I agree with everything you wrote, but want to point out one thing: it's not just about working harder/more efficiently. I know plenty Germans who are lazy and/or inefficient. I know plenty of german companies that are shitty and knowingly make shitty and/or overpriced products. German industry just has so many entrenched advantages (pretty good education/health care/retirement/etc. systems, concentrated high-tech engineering know-how, physical proximity to the most advanced machine tools...) that there is just no chance for the peripheral EU member states to ever be able to catch up in a meaningful way. It will always be easier for a german company to make a better/cheaper/more conveniently available product than for one that doesn't have the same local support structure.
Let me give you an example of what I mean, by telling you the story of a company I know first hand. There is was a company in Greece that made leather interiors for cars. Including some really great sports seats that blew Recaro's offerings out of the water. Their workers were incredibly competent and hard-working. They had the world's best leather stitching machine in the world, bought from a german specialist company that makes a few of those a year. Their management team was on point. They made a world-class product at a great price. Big OEMs like Ford were impressed by them. The only problem: they were located in Athens, Greece. No cars are produced anywhere close to there. So they could only sell their products to greek car importers, because no OEM is going to send their cars to Greece and back to have leather interior fitted. They had to start up an entirely new subsidiary in the Netherlands to do any business in the big european car markets. The greek part of the company went under when the crisis hit. Such is life in peripheral Europe.
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It's SO simple (but only if you think about it...) :
Question 1 : If the UK was not presently a member of the EU, would we want to join and be told what to do by those highly sympathetic and unerringly intelligent bureaucrats in Brussels ?
If, yes, stay in; if no... Questions 2 & 3 : how do we transition if leaving and is this any more of a challenge than staying in ? I think not.
It's not the same as Scotland, which was simply fed up with centuries of rule by the Sassenach scum (as a non-resident Scot, I'm sympathetic...), but leaving the union would have been a disaster for Scotland, whereas the UK has a relatively short history within the EU.
Btw, it's a multi-level disaster for the EU if the UK leaves, but teaches ze Huns and ze Frogs & a good lesson imho (Britain imports FAR more from the EU than it exports, not that these numbers would likely change significantly).
NATO remains largely unaffected.
I vote OUT.
(Of course if @Fat Tails would refuse to allow his indicators to be used by non-EU members, I might have to reconsider )
Last edited by jtrade; February 27th, 2016 at 11:14 AM.
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