Discover more from Christopher Titmuss - The Buddha Wallah
Vote to RemaIN in the EU on Thursday or we go back to the Little Englander mentality.
Thursday, June 23, 2016, people in Britain have to make up their mind whether they wish to stay in the European Union or withdraw into an insular existence.
The opinion polls show the vote could go either way. The duality of staying in or get out does not leave much room for manoeuvre.
I have been reading and listening to the debates and following the general direction of the arguments. I’m not a fan of the ‘Big is Best’ brigade. I am even less of a fan of our right-wing isolationists controlling this cold, wet island off the coast of continental Europe in the so-called interests of the nation.
Centuries of struggle against the rich and powerful have yielded certain benefits for the poor, sick and aged. There is a long way to go before we see a true redistribution of wealth, alongside social justice and environmental protection. We need a spiritual revolution. EU and UK cannot offer the end of capitalism, the end of greed, the end of unhappiness and widespread isolation and loneliness.
We need a spiritual revolution to address widespread suffering, most of it is totally preventable.
We need to celebrate community on our streets and to celebrate the widespread community of the human family through empathy, friedship and wise action.
I would be quite happy to step outside the EU if I had any confidence in the politics of the right to show a wise and compassionate legislation for the people, animals and nature living on this island and elsewhere.
There is no track record, no historical evidence for a liberal minded and tolerant vision except through struggle. Progressive political campaigns, fearless dedication of networks and organisations work hard for social justice. Uncorrupted members of Parliament remain determined to shift the thinking towards co-operation, openness and justice. An English terrorist shot dead last week one such British MP, Jo Cox, 41, who spoke so eloquently in Parliament for the Syrian people. She had been in public office for a year.
Some of us feel grateful to all 28 member states in the EU who have passed laws on human rights, environmental protection, workers ‘rights, free movement of more than 500 million people and an opportunity for citizens to appeal to the European courts to change harmful national governance.
The treatment of refugees is abysmal. The UK is not part of the EU’s border-free zone. Britain controls its own border which gives us the right to check everyone, including EU nationals, arriving from continental Europe. We can’t keep blaming the EU for the refugee crisis. Our wars on Muslims helped to create the crisis.
Large chunks of the media and swathes of politicians display an appalling lack of empathy for the terrible plight of refugees and asylum seekers. There is a violence of speech against immigrants and refugees in the determination to drum up fear and hostility.
If we leave the EU on Thursday, there is a danger that violence of speech will generate outrage and more violence throughout the country.
Many of us, especially free spirited young people, prefer to call ourselves ‘Europeans’ rather than ‘English.’
It is not a wholehearted vote for the EU, a very powerful economic force in the world. The EU has a lot of soul-searching to do.
Here are my 10 reasons to change the EU.
The European Union
ignores largely the worldwide destruction of the environment and pollution of cities preferring to satisfy Western desires for cheap goods
lacks the willingness to address in a comprehensive way the widespread tax abuse by powerful US corporations
continues to sell arms to fuel wars
support for invasions by the US, NATO and several EU countries
treats harshly EU countries suffering under national debt due to loans from rich member countries
turns a blind eye to the exploitation of workers in poor nations and European businesses that maintain abusive work environments
fails to address xenophobic treatment in certain EU countries of refugees fleeing the Middle East and African countries
allows itself to be bullied by the USA in political and corporate deals, such as TTIP
allows capitalism and corporate desire to feed the ongoing obesity of the West, physically and mentally
neglects corruption and gross lifestyles among the political elite and bureaucrats in the EU and in national politics.
The EU needs a radical change to develop ethics, values, compassion and wise negotiation.
I am going to vote to remain in the EU on Thursday.
Here are my 10 reasons to for the UK to stay in the EU.
As a member of the EU, our families and individuals have the right to study, work and live in any of the 27 member countries. 1.4 million UK citizens work in the EU and UK students enjoy the benefit of the student exchange schemes. Travel is easy without visas and we can use our own driving licenses
As a member of the EU, we have set up numerous international trade agreements. If we step out of the EU, we have to create new trade agreements. Countries would continue to co-operate with the remaining EU countries and see no need to give us priority. It will take years of negotiation. The EU buys 50% of our exports.
People from the EU and the rest of the world, who have come to live in this country, have made a wonderful contribution to the personal, social, cultural, religious and political life of the UK. We cannot go back to the violence of ‘us and them.’ As an EU member, there is much liaison between countries in a formal and informal ways to express sense of the collective.
If we step out of the EU, we would have to pay huge annual sums to stay in the single market without having a voice in the EU.
The belief that bureaucrats run the EU has reached mythological status. The 28 nations run the EU. We find an agreement and appoint people to implement those agreements. UK has a powerful voice in the EU.
EU standards have improved the quality of air, water, beaches and land although there is still a long way to go.
There are numerous thoughtful and sincere people who dislike membership of the EU. There are also many who prefer to live in the past rather than in the present. Far too many older voters seems to cherish the belief in the good ol’ days of warm beer, national hubris and global domination. Unable to face ageing, pain and death, they perhaps turn to the past to escape reality. EU helps Britain to move on from our imperialism and former occupation of 25% of the world.
EU has taken on multinational giants like Google, Microsoft, Samsung and Toshiba for abusive business practices. The UK has no ability to challenge corporate power and no interest to challenge financial behaviour of corporations with offices in London.
Equal pay for men and women is enshrined in EU laws. EU bans discrimination by age, race or sexual orientation. These laws help Britain to wake up.
All 28 countries together in the EU have the potential to generate a powerful voice for social, political and environmental justice throughout the world starting with the USA. Britain behaves like an obedient schoolchild to the White House. It is called a ‘special relationship.’ It is. It is the same submission for all children looking up to the head teacher.
We know that far right parties in the EU want Britain to adopt a nationalistic agenda and exit from the EU. We know that people like Donald Trump, who displays a personality disorder, wants Britain to leave the EU. He arrives in Britain the day after the UK vote. We know Marine le Pen, the leading far right politician in France, wants the UK to exit from the EU.
My friends in Germany asked me there last month: “What on Earth is going on in Britain?”
I said: “The ‘Little Englander’ mentality is back with a vengeance.”
Our own right wing zealots, such as Boris Johnson, the former London mayor, Michael Gove, former Education minister and Nigel Farag of the UK Independence Party (UKIP) are among those who want to run the country, if we exit the EU.
If we exit, we turn our backs on the benefits of European law and legislation. The powerful and the rich running the UK would make the laws to run the country.
The mantra of those wanting an exit is “We want our country back.”
We have been saying that for centuries to the rich and powerful elite, who awarded themselves various titles to maintain control.
We also want our country back from US imposition on us of US corporations, junk food, shallow TV and movies and replace with a diversity of cultural interests and entertainment on our screens that reflects 21st century Britain. Sadly, we share a common language with the USA, which makes us easy targets. Whose fault is that?
We blindly follow US foreign policy and submit to American corporate and cultural occupation. We need a referendum on that. Millions of us would be vote OUT on such a referendum.
We need to appreciate all those who prefer cooperation to isolationism, to the implementation of change rather than withdrawal from it.
I remember HELP – a Beatle song.
Help me if you can, I’m feeling down
And I do appreciate you being around.
Help me get my feet back on the ground,
Won’t you please, please help me?
Help RemaIN. Vote RemaIN.
May all beINgs campaign for social justice
May all beINgs live with compassion
May all beINgs live with wisdom