The Brexit Vision

Following the rejection of the UK’s very generous offer to the EU by the Commission and the Parliament, I am reminding people why we voted Leave by publishing the relevant section from my recent lecture.
The negotiating mandate put out by the EU falls well short of a Good Deal for us and for them, as it seeks to tie us down in far too many ways without offering a good reason to accept their terms.

The main benefits of Brexit come from once again being a self governing country

I find it extraordinary that so many who make their living out of government and politics

Are so defeatist about this greatest of countries

Why do they doubt our abilities to shape good laws

Frame a good economic policy

And trade with the five continents of the world based on what we are good at?

Why do they both say they love the EU

Yet have such a low view of it that they think its main aim will be to do us down

Why do they tell us every clause and line of the Treaties has to be enforced against the UK

Yet all those great clauses in the Treaties that require the EU to be a good neighbour and trading partner of nearby states will in their view go unenforced and unheeded

If the EU is as logical and legal as they say our future friendly relationship is assured

And if it is not and the Treaty is made for breaking, it need not concern us what it says, especially once we are out

Anyone who walks the corridors and great rooms at Westminster

Must see there the heroic story of our islands

There on the walls and in the sculptures are the establishment and the rebels

The winners and the losers, the great moments of our history

There is the signing of Magna Carta, the taming the King in the seventeenth century,

The union of the crowns,

The saving of Europe from Napoleon,

The passage of the Great Reform Bill and the triumph of the suffragettes

So many made common cause to put the people in charge through their vote

And to put Parliament in charge of carrying out their wishes

All the time we remained in the EU there were an increasing number of laws we could not change

More taxes we could not control. More money that someone else spent away from our shores

This system took away the very freedoms our ancestors fought for and established

Once back these powers will be used well and sometimes badly, but always as a result of strong argument and heated votes here at home,

We will doubtless have economic reversals out of the EU as we did in it

But the difference matters

Next time when mistakes are made they will be our mistakes

They will be mistakes the British people can punish and put right

More importantly

Taking back control gives us immediate opportunities

To legislate wisely
And to grow our prosperity

That is why I voted for Brexit

That is why many of the 17.4 million voted for Brexit

That is why many who voted Remain

Will be winners too from this course

Once we are at last out of the EU.

This great people

This once and future sovereign

Will have many contributions to make to the world

As we have in the past

Let us be a voice for freedom

A strong arm for peace

And a force for good around the globe

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  1. Peter
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:30 am | Permalink

    Absolutely. Take back control. No arguments with anything you have stated.

    My main worry is that our government lacks the resolve to deliver Brexit. I think the EU sense this too. Not that they care about an economically sensible deal. They are driven by politics and want to shore up and reinforce their own power.

    I am therefore waiting for some sort of fudge to be produced next by our government unfortunately.

  2. Peter Wood
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:31 am | Permalink

    Good Morning,
    If left to the EU bureaucracy, we will not be able to obtain a ‘good deal’. As Mr. Tusk says, it is not the EU’s objective to make Brexit a success. How many times must this sentiment be repeated before our government takes preparatory action for leaving without a FTA.
    The worst case must that we are unprepared for a WTO arrangement, and therefore the May government is left no option but to accept a very bad deal, or Brexit in name only.
    If the European national leaders, Merkel, Macron, Italy(?) and others, will not intercede and issue new instructions to the EU bureaucracy, then preparations now for WTO terms must be government priority.

  3. Peter
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    That said the Daily Express claims we are now preparing for a Walk Out from talks with the EU. It says the source is a minister. The minister apparently said that No deal preparations are well advanced and that a diplomatic approach was tried first though – “Some of us would have liked us to be more upfront about this before and shout louder about the fact we are ready to compete but we have taken a reasonable, diplomatic approach and there are good reasons for that.”

    This could just be paper talk. Part of the ongoing media wars. I don’t know how things will pan out in the end.

    It did cheer me up though.

    • Gary C
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:35 am | Permalink

      @ Peter

      Re: ‘It did cheer me up though.’

      Me too, we can only hope there’s some truth in it.

    • Hope
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:06 am | Permalink

      JR, these are good points to ask May, Hammond, Rudd, Clarke, Grieve, Soubry, Morgan, liddington, Ford, SHammond, K. Clarke. Osborn and serial ratter Cameron. Cameron loaded his cabinet with EU Fantatics and claimed to be Eurosceptic, gave away billions to the EU, made numerous false claims about the EU, and allowed mass immigration while falsely claiming the opposite. There is much work to be done in your party, your govt, past and present. I don’t think this blog will do it.

      Another demand from the EU for £2.4 billion for not preventing fraud from China. What will May do? It sounds similar to the £1.7 billion demand made to Cameron who claimed he would not pay but quietly ended up giving away £2.9 billion! When will overse aid payments of about £2 billion to EU stop? A lot of doctors, nurses, teachers, police officers and adult social care could be provided instead.

      • Mark B
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 5:49 am | Permalink

        I mentioned this a while back – Hidden costs of the EU.

        This is a another reason why we need to leave the ECJ.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 12:27 pm | Permalink


      If Cameron and Osborne had been up to the job and fulfilled their duty to the British people, preparations for a no deal scenario would have been well advanced even before the referendum. By any metric, they failed us. I just hope the present leadership doesn’t follow in their footsteps, and fails to plan for a walkout. By planning for a no-deal, they might even discover how advantageous leaving on WTO could be to the United Kingdom.


      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

        Had this been done, we wouldn’t even be in a situation where the EU half-think we can’t/won’t walk away. The strategy should have been from June 2016 to declare that we would go to WTO rules by default, but if the EU wanted to talk they had David Davis’s telephone number. This could have been done so much better…

        • NickC
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 11:56 am | Permalink

          Sir Joe Soap said: “The strategy should have been from June 2016 to declare that we would go to WTO rules by default, but if the EU wanted to talk they had David Davis’s telephone number.

          Absolutely. When will our lords and masters stop negotiating away our independence?

      • Prigger
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

        So why people who it is said did not make preparations on a 50-50 outcome be taken to court and financial consequences come about for them?

      • Mark B
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 5:51 am | Permalink


        Remember Gina Miller and her action against the UK government ? They failed to prepare then and they will fail once more.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 12, 2018 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

        Exactly the pathetic Cameron failed to prepare for the leave outcome and just walked away. Utter contempt for the people who paid him and pensioned him to do a job. The bureaucrats should also have insisted on it. They failed too.

    • SecretPeople
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

      >It did cheer me up though

      Me too 🙂

  4. Mark B
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:56 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    Our kind hosts speech at the Speaker’s Lecture was very good. Made some points that others here have made, which was nice 😉

    The EU’s refusal was both predictable and correct. They have always told us that there can be no cherry picking. Shame that our PM is allowing the EU to cherry pick what it wants from us – eg fishing grounds.

    One can only concluded, as others have alluded to here, that the ‘fix is already in’ and that all this so called negotiation is a charade for public consumption. The EU has won ! And they did not have to fight for it as they had their place men and one woman to make sure they got what they wanted. It is not enough to say that we have been poorly led, it is we have been betrayed.

    That is why I and a few others prefered FLEXIT or the Norway EEA Option. It was a ready made solution that would not have allowed any wriggle room. We would have left the EU and he Customs Union, sidestepped the Irish border question, at least for now, and most of all, we would have got our fishing grounds back.

    How many now can say that what is being negotiated is any worse ?

    • Mark B
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

      OK, OK, OK what was it this time that has landed me in moderation ?

      Can’t be the length. Links. Named persons or organisations. And it cannot be anything that people have not mentioned here before.

      Oh. And you let someone refer to a New Zealander by their nickname. When I did it, and it was about a friend, you edited it out !

      Still a good speech though 🙂

      • Peter
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 9:46 am | Permalink

        I assume you have yet to work out that some posts get deleted – or more frequently delayed – if they do not chime with the overall viewpoint of the article to which they refer.

        Flawed counter arguments get through as they provide ammunition for rebuttals from other posters.

  5. Ian wragg
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:59 am | Permalink

    Then get rid of May and Hammond.
    If you give away our waters you are finished as a party.

    • jerry
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:35 am | Permalink

      Ian Wragg; “If you give away our waters you are finished as a party.”

      What all 12 miles of them? I don’t think so, most people actuality have a clue you know, hence why UKIP style rants were good as a protest vote but when the real work needs to be done….!

      • NickC
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

        Jerry, Are you intentionally stupid? The EU’s CFP controls UK 200 mile fishing rights at the moment. Out of the EU, those rights revert (provided they are not given away) to the UK. Fish may not recognise borders, but we do. And we have an internationally recognised right to do so.

        • jerry
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

          @NickC, Are YOU intentionally stupid, post Brexit the UK will not be in the EU, thus their 200 miles self declared limit is irrelevant. UN international law only recognises 12 nautical miles [1].

          Also, just how does the UK claim a 200 mile limit in waters shared by other EU27+ countries, it is you who needs to find the clue. Due west of the most westerly UK point, the Isles of Scilly, is within the 200 mile limit that either Eire or the EU claim… How about actually consulting a world atlas before having any more rants about fishing!


          • NickC
            Posted March 10, 2018 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

            Jerry, Really I should not have to hold your hand like this, but here goes. What happens to the 12nm limit at the point France and the UK are only 18nm apart? Duh . . . essentially it’s split equally. Just like the 200nm limit would be.

            Part of the current EU 200nm EEZ is precisely in UK waters after Brexit. So, unless our government gives it away (we are leaving the CFP, I trust), the UK will have a 200nm EEZ round its coast (and as explained above the boundary will be in the middle where we are closer than 400nm to a sea neighbour like Eire).

            If you actually read the UNCLoS 1982 you will find the following: “Coastal States have sovereign rights in a 200-nautical mile exclusive economic zone (EEZ) with respect to natural resources and certain economic activities, and exercise jurisdiction over marine science research and environmental protection”.

          • jerry
            Posted March 11, 2018 at 9:19 am | Permalink

            @NickC; You really do not have a first clue, try actually looking at a world atlas and doing some distance measurements! There is only one part of the north Atlantic were we just might be able to claim a full 200 miles thus EEZ’s are not even worth the distraction.

            Yours and UKIP’s are the politics of the soapbox, nice sound-bites but little else, not actual understanding the facts.

      • Dee
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

        No, not 12 miles, 200 miles is ours or the median betwee two counties. That means midway across the North sea and Irish sea, elsewhere 200 miles, South Coast, Bristol Channel, Parts of Scotland, anywhere that doesn’t face a country within 200 miles.

    • Hope
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:08 am | Permalink

      Not waters, fishing stock through quotas.

      JR, how will the U.K. Get its money back from the EU? I.e. Assets, excise duties, taxes etc?

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 12:44 pm | Permalink


      It does perplex me when I see such obvious experience and expertise merely impotently commenting from the back benches, when the officers of state who are able to weild the power seem so dull and uninspiring. Worse, when those same officers of state are inclined to bow down and capitulate, especially when they misread the realities of the situation and fail to see the weakness of the other party’s hand.

      They need a massive injection of testosterone to face down these anti-democtatic, self-important, over-blown, bureaucratic nonentitues that have caused so much damage on the continent of Europe.


    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

      Or if you give away conrol of our borders during the transition, as they are clearly doing or indeed if they stick with socialists May and Hammond.

      BREXIT with non of the advatages.

  6. Henry Spark
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:01 am | Permalink

    You write: .. “all those great clauses in the Treaties that require the EU to be a good neighbour and trading partner of nearby states will in their view go unenforced and unheeded”. Nothing in the Treaties requires the EU to be a trading partner of nearby states. You are simply telling a lie here.

    • Ian wragg
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:17 am | Permalink

      Seeing how we have a £90 billion deficit with them I think you are a very silly man.

    • Woody
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      The eu can’t be much of a good neighbour if it blocks trade with its neighbours, can it? Clearly it will trade, but on its terms. i.e. it will cherry pick within the terms of WTO rules. No problem, as we will only trade on our terms as friendly neighbours apparently do in the eu.

      • Billyg
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:51 pm | Permalink

        Woody..the Eu is not a is an economic bloc made up of countries who share certain values and who pool their resources to their advantage with rules and regulations..rules that tbe Commission has to strictly follow. We are the ones leaving the bloc..we are leaving a situation where we currently have full trading rights to become a foreign country to them..They are not the ones who have changed their stance..we are the ones who have drastically changed ours. To them it looks very like now that we want to pick and choose the parts of the EU trading rights that we like and to discard the others we looks to them that we would like to refashion the european project just to suit ourselves..oblivious to the fact that there are 27 other countries to be considered..this is plainly not going to yes you are looks like trading by WTO rules with countries worldwide is looming.. because there is not the slightest chance that we can have an agreement with them now considering all of the red lines we have in guessing that a lot of hardline brexiteers will be very happy with this, particularly the ones who are so well off that it doesn’t matter to them..they will be still well off..but also to the ones who are not so well off, and who feel they have nothing more to lose..the losers

        • NickC
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

          Billyg, The EU is effectively a nation, or perhaps more accurately an empire being formed – it has the legal personality (Art47) in its own right, like any state does.

          The EU is much more than an “economic bloc”, which can be confirmed from the EEA agreement which involves Norway, for example, in only about a fifth of the EU laws.

          The nations which are part of the EU do not “pool their resources”, they have given up rights and powers (“competences”) which are henceforth exercised solely by the EU from the Brussels.

          The EU does not “strictly follow” its own rules: it’s not following its own Art8 (and others) rules in the negotiations with us; and it did not follow its own rules when saving the Euro from collapse.

          We do want to pick and choose. Who doesn’t? If you ever go into a car showroom do you tell the salesman “you pick the worst, most expensive car for me”? Of course not. So why do you suppose we should tell the EU the same for their cars?

          As Thierry Baudet said: “Nationalism does not lead to war. Attempts to build European empires lead to war. The urge to impose a straitjacket on the will of peoples will lead to war. In short, the European project will lead to war.” (2012)

    • Edward2
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:55 am | Permalink

      Henry you are quite wrong.
      You need to do some research.

      • Dee
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

        You must forgive henry, he has nothing better to do than get up at 6 in the morning to profer his indesputable rEUmoaner garbage. He’s not here to tell the truth, he would choke on it. Like all rEUmoaners he’s just trying to make trouble.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:35 am | Permalink

      I wonder if Henry Spark knows anything at all about the EU treaties …

      “It’s not just Mario Draghi who wants more trade, ostensibly that desire runs all the way through the EU treaties and our diplomats and other representatives should be actively pointing that out to governments and other influential bodies around the world and making sure they fully understand that when they are dealing with the EU they should always expect to be dealing with hypocritical and untrustworthy people.

      Apart from the general Article 8 TEU on the EU’s neighbourhood policy, mentioned above, here is a list, not necessarily exhaustive, of other relevant provisions in the EU treaties … “

    • mancunius
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

      The EU is required under WTO rules to engage in reasonable trade with neighbours.
      Refusing to do so would be tantamount to a bloackade, which under national and international law may be regarded as an act of war.
      The |Treaty of Lisbon has stated (Article 8):
      “The Union shall develop a special relationship with neighbouring countries, aiming to establish an area of prosperity and good neighbourliness, founded on the values of the Union and characterised by close and peaceful relations based on cooperation.”

      Under international law cooperation includes also trade. Otherwise Art. 8 is a load of meaningless guff.

      • Dee
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

        @Henry Spark:
        See henry I told you so, still never mind, stick at it and one day you too may well be able to read. But I suppose even then you will be trying to rEUmoan for your masters in Brussels.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

      So, would it not be in the EU’s best interests to be a good neighbour to the UK after we have left?

      • hefner
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

        The real question to be asked is, I guess “What is so special about the UK that all other countries in the EU (or in the rest of the world for that matter) would want to treat it so differently from other countries?”
        Personally I think that a non negligible number of UK people have not yet realised that the Empire has been over for more than 70 years, that the Commonwealth is supposed to be a group of nations equal in duties and rights.
        Britain got first to the Industrial Revolution, and was the dominant country in the 19th century. But what is its exact status and place in the world order right now?
        English is the dominant language for trade, science, diplomacy, … but being now spoken as a second language by a huge number of non-English speaking natives, might it not become less and less representative of the interests of its original island?
        Just wondering?

        • Tad Davison
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 2:22 am | Permalink

          You seem to imply that the UK isn’t worth bothering with because it no longer has an empire. You also seem to be casting an aspersion that a lot of people are too stupid to realise that we lost that empire years ago.

          Firstly, there’s nothing wrong with patriotism and wanting the best for ones country and its people. Colonialism is different and I can’t see many in the UK wanting to return to our chequered past. That shows real progress. But if you really need me or anyone else to explain this nation’s strengths and massive as yet unfulfilled industrial and intellectual potential, you really couldn’t have been reading many of the posts on this blog. I’d say those people who were so unbievably ‘daft’ they voted for our independence from the European Union have a considerable advantage over you.


        • NickC
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

          Hefner, What is this fixation on the British Empire so beloved of Remains? Not one Leave voter that I know (and I am confident I know a lot more than you do) voted Leave because of the “Empire” or any hankering after it.

          In fact, quite the reverse. We admire the ex-Empire colonies that took their independence and forged their own destiny in the world. Indeed, we want to do the same. We want to escape the EU Empire.

      • Dee
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

        It would but they are not interested in doing the’right’ thing, they are such a weak and feeble entity that they have to try to look strong by a) punishing (ha) the UK for leaving, which shows their complete and utter lack of confidence in the ‘goodness’ of their club by doing this to warn other counties not to leave. and b) and this is what T May cannot grasp, they are frightened to death because they know that GB can and will succeed after Brexit and can and will take trade away from them. Why do you think they are trying to tie the UK into agreeing a so called ‘Level playing field’? So we have taxation alignment to stop us lowering Corporation tax which makes us more attractive to business and State Aid alignment to stop us using state aid to help out business.. Though what is ‘level’ about 27 countries against 1 is difficult to see. After Brexit, the UK needs to reduce to zero its imports from the EU including the Republic of Ireland, there is a big wide World out there who will be only too glad to sell to us without reams of agreements. We need strong leaders,, we need John in number 11 and Moggy in number 10.

    • NickC
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

      Henry Spark

      Art3: “In its relations with the wider world” the EU shall “contribute to peace … free and fair trade … as well as the strict observance … of international law …” So, as the EU is itself a member of the WTO, it must strictly observe WTO good trading practices.

      Art8: The EU “shall develop a special relationship with neighbouring countries, aiming to establish an area of prosperity and good neighbourliness … and characterised by close and peaceful relations based on co-operation.

      See also Art21, Art50, Art220, and others.

    • zorro
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

      Read A8 TEU


      • Endo
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 6:48 am | Permalink

        Read it. Nothing about compulsory trade

        • NickC
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

          Endo, The EU’s Treaty articles are compulsory on the EU. That is what they are for. It would be rather difficult for the EU to comply with Art8 (and many others) unless it did trade with its neighbours. If you think all and every trade will entirely cease upon Brexit you are being pointlessly puerile.

    • getahead
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

      Henry Spark offensive and untrue.

    • rose
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:29 pm | Permalink

      Article 8 of the Lisbon Treaty tells the EU to foster peace and prosperity on its borders. It doesn’t tell it to do all it can to impoverish a country on its borders.

  7. duncan
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:05 am | Permalink

    These are mere words, admirable and honourable, but we need physical evidence to confirm that when we do leave the EU the British people can confirm for themselves that we have definitely regained our independence and sovereignty

    Will that evidence be contained within a piece of legislation on the statute books? A law which confirms that the UK is once again a sovereign nation once more?

    Will the signing of a FTA constitute undeniable proof that the UK is now free from the political infection that is the EU?

    At what point will we know we have left and how can we confirm it to ourselves?

    Most people distrust all politicians so their word is never their bond. This or any other PM telling us we have left the EU is vacuous tosh as politicians use words for political purposes rather than to convey the truth.

    As an aside, we see the disgusting behaviour of the opposition and their conspiratorial behaviour with the EU as they try to undermine the UK. You can almost smell Corbyn, McCluskey Blair and Mandelson working together with Tusk, Barnier and Juncker. In direct contradiction to their core vote Labour be punished for their anti-democratic meanderings. How anyone can vote for this party is beyond me. Labour died in the early 1970’s

    The Tories must do two things. One, make the UK a sovereign, independent nation once more. Two, neutralise that political monstrosity on the opposition benches

    We want radicalism from the Tories. Decisiveness, aggression and determination to defeat that rabble

    • Mark B
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 5:54 am | Permalink

      So you too got moderated 🙂

      Judge them by their actions and not their words. Which, when you think about it, is bloody worrying.

  8. Nadine
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:08 am | Permalink

    But I don’t understand why we made a generous offer. We should just tell them what is going to happen, and if this man Barnier says no, Mrs May should sack him and replace him with someone better. Mr Redwood, please remind Mrs May of what we voted for – out of the EU but the exact same benefits (as I think Mr Davis said)

    • acorn
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:03 am | Permalink

      Nadine, I don’t think you have got the gist of this Brexit thing. Barnier plays for the other team; (or are you just pulling our plonkers). Anyway, here are a collection of Brexit quotes:

      We should not ask people to vote on a blank sheet of paper and tell them to trust us to fill in the details afterwards. For referendums to be fair and compatible with our parliamentary process, we need the electors to be as well informed as possible and to know exactly what they are voting for. Referendums need to be treated as an addition to the parliamentary process, not as a substitute for it. (David Davis Hansard 26 November 2002.

      If a democracy cannot change its mind, it ceases to be a democracy. (David Davis 19 November 2012)

      There will be no downside to Brexit, only a considerable upside. (David Davis 10 October 2016)

      Nobody has ever pretended that this will be easy. I have always said that this negotiation will be tough, complex and, at times, confrontational. (David Davis 5 September 2017).

      (Previous contradictory statements on the ease of leaving the EU, by his colleagues in government and fellow leave campaigners, include):

      The day after we vote to leave we hold all the cards and we can choose the path we want. (Michael Gove April 2016)

      There will continue to be free trade, and access to the single market. (Boris Johnson 26 June 2016)

      Getting out of the EU can be quick and easy – the UK holds most of the cards in any negotiation. (John Redwood 17 July 2016)

      To me, Brexit is easy. (Nigel Farage 20 September 2016)

      EU needs us more than we need them. (Paul Nuttall 17 Jan 2017).

      The free trade agreement that we will have to do with the European Union should be one of the easiest in human history. (Liam Fox 20 July 2017)

      • Mark B
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 6:01 am | Permalink

        And pray tell where did you get your list from ? Please do not tell us that you compiled it yourself.

        As for telling porky-pies, I think you will find that the reason we are here to day with regards to the EU, is that our governments of past have lied and lied and lied. They lied over no loss of sovereignty. They lied as to the true purpose of this project. They lied to us over the treaties we signed. They lied to us when offered referendums, on being on Lisbon.

        So politicians lie. And bears **** in the woods. Get use to it !

        • acorn
          Posted March 11, 2018 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

          I don’t have to get used to it. The occupants of Westminster and Whitehall, know how to get around it. Alas Mark B, you voted to get shafted by spivs who are much smarter and richer than you are. 😉

      • Edward2
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:43 am | Permalink

        They are right acorn.
        Leaving the EU and doing a trade deal is easy.
        However the EU are deliberately being difficult.

      • NickC
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

        Acorn, The principle of Brexit is easy: we voted Leave to re-gain our independence. Unfortunately the government will not stick to that principle. That is because the government has listened to Remain, fudging the difference between independence and trade, and attempting a conciliatory approach. The mess we are in now is because Remain has undermined our vote.

        Taken in context almost all of the statements made by Leaves you cite are correct, and not contradictory. Referendums are an addition to Parliament, but that is not an excuse for MPs to second-guess the people when a referendum is given. And Leave voters are well informed, because we have been witness to the inanities of the EU for 20, 30, even 40 years.

    • NickC
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

      Nadine, I don’t understand why the government keeps making generous offers either. What is clear is that the government (politicians/civilservice) don’t separate out the principle of independence from their avowed desire for a trade deal. In the confusion we appear to be losing some of our new-found independence.

      The EU has no right to restrict, hold hostage, or negotiate away, the transfer of sovereignty back to the UK. The UK government has no right to capitulate on independence. Completely independently, it is desirable, but not necessary, to negotiate a trade deal – the basis for that being equal access.

    • Rogm
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

      Nadine..Mrs May and government are in the business now of trying to get some kind of a deal going with them going forward because they fully realise at that level, David Davis included, of the awful position we are in if we don’t.

      Truth is there are no new alternative deals out there waiting for us, if there were don’t you think we would have heard all about them from Messrs Fox and Boris long before now. Please be advised Barnier is a contract employee of the EU commission only and Mrs May had no say about when his contract can be terminated..and as for your other idea that somehow we can expect the same benefits from the EU after leaving? ..well forget about it..sorry to say we are going to be a whole lot worse off..again the truth is we have no bargaining power with them..all we have is bluff and bluster..empty words and some slogans that all together add up to very little..nothing..zilch

      • Mark B
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 6:05 am | Permalink

        The reason we are here today is because people, on all sides of the argument, are not as honest as they should have been.

        Leaving was NEVER going to be easy. That is why I and others argued for FLEXIT or the Norway Option as a transitory phase. But people would not listen.

        • NickC
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

          Mark B, Leave was never going to be easy, in practice, because of EU belligerence. That is why I have advocated since at least 2013 that we should give 12 months diplomatic notice and take our independence: it is the only sure way out. Norway (or Flexit) does not overcome the problem of the EU’s hostility, and merely extends the agony. As the government is too slowly beginning to realise with its non-transition “transition”.

    • getahead
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

      Nadine, did I miss something there? Has M. Barnier changed jobs?

    • Dee
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

      Can somebody enlighten me, I must be thick or I missed it somewhere along the line. What are these ‘Benefits’ we get from being in the EU? They sell to us twice as much as we sell to them, in order to let them sell us twice as much as we sell to them, we have to give them £Billions. All the revenue raised fron tariffs and VAT goes to the EU not the 27 Nations of Europe or the UK. We had to pay for our own refunds and all what was spent in the UK such as Farmers, landed gentry(who gets the most). We was robbed of our Sovreignty by lying politicians, we became subjugated by foreign courts, our Supreme Courts were allowed to become vassels of the EU courts so we were damned with and damned without.
      Is it a benefit to be able to go to Europe? No, I could do that before we joined. I cannot think of one way in which being in the EU has benefitted me PERSONALY,
      nor do I know of anyone who has benefited from being in the EU PERSONALY.
      And having an enormous trade deficit with the EU, I really can’t see any benefit to the UK either…… Yes, please tell what these ‘benefits’ are.

  9. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:23 am | Permalink

    Well said John. I couldn’t agree more. This is why I voted out and I expect Parliament to uphold the vote and deliver a true Brexit.

    • Atlas
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:03 pm | Permalink


    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

      They clearly shoud but I do not expect them to do so at all. Under May and Hammond I expect almost nothing more than a dire warm up act for Corbyn and a total cave in. But we will have gender pay reporting so that is OK. If anyone needed manspaining or indeed exspaining in general it is T May. She is clearly hopeless.

  10. Mick
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:34 am | Permalink
    Good article Mr Redwood fully agree with what you say, now copy and paste it onto Corbyn because he and his party have lost the plot, on the other hand don’t bother we up north will let all Eu loving mps know how we feel at the next GE, I can see your party in power well into the 2020s which still should give you enough time to short the mess labour left us in in 2010

  11. Newmania
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:36 am | Permalink

    Au contraire .The City and the economy generally ,is going to suffer, and Hammond is out there pleading with the EU not fragment the source our wealth right now . The people who work in it will get by , though, they are young educated and motivated
    The gullible grumbling old fools who bought the lies sold by public school charlatans will tyake the biggest hit. Their money won`t turn up ,and I shall tell you who will not be around to fix this mess

    John Redwood

    • jerry
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:39 am | Permalink

      @Newmania; But the City and the economists said but the same when we joined the EEC, they like certainty (known-knowns), it’s as simple as that!

    • Anonymous
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:26 am | Permalink

      We’ll all get by, Newmania.

      We have an obesity crisis. Plenty of fat to cut and we’ll be better for it.

      • Rogm
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

        Anonymous..plenty of fat cats in the house of commons, you mean

    • Anonymous
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:32 am | Permalink

      If we’d gone further in the EU (as is planned with the euro) the money wouldn’t have turned up in the 2008 crash – as it didn’t in southern EU.

    • Rien Huizer
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:54 am | Permalink

      You are wasting your time. Both sides are getting to the point that a future relationship will be difficult. The current politics is simply about finding a frame: blame the EU for intransigent bevaiour. That will be handy when the problems of adaptation begin to bite.

      • John C.
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

        Explain in what ways the E.U. has not been intransigent. Where has it yielded and conceded anything?

        • Rien Huizer
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

          In case you did not know: it does not have to and its negotiators have no room for compromise. Their 27 masters have given a very tight mandate. That should be music to brexiteers’ ears because it leads to an abrupt and hard brexit. Why do you think the EU should do a non-member a favour? Would you?

          • NickC
            Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

            Rien, We are politely asking the EU to do exactly the same “favour” for the UK, that the UK is willing to do for the EU: tariff free access to our respective markets. So the answer to your sneering question “Would you?” is Yes.

    • Adam
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:05 am | Permalink


      Do you intend to live in the mess you predict, or in the EU?

      • Rogm
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

        Adam..can’t speak for Newmania..but I am already living in the EU 😃

        • Fedupsoutherner
          Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

          Rogm. Best stay there then. We need people who want to support the UK.

    • Arkwright
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      You mean the clever cloggs in London that flog off provincial manufacturing or worse – the corporateers who outsource the manufacturing and quality control of brands without telling customers ? (Licensed fakery, in other words.)

      The London that made the rest of the country dependent on it and then squeals that it can’t feed itself sandwiches and coffee without open borders to Europe and the destruction of our nation ?

      Once senses that Newmania won’t get by.

      He’s got a degree in soft southern bullshit, not northern Stem.

    • graham1946
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

      You sound like Andy today. Not a shred of evidence, just shrill insults.

      We grumbling old fools did not just accept what the ‘public school charlatans’ told us, we worked it out, having lived under the EU yoke for 40 years which is getting tighter and tighter and have studied it all. We came to a rational decision, not just visceral hatred of our elders which seems to drive you and Andy and many more Remoaners who haven’t a clue and wish to sell their country out.

      Seems like the pressure is getting to you. It will get worse over the next 12 months. Better get some Valium in now.

    • NickC
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

      Newmania, Being an independent country does not cause the UK to be a “mess”, or to “suffer”. We just become the 165th independent country on the planet. The rest is up to our own efforts, as it always was.

      • Andy
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

        We are already an independent country.

        Did you miss the memo?

        • Edward2
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:47 am | Permalink

          Yes I did miss it Andy
          Please publish it for us all to read.

        • NickC
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

          Andy, Declaration 17 of the Lisbon Treaty (2007) states categorically that EU law has supremacy over member states’ law. We are therefore not an independent nation until we leave the EU

    • getahead
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

      Newmania I’m not sure the folks who voted to leave the EU are recipients of the city “source of our wealth”. Rather, it is their taxes that pay the EU subscriptions, leaving them poorer.

    • Dee
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

      @Newmania: One thing you forget mr rEUmoaner, The EU is owing £trillions to London City Banks and as they have already said to the EU, you try to hurt us and we will call in all those debts. Now since Drahgi has been printing 70Billion Euros a month in QE since Jan 2015 I don’t think they will be in a position to take another big hit. Besides the % of business the Banks do with the EU compared to the rest of the World is minimal.
      “The gullible grumbling old fools who bought the lies sold by public school charlatans will take the biggest hit”.
      And what lies would that be then? The 700,000 instantly out of work, or the £4600 instant hit on every household, or mabye it was the stock exchange crash or, and here’s my favourite from Dave, World War 3. There was lots more but I’m getting bored now. Come on, take your pick, astound me?

  12. alan jutson
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    A great vision John.


    Afraid so far we are looking weaker, and weaker, allowing the EU to dictate not only the programme of talks, but the way so called progress is to be made.

    The latest ruse by Mr Tusk, that they will not even talk about anything else until the Irish border has been resolved and agreed, is yet another enforced delay to all other matters.

    Time for us to take control, walk away now and say we will be working under WTO rules on 30th March 2019.

    By letting ourselves be dictated to in the manner we have over the last year, does not bode well for our reputation, and shows absolute weakness to the rest of the World, in front of the rest of the World.

    What chance do we have of getting other good trade deals, if we capitulate at every turn with the EU.
    What chance of us standing up strong on other matters, including security and defence, if we show we capitulate under pressure.

    Mrs May has to get back control of these talks, stand up for the UK, work in our best interests, and be prepared to unsettle a few leaders in the EU.
    That or she needs to walk away from high Office, as we simply cannot have an appeaser as head of government.
    We have to put the UK first. !

    She has tried being so called reasonable, with more than enough compromise/capitulation, and it has failed, and failed badly.

    She has to learn its our money they want, its power over us that they want, and there are absolutely no friends in business, only mutual respect earn’t out of toughness.

    If we continue as we are going, we will simply end up with the worst of all Worlds, controlled by others, and not our own elected politicians.

    The past year has been an embarrassing fiasco, it has to stop and stop now.

  13. Lifelogic
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:02 am | Permalink

    Indeed. Meanwhile the dreadful (and wrong on vitually every issue), huge waster of taxpayers money and destroyer of his party Clegg gets knighted yesterday.

    Failures in politics always get rewarded more than people with sense it seems.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:21 am | Permalink

      Wasting tax payers money on fashionable lunacy (the Erm, climate alarmism, the green investent bank…. and virtue signalling again with other people’s money. PLUS promising countless thing at elections but doing the complete opposite in when government.

      Well done Sir Nick.

      • Andy
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

        Genuine question. How old are you?

        ‘Greencrap’ as you call it is probably the biggest issue for young people. And by young I mean under 40.

        They have to inherit the planet people like you are screwing up.

        I’m guessing if you don’t care about Earth then you must think you don’t have long left on it.

        That has a word too. Selfish.

        • Arkwright
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:28 am | Permalink

          I don’t doubt environmental damage but I see unilateralism on it as futile – especially trying to square mass immigration with a steady standard of living.

          Only a tiny part of Plastic Island has come from Britain.

          Chinese and Indian peasants have just got fridges – our restraint is pointless. Totally.

          How green are you, by the way ?

        • Stred
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:38 am | Permalink

          The under 40s have been well and truly got at by the blob and the tv greenies. Pupils have to watch the Al Gore exaggerated propaganda film and teachers follow the message and on into higher education.
          The latest campaign is that plastic is the scourge of Mother Earth. They also all have to have a little bottle of water to go around with. They think tea and beer don’t count. Then they drop the bottles and think they all end up in the sea, poisoning fish, dolphins and penguins. Now the EUBC is trotting out enlightened schoolgirls to tell us that we mustn’t wrap food in plastic to keep bacteria off. Recycling for insulation snd clothes must be out of fashion this year.

        • NickC
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

          Andy, Lifelogic cited “climate alarmism” which is the biggest component of green-crap. Carbon dioxide is not a pollutant, and is essential for life. Worse, by concentrating on UK emitted CO2, real pollution is neglected here, and increased in foreign countries which take the jobs after our de-industrialising. Under 40s have been deprived of jobs, wealth and a better world environment because of green-crap. You really are a sucker for propaganda, Andy.

        • hans chr iversen
          Posted March 11, 2018 at 8:40 am | Permalink


          Do not worry everybody who has a different view than NickC is a “sucker” or something worse.

          • David Price
            Posted March 12, 2018 at 6:49 am | Permalink

            “… everybody who has a different view than…”

            So your plea for commenters to stop categorizing others didn’t last long then did it.

      • Dennis Zoff
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:28 pm | Permalink


        A Knighthood is worth what today?

        It ceased to have any meaningful relevance in the modern world and quite frankly they are given out like boiled sweets to nonentities, spivs, failed Politicians, overpaid sportsmen, third-rate celebs and narcissistic charlatans; this to keep the establishment surrounded by nodding “self-entitled” delusional sycophants! Time the whole archaic “entitlement” culture was scrapped!

        ….or better still, give dim-witted Junker and his immediate cronies one….which would personify its worthlessness!

        • Stred
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:41 am | Permalink

          They could change the title by law from Knight to Nit.

    • A.Sedgwick
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:17 am | Permalink

      The honours system has long been a farce. Only a minority of recipients have done anything exceptional and some who have are ignored until the papers get wind e.g. Damn Busters Pilot, who was belatedly given a minor honour.

    • Adam
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:13 am | Permalink

      Unless knighthood is restricted to illustrious performance, it reflects lower quality.

      • eeyore
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

        Adam – No no, keep the bar low. That way we’re all in with a chance.

        The reality is that many honours come with the rations, and always have. A Minister could once look forward to a baronage, a PM to an earldom, so Clegg’s humble K is pretty cheap really, considering the service he did his country destroying the Lib Dems.

        Anyway, party leaders and others who dish out the gongs soon learn to laugh at them. Only OM and CH have kudos. They’re the ones the Queen does herself.

        • eeyore
          Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

          Should add the BEM is without taint. Humble people get it for honest public service. It may be the lowest of the honours but it’s far from the least honourable.

    • JoolsB
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:14 am | Permalink

      What a joke. Clegg’s Knighthood along with the Sir Vince Cables and Sir Eric Pickles of this world are classic examples of why the dated and out of touch honours system should be scrapped. Failing that, no self serving politician or has been politician should under any circumstances be eligible for any title whatsoever except for ones that can’t be repeated on this site. Proof if ever proof were needed that MPs are only in it for themselves!!!

      • SecretPeople
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

        Certainly the honour should be withdrawn from those who betray or undermine our country and its people. And how does he feel about having ‘British Empire’ in his title (KBE)?

    • mancunius
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

      Excellent timing, reminding a large section of the population that we badly need to reform the honours system and – even more urgently – the House of Lords, to prevent EU-troughers from corrupting our public life and parliamentary legislation.

      • Rogm
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

        mancunius..right on..the crowd at the top of the heap will love you for this😉

    • graham1946
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

      Clegg a ‘Knight’. What a laugh. Knights were once prepared to lay down their life for their Sovreign and country whereas Clegg wants us ruled by foreigners. In the old days of ‘Chivalry’ his head would have been off by now.

      He will never be a ‘Sir’ in my eyes and I shall never refer to him as such. This is just a bauble for keeping a chair warm so Cameron could take and keep office.

      • John C.
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

        He will remain eternally just “Clegg”, a somehow very evocative monosyllable.

    • NickC
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

      Lifelogic, Sir Nick Clegg famously stated (2015) on the TV debate that an EU army was a conspiracy theory. Lisbon (2007) Article 42/2 (TEU) was reworded to state that the Common Security and Defence policy “will lead to a common defence”, changed from “might” under the previous treaties. So Clegg was either ignorant or lying.

      • SecretPeople
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

        Yes, he described as a “dangerous fantasy” Mr Farage’s claim that the EU was planning an army .

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

        The latter It seems.

    • getahead
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

      Who the hell gave the waster Cleggster a knighthood? It says as much about the person who sanctioned it as about Cleggster himself.

  14. eeyore
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:40 am | Permalink

    A brave and eloquent voice, a patient and cheerful spirit, an informed and powerful understanding: Brexiters are fortunate to have our host playing in their team.

    Also in the red white and blue strip, it seems, are the EU. Could they really be doing any more to encourage their opponents and dismay their friends? With every announcement they make No Deal comes closer. They will save Mrs May from herself yet.

    • A G Whizz
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:59 am | Permalink

      Strange but true. It’s like watching someone with their eyes wide open running as fast as they can toward a brick wall.

    • getahead
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

      save Mrs May from herself yet.

      Excellent eeyore, if only it were true. I still have this deep sense of foreboding.
      What would cheer me up the most would be the demotion/dismissal of our EU cabinet spokesman Phillip the Snake.

  15. jerry
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    “I find it extraordinary that so many who make their living out of government and politics Are so defeatist about this greatest of countries”

    I don’t, after all many of them are the same politicos and technocrats (and I include the Trade Unions here too) who were defeatist about this greatest of countries from the mid 1970s! Even today many who say they want the UK to be strong, self governing and all that are still being defeatist when it comes to certain sectors in which this greatest of countries used to be so strong.

    • forthurst
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:48 am | Permalink

      Defeatism set in before the 70s. Churchill and Eden may have been deluded about our still being a superpower, whilst lacking the industrial power to sustain it, but the rot set in with Macmillan, having witnessed the Suez debacle and the end of Empire, believed that we had become too diminished to survive on our own. In actual fact, the problem of decline that we had could not be resolved by joining the nascent EU, but by reining in untrammelled trade union power which was allowing all our competitors to steal a march on us. Every Tory leader since Macmillan was appointed on a Europhile ticket.

      • jerry
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 7:48 am | Permalink

        @forthurst; Nice, totally fact-less, rant!

        The 1950s and the Macmillan era especially was one strongest periods in the 20th Century for the UK, it wasn’t just the trade unions who cause the problems but poor (risk adverse) oversight by accountants and out of date opinions in management that caused our industrial downfall.

        France and Germany both had and have, to this day, far stronger trade unions, yet both have far stronger industrial sectors than the UK, whilst Germany especially has a far higher standard of living.

        There are many reasons why Charles de Gaulle vetoed our EEC applications, most concern the effects of UK membership would have had on France.

      • NickC
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

        Forthurst, Thank you, a well thought through comment. A minor addition: at least by the time of the Bruges speech, Margaret Thatcher had turned away from her original support of the EU (EC). Hence why she was stabbed in the back – which proves your point – a clean sweep of Tory leader europhiles.

        • jerry
          Posted March 11, 2018 at 10:02 am | Permalink

          @NickC; By late 1990 Mrs T was sacked by her MPs because she had become an electoral liability, mostly due to the Poll Tax and her leadership style. Eurosceptics tend to forget that by the Autumn of 1990 the party had been trailing Labour for 18 months in the opinion polls and by as much as 14%…

          Anyway, Mrs T was broadly (by today’s terms) europhile, she could have held a referenda in 1988/9 on the issues raised in her Bruges speech, either to confirm to the Delors Commission the UK’s objections or even on our continued membership of the EEC, so why didn’t she, with a 100 seat majority (and still many anti EEC MPs on Labour benches) there was little to stop her. Also if she was so opposed to the EEC/EU, why after Lawson resigned, did she select a ‘europhile’ to be Chancellor?

    • David Price
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:41 am | Permalink

      Well said.

    • Rien Huizer
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

      “Greatest of countries”, “strong, self-governing”. Pretty subjective stuff but is Britain not Great today. In what sectors would you like “strength” to return? Shipbuilding? Shoemaking?

      • David Price
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

        These matters are not your concern.

        You should worry more about why your “elites” are not addressing the mess they have made of Europe. Why are they so focused on causing strife and loss of trade on their Western border while doing nothing about the disgusting levels of youth unemployment within the EU states and the choas they have caused for the southern states.

        Brexit is a clear consequence of the EU elite’s failure to meet the needs of citizens and yet they appear bent on not learning any lessons but instead compounding their idiocy.

      • Robert Betteridge
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

        Tolerance, self-belief, social cohesion.

        • jerry
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 7:56 am | Permalink

          @Robert Betteridge; Non of those were a casualty of EEC/EU membership, they are the causality of our domestic political choices over the last 40 odd years. Brexit will do nothing for Tolerance, self-belief, social cohesion unless we as a society change.

      • Bolt Hole
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

        Sticking our finger in a dyke

  16. Helen Taylor
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Eaxactly, please remind Mrs Soubry I am sick of her negative imput

    I also know that there is a petition on its way to No 10 in the next few weeks that has over 1.25 million names on it that says exactly the same thing.

    We want out country back, lock stock and 200 miles of fishing water.

    Rule Britiannia

    • Ian wragg
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:21 am | Permalink

      Three cheers for that.
      I didn’t spend the best part of my youth tailing the Soviet navy to kowtow to a bunch of European ex commies.

    • Andy
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

      200 miles in one direction takes you into Ireland.

      In another direction you get to the northern France.

      Not too many fish in Lille.

      But keep up your misguided nationalism anyway.

      • Edward2
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:54 am | Permalink

        Nothing wrong with nationalism.
        Ask all the citizens of the 160 plus nations not in the EU
        Ironically the EU is at the same time turning itself into a nation.
        Citizenship passports money flags anthems justice and legal supremacy foreign embassies and coming soon it’s own defence force.

        • jerry
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 10:31 am | Permalink

          @Edward2; I agreed, generally there is nothing wrong in nationalism but just occasionally it turns sour, as it did in the 1930s as a response to the economic miss-management of the late 1920s. So what if the EU is turning its self into a nation, something both Australia and the USA did for example.

          • Edward2
            Posted March 11, 2018 at 12:39 am | Permalink

            Well Andy decries nationalism yet fails to grasp that his beloved EU is more ambitious to develop as a nation state than anything else in the last century.

          • jerry
            Posted March 11, 2018 at 10:10 am | Permalink

            @Edward2; He (Andy) wasn’t so much deriding nationalism but the faux nationalism all to often found within the comments to this site, such as the cited 200 mile fishing area that will not and can not exist post Brexit (see other discussions for why).

          • Edward2
            Posted March 11, 2018 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

            200 mile limit can work for the UK.
            If less than 200 miles the law states it shall be the median line between the two countries.

          • jerry
            Posted March 12, 2018 at 8:07 am | Permalink

            @Edward2; EEZ extended limits might work in a few areas around the UK but for the vast majority the median will be well below the magic 200 mile mark, many areas under 100 miles.

            It is the “200 mile” claim that I object to, it is pure hyperbolic soap-boxing bordering a lie, a sound bite that the unthinking will latch onto – we had enough of those claims during the referenda, we need to be serious now with 12 months and a few days before we actually have Brexit for real.

      • NickC
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

        Andy, Do you expect to be taken seriously when you evidently know nothing about the 200 mile EEZ?

        • jerry
          Posted March 10, 2018 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

          @NickC; It is you who has failed to grasp the facts! As I have said before, on EEZ’s, when you last brought them up in relation to a 200 mile fishing limit.

          In the circumstances the UK will find herself post Brexit any claim for a 200 mile UK EEZ will be challenged by the EU, a EU27 member country of some other maritime nation, it is thus very unlikely the UK could ever successfully claim the full 200 miles as far to much of it is in areas that are shared. How many times have you got to be told that 200 miles west of the UK is within any 200 mile EEZ claim by Eire whilst 200 miles East of the Shetland isles is the shoreline of Norway for example.

          • NickC
            Posted March 10, 2018 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

            Jerry, At last you now recognise there is such a thing as the 200 nautical mile EEZ. Previously in reply to Ian Wragg above you sneered: “What, all 12 miles of them?” when he remarked about our fishing waters.

            And the way boundaries are worked out for any coastal nation nearer to us than 400nm is to split the distance down the middle. Why do you have such difficulty with that concept?

          • jerry
            Posted March 11, 2018 at 10:18 am | Permalink

            @NickC; Indeed I did sneer, because like you Ian Wragg has failed to grasp the finer points of EEZ’s. Post Brexit the UK is only assured of her 12 mile territorial limit.

            “Why do you have such difficulty with that concept?

            I don’t, unlike you, Wragg and others, hence why I do not try and claim that we will have, or even be able to claim, a 200 mile zone!

      • Edward2
        Posted March 11, 2018 at 8:46 am | Permalink

        You show little understanding of the 200 mile rule Andy.
        Where the area between two countries is less than 200 miles the median line rule applies.
        ie half way.

    • jerry
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:03 am | Permalink

      @Helen Taylor; “I also know that there is a petition on its way to No 10 in the next few weeks that has over 1.25 million names on it that says exactly the same thing.”

      Wow, you mean all of 1/8th the population of Greater London!…

      What do the other 7m in Greater London think, or the other 64m people (officially) in the UK?

  17. nigelR
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    17th, 18th, 19th century stuff- any country can have ancestors and history but we can’t all live in the past. It’s good to be able to look back but I have three children who have grown up with the EU, they have learnt in school and in college and on the continent to be good European citizens and now you want to take that away from them because of your own misplaced role in things- all as you see it. Such a diatribe we rarely see – God help us now because the EU is going to rub our noses in it – not because of how we voted but because of the arrogance and stupidity of our right wing political leaders who led us down this path.

    • jerry
      Posted March 11, 2018 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

      @nigelR; By that rational we should have kept the British Empire too, after all how many of our (grand-)parents grew up with the Empire, they learnt in school and in college and across the world to be good citizens of the British Empire!

      Times and circumstances change, life will go on, as it always has done.

      Anyway, there were many good British Europeans well before we joined the EEC, many ventured forth and travelled widely through Europe, some even deciding to make another European country their home. For example I know many who made Spain their permanent home at a time when General Franco was still alive, thus well before Spain was admitted to the EC (now the EU). Once the dust settle I doubt much will change, other than perhaps the ‘free rides’…

  18. Peter Wood
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Fish. There are disturbing noises coming from government about negotiating away rights for EU fleets to continue to plunder our fishing grounds after 29-3-19. This must not be allowed. Our national boundaries, be on land or at sea, must be treated with equal sovereignty. Our fisheries must be preserved and valued as a national resource for the benefit of the UK.

    • Stred
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:55 am | Permalink

      We have 2 aircraft carriers with lots of spare space for helicopters and freezers. They can’t be used anywhere near the Chinese, Russians or ME in case anyone has hypersonic missiles but one in the North Sea and one in the Channel as fishing protection vessels would be a practical use.

  19. agricola
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    The EU and it’s parliament cannot accept democracy. Brexit is affront to all they believe in. plus of course they have to face the reality of being about £12 Billion out of funds each year. They also wish to deter any other nation state from leaving. They refuse to realise that what they have created flies in the face of democracy and denies the dignity of man to collectively decide the path to follow.

    If we/you want all that you list it will have to be fought for by saying an absolute no to anything that dilutes the sovereignty of the UK.

    • agricola
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

      Do you do this for some childish desire to annoy. You are a senior politician and should be above such nonsense.

  20. ChrisK
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Can you comment on Mr Corbyn’s recent arrangements with Brussels for a new UK-EU Customs Union? Since when has he been placed in the driving seat?

  21. Andy
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    Pass the popcorn.

    I can almost imagine Gary Oldham reading this inspiringly words.

    But, alas, the plotline has a hole.

    The Government has done the maths

    It knows Brexit will make us comparatively poorer and, yet, it is pressing ahead.

    Knowingly enacting a policy to impoverish the people.

    Gary Oldman plays bad guys too.

    • Glenn Vaughan
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

      Andy – Stick with your weekly comic super heroes as genuine heroes would pass you by unobserved.

    • Edward2
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:59 am | Permalink

      Well one biased report from a body that can be seen in previous predictions of a much shorter timeframe to be both inaccurate and overly pessamistic using dodgy computer models says in 15 years we might be a bit worse off.

  22. Bert Young
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    I saw the speech and enjoyed it ; the timing was very appropriate in the negotiation process and , hopefully , made an effective contribution to our Brexit position .

    I am now “resigning” from making further responses to John’s blog ; I do not understand how he decides that some responses are worth exhibiting ( some several times a day ) and others – that stick to the subject matter , are not .

    Contributors like Agricola , Oldtimer , Fedupsoutherner , have always been lively and interesting in their responses and worth reading , others – with too many and off topic responses add nothing to the value of the blog .

    Many thanks and Goodbye .

  23. Peter D Gardner
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:44 am | Permalink

    It is also the reason why De Gaulle said Non. He was right. He recognised the maritime heritage of UK giving it a worldwide presence and attitude, unequalled by any continental country. UK simply would not fit. And it didn’t. So we are leaving, it seems with a great many of those considering themselves the cognoscenti and elite of UK not having the faintest appreciation of UK’s history and having learned nothing from decades of EU membership, which was as historian Robert Tombs said, an anomaly in the arc of British history, an aberration. There is no use trying to inform and persuade the deliberately obtuse. They are beyond learning.

  24. Epikouros
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    When the choice is between independence an aspiration that many have fought and died for and subjugation by a government resident on foreign soil which those who fought and died did so that they would not have to suffer that indignity. Then the decision is as they say a “no brainer”. How on earth anyone can champion the cause of subservience in preference to the freedoms that come from sovereignty/self government and self determination is a total mystery to me. Only those who have a perverse understanding of social justice, democracy or believe in benign tyranny or have naive beliefs in those who advocate mythical Utopias and demand fantasy projects like an EU superstate in which to build one can possibly want the former.

  25. Porow
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    As usual a very precise article full of common sense and logic. So people who disagree, and they have every right to do so, must obviously feel we British are in capable of looking after ourselves and feel happier being ruled – controlled and dictated to by the unelected in Brussels ?
    Question: What happens to the tariffs we currently pay on none EU imports ? Does it all go to the EU ? I seem unable to get an answer anywhere.

    • acorn
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:00 am | Permalink

      Customs duties are an EU own resource. The collecting member state keeps 20%.

  26. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    For years I have wondered why people put themselves up for Parliament only to be subservient to decisions made by the EU. Perhaps they are happy to be well paid social workers who take their instructions from Brussels? The fact that they have no confidence in this country to be independent and self-governing is a reflection on their lack of vision and ability. Perhaps at the next election they will move aside or be replaced by those who can fully fulfil the role?
    Meanwhile European Central Bank President Mario Draghi yesterday told a news conference in Frankfurt “If you put tariffs against what are your allies, one wonders who the enemies are”. He was of course referring to the imposition of tariffs on steel and aluminium by the USA. His words might be better directed to Michel Barnier and the EU Commission and the belligerent way they are conducting “negotiations” about future trading arrangements with their friends and neighbours in the UK.

  27. Mike Stallard
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    Yup – ticks all the right boxes.

    When a surgeon cuts out cancer cells from the human body he uses anaesthetic and sometimes life support too.
    The EU is a cancer in our body politic. It needs to be cut right out cleanly.

    Life support? There is only one that will work and it is called Efta/EEA. Without that, we will face a lot of grief. I am a Brexit supporter. I know (Spinelli-Bertelsmann) where the EU is heading and I do not like it one bit. Remaining is not an option.

  28. ChrisS
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    As a supporter of Brexit for many years, I’m just as keen as our fishermen to get back full control of our territorial waters and to rebuild our fishing fleet. On several occasions I have proposed here that the Government should have already commissioned the building of a new fleet of boats to be leased to experienced British skippers at favourable rates on condition that they crew their boat with UK seafarers including a number of apprentices.

    Nothing is happening, of course, although I have much more confidence now that Michael Gove is in charge with his family history in the business.

    However, I am not sure how we can achieve an entirely satisfactory result when reputedly £4bn worth of fish caught in British waters never comes near a UK port but is caught by EU boats, landed in the 27 then processed, sold and consumed there.

    I suspect Brussels will try to play hard ball and if we keep EU fishing boats out of our waters, they will not allow the fish to be sold into the 27.

    Does Mr Gove have a cunning plan to resolve this ??

    • anon
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:09 am | Permalink

      Would that would apply to all other fish exporters to the EU?

      Its all project fear reheated endlessly.

      • ChrisS
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

        No, just to Britain but that’s the way Brussels is treating us.

  29. A.Sedgwick
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    The POTUS could rescue us again with exemptions on tariffs for the UK and a free trade deal.

  30. Alan Wheatley
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    For me, the most interesting word in Boris Johnson’s speech last week was “demos”. He elaborated on its lack inherent with the EU and our democratic gain upon leaving.

    I have not come across anywhere within the MSM that has commented; it is as if the very idea of living in a democracy is a concept beyond understanding.

    Very depressing. But with leaving the EU there is hope.

  31. nhsgp
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    SO call their bluff.

    Say the UK will implement one EU rule in full


    The average state spend is 12K per person.

    Charge every EU economic migrant 12K in tax, each year, man women and child.

    After all, its the EU rule, why not implement it?

    No access to public funds means no subsidies for other tax payers.

    Apparently EU migrants are net contributors how can remain complain about enforcing it. Not a single one is affected – right! :-))))

  32. Eric Sorensen
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    One word is enough: democracy.

    Funny, however, that remainers are so keen on yet another referendum when, in case it went their way, it would be the very last of its kind…

  33. BOF
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    The latest negotiating paper from Brussels cements the sound logic for walking out and going straight on to WTO rules.

    Surely, no one in a sane and sober condition could possibly see their (EU) position as one that a sovereign country could even begin to negotiate on.

    I said it before, but what an excellent lecture, which I sincerely hope the whole Cabinet has listened to and taken in!

    • LukeM
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

      BOF..even by going to WTO rules you have to have someone else to negotiate trade point in negotiating with ourselves?

      • NickC
        Posted March 10, 2018 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

        LukeM, WTO rules already exist. We can use them directly. We don’t have to negotiate with a country in order to use WTO rules to trade with them.

  34. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    “… every clause and line of the Treaties has to be enforced against the UK … Yet all those great clauses in the Treaties that require the EU to be a good neighbour and trading partner of nearby states will … go unenforced and unheeded”

    Oddly enough just a few days ago the pro-EU Gideon Rachman wrote this in the FT:

    “Europe’s strategic choices on Brexit”

    “The EU is a legal order, but it can be flexible when it wants to be”

    ”It is clearly true that the EU is a legal order. But it is also a political organisation. The EU is perfectly capable of creating new laws – or interpreting current ones with extreme flexibility – when it is politically necessary. There are many examples of this flexibility in action. France and Germany broke the EU’s Stability and Growth pact – rather than accept legally mandated fines for breaking its budget-deficit rules. There was a “no bailout” clause for the euro, but Greece was bailed out. Now the European Commission is pursuing Poland for breaching the rule of law, but ignoring equally egregious breaches in Hungary. So the EU can cherry-pick the law, when it is politically convenient. It can therefore make strategic and political choices on Brexit. And, broadly speaking, it has three options … “

    Basically the EU is run by a bunch of hypocrites, and it is past time for our politicians and diplomats to start pointing this out around the world.

  35. wab
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    Brexiters are such snowflakes. The Brexiters have created the mess and they need to clean it up, not blame the rest of the universe. And, needless to say, patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel, and plenty of faux patriotism is on display in Mr Redwood’s screed.

    • NickC
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

      Wab, Dr Samuel Johnson was a patriot: he admired patriotism and patriots. “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel” means that a scoundrel is revealed by his lack of patriotism; not that patriots are scoundrels, a common misconception. Dr Johnson also said: “He that wishes to see his country robbed of its rights cannot be a patriot.” So that counts out Remains like you.

      • hans chr iversen
        Posted March 11, 2018 at 8:43 am | Permalink


        Simplification and categorization again, you should really raise your horizon.

        Do you need help?

    • Libertarian
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:23 pm | Permalink


      Dont think you’ve been paying attention have you?

      Brexiteers aren’t the ones screaming doom and gloom. Oh and there isn’t a mess other than the mess currently being made by the totally inept buffoons who run the EU. Unable to negotiate decent trade deals. mired in a corruption scandal of epic proportions. Country after country voting in anti EU parties. I think the UK will be just fine. I worry for the 27 though

      • hans chr iversen
        Posted March 11, 2018 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

        I am pretty sure the majority of teh 27 are quite happy to remain where they are Libeetarian

    • Edward2
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

      What mess?

    • graham1946
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

      Not much patriotism in wanting foreigners to have control of your country, so obviously in your eyes you are not a scoundrel. In your eyes. We don’t blame the Universe, there is no mess, other than the one we are still stuck with until March 2019.

    • Winners and Losers
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

      We won the Referendum 😉

  36. Ian Hancock
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    With regard to the rule of law (to which the EU is committed) and relations with neighboring states I would draw Mr Sparks attention to Article 8 of the Lisbon Treaty which states:

    Article 8

    1. The Union shall develop a special relationship with neighbouring countries, aiming to establish an area of prosperity and good neighbourliness, founded on the values of the Union and characterised by close and peaceful relations based on cooperation.

    2. For the purposes of paragraph 1, the Union may conclude specific agreements with the countries concerned. These agreements may contain reciprocal rights and obligations as well as the possibility of undertaking activities jointly. Their implementation shall be the subject of periodic consultation.

    An apology might be in order.

    • Robert Betteridge
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

      Article 8.1 “founded on the values of the Union” (of micro-management).

  37. Adam
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    ‘The Brexit Vision’ embraces much of the substance that unites the UK.

    Citizens appreciate MPs, such as JR, who cherish our freedom to maintain high quality standards. Long may they prevail.

  38. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Well, JR, I read this morning in various places that Donald Tusk is threatening to more or less suspend talks on all other matters until the UK has proposed a specific satisfactory solution to the minor but nonetheless vexed problem of the Irish border, or to be more precise a satisfactory way of avoiding border checks on the goods worth a mere 0.1% of UK GDP which cross the border from Northern Ireland into the Irish Republic.

    “We know today that the UK government rejects: “a customs and regulatory border down the Irish Sea”; the EU Single Market and the customs union. While we must respect this position, we also expect the UK to propose a specific and realistic solution to avoid a hard border. As long as the UK doesn’t present such a solution, it is very difficult to imagine substantive progress in Brexit negotiations. If in London someone assumes that the negotiations will deal with other issues first, before moving to the Irish issue, my response would be: Ireland first.”

    As I have said before, going back to first principles the border controls which used to operate up to the end of 1992 were rendered unnecessary by properly enforced legal measures, namely those comprising the EU Single Market legislation passed by the UK as well as by the other EU member states.

    Yes, it could be said that the advent of the EU Single Market – NOT the EEC Customs Union – made it possible to discontinue checks at the Irish border, but the advent of the EU Single Market was dependent on the passage, and the subsequent enforcement, of the necessary laws by the UK, and by Ireland, and by the other member states.

    Therefore in my view what is required is a new UK law which will have the same practical effect as the existing UK Single Market legislation but just with regard to goods crossing the Irish border, without applying to any other parts of the UK economy.

    I think there is an issue of trust here. While we are in the EU the UK is trusted to enforce Single Market laws with sufficient rigour to render border checks nugatory, and there is no good reason for the EU to cease to trust us once we have left. Or do they really think we will start to deliberately send rubbish across the border into the Republic?

  39. Original Richard
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    The EU played hardball in the negotiations they had with Mr. Cameron before the referendum and the current negotiations are simply a continuation of this EU policy.

    The EU, together with its UK supporters, believe that if they can make the negotiations as difficult and time consuming as possible, with predictions of the worst possible outcome for the UK, then they believe the UK population will come back into line and reverse their decision to leave.

    Or failing that the EU can produce as much chaos and disruption as possible to punish the UK and thus deter any other countries from leaving, even if their policy also badly affects their own citizens.

    It is appalling to see so many UK institutions and leading UK figures aiding and abetting the EU’s behaviour and strategy after the country had taken a democratic decision to leave the EU and become a free nation.

  40. JoolsB
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    Even if we get from out of the shackles of the EU John, England will still not be a self governing country until it is free of the shackles of the UK Government especially now hapless May has promised the vast majority of powers coming back from the EU will be repatriated straight back to the Scots, Welsh, NI and UK Governments with of course no powers whatsoever for England. So Scotland will get control over it’s own fishing and agricultural policies whilst Scots MPs at Westminster will only get control over England’s fishing and agricultural policies. Sounds like a good example of self governance to me John.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

      That’s it Jools, Ruin my evening. Do I really need reminding about how much power Scotland has compared to England? I live here, enough said!!

  41. Michael
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    The fact that the EU opposes tariffs threatened by the US must make it politically difficult for them to impose tariffs on the UK. . But the EU might feel itself so unaccountable not to mind.

    • rose
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

      The EU only keeps its rules when it suits it. That is rule number 1.

  42. acorn
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    As Mr Tusk has pressed the Brexit pause button, waiting for the UK to solve the Northern Irish border problem, we will here “Smart Boarder 2.0” is the unmanned digital solution. It probably could be if someone invents it.

    Norway-Sweden got close to it but has reverted to 14 manned customs posts. The US-Canada border; 39 border posts to check 95 per cent of all cross-border trade. According to the Indy, “Even with the latest electronic technology, and FAST, the “Free and Secure Trade Program”, to clear “low risk commercial goods” as fast as possible, trusted traders wait an average of 15.6 minutes to cross the border. (Traders without FAST clearance wait 81 minutes.)”

    • Edward2
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 9:09 am | Permalink

      Gosh 15.6 minutes.
      I’ve waited for hours in queues to transit borders in EU coastal ports and airports.
      Most of the delay is security checks on the humans not the goods.

  43. Ed Mahony
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    Our country’s history is also full of tragedy (same as other countries). Same as ancient Israel, even though the favoured nation of God. As well as good things as well of course.

    Until the UK turns properly to God (the Christian God), then it can never be a great country.

    So many of our great country’s tragedies, throughout history, could have been avoided. God has a great vision of our country. That we have a strong and stable economy. Jobs that people enjoy. Strong family life. Strong sense of patriotism and public duty. Strong arts. Beautiful buildings and countryside. A mystery and depth to our country as well as cheerfulness and sense of humour. Safe and secure.

    But we can only achieve this through the power of God. Not through the efforts of man alone.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

      UK’ s Self-inflicted Tragedies Through The Ages:

      – Class envy and jealousy of those who’ve done well through hard work
      – Rebellious civil strife, class envy, socialism
      – Slave Trade
      – Satanic Mills and terrible poverty of millions through history
      – Countless unnecessary wars and millions dead.
      – Tragedies of today: split families, gay marriage, aggressive feminism, violence, crime, lack of patriotism, class envy, socialism, and so on.

      Perhaps we need to listen to politicians a little less, and to priests, poets and philosophers a lot more ..

      ‘That skull had a tongue in it and could sing once. How the knave jowls it to the ground, as if it were Cain’s jawbone, that did the first murder! It might be the pate of a politician, which this ass now o’erreaches, one that would circumvent God, might it not?’ – Hamlet, Shakespeare.

      • Ed Mahony
        Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

        Sorry, don’t want to sound high and might. But history is full of big ideas and big ideas turning into tragedies and/or failures.

        Let’s have big ideas, but they have to be properly tested. Properly planned. And not rushed.

        Best wishes.

  44. fkc
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Well said John. This post should be in every newspaper and pinned to walls. To inform everyon why we are a GREAT nation that has had its power eaten away. We MUST just walk away and get on with the job of ruling our own country.

  45. ian
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

    Brexit is good for companies like Tate & Lyle, coffee imports and new coffee refineries that germany control all over the EU, food & drink makers, thousands of new jobs and factories in the UK, never mind about banking and sending money to the EU which can bankrupt the uk people at one sitting. Fishing right is worth a billion a year to the uk people on its own, import as much as companies like/ tariff-free to build out the economy of the uk and for exports, banking is the last thing on my mind with companies who make a living out of gov contracts, all wasters/ found that out several times over last few years, bankrupting the people and taking away their services, still getting over last one 10 years on and if you have another one, there be nothing left, better not to have a service in first place, than to have one taken away.

  46. Norman
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    A great post, John. Will our people be worthy of such a history now though? It’s all in the balance. But there is still so much that is good – and often unseen and unsung. We have so much to be grateful for!
    ‘Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the Lord understand all things’ Proverbs 28:5. (AKJV – Crown Copyright- Public Domain in USA).

  47. Derek
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

    You should be writing Mrs May’s speeches for her.

    • LukeM
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

      Derek..great..that’s all we need now another speech writer living in the 18th century..

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      Anyone would be better than whoever does it now.

  48. mancunius
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    Typo, the sentence beginning in l.2 should read ‘A full *nine* minutes…'(!)

    And I do normally end a final sentence with a full stop 🙂

  49. James Matthews
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    Mostly preaching to choir here. It is the Government and a Prime Minister who seems to think the best position from which to negotiate is by throwing yourself on the mercy of the other protagonist and offering multiple concessions for nothing in return who need convincing.. Clearly Mrs May does not play poker, if so she would be bankrupt.

  50. nigel seymour
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    We make the best fish and chips
    We make the best pickled eggs
    We make the best black cabs
    We make the best music
    We make the best loudspeakers and hi-fi
    We make the best cricket balls and bats
    We make the best laverbread (although it’s welsh)
    We got lizzie,harry,wills,charlie, (even megan wants to be part of us!!)
    We got harry kane, hurst,peters (and west ham!!!!!????)
    We got gary oldman
    We got macca, elton, rod, mick, weller, knopfler,
    We got graham norton !!??
    We got brit soldier’s, navy, raf, wren’s
    We got women’s day
    We got the UK
    We got the SNP!!??
    We got curry and chink takeaway
    We got HP – sauce and parliament!!

  51. Lifelogic
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

    Anyone would be better than whoever does it now.

  52. The Prangwizard
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

    Off topic and maybe verboten but I’d like to know who in government including the PM has been asleep at the wheel while these attempted murders have been planned and executed. And others yet to come to light.

  53. Andy
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    A great quote from Paul Johnson from the IFS – a proper economist.

    “The economics are obvious. If you make trade with your biggest, nearest and richest trading partner more expensive, you will make yourself worse off. The truth is there is no dispute about that. Of course there is a case for Brexit. It’s just not an economic case. It’s a controlling-immigration case. With everything – and this is what’s frustrating about a lot of political debate – there are trade-offs. Do you want control of your borders or do you want to avoid taking a hit of a couple of per cent of GDP? You can’t have both.

    Politicians tell you that you can have your cake and eat it, but you can’t.”

    Remember when you go to the ballot box in 2022 and 2027 – the Tories deliberately made you poorer. This was their policy.

    • Original Richard
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      The IFS receives funding rom the EU so they can hardly be considered to be “independent”.

      As I have posted before, these organisations should make it clear from whom they receive their funding and the Government should legislate for news broadcasters, such as the BBC, to inform their viewers who is funding any organisation’s “research” they use in their programmes.

      The EU’s funding tentacles reach out to many organisations.

      • hans chr iversen
        Posted March 11, 2018 at 8:47 am | Permalink


        there is no definition of a trading partner, when we trade domestically, but NIckC is just continuing on his white horse, ignore it

    • Edward2
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 9:15 am | Permalink

      Is this the same EU fanatic who was in favour of us going into the ERM and still wants us to take the Euro and have no borders with unlimited world free movement?

      And I see the repeated use of a dodgy 15 year economic prediction report by a body that can be seen to have been overly pessamistic on much shorter timescales.

    • NickC
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

      Andy, Our “biggest, nearest and richest trading partner” is ourselves (c72% of UK GDP). Our next biggest trading partner is the RoW, despite it being further away (c17% UK GDP). The EU is actually third with c11% of our GDP. All figures from the 2017 Pink Book, using 4% of exports for the Rotterdam effect. So much for your economist.

  54. hefner
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

    “And a force for good around the globe”
    1839-42 opium wars in China
    1840s wars against South African Kaffirs, NZ Maoris
    1849 annexion of Punjab, 2nd Sikh War
    1854-56 Crimean War.
    1856-60 2nd China War.
    1857 attack on Persia
    1857-58 suppression of Indian Mutiny.
    1865 Governor Eyre case in Jamaica.
    1866 Abyssinian expedition.
    1870 repulse of Fenian expansion in Canada.
    1871 Maori resistance destroyed
    1874 decisive campaign against Ashanti’s in West Africa
    1877 Anglo-Zulu war
    1880-81 1st Anglo-Boer war
    1882 conquest of Egypt
    1899-1902 2nd Anglo-Boer war (1900 Boer civilians in concentration camps, 20,000-30,000 death due to lack of sanitation and food, after scorched earth policy on Boer farms).

    If that is “a force for good around the globe”, what would be a force for evil? And that from a Oxford history graduate …

    • David Price
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 6:39 am | Permalink

      How can you possibly live with yourself considering the guilt you must feel for such events so long ago.

    • margaret
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 7:46 am | Permalink

      This is the 21st century Hefner . All nations should be moving on. That is what history teaches us..!

    • Anonymous
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      Britain’s contribution to advances in medicine and sanitation alone saved tens of millions more people than she harmed.

      There were many other things Britain brought to the world to improve the well being of mankind.

    • Norman
      Posted March 10, 2018 at 9:25 am | Permalink

      Context, context, context – historical, political, cultural – you cannot ignore context. That does not mean there were not regrettable, even shameful episodes in our history. There was a seamy side, and there was a good side, which is what is celebrated in the halls of Parliament. And we each have to play our part in influencing the history of our own day, perhaps even in very small ways, such as how we relate to our neighbour or colleagues at work. In comparative terms, we still see much that’s noble to appreciate and celebrate in our country, though I also think we should not take the credit, but look to the inspirational Source, as, for example, Wilberfore did.

  55. Stop Fake News
    Posted March 9, 2018 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

    I do NOT support the MSM writing articles about your private life (as they did in the past), I found such articles distasteful and I felt uncomfortable reading them. This is NOT the sort of free press I am interested in. I want the powerful held to account. State institutions etc .

    reply i just object to lies about my private life

  • 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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