Archive | September, 2016

Bless you, Jeremy Clarkson

30 Sep

There are few occasions when I find myself being educated by Jeremy Clarkson, so I had better make the most of it. Shortly before the June 23rd referendum I watched a video blog entry by Clarkson, together with James May. This concerned how difficult it was to get a film crew into Switzerland compared to anywhere in the EU. It was about the amount of paperwork needed and the hours spent filling in forms, sending them in, getting them back with other details to include and so on and so on.

If Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty is invoked, and we decide not to have free movement of goods and people, (the ‘Hard’ Brexit option), this kind of paperwork will be required to trade with our largest market and our nearest neighbours.  Going to the Med for a holiday will be more complex. People retied to Spain or have holiday homes in France will need to make new arrangements.

Of course there will be benefits. The dead hand of Brussels bureaucracy will be lifted. Or is it that the EU is a neo-liberal  / global capitalist conspiracy? I have heard both arguments and they are complete bollocks. The first part is rubbish because we will be employing thousands of bureaucrats to cope with the new workload, and the second argument is completely mental.

With a hard Brexit many companies will re-locate to mainland Europe. That means more unemployment and lower tax revenues. Then there is the rubbish argument that goes ‘Germany won’t put tariffs on cars, because they want to sell them to us’. The morons who say this have no idea about how trade works. Tariffs are only put on by IMPORTING countries, I.e. us after Brexit. The Germans will still sell us cars, but they will cost a lot more.

If only a single advocate of Brexit would come up with a sensible suggestion for how it is supposed to benefit Britain, then I would listen. And I don’t mean bumper stickers, but suggestions backed up by proper evidence which can be evaluated. Somehow I get the feeling that I am going to be listening for a very long time.

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Plans, what plans?

6 Sep

The main problem in trying to get straight answers from the Brexiteers is that they are a loose coalition with a wide variety of beliefs and aims. What might be a suitable answer for one group is anathema to another. So when David Davies, Minister for Brexit, addressed the House of Commons yesterday what he had to say was bound to please very few.

The three leading proponents of exit are Davies, Liam Fox and Foreign Secretary (I still can’t believe that!!!!!) Boris Johnson. Johnson and Fox have been involved in a bitter exchange of words already, and neither of them has a good word to say for Davies.

What was absolutely obvious is that there is no plan, no blueprint and no sense of a single target. All that came from Davies yesterday was obfuscation and empty rhetoric. I’ve known more meat in a chicken nugget that in that speech. There was not a single date or number mentioned. These people never thought that they would win, and when they did they went into meltdown. They are clueless.

No senior civil servant wishes to become involved in the Ministry for Brexit. It is already thought of as a poisoned chalice. This is the end of the line for anyone with career aspirations. Next stop, DVLC in Swansea. This is one hot potato that is just too hot to handle.

Surely it is going to start to occur to significant numbers of people who voted to Leave that they have been sold a pup. The promise of £350m a week extra to the NHS melted away on the 24th June. Yesterday Theresa May stated that she would not introduce an Australian points based immigration system, and that was a key point that was common to most Brexiteers. (We had such a system before, and May, as Home Secretary, found it completely unworkable and seriously counter-productive, before she consigned it to the bin.)

Meanwhile, the rabid right-wing press keep looking for crumbs of comfort, and publicise any figure, no matter how unfounded, which seems to suggest that the disaster has not yet happened, and this points to the sunny uplands to come. A train coming in the opposite direction would be a light at the end of the tunnel for these peddlers of untruths. We are all in a phoney war until the nuclear button of Article 50 is pressed.

I reckon even all working together Davies, Fox and Johnson couldn’t organise the liquid refreshments in a brewery. Davies is an intellectual eunuch, Fox froths at the mouth when anyone uses the word ‘foreign’, and Johnson is probably the laziest man in Britain and a complete moral vacuum. If this is the finest that the country has to offer, god help us!

So now we know nothing more than we did on Sunday. The majority who voted bought an empty box that should have contained a flat pack and instructions. Only the box has not been delivered, and will not be because these idiots are in charge and can’t even decide on the size and shape of the bloody box, let alone what to put in it. What a bunch of onanists! If you voted Leave and still have no idea what you are going to get from the promises made, demand to know. Write to your MP.