Obviously the wilful half-truths, wild extrapolations and baseless assurances both sides have been peddling have not helped. Here are five key questions, on five fundamental issues, worth considering before polling day.
The European Union is an extraordinary creation in which countries that believe in pluralism, democracy, welfare economics and the rule of law gain extra leverage in the pursuit of their national interests by sharing sovereignty. So what is Brexit’s message to the world: two fingers? Or maybe as Ferdinand Mount, the former head of Thatcher’s policy unit, says, we’ll catch the Brexiteers belting out that Millwall chant, “No one likes us, we don’t care.” Like the football team, they’ll sing it all the way to the third division.
Over the years this newspaper has found much to criticise in the EU. It is an imperfect, at times maddening club. But it is far better than the alternative. We believe that leaving would be a terrible error. It would weaken Europe and it would impoverish and diminish Britain. Our vote goes to Remain.
Source: Divided we fall | The Economist
What matters to Europeans? The rule of law. Freedom of expression. Property rights. Democracy. The opportunity to build profitable enterprises. Freedom of the Press. The right to live with security and dignity. A safe, clean environment. Humane treatment of animals. Scientific progress. Freedom of belief. Freedom
I have been conducting a Facebook debate with some chums about Brexit. Two (who shall remain nameless), in particular, are fiercely pro-Brexit where I am firmly on the side of #Remain. One of these Brexistas made reference to the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) referring to material by Angus Armstrong to support some point he was trying to make.
For those unfamiliar with the NIESR, this is from their website:
The National Institute of Economic and Social Research is Britain’s longest established independent research institute, founded in 1938. The vision of our founders was to carry out research to improve understanding of the economic and social forces that affect people’s lives, and the ways in which policy can bring about change.
I have spent the day trawling through some of the material on the NIESR website. There’s a load of stuff, but I tried to focus on recent, Brexit-related material. What follows is selected quotes (bold text is my emphasis) from the material. I admit to bias, but I have tried to use quotes that accurately reflect the meaning of the source.
I am posting this on ODDROPS because WordPress is easier to use than Facebook for this kind of article. [Read more…]
A little bit of fun at BoJo’s expense…
Here it is – the great EU referendum debate featuring two of the finest debaters on opposite sides of the EU argument:
Boris Johnson vs Boris Johnson
Question Number 1.
How necessary or important is it that this referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU takes place? Over to you first, Mr Boris Johnson …
What do you have to say to that, Mr Johnson?
Strong words from Boris for his opponent Boris Johnson. Now for question Number 2.
What would happen if Britain left the EU. Mr Johnson?
And what do you think Mr Johnson?
So a huge disagreement between Boris and his opponent Boris. Question Number 3.
Some people claim it would be too difficult in practical terms for Britain to leave the EU. Mr Johnson, do you agree?
Mr Johnson? Do you agree with Mr Johnson?
Question Number 4…
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One of the problems with democracy, is that the average voter knows relatively little about the complex and nuanced realities of the economy and the wider world. The precarious balancing act of fiscal policy, domestic spending, diplomacy, taxation, trade and more, is like trying to blow a ball of jelly up a hill using trained ferrets with hairdryers strapped to their backs.
Fanciful concepts like closing borders, halving tax rates or disbanding government departments, can sound attractive when considered in isolation, but when understood from a wider position you realise that everything is linked and has a knock on effect. If every decision in this country went to a referendum, we would be bankrupt in a few years and before long degenerate into a failed, lawless state. Ok, so that is a slight exaggeration.
There exists a safety net. All of the main parties are relatively sensible, although they can wildly…
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The article, The CBI has admitted defeat – and the economic case against Brexit is collapsing, appeared on the City A.M. website on 22 March 2016. The author, Richard Tice (co-founder of Leave.eu) is commenting on a PwC report, Leaving the EU: Implications for the UK economy. I have read the PwC report—admittedly I mostly skimmed the annexes—and don’t see how Mr Tice’s comments are supported. I’ve annotated the article with my remarks and quotes from the PwC report, the CBI announcement on their website and other sources.
For the avoidance of any doubt, I am in favour of remaining in the EU despite the problems.
The TL;DR version of this post is that the City A.M. article is a steaming pile of falsehood and misdirection.