Second referendums are not a good idea

When the UK Parliament rightly granted Scotland a referendum on whether to stay or leave the UK I asked the SNP to tell me if they agreed the result should  be binding and would settle the matter for at least a generation., They said  they did. I agreed.

Had my side of the referendum lost, I would have kept my word. I would not have demanded a second vote, but would have helped get on with the task of organising Scotland’s departure. That was the deal. I have always said we only want volunteers in the UK Union, and if a significant bloc of voters in one part or country demand a referendum on exit it is right to arrange that. It is  not right to question the verdict of a referendum, or to create a neverendum, with successive votes on the same thing until  the losing side get a win. These constitutional referendums do create uncertainty and divert attention from the important day to day management of the public sector and economic policy.

The SNP seem to love referendums but they keep losing them. They lost both the Independence referendum and the EU referendum. They now want re runs of both. The Lib Dems helped win  the Independence referendum but lost the EU referendum. Surprise , surprise, they just want a re run of the one they lost. They want that so much, however, they would doubtless do a deal to put Corbyn into power with SNP support to get a second EU referendum. That could  include having to accept a second Scottish  Independence  referendum.

Such a development would make a laughing stock of our democracy, create substantial  business uncertainty and weaken our position in foreign negotiations. Jo Swinson did let slip that she would not accept another Leave vote anyway, so she only wants a second EU referendum if it gives her the result she wants. Ironic they still have the word Democrat in their title.

The main reason second referendums do not work is they undermine the point of the first one and so undermine the whole idea of a referendum. If Parliament will not implement the decision once taken despite promises that the people will decide, what is the point of them? If we had a second Indy or EU referendum and it came to the same answer the losers would still complain. If either came to a different answer the new losers would have every  right to ask for  a third to have the best of three.

I just hope the public want there to be an end to all this  in this General election. A majority for a government that will implement the wishes of the first EU referendum and resist a second Scottish referendum is what is needed. More referendums on the same subject would undermine our democracy and good government at home and abroad.

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143 Comments

  1. Cheshire Girl
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:06 am | Permalink

    I agree with you.

  2. Ian Wragg
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:20 am | Permalink

    A majority for a government that will foist the rotten WA on us which is in no way leaving the EU.
    Stupid we are not.

    • Simeon
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:43 am | Permalink

      You and I and some others are paying attention. Most are not. As we live in a Tyranny by the Majority, we are sunk. Collectively, the people of the UK are ignorant, foolish, or simply do not care. Either way, the political class has licence to do as it pleases.

    • James Bertram
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:01 am | Permalink

      Agreed, Ian – well-informed Leavers will not vote for such treachery. This will lead to continuing political chaos and the ruin of our country.

    • Lester Beedell
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

      I W so what is your solution?

      • Ian Wragg
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

        Hope the DUP and a handful of Brexit Party members hold the balance.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

          How democratic.

          • Edward2
            Posted December 7, 2019 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

            Very democratic.
            It would be a natural potential situation after a general election.
            Parliament is supreme as you keep telling us.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

            No system is perfect, and you hope to exploit its imperfections such that it least represents the country’s opinions.

            That says a great deal, I think.

          • Edward2
            Posted December 8, 2019 at 8:16 am | Permalink

            It says that after elections those elected may sometimes group together in coalitions or agreed voting groups.
            If they have similar requirements and policies that is understandable.
            If Corbyn could gain power in that way you would be thrilled.
            I dont hope to exploit anything nor do I seek a system that least represents the country’s opinions.
            Quite the opposite.

    • Lifelog
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

      Well hopefully they will not and will just leave. The Boris deal is dire, but better than a dire Labour/SNP/Libdim/Plaid/green crap coalition.

      But then almost anything would be.

  3. Mark B
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:23 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    Such a development would make a laughing stock of our democracy . . .

    I think it fair to say that we are well down the road on that. And we cannot blame the opposition parties for it 😉

    I am happy for there to be referendums on Scotland and the EU. But for Scotland I want them first to agree terms. I think it is important that they need to know what they are voting for. They take their share of the national debt. We demand Faslane, the Orkneys and Shetland Isles and so on 😉

    For the EU referendum the choice has to be between accepting the WA and Leaving without one. And any new treaty must comply with the Vienna Convention on Treaties – ie We have a sensible exit clause.

    What this whole charade has shown over the last three and a half years, is that our system is well overdue for reform. It use to work when you had people who believed in it, knew their place in it, worked to make it work and saw themselves as servants and not masters of the people. When you have those, such as the former Speaker of the House, acting in a manner that works contrary to their position then the system breaks down. Parliamentarians have created a mess in order to maintain its own cushy lives. It will not be forgotten or forgiven and change must come.

  4. Shirley
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:35 am | Permalink

    Democracy is very much being destroyed by UK politicians. People are so disheartened I hear lots of them saying they will never vote again. This is a very foolish attitude, as it just gives the undemocratic politicians more freedom to dictate.

    It isn’t just happening in the UK though. Trump is still not accepted even though he was elected using the same system as all other Presidents. Many of our own politicians don’t acknowledge him and publicly humiliate Trump while welcoming true despots into our country.

    Democracy deniers are on the increase. Where is the rot coming from? It appears to be coming from politicians themselves! The same politicians who seem particularly biased towards the EU, and the EU’s deliberate avoidance of giving their electorate a voice, or choice of direction.

    This is much bigger than Brexit. A second referendum is yet another sign that democracy is being deliberately destroyed in the UK. It is also happening in other parts of the world, especially in the EU.

    • Simeon
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:30 am | Permalink

      There are no good options where we are at the moment. Our politicians are all appalling, even those who otherwise might not be were they free of the party whip. Even Nigel Farage, who in effect was his party, has failed spectacularly. We are utterly bereft of good choices. As such, I believe not voting is not just legitimate, but is the best course. If sufficient numbers do not vote, then there is at least a chance that our politics will get the radical shakeup we need, if only because the ballot box will lose what remains of its legitimacy. Vote for the same old politicians and you will continue to get the same old politics.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:31 am | Permalink

      = Cultural Marxism. The Long March Through The Institutions ( every last one taken over).
      Since when? The 1930s maybe? A very long march. Generations of brainwashed-in -school children.
      But it has worked with the unwary ( or complicit) not lifting a finger to stop it.
      If Corbyn gets into power the blame will lie with the enablers.

    • Dominic
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:21 am | Permalink

      Hear, hear. Your serious concerns are shared by millions of other voters across this nation. You see it what I see.

      Unfortunately, there are millions who don’t or refuse to see what we know to be true. That democracy not just in the UK but also in the US is under attack by those who resent it our voice being heard

      I believe this issue has taken on an existential importance.

      Labour’s gerrymandering (calls to reduce voting age, voter importation, ballot rigging and Elect-Comm protection) remains unexposed. What is it with the Tory party that you refuse to stand up and direct these most important accusations at Labour? You know it’s happening. We all know Labour’s doing it. Why your silence?

    • Hope
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:29 am | Permalink

      Suggest everyone, including JR, reads Delingpole in Breitbart London today. He admirably articulates the situation.

      Johnson does not even come across as authentic anymore. Has he had a frontal labotony?

      Parliament is a busted flush that needs replacing, the public should not be asked what turd is the least offensive.

      Major and Hesltine should be sacked from the Tory party and firmly put in their place.

    • Turboterrier
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 11:33 am | Permalink

      Shirley

      Totally agree and support your views. Well said

    • Helen Smith
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

      I so agree with this comment. Good luck next Thursday Sir John, hope you are returned with a thumping majority.

      • Fred H
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

        Helen – – me too……I hope to toast a moral victory, not for the Party but for Sir John. I hope to record the Returning Officer and watch the grimace on the others’ faces – to be kept for posterity.

    • DavidJ
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

      Democracy is anathema to the EU. That is why we must have a clean break.

    • old salt
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

      Shirley-
      Just look up “Rockefeller’s 1991 leaked speech.”

      Tells you all you need to know.

  5. Lifelogic
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    Indeed.

    Surely the voters will not be daft enough to vote for Corbyn/SNP trip to Venezuela, more EU dithering, two more gerrymandered referenda, with one having no leave option? Especially after the idiotic interventions of Blair, Major, Heseltine and the rest – which will surely help Boris.

    Much talk by Labour of the threat to the NHS and public services from the Tories. The real threat to them comes from Labour as they would destroy the economy and be totally unable to fund them. Many of the rich and the hard working will have gone and the economy will be a basket case in no time at all.

    • Mark B
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:35 am | Permalink

      Surely the voters will not be daft enough to vote for Corbyn/SNP . . .

      Or daft enough to fall for the old trick of being frightened into voting for the least worst option. 😉

      LL

      You need to acquaint yourself with a bit of Game Theory. Because that is what is being played on you and others. ie You present people with a series of choices all terrible but, only one choice is considered being the least worse, which is the one they want you to take anyway. 😉

      They way to beat it is to choose the worst and thwart their plans 😉

      • steve
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

        Mark B

        “They way to beat it is to choose the worst and thwart their plans”

        Exactly.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      The average poll predictions suggest around a 30 overall majority for the Conservatives. But this will still include all sorts of dire traitors and Libdims pretending to be Conservatives so is not big enough. Even some traitors who handicaps the government in the negotiations with the total treachery of the Benn Act are being allowed to stand.

    • Hope
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:31 am | Permalink

      Johnson did not hammer home the frightening economic prospect of Corbyn. He let Corbyn come across as meek and mild! Depressing performance.

    • steve
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

      Lifelogic

      “Surely the voters will not be daft enough to vote for Corbyn/SNP”

      I’ll be voting Labour……just to stick it to John Redwood.

      • Simeon
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

        Sir John,

        It is to your credit that you allow these comments and others (including my own).

        Steve,

        I hadn’t realised Labour were the main challengers in Wokingham. I thought it was the LDs… Either way, I make you right. Sad to say, as it did seem as if our kind host was to be the one Tory worth voting for.

        Reply Labour were well ahead of Lib Dems in the 2017 result

  6. JoolsB
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    Never mind a second referendum for Scotland, when are we English going to get a first referendum on whether we want the same self determining rights already enjoyed by Scotland. I see the Tory manifesto offers devolution within England but not to it. Not good enough John. England should be given the same rights the other nations of the UK already enjoy before they get given any more powers or another referendum. UK Governments of all colours, yours included, have treated England with contempt for far too long.

    • Old Albion
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:20 am | Permalink

      There’s no arguing that ‘Jools B’

      And why are we bombarded with TV interviews with N.Sturgeon. She represents a tiny nation, smaller than the population of Greater London. We can’t vote for her.

      Though if the 2nd Indy Ref. was made (dis)UK wide. She’d find Scotland out of the (dis)UK by an enormous majority.

    • Simeon
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      Absolutely right. It is utter nonsense to profess a belief in independence from the EU but to then deny a nation to assert its independence. The Scottish referendum was supposedly once in a generation, but such a promise has no value when made by politicians, who say things purely for their own narrow political advantage. And besides, things have obviously changed since Brexit. The Scots should obviously be given a voice on indepencence – and so should the English. Were the UK to break up (which feels inevitable), it would in part be due to an abject failure by politicians to reach a just and fair settlement of inter-Union relations,

      • old salt
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

        Simeon-
        It would appear the break up of the UK is all part of the plan by the EU and the complicit establishment.

        • Simeon
          Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:23 pm | Permalink

          Traditionally, the EU has been very anti separatist movements. But perhaps things change. Either way, the EU will adapt to whatever the UK does to itself – not least because they and the complicit establishment won’t do anything to disrupt the EU project.

    • graham1946
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:36 am | Permalink

      The devolved countries also have their own ‘offices’ within government to look after their interests. Why? What is it about England that the political class don’t like?

      I saw Blackford on QT on Thursday saying how wonderful Scotland was and how England should increase its spend on the NHS to Scottish levels. I agree, but it is so much easier when you have a tame England to send the bills to. Also Sturgeon wants more immigration into Scotland. Could it be that no-one really wants to go there?

      • steve
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

        Graham1946

        “I saw Blackford on QT on Thursday saying how wonderful Scotland was”

        Are you sure he was saying it, and not bellowing at the top of his voice ?

    • Mark B
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      JoolsB

      There will never be an English Referendum ! Why ? Not because they ‘think’ we might vote the ‘wrong way’, but because they ‘KNOW’ we will vote the ‘wrong way’ ! That is why I support the SNP and their desire for an Indy’ Ref’ 2.0. The only way we are going to get independence is by giving them independence.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      Quite

      If there is a second referendum on Scotland we will just end up promising to pay for more of their free stuff out of UK funds which should be shared roughly equally per capita among the four nations.

    • L Jones
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

      I doubt very much if Scottish MPs really would wish for change in the system.

      See https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/mps-expenses-scandal/how-much-does-my-mp-claim/

      and note that the SNP people have been right up there at the top of the highest ”earners”. And I doubt that will change in the future, nor would they want to kill the goose that’s laying that golden egg.

  7. Lifelogic
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    So Major and Blair advocate tactical voting so as to deprive Boris of a majority, thus delaying or revoking Brexit. Probably putting Corbyn into office and having yet more paralysis and destruction of the economy.

    What complete idiots these people are. These people, with their misguided treaties passing more powers to the EU, their idiotic ERM disaster (and let’s join the EURO agenda) and their open door (regardless of merit or criminal records) immigration policies that surely produced the leave vote. A real leave must now be delivered and delivered now.

    • Simeon
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:39 am | Permalink

      BJ isn’t delivering a real leave if elected, but something worse than remaining. Though at this stage it hardly seems to matter. Whatever happens, the country is in irreversible decline.

      • old salt
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

        Simeon-
        I couldn’t agree more. Well said.

    • formula57
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      In light of Major’s present antics, and as one of the too few people with the gumption to try to put a stop to Major’s wretched premiership, Sir John is doubtless now inundated with apologies from colleagues from those times.

      • Lifelog
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

        How on earth were the Tory MPs of the time so thick as to retain no change no chance Major (when he “resigned”) who went on to almost destroy the party in a huge Blair landslide. But then nearly all of them also voted for Ed Milliband’s totally moronic climate change act.

        We are rules by idiots.

  8. Anonymous
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:03 am | Permalink

    This general election. If more Remain MPs win seats then I agree, Brexit should be cancelled with no need for a referendum.

    Of Scotland and “…we only want volunteers in the Union.”

    We English are not volunteers and if the Scots were serious about independence they would have let us have a vote in their referendum. They’d be out by now for sure.

    A similarly aged young Scotsman to my sons will be hundreds of thousands of pounds better off – no tuition fees and a full inheritance to come, all at our expense. Why would I vote for that to continue ?

    • JoolsB
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

      Totally agree Anonymous. It’s sickening to see the debts our young will come out with just because they are English. The list of freebies enjoyed by the devolved nations, Scotland in particular is endless and Boris even boasted recently that Scotland has received the largest block grant in history from Westminster so they can carry on with all the goodies paid for by the English but denied to them on grounds of cost. The best thing that could happen for England is they have the guts to go for independence and then maybe more of English taxes might be spent on England for a change although I wouldn’t hold my breath. John and his colleagues refuse to address the rotten deal England gets from this union which benefits everyone else except them.

    • john o'groats
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

      I’m thinking of moving to Scotland so I can vote for their Independence and move back into England before they get it.
      I’m sick of hearing them moan about not being in the EU. It serves them right to be in the EU and never ever get any independence at all.
      We’ve listened to them moan for two centuries. Enough is enough. They can keep their whisky too. Irish whiskey is much better.

      • Fred H
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

        your name should be quite rightly ‘ john o’groans’.

      • steve
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

        “Irish whiskey is much better.”

        I suggest you try Japanese. I think you may be pleasantly surprised.

  9. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    Remainers who want another referendum have frustrated and delayed the implementation of the result of the one held in 2016 for over 3 years undermining our democracy in the process. In this respect they show their true EU credentials as it always rejects any referendum result with which it disagrees and demands it be overturned. National democracy is anathema to the EU.

    • Simeon
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:40 am | Permalink

      As have those who purported to be leavers. Exhibit A: Boris Johnson.

  10. Martin in Cardiff
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    Certainly, where the choice is between two defined entities, and the vote is held on a proper basis – as the Swiss would – then the outcome should be final.

    Proper basis would mean, where appropriate:

    Age-weighted voting favouring those to be affected for longest, i.e. the young.

    A franchise which includes everyone who would be affected by the changes.

    A required supermajority to avoid divisive, marginal results.

    A constitutional power of veto for nations within a union.

    A campaign not distorted by illegal activity financing the dissemination of falsehoods.

    Electoral authorities with the needed powers and resources to prevent the above.

    Where a vote was not a clear choice however, or where the previous one was evidently not held on a proper basis, then it is obvious that further ones would be needed.

    The UK’s last referendum would appear to be such a case.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:18 am | Permalink

      “Age-weighted voting favouring those to be affected for longest, i.e. the young.”

      So the less experience of life they have and the least tax they have ever paid in their lives the more say they would get. New born babies or babies in the womb to get the most say I assume?

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

        Ask the Swiss.

        • Edward2
          Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

          You have to be 18 to vote in Switzerland

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:25 am | Permalink

      “Age-weighted voting favouring those to be affected for longest, i.e. the young.”

      Do your parents know that you are out making a public fool of yourself?

      • Fred H
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

        I imagine he’s done that for whatever his adult years are.

    • Edward2
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:47 am | Permalink

      Which translates into…I want to gerrymander and fix future referenda so that remain wins.

    • Enrico
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      What about the booklet that David Cameron and his government sent to every household in the country laying out what both leave and remain meant.You obviously didn’t read it or chose to ignore the leave stance.It was very plain and simple for both sides and when I was at school 52% was higher than 48% so the 52% wins.Just get over it.

    • Oggy
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      How about only allowing remain voters to cast their votes as one of your conditions ?

    • Robert McDonald
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:22 am | Permalink

      I gather you didn’t like the result of the referendum ?

    • Fred H
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:24 am | Permalink

      and your final unwritten point would be:
      and Marty would decide if not agreeing with the outcome.

    • IanT
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:16 am | Permalink

      Age Weighting?

      Shouldn’t that work by assuming that the oldest have the most real world experience Martin? I remember the chaos of the 70’s – most young people don’t have any idea of what they would be voting for with Corbyn/McDonald & their Union paymasterss…

    • a-tracy
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:44 am | Permalink

      ‘Age weighted voting’ – you have got to be kidding! You’re missing the point you vote for the government if the government elected want to overturn decisions they THEN can. What you propose could be matched by not allowing people who don’t pay tax to vote after all ‘they aren’t affected by the change’.

      We treat 16 year olds like children now not allowing them to finish school until they are 18. We’re told children can’t be tried like adults for crimes. Politicians like Bercow use their young age when they used to propose unpalatable theories as an excuse. Our teens are brainwashed at school by socialists many of whom have never left education and interviewed for a job without 13 weeks off per annum and full sick pay and a 25% contributed by the State pension (they are biased and wants a government who wants to give them personally more) mine were told don’t review tabloid newspapers they should review the Guardian for an English project. We have lots of low educated women (mainly women) being paid to train as teachers assistants who couldn’t pass A level maths and English, in fact a couple couldn’t get a decent GCSE pass 7+ if they were tested this month! I know one who barely finished secondary school they were absent so often (one gets their private house housing benefit, council tax and top up wages paid whilst training, etc. after they got rid of their partner and just kept them him the side).

      You are making it clear Martin that the last UK referendum really was the last opportunity the British people had on the question of the EU and if Corbyn gets enough votes with the Lib Dem’s and the others there won’t ever be a democrat vote on this matter again.

    • L Jones
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

      M-in-C
      Regarding your final two paragraphs: I’m sure if Remain had won in 2016 you would now feel exactly the same about holding a further referendum ….. wouldn’t you?
      Or – then again…

      Reply I would have accepted the verdict as I did in 1975 as a young man when I was on the losing side. I made clear just before the 2016 vote I would also have stood down from Parliament at the following election as I did not want to belong to a puppet Parliament

      • L Jones
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

        Reply to reply – actually, I was replying to Martin’s last two paragraphs:

        ”Where a vote was not a clear choice however, or where the previous one was evidently not held on a proper basis, then it is obvious that further ones would be needed.
        The UK’s last referendum would appear to be such a case.”

    • Jasper
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

      I believe all parties concerned put their arguments forward at the time of the referendum- and yet the people still voted to leave! I cannot believe nearly four years later this is still being disputed. Where is democracy – every politician said they would honour the uk result whatever the people decided and yet here we are today still squabbling about leaving – you couldn’t make this up!!

    • MB
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

      Are you also offering age-weighted taxation, favouring those who have paid into the system for the longest ?

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

        “No taxation without representation” as was the rallying cry of the American Revolution.

        So why should our fellow, tax-liable Europeans and sixteen-year-olds not have the vote, then?

        You get what you ask anyway. Pensioners do not pay NI, remember?

        • Fred H
          Posted December 7, 2019 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

          MARTY — no, but they paid NI for about 45 years pre retirement. And you of mere child years wouldn’t know that from 1961 we paid an extra Graduated pension contribution. For every £7.50d paid in we got 1 unit. That was real money in those days- a pint was about 2s (10p today), a gallon of petrol (you work it out) was about 2s6d (12.5p today). So what do we get for our expensive contributions? Well every unit pays less than 12p today per week. What a rip off! If that was a saving scheme for you today you’d be raging.

          • Fred H
            Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

            oops – slight mistake. I remember 1964/5 often putting 4 gallons (1=4.5 litres) leaded in of course! Tanks were mostly small. Cost was £1 and getting 6d change. So that was 4s 10.5d per gallon.

        • Edward2
          Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

          So now are you saying only 16 yr olds that pay income tax and NI should get a vote?

          Europeans already get a vote.
          In their own nation’s elections and referenda.
          UK citizens living in Europe don’t get to vote in any general elections nor referenda in the European country they happen to be in.

        • L Jones
          Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

          Are you Andy’s dad, Martin?

      • Andy
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

        We have age weighted taxes already.

        Young and working age people pay vast amounts of tax to subsidise pensioners. Pensioners who, mostly, have paid far less into the system than they now take out.

        • Edward2
          Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:50 pm | Permalink

          That isn’t correct.
          You don’t start paying tax until you earn £12,500 per year.
          After youngsters have spent their first 18 years living off others.
          Free health and education as just two examples.
          It takes many years after that to pay back what you have taken out.
          PS define pensioner.
          Some public sector workers can retire at 50.

          • hefner
            Posted December 8, 2019 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

            May I have a list of such public sector jobs. My grandchildren might be interested.
            Or is that a quote from the 25 October 2010 Daily Express?
            You should at least update to the Daily Telegraph.

          • hefner
            Posted December 8, 2019 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

            oops, upgrade, not update.

          • Edward2
            Posted December 8, 2019 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

            Police can retire after 30 years service on excellent pensions.
            Join at 20 retire at 50.

            And I note you continue to descend to childish comments hef.
            Usual remain fan.
            Never a comment without abuse.

        • L Jones
          Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:36 pm | Permalink

          Andy – I’ll say it on behalf of many of the young people here – what unmitigated blathering insulting tripe.
          It is better to stay silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.
          You can’t resist it though, can you?

  11. Mick
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    On your first point Sir John if Scotland were given another referendum on staying in the United Kingdom then let all of the U.K. have the vote also if they want Scotland to remain in the U.K. on another referendum on the Eu no way , we’ve already had one and that’s not been carried out, plus if what we read or see on the tv labour god forbid if they won would give the vote to Eu nationals and the gullible easily lead 16 year olds talk about a one sided referendum, then there’s the labour none deal which would be every thing the Eu wants or remain no mention of implementing the first vote of leaving with no deal, i for one in my voting life will for the first time let the Tory’s borrow my vote to get Brexit done

    • backofanenvelope
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:22 am | Permalink

      If 16 year olds get the vote; will they also get the right to buy tobacco and booze?

  12. Mike Stallard
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    Remember the Lisbon Treaty which was NOT the new constitution of the EU? (Ahem!)
    Was there a referendum on that? Not her. But there was in Ireland and they rejected the idea. So?
    The constitution – sorry Treaty – came to pass anyway. Other countries kept having referenda until they got it right.
    We are a parliamentary democracy. Out parliament decides, not “the people”.
    Keep it like that please.

    • Robert McDonald
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:20 am | Permalink

      Definition : a system of government by the whole population, typically through elected representatives.

    • graham1946
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      Remember also the even earlier Maastricht Treaty which turned the Common Market from a trading bloc to a political entity. John Major was not keen on a referendum for that and in fact when it was rejected by Parliament, railroaded it through with threats of de-selections and confidence. The Tories of course, always more keen on the interests of the party than the nation passed it and so we have what we now see.

      Some democrat is Major, also probably the second worst PM in this country’s living memory. The Danes had a referendum and rejected it, but as usual, referenda don’t count with the EU when they don’t get the answer they want and they gerrymandered a list of exceptions which the Danes finally accepted.

    • BillM
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

      But who decides who sits in Parliament? The 2016 National Referendum was Parliament asking the People to decide where their future must lie. Parliament decided to betray our decision and thus reject true democracy, for “democracy” means people power.

  13. Everhopeful
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    On reflection it seems most odd that the only referendums we have had in the UK have both been about EU membership.
    Why not one on mass immigration too? The Iraq War?
    Was it because the EU wanted “one off” decisions or infinitely alterable/manipulable ones? A series of mandates regarding poorly understood Treaties?
    Why weren’t ( openly stated) party manifesto intentions regarding membership enough?
    After all, every post war govt secretly beavered away to get us enmeshed in the EEC etc ….

  14. Andy
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    2016 was a second referendum on the European question. The first, in 1975, you decisively lost. After 1975 NINE subsequent general elections returned pro-Europe majorities in Parliament – with most voters supporting pro-Europe parties.

    2016 saw a narrow leave win – based on a series of promises about what Brexit meant, all of which the Brexiteers have failed to deliver. In Thursday’s election most voters will, again, back pro-Europe parties but – despite lacking a mandate from the majority for his Brexit – Johnson will plough on anyway.

    Brexit is already dead on arrival, but this lack of a mandate from the majority simply guarantees that the Europe question will remain open. There will unquestionably be a third referendum. And you will lose it. The question is merely when it will be, not if there will be one. I suspect it’ll be in 5 to 10 years. Enough time for the Brexiteers’ total failure to be evident to all but the most obtuse.

    • Edward2
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

      The result of the general election on Thursday can be seen as a decisive vote.
      We have three distinctive policies by the three main parties on Brexit and they have been clearly set out.
      Presumably another vote you will refuse to accept.

      • Andy
        Posted December 8, 2019 at 12:43 am | Permalink

        I’ve not refused to accept anything. I am still waiting for you to deliver anything close to what you promised in 2016 – and I am watching in amusement as you repeatedly, and rather spectacularly, fail. You can’t deliver what you promised in 2016 and it is everyone else’s fault.

        I want Boris to win a majority of seats with a minority of votes on Thursday. It guarantees we will leave the EU – but without any sort of proper mandate for his deal. It guarantees you own the blame for what is coming. It guarantees we will rejoin. All this works for me.

        • Edward2
          Posted December 8, 2019 at 8:24 am | Permalink

          Parliament has not seen fit to implement the result of the referendum.
          Due to many MPs who were elected on manifestos that promised to leave the EU and then acted and voted directly opposite to that promise.
          Only a Parliament with a majority for one party can sort out the impasse.
          It is up to the voters.
          I note you are already preparing your next argument…minority of votes…no proper mandate…you are already refusing to accept yet another vote.
          But I’m not surprised.

    • L Jones
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

      ”.. a narrow leave win..”
      Now – we’re all wondering, Andy, what you’d be saying about this ”narrow” margin if it had been in favour of you remainers.
      Perhaps you’d like to tell us.

  15. Kevin
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    If the Conservative Party promised to drop the WA and implement the clean-break Brexit that we voted for, and that Parliament legislated would happen over eight months ago, there could be an end to all this. As it is, in just two years, we went from a Conservative assurance that “no deal is better than a bad deal”, to being presented with the “vassal state” deal! Now, the next Conservative government’s starting point would be “95%” of that deal. Just imagine where we might end up in the next five years. If the Conservatives want to “unite the country” in accordance with our democratic principles, they should do so now by joining forces with the Brexit Party, as the latter seeks both to honour the People’s Vote, and to give parliamentary representation to people who do not want to vote Conservative in a general election.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

      You haven’t a Scooby Doo for what you voted.

      And there is no more such a thing as a “Clean Brexit” than there is a Pretty Disembowelment, a Neat And Tidy Plane Crash, or a Carefree Chemical Works Explosion either.

      • Edward2
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

        Your fear at living in an independent free nation is misplaced.

  16. The Prangwizard
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    And what of the implimentatuon of the EU referendum result? We have heard little or nothing from the great champions of leaving the EU, Sir John, Mr Rees-Mogg and Mr Cash recently on Boris’ WA2, since the election announcement especially.

    Is this because they are prepared to put principle and belief to one side in favour of the Tory party, the party being more important than the country’s sovereignty and freedom.

    And it is very convenient that Scotland voted against independence as this serves the other imperative of the Tories, keeping the Union together. There is no way either that Sir John will campaign for English sovereignty. His claim to speak for England is deceit.

  17. Alison
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    Good morning. Agreed. As a Scot in Scotland, the SNP minority government is focusing on another independence referendum above all else. Aside from the enormous damage it is doing to our lives, it’s very poor strategy.
    One result is that the mismanagement is such that many people who voted SNP in the past now will not. I fear that many who didn’t vote SNP in the past but want to remain in the EU (because they believe the EU is fount of massive largessse which comes to Scotland from the EU … which of course it doesn’t, in net terms, nor gross) will vote SNP on a tactical basis.

    My main worry is how a Tory government will implement Brexit. The current WA is nearly as bad as its predecessor. My dream is that Boris will find an excuse to ditch it. But I understand that there are over 150 Tory PPCs standing – if half win their seats, that may be a problem (in that unlikely event of my dream coming true).
    The UK will be forced to extend the transition. No doubt. Fishing will be given away within months.
    Para 77 of the Political Declaration is very, very bad.

  18. Dominic
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    The continual demands for repeat voting on important political issues is a mere symptom of a disease. What we are seeing is a contempt by political players for the right of the voter to be heard. When the voter expresses that voice those who find the response politically inconvenient demand continual reruns. In effect, they abhor the voter. These people need exposing

    The system and indeed the idea and importance of Democracy has over time come under sustained and sinister attack by those who despise the process of accountability being imposed by the general voter upon the actions of government.

    The EU and those who promote this organisation are at the core of this process. (named labour grandee ed) contempt for Parliamentary democracy is well known. His and those with his mindset maintain a sinister attitude to and contempt for the voting system that the private voter uses to assert accountability over intolerant politicians from all parties should concern anyone who believes democracy is of the utmost importance

    I believe there are politicians within all the main parties who would wish Parliamentary democracy serious harm. I am convinced that in private they despise the idea that the voter should have any say whatsoever and that they alone are perfectly and professionally capable of taking vital decisions that impact our lives without our permission. Down this road leads one thing and nobody wants to go there.

    All parties and their politicians are responsible for the diminution of our democratic culture. The EU and pro-EU British organisations are also responsible for the slow but deliberate erosion of our democratic life

    Democracy and politics must be separated from one another. They cannot overlap. This overlapping is allowing control of ballots and rigging to take place. The Electoral Commission has become a political body set up to protect the political status quo. The Tory party’s stance on ballot rigging, abuse of immigration to plump up Labour’s electoral voting base and their general contempt for process is shameful. Natural Tories expect more from the party

  19. agricola
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    Second referenda as demanded are a form of nagging. A pastime much beloved of Shrews, male and female. Best ignored.

    This is not to deride the use of the referendum to ensure that our representatives in Parliament adhere to the script. I see it as the next step in honing democracy providing it is used sparingly via a recognised process in which financial responsibility is part of the equation.

  20. Leaver
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:00 am | Permalink

    I agree a hundred per cent.

    We voted to leave. We need to leave No reruns.

    I also think we shouldn’t have any more referendums – as they have torn the UK apart and set neighbour against neighbour, rather than blaming politicians for all the ills of the world as we used to do.

  21. Simeon
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    Sad to say, but I think you’re guilty of hypocrisy. I would not expect someone to abandon their principles were they to lose a democratic vote. I would expect them to continue campaigning for their beliefs. I believe this would apply as much to you as it would Ms Swinson. At least I hope it would. This doesn’t mean that you continually call for another referendum, or impugn the result of the first. But of course you continue to make your case in the hope that, over time, you win hearts and minds, perhaps in light of circumstances changing. This is after all what hapoened with the referendum of ’75; over time, it became apparent that the UK’s political class had misled the people. Eventually, another referendum was called.

    The ‘once in a generation’ issue is a result of a philosophical error; history is not circular but relentlessly linear. As such, the same conditions can persist for multiple generations, but then dramatically alter in a moment. This country’s decision to leave the EU was one such moment. Therefore, it matters not whether two referendums are held five minutes apart, provided they fall one on each side of this moment.

    Of course I agree that referenda on the same question should not be held willy-nilly when circumstances have not meaningfully changed. But this point is not relevant to the issue here discussed. Given your intelligence, I can only conclude that you advance this argument out of narrow political interest.

    And lastly, there is no party offering to respect the result of the EU referendum, and the prevention of a second Scottish referendum is not in the UK government’s gift. The Scottish Parliament can demand one, if it is minded to do so and can successfully argue that circumstances are different to those in which the previous referendum was held. The likelihood of this happening in the next five years is high, and there’s nothing a Tory government could do about it. So why exactly is it worth voting Tory?

  22. George Brooks
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    Multiple referenda is a virus that has spread into our democracy from the EU where the ”dictatorship” pressed Holland and Denmark down this route until they got the answer they wanted. The EU supported by the dishonest remainers in the last two parliaments thought they could do the same and have damaged this country hugely over the last three years.

    Scotland had a near miss with the Separation Campaigners basing the country’s economy on North sea oil. Now they are trying to leave the Union again and throw themselves in front of the EU who doesn’t want to them.

    In truth the SNP just wants to destroy Brexit and doesn’t care how they do it.

    As I have said before this whole mess has come about due to politics becoming an occupation. Both here, in the US and many other countries we are electing a lot very inexperienced men and women who haven’t the slightest idea how to run anything, let alone a large country.

    We need to get a sound majority for Boris so that his rare quality can come to the fore. He can PICK PEOPLE as Churchill did. We will then get people from both within and outside parliament to get this country growing again. Not dissimilar to what Ragan did for California before he was President

    This country is in a complete mess and we need to be pulled out of it

    • Turboterrier
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

      George Brooks

      How so right you are with your observations. Too many, far too many career politicians. Neither use or ornament

      • Ian@Barkham
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

        Double agree. Democracy is precious and shouldn’t be abused in the manner the EU Commission does.

        Given Sir John’s comment regarding Major today and adding to it John Major was against his employers (the People) in the UK having any say on him giving away our Democratic rights. Major is still against the People getting to live in a Democracy

  23. Fred H
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Sir John ‘Such a development would make a laughing stock of our democracy’

    I think you’ve missed the point. It has been a laughing stock for so long, it is now into years.

    • L Jones
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

      No – it hasn’t been, nor is it now, ”a laughing stock”.
      You people who think the world begins and ends at the borders of the EU should really get out more. Other countries in the world (ie those who are our friends, not the EU) recognise what we’re up against and don’t consider it’s anything to laugh about.

  24. bitterend
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    Just like Ireland Scotland will assert it’s independence and in the end the breakup of the UK as we knew it is nigh and we’ll all go our separate ways for political reasons but one thing will never change is the geographical nearness of one to each other as in Europe and the British Isles. Things will change but essentially, except for the short sighted, things will remain the same- the people will be the same- this generation and the next will be the same people in a hundred years time.

  25. MickN
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    I wish that whenever Sturgeon wins her referendum that we the English alone set out the terms for what the deal will be and she has to take no deal off the table first.
    Seems only fair.

  26. Original Richard
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Nicola Sturgeon is a keen advocate for the UK to not leave the EU without a deal.

    So I would expect that should Scotland vote to leave the UK, Nicola Sturgeon would not want to leave with “no deal” and consequently she would be happy for rUK to be able to dictate the leaving terms.

    BTW, I think it is wrong that Scottish ex-pats were not allowed a vote in the last Scottish referendum.

  27. Dave Andrews
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    A barrier as I see it to another EU referendum is getting it past the Electoral Commission. Labour’s plan to pit a re-negotiated deal against Remain must surely fail, as it dis-enfranchises a large section of the electorate who have no means to vote against both. The problem of an acceptable question has dogged the campaign of those wanting the 2nd ref.

    If anyone suggests the Electoral Commission can’t be trusted, well I won’t stick my neck out to disagree right now.

  28. graham1946
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    The devolved countries also have their own ‘offices’ within government to look after their interests. Why? What is it about England that the political class don’t like?

    I saw Blackford on QT on Thursday saying how wonderful Scotland was and how England should increase its spend on the NHS to Scottish levels. I agree, but it is so much easier when you have a tame England to send the bills to. Also Sturgeon wants more immigration into Scotland. Could it be that no-one really wants to go there?

    • graham1946
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:07 am | Permalink

      Seems the system liked my post so much it posted it twice, the second out of context.

      • Stred
        Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

        Same with mine. The first doesn’t appear so you try it again and it comes on twice further down.

  29. Gareth Warren
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    I agree a second referendum with the same question is toxic for democracy.

    At some point I could have accepted a second referendum on how we leave – deal or WTO. But this would not have interested the remainers and would have demonstrated how indecisive the government is. If we get a hung parliament this may still be needed.

    I do like the idea of referendums for big issues, we should be a mature enough democracy to accept their result. I would say a decision not in a manifesto such as privatizing the NHS or quitting NATO would be legitimate type of questions (although both today would be so one sided as to not be worthwhile). One that might be successful would be a decision whether to join and fund NASA, here I would be strongly for yet I suspect it would be a closer result.

  30. formula57
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    The people’s Blue Boris must be given a free hand to if needs be offer the SNP in return for its support in Parliament Scottish exit from the Union by only a ‘Commons vote.

  31. BCL
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    I see no problem with a second referendum on EU membership but it is nonsensical for that to take place before the first has been implemented. If there is support in say 10 or 15 year’s time for a referendum on rejoining, I think it would be reasonable to ask the question.

    I also think the English should have our say on whether the Scotch (much as that may annoy the Scotch it is, in the English dictionary, a perfectly acceptable term to describe inhabitants of that country) should leave the UK. I suspect it would mean they were kicked out but I also suspect that would be good economically for England.

  32. GilesB
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    With the act of union Scotland gave up sovereignty.

    The sovereign entity is the United Kingdom. If we want to change our boundaries we should all get a vote.

    I suspect that if NorthernIreland wants to leave than a majority of the UK would support that in a UKwide referendum. Not so for Scotland.

    Otherwise Kensington and Chelsea will want independence. And Cornwall. And Little Wittering.

    It was a mistake to have the first referendum voted on by the residents if Scotland only. Their certainly shouldn’t be another with the same parochial electorate.

  33. GilesB
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    Actually it could be a smart move to hold a UKwide referendum on the issue.

  34. margaret
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    Shirley is right ;the rot has set in. Its all ‘ hubble bubble toil and trouble ‘. It is arrogance that we are in this stalemate position. I think a few words of yours reminds us that we are British . “Tell them I kept my word ” he said.

  35. British Spy
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Corbyn is needling everyone with his double stitch up of the Brexit result.
    He’s trying to stitch up traditional Labour voters by promising a socialist utopia which has always failed everywhere.
    He is trying to stitch up Labour brexit voters by saying he will make some kind of cloudy deal with the EU.
    Corbyn should try crochet. In that way he can use a needle with a hook, bring us back our fish from the EU.
    I feel Corbyn will,
    Go a bit loopy very soon.
    I feel Corbyn will,
    Know we have cottoned on to him.

  36. a-tracy
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    I agree John.

    People are trying to tactical vote, goodness help us, they forget people don’t speak their own truth when you talk politics to them now, this election is going to be very messy. I have family, friends and colleagues who live in very marginal constituencies and my previous safe seat has been thrown a curved ball with a defecting pretend Tory who shouldn’t have been foisted on us in 2017 anyway on a thrown away ,snidest o when Central office knew her beliefs. Corbyn has bought off the votes of waspi’s and their husbands who personally think a Labour vote gives them a much needed state pension + 4 years + their National insurance premiums back for that period (they think 🤔 they’ll get a pension claw back back to the age of 60! Even though Corbyn didn’t quite offer that!).

    75% of people really believe they don’t vote selfishly but I think we do. If I were a public servant and thought Corbyn’s going to give me an extra 5% wage increase immediately and a 30 hour week for the same money as a 37.5 hour week…. or an extra £20,000 payoff if I was a waspi- or big extra benefits if I were a single parent….and only the 5% will pay.

    • Stred
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

      For the sake of equality, I think I will declare myself a woman and claim the, £45,000 that I didn’t get until I was 70. Labour supports declaration of gender and there’s no need for the rearranging of the nether regions.

      • Stred
        Posted December 8, 2019 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

        Sorry, memory going, it was 65. All £ 640 a month to pay the bills.

  37. Everhopeful
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    Actually there was another referendum…the one on the voting system.
    I suppose if we had got PR we might also have got Brexit?

  38. BillM
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    A second referendum is merely rejecting the result of the first unless the wording on the ballot paper is unconnected. We now know what happens when the ordinary plebs of Britain come up with the wrong answer, so there is no point in having a re-run. What next a third referendum?
    This ‘once a lifetime’ opportunity will have been multiplied by devious manipulation. I do wonder why Mr Cameron has not come out in favour of the democratic decision of the people and one he publicly had promised to honour but never did.

  39. Lester Beedell
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    Democracy only works if the losers accept the result, I lost count of the number of times we were promised that the result would be implemented but then Leave won, that wasn’t in the script!

    • Lifelogic
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

      Or the number of times we were promised referenda on treaties but these were never delivered as with Cast Iron and Lisbon. It is as if the elected directors of a company (in this case MPs) have given away control of the company (the country) to anti- democratic foreign powers (with no interest in the shareholders) and without asking the shareholders ( or asking them then just ignoring them as with May).

  40. Sam Duncan
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    “The SNP seem to love referendums but they keep losing them. They lost both the Independence referendum and the EU referendum.”

    Also the AV referendum and the 1975 EEC referendum (ironically, they’ve campaigned both to leave and to stay in, and lost both times). Along with the 1997 devolution referendum, I make that “Played 5, won 1”.

  41. Turboterrier
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

    Sir John
    Good post highlights just how the majority of politicians have completely lost the plot.

    Such a development would make a laughing stock of our democracy,

    Too late Sir John it already has in certain quarters. If the status quo remains the same then it will be the start of the end of democracy as we know it. I feel along with many voters that the standard and principles of the last parliament has made a perhaps difficult situation border upon that of being a disaster, driven by a dearth of honesty and truth at the very start of the negotiations of the process.

  42. DavidJ
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    One may be sure that any party which has the word “Democrat” in its title is anything but democratic but just wants to create the illusion that it is.

    • Lifelog
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      Ditto for nearly every organisation that calls itself the “Independent” office of …..or indeed just “The Independent”.

      Even the lefty, climate alarmist, pro EU, BBC propaganda outfit – the BBC claims to be Independent and impartial. But very few are fooled.

      “The BBC’s reputation and the strength of its brand in the UK and around the world are based upon its fundamental values of editorial integrity, independence and impartiality. These values are central both to the BBC’s Public Services and our Commercial Services. Audiences everywhere must be able to trust the BBC. In order to achieve that, our impartiality, editorial integrity and independence must not be compromised by outside interests and arrangements”

      Sure thing! What about the EU funding they get. Question Time and Any Questions can however be circa 80% lefties and remainers and BBC political presenters can be 99% lefty remainers who have always swallowed all the climate alarmist bogus exaggerations. Anyone pro-leave struggles to get a word out before one of the other 4 other guests or the chairman interrupts them.

  43. BOF
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Correct on every point Sir John.

    Also, none of us who voted to leave the EU voted for the apaling W/A & PD. It is a further attack on our democracy.

  44. Tad Davison
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    ‘Had my side of the referendum lost, I would have kept my word.’

    There you have it in a nutshell John, it’s a matter of honour, and in my opinion, Labour, the Lib Dems, and remainers in general have proved themselves to be seriously wanting. But I could also include a hell of a lot of Tories in that category including former Prime Ministers who were totally out of their depth, and did their level best to deceive the electorate.

    On this occasion, and because of the poor quality of local candidates, I will be voting Tory. May was utterly useless, but I cannot punish the sons for the sins of the father. I am prepared to lend Boris my vote. I just hope I do not come to bitterly regret it as I did with his immediate predesessor having been enticed with her false prospectus in the form of one Lancaster House Speech.

    The stakes of this General Election are very high, and the consequences of Boris not getting an outright majority against the forces of evil are too dire to contemplate. I just hope that he too is true to his word.

  45. villaking
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    Sir John,
    Your opinion is well put and the principles are hard to object to. Much as leaving the EU disappoints me, I have tended to accept that it has to be done, that was the point of having a referendum. The big mistake was putting such a momentous and complex decision to a simple yes or no vote of the entire voting age population. However, based on what has happened since, I am starting to question whether a second EU referendum might be acceptable in this instance. The reason is, as you yourself can attest, there are many versions of Brexit. You voted down Mrs May’s version three times because you said it wasn’t Brexit. It was, it would have taken us out of the political structures of the EU, but it wasn’t Brexity enough for you. Mr Johnson’s deal, which is essentially the same but puts a border down the Irish Sea and states an aspiration to have as loose a connection as possible after leaving, is acceptable to you – but not to some of your posters on here who want the hardest of hard Brexits. Since leaving the EU can be defined in so many ways, perhaps a confirmatory vote could take place without breaking the principles that you rightly put forward?

    • Oggy
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

      That old chestnut – we didn’t know what we were voting for or what ‘leave’ looks like.
      An argument put forward along with many others by Remainers to dilute, delay and stop Brexit.

      I don’t recall any of this whingeing after the 1975 result to remain, even though we were never asked if we wanted to join the common market in the first place – but that’s another story. We accepted the democratic result and got on with our lives.
      Isn’t it a shame that you and your fellow remainers cannot be as magnanimous in defeat as we were. You lost – get over it. Leave means leave, not one foot in and one foot out.

    • Ian@Barkham
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

      Strange response. The referendum, was stay or leave. The election in 2017 a massive majority of prospect MP’s and those actually elected put in their manifestos the promise they would honour the referendum and the UK would leave the EU. Then also buy a large majority put into law we would leave. No ifs or buts. Mrs May’s WA never permitted leave that then started the whole farce we see today. Mrs May never involved her cabinate, her party or parliment in creating the WA.

      Leave as in the referendum meant leave, those that lost the debate have since kept contriving other scenarios that dont permit leave.

  46. Fred H
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    I notice you hold back, or mostly don’t publish my posts anymore – – is the truth too hard to accept?

    • L Jones
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

      ”… mostly don’t publish my posts anymore(sic)…”
      And what is it, Fred H, that makes you think you’re any different from many of us here? Our host has many commenters and comments – perhaps some are just more interesting or appropriate than others. Maybe you just didn’t make the grade.
      Get over yourself.

      Reply Try posting fewer each day. I delete sone multiple postings.

      • Fred H
        Posted December 8, 2019 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

        L.Jones……you infer incorrect grammar.
        anymore is fine for the meaning and context – no longer.
        any more to be used – I don’t want any more leaflets.

        oooh get you. I think you should stop being a faux headmistress.

        I understand multiple postings, but there are plenty of others’ multiples. My post which you didn’t see was criticism held back/ deleted.
        It is of course our host’s site and moderates as he wishes.

  47. RichardM
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

    Huge bribes to the DUP to prop up your abysmal government made a mockery of democracy – look where that’s got them. Stitched up with a border down the Irish Sea that no one voted for, which is precisely why another referendum is essential for democracy,

  48. tim
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

    If Scotland had voted to leave, the rich people would not have let them go.
    The UK will never be allowed freedom from the EU parasite.

  49. Stred
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    Here we go again. More muddled pinko piffle. Soft medium or hard. How would you like your Brexit done sir? Leave with full regulation, law and taxes the same and have Belgian generals commanding the army and deciding who they are fighting, or just medium done and with no say in their laws and taxes, or just leave and do the same as the rest of the world. But we the chef isn’t able to do the awful hard boiled Brexit, so the first two are only on the menu sir. Enjoy and we welcome your feedback if you would like to waste half an hour to complete our questionnaire.

  50. Ian @Barkham
    Posted December 7, 2019 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    There was a simple question ‘leave’ or ‘stay’.

    The new Parliament arrived in 2017 with 75% of MP’s promising their electorate they would ensure we just left as the will of the people had decided it. Parliament then passed the Law to leave.

    Nothing changed, other than Parliament proved to their electorate that they lied. MP’s then started to construe different story lines, apply different spin of the simple referendum. In simple terms a great number of them said democracy is when the UK parliament hand government of the UK to an unaccountable committee.

    It is the way of our Overlords in the EU that democracy means you vote and vote again until you give the right answer. Are those wanting another referendum guaranteeing that what ever the result we can have another one to over turn that. Of course they are not, they want to bury Democracy as deep as possible, as it doesn’t suit their own agendas.

    • L Jones
      Posted December 7, 2019 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

      Thank you, Mr Barkham. In a nutshell -why we just can’t believe them any more.

  • About John Redwood


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

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