Tuesday, 21 June 2016

With love to Europe

I have been away quite a bit over the last few weeks, so I haven't posted for a while. And I've been rather preoccupied by the EU referendum; I very firmly believe we should remain in the European Union, and I'm extremely worried as to what will happen if we vote to leave. I have also, like all of us, been very saddened by the killing of the MP Jo Cox.

So I haven't really the heart to post much at the moment, and will just leave you with a few pictures of Vienna, where we were recently. Walking along its beautiful streets, smelling the lime blossom, visiting its wonderful museums and art galleries, I found it difficult to believe that we wouldn't want to be part of a Europe that has such marvels in it.

See you on the other side!

The Karlskirche, with a Henry Moore sculpture in front of it.

Fountain close to the Liberation Monument, which was erected by the Russians, and which the Austrians promised to maintain when they left.

Vienna has so many beautiful fountains. This one is in the Belvedere Gardens, where a gallery houses the most beautiful paintings by Klimt, including 'The Kiss'.

The Stephansdom, in the centre.


  1. I hope it works out for you, whatever happens. Who would have thought there would be a murder involved?
    I know someone from Australia who took out Polish citizenship(she was entitled to that) just so she could live in England. I wonder what will happen if it goes the other way?

  2. This is an evidence based assessment by an academic who's an expert in how EU law relates to UK law. It's scary.https://news.liverpool.ac.uk/2016/06/16/watch-dishonesty-industrial-scale-eu-law-expert-analyses-referendum-debate/

  3. He sounds to me as another person who quite clearly has done well in his life from the EU, in his case by the study of it. He also displays what is, to me, a typical academic's ignorance, and misunderstanding of political life. He also mentions, at the 6 - 9 minutes mark, about all the discussions he's had with the 'major steakholders'. Rump, I assume. They all agree that the EU is a good thing. He says these discussions included the 'general public'. So how come that anywhere between 40 and 55% of that general public say they intend to vote to leave the EU ?

    I'll vote to remain. For none of the reasons mentioned in that talk. When I was 17 years old, my family moved from Scotland to Somerset. I remained, for 3 months, to to do exams. I lived in lodgings. My room had one bookcase, filled with a 12 or 15 very thick volume set about the Second World War. It was a long way from what I had been taught in school. Of wars that I had never heard of. Of Ribbentrop, I think, saying to his Russian counterpart... "Finland ? You can have it, if you can hold it.".

    I'll vote remain, because the Common Market (EU) has always been about European countries working in co-operation, economic and political. To end the rivalries that brought countries to each other's throats in war. Millions dead, forced migrations.

    The great unsayable today, is that the murder of Jo Cox has likely caused a considerable number of people to say to themselves.. "So that's what the far end of what Britain First, Britain Out etc..., is all about".

    Concerns me, though, that this academic is standing up there, speaking to students, with such a one-sided argument, presented as 'evidence-based'.

  4. I'm glad you're voting to stay, Andrew - and I agree that a major reason for doing so is that countries should be working together, not tearing themselves apart. I'm a bit puzzled by your comments about the speech, though. He does say at the end that he's aware that he's only addressing one part of the argument - but it, ie the legal side, is an area that he knows a great deal about. And if there's one thing I've learnt about academics, in the five years I've recently spent working alongside them in universities, it's that everything has to be backed up by evidence and logic - it's the bedrock of what they do. Also, incidentally, I got the impression that he wasn't talking to students on this particular occasion, but to a different audience - possibly the press. Anyway - thanks for your contribution , and I hope very much that we get the result we want!

  5. Further thoughts on this. I didn't say so at the time, but I very quickly found that a large, not majority, but substantial part of the funding of that man's professorial chair comes from the EU.

    I tend to ask .. " I wonder where their money's coming from.." when I'm invited, directly or indirectly, to accept what someone is saying as independent or evidence-based.

    Chomski's book, 'Manufacturing Consent', describes how in his view, mainstream media is corrupted by the mutual self-interests of media companies themselves, and their advertisers.

    Perhaps the same is true of many articulate, well-educated, and relatively affluent people in Britain, who easily avail themselves of the benefits of EU membership, and then use each other as the apparently independent reference points for how wonderful everything is.