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British EU Referendum Thread

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Taure, Oct 13, 2015.

  1. calutron

    calutron Unspeakable

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    Yes what you said is true, except for that important assumption you are making about immigration. I'm sure with enough terrorist attacks even that can change.

    That's not quite right. They would not be punishing the UK, merely allowing them to return to a somewhat pre-EU state; if that's a threat then it's very much based on the reality that there was a rationale for the existence of the EU. I don't see why reminding other members of the situation without the union would be "keeping them together with fear" any more than it would be keeping them together by reminding them of the benefits.
     
  2. someone010101

    someone010101 Groundskeeper

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    No, you start working because people will obviously agree with you, then say it's alternativlos (there is no alternativ), time is short, they really should have said something sooner and we've come to far to stop now. :)

    Anyway, about the brexit bill. Assuming eu citizens in britain and viceversa are treated the same as before for 2 years, after which they are treated the same as any other third party citizens. Britain gets free trade for goods, services and money, but not people (labor). Britain adheres to EU consumer protection, environment protection and QA regulations (but get no say, because the're not in the EU). An exit bill between 5 and 30 billion and annual payments for something, along the same lines as Norway and Switzerland. Cooperation for military and intelligence.

    Basically as close as possible without membership, along the same lines as Norway and whoever. What is wrong? Come on, shoot it dead!

    (The argument about punishment is stupid. If every country would leave the EU because it'd be better off without it, the EU deserves to die. Also, we might end up with an EU consisting of Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark and Luxemburg. Theyd set the rules for the 'EU'. Everybody else would need to follow the 'EU' rules in order to stay in the single market. Ie, thats stupid.

    As I see it, the benefit of membership is that you can make the rules instead of just folowwing them.
     
  3. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel Prestige DLP Supporter

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    So that every detail could become a political football in 28 countries? Hell no. The people have already proven they can't be trusted to make an informed decision on trade policy, so you can't simultaneously advocate forging trade pacts and promote plebian interference. That's no recipe for success.
     
  4. Chengar Qordath

    Chengar Qordath The Final Pony Prestige

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    Talk about how the hoi polloi are too stupid to be allowed to have an opinion on politics and how much better things would be without all this annoying democracy getting in the way, then be utterly baffled when they don't want to vote for you in the next election...
     
  5. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Constant public comment on the fine details of complex negotiations is famously counter-productive, as no one has any room to negotiate when they constantly have to protect their political flanks. Democratically elected leaders are empowered to make decisions on behalf of their constituents because they're privy to better information; that's democracy. Your prescription is for mob rule on complex policy which leads to disfunction and stagnation.

    My point to Invictus was that you can't honestly advocate both complex negotiation and plebiscites; they don't work.
     
  6. Sesc

    Sesc Slytherin at Heart Moderator

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    Well, yes. The trick is to care just enough to get majorities. Care too much and you get nowhere, as people literally don't know what they want, care too little and you won't even be in the position to try and get anywhere, as they don't vote for you.

    So, you know ... the usual? People don't have the time to know everything about everything, that's why someone came up with the idea to have them choose people to represent them that do, professionally. That sometimes, they have no clue either, is a different problem.


    Edit: "Involving the people" always reminds of this one public debate in small town nearby, maybe 50k inhabitants. It was about reconstructing the inner city, so something that really affects people, and the town council and mayor did ever so much to involve everyone. There were plans, and charts, and scenarios, and benefits and drawbacks -- everything so that really everyone might come and look and be involved and voice their opinion.

    The room remained virtually empty, and a handful of people cared.

    The simple and sad truth is that a lot of people love to complain, and what they love even more is sitting at home and not bothering about anything outside their walls that takes any sort of effort.
     
  7. Arthellion

    Arthellion Groundskeeper

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    Going with the smaller scale analogy...

    This past semester I was a Senator for our University's Student Government Association. All of us were elected by the students. Due to incompetence (perhaps willfull) of our president, our bylaws were lost and so new ones had to be created.

    I wrote them. Attempted to read them before voting. A motion to vote on these bylaws without them actually being read was put forwards and passed.

    I could have put anything in that document because people simply didn't care.

    Apparently this sort of thing is not rare.
     
  8. Chengar Qordath

    Chengar Qordath The Final Pony Prestige

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    The complications involved in too much public feedback are undeniable. I'm just not sure your prescription of getting rid of that annoying democracy thing so the technocrats can rule with a free hand because they know better than the unwashed masses is a improvement.

    Yes, democracies are often slow, clunky, and inefficient. I still prefer that to an efficient technocratic oligarchy.
     
  9. Agayek

    Agayek Dark Lord

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    While I obviously can't speak for him, I don't think that's what he was saying in the first place.

    To me, his comment does not at all say anything about involving the people directly in the negotiations, but instead that "your government and the EU should learn how to explain the benefits and how to stop pretending that the ignorant masses don't matter". Or in other words, learn how to sell the idea to the public instead of trying to do it without regard for public opinion.

    And honestly, I can't disagree with him. Any move the government makes without broad, stable public support is not going to last, and TTIP didn't have that. It's kinda baffling to me that you'd expect it to work out regardless.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2017
  10. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel Prestige DLP Supporter

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    It's not getting rid of democracy, it's getting rid of mobocracy. Representative democracies mean you, the pleb, cede your decision-making power to your chosen representative, who acts on your behalf until the next election. My position is let them do their damn jobs. If you don't like it, vote them out at the next election; THAT is democracy.

    The public either doesn't know what it wants, can't be bothered to tell you what it wants, or wants something that is either stupid (Build That Wall), unreasonable (free everything for everyone for free!), or that doesn't actually exist (clean coal!). The ones who have a clue get drowned out. So why bother asking?


    The public doesn't understand most policy, and it doesn't want to understand it. It doesn't matter how much you tout the benefits of unified consumer standards, lower tariffs, increased protection of intellectual property, etc., if all you hear back from them is "BUT MY LAST-CENTURY JOB IN A TOILET FACTORY GOT REPLACED BY A ROBOT!" A) Those things are only tangentially related, B) I don't care about your toilet job, and C) This is how economies work; jobs turn over as technology and market conditions change, so either move with it or get left behind.

    If the TTIP agreement had maintained its secrecy and was just announced one day as fact, people would have complained a bit for a week and then they would have gotten on with their lives. They wouldn't have even noticed much of what the agreement would have implemented.
     
  11. Chengar Qordath

    Chengar Qordath The Final Pony Prestige

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    Pretty much this. You can't have a functioning democracy that completely ignores public opinion, because public opinion plays a pretty big role in how elections work out. Most politicians aren't eager to do something that would doom their re-election chances, like pushing through policies their constituents hate.

    Think I found the issue. Your definition of an Educated Voter is one who completely agrees with you on all issues, while anyone who doesn't is ignorant fool with a five second memory who shouldn't be allowed to vote. Please, share with us the secret of your superiority? Is it better genes? Refined breeding? Racial purity?
     
  12. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel Prestige DLP Supporter

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    My definition of an 'educated' citizen is someone who knows something about the topic at hand. If they knew anything about economics, they wouldn't oppose free trade.

    Seriously?
     
  13. Chengar Qordath

    Chengar Qordath The Final Pony Prestige

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    I just want to know how you became an enlightened being who is superior to the "ignorant plebs" you heap scorn upon.
     
  14. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Well, as it relates to international trade, I worked for a time for the Department of Commerce and the International Trade Administration. It's kind of their bread and butter.
     
  15. Agayek

    Agayek Dark Lord

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    So? Really, I want to emphasize this: So fucking what? The whole point of a democracy is that everyone has a legitimate say in their government and society, regardless of all other concerns.

    There's certainly other forms of governance that would allow for the authoritative assertion of the government's will upon the governed, even if history has proven every one of them thus far a failure (if to differing extents and at differing speeds), but no modern, Western nation is one of them.

    Your attitude on this is somewhat baffling, to be entirely honest. It's directly counter to not only every single principle of first-world governance, but to liberal philosophy. Governments directly derive their authority and legitimacy from the will of the governed. They cannot legitimately act against the will of the governed, and any attempt to do so will inevitably either fail or distort the government to the point that it's completely unrecognizable. Whatever the government does, it must have the consent of the governed when it does it, whether that's wasting money on some retarded wall or negotiating trade agreements. And if it doesn't have that consent, you have to either destroy the existing government apparatus or accept that it's not going to happen (see: The newly-passed Congressional budget's rather pointed language stating that no money is to be spent on that stupid fucking wall).

    I get the rather visceral appeal of authoritarian, unilateral imposition of your will, but you've gotta understand that the entire philosophical basis of modern Western culture stands pretty firmly opposed to it. So yeah, you can sit there crowing about how it's for their own good until their blue in the face, but it isn't gonna mean a goddamn thing until you sell the populace on the idea.

    And nobody did that on TTIP, or TPP for that matter.

    Edit:
    Reading through your response to Chengar I noticed this:
    You do realize that that is exactly what happened and why the new administration (and both of the potential choices on the campaign trailfor that matter) are against Free Trade Agreements right? People saw their representatives enacting free trade agreements, decided they didn't like it, and voted for people who opposed them.

    Yet apparently, because they didn't want what you wanted, they now need to shut up and stop voting.

    I really don't get your position on this one man, it seems inherently contradictory. "Woo Democracy, make your voice heard! ...Unless you have the wrong thing to say, then shut up and sit in the corner because you can't be trusted to speak."
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2017
  16. calutron

    calutron Unspeakable

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    There are legitimate problems with free trade:

    1. Job Market is highly inefficient + Economic gains accrue to those who employ capital + opposition to taxation and state provision of benefits + inherent inequalities in intelligence that prevent people from taking up new opportunities --> People hating free trade because it fuck's them.

    2. The idea of free trade is predicated on good faith of all the parties engaging in trade, when one them(China) takes advantage of the freedom of American and European economies but does not allow entry for Foreign corporations, that is not free trade.

    Your answer is flawed because you are making an assumption that people are opposed to free trade due to misinformation, I would argue in large part that is false, people hate free trade because it affects them negatively.
     
  17. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel Prestige DLP Supporter

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    People oppose free trade because a vocal minority lose their jobs and get angry about it. The rest don't support it because they don't draw the connection between the cheap consumer goods they're supplied with and the free trade agreements that generate them.

    If you told those people that their TVs, microwaves, cars and poptarts will cost a shit ton more, they suddenly change their tune.

    They want to keep all the benefits of trade with none of the costs.

    This point fits perfectly into this thread, actually.
     
  18. calutron

    calutron Unspeakable

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    This is an incorrect(or at least incomplete) picture. The decline in middle class incomes as a percentage of GDP since the last 30 years, and increase in overall household debt : disposable income ratio, provide an alternated explanations for what's been going on.

    [​IMG]

    People are able to afford shit because they are taking on more and more debt relative to their income, they are more leveraged. While the decrease in the cost of goods has helped, you are not accounting for this effect. Furthermore, the fact that the US dollar can be printed willy nilly, without having any concerns about things like FOREX reserves, exacerbates the economic inequalities by further allowing easy access to money, and preventing normal export:import flows from affecting the cost of money.
     
  19. Arthellion

    Arthellion Groundskeeper

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    As much as I hate to say it, Darth Revan is exemplifying the attitude that lead to Hillary losing to Trump. Which is, a completely inability/arrogance to believe someone can have all the facts and yet come to believe in a different solution than their own.

    Seems to be a general issue in the democratic party at large over the past generation. Perhaps due to their dominance in Academia, the isolation/incubation of their own ideas lead to this arrogance. This carried over into the political arena and the populace recognized this arrogance.

    So the democrats are on the way out and we get Trump.

    The USA is a democratic republic in the sense that we elect our officials to make decisions for us...but we aren't an aristocracy in which there are some pre-defined qualities which allow one to rule.

    Now, the goal would be to have experts in their field running for position of government, but the problem is we truly only have politicians in positions of Authority.

    Heck, Trump is actually the closest we have to that in being not a politician (expert is highly debatable).

    Anyways, always be willing to accept that people believe differently than you and be willing to come to a compromise.
     
  20. Taure

    Taure Magical Core Enthusiast Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Trump/USA thread seems to be leaking. Not much about the EU at all in the last page.

    As an aside, I feel like many people have mischaracterised Darth Revan's point above. The contrast he is making is between:

    1. Confidential trade negotiations made by the elected executive where the people's elected representatives in the legislature approve or reject the final draft of the deal.

    2. Transparent trade negotiations made by the elected executive where the people's elected representatives in the legislature approve or reject the final draft of the deal.

    Both are fundamentally democratic. The issue of democracy doesn't come into the matter at all. The decision to be made is whether you think negotiations are better conducted confidentially or transparently. The risk of the latter being that when every interim position and compromise and negotiating strategy becomes a public political football then it tends to risk the success of the talks.