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Posted by diz (1394 posts) 2 years, 9 months ago

Poll: Should the UK stay in or leave the EU? (1654 votes)

Stay In EU - "Stronger In" 77%
Leave EU - "Brexit" 22%

On Thursday 23 June 2016, people in the United Kingdom will get to vote on whether they want to stay in the European Union.

This decision is more significant than a typical vote in an election, since it will determine the United Kingdom's future governance and potentially have wide-ranging repercussions in Europe and beyond. It's the sort of vote we last had in the mid-1970's, when the UK agreed to join Europe's "Common Market".

Here's some information from the "Stay" and "Leave" campaigns. Here's the betting odds.

Do you think it will matter? Are you in the UK and planning on voting? If you are European, do you think a leave vote will have much effect on other countries in the EU? Does this referendum get much publicity around the world?

Personally, I can't wait until the polling station opens!

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#1 Edited by Onemanarmyy (4169 posts) -

Hard to say what the better option longterm is.

However, I think that the majority of England will vote to leave the EU. Europe just haven't had much positive press in the last few years. Both sides can make lists of the numbers involved in the decision to sway the audience, but that always gets down to technicalities of how much certain industries are affected by being part of the EU and how that might change.

As a mainland european, it's hard to realize what the day-to-day benefits are that people in England recognize. Like i can point to the Euro and open borders as things that are convenient for me.

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#2 Posted by planetfunksquad (1543 posts) -

This thread will go well.

I think people will vote to leave. I honestly don't know which way I'll vote personally.

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#3 Posted by Zevvion (5965 posts) -

Would leaving also mean closed borders? I never felt like the UK was that much part of Europe anyway. Still needed to exchange for a different coin and whatnot.

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#4 Posted by Shindig (4831 posts) -

Stay, not because the Leave argument is bad but more the risks involved in doing something completely new. The same thing that knackered Scottish independence, really. Open borders work both ways but the media will always focus on the minority coming in (or the ones that drown en route). And the only other data the Leave campaign can really throw is the immediate savings from an exit. £350m a week. An NHS hospital a week.

Counter that with the £91bn in trade and money EU membership brings in annually (according to the Remain campaign). That's a bigger number which, for a country still looking for some money, holds sway with me. On top of this, I don't think the guys in Westminster need more power. I feel like those clamouring for leaving are fairly self-centered. The EU is not solely about US. Leaving puts us into territory we haven't ventured into since the 70s. And we were really fucked then.

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#5 Posted by Dave_Tacitus (2436 posts) -

I went into this nodding towards 'stay' but perfectly happy to be convinced by the 'leave' crowd. However, all I've heard is a succession of ifs, buts and maybes.

"Oh come on, you don't expect the UK will have to do abc if we leave? Look at xyz - They're doing just fine." etc etc

One thing in the leave mob's favour is that if they win, UKIP have no reason to exist...

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#6 Posted by diz (1394 posts) -

@shindig: I think the "risk-averse" argument is weak, as are all of the financial projections from both sides. I think they are red-herrings though. There is a much more fundamental principal at stake: Ask yourself if you know how the EU operates and what the power structures are there within it. Try and find out what the structures of power are in the EU, how many "presidents" there are and how many of them are elected by the people they're supposed to represent and who they are responsible to. I think it far more democratic to be able to vote for the people who rule over us instead, because if we don't like them, we can vote them out next time.

I wonder what you think of the Brexit campaign film:

Loading Video...

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#7 Posted by Bicycle_Repairman (670 posts) -

There are several arguments for staying in the EU: moral, diplomatic, historic and economic. But most of all telling the Scots that staying together is better, then leaving the EU because you don't always get 100% what you want would be a real dick move.

As a Dutchmen i hope the Brits stay, but on the other hand perhaps topics like banking regulations could actually move forward without the UK voting against it all the time. Can we make it so the London Mayor and the Scots stay with us and the rest gets like a 5 year leave? That would not be the worst thing ever.

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#8 Posted by planetfunksquad (1543 posts) -

@zevvion: yeah, I never really felt like we were all in on Europe either. I love every EU country I've ever been to, but they feel so culturally different. That body of water between us probably.

After thinking on it a little I'm leaning stay, but I'm still not decided. I mean the way the Murdoch press is getting behind leave should be a red flag, y'know?

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#10 Posted by Christoffer (2373 posts) -

If anything, EU has pushed the UK further away from Europe. But I still like the EU as an idea. Does it work as intended?

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#11 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (3642 posts) -

I want to stay in but I kind of hope England vote leave just so Scotland can get a second Independence Referendum.

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#12 Posted by AlexW00d (7570 posts) -

When one side has Boris Johnson, Michael Gove, and Nigel fucking Farage I have absolutely no idea why anyone would wanna go with a leave vote. (even without those fucking wankers I still dunno why anyone learned would wanna leave either but hey ho)

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#13 Posted by MonkeyKing1969 (7470 posts) -

I'll admit I don not know how the EU works. I don't know how people represent countries, I don't know what powers they have, and I don't know to what extent there should be powers.

Yet, it seems to make a lot of sense that Western Europe would have at least some level of standards and regional law making. And maybe that only seems reasonable because the damn Romans spent a few hundred years trying to connecting Western Europe together with hammer & tongs. The Romans did such a decent job that even when things went sideways; Charlemagne was still thinking Belgium, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and western Germany seemed like a sensible area to be ruled as one nation.

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#14 Posted by btrdeadthanred (379 posts) -

Not European or from the UK so I don't have an opinion. I hope they make the right choice, whatever that may be.

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#16 Posted by dudeglove (13677 posts) -

The UK already basically has a moat, how much further can you get away from the EU? Drift into the Atlantic somehow?

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#17 Posted by diz (1394 posts) -

I find it disheartening that some people would focus on personalities rather than the fundamental issue that's at stake: I could find as many objectionable personalities from the stay campaign (Cameron, Osborne, May, Hunt, Morgan, etc, etc) - and I voted for Clegg (also a stayer), who seemed perfectly reasonable at the time...

I think the coverage has been good so far. There have been plenty of reasoned debates by I2C, the Guardian, et al. "Question Time" (on at the moment) has had much audience noise recently and ramps up as the times gets closer. "The Telegraph" are "in", while "The Times" are "out". People making the scaremongering and outlandish claims are only underlining the importance of this decision we must make and hopefully forcing people to look in to issues around how the EU works, how markets work, asking valid questions and making reasoned decisions.

Please don't think something just because it is "easier to think it". The tough decisions are the most important ones.

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#18 Posted by iAmJohn (6293 posts) -

Just out of curiosity, is there a good resource for a Yank to get some insight into what's going on and the arguments for and against without getting bogged down in the partisan stuff? Thanks!

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#19 Posted by imsh_pl (4208 posts) -

The 'Stay' page makes it seem like voting for Brexit means that the country will physically separate from the continent.

No Caption Provided

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#20 Edited by btrdeadthanred (379 posts) -

Well, I mean the Brexit plan DOES involve Boris Jonson and Ian Botham shouting at maintland Europe until it physically propels the United Kingdom exactly halfway between Iceland and Norway.

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#21 Posted by NewHuman (329 posts) -

Hey small britishman

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#22 Posted by renegade1973 (75 posts) -

Wow. Amazed this is a topic. I'm a UK guy. The polls are showing 50/50 ish

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#23 Posted by AlexW00d (7570 posts) -

@diz said:

I find it disheartening that some people would focus on personalities rather than the fundamental issue that's at stake: I could find as many objectionable personalities from the stay campaign (Cameron, Osborne, May, Hunt, Morgan, etc, etc) - and I voted for Clegg (also a stayer), who seemed perfectly reasonable at the time...

The entire bloody things devolved into some stupid fucking shouting match between a bunch of cartoon politicians, so I really dunno what else you expect? There's no way any legitimate conversation can actually happen about this (especially on an American videogame forum...) when the main argument boils down to "omg foreigners stealing my jobs/money/laws". Less than 2% of the population will actually read into the positives and negatives of either vote, and it's all a big depressing mess of shit that won't be taken seriously (like all public votes tbf). Modern politics, my friend, is just a competition of personalities.

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#24 Posted by diz (1394 posts) -

@alexw00d: Right now, on TV, people of differing opinions on this are talking about it rationally. There has already been legitimate conversation in this thread. I posted on this international forum because I wondered how consensus from a global source would compare with national/regional feeling in the UK, which itself seems split by age more than by politic.

The root issue for me is of the undemocratic nature of the EU and in it's focus to strengthen the Euro and spread nameless, unaccountable, corrupt, bureaucratic federalism.

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#25 Posted by Pazy (2770 posts) -

Personally, I've tended to be happy with basically everything I've known about the EU and our place within it. Its certainly not perfect but I think we get at least our value back out of it and we are in a better position to change it if we are part of it.

Though I also believe in Scottish Independence and its place within the EU afterwords since, at least where I am, I only see benefits to Scotland from the EU but I see less from Westminster/UK.

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#26 Edited by GStats (197 posts) -

I'll probably be voting Leave.

I don't like how undemocratic the EU is. I don't like open-borders immigration. And I'm highly skeptical that any of the economic benefits are worth the 20 billion it costs for membership. Very few of the EU member states have been seeing huge economic growth.

As I've heard conservative MP Daniel Hannan say: Why would you chain yourself to the continent that has the slowest economic growth? (after Antarctica)

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#27 Posted by chrissedoff (2387 posts) -

I'm not a UK citizen, but, from where I'm sitting, I'm having a hard time seeing the upside besides catharsis for isolationists and xenophobes.

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#28 Posted by Strathy (184 posts) -

I'm a citizen but not eligible to vote (expat), but I'd say leave though. It's not a great situation on either end of things, and it's extremely sad that the EU is turning into such a sinkhole, but that's the reality. Any countries able to get out should cut their losses and do it.

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#29 Edited by Mikemcn (8565 posts) -

As an American, a more divided Europe is not something history tells me is a good thing. The EU was the first time in 1000 years where disparate european states came together as Europeans. I'm sure there are technical arguments that could be made about trade versus protection-ism or the part where most people are freaking about immigrants when they're the least of anybodys problems, but I find no one talking about what it means to be European vs simply English/Scottish/Welsh/Irish. It's a good thing to call those around you friends rather than simply neighbors. You don't lose identity by not being sovereign, you lose identity by assuming that borders is what maintains a culture and not the people themselves.

@alexw00d You kind of just described American Politics, it's a quagmire of nightmares over here too.

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#30 Posted by btrdeadthanred (379 posts) -

@mikemcn: you just described politics, period.

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#31 Posted by Devil240Z (5705 posts) -

Every country needs to just shut up and fund the ESA and NASA.

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#32 Posted by soulcake (2624 posts) -

I think its wise for UK to remember that there not the world power they used to be. and that unity gets you way further then exile. Also if we ever wanna live in a Star Trek like world nation we need to unite ! or need a few nuclear winters, that would help to.

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#33 Posted by davidh219 (904 posts) -

@soulcake: Glad I'm not the only dork that thinks of Star Trek when issues like this come up, lol.

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#34 Edited by Shindig (4831 posts) -

It's telling that the UK and Russia are so anti-Europe. Two former empire runners that have been eroded over time. The banking legislation thing got me thinking. If you leave and have another recession, what kind of country will I wind up living in?

I've had further thoughts, too. My energy supplier is German. My job is working for a French company. If you can't see the benefits of EU membership, you're not looking hard enough.

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#35 Edited by deepcovergecko (261 posts) -

I have some friends in England that don't like being considered as Europe because they aren't on the same landmass as France, Germany, etc.

I can kinda understand because when people say Europe, it gives the image of France, Germany and so on, but UK is very close to US popculture with both countries sharing much of the same media and comedy, there's no language barrier of any kind.

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#36 Posted by dudeglove (13677 posts) -
@diz said:

Please don't think something just because it is "easier to think it". The tough decisions are the most important ones.

Why on earth leave such a decision to "the people" then? One of the reasons we elect politicians is so they do that thinking for us.

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#37 Posted by Jimbo (10472 posts) -

I'll vote for the restoration of British sovereignty. Giving it away after fighting two wars to keep it was ridiculous in the first place.

Our immigration policy is currently as reckless as announcing your house party on social media: free booze, everyone welcome, no security on the door. No right-thinking country in the world operates this way and we shouldn't either, but while we remain in the EU we are literally powerless to address the situation at all.

It's true that people are also free to leave the UK to work in europe, and this arrangement would be fine if in practice the numbers leaving and arriving were remotely close but they aren't.

333,000 more people (that we know about) arrived than left last year: that is completely unsustainable for a nation of this size. That's an additional small city's worth of homes, schools, doctors, infrastructure etc to magic out of thin air every year. We would struggle to cope with the natural population increase of our own citizens, let alone having to provide for so many others from europe and further afield.

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#38 Posted by Devil240Z (5705 posts) -

No because every country needs to join together in a single world government.

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#39 Posted by Shindig (4831 posts) -

@jimbo: Whilst that's all well and good, the Empire was imploding long before the turn of the century. We still have our sovereignty. We've never really lost it.

Wait a minute. Britain drives a load of European cars on European petrol. Just how much more expensive will dealing with these companies outside an EU framework be? An independent Britain needs to consider this.

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#40 Posted by Blackout62 (2190 posts) -

Contrary to the catchy lyrics of seminal English punk band The Clash's "Should I Stay Or Should I Go", do not leave the EU! If you go the trouble will in fact be double.

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#41 Posted by Cagliostro88 (1238 posts) -

(i'm from continental europe)

I would hope they decide to stay in from a balance of political power prospective, but honestly i would not know how i would vote if i were british given the current situation of the EU. I was raised as an europeist and i was an absolutely fervent one but that has definitely changed from last june/july

Honestly I hope that if they vote to leave they won't do it chasing an unachievable "dream" of closed borders because of immigration fears; i guarantee you that in negotiations to enter the trade market free flow of people would be a point necessary to reach and agreement with the EU. Also i've read you would would leave open borders anyway with Ireland which would mean that's a deeply flawed plan since that would create and obvious backdoor (Ireland is in the EU...). I would understand a leave vote based on a political and cultural standpoint tho.

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#42 Posted by Carryboy (1098 posts) -

Im voting to leave, both sides seem to constantly tout numbers that seems to go against exactly what the others say so im going strictly on my own political philosophy. I dont like big overreaching government let alone a non-elected one and for that reason alone voting to leave is the easy choice for me. I think stay will win because most people arent politically active and I think to stay is the default vote.

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#43 Posted by Shindig (4831 posts) -

It should be noted Alex Salmond was talking the other day about the SNP pulling the trigger on another Scottish independence referendum if we leave the EU.

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#44 Posted by BoOzak (2515 posts) -

I'm from Buenos Aires and I say kill'em all! I mean.. I'm from the UK and I think we should leave. Scotland should also have it's independance. It could all go terribly but things are pretty shit at the moment and it's getting worse.

Online
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#45 Posted by Jimbo (10472 posts) -

@shindig: We don't even get to decide who or how many people enter the country. That's about the most basic expression of sovereignty and we can't do it.

Trade between UK and EU will be sorted out within ~2 seconds of Britain leaving. The whole organisation exists to benefit big business and they won't cut off their nose to spite their face.

The cost of fuel is all tax and a slightly cheaper foreign car isn't much help when house prices continue to rise by more than most people make. Wages are held down by cheap foreign labour and house prices continually forced up by massive overpopulation.

Our parents' generation paid 3x an average salary for a house and our generation has to pay 10-12x an average salary. To be told we are better off now than 30 years ago is pretty galling.

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#46 Posted by Jesus_Phish (3765 posts) -

@shindig: Don't worry, you've still got the great British steel and coal industries. Ol' Borris will sort it out. He'll have you driving steel chassis cars powered by British coal in no time.

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#47 Posted by Bollard (8141 posts) -

@diz said:

I think it far more democratic to be able to vote for the people who rule over us instead, because if we don't like them, we can vote them out next time.

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That was the argument that actually got me interested in this issue, enough to consider actually voting. Because lord knows I couldn't give a shit about politics most of the time.

Also, if you don't have an hour to watch the whole Brexit movie, I highly recommend this video that summarises the main points in 10 minutes:

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#48 Posted by diz (1394 posts) -

@diz said:

Please don't think something just because it is "easier to think it". The tough decisions are the most important ones.

Why on earth leave such a decision to "the people" then? One of the reasons we elect politicians is so they do that thinking for us.

Unless you want to live in totalitarianism, you must think for yourself. Democracy literally means "rule of the people" (demos = people and kratos = power). What better form of political rule is there?

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#49 Posted by Bicycle_Repairman (670 posts) -

@jimbo: I'm sorry, but border control is not the basis of sovereignty. Migration both wanted and unwanted has existed forever. It is not something you can control like a slide bar in a video game. No one is happy with all these recent refugees but its basic humanity that makes the Greeks and Italians save drowning refugees instead of hitting their rubber boats with dart guns.

My apologies if i go too hard into this topic. The Dutch just had an embarrassing referendum that was fortunately non binding. It makes me more than averagely engaged in these kind of issues.

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#50 Edited by dudeglove (13677 posts) -

@diz: It's like I'm having flashbacks to first year politics. Congrats on looking up "Websters defines democracy as..." Will you cap off with Churchill's "it's the worst form of government, but it's the only one we've got" quote too?

Part of the point of a representative government is that you have entrusted politicians to deal with these matters by electing them in the first place. Leaving such a matter as this to the whims of histrionic masses is a recipe for disaster (I hope "stay" wins, and unfortunately I cannot vote on this matter because Northern Ireland is a joke when it comes to registering for the electoral roll), and only goes to show that the British government has been extremely incapable of doing this itself, and instead offloads the risk of a Brexit decision onto the populace. That isn't "democracy", that's saying "We don't want to deal with it because we don't want to take the blame if it all goes Pete Tong" (which it will). It's darkly hilarious that Blair's New Labour approach of focus grouping everything to death has led to this.

Yes, I get that the EU is a profoundly corrupt and bureaucratic entity, and extremely inept as a result. It's cute that you bring up totalitarianism, because if Johnson ends up the next leader of the UK, he'll be as bad if not worse than Cameron.

No it will not affect Britain's chances in next year's Eurovision, but it was hilarious that Britain's 2016 entry contained the lyrics "You're not alone, we're in this together"