Friends don't let friends stay in something as stupid as the EU - Credit, public domain

It’s entirely possible to argue that this really isn’t the way to run a continent. The European Union is advancing plans to fix daylight savings time in place. Instead of changing the clocks to + 1 in summer we’ll just stay on + 1 year round. You know, all of Europe, by dictat.

The European Union said on Friday it would propose a legal change that would end the ritual of switching between summer and winter time, leaving it up to governments across the bloc to agree on whether to permanently use summer time or winter time.

So, why’s that?

European Union citizens care a hell of a lot about daylight saving time. In the largest survey ever conducted by the European Commission, 80% of around 4.6 million respondents said they favor abolishing the finicky practice of changing the clocks in summer and winter.

I’m pretty interested in politics and the EU and this is the first I’d ever heard of this “massive” consultation. Possibly that explains the numbers – that’s less than 1% of the population of the EU. As we also find out:

By far the biggest response was in Germany and Austria (3.79% and 2.94% of the national population respectively). The UK’s response was lowest – 0.02% – but few Italians took part either (0.04%).

Oh, right. So when we told people during that little mid century unpleasantness that we’d prefer not to be ruled by German socialists they din’t quite hear the answer then, is that it? Or ruled by the German and Austrian might combined perhaps?

As to the reason being given for the mooted change apparently all the stuff they’ve been telling us about fewer accidents with the change and all that, it’s rubbish. Rubbish they’ve been spouting all these decades to insist that we do change the clocks.

And we are still left with that amazing manner of running the entire continent, aren’t we? 0.02% of Britons were consulted, the lack of time change will be imposed upon 100% of Britons. Aren’t we all glad we’re leaving such a system?

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Neil McEvoy
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Neil McEvoy

I’ve never seen the point of lying about the time. We shouldn’t have the ludicrously named ‘daylight saving’ but should be on GMT (not GMT +1) all year. For that matter, France and Spain should be on GMT all year too.

NDReader
Member
NDReader

It’s handy when a couple of hundred people, many of them working 9-5, gather in the early evening to try to get a couple of hours of yacht racing in before it starts to go dark. I suppose golfers are the same.
Obviously standard hours of work could change instead, and none of us cares what the clock says during winter, but the extra hour of light after work suits many people very well indeed.

Spike
Member

It is a good thing for governments to set time zones rather than have noon defined as the sun’s zenith in each city, as it once was. However, if individual persons or companies elect to do work before dawn, thereby to have maximum sunlight after work, they should be free to do so. (The possibility of being shut when a customer calls is a reason not to do so.) There is no reason to compel an entire nation or continent to make the same decision. And yes, the only rigor the EU brings to this or any other diktat is… Read more »

Rhoda Klapp
Member
Rhoda Klapp

It’s of little import to me, but the proposal does illustrate the power of single-issue fanatics to influence lawmakers who love to make laws, any laws. (I am not referring to the EP when I say lawmakers, of course).

Spike
Member

I recall that the 2005 extension of US DST into November was lobbied for by candy manufacturers, who thought more daylight for trick-or-treating would goose their sales. The manufacturers are not mentioned but their Congressional champions are, at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daylight_saving_time_in_the_United_States#2005–2009:_Second_extension

john77
Member
john77

We were consulted – first time that I’ve heard about that!
No we bloody well were not. Some bureaucrat hired a pollster recommended by another bureaucrat and it didn’t occur to her that a response rate of 0.02% was a little implausible?!?
Even if you suppose that they only polled 4% of each population and 95% of Austrians polled responded that’s 0.5% of Britons responding to the survey. Just not believable.
Was the survey carried out in German?

Spike
Member

And why was the British response only 0.02%? Because Brits tend to keep their opinions to themselves? More likely, after the Brexit vote, that the EU couldn’t be arsed to ask many of them. “Screw ’em! They’ve left!” (Or will do, next March, or maybe won’t.)

If you are claiming to measure something, shouldn’t you have something better to report than, “They didn’t say”?

Rhoda Klapp
Member
Rhoda Klapp

Of course, it’s not about the clocks. The problem is that people who think themselves our betters want to manage a whole continent down to stupid details like this. Or sausage content, or straightness of cucumbers or whatever. It isn’t for our good, it’s because they can. There’s a word for managing everything down to the lowest level. Totalitarianism.

Southerner
Member

“Less than 1% of the population” is also a German Socialist thing. During that mid-century disturbance it could be confusing to say “fewer.”