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    It depends. If the EU carries on the way it is (i.e big central government, largely undemocratic) maybe so, but if we see genuine reform, the chances of us leaving the EU are very slim I imagine. The only way I can see it happening is through a referendum.

    (Original post by Ministerdonut)
    I have never understood why we do not go into some kind of even closer union with other commonwealth countries . Indeed other countries such as australia expressed interest long ago but we dumped them for the EU. They were rather miffed apparently. We also have much friendlier relations with Ireland now,I firmly believe if we left the EU and we asked them to join some union with ourselves and other friendly countries they would agree. Maybe the US would join and we could have a union of english speaking peoples.
    The reason why such a union in place of the EU would be a rather silly decision is that (something along the lines of) 70% of the our trade is with EU countries, so it makes far more sense to be in the EU than some union purely based on language without any real economic basis.
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    (Original post by x=o)
    Britain excludes itself from an enormous European market for one consisting of Ireland, Britain and Australia?

    and why on earth would the US join?
    It surprises me how no one has picked this up :rolleyes:

    The US has no incentive to close itself off or join a pact in particular with the UK, nor is the UK competitive enough to tap large-trade exchanges with emerging markets (hence the recent 'plate in hand' trip Cameron made to India/China, with little success evidently). South America is an option sure, but we'll be eclipsed by the bigger players (US, China, India, Russia etc) in this continent too.

    Ones personal feelings aside on whether us in the EU is right/wrong, we need it for trade.
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    (Original post by CandyFlipper)
    ... The main reason why we pay so much more now is that we lost a big chunk of our rebate, the size of the EU hasn't doubled in the last couple of years!
    The EU's financial commitments have doubled - if not more. We've just swallowed a dozen somewhat poor or middle-income eastern European states - leading to the vast increase in the need for economic aid, developmental aid and supervision of all kinds (eg. making sure their laws fall in line or are applied according to EU aquis). Furthermore, with this comes the added burden of administration both in the direct developmental programmes and EU governance (eg. The committees, parliament, and commission had to expand). Then there is the Lisbon treaty which was adopted in part to reform the EU and make it capable of absorbing the new EU states.

    To think the EU can function on its 2000 budget in 2011 is ridiculous - and all EU leaders know it and have stated it. Indeed, there are many who say the recently agreed upon EU budget increase is not enough for it to perform all of its traditional functions (particularly from voices in Eastern Europe who fear that they are being denied the privileges the old western states enjoyed).
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    (Original post by Vanbrugh)
    The EU's financial commitments have doubled - if not more. We've just swallowed a dozen somewhat poor or middle-income eastern European states - leading to the vast increase in the need for economic aid, developmental aid and supervision of all kinds (eg. making sure their laws fall in line or are applied according to EU aquis). Furthermore, with this comes the added burden of administration both in the direct developmental programmes and EU governance (eg. The committees, parliament, and commission had to expand). Then there is the Lisbon treaty which was adopted in part to reform the EU and make it capable of absorbing the new EU states.

    To think the EU can function on its 2000 budget in 2011 is ridiculous - and all EU leaders know it and have stated it. Indeed, there are many who say the recently agreed upon EU budget increase is not enough for it to perform all of its traditional functions (particularly from voices in Eastern Europe who fear that they are being denied the privileges the old western states enjoyed).
    Then maybe the EU should think more before admitting countries.
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    (Original post by CandyFlipper)
    Never say never, it would be most likely to happen if we had a eurosceptic Tory leader in power. That could definitely happen in say 20 or 30 years time, especially if by then the eurozone has collapsed and we've moved ever closer to a full political union without ever asking the people whether they agree to these changes.

    I expect UKIP to do very well indeed at the next EU elections, with the EU budget doubling in the last couple of years and with all these bailouts - whilst we're cutting at home. It's all playing right into their hands. If public opinion turns more and more anti EU perhaps the Tories at least will actually do something about it. Maybe even Labour would, there are definitely many eurosceptic Labour voters.
    I'd say that the more working class Labour voters are the more eurosceptic than the New Labour, middle class voters. If a referendum occured then I would vote to leave the EU.
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    All the fascist EU fanatic-neg'ers are out in full force I see.

    This country would be better off economically and politically if we left the EU and joined the EFTA instead. Works for Switzerland, Iceland, and Norway just great.
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    (Original post by Er-El)
    All the fascist EU fanatic-neg'ers are out in full force I see.

    This country would be better off economically and politically if we left the EU and joined the EFTA instead. Works for Switzerland, Iceland, and Norway just great.
    platitudes.

    britain created EFTA as an alternative to the EEC. do you know why britain abandoned EFTA in the first instance and applied for EEC membership?

    britain isn't switzerland, iceland or norway by the way.

    ps. do you even know what fascism is?
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    (Original post by Vanbrugh)
    The EU's financial commitments have doubled - if not more. We've just swallowed a dozen somewhat poor or middle-income eastern European states - leading to the vast increase in the need for economic aid, developmental aid and supervision of all kinds (eg. making sure their laws fall in line or are applied according to EU aquis). Furthermore, with this comes the added burden of administration both in the direct developmental programmes and EU governance (eg. The committees, parliament, and commission had to expand). Then there is the Lisbon treaty which was adopted in part to reform the EU and make it capable of absorbing the new EU states.

    To think the EU can function on its 2000 budget in 2011 is ridiculous - and all EU leaders know it and have stated it. Indeed, there are many who say the recently agreed upon EU budget increase is not enough for it to perform all of its traditional functions (particularly from voices in Eastern Europe who fear that they are being denied the privileges the old western states enjoyed).
    The EU budget is steadily increasing, yes, but the reason the amount we pay has gone up so quickly recently is that we just lost a load of our rebate. Both factors are working together and combined it means our budget has doubled in the last 2 years. I don't know why you're talking about the 2000 budget because thats not the space in which the budgets doubled, I never said that.

    But regarding the budget increase, since all European countries are currently facing spending cuts at home, perhaps it would be wise to respect that and to cut back as well. But they're not, they're allowing spending to rise. We all know there are many things that could be cut, from CAP to CFP to expenses that makes our MPs expenses look trivial. Besides, if admitting new members is causing so many problems, why not slow down the speed with which they expand?

    I still say we should look for a free tade agreement, but leave any political union. Save that entire (and as you admit, ever expanding) membership fee.
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    (Original post by CandyFlipper)
    The EU budget is steadily increasing, yes, but the reason the amount we pay has gone up so quickly recently is that we just lost a load of our rebate. Both factors are working together and combined it means our budget has doubled in the last 2 years. I don't know why you're talking about the 2000 budget because thats not the space in which the budgets doubled, I never said that.

    But regarding the budget increase, since all European countries are currently facing spending cuts at home, perhaps it would be wise to respect that and to cut back as well. But they're not, they're allowing spending to rise. We all know there are many things that could be cut, from CAP to CFP to expenses that makes our MPs expenses look trivial. Besides, if admitting new members is causing so many problems, why not slow down the speed with which they expand?

    I still say we should look for a free tade agreement, but leave any political union. Save that entire (and as you admit, ever expanding) membership fee.
    It really has very little to do with the rebate and everything to do with the value of the pound.

    how on earth can you justify states poorer than britain paying for its rebate, anyway?
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    (Original post by Ministerdonut)
    I have never understood why we do not go into some kind of even closer union with other commonwealth countries . Indeed other countries such as australia expressed interest long ago but we dumped them for the EU. They were rather miffed apparently. We also have much friendlier relations with Ireland now,I firmly believe if we left the EU and we asked them to join some union with ourselves and other friendly countries they would agree. Maybe the US would join and we could have a union of english speaking peoples.

    Although I do have criticism's of the US especially this presidential admin and the last, I would trust them more not to knife us in the back,by not supporting us when the chips are down than any of the powers on the continent, save portugal .
    What on earth would a "union of English speaking people" result in? A common language isn't a good reason to join together. What makes you think the US, Australia and Ireland would want to join such a thing?

    Why would you trust the US more than Europe? Is this just because they speak English?
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    Eventually either when the torys decide or Spain goes bankrupt? its only a matter of when not how!
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    (Original post by x=o)
    platitudes.

    britain created EFTA as an alternative to the EEC. do you know why britain abandoned EFTA in the first instance and applied for EEC membership?

    britain isn't switzerland, iceland or norway by the way.

    ps. do you even know what fascism is?
    Because they wanted Britain to be part of the closer political union that would later develop?

    By the way, EEC members states might have been producer higher trade between the countries back then, than the EFTA ones, but now those countries that stayed in the EFTA and didn't join what would become the EU are better off for it. Their GDP and GDP per capita has been increasing whilst EU member states have been getting poorer. So extrapolate from that what you will.
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    (Original post by Ministerdonut)
    I have never understood why we do not go into some kind of even closer union with other commonwealth countries . Indeed other countries such as australia expressed interest long ago but we dumped them for the EU. They were rather miffed apparently. We also have much friendlier relations with Ireland now,I firmly believe if we left the EU and we asked them to join some union with ourselves and other friendly countries they would agree. Maybe the US would join and we could have a union of english speaking peoples.

    Although I do have criticism's of the US especially this presidential admin and the last, I would trust them more not to knife us in the back,by not supporting us when the chips are down than any of the powers on the continent, save portugal .
    While I disagree with your conclusions, I have to give kudos for using Napoleonic alliances as a measure for trust. Here are some kudos
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    I'll not bother with the economic benefits of staying within the EU, and just address what you have written.

    (Original post by Er-El)
    Because they wanted Britain to be part of the closer political union that would later develop?
    nah, it has nothing to do with that - afterall, france vetoed britain's application for membership on two separate occasions. it was britain that went begging to the EEC for membership, not the other way around.

    one of the main reasons for seeking membership was that britain feared being excluded from a large european market. britain created EFTA in 1959 as an alternative to the EEC, but the problem was that its market consisted of only 90m people, and 50m of those were already british. as a result, its industrial output during this period rose by around 20%, while the member states in the EEC, which had access to a market consisting of around 200m people, saw their industrial output increase by more than 50%. there are a host of other reasons, but the general thrust of why britain did eventually seek membership was that EFTA wasn't a viable economic alternative, and it still isn't viable now.


    By the way, EEC members states might have been producer higher trade between the countries back then, than the EFTA ones, but now those countries that stayed in the EFTA and didn't join what would become the EU are better off for it. Their GDP and GDP per capita has been increasing whilst EU member states have been getting poorer. So extrapolate from that what you will.
    you really cannot compare britain and EFTA states as being like for like. norway, for example, has a population of around 9m people and is very wealthy as a result of oil, not because it remained outside of the EU. irrespective of that, do you really suppose that norway is as economically prominent as say, germany? I can't say I have witnessed them getting poorer.

    with regard to following norway's lead and trading as a non-member EFTA state, britain will only experience the worst of all worlds. norway by virtue of trading with the EU bloc is subject to all of the trading regulations/tariffs etc of the EU, but unlike britain, it has absolutely no say in the decision making process - acquis communautaire n' all that.
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    Trade benefits are outstanding. Hello free trade. Free movement of labour, capital, goods and services too. Many firms have invested in Europe. (Associated British Foods recently moved some production to Poland, as an example).

    Bailouts are getting slightly more common, that has the potential to have a large public opinion change here. The Euro is more likely to collapse before the UK leaves the EU.
    ECB putting the interest rate up, when Spain has ~80% of its population in bought houses (paid for by variable rate mortgages!). The Euro is directed solely at Germany now, who needed an interest rate rise to curb rising pressures of inflation. Less Germans own houses too, ~40% (fixed rate mortgages here!). Portugal a few months ago said it wouldn't need bailing out...we'll sit and wait with Spain.
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    (Original post by x=o)
    I'll not bother with the economic benefits of staying within the EU, and just address what you have written.



    nah, it has nothing to do with that - afterall, france vetoed britain's application for membership on two separate occasions. it was britain that went begging to the EEC for membership, not the other way around.

    one of the main reasons for seeking membership was that britain feared being excluded from a large european market. britain created EFTA in 1959 as an alternative to the EEC, but the problem was that its market consisted of only 90m people, and 50m of those were already british. as a result, its industrial output during this period rose by around 20%, while the member states in the EEC, which had access to a market consisting of around 200m people, saw their industrial output increase by more than 50%. there are a host of other reasons, but the general thrust of why britain did eventually seek membership was that EFTA wasn't a viable economic alternative, and it still isn't viable now.
    No I meant British politicians in government wanted to be part of the EEC for that reason.

    (Original post by x=o)
    you really cannot compare britain and EFTA states as being like for like. norway, for example, has a population of around 9m people and is very wealthy as a result of oil, not because it remained outside of the EU. irrespective of that, do you really suppose that norway is as economically prominent as say, germany? I can't say I have witnessed them getting poorer.

    with regard to following norway's lead and trading as a non-member EFTA state, britain will only experience the worst of all worlds. norway by virtue of trading with the EU bloc is subject to all of the trading regulations/tariffs etc of the EU, but unlike britain, it has absolutely no say in the decision making process - acquis communautaire n' all that.
    So long as we can still get into free trade agreements with the EU, then it still doesn't outweigh the advantages of doing away with all that ridiculous amount of market regulations imposed by Brussels - especially when Westminster has no say on them - which is stifling growth.
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    (Original post by The_Great_One)
    I cant understand why were in the EU it costs fortunes and you know all the rest of it. So do you think we'll ever leave the EU?
    You pay X amount for membership and get 10X back from trading + open boarders.
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    (Original post by x=o)
    I'll not bother with the economic benefits of staying within the EU, and just address what you have written.



    nah, it has nothing to do with that - afterall, france vetoed britain's application for membership on two separate occasions. it was britain that went begging to the EEC for membership, not the other way around.

    one of the main reasons for seeking membership was that britain feared being excluded from a large european market. britain created EFTA in 1959 as an alternative to the EEC, but the problem was that its market consisted of only 90m people, and 50m of those were already british. as a result, its industrial output during this period rose by around 20%, while the member states in the EEC, which had access to a market consisting of around 200m people, saw their industrial output increase by more than 50%. there are a host of other reasons, but the general thrust of why britain did eventually seek membership was that EFTA wasn't a viable economic alternative, and it still isn't viable now.




    you really cannot compare britain and EFTA states as being like for like. norway, for example, has a population of around 9m people and is very wealthy as a result of oil, not because it remained outside of the EU. irrespective of that, do you really suppose that norway is as economically prominent as say, germany? I can't say I have witnessed them getting poorer.

    with regard to following norway's lead and trading as a non-member EFTA state, britain will only experience the worst of all worlds. norway by virtue of trading with the EU bloc is subject to all of the trading regulations/tariffs etc of the EU, but unlike britain, it has absolutely no say in the decision making process - acquis communautaire n' all that.
    Norway's population is 4, 9 million. Not 9. And it's not just because of the oil that Norway is wealthy. Though it plays a great part. Most of the oil money goes into a very big pension fund.
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    (Original post by Luceria)
    Norway's population is 4, 9 million. Not 9. And it's not just because of the oil that Norway is wealthy. Though it plays a great part. Most of the oil money goes into a very big pension fund.
    oh yeah, i'm getting confused with sweden. though I suppose the correct figure proves my point all the more!
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    (Original post by x=o)
    oh yeah, i'm getting confused with sweden. though I suppose the correct figure proves my point all the more!
    Yeah, I thought you had confused it with Sweden. (happens a lot, I tell you)
 
 
 
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