Tag Archives: EU

The fascist nature of the European Union

The political leaders of both the European Union and the countries that belong to it have consistently defied the voted wishes of the electorate.

“Respect for the outcomes of referendums is perhaps not the most prominent feature of the sorry history of the E.U.,” said Philipp Genschel, a Professor at the Schumann Center for Advanced Studies. “However, the standard way not to respect the outcome of a referendum is not open defiance […] but the repetition of the referendum until it yields the ‘right’ outcome.”

In fact, the European Union as we know it today was built on a series of rejections of public votes. When the Danes in 1992 declined to accept the Maastricht treaty — which paved the way for a more integrated political union — the European Union made some concessions and then staged a second referendum in which voters finally approved of it. The same happened in 2001, when the Irish rejected the so-called Nice treaty as the bloc expanded eastward, and in 2008 when they opposed another treaty over further E.U. integration. Last year, Greek voters rejected bailout conditions proposed to the country by the European Union. But the leftist government in Athens ended up agreeing to most of those conditions anyway. Earlier this year, the Dutch voted against closer ties between the E.U. and Ukraine — a decision which was interpreted as a backlash against the hard-line stances of many E.U. governments toward Russia. The Dutch government is now considering to simply ignore the outcome of this referendum.

In other words, according to these preening self-righteous and power-hungry bureaucrats, to hell with democracy. We are your betters, and we will decide what you get, regardless of how you vote.

I suspect that, more than any other factor, it is this sorry history that drove the citizens of the UK to reject the European Union last week.

Elite journalist considers murder the appropriate response to Brexit vote

Fascist: A British journalist asked her readers today to consider whether they’d kill the leader of the UK’s movement to leave the European Union.

A journalist working for the Telegraph has asked her Twitter followers to consider if they would kill UKIP leader Nigel Farage, comparing him to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler. “You know that time travel conundrum: would you kill baby Hitler? Same but Nigel Farage”, wrote Catherine Gee, who claims to have been “writing about culture for the Telegraph since 2007”, and has also written for the Guardian, Western Mail and Clash.

She has deleted the tweet, but only I think because it embarrassed her, not because she realized how barbaric it was. Worse, she is not alone.

Over the course of just a few hours, Breitbart London uncovered hundreds of tweets and Facebook updates dating back as far as 2010, with some as recent as last Thursday afternoon after Member of Parliament Jo Cox was murdered.

The revelations go some way to shattering the narrative that “hateful” or “aggressive” rhetoric emanates from only one side of UK politics. Most of the messages listed below are from younger people, and Breitbart found that most were either Liberal Democrat, Scottish National Party, or Labour Party supporters. Most of them also expressed pro-European Union sentiment and were overwhelmingly supportive of the ‘Remain’ campaign at the European Union referendum.

Basic level searches under the search terms “shoot Nigel Farage”, “stab Nigel Farage” or “kill Nigel Farage” reveal hundreds of messages, some of those in fact with further messages of support for the notions in the replies.

Freedom and democracy cannot stand if it is considered acceptable to call for the murder of your opponents.

The howl against democracy

Link here. Key quote:

In all the years I’ve been writing about political stuff, I cannot remember a time when anti-democratic sentiment has been as strong as it is right now. No sooner had an awe-inspiring 17.5m people rebelled against the advice of virtually every wing of the establishment and said screw-you to the EU than politicos were calling into question the legitimacy of their democratic cry. Apparently the people were ill-informed, manipulated, in thrall to populist demagoguery, and the thing they want, this unravelling of the EU, is simply too mad and disruptive a course of action to contemplate. So let’s overturn the wishes of this dumb demos.

The author then outlines the numerous calls by EU supporters in the UK to do anything possible to void the will of the people in a legitimate vote. Why would I not be surprised if these same people also align themselves politically with today’s American Democratic Party, which increasingly sees the Bill of Rights and freedom as an obstacle and an evil that must be destroyed.

The elite speak!

The coming dark age: The journal Science published on Friday a nice collection of tweets from a lot of scientists expressing their contempt and disgust at the vote by the citizens of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union.

Two tweets say it all:

Dear Europe – for the record, I didn’t want this to happen. Please don’t judge all Brits by the poisonous rhetoric of the Leave campaign. — Dr Heather Williams (@alrightPET) June 24, 2016

Today is a sad day for science and sanity. #Brexit — Hannah Wakeford (@StellarPlanet) June 24, 2016

In the first the scientist accuses the Leave campaign of expressing “poisonous rhetoric”, while the second (one of many quite similar) declares anyone who disagreed with the Remain campaign to be insane. Does anyone but me see the blind stupidity here?

Not one of these tweeters, all supposedly highly educated scientists, consider for an instant the quite valid and reasonable intellectual arguments of the Leave campaign. Leave is wrong, and don’t you dare think otherwise! Some also suggest that the vote should be ignored, or invalidated, because they don’t like the result. So much for open-mindedness and a respect for democracy.

Science elites move to block UK exit from EU

A statement today from the UK’s Royal Astronomical Society, reacting to yesterday’s vote to leave the European Union, calls for the government to do whatever it can to nullify that exit.

Professor John Zarnecki, the President of the Royal Astronomical Society, commented: “We must remember that whatever happens, science has no boundaries. It is vital that we do not give the message, particularly to our younger colleagues, in the UK and beyond that our country is not a good place in which to do scientific research, however uncertain the economic and political environment is.

“I have been privileged during my career to have worked in a research environment in Europe which has had few borders for either people or ideas. We must strive to make sure that these rights are not taken away – this would be enormously to the detriment of UK society.”

The statement includes a laundry list of benefits that membership in the EU brings scientists, including lots of funding to pay the salaries of these scientists. The statement also insists that all these benefits must be maintained, despite the will of the electorate.

While many of these benefits (easy travel between nations) are beneficial and a reason to have a European Union, the electorate understood that the benefits have been increasingly outweighed by the heavy regulatory burden imposed by the EU, with no democratic recourse allowed.

Articles in the science journals Science and Nature, here, here, and here, also note the distress and opposition by scientists to yesterday’s vote.

This unwillingness of the elite community to accept the will of the public is part and parcel to the same bubble I found in Washington when I attended the CNAS conference. Unfortunately, I see no evidence of a willingness in the elite community to bend at all to the will of the general public, meaning that we can only expect the conflict between the top and the bottom to intensify in the coming years. The question will be whether our institutions of democracy will be able to withstand that battle, especially when those in power continue to find their power being attacked from below.

UK votes to leave EU

The revolt continues: The voters of the United Kingdom tonight chose to leave the European Union.

The EU was a great idea, unfortunately spoiled in the past few decades by a crushing regulatory bureaucracy unaccountable to anyone, which is why every single time the question has been put to the voters in recent years the voters have chosen to quit the EU.

The unrest among American voters, fueling the success of outsiders and the defeat of incumbents in recent elections, is based on similar issues and dissatisfactions. I thus expect similar surprises here come November. This essay expresses these circumstances here in the states quite nicely:

This is not about ideology. If people trusted elites and institutions they defend to look out for them, in a non-ideological sense, the breakdown of our systems would have been mitigated or confined. The fact that it is so sweeping is due to a generation of elites who didn’t do their jobs well, or pretended things weren’t their job for too long.

We have breakdown, chaos, and upheaval in our politics today not because the people are “insane”, as Rauch writes, but because they are sane. They know the leadership class which held power for the past generation has not looked out for them. Don’t blame a people for turning on elites who thought they knew better but proved over and over that they didn’t. It is thoroughly rational to want something else instead. Even if that something else turns out not to deliver either, at least you know it’s not the same as what’s failed. [emphasis mine]

Remember, the definition of insanity is doing the same failed thing over and over again, even though it is proven to never work. This what our elites have been doing for the past three decades. The voters, however, are increasingly showing that they are not insane, that they want to try new things. Kudos to them!

New EU tax law puts thousands out of business

We’re here to help you! A major revision to the VAT tax in the European Union tax has caused the shutdown of thousands of businesses because they cannot afford to meet the complex rules and bureaucracy required.

Designed to prevent large businesses locating themselves in VAT-competitive territories, it had the predictable effect of drowning small businesses under a sea of bureaucracy, forcing them to access the data required to prove the customer’s location, figure out which of more than 80 VAT rates to apply, and issue an invoice in the correct language, currency and layout. Unable to afford the costly software required to deal with the regulation, thousands of small business and sole traders have closed or abandoned their enterprises. Most of those who have continued to trade have either moved to third party platforms, losing up to 70 percent of their total revenue (not just non-domestic sales) in commission, or spent thousands on software.

“The human cost to these businesses is vast”, Clare Josa is co-founder of EU VAT Action commented for EU Observer. “The only reason the Digital Single Market is still functioning is because awareness levels are below 5 percent, so most businesses are continuing to trade under the former system. As awareness rises, the damage will soar.”

Read the whole article. The quote above only gives a small taste of the problem caused entirely by government bureaucrats and elected officials who seem divorced from reality. And though this is a European governmental disaster, it is instructive for Americans to learn about it. Like Obamacare, the new VAT tax rules were imposed with the best of intentions, but completely ignored the reality of meeting those intentions. The result is financial ruin for thousands of businesses and individuals.

The European Union’s program to reduce carbon emissions is in disarray.

The European Union’s program to reduce carbon emissions is in disarray.

The article at the link is probably one of the worst written stories in the history of journalism. It is incoherent, disorganized, and confused. Moreover, the authors are so in favor of the regulations to limit fossil fuels that they are unable to even consider any reasons which might explain why Europe’s carbon credit market is collapsing and why the EU’s legislators rejected a rescue plan to save it.

In fact, because of their biases, the authors buried the real story, which is this:

Parliamentarians on April 16 voted 334 to 315 for blocking the carbon market rescue.

“This is the first time I can remember when parliament has put economic survival and jobs ahead of green orthodoxy,” said Roger Helmer, a member of the U.K. Independence Party who has been in the parliament for 14 years and opposes emissions trading. “It marks an absolute watershed.”

The bad economy and high debt in Europe is making the idea of raising taxes and adding more restrictions on fossil fuels very unappealing to politicians.

More budget battles in Europe over $16 billion fusion reactor project

The budget battles continue in Europe over funding a $16 billion fusion reactor project.

Now the three statutory bodies of the European Union have agreed to cobble together €360 million from anticipated unspent funds in the still-to-be-decided 2013 budget. Another €840 million will be found by shifting money from 2012 and 2013 budget lines for farm and fishing subsidies, rural development, and environment, into the ones covering research. The remaining €100 million had already been allocated to ITER in the 2012 budget.

Sounds to me as if this whole thing has feet of clay, and is going to fall apart long before completion.