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So the UK is finished says Theresa Mayhem

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Woolley, here’s where you’re making a fool of yourself:

1. Simultaneously arguing for control over immigration and borders whilst simultaneously arguing for a completely open arrangement for the actual land border with the EU. Knowing full well that the only way into the UK without showing a passport, or crossing the English Channel in a rubber dinghy or hidden in a truck, is via Ireland.

2. Simultaneously arguing for the right for the UK to leave the customs union and make new trade deals and for an open border that makes any such deals completely meaningless. If tariffs, standards and quotas on either side can be circumvented by arriving in the EU via NI or into the U.K. via the ROI it is impossible for either third countries or the WTO to accept that trade deals are being conducted fairly. Do you see why there is not and cannot be any developed country in the world that shares an open border with another country unless it is also in a customs union? 

Edited by Freggyragh

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Why thank you, Freggy. I think that you're generally reasonable too. I always enjoy reading your stuff on here because some thought obviously goes into it, even if we seldom agree on much. With the mutual appreciation society out of the way then, you are totally wrong in second guessing my motives and, unlike some around here, I take any propaganda whatever the agenda with a very large pinch of salt. I look at the information available from multiple sources and I make up my own mind. I assure you that after over 30 years in building, investing and selling businesses, I'm not easily manipulated.

Tax avoidance is largely a whore of globalisation rather than Brexit, but I accept that Britain benefits from it more than most. Paradoxically, financial services based on worldwide tax avoidance funds a great deal of actual taxation raised in the UK through the City, and that is substantially the reason why it is jealously guarded.

I genuinely do not believe your take about weakening the standing of the country, etc. I think that outside the EU our prospects will be far brighter and there will not be the sustained attacks, treaty by treaty, on its self-determination and the need for constant vigilance over its very survival as an independent state. Good thing Blair didn't get his way and take us into the Euro is all I can say! I'm not proud, incidentally. If I suddenly had a Damascus moment and realised I had been "talking utter shite" as you put it, I would say as much and start batting for the other side. I wouldn't keep up a pretence just for the sake of appearances. What would be the point on an anonymous forum?

I do appreciate that the negotiation has not been the best, because it has been conducted largely on the EU's terms. I could live with the existing withdrawal deal though. At least it gets us out to a degree. I simply can't go along with the conspiracy theories that Brexit is such a bad idea that the populace could only have voted for it at the behest of malign foreign influence. I also take what you say about not being anti-British at face value. Sometimes I have discerned what I took as a Celtic style eagerness to belittle British interests in your posts, but I am pleased to acknowledge my error if this was not the case.  I appreciate that some people even believe that remaining in the EU would be a patriotic stance for Britain, although I cannot see how that is compatible with the ultimate aims of "ever closer union" or indeed the opposite, a messy collapse of the bloc, which is also quite possible. 

Don't get me wrong. I'm not your narrow minded egg and bacon, chips and fish, foreigner hating type Englishman who goes abroad and refuses to speak the language, gets drunk and acts boorish. They are a bloody embarrassment! I spend a lot of my time in Southern Europe - particularly Spain - and I absolutely love the continent of Europe. All the more reason that I don't like what the EU, and particularly the Euro, is doing to it. I think it is built on flawed foundations, developed by lies, expanded on hubris and heading ultimately to a very dark place. Now if they just made it a free trade bloc........

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On 2/5/2019 at 3:33 PM, woolley said:

OK then, PK. When it's ALMOST too late, if you prefer. I've been telling you for years what the strictures of the EU (and globalisation of course) have done to its southern states. I've watched on the ground as areas of Greece, Italy and Spain have sunken further and further into despair. Generations without hope. It's really quite shocking. And people who are proponents of the union that has led to this debacle then tell me I'm an uncaring right winger. You couldn't make it up.

So care to answer this ?

 

15 hours ago, P.K. said:

You keep coming up with this as an excuse for your hatred of all things EU.

As you rightly say there are various forces at play here. So-called "strictures" of the EU, globalisation of course etc etc but you seem to conveniently forget their own sovereign governments. If we take the UK as an example the "sovereignty" card much beloved by Brexiteers everywhere is, of course, a complete and utter nonsense. Farage et al were claiming that something like 75% of UK legislation was due to falling in line with EU "policies" but the HoC Library produced the figures that showed it was a mere 13% and it was nothing to do with "policies" at all. Rather it was about food standards and so forth such as "you can't use these damaging pesticides", "you can't use these hormones",  "shipping containers should be this size and design", "provenance must be available", " no gm" etc etc.

So who and what has caused these issues you keep banging on about? I first started visiting Spain in the late seventies and you only had to go a few miles inland from the coast to find real and stark poverty.. That's only forty years ago....

 

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34 minutes ago, Freggyragh said:

Woolley, here’s where you’re making a fool of yourself:

1. Simultaneously arguing for control over immigration and borders whilst simultaneously arguing for a completely open arrangement for the actual land border with the EU. Knowing full well that the only way into the UK without showing a passport, or crossing the English Channel in a rubber dinghy or hidden in a truck, is via Ireland.

2. Simultaneously arguing for the right for the UK to leave the customs union and make new trade deals and for an open border that makes any such deals completely meaningless. If tariffs, standards and quotas on either side can be circumvented by arriving in the EU via NI or into the U.K. via the ROI it is impossible for either third countries or the WTO to accept that trade deals are being conducted fairly. Do you see why there is not and cannot be any developed country in the world that shares an open border with another country unless it is also in a customs union? 

1. Not so. Ireland is not in Schengen but is in the British Isles Common Travel Area so passport control is at the port of entry to UK/IRL from Schengen. It has no bearing on the north south border. Illegal immigration happens now and will continue to happen.

2. Now we are getting to the crux. The "backstop" IS the customs union and people are right to be suspicious of it. In practice, trade across the border is miniscule compared with what arrives in the UK and even what arrives in Ireland from the UK. Given the will it could be managed. Any sustained abuse would be easy to spot. There are already differences in VAT and duty rates between the republic and the 6 counties. This anomaly does not seem to have been the end of the world.

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@ PK. As imperialists everywhere know very well, there's a great deal of difference between privations suffered at the hands of your own countrymen or even ill fortune and what is seen as suffering under the yoke of an oppressor. This is how the poor of Southern Europe now look upon the EU and specifically Germany.

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1 minute ago, woolley said:

@ PK. As imperialists everywhere know very well, there's a great deal of difference between privations suffered at the hands of your own countrymen or even ill fortune and what is seen as suffering under the yoke of an oppressor. This is how the poor of Southern Europe now look upon the EU and specifically Germany.

I would still like an answer.

Thanks.

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1 hour ago, woolley said:

1. Not so. Ireland is not in Schengen but is in the British Isles Common Travel Area so passport control is at the port of entry to UK/IRL from Schengen. It has no bearing on the north south border. Illegal immigration happens now and will continue to happen.

2. Now we are getting to the crux. The "backstop" IS the customs union and people are right to be suspicious of it. In practice, trade across the border is miniscule compared with what arrives in the UK and even what arrives in Ireland from the UK. Given the will it could be managed. Any sustained abuse would be easy to spot. There are already differences in VAT and duty rates between the republic and the 6 counties. This anomaly does not seem to have been the end of the world.

1. So you’re quite happy that anyone Dublin says can come in can also cross into the U.K. unchecked. Unchecked freedom of movement into whole of the U.K. for EU citizens and anyone else with the right to be in Ireland, vs freedom of movement to the 26 counties of the Republic of Ireland for U.K. citizens. And what if the Republic does decide it wants to be in Schengen? Which part of this arrangement is ‘taking back control’? What is the UK’s guarantee that it won’t change its mind?

2. If someone resident in County Lough nips to shops a mile down the road in County Armagh because VAT rates or currency values makes it cheaper that’s a matter between the ROI and U.K., and no one really cares. However, if the US and U.K. try to make a trade deal that the US or EU cannot accept because of the open border then that is an international dispute to be, hopefully, resolved by the WTO, but more likely by never ending recriminations.

An example of how this might work: if the U.K.  decides to cut all tariffs on Bourbon in return for the US cutting all tariffs on Scotch the US’ ability to use Boubon as bargaining chip in EU negotiations would be greatly diminished and the Irish would already be buying the Bourbon in Belfast and bringing it over the border in vans, trucks and car boots to resell in the EU. In another scenario, the EU might also decide that it, or a third party will cut all tariffs and taxes on whiskey, whilst the U.K. finds itself paying heavy WTO mandated tariffs on barley and unable to price Scotch competitively - suddenly EU produced Irish whisky could be very cheap and start challenging Scotch’s market. All such potential outcomes would inevitably lead to third countries and the WTO demanding a hard border as a condition of U.K. trade deals. 

Changing tariffs and making new deals will change the nature of regulatory alignment in both jurisdictions in Ireland and limit the UKs trading options. There’s no way round it - without the magic, as yet imaginary, frictionless border plan. 

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11 hours ago, doc.fixit said:

meanwhile. China and Russia consolidate their bases and push forward with quiet, slow but relentless acquisition and military growth......to what end?

Whether we stay in Europe or out of it will make not one iota of difference to the bigger plan, if indeed there is one.

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11 hours ago, P.K. said:

I would still like an answer.

Thanks.

Eh? That was it.

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9 hours ago, Freggyragh said:

1. So you’re quite happy that anyone Dublin says can come in can also cross into the U.K. unchecked. Unchecked freedom of movement into whole of the U.K. for EU citizens and anyone else with the right to be in Ireland, vs freedom of movement to the 26 counties of the Republic of Ireland for U.K. citizens. And what if the Republic does decide it wants to be in Schengen? Which part of this arrangement is ‘taking back control’? What is the UK’s guarantee that it won’t change its mind?

2. If someone resident in County Lough nips to shops a mile down the road in County Armagh because VAT rates or currency values makes it cheaper that’s a matter between the ROI and U.K., and no one really cares. However, if the US and U.K. try to make a trade deal that the US or EU cannot accept because of the open border then that is an international dispute to be, hopefully, resolved by the WTO, but more likely by never ending recriminations.

An example of how this might work: if the U.K.  decides to cut all tariffs on Bourbon in return for the US cutting all tariffs on Scotch the US’ ability to use Boubon as bargaining chip in EU negotiations would be greatly diminished and the Irish would already be buying the Bourbon in Belfast and bringing it over the border in vans, trucks and car boots to resell in the EU. In another scenario, the EU might also decide that it, or a third party will cut all tariffs and taxes on whiskey, whilst the U.K. finds itself paying heavy WTO mandated tariffs on barley and unable to price Scotch competitively - suddenly EU produced Irish whisky could be very cheap and start challenging Scotch’s market. All such potential outcomes would inevitably lead to third countries and the WTO demanding a hard border as a condition of U.K. trade deals. 

Changing tariffs and making new deals will change the nature of regulatory alignment in both jurisdictions in Ireland and limit the UKs trading options. There’s no way round it - without the magic, as yet imaginary, frictionless border plan. 

1. The reason Ireland is not in Schengen is because they did not want to give up the much more important CTA with the UK. They will not join Schengen in the future for the same reason. As I said, the checks will be at the entry to the CTA. I see no problem with that. We are not building a fortress so people will still come to the UK from all over the world. What difference does it make if their point of entry is London or Dublin? There is a distinction between authorised travel on a passport and "freedom of movement" in the EU sense, which not only facilitates entry but also gives automatic rights to establish, work and claim benefits. Those will cease.

2. If the examples of cross border trade abuse to avoid tariffs that you cite were to become reality on any meaningful, industrial scale, it would soon be obvious and would be stopped at source or destination rather than at the border, and the perpetrators sanctioned. All of these shipments have to have traceability and the customs in each jurisdiction have the authority to examine and investigate. OK, you might get some small retailers trying to run it one way or the other as you have had for years, but it would be trifling in the grand scheme of things. I also wonder how many people would switch from Scotch whisky to Irish whiskey as you suggest. Ugh! I think a connoisseur would prefer a little extra pain in the pocket, even if it came to that. :)

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19 minutes ago, woolley said:

Eh? That was it.

No it wasn't.

You are constantly harping on about how the EU has laid waste to parts of Spain, Greece, Italy and so forth which is one reason why you hate the EU so much. Now I'm pretty sure that the EU hasn't been burning villages and driving the women and children into slavery.

So how has the EU, specifically according to you, caused so much harm?

You know, the old "How, where & when" routine....?

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31 minutes ago, woolley said:

1.There is a distinction between authorised travel on a passport and "freedom of movement" in the EU sense, which not only facilitates entry but also gives automatic rights to establish, work and claim benefits. Those will cease.

 

This. Very important point distinguishing between right to travel (within a Common Travel Area) , and right to establish/work/claim benefits.

 

Edited by b4mbi

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21 minutes ago, P.K. said:

No it wasn't.

You are constantly harping on about how the EU has laid waste to parts of Spain, Greece, Italy and so forth which is one reason why you hate the EU so much. Now I'm pretty sure that the EU hasn't been burning villages and driving the women and children into slavery.

So how has the EU, specifically according to you, caused so much harm?

You know, the old "How, where & when" routine....?

Really? Take your pick. There's enough info out there:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17753891

https://borgenproject.org/poverty-in-portugal/

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/europe-italy-eurozone-debt-crisis-salvini-on-the-brink-economic-crisis-not-new-a8566416.html

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/03/greek-riot-police-teargas-protest-eu-migration-policy-lesbos

The whole edifice is the epitome of the charge you lay at the door of Brexit. It's the triumph of hope and delusion over reality. And it really is not an enduring "status quo" as you keep asserting. It's a constant maelstrom with new stresses surfacing all the time. Like herding cats.

 

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The second largest economy in the EU is currently in a state of paralysis, not 30 miles from Dover. Running battles around the country as the people revolt against the policy of the globalist president.

The third largest economy is in the EU, Italy, is now officially in recession. They would like to stick two fingers up to the European Commission and retain control over it's own budget but they're being told more austerity is needed. This year Italy will be forced to choose between the people and the dictatorship in Brussels.

The newly signed Franco-German treaty for an EU Army can't come soon enough for Brussels, so they can turn Greeks on Germans and Germans on Italians etc...when it starts to disintegrate. History always repeats. When an empire dies they surround themselves with foot soldiers on the payroll to protect themselves.

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1 hour ago, woolley said:

Really? Take your pick. There's enough info out there:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17753891

https://borgenproject.org/poverty-in-portugal/

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/europe-italy-eurozone-debt-crisis-salvini-on-the-brink-economic-crisis-not-new-a8566416.html

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/03/greek-riot-police-teargas-protest-eu-migration-policy-lesbos

The whole edifice is the epitome of the charge you lay at the door of Brexit. It's the triumph of hope and delusion over reality. And it really is not an enduring "status quo" as you keep asserting. It's a constant maelstrom with new stresses surfacing all the time. Like herding cats.

OK so I picked one although not at random. My sister has a villa on the Algarve. After 5 years of spending time there and the UK because of Brexit they are taking steps to make it their permanent base. Apparently there are lots like them.

As a liberal I can well get behind the ethos of The Borgen Project. Although as a pragmatist solving world hunger will need a world-wide effort that will require an end to prejudice and bigotry. Don't see that happening in my lifetime.

As I posted previously forty years ago I was very surprised at the depth of poverty in rural Spain just a few miles inland from the Costas. My suspicions were first aroused when buying a crate of beer the deposit on the crate and the bottles was more than the cost of the beer!

Italy and Greece are basket cases. Always have been. Always will be. Their governments are a shambles. If anything being in the EU seems to stop their worst flights of fiscal fancy.

Anyway, if you can explain how rural poverty in Spain and Portugal is all the fault of the EU I would be interested. Especially as they were already very poor forty years ago. Thanks.

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