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Offline xasop

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European federalism
« on: June 24, 2021, 06:00:37 PM »
This is an idea that has been floating around for decades, and still strongly divides opinion. The suggestion is for the EU to federate — each EU member would become a subdivision within one big country of Europe. Until very recently, I was extremely opposed to the idea based on my negative experiences of federation in Australia, and on what I know of the American federal system. But recently, my views have begun to change, and I will try to explain why.


The futility of the nation-state

The main argument I have heard against federation is about the sovereignty of nation-states. The principle behind the nation-state is that each nation, in the sense of a group of people with shared cultural identity, should govern itself based on its own distinct values. But in practice, this is very difficult to achieve, which is why most European states are only approximations to true nation-states. Their boundaries don't actually line up with the borders between nations, which may not be well defined at all.

For instance, the northern half of Belgium is culturally Dutch, while the southern half is culturally French. The Republic of Ireland's border with the UK should be in the Irish Sea, not through the middle of Ireland. Catalonia doesn't belong to Spanish culture, Frisia doesn't belong to Dutch culture, and Åland doesn't belong to Finnish culture. There are Germans in Italy, Hungarians in Serbia and Russians in Latvia, alongside many more examples, but I think my point is clear.

In principle, some of these have straightforward solutions, nevertheless made politically challenging by the dominant culture's reluctance to grant a minority self-determination. Others cannot be reasonably solved regardless of political circumstances — no matter how you draw up the Germany–Poland border, you are going to leave some people on the "wrong" side, unless you create a maze of exclaves. We can therefore conclude that the nation-state is an impossible idea to achieve in practice, outside of isolated (in the literal sense) examples such as Iceland.


Federalism as an alternative to nation-states

Once we accept that the nation-state is impossible, the primary argument against European federation disappears. On the other hand, the European Union's motto is "united in diversity", which speaks to its goal of respecting and valuing the various national identities within it. So, counterintuitively, European unity has greater potential for the recognition of differing cultures than the unachievable nation-state model, in which the values of the dominant culture in an area can suppress those of minority cultures.

Furthermore, the EU already has a better democratic system, in my view, than either the US or Australia. I don't think we should ignore the problems present in other federal systems, but I no longer believe their existence is a reason not to try to do better, either. Any concrete proposal for federation should look at federal systems around the world, adopt their strengths, and learn from their weaknesses.


Practicality: Is this the time and place?

If we assume for a moment that federalism is desired, is this the appropriate juncture for it? Personally, I don't think so. There are still many obstacles the EU must overcome to be ready to federate. For one thing, Serbia and Montenegro are currently in the process of negotiating their accession, with more prospective members hoping to begin negotiations in the coming decade. Such a radical reform of EU politics as federation would disrupt these negotiations by calling into question the stability of the union.

Another reason not to federate just yet is that the EU still has some way to go to in terms of democratisation. Currently, the number of MEPs is allocated based on, but not directly proportionally to, the population of each member. Consequently, a resident of Malta has roughly ten times as much political power as a resident of Germany. Also, the requirement for unanimity in the European Council has no place in a federal system.

Finally, there are practical considerations. Only 19 of the 27 members of the EU presently use the euro. Only 22 participate in the Schengen Area, a situation that depends on Irish unification to satisfactorily resolve. Then there are various microstates that participate in the Eurozone and the Schengen Area, but which are not members of the EU — should they be included in a European federal state?

In summary, I do now support European federation, but I do not see it happening until at least the 2040s — enough time for Ukraine and Georgia to submit their applications to join, and if accepted, for them to be integrated into the union. Enough time to reform the democratic system, and enough time — hopefully — to work through the issues blocking adoption of the euro and Schengen. But only time will tell.
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Offline Toddler Thork

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2021, 07:13:39 PM »
You've been living in Europe for what ... a year and they've turned you into Adolf Hitler already.

Why won't you respect other people's right to self determination?

For instance, the northern half of Belgium is culturally Dutch,
No it bloody well isn't. You are so ignorant. The Netherlands is culturally Dutch reformed (protestant) and the Flemings and Walloons ... now Belgians ... were Catholics. The Walloons didn't want to be ruled by a bunch of Protestants. They wanted to join up with their Catholic brethren to the south and so the FOUGHT A WAR for their independence!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgian_Revolution

The Republic of Ireland's border with the UK should be in the Irish Sea, not through the middle of Ireland.
Christ on a bike. The Protestant Irish in the North felt they had more in common with the English, than with the Catholics in the south. Are you seeing a pattern yet? They voted by a landslide to remain part of the UK, when the Republic left. Their choice.

Catalonia doesn't belong to Spanish culture,
Interesting. All Catholic, all speak Spanish ... all in Spain. Are you trying to offend as many people in one post as is possible?

Frisia doesn't belong to Dutch culture,
Besides actually being in the middle of a bunch of Dutch states and all the people speaking Dutch.

and Åland doesn't belong to Finnish culture.

There are Germans in Italy, Hungarians in Serbia and Russians in Latvia, alongside many more examples, but I think my point is clear.
That because people move around, nation states should be abolished? Better idea ... how about we stop all this immigration. It seems to lead to invasive populations demanding unreasonable changes upon the indigenous inhabitants.

In principle, some of these have straightforward solutions,
I'll concede that the slaughter of all the people who oppose your ideas seems reasonably straightforward.

nevertheless made politically challenging by the dominant culture's reluctance to grant a minority self-determination. Others cannot be reasonably solved regardless of political circumstances — no matter how you draw up the Germany–Poland border, you are going to leave some people on the "wrong" side, unless you create a maze of exclaves. We can therefore conclude that the nation-state is an impossible idea to achieve in practice, outside of isolated (in the literal sense) examples such as Iceland.
The nation state has functioned just great for thousands of years. It is hardly impossible to achieve. Any map you care to look at has borders and nations. In fact ... almost everyone on earth lives in a nation and not some other kind of organisation. It's a system that works.

Federalism as an alternative to nation-states
So doesn't work for the US, doesn't work for australia ... but will be a dead cert for success in Europe where millions of people with around 40 languages will all be part of the same superstate and literally no one will be offended at having fought wars for independence to be lumped in under German rule.

Once we accept that the nation-state is impossible,
We don't accept it is impossible. I live in one. One that has not been invaded for over 1000 years. World champions of war and empire. One with a Queen which we like.

the primary argument against European federation disappears.
So by declaring a falsehood, you can validate a falsehood.

Furthermore, the EU already has a better democratic system, in my view, than either the US or Australia.
Are they lacing the water with something over in Europe? How do you all believe this tripe?

I don't think we should ignore the problems present in other federal systems, but I no longer believe their existence is a reason not to try to do better, either.
Sounds like "just because communism has never worked before its just because no one tried to do it properly but this time would be different". 🙄

Any concrete proposal for federation should look at federal systems around the world, adopt their strengths, and learn from their weaknesses.
Why do you like the idea of Europeans killing each other so much?

If we assume for a moment that federalism is desired,
As a living breathing European I can assure you, it isn't.

a resident of Malta has roughly ten times as much political power as a resident of Germany. Also, the requirement for unanimity in the European Council has no place in a federal system.
I thought you said Europe had the best democracy in the world. That doesn't sound very fair.

In summary, I do now support European federation, but I do not see it happening until at least the 2040s — enough time for Ukraine and Georgia to submit their applications to join, and if accepted, for them to be integrated into the union. Enough time to reform the democratic system, and enough time — hopefully — to work through the issues blocking adoption of the euro and Schengen. But only time will tell.
Think about the current football tournament. Run by UEFA. Or the Eurovision song contest. Do either of these two stop at Europe?

Israel and Azerbaijan will be part of the EU in no time and then deals will be struck for all kinds of shenanigans. If the Aussies can be in the Eurovision, I see no reason why Germany wouldn't want them bending the knee in the EU too. My prediction ... Australia will be part of the EU by 2040. The EU is just a trade deal that takes your sovereignty. I can't see Aussie politicians having any backbone to stop that.


I propose that New Zealand and Australia become part of the Federation of China. I mean, they are all near each other in the Pacific and it would allow people to travel between them all without passports. Many Chinese already live in Australia so really it just makes sense. Plus think of all the great food. The nation state seems to be dead anyhow. Joining China seems to be the sensible option available to Australia ... you know, now that we've accepted that the nation state is impossible. Enjoy your fried bat and dog sandwiches.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2021, 07:37:21 PM by Toddler Thork »
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Offline Pete Svarrior

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2021, 07:26:06 PM »
If we assume for a moment that federalism is desired,
As a living breathing European I can assure you, it isn't.
You voted not to have a say on this. Get over it, snowflake.
Read the FAQ before asking your question - chances are we already addressed it.
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Re: European federalism
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2021, 07:38:52 PM »
If we assume for a moment that federalism is desired,
As a living breathing European I can assure you, it isn't.
You voted not to have a say on this. Get over it, snowflake.

He is suggesting the UK (my country) gets broken up to achieve his federalist dream. The last person to try to ram through a federalist European dream had a tiny moustache and got 75 million people killed.
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Re: European federalism
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2021, 07:47:09 PM »
The last person to try to ram through a federalist European dream had a tiny moustache and got 75 million people killed.
Ouch, you missed a fair few in between! No surprises there, though.
Read the FAQ before asking your question - chances are we already addressed it.
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Offline xasop

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2021, 08:28:19 PM »
You've been living in Europe for what ... a year and they've turned you into Adolf Hitler already.
Still haven't got the hang of counting?

No it bloody well isn't. You are so ignorant. The Netherlands is culturally Dutch reformed (protestant) and the Flemings and Walloons ... now Belgians ... were Catholics. The Walloons didn't want to be ruled by a bunch of Protestants. They wanted to join up with their Catholic brethren to the south and so the FOUGHT A WAR for their independence!
The Walloons are the southern half of Belgium, not the northern half. While it may have been true once that religious differences were the most important factor to most people, the Netherlands is now majority irreligious with more Catholics than Protestants. Other than religion, Flanders shares a language and culture with the Dutch but not with the Walloons, which is why there is a strong Flemish nationalist movement today.

Christ on a bike. The Protestant Irish in the North felt they had more in common with the English, than with the Catholics in the south. Are you seeing a pattern yet? They voted by a landslide to remain part of the UK, when the Republic left. Their choice.
They felt they had more in common with the English because the English planted them there to ensure dominance. Even so, they make up barely a majority of the population of Northern Ireland today, and they are easily a minority on the island of Ireland, which should never have been partitioned in the first place.

Catalonia doesn't belong to Spanish culture,
Interesting. All Catholic, all speak Spanish ... all in Spain. Are you trying to offend as many people in one post as is possible?
Spanish is not their first language. If we're counting a second language imposed upon a group as identifying their culture, why did you vote to leave the EU? More Europeans speak English than any other language.

Of course they're all in Spain. If they weren't in Spain, they wouldn't be an example of nation-states not aligning with national identity.

Frisia doesn't belong to Dutch culture,
Besides actually being in the middle of a bunch of Dutch states and all the people speaking Dutch.
Once again, not as their native language.

There are Germans in Italy, Hungarians in Serbia and Russians in Latvia, alongside many more examples, but I think my point is clear.
That because people move around, nation states should be abolished? Better idea ... how about we stop all this immigration. It seems to lead to invasive populations demanding unreasonable changes upon the indigenous inhabitants.
I am not talking about recent migrations, I am talking about established communities that, in many cases, pre-date the formation of the nation-states you so love.

In principle, some of these have straightforward solutions,
I'll concede that the slaughter of all the people who oppose your ideas seems reasonably straightforward.
That doesn't sound straightforward at all, no. Why would you bring it up?

The nation state has functioned just great for thousands of years. It is hardly impossible to achieve. Any map you care to look at has borders and nations. In fact ... almost everyone on earth lives in a nation and not some other kind of organisation. It's a system that works.
The nation-state hasn't even existed for thousands of years. It is a modern invention, accompanying the rise of Western democracy. For most of recorded history, Europeans were ruled by whoever had the mightiest sword, which is why England has had French, Spanish, Dutch and German kings over the centuries.

So doesn't work for the US, doesn't work for australia ...
I didn't say it doesn't work there. Both of those federations have significant problems, but they also provide substantial benefits to everyone involved.

but will be a dead cert for success in Europe where millions of people with around 40 languages will all be part of the same superstate and literally no one will be offended at having fought wars for independence to be lumped in under German rule.
Germany has 19% of the population of the EU. I know you're having trouble counting today, but 19% is significantly less than the 50% needed for them to "rule" a democracy.

We don't accept it is impossible. I live in one. One that has not been invaded for over 1000 years.
Wrong again, even if we ignore the fact that your country has only existed for a little over 200 years.

World champions of war and empire. One with a Queen which we like.
Glad someone does. She's also the queen of Australia and we all think she's a bad joke.

Why do you like the idea of Europeans killing each other so much?
Oh dear. It's not just counting, is it? Is it really this much of a struggle to read?

I thought you said Europe had the best democracy in the world. That doesn't sound very fair.
I guess reading must be difficult for you, then. I never said that.

Think about the current football tournament. Run by UEFA. Or the Eurovision song contest. Do either of these two stop at Europe?

Israel and Azerbaijan will be part of the EU in no time and then deals will be struck for all kinds of shenanigans. If the Aussies can be in the Eurovision, I see no reason why Germany wouldn't want them bending the knee in the EU too.
Indeed, a song contest is entirely comparable to a political union with the power to make fiscal, trade, immigration and foreign policy decisions. Bravo.

My prediction ... Australia will be part of the EU by 2040. The EU is just a trade deal that takes your sovereignty. I can't see Aussie politicians having any backbone to stop that.
Oh dear, we're back to the "trade deal" nonsense. If you're going to come bleating through every thread I make about the EU, can you at least try to learn about what it is?

He is suggesting the UK (my country) gets broken up to achieve his federalist dream.
What happened to not caring about Northern Ireland?
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Offline Toddler Thork

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2021, 08:59:49 PM »
Other than religion, Flanders shares a language and culture with the Dutch but not with the Walloons, which is why there is a strong Flemish nationalist movement today.
So these people aren't looking to be united under one umbrella ... ok, noted.

They felt they had more in common with the English because the English planted them there to ensure dominance. Even so, they make up barely a majority of the population of Northern Ireland today, and they are easily a minority on the island of Ireland, which should never have been partitioned in the first place.
Look ... a war took place lasting almost 100 years over this. There was much terrorism. Many people died. We sorted it out ... its called the Good Friday agreement. Its done. We aren't going back on that or we'll be back at war.

The nation-state hasn't even existed for thousands of years. It is a modern invention, accompanying the rise of Western democracy.
The nations of ancient Greece, Rome (before it became an empire), Egypt, the borders of Portugal were defined in 1139 almost 1000 years ago, Japan is a couple of thousand years old, even France was founded in about the 5th century. Nations have been around for a very long time.

For most of recorded history, Europeans were ruled by whoever had the mightiest sword, which is why England has had French, Spanish, Dutch and German kings over the centuries.
False. We had all those foreign royals not because they were defeating us, but because we arranged marriages to secure further powers and alliances. At no point in history have the Germans defeated us and put a German king on the throne. Nor the French. William the conqueror was a Norman ... descended from Vikings ... not gauls. The Dutch never beat us either nor the Spanish. Marriage is not 'the might of the sword'. Learn2diplomacy.

We don't accept it is impossible. I live in one. One that has not been invaded for over 1000 years.
Wrong again, even if we ignore the fact that your country has only existed for a little over 200 years.
What on earth are you talking about?
I'm English. England has been around for ages. The UK is a unitary state. A country of countries ... my country still exists thank you very much.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nation_state#United_Kingdom

World champions of war and empire. One with a Queen which we like.
Glad someone does. She's also the queen of Australia and we all think she's a bad joke.
That's because you've been given a foreign Queen. She's not even Australian. You've been utterly cucked.
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Offline xasop

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2021, 09:38:49 PM »
So these people aren't looking to be united under one umbrella ... ok, noted.
They, or at least some Flemish nationalists, are looking to be reunited with the Netherlands. They don't want to be part of Belgium. If we put the Netherlands and Belgium into the same European superstate, everyone gets their way.

Look ... a war took place lasting almost 100 years over this. There was much terrorism. Many people died. We sorted it out ... its called the Good Friday agreement. Its done. We aren't going back on that or we'll be back at war.
You have already jeopardised the GFA, while celebrating the achievement. You don't have the moral high ground here.

The nations of ancient Greece, Rome (before it became an empire), Egypt, the borders of Portugal were defined in 1139 almost 1000 years ago, Japan is a couple of thousand years old, even France was founded in about the 5th century. Nations have been around for a very long time.
Ancient Greece went through a variety of different forms of government at different times, Rome was absorbing other nations long before it became an empire, Portugal — though nominally independent — has had many Spanish kings, and Japan has been repeatedly divided and reunified over the centuries. It is true that I should have said that the idea of a democratic nation-state hasn't been commonplace until the last couple of centuries, but even then, it certainly hasn't been as stable as you are implying.

False. We had all those foreign royals not because they were defeating us, but because we arranged marriages to secure further powers and alliances. At no point in history have the Germans defeated us and put a German king on the throne. Nor the French. William the conqueror was a Norman ... descended from Vikings ... not gauls. The Dutch never beat us either nor the Spanish. Marriage is not 'the might of the sword'. Learn2diplomacy.
I am aware that not every monarch came to the throne through might, but these marriages were not arranged with input from the people of England, they were arranged by royal families only interested in keeping power for themselves, and those royal families gained their power through might in the first place. There was no self-determination for the English people before England became a constitutional monarchy — they had no vote for whom their unelected kings married.

What on earth are you talking about?
I'm English. England has been around for ages. The UK is a unitary state. A country of countries ... my country still exists thank you very much.
I don't think you understand what a unitary state is. The internal subdivisions of the UK are irrelevant, and England's existence as such a subdivision does not make it a nation-state — it is a nation, but not a state.
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Offline Toddler Thork

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2021, 09:59:05 PM »
They, or at least some Flemish nationalists, are looking to be reunited with the Netherlands. They don't want to be part of Belgium. If we put the Netherlands and Belgium into the same European superstate, everyone gets their way.
This is not true at all. The Flemish do not want to be unified with the Netherlands at all and opinion polling shows that. You just made that up to suit your narrative.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_Netherlands_ideology#Opinion_polling


The nations of ancient Greece, Rome (before it became an empire), Egypt, the borders of Portugal were defined in 1139 almost 1000 years ago, Japan is a couple of thousand years old, even France was founded in about the 5th century. Nations have been around for a very long time.
Ancient Greece went through a variety of different forms of government at different times, Rome was absorbing other nations long before it became an empire, Portugal — though nominally independent — has had many Spanish kings, and Japan has been repeatedly divided and reunified over the centuries. It is true that I should have said that the idea of a democratic nation-state hasn't been commonplace until the last couple of centuries, but even then, it certainly hasn't been as stable as you are implying.
What? You said there were no nations and that it was a modern creation. I showed this to be more made up nonsense from you. Now you are saying I'm implying that it is stable ... well it is. Some of these countries ... mine included, span a thousand years or more. Find me a thousand year old federation and we'll talk.


There was no self-determination for the English people before England became a constitutional monarchy — they had no vote for whom their unelected kings married.
??? Why would we choose another man's wife for him? This is the British Isles. Not Love Island.
In 1215AD we get the magna carter. From that point on ... English peasants have a say.


What on earth are you talking about?
I'm English. England has been around for ages. The UK is a unitary state. A country of countries ... my country still exists thank you very much.
I don't think you understand what a unitary state is. The internal subdivisions of the UK are irrelevant, and England's existence as such a subdivision does not make it a nation-state — it is a nation, but not a state.
I never said it was a nation state. You said my COUNTRY has only been around for 200 years. I disputed that. My country ... England, has been around much longer. Now you are arguing against a thing I never said.


Also, I made a suggestion for Australia ... I feel like you ignored it.
Quote from: Thork from ages ago
I propose that New Zealand and Australia become part of the Federation of China. I mean, they are all near each other in the Pacific and it would allow people to travel between them all without passports. Many Chinese already live in Australia so really it just makes sense. Plus think of all the great food. The nation state seems to be dead anyhow. Joining China seems to be the only sensible option available to Australia ... you know, now that we've accepted that the nation state is impossible. Enjoy your fried bat and dog sandwiches.
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Offline xasop

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2021, 10:23:27 PM »
This is not true at all. The Flemish do not want to be unified with the Netherlands at all and opinion polling shows that. You just made that up to suit your narrative.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_Netherlands_ideology#Opinion_polling
I didn't say a majority of the Flemish wanted it, I said it was the goal of (some in) the Flemish nationalist movement. That movement is based on a shared culture and language.

What? You said there were no nations and that it was a modern creation. I showed this to be more made up nonsense from you.
I was talking about nation-states, not nations, and I acknowledged that I could have chosen my words better. Why are you pointing out what I said again, after I corrected myself?

Now you are saying I'm implying that it is stable ... well it is. Some of these countries ... mine included, span a thousand years or more. Find me a thousand year old federation and we'll talk.
The state in which you live (whether it is a nation-state is dubious at best) is about 200 years old, as we've established. You are carefully switching between the terms "nation" and "country" to take advantage of the confusion your government has created with the marketing term "country of countries", so let's be precise and avoid the word "country".

There was no self-determination for the English people before England became a constitutional monarchy — they had no vote for whom their unelected kings married.
??? Why would we choose another man's wife for him? This is the British Isles. Not Love Island.
There's no need to choose another man's wife for him. A better solution, the one you ended up with, is not to let one man choose who runs the country by marriage in the first place.

In 1215AD we get the magna carter. From that point on ... English peasants have a say.
This is the second time you've brought up the Magna Carta, and I'm beginning to think you don't actually know what it's about. It was a great step forward for its time, but it didn't bring about democracy overnight. England didn't achieve anything remotely resembling modern democracy until several centuries later.

I never said it was a nation state. You said my COUNTRY has only been around for 200 years. I disputed that. My country ... England, has been around much longer. Now you are arguing against a thing I never said.
We were speaking in the context of nation-states, and internationally, the terms "country" and "state" are generally synonymous. You are capitalising on your government's ludicrous "country of countries" stance to muddy the waters.

Also, I made a suggestion for Australia ... I feel like you ignored it.
Quote from: Thork from ages ago
I propose that New Zealand and Australia become part of the Federation of China. I mean, they are all near each other in the Pacific and it would allow people to travel between them all without passports. Many Chinese already live in Australia so really it just makes sense. Plus think of all the great food. The nation state seems to be dead anyhow. Joining China seems to be the only sensible option available to Australia ... you know, now that we've accepted that the nation state is impossible. Enjoy your fried bat and dog sandwiches.
I don't know why you think repeatedly bringing up Australia makes any difference to me. I was not born in Australia, I do not live in Australia, I have no intention of ever returning to live in Australia, and I don't identify with Australian culture. Australia is not my country.
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Offline Toddler Thork

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2021, 10:39:22 PM »
This is not true at all. The Flemish do not want to be unified with the Netherlands at all and opinion polling shows that. You just made that up to suit your narrative.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_Netherlands_ideology#Opinion_polling
I didn't say a majority of the Flemish wanted it, I said it was the goal of (some in) the Flemish nationalist movement. That movement is based on a shared culture and language.
So they should be united against their will because you like the notion? Noted.

Now you are saying I'm implying that it is stable ... well it is. Some of these countries ... mine included, span a thousand years or more. Find me a thousand year old federation and we'll talk.
The state in which you live (whether it is a nation-state is dubious at best) is about 200 years old, as we've established. You are carefully switching between the terms "nation" and "country" to take advantage of the confusion your government has created with the marketing term "country of countries", so let's be precise and avoid the word "country".
Mmmm. Really nothing changed. We still run everything from Westminster as we have for 1000 years. Adding Scotland to our country isn't really destabilising it. It is more bolting a vassal to it.

There's no need to choose another man's wife for him. A better solution, the one you ended up with, is not to let one man choose who runs the country by marriage in the first place.
Why are you advocating that we do the exact thing we already do? We know ... we already do that.

This is the second time you've brought up the Magna Carta, and I'm beginning to think you don't actually know what it's about. It was a great step forward for its time, but it didn't bring about democracy overnight. England didn't achieve anything remotely resembling modern democracy until several centuries later.
Yes, I know. Again, we are the country that does that and everyone else copies. and it's a great system. But your thread is about throwing 1000 years of hard won rights in the bin, and federalising the nation into a German superstate.

We were speaking in the context of nation-states, and internationally, the terms "country" and "state" are generally synonymous. You are capitalising on your government's ludicrous "country of countries" stance to muddy the waters.
I don't even know what you are arguing at this point. You've ceased to be coherent.

I don't identify with Australian culture
Of course you don't. You've taken a poo in the Netherlands and now you are a European.  ::)

I don't give a squirrel's scrotum how you identify. YOU don't get to identify yourself. Other people do the identifying and if you look like Ned Kelly and sound like Ozzy Man, I'm going to identify you as an Aussie. One would hope having spent many years in Australia, you'd realise how absurd making Australia into part of Federal China is. Every bit as absurd as making the UK into a part of Federal Europe.
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Offline xasop

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2021, 11:08:01 PM »
So they should be united against their will because you like the notion? Noted.
Why do you think having an opinion is the same thing as believing others' opinions shouldn't matter?

Mmmm. Really nothing changed. We still run everything from Westminster as we have for 1000 years. Adding Scotland to our country isn't really destabilising it. It is more bolting a vassal to it.
Quite a lot has changed for Scotland. Is that what you mean by "stable"?

Yes, I know. Again, we are the country that does that and everyone else copies. and it's a great system. But your thread is about throwing 1000 years of hard won rights in the bin, and federalising the nation into a German superstate.
Do I really need to explain this again? Here, have a recycled reply.
Germany has 19% of the population of the EU. I know you're having trouble counting today, but 19% is significantly less than the 50% needed for them to "rule" a democracy.

I don't even know what you are arguing at this point. You've ceased to be coherent.
I'm not arguing anything. I'm explaining why your misuse of the word "country" caused you to become confused.

I don't give a squirrel's scrotum how you identify. YOU don't get to identify yourself. Other people do the identifying and if you look like Ned Kelly and sound like Ozzy Man, I'm going to identify you as an Aussie.
You can identify me however you like, but I don't have to care. I should have an Irish passport by this time next year, but even if I turn out not to qualify by some technicality, next year will be my fifth year in the Netherlands. That means I'll be eligible to naturalise as a Dutch citizen. Either way, I will be an EU citizen by 2023 and I don't intend to look back.

One would hope having spent many years in Australia, you'd realise how absurd making Australia into part of Federal China is. Every bit as absurd as making the UK into a part of Federal Europe.
I'm not interested in the UK beyond the border in Ireland holding back European integration. Just give us Ulster back, you can have your sOvEreIgNtY, and we'll have our glorious United States of Europe.
when you try to mock anyone while also running the flat earth society. Lol

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Offline Toddler Thork

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2021, 11:42:22 PM »
Why do you think having an opinion is the same thing as believing others' opinions shouldn't matter?
If you concede that your opinions don't matter, I shall respectfully agree and we can move on.

Quite a lot has changed for Scotland. Is that what you mean by "stable"?
Scotland never really understood what being a nation was. They are more a collection of tribes whose only real bond is mutual jealousy of their more prosperous and successful neighbours to the South. England is stable. France is Stable. Portugal is stable. Scotland is a basket case.

Germany has 19% of the population of the EU. I know you're having trouble counting today, but 19% is significantly less than the 50% needed for them to "rule" a democracy.
If you don't understand how Germany dominates Europe and the EU via its leverage in the EU, its banks, its trade, its corporations etc, then you won't understand everyone else's fear of getting crushed by them. Germany is the biggest most powerful country in the EU and it flexes its muscles all the time. It imposed the troika on Greece, it imposed the migrant crisis on Italy, refused to let the EU help out Spain, it told Hungary they must take refugees after Germany had the reckless open door immigration policy and when Hungary refused, the Germans pushed to block their regional development funds. And now Germany wants to get rid of the power of veto so that "smaller countries cannot get in the way of policy of larger countries". Germans hold all the top jobs in Europe and the Euro is geared for Germany's economy at the expense of everyone else ... keeping low export costs for German manufacturers and burying those with debts. They control everything. You never read the links I provide but you should read the one below and understand the fear of Germany.
https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/the-german-takeover-of-the-eu-is-accelerating

You can identify me however you like, but I don't have to care. I should have an Irish passport by this time next year, but even if I turn out not to qualify by some technicality, next year will be my fifth year in the Netherlands. That means I'll be eligible to naturalise as a Dutch citizen. Either way, I will be an EU citizen by 2023 and I don't intend to look back.
You can stick a Ferrari badge on a Citroen. Its still the same piece of shit underneath.

I'm not interested in the UK beyond the border in Ireland holding back European integration. Just give us Ulster back, you can have your sOvEreIgNtY, and we'll have our glorious United States of Europe.
No. You don't get to annex a part of the UK. How about we get the rest of Ireland back? It used to be ours. Ulster has never ever been a part of the EU ever. So there is nothing to give back. Why would we give Ulster to Germany?

We didn't lose a war. We VOTED to leave. We don't have to hand over territory and we won't.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2021, 11:44:28 PM by Toddler Thork »
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Offline xasop

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2021, 12:10:12 AM »
If you concede that your opinions don't matter, I shall respectfully agree and we can move on.
My opinions matter just as much as those of the other 447 million people in the EU. That's how democracies work.

Scotland never really understood what being a nation was. They are more a collection of tribes whose only real bond is mutual jealousy of their more prosperous and successful neighbours to the South. England is stable. France is Stable. Portugal is stable. Scotland is a basket case.
Your unabashed imperialism does nothing to bring me to your point of view.

If you don't understand how Germany dominates Europe and the EU via its leverage in the EU, its banks, its trade, its corporations etc, then you won't understand everyone else's fear of getting crushed by them. Germany is the biggest most powerful country in the EU and it flexes its muscles all the time. It imposed the troika on Greece, it imposed the migrant crisis on Italy, refused to let the EU help out Spain, it told Hungary they must take refugees after Germany had the reckless open door immigration policy and when Hungary refused, the Germans pushed to block their regional development funds. And now Germany wants to get rid of the power of veto so that "smaller countries cannot get in the way of policy of larger countries". Germans hold all the top jobs in Europe and the Euro is geared for Germany's economy at the expense of everyone else ... keeping low export costs for German manufacturers and burying those with debts. They control everything. You never read the links I provide but you should read the one below and understand the fear of Germany.
https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/the-german-takeover-of-the-eu-is-accelerating
I always read your links. You, however, do not.

None of this explains how 19% of the EU population, which currently has 14% of MEPs and 4% of Commissioners due to the deliberate overrepresentation of smaller countries, can dominate a democratic system. Each individual German voter has the least say in the EU at present. Making the EU fairer would involve increasing Germany's influence. None of this points to German domination, and nothing in your post nor your link contains anything but opinions.

You can stick a Ferrari badge on a Citroen. Its still the same piece of shit underneath.
I'm flattered you think of us Europeans as Ferraris. What does that make you, a Mini?

If you are so convinced I can't change my nationality, why do you associate me with Australia, a country I immigrated to?

No. You don't get to annex a part of the UK. How about we get the rest of Ireland back? It used to be ours.
Níl seans faoin spéir.

Ulster has never ever been a part of the EU ever.
Incorrect.

So there is nothing to give back. Why would we give Ulster to Germany?
You wouldn't. You would give it back to the Republic of Ireland, which is a member of the EU.

We didn't lose a war. We VOTED to leave. We don't have to hand over territory and we won't.
Actually, you do, under certain circumstances. Have you read the Good Friday Agreement? To paraphrase, it says that if a majority of people in Northern Ireland want reunification, you have to give it to them. We just need to wait for the clown you've put in number 10 to make another few of his signature cock-ups and I'm sure they'll be ready to leave.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2021, 01:19:36 AM by xasop »
when you try to mock anyone while also running the flat earth society. Lol

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Offline Toddler Thork

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2021, 11:23:35 AM »
I feel like you are busy walking further and further from
In summary, I do now support European federation

I see a lot of complaining that the UK hasn't capitulated to the EUs demands for land, and not many good reasons for destroying every country in the EU to turn it into a European Federation.

Things you'd likely have to destroy.

Languages. You can't have one nation of a thousand tongues. You'll have to pick something and all go with that. The irony is you are going to end up choosing English.
National debt. Can't have national debt with no nations. It all needs to be consolidated into one manageable loan. The German and French tax payers are going to love being on the hook for all that Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Greek debt.
National defences. One giant EU army will be required. So a German politician will be able to order your Belgian daughter to go to war. That's going to be very popular.
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Re: European federalism
« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2021, 11:46:43 AM »
Languages. You can't have one nation of a thousand tongues.
Have you ever been to India?
"On a very clear and chilly day it is possible to see Lighthouse Beach from Lovers Point and vice versa...Upon looking into the telescope I can see children running in and out of the water, splashing and playing. I can see people sun bathing at the shore
- An excerpt from the account of the Bishop Experiment. My emphasis

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Offline Toddler Thork

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #16 on: June 25, 2021, 12:10:13 PM »
Languages. You can't have one nation of a thousand tongues.
Have you ever been to India?

Is that the benchmark? To turn Europe into India?

I'm glad we left.
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Offline xasop

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #17 on: June 25, 2021, 12:23:42 PM »
I feel like you are busy walking further and further from
In summary, I do now support European federation
Yes, that happens when you come into my threads and derail them. I'm surprised it took you this long to notice.

I see a lot of complaining that the UK hasn't capitulated to the EUs demands for land
The EU hasn't demanded anything from the UK except sticking to its agreements (which the UK is presently not doing, but that's another issue). I merely expressed a personal desire for Ireland to be reunified as part of the EU, and a belief that it is inevitable eventually. If you confuse my personal views with the EU's foreign policy, you are going to have a bad time.

and not many good reasons for destroying every country in the EU to turn it into a European Federation.
No countries would be destroyed. England still exists, remember?

The reasons for the EU to federate are broadly the same as the reasons it exists in the first place, to unite the nations of Europe into a state that is stronger than each on their own. We already have monetary unity with the euro, trade freedom with the single market, and freedom of internal migration with Schengen, which have done great things for the quality of life in Europe. I can get on the train to Paris tomorrow, buy stuff using the same currency I use here in Amsterdam, and bring it back with me on the train. Nobody is going to check my passport or ask me for customs duties on the way.

With federation, we could take this unity even further. The EU could make binding legislation rather than relying on members to implement its decisions in their national legislatures. We could have a common migration policy instead of the hodgepodge of 27 different immigration systems currently. As a migrant to the Netherlands, I am treated as a tourist anywhere else in the EU because my Dutch work visa does not apply there. We could standardise VAT and corporate taxes. There are many things a federated Europe could do that are difficult or impossible with the current EU.

You should already be well aware of all of these things, because they are exactly the same reasons the UK is stronger than England, Wales and Scotland would be individually. You just choose not to look at it that way for some reason.

Things you'd likely have to destroy.

Languages. You can't have one nation of a thousand tongues. You'll have to pick something and all go with that. The irony is you are going to end up choosing English.
There are many countries with multiple official languages. South Africa has 11. The EU, though not yet a country, currently has 24, made workable by a team of interpreters working in the European parliament so that everyone can understand each other. The total number of languages spoken in the EU is far higher; 24 is just the number of languages you can write to the EU in and expect a reply in.

Your state alone, the UK, has 6 languages in varying degrees of moribundity, not counting immigrant languages. 2 of those are officially recognised by the UK government. You are simply denying that the world exists at this point.

National debt. Can't have national debt with no nations. It all needs to be consolidated into one manageable loan. The German and French tax payers are going to love being on the hook for all that Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Greek debt.
They already are, indirectly. The poorer countries in Europe tend to receive more financial aid to support their development and contribute less to EU coffers. We accept this because we are stronger united than we are divided, and because in a few decades, the roles may be reversed.

Besides, I thought you said this would give Germany control over Europe. Why would they be unhappy about that?

National defences. One giant EU army will be required. So a German politician will be able to order your Belgian daughter to go to war. That's going to be very popular.
When you enlist in the military, you accept being given orders from your commanding officer, whoever that may be. If you don't want your daughter fighting in a war, perhaps have a chat with her about her career choices?
« Last Edit: June 25, 2021, 12:46:30 PM by xasop »
when you try to mock anyone while also running the flat earth society. Lol

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #18 on: June 25, 2021, 12:40:49 PM »
Languages. You can't have one nation of a thousand tongues.
Have you ever been to India?
Screw India. Has Thork ever been to the UK?
Read the FAQ before asking your question - chances are we already addressed it.
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Offline Toddler Thork

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Re: European federalism
« Reply #19 on: June 25, 2021, 03:00:41 PM »
No countries would be destroyed. England still exists, remember?
Whoa whoa whoa. The UK is a country of countries, remember? We have an English national anthem and our own flag. Scotland, Wales & NI have their own. But Arizona doesn't have a national anthem. Queensland doesn't have a national anthem. You are looking to have a federation of European states ... and to turn a country into a state, you need to strip it of all the things that make it a country.

The reasons for the EU to federate are broadly the same as the reasons it exists in the first place, to unite the nations of Europe into a state that is stronger than each on their own.
Yes, that is broadly obvious. So Australia should become part of the Federation of China then?

We already have monetary unity with the euro,
We? Are you self-identifying again?  ::)

trade freedom with the single market, and freedom of internal migration with Schengen, which have done great things for the quality of life in Europe.
They've done a great job for Germany and her exports. I'd argue a 30% unemployment rate amongst the youth in Spain and financial oblivion for Greece is a pretty high price to pay for cheaper BMWs though.

I can get on the train to Paris tomorrow, buy stuff using the same currency I use here in Amsterdam, and bring it back with me on the train. Nobody is going to check my passport or ask me for customs duties on the way.
And this makes you safer, does it? I mean, you could have also bought some firearms in the czech republic and concealed them legally on the train, and arrived in Amsterdam where that is utterly illegal, but like you say ... no one checked. You could also have stuffed your pockets with drugs in Amsterdam that you bought perfectly legally in a bar, and import them to France where you cannot ... and again, like you say ... no one checked. And there is no paper trail because you paid cash as you all use the euro. Sounds like heaven.  ::)

With federation, we could take this unity even further. The EU could make binding legislation rather than relying on members to implement its decisions in their national legislatures. We could have a common migration policy instead of the hodgepodge of 27 different immigration systems currently. As a migrant to the Netherlands, I am treated as a tourist anywhere else in the EU because my Dutch work visa does not apply there. We could standardise VAT and corporate taxes. There are many things a federated Europe could do that are difficult or impossible with the current EU.
Why do you want all the countries to be the same? The awesome thing about Europe is that they are all different. Now you've rocked up in the Netherlands and are demanding everything looks like Germany. You are going to be loathed by your new brethren.

You should already be well aware of all of these things, because they are exactly the same reasons the UK is stronger than England, Wales and Scotland would be individually. You just choose not to look at it that way for some reason.
No ... we left them as countries. Country of countries, remember? You know, the solution you turned your nose up at. The Scots are still scots. They still eat deep fried Mars bars and wear skirts. We didn't turn them into a state.

There are many countries with multiple official languages. South Africa has 11. The EU, though not yet a country, currently has 24, made workable by a team of interpreters working in the European parliament so that everyone can understand each other. The total number of languages spoken in the EU is far higher; 24 is just the number of languages you can write to the EU in and expect a reply in.
Yes, a problem recognised more than 2000 years ago in a town called Babel. What a waste of time and money to do all that translating.

Your state alone, the UK, has 6 languages in varying degrees of moribundity, not counting immigrant languages. 2 of those are officially recognised by the UK government. You are simply denying that the world exists at this point.
Country of countries ... and we all agreed English would be the first language ... everything else is a bonus and OPTIONAL, not mandatory.

They already are, indirectly. The poorer countries in Europe tend to receive more financial aid to support their development and contribute less to EU coffers. We accept this because we are stronger united than we are divided, and because in a few decades, the roles may be reversed.
I think you'll find most Europeans DON'T accept this. You are speaking on behalf of a group of people you have recently foisted yourself upon, and now you seem to know how they feel about spending their money on other people.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2010/apr/28/debt-crisis-germans-bill-greeks

Besides, I thought you said this would give Germany control over Europe. Why would they be unhappy about that?
German people are not German politicians and corporations. German people would pay out a lot. German corporations would make a killing on the subsidised Euro. Why don't you understand economics?

When you enlist in the military, you accept being given orders from your commanding officer, whoever that may be. If you don't want your daughter fighting in a war, perhaps have a chat with her about her career choices?
8 out of 27 countries in the EU have conscription. That's not a career choice.
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