Author Topic: Brexit - question for UK folks  (Read 705 times)

Cranberries

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Brexit - question for UK folks
« on: March 12, 2017, 03:51:45 PM »
As a non-UK person I am confused by Brexit and would like to understand. I get that it cannot be reversed, but I do not understand why it cannot be undone. It would be awesome if any of you would be willing to enlighten me!



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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2017, 05:15:08 PM »
From a UK person: we are also confused and would like to understand.

In the end, it is all politics.  Former PM Cameron thought he could solve divisions within his political party by promising a referendum, a spiffing wheeze that came spectacularly unstuck.  There is no political way back from that, although Nicola Sturgeon in Scotland is trying hard (also, Putin is hoping to fuel Scottish nationalism through a propaganda operation in Edinburgh).  The Irish, both North and South, are completely discombobulated by it all (to our friends in North America: please don't start sending them guns again, it's not going to help).

I am hoping that when negotiations start, common sense will prevail.  It is not helping that France and the Netherlands have elections coming up in which the far right are featuring strongly, that economies across Europe are stagnating, that Greek finances are getting worse not better, that Italy's government is a caretaker, that Merkel is also up for reelection this year and that Erdogan in Turkey is doing his authoritarian best to create chaos to the south.
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cerat0n1a

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2017, 06:27:21 AM »
As a non-UK person I am confused by Brexit and would like to understand. I get that it cannot be reversed, but I do not understand why it cannot be undone.

In theory, it could. The whole thing could turn out to be such a disaster that the UK goes crawling back to the EU in a few years' time asking for forgiveness. Divorced couples do sometimes remarry after all. Doesn't seem likely though.

shelivesthedream

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2017, 04:34:07 PM »
We are on a slow train rumbling inexorably onward toward our first station stop of triggering article 50, going on through further stops in negotiations and finally terminating at actual Brexit. The train cannot be turned round or stopped on its current course towards our final station stop however many leaves people try to throw on the line because it would be both dishonest and crushingly embarrassing for the government. Once the train terminates, it can be reversed, but that would involve crawling to the EU, cap in hand, and applying all over again. This would also be crushingly embarrassing and I wouldn't blame the other EU countries if they took the opportunity to have a big laugh at our expense.

jim555

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2017, 06:35:12 PM »
Brexit bill: Lords pass landmark legislation on leaving EU
http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-39262081?shared

Looks like Article 50 is a go now.

Metric Mouse

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2017, 06:52:59 PM »
Brexit bill: Lords pass landmark legislation on leaving EU
http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-39262081?shared

Looks like Article 50 is a go now.
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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2017, 12:27:16 AM »
Scotland has been itching for independence and the Brexit result is an own goal. Scotland has always had strong, historical ties to Europe especially France, "auld alliance". So Scotland won't want to leave the EU and Brexit is the trigger to break up Great Britain. Let's not forget Northern Ireland also voted for remain - while England and Wales voted for leave.

marty998

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2017, 12:55:25 AM »
How are RBS shares doing? (Royal Bank of Scotland)

Can imagine there'll be a bit of volatility in the shares of firms based in Edinburgh or Glasgow.

cerat0n1a

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2017, 02:41:21 AM »
How are RBS shares doing? (Royal Bank of Scotland)

Can imagine there'll be a bit of volatility in the shares of firms based in Edinburgh or Glasgow.

RBS is 73% owned by the UK government and has had 45 billion (and counting) in bail-out money so far. I wouldn't expect much effect on share prices due to the SNP calling for a referendum, it's hardly unexpected.

Norn Ireland is the more interesting one. Looks impossible to me put a hard border between NI and the Republic, but how can immigration control & trade barriers be applied without one?

I think the EU veto system is going to make it hard for any deal to pass. It just needs a Le Pen, or a Wilders or anyone with a grudge to put a stop to it.

shelivesthedream

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2017, 03:39:41 AM »
Scotland has been itching for independence and the Brexit result is an own goal.

Not to get mardy about it, but 44% of Scotland itched for independence. 56% did not. Obviously Brexit is a big deal to happen so soon after the Scottish referendum, but no one can reasonably have based their vote on the assumption that everything would stay the same forever.

jim555

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #10 on: March 14, 2017, 03:41:44 AM »
I read the EU wants billions in the divorce settlement.  So what happens if the UK says nope and doesn't pay them?  They have no way to force a payment, right?


cerat0n1a

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #11 on: March 14, 2017, 04:08:05 AM »
I read the EU wants billions in the divorce settlement.  So what happens if the UK says nope and doesn't pay them?  They have no way to force a payment, right?

Probably not, but I'm not sure that the UK government wants to be in the position of not honouring obligations in treaties and contracts. If you agree in writing to do something and then don't do it, people tend not to trust you after that. 

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #12 on: March 14, 2017, 04:10:01 AM »
Scotland has been itching for independence and the Brexit result is an own goal.

Not to get mardy about it, but 44% of Scotland itched for independence. 56% did not. Obviously Brexit is a big deal to happen so soon after the Scottish referendum, but no one can reasonably have based their vote on the assumption that everything would stay the same forever.

From what I understand, Westminster (or Cameron) reassured the Scots that a Brexit referendum would not happen if the Scots stayed put with the union in the last independence referendum. Now that Brexit has occurred, all bets are off. Since Britain is cutting itself off from the common market, it would be in Scotland's best economic interest to stick with the EU (bigger economic market) rather than England (Commonwealth redux?).

shelivesthedream

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #13 on: March 14, 2017, 08:01:37 AM »
Scotland has been itching for independence and the Brexit result is an own goal.

Not to get mardy about it, but 44% of Scotland itched for independence. 56% did not. Obviously Brexit is a big deal to happen so soon after the Scottish referendum, but no one can reasonably have based their vote on the assumption that everything would stay the same forever.

From what I understand, Westminster (or Cameron) reassured the Scots that a Brexit referendum would not happen if the Scots stayed put with the union in the last independence referendum. Now that Brexit has occurred, all bets are off. Since Britain is cutting itself off from the common market, it would be in Scotland's best economic interest to stick with the EU (bigger economic market) rather than England (Commonwealth redux?).

Wasn't aware of that. What an arse.

merula

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #14 on: March 14, 2017, 08:38:07 AM »
Scotland has been itching for independence and the Brexit result is an own goal. Scotland has always had strong, historical ties to Europe especially France, "auld alliance". So Scotland won't want to leave the EU and Brexit is the trigger to break up Great Britain. Let's not forget Northern Ireland also voted for remain - while England and Wales voted for leave.

The problem with the "Scotland/N Ireland remain while England and Wales leave" plan is that it sets a precedent that would be detrimental to Spain (primarily), but also Belgium, France and Germany, as they deal with separatist movements of their own.

In Spain, Catalonia and the Basque Country are the areas with the largest economic growth, and also the strongest separatist movements. Their current status is "autonomous communities" with moderately broad local control and language autonomy, but still subject to control from Madrid. The main issue facing Basque and Catalan separatists is that, if they were to secede from Spain, they would need to go through the entire EU application process, and would likely face opposition at every turn from Madrid. So the public sentiment in these areas is generally "Staying in the EU is worth staying in Spain". (Not everyone, obviously, I'm generalizing.)

But, if Scotland is allowed to negotiate their own separatist "Remain", what does that mean for the Basque Country and Catalonia? Couldn't they do the same? Or at least cite that precedent? AND if that happens, the Basque and Catalan areas of France would maybe want to leave France to join the Basque and Catalan states. AND if that happens, what about Bavaria? Or Flanders? Sardinia?

That is why Spain will not allow a special exception for Scotland, and why they won't be alone.

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #15 on: March 14, 2017, 02:22:54 PM »
I suppose that's why Brexit is such a gamechanger - it's a first for many things. Having lived in Spain, the oppression by Franco of Catalonia and Pais Vasco is a far more recent memory than say the oppression by England of Scotland after the Battle of Culloden and the Highland Clearances (with the complicity of the Scottish gentry).

With regards to Spain, if those communities declare independence say several years down the track, she will lose her industrial giants and this will overspill into France ie Basque country on both sides of the Pyrenees.

Will there be a domino effect? Who knows...Spain has benefited from being an EU member being a net recipient unlike the UK (funny that the NHS isn't going to be the big winner from Brexit), so it looks like it will be on a case-by-case, country-by-country basis.

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #16 on: March 16, 2017, 11:06:06 AM »
Scotland has been itching for independence and the Brexit result is an own goal. Scotland has always had strong, historical ties to Europe especially France, "auld alliance". So Scotland won't want to leave the EU and Brexit is the trigger to break up Great Britain. Let's not forget Northern Ireland also voted for remain - while England and Wales voted for leave.

The problem with the "Scotland/N Ireland remain while England and Wales leave" plan is that it sets a precedent that would be detrimental to Spain (primarily), but also Belgium, France and Germany, as they deal with separatist movements of their own.

In Spain, Catalonia and the Basque Country are the areas with the largest economic growth, and also the strongest separatist movements. Their current status is "autonomous communities" with moderately broad local control and language autonomy, but still subject to control from Madrid. The main issue facing Basque and Catalan separatists is that, if they were to secede from Spain, they would need to go through the entire EU application process, and would likely face opposition at every turn from Madrid. So the public sentiment in these areas is generally "Staying in the EU is worth staying in Spain". (Not everyone, obviously, I'm generalizing.)

But, if Scotland is allowed to negotiate their own separatist "Remain", what does that mean for the Basque Country and Catalonia? Couldn't they do the same? Or at least cite that precedent? AND if that happens, the Basque and Catalan areas of France would maybe want to leave France to join the Basque and Catalan states. AND if that happens, what about Bavaria? Or Flanders? Sardinia?

That is why Spain will not allow a special exception for Scotland, and why they won't be alone.
Interesting... Love this discussion.
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shelivesthedream

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #17 on: March 16, 2017, 11:27:00 AM »
Yep, and don't forget the Cornish...

jim555

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Re: Brexit - question for UK folks
« Reply #18 on: March 20, 2017, 06:14:47 AM »
March 29, 2017 - Article 50 invoked!