How little thought have ‘the Brexotics’ given to any form of risk from a putative #Brexit?

This morning’s #SluggerReport featured this great essay from Ferdinand Mount in the London Review of Books (h/t Ciaran!). Here’s  some of the highlights in the argument… Splendid isolation’. ‘Very well, alone’. ‘Fog in Channel – Continent Cut Off’. That is the name of the game, the only game that appeases the dreams and resentments of the Brexiters. It isn’t about economics. Decca Aitkenhead traipsed all the way to Nigel Lawson’s gentilhommière in Gascony to seek enlightenment on the economics. But …

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Brexit Essays #1: Time for Ireland to grow up and get beyond its devotion to the EU?

James Darby writing in response to the Irish Ambassador to London Dan Mulhall’s opinion piece on the UK’s EU referendum and the implications for Irish-UK relations found here . Official Ireland is fully against the UK leaving the EU. Once again groupthink has dominated discourse in Ireland about this issue. As in 1999 when all of the political establishment supported Ireland adopting the EURO, no alternative view has been put forward. Ambassador Mulhall’s argument on how Breixt would affect Irish-UK relations …

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Cameron gambled with national security?

The BBC are announcing that today David Cameron is going to claim that the UK leaving the EU would increase risks to peace. The BBC suggested Elgar or Vaughan Williams should be playing. I suspect Holst’s Mars would be the most appropriate. Turning from the classic music back to the politics. One of the primary responsibilities: probably the prime responsibility of a Prime Minister or the like is maintaining the safety of the population that elected him and as such …

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 “Brexit could be like getting a tattoo when you’re young. When you get older, you might regret it.”

Lord Ashcroft has been running his EU Referendum focus groups in Belfast and Newtownards. Some fascinating material not least a perception that UK Labour is confused on the matter. More generally though they highlight why (despite the popularity of Brexit amongst older more likely voters) the Leave campaign has by far the tougher job… …more often, undecided voters felt the bigger burden was on those campaigning to leave. Though there were uncertainties to remaining, “we know more about staying in …

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The Remain camp needs some new faces, and quickly

Craig Harrison writes for us about the upcoming EU referendum on 23rd June If the latest polls on the EU referendum are anything to go by, then what seemed like a sure thing just a few months ago is now much less certain. Figures from an online survey by Opinium, published by The Guardian at the beginning of April, put the Leave side on 43% – four points ahead of Remain. While we are, rightly, much more sceptical about polls …

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One “Why the Government believes” leaflet gets through, but only just…

Was someone reading the Sun this morning…? Here’s one of them that got through… Mick FealtyMick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty

Does the EU have a referendum problem?

Eurosceptic hearts were gladdened last week, when they claimed victory in the referendum. Of course I’m referring to the Dutch referendum on the free-trade deal between the EU and the Ukraine, in which a majority of the minority who voted in the Netherlands on Wednesday, chose to reject the deal. Despite insisting that neither Dublin, Washington or anywhere else should tell you how to vote, on Europe, Nigel Farage even went and campaigned for a ‘No’ vote in the Netherlands …

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#EUYourChoice – robust debate in Belfast across Tory and Labour lines

Tonight’s EU Your Choice debate began with ten minute presentations from the four GB political panellists before moving into a Q&A. The full event was live-streamed and should soon be available to replay. Kate Hoey (Labour MP) – leave Vernon Coaker (Labour MP) – remain Owen Paterson (Conservative MP) – leave John Stevens (former Conservative MEP) – remain The panel was co-chaired by Quadriga Consulting’s Jeffrey Peel and Danske Bank Economist Angela McGowan, making it an interesting format given their …

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#Brexit from the business view of a border city – #EUDebateNI in Derry

Introducing the fourth in a short series of EUDebateNI events this morning in Derry~Londonderry, Conor Houston explained that while the Centre for Democracy and Peace Building takes a neutral on the decision of whether the UK remains or leaves EU, it does want to encourage debate. Business journalist Naomi McMullan hosted the debate said there was a lot of information about the EU referendum but very little clarity. She characterised the debate as “a clash of visions”. Danske Bank’s economist …

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UUP support remaining in the European Union

The UUP will join Sinn Fein, SDLP, Alliance and the Greens to argue for Northern Ireland staying within the European Union. Here is a statement from the party; The Ulster Unionist Party believes that on balance Northern Ireland is better remaining in the European Union, with the U.K. Government pressing for further reform and a return to the founding principle of free trade, not greater political union. The Party respects that individual members may vote for withdrawal on the 23rd …

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Sticking to the facts on Europe?

“On-balance” to use the first Minister’s language, the DUP’s call to vote to leave the EU is likely to be largely cost-free for her party. The vote which is now set for 23 June will come just seven weeks after the Stormont Assembly elections, will mark the end of a three year cycle of elections; local Councils, Westminster and the Assembly. The EU ballot may well therefore strike voters as an epilogue or afterthought to a 3 act play, rather …

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The Legal Implications of Brexit: mechanics, criminal repercussions, and perhaps enhanced protection of rights #EUDebateNI

Lawyers from across Ireland gathered in Belfast for a conference examining the Legal Implications of Brexit. The complexities of unpicking the UK from the EU were unearthed and discussed, including smuggling, extradition, and the impact on human rights protects. (The Attorney General reckons that Brexit would enhance the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms.)

Amazing occurrences: Sun rises in East and Boris backs Brexit

In the most surprising news since the revelation that the sun came up in the east this morning, Boris Johnson has announced that he will support Brexit. The fact that Teresa May has stayed with Cameron means that none of the serious leadership contenders would have supported Brexit had Johnson stayed with Remain. This move will no doubt make him the grass roots darling for the meantime.

Referendum & devolution: 3 different pictures

The elections this May are almost certain to see the return of familiar faces of both nationalism and unionism. Of course I’m referring to the elections to the Scottish Parliament and the Welsh Assembly, whose electorates will go to the polls on 5 May and then again most likely later in the year for the referendum on whether or not to remain in the EU. Whilst there is unlikely to be a change of government in either devolved body, the …

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Does Theresa want ‘Out’?

Recently I noted on these pages that the impending EU in/out referendum was still shrouded in ‘unknowns’, both on what Brussels will offer David Cameron and what the political landscape will look like, both in Stormont, Westminster and beyond. Today some things may have gotten more interesting as David Cameron today Conservative Government ministers are to be allowed to campaign for either side in the referendum, likely to happen later this year. Given Theresa Villiers’ history of euroscepticism, both during …

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#Brexit Northern Ireland

The debate on EU membership in Northern Ireland has recently kicked off.  On Saturday Northern Ireland born Labour MP Kate Hoey laid out the Vote Leave & Labour Leave case from leaving the EU at the TUV conference at the Hilton Hotel in Templepatrick (UKIP`s Paul Nuttall addressed their conference in 2012 on the same issue). Irish Foreign Minister @CharlieFlanagan recently addressed Queens University Belfast on implications for Northern Ireland of Brexit.  Both Labours Kate Hoey MP & UKIP`s David McNarry …

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#EURef Leave campaigns at the UKIP Northern Ireland conference #UKIPNI15

UKIP NI: David McNarry challenged the DUP & UUP to come off the fence one way or the other and state their position on the EU referendum. He also called for a victims charter with a proper definition of a victim and criticised the DUP & Sinn Fein – querying what sort of devolved government hands powers back to the Tories in Westminster.

Greece: bitter pills & ill-wills

Of the grand, ambitious projects embarked-upon on the European continent over the last three decades two highly visible examples were recalled today in Brussels: football’s Champions League and the Single European Currency. Whatever they have in common there is one crucial difference in joining either of these prestigious clubs, in the Euro one can gain promotion but there is no relegation. Countries simply don’t drop-out of the Euro if they fail to finish with enough points, only to return after …

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