- My wife is Portuguese.
- I have a load of Euros sat in the safe as the M-I-L likes to leave them behind when she comes to visit.
- My business is very largely dependent on import-export and quite a bit of that is through the EU and, therefore, not effected by import duty etc.
- The best tenant we've had is a Polish plumber!
- I want to live in a country where the politicians have legal controls imposed on them. The first ever controls imposed on the UK parliament came from Europe - before that the law and constitution was simply what the party with the majority said it was and the electorate!
- I don't want British-born scumbags to be able to claim benefits after never having contributed, so why should I want foreigners to be able to claim them?
- Freedom of movement was supposed to be about working, not about claiming benefits. That's simply a side-effect of EU anti-discrimination legislation.
- We've swapped a democratically elected dictatorial parliament for a parliament that's now forced to comply with the court's wishes, but can be over-ruled by the court of an unelected body in Europe.
I like being in the EU from the point of view that travel is easier and, if we weren't in, I'd never have met my wife as she'd not have been recruited to work in the UK. I actually like the idea of the Euro, but acknowledge that it won't ever work unless national economic policies are transferred to the control of a central department and the ECB.
Greece is a bad example. They should never have been allowed in the Euro-zone to begin with. Their economy was not compliant, but figures were fudged to make them look like they were. The ECB and Euro-zone are now paying the price for that fudge. The only issue about Greece that does apply to us is that we were forced to help with the initial bailout. Having said that, while we would not have been directly effected by our actual currency tanking, all European currencies would have suffered, so we'd have been hit anyway. Add to that the fact that the City of London holds the VAST majority of financial underwriting policies on European businesses and banks, then bankruptcies in the Euro-zone will hit us hard.
If we leave we can always rejoin? Think again! If the kid who keeps saying you can only play with his ball if he's allowed to win wants another game of football, you tell him to
off and buy your own ball! Don't forget, we were blocked from joining the EEC when we first applied. That was a direct retaliation for not joining when we were first asked to. Even if we were allowed to rejoin, it would have to be on the basis of accepting the rules that apply at the time, so we'd probably be bound by treaties that we're opted-out of now and almost certainly be forced to join the Euro.
We pay in more than we get out? Of course we do. You can't have 28 countries stick a 1 Euro coin in a machine and get a 2 Euro coin back. We've benefited in the past from European development funding, it's our turn now to pay for other people's. We want the Syrian refugees to stay in the region, so are subsidising this to the tune of billions. When are people going to realise that the same thing applies to dragging the poorer parts of Europe up to our standards applies too. Pay now to help them and reduce their need to move here in the future. After-all, look at the number of Polish workers who've moved back as their economy has got better.
I remember a law lecturer who spent a whole class saying how the only truly democratic processes in the UK flowed from Europe. He described the UK as the world's most democratic autocracy. It's still that way to a point - if a party is voted in with a true majority they can then proceed to do anything they wish to, including changing the very basis on which the next election will be run, the makeup of the voting electorate and the checks and balances provided by the second chamber. BUT, at least at the moment we'd have the possibility of running to the ECHR to try and have a law overturned as non-compliant with EU treaties. At the same time, we have thousands of small regulations and laws that are imposed on us without anyone really noticing or caring.
In or out? I'm honest not sure. In fact, to a degree, I honestly don't care - the wife is talking seriously about opening a practice in the UAE and I'm looking into the bureaucracy involved in moving my business to one of the Dubai free trade zones. In reality that's a long-shot, but now we've made the intellectual leap of investigating the logistics of this, we know it's a possibility if we need it.
On the original question. Will the jungle move to the UK if we exit?
Of course it won't, if they do get through France they'll cut the fences in Dover and run into the darkness. The jungle is there because of the barrier created by The Channel, it's not a holding camp for people who are waiting for legal entry, it's a place for them to stay while they look for another chance to sneak in. In theory, France could refuse to stop them leaving and simply force our border controls to pick up the pieces.
In reality, though, that few miles of water makes a huge difference. They can only get here by:
b) getting on a ferry/boat
c) getting on a plane
d) getting through the tunnel.
Swimming isn't really a problem and anyone who does make it that way should be given citizenship and put in the Olympic team straight away.
Planes can only manage a small number of stowaways, so checks on wheel-wells for frozen immigrants can deal with that one easily.
Stowing away on lorries and in cars is an issue for both the ferries and the tunnel, but ramping-up the security checks at the ports this side would deal with the vast majority of attempts, even though it would cause chaos to begin with if we searched every vehicle entering the UK.
There are only a certain number of points someone could get onto a ferry, so making the ferry companies legally responsible for every illegal that's caught would make them improve their security if needed.
Small boats could be tracked and searched on arrival, but that would take a huge increase in border controls and customs patrols at sea.
If the French were stupid enough to allow easy access to the tunnel, then they'd deserve to have it closed. It simply can't operate if people are walking it, so if I was a French official, I'd already be planning ways of bolstering access security at the tunnel in the even of a withdrawal of UK checks on the French side.