The EU has nothing we want that is worth £39bn

We must leave the single market and customs union when we leave the EU. That’s about the only thing the official Leave and Remain campaigns agreed about, and is also the view of the EU itself.

We cannot stay half in the single market, and we should not want to.

The government has to accept the verdict of Salzburg, that the EU  don’t want Chequers either.

We should offer a good Free Trade Agreement. You do not pay to trade.

The EU is merely offering a Withdrawal Agreement. That is all take for them and no give to us. We should reject it.

We should not want to spend another 21 months in the EU in a so called transition. It would be a transition to nowhere, with 21 months of uncertainty and argument over what the future might  bring.


If we just leave just look at the upside:


An end to  business uncertainty, and proof that the stupid scare stories were as wrong as the Remain economic forecasts for 2016-17.

£39bn to spend on tax cuts and public service improvements over two years, giving a good boost to jobs and our economy

The right to settle our own migration policy, and to encourage more people settled in the UK into jobs with better wages

Taking back control of our fish to rebuild our damaged fishing industry

Setting out our own agriculture policy so we grow more at home again as we used to before we went into the EEC/EU

Deciding on  our own tariff levels – with lower tariffs or no tariffs where we cannot grow or make the things concerned.

Signing trade deals with many countries that want even better trading relations with us.


The government says it is getting on with No deal planning. So bring on the fishing, farming, trading and spending policies that we need and want, to use our new won freedoms.





    September 22, 2018

    I’m not concerned with May’s public statements as such political devices tell us absolutely nothing about what is really happening behind closed doors.

    What we saw on Friday was utterly concocted, deliberate and a charade. Barnier, Merkel and May are on the same page and all are conspiring to ensure total continuity after March 2019.

    This British PM is utterly devoid of sincerity. She’s a ruthless political animal without any appreciation of that most fundamental of all human qualities, morals. Doing the right thing and knowing it’s the right thing to do is fundamental to how we are. May will never understand this

    The EU (Germany – Merkel) do not want the UK (May) to leave the EU. May doesn’t want the UK to leave the EU. May and Merkel are on the same page. Do not expect the UK to leave the EU in March 2019.
    May will find some reason as to why this won’t happen.

    Most Tory voters have had enough of this PM and her pandering to all and sundry. It’s time for a PM that embraces the UK, its history, its culture and its heritage. No more trotting off to Africa on virtue signalling exercises. No more trotting off to see Merkel with her begging bowl and humiliating the UK in the process. No more pandering to vocal and vexatious rights activists. No more attacks on our freedoms and liberties using the social control mechanisms of PC and identity politics –

    Come on Tory MPs, let’s have a proper PM that stands up for the UK, its people and its freedoms

    1. Nig l
      September 22, 2018

      On balance I think you are correct. This is a last minute cynical attempt to shore up Theresa May because they know she will crumble.

      The problem lies with the pathetic so called negotiations and posturing that she has fronted, I won’t say led because I see no leadership, over the past two years._

      1. Ian wragg
        September 22, 2018

        The EU are only interested in the Withdrawal Agreement as this is a surrender document.
        This gives Brussels control over large areas of our domestic policy and the latest addition is a clause stating no future government can modify it.

        1. Hope
          September 22, 2018

          JR, your opening paragraph is untrue. Regulatory alignment is single market by another name. The Irish backstop, created by May and EU, still promoted by May yesterday means staying in the single market for goods and agri products forever without a voice or veto. Prove to me I am wrong.

          This charade is about helping May get the disastrous withdrawal agreement and Chequers through parliament. It is about creating a wagon round moment to help May before her conference. She is devoid of all trust. Too little too late. Get rid of her.

    2. Fedupsoutherner
      September 22, 2018

      Duncan, hats off to you. There couldn’t be a better post than yours for the first of the day. It sums up so well what many of us will want to say so well. John is right too. £39b is not acceptable to pay the EU for nothing. They are taking the piss. May must not buckle. She must stand her ground and leave with no deal. She must keep to her word that no deal is better than a bad deal. She must be reminded of this at your Tory conference. Let her be in no doubt that we have had enough!

      1. L Jones
        September 22, 2018

        You’re right, Fedup. Duncan’s post says it all.
        I don’t think anyone can really be taken in by Mrs May’s empty words, and false indignation – she is a bad actor on top of everything else. You can see the insincerity and discomfort oozing from her. She and her self-interested cohort have never really been on the side of our country, and it shows.

        No, we shouldn’t have ever offered money in the interests of trade – why was this even considered to be a good thing? Why were we trying from the very beginning to bribe this ‘organisation’?

      2. Denis Cooper
        September 22, 2018

        But leaving with no deal is not “her ground”, because she belongs to the traditional “unhampered trade with Europe is vital to our economy (and the profits of our party’s supporters) and therefore much more important than our national sovereignty and democracy” school of Tory belief which led us into this mire in the first place.

        I nearly wrote “school of thought”, but anybody who actually thinks about it, and bothers to look up some background data – much easier now with the internet – and has some basic, primary school, arithmetical skills, can see that it is all nonsense.

        Look at that little teaser from Mark Carney which was leaked after the main leaks from the supposedly confidential cabinet proceedings, that it would give a £16 billion boost to the UK economy if the Chequers proposals were accepted:

        “With UK GDP around the £2 trillion mark a £16 billion boost would be about a one-off lift of about 0.8%, which is similar to the natural growth of the UK economy during the period that she and her favourite euromaniac civil servant Olly Robbins have been cooking it up that plan, and is also in the same ballpark as the likely gross benefit to the UK from the creation of the EU Single Market and the gain over WTO terms that might accrue from a special trade agreement like CETA, the EU – Canada trade agreement.”

      3. Hope
        September 22, 2018

        It is not £39 billion, all our assets included as well including £11 billion in the ECB. It is about £100 billion. But May has always deceitfully stopped giving us the detail for the money so we do not know the true amount under her dishonest Kitkat policy to hide costs and ties from public. This was caught on camera and May has done nothing about it, therefore it is reasonable to assume as she is in charge of them that it was with her knowledge and connivance.

      4. Bob
        September 22, 2018

        “She must keep to her word”

        When did Mrs May last do that?
        The only reason she makes these speeches is to mollify, demobilise and neutralise Brexiteers.

        Remember this one?

        “We do not seek to hold onto bits of membership as we leave…”

        “A Global Britain must be free to strike trade agreements with countries from outside the European Union too.”

      5. Dennis
        September 22, 2018

        This £39bn has still not been sorted out, at least for me. Many at least of some knowledge are still saying that this is not a bill but payments due to past commitments (still not listed though). Although I hear much over the past 2 years this contention has never been really explained.

        And JR please don’t say you have explained all this many times before – think of those who have only recently joined your blog or do you think no newcomers ever exist?

        Reply Much of it us another 21 months in the EU with continued contributions as per the draft Withdrawal Agreement

        1. Dennis
          September 22, 2018

          You see, Richar1 further down says, “What’s the actual saving? It’s not £39bn as it seems to be accepted some of this will be owed legally even with no Deal.”

          1. Dennis
            September 22, 2018

            Now I see there even more confusion about the £39Bn below here!! JR please settle this question once for all.

    3. Sir Joe Soap
      September 22, 2018

      You’re crediting her with too much guile, but yes, the EU aren’t as stupid, and they know that playing up like this with her gives her the opportunity for cover when the leavers around her are disappearing.

    4. Lifelogic
      September 22, 2018

      Indeed, I fear and suspect you are spot on.

    5. Excalibur
      September 22, 2018

      Duncan, I have noticed before that some of your posts are among the most perceptive and well written on this site. Congratulations on this riposte, and warm compliments to our host for this singularly wise and prescient analysis.

    6. Mark B
      September 22, 2018

      I agree.

    7. Peter Wood
      September 22, 2018

      Excellent post.

      I think it misses one critical issue; that is that the EU club (and most European nationals contributing here) has now made it clear that they don’t want the UK in or associated with the club at all. We are just too much trouble, and would be forevermore. We have said we don’t want the Euro, we don’t want further integration, we don’t want free movement. In short, we are not ‘on the team’.

      Therefore it’s out with the Brits, don’t waste time trying to help them with any trade deals but make sure you get a good wedge off them as they leave. Nothing more.

      However what do WE do next? We need a PM who plays by these rules, and puts the nation on DEFCON 1 as far as economic preparedness is concerned. That means at least a years worth of economic reserves so that we can continue our way of life, trading on WTO terms alone with the entire World.

    8. A.Sedgwick
      September 22, 2018

      Agreed, it is becoming very tedious stating the obvious. Mrs.May became PM by accident, she is hopelessly unsuited to the job, her public charisma is virtually nil but she is so arrogant that she thinks she is a saviour. Her mistakes continue from the Home Office through to her time as PM. As a rule of thumb if every political decision she made she had opted for the opposite course of action we would be in a better place.

    9. Brian Tomkinson
      September 22, 2018

      I agree with you completely.
      We need action not pre-scripted, duplicitous, mendacious words.
      Things have a nasty smell of Maastricht about them when PM cajoled MPs to vote for party before country.

    10. Narrow Shoulders
      September 22, 2018

      I have some foil in my kitchen if you would like to reinforce your tin hat Duncan.

      The EU is doing what it always does, it is intransigent until the last minute, it is sure of its position so does not need to posture as you surmise.

      Prime Minister May is out of her depth, but not helped by having to cope with a divided position in the UK with more apparatchiks, civil servants and politicians demanded we stay close than those who wish to leave.

      Your ire and suspicion should be aimed at the likes of Soubry, Morgan, Grieve, Wollaston (defector), Ummuna, Lammy and Starmer plus the hectoring opportunist (“I have spoken to more of the right people than you so I know the true position”) Gina Miller. Without them Prime Minister May would have little choice but to leave on the terms you would wish for.

      1. hefner
        September 22, 2018

        NS, indeed I think Duncan and his followers are getting hot under the collar simply because they are unable to read correctly the situation. From the beginning, the EU27 represented by both the Commission and the Council have said they would not move on their four freedoms. Whether you like it or not, that’s the position they have kept since 24 June 2016. I also think that the PM has been trying to find a median way hoping to get more than a Norway or a Canada-type deal, possibly/obviously influenced by some civil servants but also trying to navigate between the demands/requests of both the hard Remainers and hard Brexiters among the MPs in her party.
        I consider those on this blog talking about May following Merkel’s diktats as clowns with a very limited political sense and understanding. Unfortunately they are becoming more numerous by the day to the point that only JR’s daily contributions and a very few others are worth reading.

      2. John Hatfield
        September 22, 2018

        Shoulders, the Tories are in the pockets (cliché) of big-business. You did not mention that. It is certain EU connected businesses that are pulling May’s strings. The folk you mention are simple left-wing political groupies.

        1. Puffer Fish
          September 26, 2018

          JH, It would be strange of big business to go on supporting the Tories (at least some of the most fanatics among them) after one of the mafia bosses warned them on “consequences”: 29/09/2014 Daily Telegraph “Business that speak out for Britain’s EU membership will be punished” …

    11. Peter
      September 22, 2018

      Well Chequers is a non starter. Nobody wants it. It cannot be tweaked.

      May’s Friday speech is irrelevant. A desperate attempt to gain sympathy and muster support. Newspapers clamouring to demand why there is no instant response from the EU.

      Chequers still needs to be firmly rejected if she pushes it again.

      Time is running out for a different deal and she is not inclined to look at one. So WTO it must be.

      May is best be left in post until April

    12. oldtimer
      September 22, 2018

      The issue comes down to trust in Mrs May. Given the duplicitous way she undermined David Davis and the Brexit department, why should we believe her now?

      The EU will respond to her request for an alternative by offering a “declaration” on future trade relations. Mr Rees-Mogg has said he will not vote for that, only for an actual Canada style free trade deal. It seems a stretch to negotiate that by March 2019.

      Mrs May’s reaction to any EU proposal will be revealing. I read on Conservative Home that its survey of party members favoured a Canada + + free trade deal (42.82%) over exit with no deal (36.61%). The aggregate opinions in favour of Chequers, the EEA or Brexit postponement is only c21%.

      I no longer trust May with these negotiations.

    13. Peter
      September 22, 2018

      One danger is that May does belatedly agree to a change of plan. Canada plus or whatever.

      The EU says it is acceptable but needs more work on the full details.

      Do Not Sign A Withdrawal Agreement.

      Leave on WTO basis. New plans can then be reworked from scratch with no strings attached.

      Do Not Sign A Withdrawal Agreement.

      1. Peter
        September 22, 2018

        Opponents will spin the claim that we are not properly prepared for WTO.

        Do not fall for this.

      2. Bob
        September 22, 2018

        I would just like to re-iterate that,

        “Do Not Sign A Withdrawal Agreement.”

      3. Know-Dice
        September 22, 2018

        That’s why the EU want May rather than an unknown quantity “Boris” !!!

      4. acorn
        September 22, 2018

        When you say “Do Not Sign A Withdrawal Agreement”, what exactly do you you mean? Say, do you mean don’t sign ANYTHING as a counter party with the EU at all before the Brexit hour, 29/03/19.

        To avoid “Chaos Brexit” as Brussels techies are calling it, the UK will need a few dozen, one page “chaos mitigation” understandings with the EU. Other wise, flying to and transferring through, EU airports security will be a problem. Likewise, it will be open season for more foreign fishing boats in UK waters than you can count.

    14. Alison
      September 22, 2018

      Great post by Dr Redwood.
      Duncan, I strongly agree. I am strongly suspicious that Salzburg’s episodes of cake, Juncker book, stronger disapproval of the Chequers agreement from the EU Council was cooked up .. I then dreamt that it was by Olly Robbins, Tusk, Selmayr … all people who seem a little impish. I also dreamt that on Friday, Mr Robbins confessed to Mrs May, who hadn’t known anything about it.
      Cooking up the episode has had the result of making Mrs May look strong to the UK, simply so that she can get through the Tory party conference … worse still, with Chequers intact.
      There are quite a few people tweeting the same suspicions.

    15. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      I think you are absolutely right, Duncan.

    16. L Jones
      September 22, 2018

      No, Alison, it isn’t ”making Mrs May look strong to the UK”. I doubt there are many people who are fooled by her bad acting and weasel words. It’s made her look exactly what she is – duplicitous, insincere, false in every way. After everything that’s gone before it would be amazing if everyone suddenly saw her as a ”strong and stable” leader just because of one speech, written by Oily, no doubt.

      Duncan’s word ”charade” is exactly right.

  2. Lifelogic
    September 22, 2018

    Exactly right.

    Why on earth has this government been wasting so much time, effort and money on the Chequers (Vassal State) lunacy? One assumes they were given some assurances on it by the EU and the current impasse is part of the pantomime May and the EU are putting on before some dreadful deal is agreed at the last minute. May & Hammond cannot be trusted on Brexit, the economy, fiscal policy, their endless attack on business, home buyers, housing, pension pots, insurance …… or anything else.

    1. Sir Joe Soap
      September 22, 2018

      If Chequers, or anything with a common rulebook, survives Monday then we know something very dodgy is happening per the above posts.

    2. Rien Huizer
      September 22, 2018

      Do you prefer the shadow government policies then?

      1. libertarian
        September 22, 2018


        Really? Thats the scope of your thinking. Disagree with A therefore must have B. Oh dear oh dear .

        1. Rien Huizer
          September 22, 2018

          Just banter of course. But playing with fire is not for the clumsy.

          1. libertarian
            September 24, 2018


            Fair enough

            I agree , the incompetent May government is indeed playing with fire, it appears that the daft Remain nutters in the Tory party would prefer Corbyn rather than leave the teet of the EU

      2. Lifelogic
        September 22, 2018

        No Corbyn would be even worse than the appalling socialist dope May he would really destroy the economy.

        Though Corbyn used to be sound on the EU (for most of his life) about the only thing he ever had right until he changed his mind..

        1. libertarian
          September 23, 2018


          Corbyn hasn’t changed his mind, he’s playing politics he needs to keep the PLP onside until he can replace them all with his fan base . He is more anti EU than Boris et al . He can’t implement his programme as an EU member its not allowed

    3. Fishknife
      September 22, 2018

      We have allowed the Europhiles to shape the argument.
      This is not a divorce, or leaving the “club”.
      The EU is a Casino, with France and Germany the House.
      Euros are house chips.
      We, the UK, were suckered into paying a subscription to join in the redistribution of wealth.
      The canny half of the population, which includes a goodly proportion of those being fleeced, aren’t happy punters.
      We are leaving.
      At the moment, and probably for the next 188 days there is No Political Will for an agreement.
      It is not in Brussel’s interest, for the time being.
      Mrs. May and the EU are playing a good game of Charades, her latest performance may even start to pull the Conservative Party together.
      Keep kicking the can Mrs. May, I’ll support you – provided we LEAVE.

    4. John Hatfield
      September 22, 2018

      It’s all connected with the “deep and special relationship” that the Remainers promoted, Ll.

  3. Fedupsoutherner
    September 22, 2018

    Duncan, hats off to you. There couldn’t be a better post than yours for the first of the day. It sums up so well what many of us will want to say so well. John is right too. £39b is not acceptable to pay the EU for nothing. They are taking the piss. May must not buckle. She must stand her ground and leave with no deal. She must keep to her word that no deal is better than a bad deal. She must be reminded of this at your Tory conference. Let her be in no doubt that we have had enough!

    1. fedupsoutherner
      September 22, 2018

      Sorry John, my phone didn’t show that my comment had been posted, hence the repeat. Mind you, I feel so strongly about it all I could repeat it all day!!

      1. L Jones
        September 22, 2018

        Good post, Fedup! It’s worth repeating – unlike Mrs M’s specious words!

    2. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      Fedupsoutherner, the trouble is that May doesn’t regards Chequers as a “bad deal”. For so many people, Chequers represents a very bad deal i.e. nor really leaving, and an outright betrayal of those who voted to Leave.

  4. Joe Lolez
    September 22, 2018

    Where is your plan? Give us detail not waffle and pie in the sky about nonexistent trade deals. Most of all, where is your plan on Ireland? You have had over two years now and you Brexiters have no pl,an at all

    Reply All published and clearly set out. Read back through this website

    1. sm
      September 22, 2018

      It’s interesting to see the number of new posters on this site, most of whom trot out the same (false) lines about there being no plans put forward by our host and similarly-minded MPs on trade agreements, the NI border, etc.

      Rather like the unpleasant sneers at the (insert your own offensive adjectives) elderly, in fact.

      I assume it’s meant to be cumulatively menacing, but I’m afraid it just comes over as rather silly.

    2. Ian wragg
      September 22, 2018

      Brussels troll John. Typical response from Brussels. Reject every offer and keep saying we don’t know what you want.
      Nothing will be acceptable except the Withdrawal Agreement and which will leave us in the EU if no agreement is reached.
      Luckily the Withdrawal Agreement should be a dead duck.

    3. Ken moore
      September 22, 2018

      Sorry but there is no substance to your plan…no recognition of the difficulties.

    4. L Jones
      September 22, 2018

      Dear Joe – Not everything appears on Facebook. Try reading something a bit informative for a change. If you haven’t realised by now that there are plenty of alternative plans, and especially those relating to Ireland – well, where have you been? (Besides sitting glued to social media.)

    5. fedupsoutherner
      September 22, 2018

      Not keeping up with play then Joe. Just like most Remainers.

    6. Denis Cooper
      September 22, 2018

      Here is JR’s recently published plan on Ireland:

      It’s 19 pages with a reasonable level of detail.

      Personally I don’t agree with every detail in his plan; and I had already formed my own outline plan about ten months ago, after it had become apparent that the new Irish government led by Leo Varadkar was determined to be obstructive.

      From November 26th 2017:

      “On the TV this morning it was stated that the UK government is “desperate” to move on to trade talks, but this would be vetoed by the Irish government unless the UK government committed to keeping the UK in both the Single Market and the Customs Union …

      … So we should now say that rather than kowtow to the stupid destructive intransigence of the EU we will fall back on WTO trade rules and only seek agreements on the practical or technical aspects of continuing trade.”

      From December 2nd 2017:

      “… When you have an Irish minister saying that they will not tolerate

      “anything that would imply a border on the island of Ireland” …

      when it’s perfectly obvious to all that there already is, and for the foreseeable future there will continue to be, a border on the island of Ireland then there is really no point in any further discussions …

      … There is no point even trying to negotiate with such silly people.”

      So much time and effort has been wasted since then because the pro-EU Theresa May gratuitously agreed that we had a responsibility to prevent the EU and the Irish government erecting unnecessary obstacles to free movement of goods on their side of the border, basically inviting them to hold us to ransom.

      And into that comes Olly Robbins, originally assigned as Permanent Secretary in David Davis’s department but later transferred to advise the Prime Minister, in the same way as he had advised her as Home Secretary.

      From Sunday May 6th 2018:

      “Mrs May’s No 10 Brexit adviser, Olly Robbins, has told her that the ‘partnership’ is the only idea which will allow the UK to cut new trade deals while avoiding the need for a hard border in Ireland – and is also the only plan likely to be accepted by the EU and voted through by the Commons.”

      1. Tad Davison
        September 22, 2018

        The Irish Republic need to think seriously about where the bulk of their exports go to, and the UK needs to quietly remind this upstart EU sock puppet Varadkar, that situation might change if he continues to upset the British people.

        The only thing that makes us buy Irish produce is good will. Take that away by continually doing us down, and the people of the UK might impose their own embargo on Irish goods and to hell with what the EU might wish otherwise!


        1. Gary C
          September 22, 2018

          @ Tad Davison

          Varadkar is indeed enjoying him moment putting down the UK while puffing up his chest, he has delusions of being one of the big boys . . . . . but . . . . . . . . . When this is all over the EU will put him back in his box, he is being used and once they have had what they want he will be ignored.

        2. Andy
          September 22, 2018

          I’ve already stopped buying things from Ireland and from most other EU countries. I will not reverse that policy now and I wish the EU nothing but ill.

          1. Gary C
            September 23, 2018

            I’m with you on that Andy, we no longer buy European wine, cheese, meat’s or any foodstuff we can source elsewhere, next year we are changing our car and it will not be European.

            From one family such a gesture won’t have much affect but if many join in it will.

            Reply I find I can mainly buy excellent home grown food which I do whereever possible.

      2. Sir Joe Soap
        September 22, 2018

        Somebody should ask the Irish how a border came about in the first place. Or did UK gain it’s independence from Ireland in this rewriting of history?

    7. a-tracy
      September 22, 2018

      John, could I suggest you put a Brexit folder at the top of this blog with all your Brexit posts so that visitors that don’t follow your blog on a regular basis can just be referred to it. I read you having to say the same thing about publishing and clearly setting out your Brexit positions so this would save you time just to put a link and make it easy for people.

    8. John Hatfield
      September 22, 2018

      Joe Lolez,
      If ‘Brexiters’ are those who, on the referendum ballot sheet voted to leave, they did not need a plan. They simply wish to leave the EU.
      You should be asking the British government what the “plan” is.

  5. Richard1
    September 22, 2018

    What’s the actual saving? It’s not £39bn as it seems to be accepted some of this will be owed legally even with no Deal.

    I confess to a certain neverousness about no Deal, rather like I felt about leave at the referendum. Perhaps project fear has worked on me. It would of course be of huge long term benefit for the Country and the World if the UK left the EU and went to WTO terms…..and nothing much happened, as it would discredit the chorus of bien pensant doomsayers, so we wouldn’t have to listen to such people in the future. Rather as ‘keynesian’ economists could be ignored for a generation after their 364-signatory March 1981 letter in the Times, which forecast the economic failure of Thatcherism, marked the beginning of the long recovery and boom from Thatchers supply side reforms.

    Fingers crossed!

    1. Denis Cooper
      September 22, 2018

      Once again, there is a big difference between “no deal” in the restricted sense of “no special or preferential trade deal”, and “no deal” in the wider sense of “no deal on anything at all”. We should have given up on any idea of getting a special trade deal with the EU agreed before we left when it became apparent that the EU intended to support the absurd, extreme and intransigent position of the Irish government over the land border, nearly a year ago now, and we should have told the world precisely why we were doing that.

  6. Lifelogic
    September 22, 2018

    On Any Questions (last night) even the usually sound Simon Heffer on was suggesting fairly daft differential VAT rates & other tax incentive businesses up north. The South East is already hugely over taxed relative to other areas due to Hammond’s absurd stamp duty rates of up to 15%, the scrapping of child benefit and personal allowances for many and the 40% and 45% income tax rates which hit mainly London and the South East.

    Was Shakira Martin really elected President of the National Union of Students? Why? She can hardly string a single coherent sentence or cogent idea together.

    Robert Jenrick MP Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury yesterday saying that “Shockingly only one fifth of businesses are run by women”. Why is it “shocking” perhaps most women are just less interested in running a business? Understandably so given all the hassle, taxes, abuse and potential liabilities governments endlessly lump onto business owners.

    Women statistically (on average) tend not to study Physics, Further Maths and Computer Studies that much either. Is that “shocking” too or just the reality? They are perhaps just less interested in making money.

  7. Adam
    September 22, 2018

    £39bn might be worth paying if the EU closed down in 3 months & all European nations returned to being normal self-governing states in harmony.

  8. Bob Dixon
    September 22, 2018

    Michael Gove has laid out his plans for our farmers which are unacceptable. I now need to see what he wants to do with our fishing industry.

    1. Bob
      September 22, 2018

      He will make some fine sounding speeches while agreeing with Brussels to maintain the status quo and the continued decline of what’s left of our fishing fleet.

      He’s a Tory (and a phoney Brexiteer).

      1. Lifelogic
        September 22, 2018

        He has been rather a serial traitor to the Brexit cause. Without him we would not now be suffering Chairman May.

    2. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      Fishing for Leave are not pleased with him at all, I understand, and rightly so in my mind. Never forget that Gove stabbed Johnston in the back, and ask yourself the real reason he did that.

      1. Whorya
        September 22, 2018

        As the recent “Clam” wars have shown. We were legally in the right to fish these areas.
        Then after French fishing trawlers attacked ours. Instead of taking them to court for breaking the EUs law.
        He goes into negotiations with the French law breaking fishermen’s association.
        Asking their law breakers for a compensation deal not to fish our legal fishing grounds. Dispensed to us by the EU under the common fisheries policy.
        Another snowflake minister. Ex. I hope…

    3. mancunius
      September 22, 2018

      By analogy, he’ll want to pay the fishermen for keeping the seas looking beautiful, helping the shore-bound have the mass access to the North Sea they’re longing for, and switching from fishing to growing sustainable seaweed instead.

      1. Chris
        September 24, 2018

        You may be not far off the mark, mancunius.

  9. Newmania
    September 22, 2018

    We have not found £39 bn down the back of the sofa , it is a Brexit bill.
    We have already established that the £39 billion is due on leaving . We have a lead in when we joined and having agreed multi annual spending in writing we cannot welch on.
    The Leave campaign promised a Brexit bonus of £350 per week, Turkey was joining , millions of Syrians were swarming our way ,the “easiest negotiations ever” , a smooth transitio, the exact same access and more , all of which is now revealed to be lies .
    The penny has dropped ..and so has the pounbd ..again.
    This shameful farce is not supported by the country, few wanted the referendum in the first place and it is time well off politicians started to think about the jobs and families their irresponsible actions have put at risk.

    Grow up will you, grow up or just go!

    1. John Finn
      September 22, 2018

      The £39 billion is for what exactly? You seem to be willing to pay for something without knowing exactly what is it. Presumably some of it relates to our “participation” in the single market during the Transition period so if we leave in March 2019 that won’t need to be paid.

      The rest of the money appears to be effectively a “golden goodbye” . The UK have simply recognised that the UK’s exit leaves the EU financially embarrassed and have generously offered to cover any shortfall beyond our leaving date.

      I wasn’t unhappy about the “settlement” but their recent behaviour has altered my attitude. I now say leave without paying a penny and let the EU scum spend the next decade or so trying to sue us for the money.

    2. Tad Davison
      September 22, 2018

      Were you at the Lib Dem conference by any chance? You sure do sound like one!

    3. Denis Cooper
      September 22, 2018

      It is not a “Brexit bill”, it is part of the cost of having joined in the first place.

      1. Anonymous
        September 22, 2018

        Touch’e !

    4. libertarian
      September 22, 2018


      Just making stuff up and crying about it doesn’t really convince you know. You are just so desperate its laughable .

      Er £350 million per week is part of the £39 billion

      I would have a look at the rest of your fellow EU nations problems with immigration if I were you

      Fact checked by BBC the position hasn’t changed still more people favour leaving

      There are 830,000 unfilled jobs in the UK currently. How many do you want ?

    5. L Jones
      September 22, 2018

      Ah, Newmania! Typical Remainian comment – ill-informed and neatly topped off with an insult. True to type, as ever.

      You sound annoyed. Could it be that you’ve just seen the writing on the wall? (Or on Facebook.)

    6. Anonymous
      September 22, 2018

      “We have not found £39 bn down the back of the sofa”

      Well. If Britain goes under the EU will not denude us of our wealth – there won’t be much to take. There will just be a black hole where there used to be an important market (not that I believe this will happen.) What will happen, however (either way) is that they lose one of the top three contributors.

      Britain giving the EU loadsa money is now over – whichever way it turns out.

      Yes. Cutting a weekly bill out feels like a pay rise, money from the back of the sofa if you will. I know this from personal experience.

      The EU is finished. The bad news from Africa is just going to keep coming and coming and the extremists are already sharing power on the Continent. Unlike truly moderate and diverse Britain.

      1. Anonymous
        September 22, 2018

        PS. I saw British Paratroopers wearing EU insignia the other day.

        For this reason alone we should be leaving.

        Remain told us an EU army was sheer fantasy during the referendum.

    7. Dennis Zoff
      September 22, 2018

      Another amusing Newmania tantrum!

      You can’t substantiate anything, hence your puerile frustration.

      There are very many intelligent Remainers out there that are now listening to reason, (they are watching, in real time, the EU’s true intentions unfolding) sadly you are not one of them.

  10. Peter
    September 22, 2018

    The Withdrawal Bill must be rejected.

    Last minute twists may be on the horizon but a good deal definitely is not.

    Kicking the can further down the road is not acceptable. We cannot leave crucial elements for future negotiation with vague promises.

    The EU are less worried about WTO than our negotiators. However, it is clearly the only course to pursue now.

  11. Sakara Gold
    September 22, 2018

    The PM might be carefull about accepting any further invitations by Tusk, Barnier, Junker etc to visit Brussels – to be insulted, humiliated and bullied, knowing that the party conference is only a week away.

    By extension, the foreigners are also insulting us as a nation and the democratic decision to leave. I am no great admirer of Theresa May, but I cannot imagine how her advisers let her walk into an ambush like that by the other 27.

    We should treat them with the distain they deserve and just walk. I’m sure the £39b we would save could be better spent on social housing or our disabled (for e.g) than paying their EU Commissioner pensions

  12. Alan Jutson
    September 22, 2018

    I really do wish everyone would stop referring to a WTO deal as No deal including our PM

    No deal implies that absolutely nothing is in place at all, hence all the stupid fear/scare stories from the uniformed or ignorant.

    164 countries around the World operate under WTO terms including many within the EU and the EU itself.

    The WTO has trading, dispute procedures and protocols all in place, all agreed by all members, it also covers fishing, quite why this was never put in place by our government as a back stop BEFORE we started negotiations, is just plain stupidity.

    Says it all really that we are now scaling around trying to find solutions when one is already in place which the EU have already signed up to.

    1. Alan Jutson
      September 22, 2018

      OOps scaling = scrabbling around.

    2. Denis Cooper
      September 22, 2018

      Theresa May includes security in her “deal”. So either you accept her crazy plan for customs or you have to accept a higher risk of getting killed by terrorists. Likewise if we fail to get her preferred arrangements for trade with our neighbours then we will stand by and watch as they are slaughtered. Oh, and well-behaved EU citizens who are already settled in this country should think themselves very lucky that more than two years too late she has now said that they will not be used as bargaining chips and even if there is no deal they will not be unjustly punished for the unreasonable behaviour of the politicians in their countries of origin. Actually the more I write this the more I think she is really a quite vile person …

  13. GilesB
    September 22, 2018

    1. No portmanteau withdrawal agreement. Separate deals on security etc. So that in future each can be revised seperately.

    2. In March just adopt the Canada Trade deal. In April start negotiating revisions to it.

    3. On the divorce payment, offer a simple round sum payment of say £8billion (yes, pounds not euros. The EU can hedge the currency risk if they want) payable over five years, or go to arbitration/litigation and the EU27 can wait a long, long time before they can even know what number to put into their budget spreadsheet

    1. CharlesE
      September 22, 2018

      It is this kind of stupid speculation that is bringing the country into disrepute- that this kind of nonsense goes unchallenged is an indication of how far the brexiteer extremists have got us up the cul-de-sac

      1..Eùropean countries don’t give two fiddles about what britain has to offer in the way of security- they have their own

      2..what are you talking about ‘a Canada deal’…even if the EU crowd were to agree which I doubt, it’ll take years and years to set it up, more likely because of bad will on both’s not going to be as easy or as good as Canada, more probably a Canada minus deal if we’re lucky

      3..the the divorce payment whatever it is it will be paid in full and probably with compound intetest..the EU side have it all factored in..we are not dealing with the jungle natives now

      At this time, truth is, they only want to see the back of us

  14. Steve
    September 22, 2018

    Actually come to think of it; true, europe doesn’t have anything worth 39bn to us.

    Besides I’m convinced the EU is going to collapse, and we’ll see news coverage of it akin to the Berlin wall coming down.

    The whole thing is a powder keg and all it will take is mass uprising somewhere, followed by a second country doing likewise. and it’s game over. My guess would be Germany, Hungary, possibly also Greece – the birthplace of democracy.

    (Note that a significant number of countries across the EU have far right nationalist governments)

    When it does happen you can be sure the likes of Tusk, Barnier, Juncker and that mob will try to do a runner with the money.

    History repeats.

    1. Bob
      September 22, 2018

      “Tusk, Barnier, Juncker and that mob will try to do a runner with the money.”

      When they do, Britain should not offer them asylum, we should have nothing to do with them.
      Let them go to latin America, and good riddance.

    2. Tad Davison
      September 22, 2018

      That mass uprising you speak of could actually happen here Steve if we don’t get out of the EU.

      The politicians might not yet appreciate the bitterness and resentment felt by the voters – they always seem to be the last to see the reality – but they would be wise to do a little digging. We now need a Prime Minister who does the people’s bidding, not one who works at the behest of some hidden hand, or continually looks to the lucrative lecture circuit post tenure if office.

      I’m afraid we’ve had quite enough of those types in this nation’s recent past. Time all self-interested duplicitous gutless wonders were kicked out of office (including the civil service) for all our sakes.


  15. Mark B
    September 22, 2018

    Good morning

    The EU is merely offering a Withdrawal Agreement

    That is because they, as well as we, are legally obliged to discuss such. Go and read Article 50 section 2.

    There are some areas where the UK can work in partnership with the EU. And I like to emphasise partnership and not vassel state.

    I do not want to be governed by the EU anymore than any of the 17.4 million of us who wanted out. But neither do I want to throw out the baby along with the bath water. The EU is going to go through enormous change over the next decade. It is difficult to predict but I think Ever Closer Union will be the main driver.

    I want a UK that is at ease with itself and the world. Working at international levels to promote free trade, liberty and the rule of law. All this can be achieved but only if we are free from the shackles of the EU. Overtime the EU model will be made redundant as the rest of the world moves on and leaves them with an inefficient centralised government and highly protected closed economy. It will stagnate.

    I want us to be outward looking as we once more. No more little Europeans we should be. But alas, I fear a Tory sell out.

  16. BCL
    September 22, 2018

    I accept the truth of your assertions about the benefits of leaving. I always have. I also recognise that the future is uncertain and there may be some downside to leaving. Mrs May and many others constantly repeat that no one voted to be worse off. That is simply not true. I accept we may be worse off, at least in the short term and I don’t care. I still want to leave. Somethings such as political independence, control of our money and borders, being answerable to our own courts, are more important than a few, or even a lot, of points lost in GDP growth. Besides which, the growth we might expect within the EU is just as uncertain and project fear has been totally discredited and I just don’t believe the forecasts anymore they have been consistently wrong.

  17. Ian Lane
    September 22, 2018

    I have a slightly different reading of Salzburg.
    We know May was in Berlin the day before Chequers and it is inconceivable that Chequers was not discussed with Merkel. And it is inconceivable that Merkel did not give at least encouraging noises. Otherwise why would May proceed with it losing 3 ministers in the process. Merkel then stabbed May in the back, hence May’s genuine shock which has now turned to anger.
    The salient point about a FTA is that the EU wants the withdrawal agreement signed first.
    It is the withdrawal agreement that demands the annexation of NI, which parliament has already rejected and the 40 billion agreed.
    So we can not sign the withdrawal agreement, and there will be no FTA in the short term if we do not. Therefore WTO is the only outcome that respects the integrity of the referendum and the integrity of the UK.
    So we had just better get on with that idea and prepare accordingly.
    I note that Jeremy Hunt has just stated on radio 4 that the EU will only allow us to leave if we dismember our country.
    The penny may be dropping in government, we can only hope so.

  18. Ken moore
    September 22, 2018

    This is a fantasy. In the unlikely event that Mrs May offers no deal it would never survive a parliamentary vote. Why not back EEA membership giving the time to entangle 40 years of EU integration?

    1. Bob
      September 22, 2018

      “time to entangle 40 years of EU integration?”

      #Freudian Slip

    2. Denis Cooper
      September 22, 2018

      The fantasy is in your last sentence, not least because even a foremost longstanding advocate of that route has now admitted that it is too late to embark on it.

    3. Prigger
      September 22, 2018

      @Ken moore
      Parliamentarians are far from stupid. They know what will happen to them eventually if they vote against all of us. Must it be Twitterwrit?

    4. Ian wragg
      September 22, 2018

      EEA is not leaving the EU.

  19. Ken moore
    September 22, 2018

    I agree. Don’t accept that the government didnt have informal discussions before Saltzberg. It’s all about Mrs May’s me me mee power trip. All spin and no substance she is another heir to blair with flexible morals and principles.

  20. ChrisS
    September 22, 2018

    I think it would be impossible to leave in six months time without some kind of transition period however what is needed is a genuine transition i.e. we need to negotiate where we are going to end up and over the 20 months gradually move towards it, implementing sections as we go.

    As we would effectively be in the EU for that time, albeit in a gradually reducing degree of engagement, we should offer to make reducing net contributions. I would suggest 100% on the first 6 months then 75%, 50% and 25% in the last three months. The amount in each period would be reducing to reflect our exact engagement in the activities of the EU during the period.

    As there would only be a free trade deal, which no other country has ever had to buy, we would not need to pay anything beyond the transition contribution which, by my calculation, would come to £10.56bn (based on the 2017 net contribution of £8.9bn as stated in the House of Commons Library).

  21. Christine
    September 22, 2018

    Give Ireland some Project Fear of its own. Ask them how they will cope when their trucks are stuck in the gridlock in Kent. Ask them how they will remain competitive when we remove tariffs from non-EU beef. Ask them about their future in the EU when their Corporation Tax has to be increased, they have to contribute to the EU army and they become a net contributor to the budget. The UK bailed them out during the financial crisis and we are their biggest market. They need to be reminded that the UK not the EU is their true friend. For all the squabbles between Ireland and the UK we are closely related in language, culture and blood. The Irish border is just being used as a political pawn. Speak to the people of Ireland rather than their politicians. Let them put pressure on their Government. The Brexit team should be over there now, explaining that a good trade deal is in their best interest. Ireland may think they are important now but any country on the periphery of the EU will be cast aside in a few years as the centre block takes power.

  22. JoolsB
    September 22, 2018

    John, as usual you are talking to the converted here. It’s your pigheaded leader you need to do something about. Unbelievably she is still insisting Chequers is workable. Next week is your chance along with all your fellow Brexiteers to make her understand she is not the right person to stand up to the EU and must stand down and them replace her with someone who is, preferable Boris or JRM.

    1. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      I understand, if media reports are accurate, that there is a critical meeting this Monday when May will be told that hanging on to Chequers will result in resignations. We will see. Certainly action is needed, not words.

  23. BOF
    September 22, 2018

    I am starting to believe that even if Mrs May and Robbins (their seems to be no one else deciding Brexit policy) switched to a Canada style free trade agreement, she (they) would find a way of keeping us under the control of the ECJ and keeping us closely aligned to EU rules. Our armed forces would be under the control of the EU and I hold out no hope for our fishing industry.

    If Mrs May is still determined to continue with Chequers we have a very serious situation because it will certainly involve yet more compromise to get the already very bad deal through.

    It is little use the CP chairman telling us how dangerous Corbyn is while the Party insists on staying with the worst PM most members can remember.

  24. Dave Andrews
    September 22, 2018

    I agree we need to step up agricultural production, but that in itself is quite a challenge. I heard the other day about one farmer who would just love to employ British people in the industry, particularly at harvest time, but her adverts only attracted one applicant from the UK, who then failed to turn up. Meanwhile, supply of workers from Eastern Europe is plentiful.
    A suggestion – perhaps the UK has become too city-centric, with young families having to leave rural areas, because they can’t afford to compete for housing against wealthy buyers for second homes and holiday cottages. So rural village life dies and so does the connection of the UK population with the land. Farming declines because there isn’t the workforce there any more, just when we need it more than ever.

    1. Tad Davison
      September 22, 2018

      Excent point Dave!


      1. Tad Davison
        September 22, 2018

        (excellent * Damned mobile phones)

    2. L Jones
      September 22, 2018

      (Sorry, off topic – but in reply to Mr Andrews’ post)
      There has to be a drive towards getting students into the mind set of actually WORKING during their holidays – just as they did a few decades ago. Three years or more at University would then really encompass a life experience, instead of just a few hours a week studying, followed by weeks off doing nothing.
      A summer job picking, or whatever, was once prized. Students didn’t expect to be paid to go off on a three month jolly, or to be subsidized by the bank of Mum and Dad. They actually believed they should pay their way – at least, enough of them did to make a difference.

    3. Anonymous
      September 22, 2018

      My boys joined an agency for seasonal work – they were not offered anything (we live in a rural area.)

      What happens is that whole gangs are hired and live on site or nearby in caravans to be bussed in.

      My brother used to be private hire driver and one of his contracts was to do a round of pickups of (English) people to take them to farms. They were undercut by imported work gangs.

      I wager that not one person on this site would give up home to live in a caravan to work for minimum wage when the dole pays better.

      In any case; those farmers should be taxed for any healthcare that those imported workers use, any schooling, housing etc provided by the state – for any costs to the state of those who choose to remain in Britain and for all of the costs of the displaced indigenous workers.

      Otherwise their produce is based on false economy and we would be better off without and the national debt proves it.

      Part of my wishing to leave the EU is that we need a bit of hardship. Some are too fat, too lazy and too uneducated and freedom of movement is being used to hide this. In the long run it will prove to be a disaster as miles and miles of newly concreted countryside is showing.

      1. Anonymous
        September 22, 2018

        Also there would be plenty of willing workers if we stopped hiding youth unemployment with useless degree courses.

  25. Narrow Shoulders
    September 22, 2018

    There is much discussion about goods, settlement and Northern Island’s border but it has gone very quiet on services and passporting.

    I want to see some proposals about how our service industry will keep running a massive surplus with the EUzone when we are free.

    Goods? we run a deficit, we would benefit from tariffs either by sourcing cheaper from elsewhere, making our own or extra tax to use if we continue to pay fro EU goods and it is our choice whether to put a border up in NI. They can do what they like on their side.

    Services is where our expertise lies and access needs to be preserved. I don’t think that Canada plus plus does this yet.

    The thirty nine billion? It is a negotiating tool, if we get close to what we want then why not let them have what they want, that is negotiation? If we don’t then they don’t get what they want.

  26. Geoff not Hoon
    September 22, 2018

    Perhaps it will be the time to begin manufacturing again of some, nay all, of the things long since handed to Germany or France.

    1. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      President Trump is setting an excellent example on this, and it has happened swiftly. Quite amazing.

      A grave problem we face in the UK is the utter inertia that we have sunk into, and the belief that we cannot be entrepreneurial, and generate wealth. We have been brainwashed into thinking that we have to be subservient to overseas masters who govern us and who will decide what is best for us, in a one size fits all model. However, that does not by any means translate as best for the UK e.g. fishing. Also as these rulers/eurocrats are committed globalists of the new world order variety, (where borderless countries are the goal, with national identities broken down – Peter Sutherland – with mass movement of labour and mass immigration key tools for achieving this goal and for creating wealth for the multinationals and political elite) we will not be able to break out of this inertia until we leave the EU, and govern ourselves and regain our national identity and sovereignty.

    2. libertarian
      September 22, 2018


      We ARE already manufacturing things, we’ve never stopped. I do wish people would stop posting this kind of nonsense . Manufacturing technology changed the way we make things so far fewer people are employed as a percent of the workforce and because of new industries in software, digital and finance the percentage manufacturing contributes to GDP has gone down but we make just as much as we ever did. We are the 8th largest manufacturing nation in the world .

      We are world leaders in manufacturing in aerospace, medical devices, electronics, satellites, commercial vehicles, optics and surgical instruments etc etc

      1. L Jones
        September 22, 2018

        Absolutely right, Libertarian.
        You can find plenty of stuff manufactured in the UK, if you take time to look. There is a choice out there – you don’t have to buy EU stuff all the time. There’s often a good alternative, in every day things too – toiletries, for example.

      2. Rien Huizer
        September 22, 2018

        Of course. But there are quite a few existing jobs at stake in the event of a destructive brexit. Replacing them may be difficult and keep in m ind that those people’s votes must be bought too. With what then? Freedom? Control over borders and that sort of texts?

    3. Tad Davison
      September 22, 2018

      The bit I don’t get, is all the negativity that emanates from remoaners who refuse to believe the UK can compete on equal terms after we (hopefully) make a clean break. They seek the comfort blanket of EU protectionism and forget Sir Henry Royce’s famous line – if it exists, improve it. If it doesn’t exist, invent it.

      Then, if we in the UK produce the right goods, of the right quality, and for the right price, we have nothing to fear. So let’s take a leaf out of America’s book and adopt a ‘can do’ mentality and not look for reasons why we can’t do it. Let’s build well-managed businesses that look to establish a good reputation for quality and reliability to challenge the likes of German car manufacturers.


      1. Anonymous
        September 22, 2018

        It’s become an ego thing now.

        “How dare the oiks defeat us !”

        The seething, snobbish contempt from Andy and Newmania his here for all to see and I thank them both for providing the evidence.

        James O’Brien is doing a cracking job for Leave too. (LBC) Funnily enough, a more articulate breed of Leaver can be found everywhere but on his show, it seems. I’d love to hear JRM or our host in debate with him.

  27. Edwardm
    September 22, 2018


  28. piglet
    September 22, 2018

    Your list of benefits of just leaving without signing any withdrawal agreement is what I thought I was voting for when I voted Leave. I did not vote for some new “relationship” with the EU; I voted to LEAVE.

    1. fedupsoutherner
      September 22, 2018

      Piglet. That is what Cameron promised us when we had the referendum. We would LEAVE not renegotiate some terms with the EU that leaves them better off while we pay for it.

    2. L Jones
      September 22, 2018

      Agreed, Piglet. Spot on.

  29. agricola
    September 22, 2018

    Is Salzburg the new Damascus. Will common sense prevail. Has the PM really had enough of the intransigent EU. She sounds as if she has, time will tell. She makes Machiavelli sound like Dell boy. Do we give her credit for putting the boot into the EU, or do we await another appeasing twist like Chequers. Place your bets.

    1. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      I fear it will be appeasement again. I am as pessimistic as Jeremiah: “Can the leopard change his spots?”

      1. Anonymous
        September 22, 2018

        Not as easily as a pair of kitten heels.

  30. maybyso
    September 22, 2018

    Don’t bother offering them a FTA .. we did not vote for a FTA ..we voted to leave
    anyway we have new trade deals coming down the tracks- a la Liam Fox- I hope

    so don’t sign anything- and that way we’ll crash out and won’t have to pay 39billion- for the moment.

    so then with the money we can build more fishing boats and merchant ships, train up more seafarers, yuipee’ it’ll be like back to the 1950’s and 1960’s- deja vue.

  31. Ron Olden
    September 22, 2018

    Jeremy Hunt says to EU Leaders:-

    ‘don’t mistake politeness for weakness’

    I don’t often agree with Jeremy Hunt but I do about this. And he might have added:-

    ‘Don’t mistake the childish threats, ‘Tweets’ and gobbing off, by Tusk and Co for strength’.

    You don’t hear Mrs Merkel and Macron behaving like this. And it’s them that have the power to decide. Not office boys like Tusk and Barnier.

    It seems that in the EU and EU states that the less significant you are the more abusive you are.

    1. L Jones
      September 22, 2018

      Is that a bit like the EU Remainers too then, Ron?

  32. Alan Joyce
    September 22, 2018

    Dear Mr. Redwood,

    The Prime Minister in her statement post-Salzburg says that she will not overturn the result of the referendum. But her actions always betray her words. I was astounded to hear her say “I have worked day and night to deliver a deal that sees the UK leave the EU. I have worked to bring people with me…..” Does that include sidelining her Brexit Secretary and secretly handing the task to a Civil Servant?

    Her tub-thumping speech looks like a ruse to get her through the party conference more or less unscathed so that she can then resume her objective of keeping the UK in the EU’s clutches.

    She will be joined in her endeavours by the majority of MP’s and unelected Lords (with notable exceptions) who, horrified at the prospect of actually having to contribute something to the running of a sovereign country themselves, have at every turn sought to frustrate the result of the referendum.

    MP’s offered a referendum that never in their most terrible nightmares did they expect to lose. Since then, we have seen them work to destroy the Brexit process whilst paying lip service to it. At the end of their efforts, they point to the chaos they have created and say “this is what Brexit looks like, do you still want it?” Many of them secretly hoping that the growing chorus of another People’s Vote’ will reach a level to force a reversal of the referendum result.

    The Prime Minister then parrots her No Deal is better than a Bad Deal mantra. It is an obvious thing to say.

    But who believes that the government she leads has undertaken anywhere near the level of preparation necessary to ensure that the UK is ready for No Deal?

    Where are the fishing, farming, trading and spending policies? With incumbents such as the present Chancellor in the Treasury, otherwise known as the Heart of Remain, there is little hope.

    1. Alan Joyce
      September 22, 2018

      Dear Mr. Redwood,

      Would you kindly explain why my comment does not appear to have been posted? It is not controversial, does not contain links or references yet it is still awaiting your approval. It was posted at 9.12am long before others that have since appeared.

      It has moved up into the body of all of the comments but it still looks as though it has not been accepted by you because it says ‘your comment is awaiting moderation.’

  33. Ron Olden
    September 22, 2018

    I never hear any talk of them paying us a Divorce Settlement (nor Scotland for that matter paying us anything if it ever chose to leave the UK).

    We are entitled to our share of all the buildings and other assets etc that the EU own, the money value of our share in the European Investment Bank and our share of the Commission’s wine cellar and art collection.

      September 22, 2018

      @Ron Olden
      “We are entitled to our share of all the buildings and other” We must act with compassion. No-one should leave a partner, even though they hurt terrible. We tried to love them. But leave them curtains and a table, chairs, even a bit of cash so they can get by

      1. John Hatfield
        September 22, 2018

        Christopher, I find your definition of the EU as being a partner hard to stomach. The parasitic EU has taken Britain for what it could get.

    2. Metoo
      September 22, 2018

      Ron one in Scotland was ever asked whether they wanted to join the Uk nor was there a referendum held for the Irish people in 1800..and then when circumstances dictated in 1922 and again against the majority wishes the English establishment drew a border across the forward nearly a hundred years and UK government and DUP is aghast that there might be a new border down the Irish Sea..this from a country that has drawn borders in the sands of the middle east and the forests of Africa in complete indifference to the wishes of the native peoples..and now a government propped up by a rump unionist party from the northeast of Ireland, not even in government, also great people themselves at marking out territory when they march through the streets every year proclaining a dog looking for a lamppost ..Britain and the English people in particular unfortunately for them will pay and pay heavily- all talk about- our share and your share won’t come into right at this time the EU parliament maintenance crew is busy making plans for the storage of sixty odd seats and desks come next march 29..they are also determined to reclaim what they regard as theirs

  34. Rien Huizer
    September 22, 2018

    Mr Redwood,

    Why not give it a try. Stop negotiating now, withdraw all UK staff from EU institutions and choose a WTO regime that is available. Worry about the bayliffs from S&P and Moody’s later.

    I understand that the PM must do some acting but really no plan B as it seems. And then, if she survives the Party conference as is likely, all indignation gone, rush to the finish line and a very fuzzy future relationship withn one point clear: NI. Then that gets rejected in Parliament (Fox will have resigned by then and so maybe Gove), a constitutional crisis, new elections,. Corbyn. Corbyn nationalizes much to the dismay of the bayliffs again. And so on until we reach exit date. Gilbert& Sullivan to the rescue perhaps?

    1. libertarian
      September 22, 2018


      Agree we should just leave and trade WTO.

      However, you do make me laugh, bailiffs ? S&P and Moodys where have you been hiding for the last 10 years? etc ed
      Your analysis is excellent pantomime stuff. Couple of problems , you do know that the EU forbids monopoly nationalisation dont you? You do know that Corbyn has been anti EU his entire life and is purely playing politics. You do know that we have fixed term parliaments now, so May and the others going will just be replaced with another set of Tories.

      I’ll tell you want is “rescuing” the UK, its our creativity, energy, innovation and willingness to create the future. We are creating new digital, fin-tech, blockchain businesses at the rate of one every 52 minutes, we have so many jobs available that its causing skills shortages. Meanwhile in the moribund, backward looking, regulation bound, out of date EU things aren’t going so well. Mass youth unemployment , EU attempting to shut down the internet for EU users, more stifling regulation on stifling regulation, none of it effective, rapidly falling global market share, failing banks and a motor industry caught cheating the figures.

      Rein, rather than worry about the UK I suggest you focus on whats going on in your Federal State of the EU, the rise of far right political parties, mass crime waves, high unemployment and an impending trade war with your biggest market.

      We it all fails though we will be here to help you. As usual

    2. Edward2
      September 22, 2018

      It seems other nations survive and prosper without being members of the EU
      No sign of baillifs in America Australia Canada New Zealand Singapore China et al.
      In fact most of the world manages ok without EU help.
      In fact growth in world trade is doing well outside the EU
      In fact the EUs share of world trade is declining.

      1. margaret howard
        September 22, 2018


        “It seems other nations survive and prosper without being members of the EU”

        So why did we beg to join in the first place?

        Because we were known as the ‘Sick man of Europe’.

        Industry was collapsing, interest rates were spiralling and inflation was rampant.

        You obviously can’t remember the food, fuel and power shortages of the Heath government or the steadily growing balance of payments deficit.

        The common market had to pump in 25% of its regional development funds to stabilise the nation, the highest ever figure.

        How quickly people forget and how ungrateful they are once they have been helped back on their feet again.

        Reply We were always a heavy net contributor!
        What a grotesque lie about money flows

        1. Edward2
          September 23, 2018

          No response to the dreadful recessions and unemplyment the EU and Euro austerity has caused many EU member nations.
          We joined a common market Margaret.
          It has been hijacked by left wing failed national politicians and turned into a centralised protectionist bloc which is failing millions of its citizens.
          Your take of history is poor.
          The UK has been a contributor to the EU budget every year since joining so the fund you boast of is just our money returned to us.
          It wasnt the EU that turned this nation around but good Conservative policies and a strong leader who fought back against Labour’s failed policies and militant unions.

        2. libertarian
          September 23, 2018

          Margaret Howard

          You have been told this enough times now which means you are either very dumb ( I doubt it) or you are a political propaganda troll ( likely)

          We became known as the sick man of Europe AFTER WE JOINED THE EEC

          We joined the EEC on January 1st 1973

          The 3 day week caused by electricity shortages due to the miners strike took place between 1 January until 7 March 1974.

          Industry was collapsing, interest rates were spiralling and inflation was rampant. All whilst full members of the EEC.

          Yes I do remember it well. I lost my first job in a paper mill due to the miners striking demanding a 42% pay rise and the 3 day week causing the mill to go bust.

          “The 1973–75 recession was a period of economic stagnation in much of the Western world during the 1970s, putting an end to the overall Post–World War II economic expansion. It differed from many previous recessions by being a stagflation, where high unemployment and high inflation existed simultaneously”

          You on the other hand are just making it up. Some of us were actually there

          1. margaret howard
            September 23, 2018

            If we were doing so well, why were we so desperate to join then?
            I was there and I know why. I remember it well. The strikes you speak of were caused by the desperate state the UK economy was in.

            My European friends were so concerned about the state of Britain that they send me food parcels!

            Reply Very odd memories. The UK had just discovered North Sea Oil and was embarking on a big N Sea investment programme with oil [prices surging. The UK was badly hit after we had joined the EEC by a global oil price induced recession, with added problems for UK manufacturing facing the onslaught of continental competition with no more tariffs to help the home base thanks to joining the EEC. Our car industry halved in the first ten years in the EEC.

    3. L Jones
      September 22, 2018

      ”Plan B”, Rien? Do keep up.

  35. Student
    September 22, 2018

    All excellent points. Now how do we upload this to the May bot? 🤔

    1. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      upload not to May, but her “handlers”, S.

      1. Anonymous
        September 22, 2018

        Tony Blair/Peter Mandelson by proxy ?

  36. Malcolm White
    September 22, 2018

    The total stupidity of it all is that May is still promoting the Chequers plan. A plan that is not acceptable to anyone at the moment, but there remains an underlying fear that the EU will somehow accept it at the last gasp. We then end up with a truly bad deal which May and the Government will trumpet as a win and anyone who opposes it will be said to be going against the national interest.
    Fortunately, the Labour Party appears set to vote against any arrangement, since the six tests put forward by Keir Starmer their anti-Brexit spokesman cannot be met under any circumstances and in any case they couldn’t give two hoots about the national interest if they see a way of toppling the Government.

    1. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      Labour will not resist the temptation to bring down this government, but it may backfire if the Tories elect a Brexiter leader who is utterly committed to Brexit and restoring Conservative values i.e. abandoning the cultural Marxism and statist policies of the left, which the current Cons have so misguidedly adopted. In their chase to be all things to all men, and to appear “progressive” they fell into a trap, which will result in their demise unless they take radical action swiftly.

      President Trump has set the example of how it is done. Do not believe the media about him, but instead tune in to videos of his mid term rallies, which are quite amazing. The one in Missouri (the second rally this week) was capacity again last night, with thousands turned away, the atmosphere electric and hugely supportive, P Trump confident and relaxed. He will lead the Republicans to significant gains in the mid terms. Links to Missouri rally on the Conservative Tree House, and also Praying Medic twitter.

  37. Alison
    September 22, 2018

    Sorry to post again, off topic. I am sure readers will have seen that a group led by Jolyon Maugham QC has successfully petitioned Scotland’s Court of Session, to refer to the European Court of Justice the question of revoking the UK’s triggering of Article 50 . Mr Maugham is hoping to get the ruling from the ECJ by 22nd December.

    I think Mr Maugham’s idea is that Parliament then has the choice in 2019 to revoke the triggering of Article 50, rather than what they call “no deal”. Or indeed a proposed deal.

    A further wrinkle to this is the SNP element, with two of the petitioners to the Court of Session from the SNP. There’s a march in Stirling today, pro EU, with Alyn Smith MEP (SNP), one of the two petitioners speaking. I expect there will be a lot of pro-SNP independence/keep Scotland in the EU stuff.
    (We do have a group up here, actively pro Brexit. To defend us Scots, a lot more of us voted Leave than voted for the SNP in the last Holyrood election. )

    1. Chris
      September 22, 2018

      Alison, it is very useful to have this information. The problem is that Theresa May does not have the charisma or conviction to effect Brexit, but instead has to resort to covert operations e.g. with Olly Robbins versus Davis. She may have outfoxed Sturgeon/SNP so far, but you are right to point out further dangers. As long as she is leader we will be plagued by these sorts of issues.

  38. English Pensioner
    September 22, 2018

    I just wish that I could believe our Prime Minister. When she said at first “No deal is better than a bad deal”, I thought that sounded good. But over time it has seemed that she would call any deal a good deal and there was, for her, no such thing as a bad deal.
    The EU only want us for our money and as an export market whilst we have no real need for them. The EU don’t do deals, they don’t seem to have moved one iota from their original position, they expect us to give in, as Cameron discovered.

    Just leave and trade with whoever is willing on mutually acceptable terms. This could help some third world countries where EU tariffs on their goods are prohibitive. Enforce our sovereignty over our fishing grounds (If Iceland can, surely we can!).
    Set our own immigration policy, hopefully based on our needs. The Irish border will settle itself, we had a border before the EU and it worked. OK there was some smuggling but none of major importance and as long as the border doesn’t become a route for unwanted immigrants, any problems can be dealt with as they arise.

    The main thing is to get out and not pay the EU anything. Indeed, we should be preparing a bill for them!

  39. NHSGP
    September 22, 2018

    A min wage earner with a wife and two kids pays £13.11 a week in tax.

    They cost us £54,000 a year.

    Why are you and May going to force us to pay that?

    Go back to EU rules. No recourse to public funds.

  40. NHSGP
    September 22, 2018

    The deal is easy.

    EU lists what it wants, doesn’t want. The UK does the same.

    Where both sides don’t want it or both sides do want it, there is a deal.

    There’s no need for horse trading.

    You can go an extra step. Each side puts a value or a cost on each item where there is disagreement. So lets say the EU wants access to defense. The UK puts a cost on it. The EU does. If the EU’s value exceeds the UK’s cost, then the EU pays the difference to the UK.

  41. Steve
    September 22, 2018

    I agree with the points Mr Redwood puts forward in this topic.

    What we have seen of EU leader’s conduct in the last few days especially, reveals their psyche where the UK is concerned.

    However, politics aside, these people extended their contempt to include a distinct lack of common courtesy toward a female in their presence.

    Their behaviour was not statesman like, and in my opinion Donald Tusk shows himself on par with an arrogant little pig. This rude and scruffily dressed individual deserves to be taught some manners.

    Our host touches on the notion of us just leaving the EU, minus Withdrawal Agreement. I think the time has come, and any PM who facilitates that would have my support including Theresa May, whom it must be said deserves admiration for her composure at salzburg.

  42. Steve
    September 22, 2018

    Ken Moore

    “This is a fantasy. In the unlikely event that Mrs May offers no deal it would never survive a parliamentary vote.”

    I wouldn’t be too sure about that.

  43. Tony Sharp
    September 22, 2018

    Article 50 – the text shows that it is incumbent on the EU – not the Leaving Nation – to offer a Withdrawal Agreement. Where is thsi document? The only documents we ahve seen are those drafted by our civil servants based on terms of engageemnt within the EU , which the EU has now rejected.
    As the EU has offered no Withdrawal Agreement it is in breach of its Art 50 obligations.
    We therefore simply withdraw on 29th march 2019.

    1. Dennis
      September 22, 2018

      This is interesting if correct – is it JR? You don’t know it seems.

  44. robert lewy
    September 22, 2018

    TM’s indignation in her response to EU reception of her Salzburg speech is welcome in that it
    comes across as a challenge to EU leaders to negotiate properly if they sincerely want a deal.

    However, it equally suggests what can best be described as a case of Aggravated Begging.
    It suggests a determination to achieve a deal by some kind of right which not unsurprising was received in mirth by Tusk in particular.

    Hunt’s call for serious negotiation “to step back from the abyss” of a no-deal Brexit” is even worse as it demonstrates a fear of the one course which is likely to get the EU’s attention.

  45. John Probert
    September 22, 2018

    Very good

    How does this compare with the Canada++ deal ?

    1. Rien Huizer
      September 22, 2018

      There is no Canada +++

  46. Spinandlies
    September 22, 2018

    It’s true what Macron says there are a lot of people around telling spin and lies

    So why again are we talking about FTA – we did not vote for this with anybody?

    The withdrawal is not for negotiation as far as the EU is concerned, leaving conditions are set, it just has to be signed as an act of departure..we are conflating leaving matters by talking about another style trade deal for the future which we’re not ready for yet..better leave first, take a few years out and then decide what we want to do

    1. John Hatfield
      September 22, 2018

      Said, Spinandlies.

    2. mancunius
      September 22, 2018

      Ah, our multi-ID europhrenic friend on patrol again. (Spinandlies, how appropriate! 🙂
      Art. 50 (2) ” the Union shall negotiate and conclude an agreement with that State, setting out the arrangements for its withdrawal, taking account of the framework for its future relationship with the Union.”

      We’re still waiting for Art. 50 (2) to be fulfilled. If a future trade relationship is not declared by the EU as a basis for its suggested ‘withdrawal arrangement’ – then the EU has unilaterally breached Art. 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon, and has no legal claim on the UK.

      They can always try to find an international tribunal prepared to hear their case. It will take them years, and by then they’ll be bankrupt.

      And in international law, ‘arrangements’ does not necessarily imply any financial remuneration or even a payment.

  47. Denis Cooper
    September 22, 2018

    Here’s somebody else to explain it to P J Maloney:

    “Ireland calls for UK to give way on Brexit backstop dispute”

    “Deputy PM Simon Coveney says Barnier border proposal would be extension of status quo”

    “Interviewed in the Irish parliament on Wednesday …

    “Only minimal checks would be required to ensure goods going into Northern Ireland met the rules of the internal market, he said … ”

    No matter what those checks might be, minimal or otherwise, once the UK has left the EU it should cease to be any of the EU’s business whether or not goods going into a part of the UK, Northern Ireland, meet the rules of the EU Single Market, and Theresa May should never have entertained that outrageous claim.

  48. Freeborn John
    September 22, 2018

    The danger now is that May will come up with a new plan (e.g. Canada+) that the EU will reject. She has to learn that they will reject any plan she proposes. Therefore she must plan for no deal and waste no more time on delusions. As time ticks down the EU will propose something (possibly the same Canada+ they would reject if the proposal came from the UK). The trick is to make them do the proposing and in the meantime make clear that all UK efforts will be put into collecting duties at the same rate the EU applies on their exports from March next year. I.e. 40% on Irish Chedder, 10% on German cars.

    1. Denis Cooper
      September 22, 2018

      According to the Sun she’s already been trying to push through a crazy adjustment to her crazy Chequers plan to placate the EU, but fortunately the DUP have stubbornly refused to go along with it:

      “A BITTER row with the DUP left Theresa May unable to deliver any progress to EU leaders on Brexit talks – prompting them to reject her Chequers plan.”

      “Mrs May wants to establish a different system of rules for goods in Northern Ireland than Great Britain as the missing part of a backstop plan to ensure the Irish border remains open.”

      Why? It would be one thing, and a perfectly reasonable thing, to apply EU rules to goods which are being taken from Northern Ireland across the land border into the EU Single Market – goods which amount to about 0.1% of UK GDP – but it would be another thing, and a totally unreasonable thing, to apply EU rules to all goods in Northern Ireland.

      This is Theresa May and her euromaniac civil servant adviser Olly Robbins showing themselves to be incapable of thinking outside the EU mental box. If the object is to protect the EU Single Market from contamination with prohibited goods then that only requires controls on the goods that go into it across the Irish land border, not controls on all goods in Northern Ireland and/or the UK.

    2. Rien Huizer
      September 22, 2018

      One more point: why would the EU apply a high tariff on Cheddar chess if hardly anyone outside the British Isles eats the stuff? As to 10% on German cars, that should not be a problem. There are only three trade areas left that expoprt new cars made by brands headquartered there: Japan (exports from Asia, US and Europe), US/NAFTA exports very little, mainly made by EU and Japanese brands and EU (incl Britain) exports a lot and manufactures locally too.

      After Brexit (worst case) UK-EU supply chains will have to change. Unlikely UK will continue to make cars for export to EU (and the relevant decisions are made outside Britain in Japan, India and Europe). The question is then: for what market would the UK be making cars. The home market is too small and assuming an FTA with the US/NAFTA, cars from Japanese brands in US or Canada would look after UK production , if the UK would inherit the EU/Japan FTA, these cars might even come from Japan. Tata is not going to fill the gap. So more than likely that it will come down to the following for Renault/Nissan, PSA and the German luxury brands: do we have a complex supply chain involving a hard border or do we simply absorb the tariff for the few cars that we sell domestically, end production and send completed left hand drive cars. Just to show that this does not scare anyone.

      1. Edward2
        September 24, 2018

        It depends more on what customers want rather than what politicians and bureaucrats want.

    3. hellbent
      September 22, 2018

      Here we go again- I presume we didn’t vote for a Canada style trade deal when we far as I know we voted to there is no point in coming up with proposals for the future when we don’t know ourselves yet what we want- The EU is not going to propose anything anyway- all they want now is to wind down this whole business to 29 March as per the withdrawal – they want us out- so they are on our side

    4. L Jones
      September 22, 2018

      But she already KNOWS this, FreebornJ. She has nothing to ”learn”.
      She KNOWS that they are going to reject anything publicly proposed. We are having a lot of falsehoods paraded before us, as if we are too stupid to recognise them for what they are.
      We KNOW that this scenario has been rehearsed, that all the participants already are acquainted with every word in Mrs May’s speeches, her ”demands”, their ”rejections”, the false ”indignation”, Tusk’s and Juncker’s seeming naivety about the effects of pronouncements on social media, etc.
      We certainly are being treated as fools – and, while some of us are, undoubtedly – there are also many of us who are BLOODY ANNOYED.

    5. Steve
      September 22, 2018

      Freeborn John

      Our host informs us that the government has been and is planning for a no deal scenario.

      I agree with your sentiment concerning the EU rejecting anything TM puts forward, however I think they’d reject anyway regardless of who the PM happens to be.

      I can’t see how it’s possible for Theresa May to come up any new plan, she has, and rightly so, drawn the line. So any new proposals from the UK would just be seen as capitulation.

      There is really only one course available now, and that is to just walk away without a Withdrawal Agreement. Which is what should have happened in the first place.

  49. Norman
    September 22, 2018

    The whole business and state of play over Brexit is intriguing, and indeed revealing. It surely isn’t just about trade, immigration or any short-term political issue, but something much more existential. I’ve said this all along, but the scale of the contortions and shenanigens bears this out more and more. Many ordinary folk are sick and tired of the whole thing, and just want a soft landing in terms of how it will affect their job security and pockets. Sadly, there’s a deficit in the visionary morale of earlier times – a danger not recognized until it’s too late.
    Meanwhile, I find the bluster against Theresa May unconvincing, and not very flattering to the cause. Her compass may be a bit wonky, but I don’t see anyone on the horizon who has the guts, decency, integrity ability, or indeed willingness, to take over from her in what is a very messy business. Based on JRM’s recent words of support for the PM, I think the consensus among Brexiteer MPs might be that loyal persuasion has the best hope of winning out, and give the desired outcome for the country. Otherwise, it’ll be a case of ‘events, dear boy, events!’

    1. Norman
      September 22, 2018

      ‘Leave means Leave’ events, as addressed by Nigel Farage, David Davies and Kate Hoey in Bolton today, should provide a useful catalyst from the sidelines, and actually help the PM gauge the mood of the country. Farage’s role is more useful this way, than as a rival through UKIP.

  50. Maggie Lizzie Snook
    September 22, 2018

    General de Gaulle comments on the differences which are perhaps revealing – “England in effect is insular, she is maritime, she is linked through her exchanges, her markets, her supply lines to the most diverse and often the most distant countries; she pursues essentially industrial and commercial activities, and only slight agricultural ones. She has in all her doings very marked and very original habits and traditions. In short, the nature, the structure, the very situation (conjuncture) that are England’s differ profoundly from those of the continentals.”

    De Gaulle disliked us .. and assumed we were divisive.. Britain didn’t trust the man .. and quite rightly so..He reckoned we had invented Belgium to annoy the French…hmmmm

    1. Rien Huizer
      September 25, 2018

      De Gaulle was too well educated to believe Belgium was invented by the British. Belgium resulted from a short ivil war (!) among the peoples of the original Kingdom of the Netherlands that was created by the Congress of Vienna and included Belgium, Holland (plus the other provinces and territories of the Dutch Republic) and was constituted a Kingdom over the wishes of some of the most prominent families in the Republic (there had been a Kingdon previously under Napoleon’s brother). The Belgian uprising against the Dutch was -as far as I can find- not instigated by British interests, but rather by the French speaking minority, secretly abetted by the Crown Prince who felt more Belgian/French than Dutch. So pse show me where this attribution to De Gaulle is from. A very flawed but also important man who used history properly: for purely propagandist reasons.

      Of course for some Dutchmen that “kingdom” is still a black mark, for a country that was once the only Republic in Western Europe, paying a salary to professional soldiers (the Oranges) who were mere condottieri and aspired to be kings and finally became that courtesy of the Congress of Vienna.

      1. Puffer Fish
        September 26, 2018

        14 January 1963: Ch. de Gaulle’s press conference, a good part of which was about Europe and the UK.

  51. Whorya
    September 22, 2018

    Hi everybody. This is something “Revised now” I posted during the referendum Pros and, cons.
    The CBI as today want to remain in the single market.
    So my suggestion was. To give them clarity about future investments, and ease there concern over Brexit.
    Then instead of their employees/tax payers funding their membership to this market place. They pay pro rata on profits from all the firms/companies/conglomerates themselves.
    Then the government can implement a full Brexit. After all it is only the money the EU want.
    They will also have to accept all the rules the EU regulates to them. At their own expense and, not pass it on to UK consumers.
    If you have trade disputes you will have to go through the ECJ. As British courts will not recognize your membership of the single market. We have left.
    So to summarise if British companies want the status quo. Pay for it…..

    September 22, 2018

    And, not enlarged. ..exactly the same size.
    I know more of what I would have difficulty in explaining that I would be thought brilliant if I could. Not the detail especially just the explaining 🙂

    September 22, 2018

    Missed one out, three books!

  54. Paul H
    September 22, 2018

    In the latest news, it is stated that Robbins wants to agree to bind ourselves into more prospective EU rules so that the UK cannot be more competitive.

    Is this true? If so, what exactly is the matter with the man? On whose side is he batting? Has he forgotten who is going to be paying his fancy pension in due course?

    1. Peter D Gardner
      September 24, 2018

      Robbins takes direction from Mrs May. The question is which side is she on? I don’t think she is anti-British or wishes to do damage to UK. But she is a technocratic supra-nationalist and since the EU is the manifestation of that, she sees it as better for UK to be governed as much as she can manage by the EU. She simply sees little or no value in the sovereign nation state. She cannot understand why people, ordinary people, want to live in a country they can call their own and in which they can take some pride because its government is fully accountable only to them. Mrs May believes the sovereign nation state to be an obsolete anachronism. Government is better conducted on a supra-national basis. To reverse Boris, she would say that forever pushing national independence is the turd being polished.

  55. Simon Coleman
    September 23, 2018

    But there has to be a withdrawal agreement before the future relationship can be established. The UK government agreed to this, while continuing to pretend that the 39 billion would help to buy us a trade deal. The point of the withdrawal agreement was to ensure an orderly departure: for the benefit of UK and EU citizens living abroad, for stability for the NI border, and for settling outstanding accounts etc.

    1. GilesB
      September 23, 2018

      Art. 50 of the Lisbon treaty itself states that the withdrawal agreement needs to take into account the future relationship.

      In case you havn’t read it, here is the relevant paragraph

      2. A Member State which decides to withdraw shall notify the European Council of its intention. In the light of the guidelines provided by the European Council, the Union shall negotiate and conclude an agreement with that State, setting out the arrangements for its withdrawal, taking account of the framework for its future relationship with the Union.

    2. Edward2
      September 23, 2018

      Not correct as usual simon.
      Article 50 means we leave.
      There has to be a deal to get a withdrawal agreement.
      If the EU keep refusing any and every option put to them a deal will not happen
      And no 40 nillion will be paid

  56. Peter D Gardner
    September 24, 2018

    We wait to see what transpires from the Cabinet. Judging by first reports it seems that the Remainers are now coalescing round a Norway option, which is not independence and the Leavers around a Canada+++. So the argument has not moved on. It is not a victory for Leavers or Brexiteers. There has been no change of mind. It is still about Leave vs Remain as it was in the referendum campaign, but in a different context. There is a great deal of delusional thinking up there. The idea that EFTA would welcome UK for only a couple of years! That a three way negotiation between EFTA, the EU and UK would be easier or result in better terms than a bi-lateral EU-UK negotiation. That an emergency provision in EFTA / EEA on free movement could be used as the default. That UK would be able to diverge in any way from EU economic and much social regulation over time. All utter nonsense.

    1. Peter D Gardner
      September 24, 2018

      PS, underlying all this there is still no evidence that Mrs May and the Remainers acknowledge that the EU are not friends and partners but competitors. The EU understands it perfectly. Its strategy would be the same whether UK to advance a Norway model or any other deal before it becomes a third country. The EU’s aim is to prevent UK becoming fully independent, to strangle independence at birth. The only way UK can gain the upper hand is to become that third country first and only then, if at all, contemplate a deal.
      Verhofstadt tried to explain this to the Brexit Select Committee and was met with blank stares. In response to Jacob Rees-Mogg he explained that the EU cannot bend the rules for UK as a member. But it can for UK as a third country as it has done for other third countries.
      It seems UK is hung up on the class implications of the term ‘third country’ as if it means going back to the dark days of British Rail. For the EU it means simply ‘independent’ and free to play its full hand of cards.

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