Is the UK with the US or us Mr. Barnier? Are you kidding me?

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“With us or US? Barnier challenges May on the kind of society UK wants
Michel Barnier says Britain’s answer is important because it will direct discussions on a future relationship with the EU”

My goodness, this is the title and sub title in the Guardian yesterday. It is a question posed twenty years too late! Of course the UK is mimicking the US model, who on earth doesn’t know that by now? Apparently a main entity, the EU doesn’t. How come?

Watching the political antics in the Westminster bunch has been, of late, more “you couldn’t make it up” material than ever. It would be funny if it were not so seriously damaging people’s lives, and when the calibre of politicians is those who are seriously in love with themselves, actually believes in their own grandeur and worthiness.

But, for Mr. Barnier to pose this question right NOW is abundantly indicative of the dualism having been played out by Westminster, with its Media directors, and its increasingly Westminster centric political elites, for twenty years and more.

On the one hand, the UK pretended to be integral to the EU, whilst knowing full well that its other hand was going for the US model of an economy based on low wages and little to no social care.

Its use of ancient tactics by governing bodies, to wit that the scapegoats of foreigners in general and some foreigners in particular can always be kept as a standby when the masses start to figure out that they are missing out. That their lifestyle doesn’t match the cloak of delusion peddled out by Westminster. Mr. Barnier, please let me enlighten you! There is no point in posing this question to Mrs. May, because she is not about to come clean right now, now is she?

Mrs. Thatcher stripped the assets of the UK and sold them off...those that were left were deliberately not maintained so that money in the bank was seen as an earned asset. It was actually setting up institutions for unimaginably unpayable retro maintenance bills  - and decaying buildings - twenty years on. Unless the building was sold for capital and then leased back to the organisation. All false economies.

 

Then, Blair’s era just carried on with more of the same. He pretended that they were not the same though which makes him a bigger liar than ever could be envisaged by any Labour party supporter.

 

Conveniently, the promised vote for proportional representation was so under enthused for after his accession to number 10, it never got anywhere. Therefore, the old and trusted nationalistic and insularly emotional sentences of “the Mother of Parliaments” and such like made the nationals quite content to carry on and, remember, he was throwing money at the NHS for a while ( not properly managing it mind you because it created levels of administration never known before and lots of jobs for the boys of management consultancies ), so everyone could be sure that he would do the right things for the country.

 

Sadly, for the country that is - not for him in his Napoleonic dream state - he had already decided not to mention the promise of building closer ties to the EU again and, erm, well the media and his marketing model of New Labour went hell bent for internal peerages and self aggrandisement and all of that. Mr. Barnier, you must have noticed the Kinnock family in the European offices, all riding on a lovely gravy train having conveniently dropped all scruples and original Labour principles? You didn’t? Well, how come? Pray tell me do! And erm more particularly, you must have noticed Mr. Blair’s similar physical walking mimicry .... nay, adulation... of George W.? No?

 

This was when all pretence of any kind of Labour values was completely removed. I mean, don’t you remember the Iraq war? Where were you all? Oh, no, not listening to Boris in his utterly and pompous and thinly veiled desire to appear to be the bloody great British beloved journalist and would-be aspiring politician to higher and much greater, things. Oh, and did you not realise that he would sell his own Mother, or even an innocent Iranian British lady in years to come for his own ends? Were you actually taken in by his charm when he was drinking wine in the streets and bars of Brussells?

 

Mr. Barnier, the answer you seek has been written in golden letters on the Cliffs of Dover for at least twenty years and it is WE ARE FOLLOWING THE US MODEL....BUT YOU EUROPEAN POLITICIANS ARE SO FAR REMOVED FROM GROUND LEVEL FACTS THAT YOU DON’T SEE IT....LIKE DON QUIXOTE!


Mr. Barnier, I have some sympathy for your belabouring under a total misapprehension because the vast majority of the Brits were under one too! Except it was a different one, that all problems and issues in the UK come from foreigners in general and the EU in particular. The problems and issues range throughout all decaying public services including housing, social and mental care, policing, hospitals and on and on and on. This is why they voted BREXIT.

 

But where my sympathy and empathy fails me is that in this day and age with all of you educated and seasoned politicians rattling around the corridors of power, is that you didn’t figure it out.

 

A word of advice, if you really want to know what is going on in the UK, get over there, take a long drive through the post modern and abandoned communities and see it with your own eyes.

Honestly, it is as clearly written in streets of Britain. far, far away from the four square miles around Westminster , as were the blatant lies from Farage and Boris and Glover and the right wing dominating media, to the ordinary people.

 

Erm, if you need an advisor on what is actually happening in Westminster, look no further. I have witnessed this drama whilst working and living in multiple European countries for the past thirty years.

 

Yours most faithfully and sincerely,
From an English Woman in exile, in Maastricht.
(An admirer of Angela Merkel who is the most sophisticated and able statesperson in the world. Someone who is worthy of respect, has interests beyond herself as in she is not self seeking, she is actually working for the greater good.)

Comments

Autumn Cote Added Nov 11, 2017 - 5:12am
Please note, the second best way to draw more attention to your work is to comment on the work of others (something you haven’t done in several days). I know this to be true because if you do, I'll do everything in my power to draw more attention to your articles (there is a lot I can do and would like to do on your behalf).  Below is a few articles whose authors are deserving of more comment activity:
 
http://writerbeat.com/articles/19467-To-Expostulate
 
http://writerbeat.com/articles/19445-Russian-biological-material-and-theft-thereof
Stone-Eater Friedli Added Nov 11, 2017 - 1:26pm
Eileen
 
1. The UK is anglophone culture. As is the US and the commonwealth. Imperialist. Not compatible with the rest of Europe LOL
 
2. Merkel is a NATO/elitist globalist slave. No more than that. She's in the same club as Rasmussen and responsible for the refugee crisis here largely...
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 12, 2017 - 9:29am
Hello SE, thanks for your commentary.  I do not think that the anglophone -ery is, in itself, a reason, but the Imperialist notions is a reason. The press in the UK (vastly right wing and requiring the slave economy and US model) have plugged the Great in Great Britain so much that people genuined believe it is a proper description of the “great” land, rather than its true etymology distinguising it from the smaller and diminutive Brittany, from the middle age empire of the Plantagenets.  But yes, perhaps the incompatibility with the rest of Europe stems from induced insularity and turning away to, erm, the US, far awayover the pond but seen as more close than Europe.
 
The destruction of the social state, such as it was, cannot be seen as a natural progression in the twenty-first century as its effects are causing vast homelessness, work houses and Dickensian conditions.
 
Angela Merkel might perhaps have “caused”the refugee crisis here but where are these people supposed to go? What do we expect to happen to them? Should they just drop dead? Angela Merkel takes responsibility for the actions of our governments and war machines. There is no simple solution but taking and accepting responsibility is yet to permeate our political lives. We all need to take our responsibilities and try to understand rather than see the refugees as some kind of unrelated “problem” that should just go away. It is not practical and it will bring ever more trouble to our shores as in what we sow, we reap.
 
I am not sure if she is in the same club as Rasmussen, I have just read up on his history and cannot see the commonalities.
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 12, 2017 - 11:36am
History doesn't match your story line.  Britain had an empire where the sun never set built on trade and manufacturing following Adam Smith's understanding of economy.  America was in her shadow for decades.  America's government is based on Britain's government and it background in representation and the law of nature that came to your shores from the Normans.  The king's power was diminishing fast when we created the US Constitution.  That is the only area America has led Britain. 
 
Socialism is a European concept created by the children of members of the upper class.  They appear to be attacking the European class society but the in actual fact replacing the criteria of upper class membership.  In England even that didn't happen.  Germany seem to lead and all of Europe followed including Britain.   The mathematician and economist Hayek that lived in England during and after WWII chronicles Socialism in Britain.  All of Europe after WWI moved in the direction of socialism where America took the same turn a decade and a half later with the election of Roosevelt.  That spacing appears to have been maintained.   
 
The EU maintains the class society and classes created by the monarchy seem to have made the transition to the upper class of a quasi Democratic Socialist society.  I say quasi because to have a class society it is impossible to not have government created barrier between classes.  These barrier create disenchantment with government and thus Britain's spoke out in their BREXIT vote.  The citizens of Europe are also disenchanted with barriers they face.  
 
The Romans realized that welfare was a way to retain control of the lower classes in a class society, buy them off.    Democratic Socialist have jumped on that solution also with welfare and since that has gotten to costly, started to import lower cost workers without experience in democratic government.   
 
Welfare has stripped the assets of the UK and sold them off to pay the bill, not Prime Minster Mrs. Thatcher.   While that continued your swamp dwellers in  Westminster joined in on the low price worker importation and now you have lots of Muslims.   
 
Guess what, Muslims see the barriers also as they learn and experience democratic government.   Some do not like the choices of being an individual and responsible for their own decisions.  We call them Terrorist and radicals.  Islam has a solution,  do not think just follow the words of those that preach the words of Mohammad and the first century caliphate, 800's.  They tell you that you as a Muslim are in the upper class and all non-Muslims are in the lower class, less then human class.  You have power over them of life and death.  God will reward you for proclaiming the superiority of Islam by force.
Dino Manalis Added Nov 12, 2017 - 4:25pm
Britain should strive to push EU reforms that would enable it to remain part of the organization.  Britain and the EU are perfect together!  Just deal with problems effectively!
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 13, 2017 - 3:05am
Thomas, thanks. History matches my storyline perfectly. Social welfare and social housing were taken down from the early eighties which made the UK, not Britain as a whole, cash rich.
 
Adam Smith wrote his volumes in the late 1700s and his Wealth of Nations was based on a pre industrial economy.
 
The US left the UK King in anger and violence in wishing to escape the yoke of colonialism.
 
Socially orientated good housing and access to education and good services is a good investment. If you do not do this, you will have street level illnesses, crime increase and huge poverty. The facts are out there and are not made up my me, homelessness is now at such high rates that it is literally visible these days.
 
I am not sure where the Islam fits in here, as I consider the references somewhat opaque. If there are Buddhists and Atheists, as there will be, so what?
 
Brexit was voted for based on what people saw as breaking social services, which the government ministers blamed on foreigners to deflect the truth which is that the economies in the UK have always fed London and the South East. North of the Watford Gap is not known about inside the political elites....!
 
What I am witnessing is dualism and discord. The UK is hoping that the US will save it with trade deals. This implies that the US standards will be adopted and the EU standards abandoned. Chlorinated chicken and masses of non secure work contracts and poor education is part of the US model.  I was surprised to realise that the EU hadn’t figured out that the UK was getting the best from the EU, pretending it was European whilst following the US model...best of both worlds thus!
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 13, 2017 - 3:08am
Dino, thanks. But this is the issue! I do,not think that you can leave a club and yet have the same privileges can you?  It might be imperfect, what is?
 
But the EU is a more sophisticated model than the US and it has angreat deal to offer in a modern world.
Thomas Napers Added Nov 13, 2017 - 4:33am
“On the one hand, the UK pretended to be integral to the EU, whilst knowing full well that its other hand was going for the US model of an economy based on low wages and little to no social care.”
 
The US economy is not based on low wages and little to no social care.  For an economy based on low wages and little to no social care, look at any third world country or any socialist country.  Low wages, low social care and low social care are all highly related to each other.  For an economy that does an amazing job of providing for 320 million people, America is the shining star.  More to the point of this article, Membership in the EU has nothing to do with wages and social care in the EU.    
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 13, 2017 - 6:54am
Thomas N. thanks.  Are you aware of the huge numbers of people in the US who do not have access to basic dental and medical care because they cannot afford it?
 
Membership in the EU has everything to do with social care and standards as in the model of a more balanced state where wealth is distributed more fairly so that the extremes are not the norm.  Your Mr. Ford knew the value of the middle classes as he created its model by giving good wages and conditions and then having a market to buy his goods.  It is an entirely arguable and working economic model and its value is known by economists.
 
But alright then, am I mistaken?  Upon what model is the US based then?
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 13, 2017 - 9:59am
So let me understand you, Eileen. PM Thatcher in the 80's made getting welfare more onerous and unemployment when up but what does that mean? Unemployment does not include full-time students, the retired, children, or those not actively looking for a paying job. The latter group was forced by Thatcher to look for work and as they got work the government collected taxes instead of paid welfare and provided public housing, got cash richer. Same think happened in America under Reagan GDP growth rate highest in decades before and after.
 
This is conditionally true, "good housing and access to education and good services is a good investment." That is so long as those receiving it choose to add their labor to the GDP instead of live off the state. Welfare bankrupted Rome, USSR, Cuba, China before 1980's when it allowed more free enterprise. Equal distribution of wealth was tried in American by the first arrivals, the majority died and were replenished by idealist like you  on the next years ship. That continued for years until a new lead changed from a co-op to private property. They could not place their survival on the community, but it was placed on themselves. They flourished afterwards.
 
The industrial revolution started in the 1600's and did a major part of its growing in the 1700's. 1800's came the second stage of the industrial revolution, the rise of corporations.  Adam Smith was writing about the early industrial revolution phase.  But his greatest effect was for the second stage.
 
You answer this question yourself, "I am not sure where the Islam fits in here. . . Brexit was voted for based on what people saw as breaking social services, which the government ministers blamed on foreigners." the surge mostly of Muslim immigrants.
 
You do a great job of pointing out America's failures but seem to ignore Europe's failures which are different but just and destructive. We are all doing a bad job since our government are basically using the same Democratic Socialist ideology.  USSR that followed a more aggressive Socialist ideology collapsed. That is something we should not ignore.
 
Eileen, NHS is welfare and the problem with welfare that the Romans learned is that the cost increases over time.  When not mechanism exist to limit services by the choice of the patents then the government limits services by themselves.   The choice is simple who best can make the choice?  Free enterprise capitalism says those in need make better choices that a bureaucrat.   Here are the decision in the UK made by bureaucrats:
 
"In a centralized system, the setting of targets can lead to organized deception as well as distortion of effort. For example, when the British government decreed that every patient arriving in the emergency room should be admitted to a hospital ward within four hours if admission was necessary (and that hospitals would face fines if they failed to achieve this goal), traffic jams of ambulances formed outside one hospital, with patients prevented from entering the emergency room until the hospital could comply with the directive. Other hospitals designated corridors as wards so they could claim that patients on stretchers had been admitted in time."
2013,"Last year, the Royal College of Physicians pointed out that there are a third fewer general and acute beds now than there were 25 years ago despite a 37 percent increase in emergency admissions over the past decade. . . . Five thousand nursing posts have been eliminated along with thousands of other hospital posts over the last three years.
 
Many hospital trusts are heavily burdened with debts. According to the NHS Trust Development Authority’s summer report, 26 NHS Trusts will have a gross planned deficit of £325 million in 2013/14.
In June it was widely publicised that South London Health Care (NHS) was being placed into administration with a debt burden of £150 million. A further six NHS trusts now face bankruptcy."  
 
Eileen after Obama introduced our NHS this has actually increased, "Are you aware of the huge numbers of people in the US who do not have access to basic dental and medical care because they cannot afford it?"  Yes I am aware that high deductible for individual policies under ACA and the prevention of individual from forming groups to bargain for insurance has caused this to grow and move into the middle class.  The growth of medical care for the poor was not changed by ACA since they are signed up for the decades old (1960s) Medicaid welfare program. 
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 13, 2017 - 10:35am
Thomas S, thanks.  The Wealth of Nations was based on cottage industry and was pre industrial revolution.  It began in the later 1700 s into the next century.
 
As for the rest, I am still trying to pick out the fundamental points.
 
If we drop the word “social” and say public services, does that take out the anger about what socialism and communism seems always to bring out of some people?
 
Investment in people is always a very good economic thing to do for the entire wealth of a nation.
 
India and other countries live in “ organic socialism” whereby the very poor rely on handouts and highly menial tasks and jobbing, from the rich.
 
Mind you, India is changing now fast I suppose.
 
By creating a society in the UK that is very similar to the state of Victorian England, is a retrograde step, not a modernising or sophisticated one.  All of the stories of Oscar Wild and Dickens lament and show these factors and how very immoral and degrading these society structures are.
 
I am seeing people in the gutter, literally, these days when I walk through cities. Is this to be accepted in a country which promises greatness and pretends to be one of the most advanced in the world?
 
Perhaps it is all about our respective states of mind, but I am feeling so uncomfrtable in the UK these days that it is chilling and frightening.
 
I live in a European country where the social housing is excellent, where people have access to education and basic health services and beyond.  Of course there are wealthy and poorer people, but the tax system and the public institutions keep basic standards to allow a civilised society to flourish.  I know that if I took some of my neighbours to walk through some cities in the UK. they would be shocked beyond their wildest thoughts. It isn’t Midsomer, or central London or the nice bits of Oxford such as they see on the telly.
 
I want to pay more taxes for two reasons: it means that I have more income and it also means that even if some misguided twerp doesn’t want to contribute to society, he will not be thrown into the streets to fend for himself.  The education system allows this person’s kids to get an education, anyway and to choose their own lives and future.  
 
Economically, it makes much, more sense and we can all move on with wider views and aims and bring intellect and perspective and caring to our countries. We all benefit.
 
 
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 13, 2017 - 12:10pm
Eileen you are correct that the real explosive growth of the industrial revolution occurred in the middle 1700's.  Authors like Adam Smith lead  so they observe and predict in the early stages of a change.  The technology that powered the industrial revolution such as steam engines started in the 1600's.  By the early 1700's those machines were starting to move beyond the initial applications.  People realized where they could be applied.  Capital was starting to be gathered to create industry.  Trading companies were well established by the end of the 1600's  considering that trading companies funded the pilgrims that settled in America. 
 
The points I am trying to make are:
The problem with welfare that the Romans learned is that the cost increases over time.   This is especially true if those that receive welfare vote to keep those providing the welfare in power.  It is a death spiral also that Rome learned.  And your observation suggest that UK is well on its way, "I am seeing people in the gutter, literally."  Welfare destroyed the Roman economy because in destroyed the reason for working and spend money to reinforce not working.  Taxes destroyed the reason to invest in the economy.
 
Who best can make the choice?  Free enterprise capitalism says those in need make better choices that a bureaucrat.   That was the message of Adam Smith and others like Lock and De Montesquieu.   And they had a major influence in the foundation of America.  The example of Rome and what I wrote above shows the effect of bureaucrat making decisions.   Brexit is an example that the people can make different choices then bureaucrats.   It seems that the bureaucrats in the EU see the gain in open boarders outway the cost.  The people like you in Britain disagree.  As does now the Spanish area.
 
From this side of the pond I would never even consider this, "By creating a society in the UK that is very similar to the state of Victorian England, is a retrograde step, not a modernising or sophisticated one. "  Queen Victoria would throw the leaders of Democratic Socialism in jail.  
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 13, 2017 - 12:13pm
Note Lenin proclaimed he was creating a democratic socialist nation, USSR, as the name of the nation suggest.   Fabian Socialist or communist also would not get a warm welcome form Victoria since they want to overthrow her government.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 13, 2017 - 1:37pm
Thomas S, thanks.  I do believe that if you look at the costs of lack of basic public services including homelessness, children’s decaying teeth for lack of dental care, you will find a huge cost to society in terms of having to deal with issues in the street, in prisons and in hospitals ....there are some very respected societies that do independent research including Rowntrees, Shelter and the University of Hull.  The Red Cross joined them in an unprecedented step to point out the near collapse of the NHS and its effects on people.
 
Note, also, Thomas, that the costs of medical care in the US are exponentially greater than anywhere in Europe. The profit margins are huge for the health care industry as well as the pharma etc.  
 
It is a complete fallacy that the costs of social care is the reason for a society’s or nation’s decline. The reason for the decline in the UK is the vast difference now between the very rich and the very poor. It is so huge that the gap is also because the very rich seldom pay enough in taxes and this has been an increasing trend in the past five years.
 
Queen Victoria saw a real change in the approach to a more balanced society and her husband, as well as she, was a great champion of proper housing, limited working hours and standards in factories as well as access to medical services.  She and her Prince Albert will be spinning in their graves, as will Dickens himself.
 
The US model is that one which justifies the fact that eight people in the world own more than half of its assets. 
 
2015 report: Global inequality is growing, with half the world’s wealth now in the hands of just 1% of the population, according to a new report.
The middle classes have been squeezed at the expense of the very rich, according to research by Credit Suisse, which also finds that for the first time, there are more individuals in the middle classes in China – 109m – than the 92m in the US.” source Guardian.
 
Just eight men own half the wealth in the entire world and this is an important statement about is detrimental effects on democracy:
Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International, said:
“It is obscene for so much wealth to be held in the hands of so few when 1 in 10 people survive on less than $2 a day. Inequality is trapping hundreds of millions in poverty; it is fracturing our societies and undermining democracy.”
 
 
This highly destructive tendency to concentrate the wealth and power into the hands of so few is creating societies that are not worthy of the twenty-first century and modern man, let alone a huge destroyer of democracies, Thomas and the trend in the UK is to go hell for leather for this, same, model as proffered by the US.
 
Why is it so engrained in the US model that good, basic services for a nation is a great evil?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 13, 2017 - 3:11pm
Eileen, failure at any level in America and Europe should not be compared against each other to pick a winner. Failure means neither wins. Both are socialized medical and welfare system. So maybe that is saying that the basic approach is a failure. Failure only eliminates an approach, does not point to a better solution.
 
The cost of social care if in include welfare aimed at getting votes is a reason for nations to decline. Rome and the USSR are great examples but history is full of others that have collapse much slower. They are buying votes to stay in power and to do that they redistribute property. Criminals redistribute property, theft. Government steal from a smaller size group to give to a larger size group. The problem, Eileen, as the Romans found out and we see today, is that to maintain getting those votes, the price keeps going up as the amount give is treated as a right.
 
The group paying at the beginning can be sold on helping the poor which is what you are trying to sell, Eileen. But as the burden increases and the poor live much better that image fades. Continue to increase the burden and the only option is to decrease production of wealth and just sit on it or move. UK has seen this happen as we have in America. What comes next is collapse.
 
Queen Victoria if I remember correctly let people be charges and convicted of treason. How would she respond to the thing Lenin did in Russia? Socialism is a political system that is masked in helping the people. Stalin and Moe purged resistance by murdering them as did Hitler. Socialism reality is different then the rhetoric.  American form of Democratic Socialism have masked the enforcers KKK and Antifa that are both protected by local government.
 
Eileen, you tell us, "Just eight men own half the wealth in the entire world," Simple result of class society which we both know is created by socialism. America call the government class 'the swamp.' The goal throughout history of class societies is to put barriers to the transfer of wealth and power. We know that within about 3 generations without these barriers the wealth inherited is spent. So Eileen you do not have to worry about these eight wealthy men if you have a classless society.  That is the the goal of Socialism as we hear in many speeches by Democrats and swamp Republicans.
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 13, 2017 - 3:13pm
The goal of the swamp is a class society.  
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 13, 2017 - 3:16pm
Thomas S, this is nothing to do with having a classless society. This is everything to do with fair tax systems and civilised countries.
 
I think that the word socialism conjures up all kinds of evil in your mind but it is not about communism. Forget the word.
 
Look at Oxfam’s reports, Shelter’s and find your own independent ones.
 
I am not fighting a war on socialists or capitalists here at all.
Dave Volek Added Nov 13, 2017 - 4:42pm
Thomas
While this is not the first time we have sparred on this socialism/progressive/capitalist divide, I would like to bring an interesting side perspective and see what your insights are.
 
I see your political ideology as being un-electable in any modern democracy. So to implement that ideology effectively, a nation should take away voting rights away from the demographics that would tend to have socialistic viewpoints.
 
One delineater could be the personal net worth an individual. Let's say, for example, when the net worth of $100,000 is proven, that person gets to vote.  Such a person could be said to have a better understanding of finance and commerce and hard work and smart work. If our elected politicians need only to appeal to these wise voters, then the politicians would not be swayed by those who with a "get something for nothing" mindset. This is the only way I can see a libertarian agenda ever being implemented.
 
Comments?
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 13, 2017 - 6:26pm
Eileen, maybe it is about time to let wiser men the me speak, Abraham Lincoln. The issue of a welfare state which in both our countries is driving the nation to bankrupts is addressed: "You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.  You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.  You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.  You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves."  The reason PM Thatcher and Pres. Reagan increased the GDP while in office is because they took men that were told government can provide for decades and got them to realize the were capable of providing for themselves.  We all gained but they gained the most.
 
One of the major principles of socialism is that experts make better decision then the public so socialism creates a government of experts that once voted in make decisions for the public, (this is the rational now being put forth in Venezuela.)  It is the basis of my discussion with you on welfare and NHS.  Failures have shown that the experts make no better decisions then the citizens individual as a group.  But the big difference is that the effect of a poor decision by a citizen is small where the effect of a poor decision by a bureaucrat is huge.  
 
Eileen the main principle of a free market is that self interest will result in the best solutions becoming known and implemented.  Poor decisions will not be implemented by the masses.   Capitalism is just the collection of wealth needed to create products.  Capitalism is part of free markets and socialist societies.   Capitalism requires a return for the risk taken since success in not insured.
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 13, 2017 - 6:31pm
So what is fair?  That a bureaucrat makes a poor decision and many people suffer of that individuals make poor decision and few people suffer but other learn from their failures?
 
I do not think taxes are fair when a bureaucrat determines how the money is spent.  and often wasted.  I can not vote out the bureaucrat.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 14, 2017 - 3:10am
Good morning  Thomas  S and Dave V. Thanks for the commentary.
 
Thomas, your  :   The points I am trying to make are:
The problem with welfare that the Romans learned is that the cost increases over time.   This is especially true if those that receive welfare vote to keep those providing the welfare in power.  It is a death spiral also that Rome learned.
 
& Abraham Lincoln. The issue of a welfare state which in both our countries is driving the nation to bankrupts is addressed: "You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.  You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.  You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.  You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves." 
 
Yes, of course I see the point and the points!  I am aware of what you are speaking  and of what you are speaking is a "populist" government.  No, I agree, it does not work.    If a government does not build neighbourhoods and public services for its people, you will have extremes of basic living standards, instead of a median norm.  If you just get out of your mind the idea that I am promoting a welfare state for itself and of itself and for no other reason, perhaps you might see the chink of light?  Capitalism, equally, as an end in itself, produces no good.  Welfare, equally, as an end in itself, produces no good.  What about balance?
 
Dave V:  yes, you are endeavouring to find the middle ground. The delineator you mention was used. Reform Act 1832 – extended voting rights to adult males who rented propertied land of a certain value, so allowing 1 in 7 males in the UK voting rights.
The 1832 Reform Act was the result of a long struggle both in the streets and in Parliament, but although it enfranchised some, it had little real impact on the lives of the working classes.
Until the 1830s, Britain's elections were neither representative nor balanced. A range of factors determined whether you were eligible to vote, including whether you lived in a county or a borough and whether your area was eligible to send an MP to Parliament at all.
In a few places all men could vote, but in the vast majority of locations it depended on whether you owned property or paid certain taxes. Some boroughs, such as those in the rapidly growing industrial towns of Birmingham and Manchester, had no MPs to represent them at all. At the same time, there were notorious 'rotten' boroughs, such as Old Sarum at Salisbury, which had two MPs but only seven voters. There were also 'pocket' boroughs – those owned by major landowners who chose their own MP. Moreover, with no secret ballot, voters were easily bribed or intimidated.
http://www.bl.uk/learning/histcitizen/21cc/struggle/chartists1/historicalsources/source2/reformact.html
 
Look no further than today's parliament to see everything being returned to this pre 1832 situation because votes in the UK seem not to be able to produce any balanced and coalition government, as it now needs to be - to balance the needs, wealth and power and the economy.  The new controllers are the Media barons and those wealthy who pay little or not tax.  Deja Vu?
 
 
Billy Roper Added Nov 14, 2017 - 11:10am
Dino (Autumn) says "Britain and the EU are perfect together". Apparently, the majority of Britons disagreed. Maybe they don't like being forcibly flooded with nonWhites. 
Ari Silverstein Added Nov 14, 2017 - 11:21am
Mrs. Thatcher didn’t strip the assets of the UK and sell them off, that’s just your liberal bias impeding your ability to think objectively.  She recognized that socialism didn’t work and did what she could to make the Brits appreciate the merits of capitalism again.  My favorite quote of hers was this:
 
The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money.
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 14, 2017 - 1:15pm
Eileen I agree that a balance is the end goal that needs to be found. My guess that Lincoln wrote said this in the middle of the war and seeing the military procurement in action, "These capitalist generally act harmoniously and in concert, to fleece the people." 
 
To find a balance the role of government is to be the empire not the manager.   To be an empire barriers must exist between special interests funding and the bureaucrats and elected officials.  That means the barriers that create classes also need to go.  Death tax need to go.  Recall that within three generation inherited wealth is consumed on average when government barriers are removed.
 
National health care for example can be divided into the everyday need and catastrophic events.   Vouters could be provided so that everyone has access.  And the doctors performance and effort is rewarded proportionately.   This should effect catastrophic health care.  How to organize NHS is less obvious but the requirement is that the patents and doctors are the ones that make a majority of the decisions. Bureaucrats again act as empires  having no connection to funding and a contesting means exist.
 
The use in America of welfare credit cards have resulted in people making choices.  Solving education problems in America would be solved by vouters.  Special needs designations effect the vouter amount.  And as always contest classification is built into the empire responsibility.  Empire bureaucrats have no connection to funding. 
 
As you see Eileen I have not ended welfare but changed who makes the day to day decisions.    Finally the voters every major election must approve the rules.   I have purposely not said a budget because the budget is set for example on health care by the majority that are in good health, thus the budget will assume the population is all healthy.    This can be done by the elected officials prior to their election.  So they will have to face voters while campaigning to explain their decision and the projected tax burden.
 
Elected officials in both UK and America (only federal) into population and region  or a combination.  This approach prevent those getting free stuff that always outnumber the tax payers  from winning in a pure population vote.  If this is close to the case then everyone that can vote must pay taxes and the tax is a flat tax with no deductions.  This pushes the pain of high taxes deeper into the population.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 15, 2017 - 2:36am
Ari S. the problem with capitalism as a single operator is that you eventually take everyone else’s wealth, health and happiness. Thatcher’s legacy shines now and the very rich pay no taxes and the burden of tax is on the working classes who now have to use food banks to survive.
 
Billy, what has this to do with the EU?
 
Thomas S. we can argue political doctrine until the end of time or until global warming sees us drowning in the results of uncontrolled capitalism. My point is that I wonder how the rest of the EU missed the clear signs that the UK was heading for the US model whilst pretending partnership.  Your side wins anyway Thomas, in the UK.  It is chilling to witness though.
Check out the results of inadequate healthcare for the masses in the US, look up the costs of healthcare in the US compared to the rest of the world. The figures speak volumes.
 
Ok, the UK is becoming the next state of the US.
 
There shall be just 27 member states in the EU and er the 51st in the US!
opher goodwin Added Nov 15, 2017 - 6:00am
Eileen - As a British national I despair.
On the one hand, the UK pretended to be integral to the EU, whilst knowing full well that its other hand was going for the US model of an economy based on low wages and little to no social care.
That is precisely the road they are taking us down. The opposite of everything I stand for.
Phil Greenough Added Nov 15, 2017 - 8:44am
A word of advice, if you really want to know what is going on in the UK, get over there, take a long drive through the post modern and abandoned communities and see it with your own eyes.
 
Or you could drive through downtown Lodnon and admire the beautiful skyscrapers.  Or take a drive down Bond Street and see a wealth of elegant stores, exclusive brands, designer fashion, luxury goods, fine jewels, art and antiques. Or take a drive in London and admire the “Walkie Talkie” building, the most expensive skyscraper (per square foot) in the world.  You see, it all depends on what you want to believe, if taking a drive is how you determine economic health or lack thereof.
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 15, 2017 - 10:07am
Eileen, UK and America are the exception and have been the exception for centuries, Magna Carta is but a small representation as that exceptionalism.  The UK's empire that the Sun never set on is from this exceptionalism.  EU has a history dotted with tyrants.   Magna Carta separates UK from the EU in the past and today and that Eileen is what you seem to have missed.  Eileen the Magna Carta principles in the DNA of the citizens wins in the UK.  You want to call it political doctrine go ahead.  I think those long boats brought an understanding of the laws of nature and of nature's God.   That is the eternal truth that stepped foot on the UK's shores centuries ago. 
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 15, 2017 - 10:21am
Eileen and the rest of you WB readers I suggest that you test your thoughts against the laws of nature and of nature's God instead of the laws that have come from the societies of tyrants that dotted Europe's history.  
Benjamin Goldstein Added Nov 15, 2017 - 12:33pm
I found the article a bit messy, but well-written. Maybe my eyes are a bit tired, but is the gist of it that the UK is somehow a US colony? I think if anything, Thatcher has led Reagan. Her politics also sent waves through the following administrations (including Blair) and through Germany (particularly through the SPD headed chancelorship of Gerhard Schröder). I see her leadership in a different light, but that is a matter of taste. I don't think the UK was led. It leads. I also think Brexit leads the rest of the continent to a different place. Britain is free and strong.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 15, 2017 - 3:38pm
Opher, you have got it, indeed. Yes, it is as you say.  Yes, it is going to get worse.
 
Thomas S.  Oh dear please do not overplay the Magna Carta....it was generally ignored by King John for a long time and he only did it so that the Barons would behave!  Note this:
In 1215 there was nothing new in the ideas behind the Charter. They were centuries old and part of general European heritage. Strengthened in the 12th century by the study of Roman and canon law, they can be found in legislation and constitutions promulgated in Spain, Hungary and the south of France. It was in England, however, that they led to the most radical and detailed restrictions on the ruler. That was because in England the ruler was uniquely demanding and intrusive, thanks to the pressures of maintaining a continental empire, which stretched from Normandy to the Pyrenees. By the time of John’s accession in 1199, there was already outcry at the level of the king’s financial demands. They were to become far worse.
https://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/jan/02/magna-carta-800th-anniversary-relevance-david-carpenter
There is a lot more here at this link, read it and weep.....
 
Phil G.  Erm, well, yes, London is the capital of England and of the UK although with now some devolvement of power to Scotland and Wales.  But it is one city inside the whole of Britain...and the rest of Britain is its worker bees.  Yes, it is great in London - I have worked there, lived there, enjoyed lots of things there...although it is increasingly littered with the homeless and you do not have to look too far now.  And it is becoming unaffordable to live in for the ordinary people who keep London ticking along like the police, health workers, shop workers.....
The UK is not free and it is not strong and it is definitely not leading Europe.  Thanks for your compliment, but please come to the UK and save them would you? They need you to tell them how it really is, perhaps!
 
 
 
 
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 15, 2017 - 9:24pm
Eileen you just told us the importance of the Magna Carta. Normans had a foundation that was joined with the Saxon and the historical time was right.   America's revolution occurred only a few years before the French.  It happened at the right time in history with the right preparations.  This is the 500th anniversary of  Luther putting about 90 questions up for discussion at his monastery.   He was not the first, but it just happened that a German invented the printing press and finished spending two years setting the type and printing bibles.  That prevented the Church from squashing him.   Roma was a republic for centuries before it turned into a totalitarian government.  Concrete made this happen.
Benjamin Goldstein Added Nov 16, 2017 - 11:52am
An admirer of Angela Merkel who is the most sophisticated and able statesperson in the world. Someone who is worthy of respect, has interests beyond herself as in she is not self seeking, she is actually working for the greater good.
 
Yuck, I must have been really tired yesterday not to have read this properly. Disgusting. Sickening. Truly appalling.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 16, 2017 - 3:17pm
Thomas S. Yep, well all in its time and evolving along. Now, let's see whence the Angles and Saxons come....the European continent..... they kind of pushed to the west the Britons and the Picts remained North and far away, anyway.  The Vikings joined in from the 8th century.....   quite a mix you might say, especially when the Norman French popped over.  Would you say that the contemporary British folk have quite a mixed heritage then?  The word "English" comes from the Angles.  A nod to your remarks on the revolutions: The French Revolution was truly appalling, however and does not deserve too much honour does it?  It wasn't like the Americans taking their leave of the yoke of the UK.
 
Ach, well only history will tell, but the sadness is that the history is taught according to the needs and politics of the day. 
 
Benjamin G.  Dearie me, why on earth would you be so inclined about a Statesperson who actually takes on responsibility for issues and does not pretend that they are not there or that they are the ills, in themselves?
 
But, thanks to everyone for your commentary:  The UK shall, indeed, be becoming your fifty-first state - are you sending lots of GM food and chlorinated chicken for the masses in the streets?  Perhaps the fountains will run with MacD coffee and chips!
Benjamin Goldstein Added Nov 16, 2017 - 3:33pm
Eileen de Bruin: I have some previous articles on writerbeat about civil rights activists speaking out about Merkel. You find more on her and the civil rights situation in Germany on my blog.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 16, 2017 - 4:06pm
Hello Benjamin G.  Well, I have taken a look, indeed.  Angela Merkel can be accused of all kinds of things, I am sure. Inside a European state, grappling with problems causing the dreadful refugee crisis and all.  If she were, also, to agree to stopping refugees entering Germany, would that, then, be the right thing to do?  Pray, do tell me what the right thing to do is?  Does anyone or any country have pure solutions?  It seems to me that the war mongering ones - on your blog is Yemen and SA and, the US and France etc. not stopping the genocide - pretend not to be war mongering.  
 
If Angela Merkel is trying to deal with issues, as truthfully as can be, which is almost impossible anyway, what marks her out to be such an anti-civil rights person?  Perhaps she is trying to keep a balance.
 
Would you say that Trump seeks balance?  Or, erm, May?
 
Benjamin Goldstein Added Nov 16, 2017 - 4:13pm
I have problems with May. I don't see civil rights problems with Trump.
 
My contention with Merkel is not so much about the immigration thing. Don't get me wrong, she did a lot of BS there, too. But I refuse to accept mass serveillance, people sentenced to prison for opinions, apartments being upended wantonly and so on. I hate her. I grew up in a DEMOCRACY and this [insert insult] destroyed it. [Insert more insults].
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 16, 2017 - 4:18pm
Benjamin G. Oh, ok.  Feet of clay.  Mass surveillance?  
 
Write your story of the democracy in which you grew up please, and then what has now changed it; I'm all ears.
Benjamin Goldstein Added Nov 16, 2017 - 4:58pm
Mass surveillance:
There is, for example, a new cyber agency designed to spy on us: ZITiS.
Short before the last election, parliament passed a law that enables all government departments to infiltrate our computers and devices with a computer virus. You may find information about this one yourself. It's called "Bundestrojaner".
Of course, cameras on Berlin tram stations are now connected to facial recognition.
There is a creepy "foundation" that works hand in gloves with the government and reports our activity on social media. It's called "Amadeo Antonio Stiftung" The thing is led by former stasi spy Anetta Kahane.
Then there is this weird intelligence agency "Verfassungsschutz" that constantly surveills us and puts our "reports". They tell us that an Islamist killer was known to them after the fact. By law they do not cooperate with the ordinary police. And I wonder who they hand over our information and why we need to monitor Muslims in the first place....
 
....
 
The whole thing goes on and on and on. I'm living in a nightmare. If this could all be put in a comment, I would not write a blog. Much changed in short time. And I think this is a bipartisan issue. The pretenses sound like left-wing talking points, but it is about authoritarianism. My first WB article that Autumn copied here was about a crackdown on leftists, the German leg of Indymedia. I clearly have developed conservative views over it, but I still read Off-Guardian and WSWS, and try to be as unideological as possible.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 17, 2017 - 6:21am
Benjamin, imagine that I am a visitor from Mars.  I do not understand your story.  What I meant was:  time for your own thread here.  I would like to understand.  It is all over the place, a bit like Orwellian sub-text on acid or opioids.  Please rethink and rewrite!  I am trying to know your story, but in Jane and John language, please.
 
Thomas S. No need to worry.  The applications from the EU for working in the UK are down by something like 80% thereby threatening the health and horeca and farming industries and EU people are leaving, also at unprecedented levels, due to the uncertainty of their futures and, also, the attitude to them on the streets and in work.  I have the figures for this, but I know that you are well able to source yourself and that you wouldn't necessarily trust my sources as you have alluded to in previous threads.  Do, go ahead, and find those figures for yourself.  By the way, the Norman Conquerors were Franco-Norman - Saint George, the patron saint of England was Greco-Syrian.  Oops - should they be wiped out of the history books?
 
Thanks to everyone who has contributed.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 18, 2017 - 7:58am
Particularly for Thomas S.  I forgot to put this in earlier....the Magna Carta?  Read this and this ancient charter's effects: it is 800 years  since the sealing in London’s St Paul’s Cathedral of the Charter of the Forest and these were the grievances it addressed. Ancient document from 1217 addressing the imbalance of wealth between the poor and the rich!
 
For a fairer share of wealth, turn to the 13th century
target="_blank" rel="noreferrer">https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/nov/08/uk-fairer-share-wealth-ancient-charter-of-forest-common-ownership?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other
Benjamin Goldstein Added Nov 18, 2017 - 8:04am
Eileen: That link is great! It defies a bit your sentiment that the UK is not a leading culture, but for me it's gold.
 
There is something special about the British character that had to rebuild democracy from scratch, brought us industrialisation, the abolition of slavery, the defeat of Hitler and the invention of the digital computer.
 
It was not only the Magna Carta, but e.g. the Charter of the Forest as well, that show us how people took eventually more and more power from the crown to serve the common and gave people the rights to carry guns and to preserve themselves.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 19, 2017 - 4:12am
Banjamin, thanks, yes. There is a distinct character and the second world war resistance to Hitler, in spite of the Establishment and Royalty supporting Chamberlain and Hitler!  The people chose Churchill because he stood up and against Hitler’s regime.
 
But that was a long time ago now and things have changed dramatically in my life time. Let us be clear here: those immigrants who - eventually - benefited from a UK that was more liberal and stood for freedom and equalities of some kind, well they became British too and then Conservative and then wanted no immigrants!
 
They are British now, so time to shut the door on anyone else. There are plenty of black, asian, muslim people who believe that their lifestyle is as a result of their own hard work...as opposed to a nurturing environment as a whole of society...and they now see any foreigner as suspect.  It is in the nature of man, so we cause our own problems.  So US and UK are very similar.
opher goodwin Added Nov 20, 2017 - 4:03am
Eileen - very well summed up. The strange thing is that though, in hindsight one can see the creeping Americanisation, nobody seems to be appalled by that.
The model of low-paid jobs, no social care and poor public services is in nobody's interest. It produces a callous, uncaring individualism and a rat-race in which money is status, money is all that matters. Compared to the European model of quality social services, better paid jobs and a greater appreciation of arts and culture it is a shallow model.
We Brits are not a homogenous race as is often portrayed - the Anglo Saxons. - we are a mongrel race. A mixture of Celts (from India), Saxons and Angles (from Germany), Normans (French), Romans (Italian), Norse (Denmark, Sweden, Norway) and then the huge influx of genes from Africa, India, China and Arabia as our Empire and trade routes opened up. Our language is Germanic.
When I lived in America I quickly realised that we have far more in common with Italy, Spain, Germany and France than we ever have with the US. Culture is much more than language.
Eileen de Bruin Added Nov 20, 2017 - 4:29am
Yes, Opher, equally well put. Mongrels make the human being strong, tall and developed...i.e.: the opposite of insular! But, I suppose that losing the gene of self interest and of the hierarchy is going to take a lot longer, if ever.
 
Yep, English is teutonic/ germanic and low German and its nearest language and its root is Dutch, Anglo Saxon.
 
There were also Frieslanders and then, of course, the Roman soldiers were of various nationalities.  If you have ever been to the Jorvik museum in York, the journey back a thousand years in the small cabins, teaches you about the huge mix of peoples at that time.....
 
Will we ever learn, I wonder?
opher goodwin Added Nov 20, 2017 - 3:09pm
Eileen - Thank you - I believe that we have never had a better opportunity to learn. The internet opens up instant communication across the globe and instant news. It is harder for the establishment to obfuscate. Yet they are managing that. They put out their fake news and spin.
We are too gullible.
I'm all for building bridges not walls. I want open horizons not enclosed prisons.
 
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 21, 2017 - 10:42am
Eileen great article I put in my folder. What Lawrence is talking about is property rights that is also founded in the Virginia Bill of Rights published months before the Declaration of Independence where Jefferson replace with 'persuit of happyness,' the human effect of having property rights.
 
Lawrence attacks the wealthy that have created a class society with barriers to separate them. Taxes extract greater wealth for those coming up the ladder in America and I suspect also in Britain. What he neglects to say is that government created the barriers. Trump coined the word SWAMP. It is the upper/government class. All the political parties are swamp members because they do not tear down the barriers when they get power. No one is innocent. Lawrence is whipping his own back, I guess in is a socialist, their a political party player.
 
Back to property rights, Without them the population of England were slaves. Without property rights the industrial revolution would not have occurred. The Puritans and Quakers sold their property to purchase transportation to the New World. Freed slaves had property rights after the Civil War, Charter of the Forest heritage. This is what the Nobel Economist says on the subject, "The Southern states after the Civil War took many measures to impose legal restrictions on Negroes. One measure which was never taken on any scale was the establishment of barriers to the ownership of either real or personal property. . . . It reflected rather, a basic belief in private property which was so strong that it overrode the desire to discriminate against Negroes.  The maintenance of the general rules of private property and of capitalism have been a major source of opportunity for Negroes and have permitted them to make greater progress than they otherwise could have made. . . .
 
Paradoxes of experience is that, in spite of this historical evidence, it is precisely the minority groups that have frequently furnished the most vocal and most numerous advocates of fundamental alteration in a capitalist society.  They have tended to attribute to capitalism the residual restrictions they experience rather than to recognize that the free market has been the major factor enabling these restrictions to be as mall as they are."    "Capitalism & Freedom" Milton Friedman Univ. of Chicago Press 1962 p 108, 109
Thomas Sutrina Added Nov 21, 2017 - 10:47am
Eileen wealth on average is consumed in three generations of inheritors.   Class societies extend the number of generation significantly.  Consider your royal family.  Lawrence is saying that more government and a stronger class society, Socialism is based on a government class, will be fairer.  That doesn't make sense when history shows that class creates wealth disparities.