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EU In/Out? Is a referendum the best way?


spider9
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I'd always thought we were a Parliamentary Democracy, and, as such, we elect paid representatives to take difficult decisions on our behalf.

Membership of Europe is a difficult , complicated topic, and most people (including myself) would be hard pushed to appreciate all the pros and cons - so the populace will now be bombarded by media propaganda aimed at the lowest common denominator, I suspect.

Loads of 'crazy' EU stories will emerge and be fed to the Great British public, with 'good' EU stories being more difficult to show. Hence the media barons will, once again, get their way and politicians can then 'blame' us if it turns out bad.

Weak leadership I'm afraid.

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john bunyan

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As FE has said we have had a referendum in the '70's. One cannot keep on changing one's mind - we are in and the talk of another one will only create uncertainty in the minds of multinational potential investors in this country. It is quite clear that there is no appetite in the UK for "ever closer union" , for the Euro or for a "USE" but as a major member ,surely we would be best to seek to resist such moves from within. Countries like Norway (with a small population and big oil asset)appear to have achieved so called independence but in fact they have to abide by EU rules, and pay in a substantial amount without any input to decisions.In my view we are in and should seek to make alliances within the EU with like minded member states to achieve what we are aiming for, such as the "human rights" and other issues. While all this is going on we will lose influence in the EU.

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Aitchbee

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fm said:-

Aitchbee Are you saying you expected Nick Robinson to say;

'This is just a bit of political gameplay. At the end of the day, the UK will stay in Europe. This means I have no reason to keep taking my BBC salary so I'm off'?

My reply to your question is ... NO! (try twisting that one, fm).

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spider9

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fourm member

Very droll, I'm sure!

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johndrew

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The original 1974 referendum (under Ted Heath) simply asked if we wanted free trade. There was no mention as to the additional encumbrances seen since this vote - presumably because our elected leaders thought we would not understand if all the details were made available.

Given the extra bits of EU Law, taxes, immigration, costs, introduction of the Euro and many other items other than free trade we have seen since, I believe the population should be provided with another opportunity to decide whether to continue or not. I also believe this should be after a further opportunity to negotiate with Brussels as to the details of membership is taken.

The attitude of Brussels that one size fits all is being questioned by other member states who find their sovereignty and culture being modified adversely in a similar manner to the UK. Such impositions appear to conflict with the original intent of simple common market principles. It appears that two of the countries that wish to continue with the current status quo are France and Germany - these are two of the original members who wrote the framework.

I believe the UK population are far from stupid and have the ability to analyse the facts and detail if put in front of them. As a result a renegotiation of our membership (which may also include other member states wishes) should take place and the resulting situation be put to a full referendum.

We were promised a referendum the last time changes were made but this was avoided by political interpretation; such a situation should not be permitted again.

As an aside, a straw poll in a French newspaper is reported to have elicited a 70% vote by its readership that the UK should leave the EU. With such feelings in one major member state about us I wonder what a straw poll in others would elicit!

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namtas

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It is interesting that all those who write with so much conviction that it would be disastrous for us the sever links with the EC never back their beliefs with hard evidence, is that because none exists.

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john bunyan

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namas

Yes it does. Here for a start:

Cost of EU etc HM Treasury

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Quickbeam

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fm

Are you suggesting that the primary consideration over the last 40 years for anyone casting a vote has been cast positively on our continued membership of the EU.

In my case it's been very much one of the least things compared to other domestic matters of the day that has influenced my vote for any election I've voted in during that time.

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Quickbeam

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...which probably best answers spider9's question as he intends it to be.

"EU In/Out? Is a referendum the best way?" So I'll answer YES to that, because in a normal domestic election it's only UKIP that make it a major issue, we cast our vote based on numerous other issues. Continued EU membership requires a discussion and answer in it's own right, and deserves to not be marginalised by normal domestic partisan issues.

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Quickbeam

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Well roll on the proper debate then, but I can't see it being sorted with a simple YES/NO, IN/OUT question.

I predict that it'll be one of the most contradictory and confusingly worded referendum questions ever offered.

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johndrew

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fourm member

You appear to lack an understanding of the difference in the electorates reason for choosing a candidate. There is a visible difference between local/domestic policies and those affecting us internationally. I would suggest that most MPs are elected primarily for their position on local issues rather than any other reason. This is possibly less true of MEPs where an increase in UKIP appears to indicate a greater scepticism of Europe.

However, MPs chosen locally appear to have a larger percentage of sceptics in their ranks in recent years than previously, but this may be chance rather than design; on the other hand it could be the effect of dissatisfaction with the impact of the EU has caused such selection. It would be interesting to see the result of a truly representative poll (carried out by such as MORI) as to the opinion of the UK electorate of the impact of the EU on their lives.

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