Brexit delusions

Theresa May has made a speech at Downing Street – resplendent with the Union Jacks behind her. This is a link to the full text of this nonsense.

Extracts and comments:

Nearly 3 years have passed since the public voted to leave the European Union

That is 52% of the public voted to leave – 48% voted to stay.

It was the biggest democratic exercise in our country’s history.

So ‘democratic’ that the government instead of arguing the case tried to scare people with weird threats of the Iranian nuclear bomb.  (Yes; the official leaflet linked leaving the EU to being at threat of supposed Iranian nuclear bombs. A sign of the extreme hubris of these people that 45 minutes had taught them nothing). They’d pulled off the same trick in Scotland – hold a referendum so they could claim to be oh so ‘democratic’ and then pay ad. agencies to produce scare material to manipulate the vote. This time it backfired. It is hardly ‘democracy’.

Two years on MPs have been unable to agree on a way to implement the UK’s withdrawal. As a result we will now not leave with a deal on 29 March.

Actually, that’s a straight lie. They can’t agree to the exit deal Mrs May has negotiated. It is not “a way” they cannot agree to but “her way”.  – “Her way” may indeed be the “only way” but it is still a lie to pretend that they have not been able to agree from a range of choices when no choices have ever been available.

All of this is delivered in a lecturing and injured tone (with a plummy accent) suitable for a private school Headmistress ticking off the staff room for not putting on their best show on parents’ day.

This delay is a matter of great personal regret.

Seriously; the lives of millions will be impacted by this and you are dancing around with your “personal regret”. In fact this is just more of the emotional blackmail which has been Mrs May’s negotiating strategy all along. Hardly statesperson like.

I am absolutely sure you the public have had enough.

Indeed we have. Including of fake populism by people who live lives totally removed from the mass of working men and women.

You’re tired of the infighting. You’re tired of the political games. Tired of the arcane procedural rows. Tired of MPs talking about nothing else but Brexit when you have real concerns about your children’s schools, our national health service, knife crime. You want this stage of the Brexit process to be over and done with. I agree. I am on your side. It is now time for MPs to decide

Or. Just tired of MPs. Especially fake populism like a sudden interest in knife crime. And this populism is as insulting as ever. The assumption that people are tired of “arcane procedural rows” – in fact many people will be quite interested in Erskine May. The political class always denigrate the people whose confidence they are so desperate to win.

… and yes “schools and our national health service” were bound to be deployed at some point. The one trump card that politicians of all shades deploy – and the card that will work as long as the majority allow themselves to be duped with the idea that only the state can “deliver” education and health (and the meta idea that education and health are goods that can be “delivered” in any sense).

Some have suggested holding a second referendum. I don’t believe that’s what you want and it is not what I want.

Odd. Since the polls are saying the exact opposite.

Do they want to leave without a deal, or do they not want to leave at all causing potentially irreparable damage to public trust not just in this generation of politicians but to our entire democratic process?

This has been one of the strangest lines of the people pushing Brexit. At the time of the referendum the result was 52% to 48%. Recently opinion polls have been consistently reporting that the balance has now swung in favour of remain. How would it cause “irreparable damage to our entire democratic process” to hold another referendum?

It is a sign of the complete insincerity of this pitch that Mrs May starts off by referencing “democracy” and “our country’s history” and then just thirty seconds later rubbishes that democratic history as “arcane procedural wrangles”. How does she think that British parliamentary democracy evolved if  not though “arcane procedural wrangles?”

At the end of the day the political class can and will make whatever mess they like of Brexit (including calling the referendum in the first place) for the simple reason that it is not their interests which are going to be messed up by this. If GDP contracts as a result of a disorderly Brexit the political class will not be affected. Many will find new ways to profit (directorships with the next wave of US firms moving into the UK for example) and even those that don’t are simply wealthy enough not to need to worry. It is people on average incomes and below who will feel the pain of Brexit.

Donald Tusk, President of the EU Council, used the word “illusory” in his comments about the UK’s position.  This is kind.





Author: justinwyllie

EFL Teacher and Photographer