Referendum: a vote in which all the people in a country or an area are asked to give their opinion about or decide an importantpolitical or social question. Source: Cambridge advanced learners dictionary.
The word referendum had no applicable meaning to me until I moved to the UK. Now it has become a household term, I do applaud the leadership and citizens for having a seeming sense of balance when it comes to deciding who really should control the nation’s future. Having said that, I think the leaders still do what all political leaders do, keep the masses in the dark, while using the media to haunt them into a corner on issues they don’t fully grasp. I haven’t lived here all my life so I can understand the anger of anyone who thinks I have no right to voice an opinion on the issue, but I do love politics and would like to raise a few salient questions and ideas on the issue.
Will Britain become a stronger entity if it leaves or will it be stronger for the elite and weaker for the masses? By stronger I am referring to economic and socio-cultural strength. Can the competitive strength of the British market withstand or negotiate better with the regulatory powers of the EU when it leaves?
Is there a more suitable ‘ally’ out there? I know the UK is a sovereign nation and a strong one too, but I am also aware that the world is slowly shifting towards a global sovereignty and it will have it’s fractions with some more powerful than the other. The choice you make today determines which side of the divide you end up in the bigger picture.
What level of freedom will the EU grant Britain following a Brexit? When Scotland wanted to leave there was a lot of peaceful discuss, but there were also side talks on how to tighten the remaining parties, to strengthen it against such actions in the future. Now mirror that process against the EU and it will be safe to say that the rules after a Brexit will not be coated with sugar or anything nice. It will be harsh and perhaps a tiny bit unfriendly, a move to discourage future dissent.
Is the EU really anti-democratic or is this more a case of wanting to eat the cake and still have it? I went in search of the structure for of the EU’s institutional framework I found the following:
The EU has three political governing institutes: the parliament, the council of ministers and the European commission. Members of the European parliament are elected by European citizens, it is basically a group of member state representatives. The next level is the Council of ministers consisting of a representative from each country’s national government usually a minister. The last arm of the EU is the European Commission which is its executive body. The EC comprises of 28 individuals: 1 president, 7 vice-presidents and 20 commissioners.
The president is elected by the parliament, who subsequently selects the twenty- seven other candidates based on suggestions from member states. This model I believe is the same as what most European nations operate by way of democracy. It is basically the same politics but on a much larger scale. As with every ‘nation’, every member state will have it’s entitled allocations, some will get preference above others in certain areas but overall each hopes to be treated fairly, equally and prioritized in times of distress. States can negotiate issues as at the point of joining but once in same rules apply to everyone. In my humble understanding, I think the EU has been operating in line with the above.
Through the course of my research, I discovered that the European Union was formed after the second world war as a way to end the constant power tussle and needless bloodshed. It was driven by a quest for unity and a sense of interdependence balancing the scales between the weaker and stronger nations so to speak. In order for the EU to exist each member state must be willing to yield some of its sovereignty, to give and also receive the benefits as well as risks of such a co-dependence.
Some would argue that if Britain wanted more influence over Brussels, perhaps it should spend commensurate effort into asserting the EU’s leadership and Britain’s place in the centre of power rather than demanding it’s own private corner with all the privileges and none of the risks.
These are just my humble thoughts spurred from reading and listening to the news. Would love to hear yours.
‘When we select a prime minister, we give them a short-term lease on power with the right to change our minds after five years. In or Out will be a generational choice about the future of the United Kingdom.’ Andrew Rawnsley