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The View On The Streets: The European Union

18.25

The View On The Streets: The European Union

On the streets of Walthamstow in East London, we ask the public what they think about the European Union. It’s clear that opposition to the EU is not the preserve of bigoted ‘little Englanders’, far from it. Eloquent, well-informed citizens are seriously concerned at the EU’s undemocratic set-up and want to have their say. Individuals backing the EU are hard to find and are against a referendum as they see their fellow citizens as ignorant and too ill-educated to ‘understand the issues’.

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Related topics: Debates, Democracy, Economy

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jack said:

I’ve been browsing on-line more than three hours lately, but
I never found any interesting article like yours. It’s lovely price sufficient for me.
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Iris said:

If the UK where to remove itself as a member of the EU, it would bring the UK into an isolated position, it would loose its voice. This cannot be beneficial to the UK or the EU. Solidarity is important even in hard times.

Jen said:

Everyone interviewed, which is a lot, all have very stroing views on the subject and there seems to be mostly a united front against the EU. It’s nice to see so many direct opinions from the publiic who all sound like experts.

David Gardiner said:

It was interesting that nobody mentioned what is for me the main benefit of the European Union, namely that it was probably the biggest factor in saving us from another major war in Europe during the last 60 years. It prevented the emergence of the individual dictators, the Hitlers, Francos and Mussolinis who created the two World wars in the first half of the 20th century, and helped to bring about the downfall of those whose power did persist into its second half (Tito, Ceauşescu, Papadopoulos, Milošević, Caetano, Hoxha, many others). It has had, and still has, enormous value as a political safety shield.

The existence of the EU makes sure that some kind of minimum standards of democracy and human rights are maintained throughout most of Europe. But in addition to maintaining these minimum standards it makes it easier for people to travel around Europe, live in different parts of it, and enjoying the same rights and similar laws throughout the Union. One may argue, as the people interviewed in Walthamstow did, that those laws could be improved and developed, and hopefully that will come with time, but I think the details of how the Union works matter a lot less than the basic value of having a union, and not continuously looking over our shoulder to see which European country is re-arming and what its madman leader is raving about in readiness for the next invasion of a neighbour. Things like the Euro are technical details that need sorting-out, but for me the economic arguments are the less important ones compared to the social and political ones.

Peju Ayemojuba said:

The First man that was Interviewed had good arguments againt the view of us entering the EU, however I do disagree with it, US being in the EU would allow us to trade fairly and easier INCREASING the economic levels. We are able to collect free rights (e.g. EUCHR) and access, education, healthcare etc. It also Increases Immrigation and allow different people from different countries from the EU to come and work here.

Verkaufte Demokratie » beel it said:

[…] Juncker: “Wenn es ernst wird, muss man lügen.” ..: The View On The Streets: The European Union  Posted by Noctuus at 9:57 […]

Tauras said:

The one of aims of the European Union have been to prevent a new possible rivalries. Good idea to make neighbours
closer to each other. But in the same time we realize that following rules depends from how countries are strong
economically.
Less pleasant thing, that being in The EU should enhance some country ecomomy, but this happens not always.
And competition among members always persist. Secont thing is wrong expectations based on permanent
growth. There is no such thing as permanent growth. This means that everybody need to be well disciplined until are
in growth conditions. If we are talkig about fiscal policy there is
another pitfall is habit of government (and not Only) to lend money. And inflation of course reduces long term
moneys value. There is tricky issue for all members. And those countries who’re still have their own currencies
have more choices to act unlike others, who’ use a Euro as their currency. And definitely these countries can be
affected more by some decision makers (who they are? this is another question).
Of course the easiest way is to blame some strong members because they dictate others to follow their decisions.
And in the most points thats true. But the unfortunately we need to accept the truth, that this lended welfare model
is wery weak when you need to create some value along with players such as India, China, Brasil. In one hand EU is
the place where you can develope your country, but there are some powers which are not tended to be think that way
and making some effort to create a “universal” rules, this means, that for someones this is less usefull but
imminent.

Damy said:

This is a eye opener, has the issues been discussed are of a high significant. I mean why should another country tell another country how to behave or rule their own country. The real reason of forming the EU Union have been lost rather it’s been turn into a dicratorship whereby you either ‘Put up and shut up other wise you be getting rid of’ . Question is should that be the case?. I believe the public need to sit back review what they been told, which is far from the truth and make a stand. Good work been done here.

Timothy said:

The EU has its advantages and disadvantages, trading is made easy since the boarders were opened.
But a disadvantage is crime can easily cross boarders without detection. Each country should run its own affairs without others countries interfering.

Mark Harrop said:

Good to see such considered opinion and a wonder why mainstream TV rarely gets anything approaching it. I should’ve known better but wasn’t really expecting this – good stuff,again, WORLDbytes.

Matina said:

People’s voices should be heard. This is one of the most important things. Right now people don’t have a say. We just watch.. watch everything falling apart. There is no democracy or any kind of unity that the EU is supposed to represent. Germany and France want to promote the image of them helping countries like Greece or Portugal, but the truth is that they take advantage of them to ensure their economies. Thus, how is the EU democratic? How does it help?
What Worldbytes does is one step to hear what people think. Keep going…

Gia said:

the goverment sohuld have hear more from their people , it is not just about the economy when it comes to running a country.
falling apart with other countries by making it up is not a wise choice.

Piotr Gorzynski said:

The guy who explored the idea of the EU (as well as the current UK government) as having no strategy for growth was dead right though could maybe have gone further. The idea that the EU is an anti-democratic and beurocratic institution seems thankfully, to be quite common. Curiously there are not any expressions of nationalism or xenophobia amongst the critics of the EU.

Joanna Caminson said:

One guy, maybe two in fact, make really good points about our promoting democracy in Africa and the Middle east for the past year but denying people it here- its true the EU really is like Vatican City

Patricia P said:

It is revealing that the few pro EU people in the video the older man and young German women for example are against a referendum becuase they think we need educating to understand the issues. That really makes me mad. The people behind the EU really do think very little of their citizens.

Sarah K said:

Its so refreshing to listen to interviews like these, it makes you think wow there are a lot of smart people out there being ignored. Which is also very annoying. Would anyone watching this recommend supporting the people’s pledge for a referendum?

Vernon said:

Neither do I Timothy, but becoming European firstly has to be a choice put to the demos of European countries, so we need to win people over if they are dubious, but I am not going to argue for an ineffective, undemocratic institution but argue it over a new kind of Europe that we can all ‘buy’ in to.

Timothy said:

Hang on here, the European Union is a good idea, it is meant to show a united front, provide a common currency and common goals. That is not a bad thing, I don’t want to climb back behind my national borders.

Vernon said:

I agree with the last comment, they tell us that technocrats have to take over the business of running countries as they know what they are doing, but they are making a complete mess of it.

Kev said:

Like the guy who said the EU is just like a company. And what a company, they can’t even keep their books in order, like one of the other people said, we need to up our productivity to get people out of real dire straits. But that doesn’t seem to be on the agenda at all.

Chelsea said:

It’s really interesting to hear that most people were not against Europe but just the European Union who are unelected yet telling us what to do. You can’t help thinking that if let to the people to decide things would turn out much better as they more away from us the EU become they more they are in the dark.