Friday 4 July 2014

In the comments there was some suggestion that pre and post WW2 the UK and France considered joining together. Well, there were proposals.  The Churchill one was a desperate idea to keep the fleeing French in the war. By the time Reynaud's government received it they were just 12 hours from surrender. The later one, the Guy Mollet one, was a serious suggestion for France to merge with the UK as one nation, or to join the Commonwealth. Quite astonishing for a French Prime Minister to have suggested such a thing and it was unlikely to have been supported by the French people, who were never asked. He was a terrible, terrible socialist leader, creating a new word for duplicity.

CityUnslicker was rightly horrified at the thought of the UK and French economies attempting any kind of economic or political union. We are so different.

As the UK was privatising during the 1980's the French were nationalising. They are still nationalising as their private companies look elsewhere. Historically England and France are the bitterest of enemies. A hundred years war is a long time to do battle. 
The Triple Entente , which we will be hearing a lot about next month, sprung from the Entente Cordiale, only signed in 1904. Up to that point all British military plans had had France as the most likely enemy. France, then America.

And then there was the disaster of WW2.. the rebuilding .. the EEC..leaving NATO .German reunification... The EU .. The Euro..we just don't see eye to eye on very much. If we were to marry, it wouldn't last long.

However, there IS a solution. 

France is a left wing, monarchy free, republic, that favours state intervention and state control over privatisation and free markets. They are beset by occasional periods of centre right government which never seem to help them very much.

The UK is a right wing, constitutional monarchy, that tends to believe the opposite, but is occasionally beset by periods of centre left government which never seem to help very much.

The solution is obvious! 

The right wing thinking and voting French public pack their bags, hop on a ferry, and arrive in the UK, ready to move into the vacated houses of the die hard socialists and EU Liberals who have been moving the other way.

France becomes a true left wing socialist paradise with all the public sector comforts that brings, and the UK has the opportunity to test its ideas on low taxation and less regulation to see if they work.

And, I would suggest the French let us take their semi-private healthcare system and they can take our fully socialist one. We should probably let them have the state funded BBC, in exchange for their state owned but expansionist energy companies?..Oh..They are already here! 

Job done!


Blue Eyes said...

I agree we wouldn't want to get taken over by the Frogs again. It took us far too long to get our liberties back the last time. It would have to be a modern synergistic merger where the worst of both gets lopped off by a ruthless new board.

For example we could use it as an excuse to pre-emptively ditch Charles III. We could nick the French health system and school system (dirigiste: yes, effective: why were comprehensive schools not built like that?).

The French could lose their damaging anti-property measures and learn all about planning enquiries.

Apparently you have to be doing quite well before you pay more tax in France than the UK. Here we tax everyone to death before they even get started.

The Frenglish wouldn't need to worry about rip-off utility prices or capacity shortfalls.

A boulangerie and fromagerie on every corner, even in Birmingham. Tony Blair's café society finally realised. A proper cup of tea on the other side of the Channel. Horsemeat not just in Tesco.

Bill Quango MP said...

Anon: I suspect if Salmond had added a 3rd option to the ballot - Leave England and join France, and never have a Tory government lording it over you ever again, we would have seen a landslide for the Auld Alliance.

BE: Its a nice idea, but we are different by temperament. Our English language pulls us into the USA's cultural orbit, not something the French are too obsessed with.

Better to have a clean break and each side unloads its communists,fascists, marxists,monarchists onto the other.

It would be like the cold war again. But friendlier. Either side can visit the other. Free trade etc {except the Fifth Republique would probably have to seal its borders North Korea style to make its system work}

Blue Eyes said...

BQ I think you are missing the point slightly. Neither 20th century plans were supposed to be taken seriously, and neither is mine. Canada was supposed to get English justice, German economics and French cuisine. Likewise the United States of Europe will get the best cars, beer, wine and cheese known to mankind. We will all be happy and free to live a lifestyle according to our born or adopted cultural preferences.

Eventually Europe's elites will realise that it doesn't work when everyone tries to be German.

Vives les differences!

Electro-Kevin said...

France is obviously the more nationalistic of the two - and guess who likes visiting whom the best.

Aside its present difficulties with regards to high tax it has no problems with regard to infrastructure, energy, welfare/health tourism and it doesn't pussy foot around with its trouble-making minorities either.

Y Ddraig Goch said...


Your comment ...

I suspect if Salmond had added a 3rd option to the ballot - ...

reminds me to ask. Why on earth are the Conservative party opposed to Scottish independence? There's some short term disruption, but longer term, isn't it a one-way bet for the Conservatives?

Demetrius said...

Oh, imagine, Ed Balls as Mayor of Clochmerle.

john miller said...

We are getting lots of right wing capitalist French people who are pushing up London property prices.

Sadly, our commie gits in public "service" are firmly entrenched, but they are also pushing up house prices...

Bill Quango MP said...

I had to google that Dem. Lol!
Very apt.

EK - French difficulties with their immigrant urban populations are far worse than what we experience in the UK. And they have so many more migrants than the UK, With even more from other EU countries and many from their African ex-colonies.

Y Ddraig Goch
Any loss of population is a loss of power. We would lose some of our big nation status. And it would be humiliating among ofter nations, especially EU ones. "even your own reject you nationalistic ideas".

I still have not seen a genuine, informed, unbiased article about what a Scots exit would mean for England. I suspect because no one really knows.

Blue Eyes said...

And all those high-flying French exiles of socialism are more than welcome. We lived next door to a French family when I was in my teens and every now and again we would be invited over on a saint's day or some excuse to eat cake. My area now is crawling with Frogs and you cannot move for excellent French restaurants. Ok there are two, but anyway.

I think actually the free movement bit is the best thing about the EU as currently constructed. If you want to live in a mad socialist experiment then you may. If you want to live on spätzli and beansprouts and never go shopping then off you go.

If it was up to me I'd cut the EU down to the state aid, competition and free movement bits then invite the US, Canada, Australia, NZ and Singapore to join.

Blue Eyes said...

BQ half the Scots will move down immediately and we'd make up the other half of the loss within a few months anyway.

We aren't a big nation anyway. We're a medium rich nation which wields occasional influence. We would probably be even more successful if we stopped casting ourselves as more than that.

Budgie said...

BQ said: "CityUnslicker was rightly horrified at the thought of the UK and French economies attempting any kind of economic or political union. We are so different."

With French government spending 57% of their GDP, and the UK government spending 46% of our GDP, we are not that different.

Bill Quango MP said...

Budgie- ahh, but under the new Bi-nation plan you'd soon see the UK spending 37% of GDP and France spending 97%.

And I'd go with BE's plan of leaving the borders open. That way as UK cuts back state spending evermore of those chopped can go and find work on the French payroll.

BE- My absolubte favouite French restaurant shut down in Kingston on Thames.
But a Brazillian and an Argentinian one opened up instead.
Superb beef.

I once had a really terrific meal in one of those shops in a tiny french villages. Shop was some kind of post office, cafe, restaurant, iron monger and laundrette. Great food though. Good price.

you used to see that sort of thing in the countryside in this country. A model shop and book shop and dry cleaners and chemist. But they have mostly closed down with the recession and internet pressure.

Does anyone know how many Scots would leave an independent Scotland?
Also, something that is so strange that hasn't been seen on TV, is that we have, in this country, in modern times, had a national divorce.
The Irish Free state creation of 1922, and later the Irish sovereign nation of 1937.

Instead of pointy heads and politicos saying"no one knows what would happen if there was a split..Who would own the railways? Who the banks?"

We've done it already. We have the blueprints that might be 90 odd years old , but provide the framework.

For example, the Free State used the English currency. And did so for many years until they sorted out their own currency arrangements.The free State was granted an immigration status that meant{and still does] almost no checks on immigration or travel from one nation to another.

And so on

Quite why this hasn't been used as an example

Ossian said...

French nuclear subs at Faslane and French aircraft carriers in the Gareloch due the inability of rUK to get it's defence policy right.

EDF building nuclear powers all along the borders to get subsidy due the inability of rUK to get it's energy policy right.

..and those aircraft carriers will have, what are they called, aircraft.

Not as smart as we think we are, are we?

Electro-Kevin said...

BQ - The problems the French have with urban immigrants seem greater than ours - primarily because of conflict with authorities which won't put up with any nonsense from them.

As for which country has most ? We'd need to look at figures but we are being told that our country has the fastest growing population in the EU.

We no longer have an urban influx - this has now spread out to small towns like my own. It is massive. Beyond what they are admitting in public.

We certainly have the attendant housing crisis and NHS crises to support this claim and our own establishment seems desperate to disassociate cause and effect - to the point that when someone like Peter Hitchens dares to mention it he is smeared.

Sorry I can't be as witty as Blue. He's making some class comments there and it makes me envious.

Bill Quango MP said...

Em. From the last set of available stats, 2010, UK and France almost equal in immigrant numbers. About 7 million each..with France having a million more non EU citizens coming and uk some half million more EU citizens.

I would expect both countries to have had significantly more since 2010

UK had the Romanian Bulgarians coming, some to join those already here. Plus with the poor job prospects and difficulty in obtaining benefits in Spain or Italy, many more EU migrants must have chosen the UK.

The French too must have picked up Algerian and Moroccan and Tunisian people since the Arab spring.. And Syria was a French colony so that civil war will have swelled French numbers too.

This doesn't mean there is no problem. It simply means that what we see as an issue here affects other nations too.
Otherwise how could we explain the stunning success of the Front Nationale in France

They did better in the Euros than UKIP did here.
In fact, if anything is going to put paid to the EU project it would be a big win for the far right in France.
Because if they get in, it's not a referendum on EU membership. They will just leave.

Budgie said...

BQ said: "... as UK cuts back state spending ...".

I'll believe that when I see it - for anything substantial, never mind "37%".

Budgie said...

Ossian said: "... of rUK".

If the Scots secede from the UK, that is their decision. I wish they wouldn't, because their decision will have a serious effect on the UK. It still will be the UK, of course, if the Scots secede, not the "rUK".

Blue Eyes said...

The French allowed some of their former colonies to become part of France itself. So you can get a prix fixé à €20 in the Carribean. Frangleterre would have a tropical coastline! Why are people against this??!

Sebastian Weetabix said...

We Scots, thanks to the auld alliance, were automatically entitled to French citizenship until relatively recently. IIRC it was that difficult bugger De Gaulle who put a stop to such romantic nonsense.

Personally i find the French are even more arrogant than the English - and that's saying something!

CityUnslicker said...

SW - it's a race to the bottom eh?

Jer said...


"Frangleterre would have a tropical coastline! Why are people against this??!"

Because France....

Sebastian Weetabix said...

CU - the English ruling classes have an unerring ability to project a sense of effortless superiority over the lower orders. I don't think they even know they're doing it. It tends to enrage us chippy Glaswegians.

Parisians are worse, I think. Having a booze up in a little bar in Lannion on the other hand, you couldn't meet nicer people.

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