For M. Barnier – with English translation for the rest of us “The games are made, nothing more can go” – the EU game of roulette has run out of chips …
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.
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]
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 …
This weekend should, according to previous promises by our Prime Minster, be the country’s last as a member of the European Union.
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.
As the political wrangling reaches fever-pitch the mood amongst the general population seems to range from despair to barely contained anger.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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 …
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.
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]
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 same time!
Take 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.
Then 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?
Plus 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.
Away 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 ..
What a difference to the previous Prime Minister’s administration!
Today’s headlines in the mass media say there is a plan to bring an end to the current session of parliament and start a new one in mid-October; a few weeks before the latest deadline for ending EU membership.
This has certainly given the flocks of political pigeons around Westminster a mighty scare. Opponents of the 2016 referendum result were scheming up blockages and diversions aimed at ensuring we do not leave. But they had not allowed for this.
Sessions of parliament usually run for around 12 months and until recently started in November. But the current one started with the State Opening that was held 21 June 2017 – so it is already a record 14 months late; due to our previous PM’s repeated delays.
So be prepared for screams from the Westminster plotters and cheers from those wanting Brexit to happen sooner rather than later. And if approved this could also mean the end of the line for Speaker Bercow – surely a win-win situation …