30 comments on “Err, no. Hop Off Froggie

  1. They shot for the moon in the Withdrawal Agreement negotiations and when May capitulated they thought “fuck, we should have shot for Mars”.

  2. Bizarre….

    I thought the EU was the sole authorized negotiator in the matter of Brexit, and all thoughts, prayers, deals and offers had to be communicated via the toad Barnier.

    So France, also, finds that the EU isn’t fir for purpose and has to inject its thoughts directly.

    Intriguing.

    I’m wondering what kind of thing the UK can sign which would bind future governments…. True, if signed as part of a deal, the EU could annul all or part of the deal when UK ripped up the promise in a future Parliament. But then there’s always WTO, so who cares?

  3. As if UK politicians are going to have less stringent environmental laws than the EU, all the parties are in competition to out do each other in demonstrating their green credentials irrespective of the economic harm.

  4. I have faith in the ability of any future British govt to shackle industry and society with bogus climate linked laws all on its own, so no need for a helping frog hand.

  5. It seems that all 27 have something to claim while May has our wallet open. Just quit. The very suggestion that we should promise to cripple our competitiveness at this crucial point is ‘unacceptable’.

  6. I now firmly believe that May is a very strange person, that she is very stupid and that Alex Noble was right and that the end position was agreed very quickly.

    May has assured Merkel from day one that the EU could do what they liked as long as she remained Prime Minister. All the EU had to do was to help her see out her term. Pretending that she was becoming the hated enemy of the EU and trying to generate underdog sympathy for her was just part of the deal.

    There are no limits to what any member of the EU can do to this country. Merkel’s poodle knows that part of the deal is that the UK pays its old contributions without the rebates as part of the “ambitious trade deal”.

  7. I cannot reconcile the Alex Noble theory with what I see going on. I remember when she came back from that humiliating meeting with the EU leaders. She was seething. Then she sold us out. It doesn’t scan as it stands even with the Noble theory that it’s all just a Kabuki show and it’s all decided in advance. I think some threats or inducements have made offered in secret. I suspect threats, existential threats to the UK, such as trade hostilities if we went WTO. They are shit scared that we can succeed, they will do anything legal or not so much to ensure we cannot compete.

    So, what’s the secret thing that makes all the pieces fit?

  8. “So, what’s the secret thing that makes all the pieces fit?”

    1. Resumption of civil war in Ireland.
    2. Protectionists fund the Tory Party.

  9. @Rhoda – ignore the rapist enabler – the EU is a retirement home/gravy train for failed politicians. Once their own electorate has grown sick of them they move on to the EU where they can again pick up the reigns of power and a hefty paycheck and pension. Remainer May is a failed politician par excellence – if she pissses off the EU too much the gravy train becomes unreachable.

  10. So, what’s the secret thing that makes all the pieces fit?

    They made her sign it in a boxcar at Versailles?

    I think the simplest explanation is best: May isn’t very bright, TPTB (especially the civil service) were determined to turn Brexit into NeverExit (hence Project Fear 2.0), and the EU – as usual – was negotiationg in bad faith all along. They probably strung her along the way she did her own cabinet.

    Anyway, it probably won’t get through Parliament so they’ll probably try to drag this out further and reverse it via a “People’s Vote” (because the pleb scum who voted to Leave aren’t people, natch).

    I’m bullish on our ability to win another referendum on the same terms, but they’ll probably try to fix it in advance (fuckery on the questions, aggressive oversight by the politicised Electoral Commission, letting 12 year olds and Romanian beggars vote) – they won’t make the mistake of giving us a fair chance again.

    If we’re lucky, we’ll stumble into a WTO Brexit despite the ill intentions of our lords and masters.

    The USA is still ready to start talks on a genuinely ambitious trade deal between us and the largest economy on Earth – no unpleasant political strings or eco-suicide notes attached. Wouldn’t it be nice?

  11. BTW, I’m genuinely surprised that more hasn’t been made of this:

    http://www.cityam.com/265818/us-says-wants-start-trade-talks-uk-soon-ready-following

    It’s yuge news. If you’d dangled a free trade agreement with the USA in front of Maggie Thatcher she’d have bitten your hand off.

    The EU’s GDP, not including Britain, is about $16 trillion. The USA’s GDP is nearly $20 trillion – and growing much faster. If we’re worried about food costs post-Brexit, the USA is the world’s largest exporter of high quality agricultural products. (Yes, yes, chlorinated chicken – Google it, even the EU admits there’s nothing wrong with washing chicken carcasses)

    Unlike the never-ending bullshit the EU subjects negotiations to, the USA recently managed to completely replace NAFTA in a period of months.

    Is Trump Derangement Syndrome or Channel tunnel vision blinding us to what an incredible, historical, bigly deal the Yanks are offering? We should be camped outside the US embassy with a pen.

  12. ‘President Macron and other member states fear Britain could gain advantage over them by undercutting EU environment laws’

    Hey, Britain, why just undercut EU environment laws? Undercut ALL EU laws. Gain advantage! Have fun!

    Enjoy your freedom!

  13. May is a “peace in our time” rat who has sold out South Africa and now she is selling out the UK. Her urgent replacement is long overdue.

  14. “…Britain could gain advantage over them by undercutting EU environment laws.”

    Could we build that many brown coal power stations?

  15. “Remainer May is a failed politician par excellence”

    In terms of retaining her own position, she seems a pretty good politician. She’s proving a big hurdle to overcome.

  16. Mrs Chamberlain should have invoked the rule of ‘Arkell v Pressdram’ as soon as we voted to get out of the EU and told them they should do it pretty damn quick!

    Younger readers, just Google it.

  17. Well. We have been here before; roughly, a political consensus existed, that began to break down. Political parties were essentially trapped inside existing structures, and were unable to gain a sufficient mandate to break the cycle. An incumbent, unpopular and poorly performing government suddenly had to deal with a serious external shock. Forced into action, it gained enough of a mandate to act independently, dragging everyone into a new consensus.

    This time around, there’s a very definite internal, domestic shock easily foreseeable; planning for it is already underway.

    The only issues remaining are who is going to be the incumbent government when the inevitable happens, and how unpopular they are at the time.

  18. Steve,

    “I think the simplest explanation is best: May isn’t very bright, TPTB (especially the civil service) were determined to turn Brexit into NeverExit (hence Project Fear 2.0), and the EU – as usual – was negotiationg in bad faith all along. They probably strung her along the way she did her own cabinet.”

    The problem is more that the One Nation Conservatives really don’t care about Brexit, or frankly, making much fucking difference anywhere. They’re like those Czech glass producers under communism filling warehouses with vases that no-one wanted to meet targets and never once saying “this is a waste of time”. We’ve always made glass vases and will continue to do so.

    And that’s most of the parliamentary party. There’s some good guys in there like Gove, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Liz Truss, Dominic Raab, Steve Baker, Priti Patel and Penny Mordaunt but in general the tories aren’t going to reform anything, or put money back into people’s pockets.

    I’m at the point where we probably need the hard reboot of Corbynism to fix the place.

  19. BoM4 – I fear you are correct. The rot in our political institutions (all of them, from the House of Cronies to the humble local council that can’t be bothered collecting your bins every week) appears to be terminal.

    The Conservatives have it worst. At least Labour does some stuff its supporters like, such as pushing up public sector wages. What do Conservative voters get for their trouble? Gay marriage? Bans on plastic straws? £11Bn on foreign aid?

    When was the last time the Tories did something popular, without UKIP holding an electoral gun to their heads? They even screwed up the blue passports decision by having them made in France. Can’t get the tiniest of symbolic wins right.

    They’ve made fools of us all, and are contriving to lock our children into permanent vassalage to the EU, with no democratic means of escape. The Sunday Times – not usually given to conspiracy theories – today quoted government sources threatening to engineer a financial crash to bounce MP’s into voting for May’s Vichy deal. They’re willing to impoverish pensioners to keep us in the EU forever. This is the kind of thing politicians used to get defenestrated over.

    All we can do in return is punish them at the ballot box.

    I hope Corbyn taxes them till the pips squeak. I hope McDonnell seizes their land and hands it over to lesbian womyn’s eco-communes. I hope Abbott personally raids all of their fridges and leaves a massive, nutty poo in their kettles.

    One good thing about Jez is that the establishment is abso-fucking-lutely terrified of him (which underscores how feeble the establishment is). I hope their darkest, scariest, clown-at-midnight fears come true.

    Bring it on.

  20. Steady on, chaps. Let’s see what the coming week brings.

    If fewer than 48 of the hundreds of leave Tories are willing to attempt to try to throw this creature out on her arse, then I’ll join you in an angry despair wallow.

  21. “The problem is more that the One Nation Conservatives really don’t care about Brexit,”

    The problem is that the Tory Party are protectionists representing the protectionist interests of big industry, in much the same way that Labour are protectionists representing the protectionist interests of workers. It seems really weird that people can sit and discuss the motivations and tactics of the EU and government for days on end without ever once alluding to this obvious and basic fact! A customs union is a protectionist policy, it is the whole purpose of the EU, and it is the whole reason why UK governments on *both* sides of the aisle wanted to be in it. You *cannot* understand what their motives are without realising they’re all protectionists and considering how protectionists would think! Go read Bastiat’s ‘Sophisms’ and it should be really obvious why all your arguments about the economic interests of all parties and the benefits of free trade have no weight in the negotiations.

    As for the lock-in, they already explained the reason for that. Ireland demanded it. They don’t trust the British Brexiteers not to negotiate a no-border solution, and then back out on it the moment they can get away with it. They want absolutely no possibility of a customs border across Ireland, ever. Just as Northern Ireland have made it equally clear they want no customs border between Northern Ireland and the rest of Britain, ever. The only viable solutions to that are that either Britain stays inside the customs union, or Ireland drops out of it and joins Britain trading outside the EU, or the EU customs union is disbanded.

    The EU would rather eat their own turds than pick option 3. Ireland have obviously threatened them with option 2 (and provide momentum to a domino effect) if they don’t get Britain to stay and keep them there. And being protectionists, all parties see option 1 as the best and only choice, and having the Ireland thing force a lock-in is seen by them as a happy bonus.

    There’s no mystery about it. It’s obvious why they’ve gone for this option, and it was obvious from the very start that having a party funded by and run in the interests of protectionists negotiating was going to result in a fudge.

    “I’m at the point where we probably need the hard reboot of Corbynism to fix the place.”

    ROFL!

    “They’ve made fools of us all, and are contriving to lock our children into permanent vassalage to the EU, with no democratic means of escape.”

    People are fools. We need to educate everybody about why protectionism is bad, voting out any politician stupid enough to still believe in it, and then we need to persuade Ireland to drop out of the EU, (or at least the customs union bit of it), too. Everything else is posturing.

    Given that I’ve not even persuaded *you* that protectionism (in its guise as nationalism) is bad, the chances of persuading the whole country for the foreseeable future are nil.

    People get the government they deserve, good and hard. That, I’m afraid, is democracy.

  22. Given that I’ve not even persuaded *you* that protectionism (in its guise as nationalism) is bad, the chances of persuading the whole country for the foreseeable future are nil.

    Protectionism is not bad, it’s entirely natural and good. Otherwise we would not care about / be biased in favour of those closest to us and the species would have failed. A belief in nation (as a proxy for our tribe) is little more than an extension of that process.

  23. “Protectionism is not bad, it’s entirely natural and good. Otherwise we would not care about / be biased in favour of those closest to us and the species would have failed.”

    The species has been around for roughly 200,000 years, and ran under tribal, protectionist economics for about 199,850 of them. Plot a graph of the economy, wealth, health, prosperity, or pretty much any other measure of success, and humanity scored a flat zero for the first 199,850 years until free(ish) trade was invented. Whereupon the graph takes off upwards like a rocket!

    We’ve known all this since the repeal of the Corn Laws (you do know what the Corn Laws were, don’t you?), but people are stupid and ignorant which is why we’ve still got nationalism/socialism/protectionism. It may indeed be ‘natural’ as you say – it seems so stubbornly persistent that it’s almost as if it’s wired in to the brain. But it’s about as ‘good’ as illiteracy and poor hygiene, which were also the norm during tribal times.

    Have you ever read any of Bastiat’s works? (Or Friedrich Hayek, or Milton Friedman, Adam Smith, David Ricardo?) I know they don’t teach it at school, so most of the population have a good excuse. But I’d have thought you’d have picked up some of it hanging round with Tim and his Adam Smith Institute crowd by now. Did you read it and the problem is that you disagree or didn’t understand it, or did you just miss out completely?

  24. Protectionism != Nationalism. Peel promoted (the start of) free trade, but I suspect he was a nationalist. The EU is protectionist but supranationalist.

  25. “Protectionism != Nationalism.”

    Protectionism is just the general philosophy of avoiding competition by building barriers around yourself to protect what you’ve got. Whether it’s your business, your job, or your culture you’re protecting; whether you build your walls around your guild, your union, or your nation, the reasoning, and the flaws, are the same.

  26. The Tories have failed. They really don’t see their demise in this, or don’t care. Looks like the DUP don’t care about the Tories either. Fuck ’em.

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