THE 52% ARE NOT HAVING IT
Theresa May’s speech to the CBI this morning was a master-class in how to talk out of both sides of the mouth at once. But very few Brexiteers will be fooled: the expectations upon which the June referendum was based are not there to be managed. No ‘interim’ stage was envisaged. She clearly doesn’t get this. The People need to give Mrs Shoebucket a wake-up call.
Last August I posted a series of articles doubting Theresa May’s Brexit credentials…culminating in this one. The piece bears re-reading, as the Prime Minister is effectively acting out my doubts one by one.
The CBI speech is full of on the one hand/on the other hand drivel, but one thing is made very clear: May hinted that the Government will seek a transitional Brexit deal when negotiations with the EU begin in order to avoid the “cliff edge” that businesses fear.
Three immediate points if I may:
- There is no cliff-edge for the UK. It’s the wrong analogy: the EU is the Titanic, we need to get off, and we don’t need a temporary airlift from the Hindenburg.
- The EU hand is 9-high. Its fiscal, economic, currency, sovereignty, bond and migrant problems are out of hand, and it has a huge trade surplus with us. The Union – especially Germany – can only lose bigtime as and when we leave.
- ‘when negotiations with the EU begin’ is an interesting turn of phrase, given that Article 50 has not been unleashed and, um, there are no negotiations after nearly four months. It is becoming clearer with every week that the lite/hard, Art50/negotiations are nothing more than a Remainer tactic always to have a procedural Catch22 to fall back on.
“Brexit means Brexit,” a slippery, ambitious politician said last July. Now who was that…oh yes, it was Theresa May.
I have spent much of the last ten months telling Waspis who had their pensions embezzled by the political Establishment that casting votes, getting up petitions and demonstrating politely simply no longer works with the Whiteminster bubble-dwellers. Threats of a very specific nature are the only remedy for the selectively deaf.
That’s what the Vote Leave/Brexiteer/UKIP alliance needs to relearn – and fast. It’s not as if we are short of fissile material:
- The great majority of Brexiteers beyond UKIP vote Conservative
- 90% of Tory grassroots workers are strongly pro-Brexit
I remain sure that May wants a General Election during which she can sound anti-EU, shut up Tory rebels and take advantage of the parlous divisions in Labour alongside swinging doors in UKIP. On the other side of such an election result, we would have plenty of things to fear about Ms Mayormaynot beyond Brexit; but she cannot achieve her ambition without core voters and grassroots loyalists. If they don’t turn up, she will suffer the same fate as Hillary Clinton.
The EU/US trade deal, Merkel admits today, “is now all but dead”. With Trump in power, however, the UK is at the front of any queue that forms.
In that context, even the pragmatic case for intermediate slightly hard lite not quite Brexit doesn’t exist. But it never exist constitutionally because regardless of the terms, the referendum deal was ‘a majority for Brexit means Brexit’.
You cannot teach a pig to sing: you don’t get a song, and it just annoys the pig. We should stop right now trying any longer to get Theresa singing the Brexiteer’s tune. Rather, she needs to understand that without her own supporters, she is bacon.