Some reality breaks out in the EU

It was good to hear Mr Juncker say the EU had made a mistake in briefing in the way they did about the Downing Street dinner. Just as it makes sense for the UK to be friendly and positive in its offer and dealings with the EU as we prepare to leave, so it makes sense for the EU to be the same. We, after all, are an important market for their exports, a valued partner in many collaborations, an important part of their defence and security alliance, and a frequent ally or coalition partner in international matters. We are happy for that to remain true in the future but expect reciprocal good will.

There is a clear need for strong and stable leadership in the UK to represent our interests. The UK needs to explain patiently and firmly that we will be taking back control of our laws, our money and our borders. We also need to make clear that we are making a generous offer of continuity over trade, defence, security and many other joint ventures and common workings across a wide range of areas. There are technical matters to be settled over market access, transport rights, the rights of citizens living in each other’s territories and the rest that need not be difficult to resolve if there is good will on both sides. I see no lack of good will on the UK side. That is why Mr Juncker’s recalibration of the EU response is welcome.

It is never a good idea to try to punish your main customer. I still expect reality and commonsense to break out in due course in the EU over the UK departure, as it has done over the commentary on a dinner.

Meanwhile I see the Evening Standard on line gives prominence to the fear that university research will be damaged by Brexit. Have they not heard Ministers stating clearly talented and well qualified people will be free to come to the UK. This will include faculty members, with an open door for foreign students to undertake courses at our universities.

Promoted by Fraser Mc Farland on behalf of John Redwood, both at 30 Rose Street Wokingham RG40 1XU

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  1. Newmania
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:23 am | Permalink

    On the ground Universities are already suffering, ask anyone who works in them, this relentless nonsense must stop . Many of us on the remain side, grass roots Progressive Alliance , E UNity et al feel; we are not only fighting for tolerant Western values , but for the enlightenment itself , for the very idea that TRUTH MATTERS . Here is some truth.
    The EU has been crystal clear on two matters form the start.
    1 The UK must suffer
    2 They are just as happy to walk away as we are

    Only one outcome is possible – bad news for the UK

    It has been John Redwood`s claim for many months that WTO was workable option and it is not . We have no walk away option they do .

    Do the maths as our American chums would say.

    • Mark Watson
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:30 am | Permalink

      My son is doing a PhD at Manchester University. He’s been there for nearly 6 years in total. He says Manchester Uni is not suffering.

      • acorn
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

        Er … nothing has changed yet; we haven’t left the EU yet. Tell him to get his thesis in and get hooked up with an EU funded project, before March 2019.

        • Know-dice
          Posted May 12, 2017 at 11:20 am | Permalink

          Whilst it is true “nothing has changed yet” it does appear that organisations and presumably universities are already being cut-out of future EU projects.

          Those affected should certainly be supported by the UK Government to gain full recompense for these losses.

    • APL
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:47 am | Permalink

      Newmania: “On the ground Universities are already suffering, ask anyone who works in them ..”

      One of the worst things the Tories did, turn every technical college and polytechnic into a University.

      We’ve got too many institutions pretending to be Universities.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        Indeed we need far more builders, scientists, sales people, engineers, inventors, business people, pilots, architects, doctors and people who do real and constructive things and far fewer lawyers, tax consultants, gender studies experts and he likes.

        Even at the better universities at least half their courses are of highly dubious value. Look as some of the dire output we get from Oxford PPE, theology, history & geography courses. Or the dire lefty economic graduates we get from the LSE and even from Cambridge.

      • lojolondon
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

        APL, that is total garbage – it was Blair and New Labour, which made the claim ‘every child can attend university’, turning polytechnics up and down the country into Universities. We now have millions of unemployed and unemployable ‘media studies’ graduates, and not nearly enough plumbers, electricians, mechanics, etc. That fits neatly with Labour’s plan of mass immigration.

        • APL
          Posted May 11, 2017 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

          logolondon: “that is total garbage – it was Blair and New Labour,”

          If I was incorrect to blame the Tories, fair enough. I stand corrected.

          But I still think we’ve too many establishments claiming to be Universities.

        • Jerry
          Posted May 11, 2017 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

          @APL; The rot was started by the Tories, yes New Labour carried on and enhanced the polices but the writing was already on the wall. This from the 1997 Tory manifesto (my emphasis];

          There has been a revolution in further and higher education. Three and a half million people are in further education -up from just half a million in 1979. The number of young people going to university has risen from one in eight to one in three over the same period.

          The manifesto went on to say that they would act on recommendations made in the forthcoming “Dearing Review”, as it was that review reported to the Blair government…

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:51 am | Permalink

      “The EU has been crystal clear on two matters form the start.
      1 The UK must suffer”

      You do your case no favours at all by writing patent falsehoods like this. Neither the EU negotiator nor any national leader has said any such thing.

    • Jerry
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:51 am | Permalink

      @Newmania; Why are Universities “already suffering” from Brexit/immigration controls, unless of course (no pun intended) they have built their business models upon unlimited numbers of non UK students?

      As someone who doesn’t believe in the idiocy of 50% of UK youth attending University, just so that many can do nothing more that wave a more or less worthless piece of paper with the word “Degree” printed upon it, I actually see it as a good thing if some current (so called) Universities find they have to return to being more like the Colleges of Further Education & Tech Colleges of old, offering more realistic and workplace orientated Day Release, Block and evening schooling.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:52 am | Permalink

      Elightenment. Where are the EU accounts ?

    • Bert Young
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:21 am | Permalink

      I don’t know where your comment is coming from ; in the 25 years of my voluntary tutoring I never saw ant sign of restriction on spending , foreign students , staff or research . By the time I “exited” – 18 months ago , the present and the future was bright .

    • zorro
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:54 am | Permalink

      Have you done yours? If so, let’s see it! The case on tariffs has already been made available as you well know. So, instead of engaging in meaningless platitudes – show me the money! ?

    • a-tracy
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:08 am | Permalink

      Nearly half of EU students liable to pay back loans after going to British universities are failing to keep up with repayments, raising the prospect of the continent’s “brightest and best” getting a free education while homegrown scholars face eye-watering debts.

      TAXPAYERS are having to pick up the price for EU students studying in Britain – as more than 10,000 return home with unpaid tuition fees. A staggering £89million has not been paid after 12,134 students from European Union countries went missing after graduating from British universities.

    • Edward2
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:26 am | Permalink

      Many nations trade happily with Europe without being members of the single market.
      Yet you claim this will be a disaster for the UK
      This does not seem a logical argument to me.

    • formula57
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:28 am | Permalink

      Thank you for posting the above for I have been chuckling all morning over what Newmania has written. The seethe is strong in this one I think.

      It is a bit worrying though I suppose if the EU’s values are such that it apparently actively wishes that an exiting member “must suffer”. I am even more thankful that the UK is being liberated from the Evil Empire.

    • Deborah
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:28 am | Permalink

      Lol. What utter rot from start to finish. Even the final reference is wrong.
      Americans would say “Do the math”.

    • Ajay Gajree
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:30 am | Permalink

      Why is WTO workable for our trade partners that we have no FTA with then?
      Are you really claiming that if the EU walked away then it would not suffer?

    • Mitchel
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:35 am | Permalink

      Actually,they would say “do the math”.

    • DaveM
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 10:56 am | Permalink

      I have just asked two people who work in universities, and they say they have suffered no ill effects at all as yet. The cap on immigration to include students should have no real effect provided the longer-term intent to reduce the number of foreign builders (coupled with the increased number of apprenticeships open to UK citizens, and new technical schools and colleges) takes effect. Likewise, the “seasonal farm jobs” taken by so many EU workers can be transferred to students (foreign and domestic) – both my children would welcome employment such as that during the long summer vacs as long as accom wasn’t too much of an issue. The jobs they would traditionally expect to do, such as working in cafes and restaurants, on building sites, in garages, and large retail stores are now taken by EU immigrant workers, so a seasonal job market for students would be highly beneficial.

      I didn’t think there was a Remain side any more – the referendum was almost a year ago now, and the result came in on the 24th June 2016. I was on the Leave side, but I’ve gone back to just being a person again, as have my friends who voted Remain – we’ve decided that working together for the common good is the best way forward. I emphasise “forward”.

      “Tolerant Western Values”…mmm, interesting. Does that include shouting down anyone who has a different opinion, and smashing up shops and cars whenever there’s a legal peaceful public protest from an organisation that has a different point if view. Etc ed

      If the EU wants to “make the UK suffer”…good luck to it. They will cut off their noses to spite their faces no doubt, while the UK finds other ways to prosper. I don’t want to be part of an organisation that has that kind of behaviour ingrained in its DNA.

      WTO is more than workable; if it wasn’t it wouldn’t exist!

    • Dennis Zoff
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      Well, whatever you say as a naysayer, is now completely irrelevant. Brexit is done and we are moving on to a positive future….perhaps you have some Remainer friends you can spin your recusant yarns to?

    • Jane Moorhouse
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      Universities haven’t a clue about economics. Enlightenment. We remain. EU army with possible conscription. 25% increase in payments to EU. Euro, Shenghen and mass and I mean mass immigration. Too many poor universities offering poor, non useful degrees which probably require 2 years study at most. We need engineers, doctors, scientists etc. Not philosophy and such.
      Universities are responsible for allowing PC to fester and become a scourge on our society. The Government has said it will not stop the best coming to UK and will allow students to come. However these students must pay, go home if no job and agree to respect UK history and culture. No more demanding statues being brought down and encouraged by bitter, UK hating, Western civilisation hating, Marxist anti Royal, Atheist/humanist, Brexit hating lecturers and professors. Yanis the Greek has said it all, the EU are rotten to the core but he is a socialist agreeing with Corbyn. Why? He couldn’t give a dam about UK and knows if we leave Greece is finished. EU’s failure over Greece was one of the reasons I voted to leave but my country comes first and Two Geece’s don’t make a whole thank you very much.

      • getahead
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

        Well said Jane.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      Lib Dems give clear election manifesto pledge for *soft* Brexit. The electorate reject it and vote Tory. The Tories have their full Brexit mandate, therefore.

      Thank you, Lib Dems.

      The clearer you are the better.

    • Freeborn John
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:50 am | Permalink

      Since when has it been an Enlightenment value that other countries must be made to suffer? Remoaners are beginnng to see that the EU is a vindicative organisation that crushed Greece, bankrupted Ireland and wants to do its worst to the UK. The next step is to yourself why we would ever make sense for the Uk to become a “fax democracy” in which those vindicative politicians continue to have the power to make the supreme law in this country now matter how you or I vote in the future. Liberal democracy (nothing to do with the party of that name) is an Enlightment value and it requires self-government.

      • Anonymous
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

        The LibDems, Miller, Newmania keep wLking onto their own fists. Stupid people.

    • lojolondon
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

      I visited a university yesterday. Revenues are far, far higher than they ever were, because all students now pay about 9kpa. The fact that the poor taxpayer never gets to collect that money back doesn’t affect the instittutions, they are expanding as fast as they can!!

    • Dennis
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

      Newmania: The Americans would not say that – they would say,’Do the math’.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

      I hope Simon Platt doesn’t mind his posting being insterted here:

      There’s a lot of rubbish talked about EU membership and British universities.

      Until recently I was a university lecturer (including during last year’s referendum campaign in which I participated as a Leave campaigner while my university, including the vice chancellor, was strongly and officially for Remain). At my university there were and still are many foreign students and many foreign members of staff. The very great majority of these were from outside the EU, especially from China and the middle east. Some of those from EU countries came to Britain before their home countries entered the EU. All came on the relevant visas. I only remember one case where immigration processes caused difficulty – a new member of staff from an African country was delayed in taking up his post because of the time it took to issue a visa. But none of this is affected by Brexit.

      In respect of international research projects, notably those funded through EU programmes such as Horizon 2020, I often heard that British universities got more out of the EU science programmes than they put in (we’re pretending, here, of course, that money is not fungible). My response to that was that British universities did well out of these programmes for two reasons, reasons not affected by Brexit: first,their expertise – many British universities are world-beating; secondly, the English language – the international language of science gives Britain a natural advantage. These factors are not going away with Brexit, and if universities from the residual EU wish to collaborate with British universities, to gain the benefit of their expertise, they will still be able to do so, including in programmes such as Horizon 2020 and likely successors (many non-EU countries participate in Horizon 2020). Of course, it is conceivable that the residual EU will exclude the UK from future programmes for political reasons, but I doubt that would happen and, if it were to come to pass, we’d be back at the old question of whether we really want to be in a club that seeks to punish us for leaving.

      Universities are notoriously risk averse. During the referendum campaign it was no surprise to me that university managers were afraid of change. (I don’t mean just my own former university, but universities all over the country – all of them, I think.) But they will do very well outside the EU, when Britain is once again standing on its own two feet.

  2. Lifelogic
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:24 am | Permalink

    You say:- “I still expect reality and commonsense to break out in due course in the EU over the UK departure, as it has done over the commentary on a dinner.” – Let us hope so, not that it ever has over most EU policies such as CAP, fishing, energy, recycling, environmental policies, the common import tariffs, employment regulations and the likes.

    The idea that university research will be damaged by leaving the EU is absurd. Universities can cooperate rather more easily without all the EU red tape. Also the UK will be richer and better able to fund them. Even more so if May can be forced to abandon her childish, damaging and essentially socialist, economic agenda. As Allister Heath sensibly points out today in the Telegraph.

    • Ajay Gajree
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:31 am | Permalink

      Are there even any good Universities in the rest of the EU?

      • Dennis Zoff
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

        Yes, many…go research?

    • Mitchel
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:43 am | Permalink

      Just as when the British ruling/political class accepted that socialism was inevitable and adapted it to serve their interests,then so with Brexit.I am expecting very few changes;in most aspects we will continue to march(or rather be marched) in lockstep with the rest of the west (subject to Trump not destroying the concept).

  3. Len Grinds
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:28 am | Permalink

    You need to listen to the PM. She has made it very clear that foreign students will be included in the cap on migration. She is pulling up the drawbridge, as Britain turns its back on the world

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:34 am | Permalink

      As around 50% of students overstay their visas they should be included
      Student visas are a prime route for non EU migration according to migration watch. As for university funding it’s not from the EU it’s recycled UK taxpayers money.

    • Brian Tomkinson
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      Foreign students have always been included in immigration figures which I understand is the international convention. As for pulling up the drawbridge, nothing could be further from the truth as we cease to be members of the protectionist EU and extend our trade throughout the world.

      • Limited
        Posted May 12, 2017 at 7:03 am | Permalink

        Could you advise me on progress on the super new trade deals we were promised?
        India has said no, unless visa rules are relaxed.
        Trump has said America first.
        Australia has said we are far more interested in the EU, it is so much bigger.
        Canada has said we have an FTA with the EU, your problem if you leave that

        Global Britain? Little England

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      Attn Grinds–What you need to understand is that even if you were right about the ‘turning its back’ bit, which you are not, the EU is not, as you somehow seem to think, “the world”, very very far from it.

    • Anonymous
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:55 am | Permalink

      Explain what is so unreasonable about a points system. Other advanced countries have them.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:06 am | Permalink

      I do not think it matter much if students are included or not. This as most leave after their courses finish so they net off with the new students arriving.

      Only those who stay on are thus counted anyway.

    • zorro
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:57 am | Permalink

      Nonsense, that is the international measure for net migration elsewhere too, and has been whilst in the EU also, so your ‘pulling up the drawbridge’ is waffle.


    • Mark
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:29 am | Permalink

      Since there appears to be a large number of people who came on student visas over the past 10 years or so who have stayed on illegally, if only some of these do what they are supposed to and return home we will see a substantial increase in emigration, so cutting the net immigration figure. Indeed, if those students currently studying actually did depart if they fail to get permission to stay on afterwards we would see a big increase in emigration, improving the figures.

      • Paul w
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

        Don’t worry a short while very few students will be coming this way..why should they come to a country that sends out such strong signals that the foreigner is not wrlcome here..i’m sure they can find more friendlier places to go to spend their cash..

    • Ajay Gajree
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      As Dominic Grieve stated on the Daily Politics this week, it is the international norm to include foreign students in migration numbers. So not in fact pulling up the drawbridge.

    • John Finn
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 10:08 am | Permalink

      She has made it very clear that foreign students will be included in the cap on migration.

      But does it matter much? If 100,000 students come and 100,000 students leave 3 years later net migration is ZERO. If 100k come and 80k leave we have net migration of 20k (all graduates) so I’d assume the migration cap will apply to the rest.

      Put it this way I doubt if will affect student numbers – but I could be wrong. It depends on how the policy is applied.

    • Dennis Zoff
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:05 am | Permalink


    • Dennis Zoff
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

      Len Grinds states:

      “She is pulling up the drawbridge, as Britain turns its back on the world”

      What simpleton remark is this, please show some intelligence and make an erudite comment!

  4. Dame Rita Webb
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:29 am | Permalink

    Given who the editor is that is hardly a surprise as you could only expect the same inattention to detail that he exhibited in his previous job. However there is still no reason to vote Conservative. As there is no serious effort being made to stop deficit spending or reduce immigration to “the tens of thousands”. Though as the plentiful supply of money and labour are the cornerstones of the neo lib economic agenda we should expect nothing else.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:46 am | Permalink

      Dear Rita–It is a question of alternatives

      • Dame Rita Webb
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

        All three main parties believe in that stuff being essentially neo lib at heart
        Labour would just dress up the money printing as “the peoples QE” and continue the supply of cheap labour by denouncing effective border controls as being “racist”

    • Jerry
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:06 am | Permalink

      @DRW; “However there is still no reason to vote Conservative. As there is no serious effort being made to stop deficit spending or reduce immigration to “the tens of thousands”.”

      You are joking of course, I hope?!…

      Even if you and the hard-line right wing are correct about the deficit and immigration, name me one other party, that could realistically form the next government (or be a senior coalition member) that even talks of such ideals? A vote for UKIP is a vote for at least a Tory-LibDem coalition but more likely a Lib-Lab coalition with perhaps the added menace of Green and SNP involvement.

      • Dame Rita Webb
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

        We have had to listen to this crap about deficit elimination and immigration in the ten of thousands since 2010. I will not be voting this time as there is no one worth voting for. I will just sit back and wait for things to rapidly fall apart

  5. Lifelogic
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:44 am | Permalink

    It seems the Corbyn is doing his best to help May’s landslide victory with his insane manifesto. One that would crash the economy again in very short order. Such a shame that May’s economic agenda is almost as mad as Labour’s. How can one win a place at Oxford (admittedly only for Geography) then observe Heath, Thatcher, Major, Blair, Brown and Cameron’s governments, yet still have learned nothing about how the economy works? Less government and lower taxes are the solution dear not more.

    After the victory Theresa should remember that she only won by being the least bad option and by changing he views (perhaps we shall see) on the EU. Let us hope there will be sufficient sound Tories (with real backbones) elected to control her daft interventionist, big state, high tax socialism and stop her from caving in on Brexit as I fully expect her to.

    • Jerry
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      @LL; “It seems the Corbyn is doing his best to help May’s landslide victory with his insane manifesto.”

      I think we should all await the official manifestos, after all it is not be difficult to forge documents these days, hence why everyone from Government departments down to your local high street retailing shed advise people not to use the ReplyTo or other contact information contained within emails and letters etc without first confirming they are correct and proper details.

      That said, if this leak is genuine and close to the finalised form, it puts the 1983 Lab Manifesto into the shade, given the context of how the country if not world has moved politically in the last 35 years plus.

      “After the victory Theresa should remember that she only won by being the least bad option and by changing he views (perhaps we shall see) on the EU.”

      As should have Mrs Thatcher, if Mrs May has no mandate upon retaining the ‘keys’ to No. 10 then nor did Mrs T and many of her policies should be repealed as on your rational a majority did not want them in the first place…!

    • Mitchel
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      It is quite refreshing,though,to have such a radical and different agenda (as passionately expressed by Paul Mason on the BBC this morning),even if it is suicidal in the short to medium term.People should be more concerned that these ideas appear to be gaining traction with younger voters.

      • DaveM
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:34 am | Permalink

        “People should be more concerned that these ideas appear to be gaining traction with younger voters.”

        They’re not – only the ones that the BBC dig up.

        My kids are 21 and 18, and most of my colleagues range between 18 and 30 so I have a fair handle on the current thinking among that age group. They don’t wish harm to others, but they still retain the human instinct to protect oneself and one’s family and friends….in spite of alleged EU-sponsored indoctrination. They have their own minds, and their political thinking is as wide-ranging and diverse as ours was/is…..don’t believe all you see on the BBC!

        • Mitchel
          Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

          The Independent 26/4/17:”Labour solidly ahead of Conservatives with voters under 40 years old despite being more than 20 points behind in polls overall”

          Based on a 13,000 strong survey by Yougov.The lead is more pronounced with women than men.

          • DaveM
            Posted May 11, 2017 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

            Yeah. I’d be interested to know where The (always totally neutral(!)) Independent commissioned the survey to be conducted.

            I’ll wager it wasn’t in Sunderland, Nottingham, Leicester, Hull, Grimsby, Portsmouth, Plymouth, or rural shires.

            Islington and the cosmo parts of Manchester perhaps?

        • Jerry
          Posted May 11, 2017 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

          @DaveM; “They’re not – only the ones that the BBC dig up.”

          Perhaps you are correct about those who watch the BBC but what of those who get their news via Facebook, Channel Four, Channel Five, even Sky News or simply go direct to source – even if they first check Facebook or Twitter etc. to see what’s ‘Trending’.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:47 am | Permalink

        Suicidal in the short, medium and long term. Alas also being copied by lefty May.

    • John Finn
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      It seems the Corbyn is doing his best to help May’s landslide victory with his insane manifesto.

      I’m not sure it is an “insane manifesto” – from a Labour perspective.

      After dipping down to the mid 20s, Labour are now polling at around 30% – pretty much the same level that Milliband got in 2015. It’s clear that the core vote will remain. They’re not going to be put off by Corbyn’s policies.

      The Tories are benfiting from UKIP voters. The question is, how solid is this support. It’s clear that this cohort are not afraid to shake things up a bit. If Corbyn starts to strike a chord with one or two policies, ex-Labour UKIP voters may well think he has more answers to their problems than Theresa May.

      I still expect the Conservatives to win but don’t be surprised if the margin of victory is a lot narrower than is currently being predicted.

    • Know-dice
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

      I wonder how Labour are proposing to handle the generation that have taken out student loans after Blair introduced tuition fees?

      Pay them all back?
      Give them tax credits?

      In any case it will create a generation of disenfranchised ex-Labour voters…

  6. Roy Grainger
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:46 am | Permalink

    I believe Junker said the briefing to a German newspaper was a mistake …. in a briefing he gave to a German newspaper. Odd that, say, Italian or French newspapers never get a look in when Junker is pontificating about Brexit. I wonder why that is.

  7. Mark B
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:54 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    As has been stated many times before, the EU is not affected by trade, only by the threat of breakup. If they feel that this could lead to the unravelling of the EU then they will act in their own interests and not of the other 27 countries of the EU.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:50 am | Permalink

      Dear Mark–Sob!!–You talk as if the EU were a country (with your “other”)

      • Mark B
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

        To those wedded to the concept of EVER CLOSER UNION and all that it means, it is !

        These people care nothing for nations states, only the one they are trying to create where they are in full control.

        • Leslie Singleton
          Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

          Dear Mark–For sure that is what they are trying to create but surely we do not need to give their credibility a helping hand

    • Ajay Gajree
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:37 am | Permalink

      The suspicion is that the size of the divorce bill we agree to (Not £100 bln) will trump such concerns

      • DaveM
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:36 am | Permalink

        Another successful piece of indoctrination by the MSM. We’re not getting divorced, we’re leaving a supranational trading organisation which has morphed itself into a political entity without the full and democratically approved consent of its members.

      • Mark B
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

        The divorce bill is a hoax. Yes they would like us to meet any agreed commitment prior to us leaving (eg Cameron’s famous; “I will not pay that bill” of sometime ago, when in fact he did).

  8. Lifelogic
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:55 am | Permalink

    Another daft policy that the EU continues with is “renewables”.

    Unreliable renewables are neither green nor clean –
    as MATT RIDLEY sensibly puts it in the Spectator today. Let us hope Greg Clark is listening but I rather doubt it, he always strikes me as yet another Libdim in the wrong party.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 6:00 am | Permalink

      Wind and Solar PV unreliables actually supply less than 1% of world energy demand and do it very expensively indeed in most places.

      • hefner
        Posted May 12, 2017 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

        “do it very expensively indeed in most places”: tell that to the communities in the tropics which were up to five years ago far from any existing grid. When they got community solar PV-based electricity, together with low-cost small(ish) batteries (as in some electric cars) lasting 3-4 hours every night, that allowed, e.g., children to do their homework.
        Is that something to be against?

      • anon
        Posted May 13, 2017 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

        websearch cfd auctions & strike prices.

        -on-shore wind is near enough to out-competing fossil fuels.
        -off-shore wind in some auctions has not required any subsidy.

        nothing against using power stations to end of economic life or to keep in reserve capacity. Spinning reserve is a limited need based on forecasts, demand, production, stations going offine etc.

        We just need to ensure we have a sensible amount of energy storage, in electrical or other natural or synthetic forms.

    • Mark
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:51 am | Permalink

      The Conservative manifesto is supposed to contain another daft energy policy – a requirement for all consumers to pay for the cost of a price insurance cap that will be expensive to hedge. It will therefore lead to price rises, not price falls on average, as the insurers (mainly banks) will make a profit – the insurance has to be paid for. As the GWPF point out, the only way to cut energy costs is to end the investment in expensive energy in replacement for cheap supply. Household bills already contain £9bn of green subsidies (OBR budget figure) – over £500 per bill paying household, and that is scheduled to rise to £14.3bn by 2020, in addition to the £11bn being wasted on the unsmart meters.

  9. Chris S
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:58 am | Permalink

    The European PArliament will still have a veto over any deal and there are plenty of Zealots in there perfectly capable of voting down any deal that doesn’t profoundly punish us.

    The escalating exit bill has been ratcheted up from 50 to 60 to a ludicrous €100bn to cheers from MEPs and Merkel and Co have overruled advice from the EU Commission lawyers that this would be impossible to argue in court.

    As a result, it seems Merkel is leading them into the negotiations intent on doing nothing more than blackmailing the UK to pay this vast sum in return for some unstated access to the Single Market that may or may not be much better than any other non-EU country enjoys. Her objective being to ensure that she extracts enough money from us to prevent the embarrassment of having to greatly increase Germany’s own net contribution to the EU budget during her next parliamentary term, if she wins in the Autumn.

    With no legal standing behind the demands, all Mrs May has to do is stand implacably firm. She will do well to employ the symbolism of placing a large blue handbag on the table whenever she goes to Brussels.

  10. alan jutson
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    Far too many people speculating on the so called difficulties of us leaving the EU, including all the other UK Political Parties.

    Anyone would think we had not survived the previous 1000 years before the EU was even invented.

    How do all of the other Developed Countries in the rest of the World, who are not in the EU still manage to survive ?.

    • Barry
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:26 am | Permalink


      And why are so many countries within the EU struggling?

      Amazing how few people want to talk about Greece.

      • Dennis Zoff
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

        “See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil” EU evil incarnate, some would say?

  11. MickN
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    John, I hope the Conservatives win a huge landslide on June 8th, but I cannot be the only one who is getting heartily sick of hearing and reading the “strong and stable leadership” soundbite every time a Tory candidate appears in the media.
    Soundbites to me smack of Blair and Campbell and sound totally false and demeaning. Please have a word. Thankyou.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      Dear Mick–Thank Heaven for small mercies: at least they have dropped the “hard” from “hard-working families”

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:16 am | Permalink

      Perhaps (given May’s economic agenda) it should be changed to “strong, stable, interventionist, ever larger and economically illiterate government”?

    • Jerry
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      @MickN; Indeed, I had to turn the sound down last week when Mrs May kept saying “Me and my team” in every other sentence during a televised campaign event – at least Obama’s election chant of “Yes we can!” actually held a meaning…

    • DaveM
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 10:23 am | Permalink

      Agreed – it’s getting silly now; I don’t know what the direction is to party members who are giving interviews, but the mickey is being well and truly taken. Save the slogan for the posters and the handouts and start talking about policies and ideas please.

    • Dennis Zoff
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      I believe it is universally known Politicians don’t do detail. Soundbites are their mantra…..politically safe, usually unaccountable and a slightly gooey center!

    • Mark B
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 12:35 pm | Permalink


    • BOF
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

      What about the Labour mantra. every time I see or hear it I think ‘FOR THE MANY, FUNDED BY THE FEW’!

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

        Dear BOF–Whenever I hear this I wonder if they have ever considered where the ‘many’ would be were it not for the ‘few’, past and present.

  12. agricola
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 6:45 am | Permalink

    Try to understand that the EU are the high priests of a theology, against which we in the UK have blasphemed. Like all other theologies they can sell the afterlife like insurance without responsibility for it’s fruition. That what they sell has been proved flawed is of no concern to them, until they begin to realise that their flock, the people of Europe, are becoming increasingly disenchanted as are the politicians of many of the nation states. It is the people and their politicians who will suffer the consequences of the EUs doctrinal disasters.

    A strong and stable leadership in the UK can argue our case and appeal to those most directly affected. The repositioning of the EU stance is symptomatic of a realisation that they are losing the sympathy of the nation states. We need to be clear , resolute, and generous in our approach to these negotiations with the ultimate fall back position that no deal is better than a bad deal.

  13. Horatio McSherry
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:00 am | Permalink


    If I hear “strong and stable” one more time I’ll scream!

    It has quickly joined “…values”, “…for all”, “…for the many, not the few”, and “…hard working families…” as one of the most vacuous, meaningless, irritating soundbites in politics, and surely must turn away more people than it reassures.

    That aside, all the best, and I hope to see you on the green benches again soon.

    Kind Regards

  14. Ian Wragg
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:01 am | Permalink

    The whole punishment narrative from Brussels is getting rather boring.
    It’s time we took the lead and set out our vision post Brexit.
    I see no need to drag the process out for 2 years only to have the EP veto any agreement.
    We should offer them continuity from 1st January with a small payment from the aid budget to cover outstanding commitments and stop all further payments.
    Letting Brussels lead for the next 2 years will severely hack off the UK voters.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      As I understand it the final deal not only has to be ratified in the EP but individually by all the national parliaments, so the chance of that happening is zero I’d say.

      • ian wragg
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

        The point is we don’t do a deal, we tell them we do not intend to put tariffs on EU goods, working EU people will continue to stay under UK law minus in work or family benefits and reserve the right to reciprocate on any EU action.
        Nothing for the EP or 27 to approve.
        Any negative consequences ly to the EU.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:57 am | Permalink

      Dear Ian–We must hope that the Government means what it says, wins a huge majority and the very next day takes steps to start walking away

    • Andy
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:45 am | Permalink

      I agree with you. I diskile Varoufakis but he has pointed out that there wont be any negotiations with the EU – it will be what they want or else. I have also read an article by a Lawyer well versed in treaty law that the UK has no need to go through any of this, but can simply leave.

      • Mark
        Posted May 11, 2017 at 11:56 am | Permalink

        Article 50 is the only case where the EU is required to negotiate with a member state according to TEU. Varoufakis should read the Treaties. Otherwise, the EU only negotiates with third parties.

  15. Prigger
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    I see Canada is worried about the free trade deal with the EU. Italy wishes Canadian durum wheat, the stuff of pasta, annual sales C$248 million, to have country of origin labelling to save its own pasta industry.
    The trade deal isn’t ratified yet but one can see all kinds of problems arising as Italians and other actors finally wake up to the fact that “Hey! we’ve got our own country, we tripped over it yesterday!”
    Will the EU be labelling their British imports “Fee-fi-fo-fum we smell English durum”?

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:01 am | Permalink

      Dear Prigger–This stuff about FTA’s is getting ridiculous and I wish I understood it better: in particular in the early days of (real) Free Trade, for example after the Repeal of the Corn Laws, whom did we have to sign an FTA with??

  16. Mike Stallard
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    “There are technical matters to be settled over market access, transport rights, the rights of citizens living in each other’s territories and the rest that need not be difficult to resolve if there is good will on both sides. ”
    You betcha!
    For the EU grandees the EU is a project. It has always been a secret plan to unite Europe so that the nationalism and imperialism which characterised us in the past is absorbed into one safe union with its own allegiance.
    One Europe politically and militarily and democratically too under one Commission, one Parliament. The United States of Europe. That is the aim.
    And you are either part of it or you are a “third country”. Not part of it.
    We have (inexplicably) chosen to leave. So on 00.00 hrs 30th March 2019, we will be struck off all lists and computers. All intercourse will cease immediately. Everything and everyone who crosses into the United Europe will have to be checked individiually.
    Simple isn’t it.

  17. Original Richard
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    Mrs. May is fighting this election not only to give her a mandate for the negotiations with the EU, but more importantly to provide a mandate to bring the Civil Service, Quangos and a myriad other organisations to fight for Britain in these negotiations and to counter the corporates, hedge funds, financiers, bankers and wealthy elites who are still working to have Brexit overturned.

  18. Michael
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 7:47 am | Permalink

    Always have in mind that no deal is better than a a bad deal and that come hell or high water we are leaving the EU.

  19. dennis
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    Chinese takeaways, common sense, and outbreaks of measles, will of course be on the EU menu, since depleted fish stocks will no longer have free movement.

    Potential political clowns will continue to populate universities. Jokes, tongue twisters and Freudian slips should be deported.

  20. Chris
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    For those Remainers still pining for the past and putting forward alternative scenarios, this piece by Morten Harper from the No to EU, Norway group about the perils of being members of the EEA is interesting: from Brexit Central daily newsletter:
    “… on BrexitCentral today, we have a piece from Morten Harper of the Norwegian anti-EU campaign, Nei til EU. Last week marked 25 years since the signing of the European Economic Area Agreement, which has seen nearly 12,000 EU directives and regulations foisted on Norway, powerless to influence their content. Inspired by Brexit, Morten explains why Norwegians increasingly want out of the EEA.”

    Morten Harper: Why Norwegians now want a referendum on quitting the European Economic Area
    The cost of the EEA for Norway has increased ten-fold since we joined in 1992 and a strong majority now wants a referendum on our continued membership.

  21. Bert Young
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Tact and diplomacy never did seem to go hand in glove with Brussels . Our method of approach in dealing with controversial matters was to keep a cool head and to present a point of view that clearly understood the other side . Brussels – certainly as represented by Juncker , is like a testosterone charged teenager . Of course Brussels is scared to death of being wrecked – economically and philosophically , and does not know which way to turn for the best .

  22. jack Snell
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    If sense was common everyone would have it. Make no mistake there is no goodwill coming from either side in any of this and we are in for the battle of our lives. We are not going to get away with inviting only clearly talented and well qualified people here- that is cherry picking of the worst kind and will be shot down by the EU at the first hurdle- so lets get real about all of this- that we should have chosen to turn our backs on a consumer market of over 500 million people right on our own doorstep beggars belief- and for what- some slogan like – taking back control- or 350 on the side of a bus?

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

      ‘ We are not going to get away with inviting only clearly talented and well qualified people here- that is cherry picking of the worst kind and will be shot down by the EU at the first hurdle’

      Why should it be a problem Jack? Plenty of other countries get away with it and so very nicely by choosing who they want to live in their country. Bring it on.

  23. Mark
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    Students from the EU should be placed on a more even footing with those from outside it when we leave. Either the EU or its members should fund their fees in full directly, or the students themselves must do so. Granting student loans as required under EU rules has resulted in a poor repayment record, at UK taxpayer expense – another hidden bill not usually counted in our cost of EU membership. There is a huge imbalance between the 130,000 EU students studying at HESA institutions in the UK, and the few thousand UK students studying in Europe.

    Academic staff should be pleased if the rules on hiring from abroad grant a level playing field to all nations so we can hire the world’s best, rather than having to give preference to staff from the EU.

  24. Richard Butler
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    British academics can be found collaborating the world over and this has nothing to do with EU membership. Similarly American scientists work across the worlds Universities. Long before the EU we had people such as Rutherford (kiwi) working at Cambridge.

    Yet another example of Remainer hysteria and fear of the unknown. It all comes back to fear of change and small minded clinging to familiarity.

    I love the fact we’re jumping into the cold brook, sink or swim. We will of course swim and innovate, uncovering vast new opportunity in the process.

  25. forthurst
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    It’s sad that science research in this country is contingent on a free flow of foreigners; once upon a time, we had proper schools and proper examinations which ensured that our brightest and best were able to make this country a technological powerhouse and the incidental winners of many Nobel prizes without any dependency on foreigners at all.

    According to an article in the ES, our ‘success’ in science is achieved with 1.7% of GDP as opposed to Gernany’s 3%. Since, however, Germany is a technological powerhouse rather than the mere churner out of ‘research’ papers, that they have not abandoned academic schools for academic children, perhaps we should relearn from them with humility how to apply a scientific education, effectively, to build a successful economy. Rather than gabbing on about being a science superpower, perhaps we should understand that industrial might is built on the application of science rather than on prizes and academic degrees and the training of foreigners to take their learning back home.

  26. Prigger
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    Chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier is addressing the Dublin Parliament as I type. He is speaking not in Irish nor his native French. That in itself should provide him with an insight. The future isn’t Orange or Green or even Blue with dainty yellow stars on it but red, red as the English rose. He should accommodate himself to it, but not here.Though many of his countrymenn choose the UK as opposed to even French enclaves in Canada and France’s most remarkable achievement Mali.

  27. Mr Sakara Gold
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    Will you confirm that there will be a manifesto commitment to scrap the Renewable Obligation Certificate scheme for existing renewable energy onshore solar parks and onshore windfarms? Will you confirm that the planned post-election review of renewable energy policy will scrap the existing FITS scheme for householders who installed solar panels on their roofs pre-2014, to compensate the big six foreign owned energy companies for the loss of revenue in the light of the Right Hon Theresa May’s announced cap on their energy prices?

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

      There should be no ROC’s or FITS for anyone. People with solar panels should be grateful they are getting free energy and the energy market should go back to how it was. A free market and only using methods that supply energy 24/7. Mrs May would be a hero in my book if she ended all constraint payments for wind turbines which earn more to switch off than when operating.

  28. Richard Butler
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 12:17 pm | Permalink


    Barnier just said this (see BBC News website)

    Mr Barnier said the EU wants the negotiations with the UK to succeed.
    “We will need to negotiate a ‘bold and ambitious’, but fair, free-trade agreement,” he said.

    • Jerry
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

      @Richard Butler; But on terms preferential to the EU, no doubt…

      Free trade needs no agreements, never mind “fair” agreements!

      Also remember were Mr Barnier was making his tailored-to-audience speech, a country as much in the front line of Brexit as the UK its self, and do not be mistaken, Éire is far from the unified europhile nation eurocrats and some in the media make out. (there is still a lot of resentment with regards those repeated referenda and how Éire was treated during the Euro crisis).

    • Dennis Zoff
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

      The stark reality is pushing a new EU political narrative – EU’s “project fear” did not work and is rapidly faltering! Soon the EU narrative will become sickeningly sweet -beware!

  29. P2017
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    John Redwood continues to live in the 1850s when trade was just about tarrifs.

  30. Little Englander
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    Yes Andy we can simply leave. Why would anyone ACTUALLY believe that Junker is sincere in saying that the leak to the German press was a mistake? If he meant it he would have addressed it as soon as it hit the headlines but he didn’t. It would appear that it came after ‘The Missus’ deemed it unhelpful. As for that Dutch woman bleating about how uncaring we are as to the plight of EU citizens living in the UK whom she describes as being used as so called “bargaining chips” (which they aren’t) I would remind all these continentals that our PM attended a conference in Europe last year in which was blanked (as was expected) but when she raised the important issue of finding a speedy resolution to the plight of Nationals living in our respective Countries she was met with COMPLETE SILENCE. Our PM has tried on more than one occasion to bring this up with the Europeans as a matter of urgency but they have said that they will not discuss this at separate talks but will be part of discussions once Article 50 had been delivered. The Europeans are responsible for the suffering that this Dutch Frouwe refers to and we need to hold them to account on this issue when we sit down at the table with them. Nobody is your ‘friend’ in either politics or business – you either seal the deal that you want or YOU WALK.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted May 11, 2017 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

      Quite right Little Englander. I am fed up with the likes of Sturgeon going on about the Tories and May treating EU citizens that have settled in the UK badly when it is the EU that refuse to discuss it. Why don’t the journalist’s and the interviewers pick up on this point?

      I see Corbyn is back to Labour basics again giving away freebies like they are going out of fashion. Of course, those who like to sit back and do nothing will welcome his manifesto as they will get more given to them for nothing in return. Who, I wonder will pick up the tab for this lot? Yes, all of us that are working for a living. It’s ok to give away money all the time someone else is paying.

  31. E.S Tablishment
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    Chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier and Taoiseach Edna Kenny of the Republic of Ireland are under a grave misapprehension in regard to the Republic’s border with civilisation.

    Firstlly, Mr Barnier does not represent any nation which has a border on the United Kingdom. What Mr Barnier wishes for such a border may be interesting but cannot be any his business.
    Secondly Taoiseach Kenny has just stated “A hard border is totally unacceptable” . Well, The Taoiseach is obviously and correctly free to have wahtever he desires at his nation’s side of the border be it soft, hard, medium rare or slightly salted but what the United Kingdom has and does on her side of the border is the business only of the United Kingdom and may vary from sickeningly soft like a marshmallow or as hard as titanium with broken glass bottles cemented on the top and painted with anti-vandal paint. It is up to us.We can grow apples,rear and produce beef, pork and if pushed by Ireland and the SNP make Yorkshire whisky if we choose. We can replace Irish linen with Indian, Chinese and Mexican textiles. So, hard cheese!

  32. Mike Wilson
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    Being made to complete a tax return every 3 months has removed any chance of me voting Conservative – EVER again.

    This time, to register my protest at that, I will be voting Labour.

    • Know-dice
      Posted May 12, 2017 at 10:53 am | Permalink

      Could be better to vote independent, then at-least you know you are voting for someone who will champion local issues and has a free choice which party line to support in Westminster…

  33. Dioclese
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    When the editor of the Standard is George Osborne, can you really expect them to forget project fear?

  34. E.S Tablishment
    Posted May 11, 2017 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

    Just in case Corbyn gets in I’ve already started spreading triangular shaped sandwiches progressing their corners to dry yellowing upwards for sale on nationalised railways. I’ve been picking up old cracked white mugs for the tea too and making brown drip-sip marks down the sides. Jus’ like the good ole days where if you had the carriage windows open you arrived one and a half hours late at your destination 20 miles away with the blackened face of a chimney sweep and a barking cough. Then having to personally run back up the line looking for your dog they unfortunately and accidntally let go out of the Guards van.

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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