Should Britain and the United States merge?


gopher
+1
#31
Oceania lives, after all??
 
petros
#32
Atlantis. You can really "get down" there! - Frank Vincent Zappa
 
Spade
+1
#33
Quote: Originally Posted by gopherView Post

Oceania lives, after all??

"Oceania has always been at war with East Asia."
 
gopher
#34
... or with Eurasia ...
 
Spade
+1
#35
The Big A is a short war by comparison.
 
jwmcq625
+2
#36
Quote: Originally Posted by VancouveriteView Post

I would say yes and include Australia and New Zealand, not to mention the Pacific Islands that have some sort of free trade agreement with Australia.

But I wouldn't limit it to countries that speak English, because this could arouse the Quebec nationalists - I wouldn't mind including Haiti, a French-speaking country, and, yes, that would cause problems, but that would also silence the separatists forever.

I say we cut Quebec loose after first requiring them to pay their share of the national debt, and while they are at it, they can also include with them, any radical demanding members of the Acadian Society from NB.
 
Machjo
#37
Quote: Originally Posted by WLDBView Post

Soon we'd have to add China if its an english speaking zone. Their population is learning english pretty quickly.

I've lived in China, and while nearly the entire population studies English in school, only about 4% really succeed in learning it well enough for it to be of any real practical use to them beyond exams. A little like most English-speakers in Canada learning French.

Quote: Originally Posted by dumpthemonarchyView Post

Canada will be part of it. Not a political union, but an economic one and easy movement to live and work in the Anglosphere. The same language means a great deal. Europe and the euro won't work imposing rules on countries and voters who resent such top down bueaucracy. This is a natural route to go as so many links exist already. The UK might get a decent hockey team in the deal. And we might get a decent soccer team.



Should Britain and the United States merge? Telegraph Blogs (external - login to view)




Should Britain and the United States merge?


By Daniel Hannan (external - login to view) Politics (external - login to view) Last updated: December 29th, 2011
595 Comments (external - login to view) Comment on this article (external - login to view)

(external - login to view) Time to repatriate the revolution

In George Bernard Shaw's 1928 play, The Apple Cart, the American ambassador blurts out some momentous news to Britain's King:

The prodigal, sir, has returned to his father's house. Not poor, not hungry, not ragged, as of old. Oh no. This time he returns bringing with him the riches of the earth to the ancestral home. The Declaration of Independence is cancelled. The treaties which endorsed it are torn up. We have decided to rejoin the British Empire!
David Aaronovitch plays with the same idea in The Times today. I think he's trying to be funny, though I'm not completely certain. He uses the word 'ironically' in his column but, like many journalists, uses it to mean something along the lines of 'oddly enough'.
'We British pro-Europeans are beginning to sound more and more like Betamax enthusiasts arguing the superior merits of their systems against the unstoppable VHS tide', Aaronovitch writes. 'The people of Britain dont get Europe, dont like Europe and dont want Europe'. Indeed.

And, since Britain is apparently too small to succeed on its own (pace Singapore, Switzerland, Qatar, Monaco, Norway, UAE etc), he suggests that we join the US. While, as I say, the proposal seems to be intended lightheartedly, the analysis that underpins it the recognition that our two countries have a shared political culture and that Britain could benefit in many ways from repatriating the American Revolution is moderate and reasonable (external - login to view).

The flaw in the Shavian fantasy of full amalgamation is, of course, that Americans are as jealous of their sovereignty as any people on Earth. Look at their (justified (external - login to view)) suspicion of the United Nations. Look at their reticence vis--vis NAFTA. Do you really imagine that they'd accept a political union with 60 million Britons?

Just for the record, what we Atlanticists want is not a merger, but a free trade area. We'd like an organic, not a governmental union; ties between citizens, businesses and civic associations, not a combination of state structures. And we aim for it to embrace, not just Britain and the US, but the community of free English-speaking democracies the Anglosphere (external - login to view). In fact, by coincidence, Iain Murray and James C Bennet explain how it would work in today's Wall Street Journal (external - login to view).

I could agree to it in principle.

One possibility I could see would be sovereign states but on one point: citizenship. The citizens of these states would share a common citizenship and passport, but each state would still be sovereign otherwise. This would of course mean redefining voting rights in that a person moving from the US to Canada would forfeit his right to vote in US elections but would gain his right to vote in Canadian ones jsut as an Ontarian moving to Manitoba for example. In other words, voting rights would be based on residency.

Sovereign states otherwise though.

Quote: Originally Posted by VancouveriteView Post

I would say yes and include Australia and New Zealand, not to mention the Pacific Islands that have some sort of free trade agreement with Australia.

But I wouldn't limit it to countries that speak English, because this could arouse the Quebec nationalists - I wouldn't mind including Haiti, a French-speaking country, and, yes, that would cause problems, but that would also silence the separatists forever.

Either that or allow Quebec to separate but on amicable terms, even allowing dual citizenship for all who know both languages fluently.

Quote: Originally Posted by Ron in ReginaView Post

"Should Britain and the United States merge?"

I'm thinking Britain might be somewhat gunshy of economic unions
at this point in time, due to the whole Ero experiment that isn't
working out quite like it was envisioned by many of the signatories.

Honestly the idea of a common currency still has its advantages; let's not throw the baby out with the bathwater. The problem was not with a common currency, but rather with lack of fiscal discipline. Two separate issues.

Quote: Originally Posted by ironsidesView Post

Hong Kong the forgotten step child, they were once British then dumped.

As per the original agreement after the second Opium War, the british were to return Hong Kong to China, and they did so as promissed. Just remember how Hong Kong became a british colony to begin with: because China was trying to fight the British opium Trade.
 
JLM
#38
I don't know how everyone else thinks, but to me, geography would preclude such an idea!
 
Machjo
#39
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

I don't know how everyone else thinks, but to me, geography would preclude such an idea!

What idea? The one in the OP or mine in the last few posts? And why?
 
JLM
#40
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

What idea? The one in the OP or mine in the last few posts? And why?

The O.P.
 
Machjo
#41
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

The O.P.

How would geography be a hindrance? Consider the size of Canada itself as proof that in the modern world geography is not much of an obstacle.
 
JLM
#42
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

How would geography be a hindrance? Consider the size of Canada itself as proof that in the modern world geography is not much of an obstacle.

3000 miles of ocean!
 
Machjo
#43
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

3000 miles of ocean!

With modern telecommunications technology, that's nothing today.
 
JLM
#44
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

With modern telecommunications technology, that's nothing today.

OK, first of all let's examine the potential benefits of such a merger!
 
Machjo
#45
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

OK, first of all let's examine the potential benefits of such a merger!

Many examples, but I'll give just a few:

1. If one country has a high unemployment rate in a particular trade or profession and another has shortages, it would remove all buraucracy in international travel between those countries.

2. A kind of scratch my back and I scratch yours scenario whereby if one country's economy is weak and another's is strong, rather than have to take more social assistance, those willing could seek work elsewhere.

3. countries sharing a common passport could more easily share embassies and embassy services, thus reducing overhead there too.

4. It protects mroe against beggar-thy-neighbour policies in that a country will not be interested in protecting its jobs at the expense of another country seeing that, with common citizenship and thus free labour movement, it would be shooting itself in the foot. Thus, the interests of one country are the interests of the others.
 
Angstrom
#46
I vote, no

"no to drugs"
 
JLM
#47
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

Many examples, but I'll give just a few:

1. If one country has a high unemployment rate in a particular trade or profession and another has shortages, it would remove all buraucracy in international travel between those countries.

2. A kind of scratch my back and I scratch yours scenario whereby if one country's economy is weak and another's is strong, rather than have to take more social assistance, those willing could seek work elsewhere.

3. countries sharing a common passport could more easily share embassies and embassy services, thus reducing overhead there too.

4. It protects mroe against beggar-thy-neighbour policies in that a country will not be interested in protecting its jobs at the expense of another country seeing that, with common citizenship and thus free labour movement, it would be shooting itself in the foot. Thus, the interests of one country are the interests of the others.

Mostly good points for sure! How would that affect the "security fence" that is proposed around the U.S. and Canada?
 
Machjo
#48
Quote: Originally Posted by AngstromView Post

I vote, no

"no to drugs"

Each country would still be sovereign otherwise and so could pass its own drug laws.

Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

Mostly good points for sure! How would that affect the "security fence" that is proposed around the U.S. and Canada?

Well, while I agree with closer ties between Canada and the US, it shoud not come at the cost of Canada's ties with the rest of the world. That by the way was one big drawback of "Fortress Europe". I would really not want Canada to go down that route. The EU is a wonderful idea in princiople, except for its protectionism against non-EU trade and such.

Should the US insist on the "security fence", then we bow out and establish such a union with other countries that are not so willing to build such a barrier around them, whicle trying to keep the basic free trade agreement we currently have with the US.
 
taxslave
+1
#49
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

Many examples, but I'll give just a few:

1. If one country has a high unemployment rate in a particular trade or profession and another has shortages, it would remove all buraucracy in international travel between those countries.

2. A kind of scratch my back and I scratch yours scenario whereby if one country's economy is weak and another's is strong, rather than have to take more social assistance, those willing could seek work elsewhere.

3. countries sharing a common passport could more easily share embassies and embassy services, thus reducing overhead there too.

4. It protects mroe against beggar-thy-neighbour policies in that a country will not be interested in protecting its jobs at the expense of another country seeing that, with common citizenship and thus free labour movement, it would be shooting itself in the foot. Thus, the interests of one country are the interests of the others.

As long as you can figure out how to keep the freeloaders from migrating to where ever is paying the highest welfare. Or stop a massive influx to certain areas and driving wages down.
 
Machjo
#50
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslaveView Post

As long as you can figure out how to keep the freeloaders from migrating to where ever is paying the highest welfare. Or stop a massive influx to certain areas and driving wages down.

This might prove to be a good thing in that if all of a sudden people move from a jurisdiction that gives poor social assistance checks to places that give more generous ones, it will give that government an incentive to lower its social assistance rates too.

This of course will go only so far until they can't lower them any further without causing severe hardship, at which point it might force them to come up with new ideas on how to help the poor, such as community work programmes or other ways to help the poor while also making them work too, or some other solution.

And as for an influx to certain areas to drive wages down, that too might be a good thing seeing that such an influx would likely go to high-paying areas, thus driving their wages down towards the average for other areas, while also brining wages up elsewhere in the areas they're leaving from, so as to help bring about a more even distribution.

An amicable separation with Quebec while still ensuring free trade with them and possibly even dual citizenship for those who know both languages would mean reduced government translation and interpretation costs on either side of the border, not to mention that it woudl also free Quebec to seek out a similar union with the Francophonie.

One issue is that with such open borders, the Federal NDP would be forced to redefine itself considerably. Provincial NDPs have become somewhat more moderate on the grounds that they recognize that if they're not careful people just leave the province. Now the Federal NDp would have to worry about people leaving the country. As a result, it would have to think out its policies more carefully.
 
JLM
#51
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

This of course will go only so far until they can't lower them any further without causing severe hardship, at which point it might force them to come up with new ideas on how to help the poor, such as community work programmes or other ways to help the poor while also making them work too, or some other solution.

Good idea, there is always garbage along the rights of way that needs picking up or just patrolling the streets after dark to reduce thuggery or at least increase the apprehension of the thugs. Those willing to do so could perhaps have their welfare increased by $20 day. It would also give them a taste of what working is like. It would also increase employment as supervisors would have to be hired. I'm all for the idea.
 
Machjo
#52
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

Good idea, there is always garbage along the rights of way that needs picking up or just patrolling the streets after dark to reduce thuggery or at least increase the apprehension of the thugs. Those willing to do so could perhaps have their welfare increased by $20 day. It would also give them a taste of what working is like. It would also increase employment as supervisors would have to be hired. I'm all for the idea.

One problem though is nationalism. As good an idea as it would be for English-speaking countries to share a common citizenship and passport, the benefits are purely economically logical bu are lacking in any kind of emotional national identity. As a result, many would likely oppose the idea on naitonalistic grounds though not necessarily on logical grounds relating to economic efficiency.
 
petros
#53
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

Mostly good points for sure! How would that affect the "security fence" that is proposed around the U.S. and Canada?

What is wrong with the fence we have now?

 
JLM
#54
Quote: Originally Posted by petrosView Post

What is wrong with the fence we have now?

Well, that would keep the cows out!
 
petros
+1
#55
Or in.
 
JLM
#56
Quote: Originally Posted by petrosView Post

Or in.

Ha, another bonus!
 
petros
#57
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

Ha, another bonus!

Well that IS what our fence is like for 1800km + across the Prairie but recent adjustments to sovereignty have made it that if a CDN cow gets loose into US RCMP can go round it up and a Sheriff can come across without special requests and paperwork to pick up their cows. If the fence falls over in a lightning strike and the whole herd gets loose both RCMP and Sheriff can rally in just minutes to corral the whole lot.

They've made a couple big ass coke busts in the beta testing.
 
coldstream
#58
We should be talking about re-establishing the sovereign nation states of Canada, Britain and United States rather than talking about economic union. We and the rest of the world have already delivered ourselves to predatory jaws of global oligarchs and there running dogs in the IMF, WTO, World Bank, UN.

The desperate collapse of the Western economies are all predicated on the Global Free Market policies. So i say reestablish the sovereign national rights of trade policy, of currency and credit, of government economic planning in the public interest, and of public ownership of natural monopolies in resources, utilities, transportation and communications.

Look at Europe, teetering on the brink of chaos. Economic union does not work now, it has never worked and it will never work. The only question is whether we have to fall into a Great Depression of unknown depth and duration before we realize that.

Good fences (figuratively speaking) make good neighbours.
 
Machjo
#59
Quote: Originally Posted by coldstreamView Post

We should be talking about re-establishing the sovereign nation states of Canada, Britain and United States rather than talking about economic union. We and the rest of the world have already delivered ourselves to predatory jaws of global oligarchs and there running dogs in the IMF, WTO, World Bank, UN.

The desperate collapse of the Western economies are all predicated on the Global Free Market policies. So i say reestablish the sovereign national rights of trade policy, of currency and credit, of government economic planning in the public interest, and of public ownership of natural monopolies in resources, utilities, transportation and communications.

Look at Europe, teetering on the brink of chaos. Economic union does not work now, it has never worked and it will never work. The only question is whether we have to fall into a Great Depression of unknown depth and duration before we realize that.

Good fences (figuratively speaking) make good neighbours.

Or better yet, let's reestablish the city-state. I declare ourselves the Kingdom of Ottawa, but maybe we could establish trade relations or even share a common currency with Gatineau. I hope that won't be too free-market for your taste?
 
Spade
+1
#60
Love the Gatineau. The Gatineau is Canada.2. Canada 1 is the Prairie. Britain is a bewildering, class-rigid, marble-mouthing series of paradoxes - much like darkest Africa but without the good weather.
 
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