Brexit: Go Hard Or Go Home
  • From a mate's Facebook feed
    In laymans terms:
    "But Germany, France and Italy won't stop buying things from the UK if we leave" say the brexiteers, they NEED us, and they won't put us into a tariff regime, so says the Leave EU camp.

    It won't be a choice, it's not a case of the EU damaging their imports to be spiteful to a UK that just voted to leave the EU. The fact is that there exists a document called the Treaty of the European Union and it sets out the very foundation of how the 28 member states work and cooperate together. It was part written by the UK and part drafted by UK lawyers.

    It was agreed by all Member States that the EU would create a 'thing' called the "EU Common External Tariff Regime" for countries outside the EU that wanted to to trade with EU businesses. Different tariffs are in place for different product types. Higher for products the EU doesn't desperately need and lower for the things it does need desperately like energy for example - which explains why Norway get such a good deal as around half of Norways exports to the EU is oil and gas.

    When we tear up our membership card, Article 50 of the Treaty I mentioned comes into force. It says that a country that notifies the EU we are leaving the club all our agreements terminate 24 months after notification. When this happens (potentially summer 2018) we are automatically under the external tariff regime that the UK helped to draft and fully signed up to.

    The ONLY way this could be changed is if the Treaty is changed. This requires the agreement of all remaining 27 countries. Many of whom have a referendum lock if there are any changes to the Treaty. It just isn't feasibly possible to have all the necessary referendums and treaty change agreed by heads of state of 27 nations across Europe in the 2 year time limit.

    Meanwhile we could continue to renegotiate the 4,500 plus different product groups that we trade with the EU to try and get lower tariffs on the things we buy and sell. This could take as much as a decade (or longer if other trade negotiations are any guide).

    The point is that the UK becoming a part of the EU Tariff Regime (which meets WTO guidelines) is automatic if we elect to Leave and there is nothing that Germany, France or Spain or even the UK can do about it.
    Currently we enjoy unlimited trade with the largest trading bloc on the planet free from duties, tariffs or quota and that is my main reason for voting to stay IN the EU.

    It's also worth noting that of all the top ten economies in the world every single one of them with a population of less than one billion people is a member of a continental trade bloc like the EU. Do we really think we are powerful enough to buck the trend of global trade and international economics? I think not. We are pretty good, but not *that* good.
  • That almost scared me off the fence.
    "..the pseudo-Left new style.."
  • Yossarian
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    You should probably read it again if it's only "almost".
  • I was referencing this.
    Funkstain wrote:
    I cannot stand the negative campaigning from the pro EU group. It makes me want to vote to leave. It falls straight into the hands of Boris and co. Fucking Hollande with his "beware of leaving we'll fuck you up" yeah that's going to be great at persuading people..
    "..the pseudo-Left new style.."
  • It would be good to see a proper rebuttal of that article if it's at all possible. If it's dead on, then I cannot see how anyone can justify exiting the EU from a trade / economic point of view.
  • Funkstain wrote:
    It would be good to see a proper rebuttal of that article if it's at all possible. If it's dead on, then I cannot see how anyone can justify exiting the EU from a trade / economic point of view.

    It's still rebuttable- in so far as to say, that argument would continue to be true for an exit at any time no? If you believe short term pain is worth it for long term gain then the bitter post-exit pill you have to swallow needs to be dealt with eventually.

    If you don't accept that to be true, then you're basically saying the above argument means we can never, ever leave.

  • I don't think so - I was saying that justifying leaving on an economic basis would be very difficult, since it suggests that we would never be in such good trading conditions again ("never" meaning a very long time, potentially decades).

    That doesn't mean we can't leave, and doesn't mean there aren't other, stronger reasons to leave that aren't economic; just that the economic justifications appear to be false - there is no long-term gain for all the short-term pain.
  • http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/society/man-to-carefully-weigh-up-pros-and-cons-of-eu-then-just-be-racist-20160307106893
    Man to carefully weigh up pros and cons of EU then just be racist


    A MAN is planning to carefully assess the risks and benefits of Britain leaving the EU then just vote on the basis of not liking immigrants, he has announced.

    Retired engineer Roy Hobbs intends to read up on issues like the single market and trade tariffs before imagining a horde of gypsy beggars, Eastern European criminals and crazed jihadis taking over his village.

    Hobbs said: “I feel it’s my duty to understand the facts, even if my actual decision is based on a paranoid fantasy about no one speaking English and only being able to buy weird Polish sausages.

    “I’m currently reading a cost-benefit analysis of EU membership in The Economist, which I will weigh up against my recurring dream where 20 Bulgarians move in next door and start making vile suggestions to my wife.

    “It’s a tough call but ultimately I think I’ll be guided by my innate sense of terror and loathing towards any person whose looks or accent are noticeably different to mine.”
  • Funkstain wrote:
    I don't think so - I was saying that justifying leaving on an economic basis would be very difficult, since it suggests that we would never be in such good trading conditions again ("never" meaning a very long time, potentially decades).

    Within Europe that is entirely possible - our import/export relation with our former partners would suffer in that regard. But EU tariffs against other counties would no longer hinder us, no?

    China and the U.K. are super cost right now, for example, and freedom from EU regs provides new opportunities in that direction. Of course, do we want to go in that direction? Is it feasible? Will it make up for the drop in EU trade?
  • Yossarian
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    Why would China want to sign a free trade deal with us?
  • GooberTheHat
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    But how would we be able to negotiate a better deal with China et al as just the UK, than we get as a member of the largest trading bloc in the world?  Where are these aces up our sleeves that means that other nations are going to bend over backwards for us when we leave?
  • Kow
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    Much as some factions would like to imagine the contrary, the days of the British Empire are not coming back. No small country can exist in vacuum now. Brexit is a desperate clinging to bygone days and I hope I live long enough to tell you I told you so.
  • @Yoss Because we are actually China's Trade Partner of the Year and the Chinese are going gaga for our products, our education and our culture, including media.

    Despite many British people's belief that the Uk is a country deluded about its own sway I can assure you this...in China, the U.K. is a big deal.

    Burberry is huge.
    Jaguar are one of the fastest growing car manufacturers in the country.
    The BBC Sherlock Xmas special got a cinema release here!
    The U.K. is the destination more students want to go to than any other - but they often choose Canada, Australia etc due to price.
    The premier league is now as big, if not bigger than, the NBA which would have seemed impossible a decade ago.

    Britain IS a big deal here.

    Whether or not that will turn into more hard cash, I dunno - I've been out of that side of the game for a while. But only Germany rivals us for affection in Europe, when it comes to China.
  • But how would we be able to negotiate a better deal with China et al as just the UK, than we get as a member of the largest trading bloc in the world?  Where are these aces up our sleeves that means that other nations are going to bend over backwards for us when we leave?

    We're famous and, some countries aside, highly aspired to.

    That's not me being an imperialist. That's me saying that more people ( from outside the EU) would rather go to, deal with, and live in the Uk than almost any other member of Europe.

    Of course, I don't have the biggest sample, so people in Malaysia or Brazil, for example, may feel different.
    Kow wrote:
    Much as some factions would like to imagine the contrary, the days of the British Empire are not coming back. No small country can exist in vacuum now. Brexit is a desperate clinging to bygone days and I hope I live long enough to tell you I told you so.

    Um, I'm not disagreeing with you. I'm just trying to give both sides and say that it may not all be just doom and gloom on the Brexit side. There's a tendency to paint brexiters are unknowing, economically cavalier racists as if everyone on the left was some kind of economic expert.

    Well, if I was constantly being attacked by fearmongering and classist dismissive was then I'd basically stop engaging with everyone and vote however I wanted.

    I genuinely think a lot of people are voting UKIP, Trump etc. because they're tired of being talked down to and ignored every time they raise a point.

    There are reasons to want to leave. The EU has deep flaws. My vote? Probably stay, I think. But I fucking hate this jumping on anyone who would express an idea to the contrary.
  • GooberTheHat
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    But how would be be able to leverage that into a more positive trade deal? We have around a 20 billion pound trade deficit to China. Despite their love of all things British they hold all the cards.
  • ... But I fucking hate this jumping on anyone who would express an idea to the contrary.
    Oh lighten up, it's just a joke.

    And really, let's not kid ourselves about why this referendum is even happening.
  • GooberTheHat
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    They are also behind the USA, Germany, the Netherlands, France and Ireland as our biggest export markets.
  • djchump wrote:
    http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/society/man-to-carefully-weigh-up-pros-and-cons-of-eu-then-just-be-racist-20160307106893
    Man to carefully weigh up pros and cons of EU then just be racist


    A MAN is planning to carefully assess the risks and benefits of Britain leaving the EU then just vote on the basis of not liking immigrants, he has announced.

    Retired engineer Roy Hobbs intends to read up on issues like the single market and trade tariffs before imagining a horde of gypsy beggars, Eastern European criminals and crazed jihadis taking over his village.

    Hobbs said: “I feel it’s my duty to understand the facts, even if my actual decision is based on a paranoid fantasy about no one speaking English and only being able to buy weird Polish sausages.

    “I’m currently reading a cost-benefit analysis of EU membership in The Economist, which I will weigh up against my recurring dream where 20 Bulgarians move in next door and start making vile suggestions to my wife.

    “It’s a tough call but ultimately I think I’ll be guided by my innate sense of terror and loathing towards any person whose looks or accent are noticeably different to mine.”

    I mean this...

    Try and tell me that this shit doesn't reek of loathing, classism and snobbery.
  • Yah but I lolled so I posted it.
  • But how would be be able to leverage that into a more positive trade deal? We have around a 20 billion pound trade deficit to China. Despite their love of all things British they hold all the cards.

    I don't know. Which is one reason I would be inclined to vote stay. I'm just saying that leaving the EU doesn't mean a definite end to ALL our trading advantages. We have others, I just don't know how they could be turned into, you know, hard cash.
    They are also behind the USA, Germany, the Netherlands, France and Ireland as our biggest export markets.

    Yup.
  • That's interesting stuff, thanks Cint.

    My instinct (nothing more) is that your list seems illustrative but superficial - as you say yourself, does a love for Premier League football and extremely expensive niche cars (owned by an Indian conglomerate...) translate into multi-billion pound long term trade deals? Does the fact that we are out of the EU not mean we could be weaker in negotiations with our new bestest human rights transgressing buds, due to our desperation for any business?

    Finally, through the prism of western media, the prevailing view is that China's growth is slowing and approaching an at best trepidatious and at worse catastrophic phase. Any trade deal, even with a stagnant China, would be worth billions but surely any motivation to be "nicer" to us would be affected by local conditions.

    In short, again, I cannot see how being out of the EU would help with negotiations with other trading blocks / countries, at a macro full-stack business level (as opposed to a few opportunistic / aspirational brands).
  • GooberTheHat
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    I understand where you're coming from, I have just yet to see a clear argument that would suggest that we would gain an advantage, trade wise, by leaving.  I've no doubt we would still be able to negotiate good deals, I just can't see how they would be better, in the bigger picture, than what we have now.

    Edit, @cinty
  • Cinty, it's generally their arguments that paint them as unknowing economically cavalier racists. Apparantly all of Turkey is about to move to Lincolnshire when they get EU membership in the next few months.

    Except it's most likely decades, and just because they can move here doesn't mean they will.
  • It's not that there aren't good, non-racist reasons for leaving the EU. It's that the reasons for going are so objectively weak in comparison to the reasons to stay in. To choose leaving over staying is such a bad, irrational choice that I suspect it's driven by knee-jerk, Sun headline reading, small-minded, mean-spirited racism.
  • As for this:
    There's a tendency to paint brexiters are unknowing, economically cavalier racists as if everyone on the left was some kind of economic expert. Well, if I was constantly being attacked by fearmongering and classist dismissive was then I'd basically stop engaging with everyone and vote however I wanted. I genuinely think a lot of people are voting UKIP, Trump etc. because they're tired of being talked down to and ignored every time they raise a point. There are reasons to want to leave. The EU has deep flaws. My vote? Probably stay, I think. But I fucking hate this jumping on anyone who would express an idea to the contrary.

    I could not agree more. This "we know best" parochialism, the fear-mongering, and the outright dismissal of rational reasons to leave (which admittedly in my experience are rare) is damaging the pro-EU case immeasurably and politics in general. I can't remember who said it, but the problem with the elite is they always believe the poor to be stupid. No-one likes being talked down to.

    That said, the Daily Mash is very even handed in its mockery of all sides.
  • Funkstain wrote:
    ... does a love for Premier League football and extremely expensive niche cars (owned by an Indian conglomerate...) translate into multi-billion pound long term trade deals? ...
    There's only so much tweed a country can buy. The textiles would probably be made in China, shipped to sweatshops in Indonesia, shipped back to distributors in China, shipped to warehouses in the UK, then sold back to Chinese Anglophiles at several thousand % markup. Not hard to see where some middlemen can get cut out of that loop.
  • Funkstain wrote:
    My instinct (nothing more) is that your list seems illustrative but superficial - as you say yourself, does a love for Premier League football and extremely expensive niche cars (owned by an Indian conglomerate...) translate into multi-billion pound long term trade deals? Does the fact that we are out of the EU not mean we could be weaker in negotiations with our new bestest human rights transgressing buds, due to our desperation for any business?

    Finally, through the prism of western media, the prevailing view is that China's growth is slowing and approaching an at best trepidatious and at worse catastrophic phase. Any trade deal, even with a stagnant China, would be worth billions but surely any motivation to be "nicer" to us would be affected by local conditions.

    In short, again, I cannot see how being out of the EU would help with negotiations with other trading blocks / countries, at a macro full-stack business level (as opposed to a few opportunistic / aspirational brands).

    It is superficial, deffo. It's nothing more than an off the cuff attempt to try to rebut the doom-mongering. Think of it as earnest Devils advocate.
    monkey wrote:
    It's not that there aren't good, non-racist reasons for leaving the EU. It's that the reasons for going are so objectively weak in comparison to the reasons to stay in. To choose leaving over staying is such a bad, irrational choice that I suspect it's driven by knee-jerk, Sun headline reading, small-minded, mean-spirited racism.

    Now, I'm still not sure it is objectively better.

    For me, it's a choice between 2 horrendous groups of self-serving people who will fuck us and our future generations for their own self interest at every opportunity.

    If we had what I saw as a "good" government I might vote to leave - not because I hate the EU, but because I think the idea of the EU (as a trade bloc and cultural fraternity) is different from the reality (an attempt by a few to centralise power and strip democratic choice away from the people of those countries - and yes, sometimes those countries make bad choices, that's democracy, deal with it.)

    I love the idea of the EU, I love Europeans, I like free movement, I want more people moving to the UK (tax and cultural integration is good!), but I hate the Euro, I hate what has happened to Greece, and I hate how important decisions seem to be taken behind closed doors and slipped against what might be the will of the people. And yes, I hate that loss of sovereignty. Once again, democracy sometimes sucks.

    But we don't have that "good" government. We have an especially loathsome group of assholes at the helm and I don't want to see them get more power. So, better the devil you know.
    Cinty, it's generally their arguments that paint them as unknowing economically cavalier racists. Apparantly all of Turkey is about to move to Lincolnshire when they get EU membership in the next few months.

    Except it's most likely decades, and just because they can move here doesn't mean they will.

    And "they" are?

    Daily Mail readers?
    Tory voters?
    UKIP voters?
    Old people?
    The working class?
    Who?

    Because all of the above outdo Labour, The Greens and The Guardian (in terms of votes and readership) by quite some margin. "They" represent the UK better than we do, it seems, as painful as it is to admit. So if we want our county to be less shit in future we should probably stop hoping they magically disappear, because it's not gonna happen. Dismissing and patronising entire swaths of the country as deluded, idiotic racists (once again, as if the people here are all knowledgable on the details of international economics and immigration) is dumb as fuck.
  • Yossarian
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    djchump wrote:
    Funkstain wrote:
    ... does a love for Premier League football and extremely expensive niche cars (owned by an Indian conglomerate...) translate into multi-billion pound long term trade deals? ...
    There's only so much tweed a country can buy. The textiles would probably be made in China, shipped to sweatshops in Indonesia, shipped back to distributors in China, shipped to warehouses in the UK, then sold back to Chinese Anglophiles at several thousand % markup. Not hard to see where some middlemen can get cut out of that loop.

    Quite. Besides which, the primary reason for signing trade deals (aside from maybe ones which only cover a specific class of product) is to give those things that you produce a better chance to compete against a country's own products, not to make that country's products cheaper for consumers in your own country. China have no need to do this as their manufacturing sector is already dominant across the world.

    If China thought trade deals were in their interest, why aren't we negotiating one as part of the EU?
  • Yossarian
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    And "they" are?

    Daily Mail readers?
    Tory voters?
    UKIP voters?
    Old people?
    The working class?
    Who?

    Because all of the above outdo Labour, The Greens and The Guardian (in terms of votes and readership) by quite some margin. "They" represent the UK better than we do, it seems, as painful as it is to admit.

    I'm not convinced that's true. I'd add, on the left, SNP voters and Green voters for a start. And the idea that old people and the working class are all anti-EU and should be lumped into the above category is highly suspect.

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