British EU referendum in June [update: Leave wins 52% - 48%, politics ensue]

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leady
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby leady » Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:51 am UTC

The Swiss are completely landlocked, so to an extent they have to play nice with the EU

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Echo244 » Mon Jun 06, 2016 9:02 am UTC

Soupspoon wrote:That and the tradition arisen from its Helvetic era (the very font of its wish for neutrality? ;) )


Oh now I know I'm no angel when it comes to terrible puns, but that doesn't just take the biscuit, it takes the entire biscuit round of the Great British Bake Off.

Soupspoon wrote:(We are, of course, but I'm not sure that our claim is vastly greater than any other member state, we just never were that comfortable with being as touchy-feely as the others decided to be, and hence our position out on the social periphary to match our geographic one, but we're Ok with that, because we're Facebook Friends with our Commonwealth relatives and long-lost cousin 'Merica... Possibly.)


I'm not quite sure how much that Facebook Friendship is good for. The dream is of close links and lucrative trading deals, harking back to eras when we had more of an Imperial relationship, and more of an opportunity to dictate terms. Time has changed, and other countries have moved on, even if we want to turn the clock back. As for America... well, Obama was probably talking things up a bit to help his mate Dave, but I think there's more than a nugget of truth in the idea that the US is more concerned about Europe than about the UK, and that if the UK left, Dave would be dropping several numbers down Obama's speed-dial list of world leaders.
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Mon Jun 06, 2016 11:46 am UTC

Echo244 wrote:I'm not quite sure how much that Facebook Friendship is good for.
If you re-read what I said with the perspective that I don't rate social media as the be-all-and-end-all it's cracked to be, you'll probably find that we're in general agreement on where that analogy leads.

(And, if we leave, Obama will probably find that Cameron's entry in the World Leaders speed-dial becomes outdated even before Obama himself leaves office and hands the reigns over to Clump.)

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Echo244 » Mon Jun 06, 2016 1:26 pm UTC

Soupspoon wrote:If you re-read what I said with the perspective that I don't rate social media as the be-all-and-end-all it's cracked to be, you'll probably find that we're in general agreement on where that analogy leads.


True, we are, but I was more noting the conflict with the Leave campaign's expectations of a sudden surge in ties and beneficial relationships with the US and the Commonwealth after we leave the EU.

Soupspoon wrote:(And, if we leave, Obama will probably find that Cameron's entry in the World Leaders speed-dial becomes outdated even before Obama himself leaves office and hands the reigns over to Clump.)


Well if we're looking at that timeframe, whether or not we head for the Emergency Brexit, Obama might find himself pushing the potentially-demoted speed-dial button for Dave and find someone else picking up... Both the Leave and Remain Tory camps have upped the ante to thinly-veiled or completely open personal attacks. I can't see that being healed over quickly, whichever way the results goes, and Dave's side is weakest within his own party...
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby elasto » Wed Jun 08, 2016 5:08 am UTC

Btw, just to nail this myth about the EU being unaccountable and undemocratic... Quoting a poster from elsewhere:

Juncker and the whole European Commission are ELECTED by the MEPs who are in turn elected by all of us.

Out of 751 MEPs, Juncker got 422 votes (56%), with 250 against, 47 abstentions and 10 spoiled ballots. Due to the importance of this vote, the voting is secret (by paper ballots) to ensure absolute freedom of the MEPs from pressures of their parties, states or others.

The European Commission was elected with 423 MEPs in favour, 209 against and 67 abstentions.

See here: VoteWatch webpage: MEPs elect the European Commission

Representative democracy in action.

Not saying it applies to anyone here, but it's amazing how many people moan about the 'unaccountable EU' but have no interest in the European elections and couldn't even name their local MEP...

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Zamfir » Wed Jun 08, 2016 7:55 am UTC

That's misleading ,to say the least. The European parliament has only an up/down approval vote. They don't 'elect' the commission in the way a parliament would commonly choose a government cabinet. And as result, the Commission does not reflect the power balance in the Parliament. For a comparison, think about the US Supreme Court appointments by the president, with a Senate approval vote. The position of proposal has much more influence than the position of approval.

The Commission procedure is roughly as follows: The Council (the national government leaders together) propose a president of the Commission. The Parliament gets and up/down vote on this. Individual countries propose 1 member each for the commission. The president and the Council together put these in more or less powerful commission positions. Countries can change their candidate, so they can barter: a preferred candidate might get a lesser position, but a locally less preferred candidate might get a better position if other governments like them. The Parliament then gets an up/down vote on this again.

In recent years, the Parliament has tried to play this system to draw more power to itself (much as the Republican Party in the US has tried to use veto points to draw power away from the presidency).

In particular, they introduced the Spitzenkandidat system. The 2 largest parties in the Parliament each proposed a candidate for commission president before the Parliament election, and each promised to support the other candidate if that party would become the largest party. Then they announced to the Council that they would disapprove any candidate except their own.

Note that the Council has every right to ignore this, similar to how Obama called the bluff of government shutdowns etc. The Council didn't, partially because they were not that much opposed to greater role of the Parliament. And partially because Juncker was the kind of guy the Council have proposed anyway. Quite possibly,exactly the same guy.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby leady » Wed Jun 08, 2016 9:02 am UTC

What could be more democratic than a minority of a states representative body trading off appointments to a law creating body that is then voted on by a second set of representatives than no one can name and less than 30% of people turn out for, essentially rubberstamping the appointees?

On this basis the house of lords is democratic

edit: Oh and its telling that US couldn't constitutionally join the EU for pretty much this reason.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Jun 08, 2016 10:23 am UTC

Zamfir wrote:That's misleading ,to say the least. The European parliament has only an up/down approval vote. They don't 'elect' the commission in the way a parliament would commonly choose a government cabinet.
Parliament doesn't choose cabinet members, much more than I do. The PM (who I didn't vote for) chooses. He's where he is because his party (which I may or may not have voted for, but in neither case did my vote tip the balance) had a majority whe he was leader. He was leader because his party/paid-up supporters (of which I have never been one, of any party) decided he was the best/least-worst option, but I had no say in this. Even the person I do have a say (insignificantly) in supporting or voting against, my local MP, was presented as a choice by their party's local selectors, against those selected/self-selected opponents as are there in effectively ineffectual contest with each other.

An official up/down-voting of cabinet members sounds more formalised and representative to merely each layer of abstraction demonstrating their pleasure/displeasure at the direction the cabinet, the government and parliament in general are heading with their various appointmets and counter-appointments.

But we are always ineffectual, in any democratic decision in which our own personal opinion is contrary to the majority view (by whatever method of counting and abstraction happens to apply to this particular contest), the best we can do (if we aren't happy enough to find ourselves in tune with the masses) is express a scinitilla of displeasure that might add up with other scintillas to prick the conscience of the majority-view holders, especially if they're only marginally in their majority. (And add to the scintillas of 'protest votes' that aren't actually for what their wielders personally think, so letting those in/seeking power to vastly differently interpret their significance, both in public and private.)

(And direct democracy has similar problems with "my viewpoint is only represented if I'm lucky", while PR just muddies the water, etc, etc...)

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby leady » Wed Jun 08, 2016 10:36 am UTC

I'm not sure that the "Democracy is an illusion or ineffectual" argument really puts forward a good case either


(for reference for all the moaning about a representative, FPTP, effective two party system, the electorate actually does move the position of the parties in line with the "average" viewpoint. So yes whilst a radical change in a stable democracy is difficult, incremental positional changes are pretty overt. Blair was forced to drag Labour to recognise the reality of market economics, Labour has dragged the conservatives to social tolerance, UKIP has dragged the Tories into this referendum etc. Both the main parties are very different to the 80s)

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Jun 08, 2016 11:15 am UTC

leady wrote:[...] whilst a radical change in a stable democracy is difficult, [...]
This is the big plus, IMO. Stability. Most of the time proof from knee-jerk reactions. At the cost of slow response (or a delay before an 'undemocratic' but then-rapid response to some significant situation).

I don't much mind being outvoted on issues if I'm also assured that I'm probably not going to be plunged into terrible situations such as apartheid or other lesser/greater versions of disenfranchisation.

But I have little time for those who complain that a system is not 'right' because it doesn't entirely support their own current viewpoint, 'just' the summed-up/averaged-out/time-blurred viewpoint of everyone else around them. Because suffering a reasoned middling result would be so unreasonable, right?

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby leady » Wed Jun 08, 2016 12:02 pm UTC

I agree and further if there were a viable mechanism to take a step back within the EU in a meaningful manner then things would not have come to a head like this. However the structure of the EU makes such a step close to impossible, pretty much because it was actively designed to prevent it happening.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Zamfir » Thu Jun 09, 2016 11:07 am UTC

Which I have always thought amusing, since oak trees live much, much longer than willows.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Echo244 » Thu Jun 09, 2016 11:38 am UTC

Leaving botany aside for a moment, I'm wondering how much Dr Sarah Wollaston MP changing her mind this morning, and attacking her former comrades, will have on the overall result.

(Leaving the Vote Leave campaign, and changing her personal vote and campaign stance to Remain, because she disagrees with the figures on the Vote Leave leaflets - "£350 million a week more for the NHS", iirc, which takes no account of rebate, other funding from the EU to the UK that would need to be replaced etc. etc.)

I'm guessing, none whatsoever. Veracity of figures isn't something that will gain any traction unless Remain out-and-out call the Leave campaigners liars, which is unlikely (at least until the last week, which I expect to be as bitter as hell). And even then, Remain's numerous studies and projections and analyses, while not verifiably false, will have all sorts of their own holes to be pulled wider (in terms of disagreeing on judgement calls rather than miscounting, but still).
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby leady » Thu Jun 09, 2016 1:34 pm UTC

Whether you use the gross, the net of rebate or net of rebate & spending then the figure is still in the £100ms which gives the same emotional reaction of big numbers. Seems disingenuous to get excited about it.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Thu Jun 09, 2016 3:01 pm UTC

Echo244 wrote:Leaving botany aside for a moment, I'm wondering how much Dr Sarah Wollaston MP changing her mind this morning, and attacking her former comrades, will have on the overall result.
When I read that, my immediate thoughts were first "she thinks she's on the wrong side, and wants to get back into the winners", slightly uncharitably, and then "she was a plant.. Remain got a minor MP nobody except some of her own constituents has heard of to sidle Leave-ward for just such an opportunity to discredit them by leaving publicly", moderately conspiracy-theoretically.

Meanwhile, that Falklands War general (I forget his name, momentarily) has bashed Remain. Possibly he's a Leave stink-bomb, by the same measure... ;)


(I'm even partly convinced that some of the senior 'faces' are deliberately self-sabotaging their own sides. But then you already know that, because I've just realised I'm not wearing my tin-foil hat and your insidiius mind-reading rays are leaking through!)

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby leady » Thu Jun 09, 2016 3:15 pm UTC

Is there really any serious doubt that she was politically bribed by Camborne?

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Thu Jun 09, 2016 5:18 pm UTC

All hail our democratic representatives!

;)

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Echo244 » Thu Jun 09, 2016 7:43 pm UTC

Soupspoon wrote:"she was a plant.. Remain got a minor MP nobody except some of her own constituents has heard of to sidle Leave-ward for just such an opportunity to discredit them by leaving publicly", moderately conspiracy-theoretically.


Nyuh, not entirely a nobody. On the health select committee, probably the most credible Tory spokesperson on the NHS at the moment given that the current Health Secretary is about as welcome in a hospital as Yersinia pestis. Though that's not saying much. I've heard of her, though fully understand that a lot of people won't have.

As for the theory of people behaving in such a manner as to discredit and sabotage their own side... frankly that covers most of the high-profile campaigners on both sides of the debate. Hell, Blair just showed up and started making noises in the misguided belief that he'd have a positive effect.
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby elasto » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:23 am UTC

To follow up on my last point about the myth of the EU being undemocratic:

The claim

Most Eurosceptics can agree on at least one thing: the EU is an undemocratic superstate forcing pointless diktats on the peoples of Europe.

Leading leave campaigners, Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and Gisela Stuart, have described the EU as “a dysfunctional bureaucracy that has no proper democratic oversight”.

Some reluctant remainers take it as self evident that the EU is not a democracy. When Jeremy Corbyn voted against the Maastricht treaty in 1993, he declared it was because the EU had handed control to “an unelected set of bankers”. More recently the Labour leader has said the EU has “always suffered from a serious democratic deficit”.

EU insiders have spent more than a generation fretting about the so-called democratic deficit – a term coined by the British political scientist David Marquand in 1979.

Is the EU really undemocratic?

Unlike the United Nations or the World Trade Organisation, only democracies can join the European Union. In theory, EU member states that slide back on democratic standards can be sanctioned, although this is easier said than done.

But aren’t a bunch of unelected bureaucrats in charge?

Actually, they aren’t. When people talk about “the unelected bureaucrats of Brussels”, they usually mean the European commission. The commission is an organisation like no other: more than a civil service but less than a government. Composed of 28 commissioners – one from each country – the commission drafts, enforces and monitors EU laws. But it does not pass laws.

That does not mean the commission is not powerful: the EU competition commissioner can block mergers and fine multinational companies staggering sums computer chip maker Intel was fined a record €1.06bn (then £852m) for anti-competitive practices. But these powers rest on treaties and laws decided by EU governments. Similarly when it comes to striking trade agreements, the commission’s powers are restricted. The EU trade commissioner negotiates on a mandate drawn up by EU member states – the opening of controversial TTIP talks with the US was based on a unanimous decision by EU member states. If TTIP survives, it can only enter into force with the approval of governments and the European parliament.

The commission cannot foist laws upon EU member states. For example, the commission spent eight years trying to get EU countries to agree to a law on cleaning up Europe’s contaminated soils, but eventually withdrew the bill in the face of an immovable blocking majority, which included the UK.

Who really makes laws?

EU laws are agreed by two institutions: the council of ministers, comprising ministers from 28 EU governments and the European parliament. The European council, EU leaders meeting for regular late-night summits, plays an increasingly important role in setting the agenda.

Isn’t Britain always being outvoted?

One of the biggest gripes of Eurosceptics is the extension of qualified-majority voting, which allows the British government to be outvoted. A swathe of EU policies are now decided by these weighted-majority votes, such as environment, agriculture and transport. More sensitive policies, including tax, defence and foreign policy, have to be agreed by unanimity.

Under QMV, a law passes if it is backed by 16 out of 28 countries that make up at least 65% of the EU population. The UK has 13% of the EU population, so gets a 13% vote share.

Research by the London School of Economics found that the UK was on the winning side 87% of the time between 2009-15. So the British government does have to accept some EU decisions it didn’t vote for. One of the most high-profile losses in recent years, was when the chancellor, George Osborne, was outvoted on an EU law to restrict bankers bonuses. In this case, more than three quarters of the British public, including 68% of Conservative voters, supported the EU proposal.

Is the European parliament just a talking shop?

MEPs have been directly elected since 1979, although voter turnout has been on a downward trend ever since.

Many British MEPs argue they have more power to shape EU law than their Westminster colleagues. British Labour MEP Richard Corbett contends that the House of Commons is a “rubber stamp parliament” when it comes to shaping legislation: “It is headline news if [the Commons] amends a government bill, whereas here … there is scarcely a piece of legislation that will get through without being amended.”

The European parliament also has the power to dismiss the commission and approves the appointment of the politicians who lead it. Since 2014, MEPs have chosen who gets to be president of the commission, although that extension of the parliament’s power has not filled EU leaders with joy.

Despite these powers, the parliament does not inspire voters. Barely one third of British voters bothered to turn out in the 2014 elections and only one in 10 can name their MEP. The parliament is increasingly influential, but has a problem in connecting to its electorate.

Doesn’t Westminster get a say?

National parliaments can also throw a spanner in the works if they don’t like an EU law. If one third of national parliaments oppose a draft law, the commission must review it, a procedure known as the yellow card. If more than half of national parliaments oppose a law, this could force a vote in the European parliament or council, (the orange card). In his February reform deal, the prime minister, David Cameron, persuaded EU leaders to introduce a red card, meaning the commission would be forced to adapt or drop the law if more than half of national parliaments objected. The yellow card has only been used twice, the orange card has never been used and the red card will only come into force if the UK votes to remain in the EU.

Is this as good as it gets?

The EU is not perfect. Voter turnout has been declining for years and public approval of the European project has fallen in five of the six largest member states, according to the latest Pew Research Centre survey. Large numbers of people are unhappy with the EU’s handling of the economy and migration crisis.

If the EU does have a democratic deficit, that is because it is made up of countries with their own problems with public engagement in politics. Plus governments have a habit of blaming “Brussels” when things go wrong, which feeds the idea of an unelected, untamed bureaucracy. As one senior EU official puts it: “Anything you like you claim for yourselves and anything you don’t like you blame on Brussels.”

Some believe the gulf between the EU and voters can be filled by more Europe-wide democracy. Germany’s finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, has called for a directly elected European commission president. Others, such as the former European council president Herman Van Rompuy, have argued that direct elections would be meaningless because, for example, a Polish conservative would not vote for a Luxemburger.

There are easier ways to give British voters more control over EU law. The Electoral Reform Society thinks the UK parliament could play a bigger role in holding the EU to account, by emulating the Danish approach to the EU. In Denmark, MPs question their ministers and give them a negotiating mandate before they go to European councils, whereas in the UK ministers inform parliament what happened afterwards. As the council is the most powerful part of the EU’s decision-making machine, this could have more impact than Cameron’s red card.

Verdict: no dictatorship, but no democratic idyll

The idea that laws are dictated from Brussels by unelected bureaucrats is simply wrong. In fact, EU laws have to pass high hurdles before they get onto the British statute book. The British government has considerable clout in shaping those laws despite the growth of qualified-majority votes.

When leave campaigners talk about laws made by Brussels, what they mean is “laws made by the EU’s directly elected governments and more often than not the European parliament through the co-decision procedure”. Not as snappy, but more accurate.

But the EU does have problems. Voters mistrust the EU and are unfamiliar with its unusual structure and multiple presidents. If the UK votes to stay, parliament could take steps to close that gap. The Electoral Reform Society concluded: “The EU has many serious democratic flaws. But the deficit can be tackled.”


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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Echo244 » Tue Jun 14, 2016 8:35 am UTC

I suspect that the facts on "How democratic is it really" will matter less than whether or not the England football team gets kicked out of the current tournament, sadly.
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby kingofdreams » Tue Jun 14, 2016 2:44 pm UTC

supposedly football supporters trend overwhelmingly towards supporting brexit. Although there was a recent poll in which fans were asked 'which result do you prefer, winning the euro or your result in the referendum?' England voted 9-1 in favour of the referendum and wales was evenly divided.

edit: I will source, once I'm no longer surreptitiously using the internet
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:19 pm UTC

Referenda rarely go to penalties...

Spoiler:
Image


(Tried to find a matching Cameron one, but his press office seems to have suppressed anything similar.)

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby CorruptUser » Wed Jun 15, 2016 5:25 am UTC

I just want to see a headline "EU: Brexit Breaks it".

But seriously, a bit concerned about the dissolution of the EU. On the other hand, Greece may come out as the winner, since if there's no Euro then they can finally devalue their currency to get rid of their debts.

Soupspoon wrote:
leady wrote:[...] whilst a radical change in a stable democracy is difficult, [...]
This is the big plus, IMO. Stability. Most of the time proof from knee-jerk reactions. At the cost of slow response (or a delay before an 'undemocratic' but then-rapid response to some significant situation).


That's why the US has two "parliaments". Every 2 years, the House has everyone up for election so it's the Will of the People In This Moment, whereas one third of the Senate is replaced, so the Senate is The Will of the People over the Last Half Decade. It's been proven to be broken, but if it works while broken don't fix it.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby elasto » Wed Jun 15, 2016 10:45 am UTC

What do people predict for British politics post-referendum?

If it's a vote for Remain (I can't bring myself to type Bremain... Oh, whoops, I did), I guess not too much will change, but the blue-on-blue fighting could poison the Tories for a considerable time to come. I doubt Cameron will last to 2019; He'll probably throw in the towel earlier.

If it's a vote for Leave, I think the effects will be seismic. Cameron and Osborne will be gone, and new Prime Minister Johnson will probably call a snap election (technically he no longer can due to fixed terms for parliaments, but there are ways to trigger it none-the-less), and will gain an increased majority due to Labour being completely unelectable under Corbyn.

After that, we'll have a right-wing agenda to our legislation that even Maggie would have blanched at. I would really fear for the future of the NHS for example. Doubly so since I do believe our GDP would suffer in the short term (next 5-10 years).

What I'd quite like to see happen at that point is both the Tories and Labour fracturing - with the left-wing of the Tory party and the right-wing of Labour both so unhappy with the extremist nature of their respective leaderships that they break off and make a new centre-ground party. Under different circumstances they might all become Lib-Dems, but that brand is toxic now too - so I think it would happen the other way around, with the Lib-Dems dissolving and joining under this new banner also.

However, I think the above is still highly unlikely to occur. I think both parties will soldier on as before. We might just have to wait until the mid 2020s before we get a moderate policy agenda elected...

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Fractal_Tangent » Wed Jun 15, 2016 11:01 am UTC

Cameron's already said that he'll be gone before the next election. I think the EU referendum will definitely pick who the next prime minister will be.
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Echo244 » Wed Jun 15, 2016 11:06 am UTC

If it's Remain, Cameron will be unseated as leader. There appear to be a majority within his party who *hate* Europe and their leadership's efforts, and use of government resources, to promote Remain. Witness 57 MPs at the drop of a hat who say they'd block Osborne bringing in an emergency Budget to raise taxes and make cuts, to stabilise things in case of a Remain vote. That's a microcosm of the Party at large. I doubt Cameron would last the year, never mind 2019, and I doubt he'd throw in the towel willingly; the best he could do would be go quietly of his own accord. Otherwise... much will go on as normal.

If it's Leave, which several polls are now predicting, then Cameron goes too, and... yeah bad things happen. Boris and Gove and co will find themselves in charge, massive sweeping giveaways amounting to more than £350 million a week (which they then find they don't have)... I expect a number of organisations to not publicly pull out of the UK but start transferring their operations, and... yeah, bad time to be anything but reasonably well off or more and wanting a tax cut.

And a very bad time to be seen as foreign. The major, major topic for Leave is Immigration. That will be shut down by any means necessary. And bear in mind we've already had Home Office vans with "Want to go home? We'll give you a ticket" posters on them driving round some areas. That's nothing to what will come.

The NHS might be somewhat protected for a while given how Leave are using it as an example of where to spend EU money. But that's worth the paper it's written on - all the posters that will come down after the referendum.

I doubt the Tories will break. Too much of their in-party support is drifting rightward, too much of the leadership seen as too moderate. Any split will find itself with MPs but not too many people looking to re-elect them. They could join the Lib Dems, but they're barely a rump of what they were, dogged by issues like the Tuition Fees issue and most of their power being in the Lords and centred around creeps like Rennard.

Labour won't split for similar reasons. Corbyn's win in the first round indicates where their support lies. The PLP is much more moderate to the point they no longer represent parts of their party, but that's a problem that has nothing to do with Europe.

So... more polarisation. Much banging of the Britain First! British people first! drums. And then a slow dawning realisation that the rest of the world isn't taking that seriously. I suspect an electoral cycle or two before the patriotic messages fail to cover up that we're worse off after leaving the EU.
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby elasto » Wed Jun 15, 2016 12:19 pm UTC

Another prediction from me: Osborne is a dead duck regardless of the outcome of the vote.

Even if the vote is Remain, there's no way he'd become the next leader. They'd need some kind of unity candidate and there's no way he could pull that off. It'll be someone who's kept a low profile during all this, so will be a candidate out of left field almost by definition...

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Jun 15, 2016 12:23 pm UTC

elasto wrote:What do people predict for British politics post-referendum?
...
What I'd quite like to see happen at that point is both the Tories and Labour fracturing - with the left-wing of the Tory party and the right-wing of Labour both so unhappy with the extremist nature of their respective leaderships that they break off and make a new centre-ground party. Under different circumstances they might all become Lib-Dems, but that brand is toxic now too - so I think it would happen the other way around, with the Lib-Dems dissolving and joining under this new banner also.
...

Well, before even the knowledge that there would be a referendum, but immediately after the LibDem hyper-losses and when Labour divisions started with Corbyn's Imminent ascension, I mused upon the possibility of a new "Gang Of Four" revitalising the centre-ground, perhaps merging straight into the LibDem-succession party.

I'm not sure who I'd suggest as Conservatives likely to join in with that. I had planned to keep track of in/out alliances, but never got around to startingbthe tracking, and reckon there's more than enough people who are doing so because they care more, politically, whilst it was just a statistical interest on my part.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Echo244 » Wed Jun 15, 2016 12:46 pm UTC

elasto wrote:Another prediction from me: Osborne is a dead duck regardless of the outcome of the vote.

Even if the vote is Remain, there's no way he'd become the next leader. They'd need some kind of unity candidate and there's no way he could pull that off. It'll be someone who's kept a low profile during all this, so will be a candidate out of left field almost by definition...


Osborne's been dead in the water for a while. If a Chancellor can't get a Budget to survive intact to the weekend, he's just keeping the seat warm for his successor, and nobody else really wants that job under the current PM.

How about May? In the Remain camp, but utterly unenthusiastic about Europe, not involved in the blue-on-blue sniping, probably the closest thing there is to a unity candidate.

That said, that's assuming that the Tory membership *want* unity rather than "rid of anyone who supported Remain and kept us In"
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby LaserGuy » Wed Jun 15, 2016 4:43 pm UTC

Echo244 wrote:If it's Leave, which several polls are now predicting, then Cameron goes too, and... yeah bad things happen. Boris and Gove and co will find themselves in charge, massive sweeping giveaways amounting to more than £350 million a week (which they then find they don't have)... I expect a number of organisations to not publicly pull out of the UK but start transferring their operations, and... yeah, bad time to be anything but reasonably well off or more and wanting a tax cut.

So... more polarisation. Much banging of the Britain First! British people first! drums. And then a slow dawning realisation that the rest of the world isn't taking that seriously. I suspect an electoral cycle or two before the patriotic messages fail to cover up that we're worse off after leaving the EU.


How will this effect Scotland? I have heard musing that were the Brexit to happen, Scotland might hold another snap referendum with the aim of rejoining the EU.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby kingofdreams » Wed Jun 15, 2016 5:12 pm UTC

support for remain has dropped from 66-29 to 59-32. Will be interesting to see if scotland remains convincingly europhilic (interesting in an 'oh dear god why?' kind of way). not entirely sure sturgeon would carry the snap referendum. a second negative might send her hopes the way of quebec, I would expect the movers and shakers behind the snp would prefer to wait a few years until demographics pushes things into their favour.
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Jun 15, 2016 5:16 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:How will this effect Scotland? I have heard musing that were the Brexit to happen, Scotland might hold another snap referendum with the aim of rejoining the EU.
If the regional breakdowns indicate that Scotland (or elsewhere) is diametrically opposed to the UK's total feeling and/or the English majority, I suspect there will be enough popular murmering in favour of another go that it will be irresistable and even the "we promise not to ask again and again and again in a neverendum cycle" MPs will find themselves the perfect reasons to reverse.
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The referendum floodgates have opened. There's clearly now an expectation and only a period of political boredom may stem the flow. (Not that I predict the subsequent result, but it's as messy a group of alliances as any Shakespeare play... It'll depend a lot on who yet enters the field of battle.)

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby elasto » Wed Jun 15, 2016 11:23 pm UTC

I concur: In the event of a Leave vote, it will definitely hasten a new independence referendum; However it won't be immediately. I predict it'll be 3-4 years (within 10 years at the very worst) - once it's obvious the UK has suffered financially.

(Would also help their case if the oil price rises somewhat!)

I think it could be May for leader should the vote be for Remain. She'll probably be able to convince Leave that she was sceptical but supported the PM out of loyalty, and is a good choice to continue tough negotiations with Europe. The party do seem to value party loyalty despite how disloyal they can be. (Maybe that's why they value it!)

I think the party might decide to skip a generation though, and go to someone even less tarnished by this fight.

---

I still think the result will be for Remain; The betting markets still have Remain as favourites - and they seem to be more accurate than even pollsters.

If it is Leave though, I think Corbyn has to take a huge slice of blame for how lacklustre and anonymous he's been during this whole thing. Cameron really could not have done more in terms of campaigning; Indeed, some might say he's been too high profile - yet what choice did he have? But many Labour Remain supporters could stay at home through seeing this as just basically a Tory civil war and having little appetite for voting on the same side as him...

After all, it's easy to see how people get passionate about leaving; It's hard to imagine anyone being passionate about staying. Corbyn said he was '7 out of 10' in favour of Europe. What right-minded supporter isn't? That's no excuse for him having such a low profile though!

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby SlyReaper » Thu Jun 16, 2016 7:57 am UTC

You're making an assumption that not only will the UK be financially worse off, but that it'll be obvious. Even the worst predictions say the economy will still grow, just at a slightly lower rate.

No, the reason there will be a second Scottish referendum is because first time round, EU membership was one of the big arguments for staying.
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby elasto » Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:27 am UTC

SlyReaper wrote:You're making an assumption that not only will the UK be financially worse off, but that it'll be obvious. Even the worst predictions say the economy will still grow, just at a slightly lower rate.

The worst predictions definitely don't say that. eg:

A vote to leave the European Union would trigger economic and political convulsions in the UK, plunging the country back into recession and sending the pound sharply lower, a forecasting group has warned.

Investors would rush to dump UK assets including shares and bonds in the immediate aftermath of voters choosing Brexit, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit.

The pound would fall 14-15% against the dollar in the course of this year, unemployment would rise and the UK would risk losing its status as a global financial centre.

In its Out and Down: mapping the impact of Brexit report, the EIU warned the damage from a decision to leave the EU would be felt until at least 2020.

Analysts at the thinktank claim the UK economy would shrink 1% next year in the event of Britain voting to leave in the 23 June referendum. That would be the first contraction in annual GDP since the depths of the financial crisis in 2009.

By 2020, the economy would be 6%, or £106bn, smaller than it would have been had it stayed in the EU, as the UK grappled with a “highly disruptive period in the country’s history”, the EIU said.


link

Now, as always, the truth is likely somewhere in between the most optimistic and most pessimistic forecasts, but I'd bet my bottom dollar on it having a measurably negative effect.

The simple fact is that most Leavers seem to be saying "I don't care; Even if we do get poorer, it's worth it to 'get back our sovereignty'".

The economic argument is definitely failing to resonate - whereas the immigration argument, despite its deep flaws, is resonating strongly.

Leave has all the momentum going into the final stretch; Now we will see if one side or the other can dip at the line to snatch victory...

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby SlyReaper » Thu Jun 16, 2016 12:34 pm UTC

I love the scare quotes around getting back our sovereignty. Because it's not like that's a valid concern or anything, right?
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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby elasto » Thu Jun 16, 2016 12:47 pm UTC

SlyReaper wrote:I love the scare quotes around getting back our sovereignty. Because it's not like that's a valid concern or anything, right?

It's because it's essentially meaningless. Everything important we already have a veto over, and we can just ignore any rulings we don't like anyhow.

Plus, we will have to give up just as much "sovereignty" (if not more) if we want access to the single market. See Norway. But no point rehashing things already explained up-thread.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Soupspoon » Thu Jun 16, 2016 2:07 pm UTC

Both sides have used their own brand of Project Fear, used dogwhistle politics and made massive assumptions into 'facts', whilst both denying it and calling out their opposition for their attempts.

Leave seems to be getting away with it more, though. It's because I notice this that I find it upsetting.

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby sardia » Thu Jun 16, 2016 2:18 pm UTC

What's the latest polling or betting market say ?

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Re: British EU referendum in June

Postby Echo244 » Thu Jun 16, 2016 2:33 pm UTC

Betting market is hedging on Remain, last I heard, polls (weighted towards those likely/certain to vote) suggest Leave.

Leave are making an emotional appeal. That any of their facts are wrong, or what dogwhistles they blow, doesn't matter at all. That this works is sad, but I think that people will have to experience the consequences to understand why they're bad things and reject the approaches in future.
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