Well our Westminster MPs have been packed off to their homes or constituencies without seeing anything resembling a trade deal with the European Union. Despite another fifteen days having passed little has changed in the mass media headlines and opinion pieces despite lots of talks and briefings.
And the few changes that have happened don’t add up to much. At the bookies the sentiment has swung from deal to no deal and amongst EU politicians the stress levels have jumped with each day that passes.
Meanwhile out at sea the EU trawlers seem to have upped their policy of scooping up all marine life – whether saleable or not – to leave nothing in the waters that the UK gets back. A very short-sighted policy and one that confirms they expect to face UK controls shortly. Surprising the BBC seems to be trying to ignore what is happening – despite claiming a leading role in ecology issues. Yet Trawler-watch is one programme they have not scheduled.
So New Year 2021 is just two weeks away and the Brexit saga still drags on .. Will some last minute deal appear? Will MPs get recalled before year end? … Will we all wake up to find 2020 was a bad dream? .. Pass the port and mince pies I need to forget …
The news of a vaccination against the effects of the Covid virus has filled the media headlines for days – especially at the BBC – just in time to brighten Christmas. But it’s not just Christmas that is fast approaching – it’s also the end of the session for the Westminster parliament.
With no public announcements of even a draft trade deal with the European Union the prospects of anything other than No Deal come the end of December seem vanishingly small. There are, after all, just eleven working days remaining at Westminster. And there are plenty of other issues to resolve before year end. Further the situation in the EU is complicated by the treats of member states to veto anything they do not like. It is, of course, possible that nothing happens in practice and some sort of extension is agreed – hidden under another name
Yet those betting real money still favour a deal by the end of the year. So perhaps they have enough inside knowledge to predict that the politicians will try for a last-minute fait accompli bill and three-line whip to steam-roller a bad deal through Westminster before anyone has a chance to read it. That tactic may be just about legal but it could prove fatal to the career of any politicians who back it …
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.
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.
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]
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.
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.
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
Time to book some holidays away from all of this …
should, according to previous promises by our Prime Minster, be the
country’s last as a member of the European Union.
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.
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.
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.
public’s view of our pseudo-democratic representatives must now have
fallen to an all-time low – with plenty of justification.
political wrangling reaches fever-pitch the mood amongst the general
population seems to range from despair to barely contained anger.
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
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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
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 …
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.
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.
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.
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]
The years of
political argument – first about Scotland leaving the UK and then about
the UK leaving the EU – have left our politicians struggling to cope.
The resulting breakdown of traditional positions has lead to party
members being so confused as to be supporting opposing views – at the
the SNP leadership’s current position that Brexit going ahead will boost
their case for a second Scottish referendum. So do they support Brexit?
No they are trying very hard to stop it – so weakening their own case
for a re-run of the vote.
we have Labour pledging to get a better deal from the EU – and then
planning to campaign against the improved deal on a remain ticket. A
crazy plan that has left the EU side questioning the sanity of the
Labour top team. Their position is so wacky that the party will have to
allow a free vote to get round the cock-up.
Not to be left out we have LibDem politicians demanding a second referendum for the people to be heard but then vowing to ignore the result if it was another win for Leave. Why bother?
we have politicians from all parties who keep telling us – with a
straight face – that they know no one wants to leave the EU without a
deal. Totally ignoring the national ballot carried out earlier this year
where the Brexit Party took the most MEP seats and formed the largest
single party. They campaigned to leave – no matter what. And if the vote
had been under Westminster general election rules they would have won
hundreds more seats than LibDem, Labour and Conservative combined. Yet
politicians know that the people don’t really want it.
Finally we have the Irish backstop farce
where the key issue is maintaining free access between the ROI and the
UK. The EU took the position that the UK had to provide a solution using
the slogan – you created the problem you have to fix it. In
response the UK has agreed to maintain the present open border. The most
it can do without any powers to control the ROI side of the line. Irish
politicians – you would hope – should be prepared to do the same. But
it seems they cannot do that without the permission of the EU – having
given away their sovereignty in exchange some nice shiny euros. So this
farce is an EU creation that politicians are trying to make the UK solve
– without any powers to achieve it. Difficult is do-able and impossible
will take a bit longer.
from Westminster we have the BBC headlining every bit of news that
favours remain or stokes up leaving fears. Hardly the best way to
convince millions of pensioner customers that they should pay for even more years of being told that they don’t know how to vote. Logic has certainly taken a holiday ..