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Tags EU elections , EU politics , Frans Timmermans

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Old 1st July 2019, 03:51 PM   #1
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EU Summit: 'Timmermanns is a dangerous fanatic'

So says Nigel Farage:


Quote:
Theresa May must not back @TimmermansEU as the next European Commission president, he is a dangerous fanatic.
Theresa May it is reported stayed up until 3:00am yesterday to cast the deciding vote in the EU Parliament vote for its next leader.

She has said she will vote for whoever has the majority at that stage. Alas, after 20 hours of wrangling it had to be postponed until Tuesday.

Timmermanns, a Dutchman, represents the Centre-Left. Merkel wants Weber as representing the Centre-Right EPP. The right wing blocs of Hungary, Romania and Italy, etc., are totally opposed to the favourite, Timmermanns.

Will the EU Summit compromise by selecting someone like the Danish Vestager instead. The right wingers will probably like that despite her being a left winger because of her strong anti-immigrant stance.

Who do you think will win it or should win it, and why?
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Old 1st July 2019, 11:53 PM   #2
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Process highlights the EU's enduring ability to never respect deadlines. The people involved must really love making important decisions when severely sleep-deprived.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 12:09 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
Process highlights the EU's enduring ability to never respect deadlines. The people involved must really love making important decisions when severely sleep-deprived.
Oh well played !

Let me know when they've spent 3 years getting precisely nowhere and I'll start to compare them unfavourably to the UK.

On a serious note, I guess that's what happens when you elect a group of MEP whose openly stated objective is to deliberately frustrate and block the workings of the EU. The remaining countries likely cannot wait to see the back of the UK.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 02:14 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by The Don View Post
The remaining countries likely cannot wait to see the back of the UK.
The EU wants the "real" UK back.
You know, the one that understands the difference between the "enlightened self-interest" the country vs. the "dim self-interest" of some politicians.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 02:31 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by The Don View Post
Oh well played !

Let me know when they've spent 3 years getting precisely nowhere and I'll start to compare them unfavourably to the UK.

The EU have been just as responsible for the Brexit delay as our own crappy UK politicians: it takes two sides to negotiate. The EU could have also unilaterally ended the process in March or April by simply not offering extensions.

You know yourself that the EU always indulges in all-night, past-the-deadline, negotiations when attempting to conclude anything. I'm confident they will continue to do this, with or without UK involvement.

Last edited by ceptimus; 2nd July 2019 at 02:32 AM.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 02:36 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
The EU wants the "real" UK back.
You know, the one that understands the difference between the "enlightened self-interest" the country vs. the "dim self-interest" of some politicians.
Looking at the UK's interactions with the EU over the last 40 years or so, I'm not sure that the "real" UK was ever engaged with the EU.

During the successive Conservative governments from 1979 to 1997, the UK gave the impression that it had one foot out of the door, asking for all kinds of special considerations, rebates and opt-outs. The non-membership of the Euro and Schengen is IMO a clear indication that the UK was lukewarm about EU membership.

Any expectation that the Labour governments of the period 1997 to 2010 would usher in a period of closer integration and cooperation was, I think, scotched early on. Perhaps the relationship wasn't as antagonistic and fractious as before but then again Blair's crush on Dubya and hard on for the Iraq war IMO made it very clear who he thought the UK's strategic partners were.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 03:02 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
The EU have been just as responsible for the Brexit delay as our own crappy UK politicians: it takes two sides to negotiate. The EU could have also unilaterally ended the process in March or April by simply not offering extensions.

You know yourself that the EU always indulges in all-night, past-the-deadline, negotiations when attempting to conclude anything. I'm confident they will continue to do this, with or without UK involvement.
It's difficult to negotiate when one side (the UK) doesn't appear to have a clue what it wants aside from "everything for free" which isn't really a negotiating position.

Yes we know that the Brexiteers will hope to blame the EU for all the negative consequences of our self-inflicted pain and with enough support from the right wing press they might even succeed.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 03:58 AM   #8
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Deleted.
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Last edited by Vixen; 2nd July 2019 at 04:07 AM. Reason: Moved to Brexit thread
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Old 2nd July 2019, 04:00 AM   #9
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To replace my earlier post, here's the update in how the EU Summit candidacies are going:

Quote:
Leaders emerged frustrated on Monday from the all-night talks, with French President Emmanuel Macron dubbing them a failure and saying there could be no further EU enlargement without reforms to enable smoother functioning.

His initial deal with Angela Merkel to endorse Timmermans collapsed as the weakened German chancellor failed to deliver her fellow centre-right peers.

Merkel’s own pick to lead the Commission, German Manfred Weber, was rejected earlier in the process.

But diplomats and officials said Merkel was still insisting that the next head of the EU executive must – like Weber – be a lead candidate proposed by political groups within the European Parliament.

Timmermans and the bloc’s current top competition official in Brussels, Danish liberal Margrethe Vestager, are the others. Weber’s consolation prize could be the presidency of the new EU assembly for half of the new five-year term, sources said.

Candidates have until Tuesday evening to file applications for that role.

The parliament’s spokesman said the post would be filled on Wednesday, whether or not national leaders reach agreement on Tuesday.
That'll be interesting if they still cannot agree.

I think Timmermans will get it.
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Last edited by Vixen; 2nd July 2019 at 04:13 AM.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 08:07 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by The Don View Post
It's difficult to negotiate when one side (the UK) doesn't appear to have a clue what it wants aside from "everything for free" which isn't really a negotiating position.
It's difficult to negotiate when one side (the EU) won't agree to discuss anything except how much money you must give them to leave and how much control they'll impose on you after you've left. You may be allowed to discuss the things you want (such as free trade deals) only after you've agreed to their preconditions and left - but there's no certainty that they'll offer anything once you've paid and agreed to their legally binding terms.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 08:25 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
It's difficult to negotiate when one side (the EU) won't agree to discuss anything except how much money you must give them to leave and how much control they'll impose on you after you've left. You may be allowed to discuss the things you want (such as free trade deals) only after you've agreed to their preconditions and left - but there's no certainty that they'll offer anything once you've paid and agreed to their legally binding terms.
Well that's a very distorted way to look at things

Then again the only way in which Brexit makes any sense is if you completely misrepresent the benefits and obligations of EU membership and have a fantastical idea as to what the post-Brexit position would be, so a distorted version of the negotiation process is hardly surprising.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 09:02 AM   #12
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Can you explain why it's distorted?

It's a fact that the EU will not discuss future trading arrangements until after we've left, and the only way we can leave smoothly (they've said they WILL NOT reopen the withdrawal agreement) is to agree to pay over the leaving money and agree to be bound into their customs union after we've left, until they decide to release us.

Their customs union prevents us agreeing free trade deals with any other countries, so the EU is effectively saying we can only leave providing we enter into a legally binding agreement that deprives us of the key benefit of leaving - and the EU can choose to lock us into that agreement for ever.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 10:48 AM   #13
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<rant> So Merkel wins out. Not managing to push through EPP member Weber, Von der Leyen, her foreign minister is put forward instead...and succeeds, displacing the favourite, Frans Timmermans of the Netherlands. Another disappointing development is the appointment of Christine Lagarde as Chief EU Banker, touted by mountbanke Macron.

It seems to prove that the EU Parliament is dominated by Germany and France and the small countries, such as the Netherlands and Finland are just ridden over roughshod (Rehn and Liikanen were easily the best choice for the EC Bank role). Instead we get virtue signalling by putting forward a couple of has-beens and lauded as being 'wimmin'. I would have preferred Danish female Vestager to anything Merkel puts forward if gender virtual signalling is the deciding factor. Wait! She is not German or French.

Quote:
EU leaders have picked German Defence Minister Ursuala von der Leyen for the top post of European Commission chief, after a marathon three-day summit.

A close ally of Chancellor Angela Merkel, Ms Von der Leyen's nomination came as a surprise after the main front-runners were rejected.

If approved by the European Parliament she will become the first female Commission president.

IMF head Christine Lagarde, has been nominated for the head of the ECB.
. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-48847200

In a momentary flash of bitterness I suddenly identified with the Brexit Party. Send in the Spitfires! <sfx youth is a new generation dambusters theme> Bloody Germans!

I'll be all right once I've had a lie down. </rant>
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Old 2nd July 2019, 12:08 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
Can you explain why it's distorted?
Because it's at variance with factual reality as opposed to Brexiteer nonsense.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 12:27 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
Because it's at variance with factual reality as opposed to Brexiteer nonsense in my opinion
FTFY,

I know it's harder to actually address the argument than attack the opposing side, but you might at least make an effort.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 12:53 PM   #16
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Sebastion Kurz* on the appointment of Von der Leyen:

Quote:
Congratulations to Ursula von der Leyen @bmvonderleyer for having been proposed by #EUCO as President of the European #Commission. She is highly qualified for leading this important #EU institution and will have the support of @volkspartei in the European Parliament.
That says it all.

*That Sebastian Kurz:

Quote:
Monday, just after 4 p.m., he became the first Austrian chancellor since 1945 to lose a no-confidence vote, as his former coalition partner, the far-right Freedom Party, and the opposition Social Democrats joined forces to bring down his government in the wake of the so-called Ibiza affair.
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Old 2nd July 2019, 02:52 PM   #17
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In an article with the headline EU're Joking the SUN echoes my own reservations:

Quote:
She [von der Leyen] has also been a staunch supporter of the German government’s position in the negotiations, including “no renegotiation” of the backstop.

And in 2011 she said: “My goal is the United States of Europe — based on the model of the federal states of Switzerland, Germany or the US.” Mr Borrell has repeatedly baited Britain over Gibraltar’s future, saying Brexit will drive the territory into the arms of Madrid.

While federalist Mr Michel has backed French president Emmanuel Macron’s hardline stance on Brexit, saying in 2017: “When you push that Brexit button, there is a bill to pay.”

Last night Mr Macron upped the ante by declaring the EU must have “no fear” of letting Britain leave without a deal on October 31.
So the UK would under von der Leyen's dream be subsumed by a federation controlled by Germany. Nein, nein,nein.

The Spanish guy has his eye on Gibraltar.

I'm like a character in Enid Blyton's The Faraway Tree who's stepped through the portal at the top of the tree to transform into a Brexit Party supporter. Oh look, there's Ann Widdecombe knitting a chicken.

Quark, cluck, cluck, cluck.

Where's Corbyn? Where is the antidote?
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Old 2nd July 2019, 05:14 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by The Don View Post
It's difficult to negotiate when one side (the UK) doesn't appear to have a clue what it wants aside from "everything for free" which isn't really a negotiating position.



Yes we know that the Brexiteers will hope to blame the EU for all the negative consequences of our self-inflicted pain and with enough support from the right wing press they might even succeed.
It's worse than that. A deal was negotiated. The UK can't agree with itself what it wants. Every possible option had a majority voting against it. No option had a majority voting for it. What can the EU do about that?
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Old 3rd July 2019, 07:36 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
FTFY,

I know it's harder to actually address the argument than attack the opposing side, but you might at least make an effort.
I'll address an 'argument' when (if) you make one, rather than re-hashing Brexiteer lies.
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Old 3rd July 2019, 07:39 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by a_unique_person View Post
It's worse than that. A deal was negotiated. The UK can't agree with itself what it wants. Every possible option had a majority voting against it. No option had a majority voting for it. What can the EU do about that?
Throw the Bridiots out and let them wallow in the crapulent morass of their own incompetence, greed and xenophobia
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Old 3rd July 2019, 03:08 PM   #21
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Today I are paid a visit to my embassy in London. On seeing my beautiful flag fluttering next to the EU one, my temporary abberation of yesterday has now passed (blame it on my early British school inculcation) and I am now back to being an avowed Remainer and Eurolover.

<phew!>
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Old 3rd July 2019, 03:21 PM   #22
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It's really telling that they can't even keep the facade of democracy standing with now nominating someone who didn't run as the candidate of a party like they promised. Doesn't help that Merkel had to abstain from the vote as her coalition partner is vehemently opposed to the nomination of her party member. Also doesn't help that Von Der Leyen has been involved in a huge corruption/nepotism scandal that led nowhere just because the German judiciary is not really independent (i.e. did not open a criminal investigation). Also doesn't help that Christine Lagarde, now chosen to head the ECB, is a convicted felon for embezzlement of 400 millions of French tax payer money. French judiciary is a bit better there - but only a bit, as the conviction had no consequences for her.

Lagarde doesn't need any approval, but Von Der Leyen does, from the EU Parliament. Will be interesting to watch. I don't think it will go smoothly.
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Old 3rd July 2019, 03:29 PM   #23
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Ursula Von Der Leyen is Defense Minister btw (Vixen mistakenly claimed that she is Foreign Minister).

Her nickname is "Flinten-Uschi". "Flinte" is a colloquial term for rifle, Uschi is short for Ursula. Seven kids, so no Childless European™. Asked if any of them went to the military, famously said "of course not".
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Old 3rd July 2019, 03:41 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Ursula Von Der Leyen is Defense Minister btw (Vixen mistakenly claimed that she is Foreign Minister).

Her nickname is "Flinten-Uschi". "Flinte" is a colloquial term for rifle, Uschi is short for Ursula. Seven kids, so no Childless European™. Asked if any of them went to the military, famously said "of course not".
She's the daughter of Albrecht, some former politician, so probably a career politician who' never really had to work for a living.

I note they've voted a Socialist Italian, Sassoli, as 'president' to sweeten the Merkel alliance. It's a fancy title for someone who is little more than the speaker.

The real power, of course, lies with the EU Commission.

As for the EC Bank, I can't see Legarde as the best person for the job at all. It smacks of Macron imposing her on us.
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Old 3rd July 2019, 04:26 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Vixen View Post
She's the daughter of Albrecht, some former politician, so probably a career politician who' never really had to work for a living.

Yes, her family is old Geldadel ("Money Nobility").
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Old 3rd July 2019, 04:34 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Vixen View Post
It smacks of Macron imposing her on us.

Macron of course is a completely artificial phenomenon. Mean (and of course antisemitic) yellow vest activists call him a "Rothschild boy", but the truth is not that far off.
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Old 4th July 2019, 12:16 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Yes, her family is old Geldadel ("Money Nobility").
According to wiki, he was a self-made textile magnate from Bremen.

Quote:
Childhood, school time, education
Knoop was the fourth of eight children in an impoverished Bremen merchant family. He attended the local school of the parish. After his commercial apprenticeship in 1835, he went to his uncle in 1838, in Manchester the textile company De Jersey & Co. for operation. England was a pioneer in European cotton spinning and weaving machinery , and Knoop became acquainted with industrial textile processing there.
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Old 4th July 2019, 01:29 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by Vixen View Post
According to wiki, he was a self-made textile magnate from Bremen.
There were may generations between though. I think enough time as passed that it can be considered to be old money.
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Old 4th July 2019, 02:39 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by The Don View Post
There were may generations between though. I think enough time as passed that it can be considered to be old money.
Well, Ursula von der Leyen went to the LSE so I guess it is some kind of grounding in politics (copying dad, Albrecht though). Her dream of a Federation of EU States smacks of visions of Greater Germania though. No wonder the Brexiteers are wound up.

Poor Ann Widdecombe was reduced to claiming Brits are the oppressed slaves of the EU rising up in revolt against its oppressors, in her 'maiden speech' [sic] at the EU Parliament.
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Old 4th July 2019, 03:20 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Vixen View Post
According to wiki, he was a self-made textile magnate from Bremen.

Yeah as the Don says that was several generations ago. Her own wikipedia article has this:

Originally Posted by wikipedia
Ursula von der Leyen is mainly of German descent and has one English American great-grandmother. The Albrecht family was among the patrician (hübsche) families of the Electorate of Hanover—a state that was in a personal union with the United Kingdom; her great-great-grandfather George Alexander Albrecht moved to Bremen in the 19th century, where he became a wealthy cotton merchant, part of the Hanseatic elite and the Austro-Hungarian Consul from 1895. He married the daughter of Baron Ludwig Knoop, one of the most successful entrepreneurs of the 19th century Russian Empire.[8] Their son was the cotton merchant Friedrich Carl Albrecht, who married Mary Ladson Robertson (1883–1960), an American from Charleston, South Carolina of colonial English planter class descent. von der Leyen's great-grandmother was the daughter of the Charleston cotton merchant Edward Twells Robertson and Sarah Gilmor Ladson; Edward Robertson established the Edward T. Robertson & Son company that was active as controllers in the international cotton business.[9] The family is included in the book The Prominent Families of the United States of America.[10] Mary Ladson Robertson was a member of the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America and a descendant of South Carolina governor Thomas Smith.[11] Ursula von der Leyen's grandfather Friedrich Carl Albrecht was a physician and psychotherapist. She is the niece of the conductor George Alexander Albrecht and a first cousin of the chief conductor of the Dutch National Opera Marc Albrecht.[12]

She is married to Heiko von der Leyen, a professor of medicine, the CEO of a medical engineering company and a member of the von der Leyen family, an aristocratic family noted as silk merchants and industrialists.

So in addition to her own familiy's old money (and one of her great-great-great grandfather being declared a Russian Baron), she married into an actual "noble" family (although there is no official nobility in Germany since after WW1), the von der Leyen, another textile/silk industrialist dynasty.
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Old 5th July 2019, 04:30 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Yeah as the Don says that was several generations ago. Her own wikipedia article has this:




So in addition to her own familiy's old money (and one of her great-great-great grandfather being declared a Russian Baron), she married into an actual "noble" family (although there is no official nobility in Germany since after WW1), the von der Leyen, another textile/silk industrialist dynasty.
Politicians being rich is nothing new. In fact, the members of the Opposition in the UK, the current Labour Party have more privately educated members than the Conservative Party, or so I read somewhere. Most have never been near t'mill or t'mine in their lives.
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Old 5th July 2019, 05:20 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by Vixen View Post
Politicians being rich is nothing new. In fact, the members of the Opposition in the UK, the current Labour Party have more privately educated members than the Conservative Party, or so I read somewhere. Most have never been near t'mill or t'mine in their lives.
Unless there's been a drastic change in the last 4 years, you have misremembered:

From a 2015 BBC article:

Quote:
Among Conservative MPs, nearly half (48%) were privately educated, the report indicates.

.....

Among Labour MPs, some 17% went to private schools, among Liberal Democrats the figure was 14%.

The figure was far lower among Scottish National Party MPs, at just 5%.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-32692789

The comprehensive school is the least privileged and the figures are echoed there as well:

Quote:
Almost two-thirds of Labour MPs and a third of Conservatives, 57% of Liberal Democrats and 90% of Scottish Nationalist MPs went to comprehensives, the analysis indicates.
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Old 9th July 2019, 01:47 PM   #33
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At the moment you have to wonder if the attitude of many in the Eu toward the UK is "better off without that bunch anyway".
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Old 9th July 2019, 02:06 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by ceptimus View Post
It's difficult to negotiate when one side (the EU) won't agree to discuss anything except how much money you must give them to leave and how much control they'll impose on you after you've left. You may be allowed to discuss the things you want (such as free trade deals) only after you've agreed to their preconditions and left - but there's no certainty that they'll offer anything once you've paid and agreed to their legally binding terms.
Nope. Those are the terms of membership that the UK signed up to in the first place, not some new thing the EU has sprung unexpectedly.

If you are fine with deals and commitments already made being tossed, good luck finding any other nation that will trust you.
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Old 9th July 2019, 02:09 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
At the moment you have to wonder if the attitude of many in the Eu toward the UK is "better off without that bunch anyway".
There is certainly an undercurrent of that feeling going around. It simply is not yet very vocal. Some of the 27 have said exactly that.
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Old 9th July 2019, 03:48 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
Nope. Those are the terms of membership that the UK signed up to in the first place, not some new thing the EU has sprung unexpectedly.

If you are fine with deals and commitments already made being tossed, good luck finding any other nation that will trust you.
One reason we want to leave is that we DIDN'T sign up to those terms when we joined - back then the EEC was mostly just a free trade area - more and more rules and conditions creep in every year - and the 'common market' as it was is gradually morphing into the United States of Europe.
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Old 10th July 2019, 02:36 AM   #37
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More and more rules in which we had veto's we didn't use, and were actuve in writing the bloody rules.

Stop rewriting history to fit your distorted image of how the EU actually worked.

We were one of the major drivers behind all the rules you are currently complaining about.
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Old 10th July 2019, 02:44 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
At the moment you have to wonder if the attitude of many in the Eu toward the UK is "better off without that bunch anyway".
The eu UK split is one of many reasons further unification will never happen, and with the current crop of leadership that is not going to change
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Old 10th July 2019, 09:01 AM   #39
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This latest farce has just reinforced why I voted to leave.

A free-trade area is an obvious boon to all of the countries involved including the UK. I don't have many problems about free movemnet (within limits, staying out of Shengen is the obvious one). But this anti-democratic crap is beyond the pale and that there is no public scrutiny of the aims of the Comission. They are on an adventure for which none of us have voted to join, and with aims that are indistinct (greater EU integration).

No thanks. This isn't democracy, if the Commission can overturn Parliamentary decisions on a whim, it's totaliarism, it doesnt matter that it's not an individual who is the dictator, a single body with no other control is the dictator.

That for me is unacceptable, and they just reinforced it.
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Old 10th July 2019, 12:22 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by Mikemcc View Post
This latest farce has just reinforced why I voted to leave.

A free-trade area is an obvious boon to all of the countries involved including the UK. I don't have many problems about free movemnet (within limits, staying out of Shengen is the obvious one). But this anti-democratic crap is beyond the pale and that there is no public scrutiny of the aims of the Comission. They are on an adventure for which none of us have voted to join, and with aims that are indistinct (greater EU integration).

No thanks. This isn't democracy, if the Commission can overturn Parliamentary decisions on a whim, it's totaliarism, it doesnt matter that it's not an individual who is the dictator, a single body with no other control is the dictator.

That for me is unacceptable, and they just reinforced it.

Not only has departing EU Head Juncker criticised the method of her selection as not being done transparently (he himself stood and was elected in an open contest) - and Juncker comes from the same Christian Democratic European People's Party (as does Merkel) as von der Leyen, but the Greens (who were a very sizeable vote during the recent EU elections) are threatening not to back her unless she concedes to their green demands, which she seems to be giving lip service to, supposedly wanting the European Union 'federation' to become carbon neutral and leading the world, she's in trouble with the Socialists, too:

Quote:
The 60-year-old German Christian Democrat has yet to win over a sizable number of Socialist members of the European Parliament from Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and Britain as she seeks the backing of an absolute majority of the 751-seat assembly to succeed Jean-Claude Juncker atop the EU’s executive arm.
Von der Leyen didn't even put herself forward as a candidate which is my objection. She seems to have been pushed forward as nobody on the right wanted Timmermans. Farage called him a lunatic. So he sounds like a good guy by that token.
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