BREXIT II: Even if footie bores you, there is a way towards better futures in this post


Small beats Big. Well there’s a thing.

mesnipWe all have our favourite fuflilments. Mine are writing, football, music and gardening. They are all threatened by neoliberal values, and badly in need of creative originality. With more power as communities we can have more time to invest, and more chance to reverse our cultural stagnation. Brexit from the EU and Brexit from the euros tournament are equally relevant.

Following England’s miserable exit from the euros last night, the standard of gags on Twitter was of very high quality. My favourite was the bloke who said we should fire the manager Roy Hodgson, and immediately put him in charge of exiting the EU as quickly as possible. A close second was ‘Poundland 1, Iceland 2’.

As ever, sanguine self-deprecation is the intelligent Englishman’s way of dealing with sporting mediocrity. But if you look at England in the Euros – and the tournament as a whole – there are key insights to take on board about the fault lines in British and Western cultures.

The 2016 Euro tournament has more sponsors than an American news network, and their advertising before and during matches had one thing in common: a feigned (and usually clumsy) attempt to suggest that they care about the grassroots game. Hyundai, for example, went with ‘For the real fans’.

It might have given the Hyundai Board a warm feeling, but not that many real fans were at any of the games. I tried to get tickets for the Belgium v Ireland game, and the cheapest ones available (in the worst seats) were €380. The real fans are given pathetic seat allocations (Ireland got 7,000 for enough fans to fill the Stade de France twice) while the VIP and corporate tickets go to bigwigs with little or no interest in the sport.

This was evident when match coverage continued for most second halves, and revealed the €600 seats two-thirds empty for the first twenty minutes  after the break. But with all the European economies – ours included – suffering from an acute loss of spending power, ticket prices at these levels were never going to attract ‘the real fans’.

The so-called fans of football are now the privileged corporate, institutional, political and apparatchik Zil lane drivers who take the tickets for granted. The people who know about the game and reject the contemporary jargobollocks applied to it – the ‘real fans’ – were reduced to watching  matches in the various fan zones around France. Instead of watching their religion unfold in church, they were reduced to watching it on telly….albeit Big Screen HD telly.

I would’ve thought the neoliberal/EU élitism parallel is obvious. Like our lives in general, footie has been hijacked by fat amateurs who just want ROI. And that doesn’t stand for Republic of Ireland.

The fan zones themselves were revealing. I went to the one in Bordeaux, and there was little doubt that the providers understood their market: beer, hot dogs, chips and ketchup were very much the order of the day. And although entry was free, the prices were outrageous.

But this being France, the transport links were excellent and the security friendly and effective: the trams were shiny and clean, the Park itself was a G4S-free zone, and the loos were plentiful and civilised.


The atmosphere and fan demography reminded me of US ball games: families, a carnival atmosphere, good natured bonhommie and zero aggro. Unlike the US, however, this was a match between Ireland and Belgium, with the result that a good 80% of the attendees were bladdered by the end of the game.

But here’s the thing: not a single violent incident took place. The Irish fans were despondent but adult in defeat, and the Belgians were happy and legless. Both sets stood side by side watching the screens (no seats here, Mrs Thatcher). As we left, hundreds of them were posing for pictures with each other, and claiming new best friends. This is the generally accepted effect of alcohol in most Western cultures.

But not in Britain….and especially not in England. Or indeed, Russia. England’s first tie against Russia was marred by violence before and after the game. Politicians should think on this:

  • All those Remaindeers desperate to tell us that Xenophobia killed Jo Cox seemed unable to make the link between Russian Ultras charging the English with a degree of venom rarely seen even in 1970s British league football, and the Russophobia that has dominated British, NATO and EU foreign policy for the last four years.
  • The British and Russian cultures produce frenzied drinking that has no equivalent except in Poland, and on occasions Australia. The thing Brits and Ruskies have in common, however, is a society going back over a hundred years where each régime in turn – from Romanovs via Blairism to Camerlot – has wound up producing a privileged minority looking down on a disgruntled proletariat….and extreme bad behaviour associated with binge drinking.

It is not fashionable to suggest this, but during the British consensus years from 1953 -1970, and the USSR’s Kruschev period of thawing Stalinism during most of the epoch, equality and contentment had never been higher in either country. In different ways, both systems massively expanded social mobility, wages rose, employment was plentiful, and there was an inclusive pride in achievements that stretched from the British NHS and Russian cosmonaut programme on the one hand to rapid Russian industrialisation and British fashion leadership on the other.

It is a fact that human productivity during those years has never been equalled since in either society. Today, the ability to retire comfortably, earn a decent wage and look up to the ‘authorities’ has never been further removed from the daily life of citizens. Both nations too have seen a changed economic model usher in the return of a sort of 21st century feudalism.

The combination of drink and alienation is plain to see in both cultures. We don’t believe our leaders, we have little or no control over our destinies, and the dimension of personal responsibility is on the wane. Top down rule from an out-of-touch (and untouchable) élite ensures the disenfranchisement of the majority: it brings hopelessness, desperation, and the need for regular oblivion. Alcohol and frustration are a deadly mix.

Meanwhile, back on the pitch England have lost, drawn and scraped one victory to reach the last sixteen….and been ignominiously booted out (and outplayed) by a nation whose population one could comfortably fit into Leicester, and whose famous international footballers are as rare as a silent José Mourinho. How and why did this happen? Again, the lessons are, I would submit, more socio-economic than sport related.

First up, Roy Hodgson is a decent but dull donkey. That a bloke with his track record wound up managing the national team reflects the hermetically sealed bubble in which the grandees of the Football Association live. British soccer is stale and formulaic, and is in dire need of a radical visionary at the national level. The FA, on the other hand, want a docile mediocrity they can control. And their entirely unelected power means they are incredibly difficult to dump. It doesn’t take a rapier-like analysis to see the analogy with our political Establishment.

But the power and wealth of the FA has been substantially increased by one man: the man who has done more to brutalise, dumb down and manipulate proletarian values than any other person in our history. I refer of course to Australia’s most appalling export since mixamatosis, Rupert Murdoch.

By his own admission, Murdoch prefers malleable and corrupt institutions to those like, say, the French Assembly, whose admirably defaulted attitude towards him is “Va t’en fou”. He has therefore enjoyed unelected, tax-free access to British politics, policing and football for many decades. And he has royally f**ked up all of them.

The Newscorp boss brought his usual retinue of anti-matter to the English game: big multinational prize-money, broadcasting rights exclusivity, celeb culture, an appeal to the lowest common denominator, and monopolistic pricing that shuts out the game’s core fans from attending the lavishly rebuilt or refurbished stadiums of Britain.

But like the neoliberal piece of work he is, Roop cares not a fig for the worker or genuine investment in the grassroots. The money greedily hoovered up by all the Premiership sides has been spent not on better facilities and controlled entry prices for the loyal club fans, but on paying vast fees for – and salaries to – foreign players, while constructing corporate boxes for the Zil laners. He has turned a national sport into an international business, where the increasingly pauperised consumer pays more each year to buy a different replica kit. But above all, he has destroyed England’s national side.

England’s football problem is a microcosm of neoliberalism’s greedy unwillingness to invest for the longterm. Money has flowed towards a few (mainly foreign) players, and left the encouragement of young talent by the national association entirely to the clubs. Punishing local and European league schedules for the clubs ensure that the national side has far less time to gel as a team. And the short-term desire for safe bets and bums on seats means – as always with the New Model – risk aversion in a game that is, at its best, all about swashbuckling risk and the application of skill on the field to entertainment for the spectators.

Such has typified Hodgson’s entire reign, and was evident last night. He gave the best emerging striker talent in Britain – Marcus Rashford – just 17 minutes of play in the four matches we had. Last night he brought the young 18 year old on….for the last four minutes. Lee Dixon – former Arsenal defender and one of the few pundits in the game who talks sense – pointed out with great precision immediately after the game that “we no longer have a style or system as a footballing nation”. Only massively increased investment in the facilities and skilled staff available (to create the sort of academy that won the World Cup for France in 1998) is going to produce any discernible change.

I am not a nationalist, but the entertainment side of life gave Britain an image of youth, verve, creativity and flair in the 1960s that earned huge exports and almost certainly slowed our decline until poor management and wildcat strikes did for our manufacturing base in the 1970s. Having now Brexited (twice) we need signs of radical change in our outlook to demonstrate that we mean business in every sense of that word.

Tories of every hue talk about being open for business, when what they really mean is opening our legs for every rapist that happens along. At times I cannot help but burst out laughing when the British Left lectures me on what a dumbassed nitwit I am for voting Brexit – and thus giving even more power to the Newscorp axis via Johnson and Gove, as well as pandering to the racist ‘Little Englander’ idée fixe they have of UKIP.

I am neither a supporter of UKIP nor a fan of Nigel Farage. In turn, I have a page here dedicated to the study of what a nefarious and ruthless little toad Boris is: as long ago as 2010, I chose him and Harman as “the two biggest threats to democracy in the UK”. And finally, I have met Gove and found him a bloke with certain dimensions missing and – like Stephen Crabb – rather too fixated on the ‘lessons’ of his own background and childhood. They are already assuming that power is theirs for the taking.

Whether they get it or not is down to good sense in the Conservative Party, effective opposition from Labour, continuing protests by UKippers, Waspis and others neglected by the Establishment, and what happens in the near future to the markets, UK economy and eurozone mess.

As for me, I have never made any secret of my own radicalism. I believe British exports beyond the EU depend on greater encouragement of high-margin goods created by communitarian and mutualist entrepreneurs. I believe Bourse capitalism should play a far smaller role in financing business. I believe several ‘social weal’ supply systems (the NHS, water and the transport system) should be mutualised and then ringfenced from any influence by Government or stock markets. I believe financialised globalist neoliberal capitalism is doomed: I do not buy into Paul Mason’s attempt to slag off this model as “all capitalism”, because it’s a convenient but false argument in favour of a long-dead ideology called socialism. I want Westminster’s powers reduced and community devolution to take off. I want proportional representation as soon as possible. I want to fund all Westminster Parties via taxation, not donation – and bring in draconian restrictions on lobbying access. And above all, I want an extra-Parliamentary decency crowd-power movement to make it increasingly difficult for pols, big business, cops, Judges and lawyers to pervert the values of liberty and democracy.

I  will, at any time, support any movement I believe likely to bring those desires to reality. Yes I will give tactical support where necessary, and no, I will not be a joiner of any ideology, nor take part in physical violence. It’s why I voted Brexit in full awareness of the risks, and why I will now press for the next stage during which we shall face even greater risks.

If it looks from time to time like I’m changing sides, so be it. If it means Trump rather than Clinton, I’m all for it. If it means getting Murdoch out of our hair, I’m all for that too. And if it means Corbyn becoming his own man and then foiling the efforts of The Borisgove, I’m all for that.

We need to get the ideologists, megalomaniacs, materialist cheats and foreign power blocs off our backs. We need to stop seeing sensible immigration control as Xenophobic racism. And we need to stop viewing infrastructural investment as Communism. All this may, with luck, one day lead to a pragmatic Benthamist philosophy based on empiricism and maximum citizen fulfilment. Not Utopia.

So that – in the Euros of 2032 – we can have more exciting football, great facilities, and affordable match tickets.

Yes, you may loathe football. But insert your own dream where mine is, and I think you’ll find there is the same advantage to be had: something rewarding for almost everyone.


59 thoughts on “BREXIT II: Even if footie bores you, there is a way towards better futures in this post

  1. I’m just about Brexited out but a thought has just come to me. There is much being made of people with degrees voting remain and older less and less educated people voting out. However back in the day maybe only 10% to 20% went to University compared to 50% now. My experience is that the young are not better educated or informed on average despite having a degree. I’m just wondering if this “statistic” is really a double counting of the age profile? But the youf’s elders may have saved them from Brussels and the EUSSR – who knows?

    The view in my corner of France seems to be that the ex-pats are disappointed with the outcome (except me) but that the UK voters have sacrificed themselves to ensure the EU reforms. 1940 all over again. Or maybe not.

    And watching the match last night with my French pals was very embarrassing…

    Liked by 4 people

  2. It’s great that you’re willing to see this nation take all these risks en route to your completely improbable and idiosyncratic ideals – but here’s a polite request, move back and share the consequences, or keep your vote to yourself next time. Sound fair?

    As for the football, no need to generalise so broadly, John. The players (while no pack of world beaters at the best of times) were about 300% worse than they need to be because, back here, the country is having a breakdown.

    As national avatars, our footballing team could do little more than embody this rudderless, captainless ship. That was the footballing embodiment of how your Brexit is going — so far!


  3. Some of us have been supporting minnow Wales all along, if only to stick it to the footie-mad Scots who never even made it to the party. Independence, my arse.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The way England play I stopped watching long ago, Wales on the other hand play as a team if they lose 5-0 don’t care they are all in it together. As are we and the whole euro sham democracy.

    A tatical match and England needed to make tactical changes and like Wales will need also … can you think what that is?
    In England and Wales that means if MP’s on all sides will not stand down the manager = the people get to deselect them and put someone in more akin to play how they want. You also drop them from the team better to pick somebody else.

    Merkel is the person on the pitch dressed in black with HER BALL AND WHISTLE. Do we really want to play that game?

    The game is the EU Republic


  5. @marcjf.

    Yes, I am rather surprised, given the vastly better educated youth of today (or so they appear to think, no, believe), that they need an object lesson in democracy, after the event, that in order to influence the outcome, they have to actually cast a vote.

    My interest in football waned after the likes of George Best, Bobby Moore and Bobby Charlton left the game.

    The contrast in the behaviour of fans is interesting. It’s a shame that the EU ‘Presidential’ elite don’t learn an object lesson in how to properly conduct themselves, and I sincerely hope that any and all attempted humiliation or thuggery on Cameron’s visit to Brussels today will be swiftly dealt with.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Excellent article, sir, and a fine set of requests. We can hope. But not for millionaired England who cannot even beat a team that has to play indoors because of their difficult climate. Now, what this country really needs is another Old Etonian to be PM and an opposition leader elected by his witless MPs ignoring his support from us plebs. Then we can all go on a continuous binge. Cry Gawd, Queen Lizzie and Saint Dave!!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. The only ‘warm feeling’ I’ve had recently was down my trouser leg, and it didn’t stay warm for long. Being incontinent is the inevitable consequence of EU membership..

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Today is a national day of depression in the UK after the humiliating 2-1 defeat by the minnows Iceland.
    Even our footballing hooligans left us down and turned out to be a bunch of pussycats against Vlads Russian thugs. (sic).

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Another fine essay John.
    Sorry about the footy for the English fans , but the poisonous effect Murdoch has had on footy has had a knock on effect on Scottish footy. Hence we have failed to qualify for any tournament since 1998 and don’t look near breaking that duck. Most English teams up till Sky came along had several Scottish players and some even managers , that’s a much rarer occurrence today and certainly Scottish footy has suffered both at club level and both countries at international level. Factor in to the English game the side effects of globalization like the Glazier brothers at Man utd the impact of foreign players on the national teams and you have a perfect globalization storm and still the money just keeps flowing in to the game.

    Was listening to a woman on Radio Scotland phone in this morning berating Sturgeon for not being down in Westminster working with Cameron to move forwards Brexit but being an embarrassment by running round the EU pushing her independence agenda again. Factor in the Labour party MP’s who had their collective arses whipped in 2015 trying to get rid of Corbyn who actually won an election for leader. People if you do not like the leader and you will not follow then it’s simple folks, you resign and stand down , trigger a by-election and stand as an independent. The tragedy is how little talent there is at the moment in our political class , all parties, and how little stature they have , they all feel like little people. They certainly don’t resemble the politicians I remember growing up through till the 80’s, but then the one thing those people had was they all fought in the war for the country some even both wars.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Mark D, indeed, and when added to the fact that any PM has to ask parliament for permission to use Article 50, and we know most of them were for remaining, I guess they will just have to throw themselves on their swords! They may be out at the next election, but it’ll be too late by then.

    As to the football last night, I have read some comments over the last few days about Rooney looking like he is being paid to lose the ball; his performance last night at times certainly added to the idea!!


  11. @GQ

    I read this several years ago and I have never been able to watch professional sport in the same way. It’s not inconceivable that Rooney was nobbled.

    I adore Tomek’s contention (above) that England lost because to the Brexit result. I wonder what catastrophe will be blamed on it next. Did Sodom and Gomorra vote to leave the coalition of the Five Cities of the Plain shortly before their destruction? I think we should be told.

    Liked by 2 people

    Kunstler sums it up/

    Michael Gove got it right when he said,’ we have had enough of experts’.
    An expert is a person who knows more and more about less and less, until eventually he knows everything about nothing.
    Otherwise known as High IQ idiot (HIQI), caused by over education. and indoctrination.
    As opposed to the basically educated person who has a High b–s Detection Quotient. (HBDQ).
    Obviously the common people by life experience and observation detected the B–S of the Eurocrats and their patsies and decided they had enough in this Brexit campaign.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Well I think we need “military” leadership in Britain. Not a coup but an ex military, but a bloke who has dodged a few who has “been round the block” so to speak.Not a snout in the trough.

    As for Roop, I think his days may be numbered. In 2019 new satellites are being thrown into space which may break the monopoly he has had over the satellite belt, even Elon Musk and Richard Branson (love that pickle he makes) are on about putting sats in orbit. Also the new US L5 GPS signal is coming online to balls up the EU Galileo signal – this will give us centimetre precision on smartphones.

    As Alex Jones (though I don’t buy all he says) says, it is an interesting time to be alive.

    And yes I also think Rooney was nobbled, either threatened or bribed.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Salford

    It was Jose Ortega y Gasset who got it first right, as Minister of Culture in the Spanish Republican govt of 1936, describing them “learned imbeciles”

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Dear Everyone
    I do love the fact that you have all joined me in my smugness following the Brexit victory which I told you to vote for. We can be proud that we f*cked over our prime minister, our children, our wealth and our country. Call me a traitor, but I live in France so why should I give a flying sh*t about anything.
    More to follow. I need another drink and a lie down.


  16. The best way to sum up the FA’s values, Mr Ward, is to look at Wembley Stadium. I don’t know if you’ve been there, but I went to a couple of semi-finals/finals when, not surprisingly, the stadium was sold out. What you discover is that the FA were investing their budgets in IMG schmoozing Club Wembley prospects, whilst ensuring that they put loads of space for selling outlets which sold nothing in the ‘plebs’ area’ and putting about half the number of loos required to service half time bladders.

    It’s hardly a Nobel Prize winning piece of maths to gauge what percentage of football fans need a slash at half time after all. Just go to a few EPL stadia and count. You’ll find out what the capacity was and you’ll have two figures: % of male slashers and % of female sitters. You’ll find out what the % of male and female attendees is and then you’ll know how many bladder-emptying of each kind will occur.

    Then you have to decide if you want them all to be able to go or not in 15 minutes.

    If you decide the stadium’s role is to provide fans with entertainment, not standing in urinal queues as the second half gets under way, you’ll put enough in.

    The FA didn’t. They don’t care about fans. It’s not as if the concourses were so crammed with other things that they couldn’t have had twice as many.

    They just didn’t care.

    And you know what: when I reported back to a mate using the expression: ‘too many outlets, not enough wazzers’, you know what happened? Sir Alex Ferguson dropped Wayne Rooney for the next day’s semi final against Everton, which Utd lost.

    I wonder who was responsible for that piece of match-altering decision making?

    Perhaps you should ask Sir Alex next time you’re back in Manchester??


  17. Jeremy:

    A military man from Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, The Balkann’s wars of shame?

    How about one who resigned from the Army in protest against Americas wars of imperialism……..


  18. Well I reckon the England game was nobbled. The misses were obvious. The lads were threatened.

    btw anyone noticed Illuminati symbolism in the Euro 2016 logo? The Eurovision Song contest had it also.


  19. KFC1404 Am sure the BBC,ITV.Sky and all other networks will give such a march its full coverage! they can’t see their own bias at all yet the people are now seeing right through them!and they can’t understand why,the Stockholm effect of propaganda is limited and one sided,just like torture !

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Goodbye the Labour Party and welcome the Official One Party State

    with thanks to warcriminals Bliar,Mandelson and Campbell (not even elected)


  21. Comments on ‘Jeremy Hunt announcing he is “seriously considering“ running to become the Prime Minister of the UK.’:-

    ‘Jeremy Hunt needs to see a doctor if believes he might be Prime Minister’
    ‘He needs to have his head examined -if a proctologist can find it.’
    ‘Well . . . if there was ever a way to make Cameron look good….’
    ‘It’s like Vodemort applying to be headmaster of Hogwarts”
    ‘I seriously think Jeremy Hunt can be a unifying figure in all this: despised equally by Labour voters in the North and shire Conservatives’


  22. Lee Dixon hit the nail on the head regards England. He said he looks at Italy, Germany, Spain, France and just about every other team in the tournament and he can see what they’re doing, how they play, the system, with the same players they’ve had playing for years.

    I look at England and I have no idea how they play he said. Continuity is important in team games, England for years now , have had manages who seem to randomly generate team selection and tactics for each individual game, it is ridiculous.


  23. Why Majesty wants out of Disneyland.
    Forward looking she is.
    USA, so 20th Century…

    < China and 21 other countries have agreed to start an international development bank to fund infrastructure projects throughout all of Asia. However, the proposal has drawn criticism from the United States, and three invited countries skipped Friday's bank launch.


  24. Oh and as for playing players in the positions they play for their clubs? Dont be silly thats far too obvious.


  25. Football and violence is just another manifestation of religion and violence. Think northern Ireland and you get the idea. Teams have replaced God in today’s society and given us another outlet for mans innate desire to compete violently for tribe and God. Drinking is necessary because in the end fans know that their God will eventually let them down.


  26. Is something strange going on?
    The Torygraph has a headline about a ‘volcano of fury over immigration’ but the story is about Farage at the EU talking about democracy.
    Sky news (if you can call it news) seem to be looking for any angle involving a slightly concerned Pole. They even laminated some cards to hand out.
    BBC(EU) is banging on about race hate crimes but can hardly find any examples, lots of ‘probable’ and ‘assuming’ blather.
    My question is why? Why are TPTB trying to stir up racial hatred? Why are they trying to invent a narrative?
    I’m concerned, they’re up to something. Any ideas?


  27. Oh this is so sweet… A family member is doing the work my english is not as good as theirs but the gist is parliament is treasonous. The legislation in the 70’s seceded sovereignty and was illegal. The is where the repealment comes in but carried through to the modern day that illegal act of giving away sovereignty.

    YOU CAN’T VOTE IN to another referendum especially as we have had the offical declaration of end being a EU superstate and you effectively commit a crime of giving away sovereignty. LOLOLOLOL! Beautiful.

    It would be questionable if the last one if you voted BREMAIN and the sovereignty act if it had been mention again nothing more than a criminal. Wake up little ones … your are criminals and need jailing.

    Can’t vote IN for the next one for sure I am no criminal …

    As it stands though and have emailed the French and the Dutch bearing in mind they might not know of the 31st March 2017 deadline for article 50 because I am a “democratic” european not the jackboot one. Got to hell EU eurostate.


  28. It is fairly clear that there is frantic behind the scenes assembling of ways to ‘overturn’ this Referendum result.

    The first is a General Election under FPTP where the PTB hope that UKIP will not win enough of the vote to allow the Referendum vote to still have legitimacy.

    The second is the MPs of the house blocking whatever ‘deal’ is negotiated, which would of course be very easy to arrange as the vast majority were Remainers anyway. I don’t see the point in having a Referendum if the MPs can overturn its result. You might as well just ask the MPs, who were all wedded to Brussels in a way the people simply aren’t.

    The third is this continuous stream of news of ‘demonstrations’ of ‘examples of racism’ etc etc. It is coordinated by those parts of the media who are irredeemably Remain, notably the BBC and Sky News, Channel 4 etc.

    It’s very, very clear that the contempt for democracy is loud and clear in the elites of the UK and Europe.

    The funniest thing of all, of course, was the statement of President Hollande of France that any result in the UK ‘should be binding’. He has of course forgotten the ‘non-binding nature’ of the French electorate rejecting the EU constitution, only to have the Lisbon Treaty foisted on them instead. Semantics like that are of course minor details of presentation to politicians like Hollande……they are of crucial importance to the people………

    All I would say is this: to those who thought the war was won last Thursday: think again……..

    Liked by 2 people

  29. Interesting article from the Canary about the coordinated effort to dislodge Corbyn. If ever the BBC/Independent/Guardian Blairite axis of evil wanted to expose just how much they are threatened by someone who at least promises to stand up for Labour’s core constituency, the immediate posting of this twat Tom Mauchline’s video couldn’t be more revealing.

    (Actually, I believe the indefatiguable Craig Murray spotted this first.)


  30. sometime never…?

    If Boris Johnson looked downbeat yesterday, that is because he realises that he has lost.
    Perhaps many Brexiters do not realise it yet, but they have actually lost, and it is all down to one man: David Cameron.
    With one fell swoop yesterday at 9:15 am, Cameron effectively annulled the referendum result, and simultaneously destroyed the political careers of Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and leading Brexiters who cost him so much anguish, not to mention his premiership.


    Throughout the campaign, Cameron had repeatedly said that a vote for leave would lead to triggering Article 50 straight away. Whether implicitly or explicitly, the image was clear: he would be giving that notice under Article 50 the morning after a vote to leave. Whether that was scaremongering or not is a bit moot now but, in the midst of the sentimental nautical references of his speech yesterday, he quietly abandoned that position and handed the responsibility over to his successor.
    And as the day wore on, the enormity of that step started to sink in: the markets, Sterling, Scotland, the Irish border, the Gibraltar border, the frontier at Calais, the need to continue compliance with all EU regulations for a free market, re-issuing passports, Brits abroad, EU citizens in Britain, the mountain of legislation to be torn up and rewritten … the list grew and grew.
    The referendum result is not binding. It is advisory. Parliament is not bound to commit itself in that same direction.
    The Conservative party election that Cameron triggered will now have one question looming over it: will you, if elected as party leader, trigger the notice under Article 50?
    Who will want to have the responsibility of all those ramifications and consequences on his/her head and shouldeBoris Johnson knew this yesterday, when he emerged subdued from his home and was even more subdued at the press conference. He has been out-manoeuvred and check-mated.
    If he runs for leadership of the party, and then fails to follow through on triggering Article 50, then he is finished. If he does not run and effectively abandons the field, then he is finished. If he runs, wins and pulls the UK out of the EU, then it will all be over – Scotland will break away, there will be upheaval in Ireland, a recession … broken trade agreements. Then he is also finished. Boris Johnson knows all of this. When he acts like the dumb blond it is just that: an act.The Brexit leaders now have a result that they cannot use. For them, leadership of the Tory party has become a poison chalice.
    When Boris Johnson said there was no need to trigger Article 50 straight away, what he really meant to say was “never”. When Michael Gove went on and on about “informal negotiations” … why? why not the formal ones straight away? … he also meant not triggering the formal departure. They both know what a formal demarche would mean: an irreversible step that neither of them is prepared to take.
    All that remains is for someone to have the guts to stand up and say that Brexit is unachievable in reality without an enormous amount of pain and destruction, that cannot be borne. And David Cameron has put the onus of making that statement on the heads of the people who led the Brexit campaign.

    oh dear, I got it so very wrong…..AGAIN..!!!
    Pass me another whisky chump.


  31. @Ersatz JW June 29, 2016 at 2:44 am

    If you are going to steal a comment from someone else, it is usually polite to credit the source.

    It is interesting to note that almost the entire comment is about political manoeuvring and the political prospects of individual politicians. Cameron may well have played a political blinder over his reaction to the referendum, but nowhere in the comment is there an argument about the desirability or otherwise of being in the EU. Such an approach succinctly sums up what is wrong with our politicians today – spin, smoke and mirrors from the puppets while the truly powerful manipulate from behind the scenes and sell out the future of the ordinary Briton.

    Liked by 2 people

  32. @rtj1211

    Just imagine a general election later this year or early next – a ‘Leaver’ is leading the Tory Party, the Labour Party is still fractured…..
    Now imagine a deal between UKIP (whose reason for being is becoming extinct) and the Tory Leaver Party, where the Tories agree not to oppose UKIP in a few seats, and UKIP agree not to oppose Tories in almost all others. That pairing becomes the only available offering for the 17 million+ who voted Leave, almost all the other candidates would be ‘Remainers’, but with votes impotently split between irrelevant rumps of the rest (Lab, Lib-Dem, SNP, Plaid etc).
    The only feasible result is a Leave Tory Government with a decent working majority for five years – no risk of failure to pass Brexit bills, so Brexit happens.
    Before the next election in 2022, Nigel Farage (now a UKIP MP) is ‘elevated’ to the Lords after one term, thus removing him from any further influence/noise after his moment in the sun, business as usual starts to return.
    By which time the EU has fully collapsed and the UK sweeps up around the world – OK, that last bit’s wild speculation tinged with hope, but the rest of it…..


  33. Wikileaks posted on Facebook yesterday that the treachery against Corbyn is really about Chilcot, and Blairites trying to save themselves as well as their former Dear Leader.

    Meanwhile the UN rules that UK austerity is a breach of international human rights obligations. Corbyn is just about the only one ready to take on the establishment over this, and this would have been a prime opportunity to stick the knives into the Tories, if only the two main parties had not descended into chaos after the Brexit vote. Funny old world, eh?


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