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  • Originally posted by Corrupt View Post

    I'm on the fence about the Lords consistently, on the one hand unelected peers having a significant say doesn't exactly sit comfortably with my belief in democracy, on the other hand the Commons are often incompetent and neither abolishing nor electing the Lords strikes me as a significant imrovement. As much as they're an anachronism, the Lords are often a steadying factor that doesn't worry about reelection and is more likely to break party lines than elected MPs are. Yes many of them are knobs but it also has eminently sensible people like Robert Winston and Alec Broers.

    On this topic for example I'm not exactly thrilled with their attempts to derail the process which rightly or wrongly the government has embarked on, but equally the government approach has been so utterly shambolic that I'm somewhat appreciative of their efforts.
    They're about as anti-democratic as you can get - precisely because they don't have to worry about answering to anyone. There are also more of them than MP's (if I remember correctly there's about 1000 of them).

    I forget who said it, but "mankind will only be free when we hang the last king with the guts of the last priest" summed it up pretty well.

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    • Originally posted by aeterno View Post

      ....

      I'd argue that it is the sucessfull European integration is the very bedrock on which NATO can stand. We have no way of knowing how individual EU countries domestic and foreign politics would have panned out without it in the past 70 years. Track record before that wouldn't exactly inspire confidence that it would facilitate collective defence organisations would it.
      Large scale military threats can make allies of nations with centuries of hatred behind them. One need only look at the Entente Cordiale between the UK and France pre WW1. Economics has never done that.

      EU integration is at best a by-product of that stability, not the cause.

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      • Originally posted by TheKiwi View Post
        They're about as anti-democratic as you can get - precisely because they don't have to worry about answering to anyone. There are also more of them than MP's (if I remember correctly there's about 1000 of them).

        I forget who said it, but "mankind will only be free when we hang the last king with the guts of the last priest" summed it up pretty well.
        I'd slash the number of them, eliminate the hereditary peerages and the lords spiritual for sure, but I can see their value as a body of experts or moderating voices to advise and refine the drafting legislation. Or more accurately, I wouldn't trust the Commons to govern without them and I don't see the value of a second elected house, so I'm not sure what else to do.

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        • Not sure how they fit into the "body of experts" role. They're a mix of has-beens and never-beens and never-should-have-beens.



          Either you have faith in democracy or you don't. The House of Lords has as much to do with democratic values as I do with fashionable hair styling.

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          • Originally posted by TheKiwi View Post
            Either you have faith in democracy or you don't. The House of Lords has as much to do with democratic values as I do with fashionable hair styling.
            I subscribe to the "it's the worst system apart from all the others" school of thought. Certainly I don't subscribe to the more direct democracy and the more elected officials the better school.

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            • Unelected and unaccountable and constantly trying to undermine democracy and freedoms. And the hereditary peers even get to choose their own replacements. That's not my definition of 'worst apart from all the others'. The very precept of it (that democracy is so bad that it needs to be tempered by a special group of elites) doesn't demand a defence of "oh they're not that bad". It demands people to stand up and declaim it as the best possible option.

              Which can't be done. It doesn't matter whether they are selected by emerging from the right vagina or by being the best of chums to the ruling elite.

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              • Originally posted by TheKiwi View Post

                Don't be daft. If "unprofitable" was the criteria then the USSR wouldn't have given a fuck.
                ​I don't think you are applying same definition of profit as I do. USSR political elites were following same rules as everyone else. They wanted to keep their power, influence and living standards. Unless its an unforeseen event or circumstance nations go to war always when leadership and citizens belive that invested resouces will result in some form of gain that would exceed the cost in lives and materials.

                ​Instead of looking at NATO look at Warsaw pact. When communism collapsed across Europe the Warsaw pact was still having full capability to defend its member states from any attacker including NATO.
                Last edited by Asheren; 10-05-2018, 10:05 AM.

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                • Originally posted by TheKiwi View Post

                  Large scale military threats can make allies of nations with centuries of hatred behind them. One need only look at the Entente Cordiale between the UK and France pre WW1. Economics has never done that.

                  EU integration is at best a by-product of that stability, not the cause.
                  just like England and Scotland only the threat to Scotland came from England, the act of union was a sham, the real reason Scotland went into union with England because it was at the barrel of a gun, the legend is that England saved Scotland from bankruptcy after the failure over the Darien scheme the Scottish government had no part in it it was entirely a private venture the only people to lose out in the venture were bankers, landowners and the clergy.
                  The truth is England had blockaded all our ports so that we could not trade with other countries and they couldn't trade with us and they had amassed a massive army at our border .... this is what bankrupted Scotland hence the anger and riots throughout Scotland after the act of union was signed.
                  Why was England so desperate to control Scotland ... for centuries they seeked dominion over Scotland and by the turn of the 18th century England had seeked to carve out a larger empire than it's enemies France and Spain and Scotland was a hindrance to that because it feared invasion by France via Scotland

                  Scotland under Alexander the 3rd was one of the richest countries in Europe thanks to trading ports like Berwick .... Edward Longshanks had coveted both Berwick and Scotland because of it's wealth ... England was in massive debt due to the castles edward had built in Wales ... thus Scotland's wars of Independence made Scotland poor

                  the UK is on it's death bed i will celebrate when it finally dies

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                  • Originally posted by Asheren View Post

                    ....

                    ​Instead of looking at NATO look at Warsaw pact. When communism collapsed across Europe the Warsaw pact was still having full capability to defend its member states from any attacker including NATO.
                    You are making my point for me. That military alliances (and a foreign threat) have vastly more influence on keeping the peace than economic relations.

                    The EU claiming credit for that is a ridiculous piece of egotism.

                    Originally posted by Tizer View Post
                    ...the failure over the Darien scheme the Scottish government had no part in it it was entirely a private venture the only people to lose out in the venture were bankers, landowners and the clergy.
                    ...
                    You forgot to mention the most important group of that private venture - the Scottish nobility.




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                    • Originally posted by TheKiwi View Post

                      You are making my point for me. That military alliances (and a foreign threat) have vastly more influence on keeping the peace than economic relations.

                      The EU claiming credit for that is a ridiculous piece of egotism.



                      You forgot to mention the most important group of that private venture - the Scottish nobility.



                      much of the Scottish nobility were based in London by then ... many of them and their families followed James the 6th to London

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                      • And they were very keen on being bailed out and didn't give two shits about the opinion of the Scottish people. Much like the modern era House of Lords.

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                        • Originally posted by TheKiwi View Post
                          And they were very keen on being bailed out and didn't give two shits about the opinion of the Scottish people. Much like the modern era House of Lords.
                          very true all they want is their £300 a day attendance fee buckshee and their free 3 course lunches and 5 course dinners washed down with unlimited amounts of the finest french champagnes at the tax payers expense ... whilst sleeping in the chamber that's on top of their £50K pensions from the the house of commons .... SNP refuse to have anything to do with the HoL

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                          • Originally posted by TheKiwi View Post

                            You are making my point for me. That military alliances (and a foreign threat) have vastly more influence on keeping the peace than economic relations.

                            The EU claiming credit for that is a ridiculous piece of egotism.



                            You forgot to mention the most important group of that private venture - the Scottish nobility.
                            ​Warpact states did not give a f..k about it during collapse of SU only to get as far as possible from uneven economic relation they were in.

                            ​Ps. Given how and why May is stalling the vote in parliament your discussion is kind of funny.

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                            • Once again you are still making my point. Military alliances against an external threat are vastly more important in terms of keeping the peace than nebulous economic ties. You have yet to come up with anything even remotely convincing otherwise.

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                              • Originally posted by TheKiwi View Post
                                Once again you are still making my point. Military alliances against an external threat are vastly more important in terms of keeping the peace than nebulous economic ties. You have yet to come up with anything even remotely convincing otherwise.
                                Well you have to admit the cascade of alliances prior to WWI were rather a contributing factor to the extension of what could have been a local conflict rather than something that kept the peace.

                                As for trade between blocs, I don´t have any numbers but I have a hunch that amounts of inter European trade were much smaller than in the present period, and although that has no influence on the ranking of trade partners, it does marginalize the share of international cooperation. I am pretty sure that a big chunk of trade up to WWII is done within the colonies.

                                In this sense, the EU, by trade, is a stabilizing factor. But of course not the only one. NATO counts evidently, but individualities also played their role: de Gaulle did´nt need no NATO or EU to engage a broad action to create friendly ties with Germany.

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