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  • “Young people have to lobby much harder”

    4 January 2017  00:09, by Helene Lloyd

    What a breathe of fresh air to the usual EU’ attempt to justify itself. The author of this article, is close enough to the ground to still understand society’s frustrations but has enough practical understanding of the EU to make very practical and realistic recommendations. Mr Junker you should be taking this lady on as your adviser and listen very hard to her recommendations, she speaks a lot of sense.

  • Refugees and the European Identity: a sociological perspective

    29 December 2016  18:44, by Richard Haringsma

    While the article is mostly written in a neutral way, I did add a critical element about the arrival of immigrants and refugees. Immigrants and refugees that are willing to adapt and integrate into the local, national and European culture are always welcome and should never be held accountable by acts of criminal refugees.

    However, the first uncontrolled stream of refugees in 2015 included numerous examples that were not willing to adjust, and these examples are people who do threaten the European way of life according to the classical theory. Those refugees will be better of receiving good care such as a place to sleep, food and water at one of the many refugee camps in the surrounding countries of Syria. Camps that are fully supported by the EU and which I support completely.

    The other theory of Ash Amin shows a more diverse European identity with cultures of the whole world residing in Europe. These mixes of culture can make for the most beautiful neighbourhoods where at one place you can get Turkish bread and around the corner Dutch stroopwafels and Japanese sushi. However these kinds of neighbourhoods of multiculturalism are up to debate as it showed versions of success and failure.

    So as said in my article’s conclusion, where I put forward my own opinion, I do think that the classical theory of the European Identity fits better than the one of Amin when looking at the current situation in Europe.

  • Refugees and the European Identity: a sociological perspective

    29 December 2016  14:03, by Juuso Järviniemi

    My view is that the article presents asylum seekers and refugees in an unnecessarily negative light. It is true that crimes have been committed by asylum seekers, but I believe that the whole bulk of asylum seekers cannot be held accountable for such incidents. We’re entering the age-old debate that has expanded to the comment sections on most news sites’ Facebook pages, and I stand on the liberal side here. Another relevant point to be made here is that not all asylum seekers can justly be qualified as refugees, as the case of Anis Amri, the culprit of the Berlin Christmas market attack, shows.

    I believe that Paul Valery’s view, as described in this article, is closer to the notion of “European values” rather than “European identity”. One must be careful not to conflate notions such as human rights and democracy exclusively with the Judeo-Christian tradition. If the idea of Europe is that of human rights, tolerance, and democracy secured by checks and balances, that idea can reside in anyone I believe. To claim that a group of people fleeing chaos and persecution should primarily be viewed as a threat to the European way of life is, in my view, excessively hostile.

  • On the brink of Brexit: Scotland’s future in Europe

    29 December 2016  13:45, by Juuso Järviniemi

    Peter: I believe that’s justified, as the June 23 referendum changed the circumstances rather profoundly in Scotland. Ahead of the Scottish referendum in 2014, it was assumed that the best way for Scotland to secure its membership of the European Union would be by remaining a part of the United Kingdom. Now, however, the likelihood of remaining a part of both the United Kingdom and the European Union is approaching zero, as the Westminster government has repeatedly said that they won’t accept a differentiated Brexit.

    If 55% of the electorate wish to remain a part of the UK, and 62% wish to remain in the European Union, but there cannot be two unions, asking the public to choose is a valid option. I recognise that there are caveats, for instance the fact that one can exaggerate the simplicity of re-entry to the EU, and before a new independence referendum the public discussion needs to be based on facts (something that didn’t happen before the June 23 referendum). Therefore, I believe that a referendum, and importantly an informed one, is needed to bring the debate to a reasonable conclusion.

  • On the brink of Brexit: Scotland’s future in Europe

    29 December 2016  09:52, by Peter A Russell

    Incredible not to mention 2014 referendum which voters rejected Scottish independence.

  • On the brink of Brexit: Scotland’s future in Europe

    27 December 2016  20:15, by Osiris Messias Araujo da Silva

    Well done dear Carol. I personnaly agree on your point of view regardind to Scotland’s position about Brexit UK decison. Hopefully expect Mr. Michael Russell, Scotland’s chief negotiator in the Brexit process, come to a favourable solution for Scotland. Best regards. Osiris Silva, Manaus, Amazonas - Brazil.

  • What Scotland wants

    17 November 2016  21:17, by Iwantout

    The Scottish Parliament, the Welsh Assembly and the Northern Ireland Assembly have no authority over foreign affairs and treaties. As such it is difficult to see how they can obstruct the UK Parliament in launching Article 50, The Great Repeal Bill nor the final Brexit agreement. All three nations after all are fully represented in the UK Parliament, indeed significantly over represented in terms of their population.

    Clearly majorities in Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain in the EU. However the majority in England & Wales to leave were much larger. The vote was clearly a single national vote and as such the result must be seen in that way.

    The only viable option for the Scots is to hold a second independence referendum. (A point Ms Sturgeon is currently backing away from due to polling evidence that remaining with the UK is more popular than staying with the EU). The problem is going to be that with the launch of Article 50 in March 2017, a Scottish Referendum will have to be held before March 2019 or the Scots will find themselves outside the EU and re applying for membership with unacceptable conditions such as euro membership etc. Therefore the SNP loses control of timing, and the loss of a second referendum within a few years of the first would almost certainly end the issue for very many years.

    The ultimate point is, we were asked the question and have given the answer. There is no one of any standing suggesting that this can mean at least anything other than control over borders and removal of the authority of the ECJ. Those points alone must mean a hard Brexit.

  • Eurosceptic Tories ?

    15 September 2016  22:54, by Iwantout

    Given the result of 23rd June 2016, your comment “some recent polls show that 52% would vote to leave” was prescient indeed.