Brexit means Brexit was a sham

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Brexit means Brexit was a sham

May’s pledge that Brexit would mean Brexit is a sham. It transpires that her vision of Brexit consists of the UK retaining European regulations, tax policy and EU “values”. But, all is not lost. We can still salvage this dire situation, believes Peter Divey.

The UK negotiators are in desperate need of help. They have already conceded the baby and the bathwater to the EU with every likelihood of more goodies to follow. The upper limit for offerings seems so colossally high that it is not yet in view. The EU will continue to press because they have not yet been rebuffed.

The EU does not negotiate as such. They set up stout barriers. Then they march you into a corner and wear you down with complex and gnawing side issues. You run out of time and stamina, then you collapse and yield. The EU does not act in good faith, there is only blunt force and raw power. But a skilled boxer can defeat a puncher.

It is a simple and transparent process. Used by the EU forever. And as with others it is bamboozling and crushing the UK into basic errors and needless concessions.

May pledged Brexit would mean Brexit but here is her vision of ‘Brexit’: the UK retaining European regulations, tax policy, the often-espoused EU “values”. Project fear has won out, indeed it transpires it was never in danger of losing. Concessions to ECJ involvement are galling, barely credible. The Northern Irish border situation is incredible. Devolution and Brexit combined have created a new hybrid that would only be possible in Theresa May’s mind. The excuses cannot hide or lessen the decision, the Good Friday Agreement, the desire for peace, “the special case”, none of it will wash. This decision has made terrorism more likely, much more likely. You will have not only have less UK but more EU. The integrity of the UK has been sacrificed on the EU altar. Words are said to be more powerful than bullets, and this talk of continued “alignment” proves just that. A grin from Tusk, a wink from Juncker, a raised eyebrow from Barnier was all it took.

Sturgeon has already demanded special rights for Scotland and for the first time she has a point. Calls for another referendum in Scotland will have renewed bite. Khan is shouting for the special needs of London. Unintended consequences. Even the MEP’s cannot believe the totality of the collapse, the weakness of Britain. We have achieved everything they gloat. The DUP will throw a hissy fit. May does not care. This is for her, ‘sufficient progress’.

But the situation is salvageable. We need to fundamentally alter our position. The “No Deal” option is used badly as a fall-back threat. We need to turn it around and explain to the EU that this is our starting position and would they kindly explain how they intend to offer a better proposition than WTO terms for accessing our large and valuable market. This immediately offsets one of the EU’s favourite cramping tactics as time pressure then bears down on the EU side. Any tariffs they erect can be mirrored by the UK, make that clear. No money need be offered, as with Canada the marketplace in of itself is the prize.

The Irish Border is a smoke screen. Cover to hide the need for unedifying begging for money by the EU. The border situation cannot be solved by the UK because it is a foreign country.

There will be a hard border unless the EU decides otherwise and the UK should immediately stop wasting excessive time. State a preference then move on. The Irish Republic will also have no say, they will do as their EU masters command. Which is why they are being so noisy. The EU let them off the lead to knaw at the UK’s ankles from time to time. Ignore the nipping.

On citizens’ rights. The EU wants the UK to accept ECJ oversight even when Brexit is finalised. Turn it down flat, especially as UK citizens would have a lesser status under such a set-up. Would the EU permit a reciprocal approach with the UK supreme court holding sway on the Continent? The EU have yet to match the UK offer on rights. Move on until they do. Call the EU out when they are stalling. Fight the PR battle just as hard as they do.

EU “values” are laughably transparent. The EU wants the UK to “shadow” EU values so the UK cannot set up any “immoral” tax or trading advantages that leave the stifling EU would allow. The EU can’t have departed members surging ahead, demonstrating the restrictive practices of their “open” market. Not a good look.

There you have it, my negotiating guide to salvage this dreadful capitulation. No harm in saving tens of billions of pounds. But, there is hope yet, one more twist in the tail. The MEP’s will veto any deal. Verhofstadt’s moment in the sun will not be denied. Everything then becomes moot. But we are now ready for that fresh start. And a damned site cheaper it will be too.

4.95 avg. rating (98% score) - 38 votes
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  • Peter Divey
    Peter Divey
    Peter Divey's dormant interest in British and American politics has been reawakened by last year's Brexit referendum result and Trump's ascendency to the White House. In his spare time he enjoys playing chess and has a growing collection of vintage wrist watches.
    • alecto

      May’s idea of Brexit is opposite to what we actually voted for. If the tories don’t rein her in and stop her from making any more concessions they can expect a long time in the political wildnerness.

    • gunnerbear

      I voted Leave, and I keep reading that Brexit means we must chop regulations….yet rarely if ever, do most learned authors, like the one above explicitly state what regulations. I do think, It’s almost as if the author is admitting, that even post-Brexit, long after we’ve left, stacks of ‘EU Regulations’ will in fact stay in place because the rules are really global ones, but they’ve just been put into a nice ‘EU Folder’.

    • alecto

      May is a hopeless europhile and should step down. How can she fight for Brexit when her heart just isnt in it?

    • Lamia

      Good article, Peter. May and co have idiotically – and I can understand why many suspect it is deliberately – tangled Britain up in string they had no need to pick up in the first place. Not once has she used the ample opportunities to publicly call the EU out on its own double standards in these negotiations, and only once has she responded to the stream of insults and threats emanating from Brussels. It is abject stuff.

    • Gloria Hole

      The EU is united. Leavers are up against the EU, the civil service, traitors like Clarke and Soubry, the House of Lords and the Prime Minister.

    • SonofBoudica

      A good article. May is totally out of her depth. The EU has long had form for bullying States into agreement, mainly through making meetings continue throughout the night until delegates are exhausted and will agree anything too get some sleep. Sleep deprivation is, in fact, a form of torture. The agenda of the unelected and unaccountable in Brussels is clear. They intend to amass more control and more financial power from member States until Europe is a collection of mayoralties in which the centre in Brussels holds all the money and power.

    • Jerry Scanlon

      I gave May the benefit of the doubt at the last election, not because I favour the Tories, I don’t: But because I listened to all the players and she seemed to have the right ideas and the power to deliver Brexit to us. As she said Brexit means Brexit, so she got my vote.
      It now seems that she either deceived us all because she is after all a Remoaner, or she has become weak.
      Either way she must go now before she does anymore damage.

    • here’s looking at you kid

      If May sells the country out on Brexit she will go down in history as the most treacherous and incompetent politician we have ever had.
      I wonder if she actually has any idea of the extreme approbrium that will follow her for the rest of her days.
      It will be much much worse than the liar Blair has ever received.
      Effectively the democratic soul of the nation is being traded for a pathetic political carreer.
      The Tory Party will be finished.
      Corbyn and his Marxist scum will rule for a while but there may be hope of something far better in the future.
      Meanwhile there are dark days ahead unless we throw off the shackles of the EU completely.

    • Captain Cutlass

      I think we need an election and a new Tory leader. However before that we need to redefine the Conservative Party – as pro-Brexit – no more remainers in front bench positions – and pro – business that is small businesses not vast global-snowbls. Needs to happen from the ground up – so let local associations choose their candidate…Not London.

    • Malcolm

      From where we are now, whether thanks to political ineptitude or blatant cynicism with May never intending to deliver on her rhetoric about Brexit, I can only see two possible outcomes: either the UK leaves with no trade deal and suffers whatever short term pain that may (or may not) involve, or we don’t get Brexit in anything but name only, which would actually be a worse situation than before the vote to leave, and which would incense at least 17.4 million voters, and probably many more, with very unpredictable consequences for democracy and their willingness to accept such blatant abuse of the system. May and her advisors need to consider very, very carefully which of those two actually carries the greater risk for the nation she is paid to serve and protect.

    • digitaurus

      So far you Brexiteers have proved to be all mouth and no trousers.

      What new level of incompetence does she need to display and how many more of your principles does she have to sell down the river before you revolt?

      What a shambles.

      • fred finger

        The papers are reporting that the EU and the Irish gov, would not allow the DUP to see the final text or until very late. If this proves to be true, it shows the whole lot of them, May included, are a bunch of fuckwits.

    • Bik Byro

      “The “No Deal” option is used badly as a fall-back threat. We need to turn it around and explain to the EU that this is our starting position and would they kindly explain how they intend to offer a better proposition”
      Utterly and totally spot on, Peter. We desperately need you at the head of the negotiating table.

    • Jenni Wren

      Is this a spoof article?

      • DespiteBrexit

        No.
        Next please.

        • Jenni Wren

          In that case it’s bonkers

    • Unfortunately, this is another of those times one has to conclude that “Hitchens was right.”

      We took a shortcut, we have a Brexit mandate but a Remain government. All of the things you’ve said should indeed have been our starting position – but the people sent to negotiate for our side don’t really want to leave, so the EU knows it’s dealing with an opponent who’s heart isn’t really in it. If we get this bodged, halfway in Brexit, I predict this battle will need to be fought all over again and will probably destroy the Tory party in the process.

      • Mojo

        I think we can safely say, as of yesterday, the Tory Party is now destroyed and will be unelectable for the next 50 years at least. The liberals did many wrong things for our
        Country in 1912 and 1914 and have not been elected to power since. They ended up being stalled. By the gang of four’s Social Democrat Party to become the LibDems and now even the LibDems are walking in to oblivion.

        • CRSM

          Lloyd George was the nail in the coffin for the old Classic Liberal party. Sad, because I would certainly vote for a modern version. (Not the ‘Lib Dems’, who are neither Liberal or Democratic).

    • fred finger

      May could have used the ‘Irish Border’ problem to her advantage, but her complete weakness again showed through. She is beyond hopeless.

    • I can’t be doing with all this fake negotiation nonsense. Let’s leave. I can do without a BMW, French plonk and two-faced Irish approval.

    • Sophie Edward

      I live in hope that they will call the whole thing off for the sake of the country – all we are doing is negotiating to get ourselves into as good a position as we have now.

    • Nockian

      We should take the Norway option at this point and stop wasting time and tax payers money on something that is likely to be a worse outcome by the time our hopeless government has finished these negotiations. That means either a land border in Ireland, or we move towards a unified Ireland which remains in the EU as a seperate sovereign country. Quite honestly we have wasted enough blood and treasure on Northern Ireland as it is. We then don’t have to pay the ridiculous ransom to leave and as we remain in the customs union there are no more trade deal negotiations to make.

      I know it’s a compromise, but unfortunately, if we don’t put a plug in this hole we are going to end up with endless referenda and shaky Governments requiring elections. May has made such a mess of this thing that we will likely end up with a Corbyn government bending over to the Blairites to put us right back where we began, but poorer for it.

      • disqus_79r3exFrhB

        What you have just advocated is that we remain in the EU, lock, stock and barrel. I can just see all the ‘Leave voters’ jumping with joy at your simple answer to the whole Brexit scenario………………………….NOT.

        • Nockian

          I’m a leave voter and campaigner, so it’s painful for me to say it. However, it does not mean ‘lock, stock and barrel’. We would be outside the EU and because of our position as a net importer we could likely have our cake and eat it with regard to setting up world free trade deals. We would have to comply with the four freedoms-the most contentious being the free movement of people, but quite honestly, despite mechanisms which could be used to restrict the flow of immigrants, our successive governments have chosen to turn a blind eye. We wouldn’t have to accept the ECJ rulings except on trade itself.

      • MrVeryAngry

        I am not sure we need to take the Norway option. Why not just say ‘OK we are unilaterally declaring free trade, hence we have no need of a Irish hard border for trade. It’s now yours, the EU’s problem.’.

        • gunnerbear
        • Nockian

          Great idea, but the crony corporations and banks won’t accept it, nor will legions of those who get some sort of subsidy out of EU membership. To get that kind of thing would require the kind of philosophical change not seen since the enlightenment/industrial revolution. In time we might discover reason, freedom, individualism and capitalism, but I doubt it in my lifetime. Until then we have to go in little steps always moving towards a philosophical revolution of which Brexit is a part.

          No argument it would be the very best option, but so would a matter transporter for travel. In the short term it’s not going to happen.

          • gunnerbear
            • Nockian

              Its true that it would, even if it hurts me to say so. We could and would have to survive it, but I don’t believe people are equipped with the fortitude to stomach the pain. Just look at these millennials with their easy credit, entitlement and floating, ungrounded idealism. Are these the tough entrepreneurs of the future willing to tackle the realities and problems presented starkly to them by an independent life ? I can’t imagine any of them in the trenches in the First World War – hell, I cannot imagine myself coping with those conditions and I’m a lot tougher and grounded than they are.

          • MrVeryAngry

            There’s a lot in common between May’s shambolic ‘negotiations’ and a matter transporter. They are both being thwarted by the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle…..IMHO.

            • Nockian

              I don’t think they fully understand what the EU represents. These are very average quality people charged with managing the negotiations in the same manner as they run an election campaign-and we know how that turned out. The EU is just another layer of bureacracy to them and that’s the puddle of mud that they are used to swimming in.

      • lizmilton

        My understanding is that Norway has to accept everything the EU says in order to trade…but has no voice in any negotiations…is this correct?

        • Nockian

          It has to accept all the trade regulations, not the rest of it.

          • MrVeryAngry

            Which is precisely what we do not want as it limits our scope internationally.

            • Nockian

              That’s what we could negotiate. Norway is a net exporter, the U.K. is a net importer. We would have tarrif free access, plus make our own trade deals, but it would mean accepting the four freedoms. Not ideal I know. Yet, we could make conditions so much more difficult for free loaders and yet we didn’t.

              The problem is that we, as leavers, talk about walking away, but the EU know we won’t. Our crony businesses won’t allow it. Therefore May has to find a deal which satisfies everyone despite and because of the referendum vote.

              I would prefer to just leave and trade on WTO rules, pay nothing and get our sovereignty back, but I honestly wonder, given the current mess, whether we have any competent people capable of leveraging freedom from the EU. When all comes to all, there are a great mass of people who actually like socialism – I don’t mean they are just ignorant, but that they genuinely prefer all of us living in the mud together, they like equality no matter the cost, because to them there isn’t any.

            • MrVeryAngry

              Yes. Generally. The bit about people liking socialism. Hmm. Lot’s of them are left libertarian. They just don’t know it yet. But as you say there is a lot of ignorance out there. Which is to be expected after industrial quantities of mis-education…

            • Nockian

              If a person is low in confidence and their entire ego is driven by ‘how people see them’, then there is a unhealthy chance that they see their status as pretty lowly. If people just don’t want competition, or prefer not to push themselves, then socialism offers a neat way in which no one gets to be much better than them and mediocrity becomes a plus.

              In a world in which the best football players gets their legs removed, the man with two left feet and a lack of comittment can be a star.

            • MrVeryAngry

              The mediocre will inherit the Earth eh? Corbyn for example.

            • Nockian

              They won’t, because, ultimately the mediocre are dependent on the very best which is why communism always collapses. It’s always strange to hear a Russian telling people how good it was in the USSR – it’s inevitably someone poor with zero skills, just exactly the sort of person that benefits from such a regime. Documentary makers love to get someone on film who doesn’t like the changes-that there are such people should not be a surprise to anyone as there will always be such people.

              Anyone with a shred of aspiration is naturally not attracted to that kind of politics. Then there are those who depend on the poor for their own prestige. The Geldoffs and Abbots of this world-who, without the poor to champion would be stuck in some dead end occupation going nowhere. Championing the poor is highly lucrative and let’s them claim they are modern saints.

            • MrVeryAngry

              Agreed.

          • lizmilton

            Not correct, as far as I can see from scanning the info on the Norwegian model…they still have to accept free movement etc…the UK would have to become a law taker, not a law maker etc the article say…
            And we would lose all free trade agreements we have now with countries outside the EU…etc etc
            See
            Www. ukandeu.ac.uk

            • fred finger

              If you take a detailed look at the EU FTA, you will find that considering the EU has been at it for 40 years they have actually made little progress. For instance about 30 of the 56 countries are small central american and caribbean countries. The EU makes a big play of their so called expertise, but the reality of what they have achieved does not stand up to scrutiny.

            • fred finger

              They are not in the EU, so ECJ is not their supreme court. You might be getting confused with having to accept international/EU regulations of conformity.

            • r3d3

              Not quite.

              Norway for instance can, and does, have a very firm immigration policy including effective deportation of those considered economic migrants. No ‘Free Movement’ of (locallyconsidered) undesirables there.

              Obviously it requires Norwegian pols with some b*lls.

              https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/748976/Norway-migrant-crackdown-record-numbers-deported-2016

              (this is the Express, but a search shows similar reporting in the DT Graun etc)

            • fred finger

              They have to accept FoM, unless they use EEA art 112.

            • r3d3

              No doubt that is legally correct. Perhaps this is another example of the EU attitude to it’s written law. To paraphrase the current President of the EU Commission: ‘When it’s important, you have to lie’

            • fred finger

              Only Liechtenstein has managed to get FoM, this has not been formally agreed as the EU does not want a president, They just keep quiet about it.

            • r3d3

              get=get out?

            • Nockian

              Only ECJ ruling on EU trade. Free movement would be a yes, however, remember that successive Governments have not limited immigration from outside the EU either. As far as I can tell we could set up free trade agreements with any country.

      • Debs

        No we should withdraw without any deal.

        • Godfrey Sandford

          Agreed. We ought to withdraw without a deal, reverting by default to WTO rules.

          • gunnerbear

            No nation (well maybe two or three) trades purely under WTO rules…the EU for example has stacks of agreements, protocols, trade deals, memorandums etc. with a myriad of countries…that the UK is party to by virtue of EU membership. I note that Liam Fox wibbled fairly recently about trade deals and he hinted that his plan was to go to each nation and basically ask to ‘cut ‘n’ paste’ each agreement into a purely UK-X bilateral agreement. I’m given to understand, so far, if reports in the press are correct, that such an approach has been somewhat less than successful. Mind you, LF might soon be dealing with other issues as well… http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-politics-38831023 https://www.politico.eu/article/us-rounds-on-britain-over-food-quotas-as-post-brexit-trade-woes-deepen/ ….still, I voted Leave because I want UK politicians to directly accountable for their f^&kups.

        • Nockian

          Then you have to explain how. Our withdrawal means we must sort out Ireland. This is something Peter Hitchens said months ago would become an intractable stumbling block. The Norway option gives us the current deal but outside of the EU. That means we don’t require a border in Ireland. We don’t abide by the ECJ. We control our borders and we pay a small fee as I understand it.

          • disqus_79r3exFrhB

            We state that there will be no border on the N.Irish side and that trade and movement of goods will continue as is. If Ireland and the EU want a border, then that would become their responsibility.
            If the EU wants a ‘hard border’ then that will be seen as their doing and not the UK.

            • gunnerbear

              Except back in the real world the UK will collect the blame as well.

            • disqus_79r3exFrhB

              That is nonsense ! The UK stance is that a hard border will not exist and the technology is available to avoid that scenario.

              It is the EU insisting that there needs to be a hard border and with their usual intransigence, they are likely to create a border. The blame for that will rest completely with the EU (in the real world).

            • Nockian

              The trap here is that there will have to be a border somewhere. Unless Britain applies laissez faire capitalism in a hurry, then we are forced to put a customs border somewhere. The EU don’t want a border, they want us to stay part of the EU. It’s Britain that wants to leave.

            • fred finger

              It is the EU that is demanding Eire has a border.

            • Nockian

              They had agreed to sign a deal that effectively put the border in the Irish Sea. The EU isn’t laissez faire, it’s a customs union and Britain works the same way. If we are out, then there will need to be a customs border somewhere, that’s obvious. I don’t see another way around it. It would be nice if we didn’t need one, but unfortunately nice and hard reality are often opposites.

            • fred finger

              It is smoke and mirrors. The reason the so called deal was a non starter was because for all practical purposes it would mean NI stayed in the EU. A border always exists even in the EU, it is just that the paper work smooths over the physical checking.

              The EU did not want the deal for all of the UK, because that is what the UK is seeking.

            • Nockian

              Of course, but then why should we expect the EU to bend over backwards ? We aren’t under any illusion about what the EU is, so we shouldn’t be surprised that they don’t want to give us a deal that their own members don’t have-otherwise the EU becomes pointless.

              This is part of the U.K. Making its way in the world; it will be neither simple, nor easy. If we are falling at this fence we aren’t going to make it.

            • gunnerbear

              Yup…it’s the grinding process HMG was clearly unprepared for. I remember people shouting at me on all sorts of threads when I suggested that Sir Ivor was in fact correct: when dealing with the EU, if HMG really wanted a deal, HMG ought to have held fire on triggering Art. 50…. ….then got it’s own position sorted and sent the telex triggering Art. 50 because then the EU and the GBE would know exactly what we wanted for a ‘good deal’ and what was considered to be a ‘bad deal’. At the moment, Davis, is making it up on the hoof which makes HMG look like tools and makes the public suspicious that a fudge is being cooked up….. ..and I also wonder if some Brexit headbangers like Minford (totally free trade even if it kills UK industry) are trying to force the no-deal option because they are living in the fantasy world that the UK can become Singapore. As to the DUP, they are fantasists,,,,they want to stay within the EU for all practical purposes… https://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/815141/Election-2017-DUP-Theresa-May-Arlene-Foster-Brexit-coalition …whilst also insisting that NI remains part of the UK…. ….those two options are mutually exclusive.

            • Nockian

              I have two positions:

              What is practically possible and what I would prefer. I would prefer we leave and go total free trade, but I have no illusions that the bulk of the people would cope with the ramifications of doing so. It’s very much like the situation when the financial system started collapsing – we should have taken the pain short term back then, but few would have been prepared for the shock.

              Britain has become a lazy country and one at home with a standard of living that it cannot afford. Too much moral corruption on every level has resulted in the kind of torpor and productive stagnation that occurs in those who have let themselves become weak and sick in their latter years. Sooner or later Britain will collapse; it will have its heart attack and organ failure and live out its final years on life support regardless unless it does something-staying fully in the EU will only delay it. However, we just aren’t equipped to walk back into the global economic gym and lift the kind of weights we once managed easily. I think a lot of people think it’s only a matter of belief, rather than the hard facts of reality that prevents us picking up where we left off a century ago. The Norway model would offer us a more gentle acclimatisation and put our productive muscles back to work with manageable loading. We could look at rolling back regulation further over time and, we will be in a position to view the economic stagnation of the full EU members and perhaps, if we succeed, we offer them a guide and hope.

              We won’t be permitted to crash out of the EU anyway, the big boys won’t allow it and the public would turn nasty when it was discovered just how poorly we actually are. It would be another case of the promise ‘war over by Christmas’. The big boys would likely accept the Norway compromise and the public wouldn’t feel the pain quite as intensely. It’s time the Government prepared the people for whichever outcome is more likely. It should give a rosy view of what’s possible, whilst being realistic about time scales and the effort that will be required by everyone in order to succeed. That means no more pussyfooting around with the welfare system and the NHS. No more buying expensive Trident weapons systems. No more cheap credit. No more vanity projects.

          • Blackthorn

            No Norway deal is not acceptable – the UK govt states that it will not erect a hard border and offers the EU free trade – the EU then has to decide if it takes that offer – or it imposes tarrifs in which case it erects a border on its soil –

            • Godfrey Sandford

              The UK government must wake up! We have no choice at this time but to re-establish a land border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. The ROI is a part of the EU, so where the foreign soil of ROI touches the home soil of NI, there simply must be a physical border.
              Of course, we shall engage in trade negotiation with the ROI. Moreover, we should seek to establish a free trade arrangement with the ROI on a bilateral basis, i.e. ignoring whining and protestation from the rotten EU.

            • Nockian

              Yet a border will not be acceptable to either party. This is perhaps why May was trying to fudge it. The answer would be a United, sovereign Ireland and then we could just leave, but what’s the chance of that happening ?

            • CRSM

              Come back Gladstone, all is forgiven.

            • Little Black Censored

              We can continue to do perfectly well without a “hard” border in Ireland. If the EU/ Irish Republic wanted one it would be up to them to install it. For our purposes the existing fiscal border could be almost invisibly tweaked so as to maintain its “frictionless” character. This issue has been blown up by the EU/ Irish Republic for its own political purposes, which need not concern us.

            • Bik Byro

              When the Irish Republic asks us what we intend to do about a border, we should simply tell them that this is now an EU issue and that they should refer to their bosses and masters in Brussels for a decision.

            • Nockian

              That used to be my position, but now I see it as intractable as were the ‘troubles’. It will be another kind of political fight acceptable to one side, but not the other. NI doesn’t want a border down the Irish Sea; SI doesn’t want a border between N/S. Yet, there will have to be a border somewhere, unless there is an accommodation – which was Mays fudge attempt for the moment (because if we get a so called, free trade deal then it won’t matter quite as much), but the DUP weren’t having any of it. It looks to the DUP like an attempt to unify Ireland which isn’t acceptable to them-it could be to us, but the problem is the DUP wields the power over the Con Government and so could trigger an election in which ‘pro-remain’ Labour have a manifesto pledge to keep us in. It would then be a stealth style second referendum.

              Do you see the risk ?

              We could end up by next year, remaining in the EU, despite all the work. Labour, like the Conservatives, only care about power-in or out of the EU its all the same to them.

              Believe me, I fought bloody hard for this result so I don’t want to see it all end in a Britain ‘fully docked’ in the EU as Cameron told Junker.

            • Godfrey Sandford

              When all is said and done, a border is perfectly acceptable to Northern Ireland. To be pragmatic, there is no other solution that respects the fact that Northern Ireland is home soil, i.e. part of the United Kingdom. We ought to be concerned only with Northern Ireland, given that only Northern Ireland is part of our great political union. Of course, the Republic of Ireland is a sovereign state and free to do determine her own fate. It is not our business to comment on the affairs of the Republic of Ireland: the internal affairs of foreign powers are not our concern. Rather, out concern is to preserve the British people and the British territory of Northern Ireland as an ongoing constituency of the United Kingdom. Charity begins at home. Let’s do right by the loyal constituency of Northern Ireland.

            • Nockian

              Yes, to NI, but not SI. We really don’t want a resumption of the troubles which would cost everyone dearly.

              Farage believes the EU could see it as a special case, but I think that’s a stretch. There are realities here when the paint is shaped away that someone has to contend with. I thought at first that the EU were making a big deal out of this, but I see now that there are at least 4 and maybe as many as 7 players now; England, Scotland, Wales, EU, London, SI and NI.

              Any deal which includes an accommodation for NI will have the pro remain wolves baying for blood. This is why the EU wanted to negotiate this way, because if they gave away the trade deal first, this exact same thing would happen to the EU with all member states wanting the same trade deal.

            • Godfrey Sandford

              With respect, Nockian, our responsibility is to Northern Ireland, which is home soil and part of the United Kingdom. To be practical, a land border with the Republic of Ireland is unavoidable, since the ROI will continue as part of the EU. It is silly to pretend otherwise: there must be a land border wheresoever our home soil touches foreign EU soil. We have previously implemented a land border and it is perfectly possible to re-establish the land border within a few short weeks. The citizens of the ROI are free to determine their own destiny within the EU framework. We do not wish to interfere in the internal affairs of the ROI. Our concern is only this: to secure Northern Ireland as an integral and indivisible part of the United Kingdom.

            • Nockian

              What will the ramifications be of a NI border ? Isn’t that a primer for a resumption of the troubles ? We could of course leave it up to the EU to install, but even then, how would that be taken ?

            • disqus_79r3exFrhB

              N.Ireland is not asking for any special deal. What they are asking for is to be treated as part of the UK, which they are and they want to remain part of the UK.

            • Nockian

              Despite the numbers of NI that voted to remain within the EU ?

              As a deeply comitted leaver, I’m only now beginning to see the mess that Camerons referendum has created. It has exposed the reality of divisions by offering up a vote that seemingly empowers the individual, but is actually democracy at its very worst.

          • Vengeful Fruitcake

            That is not the Norway option at all. Norway has had to accept free movement of people and the jurisdiction of the ECJ on trade matters

            • gunnerbear

              Norway doesn’t have to accept FoM at all – Norway can invoke Art. 112 at any time….Norway chooses not to so. Likewise during the banking crisis Iceland using provisions with the EFTA / EEA treaties that stopped the flow of capital in and out of Iceland (thus demolishing another of the pillars of the ‘Four Freedoms’) and the EU could do absolutely nothing about it. If you’re interested…. http://eureferendum.com/documents/BrexitMonograph001.pdf

            • fred finger

              Norway has to meet and agree with the EEA agreement, disputes are settled in the EFTA/EU arbitration court. The ECJ is not involved.

            • Nockian

              correct.

    • Jolly Radical

      It used to be said that we were dealing with EU negotiators who are irrational or unable to see basic logic. It now becomes clear that not only the EU leaders but also our own PM and apparently the entire cabinet are equally irrational and devoid of logic.

      To recap: the PM has offered a foreign power £50 billion in return for permission to discuss what we might get in return for for a sum far greater than that. In order to secure this “permission” she yesterday tried to abandon part of the UK to the EU, apparently forgetting that her entire government only exists because of a deal with the DUP, who learned about this attempted Czechoslovakia 1938-style anschluss from journalists and not from the PM herself.

      What next? Shall we offer them Gibraltar, or Wales? How about Liverpool – that takes a lot of freight from Ireland, why not offer them the Wirral too?

      We are at a level of preposterous surrealism that Lewis Carrol himself could not have approached in his most opium-befuddled state.

    • ratcatcher11

      The replacement of May must be done as quickly as possible because she is destroying British democracy and destroying her party, yet she can’t see it. If she doesn’t go what will happen at the next election is that the Conservative Brexiteers will not vote for her ie they will not vote at all, they will abstain. All those Remainer Tories will be out also, that will be the result as sure as eggs is eggs. The Conservatives must get rid of May and install Jacob Reece Mogg otherwise there will not be a party left to vote for in the future.

      • Andypara

        ” . . she is destroying British democracy and destroying her party, yet she can’t see it.”
        Oh, she can see it clearly! She wants to be the woman who saved the EU.

    • grumpyashell

      I do not know what goes on in Theresa May and her coterie of sycophants minds. If they think that those voters which supported Brexit would ever vote for them again if they betrayed the vote are mad. There are 17 odd million Brexit voters who are probibly not going to vote for her and the “conservative “ party. I put Conservative in that way as they clearly are not conservative at all. Those voters have little choice now,Labour is now remain,Libdums have always been remain so expect a revamped UKIP to emerge with a very angry band of Brexit supporters to back them with time and money.
      I just wonder how many members the conservatives have lost in the last couple of weeks

      • gunnerbear

        Brexit, wasn’t delivered solely by the Blues….Brexit voters came from every part of the political spectrum, supported parties or did not…. As to Labour, the stated Labour position is Leave – look at the areas that delivered Brexit…in those areas, no Labour MP dare vote or push for anything other than Brexit or they’ll be out of a job…. …and Corbyn knows it…. ..a local MP i know of, campaigned for Remain, but once the massive Leave voted landed in their area, the MP is now a Leaver….

      • lizmilton

        Destroying the UK as an independent nation is far more important to the Conservative Party than carrying out the wishes of the electorate.
        As Rees-Mogg has recently tweeted, the DUP have saved Brexit.
        What a reflection on our pathetic PM…she had the opportunity to go down in history as a great PM…as is, she will be regarded as one of the worst ever…and after Blair and Heath, that’s quite an accomplishment.

        You will note we heard nothing about the importance of the sovereignty of Parliament until after the Referendum…suddenly, it could be used as a cynical way to stop Brexit.
        Control of 43 areas we would normally expect Parliament to control had been ceded to Brussels in Dec 2014…See
        “UK Parliament comes to an effective end”…

        Where was the importance of the sovereignty of Parliament, then?

        Contempt for most MP’s and free loaders in the Lords has never been more apparent…as Gert Wilders said in his excellent article last well “Time to drain the swamp- European style”… starting with May and her treacherous Remainer Cabinet…

        • gunnerbear

          I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I think politicians and PMs (all colours) pushing for the UK to remain in Europe (remember Mrs. T.’s speeches and jumper in ’75) were profoundly wrong and misguided. But I think they thought they were acting in the best interests of the UK at the time e.g when Mrs T. rammed through the SEA from which the modern EU sprang. Mrs. T. wasn’t being traitorous, stupid, silly or anything like that, she was simply wrong – I stress I just think she was profoundly wrong to have pushed the SEA through (just as Major ought to have offered the public the vote on Maastricht and Blair & Brown done the same on the treaties they signed e.g Nice & Lisbon).

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