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European Union Membership Referendum Thursday 23rd June 2016

Discussion in 'In The News' started by vaska00762, 21 February 2016.

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Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?

Poll closed 23 June 2016.
  1. Remain a member of the European Union

    80.0%
  2. Leave the European Union

    20.0%
  1. janglehooves

    janglehooves Proud to be an earth pony!

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    Given that the EU is very much focussed on its internal market (to the point of being insular I'd say) I don't think it is likely that big business/big finance favours it because of overseas trade. I would still ask the question why if the EU is supposed to be a defender of workers rights is the corporate establishment so keen on it? They don't want to see workers rights removed because it suits them to throw us a bone while the free movement of labour in the single market has completely skewed the job market in favour of the employers.

    The global economic crisis certainly helped light the fuse in Greece but the damage was already done thanks to their membership of the Euro which never should have been. Eurostat raised concerns but these were ignored and of course Goldman Sachs (very pro remain oddly enough...) helped to conceal what they were borrowing. Being locked into the Euro also prevented them from devalueing which would have at least been some defence so I'm afraid that the EU and its management of the Eurozone was to blame.
    One of my concerns about staying in the EU is that things will get worse. While we may not be in the Eurozone, much of the way the EU develops in the near future will have to be about trying to save it and that will have an influence on us. To tie our future to a failing (some would say failed...) economic and political project seems like a pretty poor choice to me. And of course if the Euro implodes (which may yet happen) I would rather be as far away as possible.
    As for the single market, I still think we will have de facto access if not in name. We are not the small guy at the table, we are a big market for the EU, particularly for Germany who are propping up that mess. Bringing in tariffs makes no sense for either side (though it's worth noting that we would still be trading with the EU either way).

    And bring on the wall of text if you like...I'll read it 'cos I'm sad like that...:D
     
  2. Oilyvalves

    Oilyvalves Railway Pony

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    For what it's worth, having had the time to look at a few things this evening, I'll probably vote. And I've still got a couple of weeks to read up on things a bit more.
     
  3. vaska00762

    vaska00762 R6 Siege fan

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    And yet Remain has been called "Project Fear". Then again, it's better than Leave's "Project Lies".

    The problem is that we do import more than export (the figures about export to the EU is still, surprisingly, under debate thanks to the claim of the "Rotterdam Effect"). Pretty much, your claim that the EU is "insular" is pretty ironic considering Britain is an island, and a lot of the Leave rhetoric is "insular". And we move onto some of the other problems, including that single market access would either mean that we would have to continue the free movement of people, or we pay tariffs. That's the precedent, and I doubt there would be some sort of unprecedented deal that will revolutionise the wheel. That's not been the way the EU negotiates, and I doubt it will.

    The problem we face is one where we leave the single market, and nothing is there to take its place, or that we are left being insular as other countries sneer at "Little Britain". Yes, we're the 5th largest economy, but that's now when we are a member of the EU and when we are a part of this economic and political union. Can you really bet our future lives on that not changing? A recent article in Der Spiegel made the case that Germany would never have been the 4th largest economy had the EU never existed.
     
  4. Loganberry

    Loganberry Element of Custard

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    I think it's perfectly reasonable to choose not to vote if you truly can't justify one side or the other to yourself and your conscience -- I'm not in favour of Australian-style compulsory voting (which applies to referendums too). What bothers me isn't that, but the idea of people simply not thinking about it at all because they imagine the result won't affect anyone but a few politicians and Eurocrats.
     
    janglehooves likes this.
  5. fiyahsparkle

    fiyahsparkle Plushie Army Commander

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    I will at spend sometime tomorrow outlining my brief points tomorrow for the wall of text but I will come to some of your responses now.

    Don't get me wrong yes businesses have reasons to support the EU workers rights as well, but they only do this because they know it applies to not only them but all the companies with access to the EEA so they are trading on even terms. They also have little recourse to effect any change to it and have a image to maintain in the modern connected world. On a economic point it is important because then one country on its own can't remove them to cut labor costs and race to the bottom to gain an economic advantage over the others. While I don't think the free movement of labor and people is perfect I find it hard to demonise people that are willing to work hard, pay taxes and spend their money to live in our country. They often fill low skilled jobs that our local population is unwilling to or high skilled positions we are unable to. That is unless we are talking about we think they should be for British people only, but that is a whole other line of reasoning no-one will would(should) admit to thinking.

    This however will all become a mute point if we have another economic crash and none of those jobs are here in the first place.

    On the subject of Greece, yes the Euro single currency certainly did a number on them, but it is important to remember we are not part of this and we never will be. This is not a vote about the Euro it is a vote about our membership to the EU only. We have a special relationship already that protects and distances us. Not only that but we have protections in place to ensure we are not going to be the ones paying for any further failings in it. For the record I agree that the idea of a fixed fiscal policy simply does not work over that scale and I am glad we are not part of it.

    It is easy to get away from the fact this is not a be all and end all, if Remain win the vote it will only be my a narrow margin. If the situation does change in the future or the short term and the Eurozone implodes we are actual in a good position to make a quick exit in the future if required but I don't think it will ever come to that. We are not part of the single currency and we have many op-outs from various commitments such as a ever closer union.

    I still disagree with the statement we will be negotiating from a position of strength to make a deal with the EU. The fact is we will be the ones that left and we will be the ones that just cut ourselves off from a much bigger percentage of our export market. We will get one eventually but (imo) we should not expect special op outs or a better deal than we currently have.
     
  6. janglehooves

    janglehooves Proud to be an earth pony!

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    Well, Remain has laid it on pretty thick, let's just say I'm redressing the balance...;) (and that's a tad rich given the rest of your post :p). I do think the state of the Euro is a valid concern in the near future as there are still some very dodgy economies in the zone.

    Er...yes, that's the point! We have a significant trade deficit with the EU so it is not in their interests to start putting up barriers to trade.
    It certainly is ironic but the EU establishment is very inward looking and the EU is certainly protectionist; often to the detriment of poorer countries in Africa for example. As for an unprecedented trade deal, a UK exit from the EU would also be unprecedented so I'm not sure it's valid to start guessing based on what has gone before. Ultimately, as I've said, it comes down to whether the EU wishes to trade with tariffs or not. And this is the reason why I find the economic arguments of the Leave side more plausible than those of Remain, because the Remain scenarios all rely on the assumption that the EU would rather trade with tariffs than make any sort of deal other than the status quo. Given our trade deficit with the EU and the already shaky state of the Eurozone it makes no sense for them hurt themselves by refusing to do a deal. Sure, there will be a lot of threats and rhetoric but ultimately that army of lobbyists in Brussels will put paid to any ideological posturing.
    I'd bet on it not changing. The EU is a declining market, the growing markets are in the wider world. We will be in a much better position outside of a protectionist EU, able to set our own regulations that better suit us for international trade rather than having to work under those designed to suit the Eurozone.

    Businesses are only trading on even terms within the EEA and given that these are multinationals trading across different continents I find it hard to believe that is their main justification for supporting the EU. I would also argue that they wouldn't be spending millions on lobbying the EU if they thought they had no chance of effecting change.
    I certainly wouldn't demonise people who want to work hard, pay taxes etc. but I would demonise a system that has removed most of the leverage that working people had and drives wages down for the poorest paid.
    Our various opt-outs might insulate us from the worst of it (if you trust that the opt-outs are unassailable and I have my doubts as it has been suggested that Cameron's latest "re-negotiations" could be overturned in the European Court) but while we remain in the EU any trouble with the Euro will have a much greater effect on us than if we were out. Just because we are not in the Eurozone doesn't mean that we won't be subject to future legislation related to holding it all together.
     
  7. fiyahsparkle

    fiyahsparkle Plushie Army Commander

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    Money in politics is certainly something I would like to see removed but again we can't change that from the outside. If we like it or not EU rules will still effect us to a point even if we leave. We are in a much stronger place to make sure they suit us from the inside not out. You will have to elaborate on what leverage the EU system has removed that our own government didn't already do from the working people for me, I am unsure on what you mean here.

    Its really really important to differentiate from the failings of our government from the failings of the EU.

    Sure we are exposed to more risk inside the EU, but it is easy to fall into the trap of risk always being a bad thing. All business is done with risk a certain amount of risk only then can you reap large rewards. I would still like to return to the point I made before. If things did get worse in the EU and it became untenable for us, our parliament can always say no and remove us from the EU at any point in the future. I don't see the evidence to show we are at that point yet where we need to hit the eject button. A remain vote is not forever and a leave vote is.
     
  8. Loganberry

    Loganberry Element of Custard

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    The first bit of encouraging news us Remainers have had for a while: Sarah Wollaston, a Tory MP who had previously backed Leave, has changed her mind and decided to support the UK remaining in the EU.



    Sarah Wollaston is an interesting politician -- she's a Tory, but she was selected in an open primary and has quite frequently had strong disagreements with ministers, especially on the NHS. That's why this is encouraging -- she's an MP who it's rather hard to accuse of doing something at the behest of Tory HQ. Unless you're the obsessive fringe of Leave, who've replied to the tweet along the lines of "you had this set up all along". That's only making them look tinfoil-hatted and, frankly, doing damage to their own cause.

    Of course, it's possible that tomorrow a currently pro-Remain MP will come out for Leave, and if so it'll be reasonable for Leavers to find that encouraging. If everyone had decided 100% on their stance from the moment the starting gun went off, it would be a bit pointless having a campaign at all!
     
  9. Discrete Set

    Discrete Set Everything is mathematics. No exception.

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    I've been arguing about this with an outie co-worker. It's rather a depressing argument, as neither of us really scored any points - he gives his arguments and I dismiss them, I give mine and he dismisses them. I think that pretty much sums up how the debate is going to go. It's not about arguments, really. It's mostly emotional.

    I'm not sure how much difference it'd even make. Even if the UK went out, we'd have to negotiate such a close relationship that it wouldn't make a great deal of practical difference. We can't leave the EEA, that would be economically disastrous and seriously inconvenient, no-one supports that - but if we stay in the EEA that means maintaining free movement of people, which is the biggest contentious issue leading many people to want out in the first place.

    Incidentally, I really like this image:
    [​IMG]

    One thing it doesn't show is that the UK, while officially outside the Schengen area, has other treaties in place which maintain almost the same terms. Enough to go explore Europe without a visa.
     
  10. TheDamnedScribe

    TheDamnedScribe Royal Guard Armourer

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    Question:

    What do you think the outcome of the referendum will be?

    Not "What do you WANT it to be", but what do you THINK IT WILL BE?
     
  11. Wonderbolt

    Wonderbolt Honorary Pony

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    I think it will be something like 52% Remain and 48% Leave. Unfortunately the fear campaign that Remain campaign are running will most likely yield results as these days fear factor is the key to winning elections (why I suspect Cameron won last year as he played a campaign that played on peoples fears such as house prices etc).

    Even in Leave win the Government will more than likely ignore it.

    In all honesty if the EU wants to survive in the long term it needs to become more flexible and allow members to pick and choose what rules, regulations and movements of people apply to them (ie nations can block some nations in the union having free movement if need be). Also they need Russia on board, you can't have a European group without Russia.
     
  12. vaska00762

    vaska00762 R6 Siege fan

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    I don't know what the result will be, because I don't think that's fair.
    I will guess a 70% turnout if the news recently is something that will carry through to the referendum.
     
  13. Discrete Set

    Discrete Set Everything is mathematics. No exception.

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    I agree with Wonderbolt: Remain will win, but by a worryingly small margin.

    I also predict that, following this outcome, we will see many prominent leave campaigners - both individuals and organisations - claim that the government used some form of underhanded trick to skew the poll results and preparing their new campaign for a repeat referendum.

    Even if the EU nations were collectively willing to give up their principles and let a country with such an appalling recent human rights record join, Russia would decline the invitation. They don't want in.
     
  14. vaska00762

    vaska00762 R6 Siege fan

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    Russia actively wants the EU to be broken up. Putin is actually funding eurosceptic parties across Europe to try and destablise it.
    Russia can go and do the proverbial, because it has no interest in being a part of a European group unless it is the Soviet Union, and Russia has full control.
     
  15. Wonderbolt

    Wonderbolt Honorary Pony

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    Is it any wonder, the EU is pretty provocative towards Russia, trying to gain dominance in former USSR states. Large European organisations, such as the Napoleonic empire, Austrian Empire, Germany (Prussia, Imperial Germany and Nazi Germany) and the Ottoman empire have generally been devastating for Russia in the past so you can't blame their scepticism.
     
  16. Loganberry

    Loganberry Element of Custard

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    Answering with my head rather than my heart: I think it will be very close but that Remain will squeak home with no more than a five-point margin over Leave. However, that's dependent on young voters actually turning out. If we get the pattern we had at the GE, where they stayed at home in huge numbers, Leave could win.
     
  17. nerdowl

    nerdowl Dr Who & MLP Fangirl

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    And this goes back to that bizzare choice of this referendum being the same day as Glastonbury...
     
  18. Loganberry

    Loganberry Element of Custard

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    I don't think that should have all that big an impact. It might have done years ago, but now that postal votes are available on demand there's no real reason for someone at Glastonbury not to be able to vote. (Anyone who's going to Glasto will have known in plenty of time to get a postal vote, so if they haven't I have little sympathy!)

    On another note, I'm saddened but unsurprised that despite the tragedy in midweek, the usual suspects on all sides are back to doing nothing but screaming that anyone who dares to disagree with them is downright evil. I think the atmosphere in this campaign probably is more poisonous than at any general election I can remember, and that's doing a lot of harm by making it far harder for reasoned, sensible views from either side to be heard.
     
  19. vcgriffin

    vcgriffin the (Quie Deaf) mustached Subgenius pony

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    I am going to Glastonbury, and have voted by post
     
  20. Somerset Cider

    Somerset Cider Old Pony

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    My polling card arrived Friday and I have worked out that this will be the first time I have exercised my franchise since 1992.
    Most of the time I ignore anything political unless its Agricultural related (Don't get me started on Badgers), but I believe that this referendum is so important that I must vote.
     
    janglehooves likes this.

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