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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