The Divided State of Europe

Discussion in 'Present & Current Events' started by nivek, Oct 4, 2017.

  1. kellyb

    kellyb Adept

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    It's kind of counter-intuitive, but sovereign and fiat is better than gold standard. There's nothing all that special about gold, anyway. You could use copper, or lumps of coal, or pocket lint. It all actually the same thing. The power of a currency comes from it being what the state wants it's taxes collected in. The potential brute force of the state is where the "value" lies.
     
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  2. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    Years ago I said this, using similar words, most in the west do not understand islam...

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  3. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    The Battle of Waterloo Bridge: Police arrest Extinction Rebellion activists in bid to herd eco-mob to Marble Arch as officers hold 122 climate change protesters in 24 hours

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    More than 120 people have been arrested over London climate change protests in less than 24 hours after a police order restricted them to one area as angry commuters face more disruption on their way into work. Police have been moving the Extinction Rebellion protesters off Waterloo Bridge (pictured today) after an order was made restricting them to gathering in the area around Marble Arch, but groups remained on the streets in Westminster.

    Scotland Yard had made 122 arrests as of noon today, the majority of which for public order offences and obstruction of the highway. While many children joined in the protests, all of those detained were adults. Protests continued today during what could be up to a fortnight of action, with Extinction Rebellion saying five locations across London had been held by an estimated 5,000 to 10,000 people.

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  4. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    How can anyone vote for Corbyn, sorry, I think he is off the rails and would be a dangerous leader but May was a train wreck...What happened to competent leadership?...

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  5. pepe

    pepe Noble

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    Extinction Rebellion is so funny. Two of them glued themselves together outside Corcyn's place. Thanks for making my day. So lame.

    They way they go limp when handled by the police would have me slinging them in a large wheely bin on the count of three to save time and effort.

    As a nation we are right up there in terms of being green. Maybe their message would be better displayed in India or Pakistan and not here when parliment is on a break.

    Timing is poor, the display is lame and the people are god dammed hippies.
     
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  6. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    She may be the third in line within the US government but she is still an arrogant woman and out of touch with Americans...

    'Don't condescend to me or to us': Furious Nancy Pelosi blasts 'red-faced' British Brexiteer lawmaker for patronizing her in private talks over US-UK trade deal

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    A leading Brexiteer was reprimanded for being 'condescending' in a meeting with the Speaker of the US Congress, it emerged today. Nancy Pelosi - the third most powerful person in the US Government - told off Mark Francois during private talks in the UK this week. Ms Pelosi completed a tour of the UK and Ireland and held a series of meetings about Brexit. She issued a stern warning that if Brexit undermines the Good Friday Agreement it will end hopes of a US-UK trade deal.

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  7. ChrisIB

    ChrisIB Honorable

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    Mr Francois was also involved in a bust up with the author Will Self recently on the BBC's Politics today.
    Mr Self sparked an angry reaction from the right-winger by claiming “every racist and anti-Semite in the country” voted for Brexit.
    Mr Self said earlier on the show there were many rational reasons for leaving the EU but there said many of the key proponents of Brexit believed in an “ethnic nationalist Britain”
    https://inews.co.uk/news/uk/will-self-mark-francois-brexit-row-bbc-video-racist-anti-semite/
    Fellow panellist Grace Campbell later tweeted that in the hospitality room prior to the show Self had baited Francois that he had a small manhood. Grace Campbell (@GraceCampbell) | Twitter
     
  8. AD1184

    AD1184 Honorable

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    I don't think it is in Britain's interests to have a comprehensive free trade agreement with the US, anyway.
     
  9. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    Ukrainian comedian Volodymyr Zelensky WINS run-off election to become country's new leader despite his only experience being playing the President on TV, exit polls suggest

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    A comedian with no political experience won a landslide victory in Ukraine's presidential election Sunday, exit polls showed.

    Volodymyr Zelensky, whose only previous political role was playing the president on television, trounced incumbent Petro Poroshenko by taking 73 percent of the vote, according to exit polls conducted by several think tanks.

    Poroshenko lost to the television star across all regions of the country, including in the west where he traditionally enjoyed strong support.

    At his campaign headquarters, as the exit polls were published, he said: 'I will never let you down.'

    'While I am not formally president yet, as a citizen of Ukraine I can tell all post-Soviet countries: 'Look at us! Everything is possible!'

    Meanwhile incumbent Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko conceded he had been soundly defeated in a run-off vote by the comedian and would be leaving office next month, but said he did not plan to quit politics altogether.

    It was an extraordinary outcome to a campaign that started as a joke but struck a chord with voters frustrated by poverty, corruption and a five-year war that has claimed some 13,000 lives.

    The 41-year-old star of TV series 'Servant of the People' will now take the helm of a country of 45 million people beset by challenges and having run on the vaguest of political platforms.


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  10. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    Today we are witnessing an unprecedented meltdown in British politics. The centre is disappearing and grave danger lies ahead, says JOHN GRAY

    No one knows how Brexit will end. The hopes of more than 17 million people who voted for it have been sucked into the black hole that is now 10 Downing Street.

    With Theresa May’s deal rejected by the House of Commons three times over, she is living from day to day. Ongoing negotiations with the Labour leadership have no clear direction. Brexit is in limbo.

    At the same time British politics is in a ferment unlike any this country has known for generations. In a paradoxical twist, the thwarting of Brexit is transforming the British political system into something more like that of continental Europe.


    An orderly departure from the EU could have inoculated Britain against the forces that are fuelling the march of populism in so many European countries. But any such benign outcome seems increasingly unlikely.

    The bungled Brexit our political classes have given us is taking Britain into uncharted territory.

    As a Mail on Sunday poll reveals today, 40 per cent of Conservative councillors intend to vote for Nigel Farage’s new Brexit Party if Britain takes part in the European elections on May 23 – as it must if it is still in the EU.

    Ukip has surged before in European elections – in 2014, it emerged the strongest party with more than 27 per cent of the votes. But never before has the Conservative Party been in such a parlous state as at present.

    Polls ahead of local elections in England and Northern Ireland on May 2 suggest it will suffer heavy losses despite struggling to steer its campaign away from Theresa May and her handling of Brexit.


    If there is any overall winner from the meltdown in British politics, it will be Jeremy Corbyn – leader of what has become by any normal standards an extremist party.

    As a historian of political ideas and movements, I have studied the rise and fall of parties and ideologies in Britain and Europe.

    Today we are witnessing a meltdown in British politics with no historical precedent. Both main parties are shedding their traditional supporters at an astonishing rate.

    According to a ComRes poll published last week, not much more than half (53 per cent) of 2017 Conservative voters intend to vote Conservative at the next General Election.

    Even more ominous for the two main parties, a separate YouGov poll last week showed that if Conservatives campaigned on May’s deal and Labour for a customs union, Farage’s Brexit Party would have a ten per cent lead over both of them.

    As we all know, polls can be misleading. Voters are extremely fickle at the present time. But there can be little doubt that they are rejecting the old political class.

    The Conservatives are being punished for not delivering Brexit, and Labour for turning its back on working-class Leave voters and toying with a second referendum.

    Many – mostly but not entirely Leavers – say they will never vote again. But it is not just voters who are fleeing the established parties. Especially among Tories, once-loyal foot-soldiers in the constituencies are deserting the party.

    Activists who tramp the streets pushing fliers through doors are decamping – chiefly to Farage. A General Election could find the Conservatives without much of a constituency infrastructure left.

    The clear risk is that people will turn to extremes to vent their anger and disgust against those who pretend to govern them.

    Ukip – today a hard, far-right organisation that has more in common with European neo-fascist parties than anything in the British political tradition – has slipped down in the polls. But it is significant that, at five per cent in the ComRes poll, it was only two per cent lower than the Liberal Democrats.

    What used to be called the centre ground of British politics is shrinking and disappearing. Change UK – the new centre party formed by Chuka Umunna and other defectors from Labour and the Tories – polled nine per cent.

    Yet it is far from clear that a party aiming to reverse Brexit has much of a future. For all its name, the party is committed to returning to the past – the status quo against which millions protested when they voted Leave.

    How did Britain get into this mess? One reason is that politics has become another middle class career.

    In 1945, when the great reforming government of Clement Attlee came to power, around a third of Labour MPs came from working class families. Today only around four per cent of MPs come from this background.

    But it is not just the working classes that are excluded. Many of our elites live in a few inner London boroughs, sending their children to the same schools and mixing almost exclusively with each other.

    The ‘Notting Hill set’ – the network of advisers and influencers who surrounded David Cameron – are only one example of a pattern that runs right through British politics. Most of those who govern us have only a sketchy idea of how most people in the country live.

    Places like Stoke-on-Trent and Sunderland might as well be in a far-off country. That is why the referendum result was such a shock to these introverted elites. The next stage of the Brexit drama will be an even greater shock.

    Many are assuming that Brexit has stalled permanently. But the present limbo cannot last.

    Politics – in both Britain and Europe – is rapidly morphing into new and dangerous shapes.

    The EU high command in Brussels is fearful that, following the May elections, a group of far-right parties from France, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Poland and other countries will become the pivotal force in the European Parliament. An expanded contingent of trouble-making Ukip MEPs would aggravate this unwelcome shift.

    A Conservative party led by an out-and-out Brexiteer would be even more unwelcome. The Mail on Sunday poll shows that the number of Conservative defectors to Farage’s new party would be almost halved if Boris Johnson became Prime Minister.

    Until now the prospect has been widely discounted on the ground that Johnson is despised by many Tory MPs. But this situation could change if the fear for their seats they feel now turns to blind panic after the local and European elections.

    Faced with a risk of wipe-out, the Conservatives could stake everything on a ruthless opportunist hardly any of them trust.

    If this scenario looks like materialising, Brexit will take a new and hazardous turn. The EU high command will realise that any agreement made with Theresa May can be abruptly torn up.

    More European leaders may follow President Macron of France in thinking the EU will be better off without Britain.

    A No Deal exit – which MPs imagined they had banished by voting against it in the Commons – could then loom up again when the Article 50 extension ends on October 31.

    At the same time British politics will become more treacherous. The party Corbyn leads is unlike any Labour party before it.

    Under Clement Attlee it nationalised sections of British industry and raised taxes substantially in order to fund the welfare state. It did not aim to take Britain out of its historic alliances, nor did it tolerate anti-Semitic racism in its ranks.

    There is another risk. A Corbyn government will have learnt from the dubious stratagems pursued by May’s enemies in the Commons that parliamentary procedure is no longer sacrosanct.

    By resisting Brexit rather than delivering it intelligently, our political classes have opened the way to a dangerous future.

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  11. AD1184

    AD1184 Honorable

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    The likes of the Guardian and Independent are making much of remarks by Labour's Blairite deputy leader Tom Watson that Corbyn will only encourage Farage unless he backs a second referendum. It seems fairly obvious that this is a sure-fire strategy to keep Farage relevant for a long time to come. The Tory party are also up in arms about the resurgence of support for Farage and his new Brexit party. They could all have avoided this mess by backing the Withdrawal Agreement.
     
  12. AD1184

    AD1184 Honorable

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    Nigel Farage does not have any solutions to the Brexit crisis. He purposefully did not come up with a plan to leave the EU, and forbade any in UKIP from coming up with one, either, back when he was the leader of that party. His only plan was to get a Commons majority (although he never managed to get even a single MP who was not a Tory defector, and only managed to get two at that), announce the country's intention to leave the EU and get Whitehall to work out the details.

    It might feel comforting to back Farage's Brexit party as an act of adolescent rebellion, but ultimately a vote for Farage is a vote for Corbyn and one which just as likely as not shall cause Brexit not to go ahead at all.
     
  13. pepe

    pepe Noble

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    910


    Sickening.
     
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  14. pepe

    pepe Noble

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    Nigel is winning and he is almost up there in London too which I never thought I would see.
     
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  15. AD1184

    AD1184 Honorable

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    The European Parliament elections are not particularly important except for the irrational emotional significance people place on them, as they have been conditioned to do so by the news media. The Brexit Party is in the lead, but this only means that it sits on just over a quarter of the overall vote according to current polling. If we do not leave the EU, then Farage has at least secured himself another five years in a lucrative job at taxpayers' expense.

    His elated supporters might however discover, later down the road, an even stronger political push back in the other direction leading to a second referendum and a vote to remain in the EU, putting an end to Brexit for good. In any case, it will become apparent that Nigel Farage has nothing to offer in the Brexit debate but hot air. His no-deal exit and "WTO" trading arrangement are a fantasy and one which he did not suggest was his preference before the Brexit vote.

    Brexit is a catastrophic mess, and it is more so the fault of know-nothing ultra-Brexiteers than it is Remainers. There is nothing left to hope for now. The dream is dead, and I blame these stupid people more than any other party. These morons can only offer no-deal, and the understandable resistance to this insane plan just as likely as not means that there is not going to be any Brexit. If there is not, it will be completely their fault. If they do get their way, then we will be in all sorts of trouble.

    Either outcome will be damaging to what remains of the British way of life.
     
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  16. pepe

    pepe Noble

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    The twist could be in the tail.

    Everyone thought remain was a dead cert in 16 but how things changed. I have a more optimistic view and agree whatever happens will be damaging but that is what we voted for and saw it as less damaging than the direction we are heading. I know some don't like or accept the fact that even big fat Kufti who lives up the road and knows nothing has just as much a say as those who are well informed. I respect that as Kufti has different reasons than mine which must be accepted as equal. By the way Kufti is a right winger if ever I saw one, big Westernised Indian who wants England to be the country he came to in the 60's. Warms my heart.

    Nigel will piss Europe because for this betrayal but will never take office.

    Ultra.... lol.....Come on, you know better than that. Plain nationals would suffice in these confused times of extreme terminology.

    Remainers doing the Brexitiers bidding is the issue, pure and simple. Fudging and fudging until the deal is off or we never make the clean break and stay tied in.

    I'm loving it because the more the resistance, the more it plays into the hands of those who represent the people.

    May is about to destroy the conservative party and Corbyn is doing the same for his huge remain following.

    Nature hates a vacuum.
     
  17. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    Here's an interest write up I came across this morning...

    PETER HITCHENS: Empty green seats that prove we are careering towards a catastrophe - Mail Online - Peter Hitchens blog

    We are told we should relax about the fate of Britain because new ravens have hatched at the Tower of London. I am more worried by another very frightening omen last week.

    There were empty seats on the green benches of the House of Commons during Prime Minister’s Questions. What is supposed to be the central ritual of our ancient, adversarial Parliament has now become so dull and pointless that quite a few MPs can no longer be bothered to turn up.

    This is a clear sign that something is seriously wrong at the very heart of our constitution.

    I still remember the thrill of the long-ago day in the 1980s when I watched my first PMQs from the Press Gallery. The previous day I had crawled through the thin seam of a coal mine for the first time, and I am still not sure which of the two experiences went deeper into my mind and memory.

    Those were the times before Parliament was televised, when PMQs were a twice-weekly 15-minute joust in which Neil Kinnock confronted Margaret Thatcher across the dispatch box. There was nothing phoney in their hostility, and nothing staged in the passions which were released once the combat got going. The two parties at that time were still truly divided, utterly separate tribes which spoke for the two halves of the country.

    I don’t exactly know what the division was, or where it started. I suspect a lot of it went back to the Norman Conquest and the deep and lasting divide between Norman and Saxon. Some of it went back to the Civil War, and to the General Strike, and to the Great Betrayal of 1931, when the Labour premier, Ramsay MacDonald, entered a ‘National Government’ whose actions made today’s alleged austerity look like a spending spree. Beyond that lay the Cold War, in which the Left still couldn’t quite bring itself to loathe the Soviet Union as much as it should have done.

    THE great thing was, these were the divisions in the country, and they were faithfully reflected in our Parliament. Nobody felt voiceless and forgotten. The House of Commons worked as it should, as a safety valve and an upward transmission belt through which people’s real concerns reached the very top, and were addressed. After the Cold War ended, and Mrs Thatcher destroyed the great heavy industries that sustained the old working class, these historic hostilities faded away.

    A new divide arose. It was mainly about mass immigration, law and order, morals and marriage, and the sexual revolution.

    It was also about the way in which so much of the country simply did not benefit from the glittering prosperity of London. Not even all of London benefited from it. Almost none of this was discussed in Parliament. Instead, the three big parties became so alike that it was often impossible to tell them apart without checking their labels.
    They despised the concerns of the voiceless millions, and talked down to them, trying to tell them what they should think.

    And it was that new, unrecognised division which led to two earthquakes in politics. First, there was the rise of Jeremy Corbyn, who, for all his faults, grasped that millions simply are not sharing in the supposed recovery. That’s why they flocked to his meetings and why he did so well in 2017.

    The other was the transformation of the European issue. Once it only bothered fringe people like me. But when millions began to see our EU membership as a symbol of everything they didn’t like about modern Britain, especially the open borders, it became the new demarcation line.

    In 2016, in the referendum result, we saw for a few days the ghostly shape of two new political parties form in the air.

    The two new tribes were more or less evenly matched, genuinely different from each other. I think the easiest way to define them is that one was a ‘Mail’ party and the other a ‘Guardian’ party.
    The things that divide this country now are not nationalisation or even tax, but morals, law and justice, mass immigration, patriotism versus internationalism. They are vital, living issues and it is time they were debated and settled in the proper old British way.
    But if they are not, then I see nothing but trouble coming. I fear greatly that we are now on course for a second EU referendum.

    I do not want this, in fact I hate and fear the idea. But MPs and party leaders have refused to take responsibility for the future of the country, because they are afraid of their own voters. And so it seems more and more likely that a second poll is where it will end up.
    Often these days, I think the only sensible thing left to do is pray.


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  18. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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  19. AD1184

    AD1184 Honorable

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    I think I might have to vote for Change UK out of sympathy, polling suggests that they are only on 1-4% of the vote.
     
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  20. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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