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Troubles in the UK

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  • #16
    Originally posted by radcentr View Post
    For now, it seems that voters in the EU are more tired of swallowing what has been cooked up by the extreme right. That's one reason why the left made recent gains. In a better world, the right would be much more careful how they handle xenophobia (or the other phobias). And the left would be more than open to the idea of shrinking the size of gov't. once alternatives are found for the social and ecological safety nets. Both (all?) sides of the political spectrum would do well to spend public revenue where it has the most value and positive impact, and consistently perform an "objectives" analysis of past gov't. programs -to see which ones made the "valuable" list, and drop policies that just don't work.

    What I see working for the right in the EU is a pledge to shrink their bureaucracy by making it more efficient. Do that first, then take a couple or three issues that the left proposes and attack their proposals. Are they simply unnecessary or could they be done better by some organization in the private sector? Make issues a short list -since adding more would probably backfire- and use that as a secondary attack. The primary issue should be the left's support of the EU's growing bureaucracy, which is arguably why the right made gains in previous elections.

    Well, the EU has fewer "bureaucrats" than the city of Paris. Or to stay in the UK, London or Birmingham. Fact :

    Yet to run the affairs of a continent, not a city, which would strike me as pretty efficient.
    The hard/extreme right gained in some places and lost in some places, and on the whole they harvested around 15 seats, which means that in a parliament with 751 mandates they now control 70 or so. Thats hardly the "nativist" upsurge that Stevie Bannon was promoting and predicting in Europe for the last year. Most hard-right gains were in Italy ( yet that has to be seen in the context of the countrys economic malaise), in France Le Pen mobilized her base while Macron failed (partially), yet she didnt gain votes (thus her "victory" is a hollow one), yet dutch firebrand de Wilders lost all his seats in the European Parliament, the german far right ( AFD) remained static, in spite of losses for the big parties ( which demonstrates that voters dont always migrate rightwards), in Austria the governement involving the hard-right FP had collapsed just in time for the EU elections ( after the party leader was caught on video offering the "niece" of a russian oligarch lucrative state contracts in return for (illegal) party donations and of course they lost, and while nationalist parties defended their standing in Poland and Hungary, they lost in Denmark, Sweden, Slovakia and Romania.
    "Populists" problem ( and why their political bet has not at all brought in the political harvest they predicted, along with vast parts of the anglo/american press) is their chronic weakness on policy. Endlessly banging the migration and anti-establishment drum carries you up to a degree. But then voters also expect answers to other burning questions. Jobs, pensions, the environment, health and education, where you cant give "simple" answers. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte challenged Geert de Wilders to debate him on TV. And he tore de Wilders pants down in public, because the latter blathered endlessly about "Muslims...evil" etc. but couldnt provide a single coherent answer about concrete policy plans. What his plans for the pensions system are ? Noone knows. The environment ? Noone knows. And that is politically unforgiveable in a small country like the Netherlands that already struggles with the effects of climate change (rising sea levels). That voters consider the environment one of the most pressing challenges of coming years is documentable. In Germany the Greens got more than double the votes of the far-right and will inevitably play a role in forming the next governement ( though largely ignored by the US press, probably because that doesnt fit the narrative of Europes alleged lurch to the right), and also elsewhere in Europe green parties are on the march.
    And in Italy Nationalist frontrunner Matteo Salvini will now have to prove that he has more ideas to turn his countrys economy around than blocking refugee rescue ships from his harbours, shouting "Prima gli Italiani" very often, insult Emmanuel Macron in every second sentence, using Mussolinis balcony for speeches celebrating national glory and taking the old italian art of wild deficit spending to new levels. His moment of reckoning comes in autumn, when his coalition governement will inevitably have to pass a budget requiring unpopular measures. With his share of the vote he will hardly be able to put all the blame on others, and the italian electorate is notoriously not very loyal.
    Another point that Americans usually ignore is that most european countries require coalition governements (under proportional representation) one way or another. That means without a partner that lifts you above 50 % you will sit on the backbenches, regardless how "strong" someone declares your showing to be. And the EU election demonstrates one of these folks key dilemmas : Bashing the EU works with a nationalist ideological core base, but not if you actually want to win elections. For that you need to attract pro-EU voters and find potential pro-EU partners. That is why Madame Le Pen has officially and publicly given up on "Frexit" and why Mr. Salvini has many times assured voters to have brillant plans to reform the EU ( that noone knows).
    Since (one last point for now) : The idea that european "nativists" of all cases would cheerfully give up their countrys seat and vote at the top table in Brussels to plead for crumbs from Trumps and Putins table in the future (and call that "sovereignity") is ludicrous. These people want to run the EU ( although there is a rather large gap between their rethoric and their electoral success) . And yes, that is inherently self-contradictory, but it shows that some of these guys are actually living in the real world ( where by far most continental Europeans want to stay in the club, as documentable by the election result.)
    Last edited by Voland; 4 weeks ago.


    • #17
      Originally posted by eohrnberger View Post

      "The "growing bureaucracy" everywhere, is like a destructive fungus attacking a buildings structure. Not so easy to get rid of. .. but it does need to be dealt with."

      A fungus indeed. Most recently that "growing bureaucracy" appears to have committed illegal spying and attempted entrapment of a political opposition presidential campaign. Are we cetain that we haven't already arrived at the European 'administrative state', where the state overrules the freedoms, liberties and rights of the electorate, whenever it wants to?

      Well, it is not difficult to do some research, if one seriously cares :

      The EU is a union of democratic nations that have decided to pool sovereignity on fields that transcend their borders. That reasoning might be more obvious to Europeans, that live in comparatively small countries, than to Americans, but nevermind. The EU is run by the council of the member governements ( where each has a veto) AND by the parliament ( that was just recently elected). The Commission is its civil service and handles bureaucracy, but it does absolutely not overrule anyone, because it needs a mandate from the member states to act on its own ( such as on trade). And that is all easily documentable :


      • #18
        Originally posted by Voland View Post

        Well, it is not difficult to do some research, if one seriously cares :

        The EU is a union of democratic nations that have decided to pool sovereignity on fields that transcend their borders. That reasoning might be more obvious to Europeans, that live in comparatively small countries, than to Americans, but nevermind. The EU is run by the council of the member governements ( where each has a veto) AND by the parliament ( that was just recently elected). The Commission is its civil service and handles bureaucracy, but it does absolutely not overrule anyone, because it needs a mandate from the member states to act on its own ( such as on trade). And that is all easily documentable :
        To be clear. The US leftists and progressives wish to install an administrative government, examples of such can be see in some European countries, i.e. they wish to grow government power over the people, rather than a more libertarian limited government. When they have this administrative state, their cram down their SJW socialistic nonsense at great expense to the middle class, who end up paying for everything in spite of the promises (lies) the leftists and progressives keep making about the funding coming from 'rich'.