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Tylluan Penry
04 Jul 2016, 11:00
For the past ten days politics in the UK have been totally mad.

This link explains what's been happening. And yes, before you ask, you couldn't make this stuff up. It's true. God help us.

https://www.buzzfeed.com/lukebailey/the-crisis-explained-maybe?utm_term=.dvJQlGz9B#.nmbBoOng9

iris
04 Jul 2016, 11:22
It's like they're filming a bad political drama over there and forgot to tell... everyone... I wasn't surprised to see Farage leave, but I wonder why he didn't at least stay to see article 50 invoked... it's not like he's actually won with all the mess you guys have right now...

Azvanna
04 Jul 2016, 11:30
My goodness. You know you're in dire straits when pollies start saying what they're actually thinking!


why should I do all the hard shit for someone else, just to hand it over to them on a plate.

Hawkfeathers
04 Jul 2016, 15:28
It's truly amazing. But we're only a step behind - the Republican & Democratic conventions are coming up this month. They're sure to be the site of much drama and malarkey!

DanieMarie
05 Jul 2016, 05:59
Yeah, good lord. I'm kind of glad I'm Canadian and German. Canada came to its senses a few months ago and has been keeping its cool for most of the year (save the occasional stupid, pointless scandal here and there) and Germany is boring. I think that Germany's push for the status quo might bite it in the ass sometime soon and it's probably everything that's wrong with the EU, but I'd rather be boring than the UK right now, to be honest.

Tylluan Penry
05 Jul 2016, 11:01
Yes, times are rather worrying over here at the moment. I feel losing the plot is perhaps putting it kindly...

Denarius
05 Jul 2016, 13:46
I find it interesting that y'all are taking a conservative mindset here. It's usually my prerogative to argue against progressive activism on an economic basis. Like with raising the minimum wage.

Hawkfeathers
05 Jul 2016, 14:21
I don't know anything about how salaries are in the UK - is there a minimum wage?

iris
05 Jul 2016, 14:46
I don't usually care enough about politics to get the terms right... but I would say that the conservative side of this dilemma are the people who have been campaigning to leave the EU basiclly since they joined...?

ThePaganMafia
05 Jul 2016, 15:44
The EU is a Neoliberal and undemocratic nightmare. Ask Greece how EU austerity measures and the removal of their democratically elected leaders has gone. It's hilarious watching Liberals fall over themselves about a Democratic decision to leave a Union that is a bureaucratic mess in which workers and their trade unions have lost bargaining power. It is an undemocratic system in which trade deals are worked in secret and the poorer EU countries get exploited by more powerful member States such as France and Germany.

Denarius
05 Jul 2016, 16:13
I would say that the conservative side of this dilemma are the people who have been campaigning to leave the EU

Well, "conservative" just means "opposes radical change" it's (In my opinion) actually the moderate/centrist position as both the far left and right are the ones arguing for radical changes. I would consider both joining the EU forty years ago, and leaving the EU now to be "progressive" and "radical." In the sense of massive political change.

I would especially consider the remain campaign to be a conservative one, as the arguments were almost all to do with short term consequences and appeals to uncertainty.

Tylluan Penry
06 Jul 2016, 02:24
I find it interesting that y'all are taking a conservative mindset here. It's usually my prerogative to argue against progressive activism on an economic basis. Like with raising the minimum wage.

The EU has problems. Some it has created. Some it has helped. Wales benefits hugely from being in the EU - yet a majority voted to leave (a lot of people didn't realise - they claimed - that leaving the EU would mean losing its grants.)
Really, over here it's a class thing.
As in 'Know your place, peasant.' ;)

thalassa
06 Jul 2016, 04:19
Well, "conservative" just means "opposes radical change" it's (In my opinion) actually the moderate/centrist position as both the far left and right are the ones arguing for radical changes. I would consider both joining the EU forty years ago, and leaving the EU now to be "progressive" and "radical." In the sense of massive political change.



That's a bit like saying cows are an animal that makes milk. I mean, so is a lion...and cows do more than make milk. If I were talking about socks, then I could use the word conservative to either mean that my socks were not restrained or that I owned a moderate number of them. TBH, if any recognizable political figure in the US is conservative in this fashion, its Hillary (and the Dems have been conservative in this way for quite some time).

Politically though, you have to go back to Edmund Burke (http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/conservatism/). Conservatism, at its roots is paternalistic and based thoroughly in appeal to antiquity, does not believe in universal rights or human agency, holds religion and government (specifically the majority status quo religion) to be the only restraining power of mankind's base nature, is anti-rational (not irrational, anti-rational), and is monarchical--based in the idea of there being "betters" and "lesser" (social stratification and class-based society). And its not improved since.

Denarius
06 Jul 2016, 04:33
That's kind of my point, at it's heart Conservatism (especially the radical sort) isn't very conservative. I prefer the term "reactionary."

Tylluan Penry
06 Jul 2016, 07:51
More news in the UK today, the Chilcot report into the Iraq war is out. Is it news anywhere else?
https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/jul/06/chilcot-report-crushing-verdict-tony-blair-iraq-war

It's a bit like Spike Milligan's 'Archduke Ferdinand is alive and well; World War I a mistake' comment.

ThePaganMafia
06 Jul 2016, 08:34
If I assist negligently killing hundreds of thousands of people with a bad decision it would stand to reason I would be arrested and very much despised.

But if I were a bourgeois political leader....

thalassa
06 Jul 2016, 09:02
That's kind of my point, at it's heart Conservatism (especially the radical sort) isn't very conservative. I prefer the term "reactionary."

But that's kind of my point--when a bunch of people who believe/do/say *whatever* go around calling themselves X, then they've effectively changed the definition of the term. Because words evolve.

Tylluan Penry
06 Jul 2016, 10:11
If I assist negligently killing hundreds of thousands of people with a bad decision it would stand to reason I would be arrested and very much despised.

But if I were a bourgeois political leader....

There are politicians here who are calling for Tony Blair to be brought to trial.

DanieMarie
06 Jul 2016, 12:07
I don't usually care enough about politics to get the terms right... but I would say that the conservative side of this dilemma are the people who have been campaigning to leave the EU basiclly since they joined...?

That's the rub. Maybe if it were a left-wing group campaigning for social change and more autonomy for social services in the UK, more of us here would be for it. But that's not who is running the "Leave" show. The "Leave" campaign was championed by right wing politicians who have previously waxed poetic about privatisation, boosting security and preserving "British" values. That's why that NHS bus ad was so suspect even from the beginning. Even if that money WAS made available by leaving the EU (which it won't be), those people were never going to give it to the NHS. They'd probably just cut taxes and call it a success on their part. And it's not just fringe parties that I'm talking about here. The more right-wing and populist of the Conservatives are mostly the ones fighting for the reins at the moment. So, yeah. No one with left-wing values wants those people running the country.

As for the chaos in the Labour party...gah. It's so hard to say not being there. In a lot of respects, Jeremy Corbyn is the face of the new left in the UK (and in a lot of Europe, actually). If he loses leadership, someone more "establishment" will take over. But maybe that's what Labour supporters want right now. I don't really know.

- - - Updated - - -


The EU is a Neoliberal and undemocratic nightmare. Ask Greece how EU austerity measures and the removal of their democratically elected leaders has gone. It's hilarious watching Liberals fall over themselves about a Democratic decision to leave a Union that is a bureaucratic mess in which workers and their trade unions have lost bargaining power. It is an undemocratic system in which trade deals are worked in secret and the poorer EU countries get exploited by more powerful member States such as France and Germany.

It is, and believe it or not, it's not all fun and games in France and Germany, either. Just ask any farmer who has to compete with the much cheaper produce from Poland (spoiler alert: it's basically impossible without resorting to slave labour or subsidies for small organic farms). Or the people who work in factories who get told that their wages have to be kept down in order to remain "competitive" (Germany has some of the lowest wages in Western Europe). The EU isn't popular with everyone here, either, and there's a reason for that.

But scrapping the EU isn't the answer. For all the bureaucratic nightmares that it presents, it's been a huge force of stability and peace over the last few decades (in the form of both the EEC and the EU). It has also offered a lot of support in terms of subsidies for regional heritage products, arts and culture, has been a fairly instrumental force in the realm of health and safety (the EU's stance is very conservative on foods and drugs, which I generally appreciate), and has done a lot to promote worker's rights across borders.

I (and a lot of other EU-critical EU supporters, ha) think that the answer has to be restoring more power to regions (not countries - regions within countries...this is Europe. Saxony is a world away from Bayern, etc) and offering more support to small businesses, small farmers and small producers so that they can better compete across the common market against their larger competitors. Oh, and fixing the tax loopholes, because, yikes.

Denarius
06 Jul 2016, 16:20
the answer has to be restoring more power to regions (not countries - regions within countries...this is Europe. Saxony is a world away from Bayern, etc) and offering more support to small businesses, small farmers and small producers so that they can better compete across the common market against their larger competitors.

That's the thing though, multi-national corporations out-compete small businesses and drive down wages largely due to internationalism.

Start up or move to somewhere with low corporate tax rate, manufacture and/or source from places with cheap labor and lax regulation, hire non-union migrant workers, then flood the markets with cheap goods because there's little to no protectionism.

If they had to hire local, union, workers. Use local resources, importing only when necessary. Manufacture locally. Be subject to local taxation. A lot of the advantages they have evaporate. Combine that with doing whatever possible to reduce their influence over government policy, and megacorps will collapse under their own weight. Something I see as necessary and desirable.

In other words, if I had my way the post-Brexit chaos and market instability would be tame. Global markets are fundamentally corrupt, we should burn it to the ground and salt the earth.


they've effectively changed the definition of the term. Because words evolve.

Like how "literally" now means "figuratively?" Evolution of words is one thing, but I'm just annoyed at how words get muddy and indistinct over time. Especially political terminology. I fail to see how becoming more vague, arcane, loaded with baggage, and utterly divorced from etymology (http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=conservative) is "evolution."

The left-right implications are annoying too, because reactionary is exactly the word to describe a lot of the political discussion post-Brexit. As has been pointed out, leftist reaction.

Maybe I'm just been conservative and/or reactionary when it comes to language. :angst:

thalassa
06 Jul 2016, 16:31
.[/I]



Like how "literally" now means "figuratively?" Evolution of words is one thing, but I'm just annoyed at how words get muddy and indistinct over time. Especially political terminology. I fail to see how becoming more vague, arcane, loaded with baggage, and utterly divorced from etymology (http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=conservative) is "evolution."

[/I]Maybe I'm just been conservative and/or reactionary when it comes to language. :angst:


The problem is that people think that evolution is directional...that there is a hierarchy, and that each generational change is good somewhere "higher"...dare I say, progressive...

Evolution is just change.

Denarius
06 Jul 2016, 16:36
Change that isn't for the better, is for the worse.

thalassa
06 Jul 2016, 16:43
Change that isn't for the better, is for the worse.

Not necessarily. History is a long game, from which the outcome isn't definitive for decades, sometimes more.

MaskedOne
06 Jul 2016, 19:02
Change that isn't for the better, is for the worse.

The list of fields where this assertion is at best subjective isn't precisely short so do you want to apply it somewhere specific?

Otherwise, shrug, I start most of my chess games against a certain man with g3 or Nf3. Tomorrow (hypothetically, since neither of our current games end tonight and I don't what I'm starting with in the next one till the next one), I'll start with d4. I'm familiar enough with both positions to play roughly equally from both and my opponent routinely defeats me in both. How exactly is switching to d4 tomorrow going to be worse for either one of us? He still has a 95% chance of kicking my ass and there is still a roughly 5% chance that he'll make an error that I can exploit to turn things.

DanieMarie
06 Jul 2016, 23:37
That's the thing though, multi-national corporations out-compete small businesses and drive down wages largely due to internationalism.

Start up or move to somewhere with low corporate tax rate, manufacture and/or source from places with cheap labor and lax regulation, hire non-union migrant workers, then flood the markets with cheap goods because there's little to no protectionism.

If they had to hire local, union, workers. Use local resources, importing only when necessary. Manufacture locally. Be subject to local taxation. A lot of the advantages they have evaporate. Combine that with doing whatever possible to reduce their influence over government policy, and megacorps will collapse under their own weight. Something I see as necessary and desirable.

In other words, if I had my way the post-Brexit chaos and market instability would be tame. Global markets are fundamentally corrupt, we should burn it to the ground and salt the earth.



Like how "literally" now means "figuratively?" Evolution of words is one thing, but I'm just annoyed at how words get muddy and indistinct over time. Especially political terminology. I fail to see how becoming more vague, arcane, loaded with baggage, and utterly divorced from etymology (http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=conservative) is "evolution."

The left-right implications are annoying too, because reactionary is exactly the word to describe a lot of the political discussion post-Brexit. As has been pointed out, leftist reaction.

Maybe I'm just been conservative and/or reactionary when it comes to language. :angst:

The EU *does* have the potential to help even the playing field, though. In some fields, it already does this. Regions that produce specialty heritage products (think Champagne and the like...basically if it's a European product that is named after its region, it probably falls under this) get a lot of benefits in the form of funding and protection from the EU. There are also lots of grants that go to arts organisations to help them stay afloat in the face of the global entertainment industry. The key is to extend that further.

The EU can choose which producers and businesses get funding and which do not. I think cutting funding to large corporate operations would be really helpful and would help even the playing field for smaller players.

One of the huge reasons a lot of people supported the "Leave" campaign is the funding that the UK sends over to the EU. But this issue is that this funding actually goes back to EU countries in a lot of ways. The UK tends to reap fewer benefits than a lot of other countries as EU funding tries its best to be somewhat progressive (allocating more funds to poorer countries and all that), but a big reality is that a lot of organisations and businesses in the UK simply do not apply for funding as often as continental ones do. There was an article in the Guardian a few years ago (https://www.theguardian.com/culture-professionals-network/culture-professionals-blog/2013/may/01/european-arts-funding-uk-applications) that outlined that, even though UK arts and culture organisations are among the most successful applicants for EU grants, UK organisations make up a much smaller part of overall applications compared to a lot of other countries. Basically, the benefits are there for them, but they're not taking advantage of them. I think another BIG problem within the EU is that a lot of people just aren't aware of what the EU does and how it can benefit them. That's not to say that there aren't major issues, but I think understanding it better would be a huge help.

The other reality is that even non-EU countries have to compete with the EU. Switzerland and Norway manage it well, but it can still be a challenge. The other thing to consider about those countries though is that they have *never* been a part of the EU. The UK is in a different position. A lot of businesses are based there to reap the benefits of being an EU country. When the UK exits the EU, those businesses will no longer be eligible for those benefits. So, those businesses will likely leave. There are already a lot of negotiations going on between companies and other EU countries to see who can entice what to base themselves in their countries. If the EU started extending fewer benefits to larger companies, perhaps some of this wouldn't happen, but there are still side benefits that will always be there for any company based in the EU.

Taxation issues aren't really going to go away by leaving the EU. The EU actually has a lot of potential to solve these issues in that it could break down a lot of barriers to transparency between countries and negotiate tax rules that benefit everyone (ie. no more tax havens in Luxembourg...why oh why is this still legal??)

Denarius
07 Jul 2016, 00:49
In my mind, there is nothing that the EU can do that individual nations cannot. As it stands, I have not been convinced that it is anything other than a way to subvert democracy and nationalism. Values that I believe in, strongly.

As far as I am concerned, it is trying to be a happy medium between the USSR and the UN. In other words skirting the line between authoritarian imperialism and utter irrelevancy.

That's not even getting into how I find it fundamentally deleterious to national security, culture, and non-international (and non-corporate) commerce.

iris
07 Jul 2016, 01:54
In my mind, there is nothing that the EU can do that individual nations cannot. As it stands, I have not been convinced that it is anything other than a way to subvert democracy and nationalism. Values that I believe in, strongly.

As far as I am concerned, it is trying to be a happy medium between the USSR and the UN. In other words skirting the line between authoritarian imperialism and utter irrelevancy.

That's not even getting into how I find it fundamentally deleterious to national security, culture, and non-international (and non-corporate) commerce.

I think, maybe, your feelig of how small some of these 'nations' are is off. We're not american sized. Really, the entire population of my country fits nicely in paris... there's a limit to what a tiny country can do on its own. Working with others is necessary, and the EU has done lots of good, has lots of potential.
personally I think nationalism is... silly? Sure, love your country. But we live in an international world, we can't just throw that away. Even if we wanted to, it's too late. Better learn to love other cultres equally.
and... the USSR collapsed in 1991 if I'm not mistaken.

This is just my personal feeling, but I don't think you fully understand the role that the EU plays. It's not perfect, far from it. They've done some stypid stuff. There are people running it that weren't all elected by the public. But you cannot call it irrelevant if you understand every aspect of it. I don't myself. But I know enough to realize that our farmers would be a lot worse off without the help they get. It givesme the right to work and study in another european country without problems, just as they can... not a bad thing for me. Maybe because I believe a united world is better than 'each to their own'. We have a clause in our membership that means we have our own currency, there are a few other exceptions to the general rules... because we said no, we don't want that. Eu isn't the big bully making the small countries dance as it pleases, we actually have a say...
but don't mind my rantings .Danie makes some good points.

Denarius
07 Jul 2016, 02:10
I'm not saying be isolationist, I'm just saying that you can accomplish all of that through democracy and as sovereign nations. There's nothing stopping you from having open borders, giving and receiving foreign aid, having an international currency, or whatever... except democracy, people like me having a fair say in how their countries are run.

anunitu
07 Jul 2016, 07:16
Much of the problem is that Wealth is considered more important than the care and concern for our brothers and sisters,and that all life is sacred. The saying "For the love of money is the root of all evil" hits at the very core of why humans neglect the well being of others.

DanieMarie
07 Jul 2016, 10:13
I think, maybe, your feelig of how small some of these 'nations' are is off. We're not american sized. Really, the entire population of my country fits nicely in paris... there's a limit to what a tiny country can do on its own. Working with others is necessary, and the EU has done lots of good, has lots of potential.
personally I think nationalism is... silly? Sure, love your country. But we live in an international world, we can't just throw that away. Even if we wanted to, it's too late. Better learn to love other cultres equally.
and... the USSR collapsed in 1991 if I'm not mistaken.

Pretty much. It would be great if each country could do it on its own, but other than maybe Germany, most have to compete with superpowers. We can't just undo globalisation overnight. A country like Italy and especially like Poland would have a lot of trouble competing with, say, China. Within the EU, they have to compete with big players like Germany, but at least they also get support from said big players.


In general and not in response to iris, some other things I think more people (even a lot of people in EU countries) need to consider:

-Yes, the EU can be undemocratic in some ways, but in other ways, it works more or less like a parliamentary democracy. Each country elects representatives to the EU parliament based on its own electoral system (eg the UK keeps its first past the post system, Portugal keeps its representative system based on electoral lists, and Germany keeps its hybrid system that uses both). The issue is that so, so few people vote in EU elections. They actually mean something and can actually affect our lives, but the turnout is abysmal. You can't not vote at all and then complain that there is no democracy.

-At some point I think unions were mentioned here, but I can't remember who and I don't feel like sorting through three pages of threads to find it. I'd like to point out that a lot of EU countries still have very strong unions (Germany is one). The UK has incredibly weak unions, but it didn't used to. However, it wasn't the EU that eroded British unions; it was 30 years of Tory and New Labour policy. A lot of the same people who are currently arguing against the EU are the same people who think union busting was a great point in British history.

Tylluan Penry
07 Jul 2016, 10:44
The thing is, in the US you can travel thousands of miles and still speak English and pay in dollars. In Europe that was never possibile until relatively recently. Travel overland say, to Greece, and you can pass through Belgium or France, Germany, Austria, Yugoslavia (as was) and then Greece, and years ago (back in my misspect youth) that meant a different language every time, and changing up loads of different currency. Yes they still have different languages (Greece even has a different alphabet) but they have connections now too, instead of all being quite separate.

Also, the US has never been occupied by a foreign power. Europe has. Several times over. It has learned from that. One of the advantages of the EU in my mind is that because countries have ties binding them together, war is less likely. Yes, really.

Danie Marie has made a series of brilliant posts in this thread. The biggest problem for the UK is that people here have been encourage not to think about Europe in positive terms. Pity.

Denarius
07 Jul 2016, 11:41
Though on that logic, there aren't a lot of places near the US where you can experience that. Canada and the the Carribean, where they largely speak our language and accept our money. There's pretty much only Mexico, and then it's really only the language thing.

English and the dollar are global institutions.

DragonsFriend
07 Jul 2016, 12:22
Denarius,
The English language and the dollar are far from global and your views reflect a lot of the ideas that make Americans "unwanted" guests in most of Europe and Asia.
The USA is not and never has been a democracy. We are a constitutional republic. We do seem to be headed toward a democratic socialist country but as long as the constitution stands we remain a republic.

Tylluan Penry
07 Jul 2016, 12:27
But that's my point. There aren't many places near the US where one experiences those differences. So Europe is not really comparable to the US in that way. And the US has never been occupied by hostile forces in relatively recent times. English may be a 'global institution' but you try telling that to a Greek trying to communicate in sign language. Where street signs don't even look vaguely recognisable...

Not everywhere is like the US. You haven't been occupied. You weren't bombed in WW2. These were things that happened in Europe, and part of its response was to band together probably in the belief that you don't invade or go to war with your trading partners. So far it's not been bad, either. No war in mainland Europe between members of the EU. Surely not a bad thing.

And Britain, though tiny, has tried very hard to pretend it has far more influence than it has. Partly it has done this by being as bloody minded as possible towards Europe. Frankly I wouldn't mind betting there are quite a few folk in the EU who are glad to see the back of us.

iris
07 Jul 2016, 12:28
English and the dollar are global institutions.
English is global, yes but the dollar isn't... I can't think of a place in Europe where a dollar would get you anything other than a 'are-you-daft' look in a shop.

And I think that was kind of tylluan's point. You don't have many places where you can experience that. We do, and that makes the need for somethig like the EU to tie us together. Imagine splitting up all of your states into seperate countries and giving each their own language and currency (and political agenda). Wouldn't work, right?
We have agreed on some laws, values and ideas that we share. That ties us together.

Denarius
07 Jul 2016, 12:30
The English language and the dollar are far from global

Well pardon me then, I have no idea where I got the notion that the dollar (http://useconomy.about.com/od/glossary/g/global_currency.htm) and English (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/09/world/asia/09iht-englede.1.5198685.html) were global. Must just be my American ignorance. :rolleyes:

thalassa
07 Jul 2016, 12:43
Though on that logic, there aren't a lot of places near the US where you can experience that. Canada and the the Carribean, where they largely speak our language and accept our money. There's pretty much only Mexico, and then it's really only the language thing.

English and the dollar are global institutions.

The point is more that you don't NEED to leave the US--states here are larger and more populous that entire countries there. http://www.decisionsciencenews.com/2015/02/20/put-size-countries-perspective-comparing-us-states/

When I traveled in Europe, (courtesy of the US Navy), no one took US money, I either traded it in or used plastic at the Euro or (because they hadn't adopted it yet) the Maltese lira. Menus were not in English, unless you went to a tourist trap (and then they were also in Spanish, French, and German, and in Czech at one bar we went to). Sure, most people spoke English--along with the 2 or more other languages they spoke.

International banking and international business are one thing, and even then, the Euro is actually fairly even with the dollar in terms of circulation. But your average person and business, unless they are in and English speaking country, do life in Spanish or Italian or French or German, etc.

anunitu
07 Jul 2016, 13:10
The UK has a history of what is termed "imperialist expansion" back when it ruled the waves. Perhaps the Spanish also appropriated countries already populated. The French also had the habit of just plopping down in the middle of a country and taking over(French Indochina) the Dutch also got in the game(the Dutch East Indies) and the Dutch East India Company. Also,The Dutch Slave Trade (http://www.history.ac.uk/reviews/review/545)

So,in many ways Europe has a somewhat checkered history..(and remember Germany also got their licks in)..The US has its own dark side over time,even though at times we are "The great hope" in some minds because we were less vengeful after WW2,and helped rebuild Europe,but also laid down roots in Europe with our bases.

- - - Updated - - -


Well pardon me then, I have no idea where I got the notion that the dollar (http://useconomy.about.com/od/glossary/g/global_currency.htm) and English (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/09/world/asia/09iht-englede.1.5198685.html) were global. Must just be my American ignorance. :rolleyes:
There was a time when the Dollar was as you say,and english was used to get our tourist dollars,and it became the basis for the term "Ugly American" among some places...

DanieMarie
07 Jul 2016, 13:16
Canada and the the Carribean....and accept our money.

At the worst exchange rate ever. You'd have to be an idiot to pay in US dollars in Canada. And they won't take it everywhere. Most small businesses won't accept it, and once you leave the border it's not commonly accepted outside of tourist sites.

Oh, and we won't give you change in US dollars. I got yelled at that once for that. I was pissed about it.

- - - Updated - - -


But that's my point. There aren't many places near the US where one experiences those differences. So Europe is not really comparable to the US in that way. And the US has never been occupied by hostile forces in relatively recent times. English may be a 'global institution' but you try telling that to a Greek trying to communicate in sign language. Where street signs don't even look vaguely recognisable...

Not everywhere is like the US. You haven't been occupied. You weren't bombed in WW2. These were things that happened in Europe, and part of its response was to band together probably in the belief that you don't invade or go to war with your trading partners. So far it's not been bad, either. No war in mainland Europe between members of the EU. Surely not a bad thing.

And Britain, though tiny, has tried very hard to pretend it has far more influence than it has. Partly it has done this by being as bloody minded as possible towards Europe. Frankly I wouldn't mind betting there are quite a few folk in the EU who are glad to see the back of us.

I think that's such an important point. At the end of the day, peace is one of the biggest accomplishments of the European project. And given the history of Europe, that was no small feat.

Hawkfeathers
07 Jul 2016, 13:24
I'd be typing all day to say all I want to about state laws & restrictions. With the health care system of today, I can't move out of my zip code unless I want to pay double. Long story but I'm in a weird & expensive coverage gap. Americans get arrested in one state for something that was legal in another. New Jersey requires a $20./year fee to own a parrot. When I moved, I checked with every state we'd be passing through to see what I needed, if anything, to ensure Buddy wouldn't be seized if anything happened. (We would have been on global news if that happened, believe me!)

I forgot about Canadian currency being different. I've been mulling over a quick trip up to Woodbine.

DanieMarie
07 Jul 2016, 13:30
I forgot about Canadian currency being different. I've been mulling over a quick trip up to Woodbine.

Just change some dollars at the bank before you leave (they give the best rates), change it at a bank in Canada (they also give great rates), or pay for everything with your credit card (EVERYWHERE accepts cards in Canada. I once paid a 25 cent parking fee with my card and no one even blinked. Visa and MasterCard, though. Not AE).

Hawkfeathers
07 Jul 2016, 13:41
Just change some dollars at the bank before you leave (they give the best rates), change it at a bank in Canada (they also give great rates), or pay for everything with your credit card (EVERYWHERE accepts cards in Canada. I once paid a 25 cent parking fee with my card and no one even blinked. Visa and MasterCard, though. Not AE).

Thanks! I probably won't end up going, but if I do it'll be credit card city!

DanieMarie
07 Jul 2016, 13:46
Thanks! I probably won't end up going, but if I do it'll be credit card city!

No problem.

Anyway, to get back on topic, here are a few fun facts about the UK and how Conservative policies have affected the pre-Brexit landscape:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/jul/07/stories-buried-brexit-child-poverty-un-austerity?CMP=share_btn_fb

Tylluan Penry
07 Jul 2016, 13:49
No problem.

Anyway, to get back on topic, here are a few fun facts about the UK and how Conservative policies have affected the pre-Brexit landscape:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/jul/07/stories-buried-brexit-child-poverty-un-austerity?CMP=share_btn_fb

It's really, horrible.
Has news of the CHilcot report reached outside the UK I wonder? And if so, what is the reaction to it?

anunitu
07 Jul 2016, 13:52
I have seen it mentioned on CNN,though I have not followed it yet.

CNN on CHilcot report. (http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/06/europe/uk-iraq-inquiry-chilcot-report/)

DanieMarie
07 Jul 2016, 13:57
It's really, horrible.
Has news of the CHilcot report reached outside the UK I wonder? And if so, what is the reaction to it?

Yeah, it's been big news here, but then again, most Germans (and Canadians...it's news there too) were hugely against the Iraq War.

iris
07 Jul 2016, 14:53
It's really, horrible.
Has news of the CHilcot report reached outside the UK I wonder? And if so, what is the reaction to it?

Yep, it's pretty big here too (well it was earlier today at least). Though our media are basically just translating articles from your media... I haven't seen any real reaction to it yet... I saw a few headlines earlier. But now I can't find any, burried under football I think. Weird priotities.

DanieMarie
08 Jul 2016, 02:31
Corbyn has spoken:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/jul/08/jeremy-corbyn-labour-negotiations-europe-tories-exploit-cheap-labour?CMP=fb_gu

Denarius
08 Jul 2016, 02:49
I disagree with a few points, but it's largely something I can get behind.

Tylluan Penry
08 Jul 2016, 09:00
Corbyn is brilliant. :)

DanieMarie
08 Jul 2016, 13:42
I usually agree with him. I appreciate him as a political leader and wish we had someone of his level of influence here. Generally, the Left and most of the Greens share a lot of his ideas here, but they're not so influential in federal politics right now.