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Comment Re:Don't Panic (Score 1) 535

In 2013. In 2014 the figure is different and it is counted differently, and the budget/spendings underwent change.

As written here:

2014 was the first year under the new MFF for 2014-2020, which contains lower overall figures than the preceding spending plan. The weight of regional spending and research and development gradually increases until 2020, while the share of agriculture decreases year on year, unlike under the previous MFF where it was the biggest spending area. This change is reflected already in 2014, with regional and agricultural resources on par with 42% of the budget.

Comment Re:From what I can tell (Score 1) 535

They base their number on the EU budget from 2013 (budget as a document), while this here is apparently the actual post-factum number from the 2014.

Will not pretend to be a finance specialist, but AFAIK the budget is only a plan, a commitment, and is not always followed strictly, and thus differs from the actual numbers. Though I do not expect the numbers to differ it that much. But one has to compare the comparable years, and there is no by-country split of 2014/later budgets.

Comment Re:Considering our office in Newcastle... (Score 1) 535

[...] are you telling me you won't reinvest in training one of your own to take the job as opposed to letting in a foreigner?

That's what Germany did. In addition to relaxing the stance on immigration, they did reform the education system, introduced subsidies for reeducation of employed, and free education for unemployed.

Comment Re:From what I can tell (Score 1) 535

Whether there were many or few, it depends on your perspective. Changing the union is a big deal, IMO.

Otherwise, I have read in the past about three such cases. One of the articles closed on the notion that many changes to the union are simply not brought up anymore, despite popular support, because position of the UK remains the same.

Comment Re:From what I can tell (Score 1) 535

Everyone need to be for any expansion of the capability? Not just majority?

As far as I understand, this affects the "Eurolaw"(?) (Primärrecht in German: the basic founding laws of the EU).

In order to change any of them, all participating countries must vote "yes".

Changes to other laws require only majority, but can be vetoed by any member with veto right. UK has veto right.

With sharing of wealth for instance Sweden is supposed to be the country which pay the most in vs what it get back / capita I think? I assume UK pay in more than what they get back directly, but of course they also have access to the market and the people and get to sell goods onto other EU nations and get their brightest people into their union.

Infographic. SE pays 3.8B, and receives 1.7B. UK 11.3 vs 6.9. (Wow, I always thought that UK is not part of the CAP, because they were deriding the program so much in the past, and yet they are.)

Outside the CAP, the money largely go to support poorer countries and regions: building infrastructure, improvement in education, and so on. To make sure that with the time they could raise their living standards. It was very insightful to read that some regions in UK are poor enough to receive that support (but largely voted to leave).

Comment Re:Don't Panic (Score 1) 535

Currently, it is France, Italy and Spain [theguardian.com] who pay for the British rebate and not the other way around.

This is misleading. The data simply show what countries would have to pay how much, if Britain didn't have the rebate.

The rebate is already applied on the Island. The rebate money do not flow back to UK - they never leave it in the first place.

Comment Re:Considering our office in Newcastle... (Score 1) 535

Well, he is kinda making the Leavers point. His office in the UK has 60 people in it, and not a one is a local person. The entire office is foreign-born. It doesn't get more "they took our jobs" than that.

The counter-argument would be: how many of the unemployed UK citizens could take the positions?

At the peek of unemployment in Germany 15 years ago, they did a research and found that while there were 1.5M unemployed, there ware also around 2.5M open positions. Almost no one out of the unemployed could take the positions because they lacked qualification and/or education. That research was more or less the final nail in the coffin of Germany's pervasive and very popular anti-immigration policies of the past.

The irony is, back then, the Germany was the main opponents of the free worker movement in EU - while the UK was actually an ardent proponent who talked Germany into it.

Comment Re:From what I can tell (Score 1) 535

But then there's the sharing of wealth with other nations, refugees, more power to the EU rather than politicians close at home...

So far UK had vetoed many of the EU political power expansion projects (often for a good reason; but not always).

Can't say about the much hated on the USA forums "sharing of wealth", but as refugee situation is concerned, the Brexit wouldn't change it.

UK takes refugees because it has signed of the Refugee Convention. In fact, after the Brexit, UK would probably have to take even more refugees, because right now EU has a deal with Turkey to take some of our refugees.

If EU was just a free trade union UK would had stayed.

Of course they would have stayed. Being a loophole to regulations is a very profitable business. That's why, for example, the hedge funds love it there in London. And that is why I'm glad that they are leaving.

Comment Re: Rationale aside... (Score 1) 1592

As far as a "race to the bottom", is that what we see with APEC, or NAFTA? No [...]

... because nobody can compete with the elephant in the "room" - the USA.

And that's why the unions work: they are narrowly defined (not really full-fledged free-trade/etc unions), and they are dominated and controlled by the USA. (And please do not pretend that it is not so. Or probably from USA's perspective, being dominated by USA is the norm of life. But it is not.)

Comment Re:Good for the Brits (Score 1) 1592

The great thing is that now that the UK has voted out, several other countries are going to follow.

"Liking or not liking" the EU is not the same as "in or out". So it is not going to happen.

Oh, Brexit would make a splash. But.

First. When UK economy would stagnate for few years - and NHS would see even less funding - even nationalists would come to their senses. First-world nationalists tend to lose support quickly, when people's living sandard is on the line.

Second. UK is unique in that it is living in a virtual media bubble. You have a completely perverted image of the EU, created and nourished by the media over the past 15 years. I know it, because 15+ years ago I was reading lots and lots of UK press. And the reporting was on completely different level. I have seen it changing from small stupid lies and half-jokes 15 years ago. To stupid unfustified accusations 10 years ago. To blatant lies and red herring - on front pages! - 5 years ago.

Some saner UK reporters are depicting that it is as if the people started believing their own lies.

Even here on the thread, most US readers know political system of the EU better than the most UK readers. And that's the f*cking Slashdot, where more or less exclusively only highly educated people are gathering. Let it sink for a moment: UK, being part of EU, knows less about EU, compared to the US who is related to EU only remotely.

Comment Re:The Naked Truth (Score 1) 1592

you mean the UK tried to retain a strong trading relationship without abandoning its sovereignty?

EU is all about trading - but, excluding: price manipulation, currency manipulation, equity manipulation, market manipulation, and so on.

If you want to sell me something, if you want my money, you automatically have obligations toward me. If I want to sell you something to you, I automatically have obligations toward you. That's Business 101.

Nobody is going to deal with a country which might rip off somebody, and deny responsibility because "but sovereignty!" excuse. That's Politics 101.

P.S. You might want to visit Cuba and ask them about how they reveled for decades in sovereignty.

Comment Re:Democracy restored (Score 1) 1592

From whom you got your information?

UK has 73 seats. You are almost 5% off the mark.

Malta and Luxembourg have 6 seats each. That's 40% off the mark.

So from the 7:1 influence ratio you tried to cry here about, it is more like 12:1.

IOW, the voice of the UK in EP is 12 times more powerful. Or in other words: it would take 9 countries at the bottom to match the voting power of UK. and at least 10 to outvote.

Still not enough??

P.S. Seats in the EP.

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