Does the EU favour No Deal?

Reading   the spin coming out of Brussels from the talks, it sounds as if the EU favours No Deal. Their rejection of every helpful and sensible proposal to let them export more easily to the UK is bad enough. When coupled to their demands that we pay them money we do not owe them, obey laws we might want to modify, and avoid trade deals with faster growing countries elsewhere it means No Deal will be better than the Deal on offer.

I regularly stress to government to need to be ready to leave on 29 March 2019 given this background. If that turns out to be the answer we can start spending the £12bn a year saving immediately, we can sign early trade deals with a number of countries that have been keen to get on with it, take back control of our fish and  put in a UK migration policy that works for us. Any Deal has to be better than this. The EU seems to think a Deal has to be a punishment. As an independent country they will not be able to punish us, so the sooner we are out the better.

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  1. Peter Wood
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:16 am | Permalink

    Good morning,

    Dr. Redwood, will you kindly take a poll of the 1922 on this conclusion and if in agreement make an early intervention with the PM and cabinet. Those of us who wish to see us out of the EU, on WTO terms if that is the best we can get, want it done. Its time for the (a) Leader to lead and take their chances.

    • Hope
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

      JR, I am bemused by what you say. This has been known to you for two years! Cameron stated publicly he would serve article fifty notice the day after the vote. He said this knowing he had not told the civil service to prepare for that outcome! Nothing. May elected by you lot knew this was the case and did nothing while the court case was ongoing. No preparation to leave or be a third country, how could this be possible? Davis knew this when he took his post, as Fox did when he took his and Johnson did when he took his. You all knew May has not been telling the truth about the line by line examination of the divorce bill and that it is five times the amount she claimed. You all heard her alancaster speech, red lines and Mansion House speech. She has failed to keep her word on any substantive point, she capitulated and he EU compromised on nothing. May made it clear she would not resort to WTO terms or walk away from the table. How is no deal possible with her as PM? Lords King and Lawson made clear at the outset it not possible to get a good deal. If it were all the other 27 countries would leave! May as capitulated on the first two phases giving away more than any other country has in the world to trade or even to trade with the EU, she additionally gave away our territorial waters and fishing stock, ECJ to rule over citizen here as welfare payment to people not set foot in the country and not yet born! While engaged in her treachery with the civil service KitKat policy to hide from the public the true costs and extent of continued ties to the EU. You have all listened, watched, commented and done nothing, sweet FA. You use the £12 billion figure. This is no t true we all now know there are add ons and commitments totally £100 billion! Where is the £3.75 billion given to the EU for t Europeans Development Fund to spend as it wishes without any say from the U.K.? Galileo project and other programs costs hidden under the civil service and May KitKat policy?

      You have the power to get rid of May, do it and stop moaning. Write to Tory associations to deselect Clarke, Grieve, Morgan, Hammond and Soubry etc.

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 8:45 am | Permalink

        Dear Hope–My understanding is that Cameron did not just not tell the Civil Service to prepare but forbade them doing so.

    • Richard
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

      The ERG letter suggested that the implementation period should be a WTO-compliant interim period in contemplation of an FTA. As JRM explains, one key reason why is: “if you are in a negotiation for a free trade agreement you can maintain your existing trading standards for ten years under WTO rules. So we have ten years from the moment in which we leave the European Union to negotiate a free trade agreement with the EU which would mean we could carry on with our zero tariffs.”

      Martin Howe QC has also suggested another suitable alternative:

      So far simpler, cheaper & safer alternatives to this unnecessary 21 month / 5 year Vassal State period do exist – but only if a fair deal is possible…

      • Not an Economist
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 7:59 am | Permalink


        I thought this rule only applies if it is with the agreement of all the particpants to it – i.e., the EU and the UK.. So is there not the possibility that the EU could refuse to maintain our existing trading standards with them for ten years under WTO rules?

        Its a complicated area so i may have misunderstood.

        • Richard
          Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

          I suspect you are right: for the WTO Interim FTA rules to apply it does need both the UK & EU to each ask for this. That’s why we need to keep tight hold on to our £40Bn+++ (see my comment down below).

          Today JRM talked again about Art 24 GATT between 4.00-5.00 here:
          Very interesting & very smoothly handled.

          Thank goodness for our host & other Proper Brexiteer MPs.

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:26 am | Permalink

        Dear Richard–Thanks for the Martin Howe link, which I have just read–All I can say is God help us all–One would never guess that all we want is to become an ordinary country trading with the EU just like any other such.

  2. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:26 am | Permalink

    Your last sentence sums it all up for me. Let’s get the hell out of it and now. We have been humiliated long enough.

    • Gary C
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

      Very true, it’s long past the time when we should have told them to jog on and walk away.

      • Hope
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

        May, Hammond, Rudd, Hunt, Fallon, Javid and Gove do not share this view. Remainers form the majority of cabinet who campaigned to remain in the EU. They outnumber the small amount of leavers. Has May always acted as a collegiate cabinet or direct to civil service and EU allowing any remainer to pay the person the country is negotiating with a visit! What business or leader would allow this to happen? Any corrections from project fear 2 lies, scares to change our minds? None fm May. In contrast She has slapped down Johnson for stating govt policy to leave the EU! If not caught out by the DUP what on earth would she have agreed! Give away Northern Ireland!
        May has an appaling,record on immigration, illegal immigration, Windrush scandal, terrorism attrocities, current murder rate in London all failures lead to her policies or being in charge of them. European Arrest Warrant was her choice to give up your freedom and liberty without recourse to any process in the U.K., gay marriage where was her mandate.

        Talking of which I presume the abortion vote in Ireland will now under go two- seven years of delay and demands for a second referendum etc. etc.

  3. Tabulazero
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:47 am | Permalink

    Where has the « they need us more than we need them » argument gone ?

    Trade amongst the EU27 is 6.0x what the EU & UK trade. It’s no surprise that the EU27 prioritises the single-market over its bilateral trade with the UK.

    This means that from the EU perspective the two easiest Brexit to deliver is either no Brexit or hard Brexit because they do not require changing the rules.

    The EU is not under any obligation to make Brexit a success and is pursuing its own interest which are different from the UK’s.

    When this was pointed out, this was dismissed as project fear.

    • libertarian
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:37 pm | Permalink


      You seem to be under the impression that so called “hard brevet” is some kind of problem…. It isn’t

      Maybe catch up with what German business thinks about it ?

      Officials in Germany’s economic powerhouse state of Hesse – home to significant industry and the major financial centre of Frankfurt – say Brexit has had no negative effect on business. Prof. Mathias Mueller, President of the Frankfurt Chamber of Commerce and Industry, explained:

      “Exports to the UK totalled 4.1 billion euros in 2017, which was 6.5 percent of Hessen’s exports…

      “Many local companies have also invested in the UK. According to statistics of the German Bundesbank, Hessen’s direct investment in the UK amounts to nearly 21 billion euros. Hessian companies employ 39,000 people in the UK. Conversely, British companies in Hessen employ as many as 60,000…

      “Business is running as usual, a ”Brexit shock” has not occurred and most companies are so experienced in international trade that they can deal with problems such as customs clearance, different national licensing processes, site-specific legal norms and the like. In general, the issues confronting companies with Brexit are nothing new.”

      Meanwhile, a nationwide poll by the German Chambers of Commerce and Industry found that even if the framework conditions for future business are not yet clear, companies that are invested in the UK will stand by their commitments. More than 91% of German companies replied to the question of possible relocations away from the UK with “no”.

      Just you then, remind us again Tabby what your business does

    • Edward2
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      It’s not about trade.

    • Richard
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:26 pm | Permalink

      The World Bank economic forecast argues that if the UK fails to secure a FTA with the EU, on WTO terms the UK’s (smaller) exports to the EU would drop by at most 2%. The UK’s exports to the EU are around 12% of UK GDP, so a 2% fall reduces GDP by c.0.25%.
      The World Bank’s study says the impact is small because the EU’s import demand for UK exports is fairly inelastic. This means that EU importers that will bear most of the £6Bn potential EU tariff (HM Treasury would have £16Bn more to spend).

      The UK could easily re-point this 0.25% of GDP by being far more nimble than the EU in doing FTA deals with non-EU countries.
      And since the UK’s much larger goods imports are more elastic, the UK has greater scope for import substitution than does the EU.

      And on Services the UK should insist on a better deal than at present. Despite the UK’s strength in Services, our Services export surplus is a mere £14Bn due to widespread heavy protectionism by EU member states:

  4. Nig l
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:54 am | Permalink

    I guess their political objective is to keep us as close as possible until people in the U.K. get fed up, the climate changes here, a second referendum is held etc, emboldened by the aims and efforts of the liberal elite here who despise the first result, and then ensure our terms of whatever type of membership we then have, are considerably worse than we have now.

    This is being encouraged and supported by your Prime Minister who seems intent on a transition period of at least two years and people like Michael Gove, I think putting their personal political ambitions above the needs of the country, already agreeing this might increase further.

    In any event, firstly there will be a deal, a massive fudge and a con to stop this happening and secondly, in the unlikely event of that, I am sure the ‘traitorous’ Messers Soubry, Clarke, Morgan, Bercow et al will quickly ensure something is placed before the House to keep the status quo and you will not have the voting fire power to defeat it.

  5. Tabulazero
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    Your « sensible demands » are just once more the UK asking for exemptions because the UK thinks it is a unique snowflake and that normal rules should not apply to it by virtue of whatever.

    Retaining a seat in the GDPR after Brexit ? Hilarious What is next ? Retaining a seat in the Council and its Comissars ?

    The EU answer is a simple one : « what part of Leave don’t you understand ? »

    • a-tracy
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:16 am | Permalink

      John, Tabulazero is quite correct there is obviously no deal to be had, no point talking anymore the EU team have been quite clear.

      Your government is misleading people now to think there is any point negotiating further. Barnier says nothing but No, it’s crunch time.

      • Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:02 pm | Permalink

        The EU has its very stringent rules, and from their point of view why should they make exception for us? I dont think there has ever been a possibility that they would. And surely the government must realize this by now? Therefore, as others have said its now one long drawn out fudge in the hope that it will all go away.

      • Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

        Unfortunately the only hope now is that the EU overplays it’s hand to such an extent that the terms are too humiliating for even the most ardent Remainer to be able to sell to the public.

        Don’t expect Conservatives to change leader or change course. That’s not going to happen.

    • Fish Knife
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:42 am | Permalink

      I’m coming to suspect that this is a re-run of the 1930’s with a European Faction intent on Domination.
      Whereas Britain has no appetite for Empire, knowing how expensive it really is, and just wants to play the game of Peace & Prosperity for all – Brussels is fervently intent on building itself up into becoming a World Order.
      While we bicker about possible queues into Dover we are blind to more malign forces ‘on manoeuvre’.
      No Common Market, no co-operation just ‘If you won’t be in of our gang’ – get out.

    • John Finn
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      The EU answer is a simple one : « what part of Leave don’t you understand ? »

      Perhaps the EU should just walk away? But they’re not going to do that are they?

      The “sensible demands” are seen as being mutually beneficial. A bit like a free trade deal such as the one the EU agreed with Canada. Presumably, if the EU thinks a trade deal with a country which imports about 10% of the EU imports that the UK takes is beneficial, they would think a free trade deal with the UK would be even more beneficial.

      But, as you imply, the EU can tell us to lump it. I only wish they would hurry up and get on with it so we can be spared the histrionics.

    • Jagman84
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

      EU standards will apply to UK products sold into the EU. The customer gives a specification and the supplier works to it. The other 4 freedoms nonsense will not, just as it doesn’t apply to any other non-EU nations, trading with the EU. The UK,
      agreeing to mirror standards for future reciprocal trading, is doing them a favour! Like our host said, maybe it is time to cut our losses, sit back and watch theirs mount up.

    • libertarian
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 3:00 pm | Permalink


      I wasn’t going to bother to reply as your post is so idiotic. Then I thought but thats not fair, we really need to help our simpler citizens understand the world a little.

      Your beloved EU is busy TRYING to negotiate free trade agreements with quite a few “third party countries” Its true that the EU is monumentally bad at this taking decades to reach agreements that everyone else achieves in under two years.

      However thats exactly what the EU is trying to do. Therefore there is no reason based on economics, trade and friendship not to negotiate an FTA with the UK. If they dont wish to do that for political reasons then thats ALL the need to say. Thanks UK we dont want an FTA with you and the EU manufacturers will happily pay the tariffs due under WTO

      • hefner
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

        Just to be sure, as clearly you have the available information: what trade deal with which country has the UK achieved under two years?

        • alan jutson
          Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:04 pm | Permalink


          Do please catch up, we cannot do a trade deal with anyone until we leave the EU (which is next year) under EU rules, which we seem keen to obey as a current Member so as not to upset them.

          We then have an extra extended transition period which our Leader wanted, where we may also not be allowed to do our own trade deals.

          The problem is not leaving, its having a Government (and Prime Minister) which collectively seem not to want to leave, and they are collectively frustrating that process with their own a lack of imagination, vision, determination, and courage.

          Sadly we appear to be led by a micro manager of detail, who has not yet grasped the much bigger picture, and who has a complete lack of any sort6 of real commercial negotiation skills.

          • hefner
            Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:04 am | Permalink

            Ala, thanks for your comment. I was just asking Libertarian what trade agreements had in the past been discussed, signed and possibly effected under two years. I hope this is a reasonably clear question. If there had not been any because of the EU inertia, fine, but how can he says future FTAs will be done within two years. A simple question of logics.

          • hefner
            Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:06 am | Permalink

            Oops, “how can he be saying”

          • libertarian
            Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:07 pm | Permalink


            No you asked what deals the UK has done, silly question

            If you look down the thread I’ve provided some examples of other countries who have completed trade deals in 2 years or less

            The logic is quite simple for those who inhabit the real world that a number of trade deals have indeed been completed in that time scale . The EU takes an eternity to negotiate meaningful trade deals as it has to get the buy in of 28 separate countries

            You need to improve your reading skills

        • Edward2
          Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:34 pm | Permalink

          We are not allowed to achieve any trade deal until after we finally leave the EU.

        • libertarian
          Posted May 27, 2018 at 10:49 am | Permalink


          I thought you were brighter than that… We haven’t left yet Doh

          If you’ve heard of a thing called google you can find out things like trade deals between countries around the world that do not take a decade or more to achieve

          Heres a starter for 10 though

          China Swiss Trade deal 2 years

          USA trade deal with Korea 13 MONTHS

          Canada USA 20 MONTHS

          The average USA trade deal takes 18 months

          • Edward2
            Posted May 28, 2018 at 4:51 am | Permalink

            And during the time these trade deal ate being negotiated, trade just carries on.

          • hefner
            Posted May 28, 2018 at 10:50 am | Permalink

            Libertarian, Thanks a lot, I am working hard on improving my web reading skill: you are roughly right, starting from an LSE blog, then some others, the China-Switzerland took a bit less than three years: end 2010-mid-2013. And indeed the others took what you said. Thanks again.
            What about your French venture? JR censored my questions to you about it yesterday.

    • Barry
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

      We understand what we mean by LEAVE unfortunately the politicians didn’t like that instruction and invented ‘Brexit’ which can mean whatever May say’s it means! We never voted for negotiations to leave, or to remain members of any part of the rotten experiment! The Tories have put a Remain voter in charge and surrounded her with like minded people from the civil service as advisers! She is oblivious to the divisions and anger her shenanigans are causing in the country and of the destruction of our democracy! Trust in politics is dead, democracy is taking it’s last breaths and the Remoaners are rejoicing as if it’s a victory!

      • JoolsB
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

        Well said Barry

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:38 am | Permalink

        Dear Barry–Very good post–I especially liked the “We never voted for negotiations to leave”–Silly in a way but then “We never voted to leave the Customs Union” is ten times more silly given that the Customs Union is part and parcel of the EU–As has been written (by me!) it would be like a man divorcing his wife yet expecting his marital rights to continue.

      • Gary C
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

        I agree Barry.

        TM has not only turned Brexit into a fiasco beyond belief she is succeeding in loosing the trust of those who voted to leave, a watered down version of Brexit will not save the party in the next general election.

    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:13 am | Permalink

    There’s no requirement to discuss this any further. The solution is simple. Depose May.

    This PM is an offence to my party, an offence to trust and an offence to democracy

    Leave won the vote. She knows this to the case but her arrogance and her political leanings (liberal left, pro-EU) means she will force through a political deal that will guarantee the UK will remain in the EU

    It is an intolerable situation. May’s hoping people will become bored with the whole issue and we’ll simply agree to any deal to achieve a consensus. She’s wrong

    Myself and my friends discuss politics and we are all unanimous in our analysis of this PM. She’s another John Major in a skirt. An EU Trojan Horse.

    If she isn’t deposed as our party leader the UK will become a vassal state of the EU. That is unacceptable. That is humiliation.

    We need to leave the EU. We need to liberalise our economy. We need radical economic policies not Stalinist-statist intervention on a micro-level.

    I will abstain at the next GE if May is leading my party. She’s a Tory fake and every Tory MP who voted for her should hang their heads in shame.

    We would now be out of the EU if it wasn’t for those MPs who voted for May. We’ve done our bit, NOW YOU DO YOURS


    • Andy
      Posted May 27, 2018 at 7:20 am | Permalink

      You missed two facts.

      1) Brexit was never defined in June 2016. Different Leave voters voted for different things.

      2) Mrs May defines it as quitting the customs union and single market. She went to the country in June 2017 to get a mandate for her definition. The country said no.

      What part of democracy do you not understand?

      • libertarian
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:09 pm | Permalink


        Entry to the EEC in 1975 was never defined and voters voted for different things

        Which means therefore the original referendum was void so we shouldn’t be in the EU even

      • Edward2
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

        Both parties said in their election manifestos that they would respect the majority view and support leaving the EU
        Over 80% voted for these 2 parties.
        Lib Dems and Greens who said they wanted to remain in the EU did not do well.

  7. Colin Donald
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    I wonder if May ever reads your blog.
    This country is being humiliated by the EU. Our negotiators lack the moral fibre to say ‘enough is enough’. How dare the EU tell us that a sovereign nation has not got the right to use cameras to monitor what is crossing the Irish border?
    Blow the whistle on all this nonsense and quit in March under WTO rules.

    • Man of Kent
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:56 am | Permalink

      Yes and I wonder if there are any legal grounds for 17.4 million people to bring a private prosecution against TM for failing to carry out the wishes of the referendum vote .

      Fanciful? Probably yes, but no more so than the warped logic being used to deny us the result we thought we had achieved and which had been promised by the government .

      Was a contract promised ? Yes

      Has it , will it be delivered ? Not on current actions .

    • acorn
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      I don’t know if the UK is working on replicating EU Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRA), the USA, has some 135 MRAs with the EU; China has 65. On Brexit with no deal, the UK will exit MRAs with the EU, but also exit the EU’s MRAs with third countries like the USA and China. MRAs exist separately to any WTO rules.

      I assume under Article 50, that no negotiation on splitting of Tariff-Rate Quotas (TRQ), will occur until Art 50 closes with the signed Withdrawal Agreement, and start Article 49 (???) for a new relationship with the EU.

      Hence, “One can say, unequivocally, that the UK could not survive as a trading nation by relying on the WTO Option. It would be an unmitigated disaster, and no responsible government would allow it.” (Leave Alliance)

      • mancunius
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

        ‘The UK has nothing to fear from WTO trading.” (economist Roger Bootle).

        There is nothing about TRQs in Art. 50. They and our MRAs with the EU countries can and should be decided before we leave, which can be done even with no deal. It is not the herculean task you imagine, though of course lazy and stupid officials can make it look so. It should be within our own powers to do, and not conditional on a Withdrawal Agreement.

        Art. 49, to rejoin the EU?? Forget it.

        Leave Alliance – whose last ‘daily blog’ post went up last December.
        It is quite clearly an outpost of Richard North’s ‘EU Referendum’, an organisation that seems to spend its time rehearsing arguments for remaining in the EEA/Efta and rather bizarrely welcoming all Britain’s negotiating defeats as a ‘success’.

        Nice try though 😉

      • libertarian
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:43 pm | Permalink


        As Ive told you before, please dont lecture us about international trading when you’ve clearly never done any . Heres a quote from German chambers of commerce

        “Business is running as usual, a ”Brexit shock” has not occurred and most companies are so experienced in international trade that they can deal with problems such as customs clearance, different national licensing processes, site-specific legal norms and the like. In general, the issues confronting companies with Brexit are nothing new.”

        Meanwhile, a nationwide poll by the German Chambers of Commerce and Industry found that even if the framework conditions for future business are not yet clear, companies that are invested in the UK will stand by their commitments. More than 91% of companies replied to the question of possible relocations away from the UK with “no”

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

      But from whence would come this pressing need for us to start doing things at the Irish border which we have not been doing for the past quarter century, since the advent of the EU Single Market? For what reason would we say “Oh, now we are leaving the EU we must start doing X at the border which we have not needed to do before?” We had the Common Travel Area before 1993, we have it now and we will still have it after we leave the EU, so that is persons sorted out, and as far as goods are concerned the Irish Republic will still be in the EU and in the EU Single Market and subject to EU law, so the stuff coming over will still comply with EU standards to the same extent as it does now. The only significant change would come if we started to charge tariffs on the incoming goods, and we could do that well enough away from the border without the old-fashioned need for customs posts.

      • acorn
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

        Denis, all the Customs and Single Market inspections are done at the EU frontier which is currently all the UK ports, including those in Northern Ireland (NI). Hence, nothing further needs doing at the EU internal border between NI and the Republic; or, the internal EU border between Great Britain and NI.

        Brexit puts the EU frontier back at the NI / Republic land border and every other sea and air border with the EU27.

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted May 27, 2018 at 6:04 am | Permalink

          Your last sentence is obviously true but equally obviously it does not answer the question, it does not identify any X that the UK will need to start doing at the Irish border once it has left the EU.

    • Turboterrier
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

      Why wait till March?

  8. Lifelogic
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:33 am | Permalink

    Indeed, but the Tories are “led” by T May and P Hammond. Paul Mason (on Any Questions yesterday – the ex Newsnight lefty who seem to belief he is an “Economist”) actually said something sensible for once. “Mark my words, Theresa May will sign up for the customs union or something that looks very much like it”. She is certainly heading that way.

    This clearly would be even worse than remaining in the EU it is remaining in the EU in all but name but without any say. May and Hammond must now go. But how can this be done without risking the the Corbyn trip to Venezuela.

    No deal/no fee is just fine, the negotiation will go on for ever anyway. Then we need to do all the sensible things the economy urgently needs too. Deregulation, lower taxes, cut input tariffs, get a much smaller but competent state sector, cheaper energy, easy hire and fire, some real competition in banking, relaxation planning, some real conservative vision ……

    Prepare for no deal now and just leave.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:31 am | Permalink

      Unless a deal rather better than just leave is offered. It will not be offered unless we are prepared to just leave.

      Surely even May & Hammond could be made to understand this – it is so blindingly obvious!

    • Richard
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:34 pm | Permalink

      Page 25 of a well known report makes clear that there is not even a moral obligation to pay the divorce bill:

  9. G Wilson
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    I’d say it’s more likely the EU favours what it’s favoured since 1992: forcing us to stay in without our consent.

    • getahead
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

      There is a powerful army of Remainers working with the EU to try to achieve a stay result. Powerful in position and wealth. Hammond is one of them. I cannot see how we can cleanly leave the EU. May does as Hammond tells her.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:04 pm | Permalink


  10. Adam
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Unless substantive change occurs soon, ‘No Deal’ presents the best option. The EU is a heavy & awkward weight, restricting our capability. We must shed its load of nonsense.

    Our leaving has been long-signalled, so business & others should now be prepared in readiness to seize the advantages of independence rapidly. It may be only those who have been doing near-nothing, in wait & see mode, who might notice any temporary inconvenient jolt of change.

    Decide & act. We Leave & Achieve!

  11. Denis Cooper
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    Not all of the UK proposals being rejected by the EU are “helpful and sensible.” Some of them are stupid, so stupid that one suspects that the civil servants responsible may intend them to be held up as stupid and rejected by their friends in the EU. The most stupid being their only two alternative plans which Theresa May will allow to be considered to prevent the creation of a “hard border” on the island of Ireland, with the whole of our governmental establishment apparently ready to accept the fallacious presumption that customs posts and other new infrastructure will spontaneously arise on the Irish border unless the UK government does something to prevent that. And they agree that it has to be the UK government which does something to prevent it happening, not their friends in the Irish government or in the EU establishment.

  12. Lifelogic.
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    Some suggesting a plan to get Ruth Davidson as the next Tory leader. She would be a disaster and is nearly as appalling as Theresa May and with a similar broken compass. The last thing the Tories need is someone like her in charge. Frazer Nelson suggests Javid, I am very unimpressed by him too. The police need proper sense of direction and sensible priorities not even more money to waste. Others suggest a Gove/Davidson alliance. VAT on school fees Gove is not an electoral asset. He is the reason we now suffer socialist dope May.

    We need a real Tory with real Tory vision not another wet, dithering fudge. Someone with sensible Mogg like policies at the very least. Alas more than half of the Tory MPs are dim, wet remainer Libdims, like T May.

    • percy openshaw
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

      Well said. Gove is a particular disappointment – venting his non-gentry spleen on private schools. What does he hope to achieve? It is our private school sector which has saved the best traditions of British education from the total rout inflicted on state schools by the hard left – and now he wants to ape that same left in pushing them towards closure.

    • JoolsB
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

      The English would never tolerate a Scottish PM now most of UK Government policies only apply to England. Even the Tories wouldn’t be that stupid.

      Agree we need a real Tory but sadly they are very few and far between in the party masquerading as Tories.

      If May and this Tory Government betray us on Brexit, then hopefully we will see a massive resurgence in UKIP who are the real Tory party nowadays.

    • Richard1
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:27 pm | Permalink

      I think this is all very harsh on Gove, he is an imaginative and rational conservative thinker. VAT on school fees was not a good idea, as no Conservative should be thinking about new taxes when tax / GDP is c. 40% of GDP, but it has a certain internal logic given we have VAT, and could I suppose have been enacted together with other conservatove policies such a flat tax on income and CGT, abolition of inheritance tax etc. Gove has made major improvements at education, was in the process of doing so at Justice before being sacked, and is now coming out with quasi-rational policies at environment, albeit with some mandatory virtue signalling stuff.

      I think he would set direction in government much better than Mrs May is doing and would probably therefore have a better chance in an election.

  13. Andy
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    No – the EU does not want no deal. The EU is simply looking on with pity at a formerly great country which has majorly lost its way. A great country which has turned its back on common sense and has fallen to a small group of incompetent ideologues.

    People who voted for hard borders who are outraged at the consequences of hard borders. People who voted to leave Galileo who are outraged that they can not be a part of Galileo. People who voted to leave the best trade deal in the world because they are unhappy with it who expect to like the less good trade deal they voted for.

    A part of me hopes that you get the no deal you crave. The consequence will be immense and it will put the extreme Brexiteers on the back foot from day 1 of Brexit. You are going to need some really good PR people to explain it away Mr Redwood. As I’ve said all along it is all now down to you lot. The queues at Dover. Rising food prices. Job losses. The first Brexit related death. You will be spending the rest of your public lives defending this car crash. And the next generation will undo it soon enough anyway.

    • libertarian
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:56 pm | Permalink


      Andy is a hard line remainer, he voted to stay in the EU

      Andy doesn’t know anything about international trade

      Andy doesn’t understand that you can by a house and live in another country without having free movement of people

      Andy doesn’t understand that lack of housing and low wages are caused by unparalleled and uncontrolled levels of immigration

      Andy doesn’t understand how a protectionist customs union works and its effect on rising prices

      Andy doesn’t understand that there is NO single market in services and the UK economy is more than 80% service based

      Andy doesn’t like people over the age of 50, even though his beloved EU is exclusively run by old white men in their 60′ sand 70″s, and the HoL who he backs is stuffed with octogenarians, he thinks Vince Cable ( age 75) is a good politicians though

      Andy is going to vote for a new political party, the one whose founder left after a few weeks as the party “doesn’t understand democracy”, a trait in common with Andy to be fair

      Andy thinks his kids when they reach voting age will willingly vote to take us back into the EU and then happily sign up for national conscription into the EU military

      Andy thinks that the EU is great because it passes rules and regulations such as VATMoss , MFiD2 & GDPR that do more damage than good and place the EU at a severe disadvantage in the new world of digital and AI.

      Andy say he owns a business that makes a 7 figure profit, but due to Brexit he will probably have to let all 30 of his staff go.

      Andy is backward looking, lacks imagination and is scared of the future , he hates his parent and grandparents generations despite the fact they gave him every thing he’s got


    • Michael Wood
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

      I really can not understand your fanatical support for the EU.
      Do you not realise that their immigration policies will spell the end of Europe?
      Have you not read

      • Andy
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 7:44 am | Permalink

        And I really can not understand you fanatical obsession with immigration.

        Have you ever even met an immigrant?

    • Original Richard
      Posted May 27, 2018 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

      “People who voted to leave Galileo who are outraged that they can not be a part of Galileo.”

      As a Leaver I am very happy that Mr. Barnier/the EU are taking a hard stance on Galileo and saying we cannot be part of this project and thus forcing Mrs. May/our establishment leaders into developing our own system.

      I do not want the UK to be part of this project and hence the UK’s security to be in the hands of Mr. Juncker and 27 (soon to be 34+) other countries, many of whom I would consider to be a severe security risk.

      Neither would I want our access to such an important piece of military hardware be capable of being denied by Mr. Juncker.

      Our ultimate security rests in developing our own system, just as we had to develop our own nuclear weapons after WW2.

    • Rien Huizer
      Posted May 27, 2018 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

      Andy you seem to be coming to your senses. There is no pointin trying to convince the remaning Leave activists that they may be doing something harmful to themselves. The harm is 90% done and the EU is losing its appetite for a deal that would make the UK less unhappy. No one believes that the UK will “walk away” without honouring its obligations although the extent of those may be subject to debate. The issue of Brexit has disappeared from European minds a long time ago and there is enough economic resilience even in affected regions or industries to deal with this. In a way, the Russian trade restrictions were a lot worse. Most Western European countries have the financial means to compensate their losers. The UK does not. Of course elderly Britons on a pension and time on their hands may not be bothered with Japanese car makers etc pulling out or Romanian bricklayers going home. But someone will feel the consequences, maybe even that pensioner. National pride is no subtitute for living standards.

  14. agricola
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    The EU favours punishment for having the effrontery to leave. This takes precedence over the real needs of the nation states. It is “pour encourager les autres” to avoid a fault line that could lead to the disintegration of the EU and Euro.

    It is time to play hardball. We should lay before them the menu. Free trade, financial services, the Irish border, and all areas of practical cooperation should be on it. At the same time there is the option of trade on WTO terms, no extended periods of payment beyond march 2019, and cooperation only where dictated by international norms and our commitments to NATO.

    The Galileo situation is symptomatic of Europe’s failure to face up to the realities of modern day security needs. Have we not learnt anything from France’s utter failure in the run up to WW2, and their utter capitulation and to a large extent their cooperation with their conqueror.

    The only people in need of convincing are Mrs May and her Cabinet. They need to take a lesson on negotiation from the Donald.

    • Rien Huizer
      Posted May 27, 2018 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

      An American point of view no doubt. Playing hardball is only for those with capacity and that includes the ability to harm and sustain harm. Donald is playing with a howitzer. the UK with an airgun..

  15. alan jutson
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:18 am | Permalink

    Sounds like you are as fed up with the negotiations as we are out here JR, but your Government still do not get it it, do they.

    The Eu want our Money and our Market for trade, but at the same time wish to punish us for daring to leave.

    The time to get tough has long since passed, just walk and do as we please, because if we do not we become the laughing stock of the World, and then what hope of negotiating with anyone else seriously.

    Given the Gallilao fiasco, clearly they are not taking security seriously either.

    Northern Ireland, just let things carry on as they do now, put Ireland on notice that we will give that solution a year, and if we find abuse or people smuggling, then a normal border control will be put in on our side of the border, let the EU do as it likes on their side.

    I am absolutely sick of the pussyfooting about.

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

      @ Alan Jutson

      I am absolutely sick of the pussyfooting about.

      Aren’t we all?

  16. Dave Andrews
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:22 am | Permalink

    Perhaps the EU council can do us a favour in their June summit and reject any deal.
    After all, the UK voted to leave, let them go.

    • Rien Huizer
      Posted May 27, 2018 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

      That will not happen so soon, but give it a little more time and you will be served.

  17. Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:26 am | Permalink

    “we can sign early trade deals with a number of countries that have been keen to get on with it, take back control of our fish and put in a UK migration policy that works for us.”

    Every single one of these things can be done if we stay in the common market (aka EEA). We must leave the European Union though.
    The only sensible future lies in Efta/EEA.

    Hard Brexit is going to cripple our economy. Why?
    Well the JIT (just in time) logistics, the electronic NTB checks and the EU world agreements are going to stop on 30/3/19 – nine months or so away.
    The EU knows this. Hence the warning.

    We have not yet learned (the very hard way) that it takes two sides to make an agreement. and the EU cannot budge. They depend on a legal system that cannot be altered.
    We ought to have realised this.

    • Jagman84
      Posted May 27, 2018 at 10:24 am | Permalink

      “The only sensible future lies in Efta/EEA”. The dog returns to it’s own vomit YET AGAIN! If it still contains the 4 freedoms, then it is not leaving the EU , as mandated by the referendum.

  18. Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    You put your finger on it when you spoke of punishment … They want to ensure we get the worst deal possible to discourage other nations from breaking away – this is clearly signs of a neurotic establishment that has to be ‘right’ and ‘in control’ of everything…. One thing is for sure, they are no friends of the UK
    The way we appease the EU is criminal
    There are islands of relative sanity in the EU discussions, but as they are driven by people who appear to dispise the UK, one can only conclude that they would settle for any deal – they don’t care about their exports, it seems – but the pertinent point is that the UK must be made to suffer….No matter what else happens

  19. Turboterrier.
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    Why on earth do these numpties want to stay tied to such an outfit as this lot.
    The time and money we have wasted in trying to pander to the EU and all these short sighted people who want to stay in the club is nothing short of criminal.

    To add to the problem the midges north of our border are gathering and want independence and one of their key objectives is to attract more immigrants to raise their population to over 6 million. They will stay in the EU because Empress Nick say’s so . Get the border posts and immigration officers ready, ready to deal with all the disillusioned that will come to the country and realise there is not a lot going for it compared to south of the border. Higher taxes, NHS , Police, shocking roads, lack of real industrial investment, 150,000 people who have never worked and a failing education system all victims of the rule of the nationalists.

    This is happening now, qualified people are being attracted by better prospects on offer in England.

    Stop the death by a thousand cuts, walk away now, get rid of May and the other high profile remainers and JFDI put this country back to where it really belongs wheeling and dealing on the world markets. We have nothing to fear and everything to gain.

  20. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:50 am | Permalink

    The EU does not favour no deal. The EU is going for our total capitulation.

    Unfortunately due to people like Chukka Ummuna, Anna Soubry, Nick Morgan, Peter Hain and Phillip Hammond it stands a good chance of achieving it.

    They so badly want to stay in they are not giving us a chance to leave well.

    • Lifelogic.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:36 am | Permalink

      Thanks mainly though to T May, P Hammond, M Carney and the total lack of vision, an understanding of negotiation or a working compass from this appalling, dithering, socialist government.

      Charles Moore today right defends the Crown. It reaches parts mere politics cannot reach. Judging by my wife’s elderly aunties in Italy the enjoyment they got from the Royal wedding almost justified the the entire cost. This multiplied by the three billion or so. They seemed to have view on every outfit, scene or person attending.

    • Andy
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:51 am | Permalink

      Awww diddums.

      Is the big nasty EU not playing nicely with you?

      I particularly enjoy how – facing an obvious car crash of their own making – Brexiteers now like to blame everyone else.

      It just be the EU. Or Remoaners. Or Civil Servants. Or the BBC. Or the Lords.

      It can’t possibly be he fault of Brexiteers that Brexit is the car crash we all told you it would be.

      • percy openshaw
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

        What an appalling lie. It is most certainly not the Brexiteers who are responsible for the delay but opportunist Remainiacs on the fringe of the Tory party working hand in glove with the Remainiac establishment. You know this full well; and yet you jeer at your victims that their misfortune you and your kind have inflicted is their own fault. Spiteful, vicious mendacity of this sort is sadly typical of EU fanatics everywhere. Well, should your backstairs demarche succeed in derailing the Brexit we voted for, look to see an unparalleled political storm. With luck it will sweep every last Remainiac out of parliament.

      • Narrow Shoulders
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

        I really don’t care how the EU plays Andy. What I do expect is my own people to get behind their own people to show a unified exit position. We have been divided from within to be conquered.

        If you could take your stay in blinkers off you might consider the consequences of not playing our strongest cards.

      • libertarian
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

        Unlike Andy

        Who only blames the Tory government, all Tories, all right wing people, every single person over the age of 50 and 17.4 million of his fellow country women & men all for having the temerity to not agree with Andy

        • Andy
          Posted May 27, 2018 at 8:13 am | Permalink

          Not true. I do not blame proper Conservatives like Chris Patten, John Major, Michael Heseltine, Dominic Grieve, Ken Clarke, Anna Soubry etc.

          I blame the UKIP lite Conservatives. The ones who basically have the same as principles, values and lack of political skills as the purple prunes but who were too gutless to actually join them.

          As for ‘getting behind your own country’. Seriously – it’s a democracy. We are allowed to disagree. I am very patriotic. Your mistake is to confused Brexit with Britain. Brexit is actually the most un-British thing this country has ever done. Why do you hate your country so much?

          • libertarian
            Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:17 pm | Permalink


            You have repeatedly gloated about the coming failure of the Conservative government, you have gloated about the end of the Tory party, so dont tell lies.

            Interesting that all the people you like are over 50

            No where in my post does it mention getting behind our country , you can’t read either. It says that you hate the 17.4 million who voted Brexit as your shrill inane rants on here testify

            I’m not into nationalism I’m into freedom, democracy, small government

            I employ more than 100 people, all my colleagues will have well paid jobs after we leave the EU still

            Sacked your staff yet?

          • Edward2
            Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:40 pm | Permalink

            And your big mistake is to confuse the EU with Europe.

    • Mitchel
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      Stalin referred to the “right-Socialist” proponents of post war European integration as the “troubadours of national treason.”

      He wasn’t wrong.

    • Turboterrier
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:29 pm | Permalink


  21. Nigel
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    JR: if you want to get a decent deal (no deal or better), you will need to get rid of Mrs May.

    • Stred
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:48 am | Permalink

      The civil service and May plotters are making leaving with no deal impossible by avoiding the ordering of software and cameras or lorry parks near Dover. The ERG should bypass them and invite bids from firms such as Dr Karlsons and those that have been developing the system to be used by the Irish and UK under EU policy for the last two years. Pull the carpet from under the plotters.

    • Lifelogic.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:01 am | Permalink

      Also remoave tax ‘till the pips squeak Philip Hammond who is damaging the economy hugely with his absurdly high, irrational and hugely complex tax system and his endless attacks on the self employed, the prudent, self reliant and the productive.

  22. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:58 am | Permalink

    Despite Mrs May saying “no deal is better than a bad deal” the EU quickly deduced that she would capitulate to their demands, supported by MPs, elected and unelected, who treat the result of the referendum with contempt and are determined to have their own way. The EU expect that MrsMay will come to them begging for whatever deal they will give her. The damage to democracy and the main political parties in this country as a consequence of this betrayal will be immense.

  23. A.Sedgwick
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    Until we have a PM who has a business brain and a modicum of national pride and self belief, the can kicking down the road and kowtowing to the EU politburo will continue. We are a few weeks away from the two year anniversary of the referendum and naively thought the A50 letter would have been sent within days after until Dave decided to run away, but remain an MP!

    There has to be a leadership election, Mrs. May is an absolute disaster. If Clarke, Soubry, Morgan, Grieve wish to see Corbyn/Sturgeon/Barnier/Juncker in power so be it.

    • hefner
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      You clearly have not read the various interventions and comments by Dominic Cummings since the referendum.
      You should try to go back and find them on the web. One of his main points is that Article 50 was called much too early and with insufficient preparation.
      The guy might be a person difficult to deal with (according to various commentators) but he seem(ed)/s to have (had) ideas much clearer on how to proceed than most among the top Brexiters.

      • Hope
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

        Hef, unnecessary scorn on a Brexiteers not in power to legally enact.
        There is some merit in what you say. Not entirely correct because Cameron could and should have made preparations before the referendum as he publicly stated the Article fifty notice would be sent the following day if leave won. However, Cameron made sure preparations by civil service would not take place while he was in post. Therefore his actions to make sure the U.K. being unprepared were deliberate. May did not either make preparations even though she knew a court case were prevent Her submission of the notice. It is still not clear if any has been done in the two year interim. With civil service and the Tory Govt skewed to obstruct leaving, how do you propose this was brought about by people intent on stopping the public vote?

  24. Nicky Roberts
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    I expect 17.4 million people agree with you Mr Redwood, but unfortunately the PM and Chancellor seem happy to be beaten into submission, any submission providing we do not upset the EU. Mrs May has shown continued weakness which has resulted in the EU becoming more and more unreasonable. I do not understand how Remainers can condone this offensive behaviour. It is now very clear that the EU does not regard us as a friend or an ally so please let us return the compliment.

    • Billy Elliot
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:06 am | Permalink

      “It is now very clear that the EU does not regard us as a friend” – Countries don’t have friends they have just interests, Henry Kissinger

      • Jagman84
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

        Theresa May wants to be ‘friends’ with the EU bureaucrats and that is her Achilles Heel. They are not our ‘friends’, ‘partners’ or ‘allies’. They are our political and economic rivals. They only like us for our monetary contributions to their failing project. It’s why they act as they do.

    • Richard Hobbs
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      From the sideline I live on, this is how I see it too. Let’s just get out and get on with our country’s life!

    • hans christian ivers
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

      negotiations are still happening, so have a drink sit down relax and wait till the final outcome, it would suit you better

      • a-tracy
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

        How do you know Hans?
        From what we are told there is no deal to be had, so why pay anything, let’s keep it to cover us whilst we regroup.
        What did Ireland lose when they went independent from the 🇬🇧 nothing.

    • getahead
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

      But the CBI et al are the EU’s friends. As someone said, the EU benefits the few at the expense of the many.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

        yes like the entire UK industry the few, wo create the wealth we want to try and keep.

        • libertarian
          Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:23 pm | Permalink


          There are 5.7 million businesses in the UK. The CBI represents just 250

          They claim to speak on behalf of 190k ( still less than 4% of all businesses ) but they actually dont, Organisations like the NFU are members and the CBI count NFU members as CBI members even though they aren’t. They’re a front organisation for a few big corporates

  25. hans christian ivers
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:03 am | Permalink


    When you have 45 to 47 % of your external trade with 5oo million people and 55 to 53% with 5 billion, there is a reason and this is due to geographical location, cultural affinities and integrated supply chains and this you d not just walk away from easily. (and lots of EU countries still export five times as much per person than we do to China , in spite of the EU>) Negotiations are still gong on ,so there I a lot of posturing go on and it will be the case to the end.

    Putting on your old record of no deal is better does not serve UK business nor the country much, so be patient and see what happens, your solutions on the WTO and technology on the Irish border short term is all an illusion. So, be patient and look at the outcome and then start talking about alternative solutions. The rest as far as I am concerned is just hot air and posturing just like the EU is doing.

    • libertarian
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:28 pm | Permalink


      I’m with the German Chambers of commerce on this, rather than you and your historic data ( maybe only 9% of our trade is with the EU because we are predominantly a service based economy and the EU really can’t deal with service businesses , and in fact has been busily trying to pass regulations to “control” new innovation and the new digital businesses )

      Anyway heres what the German Chambers of Commerce think

      Officials in Germany’s economic powerhouse state of Hesse – home to significant industry and the major financial centre of Frankfurt – say Brexit has had no negative effect on business. Prof. Mathias Mueller, President of the Frankfurt Chamber of Commerce and Industry, explained:

      “Exports to the UK totalled 4.1 billion euros in 2017, which was 6.5 percent of Hessen’s exports…

      “Many local companies have also invested in the UK. According to statistics of the German Bundesbank, Hessen’s direct investment in the UK amounts to nearly 21 billion euros. Hessian companies employ 39,000 people in the UK. Conversely, British companies in Hessen employ as many as 60,000…

      “Business is running as usual, a ”Brexit shock” has not occurred and most companies are so experienced in international trade that they can deal with problems such as customs clearance, different national licensing processes, site-specific legal norms and the like. In general, the issues confronting companies with Brexit are nothing new.”

      Meanwhile, a nationwide poll by the German Chambers of Commerce and Industry found that even if the framework conditions for future business are not yet clear, companies that are invested in the UK will stand by their commitments. More than 91% of companies replied to the question of possible relocations away from the UK with “no”.

      No deal is just a fine outcome thanks. An FTA would be lovely but not necessary

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 11:04 am | Permalink


        It is actually not more historic than we increased our exports to the Eu by 1 percentage point last year to 44% from 2016, and it did not grow to the rest of the World,so I will stick with my recent history, thank you

  26. agricola
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    To lighten your weekend lets drop the terms remainer and remoaner. Instead how about submissive sado-masochists.

    • hans christian ivers
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

      Unnecessary and totally inappropriate, shame

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 3:49 pm | Permalink


      Brilliant. Don’t do envy but I wish I had thought of that. Very Clever

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:10 pm | Permalink


        I am sorry I have actually overestimated the degree of your iamgination

        • Fedupsoutherner
          Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

          Yes Hans and we have stopped admiring your lack of vision and determination. You’re another one that cannot even think there just might be a better way.

          • hans christian ivers
            Posted May 27, 2018 at 11:01 am | Permalink


            If you cans send me that facts and figures for your other way I am very open to be persuaded about your so-called vision

  27. Richard1
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:09 am | Permalink

    It seems unfortunately that the govt has lost any credibility it ever had on this – the EU just don’t believe they will say no deal is better than a bad deal, so the EU will continue with their current, punitive, approach. In the U.K. Mrs May will use the bogus issue of the Northern Ireland border to justify the very unsatisfactory deal she is likely to agree. The EU must also relish the prospect of a Labour Govt, Barry Gardeners recent interview on these issues was simply absurd.

  28. Sir Joe Soap
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    I hope you mean No Deal has to be better than this?
    Yes. This is where the starting point should have been. By now, we should be in line to import more cars from Japan, USA, Korea. We should have a number of free trade deals lined up to sign in 30 days time. We should have lined up NZ, Australia and a number of others to replace Irish agriculture with tariff-free product. This government has wasted 23 months now, negotiating with the wrong people. That’s what we voted for, not this lovesick remainer-dom.

    • hans christian ivers
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

      when you have been part of a club for more than 40 years there are certain rules you have to follow to leave. It takes 5 to 6 years to negotiate a new trade deal ,so no we wold not have new trade deals by now.

      By the way why do you think it is that NZ and Australia trade more with Asia than anybody else, as we do with Ireland, it might actually have something to do with location.

  29. John
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    If we have to leave with no deal, will any ministers or officials who have deliberately delayed or obstructed preparations be prosecuted?

    • Ian wragg
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:15 am | Permalink

      Malfeasance in public office should be the charge starting with Cameron, Osbourne May and Hammond.
      These people are our enemies and should be jailed.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:57 pm | Permalink


        Your wild UKIP imagination is running off with you again, relax and have a good weekend

    • Lifelogic
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

      Firing the 50%+ of ministers and officials (and Lords) who have deliberately delayed or obstructed preparations be prosecuted?

      Start with Cameron and the civil service’s abject failure to even prepare for a no outcome or to have the section 50 letter and preparations ready to deliver the day after the referendum.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:58 pm | Permalink


        Enjoy the sun-shine and do not get too excited it is not good for you nor very realistic

  30. Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    The EU know that Mrs. May and her Remain advisors will do anything to avoid No Deal. So they say what they like.

    Barnier has the negotiations exactly where wants them.

    If May & co. could be replaced with a more assertive and confident leader No Deal could be on the cards.

    Unfortunately , there is no sign that she will be removed.

    • walter
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:46 am | Permalink

      Mrs May wants her next job to be in Brussels, she is clearly willing to wipe Britain and the British off the map to get it. Throwing £billions away while importing millions of so-called “migrants” – who will be nothing but a problem for us – is the only thing she is good at. Unfortunately.

  31. Jack snell
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    It looks like we are not going to get a deal now, or we are not going to get the deal that some of us would like by cherry picking…information from some reports, is that UK needs a period of time in the wilderness tò let them come to their senses..they understand we are going through a crisis of adjustment in our thinking but they are not prepared to put up with any more nonsense..there is too much bad blood here..too many insults and personal remarks have been thrown across the floor at EU leaders including of the EU parliament and Commission over the now it’s the time of reckoning..some of our politicians and establishment figures with rag press backing thought we could take on the EU?..maybe set up our own economic bloc in competition..well now is our chance.,because it looks very likely we are going to be on our own.. the UKIP and Tory MEPs bluff has being called if listening to Dan’l Hannan on newsnight last evening was anything to go by..we are sunk..

    When our own MPs including JR..they continue talking from the back benches about not paying money which some of us decide we do now owe is not being very helpful either, same with idle talk about migration policy, grabbing back the just reinforces the thinking from their side that we are not team players, we are not ready..we never will be..well too bad for us..the cliff edge over to you Dr Fox and all of these new trade deals we are going to get with partners overseas..i’ll believe it when I see it

  32. Michael
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    The EU’s objective is to have the UK on the default back stop fully aligned position for trade where they can keep us under their control for ever and a day.

    They want us to pay a shed load of money which we do not legally have to do in order to have a legally binding withdrawal agreement whilst they give us a political non legally binding promise about future trading arrangements.

    What good is the withdrawal agreement if trading arrangements are not nailed down? Once we pay over the cash we will be at the mercy of a political promise from the EU.

  33. Timaction
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    The blame for having achieved nothing two years after the vote to leave falls directly on the leadership of the Tory party, supported by the incompetent negotiating skills of Mr Davis and the civil service kit kats within and outside the Exiting team.
    Everyone else outside the Westminster bubble has seen weak and wobbly May give away concession after concession for nothing in return. What has the EU conceded? NOTHING. She has embarrassed the entire Nation and been seen to be less than useless. The only way the Country can recover is her removal and Davis’s replacement and a firm message from their successors that we have a no deal and walk away in March next year on WTO rules. We don’t want or need an extension or further extensions where nothing changes. The nonsense about more extension is just a play to acclimatise us leavers on incrementally staying in the EU! We’ve seen it all before and the politicos cannot play that stupid game any longer.
    It won’t be many more months before there will be action by the leavers to ensure the will of the people is carried out as the Government, Westminster and the fools in the Lords is loosing its mandate to rule

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

      I think you are too hard on David Davis.
      Look at who he has had to work with.

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:03 pm | Permalink


      Well said

  34. Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Now THERE’s a good idea! Very succinct! Thank you!

    Remainders who revere and extol the EU and all its machinations seem to become very gleeful at the idea of the EU ‘punishing’ the UK in various ways. It really does make one wonder why on earth they believe we’d be better off remaining in such an organisation that seems to be hell bent on threatening us at every opportunity.

    • Andy
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

      The EU is not threatening the UK. It is simply allowing the Britons to see the consequences of their vote. It is deeply ironic that people who voted for Brexit are the unhappiest at the consequences of Brexit.

      • Edward2
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 6:45 am | Permalink

        Unhappiness is caused by the delay in leaving and the increasing chance that we will not actually leave the EU..
        Not the consequences.

  35. formula57
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    Government should have woken up a long while ago to the fact that the Evil Empire is a power hostile to us.

    “I regularly stress to government to need to be ready to leave on 29 March 2019 …” – and let us trust you are not wasting your breath.

    There is some encouragement perhaps in that Mrs. Weak & Vacillating has stated she will deliver Brexit – but to whom?

  36. Rory The Cat
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    I agree wholeheartedly.

  37. Blue and Gold
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    Reading the spin from the Brexiteers leaves normal people in this Dis-United Kingdom scratching their collective heads.

    It is not the wealthy, elite Brexiteer politicians who will be bearing the cost of this fiasco, but YOU.

    It is the UK that quite rightly has to jump through hoops, not the EU.

    The Brexiteers have not come up with any suitable ideas on a proper withdrawal that will not do damage to ordinary citizens. The people they claim to want to help will be the ones who will be hit the hardest. How they can sleep at night knowing that?

    We need to remain in the Customs union, welcoming EU citizens to do all the very important jobs that British people have absolutely no interest in doing.

    Still, the bonus of all this is that the people who voted to leave, including all the right wing media, will be angry, result!

    • Dave , Spencers Wood
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

      There’s been very little effort by the 52% to persuade those of us in the 48% as to exactly what will be better when we leave.
      As far as I can tell the brexiteers don’t know what they want nor where they are going, but are quite happy to spend our money getting us there. Thatcher would be ashamed of them.

      • Jagman84
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 10:34 am | Permalink

        None so blind as those who refuse to see…

        • Dave , Spencers Wood
          Posted May 27, 2018 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

          That’s all of you’ve got ? Sell Brexit to the 48%.

          Persuade away. April 2019, we’ve left the EU. What will be better?

          January 2021 , we’ve reached the end of the transition deal . How will the life of myself and my family improve? When will we see the Brexit dividend? When will my taxes go down and my wages rise? When do we start getting cheaper food in the supermarkets ? More money for the NHS? When do we sees shorter wait times for an appointment at the doctors ? Cheaper house prices?

  38. JoolsB
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    We all agree with you John but unfortunately you’ve got a remainer in charge supported by other remainers who would rather give in on every obstacle the EU are determined to put in our way in order to stay part in any way they can of this rotten corrupt union.

    May is useless. She talks tough but acts weak. Please have the courage to get together with your fellow Brexiteers and get those signatures to get her replaced by someone that will get on with the job and get us completely out by next March and if that means no deal, fine, but it also means NO MONEY handed over whatsoever!!

    • Stred
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:02 am | Permalink

      They should form a separate party called Conservatived for Independence. Resign yhr whip and offer to support under coalition with the DUP. The MPs who sold out to their EU friends will be wiped out and the grass roots conservatives would have candidates ready to take on the Labour Marxists at thr election. There is no point in staying in a party of traitors.

      • Stred
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:03 am | Permalink

        Conservatives for Independence.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:12 pm | Permalink


        Just keep going then we are absolutely sure we will have a Labour government

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:50 am | Permalink

      Absolutely, no money.
      With Italy making noises about cutting their contributions, as well as the loss of ours, the EU will have a serious hole in their finances. Let them sweat over how they will pay their lavish pensions.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

        the money we are all paying in is about !% of GDP so et us not making it bigger than it really is

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

      @Jools B

      No argruement on any of that Jools

    • Helen Smith
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

      Not voting for the Tories again unless we leave the EU, and I don’t think I will be the only one.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

        Helen, you’re damn right!

  39. MPC
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    But where are the preparations for No Deal/WTO Mr Redwood? If only it were so simple. Mrs May surely won’t go down this route as it breaks her Deep and Special Partnership idea. It looks as if this is all going to drag on and on to the EU’s ultimate benefit.

    I see Daniel Hannan has now conveniently forgotten what he was saying only a few months ago ‘who cares how long it takes’ to leave the EU. He’s even advocating a general election as if that would solve anything at this late stage.

    The EU has the upper hand. Representative democracy has brought us to this, much to the amusement of Barnier et al no doubt.

    • Peter Parsons
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

      Unrepresentative democracy, not representative democracy.

      Due to FPTP and the House of Lords, the UK does not have democracy which represents us, the people, to any level of reasonable accuracy.

    • John C.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

      The EU is proving that tyrannies are generally more forceful and direct than wobbly, divided democracies. Democracies are scarce in world history, and generally don’t last long. A sobering thought.

  40. Mark B
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    Their rejection of every helpful and sensible proposal to let them export more easily to the UK is bad enough.

    How many more times ? This is about governance not trade. The EU only cares about keeping the rEU 27 together once we are gone. For them things will not change but for the UK we will be starting out again.

    When negotiating it is important to try and know what the other side wants. All the EU want is for us to settle our affairs and agree to their demands, they do not have to give anything as trade with the rest of the world will carry on.

  41. Anonymous
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    I think you’d be amazed at how many people dislike the EU. Far more than voted against it in 2016.

    I heard so many people saying that they voted to stay because they believed Project Fear.

    Well those are not happy motives to stay in an organisation.

  42. Prigger
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    The synchronicity or as one or two bankers say “going in lockstep” verbatim, of Remoaners in Parliament and EU negotiators, has been observed throughout. They have been playing politics. Not genuinely negotiating. Their “the clock is ticking” and ” You cannot leave a club and expect the same benefits” are but two of many examples of EU/Remoaner coincidental lingua franca.
    They talk the same talk , they walk the same walk. Dark anti-democratic forces stretching from the Cabinet itself through to the dictatorship of the EU High Command.

  43. Phil
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    The scenario you have just painted neatly encapsulates everything that I and probably 17.4 million others voted for in the referendum. The problem is May, the Civil Service, half the cabinet and most of Parliament are determined to keep us in by fair means or foul. May really has to go.

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

      @ Phil

      keep us in by fair means or foul. May really has to go.

      Mostly foul. and yes she and her fellow supporters have to go

  44. Shieldsman
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:15 am | Permalink

    I joined the Conservative Party because as you advised, only the Governing Party can implement Brexit. The PM is not negotiating a successful Brexit, allowing the Chancellor and others to kick it into the long grass by means of the ever lengthening implementation period, and dirty tricks of the EU.

    Given the opportunity I will use my vote to elect a Leader who will take the bull by the horns and go for A NO DEAL.

  45. John Payne
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    An excellent summary John. Whilst every one blames individuals for apparent mess and concessions we are allowing with EU negotiations.
    I blame 100% the Tory Party for not insisting all MP’s must back the peoples decision to Leave the EU.
    The nation overruled all political parties wanting us to remain, and gave politicians an instruction for Britain to Leave EU.
    Press and politicians decided to change the meaning of leave by inventing the word Brexit which now means anything they want it to mean.
    To put the matter more clearly LEAVE means:

    Depart From, go away from, withdraw from, go from, retire from, take oneself away from, take ones leave of, pull out of, quit, be gone from, decamp from, disappear from, vacate, absent oneself from, evacuate.

    Someone please inform me how current EU negotiation slot into the meaning LEAVE

  46. Barry Hughes
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    The most succinct and effective statement of our position that I have yet seen.

  47. Mark
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    The deal we are being offered is continued membership on Article 7 terms – no vote, suspension of EU disbursements, yet full requirement to adhere to EU rules and financial contributions. For that, we could try being Polish or Hungarian or perhaps even Italian or Austrian.

    Article 7
    3. Where a determination under paragraph 2 has been made, the Council, acting by a qualified majority, may decide to suspend certain of the rights deriving from the application of the Treaties to the Member State in question, including the voting rights of the representative of the government of that Member State in the Council. In doing
    so, the Council shall take into account the possible consequences of such a suspension on the rights and obligations of natural and legal persons. The obligations of the
    Member State in question under the Treaties shall in any case continue to be binding on that State.

  48. James K-L
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    On the plus side, in the absence of a sensible offer from the EU a no deal brexit was promised during the referendum campaign. ‘no deal is better than a bad deal’ is also in your election manifesto. The default position is WTO rules on 30 March 2019.

    Unfortunately most MP did not vote for brexit, the groups in favour of a clean brexit are divided and there is no strategy for fighting back if we get betrayed.

    Whilst I understand you supportive approach, it is likely the gloves will have to come off soon.

    When are you going to get your act together, to come up with a political strategy to stop this vassal state madness?

  49. Bob
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    The Tories have a reputation for swift and brutal leadership changes.
    It appears though that they are largely satisfied with the current leadership’s pathetic capitulation in its “negotiations” with Mr Barnier. I suppose we shouldn’t be too surprised since the party has long lost it’s conservative principles.

  50. James Matthews
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    No. They don’t want no deal. They do want abject surrender from Britain and to reduce us to vassal status to preserve their power over other European countries as well as us and they are confident that we have a prime minister and a government who will allow them to do this (and which appears to have made no significant preparations for leaving without a deal). I fear that belief may be well founded.

  51. Billy Elliot
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    No Mr Redwood we can not start to sign new trad deals. But we can start to negotiate new trade deals – which will take quite some time.

    I haven’t really seen any “helpful proposals” from our side.

    Maybe they prefer or are ok with no deal? It is still the richest trade union in the world with 420 bn surplus with the rest of the world and everybody – yes everybody – in Europe trades with it. Norway and Switzerland even pay for EU pretty much as much as we per capita even though they don’t have too much to say what it comes to EU polices.

  52. Ian wragg
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    This is the first sensible post on the negotiations to date.
    We are being made a laughing stock around the world by inept and weak politicians.
    The latest row over Galileo is a case in point. We can deduct the £1.5 billion from the divorce bill. Some comedian in Brussels says if we do that negotiations will cease because we aren’t alowed to back slide. Do they believe that the British people would stand for that.
    Politicians would become targets overnight.

  53. Stephen Priest
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    It is clear the the majority of politicians of all parties, most public officials whether EU or or Civil Service actually despise ordinary people and go out of their way to make their lives more difficult.

    Since 1997 it is very hard to think of anything done by either British Government or the EU that has made our lives easier or better. Everything has to be banned or taxed, with contradictory results.

    Most politicians and senior civil servants have cast iron index link pensions. However every investment the average 2 to 4 bedroom home owner may want to make has been penalised by governments since 1997. First Gordon Brown attacked pensions, a process continued by George Osborne. Interest rates are ultra low.

    People invest in property so that the might have some kind of pension, George Osborne takes away their tax relief on mortgages, charges them 3% extra stamp duty and starts to introduce ever more draconian Energy Performance Certificate for landlords.

    I could go on and on and on

  54. Paul Cohen
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Good post JR, lets hope this get picked up by the media and broadcast widely.

    About time we showed some grit and stopped being so obliging to the EU “negotiators” who are trying to wring every advantage by duplicity and bad faith, and are obviously following orders from above to wreck anything meaningful.

  55. BOF
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    How true that the actions of the EU point to favouring ‘no deal’. They also know that the harder they push Mrs May the more she will give as they arercertain that she has no intention of walking away.

    There is only one ‘deal’ that can now be reached with the EU and that is No Deal. Lords and MP’s who do do not now recognise this should examine their motives and consciences.

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 5:17 pm | Permalink


      Lords and MP’s who do do not now recognise this should examine their motives and consciences.

      Resign immediately resign their seats en mass would be the honourable thing to do

  56. Brit
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    A Blessing in Disguise to be sure. The Irish vote on abortion. Our army will need a lesser number of bullets in order to stop them causing trouble.

  57. VotedOut
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    All the opinion polls suggest that there is no change of heart on Brexit

    The last local elections showed the hard-line brexit vote moved to favour the conservatives – only because they are seen to be implementing the will of the people. That is conditional only on that position being maintained.

    The UK had 2 options in late 2016; to crash out and negotiate from outside the EU or to legally follow the exit route of Article-50 and negotiate on-route. The latter was chosen because any subsequent trade treaty signed by the UK with anyone else in the world would then have value – since the UK would then ‘honour its treaty obligations’.

    In view of this, I believe we, who see great opportunities after Brexit need to be patient. Nothing is agreed until everything is agreed. So even the £50billion is not agreed – despite the EU trying to make that legally binding last year. So too the transition-period is just words at the moment.

    The threat is from the House of Lords and MPs who have interests in the EU and are coordinating their actions against the UK and the British people. These people talk of jobs and economic benefits but, they were strangely quite about such virtuous things before. We should note that not once has any of them spoken of freedom and self determination in this context. We know what they are and we will hold them to account.

  58. Drachma
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    Bi Bi you Inglese brexiteers..keep digging that hole and talking about EU evil might take some time but you’ll eventually get there..australia😂

  59. Duyfken
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    I agree wholeheartedly with JR, of course.
    So we know what should be done, but not how to achieve it. It may mean a change of PM or of government but what are the chances of this happening? It seems that no matter how correct a “clean and punctual Brexit” may be, we have in parliament insufficient MPs with strong enough competence, drive and guts to procure this for us. At what stage are Tory MPs going to bite the bullet and put a stop to the present mess?

  60. Blue and Gold
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    As usual for Mr.Redwood who clearly does not like Free Speech, anything that goes against his anti EU rhetoric and spin gets censored!

  61. Andy
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    I’m afraid I echo many of the voices here. The EU are pushing Mrs May to create the worst possible deal for the UK and are very likely to achieve this. May has shown not even one scintilla of common sense in dealing with the Continental Europeans.

    When the inevitable Bill is laid to ratify the Withdrawl Agreement I hope you will use every trick of parliamentary procedure to ruin it, because whatever that woman signs will not be in the interests of the UK.

  62. June Romans
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    At one time I actually believed in the PM, despite the complete scepticism expressed by others. Wasn’t I naive to think that a church going, daughter of a clergyman could be trusted to keep her word. Well, never again. And as a lifelong Conservative voter, I look forward to seeing what will be my other choices, come the next election. Will the Monster Raving Loonies be fielding a candidate, I wonder……

  63. Graham D
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    I have heared and read the alleged economic arguments for remaining within the EU. The one argument I have not heared is the one in which remain voters explain why it is a good idea to have our lives dictated by a group of unelected politicians and bureaucrats working in a foreign capital. Is there a good argument for so doing? If so could someone enlighten me please. Sorry if I am a little off topic.

    • Andy
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

      You mean the unelected ones who are actually elected?

      • a-tracy
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

        Who elected the European Commission members Andy?

        Small Countries have an equal say in this body as the largest too.

        • Andy
          Posted May 27, 2018 at 8:22 am | Permalink

          You elect national governments who, through the EU Council, elect the Commission president. You elect MEPs who vote for the Commission president. Those national governments you elect also select their commissioner who can be rejected or removed by MEPs.

          Who directly elected Liam Fox as Trade Secretary or Boris Johnson as Foriegn Secretary? Or Theresa May as PM? Or Donald Trump as President? Nobody.

          • Edward2
            Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

            That’s the trap with the EU Andy.
            It’s at two or three further steps away from a connection with us, the voters.
            Fox Johnson and Trump stood for election by us the people.
            They were voted in by ordinary people.
            Not appointed.

          • a-tracy
            Posted May 29, 2018 at 10:26 am | Permalink

            Mrs May ran on her own ticket as Prime Minister, she was re-elected by the public (although with a smaller majority mainly due to her own personality). It would be interesting to see who the people would elect as Prime Minister from the main elected party if given the vote and choice wouldn’t it?

            The EU is interesting, only two years ago did I discover the Council of Ministers, at the time the UK had 18 ministers who had the authority to commit their governments to the actions agreed on in the meetings, these 18 members included John Prescott, Alex Salmond and Sir Roger Gale all appointed rather than elected and where was the UKIP member who the members of the British Public decided should be the dominant group in the elected Members of the European Parliament?

            I always wondered why the Commissioner the one that resigned Lord Jonathan Hill got to be chosen by the PM rather than the biggest party elected in the European Parliament elections.

  64. TomTomTom
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    There has to be a deal better than “No-Deal”. The EU knows this. The UK knows this.

    However, the EU must be seen to “Win”. That is the most important thing for the EU at this moment. And “seen” to Win, not necessarily to win.

    Admitting that there is a mutually beneficial outcome that would benefit all the people of Europe is a real problem for the EU. Because if there is such an option, then surely it would be incumbent on the EU political class to apply it to all the people in Europe.

    Merkle & Juncker managed to lose their second biggest budget contributor and a substantial trading partner. Whilst managing to keep their biggest debtor ( Greece ). Whatever your views of the EU, that’s just bad politics.

    The German tax-payer is going to have to stump up more money and/or the Eastern European countries take a cut in their grants. That’s an unavoidable outcome from BREXIT.

    The upshot of this is that everything in the media is just noise and hysteria. The UK makes a suggestion, the EU rejects it out of hand, hurling insults and barbs about “magical thinking” at the same time.

    …. but in reality, large teams of civil servants are working away figuring out the new relationship.

    One last comment, if a “bad” deal is fostered on or accepted by the UK then we’ll all be back at the negotiating table in a few years time.

  65. Jacey
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    I felt that when the Conservative party chose to appoint a person who voted Remain in the referendum as its new leader little good would come of it. This conclusion seems to be being reinforced on an almost daily basis now.
    On a slightly different but related tack I would be most interested to know your thoughts on the developing political situation in Italy most especially with regard to its potential impact on the European Union.

  66. forthurst
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    Why should people expect that politicians elected by an unfair and undemocratic electoral system, somehow, nevertheless, would magically represent the ‘will of the people’? What on Earth is the HoL even about? A distillation of the most loathsome functionaries of the state apparatus.

    Our system has been designed for capture by special interests who are happy to pull the strings from behind the curtain, leading to military engagements most people oppose and political engagements that are designed to destroy our existence as a uniquely successful monoculture. When will politicians who purport to be with us, show some resistance to the steamroller of cultural destruction rapidly wiping us out?

    • Peter Parsons
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

      How many of those politicians who you want to show some resistance are actually the staunched defenders of the system you dislike?

      • forthurst
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

        It doesn’t make them right.

        • Peter Parsons
          Posted May 27, 2018 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

          It doesn’t, and I agree with you about an unrepresentative system which has, in my opinion, allowed politicians of all persuasions to ignore and take for granted large swathes of the UK for more than a generation, and is a major contributing factor to the divisions in the country currently exposing themselves.

          The whole Westminster system needs fundamental reform such that it becomes representative of us, the people.

  67. Up and up and up
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    Richard Branson plans to blast off into space. It is unclear being amongst other things a Europhile, why it will not be in a EU vehicle and from an EU base…and not even British. But all American. No Vorsprung durch Technik on this venture buddy. Perhaps on concerns of fuel consumption gauges.

  68. Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    The Legatum material to which are clearly party has made clear that No Deal is your first choice. So roll on USA deals with GM foods, hormone beef, chlorine chickens and American drug companies running the NHS while you are your hedge fund chums clean up. So now you try to blame the EU ?

    In a proper world you have been in the Tower at least long ago.

  69. lojolondon
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    The very worst thing that can happen to the EU – the one thing that will ensure the entire collapse of the EU – is when Britain leaves and thrives. That is the reality and that is why they are desperate to do everything they can to make it difficult. Unfortunately we have many fearful Remainder quislings and the media doing their utmost to damage our Brexit.

  70. Gumblina
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

    Get rid of May who was always remain plan B.
    On domestic issues she is more than useless.
    In fact May is not a tory, she is a fraud.
    Tory MPs are banking too much on the premise that no-one will vote for Corby – they will be in for a shock at the next GE. Many people will not vote for May neither. Both are traitors.

  71. Alison
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    Dr Redwood, you are so right to stress the critical need for the government to make provision for no transition period. It’s coffee time, I’m relaxing over .. Barnier’s speech to the 28th congress of the International Federation for European Law. Interesting reading. Primarily about the Brexit negotiations and jurisdiction, and why it absolutely has to be the ECJ which has the jurisdiction over the withdrawal treaty, but with a few extra bits. Of course, given the context, he would lay it on heavy re the ECJ, but he certainly did. It has to be the ECJ for everything was my ‘take-away message’ from the speech. (The mixed committee idea didn’t get a rave review – it’s political, not legal.)

    But he also said that with no agreement on governance (which has to be ECJ), and no agreement on Eire/NI, there will be no withdrawal treaty, and therefore no transition. Perhaps I should post a tweet on Mr Robbins’ twitter page?

    There were also repeated polite but snide remarks from Mr Barnier about needing to know what the counterparty wants in a negotiation, otherwise you can’t negotiate, and it would be helpful to know what the UK wants. Oh, and we need to speed up. He noted that the EU is open to the UK changing its mind on the UK’s red lines.

    For me, the ability to set our own laws, and have jurisdiction over them, was and always has been one of the main reasons why we must leave the EU, as constituted. I accept that the question of jurisdiction over the withdrawal treaty is a difficult issue, but surely one that can be agreed between the parties to the treaty. But the nature and provisions of the treaty are critical. That treaty, and the jurisdiction over it, must not extend over our sovereignty in any way.

    On Ireland/NI, he said that the UK has accepted the principle of a backstop, to “avoid the return to a physical border and to respect the Good Friday Agreement in all its dimensions”. And then, “We must operationalize this backstop in the withdrawal treaty”. Hmm.

    There was an aura of smugness gently exuding from Mr. Barnier’s speech, like a cat who’s got lots of cream already and knows he is going to get even more. Very self-righteous too … we the EU are the home of all virtues.

    ps He had the cheek to say the EU leads on standards … It’s not as if the UK hasn’t led on standards for well over a century, if not more. I know for a FACT that many of the data standards taken up by the EU were identified and then developed by the UK, and/or the USA. Our own Data Protection Act came in five years before the EU equivalent.

  72. ian
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    As I have been saying, the votes in parliament are waste of time. As the EU put it, you are either leaving or not.
    The best way to leave is to look around at what other the third countries do for trade & communications with the EU and follow suit. It’s time for Mrs T. May to put a stop to this charade and put the money up to put in the infrastructure so the UK can leave fully before the next election. The words no going back, mean something.

    Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    This is about more than Brexit; it is about the threat to our unwritten Constitution and the survival of the Tory Party. The Lords now ignore the Salisbury Convention which was intoduced by a high Tory when they held a vast majority in the Lords, but a Labour Government in power; one of the most truly democratic acts ever.
    The present PM ignores the election manifesto completely and delays and obfuscates more every day. Any traditional centre right voter is completely unrepresented, as the vast majority of their MPs, if not rebels, are really left wing liberals in disguise. If the Tories do not return to a centre right stance, the voters will desert them, even if it means a general election.

  74. John Dodds
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    It is apparent that the EU has no intention of having an amicable separation so why does our PM carry on with this degrading performance.If she lets the country down the Conservative Party will be destroyed and together with her party rebels will forever be remembered with disgust by at least 17.4 million voters !

  75. Peter D Gardner
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    If only, Dr Redwood. Unfortunately, the eu knows very well that Mrs May’s government nearly always caves in. The Eu understands that hat she does not really mind rule by the EU. She really cannot see much wrong with it except that she must stay within the limits of acceptability to Leave voters while meeting the desires of Retainers including herself as much as she can. Intransigence on the part of the EU encourages British Remoaners, and weakens Tory Brexiteers who fear a leadership challenge to Mrs May could lead to a general election.

  76. Prigger
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

    JR apologies for attempts to crowd out comments. Will write less. Here.Free-speech paths are being blocked or dug up.

  77. Pat
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    Without a change in prime minister we will accept whatever deal the EU puts forward. After all they appear to have the Civil Service arguing on their behalf.
    Mrs May appears to be a nice person but with no ideas of her own (other than a desire for high office) and is easily swayed by the Civil Service.
    Of course the deal they offer will be rejected sometime in the future, but why go through all that when we can do better on our own.

  78. Helen Smith
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    I 100% concur. I dreaded the 2 year negotiation as I just knew how the EU would behave towards us.

    I hate to think what people in other countries think when they look upon a weak vacillating May agreeing to whatever the EU demands. It is shameful.

    No deal is a great deal. The party has to get rid of May and get someone who believes in Brexit in, someone who can inspire voters, someone like Boris. The very idea of having another GE, whether by choice or by losing a confidence vote with May as Leader is unthinkable, political suicide.

    I’m a Tory member now, I joined solely to have a vote on the next leader, who simply HAS to be a Brexiteer.

    • graham1946
      Posted May 27, 2018 at 10:00 am | Permalink

      They will get rid of May, but not until she has done what the Tories want – Brexit in Name Only. The party is far more important to all of them than what the voters wanted or the national interest.

      Gove will take over next year as caretaker leader so they can get ready for the next GE.

      How you can be a Brexiteer and still be a member of the Tories is unfathomable. The Tories took us in on a lie, Mrs. Thatcher invented the Single Market and Major sold us out on Maastricht. Cameron expected a remain vote then ran away after it failed despite promising to enact the referendum result right away and May vacillated over Article 50. In addition they know precisely what May is up to yet won’t depose her to save Brexit. How much more proof do you need that the Tories are the party of the EU, not Brexit. Brexit is not going to happen the way we voted for it.

  79. anon
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

    1) So why was article 50 delayed 9 months? Ways and means were available?

    2) Why have we not dis-engaged from faux negotiation and proceeded to the “What do you not understand about the word Leave” option?

    3) Any further talks will require
    – Trade talks based on a WTO approach.
    – No payments beyond March 2019.
    – They need to form an orderly queue behind other non-eu countries.

    The continuing wish to make payments to the EU is not based on any logical or legal reason which has been clearly listed.

    This suggests a control fraud against the UK taxpayer and or a massive cover up?

  80. Ian Pennell
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    Dear John Redwood,

    Theresa May needs to call another General Election fought on a promise to just leave the EU completely and trade on WTO terms, saving the £40 billion to spend more on the NHS and Police. That’s the only way to save Brexit.

    Otherwise, it’s game over for Brexit with at least 15 Conservative MPs willing to vote against the government and bring about Brexit In Name Only!

    • Perky
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

      You know, political activists and persons writing to this blog including myself are not representative in any way of the mood of the people of the UK. They take it all far less seriously. It is not apathy in the purist sense, just a very extremely stable political UK environment. The historical gut feeling grown over one thousand years is that we know we will will win. V

  81. Dennis Zoff
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    Does the EU favour No Deal?…. a better question would be “Does the UK Government favour a No Brexit Deal?”……..

    …… demonstrable evidence thus far, and simply breathtaking how little the Pro-Brexiteers have achieved in Theresa May’s Government, to dissuade her from a disastrous and deplorable course of action?

    With respect John, you and others talk a good story, but little in the way of tangible success? T. May is simply not listening to your sensible suggestions, quite the opposite. What troubles me and other party donors is your continuing “official” and personal support for T. May? To say we are alarmed, frustrated and distrustful is an understatement.

    The talk on the street is the need to donor support a new truly “Patriotic and Democratic Party”, which frankly is starting to gain momentum…come March 2019 and no “in the interests of UK” deal, but pathetic capitulation to Brussels, would open the floodgate of dissent and the end to Conservatives being a driving force in UK politics?

    …PS, I trust this comment will get through moderation?

  82. ian
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    As I see it England, Brittan and UK are made up of 4 countries and the EU is made up of 27 countries and both the EU and UK are unions of countries in the world eyes and they are the same, If the Uk wanted to let another country into it union it can, which might be better union than that country is already in or a country that is not in a union like the USA.

    People in a country should always have a choice.
    UK Empire has been coming to a close for a long time but if you wanted to add countries to the UK union you can do so, EU Empire is new and expanding all the time and lot people in countries like Italy, Greece, Portugal, Ireland, and the Eastern block countries are looking at what they can do about EU new laws and taxes coming up and are unhappy with the EU..

  83. Visionary 52
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    Time has come for a leadership challenge or the Conservatives will be wiped out at the next election.
    There is still time to save Brexit, but that is getting shorter by the minute.

    • Helen Smith
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

      100% concur, no good telling this government, it isn’t listening, you would think the fact that 70% of its supporters are leavers would galvanise them into getting on with Brexit even if a sense of the right thing to do doesn’t, but seemingly not.

  84. Rien Huizer
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

    Mr Redwood,

    You are well aware that the EU’s negotiating space is constrained by what its members want and are able to agree to unanimously. Also the EU is not going to agree to new arrangements with a party that can be expected to press for changes whenever the UK electorate shows signs of dissatisfaction that could undermine the ruling party’s position.

    That does not mean that the EU “wants” a no deal outcome. What seems to be happening now can be represented as a sort of high stakes bluffing game. The public may want to believe it and no doubt the betting agents and media love to nurture that belief . However, that is not the situation. The UK wants to leave, but wants to have a new relationship as well. The trouble is that the UK does not want to accept that (1) it must choose from a menu and (2) demonstrate its good faith regarding the durability of whatever is agreed. That is not “bluffing” on the EU’s part, it is a fact of life.

    Hence my opinion remains that a “no deal” scenario is still possible despite the confidence markets appear to display. Fortunately the BoE is less gullible, but despite condident talk suggesting an adequate policy capacity, the reality is that future easing (the policy response mentioned recently) is constraned by at least three elements (currency/inflation, financial stability and heavy reliance on capital flows) and that the opposite of easing could be very much part of a “plan B’.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

      As a country we’re only bothered about a new relationship if you want one too. It takes two to tango and all that.
      As a government we’re going to silly extremes to try to get you to agree to a new relationship, and the whole point of this post is that most people including our host now realise that cause is lost. We’ll succeed on our own. Watch us.

      • Rien Huizer
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

        Fair enough, apart from the “silly extremes” it is up to the UK -as the “leaving party- to come up with alternatives that the other sight might be able to accept. Since the UP has been part of that “other side” they are very familiar with what that other side might be willing to accept. And yes, the EU is – as far as a relative outsider can know- getting close to the point where a deal is no longer possible. That is not malice or lack of interest, but simply the consequence of structural factors. Do not turn this into a sort of foorball game. The UK and afew other countries will have to pay a price and unfortunately, the UK’s price will be the highest. Ireland will get assistance.

  85. John Kinasz
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

    It is quite obvious that our negotiators have no experience in negotiating, hence this stalemate. It has taken nearly two years to get, no-where, a bit like the M25. John Redwood is perfectly right, we put in a proposal, they rejected it, they put a proposal, we rejected it,if there is no middle ground, walk away.

    • The Art of the Deal
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

      You have to leave your opponents looking and feeling smart. They have electorates too. Theirs are more volatile and dangerous to the whole world, as was proven 1914-18, 1939-45. They do not take well to humiliation on the field of battle even when they are extremely wrong. As they always are. It’s a European thing. Losers!

      • Rien Huizer
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

        You might want to read up on the frictions between Patton and Montgomery when it came to effective (rather than suicidal warfare). Patton was no coward but he was not a fool either. He and his staff had a very deep understanding of the German approach to warfare dating back to the Civil War. Montgomery chose to adopt a potentially more glorious but far riskier path. That prolonged the war, caused a famine in The Netherlands and afforded space to the USSR to progress much further into German space than they had thought possible. And why? That trait often ascribed to Europeans, vanity?

  86. Harro
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

    Yawn. You are the one leaving, you are the one throwing away membership of the most sophisticated free trade bloc in human history. Take responsibility for the unfolding catastrophe, Redwood, and stop demanding the EU changes all its rules just to save the UK from its folly

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

      Rules including maintaining a friendly attitude towards neighbouring states you mean? Encouraging free trade between your bloc and neighbouring states?

      This sophisticated trade bloc has left the UK out of pocket and devoid of meaningful industry, agriculture and fisheries. It’s denying poor countries the opportunity to supply the bloc by means of high tariffs. If it was so great for us and other third countries, we’d stay. It isn’t.

    • James Daniels
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

      The UK is walking away from a political union which is abandoning democracy and sliding towards authoritarianism.
      Only this week we’ve seen Mr. Selmayr, a man who obtained his post by unorthodox means, making policy. That role should be reserved for the politicians and not performed by a bureaucrat. The Secretary General of the EU Commission should be a functionary, not a policy maker. Yet he is reported as having decided to exclude the UK from the Galileo project, a high handed decision that is so far beyond his remit that it should result in his immediate dismissal. But it hasn’t.
      Watch as, over time, the Secretary General of the EU Commission takes ever more power for the office while politicians are sidelined. The EU has made no secret of its desire to abolish national governments and run the EU as a collection of “regions”. Who populates the European Council when that happens?
      What you are watching, before your very eyes now, is a slow motion coup. Democracy in western Europe is being subverted.

    • John Finn
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      You are the one leaving, you are the one throwing away membership of the most sophisticated free trade bloc in human history.

      1. UK Trade Deficit with the EU : £70 billion (2017)
      2. UK net contributions for the privilege of running this deficit : £10 billion
      3. UK Per Capita GDP growth in 25 years BEFORE EU (1993) : 2.2%
      4. UK Per Capita GDP growth in 25 years SINCE EU (1993) : 1.6%
      5. UK Per Capita GDP growth in SINCE 2004 : 0.07%

      To be honest, I’m not sure how much more we can take of this “sophisticated free trade”.

      Take responsibility for the unfolding catastrophe, Redwood, and stop demanding the EU changes all its rules just to save the UK from its folly

      Who is asking the EU to change their rules. John Redwood’s position is, as far as I’m aware, the same as most of us, i.e. We’re leaving – Do the EU want a free trade deal with us or not? If YES – let’s sort it out; If NO – fine we’ ll move on without one.

      JR has been consistent on this from Day 1.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

        You are absolutely right JR has been very consistent since day 1 about both the EU and the EURO, but maybe not with the facts and figures presented for his argument

    • Michael Wood
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

      It’s not a free trade block; it is a protection racket.
      Get your knowledge up to date by reading ‘!’

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

        wake up to fake news and real facts before it is too late for you

    • mancunius
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

      And we are not going to subvert our national democracy to save the EU from its folly.

      The ‘sophistication’ of its ‘free trade’ is nothing more than a monopolistic, imperial, arrogantly reckless and already doomed experiment in political power, supported by limitless money-printing by the ECB.

      Italy is about to blow it sky-high. We shall watch from the sidelines with curiosity.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted May 27, 2018 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

        Italy has had dysfunctional governments for 50 years the chances of Italy growing sky high now, after so many years with that I will have my serious doubts

    • Blue and Gold
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

      Well said Harro!! These moaning Brexiteers just don’t get it.

      • Dennis Zoff
        Posted May 26, 2018 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

        Blue and Gold + Harro

        Really. Nice try with your simplistic ad hominem and your ingratiating support of Harro’s clueless comments….is that all you two have to give…rather a pitiable inane attempt! Teacher to pupils….you must try harder.

    • Gd Moaning!
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

      “the most sophisticated free trade bloc in human history” I do not believe hallucinogenic drugs should be used even for medicinal purposes. There is always a way to delete that irreversible mind-altering component leaving the medically active ingredient to ease a severe pain in the neck.

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:32 pm | Permalink

      @ Harro

      you are the one throwing away membership of the most sophisticated free trade bloc in human history

      I don’t know what you are on but I think you ought give it up or at least take more water with it.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:37 pm | Permalink


      The EU is continuing to evidence that a common external tariff is a nasty, cheap power trick used to bully other nations. In negotiating with the UK it has the opportunity to show otherwise but it does not. There is no sophistication in becoming a big gang bully, this is the EU.

      Conceptually maxfac is an idea that would allow more free trade around the world, it’s adoption could spread as an enabler without giving power that can be swung willy-nilly against others. Maxfac around the world, more economic development for all … It is time to be decent and show the EU the way.

  87. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    I know everyone laughs and derides UKIP but they are the only party anyone could vote for that are serious about getting us out of the EU. Who are you going to vote for? The three main parties want us in. So what choice do we have? I say vote UKIP, get out if the EU and see what transpires. If you stick with the 3 main parties you won’t get out.

  88. Newmania
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    You told people the EDU would roll over so we could have our cake and eat it . It was a lie. Instead of trying to wrap yourself ina flag you have no right to, start accepting responsibility for what you have done.

    It won’t be long before a lot of people are saying whgat I am saying now .
    Who were the guilty men ?

  89. Map for Ireland
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    If I was wishing to go on the road to reverse the depopulation of Ireland I wouldn’t be setting off from here today but setting off two days ago from over there.

  90. LenD
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    The EU favours a No Deal and who could blame them? They want to be shut of us ASAP..they are only going through the motions thinking is that it’s almost time now for the summer break

  91. James Daniels
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    If the government were to walk away from the negotiations citing the failure of the EU to negotiate sensibly, then that would concentrate minds all round. It is likely that the EU would return to the table and negotiations would restart quite quickly, but with more realism.

  92. mick
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 6:54 pm | Permalink
    Just tell them it’s there loss we’re leaving so get use to it , and don’t push or threaten us we don’t take kindly to being bullied by anyone and as for the £39 billion you can go whistle for it, I’m sure we will survive

  93. Turboterrier.
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

    @ Harro

    you are the one throwing away membership of the most sophisticated free trade bloc in human history

    I don’t know what you are on but I think you ought give it up or at least take more water with it.

  94. Simon Coleman
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

    The main reason for the current political chaos is the refusal of you Brexiteers to accept the outcome of the last general election. May said – ‘give me more power to negotiate tough, with a threat of no deal to back it up’. The electorate took away her majority and therefore rejected her demand. That should have meant that you, Mr Redwood and co, work out a compromise with former remainers to bring about a sensible Brexit. But you don’t know the meaning of the word ‘compromise’. In any case, the EU are laughing at us because no deal would be such a bad outcome that its value as a threat is virtually non-existent. The no deal nonsense has actually weakened our negotiating position.

  95. Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:13 pm | Permalink

    We are heading for the point of no return,good!! Today this government allowed Tommy Robinson to be incarcerated for thirteen years in secret with no representation.You are about to see events over which the government will have no control and political statements will not mollify the electorate.Goodbye common sense!!

  96. Caterpillar
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

    The disgraceful (rule following) behaviour by the EU was and is to be expected. What should not have been expected is the resignations and avoidance of his promise of ex-pm Cameron, and the ignoring of the referendum, including by the current PM, of so many MPs from all parties. Ignoring the democratic process to leave parts of UK sovereignty with the EU, not returning to independence is an act of peacefulness of historic proportions. The act against democracy, against UK values that so many MPs and Lords wish to follow will go down in history. These are the individuals that for their own power and interests turn their backs on a free referendum to forever shackle the values of the UK. How each of these politicians can look in a mirror and not recognise what they are doing behind their smugness is shocking. Two chambers populated with people who do not value their own country, who do not value the democratic process, who do not value values.

  97. Ken Moore
    Posted May 26, 2018 at 10:57 pm | Permalink

    Dr Redwood well knows that a ‘no deal’ would be a disaster. As with the government, he never sets out any great details just sketchy proposals that superficially look good enough to command popular support. I commend him on building a career out of this approach but with the Brexit issue this just will not do.

    Unfortunately he and the government have set their face against the only sensible option – EEA membership. With this option we :-

    – Leave the customs union
    – Get to make our own trade deals
    -Pay much less into the EU
    -No common agricultural and fisheries policy
    -Not bound by the ECJ
    -Have some control on immigration.

    Instead we have a series of unworkable badly thought out proposals.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted May 28, 2018 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

      That option was ruled out by the Irish government over six months ago.

      “Sky’s Lewis Goodall takes a look at the border of Sweden and non-EU Norway and whether it could work as a model for Ireland post-Brexit.”

      And the answer to that question provided by the Irish government was, and still is, an absurd, extreme and intransigent “no”.

  98. robert lewy
    Posted May 27, 2018 at 12:35 am | Permalink

    There seems to be a near consensus amongst Brexiteers here in the belief that the EU
    has sensed weakness and is not minded to offer even a deal that they could live with.

    Because Barnier doesn’t believe that we will walk away he continues to ramp up his demands.

    Of course, we should never have got into this situation. We should have made the necessary arrangements for a No-Deal outcome and made it clear that this was the likely outcome if we faced continuing obduracy.

    In reality, Leaving always involved two elements:-

    1) exiting EU and trading on WTO terms until the second element was achieved.
    2) negotiating trading terms which reflected a compromise between the respective interests of the EU and UK.

    The Article 50 approach blurred the two elements and was convenient for the EU to attempt to extort ransom money from the UK and further to test the sincerity of the Leave intention.

    If it is actually the case that the EU believes that the UK will swallow the toughest terms that they can impose ACTION must be taken to demonstrate that we mean what we say.

    Walking away without a deal still seems to be the best hope of securing a satisfactory outcome.

    If we say and do this then the EU will be tested and we will then see how far they are prepared to go in resisting a fair trading arrangement. My bet is that if we accept the uncertain situation that a No Deal entails the EU will realise that we are serious and will
    need to negotiate seriously if they want to retain market access to UK market.

  99. Original Richard
    Posted May 27, 2018 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    “Does the EU favour No Deal?”

    No, the EU is expecting Mrs May to capitulate.

  100. Tom
    Posted May 27, 2018 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    I think the EU’s end game is this.

    1) Get the UK to agree to a backstop where Northern Ireland remains in the customs union and single market unless an alternative is agreed.
    2) Realise that a Conservative/DUP government can’t accept separate rules for Northern Ireland and thus that this means the whole UK must stay in the customs union and single market
    3) Refuse to accept any alternative proposed by HMG
    4) Then say that to avoid an hard border the UK must either stay in both the customs union and single market as there is no alternative acceptable to both sides.

    May’s instincts on this are sound – she is committed to leave both customs union and single market but the parliamentary arithmetic is not her in favour. Either she’ll do a U turn on both or get defeated in parliament. After a defeat she can either concede or call an election. And Labour have already agreed to stay in the customs union and may well decide to stay in the single market too. I’m sure in the run up to any vote in parliament we’ll hear lots of Project Fear type fake news about the dangers of a closed Northern Ireland border, how leaving the customs union and single market will lead to extra costs of £10bn, £20bn, £100bn etc.

    I.e. the EU have a pretty strong negotiating position. I wish it weren’t the case but I think they’ll force CU/SM membership on the UK. Maybe even EEA membership. Both Norway and Switzerland were forced to accept EU single market rules even though the Norwegian electorate rejected EU membership and the Swiss one rejected both EU and EEA membership and also rejected free movement of people in a referendum.

    It’s pretty clear the EU is determined that every country on the continent be subject to their rules, regardless of what electorates and elected politicians want.

  101. wab
    Posted May 28, 2018 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    The EU made it perfectly clear, both before and after the referendum, what the consequences would be if the UK left the EU. Unfortunately the UK is run by a bunch of fantasists (both Tory and Labour) who continue to believe that the UK can both have its cake and eat it too. The unfolding disaster (no matter how it ends now) is clear for all to see, but the fantasists still want to blame Johnny Foreigner.

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, He graduated from Magdalen College Oxford, has a DPhil and is a fellow of All Souls College. A businessman by background, he has been a director of NM Rothschild merchant bank and chairman of a quoted industrial PLC.

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