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Do we need an EU referendum thread? (Brexit thread)

(3978 posts)
  • Started 9 years ago by I were right about that saddle
  • Latest reply from chdot

  1. Min
    Member

    And what is Solvency II and how does it benefit me and does that benefit justify the billions of pounds spent on it?

    (I am not trying to be obnoxious by the way- these are the very questions that are never answered by politicians. You are meant to just trust them without question - whatever they say)

    Posted 8 years ago #
  2. chdot
    Admin

    "

    The impact of EU membership in Scotland

    "

    http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/parliamentarybusiness/93590.aspx

    LOTS of stuff with masses of links to source material.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  3. Stickman
    Member

    @Min:

    New regulations on how much money insurers are supposed to hold as contingency. In theory, it's supposed to make policyholders less exposed to the risk of their insurance company going bust.

    I'm not going to justify it; having seen how it was developed and the amount of time and money that has been expended on it then it's doubtful it's money well spent, or that it will achieve its aims.

    But it was an example to show that large companies do follow EU regulations (whether it is good or bad)

    Posted 8 years ago #
  4. Solvency II essentially means that insurance companies have to hold a certain amount of capital to guard against insolvency, but also covers some governance requirements, and imposes the requirement for more transparency on how money is used and so on. Naturally insurance companies aren't too happy about it.

    There a LOT of banking regulation comes from Europe, and to be honest if we left we'd likely continue to abide by them, simply so we could still operate in Europe (though British financial products would likely get a little bit more expensive, because we couldn't automatically sell products in Europe).

    Posted 8 years ago #
  5. Then again, FATCA was a piece of American legislation that financial organisations around the world had to comply with and have spent an utter fortune on.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  6. paddyirish
    Member

    Agree with Stickman, there has definitely been a lot of flapping with regard to EU regulation and many projects with this and previous employers have been created to comply with these regulations.

    IMO, any failure to comply is due to ineptitude rather than disregard...

    Posted 8 years ago #
  7. Min
    Member

    I'm not going to justify it; having seen how it was developed and the amount of time and money that has been expended on it then it's doubtful it's money well spent, or that it will achieve its aims.

    But it was an example to show that large companies do follow EU regulations (whether it is good or bad)

    Hmm, okay!
    I would take that as "large companies sometimes follow EU regulations" though. :-) And in this case, rather a lot of expense for not very much - one of the main arguments against the EU - well it is my main argument anyway.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  8. Stickman
    Member

    @WC: without this diverting into an insurance black hole, Solvency II is actually based on the previous UK regulations (at least for the calculation of capital). The UK industry was miles ahead of the continentals in how capital was set, so arguably it's an example of how the UK is influencing the EU. I don't know if that's also the case with banking regs, but I wouldn't be surprised.

    I think that the insurers are generally in agreement about the principles and aims of SII, but it's been the implementation and detail that has caused discontent.

    But you're right - we have to comply with FATCA, Dodd-Frank etc despite these being US laws.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  9. paddyirish
    Member

    Another big +1 for @sallyh's posts- I was trying to say a similar thing, but nowhere near as clearly...

    Posted 8 years ago #
  10. "Solvency II is actually based on the previous UK regulations (at least for the calculation of capital)."

    Aye, but then gets further developed etc for the EU purposes. Some of the banking stuff comes from UK influence, but there are quite a few bits that the UK banking industry is also against. The main thing about the EU taking it on is it becomes a nicely unified-across-28-countries idea, so extending the stability of markets (in theory) and protect consumers.

    I guess if the UK was to leave it would still abide by EU rules, but not have as much say in how things were developed (even if from their idea originally).

    (on FATCA the project I was involved in implementing it, there was a quote from some industry expert that may or may not be true, but apparently the financial companies around the world spent more implementing it than would be saved by the US in stopping tax avoidance - so basically the IRS could have just asked all of the financial companies for a donation towards its coffers instead and wound up better off, with the companies forking out less cash).

    Posted 8 years ago #
  11. I have to agree with all the bits of this I understand...

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/30/eu-referendum-neoliberal-irvine-welsh

    Posted 8 years ago #
  12. Min
    Member

    Yes, it does rather seem to be a choice as to who we want to be screwed over by. :-/

    Interestingly, Gordon Brown's speech a couple of days ago seems from its summary to be rather full of what the EU could be doing and rather light on all the wonderful things it currently is doing. Also interestingly the speech does not seem to be available in its entirety to watch online, at least not that I can find. My conspiracy detectors don't know what to make of that, not without seeing it.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  13. chdot
    Admin

  14. sallyhinch
    Member

    Slightly more cheery piece (at least from Scotland's point of view

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/uk/adam-ramsay/eight-reasons-scotland-is-more-remain-and-what-will-happen-if-its-dragged-out

    "Whatever it is, this referendum has arrived in Scotland like a stag-do from the south coast, and the main reaction seems to be to politely ignore it, and hope it doesn’t miss its train back home in the morning."

    Not so sure the differences between Scotland and the rest of the UK's legal systems loom quite as large in the public imagination as the article implies. However the discussion about whether Scotland could stay in if the UK as a whole votes leave is very interesting - hadn't thought of that as an option

    Posted 8 years ago #
  15. PS
    Member

    Ferrets, sack

    Scenario testing all this in my head to try and cheer myself up a bit, the best possible outcome of an Exit result is that the Conservative party tears itself in two, thereby holing the first past the post system for Westminster under the waterline.

    To be honest, the bad blood that has been created by the outright deception and lies being peddled by both sides (although I would suggest more so, and in an overtly bad way, from the Leave camp) makes me wonder whether the Conservative party can remain a coherent whole even in the event of Remain result... The next General Election's going to be even more of an unpredictable mess (south of the border as least) than the last one.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  16. paddyirish
    Member

    Another, more humourous article.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  17. Min
    Member

    Slightly more cheery piece (at least from Scotland's point of view

    Gosh, it sure was sneery about the English though. I felt quite uncomfortable reading it. "We are not racist like those insular, racist, incapable of international co-operation, nationalistic English people." :-/ They also claim that most Scots have no problem with being both British and Scottish while claiming simultaneously that only a minority of Scots feel British.

    From the article - Nicola Sturgeon will, immediately, seek permission from Holyrood to negotiate with the EU terms for Scotland to Remain. Where in the past, Brussels has refused to talk to the Scottish first minister, doing so in this context would be outrageous.

    Er yes, people seem to have forgotten that the EU weren't interested in us last time. Why would they suddenly be desperate to talk this time?

    My feeling is that it pretty much doesn't matter whether we vote in or out, we are really just choosing which dictator to be overruled by. But given that there is a strong possibility of disparity between us and our Southern neighbours, it bloody does matter as it will mean more years of referendums, Scots/English bitching about each other and for me, constant condemnation from my English in-laws. Oh yay. ::-/

    Posted 8 years ago #
  18. I'm assured often that being anti-English is just 'banter'. During sporting events (such as now) it can be a pain being English in Scotland.

    I had a conversation with a Canadian friend on Saturday who was looking for an English-friendly pub to watch the match in, and I had to admit I hadn't been to a pub to watch such a match in years. Not since spending a very uncomfortable afternoon sitting through Scotland having a goalless draw with Latvia or some such similar, before England played Germany. The German national anthem was accompanied by Scots fans standing and giving Nazi salutes. But y'know, banter.

    Anyway... I don't actually think it'll be the Armageddon peddled by Remain if there's a leave vote, though I'm in the stay camp.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  19. paddyirish
    Member

    @WC My English wife was a regular Wellington rugby season ticket holder when we were in NZ and really enjoyed going. When we moved to Edinburgh we looked forward to continuing to go to Murrayfield. 10 years ago we went to a Scotland vs Barbarians match where we were surrounded by people singing "if you hate the effing English clap your hands" for the whole match. Strangely she hasn't been back since.

    Was one of the main reasons that I voted Yes to Indyref, was I felt that Scotland needs to stand on its own two feet and stop whinging about the English, which seems to be the default position for too many...

    Posted 8 years ago #
  20. Min
    Member

    That very much goes both ways by the way.

    If only it were that simple to cure..

    Posted 8 years ago #
  21. More often I've seen just basic apathy towards Scotland from England, which if anything is probably more hurtful... Though undoubtedly there are two-way streets.

    I've challenged a few people on ABE - some get defensive, some go along the 'banter' lines.

    Anyway, sidetracking this debate :)

    Posted 8 years ago #
  22. Rosie
    Member

    About 20 years ago there were passionate Europhiles especially in the LibDems. They don't seem to exist any more. The Euro, the refugee crisis and Merkel's handling of it have killed them off.

    Now the attitude of the Remainers is that it's too much of a pain/risk to leave. That's why I'll be voting to stay.

    If the UK was not part of the EU, would we be panting to join? I doubt it.

    So we're in the position of someone who is married to someone they have little love for, but their shared children, house, general commitments make it too much of an effort and an upset to get divorced.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  23. That's about the most honest and accurate summary of remaining that I think I've seen. There are some more positives, but yeah, I think a lot boils down to that.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  24. chdot
    Admin

    "If the UK was not part of the EU, would we be panting to join?"

    The simple answer is 'it depends'!

    It would depend if it was being sold as 'a big market for selling stuff without tariffs', 'easy no borders travel', 'good source of subsidies for farmers, fringe areas etc., '(possible) reduction of chance of WW3', 'job opportunities/education abroad', 'cheap Polish tradespersons', 'threat to our jobs', 'more people demanding houses, school places, NHS treatment, welfare benefits' etc. etc.

    Pretty much like the reasons people are choosing to vote stay or go. It is mildly surprising that a lot of people seem to intend to vote Out, which by most reasoning is the more risky/adventurous option.

    It's impossible to know how many people have the fantasy notion that a) immigration will stop next Friday (and maybe some of those people will leave), b) Free Trade with the Whole World will boom c) the nice people in Westminster will enact all the laws we like...

    Posted 8 years ago #
  25. Ah ha, its not all doom and gloom...

    https://twitter.com/PoliticalAP/status/743076129356034048

    Posted 8 years ago #
  26. SRD
    Moderator

    re the Adam Ramsay piece above, and subsequent discussion.

    I was going to post it because I thought it was really good, but that's been done, so a few comments:

    I don't think it's fair to accuse him of being anti-English. Poor chap gew up in Scotland, accused of 'being english'. if you met him, you'd presume he was english too... (but do ask him about his parents and the beavers...)

    If it did come across as sneery, then that's not good. but I had to go back and read it to try and find that in it. My take is that he's trying to explain scottish political culture, and it's quite hard to do that without descending into stereotypes, but that he is less interested in explaining English political culture.

    As a political scientist, I found his points about scots having different ideas about sovereignty for example and how this affects attitudes really interesting. I don't think these points are in people's conscious thoughts, but they do form slightly different political sibjectivities, which become clear at times like this, even if they are normally subsumed in other things where the differences matter less.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  27. Min
    Member

    True enough. If your position is that Scottish Nationalism = good and English Nationalism = bad then there is literally no way to put that across without being sneery.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  28. It depends on how you are defining nationalism with regards to both.

    Is wanting your country to be independent being a 'nationalist'?

    Is being a member of the SNP being a 'nationalist'

    I would define nationalism as the kind of stuff displayed by the BNP, EDL, SDL and toyed with by Ukip.

    I wouldn't describe SNP rhetoric as nationalism.

    McGlashan of Absolutely was a good parody of Scottish nationalism. I haven't witnessed much of that in real life though. Maybe I'm just lucky in that respect.

    Posted 8 years ago #
  29. SRD
    Moderator

    Nationalism is complicated, and -imho- is neither good nor bad in and of itself.

    English nationalism really was complicated by colonialism and empire, and it has many distinctive characteristics that are not seen in other nationalisms - often because they more fully subsumed groups that they absorbed -- eg French nationalism, which was a conscious creation (see Eugene Webber, Peasants into Frenchmen).

    Comparing English nationalism is a fraught topic, because there really aren't any good comparators. Maybe Turkish v. Ottoman at one point in time? Russian? Chinese? - I'm flailing around here trying to think of other post-imperial nationalisms - people tend to study the sub-nationalities, not the dominant ones (which is why Weber's book is do important and so often cited). It is a complicated beast. Perhaps not best discussed in a blogpost.

    Posted 8 years ago #

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