What Brexit means to me

(Peter ) #1

I feel I need to tell what Brexit means for a non-Britt, particularly for a Scandinavian.

Growing up in Stockholm, Sweden in the 60s, many programs Swedish television had were from UK. All programs where shown in original language, no dubbing there. So naturally we all learned English both from music, Kinks, Beatles, Rolling stones, …. and from films. We enjoyed the British humor, endless repertoar of great positive fun programs, we even bought your crappy cars!
I still think British biggest asset is your humor.

I remember a British advertising/turism/whatnot (Charm?) campaign during one summer in Stockholm in the late 60s.

In City center close to the Castle tents were set up with UK information and even a pub with lukewarm beer that we ‘tested’ every day for weeks. A total success.

You cannot possibly get more goodwill than that, and it has continued for the decades.

Not having followed to domestic UK debate, it was a total surprise to me to find the endless hate propaganda against Europeans/EU , some of it is listed here: https://blogs.ec.europa.eu/ECintheUK/euromyths-a-z-index/ .

Farages behavior in EU parlament? Are you kidding me? And it seemed like nobody in UK protested, unbelievable. No wonder EU leaders have a tough time with UK.

And then Brexit happens. What??? You don’t want to be close friends with us?
After all the goodwill generations of Brits has built, resulting in such a positive image we had. We thought you were our friends. If you walk in City of London you hear Swedish, Finnish,… spoken everywhere, European tourists creating income for travel bureaus, hotels, restaurants, shopping, enjoying themselves.

UK’s Goodwill-Image? I am not so sure anymore, some right wing-nuts in Europe might find it OK, but I guess the silent majority does not.

Ah, well…

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(Glenn Beavis) #2

Peter, I think ( and hopefully my feelings are not misplaced) that you are over thinking this.
It is not about " not wanting to be friends". It is not about the external, but more about the internal problems… if this makes sense.

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(Jane Williamson) #3

Not on here Peter, with the exception of some that think the future will be better.
No concern for now and the worry and stress they are causing their fellow citizens who, like them, have moved to live in France.
I describe myself as a British European when asked.

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(Peter Goble) #4

Peter, don’t despair or give up on Britain as there are many of us who deeply value the boundless riches of European culture across national boundaries, and see equivalent riches, yet to be discovered and shared in other cultures, hitherto neglected or ignored for historical reasons we can and should discard as unworthy.

Your own breadth and depth of understanding is an inspiration to us Brits and that will continue to gather momentum. Young people are owning and developing internationalism, and the trend is IMO unstoppable if we stay true to our principles and embrace the challenges of uncertainty, scepticism, and the likelihood of error on the way.

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(Dave Sheriton) #5

Peter, your comments, and I am sure inadvertently, shows one of the things I have felt is so exaggerated regarding Brexit.

Your bond to the UK was formed well before, not only the EU, but the Common Market. There s no reason to suppose when we leave the EU it will be any different. Before the EU it was possible to travel throughout Europe with little regulation. For my summer holiday when I was ten my friends family took me camping to France, Italy, Austria, Germany, Belgium plus I had school trips to both Netherlands and Switzerland. Members of my family moved abroad both to Europe and other parts of the world in the 1960s with no problems. There is no reason to believe that there will be some sort of ban on Scandinavians entering the UK for work or pleasure.

There is certainly lots of information put out by the Remain side which would imply there will be problems, but that is a means to an end. My brother and wife are rabid Remainers and will share any old nonsense if it supports the cause but they have already booked their holiday to visit us in August, so for all the scaremongering they like to take part in, in reality they know there will be no reason to think they won’t be able to come, even with a no deal.

The reality is that anybody who will shake your hand today will still be shaking your hand after Brexit. And you’ll be pleased to know it is still possible to get lukewarm beer!

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(David Wren) #6

Absolutely right Dave :+1: Britain will always be part of Europe but perhaps not part of the EU.

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(Sandy Hewlett) #7

I know people here who truly believe that next Saturday, 30th March, that the gendarmes will knock on their door and throw them out. Complete Project Fear victims.

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(Simon Armstrong) #8

Ditto that Dave - most of my immediate family moved over here in the late 60’s - no significant issues whatsoever - then, since or, I suspect, in the future*.

*That said…(!) I despise those immigrant Brits in France who voted leave - and always will. They have taken something from me without my consent so I’m unable to feel otherwise.

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(Catharine Higginson) #9

Agreed Peter, the younger generation are basically appalled by the silly old fart leavers who are harking back to the good old days of warm beer. And being able to rape your wife. And being allowed to display ‘no blacks, no Irish’ signs in your rental property. And there being no brown people…
I could continue but I can’t be arsed.
And for what it’s worth, I think mentioning ‘project fear’ has become the new Godwin’s law.

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(Mat Davies) #10

From the Leave campaign - whoever came up with the phrase “Project Fear” did a staggeringly effective job of incorrectly nullifying genuine concerns and fears of Brexit.

When you hear suggestions such as “but who needs experts” you really do need to start worrying.

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(Mark Robbins) #11

Of course they won’t, the world will stop spinning before that :rofl::rofl:

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(David Wren) #12

that’s quite an extreme view @cat nobody has been able to get through life without bending their knee and nobody ever will. How people deal with it is up-to them. I’m sorry you and others feel this way :worried:

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(Catharine Higginson) #13
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(Peter ) #14

In 1971 I got a job in Germany (that was before EU). I resigned from my work at Swedish meteorological institute and waited patiently for my work permit and stay-permit. A couple of days before I was to begin work I got my work permit.
Until then I was totally in limbo, having resigned from my job (=no more income) and quit my apartment ( = no bed, no nothing) and then I was told that stay-permit I had to apply in Germany, in the city I would live in.
What a hassle, I had to find an apartment and move in BEFORE I would get my permit to stay. I was 21 and not very experienced with different rules in different countries. I love how easy it has become thanks to EU. Of course it was fairly easy as a tourist to visit other countries but there is no comparison with todays free movement of people. I envy ( just a little) young people the opportunities they have today, thanks to EU.

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(Peter ) #15

And not to mention going for work related travels to UK, the questions I had to answer, it made me feel like I was regarded as a criminal. Once in the country it was OK.

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(Jane Williamson) #16

It’s war then.

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(Jane Williamson) #17

Well you are responsible for that are you not?

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(Timothy Cole) #18

Sandy is responsible for Brexit and we’re going to war, who needs to watch the news to know what’s going on when you’ve got SFN?:grinning:

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(David Wren) #19

War?? Youth of today :joy::joy::joy: @Jane_Williamson serious question. Do you ask people how they voted in the referendum before accepting bookings? Do you share your views on same on your website? Perhaps you could be the modern day equivalent of those Cat referred to, from the past, if you put your mind to it.

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(Sandy Hewlett) #20

what, for their irrational fears? No.

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