Cast your mind back to the 24th June last year.
More than half the British nation was in a state divided into an element of disbelief, backed by a following element of euphoria: we were a happy nation, we were a very relieved set of bunnies to have the prospect of the removal, collectively, of a 40 year old monkey from our backs.
I suppose that after the pre-Brexit “fear” campaign we should not be surprised that many of the previous suspects have made it their business to continue spreading their original poison, unabashed by the evidence that things didn’t turn out along the lines of their original forebodings.
There they all are – out on the election trail: the remainiacs still refusing to accept the result of the Referendum in one fashion or another, but all of them making out that Magpie May will not get a fair deal and what will we do then when we reach the stage that Mrs May considers the deal offered is so bad that she has no alternative than to press the “No Deal” button and opt out!
What a calamity, they all will call out, what an utter tragedy for this once great nation, they will cry, poison, poison, poison all the way, drop by poisonous drop! Trade and the economy will drop off a cliff edge. Oh! let’s not be nasty to the Germans and that nice Mr. Juncker who is doing his best for us!
Well I’ve news for all those doubting Thomases: if they have worries about the trading position, please read Mr. Roger Bootle’s column in the business section of the Daily Telegraph on Monday 8th May 2017 (£). Strangely enough he appears entirely relaxed about the prospect of “No Deal”.
Mr.Bootle analyses the situation as follows:
The Prime Minister has said that no deal is better than a bad deal […]
We have been left with the impression that we are going to have to pay an enormous divorce settlement, agree to the continuing jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice, accept free movement, for at least a time […] before the EU will even begin discussing future trading arrangements with the UK, never mind the “bold and ambitious” free trade agreement (FTA) that Theresa May is seeking […]
The 2 year deadline is a major disadvantage: when talks stall, the pressure will begin to build, as time ticks away […]
The former Greek finance minister warned “the EU is a past master at intimidating others by deft use of agendas and timetables.”
What we need is to work out a plan B,so if plan A fails we have something to fall back on. Also, if you have a plan B, there`s more chance of plan A succeeding. It must be seen that we have an alternative and are prepared to walk away, not in fear or trepidation. Otherwise they may not give ground to us.
Mr Bootle observes:
“Above all the government must avoid the trap that David Cameron fell into; he asked for very little, but got even less, his mistake was to make it clear that however little he got he would support staying in the EU.”
My note here: remember the Greek renegotiation – the EU knew that in the end the Greek people didn’t want to leave the Euro!
Is there a plan B? Well, there’s this dreadful mountain of “Access to the Single Market” which Business and others who should know better see as a sort of “Beechers Brook”: impossible jump.
In the words of Mr.Bootle
”[…] an image of some precious restricted space, with entry only through a locked door, perhaps closely guarded by a bibulous Jean Claude Juncker, carefully checking membership cards […];
[…] as I and others pointed out all along; every single country in the world has “access” to the single market. It is just a matter of having to pay the EU’s tariffs and abiding by its various rules and regulations governing product quality, eg, just as we have to do into every other market in the world, that`s why countries all round the world who are not members of the Single Market manage to export to it successfully. Access to the single market: so powerful an image is in fact a chimera.
[…] fall into the clutches of the WTO: It is as though the WTO (World Trade Organisation) were some sort of monster that devours its members, especially juicy new ones like us. In fact the UK helped to set up the WTO, has remained a member all along albeit with our seat vacant because our trade policy has been run by the EU. On leaving the EU, we would simply take up our seat again.
[…] remainers say trading with the WTO would be a disaster, a step into the unknown … as part of the EU the UK already trades under WTO rules to govern trading practices, and as part of the EU the UK already trades under WTO rules with over 100 countries around the world including the USA, our largest single export market, as well as China, India, Brazil and Singapore.
In addition to the WTO there are various technical arrangements called Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs) without which goods trade is almost impossible.The EU has such agreements with virtually all countries around the world including those that are neither members of the single market nor have an FTA in place.
All the UK has to do is simply to carry them over into the new world and if the EU refuses to agree MRAs with us this would count as discrimination under WTO rules and would lead to huge fines.”
So come on Government et al: convince yourselves that there is no reason for gloom – be happy! No Deal is not such a bad deal after all.
I am also getting a bit peeved by the constant gloom and churlishness expressed about Mrs May and her attitude and ability to deliver a hard Brexit. She has indeed pulled off a remarkable coup by adopting most of our, UKIPs, policies and indeed seems to be speaking for 17.4 million Brexiteers.
Most of the politicians are going around pointing out that Tory policy is UKIP policy. Why not be glad: we couldn’t have a higher accolade in the public eye. If they make a mess of Brexit, it will be apparent it is not our “blame” (Scottish expression).
Be positive in everything – people don’t vote for the miserable party!