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View Poll Results: Should Britain leave the European Union?

Voters
60. You may not vote on this poll
  • YES!...Must Brexit!

    20 33.33%
  • NO!...We Must Remain!

    32 53.33%
  • I have no idea what I want, yet I will vote anyway!

    8 13.33%
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Thread: BREXIT --->

  1. #726
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    If I have a narrative (I do: democratic liberalism, updated to the modern welfare state context, is better than naive democratic populism, especially on economic matters; if I lived in the UK i'd almost certainly be a LibDem), it may be being misrepresented to make that charge in this case. Free trade costs less than more restricted trade for simple macro & int'l trade 101 reasons: economies of scale give you the same goods and services at vastly reduced costs, and free trade pushes efficiency of production to their production frontiers. The math does itself.

    The billions it's already cost have to do with uncertainty of the risk of Brexit coming. Reduce the uncertainty and you reduce the costs. Also I'm talking about, or meant to be talking about, relative costs, relative to the alternative. Naturally never triggering the process would have saved a lot of costs. My educated guess is that indefinite hiatus where the UK stays in would cost less than an actual Brexit in relative terms (once it became clear the hiatus was really indefinite and wouldn't be quickly shaken up, subject to it actually being shaken up which would indeed raises costs again). But that's an empirical claim that may be wrong. I can give supporting considerations for why I think it, but I may be wrong in fact.

    Edit: My formal position is and has always been to invest in cost/benefit data and act on it, so if there's empirical grounds that the risk of a bad Brexit deal is still better than indefinite hiatus with the UK staying in for the long term--which may very well be true--then by all means go where the data recommends. Of course, in any event, you can't do anything that lacks legitimacy or democratic accountability, so it may not be a viable option to begin with.
    Last edited by demagogue; 20th Mar 2019 at 07:54.

  2. #727
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Thirith View Post
    Brexit has already cost the UK billions, and it continues to do so, even before it's actually happened. Why do you think that this would change with an indefinite extension?
    And costs the EU as well, not just the UK.

  3. #728
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    demagogue, don't get me wrong: if an infinite extension is possible, cheaper than the likely Brexit scenarios and allows both the UK and the EU to "reap the benefits of continued EU membership", as you put it, I'm fine with that. From what I've read and heard, though, the uncertainty of the current situation seems to be taking a massive toll, not least economically, plus it allows the Brexiteers, especially the hard Bs, to build on their narrative of the EU being the villain in all of this, which I think will just make the situation worse - because at the moment both Leavers and Remainers are of the opinion that May is betraying them, the country, democracy and kittens everywhere. Extending the current impasse looks like it just increases the already atrocious polarisation, both in parliament and in the country. That's why I think that there should be an extension, but it should come with clear goals and decision points.

  4. #729
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    Speaking of which, hot off the presses: Theresa May asks for Brexit delay until June in letter to EU

  5. #730
    Administrator
    Registered: Oct 2000
    Location: Athens of the North
    And the EU indicate that they'll only grant it if a deal is approved by the UK first and may not be as long as she's asked for. It really seems like it's a game of ping-pong to try to ensure the other side are seem as the ones responsible for any exit without a deal at this stage.

  6. #731
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: The Land of Make Believe
    The worst thing that ever happened to David Cameron was winning the election in 2015. Suddenly he had an unexpected majority in his own right, and no junior partner to enable him to sideline his lunatic right-wing. If only the country hadn't punished the Lib Dems for providing five years of stable, effective government, none of this would be happening. It's an object lesson in the consequences of cutting off one's nose to spite one's face. And now we have a madwoman in charge and a hapless opposition leader who sits on his hands while the country is driven into the shit, just so he can win an election and implement his programme of disaster socialism.

    It's a sodding mess, but Britain is well deserving of this international humiliation. Brexit has put a decisive end to the myth of British exceptionalism, almost as pernicious, and certainly longer-lived, than the American kind. The Britain that built the biggest empire in human history, unravelled the science of evolution and DNA, invented the telephone and the computer, and so much more besides - that Britain is long gone. Even if somehow our membership of the EU is rescued at the 11th hour, our image is tarnished forever.

  7. #732
    SShock2.com
    Member

    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: The land of ever sideways rain
    I can't even put in to words how angry I am right now. Teresa May blames the parliament. Like she's not wasted three very valuable years, by making mistake, after mistake, after mistake.

    It was a clear national crisis in 2016. It was obvious after her failed election that we would need a cross-party solution. She clearly rejected this. She has repeatedly, and stubbornly rejected any idea that was not hers. This might be misinterpreted as "strong and stable", as she kept robotically repeating, but it has been painfully clear that she does not listen to, or come to any sort of compromise with anyone about anything. Politics is about compromise! It's what's best for whoever elected you, and she's not been delivering any of that. Blinders on, headstrong into disaster. Not accepting any information that disagrees with her point of view.

    Don't get me wrong. I clearly blame parliament too. ERG do not live up to its name. A bunch of rich, privileged posh poncy white guys who will not be affected in any way by the way it goes, except they will most likely end up much richer from a hard Brexit. Even if they lose money, they can afford to do it on principle, harking back to some imaginary idea of what the British Empire never was, but is a model in their minds, and they're rich enough to never have to actually worry about the consequences. The Labour opposition has been painfully bad at opposing. I have no faith in Corbyn, in fact I believe he'd fuck it up even more than May, and I'm a leftist liberal bastard who should agree with him on principle, except I can't.

    Every single splintered faction in both the tories and labour have made this happen. Cameron foolishly triggered it, and it will be his legacy, probably more than fucking that pig.

    What this has all proven to me, as a foreigner living in the UK is that British politicians are so vastly far apart, grossly incompetent, and largely do NOT understand how to work a system where one of two parties is not in the majority. Almost every other European country understands this, but Britain, it seems, does not. Compromise. Discuss. Deal. Do, you know, actual politics. Diplomacy. But no. Rees-Mogg posh twats. Corbynites. May-bots. None of them seem to understand what their job description is.

    I am so SO angry. Angry over the blatant incompetence and inability to actually accomplish anything. Not that I've said that nine times before.

    On the upside, today I got my "Settled Status" email. Curious now to see what happens first, May resigning or me deciding to move of my own free will.

  8. #733
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: The Land of Make Believe
    Probably the biggest reason our politicians are spectacularly bad at compromise is because they pretty much never need to. Elections on the continent are by proportional representation, so coalitions are the norm, whereas over here you can win a majority with 35% of the vote.

    Your assessment of the situation is spot on, Gray, and of course I would hope you stay, but I well understand anyone running out of patience.

  9. #734
    SShock2.com
    Member

    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: The land of ever sideways rain
    Yes, that was my point, but then I stopped to think about another failing political system. At least it's not as bad as the USA. Yet.

    A two-party system is doomed to fail sooner or later. You need more voices to fully represent the people you're supposed to be working for.

  10. #735
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    The NYTimes headline today:

    E.U. Approves Brexit Extension, but Chaotic Departure Still Looms

    The short extension was conditioned on Parliament’s approving a withdrawal deal it has already rejected twice by decisive margins.
    This reminded me of what Al said, that at this point it's just both sides wording things to pin the blame on the other side for what's apparently the inevitable breakdown at this point, at least by the looks of it.

    It'd be great if one crisis story from 2019 turned out ok in the end. My expectations aren't very high, but just one nice turn of events...

  11. #736
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    The EU doesn't have to play the blame game. It's all on the UK in the first place. It was the UK who wanted this and played political games that led to this. It's the UK who has constantly been vilifying the EU as some sort of a national sport. Who couldn't figure out what they actually wanted after the referendum or at any time since that. Who wanted things that were impossible for the EU to fulfil. Who delayed declaring article 50 for as long as possible, despite being warned multiple times that there was only limited time before the EU parliamentary elections. Who decided to run down the clock to the last minute possible. And now it's the UK who wants an extension despite still not knowing what it wants. There is no time to waffle about anymore. If the UK is not out by the middle of April, it needs to start preparing for the EU elections.

    May blaming the MPs for the current situation takes the cake, though. Saying she's on the people's side... what a load of bollocks. Half the country never wanted to leave in the first place. And she didn't consult the opposition about the talks or include the parliament in any significant capacity. This part is all on her. And now the time is running out with no good options in sight. What a brilliant strategy.

    Oh, and MPs are even less likely to support her deal now that she's thrown them under the bus. Just brilliant.
    Last edited by Starker; 22nd Mar 2019 at 11:46.

  12. #737
    SShock2.com
    Member

    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: The land of ever sideways rain
    The EU has had more patience than can be required. This shitstorm is entirely made in the UK, by itself, towards itself. The UK has always had an uneasy stance towards the rest of Europe, being an island invaded rather a lot, and now all these old stupid and pointless fears have surfaced to make the UK kick itself not only in the nuts, but also somehow in its own head. The stupidity and incompetence angers me to no end.

  13. #738
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2001
    Location: Land of the crazy
    At least your government seems to be comparatively free from corruption and your PM isn't a dictator friendly idiot who puts his foot in his mouth all the time.

    The gridlock problem we have here is a bit different. Our system is inherently resistant to change by design. I'm referring to the branches of government and their separate powers and election timetables, along with the high bar for changing the Constitution.

    Brexit seems difficult because it cuts across party lines.

    Going back to 2015, David Cameron obviously deserves a lot of blame for making an election promise he didn't expect to keep, judging the risk on opinion polls that turned out to be wrong.

    But let's not forget Ed Miliband. He stole the party from his heir-apparent brother, made a mess of it, changed Labour leadership voting which enabled the left populists and trades unions to take over, and blew an election. Thanks to Ed's voting rules, now you have Labour led by a life long Euroskeptic, who undermined Labour participation in the remain campaign, and whipped his MPs to vote to authorize Article 50. If there were a snap election today and Labour won, it would immediately expose the division between their leaders and MPs over Europe.

    It was a big mistake to rush into that Article 50 declaration without first developing a negotiating position with majority support in Parliament. I suppose people thought that 2 years was ample time to negotiate. But in hindsight, it seems hopelessly optimistic when you consider how many different negotiations and treaties it took over decades of time to get where we are now, and how long it has taken other countries to negotiate trade deals with the EU.

    So assuming the vote next week fails again. What are May's options?

    1. Revoke Article 50. Can May do this without facing a leadership challenge and being forced to step down?

    2. Ask for a long delay to Brexit and go ahead with European Parliament elections in two months. It would be odd to campaign for seats in a Parliament you're planning to pull out of, but it's a hedge. Would the EU members be OK with this?

    3. No deal.

    Has anybody talked about a temporary deal with a sunset?
    Last edited by heywood; 22nd Mar 2019 at 14:28.

  14. #739
    SShock2.com
    Member

    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: The land of ever sideways rain
    I genuinely hope that Article 50 will be revoked, perhaps through another referendum, but I do not believe that will happen. That's just the stupid optimist in me.

    The bitter cynic in me fully expects this to drag on until it unravels even further. And even if there is a second referendum, the general spirit of the country seems to completely lack the understanding of the severity of the situation and just want to "get on with it", rather jumping into the abyss as opposed to stop and think whether it's a good idea or not.

  15. #740
    Quote Originally Posted by heywood View Post
    2. Ask for a long delay to Brexit and go ahead with European Parliament elections in two months. It would be odd to campaign for seats in a Parliament you're planning to pull out of, but it's a hedge. Would the EU members be OK with this?
    I'm not entirely certain, but from the sounds of it I don't think the EU would let this happen unless she has a specific plan that has a good chance of success of going through parliament and/or a referendum.

  16. #741
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    Holy shit.

    “Theresa May usually gets less than an hour to explain her Brexit plans to the EU’s 27 leaders at regular summits. Finally, with only eight days to go until the original deadline, the British prime minister was granted a full 90 minutes in the multi-coloured summit room in the Europa headquarters. For the EU, it was not time well spent.

    “It was 90 minutes of nothing,” one EU source said. “She didn’t even give clarity if she is organising a vote. Asked three times what she would do if she lost the vote, she couldn’t say. It was fucking awful. Dreadful. Evasive even by her standards.”

    Around a dozen EU leaders peppered the British prime minister with questions. Did she have a plan B? How was she going to gain a majority? When would she hold the vote? “She very much dodged these questions,” a second EU source said. A third source said: “She was not convincing. It was not clear if she had a plan B; it was not clear if she had a plan at all.”

  17. #742
    BANNED
    Registered: Dec 1999
    Location: Idiocy will never die
    This is standard for British politicians though.

    Isn't it the same everywhere?

    Jacob Rees-Mogg at least answers the question.

  18. #743
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    So the latest plot twist in the ongoing Brexit saga was that the Parliament took control of Brexit and proceeded to vote down all of the options. Stay tuned to the next cliffhanger after May brings her deal back for the third time, this time baited with her resignation (thought we already know what the word of Ms No Early Election is worth), and the next series of indicative votes is held on Monday (in the quite likely event May's deal gets voted down for the third time).

  19. #744
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    And for the record the least unpopular of the options was the customs union route, to bring that up again. If democracy whispers with any voice, that's the closest they'll ever get to hearing it saying anything. I'm not sure the situation will change for the foreseeable future, so I think it's the least-disruptive out they have now. Only the over-optimist in me thinks the way out could be that easy though. I'm sure they'll find a way to screw that up too.

  20. #745
    Quote Originally Posted by Starker View Post
    So the latest plot twist in the ongoing Brexit saga was that the Parliament took control of Brexit and proceeded to vote down all of the options.
    What actually happened was that they had what's called an "Indicative Vote". A vote for which the purpose isn't to find something that gets a majority, but rather to see which options most MPs like and which options are most disliked, so that a proposal that has a chance of passing through parliament can be made. The motion that put forth the indicative vote even stated as much, but I guess the press glossed over that minor detail in their search for a "Politicians don't know how to do anything" headlines.

    The main reason no option got a majority was that every single MP tried to game the system so it would appear that their favoured option got most support while the options they actively disliked had most support against them. The options they wouldn't mind, but also didn't prefer, they abstained on to leave them open in case their preferred options did not garner support. That obviously does not mean that every abstain on an option is a vote for that option, as MPs are likely to have a ranking even among them (and their party may obviously tell them to vote against something), but the two most agreed upon options are very likely to be the focus of the next vote on the subject.

  21. #746
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Yes, I know how indicative voting works, thank you. And, as I wrote:
    Quote Originally Posted by Starker View Post
    the next series of indicative votes is held on Monday
    What I was condemning with my comment was precisely that sort of gaming the system and kicking the ball down the road.

  22. #747
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    Speaking of which, I found a nice chart on next steps from here:


  23. #748
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Seems about right. Also, looks like May may seek yet another vote for her deal next week. Fourth time's the charm? Maybe this time it will be defeated by a less embarrassing margin, at least.

  24. #749
    SShock2.com
    Member

    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: The land of ever sideways rain
    You missed a couple of very important bits there demagogue, there are at least three more "fuck knows" that we're not yet fully aware of. And if history is any guide, we won't be until way after it was important.

  25. #750
    Genuinely curious, is there any chance the whole thing could be scrapped and UK remains, or is it a guaranteed wreck at this point?

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