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October 12, 2016



By this reasoning anyone who voted for Blair (I did not) following his Chicago speech on Liberal interventionism should have know what was likely to happen. And take some responsibility. Including Iraq.

No, logically fallacious.


I would mark it a badge of honour being slagged off by the Zionist cheerleader for imperialist wars, Nick Cohen. Imperialist wars approved by Israel, of course.


We could speculate all day long, or we could look at the evidence. The Ashcroft poll immediately post the Ref has the biggest n, and concludes that immigration was the #2 issue for brexiteers. #1 was control over legislation.



I voted Leave, and in my head I was voting for a Hannan-esqe model. And now I see my ideal being perverted by the Remainers who dominate the Cabinet and I am OK with that.
The reason I am OK with people making a decision I disagree with is because I voted for a controllable democracy that comes with a steering wheel, a brake and a reverse gear. The HoC gives me this. the EU does not. The EU is on a mono rail straight to ever-closer union. So I can happily see a poor decision being made safe in the knowledge that we can kick this lot out and elect someone else to repair the damage. That option value is somewhere between massive and infinitely valuable to me.


The difference between having one vote in a 45 million electorate and one in a 500 million electorate is not perceptible to me. As a member of the EU we pool some of our sovereignty with other countries for mutual benefit. But we obviously maintain overall sovereignty, or we would not be able to leave. In my view, leaving now will cause both economic and social damage to our country. While acknowledging that 52% of people who voted thought we should do so, I think it might have been wiser to wait until such time as our continuing membership represented a clear and present danger to our welfare.


Is the association fallacy a variation of the Dan Davies "good ideas don't need to supported by lies" test?



Gary i spot on here. And Duncurin I think the post-referendum events culminating in May's speech on the steps of Downing Street justify the view that the 45 million electorate is a much better vehicle than the 500 million electorate.

Luis Enrique

"And now I see my ideal being perverted by the Remainers who dominate the Cabinet"


So how do you think things would play out if we had more Foxes, Davises and Johnsons?

Gary Taylor

Brexiteers occupy 1 of the 3 great offices of state and 3 of the 22 cabinet slots in total.
So yes. Cabinet is in fact dominated by remainers

Harry Vimes

Who apparently should be sent to the Tower of London for 28 days [no trial] to teach them a lesson in democracy for having the temerity to represent the interests of over 16 million people who also live here according to yesterdays balanced and sane rantings in the Daily Express.


Harry - will this is why referenda are a bad idea. I voted leave but I'd have preferred not to have been asked.

The people who leave my jaw on the floor are the MPs who voted for a referendum then moaned when the public made a choice they didn't like. If you didn't think one of the options was viable, then don't vote to ask the public.

gastro george

But the referendum was never proposed to resolve the question on the ballot paper. It was a short-term political act by Cameron for internal party political reasons. He hoped to avoid a referendum, but also thought that, if it came to it, he could bluff his way through just like the Scottish referendum.


gastro george - quite. But the majority in parliament was 6:1. Lots of people now complaining had their chance to say this was a bad idea.

Harry Vimes

We are where we are Dipper and we need to get on with the job which is in front of us.

Can't speak for anyone else but it is a source of deep disappointment to see too many who waxed lyrical about democracy and taking back control fall silent on the subject whilst at the same time extending the rhetoric against immigrants towards 48% of their fellow citizens. That leader comment from the Express has wider support amongst the 52% and it's not just MP's who are the object of the "STFU or leave the place of your birth because it now belongs to us" advice which is increasingly being seen. It is also their neighbours who who are targeted with this rhetoric which, given the nature of crowds/mobs, sooner or later goes well beyond rhetoric to action, spurred on by unscrupulous newspapers and irresponsible politicians who lend an air of respectability to it.

Some democrats! What is ironic here is that such widespread attitudes and behaviours will only serve to break up the UK as parts split off from what is accurately observed to be the unthinking mob mentality who blame the results of their own actions on others. At some point they are going to run out of scapegoats and start turning on each other. Little wonder that Scotland is planning to distance itself from this nonsense and it would not be surprising to see London attempt to find some fix for itself.


understood Harry, but Brexit is clearly a risky process, and it is particularly irritating to see UK citizens trying their utmost to talk the country down and undermine our negotiating position. Many actively seem to want a bad outcome so they can feel justified. This is quite disgraceful.

All decent thinking people will condemn hate speak and intimidation of immigrants. However most of the hate speech I have seen has been directed at people who voted to leave.

In fact, I would go as far as to say your last paragraph does a bit of it.Both Scotland and London have benefited from government expenditure at the expense of english regions. When those regions protest you condemn them as exhibiting mob mentality. Are the SNP not a mob? Aren't people arguing for a separate London a mob?


@gary. We already had the democracy and option value you describe. We could vote in people to take us out of Europe. You're an idiot.


D. Parliament called a referendum. what were people who don't think we should be in the EU do? Vote to remain and hope a party comes along that wants to get out of the EU?

Calling people idiots with regards to the referendum doesn't narrow down the field much. Its been idiots every way you look. Sometimes even in the mirror.

gastro george

"... it is particularly irritating to see UK citizens trying their utmost to talk the country down and undermine our negotiating position."

That might be appropriate if we had a position to talk down, and any leverage in the negotiations.


gastro george.

Well if we don't have a position or leverage then what on earth were the government doing calling the referendum?

If we had voted in we would have been absolutely crucified by the commission as they would have known they could do what they like and we wouldn't leave. We would have had no position, and no leverage.


Judging by Donald Tusk's remarks today, the EU are only going to offer us the Full Monty. No wonderful deals, just in or out. That's certainly what I would do in their position.

If I were a Brexiteer I would be concerned that things will get sufficiently uncomfortable to turn public opinion against leaving before we actually do. There's nothing like a little suffering to concentrate the mind.


Duncurin - well I am a Brexiteer and I am concerned about that.

Where does that leave the UK as a nation? We can't leave. We have no power in the EU. The population of the UK heading to 80 million. It leaves millions of working class people in this country with on hope of their lives ever getting better as the dominant power (the European Commission) simply does not register their concerns as relevant to their project. A truly depressing picture.

Gary Taylor

@D lets use an example. Say I wanted to remain in the EU but reconfigure it as a small bureaucracy that had no supra-national powers or ambitions.
Are you saying the EU is configured in a way that makes that possible depending on which MEP s we vote for?

Harry Vimes

Well Dipper, there's plenty of available argument around which contradicts that notion about Scotland. For example, try checking out how much energy is exported from Scotland to feed the national Grid, and going near the rearrangement/gerrymandering of established sea borders to grab the oil is a very sore point up there.

Its like a lot of the BS that was put out by both sides in the EU Referendum. The suits are very effective at the repeating an untruth often enough, in this case the Scots are [as they like to term it] too wee, too poor etc that the trop about subsidy junkies gets accepted as established fact when its largely bollocks.

On the issue of regional funding three points need to be highlighted. Firstly, even though areas such as say, South Yorkshire received EU regeneration funding in the region of £1Billion around the turn of the century did not prevent that area recording a lower GDP per capita than Greece from 2001-11 - when the Greek crisis erupted. I don't know if the W Midlands got any EU funding but their GDP per capita also went lower than Greece in the aftermath of the 2008 crash. The question is why?

Which leads to the second point. The jobs and industries which the local economies of the communities in those regions, many of which voted out, depended on were not lost recently to immigrant labour. They were exported abroad because successive British Governments in thrall to the City of London failed to support those industries in the pursuit of a fast buck. We were importing coal from Poland, South America and other parts of the world outside Europe years and years before Poland entered the EU. Ditto for Steel and other manufacturing products.

Far more jobs and industries have been lost with the consequence of devastating whole communities and local economies for decades on end since the late 70's export of those industries from free capital movement than have ever been lost to immigrant labour. That is down to successive UK Governments cosying up in the Westminster bubble with Corporate Finance and Big Business. In terms of adverse effects on the metrics which are highlighted by those arguing strongly for Brexit immigration, the EU and free movement of labour don't even scale up alongside the adverse impacts on those metrics arising from free movement of Capital.

Yet, to hear what's been going on for far too long one would consider the opposite to be the case. The point being that if a problem exists for someone than if that someone wants to resolve it and do something about it the practical way to do so is to accurately identify from where the most pain is coming from. Concentrating on the gnat buzzing around and ignoring the elephant stamping on your foot is not going solve the problem, Nor will it engender much sympathy and understanding from those sharing the same room who are pointing at the elephant and getting verbal abuse and worse for their pains.

Yes. The EU has has morphed into what it is and it needs to be said that the UK has played a significant role in steering it in that direction - something I argued during the late 80's would happen. It was the UK Government which successfully (from the UK establishment's viewpoint) got the EU to widen its membership to include all those former Eastern bloc countries rather than allow the time for existing EU arrangements to deepen and the economies of those new members develop to a point where they could join on a more stable economic footing. The fact that UK Governments have been able to successfully blame their actions and policies on others, such as immigrants and the EU represents yet another "success'" As an aside, it was the Cameron UK Government which stopped the EU, with the UK veto, from imposing the same tarrifs on cheap Chinese steel as the US had done. So much for poor little no influence, no input UK.

Lets consider the big issue of this week, food. Its not doing the country down, as some people like to do because they can't be arsed to find a more coherent evidence based argument, when it is pointed out that we import too much food and the fall in the value of Sterling is going to have the biggest impact on those who can least afford it, many of whom voted for Brexit. For sure, the money and big finance men, as well as the corporations are deliberately turning the screw, like they always have done when they cannot get their own way.

However, the decline of food and energy sustainability (a key plank on the post war consenus up until 1979), as with industries, has not happened overnight and those who constantly voted in Governments who pursued neo liberalist voodoo economics have to shoulder some responsibility rather than hide behind football terrace level rhetoric blaming others for pointing out the bleedin' obvious.

Finally, the point about being in a superstate and wanting to regain control of your own decision making is not the exclusive property of one group of people. Is is equally applicable to the other so called "equal" state within the United Kingdom, Scotland as it is for the UK and the EU. What's sauce for the goose etc. It will be interesting to see how many who argued this line about the UK/EU relationship do a 180 degree about face when it comes to Scotland arguing the same point in regard to the Scotland/UK relationship.


@gary taylor. (not sure if you're also @gary?)

My point has nothing to do with MEPs. We can elect MPs from a party that wants to leave or that want to stay but will hold a referendum. As we recently did.



@gary taylor

To respond to your point.

No, it's extremely unlikely you can change the EU through electing MEPs. If you are @gary, though, your original point is that you appreciate the option value of being able to kick out rubbish UK MPs but you can't kick out the whoever's in charge of the EU. My point is that we have the option to leave the EU by electing UK MPs....


@ Harry Vimes. Lots of well argued stuff there.

I completely get the point about Scotland. I would point out on Scotland that IMHO rUK has created Scotland much better than the EU has treated the UK. Devolution of many powers, recognition of the Scottish Government, guaranteeing of Scottish national debt, bailing out of banks. We even got Scotlands fishing grounds back. For Scotland to continue being in the UK will require rUK to give Scotland a better deal than the EU is offering, which shouldn't be hard.

Lots of good points about the decline of much of UK industry. In reply I'd point out that whilst there are many nuances and aspect to your argument, the electorate had one button to press, and they pressed it. So far it has worked, as only now are the issues of industrial decline and abandonment finally being clearly raised and addressed by government.



"Where does that leave the UK as a nation? We can't leave."

Yes we can.

"We have no power in the EU."

Yes we do.

"The population of the UK heading to 80 million."

A long-range forecast that may never materialise and that in any event is not entirely or even mainly due to EU membership. Your point?

"It leaves millions of working class people in this country with on hope of their lives ever getting better as the dominant power (the European Commission) simply does not register their concerns as relevant to their project."


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