EU leaders clinch reform treaty deal

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by dong20, Jun 23, 2007.

  1. dong20

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    I am finding myself doing an increasing amount of international work, some in the EU, some not and some of the financial and political abuses that go on within the EU, especially its newer members are quite incredible.

    The UK didn't get to vote on the proposed constitution in 2005 so I don't know what the result may have been. I suspect it would have been NO, but I also suspect that rejection would have been largely for the wrong reasons.

    While I am in, in principle, in favour of greater EU integration, or even expansion I would support it only if it's accompanied by far greater accountability by it's institutions, less obsession with trivia and a detirmination to deal properly its more obvious inequities.

    I am certainly in favour of joining the Euro and unconvinced by most of the arguments against it. These seem rooted more deeply in blatant self interest and political dogma than sound economic theory, whatever that really is. Of course, there is also the giving up the Pound = giving up sovereignty argument to deal with.....please.:rolleyes:

    Of course the Euro was created primarily for political rather than economic reasons but given that most real arguments for and against it today are made by economists I think that's increasingly moot. It's a risk of course but then so is extended prevarication.

    When the next UK general election is announced in 2008(?) I think the latent Euro-sceptiscm of many in the UK will be exploited by the Tories on the back of a (disguised) rascially motivated immigration theme. The UK is part of Europe, I have always failed to understand fully why the Tories don't seem able to get that. I mean, I know why they don't 'politically', and, perhaps historically but in reality many actually, genuinely seem unable to grasp that concept.

    There's a fair few EU members here, any comments on potential greater integration or the UK joining the Euro, preferably without cliche nationalistic - Thatcher had the right attitude - yes, in many ways she did, then - overtones?

    EU leaders clinch reform treaty deal - Yahoo! News UK
     
  2. D_Joseba_Guntertwat

    D_Joseba_Guntertwat New Member

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  3. dong20

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    Quite appropriate, given how we were once screwed by the Scandinavians. :tongue:

    Just kidding.:biggrin1:
     
  4. Freddie53

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    Isn't part of the issue for the UK its leadership in the British Commonwealth of Nations? Unlike the other European nations, the UK is still a world power in its own right due to tradition, history, the Commonwealth and the type of military Britain has, more mobile because of the Navy and Royal Air Force.

    For those who don't make the connection, The Queen of the UK is also the Queen of Canada, Australia and New Zealand and the total land mass is the largest land mass with the same sovereign head of state in the world. Though each country is completely sovereign, there is an extremely close connection. Consider that the US is a English speaking nation whose roots go back to a time when the US was part of the British Empire. Add to that that the English Channel is still alive and flowing with ocean water makes the UK unique among the European nations of "equals." It plays a major part in the arena of political politics of the UK for sure.

    If all of these factors are recognized throughout the world, then one shouldn't be surprised that it is a major issue in British politics. Here in America, most people still recognize the UK as a major player in world politics on par with China, India, China, Japan, Russia and the US. While Germany has a larger NGP than Germany, Germany, by choice, doesn't have the political influence in the world that the UK has.

    Considering these factors, I don't see the pound becoming ohsolete in the near future.
     
  5. dong20

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    That's true, though more in a symbolic sense but mostly it's just as you say - historical. I do think our armed forces are among the very best in the world and we perhaps have a mature world view and pragmatism that isn't shared by many in Europe, or even elsewhere though that's certainly subjective and hard to quantify. The Commonwealth isn't a political or economic force, even collectively. It's more a cosy private club than anything else. It's not diminished for being that though.

    For the most part I like the 'close' political ties to the US but while they can bring some benefits they can also bring risk, the last ten years speak to that. I think we find ourselves isolated too often, the US, for the present may have the economic clout to survive that, the UK probably doesn't. It worries me that we may be rashly pinning our hopes on what could be a fading star, for the sake of history - more so when we know such loyalty would almost certainly not be reciprocated. It's time for the UK to move on so to speak. I know how that sounds, sorry.

    BTW, I didn't fully understand why Australia voted against becoming a republic...nostalgia runs deep I guess.:rolleyes:

    The Island Mentality? Oh yes, it is a factor in the national psyche even if it's not always recognised. That small channel, while geographically insignificant creates a definite sense of isolation. Perhaps that's too strong a word, independence may suit a little better. Whatever it is, it's something I simply don't see to a significant degree on the continent. It's hard to define but real nonetheless. The 'Chunnel' has done surprisingly little to change that, so perhaps it runs deeper than mere physical separation?

    Strange, but true. Why is that?

    You mean the pound being somehow symbolic of the above? I suspect you're right, at least in part, but such symbolism is based more on nostalgia and perception than any real value it may have. To think that the value or standing of a nation could be based in its currency, even to a tiny degree is quite incredible when one considers it logically.

    Are you suggesting that by joining the Euro the UK would somehow become less 'special'? I suspect that is a belief held by many, and while I can understand it, I don't share it. Primarily because I don't value any nations worth by the patterns on it's currency but by it's actions. I make no exception for my own.

    I don't believe any of these issues above are necessarily a bar to greater EU integration, financial or economic, not really.
     
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