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'Should we withdraw from Europe?' poll discussion

edited 15 June 2009 at 3:11PM in Money Saving Polls
76 replies 6.5K views
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  • prowlaprowla Forumite
    11.5K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
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    I don't mind if we move to a United States Of Europe, but we need a better deal than we have at the moment because we're getting totally shafted: pouring money in and getting little back (apart from dodgey legislation and uncontrolled immigration).
  • My vote is D + .. I think there are some areas beyond trade co-operation that can be mutually beneficial but the UK seems to have lost or should one say, given away, far too much.

    I see problems over the budget deficit and its non signing off by MEP's. The lack of MEP's Parliamentary clout and the over powerful Commisioners. The open borders and migration must be sorted, it is only common sense to balance the facilities, space, housing, etc. issue on this crowded island.

    Lets be fair. Not everything about EU law is bad, some statements on our 'rights' , have redressed the control freak nature of our own Govt.

    Being pragmatic about it I do not now ever see us withdrawing from Europe, however wide those borders and boundaries become but I think we can, and should try to claw back some things so as to be more in control of our own destiny.

    Say what you like about the French and their blockades, strikes etc. for thier own National Interests may be we should be more assertive.
  • To the Anti-European masses:
    Do you understand why other European countries are desperate to join? Surely they've got a point.
    Have you ever been to a non-EU European country? They're pretty grim.
    Who would we sell to? Britain sells little enough abroad as it is, once outside the EU the UK would be on the wrong side of the trade barrier and at the mercy of other blocs, such as the US and China.
    The UK government being dictated to by the EU? Good! Our governments are constantly useless, depriving the population of rights such as fair pay and privacy, ultimately our best hope is the European courts - or do you really trust MPs?!
  • Mr_MumbleMr_Mumble Forumite
    1.8K posts
    Options D & E are muddled. You can withdraw from the EU and retain free trade (within the EEA) like Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein have done.
    "The state is the great fiction by which everybody seeks to live at the expense of everybody else." -- Frederic Bastiat, 1848.
  • edited 10 June 2009 at 2:15PM
    teddycoteddyco Forumite
    397 posts
    edited 10 June 2009 at 2:15PM
    Four extensive EU cost-benefit exercises have so far been conducted by long-established organisations in the present century.

    In February 2000, the (British) National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) published ‘Continent Cut Off, The Macroeconomic Impact of British Withdrawal from the EU’. The paper was commissioned by Britain in Europe, the government sponsored lobbying group.

    The (British) Institute of Directors (IoD) published 'EU Membership: What’s the Bottom Line?', by its chief economist, in March 2000.

    In August 2000, the (US) International Trade Commission (ITC), a federal non-partisan agency of the US government, published The Impact on the US Economy of Including the United Kingdom in a Free Trade Arrangement with the United States, Canada and Mexico, in which it examined two scenarios, the UK joining NAFTA and staying in the EU, and the UK joining NAFTA and leaving the EU.

    In 2001, the (British) Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) published 'Better Off Out?', an updated version of their original paper which first came out in 1996.

    This quote was taken from 'Continent Cut Off, The Macroeconomic Impact of British Withdrawal from the EU', the study done by NIESR - see aforementioned.

    "It is often claimed that the British economy is highly dependent on EU membership, and that there would be dire consequences for national prosperity if the UK were to withdraw from the bloc. However, these claims are not sustainable....EU membership as such appears to have had no discernable positive effects on the British economy. There is nothing to indicate that it has contributed in any significant way to overall economic growth, per capita prosperity, inward investment, or job creation and employment....However, Britain was already a prosperous globally trading member of the European Free Trade Association and had the highest level of inward foreign investment in Europe long before it joined the EU."
  • Definitely E. The EU has gone much too far towards a political union that very few people across Europe actually want. It's beyond reform so complete withdrawal is the only option.
    Have you ever been to a non-EU European country? They're pretty grim.

    Switzerland has very little crime, and probably the most democratic system of government in the world. Hardly grim.
    "It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves" (Sir Edmund Hillary)

    AMAZON SELLERS CLUB member 0068
  • edited 10 June 2009 at 4:03PM
    JustamumJustamum Forumite
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    edited 10 June 2009 at 4:03PM
    Have you ever been to a non-EU European country? They're pretty grim.

    I don't think Switzerland and Norway are particularly grim are they?

    If you are talking about ex-Eastern Bloc countries, then they are grim for a completely different reason. There are countries queuing up to join the EU because they are poor and they know that billions of Euros will be pumped into their countries at the expense of countries such as the UK. The money we pay to the EU would be better spent in the UK.

    When the British people were asked in 1973 whether they wanted to join a group of countries for trade they said yes. Ever since then it has become a completely different entity, and I'm sure most of the people who voted yes would not have done if they knew what was to come. I was 10 years old at the time and wasn't asked my opinion. I would like to be asked for my opinion now. Unfortunately a 'no' vote in the EU is considered a temporary hiccup to be repeated until the 'correct' answer is given. A 'yes' vote is accepted for all eternity.

  • I run a cafe, the legislation and rules that emanate from the EU make it very hard to make a living. Yet when I went on holiday to France you could regularly see food sold in markets in a manner that you couldn't get away with in a British butchers stall. Also, the smaller cafes obviously didn't comply to the same standards as are enforced in the UK. If that is true in France then the situation has to be worse in some of the poorer countries. I'm not saying a lot of these rules aren't without merit, mostly it's common sense stuff. But it's the beuracracy of the system which is so time consuming to small businesses which is expensive. My Euroworth! lol :think:
  • JustamumJustamum Forumite
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    I run a cafe, the legislation and rules that emanate from the EU make it very hard to make a living. Yet when I went on holiday to France you could regularly see food sold in markets in a manner that you couldn't get away with in a British butchers stall. Also, the smaller cafes obviously didn't comply to the same standards as are enforced in the UK. If that is true in France then the situation has to be worse in some of the poorer countries. I'm not saying a lot of these rules aren't without merit, mostly it's common sense stuff. But it's the beuracracy of the system which is so time consuming to small businesses which is expensive. My Euroworth! lol :think:

    But don't other EU countries only implement the rules which suit them, whereas Britain goldplates the rules and enforces them. Apparently one of the reasons Switzerland didn't join the EU was because they, like us, comply with rules and they didn't want to be hidebound by a load of petty bureacracy.

  • edited 10 June 2009 at 7:43PM
    ceridwenceridwen
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    edited 10 June 2009 at 7:43PM
    Hmmm...dont know in a word...there was no option that summed me up...so I didnt vote.

    Some of the employment protection laws that come from a European direction are worth having on the one hand v. "Small is beautiful" and I do worry that illegal immigrants are passed "down the line" and "thrown" in the direction of Britain on the other hand (yet more people in an already hugely overcrowded country - not being racist here...I worry about ANYONE who adds to our overpopulation...including British people who have more than 2 children) and extra on our benefits bill (ditto - couldnt care less what race someone is - but I object to ANYONE who doesnt do whatever they can to "cover their own costs" if reasonably practicable claiming benefits of us if its reasonably physically possible to earn their own living...regardless of their nationality).

    I guess overall my viewpoint of "power to the people" and things should come "from the bottom up" means that I would probably, on balance, be against anything as huge as the European Union anyway. I think things should be as small and accessible as possible - so I would think, if I had the time to read up all the pros and cons, I would probably vote to withdraw from Europe.

    <how can you tell a "wishy-washy liberal when you see one?" - "on the one hand this - on the other hand that"......errrr...me in other words.

    I would want to study in depth all the arguments for and against before I came up with a definitive answer. At a "gut" level - I dont regard myself as "British" - I regard myself as a "citizen of the World" - so that would lead me to closer integration with Europe...but I hate the fact that an already vastly overpopulated country (ie this one) is being used as a "dumping ground".....

    ....aaagh...my head hurts....
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