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(502 Posts)
Luckygirl Sun 22-Jul-18 09:12:46

An interesting piece on Radio 4 this morning.

MaizieD Sun 22-Jul-18 10:06:43

It's a point of view.

jura2 Sun 22-Jul-18 10:28:21

Reminds me of a day when I had to stop the car on a minor road near us, because of the Hunt. I stood and watched the hounds and riders, next to a stout woman in her wellies and Barbour, who said to me 'what a wonderful viewpoint' and I replied 'just depends on your point of view'- she turned and stared ... and I walked off.

MawBroon Sun 22-Jul-18 10:41:21

I am so glad you picked this up, Luckygirl as I heard it on Friday night driving home and it did indeed give me food for thought.
I had not taken on board how individual governments in Europe had changed their political inclination and how Right Wing extremism was becoming a real force.
Because of the (misconceived) issue of immigration behind some Leave votes, I like many, had assumed a correlation of Liberalism and pro-EU support.
Do we really want to hitch our wagon to an AFD Germany as Merkel is on the way out, the Freedom party in Austria , a strong “Front National” in France, and an increasingly popular Right wing extremist and anti- immigrant Italy?
Let’s be clear about the direction some major governments in the EU are moving towards.
Do click the link and listen to the item, it calls itself a point of view and is worth 10 minutes of your time.

Welshwife Sun 22-Jul-18 10:54:44

But the EU itself is doing its best to stop it - probably the strongest force to do so and will be an ally to the people in those countries no do not like what is going on.

MaizieD Sun 22-Jul-18 11:01:10

I had not taken on board how individual governments in Europe had changed their political inclination and how Right Wing extremism was becoming a real force.

No doubt English backs are being smugly patted as Leavers don't recognise just how far to the right the UK is being carried.

MawBroon Sun 22-Jul-18 11:01:25

It has proved itself absolutely impotent over Italy turning refugees/migrants away and the Right wing AFD in Germany making huge progress against Merkel and her unrestricted immigration policy.

Luckygirl Sun 22-Jul-18 11:29:34

I found it interesting because he refused to be drawn down the polarisation route that the misguided referendum has led us down.

The referendum per se was wrong in principle, started for the wrong reasons, conducted in the wrong ways etc.

One of the unfortunate results is that we have lost the middle way. I would count myself as walking along that middle way. I recognise the good things that have come from being a part of the EU, but also recognise its many flaws and dangers. The referendum did not allow for such views: you were either for it (in which case you could pat yourself on the back for being a liberal-thinker) or you were against it (in which case you were a "swivel-eyed" racist).

This is one of the reasons that I opposed the referendum. It discouraged rational analysis because opening one's mouth to suggest that the "EU Project" might be flawed in any way resulted in accusations of small-mindedness and racism. It did indeed smack of communist ideology where you either had to be entirely for it or entirely against it. And where expansion was the name of the game.

There were and are many people who felt let down by the EU and more particularly by our own government whose preoccupation from Thatcher onwards has been to prop up capital and big international business as the expense of "ordinary" people.

The payback for this has been Brexit, because these people felt that this was their chance to give these elites a bloody nose. Not what the referendum was for of course, but what it came to be - and what, if anyone in power had had an ounce of political nowse, would have been blindingly obvious.

I have recently read two very interesting books, one on America and Trump by John Sopel (the BBC US correspondent) and one on Brexit by Robert Peston. They both come to exactly the same conclusion which is that Trump and Brexit are the result of political elites, wedded to international finance, who simply did not listen to those who were drawing the short straw in their countries.

What a mess for all.

The EU has been a boon; but it has also gone astray in many ways: inevitably it is a behemoth - how could it be otherwise as it grows?; it has not listened to those with concerns, particularly about immigration - you do not have to be a racist and you can embrace our multi-cultural society to also think that some form of border controls make sense.

And what happens in this situation? Those who do not have a voice latch on to extreme parties which they feel will represent them. It is scary.

The level of debate about the EU and Brexit is pitiful. There is no listening,only firing.

We are indeed in a sorry mess, but until there is more listening than firing insults we will get nowhere.

MawBroon Sun 22-Jul-18 11:33:03

Thank you Luckygirl for one of the most intelligent, reasoned and thoughtful “Brexit” posts I think we have had.
On that note, and with the reassurance that not everybody descends to personal abuse, I might try to leave Brexit threads alone from now on.

MaizieD Sun 22-Jul-18 11:49:12

I would agree with much of what you are saying, luckygirl.

It does seem to me, though, that as a great deal of immigration/asylum seeking is from countries which have been destabilised by foreign rule and foreign intervention (i.e from Western countries such as the US and the UK) that we haven't done enough to inform our citizens that we are, to a great extent, responsible for the immigration they fear so much and that it is incumbent on us to try to do something about it.

It is a shame that, in a country with an excellent (on paper) economy and getting on for full employment, as we were, we should have elected a government which proceeded with spending cuts which put an intolerable strain on public services. I think that the 'immigrants are pouring into the UK and using our scanty public services' discourse was extremely useful to the tories in deflecting blame for shortfalls away from their disastrous economic policy and on to a vulnerable section of the population who were distinctively 'different' from 'us'. Cameron's insistence on lowering immigration targets only served to intensify the impression in the mind of the public that immigrants were the cause of all our woes.

I have no doubt that the right wing parties gaining traction in European countries are exploiting the same ideas.

petra Sun 22-Jul-18 12:03:39

Very good post.
Some time ago i looked back to my 2015 diary to when Angela Merkel said: welcome.
I didn't write so eloquently as you have here. What I did write was: this is going to cause some almighty shite.
It has come to pass, and why, because the 'liberal elite' couldn't/wouldn't listen.

Mapleleaf Sun 22-Jul-18 12:52:43

A very good post, Luckygirl.

mcem Sun 22-Jul-18 13:48:33

Thank you luckygirl.
I'd like a new rule!
GNHQ to insist that anyone planning to post any Brexit comment must first read your post!

M0nica Sun 22-Jul-18 14:54:13

Our current government is economically right wing, but even if not as liberal on social policy as we would like, is still, compared with other countries socially very liberal.

In Europe it is in reverse, many of the countries like Austria, Hungary and Poland are well to the right of us socially but well to the left of us on economic issues

Fennel Sun 22-Jul-18 15:18:53

Yes good post Luckygirl. I was just thinking this morning that things in the various other European countries have changed so much since our referendum. So we're trying to negotiate with a shifting 'other side'.

Luckygirl Mon 23-Jul-18 09:00:57

It is good to know that I am not a totally lone voice and that there are others who share my view that rigid polarisation is unhelpful to this debate.

cornergran Mon 23-Jul-18 09:07:10

Thank you for your refreshing post luckygirl. I also agree that rigid polarisation is unhelpful to this debate as it is to any debate.

eazybee Mon 23-Jul-18 09:27:31

Thank you , Luckygirl. Sensible and rational.
Interesting to note that the almost immediate and predictable response was:
........'that we are, ( US and the UK) to a great extent, responsible for the immigration they fear so much and that it is incumbent on us to try to do something about it'.
Always our fault.

Jalima1108 Mon 23-Jul-18 09:38:17

Thank you for starting this thread Luckygirl; I don't have time to listen to the link at the moment unfortunately, but look forward to doing so.
However, your post of 11.29 is excellent and reasoned and sums up much of what many of us feel, whether deciding in the end to vote remain or leave the EU.

I look forward to listening and to a proper read later.

Jalima1108 Mon 23-Jul-18 09:44:05

that we are, ( US and the UK) to a great extent, responsible for the immigration they fear so much and that it is incumbent on us to try to do something about it'.

Predictable as you say eazybee and not mindful of all the facts. Many European countries were imperialists too, and many of them emigrants to the New World.
The answer may lie in aid - and the UK, more than most, is one of the foremost countries to contribute part of their national income to helping others.

varian Tue 24-Jul-18 16:27:52

Theresa May has revealed she is taking personal control of Brexit negotiations with the EU, in a major snub to Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab.

Mr Raab, who was appointed earlier this month, will be sidelined as Mrs May heads up the crunch withdrawal negotiations with the EU.

The Cabinet Office's Europe Unit, which reports direct to the Prime Minister, will have "overall responsibility" for the exit talks, Mrs May said.

Pro-EU campaigners said the Prime Minister's move, announced in Parliament today, was effectively a demotion for Mr Raab.

Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran accused Mrs May of "launching a desperate attempt to take back control, two years late".

MaizieD Tue 24-Jul-18 20:52:38

I can't say I blame her. The first thing he did was threaten to with hold the payment that had been agreed at the start of negotiations.

PamelaJ1 Tue 24-Jul-18 21:15:25


PECS Tue 24-Jul-18 21:42:31

The whole thing has been poorly managed from the moment Cameron decided to hold a referendum. The wrong expectation, the wrong question, the wrong information.

The EU was/is not perfect and reform was needed and big issues needed to be addressed. By potentially withdrawing from the club before the issues were discussed and solutions sought we have lost influence. This puts us in a weak positions in so many ways.
The fact that the electorate were not presented with projections of the pros/cons of leave/remain is shocking to me. Now Rees Mogg says it will be OK in 50 yrs!
I think that the far right movement should be the one thing we all unite against or we will definitely be in WW3.

petra Tue 24-Jul-18 21:58:57

The rise of the far right.
As if the eu couldn't enflame them anymore, they are now offering countries that border the Med. €6.000 for each migrant rescued. The Italians have answered: "we don't want your charity"