Saturday, September 22, 2018

The EU - Again

The topic of the EU has become so dull on the one hand yet gives rise to so many heated discussions on the other, that for family emails, I have asked my brothers and sisters that  we should avoid this topic where possible. 

However appreciating that two of them at least have had incomes from working for the EU and one at least is still securing income from Brussels, I begin to appreciate that there has probably  been an element of not biting the hand that feeds you in some of the family discussions. 

Likewise the most ardent supporter of the EU that I know of outside of the family, turns out to have been paid a vast salary through Brussels for his work there essentially on behalf of the EU. 

This experience causes me to wonder if all those receiving payments from Brussels should have been excluded from voting in the UK's referendum on leaving the EU. As it happens those in favour of Brexit won by a decent margin in any event  though I personally voted with reluctance, to remain.

Irrespective of the political and financial arguments, the rudeness of some of the senior European politicians in Brussels this week was unacceptable. The behaviour of President Macron of France who banded UK Brexiteers as "liars" was really appalling. 

Of course politics and terminological inexactitudes sadly often go together but politicians particularly presidents, of one country should surely usually let those in countries other than their own, criticise their politicians how they wish, rather than stoop to do so themselves as senior outsiders, especially when labelling them liars?

In times of war or say criminal poisonings where a foreign country might be guilty of the most serious of murderous behaviour, using the term "liar" might be apt but certainly not in arguments about leaving a nations' trading club. President Macron has substantially gone down in many people's esteem.

Mrs May on the other hand has never seemed particularly high in people's esteem, even in the UK yet her Downing Street speech in response to the Brussels rudeness and that of President Macron, coupled with the EU 27's General de Gaulle approach to the UK of "non non non" was her best in office so far.

Given that the EU treats countries  which seek to leave their  club in such high handed fashion I am now more strongly convinced than ever that we should leave. 

Yes the City and others will suffer for a year or two but sooner or later the UK as a fully independent nation outside the  EU bloc, will gain considerable momentum in adjusting positively to the change. 

For example at present, the  City of London makes a fortune out of trading (if that is the right word) derivatives. I have considerable doubt whether such trades are in the long term best interests of this country and personally hope that such money making activities will diminish after Brexit. 

Similarly, the advent of the C20 "big bang" in the City of London, resulted in amongst other changes, shorting shares becoming legally enforceable, that is betting on a company's shares going down in value and  making money from  so  doing,  by using shares owned by fund mangers rather than the traders themselves.  This activity often results in huge  profits for traders at the owner's (usually pension funds and the like) expense. 

Earlier such betting debts would have been legally unenforceable so paid really as a matter of honour. The outcome of the big bang changes, may have been to enrich  traders like shorters but at what cost, eg to pension funds when the shares owed by such were and are still, often used? 

 It needs to be borne in mind that shorters profit from the value of shares going down whilst the fund managers require the shares to gain in value, for their members such as prospective pensioners, to profit.

The EU27 have by their attitude probably assisted the UK PM, though only time will tell. Meanwhile Brexit continues.

After the UK has left the EU, I speculate that the remaining 27 members will consider changing the rules to make leaving their club even more difficult for any other nation.

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