Scandinavia and the World
Scandinavia and the World

Comments #9760898:

Lazy Lady 10 5, 6:58pm


"Or continue to be deluded that the BBC is some rabid right wing propaganda group."

I don't follow the BBC, but it wouldn't surprise me one bit if they gave a very UK-centric version of the issues.
The problem is of course, that when British society has been marinating in euroscepticism for decades if not centuries, it infects even institutions that are supposed to be impartial.

So no, I'm not ignoring anything. The problem is that your entire understanding of the EU and the relationship between Britain and the EU is based on decades of anti-EU lies that makes you draw erroneous conclusions.

Most of what you claim has simply no basis in facts, I'm afraid.

"Its also untrue that national government have vetoes on policy. When it suits the EU, such as providing excuses for Spain to make demands on British territory as a way of increasing pressure for further concessions. There are a fair number of examples of national governments being forced to accept EU demands, even when its not in their interests."

I didn't say they have veto power over ALL policy - I said they had so over all major decisions - which is perfectly true.

Regarding Spain you seem to willfully misunderstand the realities.
If Britain leaves the EU she will become a counterpart to the EU. Then obviously the EU:s position will change from now trying to mediate a conflict over Gibraltar within the EU-family, to one where the EU obviously will back the only nation in the EU - Spain.
It's simply ridiculous for Britain to expect the EU nations to show more consideration for a non-member then a member, of course.
So again this is just a natural consequence of Britain's own decision to leave - nothing more.

And yes obviously countries have been forced to accept compromises within the EU - again it's simply ridiculous for you or any other Brexiter to expect anything else.
But it's not some evil EU overlord that have forced these compromises on Britain - it's the result of Britain's own priorities in negotiations.

The EU is a collaboration between 28 sovereign nations that all have their own interest closest at heart of course - just as it should be.
But for the EU to work and all members to gain the benefits of that cooperation, every nation also sometimes have to concede things in negotiations with the others.

Every nation spends it's own negotiating capital in the way they see fit, prioritizing the issues that are most important to them and judging the stance of the other nations.
Having a decisive input on EU:s joint policy in one area is obviously a lot easier if no other nation really cares about that issue - or if they all agree with your nation.
If most of them agree but some oppose you position it's slightly harder and if every single other EU nation oppose your position it's almost impossible - that's just the realities of negotiations.

Britain, as one of the major nations of the EU, has had a major negotiating capital and been very influential in forming EU policy - far more so then many smaller nations.
But it still doesn't mean that Britain's negotiating capital is unlimited - she can't expect to get her wish on every single topic.

The problem is that that's precisely what the EU-bashing British politicians and your tabloids have been telling Britons for decades you have the right to expect and demand.

Any development that hasn't gone Britain's way has immediately been decried as horribly unfair, while you've accepted every decision that's gone in your favor as the only acceptable outcome.

That other nations often have been forced to concede their interests for you to gain those favorable outcomes means nothing to you, as you've been actively encouraged to only see yourselves as the permanently wronged party.

You've cultivated a ridiculous sense of victimhood over perceived slights at the hand of the evil EU, while ignoring that the reality is that compromise is always necessary for 28 nations to be able to agree on anything.

No nation can always get it's way and despite Britain actually getting it's way far more often then many smaller countries, it was never enough for you.

Thus the so called "points" you made actually has no basis in reality.
Britain hasn't been conceding more to the EU then other nations - quite the opposite.
And while you're a net-contributor to the overall budget, you're not the biggest one by far as many other nations in the EU contribute more per capita to the budget then Britain does.

But those facts never matter - because far to many Britons "know" you've somehow been wronged and have been taken advantage of.

Because that's what politicians who want you to look elsewhere for scapegoats, and publishers who want to sell copy have told you for decades.

"We could have had an amical divorce to the mutual benefit of both sides but their determined on making Britain pay for deciding to leave."

You keep parroting that since that's what the Brexiter's told you - but it's simply fantasy.
The remaining 27 nations in the EU have no incentive what so ever to give Britain the preferential deal she seeks. Again you're completely ignoring the interests of all other nations in the mistaken belief that what's best for Britain is somehow magically also best for every other nation. It's not and therefore the promise of an easy deal in everyone's best interest has always been an empty promise.

Which again, EVERYONE told you before the referendum - but a slim majority of Britons instead chose to believe the Brexiter's who gave you that empty promise.

"I'll be blunt. If I had been in charge on the British side then one of two things would have happened. [and so on]"

Then let me be blunt in saying that you're frankly delusional.
Britain leaving the EU is a TERRIBLE negotiation position as the combined 27 European nations left in the EU far outnumbers Britain on virtually every single metric.
Everyone who's studied the issue knows that and that's why even the best negotiators in the world couldn't gain Britain all the Brexiter's promised the British voters.

And you're probably not the best negotiator in the world anyway.

Britain leaving the EU was never ever going to give you all the Brexiter's promised you, and the greater danger here is that if you and millions of other Britons continue to believe in that pip-dream you also (like you've shown) continue to feed your resentment over your belief that "the EU" in some way wanted to punish Britain for leaving.
While in fact of course, the hostile sentiment in the UK against the continent has NEVER been mirrored in the rest of Europe.
Britain had a good reputation abroad and most Europeans had nothing but positive feelings for it and it's peoples.

But then most Europeans don't actually follow the debate in Britain and know with what resentments and scorn much of Britain speaks of the rest of Europe.

Thus the real risk here is that the currant and future British governments and your tabloids fosters Britain's very own version of the Germans stab-in-the-back myth regarding the loss of the First World War, where you attribute your own failures and catastrophic policy decisions to others in an attempt to mitigate the sense of shame over the defeat for Britain Brexit will become.
It's always tempting to blame others for your own mistakes - especially so if they're "bloody foreigners".

So far most Europeans don't actually know how the debate is being carried on in Britain - and they'd be shocked to hear you speak in the manner you do about them and the EU at large.
Not because we don't all can have our misgivings about the EU, but because your understanding is a caricature of an evil empire ruled by some individuals you detest.

Europeans understands the EU doesn't work like that at all and Britain would lose tremendously in credibility if people understood that this stupid caricature has now basically become official UK policy.

Europeans expect Britain's to be rational and negotiate in good faith, but if the full extent of Britain's Brexit delusions would dawn in Europe, you'd see a much tougher stance from ordinary people here.

As of now most people don't care to much about the whole issue. Few even understands why Britain suddenly decided to leave (since they haven't followed the decades of EU-smearing in Britain), and chalk it up to basically the same thing as Trump winning in the US - in 2016 the US and UK just went mad all of a sudden and shot themselves in the foot for no apparent reason at all.
Well that's too bad for you guy's, but we don't need to be mean about it - just let you sort out your own mess.

But if word got out about what a majority of Britons actually seem to believe about the rest of Europe?
Boy - you'd better believe European voters would start pressing their politicians to take a much tougher stance on Brexit.

What the British tabloids and May-government is decrying as completely unfair to Britain is the best you're ever going to get with the weak hand you have.
If the EU member states really wanted to punish Britain they could do a whole lot worse - believe me.

So let's not hope it ends up going down that road, but you can sort this mess out in Britain amongst yourselves and not turn this into a toxic conflict with the EU.
Because like Brexit itself in the first place, we would all just lose on that - but no country more so then Britain.