Tag Archives: Referendum

The Brexit Mirror — cracked from side to side

Brexit mirror cracked from side to side Rod FlemingThe Brexit mirror cracked from side to side under the weight of simple, sheer reality this week.

The fissure in the Brexit mirror began to appear when Norway’s Foreign Minister told the world that no, the UK could not re-enter the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) just because it fancied the idea. The UK was a founder member of EFTA but left as a condition of joining the then EEC in 1973. Re-entry, however, would require unanimous approval from the remaining members and Norway is agin the idea. It’s not the only one to show reluctance. Continue reading The Brexit Mirror — cracked from side to side

Brexit means Brexit. But not really

brexit means slumpTheresa May, the new Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, has said, several times now, that ‘Brexit means Brexit.’

The problem is that nobody is quite sure what that means. It would appear that even Ms May is somewhat vague on what Brexit means.

Does Brexit mean what the likes of Redwood and Cash mean, or legions of other purple-headed Blimps, or the undereducated oiks who are their foot-soldiers? Does it mean severing all ties with Europe? Does it actually, as we discussed in last week’s Friday Politics, mean ruining the world’s 5th economy, in the name of xenophobia? Continue reading Brexit means Brexit. But not really

Swivelly-eyed Brexit panic.

swivelly-eyed- brexit-panicThe first signs of widespread panic amongst the UK’s hard-right, swivelly-eyed Brexiteers have begun to appear.  In our last Friday Politics we pointed out that Brexit, as promised by the triumvirate of swivelly-eyed-ness, Johnson, Gove and Farage, is dead. It can’t happen. Now that realisation has got through to those whose eyes  are usually so swivelly they can’t read a Daily Mail headline.

They’ve figured out that they were blindsided (it’s the swivelly eyes) and they’re livid. Beside themselves. Last Friday, probably after he had read my piece,  Bill Cash, a person whose eyes are so swivelly we wonder how he drives to work, broke the ranks. ‘Brexit must happen,’ quoth he.

B-b-b-but Bill, is there any doubt? Surely…I mean it’s only been a month since the Phony ReferendumContinue reading Swivelly-eyed Brexit panic.

Brexit is dead.

brexit-dead
Last month the UK voted to ‘Brexit’. It will never happen. Here’s why.

Tweet: A month ago, the UK went to the polls and voted to leave the European Union. Today, #Brexit is dead. What happened?

The reality that Brexit could not be delivered became apparent even in the hours after the result. Why did David Cameron, the then Prime Minister, resign? He didn’t have to. He had fought a solid campaign and had been honourably beaten. He had said that he would not resign whatever the result.

Cameron probably realised that he could not deliver the result that had been asked for. His departure was the first indication that Brexit was already on life support. Continue reading Brexit is dead.

Scene from an Imaginary Western

the-messageIn the little white-painted town of Santa Westminstera, havoc had broken out. The town was ruled by two gangs of ruthless bandits. But both of these had begun fighting amongst themselves. The rule of the bosses had collapsed and anarchy reigned.

In an adobe house in the main street huddled one of the last remaining families.

Little Angelina was cuddling into her grandfather’s chest.

‘Oh papacito, what will become of us?’ she sobbed. Continue reading Scene from an Imaginary Western

Mishcon de Reya moves against early Brexit

mishcon-de-reyaThe internationally known UK law firm of Mishcon de Reya has moved to block any unconstitutional attempt to trigger the UK’s early departure from the EU.

In a piece by Owen Bowbott, The Guardian newspaper today reports that Mishcon de Reya ‘has retained the services of senior constitutional barristers, including Lord Pannick QC and Rhodri Thompson QC’ to act in this matter.

We do not yet know the opinion of these honourable gentlemen, but we can assume that it will be broadly in line with that of Geoffrey Robertson QC, another leading Constitutional lawyer. Robertson made it clear, in a recent interview with the Business Insider, that ‘Brexit’ would require an Act of Parliament. Continue reading Mishcon de Reya moves against early Brexit

Cameron’s Phony Referendum

phony-referendum
Cameron and his Wizard Phony Referendum
When is a referendum not a referendum? Answer — when it is a politically convenient device used by a slippery Prime Minister in trouble with half his MPs.

The EU Referendum held on the 23rd of June was phony. It has no legal consequences. That in turn means that it has no effect. Whoever becomes leader of the Tory Party and thus Prime Minister of Great Britain, will, if she or he wishes to cause the UK to leave the EU, have to follow the normal Parliamentary procedure for the making of law. It could take years for legislation to pass, if it is not blocked from the start by the majority of pro-EU MPs. Continue reading Cameron’s Phony Referendum

Who Governs Britain?

parliament-governs-britainWho governs Britain is the question we must now answer.

One week ago, the British people voted, by a slim majority, in favour of leaving the European Union.

The voters gave their opinion. That is all they did. But by doing so they provoked a Constitutional crisis for the United Kingdom, which may yet turn into an existential one. The question is no longer about Europe; the question today is simply ‘Who governs Britain?’ Continue reading Who Governs Britain?

Parliament: Stronger than Brexit

westminster-parliamentIn the UK, Parliament is the ultimate authority. All power is held by it. While technically, sovereignty resides with the monarch, in the UK this is ceded to and implemented by a group of elected representatives called Members of Parliament.

The UK is NOT a plebiscitary democracy; it is a representational one.  Elected Members of Parliament make decisions on behalf of the electors they represent.

The enabling legislation for the EU referendum last week is the European Union Referendum Act 2015.

This makes no provision whatsoever for the implementation or otherwise of the result of the ballot. This in turn means that the referendum vote has absolutely no authority over Parliament. It is not even ‘advisory’, in any legal sense. It is nothing more than a high-falutin opinion poll.

Continue reading Parliament: Stronger than Brexit

The British Project: the sun goes down

british-sahibs-1880The British Project was — and is — simply this: to make the world England. To profit from it and get rich on the military colonisation of other, weaker people, yes, that was its stimulus. But its philosophical motivation was to make the world England.

When I was at school, we had maps on the walls that showed a world covered in ‘pink bits’. Those, it was said, were ours. They had been ‘our’ Empire; now they were our ‘Commonwealth’. This was another way of saying that all of these countries were still ‘ours’ but we were nice chaps and we let the darkies play unsupervised these days. The whole concept was about as offensive as it gets.

So what was this ‘Empire’ that had turned so much of the planet a most unlikely salmon-pink? Continue reading The British Project: the sun goes down