Monday, 5 September 2016
Brexiteers are the biggest threat to Brexit
If there is any threat to Brexit it will not come from the remainers. The biggest liability is the Brexiteers themselves. John Redwood, Peter Lilley, David Davis and Liam Fox. These are men with fixed ideas about what trade means without any real knowledge. They are steering the agenda.
They all have their own self-reinforcing fanbases which means they are not in the least bit receptive to correction - they have their fixed narratives, they know they are wrong, but continue to argue from a position of wilful ignorance. Precisely why is a question for psychologists.
These are very much cake and eat it people who seek to superimpose their simplistic views onto the most complex political construct ever known. The want limits on immigration, they don't want to pay into the EU budget and they want regulatory divergence and deregulation. The believe all of the EU system can be replaced with a simplistic trade deal and once that is done the rest of the world will be falling over themselves to gets free trade deal with the UK.
To put this into context, if you are planning on cutting off all payments to the EU you are in effect advocating a hostile breakaway, tearing up agreements and contracts in the process, while also pulling out of a number of areas of cooperation including centralised agencies governing anything from air space to food safety without first developing domestic capability.
They then seem to think the EU will be minded to give us a favourable trade deal on the basis that they sell more to us than we do to them. If we add in services that isn't actually true. It works out about even but this notion that we can put up reciprocal tariffs is prohibited by international law in that discriminatory tariffs are forbidden.
This is a point that has been explained time and again yet they persist in ignoring it. It could be that the subtext of this is that they wish to completely walk away from the entire global rules based system in which case it is difficult to see why anyone would be keen to enter any new agreements with us.
Meanwhile if we are seeking regulatory divergence then we are introducing a number of costs to UK industry which must adapt to an entirely new set of regulations while also maintaining an export standard. We have explored this issue previously.
Meanwhile, nobody who has given the matter any serious thought thinks that a points based immigration system is a good idea and that imposing limits on freedom of movement is particularly sound. It will not have any meaningful impact on overall immigration. In fact the only sure fire guarantee that immigration will slow is if there are reduced opportunities which would indicate that we have in some way harmed our economy.
We could explore all of these facets in greater detail but it's all out there if you care to look. The fact is that their vision of Brexit is not tempered by reality and takes no account of movements in global trade over the last twenty years. They are fixated by tariffs and have no knowledge of technical barriers to trade. We are dealing with ideologue zealots with ideas going back to the stone-age who believe in magic wands.
The problem is they will resist any intrusion of reality until the bitter end. They will ignore the largely crippled opposition, they will not heed well meaning advice and it may take an outright ultimatum from the USA or China to make them think twice. Even with the entire media howling in incredulity they will maintain their delusions for as long as it takes. But of course reality will intrude and the EU's own position will be more apparent by then whereby the response will be quite hostile indeed.
Having utterly discredited themselves it will fall to Mrs May to step in at the last minute to salvage it and having wasted many opportunities and tested patience we will be lumbered with a default option that nobody wanted.
This blog has argued for the EEA as a departure lounge mechanism but in all likelihood we will end up using it not as a means of departure but as a means of shelving Brexit whereby superficially we have left the EU as far as the majority of people are concerned. Without a strategy or vision the Brexit we will get will be suboptimal to say the least, concocted in a hurry and in the end it will put us on a tight leash.
What that means is that we will have come full circle whereby we are still in the EU's sphere of control, no real roadmap out, no modern global agenda and most of the population believing there isn't a problem. So once again we will have to set upon another twenty year mission building up a new movement from scratch which will likely be made up of the same morons who believe in the same obsolete ideas. It will fail. It could see us sucked back into the EU, diminished and humiliated.
Ultimately if we want to make a success of Brexit then it is imperative that these men are utterly discredited as soon as possible. The remainers are not the threat to Brexit. Their attempts to force a second referendum will not work nor will parliamentary interference. Only dogmatic fools like John Redwood can kill Brexit though their malevolence and profound ignorance.
The short of it is, Brexit is a process, not an event and there is along road to navigate with vision and skill. The Brexiteers though are not skilled navigators. They are nihilistic wreckers who don't care how much damage they do and will happily enact a scorched earth policy to usher in their fantasy free trade new dawn. Unless they are stopped this entire enterprise is doomed. The sooner they crash and burn the better.