Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 31

Thread: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

  1. #1
    Copperknickers II's Avatar quaeri, si sapis
    Citizen

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    The Carpathian Forests (formerly Scotlland)
    Posts
    12,641

    Default Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    TL;DR - look at the questions in bold.

    Since there is now no question of Brexit being 'scrapped and started again', and since the election is now over, I thought it might be time for a new megathread on British politics: one which moves beyond the Brexit binary and looks at the real policy questions facing us in the new decade. Here are some thoughts:

    1. Brexit: while things are likely to be much slower-paced and quieter than previously, we are still entering a crucial period. There is a very unrealistic one-year deadline for negotiations - can we expect another No-Deal cliff edge? I doubt it personally, but I do wonder if we will indeed see a pivot towards the USA and away from Europe, and some very worrying trends on the horizon as a result (perhaps not a full-scale NHS selloff, but certainly a relaxing of standards in some industries and more integration with the US finance and service sectors/silicon valley), which will have all sorts of forseeable and less forseeable consequences from workers' rights degradation to a potential upswing in US->UK immigration.

    How do you think Brexit will pan out, TWC? Anything I've missed?

    2. Beyond Brexit: the following factors will be absolutely crucial in seeing where Britain goes next:

    - The Tories have laid claim to basically all of small-town Northern England and the English Celtic Fringe. This is a fundamental shift which will lead to a whole new bloc of MPs pushing hard for regional spending in some of Britain's most deprived areas. Austerity and neoliberal London-centricity may be about to take a big knock.
    - Dominic Cummings is fast becoming Little Finger, Lord Varys and Tyrion Lannister all rolled into one. He owns this victory even more than Boris does, and he will want to use it to push his agenda. His blog (read here) among other things has a massive focus on education, in particular STEM. This may actually be quite a good idea.
    - Boris' character. Given that Boris is a pathological liar, a closet racist and in many ways hopelessly incompetent, we can expect him to generate fairly regular gaffes, at best, and at worst make some really crucial mistakes that will have horrific consequences (let's not forget how he nearly got that British woman in Iran killed by not reading his briefing notes properly - it's only a matter of time before one of these near-misses becomes a direct hit on his public perception of being fit for office). This may lead to him resigning before his term is up, and maybe even following the lead of his friend Trump in throwing out dangerously extremist dead cats and foreign policy sabre rattling to distract from his domestic dramas.
    On the other hand, he has often shown himself to be a fairly middle-of-the-road centrist on some issues, and so we might see him returning to his roots and dialling back on the far right dog whistles now that Farage has been dealt with. Monitoring his cabinet picks over the next few weeks will give us an insight into how he plans to proceed.

    How will these factors (which are in some cases rather conflicting) interact with each other?

    Is there a ray of hope for a centre right-wing government with real vision delivering:

    - an economic growth spurt with strong long-term foundations for social mobility and fiscal sustainability,
    - and a transition from an old and outdated economic model into one more suitable to the modern world?


    3. The Union: Needless to say, the SNP and the Republicans' results in Scotland and Northern Ireland lead to serious questions about the longevity of the UK in the long-term.

    Will SNP infighting and Northern Irish pacifism nip these movements in the bud, or can we expect to see the breakup of the Union in the near future?


    An important wild card here is the Queen - she is odds on to die within the current government's term - her death would lead to some quite monumental symbolism if it coincides with a Scottish indyref or an upswing in Northern Irish street violence.

    4. Reforms and Opposition: we will soon see long overdue constituency boundary changes which will favour the Tories. The House of Lords and the voting system are long overdue massive shakeups which even a right-wing Tory government can't completely ignore. Meanwhile we will see some huge consititutional changes too, resulting from powers returning from Brussels to Westminster and the fallout from the Supreme Court dramas (the Tory manifesto threatened to massively reduce its ability to interfere in parliamentary politics).

    Will we see mobilisation from the opposition and divisions within the Tory party lead to progress in some of the above areas? Or will bitter Labour infighting, Scottish separatism and government centralisation lead to a hard-right power grab of historic proportions?
    Last edited by Copperknickers II; December 16, 2019 at 01:20 PM.
    A new mobile phone tower went up in a town in the USA, and the local newspaper asked a number of people what they thought of it. Some said they noticed their cellphone reception was better. Some said they noticed the tower was affecting their health.

    A local administrator was asked to comment. He nodded sagely, and said simply: "Wow. And think about how much more pronounced these effects will be once the tower is actually operational."

  2. #2

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    England has been a nation for 1000 years. It's laughable to think we can't survive leaving a trading bloc that has only existed for around 30.

  3. #3
    Copperknickers II's Avatar quaeri, si sapis
    Citizen

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    The Carpathian Forests (formerly Scotlland)
    Posts
    12,641

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Quote Originally Posted by 95thrifleman View Post
    England has been a nation for 1000 years. It's laughable to think we can't survive leaving a trading bloc that has only existed for around 30.
    I don't think anyone claims that England 'won't survive'. The problem is that the EU is deeply woven into the UK's economic and legal fabric. Undoing that will lead to a major short-term shock, as some simple underlying building blocks of our economy (e.g. the role our financial markets play in global capital flows) are wiped out. In the longer term, given the realignment that leaving the EU must surely cause, we can expect a potential drop in living standards as we lose the protections of the EU and have much less leverage to play with in a world where small players are increasingly vulnerable thanks to superpower trading blocs engaging in trade wars and protectionism.

    You have to remember that the only Western European countries which are non-EU are Norway (an oil-rich country with extremely high cost of living), Switzerland (one of the richest but also most expensive nations on earth, with a totally unique political setup based around its neutrality) and Iceland (a micro-nation which receives more tourists than it has citizens every year). Or perhaps we ought to follow the models in Canada and Australia - countries with among the highest rates of immigration on the planet. Britain may well be able to carve its own path, but how are socially conservative working people going to feel when they have to pay £10 for a pint of beer as happens in Norway, or when non-EU migrants start flooding in faster than at any time in history, as has been happening in places like Toronto, where ethnic minorities are now the majority. The EU is a bastion of stability in a world which is changing faster than most Europeans can imagine. Is provincial Britain ready for that kind of change?
    A new mobile phone tower went up in a town in the USA, and the local newspaper asked a number of people what they thought of it. Some said they noticed their cellphone reception was better. Some said they noticed the tower was affecting their health.

    A local administrator was asked to comment. He nodded sagely, and said simply: "Wow. And think about how much more pronounced these effects will be once the tower is actually operational."

  4. #4
    Praefectus
    Citizen

    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    6,460

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Quote Originally Posted by 95thrifleman View Post
    England has been a nation for 1000 years. It's laughable to think we can't survive leaving a trading bloc that has only existed for around 30.
    England will exist, Britain might survive, but I imagine Great Britain will break up. Cameron and Johnson have together taken a piss on the Good Friday Agreement for a start, and Scotland will be splitting soon.

    Either the Tories deliver a fake Brexit (rich people make a lot from the EU) or they savagely slash the British economy (and poor people will be made to suffer even more): some combination of these two is likely IMHO. Its a bad time for most people in the UK.
    Jatte lambastes Calico Rat

  5. #5

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    I have to admit, I did write off UK as a "no-hope" case, fully expecting socialist victory and UK's eventual collapse as a state due to Labor's fiscal illiteracy and socially suicidal policies. But it seems that British working class became more politically mature and educated, a sign that days of Stockholm syndrome of working class supporting champagne socialists are finally over.
    In a way, recent vote functioned as a second Brexit referendum - confirming the will of British people to leave EU, despite the screeching from the elites and their media on how no longer being a vassal to EU would somehow spell immediate doom. hopefully a deal favorable to UK would be struck, especially with Johnson and Trump representing the free world, in opposition to increasingly authoritarian merkelite EU. It would be interesting to see more "exit" movements spark in that camp as euskoepticism is gaining quite the momentum on the continent.
    While the above criticism of Jonson as "secret racist" or "pathological liar" is nonsensical, it is quite clear that "centrism", in its de-facto form of compliance with neoliberal elites, is something that does not win over public support and electoral success - so hopefully Johnson doesn't back down to cosmopolitan swamp and doesn't try to fix something that isn't broken.
    Given the results of last Scottish referendum, I really doubt secession supporters would somehow gain millions of supporters - at most it will be just an excuse to demand more preferential treatment, as it worked like that before.
    I wonder if Labor will learn from its mistakes and try to actually appear to demographics other then pseudo-educated and politically immature urbanite bourgeoisie, or if they follow the path of Democrats in US, and double-down on leftist extremism, using boogeyman of "Russian interference" and "alt-right conspiracy" as excuse for their electoral impotency.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?



    This is pretty much how the Brexiteers reckon how it might go.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Quote Originally Posted by 95thrifleman View Post
    England has been a nation for 1000 years. It's laughable to think we can't survive leaving a trading bloc that has only existed for around 30.
    A bit of a non sequitur which some Bavarians might have been repeating in 1918.
    Resident Language Geek
    Baseless Assertions on the Celts Since 1996

  8. #8
    Vanoi's Avatar Dux Limitis
    Civitate

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA
    Posts
    15,685

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Definitely think the British will pivot toward the US though i don't think it will benefit them that well. Donald Trump is a a shrewd negotiator and any trade deal between the US abd UK will definitely benefit the former more than the latter.

    The situations in Northern Ireland and Scotland could definitely lead to their independence but i don't know how likely it is. I do know if it did happen the UK would decline dramatically

  9. #9

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vanoi View Post
    Definitely think the British will pivot toward the US though i don't think it will benefit them that well. Donald Trump is a a shrewd negotiator and any trade deal between the US abd UK will definitely benefit the former more than the latter.

    The situations in Northern Ireland and Scotland could definitely lead to their independence but i don't know how likely it is. I do know if it did happen the UK would decline dramatically
    Actualy England will be better off and Scotland would be worse off post-Indy.

    People always forget that the Scottish taxes do not come close to the government expenditure and the rest of the UK has to balance the short fall. Scotland joined the union in the first place because they where broke and needed England to bail them out.

  10. #10
    Vanoi's Avatar Dux Limitis
    Civitate

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA
    Posts
    15,685

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Quote Originally Posted by 95thrifleman View Post
    Actualy England will be better off and Scotland would be worse off post-Indy.
    I'm no expert on Scotland but unless Scotland is a resourceless wasteland and doesn't contribute economically at all to the rest of the UK is going to hurt if they leave. Especially economically.

    People always forget that the Scottish taxes do not come close to the government expenditure and the rest of the UK has to balance the short fall. Scotland joined the union in the first place because they where broke and needed England to bail them out.
    I don't think its wise to base Scotland's economic status within the UK solely based off the taxes they contribute.

  11. #11
    Muizer's Avatar member 3519
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    9,123

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    I don't know where but with a solid Conservative majority and no threat of elections, we may expect to find out soon what the Johnson government is actually about. My bet atm would be on the UK trying to manoeuver itself into a 'best of both worlds' position, If only because in the post Brexit world, the UK cannot afford to 'pick sides' between the EU and the US, for instance. That would totally destroy their negotiation position.


    Btw, I wonder what the subject of that cartoon is. Since it makes no sense whatsoever, my guess is it's a Brexiteer on LSD.
    "Lay these words to heart, Lucilius, that you may scorn the pleasure which comes from the applause of the majority. Many men praise you; but have you any reason for being pleased with yourself, if you are a person whom the many can understand?" - Lucius Annaeus Seneca -

  12. #12
    hellheaven1987's Avatar Comes Domesticorum
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    The Hell called Conscription
    Posts
    35,610

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    1. No deal Brexit, then everyone would blame Tories on everything goes wrong. Be lets be honest, most Brit really not care Brexit or not.

    2. 0% chance unless UK somehow reforms Commonwealth and heavily investing India and some parts of Africa. The slow economic growth is more a global issue which British government alone can do little to reverse it.

    3. I highly doubt it would be a true independence for Scotland and N Ireland; at worst it probably is just another CANADA, and that may not be too bad if it forces Westminster to reform British Commonwealth into something meaningful.

    4. The Hard Right cannot even agree who is the most hardcore one...
    Quote Originally Posted by Markas View Post
    Hellheaven, sometimes you remind me of King Canute trying to hold back the tide, except without the winning parable.
    Quote Originally Posted by Diocle View Post
    Cameron is midway between Black Rage and .. European Union ..

  13. #13

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    A short first short, cursorily look at the scottish economy:

    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 
    Economy

    Scotland has a Western-style open mixed economy closely linked with the rest of the UK and the wider world. Traditionally, the Scottish economy was dominated by heavy industry underpinned by shipbuilding in Glasgow, coal mining and steel industries. Petroleum related industries associated with the extraction of North Sea oil have also been important employers from the 1970s, especially in the north-east of Scotland. De-industrialisation during the 1970s and 1980s saw a shift from a manufacturing focus towards a more service-oriented economy.
    Scotland's gross domestic product (GDP), including oil and gas produced in Scottish waters, was estimated at £150 billion for the calendar year 2012.[256] In 2014, Scotland's per capita GDP was one of the highest in the EU.[257] As of April 2019 the Scottish unemployment rate was 3.3%, below the UK rate of 3.8%, and the Scottish employment rate was 75.9%.[258]
    Edinburgh is the financial services centre of Scotland, with many large finance firms based there, including: Lloyds Banking Group (owners of HBOS); the Government-owned Royal Bank of Scotland and Standard Life. Edinburgh was ranked 15th in the list of world financial centres in 2007, but fell to 37th in 2012, following damage to its reputation,[259] and in 2016 was ranked 56th out of 86.[260]


    The Bank of Scotland has its headquarters in Edinburgh and is one of the oldest operating banks in the world.



    In 2014, total Scottish exports (excluding intra-UK trade) were estimated to be £27.5 billion.[261] Scotland's primary exports include whisky, electronics and financial services.[262] The United States, Netherlands, Germany, France, and Norway constitute the country's major export markets.[262]
    Whisky is one of Scotland's more known goods of economic activity. Exports increased by 87% in the decade to 2012[263] and were valued at £4.3 billion in 2013, which was 85% of Scotland's food and drink exports.[264] It supports around 10,000 jobs directly and 25,000 indirectly.[265] It may contribute £400–682 million to Scotland, rather than several billion pounds, as more than 80% of whisky produced is owned by non-Scottish companies.[266]
    A briefing published in 2002 by the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) for the Scottish Parliament's Enterprise and Life Long Learning Committee stated that tourism accounted for up to 5% of GDP and 7.5% of employment.[267]

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scotland#Economy


    Scotland is fearing a economical hit by leaving EU because of less EU tourism and less exports into EU.

    From what i see in advertising scottish banks are quite active here in Germany to make consumer credit businesses.

    Scotland is paying its part in the common defence:

    Of the money spent on UK defence, about £3.3 billion can be attributed to Scotland as of 2013.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scotland#Military

    So i guess Scotland could stand on its own and make a economical career like Ireland did after joining the EU.
    Proud Non-Citizen and Goth

    Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider is chaos for the fly. (Morticia Addams)


  14. #14

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    EU does need UK economically - so UK has a Trump card here, quite literally as both powers would benefit from strengthening their ties, as now that pro-EU forces got annihilated in the elections, UK is in a very strong position.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Quote Originally Posted by 95thrifleman View Post
    Actualy England will be better off and Scotland would be worse off post-Indy.

    People always forget that the Scottish taxes do not come close to the government expenditure and the rest of the UK has to balance the short fall. Scotland joined the union in the first place because they where broke and needed England to bail them out.
    Awesome. So you're looking forward to them leaving?
    Optio, Legio I Latina

  16. #16
    hellheaven1987's Avatar Comes Domesticorum
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    The Hell called Conscription
    Posts
    35,610

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Hey, Berlin can bail them out, and German probably are more willing throwing money on Scots than on ungrateful southern Europeans.
    Quote Originally Posted by Markas View Post
    Hellheaven, sometimes you remind me of King Canute trying to hold back the tide, except without the winning parable.
    Quote Originally Posted by Diocle View Post
    Cameron is midway between Black Rage and .. European Union ..

  17. #17

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    That Brexit is even a Topic is ridiculous.
    Both the EU and the UK are members in the WTO and if there is no inner EU commerce anymore the WTO regulations would apply.
    But the real issue here is that Brexit serves as a surrogate for the search of english, english not british, identity because there is nothing left of this core nation. The UK is a ingrown and failed project. How it has to go and find some new overlord pimpdaddy to offer itself to for naval protection since this former sea power can't even deal with second rate powers like iran on its own anymore. Burn it down and start anew.

    Best thing about Brexit in the end is that the colonial refuse the british collected on their island are no EU citizens anymore and so Brexit will keep pakistani criminals, african machete gangs and british deserters out of the europe propper.

  18. #18
    swabian's Avatar igni ferroque
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    3,510

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Raubritter, i urge you to reconsider. What happens now will determine the future for decades, possibly centuries.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Quote Originally Posted by swabian View Post
    Raubritter, i urge you to reconsider. What happens now will determine the future for decades, possibly centuries.
    .

    I give you an example how thats total .

    1492

    1492 is the year Columbus sailed for america. This is what we know today about 1492, conquest of paradies and so on.

    But this is not what in 1492 was important.
    In 1492 the richest man of the world, Lorenzo de Medici, died. France and england made a peace tready. The Borgias took over the papacy. The spanish took over grenada from the muslims and ended the 10 year long reconquista. These were the important events of 1492 and today nobody cares. Today we know Columbus sailed for america and not that the Borgias took over the papacy. And just like so Nobody in a few years will give a about Brexit anymore, a totaly pathetic fifth grade event about meaningless trade deals between two nursing home style pseudo-nations where nothing real is at stake besides paperwork. To judge any current event as historical is nonsensical.

    So no, i will not be urged to reconsider by opinion that i articulated based on the available facts because of some empty platitudes about wannabe historic importance.


    Besides that, what difference would it make. I'am not a british voter and my opinion on their referendum is meaningless, not to mention that the opinion of the british voters themselfs is meaningless because they are not souvereign to hold any referendums and the parlament has no obligation to obey any sort of referendum in the legal sense. Its just more democracy theater and feelsgood nonsense.
    Last edited by Raubritter; December 19, 2019 at 10:06 PM.

  20. #20
    swabian's Avatar igni ferroque
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    3,510

    Default Re: Britain 2020: the final decline, or forging a new path?

    Quote Originally Posted by Raubritter View Post
    .

    I give you an example how thats total .

    1492

    1492 is the year Columbus sailed for america. This is what we know today about 1492, conquest of paradies and so on.

    But this is not what in 1492 was important.
    In 1492 the richest man of the world, Lorenzo de Medici, died. France and england made a peace tready. The Borgias took over the papacy. The spanish took over grenada from the muslims and ended the 10 year long reconquista. These were the important events of 1492 and today nobody cares. Today we know Columbus sailed for america and not that the Borgias took over the papacy. And just like so Nobody in a few years will give a about Brexit anymore, a totaly pathetic fifth grade event about meaningless trade deals between two nursing home style pseudo-nations where nothing real is at stake besides paperwork. To judge any current event as historical is nonsensical.

    So no, i will not be urged to reconsider by opinion that i articulated based on the available facts because of some empty platitudes about wannabe historic importance.


    Besides that, what difference would it make. I'am not a british voter and my opinion on their referendum is meaningless, not to mention that the opinion of the british voters themselfs is meaningless because they are not souvereign to hold any referendums and the parlament has no obligation to obey any sort of referendum in the legal sense. Its just more democracy theater and feelsgood nonsense.

    Yeah, you're of course right. Nevermind. I'll be busy managing my real estates in greater Greenland.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •