Britain leaving the European Union.


#5496

Thanks for link to doc. It became even more apparent deeper in the comments.


#5497

That’s the official Leave campaign’s Twitter? Wow! You could not possibly use that clip and pretend it was a mistake made in good faith. It’s clearly intended for the masses who are dumb enough to fall for it and be influenced by it regardless of it being exposed for a fraud. And their website has the audacity to complain about “fake news” about Brexit. (Not that the Left are much better with their scare stories of Brexit meaning letting Trump buy the NHS).


#5498

So Farage using the the Brexit party effectively turned the tables and converted the EU parliament vote into a 2nd referendum by proxy.

Genius strategic move and was an incredible achievement. Like totally disruptive man.

What next?


#5499

There will be some pressure put on the NHS- see this article by Sam Lowe (2/3rds of the way through) . Pressure will be put to pay more for US pharmaceuticals as currently the NHS is a world (low) price setter. If the US gets the UK to flip, they can make billions off other countries.


#5500

Tony Connelly’s latest report from RTE makes for some very sobering reading yet again.
Seems we are heading for a no deal Brexit. What measures will be taken once/if Johnson gets to become PM? Will the government sit on their hands until October?


#5501

Some of us have been pointing this out from the outset.

The red line backstop was a schoolboy error on the part of Leo et al. The EU tried to play hardball via this measure but it has most likely backfired through a combination of arrogance and political naivety, carried out on the behalf of people who know little about the U.K. (Or indeed Ireland) beyond London . Or maybe they do and they just don’t care…the Mercosur Beef deal might seem to suggest the latter. Indeed it’s likely that Varadkar himself, his contemporaries and advisers know or understand very little of Ireland beyond the M50.

Ireland stands to lose most as a result of this disastrous policy approach which was little more than another naive Fine Gael attempt at being the best boy in the Euro class.

Perhaps even now it’s not too late to avoid a hard border but it will require a change in approach and a move away from dancing to Brussels tune.


#5502

I wonder if you know much about the agri lands yourself. The agri lobby are conflating the poor mouth language of the decline of subsistence farming which in the past got sympathy as most urban people had come from farming backrounds. In 1973, 43% of the Irish population lived on and worked in Irish farms.

However like with the shocking expose of the once genteel pastime of greyhound racing, people would be shocked by how farming as they imagine it bares nothing in common with the industrial behemoth that it is now.

I hear plenty people express great pride in Irish beef but when was the last time you met someone from the abattoir floor? The wages are very good, but the last time I met an Irish abattoir butcher was over 15 years ago, even then he was saying it was impossible to get Irish people into it.

We hear the lobbyists, but on the ground the industry is roaring. If you know anything about Irish farming you’d know you’d never ever hear an Irish farm say they had a good year.


#5503

No im not an expert on Farming although funnily enough one of my grandfathers was an abattoir butcher for many years.

Not really relevant however to the topic of Brexit. Quite simply our side have dropped the ball on this bigtime. As a number of us stated at the time, they naively placed all their eggs in one basket and allowed themselves be used as a proxy by the EU (who in turn overplayed their hand). Varadkar and Co. should have been a lot less gung ho than they were given the nature of what they were dealing with. A lot of people invested years of their lives into securing the Good Friday accord and it’s now potentially back in the balance.

Similarly the Mercosur agreement is only relevant in so far as it shows the lack of regard the broader EU has for the interests of a tiny member such as Ireland.

We have no friends on either side of the Brexit table. There are just interests and if Boris Johnson becomes Prime Ministers Irelands interests will at that point most likely no longer align with those of the EU.


#5504

Do you honestly believe Irish beef farmers care about the GFA? It’s not even on their radar.

They have a very fond memory of the UK CJD outbreak which was a boon when British beef was banned. It was because of this and the later foot and mouth outbreak that the UUP and DUP supported an Irish sea border for animal products.

What the Irish beef industry won’t talk about is how they’ve become so successful that Irish beef is actually a top shelf luxury good in Chile, Brazil and Argentina; nations famous for their beef own culture.

A few months ago the same lobby group were roaring over comments Leo made about his diet and meat consumption. They’re shameless as the crowd running Irish greyhound racing.

Dropped the ball my arse. They’re insufferable greedy whores playing on rural affinity. Watch that affinity evaporate as more abattoir videos and overgrazing effects are aired.


#5505

And what is your solution that Ireland should have accepted “alternative arrangements”? That call for Ireland leaving the EU to become a vassal state to the UK? While also bringing back a hard border? And destroying the economies of anyone who trades over the border? Those “alternative arrangements”? The ones which breach the GFA, and all of the various promises from the (always lying) UK government? The ones who have been threatening economic destruction and starving Ireland? Maybe we should trust them this time - maybe they’ll be nice.
By the way, I’ve a bridge for sale- I think you look like a canny guy who can spot a bargain, I’m sure you’ll be interested.
FYI, the Mercosur deal is a net positive to Ireland - pharmaceuticals, medical devices, IT.


#5506

Bingo. Listening to the farming lobby should come with a health warning.


#5507

I’m not sure where you’re getting the suggestion that the farming lobby are motivated by concern around the GFA. I certainly never suggested that they are.

What I have suggested is that the Irish Governmen’s position has been naive and unnecessarily antagonistic around Brexit since the outset. It has had Brussels’ stamp all over it to the extent that in my opinion, the underpinning of the GFA became secondary to representing Brussels interests ie to ensure that the U.K. was somehow punished for deigning to leave, presumably as a deterrent to any other potential leavers.

What I’ve also suggested is that Fine Gael are likely to be (rightfully) blamed for this, along with being blamed by the farming lobby for the Mercosur deal announced in the past few days (two separate issues).


#5508

IAgain, nobody has suggested any of the above. A number of posters throughout the course of this thread simply suggested that Fine Gael policy around Brexit was naive and badly thought out. They’ve now most likely been proven correct Ie We could have thrown an interim bone to a moderate PM (you can read some of the suggested alternatives that were poo poohed back through this thread). Instead we played hardball for our masters and are likely getting a Bullingdon boy Churchill wannabe in her stead. What happens then is anybody’s guess.

Re the Mercosur deal, Fine Gael will be blamed at the ballot box by the Farming lobby and their hangers on. Whether the beneficiary sectors have the political clout to prop them up in the face of same remains to be seen. Personally I think that’s doubtful.

Anyway, perception is everything. FG appear to be on the way out as it is and both these events will simply hasten their electoral demise


#5509

Then explain your alternative to the backstop. It appears you have none and admit that it is the only option. Instead you seem to be saying that how it was presented to the UK was"antagonistic". However it was always best to present it to the UK as part of the WA. That way the UK plan to use Ireland as a hostage during negotiations was minimized (clearly the intention was to divide and conquer and squeeze Ireland to act as a model for concessions on other borders and to have Ireland act as a fifth column within the EU negotiation) and the UK would have more time to prepare for no deal (and don’t forget that the next stage of negotiations - whether WA or no deal - will last 10 years - making their threats more credible.
The only unfortunate/unexpected thing was the reliance on the DUP due to Teresa May’s GE. However there is no point in gaming an alternative based on the second stage of negotiations as the political landscape in the UK could be even worse.
So again: what is your alternative approach and solution.


#5510

IUUNumber one priority from an Irish perspective (assuming you’re not a bought and paid for Europhile lickspittle) is to ensure that the framework provided for under the terms of the GFA are upheld. What the GFA provides is a mechanism whereby the aspiration to Irish unity is officially recognised, articulated and legitimized by way of an absolute commitment to democratic, non violent means… It also reassures Unionism that it will never be coopted into a United Ireland so long as a majority of people in the north (and south) retain their preference for remaining part of the U.K. Therefore it greatest trick is that it essentially kills two birds with one stone through its drawing of an absolute commitment to the democratic process from both combatant traditions.

Notwithstanding all of the above, it also expressly provides for the holding of a border poll if it becomes apparent at any time that a majority of people (to include a potential majority 50 + 1) may be in favourite of amending the constitutional status of the 6 counties. As Michael Collins may have said, from a nationalist perspective, the GFA is a stepping stone to full, independent unity Ie it is not (and was never intended to be) an end in and of itself

On that basis, the result of the Brexit referendum and resulting political fallout clearly raises the spectre of a changing consensus majority view in the North.

On the basis of all of the above, my own suggestion months ago was to lever the Brexit mayhem to incude the stumbling block of the Irish border to perhaps provide concessions around the backstop issue in return for a solid commitment from the British to hold a border poll at a specified point in the near future (perhaps 5 years from now when the implications of Brexit for all will be very much apparent).
This could have been sold to the DUP as their opportunity (over a five year period) to obtain and present clear evidence of the benefits of Brexit and maintenance of the Union in advance. Likewise it could haven been sold to Sinn Fein as a golden opportunity to step beyond the GFA to a United Ireland via democratic means. It would also have had the added advantage of sidelining the dissidents.

That was my proposal 6 months ago. Instead we appear to have placed all our political and economic eggs in one Euro basket for the equivalent of extracting a pat on the head for a bunch of star struck Fine Gael young fellas who appear lost in the headlights.

Others here had other maybe less radical proposals which may have avoided the spectre of an Uber Tory on a mission to save the Conservative party assuming power in the U.K. Ultimately however, the media and establishment propaganda and spin (much of it shared and promoted on this site) that people believed verbatim Ie that the referendum resukt was a unrepresentative flash in the pan has landed us in this scenario. And the upshot is (to restate) we’re probably going to get an Uber Tory on a mission to save the Conservatives above all else as Prime Minister.

Dangerous times that a little bit of critical thinking and non adherence to establishment narrative could have avoided


#5511
  1. Clearly there is no point in trusting Tories to give such a referendum at some point in the future - nor to rig such a vote (perhaps looking back at the history of the “independent” boundary commission might be of guidance here). Let us not forget that what was promised (repeatedly) both during the referendum and during the negotiation was that there would be no change to the current situation in terms of the set up at the border. That is aside from the fact that it is not much of a concession to receive - considering that the GFA already includes the provision that a referendum should occur where it seems that it is likely to succeed.

Furthermore, assuming that the referendum is unsuccessful (which in 5 years it could well be), as well as in the meantime, you require the Irish government to install (and more importantly agree to install) a hard border between South and North - and to deliberately throw border communities under a bus.
Aside from that, how does your proposal practically work? Do you accept the proposal that Ireland exit the Single Market and be subject to whatever agricultural rules the UK determines (in particular as it agrees those rules with the US)?
Do you accept that the approximately 300 crossing points will need to be again reduced to about 30 - cutting off towns from their hinterlands? Do you accept the proposal to set up an economic zone comprising Donegal and Derry? Do you accept that the recent proposal for Alternative Arrangements would impose such administrative costs as to render unviable much cross border economic activity?
Do you also accept that considering that the proposal involves the introduction of state personnel, it will inevitably harden up to and including military personnel?


#5512

The UK is chasing a fantasy and there’s absolutely nothing that any Irish government can do to appease that.

To believe otherwise is nonsense.


#5513

The nationalist cause is better served by a no deal where all of the harm can be blamed on the intransigence of a UK Tory and DUP government refusing to accept the will of the NI people to remain within the EU / want a backstop and the valiant efforts of the Irish government to be the voice of the dispossessed in NI. That is exactly why Sinn Fein is quiet on this.

I cannot understand how anyone can possibly argue that the backstop serves EU interests in any way - or that it does so more than Ireland’s. The EU would love a Canada style FTA with the UK as a final resolution (which is what the ERG and Brexit party want): the UK exports 80% services into the EU while the EU exports finished goods into the UK. An FTA allows the EU to continue to export into the UK while preventing the UK from accessing the EU - and only being able to do so on the EU’s terms. Furthermore a Canada style FTA consolidates all of the JIT industries (cars, airplanes etc.) within the EU - taking these away from the UK who are too small to have the critical mass to sustain these industries).

There are 2 EU interests in the backstop:

  1. to prevent “divide and conquer” tactics from the UK during stage 2 of negotiations/ allowing the UK to use Ireland as a fifth column (i.e. to protect against a weakness the UK would exploit);

  2. To show to the other small EU states (which the EU primarily consists of - and don’t forget the EU needs unanimous decision making in lots of areas) that the political interests of small EU states will be taken care of.

It should be also noted that the actually agreed backstop is a massive success for the UK - and would allow very significant access to the EU without the usual oversight and allowing the UK to potentially exploit the access provided. If you actually pay attention to what other member states think about the issue, they are actually disturbed by how far the EU moved in conceding to the UK on the all-UK backstop - correctly noting that the EU has gone too far. Hence the sincerely expressed desire from the EU to get rid of the backstop asap.

Others here had other maybe less radical proposals which may have avoided the spectre of an Uber Tory on a mission to save the Conservative party assuming power in the U.K. Ultimately however, the media and establishment propaganda and spin (much of it shared and promoted on this site) that people believed verbatim Ie that the referendum resukt was a unrepresentative flash in the pan has landed us in this scenario. And the upshot is (to restate) we’re probably going to get an Uber Tory on a mission to save the Conservatives above all else as Prime Minister.

Dangerous times that a little bit of critical thinking and non adherence to establishment narrative could have avoided

The populist momentum that brought Brexit will of course continue - especially since Brexit causes more problems, it does not solve any - yet Brexit will not be identified as the cause of those problems. In that sense, it certainly is “representative”. Nevertheless, it is true that although “the genie is now out of the bottle” nobody except a fringe in the UK cared about the EU in 2014 and it remains the case that approx. 55% of the UK is opposed or bitterly opposed to Brexit. Furthermore, Brexit cannot survive contact with reality forever - at best a particularly chaotic no deal could be whipped up by the Tories to galvanise support for a few more years, but that cannot last more than a few years. In the meantime, nationalist movements in Scotland and NI will be significantly supported.

The best thing for the EU to do would be to ensure that there is limited scope for blaming the EU in relation to the UK no deal chaos.


#5514

No matter what happens the UK will blame the EU for negative outcomes in any scenario.

It’s as if they believe it was the EU that voted to leave the UK and that we’re being unreasonable in not adopting GBP and appointing Lizzy supreme monarch of Europe.

Brexit = British exceptionalism.


#5515

I accept that. However in the same way as the major negatives of the Brexit vote were not immediately visible but instead consisted of lack of growth and increased inflation, the effect and seen from a “punter” perspective is less than that as seen from someone with a clue. So instead of preventing planes from flying on day 1 without a good excuse, it is better for the EU to strip away companies from the UK over a series of months/years. Less optically dramatic but much more effective at targeting those in control.