlas.

"Considering how many were killed on the Somme, it appears people at the time had little understanding of what was about to happen, but once it did it became apparently unstoppable."

Yes, the British military commanders should have had a better understanding of the realities of trench warfare, but did they really?

The number of British soldiers ordered to walk forward to their deaths, into scything machine gun fire, on the first and on subsequent days of the Battle of the Somme was horrendous. Was it twenty thousand British soldiers killed on the first day? My brain can't take that in, have I got the numbers wrong? Even as one regiment was annihilated, another was sent to follow.

Whatever lessons there are to be learned from that is still a puzzle, but it makes me rather cautious about people in authority making the wrong decisions.

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Irishman on Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:32 am

Like I said in that timeline they used what was available in fighting a war, men and guns and large guns, line them up and shoot at each other. British Generals were there to oversee the war just as the German Generals, lots of German soldiers did the same as their counterparts, that was the way they fought wars back then. There was no other way it could be done with the technology available.

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  cyfrifia on Thu Oct 18, 2012 10:08 am

That's a reasonable cover-all broad brush way of understanding WW one, or the Iraq wars, but not everyone agrees that the correct political and strategic decisions were taken at the time. Getting things wrong has such consequences.

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Re: Britain leaving the E.U.

Post  Atlas on Fri Oct 19, 2012 1:49 am

Irishman is correct. You have to understand the 'mind-sets' of the 'times' in which things happen and the 'beliefs' attributed to the same - another discussion regarding the 'Taliban' on another thread puts forward the same argument - - which with 'hindsight' will always appear ridiculous to us now. One faced one's enemy man-omano with cold steel and ignored the 'hot steel' buzzing around one's vitals - "Onward my brave (dead) lads" shouts the Officer as he extracts his whistle from his anus and falls dead the instant he pops his Victorian head above the parapet. A soldier is expendable as long as he does his duty, which is to fight and if necessery to die for his country. That's why he becomes a 'soldier'. (The fact that he was ignorant of the facts, grossly lied to and used as cannon fodder was irrelevent.) I think 16,000 British soliers died on the first day at the Somme - but add in the German, French losses on the same day and you get the total of which you speak.
We think to loose half a dozen soldiers in a day a shocking waste now. How times do change. And as I said on another topic, they are for the better. Smile
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