The following are the arguments I've heard in the media:
PRO TURKEY JOINING - Turkey wants to join - Turkey would add people and GDP to the EU, giving it more power
Why is this seen as necessary? And for that matter, which 'it'? It would give Turkey a hell of a lot more pull.
- Turkey is a NATO member - Turkey claims to be a secular state
Why is this a pro?
Theocracies not having the best record in such matters as, well, democracy and other things we seem to find essential...
(PeterTaylor) Countries have to be democratic to be members of the EU? Now that's irony.
(Requiem) I didn't say the reasoning had to be self-consistent, now did I?
- Having more muslims join the EU would make it become more multicultural - it would promote widening the EU - it would delay deepening the EU - One of the prime functions of the EU is as a fre etrade area, and thus all of its current members tend to gain when that area is widened.
CON TURKEY JOINING - A majority of citizens in the EU don't want Turkey to join - Cyprus - Their human rights record - They are not on the same continent (geographically they are more Middle East than Europe) - Having more muslims join the EU would make it become more multicultural - it would promote widening the EU - it would delay deepening the EU - Turkey is a silly name for a country - Turkey has a historic record of joining empires just before they die horribly
DouglasReay would vote NO, chiefly on the ground that he is pro-deepening, but also because he thinks that it would be good for a Middle East economic union to have Turkey as part of it.
Um, I'm really politically uninformed. What is 'widening' and 'deepening' in this respect? - SunKitten
Widening is adding more countries to the union. Deepening is tying the existing countries closer together (eg united foreign policy, effective EU level military force)
I'm a bit too concerned about the lack of proper democracy in the EU for me to be comfortable with us tying ourselves to it. I think Turkey should be encouraged to join, but I'd emphasise that it needed to keep its human rights record to at least its current standard, preferably higher. - CorkScrew
What do you think of the proposed Constitution? Will it make things more democratic? Is that important? Why?
(particularly like 'if the core of European identity turns out to have made you impotent, you ought to treat the disease rather than demand free Viagra from Washington.')
Some blatant FlameBait? in there - the random sideswipe at anglicism, for example, seems rather innapropriate for an argument about the EU... Um. He wanders all over the map. Seems to me he has two points: First that the EU isn't very democratic, and second that many of its policies are poor. I must admit, I enjoy a good rant as much as the next person - but the targets are very very random. --Vitenka
But first you have a whole "Anglicism isn't a real religion anyway" chunk - before it gets to the germane "The validity of the CoE? is shrinking - and so is the EU" bit. Which is only barely relevant as a segue. It works, barely - but it doesn't seem particularly appropriate to this article. --Vitenka
(PeterTaylor) It's an analogy that might even work were the evangelical wing of the Anglican church not growing in importance.