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BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation

Joe Offer 05 Oct 17 - 01:12 AM
Kampervan 05 Oct 17 - 02:16 AM
Monique 05 Oct 17 - 02:51 AM
Teribus 05 Oct 17 - 02:55 AM
Joe Offer 05 Oct 17 - 02:57 AM
Kampervan 05 Oct 17 - 02:58 AM
Joe Offer 05 Oct 17 - 03:01 AM
Teribus 05 Oct 17 - 03:12 AM
Tradsinger 05 Oct 17 - 03:15 AM
Teribus 05 Oct 17 - 03:33 AM
Steve Shaw 05 Oct 17 - 05:23 AM
Raggytash 05 Oct 17 - 05:32 AM
Raggytash 05 Oct 17 - 05:33 AM
Teribus 05 Oct 17 - 05:55 AM
Teribus 05 Oct 17 - 05:57 AM
Iains 05 Oct 17 - 06:10 AM
Mrrzy 05 Oct 17 - 09:47 AM
Donuel 05 Oct 17 - 09:51 AM
Bonzo3legs 05 Oct 17 - 04:01 PM
Iains 05 Oct 17 - 04:17 PM
Mr Red 05 Oct 17 - 04:56 PM
Iains 06 Oct 17 - 12:02 PM
Mrrzy 06 Oct 17 - 12:42 PM
Mr Red 06 Oct 17 - 05:00 PM
vectis 07 Oct 17 - 03:27 AM
Gutcher 07 Oct 17 - 02:53 PM
Iains 08 Oct 17 - 04:35 AM
Charmion 10 Oct 17 - 10:52 AM
akenaton 10 Oct 17 - 02:16 PM
Steve Shaw 10 Oct 17 - 03:54 PM
Iains 10 Oct 17 - 06:38 PM
Mrrzy 11 Oct 17 - 01:57 AM
Keith A of Hertford 12 Oct 17 - 04:26 AM
Steve Shaw 12 Oct 17 - 06:21 AM
Charmion 12 Oct 17 - 10:21 AM
Nigel Parsons 12 Oct 17 - 10:51 AM
Iains 12 Oct 17 - 10:57 AM
Steve Shaw 12 Oct 17 - 11:48 AM
Iains 12 Oct 17 - 01:43 PM
Steve Shaw 12 Oct 17 - 01:50 PM
Iains 12 Oct 17 - 02:29 PM
Keith A of Hertford 12 Oct 17 - 02:30 PM
Steve Shaw 12 Oct 17 - 05:03 PM
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Allan Conn 13 Oct 17 - 02:54 AM
akenaton 13 Oct 17 - 03:28 AM
Iains 13 Oct 17 - 03:40 AM
Iains 13 Oct 17 - 04:09 AM
Steve Shaw 13 Oct 17 - 05:10 AM
Steve Shaw 13 Oct 17 - 05:29 AM
akenaton 13 Oct 17 - 05:45 AM
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akenaton 13 Oct 17 - 06:26 AM
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Keith A of Hertford 13 Oct 17 - 07:33 AM
Steve Shaw 13 Oct 17 - 08:50 AM
bobad 13 Oct 17 - 09:17 AM
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Keith A of Hertford 13 Oct 17 - 12:47 PM
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Keith A of Hertford 14 Oct 17 - 05:47 AM
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Iains 14 Oct 17 - 03:45 PM
Steve Shaw 14 Oct 17 - 06:30 PM
Iains 15 Oct 17 - 04:03 AM
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Allan Conn 15 Oct 17 - 07:03 AM
Keith A of Hertford 15 Oct 17 - 07:22 AM
akenaton 15 Oct 17 - 10:09 AM
Iains 15 Oct 17 - 10:23 AM
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bobad 15 Oct 17 - 01:06 PM
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akenaton 15 Oct 17 - 01:49 PM
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akenaton 15 Oct 17 - 03:28 PM
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Keith A of Hertford 16 Oct 17 - 03:15 AM
Steve Shaw 16 Oct 17 - 03:20 AM
Iains 16 Oct 17 - 04:03 AM
Keith A of Hertford 16 Oct 17 - 05:36 AM
Nigel Parsons 16 Oct 17 - 07:00 AM
Steve Shaw 16 Oct 17 - 07:16 AM
akenaton 16 Oct 17 - 07:45 AM
Steve Shaw 16 Oct 17 - 12:40 PM
akenaton 16 Oct 17 - 04:36 PM
Iains 16 Oct 17 - 05:07 PM
Steve Shaw 16 Oct 17 - 06:42 PM
Steve Shaw 16 Oct 17 - 06:44 PM
Keith A of Hertford 17 Oct 17 - 03:43 AM
Steve Shaw 17 Oct 17 - 04:23 AM
Iains 17 Oct 17 - 09:08 AM
Keith A of Hertford 17 Oct 17 - 09:54 AM
Steve Shaw 17 Oct 17 - 05:35 PM
akenaton 18 Oct 17 - 03:02 AM
Nigel Parsons 18 Oct 17 - 03:23 AM
Keith A of Hertford 18 Oct 17 - 04:59 AM
Steve Shaw 18 Oct 17 - 05:50 AM
Nigel Parsons 18 Oct 17 - 06:13 AM
Iains 18 Oct 17 - 10:28 AM
Greg F. 18 Oct 17 - 10:31 AM
Iains 18 Oct 17 - 10:36 AM
Steve Shaw 18 Oct 17 - 11:44 AM
Steve Shaw 18 Oct 17 - 11:54 AM
Keith A of Hertford 19 Oct 17 - 08:17 AM
Nigel Parsons 19 Oct 17 - 09:02 AM
Steve Shaw 19 Oct 17 - 10:39 AM
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Steve Shaw 19 Oct 17 - 10:42 AM
Iains 19 Oct 17 - 01:30 PM
Steve Shaw 19 Oct 17 - 02:17 PM
Iains 19 Oct 17 - 04:28 PM
Steve Shaw 19 Oct 17 - 05:59 PM
Teribus 20 Oct 17 - 02:49 AM
Iains 20 Oct 17 - 03:49 AM
Steve Shaw 20 Oct 17 - 04:23 AM
Teribus 20 Oct 17 - 04:50 AM
Nigel Parsons 20 Oct 17 - 04:52 AM
Steve Shaw 20 Oct 17 - 08:05 AM
Nigel Parsons 20 Oct 17 - 08:28 AM
Steve Shaw 20 Oct 17 - 09:47 AM
Steve Shaw 20 Oct 17 - 10:25 AM
akenaton 20 Oct 17 - 10:40 AM
Steve Shaw 20 Oct 17 - 12:36 PM
Iains 21 Oct 17 - 03:35 AM
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Iains 22 Oct 17 - 11:03 AM
akenaton 22 Oct 17 - 11:22 AM
Iains 22 Oct 17 - 02:34 PM
Teribus 23 Oct 17 - 03:43 AM
Iains 23 Oct 17 - 05:57 AM
Steve Shaw 23 Oct 17 - 06:16 AM
Teribus 23 Oct 17 - 07:36 AM
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Teribus 23 Oct 17 - 02:49 PM
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The Sandman 24 Oct 17 - 04:27 AM
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Teribus 24 Oct 17 - 08:02 AM
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Teribus 24 Oct 17 - 11:19 AM
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Keith A of Hertford 24 Oct 17 - 02:10 PM
Teribus 24 Oct 17 - 06:24 PM
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Teribus 25 Oct 17 - 03:43 AM
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Keith A of Hertford 25 Oct 17 - 01:52 PM
Teribus 25 Oct 17 - 02:02 PM
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akenaton 25 Oct 17 - 04:51 PM
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bobad 25 Oct 17 - 05:48 PM
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Steve Shaw 25 Oct 17 - 08:35 PM
bobad 25 Oct 17 - 09:02 PM
Steve Shaw 25 Oct 17 - 09:23 PM
Teribus 26 Oct 17 - 02:37 AM
Steve Shaw 26 Oct 17 - 03:43 AM
Iains 26 Oct 17 - 04:13 AM
Steve Shaw 26 Oct 17 - 06:05 PM
Steve Shaw 26 Oct 17 - 06:21 PM
Teribus 26 Oct 17 - 07:03 PM
Iains 27 Oct 17 - 04:19 AM
Teribus 27 Oct 17 - 05:08 AM
akenaton 27 Oct 17 - 06:30 AM
Nigel Parsons 27 Oct 17 - 07:35 AM
Iains 27 Oct 17 - 10:38 AM
Stu 27 Oct 17 - 10:57 AM
Nigel Parsons 27 Oct 17 - 11:24 AM
akenaton 27 Oct 17 - 11:33 AM
Steve Shaw 27 Oct 17 - 02:29 PM
Iains 27 Oct 17 - 02:38 PM
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Keith A of Hertford 28 Oct 17 - 04:49 AM
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akenaton 29 Oct 17 - 07:16 AM
Big Al Whittle 29 Oct 17 - 07:57 AM
Steve Shaw 29 Oct 17 - 10:25 AM
Keith A of Hertford 29 Oct 17 - 11:49 AM
akenaton 29 Oct 17 - 12:04 PM
Iains 29 Oct 17 - 01:53 PM
Steve Shaw 29 Oct 17 - 05:17 PM
Big Al Whittle 29 Oct 17 - 05:53 PM
Keith A of Hertford 30 Oct 17 - 03:48 AM
akenaton 30 Oct 17 - 07:25 AM
Steve Shaw 30 Oct 17 - 07:33 AM
Iains 30 Oct 17 - 07:41 AM
Steve Shaw 30 Oct 17 - 09:02 AM
Nigel Parsons 30 Oct 17 - 09:07 AM
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Keith A of Hertford 01 Nov 17 - 07:04 AM
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akenaton 01 Nov 17 - 08:22 AM
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Subject: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 01:12 AM

I think I have a fair understanding of political trends in most European nations, but I've been to Spain only once and only to the northern part, and I can't say I understand it very well. I see in Wikipedia that Catalonia is an "autonomous community" of Spain. Its capital is Barcelona, and it has a population of 7.5 million. Its official languages are Catalan and Occitan, not Spanish. The area is highly industrialized and quite wealthy, so I can see how Catalonian independence might be harmful to Spain.
But what does Catalonia have to gain from separation? Do the separatists want to remain part of the European Union? How can it survive as an independent nation with a population of only 7.5 million? Is its economy diverse enough for it to be independent?
What is the history of Catalonian autonomy and of its off-and-on union with Spain? Are there other "autonomous communities" in Spain?
What is the political climate in Catalonia, and what is it in other areas of Spain?
-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Kampervan
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 02:16 AM

The questions that you raise are good ones.

Who would be responsible for the defence of independent Catalonia? Could they be financially independent?

Also, as a general question, is the current tendency of regions wanting independence from the larger state of which they are currently a part a good thing?

Scotland from the UK, the UK from the EU, various central European countries have been split into smaller units. Surely this makes them a lot more vulnerable to potential aggressors?
We all know that the UN and NATO for all their good intentions, are pretty toothless in the face of actual aggression.

Maybe its because the present generation has never experienced something like World War two and don't appreciate just how easily things can go wrong.

It seems to me that we are exposing ourselves in a very dangerous way.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Monique
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 02:51 AM

Spanish (Castilian) is the official language of all Spain whether the different autonomous communities have a different language of their own (Catalan and Aranese Occitan for Catalonia, Galician for Galice and Basque for the Basque Country) or not.
Spain used to be administratively divided in provinces that got much more autonomy after Franco's death.
Independence: Catalonia wouldn't be part of Spain but nor of the EU either (it'd take years), are they ready to coin their own money overnight... = big mess!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 02:55 AM

The UN may well be accurately described as "toothless" as it has no army to call on. In the face of actual aggression however NATO has proved to have been the most effective multinational military alliance in the history of the planet - it still is.

The EU Commission's desire for a Federal United States of Europe relies on the break up of the existing member states into regions and the eradication of the nation state and national identity. Only trouble with that is that at present they rely on financial contributions from individual member states to run the show.

In Spain the following regions may opt for "independence" along with EU membership which of course would mean that they were not independent at all - Catalonia, Galicia and the Basque Region of Spain.

In France - As Iains pointed out there is a separatist movement in Brittany, there is also a French Basque region.

In Belgium - Wallonia and the Flemish Regions would part company at the drop of a hat.

In Germany - Bavaria would be only too happy to break away

In Italy there is a clear divide North and South and also Sardinia.

In the UK the SNP would, apparently, recommend swapping rule from Westminster to seeking rule from Brussels.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 02:57 AM

Hi, Kampervan -
I think the United States spends far too much money on defense, and I wish there were another way. If Catalonia and other small states can be part of the EU and NATO, I think they can defend themselves at a reasonable cost.
But I sure wish the US could spend less on defense and more on healthcare and education and other social needs.
-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Kampervan
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 02:58 AM

A lot of people died in central Europe over the last few decades whilst NATO stood by and did nothing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Joe Offer
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 03:01 AM

Specifics, Kampervan? Were these central European nations NATO members?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 03:12 AM

A lot of people died all over the place Kampervan, left to the UN alone many thousands more would have died. In Bosnia and in Kosovo the Germans managed to urge NATO (Military) action (This meant at the time it cut France out of the loop) and NATO intervention saved thousands of lives.

In Catalonia had the Spanish Government stuck to just declaring the recent referendum illegal and non-binding then given and aided every facility for the said referendum to go ahead peacefully the result would have been for Catalonia to remain as part of a unified Spain. As it is, by their actions they have promoted the cause of independence and bought themselves a shed load of trouble in the years to come.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Tradsinger
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 03:15 AM

Under Franco, Catalan culture and Catalan language were surpressed. You could be punished for speaking Catalan in the street or in school, so there has been for some time a repressed resentment of the Madrid government.

I personally am very wary of this movement towards independence - the argument seems to be that as Catalonia creates a lot of wealth for the Spanish nation, that the Catalans think they ought to keep it for themselves. Fair or not? Is there more stability in unity?

And what does Catalonia consist of? Linguistically it stretches into France (Perpignon) and Andorra, and related dialects are also spoken in Valencia and the Balaeric Islands. Does the UDI move include them?

I blame Brexit for all this mess - be careful what you wish for.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 03:33 AM

"I blame Brexit for all this mess" - So a people's right of self-determination does not feature high on your list of human rights then Tradsinger?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 05:23 AM

EU countries do not endure "rule from Brussels." EU countries govern themselves. Here's an an article from the Financial Times that comprehensively explodes the myth that Teribus is trying to perpetuate. You'll have to google it yourself I'm afraid: "A Brexit myth of Brussels (mis)rule."

Franco still casts a long shadow in Spain. Catalonia, always a region that regarded itself as very distinct in terms of culture and language, was treated very brutally by him. The Spanish constitution states that Catalonia is a nationality. There is considerable resentment when Madrid is perceived as intruding into Catalan affairs. The clumsy interventions last week are only the latest manifestation of that, though a very serious one.

Self-determination is a grand thing but getting it right is a minefield. Most recent polls show only a slim majority in favour of independence, and not a majority of all the electorate. You could easily end up with a brexit-with-balls mess in which a third of the electorate drag Catalonia away from Spain. I wonder whose "rights" we'd be talking about then.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Raggytash
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 05:32 AM

A Brexit Myth

There you go!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Raggytash
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 05:33 AM

Bugger !

There you don't go !!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 05:55 AM

Date of Shaw's FT article - 26th May 2016.

Date of the EU Referendum - 23rd June 2016.

Prior to that date every political party in the UK with the exception of UKIP was campaigning as hard as it could to achieve a Remain result. Loads of "doom'n'gloom" from establishment press and the Bank of England - all proved groundless.

Odd that the piece only covered the period BEFORE Maastricht.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 05:57 AM

"EU countries do not endure "rule from Brussels." EU countries govern themselves." Chirrups Shaw.

Tell that to the Irish, the Greeks, the Cypriots, the Spanish, the Portuguese.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 06:10 AM

The EU has not, in all it's years of existence, publicly displayed a road map of where and what it wants to be. There are just vague hints thrown out now and again - a pan european defence force, or a federal states of europe. Many are unhappy that the game plan is being hidden from the populace. They are also unhappy that un-elected bureaucrats
seem to have hijacked powers to themselves contained within a structure that allows no questions, accountability, or democracy.
Little wonder that regions with a strong identity and uniqueness wish to ensure their continuation. The present structures of the EU are hellbent on ironing out discrete political entities. Sadly ironing out the far more important regional economic disparities seems a task too far for them. They just threw Greece and Cyprus under the bus, but they cannot overlook the high rates of youth unemployment in southern europe for ever.

The British Miners Strike under The great Maggie has been mentioned ad nauseum in recent threads. Just imagine had those miners been facing a jackbooted, paramilitary, pan european gendarmerie. It would not have been just blood in the streets but corpses from a massacre. No Eu condemnation of the behaviour of Spain, quite the reverse. This is quite a contrast to the opinions of the International Observers watching the electoral process.
Their utter condemnation of the events reads more like the description of events in some backwater third world dorp, than proceedings in an advanced western country.
We have seen the future and it is not orange-it is red. I foresee many other independence movements brought to fruition by the tacit pat on the back given to Spain by the unaccountable EU monolith. I wish them all every success.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Mrrzy
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 09:47 AM

The summer I lived there (1988), the Catalan referred to themselves as Catalan, and corrected you if you called them Spanish. They referred to the rest of Spain as Spain, as if where they were wasn't Spain. And they practically *spat* upon the Spanish language. That fact was crucial to my doctoral research so I looked into it... Franco has a lot to answer for.
So they have always *been* culturally separate, like the Basque in both France and Spain.
That said, I'm agin national boundaries in general, so I am agin increasing the number of them.
Also, I don't know whether states can secede from that union legally or not. Spain is a recent pastiche of a lot of smaller cultures, like Andalusia and all.
But even if they can't, riot police throwing old ladies down stairs (I conflate, I know) is not the answer to an illegal vote. Voting is peaceful behavior and should not be answered with violence. Barricades? Disposing of ballot boxes? There is a lot they could have done without violence to the individuals.
And *having* committed that high-enous act, now, even the Catalan who weren't for separation are more against Spain now than they were, which is not helpful for unity either.
And if you get the high-enous reference, bully for you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 09:51 AM

Separation was a dream of Pablo Cassals, which is good enough for me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 04:01 PM

"I blame Brexit for all this mess" - So a people's right of self-determination does not feature high on your list of human rights then Tradsinger?

Human rights has nothing to do with it. It is little more than a socialist led mob.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 04:17 PM

"I blame Brexit for all this mess" Feel free to blame whom you like. In this case you would be wrong. A potted history courtesy of Wiki. below:
"The political movement began in 1922 when Francesc Macià founded Estat Català (Catalan State). In 1931, Estat Català and other parties formed Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya (Republican Left of Catalonia; ERC), which won a dramatic victory in the municipal elections of that year. Macià proclaimed a Catalan Republic, but after negotiations with the leaders of the new Spanish Republic, he instead accepted autonomy within the Spanish state. In the Spanish Civil War, General Francisco Franco abolished Catalan autonomy in 1938. Following Franco's death in 1975, Catalan political parties concentrated on autonomy rather than independence.The modern independence movement began when the 2006 Statute of Autonomy, which had been agreed with the Spanish government and passed by a referendum in Catalonia, was challenged in the Spanish High Court of Justice, which ruled that some of the articles were unconstitutional, or were to be interpreted restrictively. Popular protest against the decision quickly turned into demands for independence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Mr Red
Date: 05 Oct 17 - 04:56 PM

the current news I get is that Catalonia does not have tax raising powers - unlike the Basque region that had an armed struggle for many years. Hmmmm...........

Catalonia contributes more per capita than the rest of Spain. I think that is seen as unfair distribution.

The northern part of Spain has more water, the southern part has ideas to use use that water to irrigate the arid parts. I think we are back into unfair distribution. Not to mention localised climate changes (it is what the south want, but at what price to the north?).

Apparently there has been a measure of intransigence from Madrid on the complaints from Barcelona which has driven the relatively moderate political parties to hemorrhage power to the more militant factions.

Does this demonstrate more of the problem?
I once worked with a Catalan lass with a PhD in biotechnology (from UK Uni, first degree in Barcelona)- she was looking for work and we showed her an ad for a translator, expert in biotech and Spanish. She spoke good English, French and a bit of German but as she says "I don't speak Spanish" (ie Castillian). Catalan yes, no Spanish. I wonder - was that Barcelona degree mostly in English, French or Catalan?

As I have said many times - referenda beget referenda. It is the peace dividend. Blame Fakebook. I do.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 06 Oct 17 - 12:02 PM

What a difference a day(or two) makes. Bit of a volte-face off the Spanish Government! A very misleading headline after reading it.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4955204/Catalan-police-chief-arrives-court-accused-sedition.html


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Mrrzy
Date: 06 Oct 17 - 12:42 PM

Sigh. Nobody got the high-enous reference.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Mr Red
Date: 06 Oct 17 - 05:00 PM

not even the laughing high-enous?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: vectis
Date: 07 Oct 17 - 03:27 AM

When I spent time in Catalunia in the late 1960s they did not consider that they were part of Spain. They saw themselves as separate and held that they were going to independent as soon as Franco popped his clogs.

They identified as Catalan, not Spanish. They resented the Spaniards bussed in to work the hotels springing up in the region. They considered that Spain was taking unfair advantage of their potential earnings from the tourist trade which was just taking off.

The bombings of the separatists started soon after I stopped going there regularly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Gutcher
Date: 07 Oct 17 - 02:53 PM

Bonzio
From what appears in the newspapers socialism has nothing to do with the
situation, indeed the socialists are very much against self determination
for the Catalonian people as they fear this would thwart their ambitions
to become the ruling party in Spain.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 08 Oct 17 - 04:35 AM

An interesting perspective. Bliar Blair has also been proposed as a mediator-is this because he made such a stunning success of being a middle east peace envoy?

https://www.globalresearch.ca/the-future-of-the-eu-at-stake-in-catalonia/5611953


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Oct 17 - 10:52 AM

It's a real pity that the Spanish government did not take a page from the book of Pierre Elliot Trudeau and his successors, who successfully defanged the Front de libération du Québec in 1970, and then allowed that energy to flow into conventional politics at both the provincial and federal levels. Separatism is still a thing in Quebec, but far less of a threat than it was even in 1995, when the latest (dare I hope last?) referendum was held. To a large extent, that development is due to the Canadian federal government's restraint in dealing with Quebec, making many concessions on cultural and identity issues while holding the line hard on proposals that would have allowed Quebec to withdraw from structural elements of Confederation.

I have read that the Spanish constitution forbids separatist action at the regional level, and that the Prime Minister took the action he did because the law demanded it. I believe that, with some effort and a hell of a lot more good will, the Spanish federal government could have found a way to conform to the constitution without bringing in the riot police to round up referendum voters.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 10 Oct 17 - 02:16 PM

Well the Cat president has declared independence, but cleverly batted the ball back onto the Spanish side by proposing "dialogue".
Of course he knows very well the Spanish govt cannot enter into dialogue without undermining their case for unity.

Probably the tanks will roll shortly and what the EU actually is will be more evident than ever.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Oct 17 - 03:54 PM

No he hasn?t.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 10 Oct 17 - 06:38 PM

Catalonia signs ?declaration of independence,? temporarily suspends it for dialogue with Madrid.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Mrrzy
Date: 11 Oct 17 - 01:57 AM

Next question, will the EU accept them and do they want to belong to the EU anyway? That is, if it's declared no longer an internal Spanish matter.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 04:26 AM

EU has said they will not be given membership.
Likewise Scotland.
It would require negotiations which always take years.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 06:21 AM

Both sides have boxed themselves in. The only solution now, I hate to say, is a referendum. Unlike our disastrous one, the bar must be set high. The referendum would be skewed, just like ours was, because if you don?t get independence this time you can keep campaigning. That?s democracy. But, if you leave, getting back in again is next to impossible, and your terms would be much poorer even if you did manage it. I?m not aware of any poll, or analysis of election voting, that shows anything like a decisive majority to leave Spain. A referendum, with terms for its conduct thrashed out and fully agreed by both sides, not just by Spain, is the only way to go, otherwise this will continue to fester for generations. Talk of EU implications is currently premature. I don?t think there?s a difference in thinking between mainstream Spain and Catalonia on that. There?s always room for negotiation on membership for states that have seceded and until we get near to a decision there isn?t much point trying to predict what would happen in those uncharted waters. The EU would want Catalonia as a member and that would probably happen, current rules be damned.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Charmion
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 10:21 AM

I agree with Steve, much to my surprise on any but a cooking question. In fact, the referendum program as proposed by Steve is almost precisely what has been done twice in Canada and Quebec, complete with the relentless campaigning when the first referendum (1980) failed, thus producing the second referendum (1995), which failed in a squeaker. We also had a national referendum on the so-called Meech Lake proposal to amend the Constitution Act of 1982 in ways that would exempt Quebec from certain elements of Confederation. News flash: that failed too. Quebec is still in Confederation without having formally ratified the Constitution Act, and both provincial and federal separatist parties still exist and have members seated in both the Quebec National Assembly (note name) and the House of Commons, but their influence is waning steadily.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 10:51 AM

Well, if you put Mark Roberts on one side, and Cerys Matthews on the other . . .




Oh, sorry, "Catalonia"


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 10:57 AM

For the EU to give any ground at all to Catelonia would be seen as weakening their bargaining position on Brexit. I do not see how the issues can be separated. As I have asked before: How can creeping regional autonomy be reconciled with the galloping federalism of the EU? The entire edifice is unstable with regional disparities of economy, culture and history. It will need more than the stroke of a pen and a peripatetic Parliament to destroy allegiance to the nation state. It must also be unique in that it cannot initiate legislation, that is left to the EU commission that has such "stalwarts" as Kinnock and Mandelson.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 11:48 AM

Brexit is either going to happen, or never happen, long before an independent Catalonia becomes an issue for the EU.

Referendums are invariably divisive. Generally, they are highly undemocratic because they ask people to make a simplistic decision on complex issues that we elect and pay politicians to wrestle over. However, in this case I can?t see any other way. But a badly-devised referendum would be worse than useless. Both sides must fully agree the wording of the question and the bar for independence must be set very high to correct for the skewed nature of the issue apropos of the alternative outcomes. Get that right and it?s a good start. Then we have to trust advocates on both sides not to mislead the public. In our referendum the bar was set too low and both sides lied in their teeth to us. If you think that has has anything to do with democracy then I?m not with you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 01:43 PM

I fail to see how referendums are any more divisive than elections.
Does any party stick to it's manifest when elected. Lying and distortion are the stock in trade of all politicians. Catelonia may or may not become an issue for the EU prior to brexit. The EU was happy to break up Yugoslavia so their hypocrisy concerning Catelonia is quite blatant. If the hamfisted diplomacy of the EU continues I suspect the Basques and a few others will start making waves. The Catelonian referendum could simply have been allowed and then ignored. Magnifying it into a major issue has done nothing to further the cause of european unity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 01:50 PM

The fundamental difference is that elections results are reversible after no more than five years. Referendums are intended to yield a permanent result, especially if it means a change (which is why they?re skewed and why the bar for change should be set high).


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 02:29 PM

" Referendums are intended to yield a permanent result, especially if it means a change"

If the EU has it's evil way the referendum will be repeated until the perceived correct response is given. Ask Ireland!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 02:30 PM

What was wrong with the referendum they tried to have?
Did the feds need to disrupt it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 05:03 PM

The decision to hold a referendum is never made by the EU.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 05:08 PM

What were the terms of the referendum they tried to hold, Keith? What was the question? How was the campaign conducted? How high was the bar set for independence? How was the voting organised? I don't know. Maybe you do.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Allan Conn
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 02:54 AM

Steve the idea that the bar should be kept high because people then view them as skewed if a small majority vote for change doesn't really satisfy people either though. You just end up making the opposing side feel even more aggrieved. The best example of that was the first Scottish devolution referendum. The Yes side narrowly won the vote but not the referendum itself because the then Labour gvt put the bar higher than 50% of the turnout. It only bred resentment and left half the country feeling the democratic rights of the majority (albeit a small majority) were being ignored by Westminster.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 03:28 AM

Yes that is quite correct Allan. A referendum must be yes or no. In or out.
I the bar was set at 60% and the out vote got 61%, non democrats like Steve would be saying it still wasn't set high enough.

Where do we draw the line? Both of the last two referendums produced very large turnouts and should be seen as extremely democratic.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 03:40 AM

"The decision to hold a referendum is never made by the EU." BUT,
of the 48 referendums held by EU states the subject matter concerned the EU. In the case of Ireland the constitution demands a referendum should changes be required to accommodate EU legislation.

I fail to see why a bar should be imposed. Is it some socialist ploy to
imitate Canute? The existing bar is quite adequate, it is called a majority. It is determined by those that were both eligible and motivated to vote. Strangely enough it is no surprise that "no shows" do not count, neither do ineligible minors. How a majority is determined in the UK referendum is fact-differing opinions have zero substance.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 04:09 AM

https://www.globalresearch.ca/spain-moves-toward-military-rule-in-catalonia/5613147

An interesting perspective. Hopefully it is only somewhat hysterical.
If it is the shape of things to come, then the european dream is about to change.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 05:10 AM

That?s the thing though, Allan. Referendums by their nature are almost certain to be divisive, no matter how you set the thresholds, which is one of several good reasons for not having them. The reason for setting high thresholds for a decision to make a change is that the change is likely to be highly significant and permanent. On the other hand, a decision in favour of the status quo can easily be followed by another referendum. That?s what I mean when I say that referendums are skewed, and that?s why, if you really must have them, a simple 50+ with a low or no minimum turnout requirement is unsatisfactory. It doesn?t matter how often leavers say the opposite: there was nothing like a majority of the electorate voting to leave. I?m stating an obstinate fact, not stating sour grapes. I won?t waste my energy on that but I will do my damnedest to argue, democratically, for a rethink. If you tell me to shut up, stop whingeing and. ?accept the will of the people? (unproven in the extreme, whereas a high bar for turnout and majority would have clinched it forever) it?s you being undemocratic and fascistic, not me. A referendum is not the same as a general election. You are voting for significant and potentially irreversible change. That is not what elections are about. It?s invidious to compare the two.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 05:29 AM

Let?s see: suppose the bar was set at 75% and that was the turnout. Let?s say that the required majority was 60% and the result was akenaton?s 61%. That?s still well under half the electorate voting for the change. To ensure a majority of all those entitled to vote, which I would say is the minimum requirement to make an irreversible and highly significant change, a turnout of 75% would require a majority of just under 67% voting for the change. That?s where I would set the bars. In those circumstances, no- one on the losing side would be able to claim no majority/mandate for change. One of the divisive elements would have been removed. That?s a much better shot at real democracy, though I still don?t believe in referendums anyway. Of course, I can see why leavers wouldn?t have liked it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 05:45 AM

You can only work on a majority of those interested enough to ACTUALLY vote.....those who wilfully do not don't deserve to be taken into account.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 05:54 AM

You can work on whatever criteria you decide on. And you haven?t a clue how ?wilful? the non-voters were. This isn?t a game.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 06:26 AM

I'm afraid we will never have the means to calibrate those who wilfully don't vote from those who have been unable to vote for myriad reasons, so unfortunately they must all be considered non voters. In a referendum any other method would be nonsensical.

It is not as if there had been insufficient information available on the referendum date, or any other obstruction to voting.

The obstructions started immediately AFTER the vote. :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 06:56 AM

They are considered non-voters because they didn?t vote. Hope this helps.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 07:33 AM

Steve,
What was the question?
"Do you want Catalonia to become an independent state in the form of a republic?"
Who can vote?
Only Catalan residents of voting age, 18 and above, are entitled to participate in the referendum. An estimated 5.3 million of the region's 7.5 million population are eligible to vote.  


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 08:50 AM

That?s a leading question, I?m afraid.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: bobad
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 09:17 AM

The question was direct, clear and unequivocal.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 10:02 AM

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 12 Oct 17 - 11:48 AM
Brexit is either going to happen, or never happen, long before an independent Catalonia becomes an issue for the EU.
Referendums are invariably divisive.


I would prefer the idea that referendums are only held because of an existing division. So the referendums are not, in themselves, divisive. They may get people talking more about the issues, and so highlight the existing divisions, but that is not the same thing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 11:20 AM

Ours was a referendum over a ?division? that didn?t need a referendum to fix. There was no overwhelming appetite for the UK to leave the EU. Just 38% of the electorate turning out to vote leave after being bombarded with outright xenophobia and racism for months is testament to that. But the division has been stepped up several pegs since the vote, and in some ways that?s the least of our worries now.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 11:28 AM

"Do you want Catalonia to become an independent state in the form of a republic?"

That is a leading question by any measure. Try this:

?There is an opportunity for Catalonia either to remain a part of Spain or to become an independent state in the form of a republic. Please state your preference by ticking one of the two boxes below...?

Make no bones about it, if I were a Catalonian living in Barcelona I would campaign and vote for Catalan independence (when not at the Nou Camp). But either you do it properly or you just store up trouble for the future. It?s hard enough to avoid that as it is.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:05 PM

"Ours was a referendum over a ?division? that didn?t need a referendum to fix. There was no overwhelming appetite for the UK to leave the EU. Just 38% of the electorate turning out to vote leave after being bombarded with outright xenophobia and racism for months is testament to that."
why do you continue to quote your opinions as though they are incontestable facts? You fool very few here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:21 PM

Because that?s what I do. Live with it. I?m not going to change the habit of a lifetime because of some ill-mannered Johnny-Come-Lately such as yourself. I suggest you debate the issues and save your bad-tempered sniping for your mates down the pub. Your own way of addressing issues here is hardly beyond reproach, is it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:47 PM

Steve,
There was no overwhelming appetite for the UK to leave the EU.

Yes there was. UKIP actually won the EU elections and the parties all offered a referendum for fear they would win the general election too if they alone promised one.

Spain would have disrupted the Catalonian referendum however the question was put.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 01:42 PM

"Your own way of addressing issues here is hardly beyond reproach, is it?"

But I do endeavour to differentiate between fact and my opinions. Also I try to give links to support my arguments.
A pity you do not do the same. After all you no longer strut up and down the classroom on mudcat, much as you may think that you do.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 03:17 PM

And what was the turnout for those EU elections, Keith?

Grow up, Iains. You?re no Teribus and never will be. Your endeavours, however noble you think they are, are secondary to the fact that you are generally extremely ill-mannered and delusional. Just my opinion, as ever. Or IS it a fact...


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 14 Oct 17 - 05:47 AM

Steve, the turnout was 36 per cent, up from 34.7 per cent in 2009.
The Independent, opening passage,
"Nigel Farage inflicted another body blow on the three main political parties on Sunday night as Ukip scored a stunning victory in the European Parliament elections.
The anti-EU party dramatically built on its success in the local elections in England last Thursday when the results of the Euro poll on the same day were announced. A jubilant Mr Farage hailed the outcome as ?an earthquake? because ?never before in the history of British politics has a party seen to be an insurgent party ever topped the polls in a national election?."
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/european-elections-results-2014-sweeping-gains-for-nigel-farages-ukip-deal-further-body-blow-to-main-9434042.html


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 14 Oct 17 - 02:43 PM

At last, an admission from Steve Shaw that he posts his personal opinions as facts:

From: Iains - PM
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:05 PM
. . .why do you continue to quote your opinions as though they are incontestable facts? You fool very few here.
From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:21 PM
Because that?s what I do. Live with it.


I think that sums up (perfectly) Steve Shaw's view on what can be considered as reasonable debate.

As the Americans would have it 'Nuff said"


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 14 Oct 17 - 02:50 PM

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 11:28 AM
"Do you want Catalonia to become an independent state in the form of a republic?"
That is a leading question by any measure. Try this:
What options would the two boxes give?
Your wording of the question precludes a simple yes/no answer, so it
?There is an opportunity for Catalonia either to remain a part of Spain or to become an independent state in the form of a republic. Please state your preference by ticking one of the two boxes below...?

also risks that the two options against the boxes will also be subject to bias.

You need to think these things through a little before posting you suggestions.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 14 Oct 17 - 03:45 PM

The problem is not going to go away. In fact escalation seems almost inevitable.

civil war wounds reopened


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 Oct 17 - 06:30 PM

So you think that a far-less-than-40% turnout, many of whom did not vote UKIP lest we forget, represents an overwhelming appetite for leaving the EU, do you, Keith? Your attempt at obfuscating waffle, a well-known tactic of yours, can?t conceal the fact that there was NO OVERWHELMING APPETITE FOR LEAVING THE EU. I invite you to look up ?overwhelming? in the nearest dictionary.

You?re wasting your time, Nigel. Targeting an individual obsessively, which is, sadly, precisely what you?re doing, is stalking. Your behaviour is a classic example. You are doing far more stalking than discussing. I see your posts but I don?t read them any more. Try sticking to the issues. You?re making a fool of yourself. Please take this as a polite early warning that your recent posting behaviour is being archived. Any more of it and I?ll complain, and I know I?ll be taken seriously. Take two steps back, Nigel.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 04:03 AM

Any more of it and I?ll complain, and I know I?ll be taken seriously.
Stupid boy!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 04:44 AM

Let him try me. And try to go whole day without hurling childish insults.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Allan Conn
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 07:03 AM

I agree that there is no need for name calling and actually I normally agree with much of what you say Steve - but not on this. The idea that putting such a high benchmark on any change would end any divisiveness just doesn't work for me. Treating non voters as if they were voting for the status-quo would just cause more division in that those voting for change would feel disenfranchised. Non voters in a proper referendum are either not interested, are not able to vote in that they may even be dead, or perhaps they genuinely either don't care either way or don't know. It is not a vote for the status quo though.

I don't see what alternatives there are to a referendum. The only other way is surely the parliamentary process and that is even less democratic. For instance in the Scottish parliament there is a Yes majority but it would not be democratic for them to declare independence as that Yes majority is not mirrored by the electorate or polls where Yes is still on about 46% only. So yes they have a clear mandate for the principle of having another vote from the electorate and from the votes in the parliament itself but that is only for asking the question in a referendum.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 07:22 AM

Steve,
UKIP easily won that election even though many leavers do not vote UKIP. Me for one.
So, that was indeed a clear vote against the EU in 2014 and the 2016 referendum proved the case that a majority want out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 10:09 AM

Nigel is not a stalker, merely showing where Steve is being "wrong headed". If he was not regularly checked by logic, people might start to believe his myth spinning.

Regarding stalking in general, though I don't keep a record, I'm sure I could put together a large portfolio of Steve's "interventions".

I listened to John McDonell today being interviewed by Andrew Marr
When asked by Marr what Labour would do if they were given power today, John came up with the wheeze of telling the EU negotiators that "Britain would never walk away without a deal".
The second biggest suicide note in British history???

Does anyone seriously think that is a sustainable position? It is more or less Cameron"s position when he went grovelling before the referendum.

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that the EU will never give us any sort of help in the form of an advantageous trade deal.
If we leave the whole edifice crumbles, the pigs are out of their sty, the cold winter is upon them.
We must stand on our own feet, and at a later date Scotland too must assert its sovereignty ....but the social and economic system must be radically reformed to make sure the people of Scotland at all levels benefit socially. Economically we should appreciate that the days of borrowing or printing money are behind us, it will be noses the the grindstone, but at least it will be British and Scottish grindstones.

Immigration should be cut dramatically, work training programmes instigated, a life on benefits outlawed, compulsory work experience for all school leavers, a proper grading system and degree choice for further education and university.....no more degrees that are of no value to the recipients or the country.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 10:23 AM

An interesting analysis of a referendum. The only comment I would make is that legislation should have been passed to make the result binding instead of advisory, as far as brexit was concerned.Referendum


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 11:01 AM

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 04:44 AM

Let him try me. And try to go whole day without hurling childish insults.


This could get interesting. I don't deal in "childish insults" although I know that Steve Shaw does.

As to his threat of 'keeping an archive' the whole of the Mudcat remains as an archive, which he is welcome to trawl for supportive evidence.
I merely point out his errors when they appear on a thread in which I am already taking an interest.
'Stalking' would involve seeking out comments by that person, in order to attack them. I'm sure there must be many threads which Steve Shaw contributes to, but which I have never even bothered to open.

I believe he must be bothered by my insisting on fact based argument, rather than personal assumptions. This was just the way he appeared to argue, until he decided to clarify the matter, as I quoted yesterday:

From: Iains - PM
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:05 PM
. . .why do you continue to quote your opinions as though they are incontestable facts? You fool very few here.
From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:21 PM
Because that?s what I do. Live with it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: bobad
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 01:06 PM

Don't sweat it Nigel, we've been down this road with Shaw many times before. It comes when he is contradicted or shown to be wrong about something that he starts with the name calling, accusations of stalking and idle threats. He's become somewhat of a running joke among some of us here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 01:29 PM

The obstinate fact is that the turnout was way too low for you to conclude that there was an overwhelming appetite for leaving the EU. Even if every person in that EU election had voted UKIP, it still would not have proved an overwhelming appetite. Too many people did not take part. Allan, I don't claim every non-voter for "my side." But if any of those non-voters had felt an ardent and vital need for us to leave the EU, they would have voted. But for some reason they didn't. That suggests something less than an overwhelming appetite. Certainly, 38% of those entitled to vote does not demonstrate an overwhelming appetite.

Generally I disagree with referendums because, in a democracy, we elect politicians to know stuff better than we do and make informed decisions better than we can. Trying to dress up the brexit vote as a simple are we in/are we out vote, is just disingenuous. The repercussions either way are manifold and complex. I want people who know those potential repercussions making the crucial decisions, not a largely ignorant electorate whose only qualification is that they're over 18. Conversely, lest I'm accused of being patronising or whatever, I wouldn't want Philip Hammond plastering my bedroom ceiling or Jeremy Corbyn fitting my kitchen. In the case of Catalonia I can't see any other way out of this now bar a referendum. If I lived there I'd want independence. But cutting corners by proposing a leading question or conducting a campaign full of lies will make things worse.

The point about setting bars high is fairly straightforward. Say Catalonia voted to leave Spain, then left. Over the next few years there would be severe repercussions regarding the EU and trade with other nations, some of whom may have been unsympathetic. Spain would create difficulties and it would soon become clear that the move was irreversible. But say Catalonia voted to stay. Over the next few years there would be rumblings about another vote. In terms of democracy, and the relative cheapness of organising one, there would be nothing wrong with peaceful campaigning for a second referendum, especially if things were getting tougher and if the first vote had been close. Having a change of mind would be relatively easy to act on. But once you're out, the chances are that changing your mind would be futile. The consequences of voting to leave are not the same as voting for staying. Therefore it should be quite hard to get enough votes to leave. Leaving is a far more serious proposition than staying. I'd say two-thirds of three-quarters minimum.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 01:35 PM

A two-thirds majority of a minimum three-quarters turnout is what I meant.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 01:44 PM

Steve, why do you keep on about "an overwhelming appetite for leaving the EU?"

The UKIP victory in the EU elections was proof that a significant proportion of the people wanted it, justifying a referendum. All parties agreed that.
The referendum proved that it was a majority view.

Generally I disagree with referendums

Strange that you never mentioned that in all the discussions we had in the run up to the referendum.
Only after you lost it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 01:49 PM

The consequences of a second vote would have to be a "best of three" vote then farce.
The consequences of staying in the EU are manifold the organisation is disintegrating and even if it survives on paper the strains of unregulated immigration and the political movements towards nationalism will make the object of "Ever Closer Union" and "Free Movement of Labour " will be unattainable.

Better out now while the waters are relatively calm.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 02:23 PM

Stupid post, Keith.

Another referendum would not be a second referendum in that the question would be very different. Actually, the last referendum was the second referendum, the first having been held in 1975. If there is another one the question would be asked in light of what's gone on since the 2016 one. A different question entirely. However, I don't think there'll be one anyway. There isn't much doubt as to which way it would go if it did happen.

In the last couple of days we've had this groundswell over no-deal. Be in no doubt as to what the brexiteers intend by this. They know that every day bad news is piling on bad news. Over the next eighteen months this is going to radically change the country's opinion on the desirability of brexit. The minute we walk away the minute the bad news is stemmed. We'll be able to paint the EU as a totally rigid and unreasonable organisation. It's a ploy to keep brexit on the rails.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 03:23 PM

"Too many people did not take part"

Well bless my soul! Shaw has created a new voting block. In my book apathy deserves everything that comes its way. A vibrant democracy requires that all those enfranchised act, when given the opportunity.

"The consequences of voting to leave are not the same as voting for staying. Therefore it should be quite hard to get enough votes to leave. Leaving is a far more serious proposition than staying. I'd say two-thirds of three-quarters minimum."

Going to bed at night is not the same as getting up in the morning.
WOW. Hows about that then. What a stunning deduction. Just how it contributes to the discussion escapes me. "Making it hard to get enough votes to leave" is blatant interference in the democratic process. Is this a cunning wheeze from comrade corbyn?(whose closest advisors have been subject to ongoing investigation by the security services)
We of the ruling party are quite happy with a simple majority vote.
How they voted in Timbuktu, or that they were away on a package holiday, or simply could not be bothered to vote is of zero interest. Squealing "not fair" after the event does not change the outcome. Those that had the most votes won, those that had the least votes lost. Simples, but leftards have a problem grasping the simplest mathematical concepts.
The only way to change the voting requirements is for parliament to pass the necessary legislation. Shaw's opinions in this matter, as in many others, counts for nought.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 03:28 PM

"The minute we walk away the minute the bad news is stemmed. We'll be able to paint the EU as a totally rigid and unreasonable organisation."

We don't need to paint them, its been obvious for months they are attempting to have the democratic will of the people reversed.
They are and have always been a "totally ridged and unreasonable organisation".....undemocratic and corrupt could also be added to their CV


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 03:30 PM

You are being stupid and insulting and all bar about two people here realise it. Live with it. You don't deserve a response.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 15 Oct 17 - 03:31 PM

That was targeted at Iains.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 03:15 AM

Steve,
Stupid post, Keith.

....but you are unable to actually challenge a word of it.


You are being stupid and insulting

....but you are unable to actually challenge a word of it.

Just saying "stupid" is not an argument, but it is all you can manage.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 03:20 AM

No, it isn?t all I can manage. It?s just that I really can?t be arsed to play your extremely silly games.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 04:03 AM

Anyway to get back on the topic of this thread and away from the resident buffoon who has a problem separating fact from fantasy.

An appended interesting analysis:


https://capx.co/catalonia-demonstrates-the-folly-of-a-united-states-of-europe/


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 05:36 AM

No, it isn?t all I can manage. It?s just that I really can?t be arsed to play your extremely silly games.

Of course it is Steve!
You could easily demolish our logic, but you choose not to.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 07:00 AM

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 05:29 AM
Let?s see: suppose the bar was set at 75% and that was the turnout. Let?s say that the required majority was 60% and the result was akenaton?s 61%. That?s still well under half the electorate voting for the change. To ensure a majority of all those entitled to vote, which I would say is the minimum requirement to make an irreversible and highly significant change, a turnout of 75% would require a majority of just under 67% voting for the change. That?s where I would set the bars. In those circumstances, no- one on the losing side would be able to claim no majority/mandate for change. One of the divisive elements would have been removed. That?s a much better shot at real democracy, though I still don?t believe in referendums anyway. Of course, I can see why leavers wouldn?t have liked it.


It's interesting, this idea of retrospectively changing the rules, and retaining the status quo if a certain threshold isn't reached.

Of course, if the 2016 referendum were revised in this strange fashion, we would need to also look at the 1975 referendum which bound us to the EU. That was a 67.23% 'Yes' vote, on the basis of a 64.2% turnout.
So only 43.2% of the eligible electorate voted to bind us to the EU.

That's it, either we stick with the results of the recent referendum and we're out of the EU,
Or, we review (and overturn) both referendums and are out of the EU.


"Simples"


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 07:16 AM

I didn't say anything about retrospectively changing the rules. Don't put words in my mouth, please. Your agenda here should be to stick to the point. In fact, had different rules been in in place at the time of the last referendum, voting behaviour in several regards might have been modified. There's no point analysing the results according to rules that were not in place at the time. The main point about the last referendum is that 38% of the electorate voted to leave. Hardly an overwhelming appetite, it hardly needs to be said. But we'll have to live with it, won't we, and see what happens now. The EU are folding their arms tightly and laughing their heads off at us. Doesn't augur well, does it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 07:45 AM

" it hardly needs to be said. But we'll have to live with it, won't we, and see what happens now. The EU are folding their arms tightly and laughing their heads off at us. Doesn't augur well, does it?

But that is not what is happening, people like you and a majority of self serving MPs are making negotiations more difficult and the EU negotiators more stubborn.

If you really believe that we HAVE to leave, get behind the government who are representing a majority of the British electorate and show a bit of British unity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 12:40 PM

38% is not a majority of the electorate. 62% is a majority of the electorate who did not jump on board the leave bandwagon. Belief don't come into it. Belief is not predicated on fact. Reach a measured conclusion from reasonably well-verified facts. Don't go around believing. It's a bad idea, believe me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 04:36 PM

"If you really believe that we HAVE to leave, get behind the government who are representing a majority of the British electorate and show a bit of British unity"

I think it should have been obvious that I was referring to a majority of the electorate who could be arsed voting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 05:07 PM

I see shaw is very good at quoting statistics. It is a shame he lacks the required skillset to generate any meaningful interpretation of them.
This has been pointed out on numerous occasions when he re-flogs this tired old hoss, but still he repeats his boring mantra in the mistaken belief that some totally misguided soul might believe him.
   To spell it out again in simple words for a simple soul. Of those that voted in the referendum the majority voted for out. That is all that we need to know.

" Belief is not predicated on fact. Reach a measured conclusion from reasonably well-verified facts. Don't go around believing. It's a bad idea, believe me."
Tis a crying shame the poor boy cannot act on his own words! Or is this the usual leftard tendency of"do as I say, not as I do!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 06:42 PM

You are an idiot and all bar about two of us know it full well. Why don?t you try to focus on the issues? One fine day you?ll look over all your inane, insulting posts and wish to Christ that there was a delete button. Unfortunately for you, your insulting, puerile drivel will be there forever for all to see. Even if you studiously refrain from reading your own dismal posting history, you may be assured that there are plenty of us here who will be only too pleased to remind you. And everything here can be googled. Your stupidity is up here forever. If I were you, before you post anything else I?d have a long, hard think about the image of yourself that you?re propagating here. Friendly advice only.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Oct 17 - 06:44 PM

Damn that new Apple keyboard...


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 17 Oct 17 - 03:43 AM

You are an idiot and all bar about two of us know it full well.

Instead of puerile name calling, please identify errors in what has been posted.
Can you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 17 Oct 17 - 04:23 AM

Yes I can. Another thing I can do is avoid getting sucked into your stupid games. It is highly hypocritical of you, of all people, to defend the posts of a serially rude sniper. Let?s talk about issues around Catalonia.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 17 Oct 17 - 09:08 AM

Two Catelonian Independence leaders jailed for sedition. This EU democracy is working rather well! It will hardly be oil on troubled waters. Austria taking a hike to the right, and Brexit marching blithely on. Greece and Cyprus not impressed. The course of European Unity seems to have found a few bumps in the road.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/catalonia-independence-leaders-jailed-spain-judge-sedition-jordi-sanchez-jordi-cu


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 17 Oct 17 - 09:54 AM

It is not playing "stupid games" to ask you to say exactly what it is that you claim is idiocy.
It is normal discussion.
Instead of calling people names, say what you disagree with and why.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 17 Oct 17 - 05:35 PM

Just go away, Keith. Your idiocy is crystal clear to all here bar two or three other fools. No games, Keith. I've picked up your ball and taken it home. You lose. Not interested. Go on, try me again to see if I am.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 03:02 AM

Answer the fucking Question!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 03:23 AM

Ake: There's no point getting shirty with him. As I quoted earlier, he has been very clear on the basis he uses for arguments:

From: Iains - PM
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:05 PM
. . .why do you continue to quote your opinions as though they are incontestable facts? You fool very few here.
From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 13 Oct 17 - 12:21 PM
Because that?s what I do. Live with it.


I love all these extra question marks he's throwing in, maybe he things he's The Riddler!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 04:59 AM

Your idiocy is crystal clear to all here bar two or three other fools.

None of us are fools, and you are unable to identify any "idiocy" in any post.

As ever you resort to abuse because you are utterly incapable of making a case or any kind of reply.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 05:50 AM

Shut up. You are pointless.

The question marks are being inserted ever since I updated my iPad to the latest IOS version. They replace every apostrophe and quote mark I try to use and trying to edit them out is useless. I really don?t know why I should have to explain these things, Nigel.

Oh yes I do, as soon as I remember who I?m talking to...


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 06:13 AM

The question marks are being inserted ever since I updated my iPad to the latest IOS version. They replace every apostrophe and quote mark I try to use and trying to edit them out is useless. I really don?t know why I should have to explain these things, Nigel.

Have you tried hitting 'preview' under the reply box, and then editing as necessary within that box?

For some systems it may be necessary to ensure you're using a valid character for the apostrophe (a straight apostrophe rather than an 'inverted comma').
Any reasonably educated person should be able to find what the fault is, and correct it.

To miss-quote Wilde:
To make this error once is unfortunate. to continue doing so seems like carelessness!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 10:28 AM

Nigel Parsons. Well played Sir.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Greg F.
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 10:31 AM

To miss-quote Wilde:
To make this error once is unfortunate. to continue doing so seems like carelessness!


To quote myself: to make an issue of this inconsequential matter is the work of a fool.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 10:36 AM

"to make an issue of this inconsequential matter is the work of a fool."This takes care of most of your pots then, does it not?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 11:44 AM

How does that pan out, Iains?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 Oct 17 - 11:54 AM

"Have you tried hitting 'preview' under the reply box, and then editing as necessary within that box?"

Why yes I have, Nigel, and I mentioned it in a post in the brexit thread that you posted to several times after the mention. Tsk, Nigel. Any reasonably well-educated person shouldn't have to be told the same thing twice within the space of a few hours. Bet you didn't listen at school either, just like your charmless pals Teribus and Iains, who pride themselves on their ignorance of teaching.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 08:17 AM

The feds are going to take control of Catalonia starting Saturday, removing its autonomy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 09:02 AM

The feds are going to take control of Catalonia starting Saturday, removing its autonomy.

Sounds like Spain is following the EU general view. Any state or part state can have autonomy, as long as they don't insist on having autonomy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 10:39 AM

Autonomy is not the same as statehood. Autonomous regions within states are absolutely fine with the EU, so I fail to see your point. If Catalonia becomes a state it will no longer be in the EU. It will have to reapply, and, for several reasons, will find it next to impossible to join. First, a unanimous vote by all the member countries is needed for a new member to join. I can't see Spain voting yes somehow. Second, there are other countries with unsettled regions such as France with the Basques. Neither the EU nor Spain would not want an eased path for Catalonia to give others ideas. Third, the whole concept of the EU is predicated on closer harmonisation, countries splitting apart being completely at odds with that. The odds are that an independent Catalonia would be out in the cold for a very long time. That prospect alone would be sufficient, I reckon, to lose an independence referendum. Spain should cool it and allow Catalonia a legal referendum. I don't believe in 'em, as I've often said, but the two sides are locked into an impossible, conflicted situation for the foreseeable future without one and there's no other way. I don't think Catalonia is going anywhere, whatever happens.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 10:41 AM

Neither the EU nor France is what I meant.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 10:42 AM

And an unwarranted double negative in that sentence to boot. My eyes are dim...


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 01:30 PM

Autonomy=a self-governing country or region.
freedom from external control or influence; independence.

synonyms:        self-government, independence, self-rule, home rule, sovereignty, self-determination, freedom, autarchy;

I do like a contradictory dictionary explanation.

I believe Catalonia's interpretation differs markedly from that of Spain and the EU.

This contretemps is still building a head of steam. Never mind it all aids brexit.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 02:17 PM

Well it's simpler to look up what autonomy means in Spain rather than look for contradictory definitions in dictionaries. In fact, it means different things for different autonomous communities, each of which has its own constitution. Spain is, in effect, more of a federation than anything. Whichever community you're talking about, the degree of autonomy is considerable. The Basque Country and Catalonia characterise themselves as nationalities and are, in most regards, the most "autonomous" of the regions. We can all read wiki. And I don't see what it has to do with Brexit right now, frankly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 04:28 PM

It would probably make more sense to ask those in Catelonia what they mean by autonomy. They may or may not accept other definitions.

If you cannot see any connection between Catelonia and Brexit then frankly you must be nice but dim.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Oct 17 - 05:59 PM

You've seen the word "Catalonia" so many times in this thread, correctly spelled. You are a slow learner, aren't you. A bit, er, dim, maybe?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 02:49 AM

" Neither the EU nor Spain would not want an eased path for Catalonia to give others ideas. Third, the whole concept of the EU is predicated on closer harmonisation, countries splitting apart being completely at odds with that." - Shaw

Totally wrong Shaw - the EU wants to do away with the "nation states" of Europe as part of it's "closer harmonisation" it does not want to have to deal with national governments and their agendas. The EU wants an organisation of smaller regional blocks that are damned sight easier to bully, coerce and control. That chap all you Labour Party supporters voted for (Three times) Tony Blair tried his damnedest to set the wheel rolling in the UK with devolution for Wales and Scotland which was supposed to have been followed up by "regional parliaments" in England - Thankfully that bit of it did not happen (In England they were far too sensible to be allow themselves to be saddled with an additional layer of government that they woud have to pay for in return for no tangible benefit to anyone except the "professional politicians" who would stick their snouts in the newly erected troughs).

Don't quite remember you coming out with any of this during discussions on the Scottish Independence referendum Shaw. Everything you said about Catalonia applied equally well to Scotland. Only thing with the SNP is that on the back of the EU referendum result they want a second independence referendum because they say they want to stay in the EU - totally ignoring the fact that Scotland per se has never been a member state of the EU - Fact is if Scotland, or Catalonia, votes for independence they are OUT of the EU. In both cases, the EU HAS TO stand apart as the matter relates to the domestic, internal affairs of the "nation state" and at present it is those "nation states" that pay into the coffers of the EU to keep the EU Commission's gravy train on the road - so guess who the EU are not going to upset at present? Especially as their second largest contributor is headed for the exit. Do you see the connection between what is occurring in Spain, in the EU and with Brexit now Shaw?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 03:49 AM

"You've seen the word "Catalonia" so many times in this thread, correctly spelled. You are a slow learner, aren't you. A bit, er, dim, maybe?"

My oh my! What a clever little lad we are shaw. Is that really the best you could come up with.
" I was merely suggesting that you worked to your strengths""You demonstrate that, basically, you understand nothing about anything. That's a weakness, so do us a favour and stick to what you're good at"

Well follow your own advice and let me be the first to congratulate you on your departure from this forum. Allow me to assure you, you will not be missed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 04:23 AM

You are indulging in the received, mythological wisdom that sez the EU wants to become one big, happy country. Once your argument is predicated on such arrant nonsense the whole thing collapses like a house of cards. As for Scotland/Catalonia, it may well be instructive to make comparisons, but not at the moment, as the fundamental difference is that the UK is leaving the EU whereas Spain isn't.

"Dim" could mean misspelling the name of a Spanish region incorrectly seven times in one thread when all around you are spelling it correctly. Best not to call someone else dim when you yourself exhibit such a deficiency.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 04:50 AM

"You are indulging in the received, mythological wisdom that sez the EU wants to become one big, happy country."

Ah so they do not need two parliament buildings then Shaw. So why are they paying for them?

There is no need whatsoever for a European Parliament at all if the member nation states are sacrosanct - what can a European Parliament do that individual national parliaments and the Council of Ministers cannot?

No need at all for the European Commission - Everything can be done by the individual states through discussion and agreement in the Council of Ministers.

No need for a European Defence Force. But they are working damn hard to force that through. To what end? What can it do that cannot already be done through NATO?

Haven't you read the EU's Aims as stipulated in the Treaty of Lisbon Shaw?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 04:52 AM

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 04:23 AM
You are indulging in the received, mythological wisdom that sez the EU wants to become one big, happy country.

I don't think anyone actually believes that (as stated).
The EU, as an impersonal edifice, can have no wishes. What we are worried about are the plans and intentions of certain sectors which are currently controlling the EU. They seem to have a wish for "one big country" as they make announcements about wanting a single top level finance minister (hence a single currency throughout), and a single EU army.
Clearly they are not bothered with whether they have a "Big happy country". Just look at how they have treated Greece.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 08:05 AM

The EU is actually half a billion persons, so not quite so impersonal. Half a billion people in 28 nations represents a very wide diversity of viewpoints and aspirations. Decisions are made by all 28 nations, of which we are currently one, and a very influential one at that - until the current fiasco started. You talk as if the EU makes big decisions in secret in a hidden garret somewhere then imposes them on the unsuspecting half billion. Well we are the EU and so far we have agreed with almost every new law, rule and regulation, demurring at very few and modifying very many via our constructive input. Your talk is part of the leave side's mythology that was dishonestly foisted on the British public. As for that EU army, as long as the UK is a member it can never happen. Ironic, innit, that it will be far more on the cards after we leave and no longer have the veto as we do now. And you can bet your life we'll have to be a part of it. Unintended consequences, eh?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 08:28 AM

Well we are the EU and so far we have agreed with almost every new law, rule and regulation, demurring at very few and modifying very many via our constructive input.
No, we are not the EU (unless you are speaking from your viewpoint as a staunch pro-European, and even then saying "we" is far too inclusive). We are currently a part of it.
We have gone along with many of the new laws, not because we agree with them, but because we were (or knew we would be) outvoted.
A little pragmatism goes a long way, but there comes the point when the people of the UK (or at least the majority of those prepared to vote) decided we did not have sufficient clout to avoid being dragged into a "United Europe" so we are getting out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 09:47 AM

Not true, Nigel. Out of thousands of EU laws we have disagreed with some points in about fifty of them. The figure is around five percent of the laws that we have wholly or partly disagreed with. It is not a simple matter of being "outvoted." We are an integral part of the lawmaking process. And, by implication, you accept that we do get to vote on things, therefore taking part in collective, democratic decision-making. You don't get to vote on things being dictatorially imposed. Have some numbers, gleaned from the Full Facts website from June 2016:

Since 1999, the UK voted no on laws subsequently passed at EU level 56 times (2%)

The UK abstained on laws subsequently passed 70 times (3%)

The UK voted yes on laws subsequently passed 2,466 times (95%)

But the UK doesn't just vote. Along with all the other countries it negotiates those laws. The numbers don't show laws that failed to pass, which on occasion would partly or mainly have been as a result of our influence.

You may not feel like you're a part of the EU but you are. The EU is an association of citizens in 28 countries. I don't like the idea of being a capitalist, but I am one as I don't live in a cave eating rabbits and wild fruits.



As for your suggested reason for the referendum result, I don't really think you are in a position to read the minds of millions of voters.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 10:25 AM

"The figure is about five percent of EU laws" would have made more sense.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 10:40 AM

No it wouldn't.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 Oct 17 - 12:36 PM

Well I would hardly expect you of all people to recognise literacy. If you have nothing to say just keep your mouth shut, there's a good fellow.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 21 Oct 17 - 03:35 AM

This latest jolly jape will go down well.


https://www.thelocal.es/20171020/tusk-no-space-for-eu-intervention-in-catalonia


http://www.euronews.com/2017/10/21/madrid-poised-to-activate-emergency-rule-in-catalonia

I wonder when the little squeaker above will learn some manners?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 Oct 17 - 05:08 AM

You don't do irony, do you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 22 Oct 17 - 11:03 AM

A few more for the party.


https://www.rt.com/news/407437-lombardy-veneto-vote-autonomy/

And the violence during the recent polling in Catalunya was apparently false news.(The scenes I saw seemed very genuine.

false news!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 22 Oct 17 - 11:22 AM

More problems for the EU! Thanks for the links Iains.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 22 Oct 17 - 02:34 PM

EU Federalism

          One treaty to rule them all,
          one treaty to find them,
          One treaty to bring them all
          and in the darkness bind them.


http://www.spectrezine.org/europe/CAEF.htm


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 03:43 AM

"Decisions are made by all 28 nations, of which we are currently one, and a very influential one at that"

Care to tell us WHEN the UK has been influential as far as the EU goes?

" As for that EU army, as long as the UK is a member it can never happen. Ironic, innit, that it will be far more on the cards after we leave and no longer have the veto as we do now. And you can bet your life we'll have to be a part of it."

Care to explain why we will "have to be part of it"? Those seeking to establish an EU army, are they the same European nations who have consistently failed to meet their obligations towards NATO? If they cannot stump up the required 2% GDP for defence with regard to NATO what on earth makes you, or anyone else for that matter, think that they will be prepared to pay for a European force? Or does the EU hope that they can fudge that by staying in NATO?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 05:57 AM

Don.t think this is on the menu at hotel corbinista.

The World Socialists

So much for international brotherhood and unity.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 06:16 AM

Well we've been influential in preventing an EU army since you mention it. We've vetoed it.   😂


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 07:36 AM

"we've been influential in preventing an EU army since you mention it. We've vetoed it."?

Really? When did we do that? I believe our Defence Secretary has stated quite clearly that "We WILL veto it", but that has not happened as yet.

But this is how the EU Commission works:

"EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has spoken of the possibility of a ?common military force? at a meeting of EU leaders in Bratislava, to which Britain was not invited."

That is how influential the UK is in Europe. 😂


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 07:38 AM

So it would appear that no examples of the UK being influential in Europe can be produced from a term of membership that spans some 43 years - Oh dear what a pity, too bad, never mind 😂😂😂


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 10:16 AM

From wiki.

"Article 42.2 provides for complete integration, which would require unanimity in the European Council of heads of state or government and has as such been blocked by the United Kingdom, which is the main opponent of EU defence integration, in particular. (The United Kingdom is however scheduled to withdraw from the union in 2019.)"

Yeah, yeah, blocked, vetoed, whatevvah. Obstinately the same result. Once we are out we can't block/veto it any more and it will happen. And the reason they don't invite us to meetings any more is that they don't want a country that's leaving to be involved in future decision-making. Duh. If we stayed in it would never happen. That's the constitution. Unanimity or not at all. Unintended consequences ahead, eh?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 02:49 PM

"the reason they don't invite us to meetings any more is that they don't want a country that's leaving to be involved in future decision-making."

But as current members they will still expect us to pay for it - but have no fear THAT is not going to happen.

The EU without the UK can do whatever it wants with regard to a "European Defence Force". It will, be a mirror, of the EU Commission itself, inefficient and ineffective. Most countries, members of the EU, will not abandon NATO which is the longstanding and proven organisation upon which the peace and security of Europe depends. The UK is definitely leaving Europe in 2019, it has no intention at all in leaving NATO.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 03:03 PM

"The EU without the UK can do whatever it wants with regard to a 'European Defence Force'"

Correct. And that is not a good thing. But while we've been a member it can never have happened, which is a good thing and a very good example of our influence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 03:42 PM

Catalonia says it will ignore orders from Spanish government when it imposes direct rule. Oh Dear!

Italian regions to begin talks on autonomy after Veneto, Lombardy referendums. Oh Dear!

'Czech Donald Trump' election win ? ?a real slam at the establishment?

The natives are getting restless.

The road to european integration is paved with potholes!
If all continues like this disintegration will create an exit for everyone. Will exit precede brexit?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 04:16 PM

Oh dear, oh dear, guess what change the original treaty of Lisbon attempted to bring in. At the moment the EU requires the unanimous agreement of all member states in the Council of Ministers, what was tried on was a change that allowed things to go through with only a two-thirds majority. 28 member states, two-thirds of 28 is 19 - How many non-contributor member states are there again? Oh yes there are 19 of them - how convenient for the EU Commission who can blackmail those in receipt of EU cash into voting the way they want. First France, then the Netherlands and then Ireland rejected the Treaty of Lisbon. This was the Treaty of Lisbon that was a step too far for the electorate of the UK, the one that prompted Gordon Brown to promise the electorate an EU membership referendum, of course he reneged on that promise and the EU Commission got their amended and much watered down version of the Treaty of Lisbon through the back door - No two-thirds provision YET - but it hasn't gone away.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Oct 17 - 05:16 PM

There can be no European army while we are members. Impossible. We block it under EU rules. Once we leave we lose that influence and it will likely come about. It really is very simple, Teribus.

"The natives are getting restless."

Nice piece of imperialist claptrap peppered with a dose of racism. Perfect. Why am I not surprised?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 04:07 AM

"Nice piece of imperialist claptrap peppered with a dose of racism. Perfect. Why am I not surprised?"

You do come out with some rubbish Shaw. Or are you merely trying to construct the perfect non sequitur?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 04:14 AM

Tell us Shaw, once we have left the EU why does it matter to us if they then decide to pander to France's vanity and ego, if they then go ahead with their European Defence Force - We, along with most countries in Europe will still be members of NATO, which will be the military alliance that guarantees the safety and security of Europe.

Now should the EU Commission then insist on EU member states leaving NATO, that is when sphincters will start to twitch and the EU Defence Force will get canned (The proposed French led EDF might just be able to put on a parade [Provided that it doesn't have to be too big] but as far as "defending" anything goes it will be utterly last). The states of Europe, particularly Germany, have had a very easy ride over the past 60 years with regard to defence spending. The Americans quite rightly are now calling on those states to live up to their obligations to NATO or the US will drastically review its position - Good high time that this attitude was taken.

Any explanation of the following Shaw:

"The natives are getting restless."

Nice piece of imperialist claptrap peppered with a dose of racism. Perfect. Why am I not surprised?


Well you should be as surprised as the rest of us Shaw as the above does not seem to be connected to anything at all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: The Sandman
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 04:27 AM

Catalonian independence would be a mistake from the point of view of most existing eu member states, as it would weaken Europe, and temporarily weaken the euro, from the point of view of those people who wish to leave europe in the UK, the weakening of the EU is just what is wanted.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 06:00 AM

Even for you, that was a particularly unfocused post, Teribus. Sounds like an EU army would be a good idea then, what with its forcing those lazy big countries to live up to their NATO obligations. The very idea seemed to be the spawn of the devil last time you were ranting against its being forced on us. Make your mind up.

Lombardy and Veneto are not seeking independence but they are demanding greater fiscal autonomy from a ramshackle and inefficient central government, so comparison with Catalonia is slightly invidious. I know both those Italian regions and a statement such as "the natives are getting restless" is staggeringly ignorant, demeaning and inappropriate when levelled at the people of Lombardy and Veneto, who could teach the originator of the term in this thread a lot about civility, good manners and appropriate use of language.

Incidentally, the ECJ (that much-maligned EU institution) has adjudicated that the right to self-determination as enshrined in the UN constitution can't be overridden by the EU. The problem for Catalonia going solo is that it would be immediately pitched out of the EU and would find it next to impossible to rejoin. The EU doesn't like fragmentation (just as Westminster didn't want the fragmentation of the Union, so any bleating on that score would represent a double standard) and would rail against it, and Spain certainly wouldn't approve. New members can be admitted only via a unanimous vote of all member states. If that were put starkly and honestly to the people of Catalonia in a referendum they would not vote for independence. It sounds like blackmail, but rules is rules. After brexit, the EU would be far more sympathetic to an independent Scotland, if that ever happened, as Scotland would have been dragged out of the EU against its will, unlike an independent Catalonia, which would be seen as having brought the problem on itself. The EU has been of major benefit to the regions of Spain and you don't get to leave without paying a high price. That isn't my stance. That's just how it is.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 08:02 AM

No confusion, or contradiction at all in my position on an EU Army - it is a thoroughly daft idea (As I said it would be a clone of the EU itself inefficient and ineffectual) - the important bit is that after 29th March, 2019 the EU Commission can do its worst the UK will be paying for none of their foolishness.

The referendums suggested for the northern parts of Italy are for more fiscal autonomy. At present neither Lombardy and Veneto think much of the way what they see as "their" money is being squandered in the south by the Italian Government. It is a source of division that will have to be addressed. A referendum is as good a way of testing the water as any, if the Italian Government pay no attention to what the people of those provinces want having asked them, then the stakes get higher, as generally if the collective wishes of an electorate are ignored it will result in trouble and a hardening of positions further down the line.

By the way Shaw which one is it? It cannot be both:

1: "The problem for Catalonia going solo is that it would be immediately pitched out of the EU"

2: "an independent Catalonia, which would be seen as having brought the problem on itself. The EU has been of major benefit to the regions of Spain and you don't get to leave without paying a high price."

Oh and as for "you don't get to leave without paying a high price." - If there is "No deal" on the 29th March, 2019 the UK will leave the EU without paying them a penny. The countries of the EU can then decide whether or not they wish to remain in the WTO.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 09:22 AM

Trade deals involving the EU and WTO won't be affected by brexit. Why do you keep going on about that?

"You cannot have both?" I didn't say anything contradictory in those two quotes.

No deal will result in a high price. Our future trade with the EU will involve tariffs. Our trade under WTO rules will involve tariffs. We are net importers of goods, therefore tariffs will hurt this country. No deal means a collapse of business confidence - see yesterday. It could mean businesses relocating out of this country with the loss of jobs. Bureaucratic barriers that currently don't exist will severely affect our services sector. Major financial institutions are already considering their options. The pound will probably go even lower, making imports expensive. Inflation is already rising as a result of the devaluation. Our economy is already struggling (far more than other major EU/G7 countries). Look at the latest growth and productivity figures. Above all, we have an incompetent, weak and rudderless government. We don't even know what the deal will be yet but we are already paying a high price. Still, do enjoy the view as you fall ever faster and don't look at the ground coming up at you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 09:59 AM

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 09:22 AM
No deal will result in a high price. Our future trade with the EU will involve tariffs. Our trade under WTO rules will involve tariffs. We are net importers of goods, therefore tariffs will hurt this country.

You still do not seem to understand that tariffs are imposed by the countries importing goods.
If we have tariffs on our imports it will be because we chose to impose them. (usually to protect our home produced goods)


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 11:19 AM

""You cannot have both?" I didn't say anything contradictory in those two quotes."

Oh yes you most certainly did Shaw:

1: The EU pitches Catalonia out of the EU

2: The EU penalises Catalonia for leaving the EU

Now the EU can hardly penalise Catalonia for actions taken by the EU can it?

So no Shaw Catalonia, should it vote for independence will find itself out of the EU, just exactly the same as Scotland would have found itself out of the EU had it voted for independence. Now Catalonia is one step further down the road than Scotland in that it currently uses the Euro. There is nothing at all to prevent Catalonia from continuing to use that currency. Catalonia is the richest province in Spain, certainly the most industrialised. It is fully compliant and could be fast tracked for consideration. In either event it will be about 10 years for Catalonia and 15 years for Scotland - now whether or not the EU will still exist in 10 to 15 years is one thing, whether, IF it does still exist, it is a group anyone would wish to join is another story entirely.

I would imagine that by that time the two-thirds thing is a done deal and the unanimous vote has been canned as those are the wishes of the EU Commission, so there would be no veto for Spain which by then may have fractured even further.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 12:09 PM

The two-thirds thing is not done. Pie in the sky. The EU is opposed to countries fracturing and will not look kindly on piddling little Catalonia. And do you honestly think that Spain, wounded by one of its richest regions jumping ship, is going to vote to admit Catalonia to the EU? In any referendum campaign those issues will be very forcibly put, you can bet your life. Catalonia is going nowhere, but the best thing now is to let the people have their say. I hate referendums but in this case I can see no other way out of a situation that is otherwise going to fester for generations.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 12:29 PM

The thing is, Nigel, that under WTO rules you can't arbitrarily vary the tariffs you charge. Once a tariff is set, it's set for every country who wants to sell you those goods. In any trade deals we try to do we will be wearing those shackles. As we import far more goods than we export, we will be at the mercy of other countries who don't like what we're doing, consequently setting their import tariffs high. You can do that with a little country (which is what we are in terms of the goods we export). Not so easy with a powerful trading bloc of half a billion people. We will have lost that leverage. We do keep trying to tell you that the glory days of empire and the whole world buying British are gone and not coming back. Trading conditions are going to be harsh. Every stitch of clothing I'm wearing today was made in China. China makes stuff but we don't. You whack high tariffs on China and they'll stuff us. Keeping the tariffs low will flood the country with cheap goods and we'll end up making even less stuff. And all the time we will be in a tariff environment with the EU, making our goods even less competitive than they are now. Then there's the massive hit that our services sector is going to take. Still, you know best. In the words of Joni, we won't know we had 'til it's gone.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 01:10 PM

The situation can be escalated or de-escalated. My bet is on the former.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-10-24/rajoy-s-allies-said-to-flinch-at-draconian-tactics-for-catalonia


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 02:10 PM

Once a tariff is set, it's set for every country who wants to sell you those goods. In any trade deals we try to do we will be wearing those shackles

We already wear those shackles when trading outside EU, but EU sets them not us.
Soon we can set zero tariffs on foods we can not grow ourselves.

As we import far more goods than we export, we will be at the mercy of other countries who don't like what we're doing, consequently setting their import tariffs high.

No. As you said they have to have the same tariffs for all.

China makes stuff but we don't. You whack high tariffs on China and they'll stuff us.

No. They have to offer us the same tariff as EU and everyone else. No increase when we leave.

Keeping the tariffs low will flood the country with cheap goods and we'll end up making even less stuff.

No. We can choose which goods to tax.

And all the time we will be in a tariff environment with the EU, making our goods even less competitive than they are now.

Yes, and theirs even less competitive too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 06:24 PM

"The EU is opposed to countries fracturing"

Where on earth did you get that from?

The "nation state" is the absolute bane of the EU and the Commissions aims. They want to get rid of the troublesome nations states that keep getting in its way.

The EU doesn't give a toss for a "wounded Spain" - Just think how easier it would be to control a whole bunch of interdependent regions than it is to control "nation states" that hold referendums and veto what the EU Commission sees as being necessary for their project Europe.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 07:14 PM

Exactly. So the fewer nation states the better. The EU can't exercise any control over "independent regions." That's just waffle. The EU philosophy, as you are so keen to remind us, is for ever-closer integration. Fracturing of states works directly against that. This is from wiki, an extract concerning what might have happened had Scotland voted for independence. When you read it bear in mind that Scotland is pro-EU and that the EU is pro-Scotland, yet EU politics might have made it impossible for an independent Scotland to join. It would clearly be no easier for an independent Catalonia. Too many regions are watching with interest to see what happens here and too many nation states are extremely wary of separatist groups being encouraged by an easy ride for Catalonia or Scotland. It may be wrong but it's the real world.

The No Campaign (Better Together), led by Alistair Darling, argued that any vote for independence would have automatically placed Scotland out of the EU as a new state, and Scotland would have had to renegotiate entry.There is no clear legal process for how this exit for Scotland would have been enacted. Comments by several EU officials and other heads of EU member states echoed the No Campaign view, and in mid-February 2014 Jose Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Commission, stated that it would have been 'very difficult' for an independent Scotland to join the EU, 'if not impossible', because of the difficulty of getting the approval of all member states, particularly Spain, which fears a possible secession of Catalonia and has blocked Kosovo's accession to the EU. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, said in November 2013 that after a vote for independence, Scotland "will be left outside the EU", while Spanish Foreign Minister Jos? Garcia-Margallo, having said in February 2012 that Spain would not veto Scottish accession to the EU, provided Scottish independence had UK agreement (thus making it different from Catalan independence), added in early February 2014 that an independent Scotland would have had many hurdles to overcome in a lengthy process of negotiations and ratifications if it was to become an EU member.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Oct 17 - 08:09 PM

Sorry, interdependent regions is what I read but what I didn't type. The EU does not "control" regions. EU structures and regulation apply to member states which are in turn responsible for the governance of their regions. There is a very wide diversity of degrees of devolution and autonomy among the regions of member states. That is not the concern of the EU.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 03:43 AM

"The EU does not "control" regions." - Odd that 30% to 35% of it's budget goes to controlling regions then isn't it Shaw.


THE EUROPEAN UNION IS FUNDAMENTALLY UNDEMOCRATIC AND CANNOT BE DEMOCRATISED

It is the absence at the level of the European Union of anything like the underlying national solidarity which binds Europe's Nation States together that makes the EU project, and especially the euro-currency scheme, so problematic and therefore unlikely to endure. The EU is a creation of powerful political, economic and bureaucratic elites, without popular legitimacy and authority, and is therefore fundamentally undemocratic. There is no European "demos," no European people, bound together by solidarities like those that bind nations and Nation States. Rather, the EU is made up of Western Europe's several nations and peoples. Every Nation State is both a monetary union and fiscal union. As a monetary union it has its own currency, and with that the capacity to control interest rates and the exchange rate. As a fiscal union it has its own taxation, social service and public spending system. By virtue of citizens paying common taxes to a common government in order to finance common public spending programmes throughout the territory of a State, there are automatic transfers from the richer regions and social classes of each country to the poorer regions and classes. This sustains and is sustained by a shared national solidarity. By contrast, the euro-currency project (EMU/Economic and Monetary Union) means a monetary union but not a fiscal union. Never in history has there been a lasting monetary union that was not also a fiscal union and political union, in other words a fully-fledged State, deriving its legitimacy from a common government and shared national solidarity, which in turn underpinned a common fiscal transfer system. The euro-currency scheme deprives the less developed EU States and the weaker EU economies of the right to maintain their competitiveness or to compensate for their lower productivity or poorer resource endowment, by adopting an exchange rate or interest rate that suits their special circumstances. But it does not compensate them for this loss by the automatic transfer of resources entailed by membership of a fiscal union. Compensatory fiscal transfers at EU level to the extent required to make a monetary union viable in the long run are impossible, in view of the amount of resources required and the unwillingness of the richer countries to provide them to the poorer because of the absence of shared national solidarity that would impel that. At present expenditure by Brussels in any one year amounts to less than 1.3% of the EU's annual Gross Domestic Product, a tiny relative figure, whereas Nation State expenditure on public transfers is normally between 35-50% of annual national products. In other words, the solidarity that would sustain an EU fiscal union and an EU Multinational State does not and cannot exist. Democratising the EU without a European "demos" is impossible. The EU's adoption of such traditional symbols of national statehood as an EU flag, EU anthem, EU passport, EU car number plates, EU Olympic games, EU youth orchestra, EU history books, EU citizenship etc, are so many doomed attempts to manufacture a European "demos" artificially, and with it a bogus EU "nation" and supranational "national consciousness." They leave the real peoples of Europe indifferent, whose allegiance remains with their own countries and Nation States. The more European integration is pushed ahead and the more the national democracy of the EU Member States is undermined, the more the EU loses legitimacy and authority. Consequently the greater and more inevitable the popular reaction against it will be. To align oneself with such a misguided, inevitably doomed project is to be out of tune with history. It is to side with a supranational elite against the democracy of one's own people, to spurn genuine internationalism for the intoxication of building a Superpower.

THE EU'S CONCEPT OF "POOLING SOVEREIGNTY" IS A PROPAGANDA COVER FOR DOMINATION BY OTHERS AND THE EFFECTIVE RULE OF THE BIGGER EU STATES



Concepts of "shared sovereignty," "pooled sovereignty" and "joint national sovereignties" are covers for having one's laws and policies decided by European Union bodies one does not elect, which are not responsible to one's own people and which can have significantly different interests from them. In the EU it is impossible for a single country or people to make or change a single European law. In practice countries and peoples which surrender their sovereignty to the EU become ever more subject to laws and policies that serve the interests of the bigger EU States. The claim that if a nation or State surrenders its sovereignty to the EU, it merely exchanges the sovereignty of a small State for participation in decision-making in a bigger supranational EU, is simply untrue. The reality is different. The EU continually reduces the influence of smaller States in decision-making by limiting or abolishing national veto powers. Even if bigger States similarly divest themselves of formal veto power, their political and economic weight ensures they can get their way in matters that are decisive to them. Equally false is the statement that membership of new States in the European Union and their surrender of sovereignty to the EU would increase their sovereignty in practice. The nation which gives up its sovereignty or is deprived of it, ceases to be an independent subject of international politics. It is no longer able to decide even its own domestic affairs. It literally puts its existence at the mercy of those who have taken its sovereignty into their hands and who decide the policies of the larger body. In the European Union the Big States, in particular Germany and France acting together, decide fundamental policy. Judicially the EU project is an attempt to undo the democratic heritage of the French Revolution, the right of nations and peoples to self-determination. It is an historically doomed project because of its fundamentally undemocratic character.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 04:09 AM

The Lisbon Treaty was clearly designed to both streamline and centralise decision making within the EU, or the more cynical would see it as nothing other than a power grab.

"The EU philosophy, as you are so keen to remind us, is for ever-closer integration. Fracturing of states works directly against that."
For a well educated scientist you appear sadly misinformed.
Small is easy, big is difficult. Simple analogy for simple minds:
a one tonne crane lift can be dealt with utilising various different pieces of machinery. A one hundred ton lift requires a dedicated crane.
Coercion can be easily applied to small administrative units, not so easily to Nation States.

I hope you can now grasp the very simple concept that Teribus outlined for you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 11:59 AM

Sorry, but your concepts, insulter-in-chief (is there a competition going on here for Problem Poster Of The Month?), are all theory and ignore reality. The EU does not "control" regions by giving them money. Cornwall has received hundreds of millions of EU funding, but come down here and ask local people how they're being "controlled" by the EU and they'll ask you what the hell you're talking about. The rules and laws of the EU apply to member states which administer their regions accordingly and there is little sign of any dead hand of bureaucratic control where I live, one the regions of the UK that has benefited most from our being EU members. As for Teribus and his concepts, containing waffle about number plates (optional), flags (optional) and EU passports (extremely bloody useful at every European airport I've been to, which is a lot), they are not his at all as he has copied and pasted them from sources he has yet to divulge (I fully expect them to be an embarrassment if and when he does divulge). Your own understanding of them, after years of whatever education you claim for yourself, has led to a completely risible analogy with cranes. Would you like me to ask the mods to move it to the joke thread for you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 01:52 PM

The EU does return a little of our money as aid, but the EU decide what it must be spent on.
Cornwall voted 140,540 for Remain and 182,665 for Leave


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 02:02 PM

Ah, Keith those 182,665 who voted Leave were probably those "Hooray-Henries" biologist Steve used to chat to about "flocks of grouse" and packs of vicious dogs in the heart of Kernow's hunting community whilst biting his tongue.

And with those figures Keith, Shaw will argue that there was a clear majority that elected to remain down there in his "beloved Kernow".


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 02:35 PM

Another childish Teribus post. Well, the people of my beloved Kernow (I come from Radcliffe, Lancs, actually) also wiped out the LibDems in two elections running in spite of the fact that the Tories are slaughtering our schools, shutting down our cottage hospitals, threatening hospital departments in the few main hospitals we have with closure, allowing huge, cheap estates to spring up everywhere despite lack of infrastructure (and next to no affordable homes included in that lot) and just letting the potholes in our country roads proliferate. Nowt so queer as folk. As Churchill said (OK if I quote him? Thought you'd approve of that at least....), if you want to know what's wrong with democracy, just spend five minutes talking to the average voter.


And Keith. If seven people in ten say bring back hanging, are they right just because it's seven in ten?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 02:39 PM

"Sorry, but your concepts, insulter-in-chief (is there a competition going on here for Problem Poster Of The Month?), are all theory and ignore reality."

But by your own admission you do not separate fact from fiction, so who are you to talk about the difference between fiction and reality?
What a funny little fellow you are shaw!

The "accolade?" problem poster and chief insulter belongs exclusively to you shaw. No-one else can come anywhere close, and far more to the point. who would want to?

I do not have to claim any kind of education. It makes no difference to me. A plumber, electrician carpenter can offer contributions on these threads that can leave yours way behind shaw.
Is it your feeling of inadequacy and inferiority lead you to boast continually about how well educated a scientist you are? Personally I could not give a rat's arse and I doubt anyone else could either.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 02:44 PM

You really don't do irony, do you?

"I do not have to claim any kind of education."

That sounds honest. Whatever kind you did have, it was rather deficient in the areas of teaching civility and good manners. Anything to say about Catalonia? Or even brexit if you like?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 04:51 PM

Steve, you are beginning to remind me of the late unlamented "Muskets", they too thought they were frightfully clever, but in the event they turned out to be just just frightful.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 05:03 PM

I'll take that as a compliment. Now excuse me as I'm making a special biological study of worms and their holes.


Actually, I could use a few volunteers...


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: bobad
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 05:48 PM

I note that the poster who has taken to worrying the term "problem poster" to death is the same who has admitted to having been threatened with suspension on more than one occasion. I wonder if the poster to whom he is referring has ever been similarly threatened.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 07:33 PM

And how would you know? Joe and I discussed in private whether I should be suspended on the ONE occasion only, in all my years here, over posts concerning religion, in June 2016. The matter was resolved without further talk of suspension. I have kept all our exchanges. You, on the other hand, have on several occasions been the subject of discussions over your dishonest double identity before the rule change about guest posts below the line last year. You can't really deny this as I have kept all the exchanges I had with moderators on the matter. Naturally, I won't post them here as I respect the confidentiality of private communications, But what I can do, if necessary, is remind the mods of our exchanges and send them the archived messages. You have also been in the dock over your stalking behaviour. You need to consider having a moment of silence on all this. The exchanges I've had with the mods make you look very bad indeed. I will never make them public as I respect the spirit in which PMs are exchanged. But, believe me, you really do need to move on.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: bobad
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 08:17 PM

Gee Shaw, unlike you I have never been threatened with suspension. As for your allegations of me having posted simultaneously under two identities I can categorically state that is a lie. In consideration of your veiled threats regarding communications with the mods I remind you that I also have saved communications from them about you that are, not to put too fine a point on it, less than flattering in regards to your character. I will leave it at that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 08:35 PM

Very good. You are so impressive. And you are lying, which you and I both know full well. Shall we have a poll? 😂 Take it outside. Now may I remind you that this thread isn't about you, old chap. Have you actually heard of Catalonia? Do you think it's about lonely cats, or cats alone, as in Home Alone? Maybe you do think that. At least, that's what I glean from the fact that you've had nothing to say about what the thread's about. So you wade in in your usual ignorant manner. You're trolling. No more from me on you.

I see that the ante is seriously being upped between Madrid and Catalonia today. The need for a neutral intermediary is crying out as never before. And the Davis clown is now suggesting that a deal could be signed a "nanosecond" after brexit. Jayz, we are in deep doodah!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: bobad
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 09:02 PM

Well now, isn't it rich that a poster who is becoming rather obsessive about decrying another poster as a "problem poster" has himself been threatened with suspension for presumably being a problem poster himself. And accusing someone who points it out of trolling.....lol. Desperate to save face I guess.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 25 Oct 17 - 09:23 PM

❤️😘❤️ ❌❌❌


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 26 Oct 17 - 02:37 AM

😂 😂 😂 😂 😂 - Shaw, the person who comments on "childish posts" - 😂 😂 😂 😂 😂 😂 😂 - "Shall we have a poll? 😂 Take it outside." - about as puerile as you can get.

Apart from Shaw who took up the description, only one person has ever referred to me as being ONE of the problem posters on this forum - that was Joe Offer. I have never, ever been admonished or warned about my posts by any moderator of this forum by PM or any other message. Shaw & Co., on the other hand have been rebuked in a very public manner on a number of occasions that I can recall.

By the way Shaw talking of pointless exercises. There would be no need for me to ask the people of Cornwall how they feel about the EU - they way they voted in the referendum told us that very clearly - of those who voted 57% wanted to LEAVE - that by the way is a majority stating that they want no part of being a member state of the EU.

On the EU, perhaps it is the name that's got Shaw hooked. European UNION, perhaps his ideological and brainwashed mind sees that word and immediately thinks it must be defended at all costs - he was after all a UNION activist.

Shall we take it outside? - 😂😂 Priceless!!!! - No wonder you wear shorts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 26 Oct 17 - 03:43 AM

Have a nice day yourself.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 26 Oct 17 - 04:13 AM

For stevie blunder. A toon yo remind him of past "glories"


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KdOCWUgwiWs&list=RDKdOCWUgwiWs&t=6


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 26 Oct 17 - 06:05 PM

The insulter-in-chief waddles along in the wake of problem poster numero uno. You could try discussing Catalonia. If you've heard of it, that is.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 26 Oct 17 - 06:21 PM

In fact, the Catalan Parliament is vacillating today. Tomorrow could be quite interesting. Both sides have handled this really badly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 26 Oct 17 - 07:03 PM

Don't know about both sides. The Spanish Government has handled it appallingly poorly.

This, I believe would have ended up as a complete and utter non-event had they let them hold their referendum, made the same case to the electorate of Catalonia that the "Better together Campaign" made to the electorate of Scotland and the result would have been a resounding NO to Catalan Independence.

As it was they waded in in the most heavy-handed manner, succeeded in injuring over 900 people who were displayed on television screens all over the world being denied what many in western Europe consider to be a basic human right and getting beaten in the process. The world will remember that, and I strongly suspect that the undecided voters of Catalonia will remember that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 04:19 AM

The only thing that has happened is that the lid has been put back on the kettle. Rest assured, it is still simmering nicely, and no doubt will boil over again in the future. The way the Spanish government has handled the situation is particularly inept and likely generated even more support for the independence movement.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Teribus
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 05:08 AM

The Catalan electorate number some 5.3 million.

In the informal referendum that sparked this crisis 1.98 million out of the 2.2 million votes cast were for independence - considering the circumstances and the situation that result should not come as any great surprise.

The Spanish Authorities confiscated and destroyed something like 300,000 ballot papers which if they replicated the ratio shown in the ballot pares counted - this would lift the YES vote to 2.1 million for YES, or just under 40% of the electorate who could be described as hardened supporters of Catalonian independence.

Those who are against independence will not have been affected at all by what has happened. But those who fall into the categories, "Don't Knows" and the "Undecided" may well have been influenced by what they saw and the impressions do not favour the Spanish Government. If you believe in human rights and basic freedom then the YES side in Catalonia may well now get the votes they require for independence.

Average voter turn-out in Spanish elections is 73.91%, which if translated to Catalonia means that 3.92 million people will vote, so NOW should those 2.1 million people vote the same way with a 73.91% turn-out that will mean the YES side will win with 53.6% for independence. If undecided voters were swayed then the percentage for independence goes up - THAT is what the Spanish Government has achieved by acting as it has.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 06:30 AM

I predict an armed insurrection which will herald the end of the EU as we know it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 07:35 AM

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 26 Oct 17 - 06:21 PM
In fact, the Catalan Parliament is vacillating today.


In what way? What two positions were they moving back and forwards between?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 10:38 AM

Catalonia has declared independence from Spain. Vacillating? The boy must be using a different dictionary to me!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Stu
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 10:57 AM

"I predict an armed insurrection which will herald the end of the EU as we know it."

Priceless. You really should write for the telly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 11:24 AM

"The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter." (Winston Churchill)

"Many forms of Government have been tried, and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed it has been said that democracy is the worst form of Government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time." (Winston S Churchill, 11 November 1947)


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 11:33 AM

"

The essence of the post-1945 European settlement is the integrity of states. After centuries of horrific wars, stable statehood is the rock on which Europe?s security rests. Allow old grievances to recur, old feuds to revive and old boundaries to shift, and chaos will ensue. Besides, that other rock of stability, the European Union, relies on states being able to enforce EU diktats on subordinate regions without challenge.

If only politics were that simple.

Just as the EU commission in Brussels has become a parody of the pre-Reformation Roman church, so aversion to central power is destabilising states across the continent. Economies globalise and national governments centralise, and as a result regional identities become more assertive and belligerent. Not just Catalans but Scots, Basques, Corsicans, Flemings, Silesians and Venetians show no signs of diminishing their plea for more autonomy, whether heavy or ?lite?. The Catalonians are merely the vanguard of a movement against the clumsy bureaucratic elites that rule Brussels as they do Madrid ? not to mention London. Hence it is pointless for Madrid simply to read the rule book and the riot act to solve this crisis.





The EU is foolish to think this is none of its business. Its blundering diplomacy has already lost it the United Kingdom



It is clear that the Catalan president, Carles Puigdemont, is desperate to avoid a cataclysmic break with Madrid, knowing that his own people are deeply divided in their separatism. There has to be the sort of deal that there was with the Basques in the 1990s ? perhaps even more radical. Spain is already among the most devolved states in Europe. Its recent ham-fisted treatment of Barcelona demands it become even more so, possibly with a new Catalan constitution that can be put to local plebiscite.

The EU is foolish to think this is none of its business. Its blundering diplomacy has already lost it the United Kingdom. No other nation dares hold a referendum on exit. Separation beckons from Poles, Czechs and Hungarians. The German-dominated eurozone has blighted the Greek and Spanish economies and is, in large part, to blame for the present crisis. The EU cares as little for regional identity as it does for any sort of devolution. The Catalonian question is about Europe as much as it is about Spain.

? Simon Jenkins is a Guardian columnist


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 02:29 PM

When I posted first thing this morning the Spanish government had not decided what to do, following discussions yesterday. They were vacillating. They have now made their decision, hours after I posted that. They are no longer vacillating. OK, chaps? And you are stalking, Nigel. Discuss the issues and stop this interminable nitpicking which makes you look extremely foolish.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 02:38 PM

"?For the European Commission", as President Juncker has reiterated repeatedly,2 this is an internal matter for Spain that has to be dealt with in line with the constitutional order of Spain."

?We also reiterate the legal position held by this Commission as well as by its predecessors. If a referendum were to be organised in line with the Spanish Constitution it would mean that the territory leaving would find itself outside of the European Union.

Beyond the purely legal aspects of this matter, the Commission believes that these are times for unity and stability, not divisiveness and fragmentation.
We call on all relevant players to now move very swiftly from confrontation to dialogue."


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 03:50 PM

Steve Shaw.
You really ought to review your own posts, or possibly post what you mean. Your latest post on this discussion:

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 27 Oct 17 - 02:29 PM
When I posted first thing this morning the Spanish government had not decided what to do, following discussions yesterday. They were vacillating. They have now made their decision, hours after I posted that. They are no longer vacillating. OK, chaps? And you are stalking, Nigel. Discuss the issues and stop this interminable nitpicking which makes you look extremely foolish.


Is discussing a totally different parliament to the one you mentioned this morning:

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 26 Oct 17 - 06:21 PM
In fact, the Catalan Parliament is vacillating today. Tomorrow could be quite interesting. Both sides have handled this really badly.


In case it needs explaining, the "Spanish government" is not the "Catalan Parliament".

As for "looking foolish", I think you've got the wrong party, yet again!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 28 Oct 17 - 04:49 AM

Was there similar international condemnation of Scottish independence?
I do not remember any.
Why has our government defended Spanish unity when we believe in self determination for our own regions?

Is it because Catalonia is wealthy and prosperous? Its independence would cost Spain not remove a burden.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 07:07 AM

What happened to the great Mudcat tradition of claiming the 100th post etc? 200!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 07:16 AM

Most people who contribute to this thread are more interested in content than post numbers Richard.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 07:57 AM

I think the Catalonia/Madrid business has been a long time coming, and very specific to Spain.

Brexit has sod all to do with it, as do our own separatist movements.

Spain is a very different kettle of fish. There are layers of historical significance and cultural matters and subtleties that we can't pick up on. So its no good pontificating.

they will deal with it. we can't possibly help matters yelling out encouragement and ignorance.

Picking up on one of Ake's points. Who is to decide whether a degree is of use to the country? The thing I loved about the Open University was the Summer school, where I met old people who were studying out of sheer delight in learning. They had grown up in an era when University education wasn't available to working class folk.

we are all better off with a cultured educated population than a stupid ignorant one. it is the best hope we have for achieving a civilisation.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 10:25 AM

"Was there similar international condemnation of Scottish independence?
I do not remember any.
Why has our government defended Spanish unity when we believe in self determination for our own regions?"

Our government fought tooth and nail to persuade Scotland to remain in the UK. There is no difference in attitude between UK/Scotland and Spain/Catalonia. The difference in approach is that Scotland was allowed to have a legal referendum. Spain has said that the sacked Catalan politicians may stand for the regional elections in December. A poor showing by the separatists may, in Spain's eyes, be a way out of this. I have a feeling that the elections won't end the divisiveness.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 11:49 AM

There is no difference in attitude between UK/Scotland and Spain/Catalonia.

Except that we allowed a referendum on independence and agreed to abide by the decision of the Scottish people, and Spain refused the Catalans all those things.
Otherwise no difference.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 12:04 PM

Quite right Keith, I voted for Scottish Independence, we lost, I accept the democratic result and will not attempt to undermine the UK government over it.   That's also the difference.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 01:53 PM

Whoooops!
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5028507/Sacked-Catalan-leader-remain-president.html


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 05:17 PM

Which is exactly what I said, Keith. Try not to be tiresome.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 05:53 PM

i think there are a lot of differences between Scottish and Catalonian independence struggles.

the most glaring of course is the Spanish civil war was 1936, Culloden was 1745. try to imagine if Culloden was 1945.


we've had two hundred years to appreciate the virtues of not doing each other in.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 30 Oct 17 - 03:48 AM

I was agreeing with you Steve.
Both governments opposed independence, the only trivial difference being that the Spanish government imposed its will on the Catalans by force and denied them any opportunity to even express a view in a referendum, while our government granted the Scots the freedom to choose their own destiny.
Otherwise, as you said, no difference Steve.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 30 Oct 17 - 07:25 AM

Al...If an armed insurrection took place in Catalonia OR Scotland, I am perfectly sure that there would be plenty of people being done in, regardless of the Spanish Civil War or Culloden.

Rebellion would be put down ruthlessly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Oct 17 - 07:33 AM

Don't you just love those bloody big "ifs"?

Not quite as funny as Harry Enfield's and Paul Whitehouse's Self-Righteous Brothers, who invented ludicrous hypothetical situations in order to show how they could put the world to rights. At least their offerings had comedic content.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 30 Oct 17 - 07:41 AM

"There is no difference in attitude between UK/Scotland and Spain/Catalonia."

What on earth did you sprinkle on your cornflakes in order to scribe the above supposition?
Can you not recognise the difference between democracy and jackboots?
Or are you confusing fact with fantasy - AGAIN!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Oct 17 - 09:02 AM

Try reading the rest of my post. Perhaps you'd prefer sentences of no more than five words and words of one syllable. Here's one such for you. Get a life.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 30 Oct 17 - 09:07 AM

From: Richard Bridge - PM
Date: 29 Oct 17 - 07:07 AM
What happened to the great Mudcat tradition of claiming the 100th post etc? 200!


Richard,
It seems in this day and age the number of posts being deleted is increasing. For that reason, what appears to be a one hundredth post today might only be the ninety-eighth tomorrow.

Counting coup is no longer what it was. Neither is nostalgia.

Cheers
Nigel


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Oct 17 - 09:22 AM

Nostalgia certainly isn't what it used to be. Until 1920 the word meant only a sort of intense homesickness. Wistful yearning for the past is a newer application of the word. I suppose we have to live with that. That's democracy for you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 07:04 AM

Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont is seeking refuge in an EU country (Belgium) from persecution and prosecution in another EU country (Spain.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 07:52 AM

Well, just think. In some countries not governed by the human rights standards and the rule of law insisted on by the EU, he might have been thrown into a dungeon or had his bonce cut off by now. Good old EU, say I.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 08:22 AM

"Good old EU"....is that the Persecuting or protecting EU? and which one is likely to rule the other?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 09:07 AM

I'll let you decide.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 11:53 AM

countries not governed by the human rights standards and the rule of law insisted on by the EU, he might have been thrown into a dungeon

He is faces up to 30 years imprisonment for sedition in an EU member nation.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 05:52 PM

It will not happen. And you know it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 02 Nov 17 - 11:39 AM

From: Keith A of Hertford - PM
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 11:53 AM
He is faces up to 30 years imprisonment for sedition in an EU member nation.


++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 05:52 PM
It will not happen. And you know it.


I hope that you're right. But if that is available on their statute books for sedition and treason, he has reason to be fearful.
After all, look how the Spanish police were willing to treat peaceful Catalan protesters.

News today From: The Guardian
Spain's state prosecutor has asked a judge to issue a European arrest warrant for the deposed Catalan president Carles Puigdemont and four of his former regional ministers after they failed to return from Belgium to testify in court.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 02 Nov 17 - 02:02 PM

It won't be the police deciding his fate.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 02 Nov 17 - 02:36 PM

Is this the EU version of oil on troubled waters or water on a chip pan fire?


http://www.euronews.com/2017/11/02/catalonias-secessionist-leaders-jailed-ahead-of-rebellion-trial


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 04 Nov 17 - 08:54 AM

"Well, just think. In some countries not governed by the human rights standards and the rule of law insisted on by the EU, he might have been thrown into a dungeon or had his bonce cut off by now. Good old EU, say I."

A fellow core EU member state has imprisoned without trial or bail a substantial portion of the government elected by its people to carry out its mandate, to hold a referendum on independence from Spain!

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/nov/03/catalonia-spain-basque-breton-bavaria-europe


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 04 Nov 17 - 09:48 PM

They are not imprisoned without trial. They are being held on remand. I know you oppose everything about the EU but let's not get carried away. It's nothing like what happens, for example, in that mighty Middle-eastern democracy Israel, where, if you are an Arab, you can be held in jail for years without trial or even without knowing what you are supposed to have done. Even if you're a child or a woman.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 03:24 AM

I wonder why you pick Israel as an example. I think your party already has sufficient problems with antisemitism.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 05:35 AM

I picked it because it happens to be a good comparison. The egregious human rights abuses in that soi-disant democracy make the Spanish government (who I think have been incredibly clumsy and wrong-headed about this) look like fluffy bunnies, and my hypocrisy-detecting antennae are tuned to those idiots who want to turn the situation in Spain into an opportunist anti-EU rant. And I think you have a problem with antisemitism, to the extent that you don?t actually know what it is and what it isn?t.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 06:42 AM

And your reference to antisemitism there is mischievous, irrelevant and uncalled for. We should close off that particular avenue in this thread right now. I'd be more than happy to spar with you in a new thread should you start one if you really have a bee in your bonnet about anyone who dares to criticise the actions of the regime in Israel. I doubt that the mods would be happy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 07:29 AM

Methinks the man doth protest too much!


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 07:39 AM

Not at all. You made an irrelevant, improper and mischievous comment. I'm always more than happy to call you out for things like that. Sorry if that embarrasses you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: bobad
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 07:45 AM

So typical of the rat Shaw - he brings and condemns Israel into the conversation without providing any context to their policies then issues warning to anyone who challenges his motive by invoking his precious mods. Back into the sewer you crawled out of Shaw.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 09:17 AM

It was only matter of time. 😂 Have a nice day yourself.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: akenaton
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 10:26 AM

Bobad is quite correct Steve, it was you who introduced Israel into the discussion....you can hardly complain when the issue of "liberal" anti-Semitism is thrown back at you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 10:54 AM

Shaw you made a statement by selecting Israel as a comparison. It was an extremely poor choice made with excruciatingly poor taste. Furthermore you know dammed well that had it been anyone else to raise the comparison you would have been all over them like a particularly nasty, antisocial rash. And don't try to deny it. It is your behaviour thru and thru.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 11:08 AM

Don't pile stupidity on stupidity, please. I made an extremely simple, ON-TOPIC point about the crtiticism of alleged human rights transgressions in Spain being falsely linked to the EU by brexiteers. Those self-same people are either silent on or defensive of the far greater human rights abuses perpetrated against Palestinian civilians in the occupied territories by a regime that is also supposed to be a democracy. That reeks of hypocrisy to me. The point is to do with the treatment of Catalonia, specifically of its politicians, by Madrid. Nothing else. Some clown gratuitously and opportunistically brought up the "antisemitism problem" in the UK Labour Party which has diddly-squat to do with Catalonia. Some other clown chimed in, very boringly predictably with a tirade of insults, and now a third clown, you, is blaming ME for the off-topic sniping. As far as I'm concerned this thread is about Catalonia. If you want to flog the antisemitism dead horse all over again, start a thread and see if you can get any takers. Better still, go and find a leaky roof to fix.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 11:21 AM

"Shaw you made a statement by selecting Israel as a comparison. It was an extremely poor choice made with excruciatingly poor taste. Furthermore you know dammed well that had it been anyone else to raise the comparison you would have been all over them like a particularly nasty, antisocial rash. And don't try to deny it. It is your behaviour thru and thru."

Au contraire. I would have agreed wholeheartedly with them.

The comparison is a valid one. If anything, Madrid is constrained by the requirements of the EU apropos of the rule of law and human rights requirements of membership. The politicians are on remand, not pitched into a stinking cell for six, twelve or more months without charge in their hundreds (go on, look it up). I actually think that Spain values its democracy in any case and doesn't need those constraints. Whatever, this is not a matter in which the EU is a major active player and to suggest that Spain's membership is exacerbating the Catalonia issue is without foundation and is downright mischievous. I don't agree with what Spain is doing, but one thing's for sure: due process according to Spanish rule of law will take place, charges will be brought (or not) and an independent judiciary will have the final say. If only all self-styled democracies could say the same.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: bobad
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 11:38 AM

the antisemitism dead horse all over again

"Shocking dossier unveiled by Jewish Labour members reveals scale of anti-semitism claims inside the party amid drive to stamp out online abuse from activists"

By Daniel Martin for the Daily Mail

Published: 01:54 GMT, 4 November 2017 | Updated: 02:59 GMT, 4 November 2017

Not dead by any means, is it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 11:57 AM

Start another thread.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 07:24 PM

. . . I actually think that Spain values its democracy in any case and doesn't need those
The comparison is a valid one. If anything, Madrid is constrained by constraints


Spain may "value its democracy", but it doesn't value the democracy of others, with its continued claims on Gibraltar. A vote in 2002 made it clear that Gibraltarians wanted to maintain the status quo Here, on Wiki)


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 08:15 PM

Well I suppose we didn't value the right of Argentina to claim the Malvinas or the right of Ireland to govern itself or the rights of the displaced Palestinians once the Jews were sorted, despite Balfour's promise. And how are you on Russia and Crimea, Nigel? Putin right or wrong? Should we ask the people of Crimea? Yiu won't get the answer you want. Isn't life complicated?

Have a look at a map, Nigel. Gibraltar is a few miles from mainland Spain and over a thousand miles from London. The Malvinas are an hour from mainland Argentina but ten hours from the UK, and, when we usurped them, there were no aeroplanes. Hong Kong is half an hour from China but twelve hours from us, but the capitalists there are still moaning. Our overseas Empire territorial acquisitions were hardly obtained by democratic means in any case, were they, Nigel?


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 06 Nov 17 - 04:35 AM

We were discussing Spain & democracy, not geography.
The closeness of Gibraltar to Spain is hardly a valid argument that Spain can use while they retain their enclaves in Morocco.
As I pointed out, the Gibraltarians wish to keep things as they are, as do the Falkland islanders.
If you must bring in Ireland, it appears to be a fairly widely accepted state of affairs at present. But you fail to make clear whether you are talking about the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, or the complete island of Ireland.

Our overseas territories may not have been obtained by diplomacy, but they are retained by such. If the Falkland islanders had voted to become part of Argentina I am sure that wish would have been accepted by the UK.
Argentina has no historic claim to the Falklands. (apart from a few days under their control in 1982)


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 06 Nov 17 - 04:52 AM

From: Steve Shaw - PM
Date: 05 Nov 17 - 08:15 PM
Have a look at a map, Nigel. Gibraltar is a few miles from mainland Spain


Talking crap again!
Have a look at a map yourself. Gibraltar is not "a few miles from mainland Spain". They share a land border.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Nov 17 - 05:19 AM

Quite so. Kind of makes it even worse in a way...I wonder whether you'd feel the same if Gib was a lump of land a few miles from Madrid. Or imagine how you'd feel if Spain owned a square mile or three just south of Solihull...


Of course the people of Gib would prefer to stay in the UK. They're Brits, 93% of 'em. Of course the people of the Falklands would prefer to stay in the UK. They're Brits too. Kind of an accidental case of gerrymandering... and just think of the faux-outrage when Russia walked into Crimea, in spite of the fact that the people there overwhelmingly see themselves as Russian. What's sauce for the goose, etc....


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 06 Nov 17 - 06:30 AM

And the Spanish enclaves in Morocco? As you say, "what's sauce for the goose . . ."


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: bobad
Date: 06 Nov 17 - 08:51 AM

the displaced Palestinians once the Jews were sorted

We all know why some Arabs were displaced and it wasn't the Jews who displaced them - they have their neighbouring Arab brothers to thank for that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Donuel
Date: 06 Nov 17 - 09:10 AM

The people of Catatonia seem unmoved.
I'll get me coat.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Nov 17 - 10:34 AM

By now, Nigel, it should be clear to you that I disapprove of anyone having an eclave or adjunct inside, stuck on or floating right next to someone else's country. It isn't right and it will only cause bother. My aversion may have originated when as a little lad I saw a map that had a lump of Flintshire not actually in Flintshire but wedged between Cheshire and Shropshire and nowhere near the rest of Flintshire. Never did get my head round that one.


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Subject: RE: BS: Catalonia: pros and cons of separation
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Nov 17 - 05:59 PM

Enclave, that would be.


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