Europe remains on our minds from several directions. The fact that the start of Brexit is 13 weeks away, so basically we have now entered the final quarter of a union that basically never was. A union that did little good for too many people and a setting that well over tripled the cost of infrastructure. All elements that are shifted around, as they aren’t clearly in budgets on reports and more important, a place of spending that is not being properly monitored or controlled.
We might all think that the EEC was so good for us, but was it really? When you are not in a high position in a large corporation, how did you really benefit? The last 15 years have been a mere exercise in exploitation by big business and short cut seekers. In all this after Brexit, the situation will remain. When goods are needed, people will buy them, which is why I oppose certain articles from the Guardian. One of them (at http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/feb/28/brexit-would-affect-lives-of-millions-official-uk-report-says) states: ‘Brexit would negatively affect lives of millions, official UK report says‘, yet is this altogether true? let’s take a look at some of the quotes “The 10 years cited in the report includes the time it would take for Britain to exit the EU, to set up a new trade and related agreements as well as negotiate fresh trade deals with the US and other countries“, I regard this to be untrue. You see, everyone wants to sell, if the UK wants to buy, than those nations will oblige. More important, HM Revenue and Customs (at https://www.uktradeinfo.com) shows that UK imports is a lot higher than exports, which means that the UK is spending between 10 and 20 billion a year more than it receives in exports. Do you believe for one second that those nations will not find an immediate solution here? The damage of the UK getting its goods from a secondary source is too scary for THEIR economies, so you can bet the house on a solution being found almost immediately after the changeover comes. The second quote which is important here is “It says the only legal way to withdraw from the EU is through article 50 of the treaty of the European Union. But it argues that there is no precedent for this and that Britain would be unlikely to achieve a successful negotiation in the two-year time period it sets out“, here I also disagree. The paper Withdrawal and expulsion from the EU and EMU (at https://lawlordtobe.files.wordpress.com/2015/07/ecblwp10.pdf) sheds light on this. On page 11 we see “One is that a right of unilateral withdrawal existed even in the absence of any explicit reference to it in the treaties, since sovereign States were, in any case, free to exercise their sovereign right18 to withdraw from their international commitments19”
The references there are:
18. ‘Sovereign power’ has been defined as ‘power not subject to limitation by higher or coordinate power held over some territory’ (MacCormick (1999), p. 127).
19. See Zeh, p. 209. This proposition is in line with the decision in Maastricht Urteil (BVerfGE 89, 155 of 12 October 1993) where the German Constitutional Court stated that the States are still ‘the Masters of the Treaties’ and can always decide to abandon the EU, revoking their acts of accession by a contrary unilateral denunciation; and more recently in its decision in Lisbon Urteil (BVerfG, 2 BvE 2/08 of 30 June 2009) the German Constitutional Court found that the EU, as designed by the Lisbon Treaty, is not a federal state and that constitutional safeguards of national identity clearly exist under EU law.
Which gives us actually two issues. The first is that from the descriptions we see, that the EEC could be seen as a tontine. Here we see the following concept “Each investor pays a sum into the tontine. Each investor then receives annual dividends on the capital invested. As each investor dies, his or her share is reallocated among the surviving investors. This process continues until only one investor survives. Each subscriber receives only dividends; the capital is never paid back“, how is that any different? In addition, the EEC does not give dividend, it costs more and more money, in addition, the nations involved aren’t adding capital, they are adding debt and the last surviving nation ends up with all the debt. From that version Brexit makes perfect sense and getting out first seems to be an imperative need (the second one is further down the article for a reason).
There is one element the Guardian did get right “It also warns that the rights of 2 million British expats to work and access pensions and healthcare in EU countries may no longer be guaranteed“, I am on the fence here. I personally believe that if expats want to live their pensions away in Spain or Greece, than this should remain a possibility. I agree that there might be initial issues, yet those people might be permanent residents as such it should not affect them other than the pensions being a problem and that should not be the case. In addition, if the government does do a 180 on this part, it will be directly responsible to get affordable housing for those 2 million people. There is no way that this would work and it should not be an issue. A pensioner gets their money, it is deposited in whatever account is specified and that is pretty much the end of it in my book. Do you think that Spain, in its current economy would walk away from hundreds of thousands of paying Britons? I think not!
These are some of the oppositional issues I have with the article of Anushka Asthana, Heather Stewart and Nicholas Watt. It is however not the only article, because there are a few sides to the EEC at present, a pressing issue of refugees is an element and it is partially driving Brexit too. The article of a debatable level here is ‘EU acting like ‘human trafficker’ of refugees, says Austrian minister‘, the core of this is “Sebastian Kurz said that “in Greece refugees are being waved through to the heart of Europe. That is simply unacceptable in the long run. The European Union cannot act like a human trafficker.” Restoring the Dublin and Schengen agreements, he said, had to be a priority at the meeting between the EU leaders and Turkey“, as I stated before, it is like listening to someone who lost touch with reality (to some extent). In the first, the EU are not trafficking in refugees. Greece is completely overwhelmed by those refugees arriving via Turkish smugglers. Greece has no infrastructure to deal with the issue and the bulk of all the refugees do not want to stay in Greece, they want to go to a German or English speaking nation, in a pinch a French speaking nation would suffice. That is a clear fact as we have seen it for a long time, in addition, the part “had to be a priority at the meeting between the EU leaders and Turkey” here he seems completely intent of not calling the kettle black, because Turkey is massively responsible for the mess at his borders, as well as the Greek borders. Allowing free passes to smugglers and looking the other way as thousands of refugees are making for Greece. It seems that this short-sightedness is also fuel for both Brexit and Frexit. Now, I will immediately accept that Austria and Germany are getting swamped too. There is an issue, no one denies that, but taking Greece out of the solution was a really bad idea, especially as Turkey is part of the mess, not part of any solution. As the borders in Germany are back up, as borders close, we see another quote. When we read “Yet there will be little sympathy for Berlin from Hungary, Italy or Greece, which are bearing the brunt of the mass arrivals of people from Syria, Iraq, Eritrea and Afghanistan“, which is fair enough. Yet, as stated earlier: “This proposition is in line with the decision in Maastricht Urteil (BVerfGE 89, 155 of 12 October 1993) where the German Constitutional Court stated that the States are still ‘the Masters of the Treaties’ and can always decide to abandon the EU, revoking their acts of accession by a contrary unilateral denunciation“, the intersections of the two situations is found in the works of Juli Zeh.
This now reflects also on the second issue, the first I described earlier, the second issue I skipped until now. This all comes from an article titled ‘Union Membership: Accession, Suspension of membership rights and unilateral withdrawal. Some reflections‘ by Jean-Victor Louis, an honorary Professor from the Free University of Brussels. In his reflections on Page 11, we see: “The future will say if the prevision of unilateral withdrawal will be a “source of pressures and blackmailing against the general interest” or prove to be a useful way out of undesirable changes in the working and orientation of the European Union. Juli Zeh concludes her in-depth analyses of the right of withdrawal by quoting an Estonian member who expressed “hope that this clause will never be used” and indeed she is right. We would like to suggest that the Union should conceive and put in practice an accession policy for the future in order to avoid unilateral withdrawals“.
The interesting part is that at no time any consideration is given to the accountability of national needs and national acts. Consider the overspending of the budget by 12 trillion euro’s (total EEC debt including UK), or the fact that the bulk of the European nations remain incapable of keeping a budget. One could argue that not unlike a contract, the presence of unfair terms are not binding on consumers and the trader may not rely on them. Is the European Union any difference?
The last one is not really that sellable, but the premise is, in addition, should certain parties be investigated for neglecting ‘their’ national need? That question arises from the initial PDF mentioned. Here we see: “As one author has written, there are three main reasons why the treaties were silent on withdrawal: first, it was in order to avoid putting question marks to the Member States’ commitment to the achievement of their shared objectives; second, it was because providing for the possibility of withdrawal might have increased its likelihood; and third, because to provide for this possibility would entail the daunting task of spelling out the procedure and consequences of withdrawal“, this now implies that the creating parties set up an unbalanced situation and in addition the elected politicians at the time did not do their homework and created a dangerous situation to their national need. Am I the only one asking the right question here?
So will Brexit turn out to be murder, or will the British be killing it? Where will the economy go? These are questions that many sources are answering in their view, emphasising their need to be in-EEC, or out-EEC. I have my own view, but I do not have any useful answers. You see, there are issues on both sides, yet as I see it, the scales that are in favour of the UK seem to lean towards out-EEC at present. This view will be interfered with, especially by the USA, as it will topple a massive economic minefield which will blow up in all our faces, especially the value of the Dollar. Yet, the status for the UK would remain strongest if they leave first, especially if the Commonwealth unites with the UK in a strong economic bond. If we find a way to keep import low by utilising the Commonwealth bonds that Commonwealth nations have, the UK coffers would grow better, faster and higher. In the end, Brexit or not, a solution for the refugees must still be found, closing the borders to them completely is as unacceptable as it was for Austria to keep Greece out of the debate. How these parties will be resolved is a question that remains without answer as the involved parties have a hard time agreeing on the resolution, which is fair enough, there are no easy answers, as there is an equal concern that a solution is not forthcoming any day soon. For that Greece would have been needed to create locations, an option Austria decided to take it out of consideration, something that will haunt us for a little longer than we are all comfortable with.