Tag Archives: brexit

A positive case for remaining in the EU

 

Many voices express concern that pro-EU activists should avoid emphasising the dire outcome of Brexit because, as we learnt during the Scottish referendum debate, concentrating on the negative makes for a dismal campaign.

Yet how can we not point out that a Brexit, with its consequent uncertain trade agreements especially with the UK’s major partner, would be catastrophic? But yes, we must also give a positive message. Proclaiming past EU achievements doesn’t seem to play well; too many people take them for granted, believe they would have happened anyway and in any case find them boring. However, everyone who supports continuing membership acknowledges the EU’s many flaws. Why not tackle these failings head-on and make improving the EU Britain’s mission? With its Liberal and Social Democrat tenets, LibDems are particularly well placed to develop an optimistic and constructive reform agenda.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 12 Comments

LibLink: Catherine Bearder says that any post-Brexit deal would be tough on the UK

 

Catherine Bearder, our only Lib Dem MEP, has been interviewed about the consequences of Brexit by the EU Observer.

She doesn’t think that an arrangement similar to Norway’s – being in the European Economic Area but not in the European Union – is achievable.

Posted in LibLink | Also tagged | 42 Comments

Dutch economists & ex-ministers: Brexit so disastrous that Dutch government should campaign against it

Netherlands’ Prime Minister Mark Rutte discusses the UK’s negotiations over EU membership with David Cameron

Two prominent economists who also were Dutch ministers and still are influential “public thinkers” about macro-economic, budgetary and fiscal affairs, have come out in their weekly column for a strong Dutch government involvement in the campaign against Brexit.

write in their Sunday column (15th November 2015) in the biggest Dutch newspaper The Telegraaf, that the OECD may predict a sunny future for the Netherlands, but that uncertainties like the slump of China and others Emerging Economies (see: The Economist) can scupper those rosy predictions.

But a second danger looms on the horizon: a Brexit can also harm the economic and political interests of the Netherlands. Vermeend and Van der Ploeg point out that with a Brexit

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 13 Comments

Working together to stay in the EU

 

I was personally impressed by the article in last Wednesday’s Guardian by Labour’s Pat McFadden MP, which challenged the Brexiters to spell out just what life would be like for us if we chose to leave the European Union. Coupled with the recent sensible remarks from his party colleague, everyone’s favourite ex-postie, Alan Johnson MP, and the furious back tracking of Messrs Cameron and Osbourne, it gives me hope that all like minded people WILL bury their differences and show a united front against forces both political and popular that seem to think that we can throw our weight around as we did a hundred years or more ago.

As someone who has concerns about the current Lib Dem tactics on the upcoming EU referendum, which seem to be operating in a bubble, with no reference to political reality, the chances of politicians from most, if not quite all, parties sharing both physical and media platforms in the run up to the vote, whenever it takes place, makes a great deal of sense.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 13 Comments

Central Bank Independence

 

Support for multilevel governance seems a prerequisite for any Lib Dem. Devolution from the centre to the periphery, from Westminster to Holyrood and the Welsh Assembly is one example. There has also been devolution upwards to the supranational institutions such as the EU Statesman are no longer the preserve of government; governance is now very much a fixed concept.

However, there has been devolution or delegation to other institutions besides devolved bodies and the EU. The Bank of England’s independence is an interesting point in case. If LDV readers do support Central Bank Independence as a theoretical concept in the abstract, then its internal consistency should also have an external consistency when applied to the specific case of the Bank of England.

At this point, I would really like to start a debate on the following:

What should the size and scope of the Bank of England’s remit be?

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 5 Comments

Catherine Bearder MEP speaks… Britain after Brexit

Bearder Oxford UnionCatherine delivered the following speech to the Oxford Union, painting a picture of what life would be like after Brexit.

I want to take you to a land, not so far away. Close your eyes and think of Britain after Brexit.

Posted in Europe / International and Op-eds | 14 Comments

Lord (Dick) Taverne writes… Cameron heads for Brexit

David Cameron - head in handsIf Mr Cameron becomes Prime Minister again after May, he is likely to be the Prime Minister who will lead the UK out of the European Union.

From time to time Mr Cameron has expressed enthusiasm for Britain being at the heart of the EU. In his Bloomberg speech in January last year, he declared:

“I believe something very deeply, that Britain’s national interest is best served in a flexible, adaptable and open European Union and that such a Union is best with Britain in it….There is no doubt that we are more powerful in Washington, in Beijing, in Delhi because we are a powerful player in the European Union. That matters for British jobs and British security.”

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 20 Comments
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