Friday 1 June 2018
An agonizing curiosity of the past eighteen months of government (in)activity over Brexit has been its reluctance to deploy the no-deal weapon. Save a vague “no deal is better than a bad deal” threat, delivered by the prime minister at Lancaster House in January 2017, her administration has been mute. Britain’s trade deficit with the EU stands at £72bn. They need us more than we need them and they need to be reminded of that, forcefully and frequently.
The government’s “preparedness for no deal is virtually non-existent,” the words of one senior civil servant, reported by the pro-EU FT on Sunday.
Whitehall’s resistance was to be expected, which is why a pro-Leave Cabinet headed by a patriot to keep the globalist troops in line was so essential. A devastatingly effective bargaining chip is being squandered.
The Telegraph then reported Theresa May has fitted her ministers with a gagging order over the prospect of Britain saying “auf wiedersehen” to the EU’s obstructionist negotiation. One of the only Tories eager to pipe up has been Jacob Rees-Mogg (see cover image).
Another Brexit hero, Whetherspoons boss Tim Martin, vented his frustration. “It’s time to show some steel” were his words, fired directly at the prime minister.
Ever stickier morass
The developing morass over withdrawal only becomes bigger and stickier. The EU has offered Britain a say in how the EU budget is spent, all the way up to 2027, even though formal budget payments are set to terminate upon the conclusion of the current cycle at the end of 2020. The transition period is set to expire then for that specific reason. The offer stinks of an attempt to reel Britain into yet more cash handouts.
The EU has also offered Britain continued participation in the Erasmus student exchange program, an invitation that should only be accepted with EU concessions – to create a common European identity, Eurocrat graduates need a single language, that language is English and there are only two countries in Europe speaking it.
But while dubious gifts were placed on the table, others were withdrawn. We can only hope Mrs May does not chase after them. The EU refuses to discuss British involvement in its multi-billion euro research and innovation fund. Associate status – currently bestowed upon Israel, Turkey, Albania and Ukraine – is not on the table. Similarly, British defence contractors will be barred from the €500m defence fund created almost immediately after the referendum. The program is a cunning platform to launch an EU army.
“We must cut free from real and present dangers of continuing entanglement and subordination to the EU after Brexit,” was former MI6 chief Sir Richard Dearlove’s response. A worthy intervention, but it’s jolting to think the PM needs to be told the bleeding obvious.
Irish border (again)
Naturally, the Irish border reared its head again. The latest proposal is even more absurd. David Davis hopes to resolve the niggling problem of easy access to both markets for Irish dairy farmers located within close proximity of the border by imposing a ten-mile buffer zone. How to implement such a plan without recourse to infrastructure, which May has foolishly pledged to avoid, and without driving small-scale farms absolutely mad through the enforcement of two separate regulatory codes remains very much up in the air.
“Max Fac 2 [as it is known] is tremendously complicated, but it’s at least something the Cabinet can unite around,” said one Cabinet source. Oh dear.
The biggest story of the week, of course, was the collapse and formation of two near-identical governments in Italy. The culprit for all the turmoil? Brussels. The EU no doubt wanted the Cabinet initially proposed to be rejected, which it of course was. Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger then warned with vicious intent that the financial “markets will teach the Italians to do the right thing.”
To the Euroelites’ horror, bond yields have barely budged. Then, last night Lega and the Five Star Movement, the two leading parties at the recent election announced a new government with minor tweaks to Cabinet personnel that was approved by Sergio Mattarella, the Italian President and the EU’s man in Rome.
In his capacity as president, it was Mattarella who rejected the original Cabinet proposed by the Lega-Five Star coalition, on the grounds that their choice for economy minister, an arch-Eurosceptic, did not conform with either party’s election mandate. Utter nonsense – both parties’ hostility to the EU and particularly the Euro are well-known. For a full account of the week’s events, check out the Leave.EU blog.
‘Operation Payback’ update
In April we wrote to you about the launch of our major new research project into the funding and potential rule-breaking of anti-Brexit MPs and campaign groups.
Many of you kindly donated to help fund this investigation and we’re pleased to report it is already bearing fruit.
Having studied Electoral Commission and parliamentary records, we have unearthed the names of five hardcore Remain MPs who received election donations from George Soros’s Best for Britain anti-Brexit campaign, but who haven’t declared that funding to the proper authorities.
Our studies of individual spending returns by Best for Britain’s shameful ‘anti-Brexit champions’ also confirms that the group has not been using donors’ funds as they have claimed.
Hardcore anti-democrats appear to have their own big questions to answer about how they raise and spend their campaign funds. We’ll report back soon with the full results.