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Odds and Ends
17 5, 10:56pm
"That I've been misled by Eu-spectic propaganda is what you have said, through you deny it now."
No, I've never denied that - that's what I've said all along.
What I've denied is your claim that this propaganda could only have come in the form of right-wing tabloids - that I've never claimed.
I wrote earlier that as far as I know the main sources of eurosceptic sentiment in the UK is Ukip, Tory back benchers and the tabloids - most of which are right-wing as far as I know, yes. But I went on to write that I don't believe the crucial point of eurosceptisism is that it's right-wing as much as that it's populist.
Like all populism it seeks to explain all manner of internal UK problems by blaming a scapegoat (the EU) and simplifies a complex reality into a false "us vs. them" where "us" is always the wronged party at the hands of the evil "them" who is deliberately out to control and dominate Britain.
It's stupidly populist - but unfortunately stupid populism often works if respectable institutions don't use their influence to educate the public on the reality the populist message distorts.
And in the case of Britain, as far as I know, most such respectable institutions have been asleep at the wheel for decades.
Populist eurosceptisism has been allowed to grow unchecked for decades because many of the respectable institutions (or what one would hope where respectable institutions) have stood to gain by this development.
As I described before, decades of British politicians have found it useful do blame the EU for all manner of internal problems in the UK, and the tabloids (and in part I guess even the regular press) have found it useful to sell copy.
While no, or few, such respectable institutions seem to have seen a value in correcting the misconceptions about the EU this populist rhetoric has spread - leaving the British public very uneducated about the true state of affairs.
We see the same thing play out in the US, where a large minority of the country simply doesn't trust the truth when presented to them, but preferring instead to live in the fantasy world created by populist rhetoric.
I'm sure Trump supporters and Brexit supporters are utterly convinced about the things they believe - but the fact is nonetheless that much of what they believe is pure fantasy.
Which you of course resent hearing - but there is no nice way of saying it, unfortunately.
"Also that any criticism of the EU you automatically assume to be inaccurate."
No I don't - but you have yet to offer any criticism of the EU that's actually based on reality!
I have my issues with the EU as well - but the things you've brought up are either simply not true at all, or based on irrational expectations of what Brexit would mean for Britain.
Like for instance the simple fact that there has never been that magical deal that could be best for everyone and the only reason Britain isn't getting that is that the EU is somehow trying to "punish" Britain for voting leave.
In reality no such deal ever existed - Brexit would always mean a loss for both sides. And because of the unbalance in power between the two sides in the negotiations, the side that would lose the most was always going to be Britain.
Which everyone who knew the first thing about this said before the referendum - but the Brexit campaigners of course ignored anyone who did and instead promised everything under the sun, if people just voted to leave.
But there has never been a realistic plan how to achieve all the things they promised - because they simply promised the impossible!
"It doesn't help further that in this 'discussion' while I have pointed out the problems for people in the EU from the current situation you ignore that to rabbit on about me complaining we're not getting everything which 'deluded Britexiter's have claimed Britain would get out of leaving' which is totally unrelated to what I've been saying here."
Everyone in the remaining EU understands that Brexit will mean a loss to us as well - that's not something that has been hidden from the public and we don't live under the illusion that there is some perfect deal that could benefit everyone more then Britain being a member.
But Britain has decided to leave and we obviously respect her decision to do so.
There is absolutely no comparable UK-skeptic sentiment in the rest of Europe, to the British eurosceptic sentiment. There never has been and there aren't now.
You can't find tabloids in Europe filled with spite and illwill towards Britain, and neither are the respectable press gleeful over the sad fate of Britain, nor are broadcast journalists.
Mainstream European sentiment on Brexit is very much that we're sad to see Britain leave, but since she voted like she did we guess she's leaving.
We know that'll result in some financial losses and that we'll have to renegotiate the EU budget once she's gone - but there is no great uproar about those things.
Mainstream European news don't cover Brexit a tenth as much as UK news does - because it's frankly not a huge issue for us.
All of this is because the rest of Europe has a rational understanding of Brexit and what will happen. They haven't been sold a fantasy version either of a huge benefit, or warned of a huge disaster when Brexit occurs - because neither of those scenarios will happen in the rest of Europe.
There will be some financial loss in Europe as well, and some problems for business and individuals - yes. But that's unavoidable - we realize that.
So Brexit supporters trying to tell other Europeans how terrible everything will be for them if they don't pressure their government to give Britain a better deal falls on deaf ears here - no one is listening to those claims.
"Its what people like Tusk and Barnier themselves say which has led to me viewing them with such contempt and distrust."
I've seen many quotes either fabricated completely, or taken out of context and presented as something completely different then what the person in question was actually saying, online.
So if you want to present quotes from individual EU employees (which they are - remember neither of them decide policy, they only implement it), you will have to provide me with the exact quote or a link to a place where it occurs so I can research it further.
Last time a person online claimed a quote to me it was some Russian, claiming Hillary Clinton had talked about how she wanted to control Russia's Siberian natural resources.
After some digging I found out the first "source" for that quote was a Russian intelligence officer who - in a Russian newspaper some years ago - claimed Russian military psychic's had gleaned this from Clinton by looking at pictures of her and reading her mind...
And that "quote" is still being used in Russian propaganda today, as "proof" of the west's evil intentions towards Russia.
The Russian I talked to presented it as a factual quote.
"Its only with the irresponsible behaviour of the EU 'representatives' since 2016 that I accept the enmity towards Britain goes much deeper."
Show me proof of this "irresponsible behavior" then. Not just you claiming things again, but actual PROOF. Link to sources showing what you claim is "irresponsible behavior" and I'll at least be able to check it out in some way.
I've seen none of that, so my basic assumption is that this is in fact not at all the case.
Instead, I very much believe that what you're upset about is the discrepancy between the fantasy of Brexit you where sold, and the reality that's now emerging.
But as I told you before - none of that is actually surprising or "irresponsible behavior" in reality, but a consequence of Britain's weak hand in the negotiations.
You can be as upset as you like about the stronger party in the negotiations not handing the weaker party all it wanted - but in reality that was never going to happen, and that's not in any way "irresponsible behavior" on the part of the EU negotiators.
Instead they're just responsible to the people they represent - the other 27 EU members.
That may suck for Britain - but again that's just a result of Brexit being a very bad idea to begin with, not some evil plan by the EU to be nasty to Britain.
Also, on the topic of "irresponsible behavior" I would like to point out that I've already showed you that one of your first attacks on the EU - for not wanting to agree to a deal for the EU's citizens in Britain and Britain's in the EU - was in reality the exact opposite of what you claimed.
The EU has NEVER been the party that refused such a deal. It was ALWAYS the May-government which refused to settle this issue, because they wished to keep the fate of these people as a bargaining chip in the future negotiations.
So far from "irresponsible behavior" the EU has in fact - as far as I know, barring any possible actual proof you have yet to provide - been the responsible party in these negotiations so far.
While the May-government has wasted time dithering and vacillating between positions, not willing (or unable) to decide what they actual want out of the negotiations.
Which, again, is a natural result of the fact that the Brexit campaigners, to sell Brexit to the British public, sold several different and mutually excluding versions of what Brexit would actually mean.
Which means that the May-government knows it can't possibly fulfill all the promises made, and is locked in a constant internal war over which version of Brexit to pursue.
Which in turn is why the best May could offer was "Brexit means Brexit" - which says NOTHING - but let's everyone think she's for whatever version of Brexit they are for.
"Its the extremists on the pro-EU side that are the reason I and I think many others have been alienated from it."
Ok then - let's see some of the extremist things these extremists have said then?
Again - actual sources are what's needed and not just you claiming things.
Also - remember there are actual extremists on both sides of every issue, and that it's pointless to talk about those unless they have some actual power to influence policy with their extremism.
So pointing out some private citizen saying stupid things doesn't actually prove anything, as you could always find people like that.
What's interesting is if you can point to people, or better still entire organizations with actual power or influence over policy that hold extreme views - that actually says something.
"If you stop with the blind insistence that despite knowing nothing about me you can tell me why I disagree with you we might have a basis for discussion. Especially when your conclusion is so obviously wrong. As I have probably said before you will not influence me by continuing to insult me, which is what you have done every time. "
As I've repeatedly said, I've actually made far fewer claims about you then you have claimed. The only thing I've really said about you is that you're ill-informed about Brexit and the EU - and you clearly are, as shown by the many false claims you've made.
Now I guess you find it insulting that I tell you so, but it none the less remains a fact that you've main a number of claims that are simply wrong.
Something I've proven with a number of sources, while you so far has not presented a single source.
It's really not my intention to be mean or disrespectful - but when someone is wrong on the facts, that's just the way it is and I don't believe that sugarcoating it will do much difference.
Wrong is still wrong.
But I've also said I've certainly never believed you to be a racist or evil or that you deliberately misstate what I write or misunderstand it.
I've always felt you're just very ill-informed about the realities - and I truly believe that to be the case with many Britons who support Brexit as well.
Which isn't really that surprising. You've been lied to by populist euroeceptic rhetoric for decades, and few respectable institutions in Britain seems to have helped you get your facts straight.
With that kind of background, it's not hard to understand why many Britons hold such a negative view towards the EU, compared to any other people in Europe.