LEADING THE WAY OUT OF THE EU

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Tuesday 25 July

Jeremy Corbyn faces renewed rebellion from his Europhile back benches following clarity from Barry Gardiner on the party’s stance regarding the single market and customs union. Mr Corbyn had grudgingly won the support of his parliamentary party following a surprisingly strong showing in the general election. The result had quelled calls the calls for resignation that had hounded his leadership from his first election to the job in 2015, but it seems the hostility is ready to warm up again after the long-time Eurosceptic confirmed that continued membership of the European single market and the European customs union are incompatible with last year’s historic referendum result.

His Shadow Trade Secretary Barry Gardiner wrote in the Guardian that “the 52% who voted to leave the EU would consider it a con if Britain was out of Europe but still subservient to its laws and institutions”. He went on to write that Brits wanted “to have control over our borders, to have sovereignty over our laws, not to submit to the European court of justice (ECJ), and not to pay money into the European budget”.

One would hope that Labour were finally waking up, but hardcore Remoaners Chuka Umunna and Carwyn Jones were quick to spoil the illusion by launching into ill-informed rants about the need for Britain to remain shackled to the EU in all but name. Jones told Radio 4 that “there is no need to leave the single market”. Wrong!



Monday 24 July

International Trade Secretary Liam Fox has hit out at the BBC, accusing them of covering up positive economic news while spinning the rest as being “despite Brexit”. He has demanded a showdown with clueless BBC bosses over the broadcaster’s lack of impartiality, citing “a clear pattern of unbalanced reporting of the UK economy”. It follows moved by a coalition of patriotic MPs to arrange a face-to-face meeting with the BBC, whose horrific coverage of Brexit has caused outrage amid last week’s scandal of fat salaries for liberal luvvies like Chris Evans, Graham Norton, and Gary Lineker.

Meanwhile estimates have suggested that the UK-US trade deal that Fox has started negotiating with the US could add an additional £40bn to the UK economy every year by 2030. Boris Johnson is reaching out too with visits to New Zealand and Japan which confirm that the UK has every intention of going global and building upon our present prosperity by quitting the EU’s disastrous trade policy.



Sunday 23 July

EU negotiators, apparently keen to uphold their controlling, dictatorial appearance, have refused British requests for an independent Brexit monitor.

UK officials had asked for a third party, such as Canada, to oversee talks, specifically when it comes to issues such as EU citizens’ rights.

But Brussels issued a flat “no” to the request, frustrating British officials and prompting speculation talks could grind to a halt.

A British insider said: “We understand their position, but the problem is that to make progress both sides need to move together, and the current process just doesn’t work.

“If the EU 27 cannot move in small steps, then there is no reason our side should either.”

It’s typical of the EU to ask for so much but offer nothing in return. It looks like “no deal” may be the only option.


Saturday 22 July

Interpol have today released a 173-strong list of ISIS-trained jihadists who could be the next Islamic militants to come to Europe, aided of course by EU open borders.

According to the Guardian newspaper, the list published by the international police agency contains names, the date they were recruited, last address, the mosque they have been praying at, their mother’s name and any photographs.

As ISIS begins to lose ground in its strongholds within Iraq and Syria, the dispersement of its religious soldiers and the potential for exploitation of the ongoing migrant crisis by jihadis causes Europe a major headache. Like a number of individual Member States have done, the European Union executive needs to take drastic action to mitigate the damage that could be done to Europe by the wounded beast of Islamic State.


 

Friday 21 July

Environment Secretary and staunch Brexiteer Michael Gove has pointed the way to a more rational farm subsidy system after Brexit, warning wealthy landowners that there will be a “green Brexit” and that subsidies in the future “must be earned”. The government plans to maintain the value of our present subsidy system, but Gove is set to lay out a re-balancing of the system in a speech later today where he will demand that farmers do more to protect the environment and improve rural life. He will lay out “a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reform how we care for our land, our rivers and our seas, how we recast our ambition for our country’s environment, and the planet”.

Meanwhile Labour’s mathematically illiterate Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott made a stunning comeback yesterday after dropping out of sight during the general election for unspecified “health” reasons. She was quizzed about Labour plans to pay for 10,000 new cops and once against struggled to provide answers. Embarrassing.



Thursday 20 July

David Davis is set to meet today with chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier to outline the progress made over the last four days of Brexit talks. Davis sparked controversy at the beginning of the week when the pro-EU media portrayed a short visit to Brussels as a premature walkout, but it appears the two sides are making progress on a deal over reciprocal citizens’ rights while the UK hardens its stance on the so-called divorce bill and commits to a line-by-line analysis of European demands.

Meanwhile, the BBC continues to deal with the fallout of shocking pay revelations yesterday by threatening to cut the salaries of major male stars to deal with a supposed gender pay gap at the publicly funded broadcaster. Eyebrows were raised at the huge discrepancy between top pay for male star Chris Evans, at £2.2m a year, and the female top-earner Claudia Winkleman who is paid just under half a million. The BBC appear to be running with the gender pay controversy in order to avoid discussing wider issues about the justice of the television licence fee and the massive sums spent on television stars more broadly as BBC radio star Jeremy Vine, raking in just below three-quarters of a million a year, was confronted on air by an ex-miner about his ridiculous salary.

Yesterday, it was revealed that the EU has opened trade discussions with the UK after insisting it would only be negotiated in the latter stages of the Article 50 period. Today, it was announced that yet another off-limits activity is in fact entirely permissible: UK trade negotiations with non-EU economies, the ones where all the growth is to be found.

On Monday and Tuesday of next week British officials will meet with American counterparts to lay down the ”groundwork for commercial continuity for U.S. and UK businesses as the UK leaves the EU and exploring possible ways to strengthen trade and commercial ties, consistent with the EU’s common commercial policy,” said a US diplomat to news agency Reuters.

British and American delegations will take tentative steps to setting up working groups to sketch out the parameters of a future trade deal. This process will fall short of a cast iron agreement, but it is a significant step nonetheless. Just ask the EU, Brussels apparatchiks have been jumping for joy after reaching this stage with Japan two weeks ago. As usual, the EU fanfare is exaggerated, but there’s no denying Britain can get a long way to finalising commercial deals with economic partners the world over before Article 50 expires. The US is just the beginning.