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Alfie · 947 · 31380

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Downing Street said that after Article 50 is triggered, it is expected that the remaining 27 EU member states will agree their terms and for there to be an initial response within 48 hours.

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-39325561

Maybe I am reading it wrong as English is not my native language but did UK overlooked the fact that e.g. The Netherlands just had elections and coalition still as to be formed? For sure this will not happen with 48 hours after March 29 so personally think given deadline will not work. UK waits for some time after Brexit referendum and now puts the pressure all of a sudden on the EU?

Robert, they understand that. The initial response to the UK will be to confirm receipt of the UK's formal notice to quit. To express disappointment, a few platitudes about future working relationships and so on.

I would say that at least 50% of what needs to be agreed will be bureaucratic formalities and dealt with at a lower level and quite quickly. The rest will take longer and at the very top level, irrespective of who has been formally appointed to negotiate, the decisions will be made by the leaders of each Country. A near impossible task I would say.

Meanwhile it appears that the UK and Germany at least, will be signing a new defence pact asap.


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The Daily Express, putting the boot in as usual, about rumours of the UK having to pay a massive E50bn exit fee to the EU. From the aptly named veteran MP, Sir Bill Cash ! Apparently half of all Germany's debts were written off after the 2nd World War.

''Signed by countries across the world the 1953 deal provided West Germany with relief on its massive post-war debts - including money owed from First World War reparations and post-1945 loans provided by the US. The agreement, which followed months of talks, slashed West Germany’s debts in half and also tied repayments to the health of the country’s economy.''

http://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/781613/Brexit-news-Article-50-talks-EU-exit-fee-50billion-Sir-Bill-Cash-Germany-war-debt-WW2
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Offline Alfie

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Theresa May has triggered the official Brexit process in a letter to EU.




The UK is officially on its way out of the European Union after 44 years.

Prime Minister Theresa May has triggered Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty starting a two year countdown to the UK's exit.

'You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!'


Offline Alfie

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The article 50 letter in full.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/29/article-50-brexit-letter-read-full


29 March 2017

Dear President Tusk

On 23 June last year, the people of the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union.  As I have said before, that decision was no rejection of the values we share as fellow Europeans.  Nor was it an attempt to do harm to the European Union or any of the remaining member states.  On the contrary, the United Kingdom wants the European Union to succeed and prosper.  Instead, the referendum was a vote to restore, as we see it, our national self-determination. We are leaving the European Union, but we are not leaving Europe – and we want to remain committed partners and allies to our friends across the continent.

Earlier this month, the United Kingdom Parliament confirmed the result of the referendum by voting with clear and convincing majorities in both of its Houses for the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill.  The Bill was passed by Parliament on 13 March and it received Royal Assent from Her Majesty The Queen and became an Act of Parliament on 16 March.

Today, therefore, I am writing to give effect to the democratic decision of the people of the United Kingdom. I hereby notify the European Council in accordance with Article 50(2) of the Treaty on European Union of the United Kingdom’s intention to withdraw from the European Union.  In addition, in accordance with the same Article 50(2) as applied by Article 106a of the Treaty Establishing the European Atomic Energy Community, I hereby notify the European Council of the United Kingdom’s intention to withdraw from the European Atomic Energy Community. References in this letter to the European Union should therefore be taken to include a reference to the European Atomic Energy Community.

This letter sets out the approach of Her Majesty’s Government to the discussions we will have about the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union and about the deep and special partnership we hope to enjoy – as your closest friend and neighbour – with the European Union once we leave.  We believe that these objectives are in the interests not only of the United Kingdom but of the European Union and the wider world too.   

It is in the best interests of both the United Kingdom and the European Union that we should use the forthcoming process to deliver these objectives in a fair and orderly manner, and with as little disruption as possible on each side. We want to make sure that Europe remains strong and prosperous and is capable of projecting its values, leading in the world, and defending itself from security threats. We want the United Kingdom, through a new deep and special partnership with a strong European Union, to play its full part in achieving these goals. We therefore believe it is necessary to agree the terms of our future partnership alongside those of our withdrawal from the European Union.

The Government wants to approach our discussions with ambition, giving citizens and businesses in the United Kingdom and the European Union – and indeed from third countries around the world – as much certainty as possible, as early as possible.

I would like to propose some principles that may help to shape our coming discussions, but before I do so, I should update you on the process we will be undertaking at home, in the United Kingdom.

The process in the United Kingdom

As I have announced already, the Government will bring forward legislation that will repeal the Act of Parliament – the European Communities Act 1972 – that gives effect to EU law in our country.  This legislation will, wherever practical and appropriate, in effect convert the body of existing European Union law (the “acquis”) into UK law.  This means there will be certainty for UK citizens and for anybody from the European Union who does business in the United Kingdom.

The Government will consult on how we design and implement this legislation, and we will publish a White Paper tomorrow. We also intend to bring forward several other pieces of legislation that address specific issues relating to our departure from the European Union, also with a view to ensuring continuity and certainty, in particular for businesses.

We will of course continue to fulfil our responsibilities as a member state while we remain a member of the European Union, and the legislation we propose will not come into effect until we leave.

From the start and throughout the discussions, we will negotiate as one United Kingdom, taking due account of the specific interests of every nation and region of the UK as we do so.  When it comes to the return of powers back to the United Kingdom, we will consult fully on which powers should reside in Westminster and which should be devolved to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.  But it is the expectation of the Government that the outcome of this process will be a significant increase in the decision-making power of each devolved administration.

Negotiations between the United Kingdom and the European Union

The United Kingdom wants to agree with the European Union a deep and special partnership that takes in both economic and security cooperation.

To achieve this, we believe it is necessary to agree the terms of our future partnership alongside those of our withdrawal from the EU.

If, however, we leave the European Union without an agreement the default position is that we would have to trade on World Trade Organisation terms. In security terms a failure to reach agreement would mean our cooperation in the fight against crime and terrorism would be weakened.

In this kind of scenario, both the United Kingdom and the European Union would of course cope with the change, but it is not the outcome that either side should seek. We must therefore work hard to avoid that outcome.

It is for these reasons that we want to be able to agree a deep and special partnership, taking in both economic and security cooperation, but it is also because we want to play our part in making sure that Europe remains strong and prosperous and able to lead in the world, projecting its values and defending itself from security threats.  And we want the United Kingdom to play its full part in realising that vision for our continent.

Proposed principles for our discussions

Looking ahead to the discussions which we will soon begin, I would like to suggest some principles that we might agree to help make sure that the process is as smooth and successful as possible.

(1) We should engage with one another constructively and respectfully, in a spirit of sincere cooperation.  Since I became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom I have listened carefully to you, to my fellow EU Heads of Government and the Presidents of the European Commission and Parliament.  That is why the United Kingdom does not seek membership of the single market: we understand and respect your position that the four freedoms of the single market are indivisible and there can be no “cherry picking”.  We also understand that there will be consequences for the UK of leaving the EU: we know that we will lose influence over the rules that affect the European economy.  We also know that UK companies will, as they trade within the EU, have to align with rules  agreed by institutions of which we are no longer a part  – just as UK companies do in other overseas markets.

(2) We should always put our citizens first.  There is obvious complexity in the discussions we are about to undertake, but we should remember that at the heart of our talks are the interests of all our citizens.  There are, for example, many citizens of the remaining member states living in the United Kingdom, and UK citizens living elsewhere in the European Union, and we should aim to strike an early agreement about their rights.

(3) We should work towards securing a comprehensive agreement.  We want to agree a deep and special partnership between the UK and the EU, taking in both economic and security cooperation. We will need to discuss how we determine a fair settlement of the UK’s rights and obligations as a departing member state, in accordance with the law and in the spirit of the United Kingdom’s continuing partnership with the EU.  But we believe it is necessary to agree the terms of our future partnership alongside those of our withdrawal from the EU.
 
(4) We should work together to minimise disruption and give as much certainty as possible.  Investors, businesses and citizens in both the UK and across the remaining 27 member states – and those from third countries around the world – want to be able to plan.  In order to avoid any cliff-edge as we move from our current relationship to our future partnership, people and businesses in both the UK and the EU would benefit from implementation periods to adjust in a smooth and orderly way to new arrangements.  It would help both sides to minimise unnecessary disruption if we agree this principle early in the process.

(5) In particular, we must pay attention to the UK’s unique relationship with the Republic of Ireland and the importance of the peace process in Northern Ireland.  The Republic of Ireland is the only EU member state with a land border with the United Kingdom.  We want to avoid a return to a hard border between our two countries, to be able to maintain the Common Travel Area between us, and to make sure that the UK’s withdrawal from the EU does not harm the Republic of Ireland.  We also have an important responsibility to make sure that nothing is done to jeopardise the peace process in Northern Ireland, and to continue to uphold the Belfast Agreement.

(6) We should begin technical talks on detailed policy areas as soon as possible, but we should prioritise the biggest challenges. Agreeing a high-level approach to the issues arising from our withdrawal will of course be an early priority.  But we also propose a bold and ambitious Free Trade Agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union. This should be of greater scope and ambition than any such agreement before it so that it covers sectors crucial to our linked economies such as financial services and network industries.  This will require detailed technical talks, but as the UK is an existing EU member state, both sides have regulatory frameworks and standards that already match.  We should therefore prioritise how we manage the evolution of our regulatory frameworks to maintain a fair and open trading environment, and how we resolve disputes.  On the scope of the partnership between us – on both economic and security matters – my officials will put forward detailed proposals for deep, broad and dynamic cooperation.

(7) We should continue to work together to advance and protect our shared European values.  Perhaps now more than ever, the world needs the liberal, democratic values of Europe.  We want to play our part to ensure that Europe remains strong and prosperous and able to lead in the world, projecting its values and defending itself from security threats.


The task before us

As I have said, the Government of the United Kingdom wants to agree a deep and special partnership between the UK and the EU, taking in both economic and security cooperation.  At a time when the growth of global trade is slowing and there are signs that protectionist instincts are on the rise in many parts of the world, Europe has a responsibility to stand up for free trade in the interest of all our citizens.

Likewise, Europe’s security is more fragile today than at any time since the end of the Cold War. Weakening our cooperation for the prosperity and protection of our citizens would be a costly mistake. The United Kingdom’s objectives for our future partnership remain those set out in my Lancaster House speech of 17 January and the subsequent White Paper published on 2 February.

We recognise that it will be a challenge to reach such a comprehensive agreement within the two-year period set out for withdrawal discussions in the Treaty. But we believe it is necessary to agree the terms of our future partnership alongside those of our withdrawal from the EU.

We start from a unique position in these discussions – close regulatory alignment, trust in one another’s institutions, and a spirit of cooperation stretching back decades.  It is for these reasons, and because the future partnership between the UK and the EU is of such importance to both sides, that I am sure it can be agreed in the time period set out by the Treaty.

The task before us is momentous but it should not be beyond us.  After all, the institutions and the leaders of the European Union have succeeded in bringing together a continent blighted by war into a union of peaceful nations, and supported the transition of dictatorships to democracy.

Together, I know we are capable of reaching an agreement about the UK’s rights and obligations as a departing member state, while establishing a deep and special partnership that contributes towards the prosperity, security and global power of our continent.
'You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!'


Offline Anton

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Instead, the referendum was a vote to restore, as we see it, our national self-determination

Rubbish. Surely there was nothing to "restore". Without national self-determination there wouldn't have been any such referendum to start with. Without national self-determination, a peaceful break away wouldn't have been possible. The rest of the letter is a sample collection of diplomatic hypocrisy and clichés.


<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XVXBnfGFQe0" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XVXBnfGFQe0</a>

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Online Robert

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Without our national self-determination you would probably be speaking German now
Everything depends how far you want to go back in history IMHO  ;D ;D ;D


Offline Anton

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Without our national self-determination you would probably be speaking German now

This anachronistic objection has nothing to do here: nobody's denying, objecting, refusing or criticizing your national self-determination. This simplistic objection is normally the one preferred by American members when trying to defend US foreign policies. I already replied to it here.
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Offline Anton

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Without our national self-determination you would probably be speaking German now
Everything depends how far you want to go back in history IMHO  ;D ;D ;D

I would give my right arm to go back to when we were all speaking Latin  :D
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Offline Alfie

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Quote
Instead, the referendum was a vote to restore, as we see it, our national self-determination
Rubbish. Surely there was nothing to "restore". Without national self-determination there wouldn't have been any such referendum to start with. Without national self-determination, a peaceful break away wouldn't have been possible. The rest of the letter is a sample collection of diplomatic hypocrisy and clichés.

Perhaps she is referring to the ending of the current situation of the supremacy of EU law or the slide towards a United States of Europe "superstate". There is no appetite for the latter in the UK.

The rest of the letter is a sample collection of diplomatic hypocrisy and clichés.

I don't see any hypocrisy in the letter but for sure it's full of diplomatic and political "speak".
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Online Robert

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[/quote]
Perhaps she is referring to the ending of the current situation of the supremacy of EU law or the slide towards a United States of Europe "superstate". There is no appetite for the latter in the UK.
[/quote]

Most people in Europe also do not like United States of Europe. Simple matter of own identity. It worked in the U.S.A. because immigrants came from different countries but did not stay together after some time. So now a mix of cultures, quite the opposite in Europe where countries exist with their own culture and identity which they value and want to keep and protect. I believe EU works well for commerce etc. but I would never want to have one Europe! Just my personal view on this.


Offline Anton

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Perhaps she is referring to the ending of the current situation of the supremacy of EU law or the slide towards a United States of Europe "superstate". There is no appetite for the latter in the UK.

Most people in Europe also do not like United States of Europe. Simple matter of own identity. It worked in the U.S.A. because immigrants came from different countries but did not stay together after some time. So now a mix of cultures, quite the opposite in Europe where countries exist with their own culture and identity which they value and want to keep and protect. I believe EU works well for commerce etc. but I would never want to have one Europe! Just my personal view on this.

Preserving everybody's identity in a stronger Europe would have been possible, had it been built differently, with a bit more of grain and less hurry to expand indiscriminately and without consulting the people. We could now have a smaller but stronger Union or Federation. Alas: poor leftist politicians, daydreaming technocrats, decided and are still deciding differently. If renouncing to a unified or federate Europe is the only way to preserve national identity, that means we are in the hands of bad politicians. That also means we are condemned to being bullied also in the future by the titan of the moment (USA, China, Russia...).
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Offline Anton

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THERESA MAY'S EMPTY BREXIT PROMISES


By John Cassidy, March 29, 2017


Bexit has begun. On Tuesday evening, Theresa May, the British Prime Minister, signed a letter formally giving notice that the United Kingdom intends to leave the European Union. On Wednesday, Sir Tim Barrow, the U.K.'s Ambassador to the E.U., delivered the letter to Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council. Next up: a long set of talks about the terms of Britain's exit.

"When I sit around the negotiating table in the months ahead, I will represent every person in the United Kingdom—young and old, rich and poor, city, town, country, and all the villages and hamlets in between," May told the House of Commons on Wednesday. "It is my fierce determination to get the right deal for every single person in this country. For, as we face the opportunities ahead of us on this momentous journey, our shared values, interests, and ambitions can—and must—bring us together."

"We all want to see a Britain that is stronger than it is today," she added. "We all want a country that is fairer so that everyone has the chance to succeed. We all want a nation that is safe and secure for our children and grandchildren. We all want to live in a truly global Britain that gets out and builds relationships with old friends and new allies around the world."

May's speech was filled with so many false claims, so much cant, and so many examples of wishful thinking that it is hard to know where to begin. Her vow to represent "every person" in the U.K. is blatantly false. Last year's referendum, in which 51.9 per cent of the people who voted signalled a preference to leave the E.U., represented a victory for the old, the less-educated, and the xenophobic. The young, the college-educated, and the outward-looking all rejected, and still reject, Brexit. Many of them regard it as a willful act of self-destruction, and future historians will surely agree with them.

The upcoming exit talks, which are expected to last about two years, will cover a number of areas, including the terms on which British exporters will be allowed access to the European market, the rights of E.U. nationals living in the U.K., and whether Britain will have to pay a big departure fee. Although May is talking a brave game, her negotiating position is weak. Retaining open access to the E.U. for British goods would require the U.K. to keep paying into the E.U.'s budget and allowing labor to move freely across the English Channel. May knows that she can't sell either of these concessions to the Little Englanders in her own party or to the jingoistic tabloids that have championed a "hard Brexit"—a clean break with the E.U.

In January, May said that Britain wouldn't try to remain a formal member of the single market and instead would seek a new trade agreement with the E.U. that preserved the "frictionless" movement of goods and services. She also said that she was prepared to walk away from the negotiations if Britain didn't get what it wanted, in which case the country would crash out of the E.U. with no agreement at all. She said "no deal" was preferable to "a bad deal for Britain." That language went over well with the Daily Mail and the Sun, but it really amounted to the Prime Minister putting a gun to her head and threatening to shoot. As a negotiating ploy, it failed miserably.

The leaders of the E.U., meanwhile, want to discourage other member countries from following the U.K.'s example, and appear increasingly determined to impose a harsh deal on London. At an E.U. summit over the weekend in Italy, Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, was asked if there was any leeway to reach a friendly arrangement with Britain. "Some things are not for sale," she said, indicating that the U.K. would not receive any concessions that undermined the free movement of goods and people within the E.U.

Merkel's tough line echoed the sentiments expressed by Wolfgang Schäuble, the German Finance Minister, in a recent interview with the Financial Times. "We have no interest in punishing the U.K, but we also have no interest in putting European integration in danger over the U.K.," Schäuble said. "That is why our priority must be, with a heavy heart, to keep the rest of Europe—without the U.K.—as close together as possible."

Both sides are still staking out their positions, of course, and it will be some time before we know how the negotiations are going. Many European officials believe that May will eventually soften her stance, because leaving the E.U. without a deal would be catastrophic.

In such a situation, British goods would suddenly face tariffs and would be subjected to customs checks. Even more damaging, a lot of multinational companies that have set up operations in Britain because of its access to the E.U. would move their operations across the Channel. Arguably, this process is already beginning. A number of big banks have said that they will be shifting staff from London to Frankfurt. BMW, the German car manufacturer that now owns the iconic Mini brand, is reportedly considering whether to build a new version of the compact car in Germany rather than Oxford.

May and her fellow-Brexiteers have dismissed these developments, but despite their talk about creating a "truly global Britain" and turning the U.K. into a "global hub," they don't have a viable post-Brexit vision to offer. To quote the FT's Gideon Rachman, Britain is long past the days of empire, when it was "capable of blasting its way into global markets." And it isn't tiny Singapore either. It's a medium-sized post-industrial nation off the coast of Europe, which is its natural trading partner.

The stakes go beyond economics, of course. By going ahead with Brexit, May is endangering the very union that her party, officially the Conservative and Unionist Party, claims to represent. In last year's referendum, Scotland and Northern Ireland both voted to stay in the E.U. Once Britain leaves, Scotland may well choose to become independent and apply for membership on its own. (On Tuesday, the Scottish Parliament backed the call by Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister of Scotland, for a second referendum on Scottish independence.) There would also be huge questions about the future of Northern Ireland, which, at some point, could opt to join the rest of Ireland inside the E.U.

It is still possible, of course, that May will manage to cobble together a deal that preserves some of the economic advantages that Britain has built up during its four decades of membership in the E.U. It's even conceivable (although unlikely) that in two years time Parliament could reject the exit agreement, or non-agreement, forcing a general election that May might lose. For now, though, the wreckers are firmly in the ascendance, and today they are celebrating their victory.


Source (The New Yorker)
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Offline Anton

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Last year's referendum, in which 51.9 per cent of the people who voted signalled a preference to leave the E.U., represented a victory for the old, the less-educated, and the xenophobic.

I wonder what category pro-Brexit members here belong to  :P
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Offline enrico

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  my old man used to say,son ,if you have the cash, you can buy anything thats for sale ? and if you are selling anything and its good value,you will not have to advertise, they will be queuing up right outside your door ?? well we have done it before, and i still hope we can do it again ? bring it on  ?


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I think that article pretty much sums up the cheap, shoddy journalism that has sprung up around Brexit. All young people voted to remain and all old people voted to leave, yeah right. I was 18 when I voted to remain back in the day, my first ever vote, most of my friends voted the other way. I'm now an 'old man' and the same arguments were spewed out then, about future generations. That turned out to be a load of crap really.

You have to be British to understand why Brexit happened. It's as simple as that.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2017, 01:13:49 AM by caller »


Offline Alfie

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Yes, a pretty biased article and one that misses the point.
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Offline dereklev

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Last year's referendum, in which 51.9 per cent of the people who voted signalled a preference to leave the E.U., represented a victory for the old, the less-educated, and the xenophobic.

I wonder what category pro-Brexit members here belong to  :P

I am sure that the majority of "OLD" Brits voted to leave. We were merely correcting the error we made in 1972 when we voted to join!!
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Offline Anton

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A few additional remarks and plain language rendition of some points in the first half of Ms. T. May's "Article 50" letter (until "Proposed principles for our discussions" as I have better things to read).


Quote
On 23 June last year, the people of the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union

She originally dictated "half the people..." but the half got lost along the way, typing oversight.


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the United Kingdom wants the European Union to succeed and prosper

Quote
We are leaving the European Union, but we are not leaving Europe

"We don't want the cons anymore, but we still want the pros"


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the deep and special partnership we hope to enjoy – as your closest friend and neighbour – with the European Union once we leave

"We don't want the cons anymore, but we still want the pros"


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This legislation will, wherever practical and appropriate, in effect convert the body of existing European Union law (the “acquis”) into UK law.  This means there will be certainty for UK citizens and for anybody from the European Union who does business in the United Kingdom

She forgot to add "wherever practical and appropriate" also in the second sentence, but I don't doubt it was in good faith.


Quote
When it comes to the return of powers back to the United Kingdom, we will consult fully on which powers should reside in Westminster and which should be devolved to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.  But it is the expectation of the Government that the outcome of this process will be a significant increase in the decision-making power of each devolved administration

Don't come washing your dirty linen in public! Is this how you respect your "closest friend and neighbour"?


Quote
In security terms a failure to reach agreement would mean our cooperation in the fight against crime and terrorism would be weakened

"Oooops, we hadn't thought about that. Help!"
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Online caller

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I think you should stop Anton. You are becoming misogynic.

The more you continue, the more you convince me that we made the right decision in leaving. I am tired of the mocking, of the threats, of the insinuations about our intelligence.

Our histories and values are different . We don't belong, we have never been welcomed, never been respected and always treated with suspicion. We do not desire nor see the value of a federal Europe. We have a proud history of democracy unlike most European states and have a self-confidence that is not shared by many in Europe - best not call them Countries anymore. We will always be pulling in different directions.

And we will continue to offer security to Europe via NATO - 800 British troops are currently in Latvia helping to protect the EU's borders - even if various EU states want such protection on the cheap - there is a certain irony that Greece, the EU's political football and poorest member, pays it's full dues whilst richer states don't, which is shameful.

But apart from that, au revoir.