Ms. Cadwallader’s hostage to fortune here


But what Elliott couldn’t spin was this: according to his own account of the report, Vote Leave, the official referendum campaign that was partly funded with taxpayers’ money, looks to have committed what may be one of the biggest incidents of electoral fraud in Britain in more than a century. Back in March, when the Observer reported on compelling new evidence provided by Shahmir Sanni, a Vote Leave whistleblower, Gavin Millar, a QC at Matrix Chambers, an expert in electoral law, told us that this was of a scale and seriousness that simply hasn’t been seen in Britain in modern times.

Arguably, you need to look to the 19th century to find a parallel – a deliberate, premeditated overspend of nearly 10% of the entire campaign budget. But what we saw in the referendum surpassed what happened then in sophistication and complexity, if not scale. Because more than a century ago, a series of hugely corrupt elections led to a reform of our electoral laws: laws designed to control spending in our elections and which – with some updates – have largely stood to this day. But which simply no longer work.

Because when it is understood – it’s already been revealed of course – that the Remain campaign did as much an worse, what then?

An interesting linguistic question

But Alison McGovern, an MP who is co-chair of Labour Campaign for the Single Market, called it an “excellent and clear” statement which sent out the message that “Tory Brexit is bad for us and we have to keep all aspects of the single market on the table and the possibility of a People’s Vote”.

Just what is a People’s Vote? is that where the people have to vote again and again until they reach the right damn answer?

Hey, great, go for it

It’s time for the European Union to kick Hungary out. There it is, a member state, casually flouting basic democratic norms and human rights, swiftly evolving into an authoritarian nightmare, with absolutely no meaningful consequences.

Because with one country voluntarily leaving, another being kicked out, that’ll be the end of the whole thing.

Go on, really, do it.

Let me count the ways that Willy Hutton does understand

Airbus’s warning that it would have to disinvest from Britain unless there was a deal in which Britain continued its membership of the EU’s air safety certification system, single market, customs union and respected the jurisdiction of the European court of justice.

Airbus’s customers need to know that every component in its planes conforms to the highest safety standards, which are set by the EU. Equally, it must strain for maximum production efficiency, fighting for every last order against Boeing; parts cannot be delayed for days, even hours, subject to time-consuming customs checks. As matters stood, warned its chief operating officer, Tom Williams, none of this could be assured: there was no clarity about Britain’s economic and trading regime after the transition period in 2020. His concerns are amply justified. Johnson’s reaction, and the parrot squawk that it is all part of Project Fear and safely to be ignored, is evidence enough. In the 21st century, it takes a continent to build a plane and the continent has to have shared trade rules, common regulatory standards and accepted adjudication processes.

Airbus actually said that absent the UK’s membership of the EU it might have to build in the US or China. Places also outside all those things.

Days earlier, Erik Nordkamp, chair of a trade association of 10 US pharmaceutical companies based in Britain, reported that 86% of life science executives responded, in a survey, that Brexit uncertainty was imperilling investment. Our traditional dominance in the life sciences, warned Nordkamp, was under threat. As in air safety, so it is in medicine. The EU’s European Medicines Agency, now moving from Britain to Holland, sets the continent’s drug standards. Again, it takes a continent to research, prototype, safety-test and launch a drug. Outside that trade and regulatory framework, and with a NHS too cash-strapped to order new drugs, another British economic flagship is set to sink.

Switzerland, a non-EU member, is also home to the occasional pharma company. I’m really quite sure of that as well.

The car industry will join its ranks. Revitalised by foreign direct investment, the UK car industry is part of a continental-wide system of production in which we disproportionately share the higher value work. BMW, maker of the Mini, warns of how a hard Brexit will force it into expensive, wasteful mitigating measures; Tata has already announced it is moving production of the Discovery Land Rover to Slovakia, while John Neill, CEO of Unipart, declares that Brexit is a fatal threat to the car industry. And our space industry, aiming to grow to £40bn by 2030, is about to be severely wounded by being excluded from the EU Galileo collaboration.

The North American car industry is continentally integrated as well. Without the EU. That is, systems – even legal systems, common standards an judicial processes – can be constructed without needing all the rest that the EU brings.

Which is why yesterday I joined the march for just that: when tens of thousands freely give up their time to make common cause over a great purpose, politicians should listen.

And when 52% of those voting in a referendum decide differently, what then? Ah, yes, just keep voting until they get the answer right. How EU of you.

Polly’s error

Brexiteers know that if on Brexit day, the 29 March 2019, everything seizes up, they will be blamed – and they will be done for.


‘ll even happily take all the blame (no, I’m not that important).

For the only way out of such a mess will be unilateral free trade plus a killing of most of the regulation of the economy. Exactly what we should be doing anyway.

Yes, I know, it all sounds a bit Trot, we must destroy in order to create anew. But still.

Yes, and?

Top Tory Eurosceptic MP Jacob Rees-Mogg has defended his City firm for setting up an investment fund in Ireland after it emerged that its clients were warned about the risks of a “hard” Brexit.

Somerset Capital Management, the MP’s London-based firm, has launched a new investment vehicle in Dublin.

The news is potentially embarrassing because Mr Rees-Mogg has suggested that a hard Brexit, when the UK would walk away next year without an exit deal or trade arrangement, should not be ruled out.

Isn’t he showing how easily it can all be dealt with? How easy it is to gain passporting and thus continue to sell to Europeans?

How badly can you misread politics?

Desperate for a hard Brexit, May has shown she has no time for democracy
Karan Bilimoria

May is a – weak – Remoaner. She also seems to think that the result of the referendum, the expressed will of the people, be accorded with.

Doing what the people say they want seems pretty democratic. Doing it against your own wishes seems pretty democratic. And she’s not in favour of, nor moving toward, hard Brexit anyway.

Well, it’s an interesting idea

Hatherley’s theory, which this book not so much tests as pummels furiously for signs of weakness, is that for all its evident problems, belonging to Europe means – or meant – committing to an idea that everyday life can be made better for the vast majority of people with planning, humility and a good measure of collective provision. Europe, he reckons at the outset, reminds him of fast, comprehensive public transport, generous and affordable rented housing and public spaces that you want to spend hours in rather than hurry through.

It’s also bollocks. There’s no need to be ruled from Brussels to have those things.

In fact Brussels has entirely scrotum all to do with any of them. Thus staying in the EU is irrelevant to whether we have them or not. Apparently Canada is a nice enough social democracy having those things. It’s also not in the EU. QED.

Europe cut off by Brexit

France is blocking Britain’s attempt to remain part of a European Union security system that helps to identify foreign criminals and is designed to keep the public safe.

The government wants a guarantee that it can continue to access and share vital DNA, fingerprint and vehicle information with other European countries after Brexit.

Ministers have said that Britain’s participation in the so-called Prüm Convention is “clearly in the national interest”. The system allowed French and Belgian authorities to identify the terrorists responsible for the Paris attacks in November 2015.

Britain has been rebuffed, however, with France leading the resistance at a recent meeting to its efforts to join a “Prüm 2”. A senior government figure said: “Normally France is quite helpful when it comes to security co-operation but on this they are being awkward.”

Trust the Frogs not to grok cooperation. Sure, we get access to their information – but they also get access to our.


That’s nice of them, isn’t it?

Mattarella’s decision set off a chain of events that roiled Italian markets: Conte resigned as prime minister-in waiting and new elections appeared to be imminent, worrying markets and officials in Brussels. Their concern was that new elections could strengthen populist gains in Italy, leading to even greater uncertainty about the country’s future in the eurozone.

If your finance minister threatens the EU and the euro then you can’t have him. But if having elections to sort this out threatens the EU and the euro then we’ll change tack so you don’t have them.

There’s a little batsqueak somewhere telling me this isn’t quite how democracy should work really.

Whose pension comes from the EU?

“Even contempt for ‘experts’ cannot obscure the evidence that the Johnson-led Brexit vote has already damaged and will inflict future harm on the NHS,” Kinnock said. “Meanwhile – vitally – Brexit has already diminished, and will continue to depress, the revenues on which the NHS depends.

“If Johnson really wanted the extra NHS spending, which is sorely needed, he wouldn’t be using the issue as a ploy to feed his lust for the Tory leadership but would be working to end Brexit.

“The truth is that we can either take the increasingly plain risks and costs of leaving the EU or have the stability, growth and revenues vital for crucial public services like the NHS and social care. Recognising that, we should stop Brexit to save the NHS – or, at very least, mitigate the damage by seeking European Economic Area membership.”

That Anglo Saxon Wave

The European Union will demand the right to raid financial services firms in Britain after Brexit and hand its regulators sweeping new powers, as Brussels moves to shackle the City of London with red tape after the UK leaves the bloc.

How colonialist that is. The natives can’t be trusted to run themselves, send the gunboats in.

You know, sovereign jurisdiction is sovereign or it ain’t…..

Well, boo hoo, eh?

Fruit and vegetable farms across the UK were left short of thousands of migrant workers in 2017, leaving some produce to rot in the fields and farmers suffering big losses.

More than 4,300 vacancies went unfilled, according to new survey data from the National Farmers Union (NFU), which covers about half the horticultural labour market. The survey, seen exclusively by the Guardian, shows more than 99% of the seasonal workers recruited came from eastern Europe, with just 0.6% from the UK.

Since the vote to leave the European Union in 2016, growers have warned repeatedly of damaging labour shortages, with recruiters reporting that Brexit has created the perception among foreign workers that the UK is xenophobic and racist.

The government, which has pledged to reduce immigration, has so far rejected calls to reinstate a seasonal agricultural workers scheme (Saws). Facing uncertainty over labour, some farmers have begun moving their production overseas.

The NFU labour survey found that an average of 12.5% of vacancies went unfilled in 2017, the first time there has been a shortfall since the survey began in 2014. The proportion of workers returning to work in the UK after previous years is also dropping fast, from 41% in 2016 to 29% in 2017. The fall in the value of the pound after the Brexit vote has also helped make the UK less attractive.

It’s the last sentence there which is important.

So farmers will have to raise the wages they offer. So sad, eh?