Author Topic: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay  (Read 106521 times)

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #250 on: July 22, 2016, 18:04:26 »
From todays National Post. Re-produced under the usual caveats of the Copyright Act.

Quote
Brexit is already proving to be a huge victory for global free trade

Lawrence Solomon | July 22, 2016 11:41 AM ET

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, after talks this week with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May, declared it was imperative that the U.S. move “as fast as possible” to “maximize the economic opportunities” of Brexit.

Jack Taylor/Getty ImagesU.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, after talks this week with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May, declared it was imperative that the U.S. move “as fast as possible” to “maximize the economic opportunities” of Brexit.

World trade, Canada’s included, is beating a direct path to the British market.

Canada has long wanted free trade with the United Kingdom, a fellow G7 country that became the world’s fifth-largest economy in 2014 after overtaking France. According to the Centre for Economics Business and Research, a premier U.K. consultancy, the fast-growing U.K. will overtake Germany over the next two decades to become Europe’s largest economy and the world’s fourth largest.

But until Brexit, Canada was shut off from this economic powerhouse, our only path to profitable U.K. trade wending through the EU bureaucracy in Brussels, which controls trade access to every EU country. And as a frustrated Canada knows only too well from almost a decade of interminable, ongoing jockeying in aid of sealing a Canada-EU trade deal, the EU is the world’s largest closed shop. No one gets to trade with the EU on preferential terms without either joining the union or trading away national sovereignty for the privilege.

Now the world, Canada included, is beating a direct path to the United Kingdom. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, after talks this week with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May, declared it was imperative that the U.S. move “as fast as possible” to “maximize the economic opportunities” of Brexit. Kerry’s views echoed those of Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull who, after his own discussions with May, stated: “So as Britain leaves the EU, what we will need to do is negotiate direct arrangements with Britain … we need to get moving on that quickly.”

According to the U.K.’s international trade secretary, Liam Fox, countries are lining up to strike trade deals with the U.K. — Japan, India and China are among those that have informally committed themselves, with some saying they are eager for quick deals. The U.K. has not only become the world’s most eligible free-trade partner; it has also become its most attainable. “We can make Britain a beacon for open trade,” Fox told The Sunday Times. “We have already had a number of countries saying ‘we’d love to do a trade deal with the world’s fifth-biggest economy without having to deal with the other 27 members of the EU.'”

If not for Brexit, and with the possible exception of Canada, none of the many countries eager for U.K. trade would have access to its immense market anytime soon — these potential trading partners have been shut out since 1973, when the U.K. joined the European trading bloc and cut itself off from greater trading opportunities in the rest of the world. Now, less than a month after the Brexit vote, barely a week after a new prime minister has taken the helm, countries large and small are contemplating their access to a British market that had been blocked by tariff walls for almost half a century. Put another way, Brexit has become the biggest impetus to global free trade in more than a generation.

Once the U.K. strikes free-trade deals with the U.S., Canada and several others, it will have gained access to a much larger market than it had in the EU (the U.S. economy alone, by some measures, is larger than the EU market). From the perspective of a Canada or a U.S., the opening up of free trade with the U.K. is no less consequential: The U.K., the U.S., and Canada have a combined GDP far exceeding that of the NAFTA partnership.

The Brexit free-trade bonanza would just be starting, though, because Brexit, doomsaying notwithstanding, is opening eyes in the other EU nations. The IMF — perhaps the most prominent among the doomsayers — has entirely reevaluated its analysis. Brexit will not sink the U.K. into recession after all, it now says; instead the post-Brexit United Kingdom will best Germany and France to be one of the G7s best-performing economies, behind only the U.S. in 2016 and only the U.S. and Canada in 2017. 

In France, the Netherlands, Spain and elsewhere in Europe, the sentiment among large portions of the citizenry to leave the EU is thwarted largely by fear of the economic consequences. Brexit is showing them that the consequences of staying within a decaying EU is fear-worthy, while striking out into a world of free trade is hopeful and worth embracing. Every free-trade-oriented country in the EU that shrugs off the dead weight of the EU bureaucracy from its back and follows Britain’s lead will, like the U.K., provide countries around the world with a new free-trading partner in another free-trading round, making Brexit a defining event in the annals of free trade.

LawrenceSolomon@nextcity.com

Lawrence Solomon is a policy analyst with Probe International. Fourth in a series. For the first in a series, click here.

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #251 on: July 27, 2016, 12:12:08 »
Just been having some more "fun with numbers". (From various sources - trust me  [:D )

The UK economy generates a GDP of 1870 Billion UKP.

Annually it exports about 300 BUKP of goods and
it imports about 420 BUKP of goods.

Of the exports 133 BUKP goes to Europe and
imports from Europe are 219 BUKP.

On the basis of trade in goods the UK is worth 86 BUKP annually to the EU.

In addition, according to EU rules the UK is supposed to contribute 18 BUKP in membership fees to the EU.  (Farage's 350 MUKP / week)
The UK, thanks to Maggie, gets a discount on its fees of 5 BUKP and only has to pay dues of 13 BUKP.         (250 MUKP)
The EU then spends 4.5 BUKP of that money back in the UK bringing the UK's net contribution down to 8.5 BUKP. (150 MUKP)

The EU sells itself to Britain as a Free Trade opportunity.  But Britain has to pay up front for that privilege.

The cost of accessing the EU market (8.5 BUKP) is equivalent to a 6.4% tariff on all British exports to the EU (8.5/133 = 6.4%).

That is already higher than the average tariffs paid by non-EU members like the US, Canada and Australia. 

In addition the rebate and the reinvestment in the UK are both at the discretion of the EU.  It is not inconceivable that the EU could rescind the rebate and fail to reinvest in Britain should Britain remain in the Union.  That would drive, potentially, the contribution up to 18 BUKP or a tariff equivalent of 13.5%.

So Britain is worth 86 BUKP annually to the EU's manufacturers, providing jobs in Spain, Italy and Germany. 

And it costs Britain 8.5 BUKP for the privilege of buying those goods.

In a world where we are constantly being sold the benefits of Goods and Services Taxes, or Value Added Taxes, administered by individual consumers at point of sale in billions of separate transactions, I suggest that there is little justification for not letting the British exporters manage the cost of selling their goods into the EU by paying whatever GST/VAT/Tariff is necessary to market their product.

The EU would still receive their funding but it would be at the expense of either/or the British exporter and the EU consumer.

A side benefit for the Brits would be that they would not be on the hook for the cost of administering their 18-13-8.5 BUKP contribution to the EU (politicians and bureaucrats).

I am not aware of any equivalent membership fees being due for Canada to be a part of NAFTA.



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Offline Thucydides

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #252 on: July 29, 2016, 00:12:46 »
Brexit could be the forerunner of further breakups or breakdowns wishing the EU and EU nations themselves, as this from Spain suggests:

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-07-27/latest-political-coup-catalan-parliament-votes-secede-spain

Quote
In Latest Political "Coup", Catalan Parliament Votes To Secede From Spain
by Tyler Durden
Jul 27, 2016 1:17 PM

In the aftermath of last month's Brexit vote, there was an outpouring of concern in Europe that the British decision would embolden similar separatist movements across the continent. Earlier Wednesday, this is precisely what happened when Catalan nationalists voted to approve a plan to secede from Spain, defying the nation’s Constitutional Court and challenging acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, who is currently in political limbo as he struggles to form a government.

The decision was approved by 72 regional MPs out of 135. Ten MPs from the CSP group linked to Podemos, Partido Popular and Ciudadanos walked out of the assembly and the Socialists did not vote. A recent poll shows that 48% of the Catalan population currently supports independence compared with 43% against it.

The vote, symbolic as it may be, was one of defiance toward Madrid as Spain's Constitutional Court had in recent days prohibited the regional parliament in Barcelona from voting on it. As Ansa reports, the resolution was presented by the pro-secessionist groups Junts Pel Si and CUP. The anti-secessionist parties - PP, Ciudadanos and PSC - have spoken out against the ''illegality'' of the decision. PP parliamentary chief Xavier Garcia Albiol has said that the act is tantamount to a ''coup'' against the government in Madrid and warned that there will be a price to pay for it. The head of the Socialist party, Pedro Sanchez, said there can be no democracy without common rules, while Albert Rivera, the Catalan-born leader of liberals Ciudadanos, described it as a attack on Spanish democracy. They both have rejected supporting Rajoy’s candidacy to become premier again.

Catalan regional president and pro-secessionist Carles Puidgemont instead says that the position taken by the regional MPs is ''legitimate'' and has in recent months confirmed that the goal is to achieve an independent ''Catalan Republic'' by the end of 2017.

Meanwhile, Spain’s caretaker administration - recall that Spain has been unable to form a government after two consecutive elections - said it has called on the state’s attorney to present a challenge before the Constitutional Court dismissing the plan, which lists the steps that would be followed to create independence, including drafting a Catalan constitution.

The latest escalation in the multiyear separatist movement signals renewed impetus from Catalans to break away from Spain. It coincides with a seven-month political deadlock sparked by two inconclusive elections that left the nation without a government. While Rajoy increased his party’s seats in parliament in the second vote, he’s failed to agree on governing terms with other parties, fueling prospects for a third election. Facing a parliamentary defeat, Rajoy has said he won’t undergo a vote of confidence in the 350-seat chamber that is needed to become PM unless he has received enough pledged support from rivals to guarantee his victory.

And taking advantage of the political chaos in Spain, and the lack of an actual, elected government, Catalonia just became the second European state in the span of a month to demand secession. It may not be successful this time, but as Brexit showed, sooner or later the will of the majority will prevail.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #253 on: August 02, 2016, 19:47:37 »
http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/brexit-the-british-always-want-special-treatment-a-1105751.html

Quote
Financial Expert on Brexit: 'The British Always Want Special Treatment'

Interview Conducted By Alexander Jung


What direction will Britain take as it prepares for Brexit? British financial industry expert David Marsh says he believes Britain's withdrawal from the EU will do less damage to Brits than to the rest of Europe.


SPIEGEL: Mr. Marsh, did you vote to leave the EU?


Marsh: No, I voted to stay. I did though do something unusual for me: I placed a £200 (237 euros) bet on "leave" with bookmaker Ladbrokes, just in case, to have a small consolation prize.

SPIEGEL: How much did you win?

Marsh: £600 -- it relieved my pain a little.

SPIEGEL: It has now been five weeks since the referendum, and many expected an economic crash. So far, however, this has not happened. Were the concerns exaggerated?

Marsh: I think so. We have a period of uncertainty and companies may invest less. But in 20 years it is unlikely we will say that this referendum has led to a disastrous outcome. It may even offer opportunities.

SPIEGEL: What do you mean?

Marsh: The pound has fallen. This weakness will help our exports, British products will be cheaper abroad. And this attracts foreign investors, as seen with Japan's Softbank taking over high-tech ARM for €29 billion euros.

SPIEGEL: Such a coup is hardly what Leavers wished for -- to have foreigners take control of the economy?

Marsh: Oscar Wilde once wrote that people know the price of everything and the value of nothing. It's nothing special for the British if everything is for sale. We have fewer sensitivities in this regard than the Germans.

SPIEGEL: But will the British be so relaxed about their flagship industry -- financial services? Some here fear a veritable exodus.

Marsh: There are certainly some sectors that are particularly affected, for example the settlement of euro transactions. But computers can carry out a lot of this already. It could also lead to the relocation of some foreign exchange trading or investment banking, but not in a large way. Over 700,000 people work in the London financial sector, at the most 10 percent will be influenced by the Brexit vote.

SPIEGEL: But the banks may lose the EU passport necessary for distributing their products in Europe.

Marsh: The big houses already have bases in Frankfurt, Dublin or Paris. You can use these centers, which does not require much effort.

SPIEGEL: Many European financial centers are trying to attract business away from London. The Hesse economic minister will go there in August and lobby for Frankfurt.

Marsh: The Parisians were already here. Competition here is good for business. There it is not just one, but 10 rivals -- that may help London. The City can operate the classic British game, the balance of power, playing off rivals against each other.

SPIEGEL: Frankfurt's hopes are premature?

Marsh: Frankfurt will not transform itself overnight into a major international financial center. Frankfurt and London could complement each other. Frankfurt could focus on financing EU industry, and London could take the global operations.

SPIEGEL: This week, shareholders have agreed to the Frankfurt-London stock exchange merger. Is it realistic to have the headquarters in the UK?

Marsh: It wouldn't be very clever to have the legal seat of the company in London. Maybe they could find another place, perhaps Amsterdam or Dublin.

SPIEGEL: The European Banking Authority will likely have to pull out of London.

Marsh: That would be a setback for the City. But we expect there'll be another two and a half years before Britain leaves the EU. A lot can happen. European politicians' ability to find compromises never ceases to amaze.

SPIEGEL: The UK is looking for a post-EU model. How would this look?

Marsh: It is certainly not like the Swiss model, nor Albanian, nor Greenlandic. I hope this doesn't sound nationalistic -- it should be a British way. There is a tendency in Germany to think that the British always want special treatment -- and that is true: We want special treatment.

SPIEGEL: And what does this consist of?

Marsh: We need to manage a compromise between our expectations and the EU's: We will still pay into the EU budget, but significantly less. We will control immigration more rigorously. And we want to maintain access to the EU internal market.

SPIEGEL: Do you really think Europe will allow this? If so, then EU critics in the Netherlands or Austria will wish to emulate this British model and leave the EU.

Marsh: That's right; the EU can't be too generous toward Britain. On the other hand, we have time on our side. Britain will probably not have a general election until 2020, while the German, Dutch and French will all go to the polls next year. Prime Minister Theresa May has time to develop Britain's European position. She can build on the UK's special status outside the euro area, where we are one of the largest trading partners. We will find a form of British exceptionalism. Frank Sinatra's "I Did It My Way" may become for the UK, "We did it May way."

SPIEGEL: What might this "May way" look like? Will the UK turn itself into a low-tax paradise with minimum regulation?

Marsh: We will certainly not become a European version of the Cayman Islands -- we cannot afford that. Banking regulation should be at least as strict as in the EU. The financial crisis has taught us that less regulation leads to poorer results.

SPIEGEL: There are a lot of similarities between the prime minister and Chancellor Angela Merkel, this was obvious when May visited Merkel on July 20 in Berlin: They are of a similar age, similar origin and they are similarly pragmatic. Will that help British negotiations?

Marsh: There is good chemistry between the two. You can talk of "Angela May and Theresa Merkel" as Europe's new tandem. Yet the chancellor faces the tougher task. Her room for maneuver is narrowing, the more she faces Europe's economic problems: the debt issues in Greece, the banking crisis in Italy, the monetary policy of the European Central Bank.


SPIEGEL: What should she do?


Marsh: She is in a dilemma. Merkel's supporters may desert her if she's too conciliatory. But then the Germans cannot always say "no" when it comes to aid for countries in crisis or softening the Maastricht criteria (on deficit spending). They don't have the strength.

SPIEGEL: Who will suffer most from Brexit: the UK or the rest of Europe?

Marsh: The British face a short, sharp shock that will subside relatively quickly. In Continental Europe, the process will last longer and be more painful. Although I voted against leaving the EU, I see Britain's s future more optimistically than that of the rest of Europe. Yet if Germany and the UK formed an alliance, both would have it easier.

About David Marsh

Andrea Artz / DER SPIEGEL
David Marsh, 64, is a leading expert on the European financial industry. He is the co-founder and managing director of the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum, a London think tank for financial and economic issues. He previously worked for various financial institutions and as a journalist. Between 1978 and 1995, he worked for the Financial Times in Germany, France and England.

A neat summary of Brexit to date -

And of course the Brits want special treatment.  They're British.   [:D
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Offline Thucydides

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #254 on: August 18, 2016, 21:24:26 »
Defying expectations; UK unemployment falls after the Brexit:

http://order-order.com/2016/08/17/unemployment-falls-brexit/

Quote
guardian
Enjoy these two entries from the Guardian politics liveblog this morning:

8:09am: UK jobless claims expected to rise following Brexit vote – Economists polled by Reuters are expecting a 9,500 jump in claims

9:34am: A big surprise in the labour market data: the number of people claiming unemployment benefits fell by 8,600 in July, a month after the Brexit vote. No sign yet then that the Brexit vote is hurting the jobs market…

Economists wrong about the impact of Brexit, shocker. “We’ve heard enough from experts…”
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #255 on: August 27, 2016, 11:27:30 »
Sir Humphrey's heir: "Brexit is not inevitable and Britain could remain in the EU, says Lord O'Donnell"

Quote
.. no "rush" ...

...

Before his peerage, Sir Gus O'Donnell, as he was then known, was in charge of the Civil Service between 2005 and 2011 under three prime ministers - Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and David Cameron.

The crossbench peer said: "Lots of people will say, 'We've had the referendum, we've decided to go out, so that's it, it's all over'.

"But it very much depends what happens to public opinion and whether the EU changes before then.

"It might be that the broader, more loosely aligned group, is something that the UK is happy being a member of."

... complicated and take "a very long time"...

..... "a huge administrative and legislative change" ....

....

Lord O'Donnell also warned against rushing to trigger Article 50, which starts a two-year countdown to Brexit.

"The key for Government is to have a strategic plan to say 'what kind of UK do we want? What is our place in the world? What are we trying to achieve in these negotiations'?"he told BBC Radio 4's Today programme.

"Once you have got those strategic decisions sorted out, then you can go about thinking about 'so when should we implement Article 50?' I wouldn't be in a rush."....

....
He added that elections in France and Germany next year meant "it is not even clear which leaders our Prime Minister will be negotiating with, so I don't think there's any great rush to do it".....

... it was going to be a "tough ask" for the civil service to take the UK out of the EU because Britain was "very short" of trade negotiators.

..."It is a big task, an enormous task that will take up a lot of the time both of the Government and Parliament over the rest of this Parliament."

The counter-point: "Gus O'Donnell has made a mistake. Even the suspicion that civil servants will try to block Brexit is dangerous"

And in other news, with disastrous timing, Sir Anthony Jay has just died.



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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #256 on: August 28, 2016, 20:35:21 »
Sir Humphrey's heir: "Brexit is not inevitable and Britain could remain in the EU, says Lord O'Donnell"

The counter-point: "Gus O'Donnell has made a mistake. Even the suspicion that civil servants will try to block Brexit is dangerous"

And in other news, with disastrous timing, Sir Anthony Jay has just died.

Why bother staying in the EU? The UK has a lot more going for it than it realizes...

http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/brexit-what-next-reasons-to-be-positive-eu-referendum-jeremy-corbyn-a7104016.html
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #257 on: August 28, 2016, 20:43:38 »
Why bother staying in the EU? The UK has a lot more going for it than it realizes...

http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/brexit-what-next-reasons-to-be-positive-eu-referendum-jeremy-corbyn-a7104016.html

After all, who else could have invented a currency system based on 20s and 12s, and then tossed in guineas for the upper classes? And for the mechanically-minded, the British automotive industry aimed at frustrating the home mechanic!

My RCAC friends are invited to discuss Centurion maintenance. 

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #258 on: August 28, 2016, 20:59:26 »
After all, who else could have invented a currency system based on 20s and 12s, and then tossed in guineas for the upper classes? And for the mechanically-minded, the British automotive industry aimed at frustrating the home mechanic!

My RCAC friends are invited to discuss Centurion maintenance.

2 farthings, one ha'penny
2 ha'pennies, one penny
Tuppenny bit
Thruppenny bit
Sixpenny bit
12 pennies, one shilling
2 shillings, one florin
2 shillings and sixpence, half a crown
5 shillings, one crown
20 shillings, one pound
21 shillings, one guinea (which I never actually saw, nor did I see a sovereign)

There - what's so hard about that?  Had it all figured by the time I was six.  How else was I going to buy my Kit Kat on the way to school? 
Also worked wonders when I came to working in bases other than 10 - silly decimal system.
 
Edit: in any event - according to Wiki - we can blame the Dutch.

"Low Countries

In the principalities covering present Netherlands, Belgium and Luxemburg, the cognate term schelling was used as an equivalent 'arithmetic' currency, a 'solidus' representing 12 'denarii' or 1/20 'pound', while actual coins were rarely physical multiples of it, but still expressed in these terms."

We also got the Florin from Florence.

International monetary exchange.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2016, 21:09:40 by Chris Pook »
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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #259 on: August 29, 2016, 01:04:38 »
After all, who else could have invented a currency system based on 20s and 12s, and then tossed in guineas for the upper classes? And for the mechanically-minded, the British automotive industry aimed at frustrating the home mechanic!

My RCAC friends are invited to discuss Centurion maintenance.

I'm guessing the global system of trade they established and dominated for centuries will stand them in good stead, if reinvigorated in a new form freed from the requirement to kow tow to an ever increasingly cloistered and anti-competitive EU.
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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #260 on: August 30, 2016, 11:09:08 »
This is curious.

The Daily Express loves its Gotcha! headlines.  It also loves Euro-baiting.  This headline is not a big surprise as their headlines rarely have much to do with the meat of the article or the position of characters in the piece.

Quote
FEDERAL EU BLUEPRINT: Brussels SIX-POINT plot to turn Europe into a SUPERSTATE unveiled

http://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/705229/European-Union-Brussels-EU-superstate-unveiled-MEP-Guy-Verhofstadt

What is interesting is this one comment buried in the body of the article:

Quote
Instead, member states should be given an ultimatum to either accept all the terms the Brussels club lays down or leave and become an “associate member” with access only to the single market.

Given that access to the Single Market is the only real sticking point for the Brits - the only thing they really want from the EU - I sense that "Brussels" may be telegraphing that it is ready to concede the match and let Britain have access on bespoke terms.

The debate then shifts to what those terms are.

My current sense of the state of play is that when Article 50 is triggered a deal will be signed very shortly afterwards.   A lot of negotiation seems to be going on despite the ban on negotiation prior to Article 50.

It is in everyone's interest to clear this matter up quickly.  Short term economic and geo-political realities will trump philosophical principles.
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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #261 on: August 30, 2016, 20:15:12 »
Interesting move by the EU, considering that the biggest complaint is interference by unelected foreign politicians on state matters.

And it also has implications for future trade negotiations between the US and Europe.

Apple Ordered by EU to Repay $14.5 Billion in Irish Tax Breaks
EU says tax deal with Ireland allowed Apple to pay almost zero tax on European profits between 2003 and 2014


http://www.wsj.com/articles/apple-received-14-5-billion-in-illegal-tax-benefits-from-ireland-1472551598

Quote
The European Union’s antitrust regulator has demanded that Ireland recoup roughly €13 billion ($14.5 billion) of unpaid taxes accumulated over more than a decade by Apple Inc., a move that intensifies a feud between the EU and the U.S. over the bloc’s tax probes into American companies.

The size of the tax demand, which came in a formal decision issued Tuesday, risks further unsettling multinational companies, which face a broader international effort to curb aggressive tax avoidance. But the commission’s decision shows companies could be on the hook for past behavior and potentially be handed big bills for allegedly unpaid back taxes.

The sum is the highest ever demanded under the EU’s longstanding rules that forbid companies from gaining advantages over competitors because of government help.

The decision—which ordered a payment well above most analysts’ expectations— is likely to be the subject of years of appeals up to the EU’s top court. It could also set off a broader scramble by the U.S. and individual EU governments over the right to tax billions of dollars of offshore profits made by Apple and other large companies.

Apple disputed the reasoning of the decision and said it would appeal. Chief Executive Tim Cook, in an open letter, added: “Apple follows the law and we pay all the taxes we owe.”

Irish Finance Minister Michael Noonan said he disagreed “profoundly” with the European Commission’s decision and said Ireland would appeal the decision in order “to defend the integrity of our tax system.”

The European Commission said tax arrangements that Ireland offered Apple in 1991 and 2007 allowed the company to pay annual tax rates of between 0.005% and 1% on its European profits for over a decade to 2014, by designating only a tiny portion of its profit as taxable in Ireland.

“The commission’s investigation concluded that Ireland granted illegal tax benefits to Apple, which enabled it to pay substantially less tax than other businesses over many years,” said European antitrust commissioner Margrethe Vestager.

Mr. Cook described the decision as “an effort to rewrite Apple’s history in Europe, ignore Ireland’s tax laws and upend the international tax system in the process.”

Under EU rules, Ireland has four months to calculate the exact amount the commission says Apple owes and collect the cash. Apple, whose shares fell by 0.8% Tuesday in New York, said it would put the money in an escrow account pending appeals.

Ms. Vestager said Apple would also be expected in the future to pay taxes based on the ruling, but it is unclear how much that would boost the company’s effective tax rate because Apple changed its European tax structure in 2015.

Lawyers said that the EU had been aggressive in calculating the amount of unpaid taxes it says Apple owes. “It certainly is a massive amount,” Philipp Werner, a Brussels-based partner at law firm Jones Day. Apple posted a profit of $7.8 billion in its most recent quarter.

The Obama administration and U.S. lawmakers said the decision upended international tax norms and could cut into the U.S. tax base by giving companies foreign tax credits that would reduce their eventual U.S. tax bills.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. Treasury Department said “retroactive tax assessments by the commission are unfair, contrary to well-established legal principles, and call into question the tax rules of individual Member States.”
It's hard to win an argument against a smart person, it's damned near impossible against a stupid person.

There is no God, and life is just a myth.

"He who drinks, sleeps. He who sleeps, does not sin. He who does not sin, is holy. Therefore he who drinks, is holy."

Let's Go CAPS!

Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #262 on: August 30, 2016, 20:41:35 »
And further to that - this from Ambrose Evans-Pritchard

Quote
... But there is little doubt that free trade advocates have lost the battle for public opinion in Europe, where activists have turned TTIP into a Gothic horror story, a secretive stitch-up by corporate lawyers that allows capitalist interests to game the international system at the expense of working people.

The Left has made much of negotiation documents leaked to Greenpeace that suggest the EU’s ‘precautionary principle’ has succumbed to the rival ‘risk based’ doctrine of the US, allegedly opening the way to a “race to the bottom in environmental, consumer protection, and public health standards”. Free traders have struggled to rebut this.

Mr Korteweg said the EU elites took the public for granted, failing to sense the growing backlash against globalisation. “They dropped the ball and lost control in framing the narrative,” he said.

The parallel drama in the US has different contours. Public wrath is largely directed at the Pacific trade pact (TPP), seen as a tool for multinationals to undercut US standards by exploiting cheap labour and lower ecological standards in Asia.

 Americans are more relaxed about free trade with Europe. TTIP has not been a major issue in the presidential campaign, though Donald Trump would almost certainly kill it in the unlikely event that he were elected president.

The TTIP crisis is essentially a European story. The project is not yet dead but support is ebbing away in a string of countries. While German Chancellor Angela Merkel still supports the talks, just 17pc of the German public back the accord. She can no longer keep her Social Democrat (SPD) partners in the coalition fully on board.

Sigmar Gabriel, the German economy minister, said over the weekend that talks were going nowhere. “The negotiations with the US have de facto failed because the Europeans would naturally not submit to American demands. I can’t imagine that the social democrat movement in Europe will opt to carry on and say ‘we stick to the whole bad deal’”, he said.

Two comments

- personal belief - the precautionary principle is the ultimate statement of conservatism - thou shalt not change, modify or adjust

- Sigmar Gabriel - is of the Social Democratic Party of Germany -  along with Hollande's Socialist Party - charter members of the Socialist International.  Britain's Labour Party is an Observer.  The Socialist International is the organizing forum for the social democrat movement. This is the supra-national project driving the EU.
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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #263 on: September 07, 2016, 13:43:39 »
Quote
Britain is building a 13 foot-high concrete wall to keep migrants out

POSTMEDIA NETWORK

FIRST POSTED: WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 07, 2016 09:34 AM MDT | UPDATED: WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 07, 2016 09:47 AM MDT

Calais

Migrants walk past security fencing at the Jungle migrant camp on Sept. 6, 2016, in Calais, France. (Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Donald Trump will be proud.

Britain is constructing a 13 foot-high concrete wall to stop migrants reaching the U.K. from the northern French port of Calais.

The $30-million wall will run about 1 km around the main highway and port.

It has only taken 458 years.....

Quote
Richard Cavendish remembers how France took Calais, the last continental possession of England, on January 7th, 1558.

Taken by Edward III in 1347, Calais had become the main port through which English wool was profitably exported abroad. From 1536 it sent members to the English parliament and the town’s fortifications were repaired in Henry VIII’s time, but the castle was allowed to fall into decay and the garrison was reduced.

In 1557 when Mary Tudor was queen, her husband Philip of Spain involved England in war with Henri II of France. The French king saw an opportunity and in December 1557 Philip sent word to London of an impending attack on Calais. The government decided to send reinforcements under the Earl of Rutland, but England was gripped by so serious an epidemic of influenza that fit men were difficult to find. Rutland’s expedition embarked on January 2nd, but when they arrived they found that the Duke of Guise had struck swiftly across the frozen marshes on the town’s seaward side to seize the entrance to the harbour and the fort that commanded it. The English were unable to reach the town, which the French bombarded to such effect that it surrendered on the 7th. Plans for a counter-attack were abandoned and Queen Mary famously said that when she died, Calais would be found engraved on her heart.

http://www.historytoday.com/richard-cavendish/fall-calais
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Offline Thucydides

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #264 on: September 07, 2016, 13:59:13 »
Will the UK make France pay for the wall..... ;)
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #265 on: September 07, 2016, 14:28:15 »
No. But it is Brit Coppers on French soil.
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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #266 on: September 21, 2016, 15:57:09 »
https://www.facebook.com/TribesPeople/videos/1671348653124505/

The link goes to a video timeline of European spheres of influence (more than just borders it appears to show regime change as well) for the last 1000 years
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Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #267 on: October 12, 2016, 19:34:12 »
One law for thee and another for me

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/10/12/if-europe-insists-on-a-hard-brexit-so-be-it/

Quote
If Europe insists on a hard Brexit, so be it

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard 12 OCTOBER 2016 • 8:28PM

If the central purpose of Brexit is to restore the supremacy of Parliament, we should congratulate Labour for forcing a debate on the proposed terms of withdrawal. Let us demand that MPs should have a vote as well.

Brexit belongs to no faction. The referendum was not an election where the winner takes all. The circumstances are entirely sui generis and extremely delicate.

Both Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain, and the constitutional implications of this have yet to be confronted. A great majority of those below the age of thirty opposed Brexit, and many feel betrayed. It amounts to an inter-generational crisis.
 
The exact contours of Brexit were never defined. There was no Manifesto. The binary ballot presented to us on June 23 - nolens volens - contained not a single word about immigration. Many who voted to leave the EU want a liberal, amicable, open settlement with Europe.

It is the proper role of Parliament to discern the national will, and to impose its verdict on ministers. Theresa May is well-advised to bow to this imperative before Article 50 is triggered, even if raucous wrangling in the House greatly complicates negotiating tactics with Brussels.

That said, one must guard against certain vested interests in the City that are actively seeking to whip up hysteria in financial markets. There is an attempt underway to create a bad Brexit narrative in the hope of overturning it, or at least to frighten the country into a minimalist outcome that achieves much the same thing.

The interests of the financial elites should not be conflated with the national interest. A legitimate case can be made that they are in conflict.

Paul Krugman, the Nobel trade theorist, says the UK has been suffering from a variant of the "Dutch Disease", an over-reliance on finance that drove up pound and hollowed out manufacturing industries. This economic deformation has greatly enriched London's financial set and those who service its wealth, if non-one else.

There may be serious economic trials ahead as we extract ourselves from the EU after more than forty years, but the slump in sterling is not one of them. The devaluation is necessary and desirable. The pound is now near 'fair value' based on the real effective exchange rate used by the International Monetary Fund.

All that has happened is a correction of the extreme over-valuation of sterling before Brexit, caused by capital inflows. This left the country with the worst current account deficit in peace-time since records began in the 18th Century.

The fall is roughly comparable to the devaluation from 2007 to 2008 - though the same financial elites who talk so much of Armageddon today played it down on that occasion, mindful that their own banking crisis was the trigger.

The latest fall in sterling is comparable to 2008, which proved benign

We can argue over how much the 2008 devaluation helped but it clearly acted as shock absorber at a crucial moment. It was in any case a far less painful way to restore short-term competitiveness than the 'internal devaluations' and mass unemployment suffered by the eurozone's Club Med bloc.

But there is a deeper point today that is often overlooked. Central banks across the developed world are caught in a deflationary trap. The 'Wicksellian' or natural rate of interest has been falling ever lower with each economic cycle and is now at or below zero in half the global economy,  a full seven years into the expansion.

This paralyses monetary policy and has dark implications for the next downturn. It is why central banks are desperately trying to drive down their currencies to gain a little breathing room, or in the case of the US Federal Reserve to stop the dollar rising.

By the accident of Brexit, Britain has pulled off a Wicksellian adjustment that eludes others.

With luck,  the economy may even generate a few flickers of inflation, enough to let the Bank of England raise interest rates and start to restore 'intertemporal' equilibrium.

Personally, I have been in favour of a "soft Brexit" that preserves unfettered access to the single market and passporting rights for the City, but not at any political cost - and certainly not if it means submitting to the European Court, which so cynically struck down our treaty opt-out on the Charter in a grab for sweeping jurisdiction.

But what has caused me to harden my view - somewhat - is the open intimidation by a number of EU political leaders. "There must be a threat," said French president Francois Hollande. "There must be a price... otherwise other countries or other parties will want to leave the European Union."

These are remarkable comments in all kinds of ways, not least in that the leader of a democratic state is threatening a neighbouring democracy and military ally. What he is also admitting - à son insu - is that the union is held together only by fear. He might as well write its epitaph.


Mr Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel invariably fall back on the four freedoms -movement, goods, services, and capital  -enshrined in EU treaty law, as if they were sacrosanct.

These freedoms are nothing but pious shibboleths. They often do not exist, and where they do exist they are routinely honoured in the breach. Services make up 70pc of the EU economy yet account for just 22pc of internal EU trade. All attempts to open services up to cross-border commerce have been defeated, to the detriment of Britain.

The sorry saga of the Services Directive in 2006 tells all you need to know about how the EU works. "The French and Germans gutted it," said Professor Alan Riley from the Institute for Statecraft.

The 'country of origin rule' that would have allowed firms to operate anywhere in the EU under their own domestic law was dropped, casualty of the "Polish plumber" scare. The directive did not cover health care, transport, legal services, professions, tax experts, and the like. Germany protected it guilds.


Online and digital trade across borders remains minimal, riddled with barriers. Britain's All-Party Parliamentary Group for European Reform concluded that "there is no single market in services in any meaningful sense."

As Brussels correspondent I covered the parallel fiasco of the takeover directive. This too was sabotaged by France and Germany,  after fourteen wasted years. They reinstated poison pills and a host of tricks in an explicit attempt to stop 'Anglo-Saxon predators' taking over their companies, even as their own companies were free to stalk British prey.

"It was disgusting," one Commission official told me at the time. Frits Bolkestein, the quixotic single market chief, was despondent.  "It is tragic to see how Europe's broader interests can be frustrated by certain narrow interests," he said.

So much for the freedoms of capital and services. Nor has the free movement of people been strictly upheld. France and Germany - unlike Britain - blocked access to their labour markets and welfare systems for East Europeans for seven years after they joined the EU in 2004. It was political decision.

The four freedoms are really just aspirational guidelines, enforced when expedient, neglected at other times. The rigid exhortations from Paris, Berlin, and Brussels that there can be no free trade with Britain unless there is unrestricted migration - even after leaving the EU - is politics masquerading as principle. If they want to find a compromise solution, they can do so easily.

It is an odd spectacle. On the one hand the EU is so insecure that it talks of punishing Britain to deter other escapees; on the other it exhibits an imperial reflex, demanding submission entirely on its own terms, seemingly unable to accept or even to imagine a reciprocal trading relationship based on sovereign equality.

Mr Hollande wishes to bring about the hardest possible Brexit. If this proves to be the EU position - and it may not be, since it is lunacy and he for one will soon be irrelevant - it does at least clarify the issue.

A hard Brexit was never my preference. While the economic benefits of the EU customs union are greatly overstated, it would be no small matter to unwind the nexus of cross-border supply chains that has evolved over decades.

But if that is the only choice, so be it.

It was ever thus

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/eu/11207721/Why-do-France-and-Germany-keep-breaking-EU-rules.html

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Offline Thucydides

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #268 on: October 24, 2016, 12:58:46 »
Hard Brexit might not go as well for Europe as they would like to think:

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-tax-idUSKCN12N09K

Quote
UK could slash corporation tax to 10 percent if EU blocks Brexit trade deal: Sunday Times
By Kylie MacLellan | LONDON

Britain could slash corporation tax to 10 percent if the European Union refuses to agree a post-Brexit free trade deal or blocks UK-based banks from accessing its market, the Sunday Times reported, citing an unidentified source.

The newspaper said the idea of halving the headline rate from 20 percent had been put forward by Prime Minister Theresa May's advisers amid growing fears other EU member states will take a hard line in Brexit negotiations.

The tax cut would be used to try and persuade the EU to grant "passporting" rights for financial services firms to continue operating across the EU, the newspaper said, in a sign of the likely animosity of the upcoming divorce talks.

At a Brussels summit last week EU leaders were clear they would not allow Britain to "cherry pick" things such as free access to the market for certain sectors without taking on the full responsibilities of EU membership.

"People say we have not got any cards," the newspaper quoted an unidentified source familiar with the British government's thinking as saying.

"We have some quite good cards we can play if they start getting difficult with us. If they're saying no passporting and high trade tariffs we can cut corporation tax to 10 percent," the newspaper quoted an anonymous source as saying," the source was quoted as saying.

Cutting corporation tax could attract companies away from the EU to Britain, boosting its economy and challenging Ireland's preeminence as Europe's low tax home for large international companies.

EU leaders have warned that if Britain places limits on the free movement people it will lose its preferential access to the single market, leaving London-based international banks worried they could lose their right to sell services across Europe.

Writing in the Observer newspaper, the chief executive of the British Bankers' Association said the uncertainty over Britain's future relationship with the EU meant most international banks were already looking at which operations they would need to move out of the UK.

"Their hands are quivering over the relocate button. Many smaller banks plan to start relocations before Christmas; bigger banks are expected to start in the first quarter of next year," Anthony Browne wrote.

Japanese carmaker Nissan (7201.T), whose Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn met May this month to discuss his concerns over Brexit, on Sunday denied a story in the Telegraph newspaper that it had decided to make its new Qashqai model in Britain.

Nissan's CEO has warned he could scrap potential new investment in Britain's biggest car plant unless the government pledges compensation for any increased tax costs resulting from Brexit.

"No decision has yet been taken. That decision making process concludes next month," a spokesman at Nissan told Reuters.

(Additional reporting by Costas Pitas; editing by Guy Faulconbridge)
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Canuck_Jock

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #269 on: October 24, 2016, 14:32:56 »
Hard Brexit might not go as well for Europe as they would like to think:

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-tax-idUSKCN12N09K

Good call.  George Osborne suggested corporation tax cuts last spring after the vote.  I recall the EU wasn't particularly pleased.  But, push comes to shove, if the EU wants to apply revenge over common interest, corporation tax cuts are fair game.

Offline Thucydides

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #270 on: November 05, 2016, 22:06:44 »
The Brexit was a triumph of populism and democracy, now the Remain faction is attempting to derail the "will of the people". It is interesting to see how they are trying to get their "correct" result. Considering Clegg leads a party with only 8 seats, I can;t see this having a happy long term result for them:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3907376/Nick-Clegg-Brexit-saboteur-Former-Lib-Dem-leader-branded-undemocratic-reveals-plans-use-unelected-Peers-water-EU-exit.html

Quote
Nick Clegg the Brexit saboteur: Former Lib Dem leader is branded undemocratic as he reveals his plans to use unelected Peers to water down EU exit

Theresa May vows to defeat 'undemocratic plot' to slow down Brexit
Nick Clegg said he would propose amendments in Parliament vote
Former Lib Dem leader wants 'soft Brexit' allowing workers free access
But Prime Minister is confident Supreme Court appeal will succeed
By JAMES SLACK POLITICAL EDITOR FOR THE DAILY MAIL
PUBLISHED: 00:28 GMT, 5 November 2016 | UPDATED: 00:52 GMT, 5 November 2016

Theresa May last night vowed to face down a ‘profoundly undemocratic plot’ by Nick Clegg and a band of unelected peers to frustrate Brexit.

The former Lib Dem leader said he would take advantage of a High Court ruling saying Parliament must have a vote on leaving the EU to try to derail the Government’s plans.

Mr Clegg – who left his party with only eight MPs after he took it to the brink of annihilation at last year’s general election – said he would table amendments at Westminster which allow only for a so-called ‘soft Brexit’.

This would involve keeping Britain inside the single market, and continuing to allow EU migrant workers free access to the UK.

Critics said it was proof the only reason MPs had been demanding the courts give them a say was so they could sabotage Brexit.

The Prime Minister yesterday said she was ‘confident’ that an appeal to the Supreme Court would succeed – and that she would be able to launch Brexit negotiations without a vote by MPs or peers.

In a series of phone calls to European leaders, she insisted her timetable for triggering Article 50 – the two-year process for leaving the EU – in March would not be blown off course by the row with the courts.

On a visit to Germany, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson also insisted it was full-steam ahead.

He said: ‘You can’t put the toothpaste back in the tube. I would really not read too much into the legal decisions that you have just seen.’

'Hard or soft, sweet or dry, there are 50 shades of Brexit':...

MP who quit over Brexit saying he can no longer live with...

But one of Mrs May’s ministers made it plain the Government would fight Mr Clegg all the way if it came to the crunch.

David Jones, Minister of State at the Department for Exiting the European Union, said: ‘Nick Clegg has given the game away.

‘He didn’t like the answer the people gave in the referendum and now he’s admitted he wants to work with other parties to try to block the process of Britain leaving the EU. It is profoundly anti-democratic.’

Yesterday, there was continuing fury about the High Court’s decision to force a vote in Parliament on triggering Article 50.

If the appeal to the Supreme Court fails, it will mean the introduction of an Act of Parliament.

Mr Clegg and other Remainers would then be able to amend the legislation to try to get their own way.

In a radio interview, the former Lib Dem leader made clear he was already plotting how to do this.

Mr Clegg told the BBC: ‘We will seek ... to amend the legislation such that Parliament would say to Government that it should pursue a soft Brexit.

'There should be some means by which the British people can have a say on the final deal.’

He added: ‘If the Government, on the other hand, digs its heels in and says, “we are going to go for a more self-harming, hard Brexit and not give anyone a say on the final package”, then of course I think people will say “hang on a minute, we are not sure we are going to give you the consent to proceed on that basis”.’

There is particular concern that the 104 Lib Dem peers in the Lords could block or delay Article 50.

Yesterday, a Tory peer who supports Remain said she would side with attempts to frustrate the will of the 17.4million who voted to leave.

Baroness Wheatcroft said Mrs May’s deadline of triggering Article 50 by the end of March looked like ‘an impossible target’.

She added: ‘I think that it’s only right to delay until we have a clearer idea of what it actually entails and I think there will be others in the Lords who feel the same way.

'How many, it’s hard to say, but I think there could be a majority who’d be in favour of delaying Article 50.’

Labour MPs also said they would vote to block Brexit. Tottenham MP David Lammy said: ‘My constituents voted overwhelmingly to remain. So I’ll represent my constituents in Parliament.’

Remainers have already held meetings on how to use the judgment to force the Government to reveal its hand.

Tory ex-cabinet minister Theresa Villiers said: ‘Frankly I think it would be a constitutional outrage if unelected Liberal Democrat peers were to stand in the way of a clear result of a referendum in which 33million people took part.’

Fellow Tory MP Charlie Elphicke added: ‘It is shameful to see unelected peers publicly plotting to subvert the will of the people.’

In a series of calls yesterday, Mrs May told European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker and Germany’s Angela Merkel she is confident the Supreme Court will overturn the High Court’s ‘disappointing’ ruling.

The case is due to be heard in December, with a verdict due in January.

No 10 dismissed concerns that it was wrong to criticise the judges who took the decision.

The Prime Minister’s spokesman said: ‘I don’t think the British judiciary is being undermined.’

Angry NHS worker says she 'hopes Brexiters children get sick'

Ministers have privately warned the decision could delay the triggering of Article 50 by up to a year.

But senior Government sources said that – if the appeal was lost – emergency legislation would be introduced which could be passed within a week.

The time for debates would be limited and the Commons and Lords would be ‘dared’ to defy the wishes of the of the public.

Opposition MPs who support Remain yesterday criticised the Daily Mail and other national newspapers over their coverage of the High Court ruling.

They claimed it was wrong to attack the panel of three judges, headed by the Lord Chief Justice, which delivered the verdict.

The Mail’s front page was headlined ‘Enemies of the people’, with pictures of the three judges.

Labour spokesman Richard Burgon said it was ‘unacceptable’ to attack the judges personally.

He criticised Liz Truss, the Lord Chancellor, for not speaking out in defence of the ‘independence’ of the judiciary.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Online Ostrozac

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #271 on: November 06, 2016, 05:46:02 »
The Brexit was a triumph of populism and democracy,

As an alternate observation, the Brexit vote was a side effect of an internal civil war within the Conservative Party -- a civil war that shows no signs of slowing down. And given the weak state of Her Brittanic Majesty's Opposition, there's really no outside force which would act as a common enemy to unify the Tories. An election could be held tomorrow, and the Tories would win a resounding majority -- but it still wouldn't solve anything as the party itself is hopelessly divided.

Expect shenanigans for several years from both sides (both Euroskeptic and Europhile).

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #272 on: November 06, 2016, 08:58:04 »
As an alternate observation, the Brexit vote was a side effect of an internal civil war within the Conservative Party -- a civil war that shows no signs of slowing down. And given the weak state of Her Brittanic Majesty's Opposition, there's really no outside force which would act as a common enemy to unify the Tories. An election could be held tomorrow, and the Tories would win a resounding majority -- but it still wouldn't solve anything as the party itself is hopelessly divided.

Expect shenanigans for several years from both sides (both Euroskeptic and Europhile).

Yes, but it reflects splits that go well beyond the Conservative Party, the UK or even Europe.

An especially crude form of populism is on the rise, reminiscent of the 19th century "Know Nothing" nativist movement in America or even of US Senator Joseph McCarthy in the 20th century ...



... but it is everywhere, including amongst Canadian Conservatives who want to ban headscarves and have "loyalty checks."

The splits are highly visible in all of Europe and in America and, I daresay, in Canada, too ... and not just inside the CPC. They, the populists, will, I am fairly certain, run their course, albeit not without some bloodshed, maybe even in November 2008 when some people don't get what they want. Populism is a throwback to Athenian "democracy" which was, by and large, a form of mob rule in which the loudest, often  most outrageous "voice" carried the day. One would like to think that we have, over the past couple of thousand years, tempered the "tyranny of the majority," but ...  :dunno:
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 #273 on: November 06, 2016, 12:00:25 »
The problem is really quite simple - the leaders are no longer leading in a direction that others wish to be led.

Until those that see themselves as leaders stop patting themselves on the back for coming up with ever new and interesting ideas, promoting change, and thereby increasing the rate of change then the problems will continue.

They are setting themselves apart from those who have quite enough change in their lives already from a variety of other causes. 

The Deplorables don't need self important gits with good idea fairies on their shoulders proposing the stabling of unicorns in their back yards.

"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Brexit Vote: 51.9% leave, 48.1% stay
« Reply #274 on: November 06, 2016, 12:49:57 »
And by the way, constant denigration of the other as Deplorables, know-nothings, red-necks, crackers, populists, the uneducated..... The Old Contemptibles..... will not have the desired effect. Unless, of course, one doesn't desire reconciliation.
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"