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Why I will vote to Leave the EU - From an alternative viewpoint watch

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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    I am sure if and when Brexit happens, it will become a give and take situation just like right now. We cannot expect all the benefits of the EU without sacrificing some of our own, however I believe there are more sovereignty power to be obtained back if we leave the EU and reconsider our relationship with Europe (possibly by joining EFTA).
    Oh, I don't disagree, just that I would wager that many people voting leaving for sovereignty's sake would consider any violation of sovereignty to be unacceptable.
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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    As I said from my post, I for one have no problem with free movement of people/labour. It is unfair to assign this believe to every Leave campaigner when many like me have do not object to these policies.

    To me in the grand scheme of things, the most important issue is not the EU in its current state, but the direction it is heading and the erosion on our country's democracy in the future.

    There is no way to predict what will happen in the organisation if we stay and whether reforms will be made. What we can be certain is by staying in the EU, we are at the mercy of people who do not have our interests at heart and certainly not accountable to our country's electorates. I hope more people can address this problem, instead of repeatedly debating on non-issues and deflecting the argument.
    I think the main issue is that your idea of where the EU is heading is just speculation. If it came to the point that the EU really was a threat to our democracy then we could leave. But that point has not been reached. If anything, at the moment, the EU gives us greater democracy, because European Parliamentary elections are the only place in England that you can vote via proportional representation. If it were not for proportional representation the likes of UKIP would never have seats in the European Parliament.

    Additionally it gives UK citizens the opportunity to keep a check on the excesses of individual governments, to make sure that they keep to the obligations that they have signed up to. Often a big deal is made of the UK being told what to do by the CJEU - the reality is that the UK wins the vast majority of the cases brought against it. But, where it does not this is an important reinforcement of our democratic rights.

    You seem to advocate oversight by the UN or the WTO, where ordinary citizens have no representation and no judicial process. How is this reinforcing our democracy?
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    (Original post by Aceadria)
    Or vice versa. No real conclusion can be predicted as trade negotiations are dependent on a number of factors. My issue is with conclusions that both sides are making on this subject ("We're going to lose everything!" or "Trade will not be affected").
    I understand your point. I don't believe it is true that anyone on the REMAIN side is saying that we will lose everything. Please post a reference if you believe otherwise.

    The main argument on the REMAIN side is that we know what the terms of our deal with the EU is right now, we cannot know what a Brexit deal will look like, and it's unlikely that a Brexit deal could be on better terms.

    Obviously better terms is subjective, some lunatics are advocating for Brexit on the basis that an annual loss of £4,300 per household would be a price worth paying. Personally I don't see the upside from that.
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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    1. Regarding your points about peace, please allow me to quote you:
    I think you are not understanding what you are reading.

    'The truth is that closer economic ties make war a futile venture, and those closer ties have been fostered by the EU.' - this implies that you believe the EU has collective power in defence when its countries are economically dependent on each other.
    No, this implies that within the EU (not externally) there is economic interdependence, and that makes war futile. This isn't a military defence function, it is an economic function.

    'The UN has no direct power, it relies upon the implementation of member states. We have also seen time and time again, in the Security Council, some of the permanent members (ie China, USA, UK and France) use their vetos to prevent resolutions from passing.' - This implies that countries are allowed to impose their own sanction, regardless of its political affiliation. As to the EU, sanctions require a unanimous vote of the European Council, minus the offending state, meaning any member country can veto.
    I'm not really sure what point you are making here. The EU has more teeth than the UN because it does not have such diverse interests. How can the UN pass effective resolutions against Syria when Syria has Russia as an ally, etc? How would the "offending state" be in the European Council if we're talking about external EU sanctions?

    'You might note that the EU is also a voluntary organisation' - you agreed that the EU is a voluntary organisation, just like the UN.
    Well, I think your point was that the EU was not a voluntary organisation. That its rules were forced upon us. So, again, I don't really understand what point it is that you are trying to make.

    2. Improving the EU's democracy does not mean that the UK's democracy will be improved, and vice versa, nor do I believe this is likely.
    You are the one arguing that the EU is not democratic. Now you are arguing that if democratic representation in the EU were improved it wouldn't make a difference anyway. I think there is a lack of a coherent argument here.

    We should not use a comparison mentality when it comes to achieving a better democracy overall. Although our democracy is not perfect does not mean it is not a democracy, in fact it is one of the most advanced democracy in the world.
    Surely it is perfectly reasonable to examine what you say is an "advanced democracy" and compare that against which you say is lacking in democracy?

    I am more interested in what is definite in the political future, than speculations. What is being speculated is whether the EU will become more democratic if we continue staying. What is definite is that the EU's parliamentary system is under-representing the UK and we only yield a 10% voting power.
    This is actually representative of our population within the EU. Would you want the UK to have a greater parliamentary weight than its population dictates.

    What is also definite is that by leaving the EU, the UK will be 100% responsible for its laws and legislations.
    Clearly you know nothing about international law. When a state signs trade agreements or other international treaties it takes on obligations. Those obligations are often enshrined in its legislation and regulation.

    I can give you a good example of this. Up until the mid 1970s the USA was not a member of the Berne convention, primarily because its law was not compliant. The main issue was that the USA required registration in order to protect copyright, and that it had a fixed term of protection of 28 years, that was renewable for a further 28 years (ie a total of 56 years. The Berne Convention dictates that there is not requirement for registration for the protection of copyright (it comes into existence at the moment of creation) and that protection is for a term of the life of the author plus 50 years.

    The USA was faced with the position that not being in the Berne Convention meant that its authors could often not protect their works effectively outside the USA. Therefore it changed its laws and joined the convention in 1989.

    There are many, many examples of these international treaties forcing states to change their legislation. Good examples are the recent trade deals the USA has concluded with SE Asian and Oceania states within the past few years and the current negotiations on TTIP:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transa...nt_Partnership

    3. The believe that the UK has benefited from the EU membership is not exclusive to my believe that the UK will benefit from the EFTA and staying as a part in the single market.
    There is no evidence that the UK could become a member of EFTA. Even if it did it would most likely be obliged to implement many of the EU's directives and regulations, as well as being answerable to the CJEU.

    4. Given the massive difference in standards and distance, I do not believe it is reasonable to liken the outcome of Brexit on trade to the US.
    I don't think distance has anything to do with it. Again you are out of step with the main LEAVE arguments, which are even now advocating better trade links with the USA, BRICK states and the Commonwealth. Some of these countries are literally on the other side of the world.

    The UK is free to join the EFTA, of which there is immediate membership considering we meet the requirements. Upon joining your concerns on tariffs and administration should be well addressed.
    This is just fantasy.

    5. Your statement that there is "no plan for a Federal Europe" is not a fact. What is not being planned publicly does not mean the EU have no ambition to create a federal body. In politics what is being planned is not always available to the public. It is merely your belief and there is no evidence to back up as such. My argument on the future direction of the EU is also my belief, and I have always stated as such.
    But as I have previously said, if a federation is a realistic outcome, and the citizens of the UK do not want that, they can vote on that point when it arises. Indeed the last parliament created legislation that there would be referenda on any change in sovereignty regarding EU treaties. Therefore your fears are unfounded.

    6. It is true that trade between countries have an effect on maintaining peace.
    I believe that's my point, which you appear to be disagreeing with above.

    Being an EFTA member effectively allows a country to trade with other EEA countries, so why would Brexit diminishes this effect?
    But the UK is not an EFTA member. And as above, there are obligations that go with joining that group.

    Regarding peace, you will find that most wars in recent history did not involve a nuclear state, and when it does it is always the nuclear state that have declared war. It is also worth noting that there is a higher concentration of nuclear states in Europe, so this could be more effective in deterring wars as each nuclear state act as a deterring party and each individually likely to invoke the deterrent in the event of war.
    Wars involving Russia: Syria, Afghanistan, Georgia, Ukraine, Angola, Korea, Vietnam…

    Wars involving the USA: Iraq I, Iraq II, Serbia, Afghanistan, Grenada, Panama, various interventions in South America, Korea, Syria, Libya, Vietnam…

    Wars involving the UK: Iraq I, Iraq II, Serbia, Afghanistan, Korea, Libya, Syria, Falklands…

    Wars between EU members after membership: none.

    EU states with nuclear weapons: UK and France.

    What other wars in recent history are there? I think that in most of these the nuclear power may have declared war first, but it doesn't follow that they were the initial aggressor.
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    (Original post by typonaut)
    I think you are not understanding what you are reading.
    No, this implies that within the EU (not externally) there is economic interdependence, and that makes war futile. This isn't a military defence function, it is an economic function.

    I did not state that this is a military option, I am highlighting your point that it is a collective defensive power driven by economic interdependence. I suggest you read more carefully before accusing me of not understanding your statements.


    I'm not really sure what point you are making here. The EU has more teeth than the UN because it does not have such diverse interests. How can the UN pass effective resolutions against Syria when Syria has Russia as an ally, etc? How would the "offending state" be in the European Council if we're talking about external EU sanctions?
    The UN had imposed sanctions on Russia due to their involvement in Crimea, this shows the the UN is not afraid of imposing such sanctions if needed. The UN did not sanction Syria and was right to do so, because the country is not involved in a cross-border war but a civil war. Sanction on Syria would mean the country will suffer as a whole indiscriminatingly and would solve nothing, only enhancing the suffering of more Syrians.


    Well, I think your point was that the EU was not a voluntary organisation. That its rules were forced upon us. So, again, I don't really understand what point it is that you are trying to make.
    I am simply referring to what you stated, so I am glad you again clarified that the EU is a voluntary organisation. Also you might also want to read again at my post as I did state that the EU is a voluntary organisation, hence our option to leave it.


    You are the one arguing that the EU is not democratic. Now you are arguing that if democratic representation in the EU were improved it wouldn't make a difference anyway. I think there is a lack of a coherent argument here.
    No, my point is that by improving the UK's democracy (which you complained about its imperfections) would not improve the EU and would not improve our situation therefore it is illogical to bring the UK' democracy into the argument, given that these are 2 separate matters requiring 2 separate campaigns if needed. We should not employ the mindset of 'because our democracy isn't perfect, let's adopt another imperfect system and hopefully both can improve.'. The correct logic is to rid ourself of the external system, and then improve our system.

    Surely it is perfectly reasonable to examine what you say is an "advanced democracy" and compare that against which you say is lacking in democracy?
    The UK's parliamentary system is one of the World's oldest and most accountable, complimented by the checks and balances between both houses of parliaments and the courts. The prime minister is also subject to opposition's questioning every week. There are also committee which are responsible for scrutinising the government's decisions and the public has the right to force a debate in the parliament by participating in petitions. The EC is not subjected to questioning and there is no direct procedure for EU citizens to force a debate or review of legislation.

    This is actually representative of our population within the EU. Would you want the UK to have a greater parliamentary weight than its population dictates.
    Please read my original post regarding under-representation and the calculations. We are under represented in a common and mathematical sense. Please do not deflect this issue to the UK's electoral system, I have addressed this previously.

    Clearly you know nothing about international law. When a state signs trade agreements or other international treaties it takes on obligations. Those obligations are often enshrined in its legislation and regulation.
    Again you are not reading what I stated carefully, and accusation that I 'know nothing about international law' is offensive and is not helpful to your argument. When a country is has absolute sovereignty, naturally the country is responsible for its laws, legislations and signing its trade treaties. I understand that trade treaties will subject the country to be bound to its conditions, but the control originates from the country's freedom to sign it at the first place. You must recognise this and stop jumping to the end conclusion so quickly.

    There is no evidence that the UK could become a member of EFTA. Even if it did it would most likely be obliged to implement many of the EU's directives and regulations, as well as being answerable to the CJEU.

    I don't think distance has anything to do with it. Again you are out of step with the main LEAVE arguments, which are even now advocating better trade links with the USA, BRICK states and the Commonwealth. Some of these countries are literally on the other side of the world.
    This is just fantasy.
    The UK is free to join the EFTA, it meets its requirements and is therefore eligible providing the UK is prepared to accept the terms of the organisation, which I fully support. If the UK is to submit its application the EFTA must accept. I did not advocate stronger links with the USA, please quote me if I did. I must also note that your tone is getting accusatory and offensive. Please refrain from this, it shows more about you than myself.


    But as I have previously said, if a federation is a realistic outcome, and the citizens of the UK do not want that, they can vote on that point when it arises. Indeed the last parliament created legislation that there would be referenda on any change in sovereignty regarding EU treaties. Therefore your fears are unfounded.
    Yes you are correct, and this referendum is one of such in this nature.

    I believe that's my point, which you appear to be disagreeing with above.
    No, my disagreement is that although trade does have an effect on peace, leaving the EU does not harm peace. The trade is still there, there are trade blocks we can opt ourselves into without giving up a major share of our legislative power.

    But the UK is not an EFTA member. And as above, there are obligations that go with joining that group.
    The UK is free to join the EFTA, and they have no legal basis to reject such application considering the UK agrees to its terms. In effect, membership is guaranteed should the UK submit its application.

    Wars involving Russia: Syria, Afghanistan, Georgia, Ukraine, Angola, Korea, Vietnam…

    Wars involving the USA: Iraq I, Iraq II, Serbia, Afghanistan, Grenada, Panama, various interventions in South America, Korea, Syria, Libya, Vietnam…

    Wars involving the UK: Iraq I, Iraq II, Serbia, Afghanistan, Korea, Libya, Syria, Falklands…

    Wars between EU members after membership: none.

    EU states with nuclear weapons: UK and France.

    What other wars in recent history are there? I think that in most of these the nuclear power may have declared war first, but it doesn't follow that they were the initial aggressor.

    And how many wars are initiated by a non-nuclear state on a nuclear state, or a nuclear state on another nuclear state?
    The point of nuclear deterrence is for the defence of the nuclear state, it does not impact the likelihood of such states to attack non-nuclear states. In scenarios when a non-nuclear state attacks a nuclear state, such as the Falklands, you will find that the scale of the war is very small in terms of number as the aggressor would know that a large scale invasion would be highly likely to invoke the usage of nuclear deterrence from the enemy. The true strength of nuclear deterrence is its ability to prevent large scale wars and it would qualify the use of the deterrent. This, combined with the effects of NATO, the UN and international trade is the true reason why the world had enjoyed peace overall in the past half-century. Leaving the EU does not have a major effect on international trade, if any. The UK's ability to impose sanction on its own entity is still there, and can be used just as effectively as part of a combined effort to sanction aggressors.
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    I'm sorry, but I think your stance is ideologically driven, and not based on logic, but rather fantasy. You may have some issues upon which you disagree with the direction of the EU - I am sure that many people do, including those who will vote to REMAIN. The problem is that you are generally avoiding the positive aspects of EU membership and concentrating on the negative aspects. I heard someone say this on the radio a few days ago: "Theresa May is a Eurosceptic, but she has made the intellectual decision, that on balance, the UK is better off in the EU".

    I think you need to follow Ms May's lead.
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    (Original post by typonaut)
    I'm sorry, but I think your stance is ideologically driven, and not based on logic, but rather fantasy. You may have some issues upon which you disagree with the direction of the EU - I am sure that many people do, including those who will vote to REMAIN. The problem is that you are generally avoiding the positive aspects of EU membership and concentrating on the negative aspects. I heard someone say this on the radio a few days ago: "Theresa May is a Eurosceptic, but she has made the intellectual decision, that on balance, the UK is better off in the EU".

    I think you need to follow Ms May's lead.
    I think perception is the issue here, it is not a good assumption to make that I have ignored some aspects of the debate. In fact I have addressed all of them with evidence and explanation.

    From my background, I along with many others have learnt the hard way the importance of democracy and the many things that erodes it, and the tactics usually used. The fact is the EU is heading for federalisation. It is not only from my political instinct and experience, but also confirmed by the EC President himself this week.

    In terms of the the economy, I believe both sides has their merits, and nobody can possibly predict the outcome. What one can argue that the UK will lose out from leaving, another can argue that we can gain more of the very same thing if we leave. Trade is a highly dynamic and humanly driven thing, there is no point guessing and being ambiguous on issues we have no evidence to support.

    As I stated from my original post, my argument is heavily based on the EU's democratic structure. The fact that the EU intends to federalise is something that is backed by evidence, and something I am sure of. Given that this is the area that concerns me the most, I made my decision based on considering what I can be sure of, rather than being deflected by things nobody can be sure of.

    I hope you can refrain from accusing me of not using logic in forming my decision, in fact it is the very thing which drives me, and many other Leave voters to make such a bold decision.
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    I hope you morons do because that means as an American I will have a higher chance of getting into LSE/UCL/Oxford next year if you end your agreement with EU students. I can't actually believe that there is an argument about this. England is far more powerful financially, politically, and militarily with the EU than without the EU.
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    (Original post by Americanballa)
    I hope you morons do because that means as an American I will have a higher chance of getting into LSE/UCL/Oxford next year if you end your agreement with EU students. I can't actually believe that there is an argument about this. England is far more powerful financially, politically, and militarily with the EU than without the EU.
    Being in the EU has little to do with getting into any of those universities mentioned. In fact I study in a top 8 University and the entry requirement is high but justified, you get what you put in. Also for all top universities, entry requirement is entirely merit based - it does not make a difference whether you are a local, European or international applicant.

    Can you proof your assumptions that we are 'far more powerful financially, politically, and militarily' in the EU?
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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    The fact that the EU intends to federalise is something that is backed by evidence, and something I am sure of.
    You talk about the EU like it is them, that impose on us, forgetting that we are part of the decision making process in Europe. Everything that the EU does to us was actually part negotiated by us and we then voted to allow it to happen.

    It is true that there are some in the EU that want closer integration, but I don't believe it is a done deal by a country mile. Mass immigration throughout Europe has changed the political landscape in terms of the voters who were already sceptical about some of the EU institutions. There is descent across the board, so this idea that a federal EU state is a done deal, really couldn't be further from the truth. Of course, should the UK leave the EU, that would be one obstacle removed for the federalists. And yes, a federal Europe with an independent UK is bad news for us, simply by virtue of economic might. By staying in the EU, there is less chance of such a union forming, mainly because we would use our veto.
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    (Original post by ByEeek)
    You talk about the EU like it is them, that impose on us, forgetting that we are part of the decision making process in Europe. Everything that the EU does to us was actually part negotiated by us and we then voted to allow it to happen.

    It is true that there are some in the EU that want closer integration, but I don't believe it is a done deal by a country mile. Mass immigration throughout Europe has changed the political landscape in terms of the voters who were already sceptical about some of the EU institutions. There is descent across the board, so this idea that a federal EU state is a done deal, really couldn't be further from the truth. Of course, should the UK leave the EU, that would be one obstacle removed for the federalists. And yes, a federal Europe with an independent UK is bad news for us, simply by virtue of economic might. By staying in the EU, there is less chance of such a union forming, mainly because we would use our veto.
    I did not 'forget' that we were partly involved in the voting process, but a voting power of 10% is not enough to secure our interests. We can be easily outvoted by other member states who have different interest to ours. Please also read my original post on points made regarding under-representation.

    Just because certain terms were accepted in the past, when the EU was less bureaucratic and less powerful, does not mean we will always accept them in the future, especially when the state and structure of the EU had changed so much in recent times.

    Your points that 'should the UK leave the EU, that would be one obstacle removed for the federalists', and 'a federal Europe with an independent UK is bad news for us, simply by virtue of economic might' are unfounded.

    There is no evidence or indication that the UK would not be able to trade individually, or under a single market but not within the EU (e.g. EFTA). It is also illogical to assume that the UK will be 'punished' by the EU should we leave the Union, ignoring the demands of businesses and the massive amount of EU exports the UK purchases.

    In my view if the UK leaves the EU, it would not become less obstructive for the EU's federalisation, it would in fact reverse it, or at least impede it. The event would be regarded as a warning signal to the Union that its members can and will exercise their rights to withdraw membership, should the Union overstep its powers. It would also show other countries that political union is not compulsory for peace and economical cooperation, as already displayed by the few countries in the EFTA.

    Regarding veto, only 11 of 56 policy fields are eligible for veto (i.e. requires unanimity), the rest are conducted by qualified majority voting. This means on most areas, the only way to exempt from certain policies is to withdraw membership - hence the current referendum being held.
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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    Since there are a lot of debate on the referendum (as the referendum date is getting nearer), I would like to offer my side of the argument - perhaps from a different viewpoint to most of you. I have included some important statistics in bold for easy reading because this thread is getting quite long as I type it.

    Firstly let me introduce myself and my background. My family emigrated from Hong Kong in 2003 when I was 9 years old under the British Nationality Selection Scheme. I am now studying at University and intend to stay in the UK in the future along with most of my family.

    The greatest problem to me is not an economic one, but its fundamental structure and its level of influence on its member states. The European Parliament consists of 751 members, of which 73 of them represents the UK. Considering UK's population of about 64m, this gives a population per MEP of 875,289. This places the UK with the 2nd highest population per MEP figure, meaning most countries have a higher representative in the EU when considering their populations. This is against the fundamental principle of Democracy, every person's vote should be the same and wield the same amount of power. My concern is that - how can we rely on the EU to represent our interests, when we are under-represented and only account to roughly 10% of the votes?

    Economically I believe the EU is beneficial to the UK, but our deals and treaties with them can be arranged with their member states externally - like Norway and Switzerland. About 44% of UK export goes to the EU and 8% of EU export comes to the UK. This means we export £226.7b to the EU and the EU export £288.3b to the UK. On a purely numerical basis, the EU needs the UK for trade more than the UK needs them. With this theory in mind, I believe the UK should have no problem with negotiating its deals with EU countries, considering smaller economies like Norway were able to do so. Also if we choose to leave the EU, the process will be gradual and stretched out to allow time for legislation (as confirmed by the government). We should have plenty of time to replace existing trade treaties, and if in doubt we can always reference off Norway and Switzerland to save legislative work. One further suggestion is that we can allocate the £8.5b net annual membership fees to offer as grants to help businesses with the transition.

    Unlike some Leave campaigners I actually have no issue with immigration. I believe the EU has been responsible in its immigration policy in general and I think that the UK will continue this if we end up leaving the Union and decide our own policy. If not I am confident that the government will consult the public on what is best for the country. I also disagree with some Leave campaigners on foreign labour policy. I think being an internationalised developed economy, it is important to our market dynamics to have the best labours in the World, albeit from other countries. This keeps us competitive and cost effective.

    As a child living and Hong Kong and now as an adult in the UK, I have been closely monitoring the progress of democracy in Hong Kong. I realised the importance of freedom and democracy, and the struggle many people had to suffer to obtain it. I am alarmed that the EU will continue to become federalised and we will reach a point of no return, when we can no longer maintain our laws and defend our ideals which the British people have fought so hard to obtain for centuries. I am not optimistic that reforms will be made in the EU if we choose to remain and subject ourselves to this continuous trend of federalisation.

    I think I have covered most of my viewpoints. Thanks for reading and I hope that you can sympathise with my concerns. Feel free to respond and I will try my best to answer.
    Your trade figures (actually 70% of the EU trade surplus is IRELAND - I doubt that many mainland EU countries are that bothered by Ireland.

    The easiest answer to this would be to, rather than leave the EU, we should split the UK up into its constituent parts (wales, NI, Scotland, NE, NW, London, SW, SE). There is a lot of evidence that smaller Northern/Western European states do better than larger ones.
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    (Original post by FredOrJohn)
    Your trade figures (actually 70% of the EU trade surplus is IRELAND - I doubt that many mainland EU countries are that bothered by Ireland.

    The easiest answer to this would be to, rather than leave the EU, we should split the UK up into its constituent parts (wales, NI, Scotland, NE, NW, London, SW, SE). There is a lot of evidence that smaller Northern/Western European states do better than larger ones.
    No, those were the statistics for the UK in 2015. I cannot find my original source, but here is an official source with similar figures for 2015 (£223b export to EU and £291b import from EU - see page 4).

    I do not think splitting the UK into parts would help our existing issues with the EU, the main issues to me are democracy and accountability.
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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    No, those were the statistics for the UK in 2015. I cannot find my original source, but here is an official source with similar figures for 2015 (£223b export to EU and £291b import from EU - see page 4).

    I do not think splitting the UK into parts would help our existing issues with the EU, the main issues to me are democracy and accountability.
    Perhaps I should have phrased it thus. There is ONE EU country that keeps UK trade within some sort of reason - IRELAND
    http://www.worldstopexports.com/unit...port-partners/

    The whole Ireland "thing" is pretty important to the UK. If we lost Ireland to Germany or France we'd probably be stuffed. We're not gong to get that 5% somewhere else in a hurry (click SURPLUS on the link).
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    (Original post by FredOrJohn)
    Perhaps I should have phrased it thus. There is ONE EU country that keeps UK trade within some sort of reason - IRELAND
    http://www.worldstopexports.com/unit...port-partners/

    The whole Ireland "thing" is pretty important to the UK. If we lost Ireland to Germany or France we'd probably be stuffed. We're not gong to get that 5% somewhere else in a hurry (click SURPLUS on the link).
    I think trade between the UK and Ireland are geographically linked, given the close proximity and sharing the same language. They rely heavily on UK export for logistic reasons and simply because it is easier to import from English speaking countries. UK and Ireland had a close relationship historically, and although not in the same union now, we are still closely linked in trade.

    Also I find your statistic of Ireland accounting for 70% of UK surplus to the EU bizarre, since this only counts the very few EU countries in which the UK has a trade surplus with and ignores the export figures for those not in surplus or near breaking even. If you consider the number, our trade surplus with Ireland amounts only to £4.44b ($6.4b) in 2015. Therefore, added with the geographical linkage mentioned above, I would regard Ireland as a very minor influence in this debate, and has very little effects on the UK, if any.
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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    I think trade between the UK and Ireland are geographically linked, given the close proximity and sharing the same language. They rely heavily on UK export for logistic reasons and simply because it is easier to import from English speaking countries. UK and Ireland had a close relationship historically, and although not in the same union now, we are still closely linked in trade.

    Also I find your statistic of Ireland accounting for 70% of UK surplus to the EU bizarre, since this only counts the very few EU countries in which the UK has a trade surplus with and ignores the export figures for those not in surplus or near breaking even. If you consider the number, our trade surplus with Ireland amounts only to £4.44b ($6.4b) in 2015. Therefore, added with the geographical linkage mentioned above, I would regard Ireland as a very minor influence in this debate, and has very little effects on the UK, if any.
    I don't think we have a surplus with anyone else in the EU, so if we lost Ireland, we lose the lot.
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    (Original post by FredOrJohn)
    I don't think we have a surplus with anyone else in the EU, so if we lost Ireland, we lose the lot.
    What makes you think we will lose the surplus with Ireland, should the UK leave the EU?
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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    Being in the EU has little to do with getting into any of those universities mentioned. In fact I study in a top 8 University and the entry requirement is high but justified, you get what you put in. Also for all top universities, entry requirement is entirely merit based - it does not make a difference whether you are a local, European or international applicant.

    Can you proof your assumptions that we are 'far more powerful financially, politically, and militarily' in the EU?
    Less will apply if instead of charging the standard 9,000 pounds they charge what they charge Americans (27,000+).
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    (Original post by Americanballa)
    Less will apply if instead of charging the standard 9,000 pounds they charge what they charge Americans (27,000+).
    There is no indication that the current fee structure would be scraped, if the UK leaves the EU. Increasing the fees would also mean that other countries would do the same to us, resulting in more British applicants in British universities.

    Also I would argue that the £9k tuition fee is actually quite expensive by European standards, thus attracting strong EU applicants in general. I think this strengthens the application pool, and is good for our universities especially the top 10 - for which their reputations rely heavily on the aptitude of their students. A high level of student aptitude is important as it ensures that students are intellectually capable of receiving top quality education, for which the UK is world-leading.

    So even if your assumption is valid, while I understand your point that it might increase your chance of admission, I wouldn't see this as a good thing as it also reduces the overall quality of British higher education.

    As I said, for the top 10 you get what you put in, considering you are good enough at the first place to gain entry. If not, there is no point entering via a backdoor only to struggle with the more intense work load. Therefore I wouldn't say a high entry requirement is a bad thing, it could be the very thing that kept you from making a bad decision.
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    (Original post by CherishFreedom)
    I did not 'forget' that we were partly involved in the voting process, but a voting power of 10% is not enough to secure our interests.
    As I asked you previously, this is our ratio of population across the EU - how can you talk of democracy and at the same time seemingly make the claim that "our" voice is more important than "theirs"?
 
 
 
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