Tag Archives: Leave

No More Nominations

It’s 4 pm so nominations for candidates in next month’s general election have closed.

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And after a short delay a full list of potential members of parliament for all 650 seats should be available to the voters. A list that should be notable if only because of the number of changes since the last national vote. Even without all the schemes for tactical voting – ie voting for someone you don’t like so has to disadvantage someone you like even less or just not fielding a candidate – there were around seventy seats where the previous MP is not standing.

Given that there are also seats where the previous MP is standing but has changed allegiance the total number of new MPs must be approaching a hundred. And that does not allow for the fact that the Labour Party has switched from – at best – neutral to firmly pro-EU. A move that that will change voting patterns that have been in place for decades in some pro-independence constituencies.

With the political turmoil of the past few years the 2019 result is going to be hard to predict – but it is quite possible that Friday the 13th will see the no end to the unrest …

Another False Dawn

It’s November and the UK’s position with the European Union remains unchanged. Despite all the promises we are still paying the EU vast amounts so that they can spend our taxes on themselves and their pet schemes in Europe and on aid around the world.

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Now the mythical leaving date has been moved to the end of January 2020. This gives the politicians just thirteen weeks to complete their scrutiny and implement some form of exit plan.

But the first six of these weeks will be spent campaigning in a  general election. Then at least the next three will be spent getting the new parliament in place and taking a Christmas-New Year break. Then no more than four weeks will remain for the new balance of power to take control and finalise a plan.

Of course the numbers are critical in determining how these four weeks progress – if at all. The so-called Liberal Democrats (George Orwell’s fictional NewSpeak becomes fact!) intend to revoke our request to leave if they get the chance. And there are constituencies that voted to remain in 2016 where today’s voters think that this is acceptable practice. With a number of MPs switching their allegiance the party could gain seats – but perhaps not enough to have another female Prime Minister just yet [sorry Jo]

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Meanwhile the Marx Brothers – and Sisters – say they will delay leaving yet again so that they can negotiate a better leaving deal and then campaign to remain through a second referendum. One that excludes the option to leave as a free agent under world trade terms. Considering that many Grandads from outside of Greater London who voted to leave in 2016 are also traditional Labour voters this approach seems doomed from day one. The only question is how many seats will Labour loose?

At the Shrine of the Dead Donkey the Conservative position is let’s back the May-Robbins-Johnson deal and move on. This policy could be good enough to convince enough voters and so add enough seats for a new government to have a working majority. Its major weakness is that it leaves the country shackled to our friends in Europe. And that man Barnier is already lined-up to extract the maximum punishment in the trade talks still to come. Given the time and effort spent to get to the current position – and what has happened with other trade deals – we could be suffering at the hands of the EU for many more years.

Finally we have the party that highlighted the problems created when widely divergent nations are tied to a common bureaucracy. In this election the Brexit Party will suffer from being seen as a one issue party – and from the Conservatives reluctance to spell out what their deal really means. The voting public are smart enough to treat Euro elections differently to domestic ones. So the TBP will not gain as many seats as they did earlier this year. However they have the possibility of gaining some and these could be critical in influencing the outcome of those four weeks in January.

It all depends on how well the implications – and shortcomings – of the current deal can be explained. And if the new parliament reverses the no-deal block that was imposed by political scaremongers in the last session.

Time to book some holidays away from all of this …

What More Can We Take?

This weekend should, according to previous promises by our Prime Minster, be the country’s last as a member of the European Union.

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And even though there are six remaining days for things to change, it seems almost certain that leaving at the end of October will become another promise that is broken.

True the lack of a majority in parliament has left the country with a government that is unable to govern. With an array of anti-exit political factions and vested interests against it any meaningful progress has become impossible – even the judiciary showed their bias.

Of course, for the many Grandads happy to support leaving without the far-reaching constraints demanded by the EU, this situation means that a bad deal has also been delayed – so far. But with many politicians demanding that No-Deal is taken off the table the chances of the UK actually escaping the spider’s web of EU control next week seem slim.

Obviously giving up on the present parliament and having a general election does offer a potential solution. But only if it results in a clear majority of MPs being in one camp or the other. Recent experience shows that another minority government could be the result – and then we are back in the same situation by Christmas.

The public’s view of our pseudo-democratic representatives must now have fallen to an all-time low – with plenty of justification.

We Cannae Take Much More Captain

As the political wrangling reaches fever-pitch the mood amongst the general population seems to range from despair to barely contained anger.

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How can so many of our elected representatives be so bad? Many – most – ignore their constituents’ choices and play juvenile games in an insulated metro bubble with zero regard for the well being of the nation.

At least the EU politburo is working towards an objective with a plan – even though it is flawed plan to create a European Empire ruled by a central cabal. Whereas every UK plan seems to be to try anything and hope we can all muddle through. All the time expecting that everyone involved will play the game with fairness and honesty. An ideal that cuts little ice in the 21st century.

The next few weeks are supposed to be our last under EU control .. but we have all heard that so often before.

Good Riddance

Given that it is now 1,200 days since the EU membership referendum result and that was preceeded by months if not years of pro- and anti- arguments you would think that every possible issue had been covered.

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But no. Instead we have shrieks and wails from anti-Brexit factions demanding months more of delays. For what? To discuss? To have a rigged referendum? To have a damaged general election? Or simply to remain- either by these repeated delays or by revoking our leave request?

Looking at our politicians – and judges – from outside of the metropolitan bubble gives Grandads little insight into their off-camera activities. But experience tells us that most are driven by self interest – be that personal, financial or idealogical. So we cannot see who is getting paid or benefiting from insider trading or who is trying to weaken or even break-up our country. But there can be little doubt that they exist.

And outside of the UK we have little support from powerful EU figures – unlike leaders in Australia and the United States for example. And the typical EU view is that we are there to be exploited and restricted in any way possible. Their words deny it – but their actions do not.

The country has to leave – and today would not be too soon!

Political Breakdown

With just five weeks to the next critical date the UK’s political pundits are getting geared up for long spells in the limelight. Clearly a situation that many of them enjoy. And this time the top lawyers and lobbyists are adding to the twists and turns as they seek to turn political actions into criminal activities.

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But the average Grandad is less worried about who said what and much more concerned about how the eventual outcome will impact both him and his grand children.

Luckily today’s Grandads are too young to have fought in a world war – even though there has still been too many conflicts since the 1940s. But they have had to experience the crass stupidity, blatant self-interest and false ideologies of too many politicians and civil servants over the years. And the next few weeks seem likely to add more depressing episodes in this long history of political infamy.

Just like watching a train wreck from a distance, it’s horrific but there’s nothing we can do to stop it …

Learn From History

As the horrors of the 1939-45 War fade from living memory they become just another part of history. And our present day issues with the European Union are almost always taken as short term; arguments unrelated to the bigger picture or long term perspective.

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They are in a different mental compartment to Nazi plans for controlling Europe from 1942. Yet the Treaty of Rome – the start of the current EU – was produced just 8 years after troops from the Western Allies had to carry out risky airlifts to get vital supplies to the people of West Berlin for the eleven months of a Russian blockade. Indeed British troops were still stationed in Germany when the Treaty was produced.

As a result few, if any, in those shouting, banner-waving mobs have any concept of the plans behind the EU’s on-going fiscal and legislative programme. To many a highlight of EU legislation is the capping mobile phone roaming changes [seriously – this was circulated as a major reason to remain just last month!]. Few have bothered to read – much less digest – the plans dictated by top eurocrats and EU civil servants.

However you would hope that all pro-EU activists – especially those who have spent the past three years shouting down anyone who disagreed – would have read what it says on the tin. Yet it seems not. Just this week we saw a pro-EU placard-waving marcher asked for their three favourite things about the EU. They could only think of one – the NHS!

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. [George Santayana]

How Many More Wasted Days?

Having spent too many weeks getting Mrs May to go, and then weeks more finding a replacement, the Days-Not-Out total has grown to 1,125.

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Looking forward there are now exactly 100 days to the latest deadline at the end of October.

So will Mr Johnson be able to cut the EU apron strings by then or will he simply get tangled up and have to call for yet another extension?

Many Grandads will be looking at the calendar and thinking that many of those 100 days are going to be taken up with holidays, party conferences and end of term wind-downs for the outgoing EU leaders. Getting out in 100 days is a big ask – so doing it in as few as 20 to 30 working days seems even more problematic. When you add in the time that the Government might need to spend on issues other than Brexit – and the number of anti-Brexit trouble makers – Bojo will need to move very quickly to get anything done in time.

He has the leadership of the Conservative Party – but very little control at Westminster. Place your bets now …

Choices Made?

At our beloved European Union HQ the parliament has selected its leader for the next five years – from a candidate choice of just one! Despite this non-existent range of options Ursula von der Leyen still struggled to get enough votes to confirm her appointment as President.

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And again those Grandads who favour staying members of the Europa Projekt will surely know all about their new ruler – but for the rest of us here is a quick update. Frau von der Leyen is currently the German defence minister – useful for those EU Army plans – but not exactly a high flyer in German politics. Back in childhood her father, Ernst Albrecht, was one of the first European civil servants who later moved back to Germany and became Prime Minister of Lower Saxony. A post that may have helped Frau von der Leyen become a minister in the Lower Saxony state government in 2003 and then in the federal government in 2005. In recent years she has been considered as a contender for the post of Chancellor and ironically NATO Secretary-General. However her performance in government has not been much of a recommendation for high office being the lowest rated minster in national polls. Some see her being gifted the top EU job as a way of removing her from German federal politics.

Meanwhile in the UK we are still waiting to learn who has got the most votes for the job of Conservative leader – and with it the keys to 10 Downing Street. Unlike the EU election process the UK contest had an over-supply of candidates even if the voting was limited to party members. The expectation is the Boris Johnson will win with a massive majority – by a similar margin to the earlier votes by MPs.

But the fractured nature of UK politics mean that even if Johnson does have much more support than anyone else there will still be party members trying to block and disrupt his time in office. Moves that invalidate the idea that they are in a single political party. The issue of Brexit has split both the Conservative and Labour parties so that we now have a least four separate groupings who are only nominally on the same side. If the factions lead to an early general election then it could be the Brexit party and the LibDems that gain – merely because they have unequivocal positions on the biggest issue this country has faced in a life time.