Brexit - The UK and the EU

Fwiffo

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The fact that this will expose the Brit establishment as effete, ineffectual and frightened of their own shadow does not embarrass them one jolt. Do you honestly think the barren hags that rule western europe have any sense of decency or pride?
Let's put the Great back into Great Britain?
 

Pimpernel Smith

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70% of the supplies come from continental Europe? Interesting. Makes me wonder who has more to loose. No French, Italian and Spanish fruits, vegetables, olive oil and wine sold in the UK, no German cars, no Danish pork and whatever else comes across the channel.
Western Europe is slowly sliding into a recession and here foremost Germany. The stupid sanctions against Russia and the US trade war with China is really hurting the German economy. Add to that the still unsolved mass immigration problem all over Western Europe and it becomes obvious that the EU will crumble sooner or later. There is also another global financial crisis looming.
However, going by what I see on a daily basis I'd say most Brits could do with a little bit of fasting. Will save the NHS billions. Problem solved.
Surely you're not implying that the EU would commit to a trade embargo against the Brits? That would be very interesting indeed.
:ahahahaha:

It will be a bloody big problem for everyone in the EU, if it ends in a no deal scenario. That much is clear.
Guess I have to start getting used to eating more pork.
No deal is only reverting to WTO. Not the end of the world. Talks could commence straight away on a trade deal.

Let's put the Great back into Great Britain?
The Great never went away.
 

Scherensammler

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Surely you're not implying that the EU would commit to a trade embargo against the Brits? That would be very interesting indeed.
Just saying that a great chunk of the EU market would break away. There will be immense pressure on the EU coucil to come to an agreement quickly, I'm sure. They could pay for more farm produce to be stored or destroyed, I guess, but for how long?
 

fxh

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The issue is JIT and Roll On R Off - no one has warehouses anymore - any delays have a direct hit. Hard borders - even with the best goodwill - mean delays.
 

formby

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The issue is JIT and Roll On R Off - no one has warehouses anymore - any delays have a direct hit. Hard borders - even with the best goodwill - mean delays.
It has to be acknowleged that there will be disruptions for both the EU and the UK. For how long, and how deep, nobody knows. If they work together, I think it will be resolved fairly quickly, if one or both sides start to play silly-buggers then...
 

Pimpernel Smith

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It has to be acknowleged that there will be disruptions for both the EU and the UK. For how long, and how deep, nobody knows. If they work together, I think it will be resolved fairly quickly, if one or both sides start to play silly-buggers then...
Under WTO articles there can be an interim arrangement of zero tariffs between the EU and UK for up to 10 years whilst a trade agreement is concluded. A sensible way forward after 29th March. Highly unlikely, the EU project is in big trouble and cannot afford to let the UK escape and thrive. Indeed, any nation that leaves is likely to thrive. They're in the proverbial and they can only now survive by ever increasing authoritarian action, doubling down on failure and stifling innovation. What will be left when it goes down is a monument to the folly of intellectuals as Thatcher rightly concluded.

She knows that the Tory party will stay with her, rather than allow a Labour party to take office, especially so, given a Labour party led by a character like Corbyn and his backroom team.

She's a beneficiary of events.
And an example that sometimes, extraordinary luck of a rank mediocrity trumps being a competent stateswoman, being possessed of political acumen and that of someone with a sound and rigorous mind.
 

Fwiffo

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Brexit: High-profile Germans plead with UK to stay in EU

"Britain has become part of who we are as Europeans and therefore we would miss Britain. We would miss the legendary British black humour and going to the pub after work hours to drink an ale. We would miss tea with milk and driving on the left-hand side of the road. And we would miss seeing the panto at Christmas.

But more than anything else, we would miss the British people - our friends across the Channel.

Therefore Britons should know, from the bottom of our hearts, we want them to stay."
 

doghouse

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Brexit has had exactly the opposite result than it was intended. Instead of making Britain stronger, it's made it massively weaker.
 

formby

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Brexit has had exactly the opposite result than it was intended. Instead of making Britain stronger, it's made it massively weaker.
Its the furore around Brexit that has made her (temporarily) weaker, as its been a strategic distraction (forcing her to look inward rather that outward), not Brexit itself which hasn't yet happened, and in my opinion isn't likely to. And for that I blame the political class, not Brexit.

Britain has always derived her power from her alliances. I do not see that changing.
 

Scherensammler

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Brexit: High-profile Germans plead with UK to stay in EU

"Britain has become part of who we are as Europeans and therefore we would miss Britain. We would miss the legendary British black humour and going to the pub after work hours to drink an ale. We would miss tea with milk and driving on the left-hand side of the road. And we would miss seeing the panto at Christmas.

But more than anything else, we would miss the British people - our friends across the Channel.

Therefore Britons should know, from the bottom of our hearts, we want them to stay."
Was featured on the Jeremy Vine show.
High profile my arse! Total BS. The Brits will still have all the things mentioned and the Continentals hardly do any of it...
Globalist shills or virtual signalling has beens.
The party leaders mentioned have no real support in the population. AKK (the womanbearpig™) is Merkel 2.0 and especially Andrea Nahles (hardcore marxist) leads a party that is drifting into the Nirvana of insignificance. Same with Green Party politicians (another bunch of marxists who care more about migrant families than German ones, love mass immigration and refuse to have criminal migrants deported).
I would also say that the mentioned "dark British humour" is totally wasted on them. The majority of Germans don't have the language skills to understand the word plays, that in a similar form do not exist in German. It is still custom to dub foreign films. Not to mention that apart from Mr. Bean, Monty Python and Benny Hill, there is hardly any "dark British humour" available. Occasionally you can find original versions (with subtitles) on the culture channels at late hours.
 

Fwiffo

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Was featured on the Jeremy Vine show.
The majority of Germans don't have the language skills to understand the word plays, that in a similar form do not exist in German. It is still custom to dub foreign films. Not to mention that apart from Mr. Bean, Monty Python and Benny Hill, there is hardly any "dark British humour" available. Occasionally you can find original versions (with subtitles) on the culture channels at late hours.
Incidentally the German colleagues from my old company frequently watch films with German dubbing. When they boarded a non Lufthansa plane they complained about the selection of movies. One told me upon hearing what the real English speaking actor sounds like, he remarked the actor sounds better with dubbed.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Its the furore around Brexit that has made her (temporarily) weaker, as its been a strategic distraction (forcing her to look inward rather that outward), not Brexit itself which hasn't yet happened, and in my opinion isn't likely to. And for that I blame the political class, not Brexit.

Britain has always derived her power from her alliances. I do not see that changing.
It's certainly exposed the political class as being in contempt of the people and unfit to represent the electorate. The one thing that Brexit has going for it, is the utter incompetency of the House. Of course the UK is diminished in the eyes of the world: everyone sees that the May's Agreement is the project blue print for a vassal and neutered nation, no more than a colony to the EU. She and her kind are traitors, quislings.

If it doesn't happen, a pyrrhic victory, the EU project is failing and it's a nation buggered by its political and establishment class that walks back into the cage. But I don't think that the flames of Brexit can be snuffed out. The Brits are not a nation to choose a gilded cage over freedom. It will only be the beginning and will galvanize the resistance. And the resistance is growing in Europe big time.
 

Kingstonian

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Prorogue Parliament? Then it gets to the end of March and we are out while no business conducted in Parliament. Voters also then have a say on which candidates are sound.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Prorogue Parliament? Then it gets to the end of March and we are out while no business conducted in Parliament. Voters also then have a say on which candidates are sound.
Exactly, the only option now for Parliament to thwart the will of the People is to go rogue and commence a coup.

Civil war is on the cards. It might be a very bloodless one, but by the end of it, democracy will be restored. But I personally, would be in favour of a few so called honourable Members of Parliament doing the Tyburn Jig. It would set a great example of what happens to those parliamentarians who think the People exist to serve them and not the other way around!
 

doghouse

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By Alex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland editor of the Spectator and writes a column for the Times of London.
January 21 at 6:00 AM

Sherlock Holmes was fond of declaring that a tricky, seemingly impenetrable case was “a three-pipe problem,” demanding a lengthy period of quiet contemplation before the key to its unlocking could be found. Sometimes the solution to these cases would appear, intuitively, baffling or even absurd. But, as Holmes reminded Dr. Watson, “When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.” The great detective, however, was never tasked with solving a riddle as complex and apparently unresolvable as Brexit.


On Tuesday, Theresa May endured a humiliation of the sort that in less extraordinary times would render the British prime minister’s position unsustainable. At long last, more than 2½ years after Britain voted to leave the European Union, she was prepared, and able, to present the withdrawal agreement reached with the 27 remaining E.U. members to the House of Commons. This was the “meaningful vote” that would determine whether a deal could be reached.


The answer was not in doubt, only the details. The United Kingdom is stuck in the political equivalent of a Samuel Beckett play: Matters cannot go on like this, yet all alternatives are equally disagreeable. Waiting for Brexit has become an existential farce. The debate is not just an argument about leaving the European Union but, instead, a broader dispute about the kind of country Britain wishes to be. This week promises more of the same, only more so.


The details last week, of course, were ugly: No government has ever before been defeated by as many as 230 votes, and certainly not so comprehensively repudiated on the single biggest decision the country must make in nearly half a century.


[Britain's Brexit crisis was entirely self-inflicted]


Despite that, May struggles on. She is not for turning, even if comparisons between her position and Margaret Thatcher’s end there. Having survived internal rebellion and a confidence vote on her leadership last month, Conservative Party rules mean she is free from a challenge by her own side for a year. She will go, if she goes at all, only of her own volition or if the Labour Party successfully carries a vote of no confidence in Her Majesty’s government in the House of Commons.


Labour tried and failed that on Wednesday, however, so there is little sign the opposition can force a change in government or a general election that would at least allow for a resetting of the parliamentary arithmetic and, perhaps, hold out the prospect of finding a workable majority in the Commons for any kind of Brexit.


That is the nub of the problem. Parliament does not like May’s deal, nor can it agree on anything that might plausibly replace it. That in turn increases the possibility of leaving the E.U. without a deal by the March 29 deadline; the very outcome most members of Parliament think would be the worst of all possible Brexits. Dread of a “no deal Brexit” happens to be the one thing a majority in Parliament can agree upon.


Opinion has hardened on all sides. “Brexit means Brexit,” May says, failing to appreciate that there are as many different kinds of Brexit as there are kinds of British rain. With that truism, she’s mostly trying to threaten ardent leavers in her own party with the possibility that Parliament might decide against going ahead with Brexit at all. But at the same time, she’s also threatening remain-supporting MPs with the specter of a departure without a deal unless they support her cobbled-together, complex, unsatisfactory plan. The contradictory strategy has proved a dismal failure. MPs on all sides are holding out for their preferred options even if doing so risks leaving them with the result they fear and dislike most.


[Brexit will make things worse. Is that why people voted for it?]


Notionally a referendum on the arcana of trade policy and border rules, Brexit was really an inquiry into a different, deeper, issue: What kind of country should Britain be? For 40 years, Britain had endured an uneasy relationship with the continent: part of the European club but never enthusiastically so.


Europe would suffice as a replacement for the long-gone empire. It was to be, at last, the answer to Dean Acheson’s quip that, having lost that empire, Britain was in desperate need of finding a new role in the world. Pivoting to the continent in 1973 was a means of arresting relative economic decline, but, as a matter of political psychology, Europe could offer only a pale imitation of past glories. The British were late to the party and even then only ambivalent participants. Membership in a German-dominated E.U. reflected Britain’s reduced status, and it could not satisfy a yearning for something greater, something grander, than that. Brexit, its proponents promised, would be a declaration that Britain was not just different but also, unavoidably, better.


Spared the worst of the 20th century’s wars, Britain never felt the urgency of European cooperation in the manner it was understood in France or Germany. There was no British equivalent of the symbolic, and deeply significant, meeting between François Mitterrand and Helmut Kohl, photographed holding hands at Verdun in 1984. That spoke to the essential poetry at the heart of the European project; Britain’s relationship, by contrast, has always been written in prose.


The positive vision for Brexit depended heavily upon the imagery of Britain as a newly liberated global trading house. While optimistic, this prospect still rested on a bedrock of implicit, and only rarely acknowledged, nostalgia: Freed from its Brussels captivity, Britain would be at the forefront of a new era of free trade. If this required a measure of wishful thinking, it still presented a picture many Britons instinctively find attractive. Brexit-supporting politicians indulged these flights of fancy, promising that trade agreements with other countries could be reached quickly and easily. Reality has not cooperated with these grandiose pledges, but reality only kicked in once the referendum votes had been counted.


No one enjoys being laughed at, but there is the unmistakable sense now of Britain becoming something close to an international laughingstock. Time and time again, Europe’s leaders have asked for guidance on what Britain hoped to achieve from Brexit, only to be left disappointed by the lack of any clear answer. Britain wanted the ball. But once Brexit seized it, the country belatedly discovered that it did not know what to do with it. “Taking back control” — the appealing and persuasive slogan coined by the leave campaign — has proved more complicated than expected.


[British millennials like me are the real losers in the Brexit vote]


That reflects the essential economic dilemma within Brexit: How do you maintain the economic advantages of E.U. membership without being a member of the E.U.? That is an unsquarable circle. Forced to choose between the nation’s economic self-interest and the political imperative issued by the electorate, May has opted for the latter.


So, too, has Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour leader and, unusually for a Labour politician, a veteran left-winger who has long been, at best, ambivalent about the E.U. Corbyn’s MPs, like Labour’s supporters, are overwhelmingly in favor of remain, but the leadership is more cautious, determined that the referendum result must be honored.


That means Labour will, as a matter of political expediency, continue to flirt with — but fail to commit to — a second referendum that might, at last, decide the issue once and for all. A fresh plebiscite would probably take at least six months to organize and require the E.U. to pause the withdrawal process while Britain, finally perhaps, made up its mind. Advocates of a so-called “People’s Vote” see Brexit as, in essence, a peaceful and British Vietnam, a project whose reverberations will last a generation.


Here, too, you may discern the signs of a political class crippled by dysfunction: a Parliament appalled by the road it finds itself on but equally unsure it can, or even wants to, take any other path. The result is a kind of political nervous breakdown. All the available alternatives are unpalatable but so, terribly so, is doing nothing. The meaning of Brexit is elementary: When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, remains just as impossible.
 

Kingstonian

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May says no further referendum and No Deal is still an option. She will try and flog a dead horse again by getting amendments to her Withdrawal Agreement to deal with the backstop. Fat chance. It would still be terrible anyway.

Still you cannot believe a word she says. So who knows? Meanwhile the clock ticks.
 

formby

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Massie is an ardent Remainer, fair enough. But he keeps repeating the the trope that leaving the EU is in some way a product of nostalgia about Empire.

Perhaps Mr Massie could explain the rise of the far right in Eastern Europe, the problems in Germany, France, Italy, Greece, Spain...Can these be explained away by nostalgia for Empire too?

Massie needs to stop gazing at his navel.
 

formby

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I don't think that is what he is saying.
Oh, that's EXACTLY what he's saying. And he's been saying it for the last 3 years. There were another couple of articles this week on a similar vein. Its tiresome, and it is false, but it keeps getting repeated as a way of bludgeoning leavers.

We have in Britain, like most Western liberal democracies a Burnham-esque situation where politics has given way to managing.

And that is a big part of the problem.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Massie is an ardent Remainer, fair enough. But he keeps repeating the the trope that leaving the EU is in some way a product of nostalgia about Empire.

Perhaps Mr Massie could explain the rise of the far right in Eastern Europe, the problems in Germany, France, Italy, Greece, Spain...Can these be explained away by nostalgia for Empire too?

Massie needs to stop gazing at his navel.
It's like reading Matthew Parris, the same shite regurgated almost daily. I thought this rather grandiose: ''That spoke to the essential poetry at the heart of the European project; Britain’s relationship, by contrast, has always been written in prose.'' The essential poetry of the EU, now that's something Greece can chew on!
 

sirloin

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Hard to see a satisfying solution both to us in the EU, and at the same time one that will be able to pass through parliament in the UK.
A lex Norway compromise seems to be the closest to a deal, that would get UK out, but still have close enough arrangements to somewhat satisfy the remain+soft brexit side.
Obviously this would not satisfy hardcore brexiteers - but I don't see that side coming with solutions that will realistically both go through parliament, and get agreement from EU.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Hard to see a satisfying solution both to us in the EU, and at the same time one that will be able to pass through parliament in the UK.
A lex Norway compromise seems to be the closest to a deal, that would get UK out, but still have close enough arrangements to somewhat satisfy the remain+soft brexit side.
Obviously this would not satisfy hardcore brexiteers - but I don't see that side coming with solutions that will realistically both go through parliament, and get agreement from EU.
The Machiavellian shenanigans have back fired big time. Now they're talking about a hard border with NI and likely a good place for the new EU army to earn their stripes. The continental system and experiment is failing and the only way you will hold it together now is ever increasing authoritarian moves and paramilitary policing as in France. Here comes the jungle....
 

Scherensammler

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All that the EU and Remain had to offer for the past (almost) 3 years was fear mongering, threats and claiming that the Leave voters were too stupid to know what they were voting for.
The UK should have officially left shortly after the vote and immediately started negotiations with trading partners outside the EU to test the waters. Whether this mess is shear incompetence or utter reluctance on the UK governement's side, I don't know. Probably a bit of both.
Now we have a big push in the MSM (including the BBC) for a second referendum, possibly overruling the first one. And more project fear: No food, no happy pills for the mentally ill and all around doom and gloom.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Now we have a big push in the MSM (including the BBC) for a second referendum, possibly overruling the first one. And more project fear: No food, no happy pills for the mentally ill and all around doom and gloom.
The fake MSM industrial complex has become a liability to the plan. Same tactics in the USA with the Covington school very fake news indeed regular trade mark. The more they rage against reality, the more distant they become and have no ability to grapple with it. A second referendum would poison the well and the issue would not go away, it would intensify. Gerrymandering the result won't help them.

The only decent option, and if you were a Remainer in for the long game, is to leave on 29th March and then regroup with a political manifesto as a party who's committed to taking the UK back into the EU. But the Remainers are to dumb to see this and they'll try and subvert democracy that will leave their cause illegitimate and tainted for a generation.

Yes they certainly have. Honestly you could see it from the start. With UK/EU positions so far from each other, and a full on political circus mixed with incompetence, it had to end badly. But this badly? What a show.
I watched the BBC Question Time with the new presenter Fiona Bruce and the infamous Diane Abbott as Labour have kicked-up a fuss saying Fiona was racist and gave Abbott a hard-time. All BS of course. But one thing was palatable from the audience, and normally they're carefully picked to be right on message, is that the people are pissed-off with rank mediocrity and failure of the political class over Brexit. And rightly so, none of them could negotiate their way out of a paper bag. The EU are equally as bad lots of schemes to shaft the Brits and cut off a bit here and there and now they're looking at solutions that will reignite the Troubles. Utter contempt for the lot of them. Sooner they're outed at the ballot box the better. And sadly they leave us very little option, but to vote against the liberal democracies.
 
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