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02 May 2017 17:53

Labour need to hide Diane Abbott for the next month, preferably forever. Or sack her.
Brullnux
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02 May 2017 18:01

Politics is a funny thing isn't it.
People can create absolute carnage with serious repercussions for everybody for decades...and then just walk away with total impunity.


Gove, Johnson and Farage. How can it be that these three human gargoyles can have wrought so much damage.
mcduff
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02 May 2017 18:14

It's even funnier when you consider only Farage actually wanted it, and other two were in it for their own career advancements. Which both failed.
Brullnux
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02 May 2017 18:21

I think Farage made a tidy career out of it too. Will Self's description of him on QT was spot on...hence Farages reaction.

https://m.youtube.com/?gl=GB&hl=en-GB#/watch?v=QvTjNugYTRk

The Macbethian antics of Gove and Johnson were a joy to behold.
mcduff
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03 May 2017 17:05

"Britain’s negotiating position in Europe has been misrepresented in the continental press."

The most important quote from May's 'declaration of war' with the EU. Is it the continental press who have misrepresented our negotiating position, or you yourself? I'd love to know from a continental persepective, what people think of May and her posturing, and in general if they think the UK has any actual standing in these negotiations. My perspective is not completely one-sided, as I was not born in Britain so feel less of the inherent jingoism that others may feel (the 'they need us more than we need them' idea) so like to think I can look at it from a fairly objective position (not the EU, but how the negotiations will go). I also keep an eye on some European newspapers to gather their point of view.

In my opinion, May has negligible power in the talks. We have seen many people try to negotiate with the EU and Brussels and fail, on topics which the EU had more of a reason to be respecting of. Varoufakis and Greece, most notably. The idea of the mandate is negated by the 27 other mandates which she will be negotiating with. Which brings me onto another point: just sheer size. The EU is far bigger than the UK and has a much bigger GDP. Trade wise, they export less %-wise than we do: 42-44% vs 16%. If that cuts by half, the UK loses over a fifth of their exports. The EU loses a twelth.

Then comes the more political side. The EU, politically, cannot give the UK a good deal. They definitely will not allow one which is mor favourable than a current inside-the-EU agreement. Therefore, I think Juncker and Merkel had a hierarchy of deals. Plan A: a Norway style agreement. Trade is still there and so is freedom of movement; the cost is less but the UK has no say in the laws they are forced to abide by and there is no possibility of 3rd party deals. The EU economy is still as strong, and the UK gains very little and loses a bit. Plan B: Harsh, harsh deal which hurts the UK. This may hurt the EU, but it will (probably) put off some other countries from leaving the EU. It will also anger some people in europe, but I think the EU thinks it a net-positive arrangement. Since May has ruled out plan a, it is looking very much like plan b. Especially with the antagonisation that has gone on recently, I do not think May will have much say on what the final trade deal is. Juncker and co will give her one, and she will either accept it, and face humiliation (although the servile and sycophantic media will see it as a victory), or leave without a deal and stick to her promise. Mind you, there is more chance of the talks falling through than anything else. Then comes the issue of the bill etc. May is criminally underestimating how hard this will be.
Brullnux
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Re:

03 May 2017 17:14

Brullnux wrote:"Britain’s negotiating position in Europe has been misrepresented in the continental press."

The most important quote from May's 'declaration of war' with the EU. Is it the continental press who have misrepresented our negotiating position, or you yourself? I'd love to know from a continental persepective, what people think of May and her posturing, and in general if they think the UK has any actual standing in these negotiations. My perspective is not completely one-sided, as I was not born in Britain so feel less of the inherent jingoism that others may feel (the 'they need us more than we need them' idea) so like to think I can look at it from a fairly objective position (not the EU, but how the negotiations will go). I also keep an eye on some European newspapers to gather their point of view.

In my opinion, May has negligible power in the talks. We have seen many people try to negotiate with the EU and Brussels and fail, on topics which the EU had more of a reason to be respecting of. Varoufakis and Greece, most notably. The idea of the mandate is negated by the 27 other mandates which she will be negotiating with. Which brings me onto another point: just sheer size. The EU is far bigger than the UK and has a much bigger GDP. Trade wise, they export less %-wise than we do: 42-44% vs 16%. If that cuts by half, the UK loses over a fifth of their exports. The EU loses a twelth.

Then comes the more political side. The EU, politically, cannot give the UK a good deal. They definitely will not allow one which is mor favourable than a current inside-the-EU agreement. Therefore, I think Juncker and Merkel had a hierarchy of deals. Plan A: a Norway style agreement. Trade is still there and so is freedom of movement; the cost is less but the UK has no say in the laws they are forced to abide by and there is no possibility of 3rd party deals. The EU economy is still as strong, and the UK gains very little and loses a bit. Plan B: Harsh, harsh deal which hurts the UK. This may hurt the EU, but it will (probably) put off some other countries from leaving the EU. It will also anger some people in europe, but I think the EU thinks it a net-positive arrangement. Since May has ruled out plan a, it is looking very much like plan b. Especially with the antagonisation that has gone on recently, I do not think May will have much say on what the final trade deal is. Juncker and co will give her one, and she will either accept it, and face humiliation (although the servile and sycophantic media will see it as a victory), or leave without a deal and stick to her promise. Mind you, there is more chance of the talks falling through than anything else. Then comes the issue of the bill etc. May is criminally underestimating how hard this will be.


https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/may/03/yanis-varoufakis-greece-greatest-political-memoir
"Hitler … didn't even sink to using chemical weapons."
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03 May 2017 17:24

I'm not sure there is an equivalence between Brexit UK and Bankrupt Greece.

With regards to jingoistic viewpoints amongst the British, I would suspect that depends very much on which side of the Brexit debate one lies. The right wing press has been drip feeding lies about the EU for decades, the biggest ones being about EU law. EU laws have, largely, been extremely advantageous for the UK..no surprise given that the British were very central to their creation!

Its no wonder the Brexit voters hold the opinions they do, given the poison that has been dripped into their ears. It feeds right into the national psyche of victimhood, and support for the underdog (in this case,us). If they truly believe that the damned foreigners are cheating us, then a desire for Brexit is a logical position.

That the entire debate was able to he framed in these terms demonstrates the lack of sophistication of the British electorate, or at least 52% of them.
mcduff
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Re:

03 May 2017 18:58

Brullnux wrote:"Britain’s negotiating position in Europe has been misrepresented in the continental press."

The most important quote from May's 'declaration of war' with the EU. Is it the continental press who have misrepresented our negotiating position, or you yourself? I'd love to know from a continental persepective, what people think of May and her posturing, and in general if they think the UK has any actual standing in these negotiations. My perspective is not completely one-sided, as I was not born in Britain so feel less of the inherent jingoism that others may feel (the 'they need us more than we need them' idea) so like to think I can look at it from a fairly objective position (not the EU, but how the negotiations will go). I also keep an eye on some European newspapers to gather their point of view.

In my opinion, May has negligible power in the talks. We have seen many people try to negotiate with the EU and Brussels and fail, on topics which the EU had more of a reason to be respecting of. Varoufakis and Greece, most notably. The idea of the mandate is negated by the 27 other mandates which she will be negotiating with. Which brings me onto another point: just sheer size. The EU is far bigger than the UK and has a much bigger GDP. Trade wise, they export less %-wise than we do: 42-44% vs 16%. If that cuts by half, the UK loses over a fifth of their exports. The EU loses a twelth.

Then comes the more political side. The EU, politically, cannot give the UK a good deal. They definitely will not allow one which is mor favourable than a current inside-the-EU agreement. Therefore, I think Juncker and Merkel had a hierarchy of deals. Plan A: a Norway style agreement. Trade is still there and so is freedom of movement; the cost is less but the UK has no say in the laws they are forced to abide by and there is no possibility of 3rd party deals. The EU economy is still as strong, and the UK gains very little and loses a bit. Plan B: Harsh, harsh deal which hurts the UK. This may hurt the EU, but it will (probably) put off some other countries from leaving the EU. It will also anger some people in europe, but I think the EU thinks it a net-positive arrangement. Since May has ruled out plan a, it is looking very much like plan b. Especially with the antagonisation that has gone on recently, I do not think May will have much say on what the final trade deal is. Juncker and co will give her one, and she will either accept it, and face humiliation (although the servile and sycophantic media will see it as a victory), or leave without a deal and stick to her promise. Mind you, there is more chance of the talks falling through than anything else. Then comes the issue of the bill etc. May is criminally underestimating how hard this will be.

Speaking from continental Europe, I think it is the general opinion that Britain indeed cannot get a better deal out than in. All 27 countries will make sure of that. Furthermore, there seem to be two races going on at the same time in Britain: the internal one (elections) and the external one (Brexit negotiations). Seems like May is aiming for winning the internal one but very likely at the cost of the Brexit deals (see her latest comments). On the Brexit front, she seems to be overplaying her hand. If I'm slightly malign, I would say this is still the 'old' Britain thinking it's still an empire.
User avatar Jagartrott
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03 May 2017 20:01

Its not really as simple as that. Its internal problems centred around declining living standards (most especially for the working class) coupled with an ideological drive to reduce the state at all costs (again, hitting the lowest classes hardest) being attributed to too many swarthy looking people out on the streets. I don't think there are any illusions of empire, other than in the minds of foreigners reliant on clichés.

It is in some ways not dissimilar to the drivers behind Trumps election, and the possible election if Le Pen in France.
mcduff
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04 May 2017 13:30

User avatar Jagartrott
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Re:

04 May 2017 17:38



Agree, its good.

To be honest, British politics are not at all about what they purport to be about at the moment.

Cameron kicked it off by allowing a referendum on the EU in order to consolidate his power within his own party.

May is now using the EU issue to try and consolidate her power within her party and Parliament.
mcduff
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05 May 2017 07:48

Tories gain, Labour lose, UKIP demolished. Lib Dems struggle, despite this being a local election in which they normally do excellently.
Brullnux
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05 May 2017 09:42

"We are a party that is centrist"-Stephen Kinnock

That isn't factual. Labour has been centrist, but it has also been left-wing. Corbyn at heart is a socialist, but his policies are still not fantastically radical, and wouldn't have seemed too out of place on an Ed Miliband manifesto. The epithet of 'hard left' for most of his policies is wrong. Just because Corbyn is useless and has shown support for Hezbollah and the IRA doesn't mean that his policies are crypto-Marxist. I suppose this is Kinnock Jr.'s leadership pitch for September.
Brullnux
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05 May 2017 17:40

The wrong Milliband.

Things might have been different if the right one had won the leadership.
mcduff
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Re:

05 May 2017 18:11

mcduff wrote:The wrong Milliband.

Things might have been different if the right one had won the leadership.

Ed is a much better person than David, less arrogant and less careerist. David may have been the better politician but he would have been Blair 2.0. As soon as he lost the leadership election he upped sticks, deserted his constituents and flew off to NYC where he is now rolling in it working for IRS. Ed lost the general, and stayed in parliament. To me this shows Ed is a politician because he truly wants to make a difference, while David was there for the fame and power. In fact, I'd say with complete confidence that Ed would've been better for the UK than David.

David is more charismatic and a much smoother operator and yes, would have won the 2015 general, but only because he wouldn't have been pilloried by the Sun and Daily Mail. Take them out of the equation, and Ed would have won.
Brullnux
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Re:

05 May 2017 18:49

Brullnux wrote:Tories gain, Labour lose, UKIP demolished. Lib Dems struggle, despite this being a local election in which they normally do excellently.

In England and Wales...in Scotland SNP win and are now the largest party in our 4 major cities, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee. Tories gain over Labour.
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Re: Re:

05 May 2017 19:29

ferryman wrote:
Brullnux wrote:Tories gain, Labour lose, UKIP demolished. Lib Dems struggle, despite this being a local election in which they normally do excellently.

In England and Wales...in Scotland SNP win and are now the largest party in our 4 major cities, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee. Tories gain over Labour.

The Scots hadn't started counting yet when I posted that. Probably a bit disappointing for SNP considering their 2015 general performance, but I think part of their support is flooding to bloody Davidson. Or at least all the unionists are, but the SNP seem to be losing a bit of ground since 2015 too. We'll see for sure in June.

Disaster for Labour in the midlands and heartlands like Tees Valley and Cumbria. Shored up well enough in Wales, especially as the 2013 elections were a miracle there. The victories in cities perhaps more resounding than expected, and West of England probably a pleasant surprise. The lib dems did ok. Failed a bit in Somerset and other places in the South but seems as if the vote share is good (18%), while councillors not so much. However, they tend to be a bit more politically active than labour voters and tories (you don't often hear people say I'm voting because my family has always voted Lib Dem), so I expect the vote share in June to be about 3 points lower.
Brullnux
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Re: Re:

05 May 2017 20:48

Brullnux wrote:
ferryman wrote:
Brullnux wrote:Tories gain, Labour lose, UKIP demolished. Lib Dems struggle, despite this being a local election in which they normally do excellently.

In England and Wales...in Scotland SNP win and are now the largest party in our 4 major cities, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee. Tories gain over Labour.

The Scots hadn't started counting yet when I posted that. Probably a bit disappointing for SNP considering their 2015 general performance, but I think part of their support is flooding to bloody Davidson. Or at least all the unionists are, but the SNP seem to be losing a bit of ground since 2015 too. We'll see for sure in June.

Disaster for Labour in the midlands and heartlands like Tees Valley and Cumbria. Shored up well enough in Wales, especially as the 2013 elections were a miracle there. The victories in cities perhaps more resounding than expected, and West of England probably a pleasant surprise. The lib dems did ok. Failed a bit in Somerset and other places in the South but seems as if the vote share is good (18%), while councillors not so much. However, they tend to be a bit more politically active than labour voters and tories (you don't often hear people say I'm voting because my family has always voted Lib Dem), so I expect the vote share in June to be about 3 points lower.


Good analysis. Not that disappointed with the results in Scotland (well not quite true, as a Labour man at heart it breaks the same to see so many now voting for the Tories:() I think the SNP are still pretty much on track to secure 50+ of the seats in the GE but the Tories will probably gain the rest, bar Orkney/Shetland probably. I NEVER EVER could imagine Scotland being without one Labour MP but it is really looking like that.
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06 May 2017 00:13

I'm expecting Scotland will break away within the decade. It'll be interesting to see how that affects Scottish politics in terms of representation and political parties in an independent Scotland.
mcduff
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Re:

06 May 2017 01:01

mcduff wrote:I'm expecting Scotland will break away within the decade. It'll be interesting to see how that affects Scottish politics in terms of representation and political parties in an independent Scotland.


It will happen in the next 2/3 years or not, literally for a generation this time. The GE results will give an indication. As an SNP activist and realist, I'm afraid to say it will not happen. That being the case, I really really just want to see Labour get their act together in England which will have a knock on effect in Scotland and Wales. We can all dream I guess:(
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