Britain Divided? Who Wants to Leave and Who Wants to Remain

Posted on 21 October 2015 by John Curtice

Do we all think the same about Europe? In one sense the obvious answer to that question is, ‘No’. After all, as our Poll of Polls shows, support for the two sides in the EU Referendum campaign that is now beginning to get into gear is almost evenly matched. At the moment at least Britain appears to be split down the middle on whether to leave or remain.

But this is not the only way in which we can address our question. We can also ask how far different sections of British society are inclined to hold different views about Britain’s membership. This is the perspective adopted by the first in a series of analysis papers to be published on this website as part of its attempt to provide impartial information on public attitudes to Europe in the run-up to the EU Referendum.

There is, after all, good reason to anticipate that some key differences and divisions will exist. Two in particular come to mind. First, we might well anticipate that on balance younger people will hold different views from older people. Second, we might reckon that graduates in well-paid jobs are typically happier about the prospect of remaining in Europe than are those with few, if any, educational qualifications for whom finding and keeping an adequately paid job can be more of a struggle.

Younger people have been brought up in a rather different world than the one in which their parents and grandparents were raised. For them there is nothing new about living in a racially, linguistically and religiously diverse society. They are thus less concerned about immigration – and concern about immigration is one of the key motivations behind many people’s opposition to staying in the EU. At the same time, they have grown up in an age of widespread international travel and communication, an experience that may well have left them more inclined to accept the principle of international collaboration that, for its advocates at least, is exemplified by the European Union.

At the same time, younger people are also more likely to have enjoyed a university education. This experience itself is likely to make them more aware of diverse cultures. But, crucially, such an education also means they are better equipped to secure employment in a labour market in which people from Britain can find themselves in competition for jobs with those living abroad. Indeed, they are also more likely to take advantage of the opportunity afforded by the EU’s freedom of movement provisions to find work in another member state. In contrast, those with fewer educational qualifications who are in less secure, less well paid employment may well feel that what the inflow of migrants from the rest of the EU means greater difficulty in finding a job and a lower rate of pay when they do.

Our paper shows that recent polls and surveys consistently confirm that these differences exist. For a start, typically those aged under 35 are around twenty percentage points more likely than those aged 55 and over to say that they will vote to remain in the EU. There appears to be a big ‘generation gap’ in attitudes towards the EU.

But this is not the biggest gap. According to both the British Social Attitudes survey and the British Election Study, the difference between the views of graduates and those without any educational qualifications is even bigger, at somewhere between 30 and 40 percentage points. Graduates are mostly inclined to vote to remain, while many of those without any educational qualifications say that they want to leave. More broadly, remaining in the EU is relatively popular amongst those with at least some kind of post school leaving age qualification, whereas leaving is relatively popular amongst those whose highest qualification is that which would normally be obtained by the age of 16.

These big differences in attitudes indicate that the referendum is not just a debate about Britain’s relationship with the EU. It also reflects important social divisions within Britain. On one side of the divide are those who are capable of doing well in today’s globalised world and who are relatively comfortable with the cultural diversity this world can create. On the other side are those who feel they lose out from globalisation and are less comfortable with its cultural diversity. The eventual outcome will not only determine whether or not Britain remains in the EU, but will also tell us a lot about what kind of country we think we should be.

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Read the full analysis paper:

Britain Divided? Who Supports and Who Opposes EU Membership

 

 

John Curtice

By John Curtice

John Curtice is Senior Research Fellow at NatCen and at 'UK in a Changing Europe', Professor of Politics at Strathclyde University, and Chief Commentator on the What UK Thinks: EU website.

146 thoughts on “Britain Divided? Who Wants to Leave and Who Wants to Remain

  1. I will gladly suffer financially in order to leave Europe. What is most important, is that we have some sort of democratic process in the UK. Please, those who are scared of change, be bold and watch as our country develops and moves forward with the British strength of character that has always served us well. Vote leave !Report

  2. Well if we do leave , be prepared , you may have no job anf no change to get one , as you wanted BMW and all the big manufacturers have left. Cost of living and taxes go up and holidays will be the past as you get no holiday pay anymore.
    Good luck !!!Report

    1. I do believe that there were plenty of jobs before we joined the EU, I also recall those with jobs got holiday pay.
      Maybe when we leave the EU it might be reasonable to encourage the British to buy cars made in Britain, than BMW could concentrate on selling cars to the Bulgarians, or the Greeks oh sorry I forgot they have run out of money!!!
      By the way we could always holiday in the UK, iv heard Cornwall is very nice.Report

  3. As I already said we must stay !
    Peace
    Jobs
    Giving our children a safe future
    Only inside the EU we have this!
    The migration is not an issue , it sort it self out.
    We don’t want the 1940 or 1980 back !!!
    We are now people of Europa !Report

    1. You may well view yourself as a Europa citizen, don’t count me in there with you I’m an English subject and always will be.Report

      1. You mean a British subject, a nationality created in 1707. You are also European, which is not a nationality but a term to describe your origins. English, Welsh, Cornish and Scots Gaelic are all Indo-European languages ergo you are ostensibly ignorant of your own culture and identity. The English originate from modern-day Denmark and Germany by the way. Report

    2. Volker – when traveling (as I often do) I hear the same thoughts from my fellow European travellers. I think its fair to say that the vast majority of UK citizens do not hold your view and do not want to be part of an EU super state. Our politicians know this and that’s why they have never held referendums on any of the past treaties.
      I am surprised that the EU even want us and maybe Jacque DE Gaulle was right when he rejected UK membership all those years back.Report

    3. There no such thing as Europia (utopia) why because we are all different, we want different things, we believe in different things, try and sell the idea of Utopia to ISIS – there interpretation will be different to yours. Hang onto your head mate.Report

      1. No, we are not that different. We are very much alike. Just take a close look at ten people coming from ten EU state members and tell me where each of them comes from. I bet you can’t manage that. We dress in a similar manner, we watch the same crappy tv shows, we all eat at similar restaurants, listen to the same music, read the same books, we speak each other’s languages. Well, perhaps the English only speak their own, but the rest of us do. We help each other, we are interested in each other’s culture and history. That’s no utopia. You are welcome to join my class of Erasmus students who come from all over Europe. They have great respect for each other, they share a common European identity and are aware of the fact that connecting is a good thing, working together is a good thing. Perhaps economically there’s a lot of work to be done, but the EU project changed our mentalities, the way we treat each other. Trust me, I see it every day. Otherwise, I don’t care much about how you vote today. I’ve been a huge admirer of your country and culture all my life, to the point where I read almost exclusively in English and I am more informed about the political scene in your country than in my own.No matter what your country decides today, I remain utterly disappointed. Not asking you to show the same level of interest in my country or culture as I have in yours. Just some. Clearly, 50% of your population are only interested in themselves.Report

        1. As for what we want… We all want exactly the same things: prosperity, good health service, good schools, security, peace. We all believe in justice, fairness, opportunities for all. And we are all on our way to achieve all that. Some are ahead, some a little behind, but we are all working toward the same goals. Report

  4. I did a poll amongst my Facebook friends – a diverse group, and only 6 out of the 84 that replied were for staying in. Even people I talk to in the street are of a similar proportion… So where are all the ‘in’ voters? I have no faith whatsoever in getting a true result from this, which is why I intend to be amongst the vote counters at my local polling centre. At least I will see for myself. Report

    1. I’v had a very similar experience, most people are adamant they are wanting to leave, only a few who are completely disengaged might turn up at the polling station and vote to remain because it’s hard work to think of an alternative.Report

  5. I am surprised at the opinion of (the majority?) young people who want to remain as when the EU implodes, as it will eventually, it will be them who bear the cost and uncertainty. Even if we remain, what real influence does anyone really think we have, so democracy will be diluted as the centre tries to control the various performances of northern vs southern Europe.
    I also want our Government to allow migrants from countries with the appropriate skills, be they Indian, Chinese or German.
    I am 68 now so little will matter to me but Brexit now will mean that my children and grandchildren will have a more democratic say in their future. Report

  6. BREXIT asap. Our Fishing Industry has been systematically destroyed in the name of conservation, while other fleets bend the rules and carry on. Our Fishermen now have to resort to buying Licenses and Fishing Quota to survive, pricing most small boats out of the market in favour of bigger players and making start-ups impossible. Administration and policing costs have reached unbelievable levels while UK control has disappeared.
    Decisions on an EU scale take far too long to implement, creating more problems than are solved. The Steel crises, migration and recently having to ask permission to adjust Tampon prices being typical examples. EU court decisions overriding our courts being another way in which our UK rights are abused. It may have seemed like a good idea while 9 countries were involved, but now we have 27 the EU is stagnating.Report

    1. Once there was transition from industrial to services sector there will always be transition in culture and production. We can surely invent something new, but not surely inventing good old times looking at them with nostalgy, because 50 years or 20 years ago, world was different. Report

  7. My iPad has its volume limited by default due to an EU regulation. Vacuum cleaners are to have limits on wattage of motors (hence sucking power); again EU regulation. I walk down my English high street and am submerged in strange languages. Maybe I’m old and grumpy but constant reminders of EU membership just irritate me. Report

    1. Underpowered kettles and toasters next on the agenda Hilary. Yet physics tells me that it takes a specific quantity of energy to raise 1 litre of water by 1 kelvin…..so rather than saving any energy at all, it just looks as though I’ll have to wait longer for my cuppa when I reluctantly have to replace my kettle!Report

      1. Exactly! You wait longer for your tea, your toast takes longer to brown and is therefore dry in the middle, you spend longer pushing the vacuum cleaner back and forth and wear out the carpets quicker, your lawnmower can not cope with long grass, lower powered electric ovens will reduce their ability to bake large quantities and mean that the heating element is running for longer – none of this will make any significant difference to energy consumption but the halfwits who dream up these ideas delude themselves that they are doing their bit for the environment. The EU seems to run on delusion and vanity and appears to be for the benefit of the elite in the organisation and not the average citizen.Report

      2. A low wattage vacuum takes twice as long to clean, so surely this defeats the object of saving energy by reducing consumption.
        Think the EU are out of touch, or maybe they can afford cleaners and don’t realise there errors.Report

  8. What is better? What you know or the Unknown? The U.K. Is the member since 1973 and I lived most of my live here. My kids are euro citizen. We have moved on and remember we had peace in Europe for 70 years. All this on the back of the EEC.
    Come on we needed to stay to give our children a chance in life.
    Europe is the only way to stay strong.
    As a union we can face any problem.

    Yes to Europe , yes we must stay, yes to peace, yes to the future.
    Report

    1. Not sure where you get your 70 years from as EU came about on Nov 1st 1993. The former EEC was formed on March 25th 1957.
      The period between 1945 to 1957 had no recorded conflicts in Europe.
      Unfortunately since 1957 their have been numerous conflicts – break up of Yugoslavia, Cyprus, Ukraine……….plus others. In some of these EU has been either unable or even instigated the conflicts.Report

  9. We were blinkered and misled by Edward Heath which got us shackled to Europe in the first place and now we are getting the same treatment from another Conservative government under Cameron. Last century Germany twice tried to take over Europe (and us) by force and we resisted and overcame the oppressor. With a change of tactics the taking over has been by stealth and will continue if we do not oppose it. Cameron has shown there is no real prospect of getting real reform within the EU and still wants us to stay and ultimately become part of the United States of Europe. The trouble is there is no unity and this bunch of misfits lunge from one crisis to another. If we stay then in a few years when all the refugees who have flocked in have the status of EU citizens we will not be able to keep them out. I feel sorry for those genuinely displaced people who have endured the most horrific ordeals but unfortunately there are going to be rogues and terrorists among them. How can we effectively regulate who we let in if we don’t take back control? The terror attacks in Paris and Brussels are surely proof that free movement is not a good idea. It is projected that with continued unbridled immigration we will within a generation have a larger population than Germany. We are a small island and there is not the room for that many people; we simply could not cope with them. Houses, roads, schools, hospitals, jobs? As for trade, we are restricted by the EU as well as receiving some benefits, and if they choose not to trade with us there are others who will accept our custom. Why on earth do we keep pouring vast sums of money into this bloated inefficient undemocratic corrupt beaureaucracy where the accounts haven’t added up for 21years? I expect Europe will do their utmost to try and cripple us if we leave as they would not want others to follow and thereby destroy their monumental vanity project. We stood up to Hitler and we can stand up to Merkel. WE MUST STAND UP TO MERKEL!Report

    1. From Malta with you 100% mate as we were against that twit back in 39-45. This union serves one category of people very well: The EVADERS. Those who prefer to enter and leave countries unscrutinised and undetected. Those who prefer to induce themselves into societies (who they do not respect for their hospitality) bent on exploiting their social development and structures while doing their best to usurp them with their alien ideologies. Those who want Customs to look the other way and be satisfied with bits of paper instead of actual ship rummages and container examinations. Those employers who want to have employees at their mercy by having the market flooded by cheap labour from other countries. Failed politicians who are found instant cushy jobs on the EU gravy train. Public service officials who are wasting time and money going to and coming from Brussels for naught. The Belgians who get all their hotels booked by all the official travel. A bunch of evaders so substantial whose head is the Prince of Mediocrity: The insubstantial chief of the EU. De-nationalised, borderless, unchecked, completely run down. A veritable emperor without clothes, without any morality political or otherwise except that of convenience to accommodate the power greed, a military and political gnome on the international scene. MAY THE BRITS BRING THIS HARLOT TO HER KNEES AND THEREBY BEGIN ITS DEMISE.
      .Report

  10. As an ex-pat living in Australia I watch this debate with considerable interest.
    There is no way anyone can predict the real consequences of leaving the EU but the recent financial troubles have proved that no country has sovereign power over it’s own governance without having sovereign power over it’s own currency. This was obvious to some at the time the Maastricht treaty was signed in the 90s but carefully ignored by those who wanted the Euro to proceed. What a relief Britain still has Stirling!

    If the vote is to leave the EU, remember that New Zealand is still in the Commonwealth and willing to supply all the lamb and butter that it used to before the EU came along and Australia can supply wines at least as good as the French. You will even be as welcome as ever to come to us on holiday! We speak a very similar language, conveniently have our Summer in your Winter and even drive on the correct side of the road!Report

  11. The UK should have the confidence to leave the EU. It has a strong trade position with the EU, strong international relationships with the EU countries, the skills and internationally respected national institutions to be a strong player in commerce, finance, defence, international affairs, the arts. The events of the past few years show that the EU is an expensive failed experiment which can never succeed in its objectives of political union and economic union. Unlike the United States, the EU countries have histories & political and social cultures which are so widely diverse that they can never be unified. The decision to retain the Pound has insulated the UK from the chaos of the Euro crisis – which still has yet to run its full course. We should not have joined the EEC back in 1975. The UK has just one chance now to control its own sovereign destiny. Vote to Leave the EU and escape rule by the expensive, unaccountable, inefficient, self-serving officials in the EU bureaucracy who cannot know the wishes of the UK citizens. Report

    1. You have so good positions in mentioned fields…guess why? You are part of EU, be sure there are many countries in EU which are doing great as part of EU as well…dont know why you are doing so bad from what you say…oh yes, you are even greater. If you count negative aspects as EUs and positive accounts for your own you are most probably missing something. Report

    2. One point maybe more important, and it is missing in discussions. European union is here to help us be closer and shape us together to better understand each other, not to show how different we are because we really are not so much. We had war in 40s and we want to show our better selves and not make new borders and selfish transitions to some global influence. My opinion is that Britain should stay or at least be very cautious about further stpes, as it seems that brexiters are trying to put own faults on someone else. Its very easy in EU, where there is something above every nation, but in my opinion what shape country most are its citizens and not politics who at least reflects mood.Report

      1. Should we remind ourselves which nation was the cause of two world wars? Germany!!, and now Germany takes its place at the head of Europe, isn’t that what Adolf wanted to do?
        Belonging to the United States of Germany makes a mockery of our history.
        Report

    3. Correct. From outside politicians make it shine but once inside a citizen quickly realises that this is basically a utopia that quickly turns into a dystopia.Report

  12. BMW, French wine: UK is the biggest clients of these products. Does anyone really think that these industries will ‘pull the plug’ on UK after Britxet? Airbus, will the French try to transfer the wing production to another country (in the EU) after Britxet? Which countries are net contributors to the EU budget?
    Britain is the World 4th largest economy. Second largest economy within the EU.
    UK has a unique opportunity to lead the reform of the EU. First we need a ‘Leave’ vote. Then we can renegotiate a more equitable deal for all countries. Given 10 years, London will be the Capital of Europe. Then the good burgers of Europe can look to a non-intrusive, non-invasive form of loose federal government. A trade bloc not a political bloc.
    Vote out!!!Report

    1. If remain are so sure of victory why are they using public funds, the bbc, us president to back their lost cause.
      Every time one of the aforementioned have had their argument destroyed or retracted it is our country that must be run by our folk for our benefit I for one can live without BMW, French wine, Audi, Peugeot, Citroen etc vote out for freedom.Report

    2. Of course they will continue trading but it is obvious that products will not be as cheap as tariffs will be imposed. If you require access to the Single Market then you must contribute financially to it as do Switzerland and Norway.Report

    3. Absolute and total sense! Vive le difference, quite simply if you make good things people will buy them the union in Europe is not for the benefit of the people it is wholly for the unelected extremely well paid boys and girls in their Brussels ivory towers. The bigger things get the more crooked they get as no one can possibly unravell the mess to see any wrong doing.Report

  13. Great Britain will have a wonderful opportunity to prosper if the British people vote to leave the EU. Trading agreements with the rest of the world as well as the European nations would bring real prosperity to our nation. If leaving the EU was such a ‘leap in the dark’ as is being suggested by the government why oh why did they ever even suggest the idea of a referendum. The so called renegotiations really amount to the next best thing to nothing in the long term. The notion that Britain could stand on the sidelines whilst the rest of Europe goes for political union is ridiculous. If we vote to stay in, political union will be inevitable. The so called curb on benefits will at best last for just a few years and then we will be back to the unsustainable position that we are in at the moment. Those of you who are yet to make up your mind please don’t go with the way of fear, instead go the way of freedom and great oportunity.Report

  14. What happened in scottish referendum, same will happen gain.. There is no huge difference in demographics between scotland and england. Britan will remain in the EU. People think about their current situation and react. If house prices were down, high unemployment exist and economy was like greece result would be different.People are risk averse.Report

  15. The “in campaign ” is using fear and the same baseless argument
    That the Euro should be adopted I hope the people of the UK wil vote in large numbers to leaveReport

  16. The financial aspects of our EU membership are so complex that experts cannot agree and the future is difficult to predict.
    The original deal struck by Heath was dishonest, most people who voted thought it was just about a ‘common market’ which it should have been. The small print however alluded to greater integration and a common currency.
    Why is Europe so keen to keep us in? because it benefits them, I don’t believe in international altruism.
    Our first disicion should be based on our desire to keep our democratic and sovereign governance, everything will then be determined by the British voter; more or less migration, trading partners etcReport

  17. Those that shout for Brexit give little or nothing by way of explanation for their reasoning. Indeed much of this war-cry seems to eminate from those who are engulfed by the politics of envy. The same people are abusive to pensioners who chose to live out their final years on the European Continent. Indeed, these people have been most vocal in the support of the Winter Fuel Allowance having been ‘stolen’ from UK pensioners living in Europe despite Ian Duncan Smith having been found out over his fiddled temperature statistics.

    Some of these people believe that pensioners should lose their right to their pension and such drivel is common place on these opinion websites.

    These people have not for one minute considered the downside of the UK cutting itself off from Europe like a greater risk of vunerability to attack by the new Soviet Union, loss of prestige in the world, loss of significant trade and freindship and not least of all the possibility of Scotland, Wales and N. Ireland voting to leave the UK and rejoin the EU.

    These little Englanders are buried in the history of England past greatness and refuse to face up to the modern world.Report

    1. What a load of twaddle. Do you really believe all that you have just written? All I see from you is scaremongering and insults for people who support Brexit. I have not decided yet but arguments like yours are pushing me and a lot of undecided people towards an out vote. The In campaign is. Extremely negative while the out campaign is positive, and as for calling people little Englanders I personally find that extremely insulting.Report

      1. And the put campaign is full of ifs and maybes, and the odd outright lie by Bojo with regard to cross rail tunnels. What a choice, maybe you should choose which is best for you rather than being swayed by posts on a web site!Report

      2. Good. I’m sure that was the intention.
        You’re insulted – yes, and? Any evidence to counter the claims made? No.
        It’s not the 1950s pal, so climb back under your xenophobic stone.Report

      3. To vote out because you don’t like the comments of others lacks logic, if you want to vote out you should only do so because you really believe that Britain is better off out, although that does go against the advice of the big money men of the world, still, if you know better than the head of the IMF and others………Report

    2. How would you descrbe Little Englanders? If you are referring to the people who are not afraid to fight for democracy,and people who see how the EU is holding us back and people who
      do not want to be dictated to by the enelected. People who have respect for people who fought
      for freedom and that we should govern ourselves instead of which we are now paying people to
      govern us .Then I see them as the brave the strong and hopefully the free after the 23rd,june
      Dont forget Cameron said he was leaving nothing out.By putting his fear campaign into a higher gear will backfire as it shows his desperation and lack of confidence .How can he lead us into anything but chaos.Noticed how many UTurns of late.Report

    3. Of course it is true that there are downsides to leaving, but there are also downsides to staying in this shambolic union. If we look to the long term and think seriously about where the EU is going we have to ask if we want to be a small part of a United States of Europe with no say on our laws, taxes, who comes into what was once our country, etc.? Europe’s economy has stagnated, the Euro crisis has not been solved and the bungling and botching to hide it will not work forever and the underlying issue will rear its ugly head again. There has not been the treaty change we were promised and the agreements that have been made are both minimal and temporary. Do not be fooled, the EU has tried to bring together a mismatch of countries and insists on adding to them and forcing them ever closer together. Countries that have traditionally been somewhat hostile towards each other have been forced to be uncomfortable bedfellows and many tensions lie barely hidden and waiting to erupt. In time they will, so do we want to be engulfed in this or free to forge our own path and destiny which, as the fifth largest global economy, we can do. As Juncker has admitted, Europe needs us more than we need them.

      I would also suggest that the winter fuel allowance is to help pensioners with their heating bills that can be quite substantial in colder climates.for those who have moved to warmer climates like the Mediterranean they do not have such an expense and therefore the allowance is not necessary or justified. The government should means test this along with free bus passes, prescriptions and tv licences. Report

  18. Scaremongering is the only argument that the Stay side can muster as David Camerons “Negotiations” have been shown to have no substance and if he claims success the outcomes can be reversed by the EU after we voted to stay. One question that could have been asked is ” Do you trust the unelected heads of the EU”. Report

    1. how many of us are aware that we will be joining the euro as our currency by the end of november 2016 then god help us.Report

  19. Cameron has only a few vague promises to offer. Once the public see how hollow these are the BREXIT poll is going to rise and rise.Report

    1. Let’s have a commonwealth of European nations with each nation maintaining its sovereignty, co-operating peacefully and productively with each other rather thanbe shackled by a United States/Nations of Europe ruled by a non-democratic EU barons in “Brussels”.Report

      1. Well said Claude,

        What’s wrong with being a group of individuals but all working together!?

        Banding together and behaving in packs is a defence mechanism.

        We wouldn’t need it if there wasn’t anything to defend against!

        Why don’t we all just go our seperate ways and collaborate together as and when we feel we need to.

        Let’s face it… No one would have suggested a referendum if it wasn’t obvious we needed one.

        People keep talking about immigration. Immigration isn’t a bad thing. Let’s look at the world as being our collective country instead of the borders you were born into. Let’s view the our countries as towns as simple labels for that place. But we need to respect the people that demidnt have a choice being born into that environment or place. It’s not like you can choose where you want to be born before you are!

        We get dealt a hand at the beginning of our lives which we don’t get to choose. It just is that way. If someone wants to move elsewhere then so be it. However, they need to be able to afford it and have realistic purpose and goals in that place. Whether it is the UK or Germany or where ever!

        If everyone had their own country at least they would have CHOICE. To design their own rules, regulations, principals, morals, culture, society etc etc… That’s what seperates us from the Animal Kingdom so let’s stop behaving like animals and take control of the situation.

        The biggest reason why there is a lot of people complaining about the system is because 60-75% of the U.K. Pop is working class. They are the back bone of the country and when you have “foreigners” coming into the country because of some EU Law we can’t overrule, we risk, the people that are born in this country the CHOICE or the ABILITY to find work or benefit from our own Government system because we’re too busy keep the foreigners lives going.

        The difference here is… People born in this country didn’t have a choice, their souls chose that life and they’re born here. The immigrant who comes to the UK was born elsewhere! They are taking up the space for British born human beings to reside with a bright future.

        Now this isn’t biased, it works both ways. One from UK can’t just get up and go to France etc however the UK has a very good benefits and public welfare system and its been maximised to limits & resources.

        It’s not racist to look after your own interests or family. Only human.

        Just for everyone’s education 6th June is D Day.Report

        1. The problem with a collective world government sir, is the fact that throughout history there is the problem of the ascension of those who would be dictators, or worse a government comprised of those would be leaders who would in fact subjugate a populous into serving as their slaves (whether they are aware of it or not.). The current state of the corporate empire of the united states of america is a prime example of such an Oligarchy.

          While you may think that earldoms, and lordship is a thing of the past I can tell you that it is not. The only difference between what we have now is titles, and the manner in in which they use their control. No longer is land is as important as it was. This has changed to the ownership of things. The ownership and control over funds, and the buying and selling of dept has replaced land ownership. Empires are comprised of holdings companies, patents, and ownership of national, international, and personal debts. Wars while still fought on land and for land now also take place in boardrooms, the stock market, and are fought with money instead of bullets. What we have then is the fact that these same empires also use media systems to distract and persuade people to support these various divergences by selling them products and provide dept to allow people to do so if they cannot afford it. This drives the economy to slow degrade from a 3 class system into a 2 class system closely resembling not British empire but the Roman empire. By supporting a world government we are providing a ground to which this sort of thing can flourish in a manner not beneficial to the whole of man, but the select few who would reduce the masses to throngs of debt ridden slaves of which the debt of the total is owned by the few.

          Report

  20. We will only have this chance to correct the slight of hand used when joining as we were told to believe was joining the Common Market. We must not let the same tactics to be used again. Immigration must be regulated. We can only allow the number of people to come in that can be matched with the resources we have. We cannot allow our laws (our way of life) to be continually altered by differing cultures outside our control. As seen in the EU immigration crises at present it takes to long to make a decision on way needs doing. It was obvious from the start that Greece’s defences needed bolstering by the EU states.g Report

    1. I don’t know where the idea has arisen that when we voted to join the EU (or European Economic Community as it was then) in the early 1970s that no-on knew it was a bloc aspiring to political union. I was a teenager at the time and I knew that we were joining a bloc with political aspirations. Those campaigning in favour made much of the EEC as a force for peace and those campaigning against joining constantly referred to the fact that it aspired to political union.

      With regard to immigration from outside the EU, Britain is not part of the Schengen Zone and there is little appetite for us to join it. We clearly have control of our borders (as evidenced by the thousands of non-EU immigrants blocked from entry in Calais. I am definitely for staying in the EU but it is clear that the Schengen Zone has not worked because the southern states who are supposed to defend the external EU borders, like Greece and Italy have proved themselves unable to defend those borders. This is recognized by people throughout the EU and unless a method is found to strengthen that border Schengen is unlikely to survive.
      Report

      1. That’s all very well but you ignore the fact that immigration from the EU is uncontrolled and cannot be so whist we remain. This country cannot sustain 300,000 immigrants per annum from the EU and I would like to hear how you would propose to accommodate them.Report

        1. Net immigration from the EU isn’t 300,000. It’s currently about 160,000. Over 30,000 are from the Republic of Ireland, with whom the UK has had an agreement since the 1920s.Report

          1. Do you really believe that we can even cope with an increase of 160000 people each year ?
            & if that is the correct figure have you worked out how much extra accommodation & services need to be provided for them for every year ? Or are you expecting them to sleep in the streets? Report

      2. The idea that we voted for a common market and not political union has come from the propaganda put out by Edward Heath and those pro-EU advocates back in the day who tricked us. Heath said that joining the Common Market would not infringe our sovereignty, nor would it mean giving away our fishing grounds.

        The Treaty of Rome apparently contains the words ‘ever closer union’; but how many of those who were told we were entering into a trade agreement actually read the Treaty of Rome – and how many trusted the politicians instead?

        Some advice, therefore: don’t trust the politicians.Report

      3. Not only Italy (where I’m from) and Greece are struggling under the euro, other EU countries are too.huge unemploiment etc.
        You are contracting yourself, if the Shengen might fail but you are for IN.
        Are you for UK or against?
        You do not sound like a confident UK man, you sound more a pro Brussels where they spend our money lavishly.
        Anyway, hope you be in minority and us OUTERS for majority.Report

    2. I am puzzled by the frequent Brexit references to “interference or imposition of rules and laws” by foreign organisations. Most of the imposition of foreign laws comes not from the EU but from specialist organisations of the UN such as the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). Maritime law is equally internationally imposed . These are only two examples of “interference” with our sovereignty. This is an essential aspect of the shrinking globe attempting to avoid chaos in international travel. Grow up Brexiters and embrace the new world.Report

      1. Les, the rules you mention apply to all nations, the ones made by the EU only apply to EU countries which impose costs that our international competitors do not have to bear.Report

        1. You make a valid point Trevor but I merely wish to point out that it it is not uncommon for rules and regulations to be imposed by other supranational organisations in the interest of the whole. Thus the whole argument about sovereignty is specious.
          With regard to other Brexit arguments, such as immigration, there is nothing new under the sun. I too have nostalgia for a Britain long gone. In my case it is that of the 1940s/50s. Yet that era was awful in many ways. We have moved on. In my boyhood it took 6 weeks for the England cricket team to reach Australia for the ashes series. (By the way, they played real first class cricket in those days!) we had 10 million displaced persons wandering Europe, their countries either defeated or swallowed up by bigger fish. I remember the Czechs and Poles and even Germans who settled here an prospered, enriching our society in the process. My own ancestors came here raping an pillaging more than a thousand years ago and left us with God’s own country of Yorkshire.
          I merely point out, partly in jest that nothing stays the same and in my own humble opinion, the EU is an imaginative giant step forward in the Genesis of nations.Report

          1. Nah Nah Les keep the cricket out of this otherwise the EU l’ll notice theres somat they’e yet to have a go at,,, we could end up with square bails on square stumps and a rubber ball.
            The difference between supranational regulations and some of the comic ideas that emanate from that lot tother side of the channel is that supranational is negotiated between democratic nations in and for the good of all whereas the EU decisions are made by the hired help and the elected ones have little or no effect making the entire EU anti democracy, a bit like the referees makingup the rules as they go along.
            Indeed I would be amazed if anyone can name 10 regulations thrown out by our MEP democratically elected representatives.
            I can also remember when Idi Amin threw out thousands of Asians we as good as our word gave the a home, solace and and assistance proving we are tolerant and accepting of others however in that case we did have a choice with open borders and free movement of people we do not, we cannot house and truly care for our own, the NHS is dying a slow painful death which the cost of our EU membership could probably save.
            The Australian points system has much to recommend it and lets face it the Aussy’s play a good game,,, most of the time. Report

          2. Trevor,
            Clearly you an I will never agree on the subject and are unlikely to change our minds. I just wish that all the arguments were being conducted at the same considered level and with the same pleasant temper. It was pleasant debating with you.Report

          3. You make some valid theoretical objections to the EU but in practice I’m not sure they matter enough. There aren’t too many EU laws or regulations which I’d be itching to jettison, at least no more so than some of our own home grown laws and regulations. As for elected (UK) versus unelected (EU), I’m more concerned with the quality of people who govern me rather than whether they were democratically elected. Besides, the “popular democracy” we have these days (aka mob rule) ends up meaning that if ghastly selfish dim people make up the bulk of voters, then they get what they deserve – but the trouble is that I am also a passenger on this floundering ship of fools. So I’m with Socrates on democracy! When the choice we are threatened with is the unmovable rock of Theresa May versus the hard place of Jeremy Corbyn (and his partly-under-the-radar Marxist puppet master), I’d rather be Governed by the EU. Report

      2. Hi Les,

        Much has been made of how terrible it would be to be ruled by the Tories and how rapacious they are, offering gifts to their rich friends.

        So, why would anyone vote to remain in the EU when David Cameron, George Osborne and the likes of one of the worst examples of rabid capitalism, beggar my neighbour, Goldman Sachs want us too stay in the EU?

        It’s about making their lives easier, provided the electorate with a salve of ‘elected’ MEP’ who in reality have zero power.

        We all know that trade will be largely unaffected.

        Last year the UK bought 20% of the ENTIRE German car output.

        The Euro currency is such a weak state that the ECB is currently printing €80 billion per month in what currency traders have described as a last roll of the dice!

        The Greeks are liable to default on the debt repayments.

        They have youth unemployment of around 50% and that has led to the rise of far right wing parties not only in Greece but in other incredibly high youth unemployment countries such as Portugal, Italy and Spain.

        Camerons opt outs ALL require treaty change and there’s no way the EU will do that.

        Let’s say they did, the UK would STILL have to pay for the Eurozone bail outs!

        Why?

        Do you recall at the end of 2014 how the UK was sent a bill from the EU for an EXTRA £1.7 billion, because we were, “Doing better”?

        (Incidentally the biased IMF got that wrong, they said we’d be doing worse).

        Where did the vast bulk of our money go to?

        You’d think to the poorer EU countries. You’d be wrong.

        The vast bulk of it went to just two countries.

        France and Germany. The same two countries who pay for the Eurozone bail outs.

        Incidentally it is true that the same people who said it would be a ‘disaster’ if we did not join the Euro are the same people who want to keep us shackled to the sinking EU.

        This referendum is actually about DEMOCRACY and not just a Farage bash the immigrants.

        Were the following Labour Cabinet Ministers at all racist or far right wing…

        Barbara Castle
        Tony Benn
        Michael Foot

        No, they were not and they all campaigned to exit the EEC or as it is now know the EU.

        Why?

        Because it removes DEMOCRACY.

        I hear all sorts of rubbish spouted by Experts’ who are all on the EU payroll from the TUC to the BBC and even the IMF is staffed with highly paid ex EU staff!

        There is NO democracy in the EU.

        The 28 EU Commissioners are appointed, not elected.

        They make ALL the laws in the EU.

        If our unelected undemocratic House of Lords was the ONLY chamber allowed to make our laws would that be in the least little bit democratic?

        No it would not.

        But lets say that we vote to remain in the EU, and that we are 100% happy to have our democracy removed to be replaced with the whims of these 28 unelected undemocratic commissioners…

        Just who are these Commissioners?

        They must be men and women of impeccable character?

        No.

        They are people subject to the same greed as some our own elected representatives are. Let’s consider the case of Peter Mandelson.

        Peter Mandelson was thrown out of Tony Blair’s cabinet not once but TWICE for indiscretions.

        After the second sacking his pal Tony got him a job as our EU Commissioner!

        So there’s a man who was judged to be UNFIT for office in the UK but perfectly ok to be a Commissioner.

        Then around the same time Silvio Berlusconi was the President of Italy. We know now that Berlusconi is a CONVICTED TAX FRAUD CRIMINAL. Just who would he have put in as his commissioner?

        Let’s go back just a little further to 1999 when EVERY single EU Commissioner was forced to resign.

        Why?

        Because of fraud and nepotism!

        All bar one or two got back in and as a group they said, “This shall never happen again” and they appointed a very strong willed French accountant to oversee them.

        Sic month later she resigned!

        Why?

        Because the EU Commissioners would NOT cooperate with her.

        LET’S NOT HAND OUR DEMOCRACY OVER TO THESE DESPOTS IN THE EU.

        Anyone who even remotely values democracy and want to be able to SACK their government MUST vote to exit the EU on June 23rd.

        Report

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