Author Topic: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay  (Read 108480 times)

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Offline FJAG

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #350 on: September 29, 2018, 18:28:29 »
Chris

I'm not taking issue with your opinions at the end of the post. Those are yours and fairly held. I do take issue with the article itself and the issues that it raises specifically about its suggestion that FCO30/1048 considered the public stupid and advocated a program of misdirection and concealment of the facts.

The article does not provide a link to the paper itself so that a reader can check for himself but fortunately it's not that hard to find online. I've located one that is an "annotated" version. The text in italics, is the actual paper and the unitalicised text are the annotated comments. I found this one useful because one could read the criticism directly with the actual text and form one's own conclusions.

http://www.eureferendum.com/documents/FCOsovereignty2.pdf

I don't think that there is any doubt that the writers were advocating in favour of union with the EEC and were actively laying out both the benefits as well as the shortcomings, principally the reduction/loss of sovereignty and that EEC institutions would take predominance over domestic ones. At the time that's what the whole issue was; to build a strong and powerful central community which would be greater, stronger, richer than it's independent parts.

In my view that is what a ministerial paper should do in advising the various ministers of the facts, options, risks etc.

Along the way it points out that there are perceptions and anxieties within the public that must be understood and addressed. Specifically the paper says:

Quote
Before entry it is important to deal squarely with the anxieties about British
power and influence (masquerading under the term sovereignty) by presenting the choice
between the effect of entry and on Britain’s power and influence in a rapidly changing world

The article interprets this as "cover-up". I think that's a major and unfair leap.

Similarly, the article talks about:

Quote
The patronising tone deepens further as the writer suggests Britain is populated by xenophobes who have a large ‘mistrust of foreigners.’ He bizarrely quotes novelist Nancy Mitford saying: “Nancy Mitford’s Uncle Matthew was not alone in considering that: “Abroad is hell and foreigners are fiends.”

This comes from para 15(i) of the paper which starts:

Quote
We are all deeply conscious through tradition, upbringing and education of the distinctive
fact of being British. Given our island position and long territorial and national integrity,
the traditional relative freedom from comprehensive foreign, especially European, alliances
and entanglements, this national consciousness may well be stronger than that of most
nations. We are all deeply conscious through tradition, upbringing and education of the distinctive
fact of being British. Given our island position and long territorial and national integrity,
the traditional relative freedom from comprehensive foreign, especially European, alliances
and entanglements, this national consciousness may well be stronger than that of most
nations.

Let's call a spade a spade. The Brits were, and continue, to be xenophobes. All you need to do is read the Daily Mail and you'll see articles that look back at WWII and Nazis every second day. They just can't let go of the fact that the continent is populated by Krauts, Frogs, Dagos and various other groups of strangers. The paper is neither patronizing nor bizarre; it states a fact in subtle tones and cautions the ministers to be aware of that underlying public opinion.

Like I said before. We may all differ on whether or not the EU (or the EEC at the time) is a good thing, and there are  fair positions to take on both side of that issue. I think that this article, however, takes the clear fact that the authors of the paper were in favour of union and advising the ministers of the various upside and downside issues and spins that into some fanciful yarn that there was a massive bureaucratic conspiracy to hide the truth from the public in order to implement their plan.

Read the paper for yourself and draw your own conclusions.

 :cheers:

Edited to fix my crappy grammar
« Last Edit: September 30, 2018, 14:09:02 by FJAG »
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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #351 on: September 30, 2018, 12:57:58 »
Thank you for posting the link.  Quite expositive.

The issue continues to be one of power and how to influence it.  Quebec and Alberta already have issues internally with people contending over whether or not their provincial governments are reflective of the needs and wants of the residents.  Those are communities of millions.  They have problems with Ottawa acting in ways often seen at odds with their wants and needs and felt to be ignoring them on the basis of serving the needs and wants of the larger community.   It is an open debate as to whether or not the needs and wants are being fairly understood by the government of the day or whether or not the needs and wants are revealed truths that surpass the understanding of mere mortals. 

The larger the community the less the opportunity for the individual to influence either the community or its leadership.  The larger the community the greater the opportunity for the leadership to indulge its sense of infallibility and act according to the leaderships sense of needs and wants - and we are left with relying on the benevolence of the leadership.   Which is where we started.

I, for one, uniquely, as an individual, am not prepared to put my faith in the benevolence of a single, unique, individual purporting to act infallibly in the name of 7 billion single, unique, individuals.

We have ample historical examples going back 12,000 years of failed attempts to establish empire both internally and externally.

I believe that Quebec has been somewhat less than happy with such efforts both pre- and post-1867.   

Parliamentary democracy, within cultural and geographic limits, at least has the advantage of tamping down internal discord for a couple of centuries and doing no worse externally than more absolutist neighbours.

Yours in Xenophobia.   :cheers:
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Offline FJAG

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #352 on: September 30, 2018, 14:41:12 »
Thank you for posting the link.  Quite expositive.

The issue continues to be one of power and how to influence it.  Quebec and Alberta already have issues internally with people contending over whether or not their provincial governments are reflective of the needs and wants of the residents.  Those are communities of millions.  They have problems with Ottawa acting in ways often seen at odds with their wants and needs and felt to be ignoring them on the basis of serving the needs and wants of the larger community.   It is an open debate as to whether or not the needs and wants are being fairly understood by the government of the day or whether or not the needs and wants are revealed truths that surpass the understanding of mere mortals. 

The larger the community the less the opportunity for the individual to influence either the community or its leadership.  The larger the community the greater the opportunity for the leadership to indulge its sense of infallibility and act according to the leaderships sense of needs and wants - and we are left with relying on the benevolence of the leadership.   Which is where we started.

I, for one, uniquely, as an individual, am not prepared to put my faith in the benevolence of a single, unique, individual purporting to act infallibly in the name of 7 billion single, unique, individuals.

We have ample historical examples going back 12,000 years of failed attempts to establish empire both internally and externally.

I believe that Quebec has been somewhat less than happy with such efforts both pre- and post-1867.   

Parliamentary democracy, within cultural and geographic limits, at least has the advantage of tamping down internal discord for a couple of centuries and doing no worse externally than more absolutist neighbours.

Yours in Xenophobia.   :cheers:

I'm a bit of a xenophobe myself and not really a fan of the EU as structured. I sometimes wonder about how a big city like Toronto or New York can function and the answer is quite simple: by one neighbourhood at a time. The trick is finding exactly the right division of responsibilities between what goes on at the local level and what happens at the ever expanding higher regional etc levels.

IMHO that's where the EU fails. It throws too much power at the central government in dealing with issues that are much better dealt with at the local level. I put this down to the fact that much of the EU functions under a civil code system. Civil codes, again IMHO, tend towards being micromanagement systems. I think laws work best when they restrict or forbid specific unwanted acts and leave individuals and companies to operate freely and innovatively everywhere else rather than setting out a formula or process that must be followed by everyone in all cases. The US offers an interesting contrast having a common law basis but a codified statute system. More importantly it is a system of dual sovereignty as between the federal and states governments as may be limited by it's constitution.

I spent quite a few years working with individuals from the EU and noted that there was a tremendous difference in attitude to many things between the northern more Scandinavian/Germanic (including the UK) nations and the southern Latin (Roman influenced) countries like France, Spain, Italy etc. I would think it would be very difficult to create any system that would create consensus amongst such disparate cultures.

I expect that the debates as to which is the superior system are be endless.

 :cheers:

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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #353 on: September 30, 2018, 15:10:14 »
I believe that debates over the superiority of systems are endless and that "finding exactly the right division of responsibilities" is a mugs game.

It is precisely for those reasons that I oppose the centralization of authority and commend local democracy regardless of whether or not local democracy produces a system under which I might wish to live.

With centralization I am left with two options.  I must obey or fight.  With dispersed local democracy the odds are that I can find a location where I can live with convivial values.

The only trick required is toleration of cultural norms - no matter how ugly they may seem to others.

Edit:

One of the more interesting parts of the Canadian Experiment was the settling of the Prairies.  The Governments of the Day encouraged "ghettoization" as some would deride it today.  They encouraged the transposition of whole communities to create like-minded communities on the Prairies.  Hungarians in Esterhazy.  Ukrainians in Vegreville.  French in Gravelbourg.  Icelanders in Gimli. Dutch. Scots. Catholic. Orthodox. Mennonites. Hutterites. Mormons. Reformers.

This encouraged the local, as a "support group", with a common culture, rule book, language, church and sense of community while the various communities figured out how to work with the neighbouring communities and with their new national governments.

Canada was intentionally a patchwork of independent communities:  An exportable model.

« Last Edit: September 30, 2018, 15:20:13 by Chris Pook »
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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #354 on: December 03, 2018, 12:39:33 »
I believe I have found the answer.  Why is the government of the UK having such a hard time with Brexit?

Quote
But the Prime Minister will struggle to paint much of a picture given that the Government is still trying to nail down the nuts and bolts.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2018/12/03/theresa-may-keeps-giving-mps-reasons-vote-against-brexit-deal/

Painting a picture with nuts, bolts and a hammer is not a strategy that immediately commends itself to me
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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #355 on: December 12, 2018, 14:19:47 »
A thought about Chaos.

The governing party is responsible for finding solutions.
The opposition is responsible for critiquing those solutions.

At the next election the governing party will be held to account by the public for the quality of those solutions.

The public will then decide whether to allow the the governing party to continue governing.
The leader of the opposition may then have an opportunity to take over governing.

Now, both Theresa May and Jeremy Corbin have parties that are split over Brexit.
This is a problem for Theresa as she tries to find solutions.
This is not a problem for Jeremy.  All he has to do is continue to oppose her solutions.

Jeremy is in the position where all he has to do is not interfere with an enemy intent on destroying itself.

Meanwhile Brexit.

Jeremy is on record as wanting to leave the EU.  40 years in parliament and nary a kind word.
Theresa in on record as wanting the remain.

The public is split with not much of an advantage either way.  No particular electoral advantage for either party.  Half the population will blame the governing party regardless of the outcome.

The opposition will throw away its electoral advantage if it ends up supporting whatever deal the governing party proclaims.  Including no deal.

In the event of no deal the governing party gets the blame and the opposing party gets the opportunity.

And Jeremy Corbin?  He gets to leave the EU, as he has wanted for the last 40 years, put two fingers up to the establishment, wreck the Tories,and be free from EU interference while he imposes his brand of socialism on the UK.

My take?  Jeremy Corbin will do what it takes to ensure "no deal" and that Theresa and the Tories take the blame.

As a Brexiteer - pluses and minuses. 

Britain survived Cromwell, Harold Wilson and Clement Atlee.  Might have to dig deep again.
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Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #356 on: January 29, 2019, 19:54:37 »
Only in England are these titles imaginable together--PM Theresa May says:

Quote
...
But I believe that with a mandate from this House and supported by the Attorney General, the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and the Secretary of State for Exiting the EU, I can secure such a change in advance of our departure from the EU...
https://www.independent.ie/ca/business/brexit/it-is-not-renegotiable-theresa-may-under-fire-as-she-bids-to-drop-the-brexit-backstop-37762125.html#

Mark
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Ça explique, mais ça n'excuse pas.

Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #357 on: March 14, 2019, 18:27:16 »
https://whatukthinks.org/eu/opinion-polls/uk-poll-results/page/3/

An absolutely fascinating link - 74 pages of opinion polls ( I got to page 2 and a bit) on every question of the day pertaining to Brexit, deals, immigration, tariffs and what matters - up to March 11.

A great antidote to the headlines and all those drunken, sleepless MPs at Westminster.  25% are scared of leaving. 25% are determined to leave. 25% don't know and 25% don't care.

The sun will rise in the morning as usual and bills will have to be paid.
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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #358 on: March 27, 2019, 10:47:38 »
I have been refraining from commenting on this democratic exercise which, in the main, is still being conducted by the rules (although, to be honest while the match is still mainly on the pitch it is looking more and more like an Old Firm Cup final at Ibrox with a bent Ref).   I am reduced to following events with both amusement and bemusement because I don't really expect an outcome on this one any more. No more than I expect a resolution of the Basque, Provencale and Catalonian problems - Or Scotti Tcheuchters vs Covenanting Picts. 

However - this really caught my attention:

Quote
In an attack on MEPs critical of a long Brexit delay, Mr Tusk urged them to still consider British Remainers as "Europeans".

He said: "You cannot betray the 6 million people who signed the petition to revoke Article 50 or the increasing majority who want to remain in the EU, they may feel that they are not sufficiently represented by the UK parliament but they must feel they are sufficiently represented by you in this chamber because they are Europeans."

For those of you not keeping up - there is an on-line petition (accessible by anybody from any country) with some 6 million names calling for Brexit to be cancelled.   Just to be clear some 17 million voted to leave, 16 voted to stay, another 16 or so didn't care enough to get out of bed, and a bunch more weren't eligible to vote.

What gets me about President Tusk's comment is that he is from Poland. 

What would be his reaction if he saw the following in the daily news:

Quote
In an attack on MEPs critical of a long Brexit delay, Mr Tusk Putin urged them the Russian Parliament to still consider British Remainers Communists in Poland as "Europeans  Russians".

He said: "You cannot betray the 6 million people who signed the petition to revoke Article 50 or the increasing majority who want to remain in the EU those who want to rejoin with Mother Russia, they may feel that they are not sufficiently represented by the UK Polish and EU parliament(s) but they must feel they are sufficiently represented by you in this chamber because they are Europeans  Russians."

As I have said elsewhere - it is easy to become cynical when you hear rhetoric like this.

The good news is that none of this really matters.  We're still here despite thousands of years of the same rhetoric and worse actions.

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Offline Baden Guy

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #359 on: March 27, 2019, 11:23:31 »
98 Reasons To Stay In The EU: Benefits Of Membership For The UK

https://smallbusinessprices.co.uk/remain-eu/   :2c:


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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #360 on: March 27, 2019, 11:36:55 »
Quote
Philip Cross: The state’s increasing intrusion into our lives in the name of control and structure is stifling vitality
Feeling alive is what many people want more than the material comforts promised by government and proffered by corporations



https://business.financialpost.com/opinion/philip-cross-the-states-increasing-intrusion-into-our-lives-in-the-name-of-control-and-structure-is-stifling-vitality?utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Facebook&fbclid=IwAR1mcUQD4sfC-I-fHwgPVMlCzOiMzKZGEPenmnpdMbGfxlpIoheaHj5b2po#Echobox=1553692688
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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #361 on: March 27, 2019, 12:37:56 »
Londoners at work - above

Londoners at home - below





Londoners on holiday - 1947




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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #362 on: March 27, 2019, 12:42:34 »
And Londoners on holiday today

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #363 on: May 24, 2019, 06:51:49 »
The Economist, the Financial Times and almost every other news outlet report that Theresa May will resign as UK prime minister on 7 Jun 19, and that the UK Conservatives will select a new PM, early bets being on Boris Johnson by mid July.

She is just the latest British leader to be brought down by the British mostly English people's disenchantment with the EU. I think both John Major's and David Cameron's political lives were also destroyed by the EU.
It is ill that men should kill one another in seditions, tumults and wars; but it is worse to bring nations to such misery, weakness and baseness
as to have neither strength nor courage to contend for anything; to have nothing left worth defending and to give the name of peace to desolation.
Algernon Sidney in Discourses Concerning Government, (1698)
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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #364 on: July 03, 2019, 11:56:54 »
Today, the Telegraph Spectator (my error) republished a 2014 article on the EU by Christopher Booker on the occasion of his death.

Quote
How the first world war inspired the EU
Christopher Booker
 
3 July 2019
2:35 PM


Christopher Booker has died at the age of 81. In 2014, he wrote in The Spectator about how the first world war inspired the EU, and why its supporters won’t tell you:

Among the millions of words which will be expended over the next four years on the first world war, very few will be devoted to explaining one of its greatest legacies of all, the effects of which continue to dominate our politics to this day. One of the best-kept secrets of the European Union is that the core idea which gave rise to it owed its genesis not to the second world war, as is generally supposed, but to the Great War a quarter of a century earlier. It was around that time that the man who can be described as ‘the Father of Europe’ was first inspired to the detailed vision which only after 1945 was he finally in a position to launch on its way.

More than a decade ago, when I was working with my colleague Dr Richard North on a history of ‘the European project’, nothing surprised us more than how completely historians had failed to uncover the real story of that project’s origins. Furthermore, this was not merely of historical interest. The missing piece of the jigsaw gives us such a crucial insight into the core idea which was to create and shape the European Union that the failure of David Cameron and our present-day politicians to take it on board makes much of what they are today all saying about Britain’s relations with ‘Europe’ just empty fluff.

The first session of the Council of the League of Nations, 15th November 1920 Photo: Getty


The story began just after the outbreak of war in 1914, when two young men were appointed to organise the shipping between North America and Europe of food and vital war materials. One was a now forgotten British civil servant called Arthur Salter; the other was the Frenchman Jean Monnet, a former salesman for his family’s brandy firm. By 1917 they were so frustrated by the difficulty of hiring ships from all the international interests involved that they had a radical idea. What was needed, they agreed, was a body armed with ‘supranational’ powers to requisition the ships, overriding the wishes of their owners or any national government.

In 1919 these two men became senior officials in the new League of Nations: Monnet was deputy secretary general, Salter in charge of German reparations. They were inspired by the way they and their colleagues were expected to forget national loyalties in working for a higher international cause. But as the 1920s progressed, they again became frustrated by what they, like so many, saw as the League’s central flaw. Every nation had a veto — an expression, as Monnet saw it, of that ‘national egoism’ which had caused the war and might yet bring about another.

By the decade’s end, when the League, without the USA, had become largely a European concern, Salter had developed their ideas in a new direction. He proposed in a book published in 1931, The United States of Europe, that the League’s four core institutions — its ruling secretariat, a council of ministers, a parliamentary assembly and a court of justice — should be turned into a ‘government of Europe’, run though its secretariat by technocrats like himself, above all national loyalties. This body must be given ‘supranational’ powers, eliminating national vetoes. And the first step towards this new government should be to set up a ‘customs union’, providing it with so much revenue from tariffs that it would reduce national governments ‘to the status of municipal assemblies’.

Scarcely had Salter outlined his grand design, intended to avert another European war, than Hitler’s rise to power made it irrelevant. But in 1939 Salter and Monnet were reunited in London. Monnet had now become a very effective behind-the-scenes political operator — it was he who, just before the fall of France in 1940, talked Churchill into that quixotic proposal for a political union between France and Britain — and he used the succession of influential positions he held through the war to push their idea to men such as Paul-Henri Spaak, Belgium’s prime minister in exile. In Algiers, in 1943, he put it to Harold Macmillan that the first step towards a ‘federal Europe’ should be a ‘supranational’ authority to run the industries key to waging war, steel and coal.

In the years after 1946, having been placed in charge of France’s economy by President de Gaulle, Monnet watched scornfully the efforts being made to set up an ‘intergovernmental’ Council of Europe, which he predicted would be rendered as impotent as the League of Nations by the same fatal flaw, the national veto. In 1950, when France was faced by the US with a deadline to come up with a plan for international control of Germany’s renascent coal and steel industries, Monnet saw his moment to strike. He put in the hands of France’s foreign minister, Robert Schumann, a proposal for a ‘European Coal and Steel Community’: a plan seemingly so visionary that within two years this body, representing six nations including France and Germany, was set up with Monnet himself at its head. He was surrounded by those four core institutions borrowed from the League of Nations: his own secretariat, a council of ministers, an assembly and a court. Opening the assembly in 1952, Monnet told the delegates, ‘You are the first government of Europe.’

Monnet then, however, overreached himself. Not only did he and Spaak propose a ‘European Defence Community’; Spaak went even further, wanting to go straight to a ‘European Political Community’, for which in 1953 a ‘Constitution for Europe’ was being actively discussed. But in 1954 all these heady plans were brought to nought by the French Assembly, prompting Monnet in 1955 to resign from his Coal and Steel post. It was this rebuff which led him to work from behind the scenes, with his now powerful friend Spaak, for a new strategy. Realising they were not going to get their ‘United States of Europe’ in one fell swoop, they would have to build it up gradually over many years — and, crucially, without ever revealing openly what was their ultimate goal. This was why they would begin with just that ‘customs union’ suggested by Salter: a ‘Common Market’.

Foreign affairs ministers at the 'Treaty of Rome' creating the European Economic community (EEC) and the Euratom, March 25, 1957 Photo: AFP/Getty

Thus it was in 1957 that those original six nations signed the Treaty of Rome. But at its heart were the same four institutions, headed by a secretariat now called the ‘European Commission’. This treaty represented the constitution for a form of government far more ambitious than anything needed to run a trading arrangement: dedicated, in its opening words, to work for an ‘ever closer union’ between its members until they reached that ultimate goal: a ‘United States of Europe’.

However carefully this was concealed, the aim, right from the start, was step by step to pass ever more powers to the centre, eliminating national vetoes — until their Commission, run by unelected officials, could come fully into the open as the supranational ‘government of Europe’. There was no principle more sacred to the ‘European construction’, as it was called in Brussels, than the acquis communautaire: the unshakeable rule that once powers were acquired by the centre they could never be given back. And thus, over the next 60 years, did the long-dreamed-of ‘United States of Europe’ gradually take shape, extending its powers, treaty by treaty, over ever more areas of government, embracing ever more of the countries of Europe, in a way which back in 1957 would have seemed unimaginable.


All this had grown directly out of that core idea envisaged by Monnet and Salter in the 1920s. Having failed in its original purpose to avert any repetition of the first world war, it had only been revived when the world had been through such a geopolitical earthquake that the new division of Europe between Nato and the Soviet empire made it irrelevant.

But no one continued to have more influence over the shaping of ‘Europe’ than Monnet, the man who as early as 1960 first suggested that there would be no more effective way of welding the peoples of Europe together than giving them a single currency. It was also he who, even as late as 1972, suggested setting up the ‘European Council’, those regular meetings between the elected heads of government which were only formalised as an ‘institution of the Union’ in the Lisbon Treaty in 2008.

But why has all this suddenly become of more urgent relevance to us all than ever before? It is because so little of it has been properly understood by British politicians, including Mr Cameron, that almost nothing they are now saying about a referendum on ‘Europe’ bears any relation to reality. When they talk about the need for the EU to be ‘reformed’ and ‘Britain winning back powers from Brussels’, they have no real idea of how this defies the EU’s most sacred rule, the acquis communautaire; which is why, when José-Manuel Barroso is asked whether Mr Cameron will be given powers back, he merely snorts. Those politicians who talk about returning the EU to little more than the trading arrangement we joined in 1973 haven’t begun to grasp that the Common Market was only ever intended as a first step towards a fully fledged ‘government of Europe’.

Most alarming of all is that, just when our own politicians are still talking about the need for a new treaty ‘to win back powers’, they seem quite oblivious that senior figures in Brussels are talking about a major new treaty of their own, one designed to take the EU yet another major step towards that ultimate goal. When the Commission’s vice-president, Viviane Reding, declares that May’s European elections will give voters the chance to support ‘a United States of Europe’, what she explicitly has in mind is that same destination Monnet and Salter were talking about 80 years ago. And the reason why our politicians still seem unable to recognise this lies in that crucial decision taken by Spaak and Monnet 60 years ago — that they could only achieve their ultimate goal by concealing for as long as possible the reality of what they were after. That is why, when Richard North and I were for the first time able to put all this story together, we called our book The Great Deception. But now that even senior officials in Brussels feel free to talk openly about wanting to build a ‘United States of Europe’, we really do need at last to wake up to the reality of what we are up against. We are facing the endgame. The time for deception — and self-deception — is over.


https://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2019/07/how-the-first-world-war-inspired-the-eu/
« Last Edit: July 03, 2019, 12:01:50 by Chris Pook »
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Offline FJAG

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #365 on: July 03, 2019, 14:02:47 »
I really question whether there is a "secret" plan of this nature.

We're talking about a massive industry of both politicians and bureaucrats who have self interest and power seeking at their core. While I don't doubt that there are forces in Europe tugging in both directions on this question and that there is a significant group of civil servants who wish to create a massive overarching European government, I doubt if the "plot" is a "secret" one.

One should note that with the exception of those conflicts arising out of the fragmenting of the former Yugoslavia and some of the old Warsaw Pact that the last eighty years have been ones of unprecedented stability within Europe vis a vis conflicts between nations (if not universal financial stability and immigration woes).

To me it seems more likely that rather than a "secret" plan by bureaucrats, there is general testing of the waters by politicians and the public in exploring how far to total union the system ought to go. Quite frankly without the immigration issues, the **** disturbing by the Russians and the growth of nationalistic movements over the last few years, that experiment might even be farther along than it is.

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Offline Brad Sallows

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #366 on: July 03, 2019, 15:44:28 »
It isn't "secret", but neither is it particularly "open" or "transparent".  The proponents of ever closer union don't spend much time reiterating to voters what is sought and what the effects will be, and seeking renewed mandates at each step to pursue the ends.  Clearly the people mentioned in the article weren't beaking off every few months about what they were trying to do.

"One should note that with the exception of those conflicts arising out of the fragmenting of [unified entities that it turns out didn't want to be unified]..."

So the stage is being set for future conflicts arising from the same old cause (people who want to be in charge of themselves).  Undoubtedly there will be the usual cheerleaders praising whatever the EU does if the dissent rises to Hungarian or Czechoslovakian levels.  And the political and social climate necessary to keep the unified entities unified even while they weren't in open revolt was well short of anything acceptable.

I suppose some peoples can manage peace and free trade between nations without needing an uber-government, some can't.  European peace is due to NATO - not the EU - and NATO is an alliance of nations.  So it can be done without ever closer union.  When someone says "we can't have peace and prosperity without the EU" I hear "we're too incompetent not to frig it up unless you give us supreme authority".
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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #367 on: July 03, 2019, 18:54:51 »
These maps demonstrate why I have some sympathy with those inclined to try and impose order in Europe.

But after at least 2000 years of trying perhaps somebody could be convinced to give it up as a bad job.





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