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Another Europe is Unlikely: Why Socialist Transformation Won’t Happen Within the EU | Novara Media
Putting to one side the continued influence of financial institutions and special interest groups on European politics, a more fundamental challenge comes from the national interests of the most powerful states within the EU. For Germany, the priority is reducing inflation and resisting any attempt at debt mutualisation – the guaranteeing of the sovereign debt of other states. For France, it is transforming the rhetoric of ‘ever closer union’ into reality. For the Visegrád group (the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia), it is maintaining their authoritarian grip on power and securing the EU’s borders.
EU  capitalism  regulation  singleMarket  rules  financialisation  UK  stateAid  reform  EuropeanCommission  democracy  socialism  politics  dctagged  dc:creator=BlakeleyGrace 
yesterday by petej
Don’t pity May. Her immigration obsession helped get us into this mess | Gary Younge | Opinion | The Guardian
The story of the last two years, like the last few days, has been reality intruding on rhetoric in the most inconvenient ways. The actual process of Brexit demands more pain or more compromise, or both, than most of those who voted to leave the EU are prepared to put up with.

“There are two kinds of European nations,” the Danish finance minister Kristian Jensen said last year. “There are small nations and there are countries that have not yet realised they are small nations.” This is Britain’s most public and painful reckoning with its size and influence in its post-colonial state. It’s not pretty. This is why we can’t have nice things.

Absent a change of government, the only thing we can be certain of is failure. Either Brexit will fail and we will stay in the EU or it will succeed in some way we either do not want or had not anticipated, and the country will fail. The politics, at this point, appears to be centred upon who will be blamed for that failure. Few in the polity seem to be talking about what success would look like beyond the narrow litigation of the close result two years ago. The leave victory was not only, in part, the product of alienation; the way in which the political class has dealt with it has produced even more cynicism.
UK  politics  ToryParty  Brexit  MayTheresa  leadership  noConfidence  immigration  hostileEnvironment  xenophobia  incompetence  delusion  dctagged  dc:creator=YoungeGary 
3 days ago by petej
If the remain campaign makes the same mistakes again, it will lose again | Ash Sarkar | Opinion | The Guardian
The reason Brexiteers have been so effective is that they have made the fight about broad political values. The message was sovereignty, borders, national identity; bolstered by the occasional figure (£350m) or policy area (fishing). Brexit didn’t win on a manifesto, it won on emotionally resonant memes. “Take back control” was able to tell a complex story in just three words – that voters had the opportunity to reverse national decline by participating in an insurgent political moment.

You can’t debunk memes with facts. It’s like bringing tap-shoes to a gunfight. So no wonder Project Fear failed in 2016. And if it is attempted again in a second referendum, it will fail again. The facts on the ground haven’t changed: telling people “it’s the economy, stupid” just sounds like you’re calling them idiots for not feeling politically invested in the finances of the rich. Arguments about collapsed economic growth aren’t going to work for people who haven’t felt the benefits of it for decades.
UK  EU  Brexit  Remain  PeoplesVote  referendum  withdrawalAgreement  politics  dctagged  dc:creator=SarkarAsh 
3 days ago by petej
Theresa May is now a lame duck – too weak to take back control of her party | Martin Kettle | Opinion | The Guardian
More profoundly – much more profoundly – this vote was a wake-up call about the terminal sterility of a certain kind of Conservative vision. It’s a kind of Conservatism that is a confluence of two different traditions, and the Tory party is too respectful to both of them. On the one hand, there is a white establishment tradition, largely English rather than British in mentality, that has not come to terms with the loss of empire, dislikes foreigners, and which somehow equates Brexit with the restoration of British superiority and power. On the other, there are Thatcher’s children, often self-made, self-confident, petit bourgeois, anti-foreigner and anti-state, flirting with Ukip, beguiled by the Great in Great Britain and irreconcilable to any European engagement.

May’s critics are genuinely hopeless at politics. They can cause a lot of trouble. But they cannot, will not, take responsibility for practical action in government. They appear to believe that there is a Commons majority for their faith-based, crash-out, free-at-last, ourselves-alone Brexit if only they can install a true believer and bring the DUP back onside. The vote confirmed that is not true. The naivety is breathtaking. Such a Tory leader would lose any Brexit bill or confidence vote. Luckily for the Tory party, most MPs proved today they are not so foolish.

In the end, it’s the recklessness over Ireland, an instinct that lies deep in the DNA of part of the Tory party, that is the most frightening piece of foolishness. These fanatics, playing footsie with a DUP clique that puts sectarianism above the wider needs of a Northern Ireland that voted remain, are the direct political descendants, though with half the talent, of people such as Lord Randolph Churchill in the 1890s, FE Smith in the 1910s and Enoch Powell in the 1970s. All of them tried to play the Orange card. All of them did so with awful results for Ireland and Britain alike. As Talleyrand said of the Bourbons, they have learned nothing and forgotten nothing – and they proved it again this week.
UK  politics  ToryParty  leadership  MayTheresa  TheRight  Brexit  authority  dctagged  dc:creator=KettleMartin  conservatism  nationalism  xenophobia  Thatcherism  neoliberalism  delusion  Ireland 
3 days ago by petej
Did @paulmasonnews just sum up the politics of #Brexit in one sentence? #noconfidencevote
"The fact is that ... no form of Brexit that is possible is going to be supported by the people who want Brexit. That is, in one sentence, the British political situation, and that's why it is not going to happen."
UK  EU  Brexit  withdrawalAgreement  Parliament  politics  dctagged  dc:creator=MasonPaul 
4 days ago by petej
Labour should prepare to fight neoliberalism within the EU – Lexit is not an option
But the British left has to stop dreaming about Lexit. One of the things we have genuinely learned from the process of trying to leave the EU is the extensive nature of its status as a regulatory superpower. Even a Britain ruled by the Socialist Workers Party and the Morning Star would find itself forced to comply with Commission directives. Paradoxically, a left exit from Europe is only possible if Europe itself goes left.

For two and a half years Labour has dutifully and painfully tried to make Brexit work. But parliament has been sidelined, time has run out, and the space for a Labour-designed version of Brexit has disappeared. If anybody has betrayed Brexit it is Theresa May. Once her deal is thrown out, the moral authority of the 2016 referendum evaporates. It’s then either no deal or no Brexit.

And if it’s no Brexit, watch the blood drain from the faces of European neoliberalism: I’ve been with Jeremy Corbyn as he’s hit both Brussels and the Hague with messages of uncompromising clarity: neoliberalism is over, austerity is a catastrophe. But to the stunned audience of centrist social democrats, Corbyn’s words always seemed like a message from afar. If we play this right, we can take it into the heart of Europe.
UK  EU  Brexit  withdrawalAgreement  LabourParty  Remain  reform  Maastricht  Germany  Italy  budget  Portugal  Greece  Spain  EC  neoliberalism  JunckerJean-Claude  freedomOfMovement  migration  exploitation  TheLeft  CorbynJeremy  dctagged  dc:creator=MasonPaul 
4 days ago by petej

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