Politics The EU

RasputinLives

Not dead
Contributor
I've been reading into German politics a lot recently. From contact with many young people in Germany it's pretty clear that the younger demographic despise Merkel and aren't exactly keen on the EU. That view never seems to get represented in Germany so I was interested in why. I found this article written by a respected German journalist which was really interesting.

https://www.politico.eu/article/germany-democracy-problem-history/

It basically talks about how Germany is a less democratic country than the rest of Europe as the establishment is scared of the people. Due to its history, and the fact the nation embraced Hitler and his policies, the Germany political class do not trust it's public to make sensible decisions so blocks them from having any real political influence. The thinking is that democracy is young in Germany and the 'powers that be' need to keep the stabilisers on.

It appears that campaigns are now happening to try and change this. It's a good thing as the German political class is obviously in need of a serious shake up. It took 141 days to form a government after their last elections. That's nearly half a year of complete blockage on anything in the country which is about on par with the UKs Brexit stuff.

It worries me slightly that a country which is obviously in so much crisis is at the forefront of the EU, same with France really. To be honest I think the politcal leaders of some of these European countries (Germany, Spain, France) are delighted that the UK has got themselves into this mess with Brexit. I think it's a perfect excuse for them not to have their own referendum (where most of them would vote to leave too) and also to distract away from their own political sins by pointing at the 'stupid ignorant empire loving racist Brits'.
 

Izumi

Points Scorer
"Referendum is poor way to govern in democracy", said Dr. G.F.Will, a W.F. Buckley type American conservative, commenting just this week on Brexit. That is a reason why Germany would adopt such process as last resort. There is no point do stupid things.

Germany is without sliver of doubts democracy, regardless how much dirt, half-truths, and distorted facts are thrown in that direction. I cannot however say the same about a few other countries, regardless how pretentious their behavior is.
 

Ruslan

Points Scorer
Quote:

Can you imagine a room in Germany named after a Second World War general? Is there a Rommel Room anywhere?

Example

German destroyer Rommel - Wikipedia

No, not a room but a Warship named after a Second World War General. And it was launched by Rommel's Widow.

Oh and the two other ships in the class were named after the Commanding Officer of the Battleship Bismark and a World War 2 German Air force pilot.

The Truth is a very fluid concept.
Rommel was involved in the plots to overthrow Hitler. It cost him his life.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff member
Premium Contributor
Yes I am well aware of Rommel's life.

Shame he wasn't involved in plots to overthrow Hitler in 1938.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
There are so many things factually incorrect in that interview with a supposed Professor I wonder why they bothered to publish it. Do Speigel journalist not bother to check the "facts" presented to them?
 

F1Brits_90

Race Winner
^ That.

It's very surreal living over here - in addition, the guy lies through his teeth, not on a daily basis, or even hourly basis, but constantly, even when there are reams of evidence to counter his lies.

All False statements involving Donald Trump | PolitiFact

The worshippers just don't care though - I have seen quotes whereby they say that no matter how bad things get under Trump, or no matter how much he lies, how many women he grabbed by the pussy, etc., it's still better than Obama, Clinton, <any Democrat>.
replace trump with farage & youve got brexit
 

Ruslan

Points Scorer
Yes I am well aware of Rommel's life.

Shame he wasn't involved in plots to overthrow Hitler in 1938.
Well, in 1938 he was second in command of Hitler's escort battalion. As far as I know, he was not contacted or aware of the plots to overthrow Hitler in 1938. I don't think he had serious doubts about Hitler until 1942.
 

Bill Boddy

Professional layabout
Premium Contributor
Don't forget that Germany's parliamentary system was set up after the war by France, the UK and the USA with a view to ensuring that no single party would be able to form a government on their own

The trade union system was set set up as working in companies rather than nationwide i.e. in the UK there were various trades which were all separate so that in the shipbuilding companies there were metal workers and wood workers who were very jealous in guarding their trades resulting in arguments, onet shut down a whole shipyard over an argument about who should drill holes which went through both metal and wood; the German trade unions would be more likely to have one trade union which encompassed all the various trades within the company. This, of course, backfired as it was easier for a company to trade with one group than with disparate groups who were also arguing amongst themselves.

The Iron and Steel Community was set up purely to form a group who would be working together towards a common goal and thus less likely to engage in arguments leading to war. So far that has worked, Western Europe has been at peace for 74 years. It would be hard to find any other era of peace which has lasted that long.
 

RasputinLives

Not dead
Contributor
Was reading this today. Very interesting read.

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/02/19/british-attitudes-on-national-identity-and-religious-minorities-not-unique-in-eu/

It basically identifies through polls that the right wing views accredited to the extreme Brexiters are mirrored percentage of populatik wise across most of Europe with some being a lot higher. Apparently a third of Europeans would not accept having a Muslim family member. It's even higher than that some places. Article says a massive 8 out of 10 people in Czech Republic would not accept a Muslim as a family member.

Stats like that are really interesting. I keep repeating the point but I think the only difference between the UK and it's European partners is that it actually gave it's public the referendum on Europe. I think if others had then they'd be in just as big a mess if not worse.
 

Bill Boddy

Professional layabout
Premium Contributor
It is nice to know that here are currently 11 Conservatives who are willing to take on the position of Prime Minister. We should have some interesting debates with such a broad range views; it is also good to know that they all have sensible ideas. From the BBC website, https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-48496082, they all sound to be worthy of note, especially when it comes to the EU.

Michael Gove is playing his cards on Brexit close to his chest, just saying that he has the experience to deliver Brexit.

Sam Giymah would have a second referendum.

Matt Hancock deals mainly with the Irish issue, notably he would "seek a time limit to the backstop".

Mark Harper will go to Brussels to negotiate changes to the backstop.

Jeremy Hunt is in favour of changes to the withdrawal agreement, he also is in favour of changing the Irish backstop.

Savid Javid is going to focus on the withdrawal agreement with changes to the backstop. He also proposes a digital system as a cure for the Irish border problem; he proposes that as a gesture the UK will fund the development of it.

Boris Johnson would replace the Irish backstop with "alternative arrangements" to avoid a hard border, so as to facilitate a "managed exit" from the EU

.Andrea Leadsom amongst other things will worki on "alternative arrangements" for the Irish border.

Esther McVey says that she would leave the EU under WTO rules but if the EU made a better offer she would listen.

Dominic RAAB would re-open the withdrawal agreement and overhaul the backstop.

Rory Stewart is planning to get Theresa May's existing deal through Parliament. He is also planning to have citizens' assemblies to thrash out a compromise over Brexit.

So 7 will meddle with the backstop/withdrawal agreement despite the EU saying numerous time that the agreement and the backstop cannot be changed. Mrs May has attempted to get her plan through Parliament, there seems to be a good showing of people wanting to try again. If you keep doing something and it is turned down time after time but you keep on repeating your actions isn't this a sign of something????
 

RasputinLives

Not dead
Contributor
Dominic Raab saying he would re-open negotiations is a laugh. Last time he went to Brussels he set the negotiation process back 3 months at his first meeting by going back on everything the UK and EU had agreed on whilst giving on reason or alternative solutions despite not being instructed to do so. He is very much one of those who jumps up and down saying nothing is right whilst never presenting anything to make it work.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Whatever happened to the EU offer to have border checks on goods from the UK at Dublin and Rosslare? Solves all the problems as goods and people can flow back and forth across the border (including all the contraband and cheating of the Common Agricultural Policy) and Europe retains its borders. Too simple?
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff member
Premium Contributor
FB ,I'm not sure but that also means that goods bound for the Republic of Ireland would have to have EU customs checks at Belfast or other points of entry in the North and the DUP have already said they would veto any attempt to make the North different from the remainder of the UK.

Having different rules on abortion and things like that are fine but definitely not border controls.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
UK government said they would leave the border open and wouldn't care as long as it was checked in Dublin or Rosslare.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff member
Premium Contributor
I can't see that being accepted by some of the more militant EU nations. It would effectively mean the Republic of Ireland and the UK would have their own free trade deal.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
In fairness it would create all sorts of problems for the EU under WTO rules, although half the time they don't give a monkeys about them anyway.
 

Splash

Points Scorer
Imagine that neither the UK nor the Republic of Ireland were in the EU.

Now imagine that the Republic of Ireland wanted to join the EU.

Do you think that would be a problem for Ireland or the EU?
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff member
Premium Contributor
It would be a problem for Ireland because they would have to demonstrate how they would achieve their compliance with EU regs.

Every prospective EU country has to meet certain requirements to join the club.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Or the rules are bent to ensure they can get in. Just look at the fiasco that is the Euro which let basket cases like Italy, Greece, Portugal and Spain join despite them being nowhere close to the qualifying criteria. Although Germany loves it as it keeps the value of the Euro low and helps with their exports.

Sorry, I have a VERY juandiced view of the EU as the rules apply when it suits them but a blind eye is turned every time they get in the way. State owned French companies run UK power and car manufacturing (and gods knows what else) but UK government can't support British Steel in Scunthorpe as it would "break EU state aid rules".

I know the situation at British Steel is more complicated as it is run by half wits and numpties who are just in it for a quick buck, add to that the ideological situation with the current government on state ownership, but FFS direct 4,000 jobs will and probably 3 or 4 for every one of those directly employed.

We can only have so many call centres and distribution warehouses!
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff member
Premium Contributor
Agreed regarding the Euro criteria. We were a proper basket case economy when we joined the ERM in the early 90's but thankfully due to black Wednesday we managed to avoid the Euro itself.

The state aid rules are limiting but made worse for us because we have sold all of our state assets. If it ever got out that our government had been investing in other countries industries at the expense of our own there would be outrage.
 
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