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Old 11-12-2018, 03:29 PM
Elendil's Heir Elendil's Heir is online now
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Brexit - general discussion thread

Prompted by this article: https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/12/media...may/index.html

There were some earlier threads, but they seem a bit stale now.

Should there be another referendum? Will Theresa May be able to stay at 10 Downing Street? Should she?
  #2  
Old 11-12-2018, 04:10 PM
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A no-deal Brexit looks more and more likely.

Another referendum doesn't matter at this point if I understand correctly, as the UK invoked Article 50.

They still want all of the advantages of being in the EU without the costs, which was unrealistic in the first place and now they will pay the price. IIRC as they have invoked Article 50 they would have to ask to rejoin and the request may be subject to the procedure in Article 49 as the the question if Article 50 is revocable is untested and may happen but I doubt it will with the political realities inside the UK.

There is a prohibition against using Article 50 to better ones position which would be a hard sell to the pro-Brexit crowd.

Last edited by rat avatar; 11-12-2018 at 04:15 PM.
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Old 11-12-2018, 04:39 PM
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And there's the problem with governing by referendum. Suppose May reaches a deal with the EU; it's softer than the leavers want, and harder than the remainers want, so there's a large vote against it, maybe even larger than the original vote, because no-one likes it.

So you end up with a hard-break, which increasingly looks likely anyway.


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Old 11-12-2018, 04:59 PM
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I think recent history has shown that referendums are no longer meaningful if enough attention is paid to the matter. There's too much polling and too much attention to allow the thing to not turn into a 50/50 Hotelling's Law scenario. Fundamentally, you need intellect, introspection, and factual underpinnings to enter the matter in order for a real outcome to result. Once you get the full attention of the general masses - who lack the intellect and introspection - and then also get the financial backers for each side - who will destroy all chance for factual underpinnings to rise to the fore - you're left with a clusterfuck. You just get a 50/50 result that could go either way and certainly won't demonstrate a "clear" message and political mandate to get things done. And nor is it based on any reality. It's just a poll of whether anyone actually knows anything. And since no one does, the result is 50/50. Half go for and half go against, because they don't actually understand what the vote means in any real way.

I mean, Brexit should be stopped. And if a second referendum would stop it - of which there's a 50/50 chance - then by all means it should take place. But it's really not the answer.

We all need to accept that there's a reason for us to elect representatives. They represent what we would choose if we were given the ability to investigate and deliberate properly. You have to let them do that. There never should have been a first referendum. And after the results of the first referendum, after Cameron left, everyone else should have simply issued a statement to the effect of, "Cameron was a moron and he took a lazy way out of doing his job. The rest of us intend to actually do our jobs, as your elected representatives, and govern based on the facts of the matter and what we can determine based on economic models, foreseeable legal changes in Brussels, etc. and we will decide how to interact with the EU on the basis of what makes sense. If you genuinely think that you know something on the topic and have a strong opinion, then by all means vote for the representatives who you trust to advance your positions. That's the only vote that matters. We're going to do what makes sense not let the country slip into shambles because of populist idiocy and political laziness."

And, simply, there's no reason to not issue that proclamation today either. The UK government should do its job and if Brexit is stupid and bad for the nation, then they should not proceed with it.

Last edited by Sage Rat; 11-12-2018 at 05:02 PM.
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Old 11-12-2018, 05:06 PM
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But as I understand it, it's not clear under Article 50 if the UK can just say "oops, our bad, never mind!"

Once Britain gave notice, they're on the train to Exitville.


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Old 11-12-2018, 05:16 PM
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But as I understand it, it's not clear under Article 50 if the UK can just say "oops, our bad, never mind!"

Once Britain gave notice, they're on the train to Exitville.


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I'm sure I've read a statement from Tusk saying that they can always back out. I'm not sure what that's based on. I'll try to confirm, one way or another, as that seems pretty relevant to the discussion.
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Old 11-12-2018, 05:19 PM
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This is saying that it can be reversed, according to the guy who wrote the article of the EU constitution that outlines the steps for leaving the EU.

https://www.businessinsider.com/dona...stopped-2018-1
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Old 11-12-2018, 05:27 PM
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Should there be another referendum?
Absolutely. This was a terrible decision and I think it would never pass if voted on again. Forget all the need for face saving or any special rules in the EU-- write new ones, if needed.

The strength of the Union is Britain,
And the strength of Britain is the Union.


To paraphrase from The Jungle Book.

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Old 11-12-2018, 05:44 PM
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Either May is playing a blinder or she's making an almighty cock-up and just praying that something comes along to rescue her. Personally I tend to the latter. She took a year to invoke Article 50, for example, which gave Remainers enough time to mount a legal challenge and cause serious damage to the process.
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Old 11-12-2018, 07:11 PM
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May is trying the buy time until some kind of solution emerges for the Irish Border problem. Between the UK, the EU, Ireland and parties in Northern Ireland, there is no consensus on how to draw a border. Her strategy is to try to negotiate a delay in leaving the EU during which the UK will be in some kind of limbo unable to leave and negotiate other trade treaties, yet the UK would still have to pay its membership. This position is unacceptable to the Brexiteers.

The opposite: crashing out of the EU with no agreement is even more unacceptable to just about everyone because of the economic disruption it will cause. We have had warnings from former prime ministers and major industries dependent on Europe wide supply chains and many other businesses. The status of he 4million EU nationals working in the UK and 1 million UK nationals who live and work or are living out their retirement in sunny Spain is another concern. It is a nightmare scenario and an answer is needed before the deadline that is looming in March next year.

If May does not get support for her delay and is her position becomes untenable she may resign. Then there would have to be another leader who would face the same stark choice.

I suspect fudging and delaying the issue is probably the only way forward until public opinion begins to turn and people begin demanding a vote on what sort of constitutional and economic car crash they prefer.

Staying in the EU is clearly the most sensible thing to do. But sadly we don't have any senior politicians with the courage tell the British people that Brexit is a stupid idea and it is not going to work without a great deal of unnecessary pain to the economy. The Referendum was supposed to be advisory anyway. It was never intended to be an instrument for a Constitutional change or they might have put a bit more thought into it. It has been promoted as the 'democratic will of the people' by the Brexit campaigners. .

Allowing the vote to go 49/51 is a very small margin which has split to country. A second vote could be justified on the basis that a significant number of the people who voted last time are not dead and a lot more have come of age.

In any case, why did we agree that the Scottish Referendum should allow voting at 16 yet the EU vote should be 18? It was ill conceived. The UK does not do Referendums well, this is not Switzerland where they have them all the time and they know what they are doing. This was Cameron taking a gamble to get UKIP and the Anti-EU Conservative Party off his back when he had a small majority of seats. He gambled on winning the Referendum and lost. He has jeopardised the prosperity of the country for internal party political intrigues. The fellow is scoundrel and responsible for getting us into this mess. Sad to say, I cannot see that there is any politician who has any credible answers from either the Conservatives or Labour. Labour is just as divided, not wanting to alienate their working class voter base.
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Old 11-12-2018, 10:28 PM
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...This was Cameron taking a gamble to get UKIP and the Anti-EU Conservative Party off his back when he had a small majority of seats. He gambled on winning the Referendum and lost....
Just as May gambled on calling snap elections to strengthen her hand in Brexit talks. That... didn't work out too well, either.
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Old 11-12-2018, 10:40 PM
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This is saying that it can be reversed, according to the guy who wrote the article of the EU constitution that outlines the steps for leaving the EU.

https://www.businessinsider.com/dona...stopped-2018-1
Yeah. I gotta say that, once legislation has been enacted, the opinion of the technicians who drafted the legislation as to what it means counts for very little.

There's a case currently on its way to the European Count of Justice on the question of whether the UK can validly unilaterally withdraw the Article 50 notification that it has already given. The opinion of the ECJ on this is very signficant; Lord Kerr's, not so much.
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Old 11-12-2018, 10:57 PM
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Another bit of unintended consequences is the amount of reorganization lots of companies are doing to prepare for Brexit. In the consulting sector, mid and long-term positions in the UK are being increasingly difficult to fill based on the amount of times I get hooks for the same one and on what my British agents tell me; firms which used to be exclusively UK-based are scrambling to get a subsidiary in Ireland or the Continent. Firms which used to be UK-based with a Continental subsidiary have reversed the setup. In some cases the Continental branch is Swiss and this may still be more convenient than being British, going forward (Switzerland is not EU but that's more and more a distinction without a difference).

In the air, the company which owns Iberia and British Airways is Spain-based but mainly UK-moneyed, and they're scrambling to ensure that this allows them to continue counting as "EU". I'm not sure why does the nationality of the money matter, since IANAFinance Person at all, but if it didn't there wouldn't be a lot of lawyers getting paid to solve this. They're not the only ones in this situation, just the one best known in Spain: one of my former clients is a Spanish company whose main stockholder is Rolls Royce, and they're a huge player in the airplane-maintenance sector. That includes maintenance for NATO planes in Spain.

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Old 11-12-2018, 11:38 PM
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I think recent history has shown that referendums are no longer meaningful if enough attention is paid to the matter. There's too much polling and too much attention to allow the thing to not turn into a 50/50 Hotelling's Law scenario. Fundamentally, you need intellect, introspection, and factual underpinnings to enter the matter in order for a real outcome to result. Once you get the full attention of the general masses - who lack the intellect and introspection - and then also get the financial backers for each side - who will destroy all chance for factual underpinnings to rise to the fore - you're left with a clusterfuck. You just get a 50/50 result that could go either way and certainly won't demonstrate a "clear" message and political mandate to get things done. And nor is it based on any reality. It's just a poll of whether anyone actually knows anything. And since no one does, the result is 50/50. Half go for and half go against, because they don't actually understand what the vote means in any real way.

I mean, Brexit should be stopped. And if a second referendum would stop it - of which there's a 50/50 chance - then by all means it should take place. But it's really not the answer.

We all need to accept that there's a reason for us to elect representatives.

... The UK government should do its job and if Brexit is stupid and bad for the nation, then they should not proceed with it.
I agree with Sage Rat overall, but ...
        "Hotelling's law is an observation in economics that in many markets it is rational for producers to make their products as similar as possible."
While there may be something to Sage Rat's observation, surely it's not as simple as Hotelling's Law. Leave and Remain were hardly "as similar as possible."

I know nothing about European politics and perhaps shouldn't offer an opinion, but if the British P.M. went to Berlin, stood barefoot in the snow, and kissed the feet of the German Chancellor, couldn't the matter of Article 50 be set aside? They all want what's best for Europe.
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Old 11-13-2018, 12:04 AM
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They all want what's best for Europe.
"Objection! Assumes facts not in evidence!"
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Old 11-13-2018, 12:15 AM
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I agree with Sage Rat overall, but ...
"Hotelling's law is an observation in economics that in many markets it is rational for producers to make their products as similar as possible."
While there may be something to Sage Rat's observation, surely it's not as simple as Hotelling's Law. Leave and Remain were hardly "as similar as possible."
The Leave campaign worked hard to market a Leave vote on the basis that it was, in many respects, similar to Remain, telling people that the UK would keep all the advantages of EU membership even if they left; that the EU would rush to enter into a new treaty with the UK conferring all the goodies that the UK already has, but without any of the tiresome budgetary contributions or all those foreigners coming in. After the referendum they spent some time framing the EU position (that if the UK leaves it will be a non-member) as "punishment" by the EU, and now they've moved on to gaslighting the electorate by assuring them that they voted for Leave, including all the negative consequences of leaving, and they knew this at the time.

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I know nothing about European politics and perhaps shouldn't offer an opinion, but if the British P.M. went to Berlin, stood barefoot in the snow, and kissed the feet of the German Chancellor, couldn't the matter of Article 50 be set aside? They all want what's best for Europe.
The immediate obstacle to the UK revoking its Article 50 notice is domestic; it would be unacceptable to too many people in the UK.

If they could get past that and they sought to revoke their Art 50 notice, the EU would have a dilemma. On the one hand, it would be gratifying and a salutary example to others to have the UK realise that leaving has really, really bad consequences. On the other hand Brexit has consumed a great deal of time, effort, energy and goodwill; do we really want to subject ourselves to more of the carping and the whingeing and the throwing of toys out of the pram, perhaps indefinitely? So I think much would depend on the political context; is the UK seeking to revoke A50 notice simply because it can't arrive at a decision on how to leave? Or has it actually developed a positive national consensus for a commitment to the European project?

Last edited by UDS; 11-13-2018 at 12:17 AM.
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:12 AM
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To be fair to the Leavers, no one anticipated that Brexit would revive the Irish question.
The only practical solution to it short of canceling Brexit or the United Kingdom might well be a reconquest.

Does anyone else get the feeling the whole thing i.e the referendum, was not thought through?
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:53 AM
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To be fair to the Leavers, no one anticipated that Brexit would revive the Irish question.
It was obvious that it risked doing so, and the fact was much discussed in Ireland.

If this escaped attention in the debate that went on in Britain this is because it was not in the interests of the Leave campaign to point to this problem, and the Remain campaign was led by people who had a policy of not considering or planning for the consequences of a vote to Leave, since this implied that Leave might win, and that was considered defeatist.

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Old 11-13-2018, 02:28 AM
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To be fair to the Leavers, no one anticipated that Brexit would revive the Irish question.
The only practical solution to it short of canceling Brexit or the United Kingdom might well be a reconquest.

Does anyone else get the feeling the whole thing i.e the referendum, was not thought through?
A reconquest?
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Old 11-13-2018, 05:05 AM
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The Good Friday Agreement created a settlement between the UK and Ireland that brought peace to a long running conflict that caused the deaths of three thousand victims. Years of terrorist attacks with Northern Ireland beset by sectarian paramilitaries persecuting each others communities and requiring a heavy, militarised security presence. The regular terrorist bombings are not forgotten. The IRA nearly assassinated Thatcher and Major. It was the UKs major terrorist threat from 1968. It was settled by agreeing to change the constitution of both the UK and Ireland and agree institutions that applied across the whole of island of Ireland. The amount of political capital spent on this was very high by Major and later Blair.

The Irish Question has been a major constitutional concern for the UK from the beginning. It is a very big deal and every UK politician (and every politician in Ireland and the Northern Ireland) does not want to open that can of worms.

Ireland is a dedicated member of the EU and, like many smaller economies, has benefited greatly from its membership. There will be a border between the EU and UK and the land border runs across Northern Ireland. It requires some way of checking goods and people crossing the border. The borders between EU member states are pretty very open. Whereas the borders between the EU and non-EU states required customs and police checks. Put that in place between Ireland and Northern Ireland and the worry is that they will become the target for terrorist attack from Irish Republican groups. Very easy for that to escalate the Troubles in Northern Ireland to return. The EU says Northern Ireland can stay in the EU customs union and there can be border with the rest of the UK along the Irish Sea. That is unacceptable to the Unionist parties in Northern Ireland and May is dependent on their votes in Parliament.

Even if all the other issues relating to Brexit can be solved (and there are lot of them), this one is sticking point with no clear solution. May suggests that some remarkable computer system can be contrived to make the border 'frictionless' and she is trying to buy time by postponing the exit for an undetermined length of time. Her support within her party for this proposal is looking very shaky.

Without that compromise agreed and accepted such that she can win a vote, the only alternative is a Hard Exit with no agreement. Or, of course. going back to the country and saying. Hey we can't do this. It was too hard and the consequences were very bad.

I don't think anyone would vote for a No Deal, Hard Exit from the EU and the economic crisis that would surely result. But it is surely democratic to offer the public a vote now that the consequences are becoming clear because it certainly was not two years ago.

Most of the issues regarding Brexit explored so far have been internal wrangles taking place between factions within the Conservative Party about what the UK wants. The EU has said no negotiation on a future trading relationship until the UK leaves. Only then the UK be able to negotiate with the EU and start developing all the trade deals with other nations and trade blocs around the world.

That limbo is where the default position is the WTO trading rules, which deals with tariffs and has little regard for the legal regulations regarding standards. Some in the Conservative Party think that this is a perfectly acceptable position to be in and the economy will surely thrive and take advantage of all kinds of novel trading opportunities. The business community can see only problems that will upset finely balanced trading arrangements that have been put in place over the past 40 years and are essential for smooth international trade.

The UK is highly dependent on international trade, the basis of the economy is that of a major trading nation. If that is disrupted the consequences will be serious.

We should find out quite soon whether May has developed an agreement that is acceptable to the various factions on which she depends on for votes. She really has the worst job in politics.
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Old 11-13-2018, 05:13 AM
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Does anyone else get the feeling the whole thing i.e the referendum, was not thought through?
At this point, to laugh or to cry. Any suggestions?
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Old 11-13-2018, 08:44 AM
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Either May is playing a blinder or she's making an almighty cock-up and just praying that something comes along to rescue her. Personally I tend to the latter. She took a year to invoke Article 50, for example, which gave Remainers enough time to mount a legal challenge and cause serious damage to the process.


Oh, please.


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Old 11-13-2018, 10:22 AM
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At this point, to laugh or to cry. Any suggestions?
I think crying is probably the more appropriate option.
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Old 11-13-2018, 11:07 AM
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Whereas the borders between the EU and non-EU states required customs and police checks. Put that in place between Ireland and Northern Ireland and the worry is that they will become the target for terrorist attack from Irish Republican groups. Very easy for that to escalate the Troubles in Northern Ireland to return. The EU says Northern Ireland can stay in the EU customs union and there can be border with the rest of the UK along the Irish Sea. That is unacceptable to the Unionist parties in Northern Ireland and May is dependent on their votes in Parliament.
Those 2 options comport either a risk of some violence or waiting until a coalition partner isn't needed. They're definitely not pleasant options but neither is impossible.

Sparking up violence in Ireland is bad but it's a risk, not a certainty, of something the UK and Ireland have already been through.

Once a government gets a majority, putting Northern Ireland in limbo will become an option. Grabbing and insisting on retaining a chunk of the neighboring island was always going to be awkward.


Technology enabling a frictionless border; It still requires putting a customs border someplace which I gather is the sticking point. Also, if frictionless customs were possible, wouldn't we see some version of it somewhere?

It's worrying because it means that May is either deluded or lying knowing perfectly well that her lie is bound to blow up at some point: "Bullshit them long enough so we don't have to deal with unpleasant choices right now" is how I gather Leave leaders behaved.


Are there any stats on the percentage of people who voted Leave vs Remain in the South of England vs the North? A part of me would like for the UK to become disunited with Scotland getting its freeedom, the South remaining in the EU and the North leaving so it can freely plunge into a Norsefire. I don't know about the elves, they're at the same latitude as much of the Nort' but I think they'd like to remain in the EU.

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Old 11-13-2018, 11:17 AM
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At this point, to laugh or to cry. Any suggestions?
Try a whimper.

If you have a Tory MP, you could try writing to them to ask them to depose her, as I did.
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Old 11-13-2018, 11:52 AM
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To be fair to the Leavers, no one anticipated that Brexit would revive the Irish question.
That's not being fair. That's giving a pass to willful ignorance.
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Old 11-13-2018, 12:03 PM
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Try a whimper.

If you have a Tory MP, you could try writing to them to ask them to depose her, as I did.
Thing is, I don't blame May, she's inherited this shit show, it was always going to be a right royal mess. It's Cameron I hold to blame for this catastrophe.

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Old 11-13-2018, 12:27 PM
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I do blame May. She didn't have to trigger Article 50 without a plan, and she didn't have to wrongly interpret the referendum result as a mandate to leave the Customs Union and Single Market. Life would be a lot easier if she'd try to eke out a reasonable middle way, as the result warranted.


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Old 11-13-2018, 12:39 PM
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BREAKING NEWS - brexit ‘divorce’ deal agreed by UK/EU negotiators, UK cabinet to assess tomorrow (according to BBC).

Deep breaths everyone.
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Old 11-13-2018, 12:50 PM
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Here you go: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-46188790
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:04 PM
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How many more ministers are going to resign because they find this deal unacceptable?
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:05 PM
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BREAKING NEWS - brexit ‘divorce’ deal agreed by UK/EU negotiators, UK cabinet to assess tomorrow (according to BBC).

Deep breaths everyone.
Rees-Mogg is currently hyper-ventilating about the UK becoming a "slave state"
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:06 PM
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Let's see it before passing judgement.
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:34 PM
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It's not only the Cabinet and Parliament that have to sign off on it. It's also Germany and France and Ireland and....

Chances that everyone will accept it... minimal.

Corbyn has already said "this is unlikely to be a good deal for the country".

The agreement is 400+ pages of dense legalese. Ministers can flip through it at no. 10, but not take it home. They have to vote to accept it tomorrow, or else resign - so definitely an informed decision with no pressure.
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Old 11-13-2018, 02:06 PM
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As expected Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg are already against it, they are still under a delusional belief that the UK has more power than it does.
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Old 11-13-2018, 03:12 PM
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It's not only the Cabinet and Parliament that have to sign off on it. It's also Germany and France and Ireland and....
No, while you need substantial support from the EU governments you are not in the situation where one EU country can veto the deal. And Barnier has been in very close contact from the EU governments.
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The conclusion of the withdrawal agreement requires the consent of the European Parliament, by simple majority of voting MEPs.

Following the consent of the European Parliament, the Council concludes the withdrawal agreement on behalf of the EU by a so-called super-qualified majority vote. Article 238(3)b TFEU defines the super-qualified majority "as at least 72 % of the members of the Council representing the participating Member States, comprising at least 65 % of the population of these States". This means that effectively 20 out of the 27 Member States have to vote in support of the withdrawal agreement and that the total population of these 20 Member States can be no less than roughly 280 million people.
https://www.dlapiper.com/en/us/focus...-happens-next/

The big problem is with the British Parliament. Later when the Final agreement comes up you are going to need universal EU agreement--and that will probably be very difficult to get.
  #37  
Old 11-13-2018, 03:16 PM
Dewey Finn Dewey Finn is offline
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It seems to me that the Brexit vote was one of two now-regretted votes made in 2016. The other was in the US.

And I wonder what's going to happen to all of the expensive real estate in London that's now occupied by bankers when the EU banking center moves onto Dublin or Paris or where-ever? And whatever happened to the claim that leaving the EU would free up 350 million pounds a week that could instead be spent on the NHS?
  #38  
Old 11-13-2018, 05:14 PM
Malden Capell Malden Capell is offline
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Originally Posted by Baron Greenback View Post
Rees-Mogg is currently hyper-ventilating about the UK becoming a "slave state"

Yes, they're claiming the UK loses the sovereignty that they claimed the UK didn't already have. How anyone still sticks up for Brexit is baffling.


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  #39  
Old 11-13-2018, 07:36 PM
Ludovic Ludovic is online now
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My subconscious just told me something my conscious didn't want me to admit: upon seeing the news of the possible compromise my heart sank as an American, because it is neither the economy-boosting remain result that would be better overall for the world economy, nor the insular isolationist result that, while potentially disastrous, might still result in a closer U.S.-British relationship out of necessity. On the plus side,
Quote:
And I wonder what's going to happen to all of the expensive real estate in London that's now occupied by bankers when the EU banking center moves onto Dublin or Paris or where-ever?
Maybe it will engender a pause in the construction of glass-paned eyesores in London.
  #40  
Old 11-13-2018, 07:54 PM
UDS UDS is offline
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It's not only the Cabinet and Parliament that have to sign off on it. It's also Germany and France and Ireland and....

Chances that everyone will accept it... minimal.
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Originally Posted by PastTense View Post
No, while you need substantial support from the EU governments you are not in the situation where one EU country can veto the deal. And Barnier has been in very close contact from the EU governments.
PastTense is correct. But any Withdrawal Agreement does need to be ratified by the European Parliament. And, while that is not so hairy a prospect as getting it ratified by the Westminster Parliament, it's not a shoe-in.

But the likelihood is that it goes to Westminster first. If Westminster says "no", then approval by the EP is moot, and presumably they will not consider or vote on the already-rejected agreement.
  #41  
Old 11-13-2018, 09:06 PM
An Gadaí An Gadaí is offline
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And I wonder what's going to happen to all of the expensive real estate in London that's now occupied by bankers when the EU banking center moves onto Dublin or Paris or where-ever?
The bankers are not welcome in Dublin. Rents now are already comparable to London or NYC. Homelessness is sky high. I don't think this city can absorb 1,000s or 10,000s additional well paid workers in the short to medium term without there being serious ructions.
  #42  
Old 11-13-2018, 10:37 PM
PastTense PastTense is offline
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But the likelihood is that it goes to Westminster first...
Maybe. The other possibility is that some Cabinet members will resign and several more Tory MPs will send letters to the 1922 committee so May will be subject to a confidence vote. There is a growing feeling that May has totally mishandled the Brexit process. On the other hand there is no obvious alternative Tory MP to become Prime Minister.
  #43  
Old 11-13-2018, 10:54 PM
Jonathan Chance Jonathan Chance is offline
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Just speaking as an American but...

How many PMs is this thing going to claim, anyway? It appears, from here, to be a truly insoluble problem.
  #44  
Old 11-13-2018, 11:10 PM
UDS UDS is offline
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Maybe. The other possibility is that some Cabinet members will resign and several more Tory MPs will send letters to the 1922 committee so May will be subject to a confidence vote. There is a growing feeling that May has totally mishandled the Brexit process. On the other hand there is no obvious alternative Tory MP to become Prime Minister.
Oh, sure. But it all comes to the same in the end. If the draft Withdrawal Agreement is rejected by the Westminster Parliament before the EP considers it, the EP will never consider it. If the May govt. falls apart rather than accept the draft Withdrawal Agreement so that it never even gets to the Westminster Parliament, same outcome; the EP will never consider it.
  #45  
Old 11-13-2018, 11:17 PM
UDS UDS is offline
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Just speaking as an American but...

How many PMs is this thing going to claim, anyway? It appears, from here, to be a truly insoluble problem.
The Conservatives have painted themselves into a corner from which escape is impossible. The only way forward for the Conservatives is to lose office, spend a period in opposition, purge themselves, try to reinvent themselves as a movement at least arguably sane and potentially competent, and hope to God the electorate will buy this in a few years time.

Of course, in the meantime enormous damage is done to the country; it faces a choice between Brexiting on awful terms, or Brexitting on terms that are much, much worse that that. No good Brexit is possible. There's a slim chance that the country might still avoid Brexitting at all, but (a) this seems very difficult to pull off, starting from where things are now, and (b) even this would leave a lasting legacy of bitterness, anger, sense of betrayal, waste, humiliation.

But the country is basically just collateral damage in the Conservatives' civil war.
  #46  
Old 11-13-2018, 11:28 PM
Velocity Velocity is offline
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So......is this kind of like the Abilene Paradox by now? The main majority of Brits don't want Brexit any longer, would heave a big sigh of relief if it were not to happen after all, and the PMs don't want to leave, and there isn't any legal reason it HAS to leave, but.......it must make itself do something it doesn't want to do?
  #47  
Old 11-13-2018, 11:57 PM
Nava Nava is offline
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Velocity, the majority of electoral-college voters voted for Trump in 2016: would he stop being president if a poll taken of those same people now said a chunk of them have changed their mind? In the UK, the majority of people who voted did vote for Brexit. "I changed my mind" doesn't work for this kind of situation.

Last edited by Nava; 11-13-2018 at 11:59 PM.
  #48  
Old 11-14-2018, 12:39 AM
Elendil's Heir Elendil's Heir is online now
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Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
So......is this kind of like the Abilene Paradox by now?....
Never heard of that before: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abilene_paradox
  #49  
Old 11-14-2018, 12:46 AM
UDS UDS is offline
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Velocity, the majority of electoral-college voters voted for Trump in 2016: would he stop being president if a poll taken of those same people now said a chunk of them have changed their mind? In the UK, the majority of people who voted did vote for Brexit. "I changed my mind" doesn't work for this kind of situation.
Well, it can. The referendum of 2016 was, formally speaking, consultative. Legally, Parliament doesn't have to give effect to it. Politically, though, both the major parties committed themselves to give effect to the outcome of the referendum, so it's very difficult not to.

But not impossible. You could take the view that circumstances have changes so much since 2016 that the political mandate conferred by the referendum is no longer adequate. Or that Brexit, as she is shaping up, is so very different from the Brexit offered in the referendum campaign, that the mandate is no longer adequate. And, if you take that view, then you can argue either that Parliament as the sovereign power can now decide not to implement the referendum (which, legally, is undeniable but, politically, would be highly controversial) or that Parliement can, and perhaps should, seek a fresh mandate in a second referendum for Brexit on the terms that are available. Now that they know more about what Brexit actually looks like and what it actually entails, people may change their mind about whether they want it, and if there's reason to think that that is so that's a perfectly good reason for another referendum.

(Which is not to say that a decision to hold a further referendum wouldn't be hugely controversial and divisive.)
  #50  
Old 11-14-2018, 01:04 AM
PatrickLondon PatrickLondon is offline
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Originally Posted by UDS View Post
(Which is not to say that a decision to hold a further referendum wouldn't be hugely controversial and divisive.)
Not to mention defining the question, and how the answers would be interpreted. This deal or no deal? This deal, or no deal, or call the whole thing off and hope everyone forgets it ever happened?
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