Comments for http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html en-gb 30 Sat 23 May 2015 14:20:51 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html moore1957 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=99#comment171 Questioning of the relevance of ever-closer union should be welcomed, as should a genuine restatement of the goal of the project. As numerous recent articles have noted the glue holding the Union together and propelled at least a majority of members toward union is not what it was due as much as anything to generational change and expansion. If you restate the goal, then some of the institutional changes follow from that, probably at the EU's usual glacial speed.If the current round of belt-tightening at national level actually leads to real demands for improvements at EU level and an engaged discussion about how the EU does its job, it would be a good thing. It would show that member state governments still care about the famously-tiny share of revenue which goes to Brussels. Don't count on it though, Thu 11 Nov 2010 13:46:36 GMT+1 torpare http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=98#comment170 @93.cool_brush_work wrote:"Oh sage of the Swiss.." I'm sorely tempted after this to adopt as my username "'n'onions"."A well written piece..."You surprise me CBW. For instance:-"Consider Marx, the father of socialist doctrine. His father was a preach, as was his grandfather. Marx was an academic precisely because his family were entitled to state funding for the fine living habits."In fact, Marx's father was a lawyer. (His grandfather was, though, a rabbi - so 50% right). Marx never occupied any post in any academic institution. He was for a time a freelance journalist; he also received substantial financial support from Engels, to enable him to devote most of his time to his writing. Later, the Marx family inherited money and property (mainly from his wife's family) and - after that, but not before - were able to live in modest middle-class comfort. DT's posts seem to me to have but one, unvarying, aim:- to emulate the outpourings of his compatriot J-J. Rousseau. We are treated periodically to his philosophical musings, from which (if I've nothing better to do) I sometimes try to tease out some meaning. One gathers that for DT (as I've pointed out before) all clocks stopped at some point prior to the First World War and European society has ever since remained frozen in the attitudes that were then prevalent. I think of DT as being another Rip van Winkle, just awakened from a very long slumber and still reflecting the world as he knew it before he fell asleep.Apart from that, I'm still trying and failing to discern what message DT is seeking to transmit (leaving aside all questions of his posts' relevance to any given topic, but that's another story). It's clear that he disapproves comprehensively of modern life and in particular of the class system as he sees it (which as it happens was also the lynch-pin of Marx's analysis). What's less clear is what he's proposing instead. Mere disapproval - even if justified - doesn't take one very far. DT is long on analysis (of a rather peculiar kind) and short on specifics. Rousseau's specifics, along with others' among the "Philosophes", led to the French Revolution. So both Marx's and Rousseau's ideas resulted in bloodbaths. Perhaps we should be thankful that DT is short on specifics. Wed 03 Nov 2010 13:36:22 GMT+1 David http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=98#comment169 Norman Conquest,At least now all people of "any, I repeat, any diversity whatsoever" know now to stay away from YOU :) Sun 31 Oct 2010 20:30:21 GMT+1 Norman Conquest http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=97#comment168 "141. At 09:33am on 29 Oct 2010, cool_brush_work wrote:...As it happens I do know of 2 'gays' that served in the Paras alongside myself...It is another indication of NormanC having not been 'in-action' or any serious 'service': When Your life is on the line You don't start asking Yourself or Your buddy if they enjoy page 3 models, but You do ask Yourself will 'I' be good enough & can my buddy rely on ME!?+++++Cool brush work,But would you really want a gay British para, ahem, covering your Back? Even when your life is on the line?Talk about being between the rock (the enemy) and the hard thing. Sun 31 Oct 2010 15:12:13 GMT+1 Nik http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=97#comment167 CBW... keep amusing us! Sat 30 Oct 2010 00:07:25 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=96#comment166 "there are truly none so blind as those who can see"Amen brudda. Fri 29 Oct 2010 19:37:53 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=95#comment165 165. At 7:55pm on 29 Oct 2010, AndyAnd MOST others in the EU commissariat it seems, plus their politicians both elected and appointed, there are truly none so blind as those who can see. Fri 29 Oct 2010 19:23:19 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=95#comment164 Buzet23,"For you in primitive caveman language, harmonisation does not work because no member state wants it too, they pay lip service to it but nothing more. Now is that simple enough for you?"Harmonization has no chance of working when people don't want it too. People like you. Fri 29 Oct 2010 18:55:42 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=94#comment163 #163. At 3:11pm on 29 Oct 2010, AndyIt's sad when someone here continually misses the point, your own logic gate seems to be closed, maybe a short circuit?For you in primitive caveman language, harmonisation does not work because no member state wants it too, they pay lip service to it but nothing more. Now is that simple enough for you?PS. Harmonisation is spelt with an 'S' not a 'Z', at least change your spell checker to Oxford English. Fri 29 Oct 2010 18:39:12 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=94#comment162 159. At 2:41pm on 29 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"As for electricians, I am not joking when I say Belgian Wallon electrician cannot work in Belgian Flanders unless he undergoes a language test, he is agreed for the whole of Belgium but the regional government of Flanders won't accept him. If harmonisation doesn't work even within a small federation how do you expect it to work across a whole continent."Your example does not show a harmonization working, your example shows the lack of harmonization not working. Check your logic circuits, correction, get someone evidentially better qualified to check them. Fri 29 Oct 2010 14:11:37 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=93#comment161 Re #157Anyone who watched thosands goose-stepping Chinese soliders of both sexes during the massive PRC anniversary military parade would agree that harmony in China is alive and well. ;)"Harmonization (the word chosen because 'gleichschaltung' -ie the same thing- would have sent alarm bells ringing)" I recall some 40 years ago Germans from BRD wanted to issue some kind of medal: after an internal debate they replace a word 'Fuehrer' on it with a word 'leader'. :) Fri 29 Oct 2010 13:59:46 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=93#comment160 157. At 2:05pm on 29 Oct 2010, resistance35 wrote:"interesting you mention North Korea (DPRK). It too has an elected parliament. But is it a democratic parliament?"I don't think it is and I don't think any parliament is truly democratic, there are varying degrees of how democratic they are."Harmonization isn't something good at all, diversity is better."OK, you can drive down the wrong side of the road in the name of diversity if you like, perhaps you can ask powermeerkat to join you on the road coming in the other direction. Fri 29 Oct 2010 13:51:39 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=92#comment159 Re 149 Resistance35:"France is looking at a € 60-80bn deficit in the pension system if nothing is done, lowering taxes would make that worse."Watched France24 the other night.Protesters quizzed 'bout their dwindling numbers explained they were in it for a long term aming at removing Sarkozy in the next election.Here's wondering what will French Socialists (particularly one called nomen omen Royal] do then if they come to power?Reverse Sarkozy's reforms and lower the retirement age back?Especially that fiscal situation then will be probably not better, if not worse than it is now?[Cf. unavoidable decisions made very grudginly and after a long delay by Spanish Socialist Zapatero.] Fri 29 Oct 2010 13:47:40 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=91#comment158 #154. At 1:21pm on 29 Oct 2010, AndyWrong again, there are some things that should be harmonised and many that should not, and if the much lauded freedom of movement of workers is to work qualifications are one that should, at the moment it is nothing more than a slightly worthwhile bit of paper. My point was that harmonising qualifications should be easy and the EU says it has achieved that which is pure spin, it has not. There are many ways in which the member states block harmonisation of qualifications, i.e insisting all course matter is available and translated into their language, claiming their diploma is superior to another, you name it they do it. As for electricians, I am not joking when I say Belgian Wallon electrician cannot work in Belgian Flanders unless he undergoes a language test, he is agreed for the whole of Belgium but the regional government of Flanders won't accept him. If harmonisation doesn't work even within a small federation how do you expect it to work across a whole continent. Fri 29 Oct 2010 13:41:56 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=91#comment157 "His K.Ph.'s name is synonomous with gross betrayal & treachery."CBW, if it makes you feel any better we've got our own equivalent:ALDRICH AMES.Who also got quite a few people killed, or actually murdered after tortures.Excepts that he was paid by the Russians for his treachery: in DIAMONDS.[life without parole: that's what Ames has finally got. Just like Walker sr.] Fri 29 Oct 2010 13:21:13 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=90#comment156 @154 Andyinteresting you mention North Korea (DPRK). It too has an elected parliament. But is it a democratic parliament?Harmonization isn't something good at all, diversity is better. What the EU wants is to stamp out diversity and turn countries into carbon copies of eachother.Harmonization (the word chosen because 'gleichschaltung' -ie the same thing- would have sent alarm bells ringing) is the problem rather than the solution. Usually the compromise measure is not stern enough for half, and too stern for the rest. Take the Euro interest rate for example. No one is happy with it, they all think its too high or too low. Fri 29 Oct 2010 13:05:23 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=90#comment155 "Of course, unlike the vindictive cruelty of the Soviets, the British never intended to execute this miserably treasonous scum."QBW, the British were co civilized, that they didn't kill, let alone tortured, a leading Soviet atomic spy in Los Alamos, Klaus Fuchs, but rather allowed him, after some years of imprisonment, to move to East Germany where he died peacefully in his own bed.[Did you know that when already in Moscow Kim seduced a fellow spy's (Mclean's) wife? :)][Just like Gunter Guillaume. :)] Fri 29 Oct 2010 13:02:51 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=89#comment154 David, if you are concerned that it's Americans who are targeted for offensive abuse be aware that even being Swiss will not protect you from it:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-11648399 Fri 29 Oct 2010 12:47:38 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=88#comment153 153. At 1:01pm on 29 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"Like they've harmonised educational qualifications, like not. Like for instance an electrician can(not) work in any country, or a gas fitter can(not) work in any country, or even a road sweeper can(not) work in any country. Your fantastic harmonisation is a farce and the spun version put out by the EU publicity (spin) department bears little resemblance with reality. If they [member states] can't even agree to accept qualifications across the EU without invoking various 'busting' methods then just why do you still think it will work with even more critical affairs."They've not harmonized everything yet by a long way, I hope they will so that, to use your analogies, an electrician can work in any country, or a gas fitter can work in any country, or even a road sweeper can work in any country. You seem against that.At least the member states are trying to harmonized, to find common ground, you want isolationism which is a thing of the past and could lead to a North Korea type scenario. Fri 29 Oct 2010 12:21:29 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=88#comment152 #152. At 12:40pm on 29 Oct 2010, Andy Like they've harmonised educational qualifications, like not. Like for instance an electrician can(not) work in any country, or a gas fitter can(not) work in any country, or even a road sweeper can(not) work in any country. Your fantastic harmonisation is a farce and the spun version put out by the EU publicity (spin) department bears little resemblance with reality. If they [member states] can't even agree to accept qualifications across the EU without invoking various 'busting' methods then just why do you still think it will work with even more critical affairs. Fri 29 Oct 2010 12:01:22 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=87#comment151 150. At 12:15pm on 29 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"As can be said by the old axiom, "you can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink", in your case no matter how much evidence to the contrary there is you still think harmonising is a desirable end result, unbelievable."I think harmonising in many cases is FANTASTIC, indeed, it's one of the positives that the EU has provided.I wish they'd get on with harmonizing benefits, taxes, electricity, driving on roads, all standards in fact. Fri 29 Oct 2010 11:40:41 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=87#comment150 150. At 12:15pm on 29 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"I bet you believe in fairies at the bottom of the garden as well"Lol, likewise do you seem to see Beasts at the bottom of yours? Fri 29 Oct 2010 11:38:01 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=86#comment149 #148. At 11:55am on 29 Oct 2010, AndyI bet you believe in fairies at the bottom of the garden as well, yet another misguided idealist who has not yet read the writing on the wall about the EU and the nature and structure of its member states. I trust you'll be first in line to receive the pittance the social (Socialist) EU will agree on, but then if the old USSR is anything to go by it'll be a very long queue.As can be said by the old axiom, "you can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink", in your case no matter how much evidence to the contrary there is you still think harmonising is a desirable end result, unbelievable. Fri 29 Oct 2010 11:15:10 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=86#comment148 If not at German rates, then taxes would be lower, thus meaning that Germany will have to reduce expenditure, where would you think Germany has to cut costs to make up for the loss of revenue? Welfare to be lowered? Because that often is what will happen.Germany and France, considering pension 'commitments' simply cannot afford to lower taxes to any other country's level. When they suggest 'harmonizing taxes' they mean 'everyone must increase them to our level'. France is looking at a € 60-80bn deficit in the pension system if nothing is done, lowering taxes would make that worse.Therefore, it is imperative that the undemocratic EU doesn't get its dirty hands on the tax rate levers. Fri 29 Oct 2010 11:05:26 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=85#comment147 147. At 11:43am on 29 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"You have got to be joking, R35 has it right when they say that Germany would love that and often demands that, after all it makes all countries equally uncompetitive since their costs will be identical to Germany's. The German mentality is that we are the best, we make the best quality products but they are expensive - solution - make everyone else as expensive so that quality is the only measure. Also, who would pay for the huge enormous increase in benefit costs as they are harmonised to the highest denominator, or will the masses have to revert to the lowest denominator of poor former eastern European countries, ah, the benefits of the new EUSSR."I think it glass-half-empty to assume that taxes would be harmonised at German rates, indeed, that whole statement is dregs-at-the-bottom-of-the-glass. Fri 29 Oct 2010 10:55:02 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=84#comment146 #143. At 10:54am on 29 Oct 2010, Andy,"that they should work a brief time on returning to Blighty before they are yet again, insured."Just what happens if they are unable to find work in order to qualify, they are in effect ostracised from their home country and have to beg or hope family help them. Some reward for maybe decades of contributing towards the unemployment benefit of their home country."I'd quite like to see benefits & taxes harmonised across Europe"You have got to be joking, R35 has it right when they say that Germany would love that and often demands that, after all it makes all countries equally uncompetitive since their costs will be identical to Germany's. The German mentality is that we are the best, we make the best quality products but they are expensive - solution - make everyone else as expensive so that quality is the only measure. Also, who would pay for the huge enormous increase in benefit costs as they are harmonised to the highest denominator, or will the masses have to revert to the lowest denominator of poor former eastern European countries, ah, the benefits of the new EUSSR. Fri 29 Oct 2010 10:43:27 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=84#comment145 131.Andy wrote:We're not a federal EU yetAnd we never will be becuase the people are against it. Fri 29 Oct 2010 10:32:31 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=83#comment144 143.Andy wrote:I'd quite like to see benefits & taxes harmonised across Europe, but we're not there yet and until we are, the current rules re. insurance are fair imv.Say hello to the sky high French and German taxes, then. And get ready to fund Romanian and Bulgarian benefits and pay for their healthcare too.I say: over my dead body. No EU taxes, ever. No EU benefits or welfare. No no no! The undemocratic EU must be destroyed and those that actively supported it tried for treason against democracy. Fri 29 Oct 2010 10:30:30 GMT+1 David http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=83#comment143 Its nice to get the vitriol out of My system..after my work is over for the nite...have to watch myself..hmmmm:) Fri 29 Oct 2010 10:17:25 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=82#comment142 Buzet23,I think it's fine that someone who has chosen to leave Blighty, stopped paying their insurance in Blighty, that they should work a brief time on returning to Blighty before they are yet again, insured.I'd quite like to see benefits & taxes harmonised across Europe, but we're not there yet and until we are, the current rules re. insurance are fair imv. Fri 29 Oct 2010 09:54:30 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=81#comment141 #134. At 9:47pm on 28 Oct 2010, AndyYou seem to be thinking socially rather than as a job hunter, if you wish to swan off to Spain and laze it around in the sun then you are right, BUT, if you are a job seeker then you are totally wrong. The EU encourages freedom of movement of workers and the social systems specifically encourage job seekers in one country to seek work across the whole of the EU. Special rights are in place for the first three months you seek work in another member state, but if you stay and work then you become part of that countries social system which is fine. But, if you don't want to spend the rest of your working life in that country you are in a quandary, as maybe it's a cold wet windswept hole (like Scotland). In such a situation to gain any sort of welfare in the UK you have to regain your previous status by working a brief time.I don't think you fully understand my point as I was not referring to those jollying off for a it of fun, but rather those job seekers who do what the EU wants them to do and can then be let down and made to stay in a foreign country in order to receive welfare benefits. True they can look for work whilst waiting but if the work has dried up, what then, especially if your family is back in old blighty.PS. I'm not talking about myself, but this is a topic that cropped up during research for a friend of mine. Fri 29 Oct 2010 08:41:32 GMT+1 cool_brush_work http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=81#comment140 DavidRe #136-7 & NormanCThank You.As it happens I do know of 2 'gays' that served in the Paras alongside myself: In such a macho-environment though obviously not an easily done thing they were obliged to keep that part of their lives entirely off-barracks and so far as I'm aware they managed. '1' I knew in the paras and the other 'came out' at a regimental get-together after we'd all quit the service. These were both fine men who served their comrades and the nation with dignity & courage (the 1 I knew about was in the Falklands campaign). So far as I'm aware apart from the ribald jokes which accompany all 'get-togethers' irrespective any 'predelictions' nobody batted an eye when their lifestyles/sexual persuasion eventually became common knowledge.It is another indication of NormanC having not been 'in-action' or any serious 'service': When Your life is on the line You don't start asking Yourself or Your buddy if they enjoy page 3 models, but You do ask Yourself will 'I' be good enough & can my buddy rely on ME!?Always a pleasure to read Your often pithy comments David. Cheers & luck. Fri 29 Oct 2010 08:33:53 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=80#comment139 #135. At 04:07am on 29 Oct 2010, MTE_0509Virtually all member states use the PR system of voting which means it's hard to find any government that is not a coalition. This means it is not possible to say the EPP runs most governments, the party affiliated to the EPP in each member state may have a part in the government but how big depends on the member state and who their partners are. Fri 29 Oct 2010 08:30:00 GMT+1 David http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=80#comment138 the ol'..meaning..why did you even bother with such weak arguing? Fri 29 Oct 2010 08:25:04 GMT+1 David http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=79#comment137 Hi Web Alice,Would you like to hear a *self-censored tale* of my beauracratically [sic] inclined US govt. job? I won't be depressing and I will try to make it relevant to the discussion. :)David Fri 29 Oct 2010 07:29:27 GMT+1 David http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=79#comment136 And whomever, if you are trying to insult CBW on the basis of ..."persuasion," and innuendo,at least, Try Harder:)))Do you get the ol' drift-aroo??? Fri 29 Oct 2010 07:09:34 GMT+1 David http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=78#comment135 Gays mis-characterized (mis-catagorized)...hmmm.."We" can take THAT, CBW...dont ever stop writing here as your contributions Would be missed Sorely by ME....see, I read according to known quality, (not SOME assumed meaning:))) Fri 29 Oct 2010 07:00:08 GMT+1 Mte_ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=77#comment134 #120. Buzet23:I was talking about national governments run by EPP member parties. Practically all of them are implementing austerity right now. Fri 29 Oct 2010 03:07:42 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=77#comment133 132. At 9:33pm on 28 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"I was not referring to pension rights as they are protected and covered by various EU directives, it's simply that even if you have put something aside, that will not last for ever. The current concept of EU freedom of movement is that your social welfare needs are catered for by the country of your domicile, therefore if you came back to the UK, true you could buy pension rights, but you will be in the same situation as any other migrant and you would have to earn any social rights."I view some contributions I pay as insurance, insurance against losing my job for instance (unemployment benefit). While I'm in the UK paying my taxes (insurance), I am covered if I should lose my job (I'll get benefits). Should I pay in for 20 years and never lose my job then leave the country, then I've been protected (had the insurance) for 20 years. I would not expect to be able to claim on the insurance once I'd decided to leave the country though.So, because I'm going to lose my insurance because I chose to leave the country, I need to plan for myself which could include building a nest egg or making sure the country I'm thinking of going to will pay me if I pay into their insurance scheme, which many will.You seem to want you cake and eat it - by living abroad but benefiting from previous years insurance payments should the poop hit the fan. I think that is wrongheaded. I think one should have to earn back ones social rights if one has chosen to bugger off to another country and let those social rights lapse - you've not been paying the insurance therefore should not benefit from a payout. Thu 28 Oct 2010 20:47:56 GMT+1 cool_brush_work http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=76#comment132 NormanCRe #126 & "..we can all make it up.."Then I suggest You get hold of a copy of Chapman Pincher's 'Their Trade Is Treachery' - - it's available on amazaon.Go on, educate Yourself!Many apologies if You were upset by the 'sexual persuasdion' reference - - I was intending it as a mild joke not a personal attack on You.However, the 'gay' & 'bi' predelictions of 4 of the 'ring of 5' was quite a factor at the time of their recruitment in the elitist 1930s Oxbridge student circle: It is well documented that each of them had this 'personal' foible to keep hidden alongside their 'poitical' leanings and it contributed to their overall susceptibility to pressure persuasion by Soviet agents.No we cannot agree: IMO, Kim Philby was a traitor of the worst sort to his Nation; he passed on numerous secrets of UK 'security & defence', actively recruited or exploited like-minded 'fellow travellers', undermined the safety of his fellow Citizens and was a willing partner in the abduction, torture & murder of many of his colleagues as well as nationals of other countries. That Philby did it out of personal commitment to the 'cause' rather than for financial gain makes no difference to the ultimate results of his personal deliberate, chosen actions. His name is synonomous with gross betrayal & treachery. Petty it maybe, but if in the supposed after-life he's turning on-a-spit it's still too good for him! Thu 28 Oct 2010 20:34:41 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=76#comment131 #131. At 9:15pm on 28 Oct 2010, Andy I was not referring to pension rights as they are protected and covered by various EU directives, it's simply that even if you have put something aside, that will not last for ever. The current concept of EU freedom of movement is that your social welfare needs are catered for by the country of your domicile, therefore if you came back to the UK, true you could buy pension rights, but you will be in the same situation as any other migrant and you would have to earn any social rights.The conclusion of my warning here is that as always, well intended laws etc that have been brought in by political ideology often have unforeseen drawbacks. This is simply one such case as making all EU citizens equal means you lost the right to belong to your home country. Thu 28 Oct 2010 20:33:54 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=75#comment130 130. At 8:43pm on 28 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"I guess I have to spell it out a bit better, if you work in your home country for many years you pay into its social security system, for instance you could have worked twenty odd years without benefit claims and are then made redundant. Being a responsible sort of person you find a job in another country which lasts for some years and you are entitled to benefits in that country, BUT, if you want to return to old blighty you have to earn the right to benefits as you are just another migrant, and your previous contributions count for nought. The upshot is that unless you can earn the right to benefits by finding another job you have to stay the other side of Europe (maybe), ad finitum, or sleep in the gutters or scrounge off family."I read something about buying back into NI contribution which hits on your point I think.As you can read in that and further Googlings, after 20 years you of contributing, you would be eligible for a portion of a pension - that's not "nought" imv.Personally, I save an emergency nest egg which I will break into if circumstances require it, ie, I lose my job abroad and need to return to Blighty. It's part of something called planning, and something to consider before you take off for foreign shores.We're not a federal EU yet, until we are and until we can the same benefits regardless of where we live in Europe, we need to plan for such things. Thu 28 Oct 2010 20:15:26 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=75#comment129 #129. At 8:06pm on 28 Oct 2010, AndyI guess I have to spell it out a bit better, if you work in your home country for many years you pay into its social security system, for instance you could have worked twenty odd years without benefit claims and are then made redundant. Being a responsible sort of person you find a job in another country which lasts for some years and you are entitled to benefits in that country, BUT, if you want to return to old blighty you have to earn the right to benefits as you are just another migrant, and your previous contributions count for nought. The upshot is that unless you can earn the right to benefits by finding another job you have to stay the other side of Europe (maybe), ad finitum, or sleep in the gutters or scrounge off family. Thu 28 Oct 2010 19:43:36 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=74#comment128 #112. At 12:33pm on 28 Oct 2010, Gareth wrote:"What exactly does the EU do for us? Yesterday i went to a international job fair and was told by 13 out of the 18 EU countries including France and Germany no work for you."#113. At 1:12pm on 28 Oct 2010, Andy"What, they would not let you work if you found a job in 13 out of the 18 EU countries? Name and shame if that is the case."#123. At 6:49pm on 28 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"You were lucky, just look into the lovely open market of the EU and see where you will stand if you lose your job in a foreign country. I'll give you a clue, all EU citizens are treated equally, therefore you are just another immigrant wishing to return to your home country."124. At 7:07pm on 28 Oct 2010, Andy wrote:"As you can see, you have not answered the question.If I lose my job in a foreign country, I personally come back to Blighty and look for another job, either in Blighty or in the EU."127. At 7:55pm on 28 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"And if you cannot find a job, just what would you be able to claim in the mean time, question answered.PS. you would have to find work before being entitled to any support."Ah, so you meant in 13 out of the 18 you cannot just pitch up there and claim unemployment benefits? Thu 28 Oct 2010 19:06:38 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=73#comment127 #126. At 7:32pm on 28 Oct 2010, Norman Conquest Brain dead! I just hope wherever it is you live in your workers paradise you get the midnight knock on the door because you were shopped by a comrade who was equally as stupid and thinking that the Socialist revolution is all important. Thu 28 Oct 2010 18:59:19 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=73#comment126 #124. At 7:07pm on 28 Oct 2010, AndyAnd if you cannot find a job, just what would you be able to claim in the mean time, question answered.PS. you would have to find work before being entitled to any support. Thu 28 Oct 2010 18:55:26 GMT+1 Norman Conquest http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=72#comment125 @ 117Cool brush work,Well, here's his portrait below, can you say in all honesty that it's not a "good kind face"? Of course, it is.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:1990_CPA_6266.jpgWhat does "sexual persuasion" have to do with anything? It's not like this kind of thing is completely unheard of in Britain you know. And I don't recall asking you what your sexual persuasion is or was at one time or other. You were in the British paras, and they do get up (down) to all kinds of things on those long winter nights in the barracks. You are not in the British Army recruitment office and am not volunteering for you to ask questions like that, m8.And now, those British agents whose identities were allegedly revealed to the Nazis, i think we can safely discard it as a patent lie. I've never heard anybody else claiming that. See, we can all write anything we want on this blog in the knowledge that no-one will bother to check it out, just don't expect everybody to believe it.As for Albania and other places, why did Britain have to send agents there in the first place? Did Albania send agents to Britain? Did the Soviet Union ever send covert armed groups to Britain to help, say, in the Welsh, Scottish, Irish, Cornish, Northern English separatist movements? Never. Then why did Britain think that she had the right to send what essentially were armed bandits to other countries? Those who sent, who recruited those people are at fault in the final analysis, not Kim Philby; also those people themselves were not shrinking violets remember, they were sent there to do their work -- to sabotage, to blow up infrastructure, to assassinate, to kill, etc.But enough of that -- anyway in the end it all evened out and worked out for the better. Can't we agree Philby is not at all the worst character that Britain ever produced -- in round-about way he did more for the workers' rights, for understanding between peoples, for Britain and for peace than most other Britons, more than you even. Thu 28 Oct 2010 18:32:27 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=72#comment124 lose, bah! Thu 28 Oct 2010 18:16:03 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=71#comment123 #112. At 12:33pm on 28 Oct 2010, Gareth wrote:"What exactly does the EU do for us? Yesterday i went to a international job fair and was told by 13 out of the 18 EU countries including France and Germany no work for you."#113. At 1:12pm on 28 Oct 2010, Andy"What, they would not let you work if you found a job in 13 out of the 18 EU countries? Name and shame if that is the case."#123. At 6:49pm on 28 Oct 2010, Buzet23 wrote:"You were lucky, just look into the lovely open market of the EU and see where you will stand if you lose your job in a foreign country. I'll give you a clue, all EU citizens are treated equally, therefore you are just another immigrant wishing to return to your home country."As you can see, you have not answered the question.If I loose my job in a foreign country, I personally come back to Blighty and look for another job, either in Blighty or in the EU. Thu 28 Oct 2010 18:07:06 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=70#comment122 #113. At 1:12pm on 28 Oct 2010, AndyYou were lucky, just look into the lovely open market of the EU and see where you will stand if you lose your job in a foreign country. I'll give you a clue, all EU citizens are treated equally, therefore you are just another immigrant wishing to return to your home country. Thu 28 Oct 2010 17:49:33 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=70#comment121 #109. At 10:07am on 28 Oct 2010, Norman ConquestThank you for letting any friends you once had know just what you're capable off, I wouldn't trust you to order a beer. Thu 28 Oct 2010 17:46:14 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=69#comment120 #105. At 08:45am on 28 Oct 2010, MTE_0509The Liberals are by nature swimming in a sea of politics, they don't know what they are or where they should be or what's best, but at least some voted against the budget increase. Thu 28 Oct 2010 17:43:17 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=69#comment119 #103. At 08:36am on 28 Oct 2010, MTE_0509What utter rubbish "But more important than anything in the EPP manifesto is the fact that EPP member parties have been at the forefront of pushing austerity measures in Europe - the exact same kind of economic policy adopted by the Tories in the UK." you seem not to have read the voting figures for the EP's decision to approve a budget increase. Let me know just who from the EPP voted against and supported austerity measures, a very difficult question for you as there were none. The EPP voted with the Socialists, do you now understand the politics of Europe or is it a bit too difficult. Thu 28 Oct 2010 17:40:13 GMT+1 quietoaktree http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=68#comment118 #117 CBWYou are again correct -- they were from `the privileged class´who made the mistake of considering the poverty of ´the British working class´.Traitors ? Thu 28 Oct 2010 16:03:36 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=68#comment117 116. At 3:34pm on 28 Oct 2010, powermeerkat wrote:"Its [China] massive spying in the U.S. is simply dictated by the same motivation Dillinger revealed when asked by a judge why did he robbed banks."Becasue that where the money is"In case of U.S.: because that's where you can find (and steal) all state-of-the art technologies."I don't have much time for US squeals about industrial espionage committed by other states upon it as it's the kettle calling the pot black. Thu 28 Oct 2010 15:32:33 GMT+1 cool_brush_work http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=67#comment116 NormanCRe #109This the 3rd time.Are You intending to give me a good belly laugh on a regular basis, e.g. "..Philby.. good, kind face.."?Anyway, also guffaws for that line about 'Kim' being Your "..hero": Do You by chance share his sexual persuasion because as they so rightly say, it would be the 'cherry' on the Blog!Now, on the serious stuff: Kim Philby confessed in January 1961 to having been a Communist and Soviet spy since 1934.Among his many 'achievements' for his KGB spymasters was the betrayal of the names of British secret agents during the WW2 period 1939-41 when the USSR was Nazi Germany's partner; almost all those agents' identities were passed on to the Nazis & most were liquidated. Philby went further post-WW2 betraying the identity of 'Volkov' the Russian agent defecting to the UK and his death, ordered by Beria, was particularly brutal after a long incarceration & torture. It was also Your 'hero' who betrayed the identities to the Communists of over 300 agents & their contacts in Albania: The entire group were rounded-up & eliminated. To round-off his career of calumny & treachery Philby lied about Blunt being a spy for the Soviets and this protection enabled Blunt to continue spying on behalf of the Kremlin in the UK Secret Service for another half dozen years.There had been many suspicions of Philby, but in the end he was fittingly betrayed by a 'defecting spy' from the USSR, Anatoli Golitsyn, doing in reverse what 'Kim' had done to so many unfortunate other colleagues. Of course, unlike the vindictive cruelty of the Soviets, the British never intended to execute this miserably treasonous scum. Nevertheless, typical of his ego-driven, conniving criminal's entire life, rather than face any kind of retribution Philby ran away to be a guest of his Russian comrades.As Powermeerkat has already stated: The only satisfaction for the British is that Philby along with Burgess & Maclean (3 of the ring of 5) all became alcoholics and died miserably unhappy in squalid little Russian tenements. It was not their 'just desserts', but doubtless in their exile it dawned on all '3' there was a distinct lack of amenities & opportunities in their supposed 'workers paradise' compared to those they had enjoyed in the UK/West.Cheers. Thu 28 Oct 2010 14:42:40 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=66#comment115 Powermeerkat;"The Chinese need American microprocessors for the same reasons Soviets/Russians have always needed them: to improve performance of their ICBMs' navigational systems,"It doesn't make a whole lot of sense to blow up your best customers who also happen to owe you a lot of money. Inscrutable.MAII: The Chinese tried to acquire decent ICBMs and improve them ever since Ussuri clashes (1969).Wars between PRC and India over some border territories gave them additional incentives.Beijing has known for many years that U.S. is not its most dangerous enemy.Its massive spying in the U.S. is simply dictated by the same motivation Dillinger revealed when asked by a judge why did he robbed banks."Becasue that where the money is"In case of U.S.: because that's where you can find (and steal) all state-of-the art technologies. Thu 28 Oct 2010 14:34:50 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=66#comment114 CBW: " Philby's ugly mug on the Izvestia front-cover having fled all those years ago didn't have quite the same appeal"On the Soviet commemorative stamp (after all he managed to have quite a few Britons dropped in Albania killed -Kim did not look much better. Thu 28 Oct 2010 14:27:06 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=65#comment113 CBW: " It is well known 1 in 9 East Germans spied on their neighbours for the Stasi."Not only be any means.After Guck Commission opened Stasi files many East Germans found out that that their wives/husbands/sons spied on them as well.Sometimes for years. Thu 28 Oct 2010 14:22:31 GMT+1 Andy http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=65#comment112 112. At 12:33pm on 28 Oct 2010, Gareth wrote:"What exactly does the EU do for us? Yesterday i went to a international job fair and was told by 13 out of the 18 EU countries including France and Germany no work for you."What, they would not let you work if you found a job in 13 out of the 18 EU countries? Name and shame if that is the case. Thu 28 Oct 2010 12:12:09 GMT+1 Gareth http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=64#comment111 What exactly does the EU do for us? Yesterday i went to a international job fair and was told by 13 out of the 18 EU countries including France and Germany no work for you. We should have set up a Commonwealth trade agreement, it would have worked out so much better. Thu 28 Oct 2010 11:33:31 GMT+1 MarcusAureliusII http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=63#comment110 Powermeerkat;"The Chinese need American microprocessors for the same reasons Soviets/Russians have always needed them: to improve performance of their ICBMs' navigational systems,"It doesn't make a whole lot of sense to blow up your best customers who also happen to owe you a lot of money. Inscrutable. Thu 28 Oct 2010 10:49:03 GMT+1 Benefactor http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=63#comment109 101. At 08:04am on 28 Oct 2010, Huaimek wrote:--"Have you ever read the Eurobarometer Surveys, or only seen the given result? I suspect the latter."-- You suspect wrong then.--"I have chanced upon the surveys, looking up something else for curiosity. The subjects and questions asked could give NO clear indication of comprehensive European citizens opinion of the EU as an institution, for better or worse."--http://ec.europa.eu/public_opinion/archives/eb/eb73/eb73_first_en.pdfp11. Do you think your countries membership of the EU is:1. a good thing2. a bad thing3. dont knowI suppose it could be worded differently, maybe "do you think the EU is: a good thing, etc etc." but do you really think it would change the result?--"The surveys are presented in such a lengthy and long winded way as to test ones patience and perseverence to plow through it."--The reports on the web are quite lengthy yes, they are reports...They take the survey results and draw conclusions from the data. Thu 28 Oct 2010 10:34:18 GMT+1 Norman Conquest http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=62#comment108 @ 108Cool brush work,easy there, hold your wild horses m8. Kim Philby happens to be a hero of mine. He's the greatest Briton that has ever lived, saved Britain from its evilish self, IMO (also he mainly concentrated on anti-American activities, wouldn't be involved in anything aimed at Britain). "His ugly mug"? Even though you English don't score highly on the perfection of facial features in general (long noses & jaws, prunish looks etc., etc.), Him I don't find ugly, he had a good kind face (almost an un-English face). Thu 28 Oct 2010 09:07:23 GMT+1 cool_brush_work http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=62#comment107 A 'spy' in one nation is a traitor or enemy of the State and in another he/she is the nation's loyal servant & a hero.Such people have always existed and as long as there are international competition of any sort they will continue to exist.West Germany's poor old Chancellor Brandt found that out with his pet 'secretary' Gunter Guillaume, didn't he!?It's been estimated 30% of former East Germans who served in the united Germany Parliament had formerly been members or helpers of the East Germany Stasi.It is well known 1 in 9 East Germans spied on their neighbours for the Stasi.How they & their off-spring feel aboput it now? Well, perhaps a prominent German-based contributor on this Blog could give his reasons?Nowadays, it seems celebrity has reached the 'undercover' scene: A glamarous Russian female 'spy' is now the very exotic face & body on some Russian magazines.Times change.Somehow, Philby's ugly mug on the Izvestia front-cover having fled all those years ago didn't have quite the same appeal: Despite his horrendous deeds that resulted in hundreds of deaths he always insisted he never regretted for a moment betraying the UK, USA & 'West' in war & peace time because he was all along a dedicated Communist. Thu 28 Oct 2010 07:54:34 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=61#comment106 "Socialists see the financial and economic crisis as a chance to push their age-old agenda of nationalisation, protectionism and permanent deficit spending."Capitalists can at least create capital; Socialists - only "Das Kapital".[besides untold human misery] Thu 28 Oct 2010 07:48:16 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=61#comment105 " Their cause was the only thing important, risking the lives of their friends, colleagues, countrymen was irrelevant to the cause."Well Buzet, at least Black, Burgess, McLean, Philby, etc., were more effective than, say, the pathetic "Dirty Dozen" recently expelled from the US back to Russia.They believed in something (at least initially), as many other Western intellectuals cum "fellow travellers" of the era, unlike present day traitors (on the order of Ames, Howard, Walkers Gang) who were simply after $$$$$.[that B,B,H,McL,P died in Moscow as unhappy embittered alcoholics is a horse of another colour] Thu 28 Oct 2010 07:46:09 GMT+1 Mte_ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=60#comment104 Also, in terms of the federalist vs. eurosceptic issue, I'd like to point out that the most federalist group in the European Parliament are the Liberals (ALDE) - who are arguably also the most enthusiastic supporters of free markets and capitalism. Euroscepticism tends to increase as you move further from the liberals, either towards the right or the left. Thu 28 Oct 2010 07:45:46 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=59#comment103 MAII Re#96; Waterboard them to find out who in the Chinese military wants them and for what purpose"I don't think that would be necessary.The Chinese need American microprocessors for the same reasons Soviets/Russians have always needed them: to improve performance of their ICBMs' navigational systems, radiolocation and satellite capabilities and to quiet their subs.Oh, and of course to finally get to the Moon. For helium-3. :) Thu 28 Oct 2010 07:37:30 GMT+1 Mte_ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=59#comment102 #100. Buzet23:Again, you basically claim that all major political forces in Europe are left-wing. Presumably they are left-wing compared to you. Fair enough. But why should your opinions be the benchmark? The EPP - and, for that matter, the Liberal group, the Greens, and the PES - are right-wing compared to me. But I don't try to say that, therefore, all major political forces in Europe are right-wing. I understand that my own opinions are not the proper yardstick here.It's funny that you point to the EPP election manifesto and at the same time claim that "their policies are almost the same as the Socialist grouping", when, in fact, the EPP manifesto itself repeatedly attacks socialists! Here, I will let the EPP speak for itself:> "Facing the new challenges of 2009, we are well aware of what others are proposing. Socialists see the financial and economic crisis as a chance to push their age-old agenda of nationalisation, protectionism and permanent deficit spending. We, on the other hand, are acting in order to preserve a competitive Social Market Economy and make it more sustainable."> "We don’t want to move to Socialism — we want better and smarter regulation, not regulation for its own sake."As for your request that I identify some conservative policies in the EPP manifesto, I will be happy to oblige:> "The EU’s first security priority is counter-terrorism." [left-wingers generally don't think terrorism is our biggest threat]> "The fight against illegal immigration and human trafficking requires more coordinated action." [opposition to immigration is a longstanding conservative policy; and see Merkel's recent comments and Sarkozy's expulsion of the Roma]> "Market mechanisms can and should be used to reduce emissions." [socialists do not support market mechanisms]> "A functioning system of emissions trading as a market-based incentive to reduce greenhouse gas emissions needs to be put in place." [this is to the left of those who think we should do nothing about emissions, but to the right of socialists; because, again, socialists try to avoid market-based policies]> "The EPP sees families as the centre of our society and the guardian of our values and therefore special incentives have to be provided for them." [obviously conservative]> "Pension reforms in Europe must be undertaken so that the effective retirement age adapts to demographic developments. Private pension schemes should also be enhanced." [right-wing attack on public pensions; see Sarkozy's policies in France]> "Life-long learning is essential in order to meet the new challengesposed by technological advancement and globalisation and as public sector costs increase, advantageous cooperation with the private sector should be explored." [right-wing attack on public education]> "Stronger cooperation in defence is necessary, including a strategic agreement with the US and other allies, better pooling of resources in military structures as well as financing and research, and a common defence force with standardised conditions for intervention and rules of engagement for international missions." [left-wingers don't think getting lots of shiny new guns is a priority right now]But more important than anything in the EPP manifesto is the fact that EPP member parties have been at the forefront of pushing austerity measures in Europe - the exact same kind of economic policy adopted by the Tories in the UK. Thu 28 Oct 2010 07:36:51 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=58#comment101 #94. At 9:31pm on 27 Oct 2010, quietoaktreeAs DT said "The thing to remember is that a socialist is not far from a religious zealot.". In the case of the spies you mentioned who were supposedly intellectuals and intelligent yet political zealots, that fits perfectly with what DT said. Their cause was the only thing important, risking the lives of their friends, colleagues, countrymen was irrelevant to the cause. Thu 28 Oct 2010 07:13:20 GMT+1 Huaimek http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=58#comment100 #82 BenefactorHave you ever read the Eurobarometer Surveys , or only seen the given result ? I suspect the latter . I have chanced upon the surveys , looking up something else for curiosity . The subjects and questions asked could give NO clear indication of comprehensive European citizens opinion of the EU as an institution , for better or worse . The surveys are presented in such a lengthy and long winded way as to test ones patience and perseverence to plow through it . Thu 28 Oct 2010 07:04:24 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=57#comment99 #98. At 05:11am on 28 Oct 2010, MTE_0509It is clear that you do not understand either politics in Europe or what the word conservative means in a political sense. The EPP was originally the European union of Christian Democrats which if you know anything about Christian Democrats it's that they are centrist and Liberal in UK political terms. In Europe because there is so much Socialism they claim to be centre-right in order to gain some clear blue water from the centre-left parties, but when you look at their policies they are almost the same as the Socialist grouping :- * Creation of new jobs. Continuing reforms and investment in education, lifelong learning and employment in order to create opportunities for everyone. * Protectionism must be averted. Fiscal and monetary policies must be coordinated. * Increasing transparency and surveillance on financial markets. * Making Europe the market leader in green technology. * Increasing the share of renewable energy to at least 20% of the energy mix by 2020. * Family-friendly flexibility for working parents. Better childcare and housing must be provided, family-friendly fiscal policies introduced, and parental leave should be encouraged. * Europe should find a strategy to attract skilled workers from the rest of the world to make Europe’s economy more competitive, more dynamic and more knowledge driven.Would you like to identify here just what traditional conservative policies were included in the above 2009 election manifesto? Thu 28 Oct 2010 06:51:52 GMT+1 Huaimek http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=56#comment98 #82 BenefactorAs you say , it depends on sample sizes and questions asked . I would also add , where the sample for the survey takes place . The EU does not hold surveys that do not produce a positive answer , Brussels could be a good place for a survey on EU popularity . It is fairly common knowledge that the EU is not an open and honest institution , but some people try to pretend that it is . Thu 28 Oct 2010 05:38:45 GMT+1 Mte_ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=56#comment97 #55. Buzet23:So you think that the vast majority of political parties in Europe - and, in some countries, ALL political parties - are left-wing or centre-left? That is the implication of your claim that only members of the ECR and EFD count as conservatives. Most EU member states don't have any party in the ECR or EFD.And you have the gall to say that I'm the one misrepresenting the political situation in Europe! You're the one who is saying that anyone to the left of you is a socialist (including Merkel, Sarkozy and Berlusconi, apparently). My definitions of right-wing and left-wing are very simple: the centre is defined by average popular opinion. Whatever is to the right of average opinion counts as right-wing. So the EPP is right-wing.You seem to want to use yourself and your own opinion as the yardstick to measure right and left. That is not how it works.And for the record, I am very strongly opposed to the EU. Thu 28 Oct 2010 04:11:37 GMT+1 MarcusAureliusII http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=55#comment96 #96; Waterboard them to find out who in the Chinese military wants them and for what purpose. Thu 28 Oct 2010 03:22:37 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=55#comment95 BEIJING (Reuters) – Two Chinese nationals have been arrested in Hungary and are awaiting extradition to the United States, where they face charges of seeking to buy microchips banned from export to China, state media said on Wednesday.At least Hungarians start doing something right in those tough times. :) Thu 28 Oct 2010 01:02:35 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=54#comment94 #92. At 7:09pm on 27 Oct 2010, cool_brush_work ,Quite so, rule books are irrelevant when being attacked, when someone searches the misery they get it, enough said. Wed 27 Oct 2010 20:47:34 GMT+1 quietoaktree http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=54#comment93 CBW and DTHow do Philby, Burgess, Maclean and the others fit into your theories ? Wed 27 Oct 2010 20:31:31 GMT+1 cool_brush_work http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=53#comment92 Oh sage of the Swiss (I resisted 'poor ***') You are on much safer ground in Your #91.The egregious absurdity of the 'Enobled Socialist'!Now that is an area of the modern political-social scenario in which it appears You do have some expertise as opposed to wilfull bluster & blind bias.A well written piece containing all the pertinent viewpoints as to the personal tyrannical corruption at the core of any would-be messianic philosopher-political pundit, e.g. Marx: And their would-be followers who will only see, hear, accept their own perspective and then betray those proclaimed principles the moment advancement or advantage is open to them.Ashton of course had the fine example of the Kinnocks to follow from: A pair who are an absolute laughing stock example of this 'champagne socialism'.My advice is stick to what You know DemocThreat: You'll get by a lot better on these Blogs if You show a good deal more of the caution & humility You are so fond of recommending to others. Wed 27 Oct 2010 18:21:16 GMT+1 cool_brush_work http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=52#comment91 Pontificating sage of the SwissRe #90Must say, I think much of #90 is based on a misreading rather than just the usual pathetically sub-standard quality of DemocThreat's debating technique.E.g. "..doesn't he (cbw) sound like bin Laden..": Don't know I've only ever heard his arabic cassettes & videos.Of course, if by some remote chance You were insinuating I was encouraging the wholesale slaughter of innocent peoples, the deliberate murder of people without charge or trial then I would have to refute that ludicrous assumption based upon the most spectacularly preposterous stretch of the content at #89.I mean, when I wrote, "..'war' isn't in the rule book.." it's clearly not endorsing 'war' and I am pointing out how very bloody & outside the Law such conflicts over centuries have proven to be.I mean, when someone writes accounts of how time-and-again Nations at 'war' have deliberately contravened every normal standard of civilised life, e.g. "..Germans executed British Nurse Edith Cavell and the British executed Germany's Mata Hari.." only a clot would see that as endorsing criminally unjust & cruel treatment of opponents in 'war'. It is pointing out how difficult it is to maintain civilised controls of presumed civilised Nations in a time of 'war'.As for "..Phoney heros like CBW.. are bullies and cowards at heart.." I'm more than a little confused as to the basis for that harsh assessment? I again assume it is based on a set of prejudicial inferences which are in essence a total misreading of the content of #89 by the sage (perhaps that should be 'poor sap' in future). I mean, when CBW writes from personal experience how incredibly difficult it was to maintain codes of discipline when under fire, "..Do You suppose when Paddy fired without warning... we soldiers all referred to our 'card' stating the rules of engagement?Yes, of course we did!"Is not the fact he & other soldiers referred to their 'rules of engagement' whilst the Irish terrorist equivalent of bin Laden fired indiscriminately into a street of women & children some sort of vindication for the attempt by higher authority to apply rules in 'war'?Did I not also point up for the benefit of the likes of the 'do-gooder, liberals' and those sadly scornful such as DemocThreat that it is as patently obvious as is humanly possible to be, "..'War'.." REALLY, "..isn't in the rule book.." referred to by the Terrorist.If my explanation of the intensely difficult application of 'rules' in a 'war' is in DemocThreat's eyes "..the trademark of the bully..." then I will readily plead guilty. Particularly as DemocThreat was unable in #90 to offer any sort of example of how the 'rules' are negotiated & enacted in 'war' despite his vast sense of his personal Humanitarian experience. Wed 27 Oct 2010 18:09:39 GMT+1 democracythreat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=52#comment90 Buzet, the point about socialists with titles is exactly what I was talking about when I spoke of the European mindset being utterly servile and backwards in an intellectual sense.I mean, can you imagine how idiotic a person would seem in the USA if they went around addressing herself as "Baroness", and then told folks she was a SOCIALIST???? She would look stupid enough calling herself a Baroness. But to call yourself by an archaic title that owes its origins to a feudal society, and then in the next breath to consider yourself a socialist....... this is beyond foolishness. It is utter delusion. It is truly doublethink, the Orwellian ability to believe two completely opposite things at the one time.But of course, we ought not be surprised, because it is the traditional hallmark of the socialist to be utterly deluded and feel completely self important at the same time.The thing to remember is that a socialist is not far from a religious zealot. Indeed, if you study your Russian and European history, in both cases the former evolved quite naturally from the latter.Consider Marx, the father of socialist doctrine. His father was a preach, as was his grandfather. Marx was an academic precisely because his family were entitled to state funding for the fine living habits. And the idea Marx had to "save the world from money", is this really so far away from Jesus christ saving the world of sinners from greed and pride? Marx had a classic Jesus Christ delusion, if anyone ever did. He honestly believed he was ordained to save the world. Now he also rejected the church, but note the delusions of grandeur and the core beliefs did not change. Marx thought he was a saviour, and he believed it was easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter heaven. He didn't invent that plot in his story, Buzzet. He just wrote the same old story in a modern context.Or take Lenin in Russia, as another example of the titled gentry being incredibly inflated in their own opinion of themselves. Lenin was a nobleman, and he was not shy of living the privileged life of a nobleman. He lectured peasants, he did not learn from them. He lived, like marx, the entitled life of one born into the academic class. And like marx, he really believed he was ordained as the saviour of his fellow man. And, like marx, he believed money was sinful and that his own church of communism was the one true church.But the real proof of how Lenin thought of himself, and just how deluded he was, is found in his experiences in Switzerland. When he was living in Switzerland, he signed his room bills "Hereditary Nobleman Ulyanov". And when he addressed a socialist workers convention, he was so upset at being questioned by the workers there that he stormed out and never went back. He had attended to lecture the swiss workers, and not to discuss matters. When they poked holes in his theories and suggested that their direct democracy was preferable to his quasi religious demagoguery, he took his intellectual ball and ran home.In short, both Marx and Lenin were red priests who were born believing they were entitled to tell others how to live. Given that history of the socialist movement, how can we be surprised that the socialist party is owned and run by people who prefer to call themselves by their hereditary titles? Socialism, like fascism, is just one more racket run buy the children of the titled classes of Europe. Hence socialists and fascist both fear democracy. In a democracy they might have to work for a living, and they might have to answer questions from the people. that is not how titled people roll, buzzet. that is why the institutions are the way they are. These institutions protect the quality titled folks from the rudeness and insubordination of the lower orders of humanity. Just like the church, and just like every other institution set up by titled aristocrats for titled aristocrats.And you have to stop and think about what they think of you, too. I mean, rich people are just poor people with money. They are not super stupid, just as they are not super brave, or super smart.So why would they prance around with their titles, do you suppose?Why would Baroness Ashton accept that title? Why would a labour Lord adopt the title of "Lord"?What is it that you suppose they are achieving by this most incredible patronizing of their fellows?Of course the answer must be that they wish to feel superior, and here we come to understand exactly how the class system perpetuates itself in modern Europe. The titled aristocracy own the system of politics, meaning they own both sides of the two party system. As an aristocrat, you can play on either team. What those team stand for doesn't matter. Of course they both stand for exactly the same thing: your own political hegemony and property rights. What matters is to be picked in one of the teams, and to prove that you are superior to others of your class. Wed 27 Oct 2010 16:42:40 GMT+1 democracythreat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=51#comment89 CBW wrote:"'War' isn't in the rule book much as all the do-good, liberals would try to make out it is supposed to be:.."Doesn't he sound just exactly like Osama bin Laden justifying the slaughter of innocents?All phoney heros like CBW and bin Laden are bullies and cowards at heart. They preach and they prance around thinking everyone is fooled by their tough guy act, and when their casual brutality and shallow ideology of slaughter is exposed they sneer and preach the truth of the horror of war as though it is some kind of defense for their own actions, as if they are somehow wise because they have perceived their own worthless barbarity.It is the trademark of the bully, this delusion that through the persecution of innocents comes a reputation for strength. Wed 27 Oct 2010 16:16:28 GMT+1 cool_brush_work http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=51#comment88 Jukka_RRe #87Look, You are not viewing these things in the light of the 'war on terror'.To put another way: In WW2 the British Government authorised the killing of any British Citizen found to be committing treason on behalf of Nazi Germany or the Japanese.Closer to home: If You care to check the 'Winter' & 'Continuation' War Record, Finland authorised the execution, if capture were impossible, of any Finn who worked/served for the USSR.During all 'wars' each side takes extreme measures to preserve their control of the strategy: Thus, in WW1 the Germans executed British Nurse Edith Cavell and the British executed Germany's Mata Hari, and so it went on.If You seriously believe the 'war' currently being waged on Islamic Fundamentalist terror groups should not include execution/murder of the enemy then kindly tell that to the relatives of beheaded US Journalist Daniel Pearl or the Western isles family of recently Taliban kidnapped & tragically killed Aid Worker Linda Norgrave etc.'War' isn't in the rule book much as all the do-good, liberals would try to make out it is supposed to be:E.g. When I was serving in Northern Ireland during the *Troubles' we UK Armed Forces had 'Rules of Engagement' for when we were supposed to use our weapons. The 'rules' were clear as daylight and we all had a day's training on their intent as well as regular reminders from the Officers.Now Jukka_R, do You suppose when 'Paddy' fired without any warning on my unit's foot patrol from the top of the Divis Flats with women & children in the same street we soldiers all referred to our 'card' stating the rules of engagement?Yes, of course we did! Wed 27 Oct 2010 15:56:17 GMT+1 Benefactor http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=50#comment87 84. At 3:57pm on 27 Oct 2010, resistance35 wrote:--"So, its against the house rules to say that the EU barometer is rigged? It is against the rules to say that the EU court of justice is also rigged because of being stuffed with apparatchik judges screened for commitment to federalism?And also, it seems to be against the house rules to suggest that the EU is a Franco-German 'Reich' in which nothing happens that France and Germany don't approve of?"--The BBC moderators are probably secretly paid off by Brussels, the conspiracy is everywhere and involves everyone but you (and EUPrisoner.)No, in all seriousness, mentioning those things is obviously not against the rules because you've just done it. Countless others before you have also done it. DT mentions those things all the time. Wed 27 Oct 2010 15:18:59 GMT+1 Jukka Rohila http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=50#comment86 To Freeman (80):The US President has power to assassinate US citizens without any judicial or legislative oversight, for references you can read for example these articles...Confirmed: Obama authorizes assassination of U.S. citizenhttp://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/04/07/assassinationsU.S. Approves Targeted Killing of American Clerichttp://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/07/world/middleeast/07yemen.html‘Dozens’ of US citizens on assassination list, White House adviser hintshttp://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/06/white-house-adviser-dozens-citizens-assassination-targets/To resistance35 (83):You seem to not have learned anything from... the Yellow cake case...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yellowcake_forgeryor fromGeorge W. Bush..."We know that Iraq and the al-Qaeda terrorist network share a common enemy — the United States of America. We know that Iraq and al-Qaeda have had high-level contacts that go back a decade" and "we've learned that Iraq has trained al-Qaeda members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases." http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2004-06-16-al-qaeda-comments-by-bush_x.htmKings reign beyond the law, US presidents can reign so too. Wed 27 Oct 2010 15:10:29 GMT+1 cool_brush_work http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=49#comment85 Jukka_RYour USA President empowered to murder US Citizens is the sort of outlandish excess that undermines Your otherwise sound points.President Nixon was basically kicked out simply for paying a bunch of fools to burgle a room in a hotel.All Democratically elected Governments have additional powers for times of crisis.The worry with the ever encroaching EU & ECJ is that there is no Democratic Representation or Accountability as this wretched entity moves towards accessing such enormous powers over the Citizens. Wed 27 Oct 2010 15:09:36 GMT+1 Benefactor http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=48#comment84 80. At 3:38pm on 27 Oct 2010, Freeman wrote:--"For example the US President has power to assassinate US citizens without any judicial or legislative oversight."Sure of that are we JR? oO"--There was a bit of uproar about it, Obama apparently authorized the detention or "targetted killing of extremist Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki."The man in question wasn't in America at the time, I assume if he was he would have been arrested and tried as is traditional. Wed 27 Oct 2010 15:07:45 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=48#comment83 So, its against the house rules to say that the EU barometer is rigged? It is against the rules to say that the EU court of justice is also rigged because of being stuffed with apparatchik judges screened for commitment to federalism?And also, it seems to be against the house rules to suggest that the EU is a Franco-German 'Reich' in which nothing happens that France and Germany don't approve of? Wed 27 Oct 2010 14:57:02 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=47#comment82 79.Jukka Rohila wrote:I would really question the need for a strong executive that is elected by a popular vote. Of course you would.The President in some situations can and has acted more like an King that is beyond the law. For example the US President has power to assassinate US citizens without any judicial or legislative oversight.Really? Did you just make that up? The US president is far more controlled by Congress than the unelected EU Commission by the phony EU 'parliament'.Council of the European Union more or less functions like the US senate and the European Parliament fills the role of the Congress.Apples, meet oranges.Either way, I don't want to go to the same direction as the US Federal government has gone after the American civil war.That direction would be: more federalism. Yet, US states have more powers left than EU member states do. The federal government and the congress have nowhere near the control over legislation that the EU commission and council do. And the US supreme court isn't stuffed with apparatchik judges committed to and screened for commitment to federalism.So lets abolish undemocratic EU and do only economic cooperation. Wed 27 Oct 2010 14:53:27 GMT+1 Benefactor http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=47#comment81 70. At 1:46pm on 27 Oct 2010, Huaimek wrote:--"Surveys are notoriously inacurate. A Eurobarometer survey speaks for itself. The questions asked are carefully weighted to give a favourable impression of EU popularity; where if they had asked straight questions, asking people directly what they thought of the EU, they might have got a different result. The EU is big on favourable propaganda, a great deal of money is spent to cast the EU in a good light and win over the European people, but even they lament, to little effect."--Not big on examples? All the Eurobarometer surveys and conclusions are published online. There will be hundreds of questions to pick from (although I'm not unreasonable, just a couple would do. If there all as skewed as you say it should only take a couple of minutes.)Also, Surveys are not notoriously inaccurate. It depends on sample sizes, questions, etc. Wed 27 Oct 2010 14:52:17 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=46#comment80 This post has been Removed Wed 27 Oct 2010 14:47:46 GMT+1 Freeman http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=45#comment79 "For example the US President has power to assassinate US citizens without any judicial or legislative oversight."Sure of that are we JR? oO Wed 27 Oct 2010 14:38:02 GMT+1 Jukka Rohila http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=45#comment78 To John_from_Hendon (62):I would really question the need for a strong executive that is elected by a popular vote. In the USA the system has advanced into a state where A) hundreds of millions of dollars are used by leading candidates, largely financed by corporations, and B) the President in some situations can and has acted more like an King that is beyond the law. For example the US President has power to assassinate US citizens without any judicial or legislative oversight.I usually don't want to play the history card, but in this continent we have had more than enough of our share of strong leaders. We really don't need a strong executive, a strong executive can be a great leader and take a state and nation into a right direction, but they can also make terrible plunders.I myself at this point of time am more inclined to have a EU that works via institutions and via representation. Council of the European Union more or less functions like the US senate and the European Parliament fills the role of the Congress. Maybe what we could change is that member states have to nominate a Senator to the EU Council, that is the spoke person and negotiator of that said state, guided and authorised by both the parliamentary committee and the cabinet. Member states then would be free to elect their Senator what ever way they want, either having the parliament to elect or having a popular vote.Either way, I don't want to go to the same direction as the US Federal government has gone after the American civil war. Wed 27 Oct 2010 14:15:06 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=44#comment77 Gavin wrote:What struck me in the speeches and interviews that interspersed our dinner courses was the vein of insecurity coursing through the comments. When the EU Commissioner Viviane Reding was pushed on the issue of the union's unpopularity she took comfort in her view that at least the EU was more popular than most national governments.She would be wrong in that opinion. More and more people, especially in net contributor countries, are realizing the EU itself is a drain on our wealth and one of the causes rather than the solution to the 'crisis'. the midst of the crisis a poll by Eurobarometer found that in many countries the popularity of the EU was ebbing. Fewer than half of voters (49%) across Europe seemed to back the EU.And remember, the Eurobarometer is notoriously unreliable and rigged towards the EU. If even that cannot produce a majority anymore... just wonder if it was an honest poll and the respondents knew how the EU worked. I guesstimate the figure would be around 20-25% Just add up all the pro EU types: politicians, bureaucrats, bankers and lobbyists. Wed 27 Oct 2010 14:12:00 GMT+1 resistance35 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=44#comment76 14.BluesBerry wrote:Could the EU be unpopular because not enough is being done to promote all that the EU is trying to do for Europeans?The EU does nothing that couldn't also have been done via intergovernmental treaties. Therefore its added value is zero.Has the concentration been so much on Greece, Spain, Portugal, etc. to the detrement of the good ideas being generated in Brussels, the ideas that would definintely help Europeans?Let's have a go at: FAT - financial activities tax.Don't you ever tire of peddling that banker scheme?Are you a banker by any chance?The proposal is this: tax financial activities. The inevitable result will be that banks and investors will pass costs on to consumers.Or that some of the business leaves the EU altogether and goes where there is no such tax.In my opinion, only someone devoid of braincells could support this idea. Generate billions? It will do nothing of the kind. Wed 27 Oct 2010 14:03:31 GMT+1 Betty_B http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=43#comment75 Having worked for the EU, I think what they tend to aim for is popularity without accountability. The Brussesl eurocrats (we used to call them a eurostacracy) are very averse to criticism. They enjoy a lot of privileges that they are also averse to losing. They don't want average Europeans questioning what they do or what they have - they want complete trust and acceptance without too many controversial questions, like some kind of European church. One wonders if they haven't lost the focus of the European Union themselves, and one wonders if they can really get it back given what providing real accountability may cost them. Wed 27 Oct 2010 13:54:34 GMT+1 Norman Conquest http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=43#comment74 @ 73Buzet23,Maybe... I think there will be no grammar lesson # 2. Not from me anyway. Wed 27 Oct 2010 13:38:40 GMT+1 powermeerkat http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=42#comment73 Since I've sent many years in trash removal business I was referring to trash. Obviously. Wed 27 Oct 2010 13:23:00 GMT+1 Buzet23 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/gavinhewitt/2010/10/unpopularity_and_the_eu.html?page=41#comment72 #69. At 1:40pm on 27 Oct 2010, Norman ConquestPersonally I would have thought 'the tip of the iceberg' to be more grammatically correct, bearing in mind the subject matter and context. Wed 27 Oct 2010 13:19:54 GMT+1