Red Cliffs Of Dawlish

Red Cliffs Of Dawlish
Red Cliffs Of Dawlish

Thursday, 16 June 2016

The Remain Argument: A Hollow Relationship Built From Empty Promises

At some point in time, too many empty promises that don't materialize or else "run out long ago" by spending "the stored good will" in others results in a requirement to change the relationship.

I think perhaps the above manages to symbolize, or capture or encapsulate all that the EU has become, perhaps regrettably and sadly?

  • Financially: The Eurozone/EURO Debt Crisis
  • Prosperity: The Unemployment Rates
  • Peace: The mixture of Terrorism and Immigration
  • Politically: The increase in lack of trust and confidence in politicians due to their constant failure of promises to voters.
  • Deception: The abuse of the terms of "goodwill": Peace, Prosperity, Global "Clout" or "Influence" by pooling sovereignty become their opposites and hence the relationship feels based upon a Deception.
  • Democratic Deficit: The failure to include people along the way towards "Political Union".
  • Empty Promises: Of "EU Reform" and "this this time it will be different" along with the avalanche of FUD and orthodoxy in the areas of society with their hands on the "levers of power" compared to other areas of society which may like to question more?
If you are a Remain advocate, I've tried to above capture some sentiments of a Leave advocate, the general "gut-feeling" that no amount more of rhetoric will do to "persuade" to change minds and vote Remain. The accumulation of the above into an overall feeling that "It's done" and "It's time to move on and break with this stale and empty relationship". All these reactions are how people deal with when a relationship feels as if it's not working and is dragging on too long, with too much negative consequence.

For almost all of the past two years, I'd argue as reasonably as I can, using the materials I've found most rigorous on both sides of the argument, mostly in fact from the affiliated sites on this blog such as: The Great Deception (WHAT?), The Harrogate Agenda (WHY?) and FLEXCIT: The Market Solution (HOW?). The basics of grasping a basic understanding via such questions on such a wide range of subjects within politics.

However, recently I noticed some appalling coverage in the news involving various acts of "terrorism". Here there is I think a combination of two ways of understanding the forces driving the question over our status as "A Member Of The EU":-
  • Identity
  • Relationship
I think in general the great problem with the idea of the EU is that it's effectively taken away control over the peoples' ability choose their identity and hence feel secure in their relationship: The most notable and visible example of this has been the great debate over immigration (Migration) as well as it's connection to the spread of terrorism or else other "atrocities" in Europe by people who are ruled by other ideas of identity that are not compatible and should have been filtered out more effectively.

I'm not making a new argument for myself here. But am pointing out that for many many people who don't know the arguments to a high degree, it is I think very understandable if they choose this form of argument and decide they "get control" back more if they vote Leave on this sense of identity and relationship with stronger controls or security over Migration Policy. Not only this, but the government does not talk "straight" to people: They code everything they say in political language which is frankly weird and hence likely unreliable. Given a direct vote to "tell" them how to behave/act, the choice is obvious. The threat of economic disaster is possibly an "empty on" or bluff: The government already suffers from economic failure not by it's own choosing and would point to economic success as by it's own hand for winning the votes.

This takes us to Remain arguments: What are they?

They are the same form on identity and relationship:-
  • International Relations eg "Global Top Table"; "Peaceful Unity in Europe",
  • Internal Relations eg "Good Friday Agreement"
  • Tory Internal Relationship dynamics: "Feuding Tories" ; "Tory Infighting".
  • Good People support Remain: Rowan Williams, Richard Dawkins, Ai Weiwei, Russell Brand, Gordon Brown, Amartya Sen, Tim Berners-Lee, Stephen Hawkins, Ban Ki-Moon... etc...
  • Higher Values: "Human Rights", "Interdependent World"
  • Big Challenges: "China", "Putin", "Globalization Threat", "A Modern Marshall Plan for Middle East and Africa", "Europe-Wide Challenge of Immigration"
On The Argument itself:-
  • UK/British public immensely ignorance on the EU.
  • Brexit is about Immigration only, a "jaundiced view of the world"
  • The UK COULD NOT TRADE in the Single Market without EU Membership
  • Brexit would be disastrous for the UK Economy and for the rest of the world, the stock markets, the pound and euro currency and house prices and pensions and a new budget would be needed. Jobs would go in their hundreds of thousands.
  • Admittedly "European Union is not doing particularly well at the moment..." but the alternative "Britannia ruling the waves" no longer exists.
  • Problems can only be addressed "together" and not "in isolation".
  • Britain/UK acts as a "balance" in the EU improving some of the weaker positions of France and aiding Germany to steer the EU towards a more economic EU than political.
  • Norway is totally different to the UK, therefore there can be no Brexit possible eg all the other models are "what Brexiteers want" but they lose what "we already have".
  • Britain would be sending out the "wrong signal" to the "global community" quitting: "A jilted partner has more reason for angst than an unapproached suitor".
  • Besides "policy changes" and "institutional reform" are what the EU needs not Brexit. The EU needs "solidarity".
  • "The EU was built from the rubble of two world wars and has ensured peace and prosperity for a generation of Europeans".
  • "Europe will be able to deal with Enormous challenges if it speaks with one voice."
  • "We live in an increasingly  interdependent and globalized world. No nation can afford to be too isolated."
  • "Scientists are not known for their conformity, but there i one topic on which the great majority agree: Being part of the EU is good for British Science".
  • "We want our country back" is a constant Brexit refrain. Yet many of the things that make our country great - the BBC, the NHS, the Post Office - are at most risk not from the EU but from the largely pro-Brexit right wing of the Tory party".
  • "Many of these pesky European regulations and directives, meanwhile, are designed to improve the quality of our air, beaches and animal welfare - imrpovements that our government often fights tooth and nail."
  • "If we do Remain, we need better (and better-expressed) ideas, not about "Britain and Europe" but rather about Britain engaging more constructively with Europe." (LOL!!!)
  • "Sovereignty is not something to be hoarded. It is an asset that governments can use nationally or in co-operation with others, issue by issue, depending on which appraoch is the most beneficial to their citizens. The question, therefore, is whether the UK is likely to benefit from continuing to link certain aspects of its sovereign power with the EU. Meanwhile the UK has retained Sovereign control over most of the matters of greatest concern to British voters."
  • "In an increasingly competitive as well as interdependent world, Britain will be better off pooling discrete areas of its sovereign power with 500 million fellow Europeans than leaving its population of 65 million beholden tot he rules and whims of others."
  • "Being a part of something larger than states and empires is a source of optimism and inspiration."
  • "I believe Britain should stay in the EU. The logical reason is that we need structures of alls cales to manage this planet, and there are a good manythings that are best done at the scale of Europe. The emotional reason is that it is somcuh more fun to embrace the fascinating mix of people, cultures and languages that is Europe."
  • "The EU level, though, is essential for us. There are a lot of regulations that may be boring and bureaucratic, but is it not more efficient to use the ones set by the EU, rather than for each country to make its own?"
  • "Trying to persuade people, especially the young, to vote in the Referendum on 23rd June."
  • "I strongly believe we are safer inside the Union".
  • "Gone are the days when we could stand on our own, against the world. We need to be part of a larger group of nations, both for our security and for our trade."
  • "We're flourishing in this open Unoin of ideas and talent exchange, and baffled by the desire to choose a parochial "Little England" rather than the bigger, richer, more generaous terrain of the EUropean continent.
  • "Europe for me means os mcuh more than economic union. It is about a gate opening on the world, the start of a great love affair with all things international."
  • "In case of Brexit, we call for urgent measures to retain the vital rights and protections created by the EU."
  • "The European project is about peace as well as prosperity; the EU creates a shared identity that encompasses and celebrates diverse cultures and understands the free movement of people as a strength rather than a threat."
  • "A European community, a European union, must be created to ensure tha another war between European nations would never happen. It was in effect, a declaration of peace and reconciliation."
  • "Is this European Union perfect? No. Is the bureaucracy so often absurd and wasteful? Yes. Does it have the democratic integrity it should have? No. But, does it, has it, helped to keep the peace? Most certainly."
  • "Making Europe into one place was the obvious intellligent reaction to two European world wars."
  • "We ought to stay in, get on with changing what needs to be changed and stop complaining about it."
  • "First, Europe, to me, does not mean a perfect institution; it is not faultless - but it represents moving forwards rather than backwards. Europe means achieving so many things through unity that we could not achieve in isolation."
  • I like to think that although therw will be inevitable political disagreements, we all want to bring countries - and therefore people - closer."
  • "We are connected in some way with our fellow human beings, and connection is good, especially now that the world has turned into a giant Wes Craven film."
  • "When Brexit advocates tell me that if the United Kingdom leaves the EU, the open road will remain open, I know they cannot guarantee that. Fundamentally, Brexiteers are asking voters to take a monumental gamble."
  • "For me, co-operation with our partners on th European continent and the restriction of the powers of our government is a positive, not a negative."
  • "Europe is not an elite conspiracy against the public: at its best, it is the opposite. It is about the solidarity of the peoples of Europe with each other and our determination to create a better, freer and fairer world."
  • "My granddad was an internationalist."
  • "I will be voting for Remain on 23rd June and so should you, if you care for the immediate health and safety of your friends and neighbours."
It's fascinating reading the "Remain" case. I don't believe it makes any difference to the Leave advocates concerned about Immigration: So many words and so little direct contact. What it does suggest is that these arguments are about Relationship and Identity also. But that they have put the ideas of these things BEFORE the arguments themselves and hence understanding why such "promises of building better worlds" don't turn out quite as expected or promised.

Perhaps the most dangerous Remain position is to characterize the EU as THE ONLY RELATIONSHIP that is possible and good. And by doing so preventing the temptation to vote for Brexit for a different relationship? This failure either because the EU is reality or else because any alternative cannot be reality (too dangerous!) is suggestive of a hollow relationship:-

So how should the EU deal with the UK itself? Many so-called Brexiteers have advocated leaving, but maintaining access to the single market. But German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble (CDU) said just a few days ago that he is not in favour of such an arrangement and that the UK is either in or out.

There can’t be special treatment for the UK. Brexit would be a huge cost to the country; the British would have to pay to leave the EU. But, of course, we would still need to continue our relationship with the UK, which is our neighbour and a country that has been in the EU for some four decades now. What status does the UK want and what would the remaining 27 be likely to confer on it? At the end of the day, the decision to leave will have to be accepted by the other member states and the European Parliament. It’s still unclear how that would actually play out.

The best case scenario for them probably is the Norwegian model: the UK would continue to enjoy access to the single market through membership of the European Economic Area, but would still have to pay for that privilege, as Norway does. But with this, the UK also takes on the same rules, like the principle of freedom of movement. That would probably be the main stumbling block in the negotiations.


If Arguments had been promoted more thoroughly and fairly, more people would have ended up less confused than they already exhibit. That is to say, the result always was going to be about RELATIONSHIP continuing either way and if people had learn the actual arguments instead of willing the results to come first such as clinging to safety of relationships known (EU) irrespective of it's quality, and secondly more Vote Leave morons had understood this too about a staged withdrawal such as EFTA/EEA aka "The Norway Option", then this Referendum might have had to deal with far less emotional digestion and concentrated on more mature democratic participation in action - a positive result either result: Remain or Leave.

The fact Remain denied there was a future alternative relationship possible, is potentially the most useful error of that argument's proponents. Any relationship suggesting such is no real relationship to build the future upon, I would argue?

An example of the childish confabulation of Remain Arguments is this article Which would you rather, President Trump or Brexit? It’s no contestJonathan Freedland which shows so clearly how the childish conception of taking elements that it wants and elements that it can see and concocting a mixed up communication of an event to the adult patiently listening (sometimes with amusement!):-

"Words Will Work If We Will A Better World Enough." ~ Remain in the EU
I don't agree at all no matter how much propaganda is used.