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EU - I'm in a quandary

(876 Posts)
Riverwalk Fri 03-Jun-16 08:39:39

I can't be the only one!

I'm minded to vote out - the main reason being the free movement of capital and labour has resulted in a very low-wage economy and zero-hours contracts (gravy train, inefficiency, lack of democracy, vested interests, etc., also play a part).

However, how can I be on the same side as Bozzer, Gove, Fox, Farage et al - I wouldn't normally give them the time of day. Apart from Gisela Stuart I can't think of any politician I'd be remotely connected to.

Surely the Big Beasts in politics, academia & sciences, unions, etc. can't all be wrong?

As I said, a quandary confused

rosesarered Fri 03-Jun-16 08:44:10

Forget who is taking the same side as you on this, it has split the nation after all.I am voting for what I think is in the best interest of our country not because of any self interest.The big beasts are often wrong! And have been worryingly wrong on a lot of things in the past years.

Teetime Fri 03-Jun-16 08:49:31

Hear hear well said!

Kittye Fri 03-Jun-16 08:55:51


Anya Fri 03-Jun-16 08:58:14

I think you'll find that the split in opinion is not just across the political spectrum Riverwalk but across academia, business and industry, etc. For every business who wants to stay 'in' there's another who would be better off 'out'.
The best debates have been on Radio 4. Last week I listened to two farmers both with opposing views. Previously I listened to two economists - one thought the effect would be minimal and short-lived and the other thought there would be no immediate effect but it could hit later to a lesser or greater extend.
Good, calm reasoned debate but both did agree that they simply didn't really know.

What I do think inevitable though, is that we will have less and less say in the running of our own country and, more and more countries. with less and less to offer but plenty to gain, will join the EU.

daphnedill Fri 03-Jun-16 09:01:55

So what will we have to gain if we leave?

morethan2 Fri 03-Jun-16 09:05:05

I too am in a quandary. I'm worried about immigration, not because I'm a 'little englander' at least I hope not, but because I think if we don't get it under control it will cause major social unrest in the future. I agree about it appearing to be partly to blame for low wages and zero hour contracts but that's mostly down to greedy employers I suppose. The inefficiency, red tape and probable corruption all add to my concern. What my major concern is, unlike most elections when who wins may at the most affect us for 3 terms. The outcome here may affect me in the short turn with the downturn in the market affecting our pension (the uncertainty has already done that)but actually those who will feel the most affect of the vote is my children and grandchildren. I'm voting for them, not me. This vote we hold is for our children and grandchildren. So taking that as my most important priority I will probably stay with the devil I know. Just to play it safe. confused

Anya Fri 03-Jun-16 09:18:52

Oddly enough I'm voting out for the sake of my grandchildren.


whitewave Fri 03-Jun-16 09:25:07

Talking about the advice we are receiving from practically every economist, and every world leader and every big institution, including those you might not think of like environmentalists like the RSBP, The Friends of the Earth etc

Yes undoubtedly there have been times when they have been wrong,

BUT - they have got it right far more times than wrong- so the odds that they are ALL right this time - and that represents a huge body of knowledge.

How can anyone be so arrogant as to dismiss this expertise?

whitewave Fri 03-Jun-16 09:34:53

Do not be under the illusion that immigration will be any different.

At the moment we have more or less full employment in the UK.

Let's take the NHS and hospitals as an example. 99% of cleaners, kitchen staff,in our local hospital are EU folk. Nurses and doctors are similar but at a lower percentage.

Businesses such as farmers employing packers etc.

How are they going to manage?

The government which will succeed Cameron will be a right wing Tory government who intend to follow a neo liberal agenda.
This includes of course what they term a free market which includes allowing businesses to employ at the cheapest rate possible. So access to cheap labour is essential in this agenda. There will be continued immigration of cheap labour under the next government, business will lobby very strongly for this.

Jane10 Fri 03-Jun-16 09:52:42

Actually although I completely agree about all these august economic institutions and organisations being much more likely to be right, I think the next govt might be very different than we might expect. Given that the Tories will be/are split in two re brexit and Labour is also somewhat split between Corbynites and more centralists, we could/should have an interesting coalition trying to muddle through. If we leave EU, we'll struggle for exports and if pay and conditions have to be increased we'll be even more economically disadvantaged. The poor govt will face a hellish task and it will be impossible to please everyone or even anyone at all and if we vote to leave EU there won't be anyone to blame but ourselves.

Juliette Fri 03-Jun-16 10:12:16

In, out, shake it all about.....sitting on a very uncomfortable fence here. It depends who I've listened to last.
I would vote out after listening to my ndn, he exports and does business in the wider world. My friends sil is a beef farmer he has valid reasons too for voting out.
Then there's whitewaves son and others like him, would have to vote in there.
I am tempted not to vote for the first time ever and just go with the flow and suffer the consequences whatever they may be.

Juliette Fri 03-Jun-16 10:21:59

ps. I realise that this is a very simplistic view of things but is probably representative of how a lot of people think.
I do read the political threads but they make my fluffy blonde head ache at times.?
Apologies to Mrs. Pankhurst et al for even considering not voting.

whitewave Fri 03-Jun-16 10:24:21

juliette shock

granjura Fri 03-Jun-16 10:50:46

whitewave we were lucky enough years ago to go skiing in Steamboat, Colorado. The resort was such a mess and the reason was made clear to us. The local authorities had decided to have a massive clean-up of all illegal immigrants living there.

They were very sucessful in this, and were all patting each oteher on the back- very proud of themselves indeed.

And then they realised - they couldn't run the resort. Couldn't get it ready for opening, didn't have anyone as lift attendants, cleaners, waiters, etc, etc- and just couldn't understand what had gone wrong sad ...

So its easy to have quotas for doctors and nurses- but hospitals, etc, also need 1000s of ancillary staff.

Lyndylou Fri 03-Jun-16 10:52:06

I find the more I listen to the different arguments, the more uncertain I become about which way I should vote. My problem is that, having worked and lived on the Continent, I love being a European and I would be very happy to be in a European Union. Just not this one.

Everyone knew 25 plus years ago, when I lived in Belgium, that the HQ at Brussels was a gravy train. If you could get a job there, you were set up for life. The Commission wastes tons of money when the rest of us are in austerity, the Euro has produced problems in countries like Greece and Italy who need massive bail outs from us and it is undemocratic. Even now, weeks from the decision, Junker and Merkel are talking to us like we are children who need to toe the line, rather than one of the biggest contributors to their budget.

However, I think the biggest problem Europe faces at the moment is non-EU illegal immigration and I'm not convinced coming out will solve that. In fact I think it will make it worse. France, Belgium etc will have no reason to police people trying to get here and we run the risk of them refusing to accept people back. Also, Russia and China are getting more aggressive and being by ourselves makes us more vulnerable.

Well, I'm glad I've got that off my chest!! Not that I am any clearer now about how I am going to vote. confused

granjura Fri 03-Jun-16 10:59:01

Not easy LyndyLou- I so agree. But as you say, our main problem is not EU migration- and non EU migration will probably be made much worse by leaving, for the reasons you stated very well.

As an aside, where I live in Switzerland we have just over 5% unemployement- and at the same time, 1000s and 1000s of French workers coming in every day to work here. These French workers are having a field day at the moment, being paid in Swiss Francs which is very high- their salaries have gone up 40% last year, just with the exchange rate- and their livings costs in France are much lower. So many locals say- get rid of them and give the jobs to our unemployed. Problem is those un-employed people do not want to work in hospitals or old people's homes, and are not qualified nurses, doctors, watch-makers or precision engineers either.

kittylester Fri 03-Jun-16 11:23:38

I've just come to this thread to say that I hope so, Jane10. We need an honest centralise coalition or whole new party. Where is the SDP when you need them?

kittylester Fri 03-Jun-16 11:24:51

No doubt someone will pop along in a minute to tell me why I've got it all wrong, Again! sad

kittylester Fri 03-Jun-16 11:25:42

And, no, Riverwalk , you aren't the only one!

nigglynellie Fri 03-Jun-16 11:40:00

As I've said on another thread, I simply don't know which way to vote! I'm pulled first one way and then another, till in the end I'm beginning to feel that I shall have (not want) to abstain. I don't know what's best for this country for the unforseeable future, and I'm not sure that we the uninitiated should be being asked what is a very serious question that could alter future generations lives! If politicians can't agree, then how on earth can the general public the majority of whom including me haven't really got a clue?

Riverwalk Fri 03-Jun-16 11:54:37

"Let's take the NHS and hospitals as an example. 99% of cleaners, kitchen staff,in our local hospital are EU folk. Nurses and doctors are similar but at a lower percentage.

Businesses such as farmers employing packers etc.

How are they going to manage?"

If there is an exit Whitewave the above won't have to leave the country - the UK will still be able to import workers, the difference being that new incomers will be by invitation not by 'right'.

Devorgilla Fri 03-Jun-16 12:04:26

Granjura, I think you make a valid point about needing workers from other parts of the globe. Truth is, as so often happens in history, once your population has reached a level of affluence they don't want to to the 'unattractive' jobs. I find it amazing that we have to recruit abroad for nurses etc. My sister went into nursing in the '50s and it was considered quite prestigious then. At the end of her career she was recruiting from abroad. We need to make these careers attractive again to our own workforce. I brought all my children up to know they were no better than anyone else and if push came to shove they had to earn money anyway they could. As a result,before entering their main careers, they worked as shop assistants in supermarkets, auxiliaries in nursing and care homes etc. It taught them that life is not easy for a lot of people and that they are very fortunate to have a choice.
I will vote to stay in, mainly based on the belief that my human rights will be better served inside the EU. Also, I heed what world leaders like Obama and Merkel have to say on the economic situation. They are very shrewd politicians. Of course, they will have their own agendas for their areas but don't we all?

granjura Fri 03-Jun-16 12:17:19

Thank you for your contribution Devorgilla. I for one am very glad this and other post have contributors with very different backgrounds and opinions. Just can't see the point of any thread just preaching to the converted- what would be the point?

Having just spent nearly 2 weeks in a hospital here, and visited by brother who has been in several hospitals here since late December- no wonder so many French and foreign staff, be they doctors, nurses or ancillaries- want to work here. And no wonder expats forums here are full of posts asking how to work here- as they just cannot stand working in UK hospitals or schools- massive work-loads, low salaries and constantly undermined by the Gvt. They will have to be replaced - by whom?

Alea Fri 03-Jun-16 12:25:02

And no wonder expats forums here are full of posts asking how to work here- as they just cannot stand working in UK hospitals or schools- massive work-loads, low salaries and constantly undermined by the Gvt. They will have to be replaced - by whom?

This may be entirely unintentional Granjura but it reads like yet another instance of UK bashing. If anybody is "undermining " anybody , this statenment is.
Yes I will not deny that public sector work has its challenges as well as its rewards, but the workforce are not unanimously forming an orderly queue to invade Switzerland.