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European Elections

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Dark Belra, Nov 28, 2016.

  1. Fiat

    Fiat The Chosen One DLP Supporter

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    You're mixing and matching pretty freely here. Quebec was a violent indepencence movement from the previous century - complete with about 80 deaths, the kidnapping of a cabinet minister & British Diplomat, and the use of the Army to restore order, though this is all extremely small-scale compared to either the IRA or ETA - that eventually turned into a parliamentary independence movement, towards the end of the previous century. The last Quebecois independence vote was twenty two years ago, and no, I do not believe there are any records of police violence during the 1995 vote. Actually, since it's impossible to actually Google it right now due to any combination of the relevant words getting you Quebecois reactions to this, going off the top of my head, the closest we've got is a Quebecois Separatist trying to stab the Prime Minister back in '95. Can't find any record of the police beating scots during or after their referendum either, though there are multiple accounts of violence from Unionist or Pro-Independence people against each other, both as individuals and as rioting mobs.

    Seriously, Quebec does not fit neatly into any of these categories and I find its repeated inclusion super weird. The Quebecois Separatist movement completely lost its wind shortly after I was born, with the exception of one Montreal Parti Quebecois shooting five years ago. Meanwhile, the Basque Conflict only ended in the early 2010s. These categories do not work especially well.

    Comparing this to the sort of political violence from the previous century is, frankly, ridiculous. That kind of violent separatist movement and more particularly the violence with which they were repressed is not the norm in the developed world. That's entirely why people remember either of them. The moment an issue escalates from, say, the level of the Quebecios in the '60s - which is still a big enough deal to Canadians that it got as much time in my 10th grade history class as WWII - you're suddenly the subject of serious scrutiny on the international stage. When a thousand or more people are dead you're both looking at and are an insane outlier. Saying that this is no big deal compared to the ETA & IRA is sort of missing that, if you reach a point where you actually need to reassure yourself with the statement "Well, at least it's not as bad as The Troubles" and live North of Africa, East of California, and West of Ukraine, you've probably done something really wrong. The chain of bad decisions that gets you to that point in the modern era are rarely the sort that a nation gets the chance to repeat.

    Here in Toronto, a coalition of various Nazi groups and communist groups meet to scream at eachother, held apart by a Police Barricade, every Saturday afternoon downtown by City Hall.This has been going on for at least a few months. I haven't seen any police brutality in the news yet. The town where I went to University is poor as dirt, 97% white, and a somewhat dangerous place to live, but this weekend, when it looked like there were going to be violent riots in the street on the same day as the University's homecoming, the town revoked the relevant Neo-Nazi group's protest license and nothing happened. I never thought I'd say it but that's a first-world problem. 700 incidents of police brutality serious enough to be reported as injuries in less than 24 hours, along with ten injured police officers, is not. Instead, it looks pretty representative of how you stop having first world problems and start having third world problems.

    Even American violence is rarely at this scale, frankly. The St Louis Riots recently involved fourteen injuries and 187 arrests. American violence is just more likely to involve at least one dead body.
     
  2. Invictus

    Invictus Heir

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    Pretty sure you would see that if Quebec and Scotland tried their referendums without consent. And the Catalonian independence movement had violence and deaths before as seen here: lawhttps://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terra_Lliure.

    You don't spit in the rule of law and challenge direct orders from:
    The Supreme Court
    The Parliament
    The National Police

    In a actual democracy and don't expect to be thrown out of the place you're illegally occupying. That's not how this works. None of this would have happened had the Catalonian police had done their job. Which they didn't because they and the Catalonian government wanted exactly this to happen. And Rajoy was a populist dick and dumb enough to give it to them.
     
  3. Oment

    Oment The Betrayer

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    Before what happened this weekend. I cannot imagine the Spanish government scoring any brownie points with the ~9-10 % who were on the fence (as per a quick perusal of Wiki's poll-tracking), nor any with the segment of the population who would vote to stay mainly out of a lack of desire for independence. (The status quo voters, as opposed to actual unionists.)
     
  4. Fiat

    Fiat The Chosen One DLP Supporter

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    Funny, that. I guess it depends on your definition of consent, but Quebec already did this almost forty years ago. They didn't ask permission to hold a referendum, they unilaterally declared that they had the right to do so, passed a law to that effect in provincial parliament, and decided that this was legal. Plan A was to unilaterally declare independence instead but they decided that international recognition was more important than speed. Federal government did not approve of this and told them that A ) they would not negotiate independence B ) neither Quebec or the Federal government actually had the right to negotiate it either way, and C ) Quebec's question on the referendum was too badly worded to be a legitimate referendum either way and would not constitute either a mandate or a legitimate vote if Independence won.

    So, yeah, Canada did not consent to a referendum the first time Quebec decided to have one by most definitions. They didn't agree to it, were never asked for permission, spent a lot of time talking about how they would not recognize the results of the vote because it wasn't legal, and then broke provincial law by intervening in the campaign.

    They intervened by actually campaigning for the 'stay' side, which was illegal because it was a two person race with strict campaign finance regulations established in the Referendum Act. Evidently, the idea of pulling out the army a second time or sending in the mounties never occurred to anyone, or if it did it definitely didn't register as a legitimate option for a modern western democracy. That might be because it isn't.

    Strangely, it seems that violating a province's laws by holding a political campaign during a referendum works better than violating the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by organizing mass violence against a referendum.
     
  5. cucio

    cucio First Year

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    I will be the first to admit that my perspective may be skewed or I may be desensitized because of all the hardcore stuff we see in the news, but where do you draw the line between brutality and proportionate and lawful use of force? Being a riot police officer must be a shitty job and must not attract exactly the most balanced kind of people.

    Footage from yesterday:



    I don't know if forceful eviction against passive resistance can be performed in a non-brutal way which doesn't occasionally result in sprains, lacerations, anxiety attacks or worse.

    If you tell me confrontations between police and demonstrators at this relatively low level of violence (not scale) never happened in Quebec or Scotland, ok, I'll take back my offhand comments, pass on my compliments and declare myself envious of an admirably civilized society and an impeccable law enforcement corps.

    A completely different issue is whether forceful eviction is an appropriate response from the Spanish Government to a political situation that mobilizes 2 fucking million people, which I personally think is nuts (but you would be surprised at the amount of Spanish people who see separatists as just common delinquents and approve of the police actions, it is frightening.)

    I guess this is part of the reason why the Spanish Government refuses to acknowledge the possibility of a legal referendum. Right now, non-separatists feel safe in their belief that independence is simply not an option. If this changes, perhaps that will be the kind of violence that will start to happen.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2017
  6. Invictus

    Invictus Heir

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    I'm sorry. Did they actually directly infringe the Constitution? Which is actually what we're arguing here. Did a whole province directly broke a constitutional law and the central government and the Courts did nothing? Because there's a difference between political opposition and legal opposition in case you don't know. One threatens the very basis of rule of law and makes all derivative acts voidable, because of the poisoned fruits theory.

    >organizing mass violence.
    >violating Human Rights
    Can you point out where the Spanish government ordered purposeful violence against protesters or were they just an incident after opposition and, I repeat, their refusal to obey the law? And can you point out the article in the DHR where it forbids governments to use it's monopoly on violence against those who break the law?
     
  7. methor

    methor Fourth Year

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    I'm not sure what end goal of your argument is here. Arguing that this level of police brutality is perfectly normal and justified, makes it look that much worse because then we imagine that this level of brutality is perfectly normal in Spain.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
  8. Fiat

    Fiat The Chosen One DLP Supporter

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    You made a claim, I responded that, contrary to said claim, they actually did do exactly that. You can move goalposts however you like or claim private definitions of words, but, well, no one gave them the right to secede or approved of the decision or agreed that what they were voting on was either legal or possible. It was stated repeatedly that no matter the result of the referendum, it did not have any power, was completely non-binding, and that the actual concepts that negotiating Quebecois independence entailed were not within the constitutional powers of either Quebec or the Federal Government of Canada. It was made extremely clear, time and again, that this was not a thing we were okay with, something we would honor, or something that we would acknowledge as legally valid in the event that the vote went to the secessionists. We just let them have their vote even while making it clear that it did not actually have any power or carry any legal force, because voting for something illegal isn't, itself, illegal. At least here. Also because the Prime Minister wasn't an idiot and recognized that political opposition would be more effective in winning over a populace that saw itself as a subjugated colony than legal opposition, until it came to that. The Canadian Army had been deployed to establish order in Quebec only ten years prior. They did not have any interest in kicking any more hornet's nests any sooner than was absolutely necessary.
    Opposition? Where? I mean, other than the ten officers injured - ten people injured when attempting to subdue two million people says a lot about how violent the catalans were - you can, right now, actually watch a decent amount of unedited footage of police officers tossing catalans down flights of stairs, jumpkicking people in the chest while other police officers hold the victim in place, dragging retrained women around by their hair, and in all of that no one does anything but scream. That is 'an incident.' That one video is a massive incident by the standards of the rest of the developed world, actually. That same sort of violence spread across ~400 polling centers in a province is not an incident, it's mass political violence.
    Article Five. "No one shall be subject to cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment."

    Completely legitimate question that I don't have an answer to. I typically draw the line around the time people are restrained and being beaten for no reason but the officer in question being angry or just wanting to hurt them, as lawful uses of force are typically those which are used in the defense of public safety. This is rather likely to actually vary in the law between jurisdictions, though. I know that, here in Toronto, a guy in my graduating class - pretty big news story at the time - took a bunch of MDMA, whipped out his dick on a streetcar and pulled a knife on some girl back in 2013. The police officer that shot him was sentenced to six years in jail, today, because at the point where he made the decision to kill him, the guy did not pose a threat to anyone; despite having a knife in his hand. We can be pretty strict in our definitions of what is and is not a legitimate use of force against anyone that is not aboriginal, though. Our self-defense laws, as I learned them at least, are pretty similar to my shitty attempt at defining a lawful use of force up there; if a person attempts to stab me and, in the struggle, I reach a point where I am winning the fight and have him restrained, any escalation from there is either assault or murder on my part.

    Yeah, your second point is a little closer to how this looks, from my end of things. The question of "How do you forcefully evict passive non-violent resistance without having it descend into brutality" is probably not one that has ever crossed my mind.
    I can't say for sure that it's never happened in either. I've never even been to Scotland and the last Quebec referendum was when I was an infant. But I can't find anything vaguely reminiscent during either. Probably because, well, no one actually tried to forcefully put down this sort of vote in Quebec or Scotland. In Quebec, we campaigned against the independence movement and won. The British actually let Scotland vote and, when dramatically unprepared for the way the polls were looking, desperately struggled to get into campaign mode.
    This is probably a much bigger issue in terms of Spain than it was in Scotland. What I'm talking about are essentially crowds of drunk Orangemen getting out of control after winning and feeling the need to go stick it to the losers, and drunk Yes Voters being angry and pissed off enough to do the same for the opposite reasons. Not quite potentially-millions of mobilized rioters engaged in real political violence. This was closer to the sort of chaos on the streets we got a few years ago when Vancouver lost the Stanley Cup, as far as I understand the news stories at least.
     
  9. Chengar Qordath

    Chengar Qordath The Final Pony Prestige

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    Yeah, you'd be a lot better off arguing that the videos of Spanish cops stomping on downed voters or dragging cuffed women around by their hair were isolated incidents of individual officers going too far in the middle of a tense situation. Still not okay, but I can at least understand how that could happen. Instead, it seems like the argument is that it's totally okay for the state to send out thugs to beat anyone who votes in a way it disapproves of.
     
  10. Invictus

    Invictus Heir

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    That's all still within political opposition. There was no law directly broken or no Court order to stop the vote was it? I mean. You don't think there's a difference between them? You sincerely don't see the difference between one, ignoring what a political body tells you, or two, ignoring what your own courts and police told you to do?
     
  11. Arthellion

    Arthellion Groundskeeper

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    Just gonna say this seems somewhat remniscent of the Boston Massacre prior to the American Revolution.

    Which is...kinda scary. At what point does your populace voting for separation from the federal government become actual revolution and civil war versus legal cessation. I mean, the Southern States in the USA tried that and it became a devastating war (albeit the situation is ridiculously more complicated).
     
  12. Sesc

    Sesc Slytherin at Heart Moderator

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    It's actually very straight forward. Spain has an army, Catalonia does not. The end.

    Or, at least the end as far as Rajoy's idiotically simplistic the-world-is-what-laws-say-it-is approach is concerned. Tomorrow, Catalonia will declare some sort of independence, after which Rajoy will declare all autonomic powers null and void. That will cause some more unrest, which he will, again, beat down. Problem solved, he has "won".

    Twenty years down the line, it might become another Basque Country, but by then Rajoy is dead and doesn't have to care anymore. Yay for far-sighted political instinct.
     
  13. Oment

    Oment The Betrayer

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