Brexit… Lite? @vote_leave #takecontrol #voteleave #brexit

EUStates

Immediately after the EU Referendum, people were talking about whether we would really leave the EU or not. But now that people have more-or-less accepted the result, everyone is talking about whether we’ll opt for “Brexit Lite” (The Independent, The Scotsman, Digital Look) or full-blown Brexit.

But given the once-in-a-lifetime, Remain or Leave, “you can’t be half-pregnant”, binary nature of this referendum, how could there be a “Brexit Lite“, and what does that even mean? I thought I would pass on the above graphic to bring light to the situation.

The more of those circles you are in, the more locked into the “European Project” you are. Note particularly the circles which read “European Union” and “Eurozone”. But it is very possible to be involved in some parts of European co-operation without being a state of the EU. Brexit-lite would simply mean being outside of the “European Union” (without presumably becoming Eurozone or Schengen Area), but not leaving all of the other circles. Full blown Brexit would presumably be leaving all or almost all the circles. Simple. The question is: which circles will we join or stay in?

© 2016 Bryan A. J. Parry

featured image from https://www.aegee.org/yvote2014/voting-guide/how-does-the-eu-works/

 

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Britain Will NOT Leave the EU @gideonrachman @Vote_Leave #TakeControl #VoteLeave #Brexit

cbf2f15f-b69c-4c6b-b8fd-e4f3b0312848

Two days ago I wrote how I can foresee a second EU referendum, however politically suicidal or disrespectful of the British people’s wishes that that would seem right now. I spoke of how often this has happened in the past when the people say “NO!” to the EU, and why it can and perhaps will happen again.

Now someone who knows more than me, Gideon Rachman of the Financial Times, has said the same thing in his article I do not believe that Brexit will happen (also available here). Unlike Mr Rachman, however, I would not view the onward trundle towards a European Super State or a second referendum to be a good thing. I say, let’s get out ASAP! I also think we cannot trust Boris Johnson on this. After all, he was until recently a lukewarm Bremainer, and famously said a few months ago that the best way to reform the EU, and stay inside this reformed entity, was to vote “NO” in a referendum.

As I said two days ago, we must watch our masters carefully. Any hint at a betrayal of the referendum results, especially Referendum: The Sequel, must be loudly opposed.

© 2016 Bryan A. J. Parry

featured image from http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/8f2aca88-3c51-11e6-9f2c-36b487ebd80a.html

EU Referendum and Bullying @BarackObama @LeaveEUOfficial #Brexit #LoveEuropeHateEU #ProjectFear

U.S President Barack Obama, right, and Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron walk from 10 Downing Street, London after a meeting Friday, April, 22, 2016. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Nobody likes to be told what to do. Indeed, when you’re told you have to do something, very often it galvanises a kind of resistance. This starts in childhood. If you leave a child alone in a room with a biscuit for five minutes, they may eat it, they may not. But if you tell the child, “Do not eat this biscuit; if you do, all your hair will fall out!” then they will almost certainly have eaten it by the time you come back.

Childish? Maybe. But it’s also basic human psychology.

Therefore, the “Bremain” side of the EU Referendum are playing a dangerous game. Even if I wasn’t a Brexiter, the very fact that all the main political parties, many of the corporate interests, and individuals like Barack Obama are in favour of Bremain, would make me very suspicious indeed. Just why are the rich and powerful so against Brexit…? What are they trying to hide from us, hmm…? And to be honest, I’ve found the wheeling out of Obama to be a little offensive. I don’t need foreign leaders to tell me what to think, even if they’re so sexy and smooth they make me question my own heterosexuality.

Some facts now, not fear.

The UK is the world’s fifth largest economy. Plenty of countries trade with the EU and with other blocs and nations without having to accept the laws and a constant erosion of sovereignty. There is no “safe” status quo option in this referendum: the choices are ever closer integration (remain), or independence (leave). The EU was founded on the principal of creating a “kind of United States of Europe” — those are Winston Churchill’s words! (The European Union: A Very Short Introduction is a good short pro-EU primer on the EU including its founding principles)

So, thank you for your intervention, Mr Obama, but I have to tell you: YES WE CAN. Yes we can be free, yes we can be independent. We are a major player, and freedom will do nothing to hurt us. And YES YOU CAN: please stand with the chorus of elites who are trying to bully the British people. Hopefully we are so irked we vote for freedom, vote to leave.

In other news, so good to see Obama agree to give up the Dollar, pool sovereignty with South America, and have United States policy in all areas be dictated by non-US citizens.

© 2016 Bryan A. J. Parry

featured image from http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2016/04/22/article-urn:publicid:ap.org:86a16f269734497ba5d7e288ab971169-2OYR8x2FaP50a802cebb41be018f-638_634x450.jpg

The EU Has NOT Kept the Peace in Europe #LoveEuropeHateEU @vote_leave @LeaveEUOfficial

aftermath-of-the-yugoslav-war

Contrary to the propaganda, the EU has not kept the peace in Europe. Look at the break-up of Yugoslavia and the tragic wars that followed. Rather, the EU is partly a product of the desire for the great European nations to not go to war with each other again. The desire to not go to war has prevented wars.

Yes, Europeans not wanting to slaughter each other yet again has kept the peace in Europe — when indeed it has been kept!. Not the EU. The EU is a symptom of that desire for peace, not a cause.

No more propaganda, please. Only facts.

#LoveEuropeHateEU

© 2016 Bryan A. J. Parry

featured image from https://jerusalemstateofmind.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/aftermath-of-the-yugoslav-war.jpg

EU Referendum: Jeremy Corbyn @jeremycorbyn @LeaveEUOfficial #Brexit #LoveEuropeHateEU

corbyn-641780

I’m not a socialist, but I was over-the-moon when Jeremy Corbyn was elected as leader of the Labour Party. An outsider, an independent mind, a long-time principled campaigner, a kind of British Bernie Sanders. He was the sort of guy we needed to shake our politics up. I’m tired of these career politician clones; I have a lot of time for principled folk of all political stripes.

How disappointed I now am.

The past week has seen Corbyn throw away much of his respectability.

First there was the biggest non-issue in history: David Cameron’s finances. The guy is a wealthy plonkstain, for sure, but he didn’t do anything illegal. The headlines should be: MIDDLE CLASS MAN MAKES SOUND INVESTMENTS AND MODERATE GAINS. Corbyn demanding that Cameron should publish all of his records and be subject to a parliamentary official probe was the worst kind of political opportunism and wholly unbefitting a so-called man of principle. And no, I’m not even a Tory!

And now he’s chucked his credibility in the bin. The man is a lifetime opponent of the EU (here’s a great article outlining his consistent opposition to the EU). Yet since becoming Labour leader he has had a magical change of mind. This is the lowest and most see-through political opportunism ever. To save his own skin, he has sold out a core principle which he has always fought for. At a time when our nation’s future hangs in the balance, he has chosen career politics over the nation’s welfare and over his own principles.

The man has lost my respect. Not because he is now in favour of us staying in the EU, whereas I am a Brexiter. But because he has jettisoned his principles for political expediency.

His statement about the EU was full of non-sequiturs. Take the following.

EU membership has guaranteed working people vital employment rights including four weeks paid holiday, paternity and maternity leave, protection for agency workers, health and safety in the workplace. Being in the EU has raised our environmental standards… and protected consumers from rip-off charges.[1]

I won’t take the time to rip his argument to shreds in this post as it would turn into a lengthy screed. But it suffices to say that a lot has changed since we joined the European Community in 1973, 43 years ago! Y’know, two years after decimalisation, and six years before Margaret Thatcher even became PM! The implicit point in Corbyn’s statement is that we wouldn’t have developed equivalent or better standards in the last almost half century without being a member of the EU — otherwise, his statement makes no sense. However, he is quite wrong. That we have been a member of the EU means that, like other members, we have developed these standards within the framework of the EU. Correlation is not causation. The UK would very likely not be stuck in a 1973 timewarp had we not joined the European Economic Community — or had we left it in 1975 as Jeremy Corbyn himself campaigned for! We would have developed our own, likely very similar, standards.

It is said that a week is a long time in politics. Indeed it is. The days when Corbyn seemed like (read: was) a man of unwavering principle, above the muck and grime of day-to-day politics, are long gone.

[1] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-eu-referendum-36039925

© 2016 Bryan A. J. Parry

featured image from http://cdn.images.express.co.uk/img/dynamic/139/590x/corbyn-641780.jpg

“Eurosceptic” @LeaveEUOfficial #Brexit #LoveEuropeHateEU

image

I really dislike the terms “Eurosceptic” and “leave Europe” and I don’t use them. I am against the UK being a member of the EU, I want the UK to leave the EU. But I have no issue with Europe.

Let’s be clear. The UK will not leave Europe; we are European. I am not against Europe.

I love Europe. I dislike the EU.

I am tired of this deliberate and sometimes accidental conflation of “Europe” and the “EU”, as if they were somehow the same thing. Europe is the magnificent continent whose peoples, languages, cultures, and achievements in both arts and sciences are unrivalled. The EU is the mostly well-intentioned but misguided political project which does not, has not, and will never serve Europe’s best interests.

I will be voting for the UK to leave the EU. I am not “Eurosceptic”; I’m “EUsceptic. Let’s stand up tall and proud as grown-ups, making our own decisions. Love Europe, hate the EU.

© 2016 Bryan A. J. Parry

featured image from http://cicero-group.com/media-centre/reports/eu-referendum-the-question-for-the-uk-a-cicero-group-analysis/

EU Trade Law

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Scotland’s plan to introduce a 50p per unit of alcohol policy may infringe EU trade laws (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-34133269).

I have been massively against Scotland pursuing this policy as I think it will damage the alcohol industry and also not help alcoholics at all. Rather, it will merely penalise poor people and is an easy way for the Scottish government to rinse the masses.

However, the idea that the EU can dictate to nations what they can and cannot do within their own borders is disgusting. The United Kingdom can do whatever the hell it pleases, and we please that Scotland has such rights. It is not for the EU to tell the UK or Scotland what we can do. People need to wake up to this reality: the EU simply does not exist to serve the democratic will or prerogative of nations, and never has — but rather, it exists to serve its own strengthening and survival.

And it is for a thousand “little” reasons like this that I will be voting for the UK to leave the EU in the forthcoming EU Referendum. No jingoism, no racism or hatred, just a belief that the people of a nation should decide their own fate.

© 2015 Bryan A. J. Parry

featured image from http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/3224006627.jpg

General Election 2015: Ideologies

 

liblabcon

The General Election is on 7th May 2015. So the question is, who should you vote for? 

There’s lots of reasons to vote for one party or another. But me, I like to know where people stand. I mean, where they really stand, not what they say. And whilst policies may change or be ill-thought-out, the fundamental underlying ideology which motivated those policies is key. Therefore, voting for the underlying ideology is a good reason to vote one way or another (even if some of the policies may be a tad dodgy).

The following represents what I believe to be a fair, one-sentence summary of the core ideology of each of most of the prominent British parties. I try to be as neutral, yet blunt, as possible — but you’ll see that I can only go so far on that point.

VOTE BNP if you believe in the rights of white, Anglo-Celtic Britons being put first.

VOTE GREEN if you believe that the environment is the single most important and pressing issue of our age and you believe that socialist-leaning policy can solve this.

VOTE PLAID CYMRU if you believe in putting Wales above everything else and that this should be done with socialist-leaning policies.

VOTE SNP if you believe in putting Scotland above everything else and this should be done with socialist-leaning policies.

VOTE UKIP if you believe that democracy is the most important issue of all and that British democracy is best served by leaving the EU and that this should be done with mixed / centrist policies.

VOTE CONSERVATIVE, LABOUR, OR LIBERAL DEMOCRAT if you like a blander style of politics with no underlying ideological commitments whatsoever.

SAY NO TO THE FALSE CHOICE OF THE “LESSER OF TWO EVILS” PHONY PARADIGM

Labour are no longer a socialist party. The LibDems are not really a liberal or a democrat party. The Conservatives are not a conservative nor a nationalist party. These three parties have no underlying ideology any more and they therefore cannot be trusted on anything they say.

futurama

The whole thing reminds me of the following skits from The Simpsons and Futurama.

The politics of failure have failed. It’s time to make them work again!
The Simpsons http://youtu.be/Tv5CT7r3Txo

[presidential candidates Jack Johnson and John Jackson having a debate]
Jack Johnson: It’s time that someone had the strength to stand up and say, ‘I’m against all those things that everybody hates!’
John Jackson: Now, I respect my opponent, I think he’s a good man, but quite frankly: I agree with everything he just said!
[…]
Jack Johnson: I say your titanium three cent tax goes too far!
John Jackson: And I say your titanium three cent tax doesn’t go too far enough!
Futurama http://youtu.be/Fs9P44voNfU, http://youtu.be/f69PnAUwv-E

People say, ‘A vote for UKIP is a vote for Ed Milliband’. People say, ‘A vote for the Greens is a vote for David Cameron’. People say, ‘Let’s vote for the lesser of two evils’. And most egregiously of all, people say, ‘A vote for anyone other than Labour or Conservative is a wasted vote’.

Well I say, a vote for something other than that which I believe in is itself a wasted vote. If I believe in Slightly Sillyism, and therefore vote for the Slightly Silly Party, then my vote is not wasted even if no one else votes Slightly Silly. Why not? Because otherwise, I’d be voting Labour or the Conservatives, neither of whom I support, and so voting for them would indeed be a wasted (and an idiotic) vote.

REJECT this phony “Vote Evil A to keep Worse Evil B out” paradigm.

REJECT this phony “A vote for a smaller party is a wasted vote” paradigm.

REJECT the LibLabCon who all share the same values and background, i.e., those of the ruling class and the old boy network, and who have no coherent ideology, i.e., no principles whatsoever.

DO NOT vote Labour, LibDem, or Conservative just because you always have. DO NOT vote Labour, LibDem, or Conservative because of what they used to stand for.

VOTE FOR an ideology. REJECT LibLabCon. Even if this means spoiling your ballot by writing a minority party in who aren’t standing in your constituency, e.g., the National Liberal Party, the English Democrats, the Christian Democrats, and so on.

Also, check out this political alignment quiz and this link to the manifestoes.

Happy voting!

featured image from https://poppyreece.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/liblabcon.jpg

John Jackson and Jack Johnson image from http://vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net/nonciclopedia/images/2/2c/Jack_Johnson_e_John_Jackson_(futurama).jpg/revision/latest?cb=20120429093102

© 2015 Bryan A. J. Parry

The Stunning Fall of the British National Party

BNP_logo_edit

Some stunning facts about the rise and crash of the British National Party (BNP).

  • In 2008, Richard Barnbrook was elected to the London Assembley for the BNP; the party had achieved 5.3% of the vote (130,714 votes).
  • in the 2010 General Election, the BNP fielded a record high of 338 candidates (the fifth highest after Labour, Conservatives, LibDems, and UKIP) and polled 563,743 votes: the fifth highest number of votes, and twice the amount that the Green Party (who got a candidate elected) managed.
  • In May 2010, the BNP had over 14,000 members — more than UKIP.
  • By January 2015, the party had a mere 500 members.
  • In the 2015 General Election, the BNP will field only 8 candidates — half as many as the Official Monster Raving Loony Party.

The phrase “Pyrrhic Victory” springs to mind: the 2010 General Election was the BNP’s most successful, yet 267 of its candidates got less than 5% of the vote and so lost their deposit — costing the party £133,500. This more-or-less precipitated their decline.

Shit happens.

© 2015 Bryan A. J. Parry

featured image edited from http://www.sparksunderland.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/BNP_logo-620×250.jpg

References:
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/generalelection/general-election-2015-the-bnp-has-almost-vanished-from-british-politics-10176194.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_National_Party

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom_general_election,_2010

http://www.bnp.org.uk/news/bnp-crashes-through-14000-membership-mark-%E2%80%94-party-now-larger-ukip

 

2015 General Election Manifestos & Policy Guide

 

 

General-Election-2015

The 2015 General Election is a mere 21 days away. Please read the manifestoes of each of the main parties. I’ve also included links to policy guides. Place your vote with full knowledge of the facts.

Policy Guide: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/election/2015/manifesto-guide

Match the party to the policy: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/generalelection/general-election-2015-video-can-you-match-the-party-policy-to-the-manifesto-10178937.html

Conservative Party Manifesto: http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/apr/14/conservative-party-manifesto-2015-the-full-pdf

English Democrats Party Manifesto: http://www.englishdemocrats.org.uk/policies/full-manifesto.html

Green Party Manifesto: https://www.greenparty.org.uk/assets/files/manifesto/Green_Party_2015_General_Election_Manifesto.pdf

Labour Party Manifesto: http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/apr/14/labour-manifesto-2015-the-full-pdf

Liberal Party Mini Manifesto: http://www.liberal.org.uk/elections/manifesto.pdf

Liberal Democrat Party Manifesto: https://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/libdems/pages/8907/attachments/original/1429028133/Liberal_Democrat_General_Election_Manifesto_2015.pdf?1429028133

Libertarian Party, A Manifesto: http://libertarianpartyuk.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/Libertarian-Manifesto.pdf
Libertarian Party 2015 Manifesto: http://libertarianpartyuk.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Manifesto-2015.pdf

National Liberal Party Manifesto: http://nationalliberal.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/GEManifesto.pdf

Plaid Cymru Party Manifesto: https://www.partyof.wales/uploads/Plaid_Cymru_2015_Westminster_Manifesto.pdf

Scottish National Party (SNP) Manifesto: <<forthcoming>>

United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) Manifesto: http://static.guim.co.uk/ni/1429097117463/theukipmanifesto2015.pdf

featured image from http://www.independent.co.uk/incoming/article10057263.ece/binary/original/General-Election-2015.jpg

© 2015 Bryan A. J. Parry