Hard Brexit is not an option Watch

Gmart
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I still cannot believe that Brexiteers are insistent that Hard Brexit is the way forward. Again and again on debates and especially on programmes who are trying to put forward a 'balanced' position we get Brexiteers who take this position unchallenged.

Let me be very clear: We are talking about our fellow Unionists within the Union that is called the United Kingdom. Hard Brexit would result in Northern Ireland getting a border which everyone (during more calm periods) have stated cannot happen.

A Hard Brexit would be specifically doing over a neighbour, one of the other three members of the Union, against their own will as voted in the referendum (there should have been a veto for all four as well as a super-majority), and it really looks like an act of oppression. (Not to forget Gibralter and others.)

Therefore the only two choices which are left are an Irish Sea Border or the whole of the UK remaining in the Customs Union and Single Market. I didn't see many Brexiteers arguing before for the Irish Sea Border which would have allowed the rest of the UK to leave the CU and SM.

It is quite impressive that we have a deal on the table which allows us to leave in an orderly manner though it is true that Northern Ireland will probably be lost in the end depending on how bad a Brexit we go for. It is therefore a surprise that the Brexiteers are not going for this deal as it represents the only way to ensure that their (very poor) idea of leaving the EU is realised. Anyone would think that they really don't want it to happen (with the vast amount of blame that way would send them)...

Experts are clear that a 'Hard Brexit' would result in a vast amount of job losses, price rises, house price falls and many other 'Project Fear' favourites which are actually based on reality as opposed to the dreams that Brexiteers are selling. Anyone who has bothered themselves to be guided by rationality can see that this deal is the only way forward, and should therefore be a unifying deal for the Brexiteers. Indeed I am sure that TM herself is a bit surprised that this is not happening.

The reason it is not happening is because there is no reasonable vision of Brexit. The UK becoming such an isolated and small nation just doesn't make sense in the modern, globalised world. But we all know that don't we? The old elites of the UK/London may not like the harmonised rules of the EU but they recognise that as a cooperative it has given us years of growth and stability and has allowed us to better weather the forces for globalisation. It (imperfectly) harnesses the efforts to cooperate for mutual gain.

The Brexiteers were very happy going on about the EU as an 'oppressive' regime', talking about bent bananas and writing sensationalist stories about the judges who seemed unable to interpret EU law flexibly (like what happens in the rest of the EU), and then blaming the 'bureaucrats in Brussels'.

Of course while they had no chance of leaving they were happily taking the advantages of membership while complaining about how great it would be if we left. Their nightmare is that somehow some great powers quite like the idea of sidestepping the tax havens laws due to come in soon within the EU and so suddenly their bluff has been called.

In conclusion, if anyone tries to take the Brexiteer position of talking about great futures while quietly forgetting to mention Northern Ireland as well as the other costs, then we must hold them to account.

If they support an Irish Sea Border then fine, that is the hardest brexit possible but will result in losing NI and Gibraltar as well as the vast numbers of businesses who will move to mainland Europe due to this position, so vast economic costs.

The second option of staying within the CU&SM would have the smaller economic cost: ie fewer job losses and fewer businesses moving abroad, however this option would indeed be the Norway option of having to take the rules without representation.

The smallest cost would be to stay.

So the final question is: do we really want to give up our position as one of the three most important economies guiding the EU, working within it to reform it towards a better model? Or do we wish to truly find out what a small country feels like?

A further referendum should be called to make this choice. If the population decides to go with the deal then fine. It would have been an informed choice. However, I say again: Hard Brexit is NOT an option and never can be so the choice is between the deal and remaining.

We should not be afraid of democracy. This choice was not informed before and so could not be made in 2016 no matter what the false promises were. Now we have to be certain that we truly wish to make this step now that the costs are known. Will we truly take away the rights from our citizens as EU members? Only to reverse a 'loss of sovereignty' which the government's own documents describe as illusory?
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Nalk1573
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hello_shawn
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oh well, matters not if brexit ever happens whatever form it takes. most will be happy for the EU in its current form to die.
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ByEeek
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(Original post by hello_shawn)
oh well, matters not if brexit ever happens whatever form it takes. most will be happy for the EU in its current form to die.
Why though? Why is it a good thing if our nearest and dearest neighbours, who have stood next to us on the battle field, who trade with us, why is it a good thing that they die? I just don't get this sentiment.

Do you know what WW2 was? It was when Europe was fighting itself and practically destroyed itself including the UK. Is that what you want? Because that is what it sounds like. It is like saying you would be better off without your parents, family, extended family and friends.

Why do you want the EU to die?
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Drewski
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(Original post by ByEeek)
Why though? Why is it a good thing if our nearest and dearest neighbours, who have stood next to us on the battle field, who trade with us, why is it a good thing that they die? I just don't get this sentiment.

Do you know what WW2 was? It was when Europe was fighting itself and practically destroyed itself including the UK. Is that what you want? Because that is what it sounds like. It is like saying you would be better off without your parents, family, extended family and friends.

Why do you want the EU to die?
His choice of words is deliberate. "In its current form".

The EU has the potential to be great, a power for good. But, as with any large political body, it's being affected by interest parties trying to get their own agenda above that of others.
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hello_shawn
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Everything comes and goes. And to be perfectly honest we are in war, not a war between countries but a war between cultures. It's a war between those who want to belong somewhere and those who think belonging doesn't exist. A war between those intent on degrading human survivability and those acting on their natural instincts. A war between those who force and those who say, "be you". The war has its battles over Islam, climate change and sexuality among other things.
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ByEeek
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(Original post by Drewski)
The EU has the potential to be great, a power for good. But, as with any large political body, it's being affected by interest parties trying to get their own agenda above that of others.
Well yes. That is called democracy. But if you don't like it, you can't say it is a force for evil. That is the nature of a democracy. Sometimes stuff happens that you like and sometimes not. But I will take my human rights, right to privacy, GDPR, clean beaches, high environmental standards and more besides. The US has none of that. As a citizen you are at the mercy of the government who is sponsored by big business. You have practically no rights other than to own a gun. Some seem to be advocating for that.
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Andrew97
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Didn’t read it all, but have to point this out

A supermajority where one nation could have a veto. That’s no longer a fair referendum. That solution would cause even more trouble.
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Drewski
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(Original post by ByEeek)
Well yes. That is called democracy. But if you don't like it, you can't say it is a force for evil. That is the nature of a democracy. Sometimes stuff happens that you like and sometimes not. But I will take my human rights, right to privacy, GDPR, clean beaches, high environmental standards and more besides. The US has none of that. As a citizen you are at the mercy of the government who is sponsored by big business. You have practically no rights other than to own a gun. Some seem to be advocating for that.
I don't agree that it's a force for evil, but I also don't think it's as good as people pretend. There's no point pretending, for instance, that there aren't problems with it. And the fact that after the Brexit vote the leading figures of the EU didn't sit down and think "right, what can we do better, we don't want this to happen again", but instead - seemingly - sat and thought "we need to make it bad for them, so nobody else wants to leave" doesn't cover them in glory.

The US has a lot of what you quoted. But the entire place doesn't. Just as not the entire EU actually puts EU law into place. A lot of the individual states do a lot that we don't hear about, because only federal programmes really get the fanfares.

No one system is perfect, of course, but we shouldn't act like it couldn't be better.
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ByEeek
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(Original post by Drewski)
I don't agree that it's a force for evil, but I also don't think it's as good as people pretend. There's no point pretending, for instance, that there aren't problems with it.
Agreed. But the perceived problems are massively bigger than the real problems. And we are well and truly shooting ourselves in the foot, leg and head by citing these minor problems with the EU as a justification to leave.

The Leave campaign did a fabulous job at stoking up fear of the EU and what it stands up for and then ironically calling those who oppose that fear mongering as Project Fear. In truth, the leave campaign have no real facts to back up their position. Only fear. The fear of being dictated to. The fear of people different to ourselves. The fear of others coming to take what we have. It is all an illusion.
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Drewski
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(Original post by ByEeek)
Agreed. But the perceived problems are massively bigger than the real problems. And we are well and truly shooting ourselves in the foot, leg and head by citing these minor problems with the EU as a justification to leave.

The Leave campaign did a fabulous job at stoking up fear of the EU and what it stands up for and then ironically calling those who oppose that fear mongering as Project Fear. In truth, the leave campaign have no real facts to back up their position. Only fear. The fear of being dictated to. The fear of people different to ourselves. The fear of others coming to take what we have. It is all an illusion.
And Remain did feck all to talk to people about what the status quo actually was, what we could change / improve / have influence over. Not helped by EU politicians (not politicians from other EU countries) who are very easily portrayed as anti-British.

It was awful campaigning from both sides. Just that one side's bad was shamefully effective.
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Gmart
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Some interesting points from many. I am intrigued that someone posted that we have half our trade from the EU. Was that a point against??? Or maybe it was for?

Certainly the legacy of WW2 was that it was better to cooperate no matter what rather than going back to the historical mean of kicking seven shades of **** out of each other.

Also there are many on here who point out that the EU requires reform, maybe to put the elected government above the appointed (by elected governments) Commission. There are issues in finance (EU bonds etc) and what to do when a state goes bankrupt (Greece/ the good points Varifakis makes).

It should be pointed out that there are a number of dodgy issues which are fair points, but even Varifakis, who has a better reason to dislike the EU than anyone, argues for reform from within rather than running away.

The ongoing wars (assuming that we will avoid another one in Northern Ireland by avoiding a no deal Hard Brexit) such as Islam, Climate change, drugs etc can be won more effectively if we stand together with our EU cousins rather than going isolationist.

Any democratic mechanism will have a version of getting some of your way and some not. Does anyone truly believe that Parliament will suddenly call a halt to immigration for jobs the British population won't do?

In general the whole issue is a thinly veiled power grab by a number of groups who dislike intensely the idea of having the EU as a check on their ability to abuse the British people.

I see no problem with the four countries having a veto on constitutional issues which affect them as grieviously as Brexit will. A super-majority is used in other countries to ensure that the decision is truly representative of a significant enough majority to avoid the 'tyranny of the majority' problem as well as avoiding any temporary popularity issues.

The original referendum was between as many rosy futures the Leave campaign could create without need to show how realistic those visions might be, and a singular, boring status quo during a period of significant austerity. Put that way it is a miracle that Remain got as many votes as they did...
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Rakas21
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(Original post by Gmart)
Some interesting points from many. I am intrigued that someone posted that we have half our trade from the EU. Was that a point against??? Or maybe it was for?

Certainly the legacy of WW2 was that it was better to cooperate no matter what rather than going back to the historical mean of kicking seven shades of **** out of each other.

Also there are many on here who point out that the EU requires reform, maybe to put the elected government above the appointed (by elected governments) Commission. There are issues in finance (EU bonds etc) and what to do when a state goes bankrupt (Greece/ the good points Varifakis makes).

It should be pointed out that there are a number of dodgy issues which are fair points, but even Varifakis, who has a better reason to dislike the EU than anyone, argues for reform from within rather than running away.

The ongoing wars (assuming that we will avoid another one in Northern Ireland by avoiding a no deal Hard Brexit) such as Islam, Climate change, drugs etc can be won more effectively if we stand together with our EU cousins rather than going isolationist.

Any democratic mechanism will have a version of getting some of your way and some not. Does anyone truly believe that Parliament will suddenly call a halt to immigration for jobs the British population won't do?

In general the whole issue is a thinly veiled power grab by a number of groups who dislike intensely the idea of having the EU as a check on their ability to abuse the British people.

I see no problem with the four countries having a veto on constitutional issues which affect them as grieviously as Brexit will. A super-majority is used in other countries to ensure that the decision is truly representative of a significant enough majority to avoid the 'tyranny of the majority' problem as well as avoiding any temporary popularity issues.

The original referendum was between as many rosy futures the Leave campaign could create without need to show how realistic those visions might be, and a singular, boring status quo during a period of significant austerity. Put that way it is a miracle that Remain got as many votes as they did...
About 44% of our trade is with the EU however that has been falling throughout this business cycle as non-EU exports have increased.

Nobody is really arguing against trading with the EU though, simply that we do not have to subscribe to membership in order to do so.
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DrMikeHuntHertz
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This brexiphobia needs to stop.
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anarchism101
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(Original post by Rakas21)
Nobody is really arguing against trading with the EU though, simply that we do not have to subscribe to membership in order to do so.
Except that's not really up to us. The EU have, for obvious reasons of institutional self-interest, essentially established a system where more frictionless trade requires getting closer to membership.
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Rakas21
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(Original post by anarchism101)
Except that's not really up to us. The EU have, for obvious reasons of institutional self-interest, essentially established a system where more frictionless trade requires getting closer to membership.
Sure but the treasury's economic analysis is clear that this can broadly be obtained without membership. May's deal (taking us out of service rule taking) will cost us an average of just 0.2% per year.

The only scenario which even produces a soft recession is no deal.
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