A Mr. Murphy opines:
The result is, though, that at present it is very hard to see what progress there can now be on any talks with the EU. Liam Fox says we will leave the customs union and single market, as a matter of fact. And as a matter of fact that requires a hard border between the Republic and Northern Ireland.
But as a matter of fact the DUP says it will not have that border.
And in reality it is perfectly obvious that such a border is not deliverable. Three hundred road crossings and the lack of any physical sign of where the border might be along most of its length makes that obvious.
Just as it is obvious that the DUP demand that Northern Ireland have no special status different from the rest of the UK is in any way consistent with the demand for no border with the Republic.
These are, to be blunt, issues that cannot be resolved by any amount of negotiation. There is no such thing as a non-border when the whole point of Brexit was that there should be one. And yet there is no way there can be a hard border. And there is no way there can be the arrangement the DUP demands.
And nor is there any way that border controls on flights and ferry crossings between the North and the rest of the UK cannot happen in future if there is no border between the Republic and the North, as the DUP demand. Like it or not that’s because without controls between the North and the rest of the UK in that situation there would be no border for migration between the EU and the UK. In other words the DUP simply cannot say borders are unacceptable anywhere and leave Brexit in any sense meaningful in the eyes of all those who voted for it because they thought migration the issue it was meant to control.
What this means is that, like it or not, the Irish question is now at the core of the Brexit debate. And nor can it be deferred. No trade deal overcomes it, most especially if the UK is adamant about leaving the customs union and single market. Any such departure leaves both the Republic and the DUP in impossible situations. And that leaves not just the UK government in an impossible situation, but also without a majority since it is dependent upon the DUP for that. It leaves us, then, without a government at all.
As a result the fact is that the 2016 Brexit vote may have been as significant an issue for Ireland and the rest of the UK as the 1916 rising, one hundred years earlier. And in both cases, and just a few years later, a solution to a border issue has to be found or the consequences will, I fear, be very long lasting indeed.
The solution is simplicity itself.
The big lie, truly monstrous.
Sure and now isn’t that a hard border? Can’t yez see the signs insisting that if you cross it you must check in with the nearest constabulary or you’re being a very bad boy indeed? And why wouldn’t that be enough for yez? And sure we’ll do some checks on the gombeen men as well.
And then tell everyone else to fuck off, right royally.