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How involved shoud Britain be in Europe?

Totally in! All the way, dude!
28% (5 votes)
Lets just stay on the edges and occasionally get pissed off with the french like we have been
11% (2 votes)
Get out and stay out! Europe is bad news.
22% (4 votes)
other (please specify below)
39% (7 votes)
Total votes: 18

Posted By

Ceannairc
Apr 26 2004 09:37

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Ceannairc
Apr 26 2004 09:37

Should Britain be more or less involved in europe? It would mean less power in the hands of the nations government, but only because of another authority. However, that authority would force us to recognise the ideas of other nations and other cultures - surely no bad thing. Going into europe would be a blow to all the patriotic arseholes who think that Britain is in some way special or above others. It would remove some of the arrogance and unthinking rascism which infects large parts of our society. It would open up our country a little more. OK europe means more red tape and more petty rules and regulations, but to be honest thats not much worse than what we have now - or is it?

Spartacus
Apr 26 2004 10:57

britain is in europe whether it likes it or not, europe is a geographical region. but if you mean should it be in the eu, and more specifically this constitution they want to introduce, then that just means more authoritarian laws and so on (some of the stuff that's in the constitution is really wuite scary, blunketts probably wetting himself with excitement). it's another effort by the ruling class to consolidate its power, so surely anarchists should be opposing it every step of the way, whilst obviously trying to strengthen our connections with other european anarchists.

i don't see how it would remove the racism and arrogance in some sections of british society, there are plenty of racists and arrogant bastards in other european countries! it's bizarre that in this country the right is most opposed to the eu, while in most other countries it's been the left and anarchists.

Ceannairc
Apr 26 2004 11:06

obviously I did mean the EU, constitution or none.

I guess my point is that it can't be much worse, but then I haven't looked at the constitution in detail - what sort of stuff is in there?

Spartacus
Apr 26 2004 11:09

well, i've only had a very brief look at some of it, and the main thing that i can remember off the top of my head was legislation of europe wide arrest warrants and generally more cooperation between police forces, which is obviously something activists should worry about...

pingtiao
Apr 26 2004 12:04

That is a bit simplistic I think. Almost all of the (palty) gains made in recent years have been the result of EU legislation (Human Rights Act etc). It is a little trivial to just state that it is all bad.

The reason that this is even up for discussion, and done totally behind closed doors, is that there is a split within the Capitalist class itself around this issue. There are some sectors that feel it will undermine what control they have over the UK State (I would put Murcoch in this category), and there are those that feel the ease of cross-border trade would increase their power (I think that the smaller capitalists fit into this category).

Either way, it is mostly just bosses' politics.

red n black star

Ceannairc
Apr 26 2004 13:15
pingtiao wrote:
That is a bit simplistic I think. Almost all of the (palty) gains made in recent years have been the result of EU legislation (Human Rights Act etc).

thing is that while the eu may have done things like the human rights act, they have been disregarded quite a lot especially with anti-terrorism laws. If we get more involved it could be harder for the govt to weedle out of these things. But then again, who knows what tricks they'll pull in the future? can't trust the bastards...

do you think europe as a whole is more left and liberal than UK?

JoeMaguire
Apr 26 2004 13:26

I stated this in a previous discussion,

Quote:
Its generally accepted that the manafacturing industry is pro-Euro, whilst those companies which are US or Japn based or even deal with currency exchange are anti-Euro. This is why the media (7 companies control 90% of the worlds media) isnt exactly happy about the EU so the right wing agenda is always the one the public will hear. Also the UKIP is the brainchild of a man who is set to loose millions through currency exchange if we loose the pound...

But the intial concept of the EU was based around the idea that a defeated Germany minus a standing army wanted to compete on level terms with Japan and the US, an amalgamation of states is born out of this.

For businesses what this state will achieve is making the labour market more 'flexible', lower taxation and increase trade, for workers this is obviously a bad thing...

The interesting thing is that some parts of the left think the EU is good because it will unite the European working class against a central enemy,...but this is quite deluded

Generally we should understand that the EU is a plan of one section of the european wide ruling class to further intergrate markets, create greater job flexibility, and lower taxation. This will mean greater exploitation of the workforce, less subsidies on social services and increased draconian policies on immigration. This inevitably is bad since it centralises the political/social powers into several bodies which have further control over us than they currently do.

I fail to see how we can be neutral or pro-euro....

Augusto_Sandino
Apr 26 2004 13:43

Although the EU really is a Europe for the bosses and the bankers, i voted "yes, all the way" because it might give us a leg to stand on against the US. And there isnt going to be anarchy if were all either dead or ruled by a man who lives on the otherside of the pond.

pingtiao
Apr 26 2004 13:45

Well, there is a perspective that says that the power differential between states and corporations is decreased by european integration.

Let me clarify: don't want to be labelled a pro-state liberal FFS!

The state is at least partially influenced by the people who live in it. Not very much, but there is a small degree of control involved. Corporate power, on the other hand, is entirely unaccountable.

With the rise of multi-nationals, the degree of power that one private tyranny can exert over a country is increased with it's control of capital. For example, Nike has more control over labour conditions in the Philippines than it would have in Norway, or DelMonte over union laws in Costa Rica than they would have here.

This argument states that individual corporations will have their influence on each country within the EU lessened with the emergence of a more integrated power block.

I have a little sympathy with this argument, but think that it overestimates the degree to which policy can be effected by populations.

Mystic
Apr 27 2004 09:35

CAP and Fortress Europe policies are devastating to people outside Europe. Also, a more integrated Europe would mean a more integrated market, which means even bigger, more powerful corporations, a-la US. Look at the way Europe works: they have zero democratic accountability in the commission, they try to force things on us, if we say no, instead of changing it, they just bring back referendum after referendum until we say yes (like in Ireland). Plus in Europe they tend against trial by jury, innocent till proven guilty, habeas corpus, and things like that, which are the best parts of our flawed justice system here.

I'm all up for getting rid of borders in Europe, but the way the EU's going is extremely authoritarian.

coyote
Apr 27 2004 10:03

london or brussels?

labour or tory?

hanging? or shooting?

BUT purely for my scial life EUROPE ALL THE WAY!! 8)

Norwicher
Apr 27 2004 11:54

Who gives a fuck- the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer.

Won't make any difference to most of us in the slightest.

JoeMaguire
Apr 27 2004 14:12

Yet again I am amazed by the discussion on EU membership, take for example this,

Augusto_Sandino wrote:
Although the EU really is a Europe for the bosses and the bankers, i voted "yes, all the way" because it might give us a leg to stand on against the US.

So let me get this, in a conflict between two ruling classes you side with your own, and then thats regardless of the fact that you recognise that 'Europe [is] for the bosses and the bankers' roll eyes

And again,

Quote:
Who gives a fuck- the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer.

Won't make any difference to most of us in the slightest.

The EU project is about centralising most of the decision making powers we have and then handing them over to a bureaucracy which has ZERO accountability. The entire basis of this is that it will lower taxation on European business to create a neo-liberal infrastructure in which jobs will become more 'flexible' with people being forced to move across Europe to find work. This inevitably will increase wealth for big business and increase unemployment, while at the same time damage our already deterioating social services.

Fitting neatly into a pro or anti europe campaign is inevitably not going to happen for us, because we reject the pound and the euro, but while were lurching towards an authoritarian neo-liberal structure you cant simply just roll your eyes and say its the same old, because it just simply isnt.

phoebe
Apr 28 2004 11:18

I reckon that whilst we're still living in a liberal capitalist state system, I'd rather there was more allignment between the british government and europe as a whole, just on the basis that (whilst I'm living under a government) I'm not so keen on living under a government that has all it's eggs in a US basket. There's a couple of things I've benefited from directly under cooperation with the EU like the fact that they've now pretty much settled on laws which mean that once I've "registered my gender" which I'll probably end up doing, it'll make it impossible for anyone but a government agency to find out, and I won't have to face all kinds of rights abuses that were previously targetted at transsexuals.

That doesn't mean that I'm entirely happy about it (there's a thread on here about my problems with the way it reinforces government authority and makes a system that already revolves around gatekeeping worse) but there's stuff that I'm benefiting from whilst the state system exists by us having some sort of afiliation with europe. From what I figure, the EU human rights stuff in general is a lot more liberal than Britain is (even if that isn't necessarily reflected by the member states) and that has knock on effects improving people's lives.

phoebe
Apr 28 2004 11:31

oh yeah, as well as that I've heard lots of people mumbling worriedly about how the new countries coming into the EU will make it easier for Scary Brown People (tm) to come into Europe and that gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside.

LeighGionaire
Apr 29 2004 22:55

If Anarchists are supposedly anti-state I see no sense in wanting to join an even larger 'Super' State.

Augusto_Sandino
Apr 30 2004 09:52
Quote:
So let me get this, in a conflict between two ruling classes you side with your own, and then thats regardless of the fact that you recognise that 'Europe [is] for the bosses and the bankers'

I live near a couple of thousand americans mate, and i can tell you i'd rather be oppressed by a British boss (or french, for that matter) than any one of those fucking arses.

JoeMaguire
Apr 30 2004 13:08
Augusto_Sandino wrote:
Quote:
So let me get this, in a conflict between two ruling classes you side with your own, and then thats regardless of the fact that you recognise that 'Europe [is] for the bosses and the bankers'

I live near a couple of thousand americans mate, and i can tell you i'd rather be oppressed by a British boss (or french, for that matter) than any one of those fucking arses.

Your missing the point, in a conflict between one state and another, or infact one boss for another - we take neither side....

Augusto_Sandino
Apr 30 2004 18:38

Well the theory is all good and well, but reality comes out different sometimes. You cant live your life based on a piece of paper, or on the works of a man who died half a century ago. If one boss pays $5 an hour, and another boss pays £6, you go for the £6 man. If one superstate is fairly pacifist (fairly..), is a little more similar culturally, and the other is aggressive, abusive politically and economically and run by neo-cons then i'll take the pacifists.

Although saying that, if we could do neither (which i dont think is possible, unfortunately) i'd do that.

Spartacus
May 3 2004 12:12

governments in europe are just as bad as america's government, they just aren't powerful enough at the moment to cause as much misery. italy is run by a far-right scumbag with members of fascist parties directly related to mussolini's party, germany is an incredibly repressive state well on it's way to becoming a total police state, the new countries entering have equally vile governments helping to force "flexibility" on to their economies, and the only reason france and spain aren't quite as bad is because their workers' movements tend to be rather more militant. if all these governments start pooling their resources who long do you think the few vaguely liberal aspects of any of these countries will remain?

Augusto_Sandino
May 3 2004 12:47

Yeah, im aware that the european governments are no saints, but then again they have liberalism or socialism ingrained in them. Liberal in America is almost a term of abuse. Italy has a socialist party, but there isnt an American socialist party, and not much of an English one either.

The reality is, that a socialist or liberal state is always going to better than a new-right or neo-con one. Its way to easy to just say "state = bad, anarchists = good".

cantdocartwheels
May 3 2004 13:34

Depends, while i have no illusions aboutt he uro or european power, i do think its worth considering the EU constitution and its trade union laws .

Unfortunately there doesn't seem to be enough gain in order to justify Theexpansion of the EU constitution as it is inevitably just a means of

exploiting labour in eastern europe

Although i'm still unsure, its hard to know. I mean the EU constitution isn't NAFTA but it does have similar connotations when applied to workers in eastern europe,

so no despite its apparent trade union regulations, i oppose it

Augusto_Sandino
May 3 2004 18:29
Quote:
EU constitution and its trade union laws

You know the ins and outs of this? I'd be grateful to have it explained by anyone...

JoeMaguire
May 4 2004 14:18
Augusto_Sandino wrote:
Well the theory is all good and well, but reality comes out different sometimes. You cant live your life based on a piece of paper, or on the works of a man who died half a century ago. If one boss pays $5 an hour, and another boss pays £6, you go for the £6 man. If one superstate is fairly pacifist (fairly..), is a little more similar culturally, and the other is aggressive, abusive politically and economically and run by neo-cons then i'll take the pacifists.

Although saying that, if we could do neither (which i dont think is possible, unfortunately) i'd do that.

In the boss scenario you state, the outcome would be that you PREFER one boss over another NOT SUPPORT one over another. This is the same situation with the EU, Id prefer not to be an EU state member but I dont support the UK state.

And in the case of the EU and the UKs comparison to it, I would say that the EU was far more authoritarian and less democratic than that of the UK...

Augusto_Sandino
May 4 2004 19:36
Quote:
And in the case of the EU and the UKs comparison to it, I would say that the EU was far more authoritarian and less democratic than that of the UK...

Sounds a bit like your supporting one over the other. I suppose i am too actually, i think the UKs fine apart from the tax rips etc. all that stuff that anarchists hate, but i mean id rather be in with the EU than the US.

redyred
May 4 2004 21:24

Can you possibly edit the poll so that option four is "I'm not a liberal"

Ceannairc
May 5 2004 10:15

Sorry I can't work out how to change the poll, but really option 4 is for exactly what you are doing: saying no to the others, but wanting to put across a diferent view. I see no pain in letting stay like it is...

in an EU vs USA thing I definitely choose EU, especially while that FUCKNUT angry is in the white house! I mean as I understand it, socialism isn't really considered an option by the general society of the US (maybe I'm wrong, can anyone correct me?), whereas at least europe has it's options open. Now, socialism is by no means my goal, but an equal understanding of both right and left is a promising sign. Surely anarchism is a kind of combination of both: the legal freedom of capitalist thinking with the equality and fairness of socialist thinking?

JoeMaguire
May 5 2004 15:44
Augusto_Sandino wrote:

Sounds a bit like your supporting one over the other. I suppose i am too actually, i think the UKs fine apart from the tax rips etc. all that stuff that anarchists hate, but i mean id rather be in with the EU than the US.

As weve said before a liberal democracy is better than a fascist dictatorship, but neither have my support, thats the same point with the EU. Both are inherently wrong but the EU is farworse than a stand alone UK state.....

I dont see the relevance of "im not a liberal"

redyred
May 6 2004 10:12

The relevance is that the EU is a complete non-issue as far as I'm concerned. It's good for certain sections of the bourgeoisie and bad for others. As far as the expropriation of the proletariat is concerned, it's not going to make much difference either way.

Augusto_Sandino
May 6 2004 12:49
october_lost wrote:
Augusto_Sandino wrote:

Sounds a bit like your supporting one over the other. I suppose i am too actually, i think the UKs fine apart from the tax rips etc. all that stuff that anarchists hate, but i mean id rather be in with the EU than the US.

As weve said before a liberal democracy is better than a fascist dictatorship, but neither have my support, thats the same point with the EU. Both are inherently wrong but the EU is farworse than a stand alone UK state.....

I dont see the relevance of "im not a liberal"

I settle for that 100%. But the UK isnt going to be enough of an economic power to survive on it's own (without the US or EU) and retain a role on the world stage with any credibility. I think that the UK should accept it's days are over, and stay out of the international stage altogether, like Japan. Im sounding a bit statist now!