Nice work if you can get it.

It’s nice to be tagged, even quoted by someone else but someone’s cage has been truly rattled. What is it with these ‘Eurosceptics’ anyway? They’re no fun, I tell you!

This is pure biscuit-taking,

In my experience, Eurosceptics are likelier to have lived abroad, more open to foreign cultures and more skilled at languages than Euro-enthusiasts.

Hmmm, where did this come from? Nice bit of myth-construction here. I have news for you, I’m actually fairly well-travelled and I speak 3 languages (I’m always open to learning more of them) and so are many other ‘Euro-enthusiasts no doubt’. I was also born in Germany and lived there for some of my childhood. I think of myself as a European, better still, I consider myself to be a citizen of the world; an Internationalist. Ooops, does that mean that I’m a filthy socialist too? Careful with those binaries! You’ll have someone’s eye out!

If Hannan or any of the other self-declared libertarians were true to their word, they would be arguing for the abolition of nation-states instead of joining statist political parties.  How exactly can one call oneself a libertarian and be a supporter of the State while participating in a [Euro] statist institution? Is it the money? When it comes to states, there are no half measures; you either have them or you don’t. The smaller state is a myth.

Back to the Euro: the drive to ‘save the pound’ is driven by obsessives who see any move to the Euro as an affront to their sense of national identity. For me, the Euro isn’t the issue; it’s another capitalist sideshow. The real issue is money itself; what it is or, rather, what it isn’t. The question that I would ask them is “what is so important about pieces of debased metal and bank notes that aren’t tied to anything tangible or real”? Surely, in these globalised times, one form of money is as good as any other? In years gone by, money was based on some form of precious commodity. Even banknotes – being IOU’s could, theoretically,  be exchanged for silver. Today’s money is based on nothing more than fresh air – that includes Sterling, the US dollar and any other currency that you care to name. Bretton-Woods is just another hazy memory of a long hot summer. But conveniently for our Euro-phobic friends, the spectre of Greece hangs over Europe – it’s a rather fortunate coincidence. But the problems with Greece would have happened with or without the Euro. It’s dishonest to use the example of Greece as an “I told you so” defence when the responsibility for their crisis and ours lies with the speculative activity of the banks.

Now that the Tories are back in power, they think they can mask their divisions over Europe from the rest of the world and these divisions are bound to come to the surface sooner or later. We still remember the Major years; our memories have not dimmed with the passage of time. But having to sit next to, or within close proximity to, the Europhiliac Lib Dems must feel pretty damned uncomfortable for a lot of Tories. I wonder how the Lib Dems feel about the Tory alliance with Poland’s Law and Justice Party? You know… that party of xenophobes and homophobes. It’s the company you keep, as they say…

Finally, how many people in this country actually know what their MEP does? Furthermore how many can separate the European Parliament from the tabloid-constructed image of the anally retentive ‘kill-joy’? I am not a fan of the EU, I think the European Parliament is a talking shop – the real power lies elsewhere.  Still, the money must be good…the expenses too.

Nice work if you can get it.

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2 Comments

Filed under Government & politics

2 responses to “Nice work if you can get it.

  1. richthegeek

    1. I agree that Dan Hannan’s assertion is unfounded – as an “evil tory xenophobe” he is more likely to meet others similar to himself than “cuddly socialist europhiles”, and as such is likely to imagine a strong correlation between being well-traveled and euroscepticism.

    However, your understanding of the word “likelier” is flawed. He does not mean that there are no europhiles who speak foreign languages or have travelled, nor does he mean that all sceptics are multi-lingual and regularly visit Amsterdam.

    2. Do you resent his position in the EU because he is being, in your view, hypocritical by not jizzing all over every proposed diktat?

    Any non-dictatorial ruling structure will work better with opposition to it’s ideas. No-one will get it 100% correct on their own – it’s only by someone (be they a man or a group) pointing out the flaws in the plan.

    If this is Dan’s position, he is an altruistic libertarian, as opposed to an idealogical one. Even then, from what I know, his position as a libertarian is simply that he dislikes intervention on the state on people’s lives beyond those that maintain law and order.

    3. Money & Greece. Sure it’s not backed by anything tangible (besides the economy of the country/region it represents, and that’s a big besides), but the point he makes, and all opponents to the Euro make, is the problems that such a system causes.

    Using to the Euro (and thus having your entire economy relying on it) means that the government no longer has much control over its own economy, no way to print its way out of debt (a bad idea usually anyway) or lower inflation (by modulating interest rates). It also puts the countries economy at greater peril from the misfortunes and mistakes of other countries.

    *This* is why Greece is so happily pointed at by the evil tory xenophobes. Eurozone countries are at massive peril because of the implosion of Greece, and greater still if/when Spain, Italy, Ireland, and Portugal follow.

    The commission has stated that the 750b EUR might not be enough to cover all required bailouts and economic reconstruction of the failed countries in the event that it gets much worse. This means the total debt burden of the other Eurozone countries increases, bringing them closer to bankruptcy, leading to a greater debt burden on the remaining Eurozone countries. You see the MASSIVE positive feedback loop here?

    If Greece had it’s own currency, yes the problems would have occurred (possibly – it would have had seperation of powers allowing different courses of action available to it, but the outcome would likely have been the same), but it would not have spread like a vicious cancer throughout Europe. Greece would have collapsed, probably gone through a revolution, and come out the other side as some unpredictable entity.

    This, and I say it again, is why the ETXs love Greece as an example. It shows that one countries failure can cause issues with every country using the same country. There is no buffer caused by conversion and tangible imports/exports. There is limited control over your own finances, and what control you do have is destroyed by the profligacy of others.

    As such, they for the most part dislike the Euro not because it is an attack on our nationality but because it is an attack on our economic freedom, a key part of sovereignty and without it, a tool easily used for blackmail and strong-arming by any cuddly socialists.

  2. Dan is not “altruistic” at all. How can he be? He’s a fan of Ayn Rand. Furthermore, my understanding of the word “likelier” is not flawed. Would you care to tell me in what way is it flawed?

    “. Do you resent his position in the EU because he is being, in your view, hypocritical by not jizzing all over every proposed diktat”?

    Reductio ad absurdum. No, I am more concerned with the lack of principles. At least Sinn Fein – whatever you may think of them – have to courage of their convictions and refuse to sit in the Commons. The same cannot be said for Eurosceptics who prefer to take their salaries and complain that the Euro parliament should be abolished. I find the position of Eurosceptics stunningly hypocritical. UKIP is probably the worst of the bunch in that respect.

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