Say what you like about Theresa May, whatever her other faults might be, she has achieved, during her brief interregnum, something never before managed during the half century of British debate about our relationship with the European Union. The Prime Minister has united our nation – be they Leavers or Remainers – on one all-important topic: everyone thinks she is making the most unutterable hash of it.
When you think about it, that’s a near-miraculous achievement. But it is going to make life horrendously complicated if and when there is effectively a Second Referendum….that is to say, the ‘final deal’ having passed Brussels and Parliament, The People are given their ‘say’, ho-ho.
It’s a shame one can’t say the same for the Party Mrs May heads (as a verb describing her position, it works better than ‘leads’ for me) which today resembles an old glass objet d’art that has fallen to the floor, and now needs the attention of a very patient person with lots of glue to hand. Given the people most likely to vie for the job are Philip Hammond, Boris Johnson, Jacob Rees-Mogg and Jeremy Hunt, it might save a lot of time if someone were apply a brush and pan to the problem, and then recycle the shards via the dustbin.
It’s all good knockabout stuff, led for the moment by David Cameron, who says that Michael Gove is a lunatic. The Sunday Times front-paged it yesterday, but it still doesn’t make questions about Gove’s sanity news.
With the Trade Secretary and the Bank of England Governor now warning us in their entirely different ways to prepare for a No Deal Brexit, it is worth remembering that the allegedly opposing sides at the Brussels negotiating table have conspired to fritter away two years of time, thus leaving us exactly where were on 24th June 2016. Given that the guiltiest parties therein are the UK Civil Service and the Brussels bureaucrats, I would’ve expected a somewhat greater insurrection of the electors to be inflicted upon the unelected. But it hasn’t happened.
In that context, the ease with which the Remainers have persuaded everyone that the Final Say should have but two alternatives – accept The Deal or Remain in the EU – astonishes me. And given I have spent seven decades being told I’ve never had it so good, I can Go with Labour, Prices can be cut At a Stroke, Unions are terrific, Big Bangs are terrific, Things can only get Better, Banks are terrific, Austerity brings Growth, the NHS is Safe in Tory Hands, Immigration is terrific and Corbyn the Nazarene will lead us to the Land of milk and Honey, it takes a lot to astonish me.
It’s not even a three-card trick: it’s a two-card trick wherein the majority who voted Leave lose in both eventualities…..they get Brexit Lite, or nothing. But it’s the Silly Season, so all this is to be expected. In 2018, someone needs to explain to me how the July/August Silly Season is sillier than all the other months. But never mind. Life goes on.
Some things can still be relied upon. CNBC says the “Wall Street angst is overplayed and the market is in a pretty good spot right now”. The CIA says the Russians will be “stepping up their efforts to interfere in the US mid-term elections”. The Presidential Caucus is about to start the marathon towards 2020, but the Democratic Party is still disputing the result of the last one. Dr Arvind Madan, NHS England’s Director of Primary Care and Deputy Medical Director, has been forced to resign because he trolled GPs’ e-accounts with pleas to get real about what they earn. Whether he was forced with the help of some kind of injection is unclear. Vandals have scrawled Graffiti on the walls of Jacob Rees-Mogg’s home, opining that he is ‘Posh Scum’. The Mothers’ Union has denied responsibility for the attack. The Italian coalition is squabbling internally about charges of racism against one of its luminaries. A spokesman said the racism put Italy in a bad light, alongside other factors such as bond yields, empty banks, and cutting debt by spending money. And last but not least, the African migration surge into Spain (caused by the new Government saying they were all welcome) has seen growing support for right wing Parties.
Another week lies ahead. I am tumescent with expectation.