The EU finds it difficult to adjust

The EU website today has no record of the EU/UK Trade Agreement under trade deals. Nor does its site give any indication of how to trade with the UK, left out from a long list of nations they refer to in the Trade section. Do they not want to keep on selling us so much, or are the just unable to update their site for the new realities? Surely they should put up the EU/UK Agreement subject to ratification, as I understand that is what they intend to do. Alternatively if they do not think they will be ratifying it they should put up the WTO terms to alert people to that.

The EU site has however been updated in one important respect. Where it seeks to show the scale and size of the EU in the world they now quote figures for the EU 27 without the UK. It shows the EU currently at a little under 15% of world GDP, with a forecast suggesting this will fall to 9% of the world by 2050. The EU cites estimates That the USA will lose less share than the EU over the next 30 years, whilst India will surge and China will do well.

I did not see any discussion of how the EU might limit its losses in share of world output, or narrow the gap with the USA. The challenge for the UK out of the EU will be shift our performance upwards to US or better levels, by varying our policy mix from the one the EU predicts will leave it declining as an economic force in the world.

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413 Comments

  1. Mark B
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:19 am | Permalink

    Good morning – again.

    You will not find it under trade deals as it is not, as I keep saying, a trade deal – It is an Association Agreement !

    The UK and the EU need to move on and the UK should not waste time in trying to making itself less dependent on the EU in energy and access to trade from elsewhere. We need to seek to get our food and raw materials elsewhere. Competition is our weapon and the EU need to learn that if they want continued access to the UK market it needs to offer a better price.

    We also need to look internally. We need to look at all aspects of our democracy and administration. From the way the Executive works to the devolved administrations and the lack of proper representation England receives. We have seen that Parliament does not work as it should and that we need to consider other forms of democratic oversight. The Executive is too powerful and will not, and indeed cannot, do its job. HM Official Opposition and the media have forgotten their respective remits. One to hold the government to account, the other to report about what is going on. I cannot emphasise the magnitude of their failure, especially with regards to EEC/EU membership.

    The ‘deal’ is not what I voted for. In fact, like all those who took part in the Referendum, neither side voted for such. But a ‘deal’ is what we have and it is a ‘deal’ designed to keep the Tory Party from tearing itself apart. So what we got is to be expected, although not accepted. It to me, is a project that is ongoing.

    Nigel Farage has stated that the BREXIT wars are over. He is wrong ! The Remain camp is re-organising as I type. It is preparinging the ground for a campaign for our re-admission. We need to keep talking about the EU and we need to point out its relentless drive for EVER CLOSER UNION. Infact, I will go as far as to encourage such as I feel it is important to future generations to see this time it true intent and nature.

    A 50 year battle has come to and end. The battle lines, much like the Great War of one hundred years ago, have moved little and at great cost. But the sound of guns are rumbling in the distance and to achieve our true aim of getting back to where we were BEFORE we joined, we must be prepared march towards them.

    There can be no going back to last 50 years !

    • NickC
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

      Mark B, Excellent. We cannot this time rest on our laurels. Remain will force us back in by fair means or foul, if we even blink.

      • Hope
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

        Johnson, needs to help farmers restore beef and dairy herds.

        Buy British whergoods vet possible. If not outside world. Encourage shops to buy British food at and other products.

        Make sure you do not buy from any EU country including Ireland. No more African products from Ireland. Short term financial pain will help them come to the right decision to leave the EU!

        Irrespective what has been agreed no one can force you buy EU products.

        It is a truly awful surrender agreement where sovereignty is not worth a jot where punish wants are so severe it cannot be exercised.

        Cameron promised out of ECHR and out of the EctHR. May promised the same in 2017. Johnson promised the same. He has now agreed to remain and if the U.K. opts out the surrender agreement will be terminated in 15 days! UK courts and laws being forced to follow Foreign law and a Foreign court!

        The points based immigration policy is a total sham. It will only increase numbers not reduce. Claims from Johnson and Patel are totally specious. 100,000 houses will need to be built to,accommodate immigration alone according to Migrarion Watch. Both forget in berserk outside the EU are historic record highs as well! Nothing to,do with EU.

    • jon livesey
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

      I would not worry too much about Rejoiners. Rejoin will only become a significant issue if there is some specific reason to do so that catches the attention of the voters.

      When we originally joined the EU there was an enormous campaign to persuade voters that it was the only way to save the economy, but that was a big error, because our economic problems back then were really cause by too much Government intrusion in the economy, an too many desperately inefficient State owned industries and enterprises.

      It was Maggie who identified and solved the real economic issues, not the EU. Joining the EU was like taking anti-biotics to try to cure a broken leg. It was irrelevant, and mostly harmless, although it eventually became harmful.

      If we run into serious economic problems in the next decade, it will be very hard to argue that they are due to EU non-membership, or that membership will solve them.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

        Well said Jon.

      • Mr S Lawrence
        Posted January 6, 2021 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

        Ironically, the outcome of Brexit will provide exactly the specific reason to catch the attention of the voters. It was a narrow margin, and possibly without the illigal overspend, may have swung the other way. Now a the lies are being exposed and reality is becoming clear to section of the electorate targeted by social media campaigns and ultimately the ones most impacted, will turn.

  2. boffin
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:19 am | Permalink

    Sir John, might I be forgiven for introducing a little much-needed levity when the gloom following Parliament’s crass, sheep-like, endorsement of a spectacularly ‘Bad Deal’ -much worse than the real freedom which would have resulted from ‘No Deal’! – is about to creep up upon our nation?

    In the Victorian era, the Savoy Operas were immensely popular not only because of their
    splendid production but because they carried an underlying element of quite vicious political satire – now almost completely lost upon remaining present-day audiences – but which was hugely amusing to the populace of that time.

    A poignant example is the sung autobiograpy of a spoof First Lord of the Admiralty (Sir Joseph Porter, KCB, in ‘HMS Pinafore’ ) in which he recounts his ascendance from humble minion to high office, admitting:

    “I always voted at my Party’s call, and I thought very little for myself, at all ..
    …. I though so little, they rewarded me – they made me the Keeper of the Queen’s Navee!” (etc.).

    (This was lampooning the then First Sea Lord, a successful stationer who had crept up the political ladder to that office, despite having no personal knowledge of the Royal Navy or its operations …. he was one W. H. Smith .. whose name still hangs around on the high street to this day).

    Aaahh, plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose …

    – so thank you, Sir John, for abstaining.

    • margaret howard
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

      boffin

      “….so thank you, Sir John, for abstaining.”

      Pity he didn’t do so when he voted FOR the disastrous Iraq war. Instead he and his fellow war mongers destroyed the country and set the whole region on fire.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

        After you socialists lied to our nation.
        Dossier of truth.
        Yeah right.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:01 am | Permalink

          The UK government made the mistake of repeating information given to them by US intelligence which they took in good faith.

          It was untrue.

          I still say that they showed poor judgement in taking anything from Bush’s side as read.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:42 am | Permalink

            It wasnt solely USA intelligence info that was in Blair’s dodgy dossier.

          • NickC
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

            Martin, You portray Blair as the naive misled junior partner. That’s entirely false. The bent intelligence was two way, and Blair was at least as enthused as Bush, probably more so.

          • dixie
            Posted January 6, 2021 at 9:04 am | Permalink

            The first 4 years of Blair (1997-2001) had Clinton as US president so are you saying Bush was at fault for GW2, Kosovo and Sierra Leone, as well?

            Blair was a shallow, socialist war monger.

  3. Terry Grant
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    Here is the EU’s official website, with the full text of the Agreement
    https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=OJ:L:2020:444:TOC
    It would be interesting to hear you explain why you are so determined to mislead people

    I refer you to the sections on trade and trade deals which I clearly referenced.

    • margaret howard
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:12 am | Permalink

      Terry Grant

      “It would be interesting to hear you explain why you are so determined to mislead people”

      He never does.

      • NickC
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

        Do you, Margaret?

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:32 am | Permalink

      You’re wrong, the link leads to a 2 page summary including “the texts published here may contain technical errors and inaccuracies that will be corrected in the coming months.” But there are no texts.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:41 am | Permalink

        Maybe the clue is in “coming months”?

    • ukretired123
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:52 am | Permalink

      Foggy in the Channel unless you have detailed knowledge of the EU web workings old boy!

      • ukretired123
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:03 am | Permalink

        In any case It’s not looking too good is it for them – which is Sir John’s key point and why you put reverse-spin on EU shrinking.

        • hefner
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:46 am | Permalink

          The EU share in world trade has clearly been decreasing with the increasing trade by China, India, and a few others. For comparison the UK figures are: UK GDP as % of world total (tradingeconomics.com)
          1950 6.5%
          1960 5%
          1970 4%
          1980 3.5%
          1990 3.5%
          2000 3.5%
          2010 2.8%
          2019 2.33%
          The really interesting and relevant question is: what will this UK percentage be in 2025, 2030 and later?

          • Fred H
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

            Why is it so interesting? Perhaps you should advise us on where the world GDP is, and how has some grown, and others declined – THEN it might have some relevance.

    • steve
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      Terry

      I think JR is talking about something different to what you assume.

      • Grey Friar
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:32 am | Permalink

        As far as I can see Terry has helpfull referred us to the text of the Agreement on the EU’s website. Which JR, mysteriously, says doesn’t exist

        Reply Read what I wrote. No guidance or recognition of the agreement in their Trade p[ages.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:40 am | Permalink

      Thank you Terry.

      Yes, on the other hand John is correct that the GDP of the European Union will fall to a lower relative share of world GDP, as the developing world – that is most of it – er, develops.

      So will that of the US and of other like developed nations and entities.

      In absolute terms it will continue to grow however, and more importantly, to set a principled, enlightened, moral example to the rest of the world.

      • NickC
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

        Martin, The only example the EU gives to the rest of the world is how easy it is to fool some people with pompous authoritarianism, a cod parliament, and sheer immoral vindictiveness.

        • hefner
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:42 am | Permalink

          Particularly interesting is the case of those in the world who having been terra-formed for years to believe in such a pompous authoritarianism, the cod parliament and the sheer vindictiveness of the EU appear to be thinking of themselves as soaring eagles able to see through the mist of the Brussels disinformation while being unable to see the same exact disinformation effort going in the opposite direction from their beloved press and websites. Isn’t such a thing funny? And now the poor things are left bumping their little fists against their PM and Government who has brought them ‘sovereignty’ for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
          What a lark.

      • IanT
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

        And eventually get it’s accounts passed by the Auditor ! 🙂

        • margaret howard
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:04 am | Permalink

          IanT

          Not that old (discredited) chestnut again.

          • IanT
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:06 am | Permalink

            Really Margaret?

            The EU’s Court of Auditors has consistently found significant errors in how money is paid out since it began giving opinions in 1995 (for the 1994 EU financial year). It does seem that the audit has improved since 2016 though (the year we voted to leave) – but during the Leave campaign (pre 2016) it was absolutely true that the EUs own Audit body was critical of the EUs book keeping.

            No Old “Chestnuts” involved at all…. 🙂

        • hefner
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:21 am | Permalink

          The Court of Auditors has signed the EU accounts every year since 2007, while pointing out that some individual EU countries, once they had received the EU funds, have misused up to 4.4% of the total budget.

          • margaret howard
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

            hefner

            Correct.

            By comparison, according to the European Court of Auditors website, Comptroller and Auditor General for the United Kingdom stated that there were 500 separate accounts for the UK, and “in the last year, I qualified 13 of the 500. If I had to operate the EU system, then, because I qualify 13 accounts, I might have to qualify the whole British central government expenditure”.

          • NickC
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

            Hefner, Corruption, fraud and mismanagement are common in the EU, as OLAF reports indicate (and that’s only the discovered crime). But one of the main facets of the EU itself is as a slush fund – cash is sloshed around by the EU to gain and enforce its power. Or as Farage described the EU – a mafia protection racket.

      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

        Where were your moral EU in banning pulse fishing. Immediately?
        Or factory trawlers?
        Or throwing back overcatch?
        Or putting 40% tariffs on third world produce?
        Or their “activities” in Ukraine?
        Or in provoking Irish nationalism?

        All disgusting, with a smile and a clean face.

  4. Lifelogic
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    Indeed and we certainly know what is needed. The question is do we have the political will to go for cheap energy, deregulation, far lower taxes, far less government, easy hire and fire, real freedom and choice (with a level playing field) in healthcare, energy, housing, schools and universities? Not much sign of it with the current essentially socialist government in charge.

    An excellent tweet from Joel Smalley yesterday with diagram of excess deaths for the past few years he says:- “In a really rather peculiar turn events, non-COVID winter deaths are negative for the first time ever. In other words, there is apparently far less (non covid) death this winter than you would usually expect during the summer. That’s 2020 for you. Happy New Year!”

    It shows that we have a completely normal winter increase in deaths this winter except they are now mainly labelled as covid. Why on earth are they still locking us down and causing far more harm than good?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:16 am | Permalink

      37,000 excess winter deaths so far this year (entirely normal as we are about half way into the winter excess period). But this year 25,500 0f these now labelled as covid deaths. Other causes, cancer, heart disease, circulatory, cerebrovascular, dementia, influenza all magically in large decline.

      How stupid does the government and NHS/ONS think we are?

      • Zorro
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

        Very stupid because it’s not about a virus. The tentacles of the CCP have run very deep over the last two decades.

        zorro

      • None of the Above
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:50 pm | Permalink

        You clearly do not understand what is meant by excess deaths!

        • Lifelogic
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:22 am | Permalink

          In what way do I not understand “Excess deaths” as published by the government. These are excess or otherwise to the last five year average and published each week by the ONS. Take a look.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:18 pm | Permalink
      • Edward2
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

        Ah the Guardian.
        What a wonderful place of truth.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:25 am | Permalink

        How much energy does it take to manufacture, maintain, back up and install these wind farms relative to what they will ever generate 60% perhaps?

        • dixie
          Posted January 6, 2021 at 10:41 am | Permalink

          What is your source for this bullshit?

          An example – A 2014 study by Haapala and Prempreeda puts the energy payback period for two 2MW turbines at 5.2 and 6.4 months, over a projected lifetime of 20 years.

          So where do you get this 60% from?

          Come on, you claim to have studied maths and physics at Cambridge and berate all and sundry for being non-numerate.

          Demonstrate your claims of numeracy have some degree of legitimacy – Where is you data?

          Or is this simply your inferior version of the hockey stick …

      • NickC
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

        What happens when the wind doesn’t blow, or blows too hard, Martin? What will you use for 40GW backup, and where is it being built, and how much extra is it costing, and what is the technology, and how dispatchable is it, and how long will it last, etc, etc?

        • dixie
          Posted January 6, 2021 at 10:44 am | Permalink

          Considering the power failure in 2019 was due to both a wind farm and a gas fired generator failing you might ask what is the backup for the backup?

  5. steve
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    JR

    Perhaps with the EU it’s similar sentiment as we see with remainers i.e sour grapes. It’s actually quite amusing.

    Fact is we are out, Boris Johnson’s made a few sacrifices along the way that he ought not to have done, and the deal is far from perfect…..but we are free of the ungrateful french-led pariah.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:49 am | Permalink

      John is clearly not expecting people employed by the European Union’s institutions to be allowed to have New Year’s Day as a public holiday in Belgium.

      I somehow suspect that they will, and I hope that they have a very pleasant and well-deserved rest.

      It clearly shows the position in which he expects employees generally to be however, and is all the funnier for that.

      Reply The website could have been remedied with a time trigger well before Christmas!”

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

        Thank you John, and the UK could have organised a test, track and trace system which actually worked.

        In any case you and many others were predicting and hoping for a No Deal, so why should people waste their paid time?

        • NickC
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

          And the EU could have organised a vaccination system that actually started on time, Martin.

          In any case there isn’t a ‘no deal’ (unfortunately – I did hope!), so the EU employees should do their job instead of just chortling about how they made the UK their colony.

        • steve
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

          MiC

          “Thank you John, and the UK could have organised a test, track and trace system which actually worked.”

          ======

          Think you can do any better ?

      • dixie
        Posted January 6, 2021 at 10:46 am | Permalink

        The EU had far longer to organise themselves for this event than the UK government, and the EU are the ones that dragged things out to the last minute.

        So is this delay because of EU incompetence or malovalence or both?

    • Andy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:07 am | Permalink

      What comes out goes back in again.

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

        You seriously think they’ll have us back?!

        Without our rebate and having to adopt the Euro. Not in the next hundred years.

        And, more countries will leave. At which point it will either fall apart or abandon the political union and just be a trade bloc.

        • margaret howard
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

          Mike Wilson

          Want a bet on which union will fall apart first, the UK or EU?

          Nicola has already asked the EU to keep its door open as

          “Scotland will be back, Europe”.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

            Dream on.

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

        Dearest Andy–It disgusts me even to think about the possibility of going back in–the FTA covers marlet access so presumably you are talking about your desire for political subservience to a mishmass of undemocratic foreigners –Good luck with that.

      • steve
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

        Andy

        No this country will not be going back in, ever.

        Things will pan out quite well for us because we’re resolute to making BREXIT work, and there won’t be a European Union before long.

        I’d be interested to view your comments when the next nation votes to leave, no doubt you will profess yourself to be knowledgeable about a country you have never been to and people you know nothing about.

        We are taking our country forward whether it’s BRINO or BREXIT. You’ve made your position quite clear, so we won’t be dragging your baggage behind us.

        We’re going for it, nothing you can do or say will stop us. GREAT BRITAIN !!

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

          I’d ask the Scots about “Great Britain”.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

            We did.

      • steve
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

        Andy

        “What comes out goes back in again.”

        Is that so.

        Then perhaps you could explain why you’re here.

    • Simeon
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:22 am | Permalink

      steve

      You are remarkably magnanimous in defeat. Still, at least it’s our defeat, and not one inflicted by the EU. And our de jure rulers are now British. Nevermind that we are now in competitition with the EU to prove that we are greener and more woke than they are. (We’re well-placed to win, a racing certainty I’d say.) Nevermind that we have already won the race to roll out an unproven vaccine for a virus that is mutating rapidly, that poses no greater threat to life than influenza, and which may very well be largely immune to the vaccine. Endless lockdowns are such an appetising prospect! Because we can pretend we are free, and dream that one day someone with a clue might be elected to a position of power. Happy new year!

      • steve
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

        Simeon

        We’re out and staying out. Get used to it & quit with the sour grapes.

        • Simeon
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

          Sorry Steve, but that’s an odd reply. We’re not really out. There are no sour grapes on my part. These past five years have played out broadly as I anticipated. Our political class, as you have tended to acknowledge, are utterly worthless, and this country’s prospects are utterly miserable. Maybe there will be a great awakening of the people, but I’m not holding my breath. All the best mate.

    • Lynn
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:36 am | Permalink

      We are not!

  6. Lifelogic
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:05 am | Permalink

    The government have finally taken up my suggestion (later taken up by T Blair’s for single vaccine shots initially given the short supply). But not my suggestion to vaccinate men at a slightly earlier age than women to reflect they far higher risk of death. Thus getting far more lives saved for a given number of vaccine shots. Is it the “experts” who are too dim to see this or the vaccine Tzar who is vetoing it? How many extra deaths will this cause I wonder? A good few hundred by my estimations. This assuming the vaccine is indeed very safe and fairly effective as claimed.

    We seem to be led by Donkeys as usual.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:35 am | Permalink

      No.
      You can’t break verbal agreements made with people to immunise them with 2 shots just because you’re the (incompetent) government. This is just morally and contractually wrong.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        Not even to save several lives? It is only a short delay for them and they partly protected anyway.

        • hefner
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

          Where does LL take ‘his science’ from?

          Pfizer/BioNTech’s vaccine has a three-week gap between injections, Moderna’s a four week gap (see cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/info-by-product ). On healthline.com (which details all the vaccines presently existing) the Oxford/Astra-Zeneca vaccine has a three week gap between injections.

          Why should I take seriously any of Tony Blair’s or LL’s suggestions? None of them are to my knowledge specialist in vaccine development, testing, distribution, efficacy or side-effects.

          • NickC
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

            Hefner, The Oxford/A-Z vaccine has been recommended by the MHRA to have a gap of between 4 and 12 weeks between the two doses, not the 3 weeks you claim. A single dose of it is supposed to be around 70% “effective” (data still hidden), so a single dose regime is a possibility.

          • None of the Above
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

            How you on Prof. Van Tam’s modelling team’s extrapolation calculations?

          • Lifelogic
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

            They vaccine companies did trials on that basis but they do not really know much at all about the delays between doses. It seem very likely to me Blair (and one assumes the governments experts now) that giving one vaccine dose to 2 million people and delaying the second dose until more supply is very likely to save more lives that giving 2 to 1 million. I cannot see many ways in which it would not be.

            My other suggestion of doing men at a slightly early age than women will certainly save lives (assume the vaccine works and is safe that is).

          • Sir Joe Soap
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

            Indeed.
            He’s had an off day, poor chap.
            No evidence whatsoever that missing the second shot gives long term immunity, never mind the lack of trust engendered in the whole process if recipes can be changed at will.

            Relying on T Blair as a science or money guide isn’t wise.

        • hefner
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

          Soon enough the Great LL will recommend mixing vaccines, mamma mia che asino! Double double toil and trouble, fire burn and cauldron bubble.

          • margaret howard
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:18 am | Permalink

            hefner

            Flat earthers
            ===

            Dictionary entry for flat-earther:

            “One who stubbornly believes or adheres to outdated , outmoded, and/or debunked theories, ideologies, ideas, or beliefs, despite overwhelming evidence against them. “

          • Fedupsoutherner
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:31 am | Permalink

            PHE have already said mixing vaccines is a possibility

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:42 am | Permalink

      And why on earth are primary schools being closed when 80 plus year olds (who are actually those affected almost exclusively) can be found wandering around local supermarkets, and carrying on life pretty much as usual?

      Why can’t the resources be put into helping keep the elderly safe instead of chucking them down the drain of keeping half the parental population off work?

      • Mike Durrans
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

        On And you Joe Soap can put a plug in it. I have every intention of wandering around the supermarkets and the hills for that matter, pretty much as usual to make the best of whats left of my life. I will not be taking any form of vaccination including flu jabs and nobody like you will be locking me up, Time you grew up Lad rather than cowering beneath your bed.

        • Sir Joe Soap
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

          Fine, happy with that, but don’t go into your local hospital begging for oxygen and expecting to be put ahead of cancer patients then. Deal?

          • Fred H
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

            I think you’ll find on closer examination that the hospitals are filling with Covid patients, while hundreds of thousands are locked down at home, doing nothing and seeing nobody in their remaining time, dying sometimes quite slowly from all sorts of cancers which NHS used to alleviate or even cure.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:32 pm | Permalink

        It’s absolute madness….

        zorro

    • Everhopeful
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:55 am | Permalink

      Trouble is the vaccine will only be the beginning, even if they can achieve it ( which is doubtful).
      Capitalism must be smashed and virus after virus after mutant will be “discovered” to achieve total annihilation.
      Already the next pandemic is being ramped up.
      Crystal ball or pure invention?
      If illness could be predicted then this earth would truly be paradise.

      • steve
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

        Everhopeful

        A scenario I had too had considered, but no I don’t think it’s the case. They could only pull it off a limited number of times, people already became highly suspicious before it allegedly mutated.

        Capitalism ? …….just needs the right balance of responsibility vs profit.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:22 am | Permalink

      Nadime Zahawi read chemical engineering at UCL, so this rather obvious point should not really be beyond him. Unlike the rest of this government he occasionally says sensible things on energy such as:- “ Getting shale up and running is a top priority” for example.

      Though not much action on this.

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

        No action because a lot of people won’t wear it. It’s time for clean energy.

        • NickC
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

          Mike, Shale natural gas is clean energy. And much safer than uranium cycle Nuclear. It might give us time to research thorium cycle nuclear.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

          There is nothing “dirty” about C02 or natural gas. Nor are “renewables” fully clean!

    • Caterpillar
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      LL,

      Assuming the vaccine is highly effective in the elderly, I am not sure the reasoning to single dose has been clearly shown. There are two arguments against (i) spreading the vaccine thinner drops the efficacy from maybe 95% to 60%, but does not necessarily spread to those at equal risk (multiply by the ratio of infection fatality ratio of the additionally vaccinated; though some of this could be compensated for with a male focus), (ii) JVT’s argument against GBD was (rightly or wrongly) that one couldn’t protect care homes and multigenerational households – protect these at the 95% level takes that away.

      (There is an additional issue on the treatment of science in that the Pfizer vaccination was not tested with long gap to second dose, so could be depriving the elderly of protection by untested change. The finger in the air science is of course what is expected from these advisers; there is no controlled expt or little retrospective support for lockdowns, indeed there is probably more retrospective support for some of the prophylactics than there is lockdowns, but the Gov and advisers continue with the finger in the air stuff).

      Aside: Good to see Israel showing how roll out can be done.

      • a-tracy
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

        Israel has a population smaller than London.

        Don’t you think the vaccine trial just had problems because of the Christmas/New Year Holiday period and staff absence? It could have been anticipated if you started the program three weeks before a major lockdown and Christmas.

        « Hospitals and ambulance services are struggling with a staff sickness rate two to three times higher than usual, as growing numbers of NHS workers fall ill or go into isolation amid a huge surge in Covid infections. Absence rates in some hospitals are now between 8% and 12%, versus the health service’s normal level of 4%«  guardian 30/12/20

        • Caterpillar
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

          Israel is doing proportionately better with initial 24/7 roll out has been effective at getting to its elderly. As you note, much could have been anticipated, yet England is still recruiting. These observations are neither against NHS workers or pro Israel military.

          (I think Israel and UK are not dissimilar at about 0.1% new positives per day, but I haven’t checked).

    • Nig l
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

      And your estimate and view of the efficacy of a later shot is based on what and of course the sane has been said about ‘know (f) it all Blair.

      Much like many other pronouncements especially as a global warming denier, I think it’s called God complex.

    • Nig l
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

      And the top US man says he wouldn’t be in favour of the delay. So tell us all again what are your qualifications in this field or else me thinks the donkey is closer to (your) home.

  7. Lifelogic
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    I see that Cambridge’s Labour-run city council have closed down the city’s open air marketplace from January 1. Why surely is is rather safer than indoor shops?

    Robert Tombs today in the Telegraph.

    “We must fulfil the promise of Brexit to galvanise Britain and banish declinism
    The route to national reconciliation lies in making the most of this glorious opportunity.”

    It surely does but do we have the political will? Less than four years to the next election?

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:28 am | Permalink

      Another three jumbo jets full of people died from covid19 in the past twenty-four hours, and it will be the same every day for some time.

      People are being treated in ambulances queuing in car parks.

      • matthu
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:52 am | Permalink

        Died WITH COVID rather than OF COVID I think you will find.

        How many people will die from further lockdown as opposed to lives being saved from further lockdown? Does the government even know this figure – and if so, why has it refused to release the information?

        • Blazes
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

          With Covid or Of Covid? another one going around with a poker up his ass- methinks

        • Nig l
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

          Talking about open spaces you need to get out more. Blow some of your obsessions away.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

          Must be quite a few who dies “with” athletes foot, verrucas, arthritis, acne or sore throats too.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

            died

        • NickC
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

          Matthu, The ONS uses the word “involving”, as in: ‘deaths involving covid19’ because they know full well that the majority of these deaths are not deaths from covid19.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:31 am | Permalink

        About 90% of the sad people were going to die of something else before long, Covid was the last straw. Ambulances queuing? No change there then … praise our NHS.
        Build Nightingale hospitals, don’t staff them, plan to close them, re-open them, ignore them, plan to use for something else, decide they are the answer, put them on standby, don’t staff them ……REPEAT.

      • Everhopeful
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:54 am | Permalink

        Who has been counting over the Bank Holiday?

      • NickC
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:00 am | Permalink

        And ill people without covid19 are not being treated at all, Martin.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

          Never pay up front for things if you can possibly avoid it and certainly not to a not to be trusted government promising you a state monopoly healthcare/rationing & queueing system. A system that is the envy of no one sensible and seems to be only about 1/3 as effective as the German one at preventing Covid deaths.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:50 am | Permalink

        Rubbish, daily deaths currently are normal for this time of year. They are just labelling many deaths as covid. See Joel Smalley and the excellent Dr Clare Craig on Twitter yesterday with a diagram of excess deaths for the past few years he says:- “In a really rather peculiar turn events, non-COVID winter excess deaths are negative for the first time ever.”

        This is very clear indeed if you just care to look at the figures in a little details.

        • Everhopeful
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

          +1

        • Zorro
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

          Agree – why is this pantomime carrying on?

          zorro

    • steve
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:10 am | Permalink

      LL

      “We must fulfil the promise of Brexit to galvanise Britain and banish declinism
      The route to national reconciliation lies in making the most of this glorious opportunity”

      =========

      Very true. A good start would be to give that seditious and divisive BBC a damn good routing, the negativity and left wing bullshit coming from that thing is a real threat to sovereignty and unity. Make it mandatory for all their television presenters to wear a Union Jack tie instead of the EU’s colours.

      Personally I think they should defund and terminate the BBC altogether, perhaps replace it with an official Government news channel – then we can all judge for ourselves the integrity of what government says and without the left wing bias.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

        +1

  8. acorn
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement: Council adopts decision on the signing
    The Council has today adopted, by written procedure, the decision on the signing of the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement and its provisional application as of 1 January 2021, pending the consent of the European Parliament and conclusion by the Council decision next year.

    The agreement will now be signed by the two parties on 30 December 2020. European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will sign in Brussels on behalf of the European Union while Prime Minister Boris Johnson will sign in London on behalf of the United Kingdom.

    After the formal signing, the decision adopted today on the signature and provisional application and the agreement itself will be published in the Official Journal of the EU in all languages and will be provisionally applied from 1 January 2021.

  9. Sea_Warrior
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:44 am | Permalink

    And this, I think, goes some way to explaining Macron’s New Year’s rant. This year, Sir John, would you kindly make pushing the government to realise the benefits of Brexit your great mission. They need to do a great deal in that regard BEFORE the Holyrood elections.

    • steve
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:56 am | Permalink

      Sea Warrior

      “They need to do a great deal in that regard BEFORE the Holyrood elections.”

      ========

      I have a hunch the sectarians aren’t going to do quite so well this time.

      The Scottish people aren’t stupid, and they know if Krankie had her way the EU would be plundering the crap out of Scottish fishing grounds, the Barnett appeasements would cease, and they’d find themselves sold out from one ‘perceived’ overlord into the clutches of a real pariah – assuming the EU would have them. The penny is beginning to drop.

      Whether by bumbling accident or cunning strategy Boris Johnson has managed to pee on Sturgeon’s parade and she doesn’t like it – that’s why her latest rhetoric is despotic and very comparable to the mood of a teacher’s pet that was knocked off her throne.

      We don’t need to worry about Holyrood elections.

      • IanT
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

        And a hard border between Scotland & England – which (unlike Europe) there has has never been before.

        What a great pity if that happened! 🙁

  10. Nig l
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:47 am | Permalink

    For all,their talk about collective sovereignty the reality is they are beholden to their powerhouse countries Germany and France both (and therefore the rest of the EU) shackled by centre left policies and a one size fits all currency making it impossible to match the dynamism of China and ‘America. India has the potential but needs massive structural change driven by exceptional (brave) political leadership and little sign of that yet.

    Recent international tax arbitration cases show they are still looking internally rather than a global perspective.

    Re your your comment about the US, as you regularly point out the value of the dollar is out of our control so strange your obsession with ranking the EU or us against them. In athletic terms currency changes can provide the same stimulus as drug taking (although obviously legal) so not a level playing field.

    What we need to do concentrate on creating our own dynamic growth which by definition should improve our global ranking if that is important to you. Certainly as in business, crucial to know what the ‘competition’ is doing.

    But ‘a mine’s bigger than yours’ approach, not sure it adds much?

  11. agricola
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    Do not fret over the EU. We need to concentrate on setting out the right elements that will make the UK very successful. Part of which is to make us more self sufficient and more global in our import of food we cannot produce ourselves.

    • oldtimer
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:11 am | Permalink

      Agreed. MPs need to focus on paddling the UK canoe so that we do not end up the creek without a paddle. This government has only a brief window of time to get its direction of travel right.

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:07 am | Permalink

      Correct. I for one have no interest in the EU, it’s run pretty much like the NHS, unaccountable, slow and cumbersome.
      We should be starting a sprint now the shackles are off.

    • Peter Wood
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:24 am | Permalink

      That’s my view also. I don’t want to hear about the EU/Brexit any more, it’s over. I will only commiserate with the occasional European who wakes-up to the realisation that the EU is now the bureaucracy for Germany to manage Europe and who wish they could leave also.

      I want to hear, in the next couple of months, our governments pro-active plans to encourage development our industrial, commercial and intellectual strengths, achieve self-sufficiency in food and energy, and overhaul/reduce the tax take to cut the governments share of GDP. Oh, and cancel vanity projects like HS2.

      • Ian Wragg
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        Already a positive start, vat off sanitary products and pulse fishing banned, small steps but a start.

        • steve
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

          Ian Wragg

          Happy new year to you Sir !

          Agree, these steps are encouraging. The next thing I would like to see is the BBC banged to rights. What the BBC puts out is to me similarly offensive as publishing hate material. i.e. very strong anti-British bias…..it’s dangerous propaganda and we don’t need it.

          • steve
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

            Ian

            “pulse fishing banned, small steps but a start.”

            …….makes you wonder maybe Boris Johnson might, just might, be listening after all.

            Much more of this and I’ll have to consider giving him another chance.

          • Fred H
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

            Should he announce termination of HS2, plans to relocate Westminster to the regions, reducing 650 MPs to say 100, and ending the Lords with a mixed experience group of say 100 — I might also eat humble pie- but it has got rather cold this last year.

  12. Tabulazero
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    Your new year resolutions of not bashing the EU have not lasted very long. The treaty is not approved yet by the EU Parliament and is not shown as thus.

    It is a bit of a shame that both parties chose to disregard their respective parliaments to such an extent: only a day to review it for the British and the EU parliament ending in the same situation as the UK when it comes to sovereignty: it can in theory reject the deal but in practice it has no interest to do so. Well… the treaty was at least approved by the EU Council so there is a modicum of political accountability.

    The EU’s focus is on pandemic recovery as you may have guessed. It just signed an investment treaty with China. When it comes to the UK, the best course is for the EU to ignore the UK. Let it cool down for a while.

    Best wishes to you all and good luck in your quest to find a new scapegoat.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:18 am | Permalink

      Yes, too short a time to review it but at least we did it whereas for all the huff and puff the EU didn’t. Of course the EU needs to focus on the pandemic, perhaps more than the UK as you seem to take months over deciding whether the most usable vaccine is ok.

      The EU, eh! Fleet of foot, not.

      • Andy
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:02 am | Permalink

        We didn’t review it. It is one of the most important things any MP will ever vote on and it was slammed through Parliament in 5 hours. A totally contemptuous way to treat our people. If it is a good deal it survives Parliamentary scrutiny.

        The EU Parliament has set aside plenty of time this month to review the agreement. It is provisional until the EU Parliament’s process is complete – which will be by the end of February.

        Fleet of foot is an interesting expression. In governance speed is a rarely a sensible attribute. When things are done quickly mistakes are made. As our government’s response to Covid has repeatedly shown. Remember in the race between the hare and the tortoise the hare doesn’t win.

        • a-tracy
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

          This wasn’t a one-sided negotiation Andy, one day was all Boris was given by the EU on a compromise deal that wasn’t ideal for either party but our politicians decided en-mass it was better than no-deal (other than a couple of MPs who preferred to leave without the agreement).

          Boris has two months notice from the EU now that until the deal is signed at the end of February we could still have to leave on WTO, I would hope he is urged to ensure he has backup plans just in case.

        • NickC
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

          Andy, It has been four and a half years since we voted Leave. Hardly “quickly” – it’s plenty of time to work out a deal and check it over. If you Remains wanted better scrutiny, and the power of Parliament to actually Leave the EU, you have a funny way of showing it.

        • IanT
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

          But MEP cannot instigate nor stop EU legislation Andy – so the reality is that no one really cares what they think about the deal – most particularly the Commission & Council where the real power lays.

          This just makes it plainer for them to see that’s all.

          Sad isn’t it?

          • Tabulazero
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:38 am | Permalink

            MEP cannot instigate legislation (like many other Parliaments by the way) but they can amend and reject laws

          • Edward2
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:17 am | Permalink

            Very rarely have they ever rejected laws.
            It is a puppet Parliament.

      • Tabulazero
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:36 am | Permalink

        May I point out that from the EU’s perspective, the deal was approved by the EU Council which consists of all the member-state democratically elected leaders. I do not view it as an organisation lacking democracy or accountability.

        I am very happy with what Macron got for fishing and the fact that the UK is firmly and clearly out of the Single-Market. I will probably vote for him again.

        As for the vaccine roll-out, thank you for volunteering to be guinea pigs. Much appreciated.

        • margaret howard
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

          Tabulazero

          What is even more amusing is the constant boasting of being FIRST, not creating the vaccine but using it.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

            Well that is the real point of having a vaccine.
            Actually using it.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:42 am | Permalink

            Yes. It was funny to see the Brexiters proclaim as a great British victory what is a German vaccine, discovered by Turkish immigrants, funded by EU research grants and produced in Belgium.

            Germany, Turkish immigrants and Belgium: all things Brexiters love.

        • NickC
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

          And what could any one country have done, Tabulazero, if it had wanted to object? Leave?? Ha ha ha ha

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:23 am | Permalink

      It appears to be an obsession which only becomes ever more fixated with these people.

      And as the different sectors lobby government for improvements in relations these topics will never leave the news nor John’s blog.

      Brexit is the beginning of a national obsession with the neighbours, far from the end.

      • NickC
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:16 am | Permalink

        Martin, You don’t get to decide what I’m interested in. And I’m interested in the machinations of a dangerous ideology located only a few miles from us. I’m also very interested in how well our Brexit government performs. So if you’re not interested in those find another site more in tune with your desire to control what others talk about.

      • Tabulazero
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:38 am | Permalink

        Which is weird because the UK hardly makes the news, unless it is Boris Johnson’s own father asking for French nationality which is hilarious.

        That’s serious trolling within the Johnson familly.

        • Fedupsoutherner
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

          Do you really think that we a toss what you think? You come across as nasty and childish which is how most of us view the EU.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

          True, his own Father and siblings all stunned at his success as a bullshiter.

        • NickC
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

          Tabulazero, It’s only in the EU that uniformity is so prized. And China and N.Korea.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:43 am | Permalink

            And the US and Japan

            We are in a world of large blocks

      • Original Richard
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

        Martin,

        Of course we need to be checking carefully upon what goes on in the EU, particularly since it is anti-democratic and desirous of expanding its empire, just as we needed to check what was going on in Germany in the 1930s.

    • Glenn Vaughan
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:41 am | Permalink

      Tabulazero

      Good luck with trying to overcome your petulance.

      • Tabulazero
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:42 am | Permalink

        Pétulance has a slightly different meaning in French. It has positive connotations. It would be closer to “high spirit”.

        I will therefore take this as a compliment.

        Thank you very much. That is so kind and best wishes for 2021.

        • Glenn Vaughan
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

          I’m not interested in the French language so you can interpret “petulance” as anything but a compliment.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

            I don’t think anyone thought for one moment that you were.

          • NickC
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

            Martin, We’re writing in English, not French. Perhaps you’d not noticed?

          • margaret howard
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:31 am | Permalink

            Glenn Vaughan

            “I’m not interested in the French language”

            Well you ought to be as English is made up of about 30% French 30% Saxon German and 30% Latin. A true continental language.

            Mind you being monoglots is unfortunately another one of our not very admirable reputations.

        • Leslie Singleton
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

          Dear …..Zero–The existence of French, such as it is, is unhelpful to us Brits but we have to grin and bear it because the Frogs are our closest neighbour, but Macron’s and perhaps your dream of French taking over the World is about as away with the fairies as one can get. Nobody, least of all Germany and Italy (My mother was Italian), gives a tuppenny toss about French. Macron looks silly these days. Napoleon he ain’t.

          • margaret howard
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:35 am | Permalink

            Leslie Singleton

            “Macron looks silly these days. Napoleon he ain’t.”

            Macron silly? To us who have Boris as our dear leader? You can’t be serious.

            The whole of Europe is laughing at us and from what we hear even his own family don’t think too highly of him.

    • No Longer Anonymous
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:37 am | Permalink

      I expect that it is we who are being made the new scapegoats.

      “The UK Variant” regards the new strain of CV-19. So it will be the dirty English that caused a worsening of the disease.

      I seem to recall that we were xenophobes for daring to call the original version of CV-19 Wuhan Flu.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

        Quite right too.

        • No Longer Anonymous
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

          I think it should have been given a number. Wuhan Flu 2.

        • NickC
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

          As the resident China apologist, Martin, that’s rather daring of you.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

        ‘Bat lady potion’ will do for me.

    • czerwonadupa
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

      What you call an EU parliament is actually a fig leaf.

      • Tabulazero
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

        What you call the British Parliament is actually an anachronism.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 4, 2021 at 11:49 am | Permalink

          I’d call it an ego talking shop in between bouts of snoring…

  13. Adrian Barrett
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    Sir John,

    In the UK should we not refer to the ‘UK/EU Trade Agreement’, rather then the ‘EU/UK Trade Agreement’? Rather in the same way, perhaps, that one prefers ‘Belfast Agreement’ over ‘Good Friday Agreement’.

    Thank you for your dedication and hard work over the past 30 and more years to get us out of the ever-deepening Soviet-style EEC/EC/EU anti-democratic quagmire. You’re a hero of the war to defend sovereignty, independence and freedom. Your place in history is assured – for eternity!

    Adrian Barrett.

  14. Everhopeful
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    Appeasing the bully is a bad idea.
    The EU is simply ignoring the new “treaty”? Should have gone for No Deal in 2016.
    The utter feebleness since has only handed the (very) China-involved unions huge power.
    Just wait and see how the blame for wholly unnecessary COVID related economic death will land at the feet of the tories.

    • Lynn
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:42 am | Permalink

      Justifiably.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:53 am | Permalink

      Quite likely. They need to unlock now.

      • Hope
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

        How is Johnson ever going to get people back to work he did not achieve it in the summer!

        Johnson still trying to promote World Economic Forum’s Marxist socialist agenda of the great reset- nothing of the sort. Delingpole and others writing about the underhand agenda and what it really means.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

        Where would you rather have celebrated New Year, UK or Belarus or Tanzania?

        zorro

  15. Nig l
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    Off topic but now more important. The alleged bureaucracy in NHS vaccine giver recruitment looks like a similar scandal to PPE back in the day.

    Does it need one of your pithy interventions or is it just a typical media ‘bad news’ puff?

    Will it slow down the roll out. If the follow up vaccine should be given at 19 days, how magically is it now Ok to give it months later apart from covering up government/NHS failure?

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:49 am | Permalink

      When you think about it being led by the nose by the media on health is a speciality of the Health Ministry in 2020 and it seems to be going on into 2021.

      We won’t have enough ventilators, = a fortune spent on getting them and quickly, = we don’t need them they don’t work.

      We won’t have enough staff and beds, = a fortune spent on beds and capacity at Nightingale hospitals and others, a big build up of volunteers – bringing medical staff trainees out of universities and onto wards, = not used, we can’t cope, you’re all gonna die if you have to come into hospital in London! WE CAN’T COPE – STAY IN OR YOU’RE GONNA DIE OR KILL YOUR RELATIVES.

      We won’t have enough PPE, it’s the only thing that will save the medical teams, = quick turnaround on orders, freeing up purchasing chains to stop the hysteria, = we’ve got too much, it’s not the right sort, its sat on the dock!

      We’re going to test 100,000 per day, we’re testing the worried well, numbers of tests go up, positives go up less than France, we have a massive emergency Christmas and New Year is cancelled even though we had big lockdowns in November to save Christmas, nothing is working, there is a new virus, it’s out of control, we can’t cope with it.

      Vaccines are going to save us all, we got the first batches, a million vaccinated, oops we’ve run out, we’re not going to be able to give the important second dose, oh seconds thoughts we better had.

      I’ve a suggestion make some changes at the top or get a grip.

      • Mike Durrans
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

        +1

      • Hope
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

        338 people under 60 without having disclosed underlying health issues have died. The whole economy and way of life being wrecked for this!! Thank god none of the ministers are generals they would never go into battle!! Elf and safety!

        Why are the schools shutting when most parents will be under 55 years? This crazy wharped Nut job of a Govt needs to change course ASAP. Oust Johnson next week, submit termination of surrender agreement and use the year to properly get out of the EU!

        • a-tracy
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

          Hope, I’d start really investigating the 338 under 60’s that died without underlying health issues.

          Did they all die in hospital, what % died at home without ever going into hospital?

          What treatment were they given, how long were they infected before they went to hospital, were they put on ventilators? If they were put on ventilators how long after their condition started and by which hospital?

          Where did they catch the virus, had they been abroad or in contact with someone abroad, were they family or friends of healthcare/care professionals? Were they in similar jobs? Had they been attending protests, were they anti-maskers?

          For me I’d want to really dig down and forensically look at any patterns, treatments, coincidences, blood groups, allergies, hopefully someone is actually doing this on these small numbers of people. We just seem to be flailing around guessing all the time.

      • IanT
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

        I’ve always wanted to meet someone blessed with Hindsight Tracy – It must be a wonderful thing 🙂

        • a-tracy
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

          It is, thank you I also have foresight 🤗.

          • IanT
            Posted January 5, 2021 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

            And that is a much rarer gift! 🙂

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:54 am | Permalink

      Indeed parasites all over the place getting in the way of productive activity.

      • Nig l
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

        Stupid word parasites like much of your hyperbollocks, I meant hyperbole.

        On the scale between them and property developer/speculators. Look in the mirror.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

          So you thing building properties for people to live in is parasitic do you?

          • hefner
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

            Building properties, certainly not. Being on this blog continuously moaning about the tax you are paying on your profits is rather if not parasitic but certainly curious as denoting somebody who appears to have far too much time on his hands to spend in a rather parasitic endeavour (a bit like a civil servant, don’t you think).

            And if you really are not making any profit, what about you doing something different with your life, a change that should be easy for someone with four BScs and such ‘a scientific mind’.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:15 am | Permalink

            Pot kettle hef.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

      I don’t know if it’s true because I read this in the papers. The UK is now going to vaccinate possibly using two different types of vaccine. While I’m happy to have the vaccine I would prefere it to be the same one on both occassions. The vaccines have been made using a different technique and they haven’t tested to assess it’s safety given this way. Meanwhile the makers of the vaccines are saying there are no hold ups so why are we being led to believe that the supply of the vaccine is difficult?

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

        Just using simple logic I would suggest the mixing of vaccines would be rather stupid and against all protocols, given they have been developed and are made up using different methods, and work in different ways.

        Surely no one would be that stupid would they.???

        But just in case, I will ask which one is being used on me when eventually I get called for a jab, and will do so again when I am called for the second follow up, just to make sure they are the same.
        I do not care which one it is, I just want to make sure no mix up !!!

        • Fedupsoutherner
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:26 am | Permalink

          Look at pulse today. Co.uk or Google the question. PHE think it’s ok to use different vaccinations.

          • Alan Jutson
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:56 am | Permalink

            Would just about sum up my thoughts about usefulness of PHE if they approve.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

        It would be criminal to mix the mRNA and Oxford virus, what is going on?

        zorro

  16. Nig l
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    I see Boris wants to recruit more public sector frint line jobs. Strewth, more cost, more bureaucracy, inefficiency, waste.

    Just what we need to drive our economy out of this situation and anything but dynamic.

    • Lynn
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

      Ah! So you do know that ‘front line state workers’ are parasites (an entity that lives off other beings).

  17. Tabulazero
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    And finally to answer your question : “Will the EU find it hard to adjust to the UK departure?”

    No. Definitely not and for the simple reason that the UK has been pretty much absent from European affaire since David Cameron’s day. It’s a non-entity.

    Formally leaving the EU won’t change that and also the fact that the UK want to be left alone.

    • Richard1
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:55 am | Permalink

      If I was a an EU-federalist I would be happy the U.K. has left. It will be much easier to bring about proper political and fiscal union without the U.K. – with big transfers to the euro-south and tax and borrowing powers at the EU level. the other sceptical countries are small enough to be forced into line.

      Who knows, if it works out, the EU becomes effectively the USE, and that clearly delivers greater prosperity, the U.K. could be back in a decade or two.

      Meanwhile in the U.K. there is massive pressure on the government which delivered Brexit to make it a success. Which is positive both for the U.K. and for the citizens of the EU (although perhaps less so for the bureaucrats).

      • Tabulazero
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

        I am indeed happy that the UK left. It allows the European project to move forward.

        The worse deal was Chequers, which was the UK cherry-picking it’s way through the Single-Market.

        • Edward2
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:50 pm | Permalink

          Which you also opposed.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:28 am | Permalink

            Absolutely. I never thought the EU should let the UK have one foot inside the Single-Market and the other outside.

            You are either inside and subject to the same rules as all of us mere mortals or you are fully out with the ability to diverge to your heart content but on the other hand we get the right to protect ourselves through tariffs and other trade barriers.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:13 am | Permalink

            The two biggest nations trading with one foot inside the single market are China and America.
            Would you ban them too?

        • Richard1
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

          Indeed Chequers was an absurdity and would have made the UK an economic colony of the EU

          • Tabulazero
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:24 am | Permalink

            I think it would have destroyed the Single-Market with the UK cherry-pick the sectors in which it wants to participate.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:23 am | Permalink

      eh? Andy and Martin repeat ad nauseam that we are a big voice in all affairs of the EU. Which is it? We are ignored, or a top dog?
      That non-entity just took the second or third biggest budget funding away.
      The EU never balanced its dodgy books, and now will require rather more creative accounting.

      • Mike Durrans
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

        +1

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:07 am | Permalink

        You may be old, but your binary, absolutist approach to most things is utterly infantile.

        The UK was one of the Big Three along with France and with Germany, and with similar influence.

        Its position has gladly been taken by Italy now.

        • Edward2
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:12 am | Permalink

          One vote in 28.
          With increasing qualified majority voting and use of Treaty obligations to create new laws regulations directives and rules.
          Nine paying in, the rest taking out.
          I agree with you that we were one of the big three but only in terms of the amount of money we put in.

        • NickC
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

          We are either in the EU or out of it – that was the binary choice on the ballot paper.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 4, 2021 at 11:51 am | Permalink

          me – infantile?
          Thanks for the abuse. At least I state perfectly reasonable points of view rather than the leftie unbalance shite you try to fill these articles with!

      • margaret howard
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

        FredH

        “In 2019 Germany’s contributions to the budget of the European Union was 25.82 billion Euros, the highest of any EU member state.

        France was the next highest contributor at 21 billion Euros, followed by Italy at 14.96 billion Euros and the United Kingdom at 14 billion Euros.”

        Another myth, just like the EU budget not signed off one. Still, Daily Mail readers revel in these type of stories.

        • a-tracy
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

          Margaret, is this just our membership fee, you didn’t quote a source for your figures, did it include the 20% UK VAT that is sent to the EU, the tax on Prostitution and Drugs, the contribution on Rest of the World imports to the UK what % was that again 75 or 80% to the EU? How much flowed Straight back out again to the Countries to say paid the most in?

          Just curious.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 4, 2021 at 11:52 am | Permalink

          Daily fail? – wouldn’t know haven’t bought one for more than a decade.
          You obviously are an avid, but critical reader.

    • czerwonadupa
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

      But you still demanded their money

    • NickC
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

      Tabulazero, For all the effect the UK has had on the EU (apart from “donating” money and fish!) we might as well have been absent from 1973. And I thought you Remains were insistent that we “formally” left on 31st Jan not 31st Dec? Slip of the tongue (or pen), or what?

      • Tabulazero
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:32 am | Permalink

        That is where you are wrong. Some bits of the EU were shaped by the UK such as the Single-Market or its cometition policy. Also, the rapid eastward expansion of the EU was pushed by Tony Blair.

        • Edward2
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:08 am | Permalink

          A other of Blair’s disasters.

        • NickC
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

          No, the EU’s single market was not shaped by the UK, Tabulazero. We wanted an intergovernmental run market dependent upon mutual recognition, not a centralised, dirigiste, top down monolith. You’ve had this explained before – read Thatcher’s memoirs.

    • jon livesey
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

      The UK a non-entity? I guess that explains why both Merkel and Macron felt the need to go on TV to reassure their voters.

      • Tabulazero
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:35 am | Permalink

        Macron reminded the French not to pay attention to the bout of French bashing in the British press in the run up to the agreement.

        It is par for the course.

        • NickC
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

          What, the French press doesn’t go in for bashing the Anglos, Tab? One of the French hobbies is attacking the UK and the USA – it’s an obsession, probably from a sense of inferiority.

          • margaret howard
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:36 pm | Permalink

            NickC

            Sense of inferiority? To our Boris UK and the Trump US? And unlike us they don’t grovel to the US and follow them like sheep into illegal wars.

            I’ve lived in Paris and I can assure you their what you call ‘sense of inferiority’ doesn’t exist. And quite rightly so.
            Their way of life, architecture, food, drink, culture etc are second to none. And they know how to dress.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted January 5, 2021 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

            Frankly ? The French are interested in the French and do not care very much about the UK.

    • IanT
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

      Yes, they won’t miss that 17% loss of income and having fewer (large) contributors to spread that Covid debt around. Maybe Greece, Portugal, Spain or Italy will make up the shortfall. Well – Good luck with that.

      We will have our problems but they will be our problems – and not other peoples. Money will have to be given/lent but we will decide who gets it – not someone else.

      On balance – I’m happy with that arrangement.

      • margaret howard
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:19 am | Permalink

        IanT

        “We will have our problems but they will be our problems”

        We? Leave the Scots out of it. They don’t seem to want to be part of ‘our problem’. Nor the Irish.

        EU here we come (as Nicola said).

        • IanT
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

          That may be true of some Scots Margaret but certainly not all….especially when it gets down to hard tacks.

          I always enjoy watching Andrew Neil interviewing fellow Scot “Nicola” on her ‘successes’ in Healthcare and Education. I haven’t heard her explain exactly how she will replace the Barnett formulae yet either (I don’t think Brussels will cough up). It’s currently running at about £1,900 per annum for every Scottish person – that’s quite a lot of money to replace (or do without)

          And will the Scots really want a hard border between them and 60% of their ‘export’ market?

          I do understand the Scots pride in their country and culture but I’ve never taken them for idiots where their money is concerned.

        • a-tracy
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

          How many Scots study in England or work in England compared to those that go to the EU?

          What % of Scottish exports would go to England in comparison to the % going into the EU?

          How many British jobs would have to be moved to South of the border like defence and their connected jobs?

          How much would the bill be, lets not forget we just had to pay a large 5 year bill to separate and the Scots owe England for bailing them out in the first place and the massive amounts spent on infrastructure.

          When we went into the EU we were always paying more in, and we’ve always been sold more than we export.

          Scottish Universities have been taking the mickey with English students and breaking EU agreements and same treatment for all EU citizens, this disgusting little aside that Blair stitched up allowing EU citizens to study in Scotland for £1500 pa and giving them tuition fee loans and living fee loans whilst insisting the English paid for everything themselves. The EU talks of level playing fields and yet again the English the muddy uphill side of the uneven pitch.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:07 am | Permalink

        Good they can get their subsidies off the EU.
        Save us English billions.

    • Original Richard
      Posted January 3, 2021 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      Tabulazero,

      Whilst the EU won’t miss our representatives who appeared to attend EU meetings but were not involved, they will miss :

      – Our budget contributions.
      – Control of our fishing grounds.
      – Control of our borders and our corporates who imported unemployed EU labour.
      – Control of our import tariffs, trade, VAT and energy production.
      etc.

      If the UK leaving the EU was of such little consequence to the EU and their UK supporters in would not have taken until the very last few days to come to an agreement on future terms.

  18. Everhopeful
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    Why can’t the tories see that the extreme, far left ( I would say Marxist ) unions are using the notion of a virus to destroy the country?
    Why won’t the government save us?
    Because it too wants the destruction?
    Oh no! It wants the vaccine.
    Why?

    Dentist’s Union urging members to resists govt. request to treat patients.
    Teacher’s Union urging members to resist school opening.
    Do the useful idiots believe furlough will go on forever? Universal subsistence income just down the line.
    Tories…pray to the shade of Mrs T for guidance and beg for courage.

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      I’d guess all these people don’t have furlough terms in their contracts and when not working the clients I.e. taxpayers just keep paying their full wage unlike everyone else that gets put out of work on 80% up to a maximum of £2500 per month, why are the public sector treated differently?

      • Everhopeful
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        I just wonder if it is the unions?
        The public sector seems to have negotiated quite a few pay rises during all this misery.
        AND I saw a vid of a virtually empty Christmas postal sorting office where the very few staff were being regaled with a selection of carols on a workmate’s bagpipes. He paraded up and down the premises PUFFING AND BLOWING!! Never mind not being allowed to sing in Church!

        • a-tracy
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

          Public Sector get their pay rises through grade movements, extra free holidays, paid time off, reduced hours.

          All they’re doing at the moment is causing people to ask more questions, if teachers don’t work are they able to be furloughed instead of just on full pay? If not why not? Why not start the term later in the year and finish later in the year and move the term dates if they want to work at the moment? Instead of six weeks off in the summer make it four and agree to an extra two weeks holiday now.

          Hospital staff, which staff aren’t able to work at all and why? If they’re shielding redeploy. Do we ever assess the health conditions of workers in the public sector, could they be immunised and put in vaccination clinics or to watch after-vax to check for shock. If they have to be totally isolated why couldn’t they be redeployed to run track and trace from their home bases. In a private company you would have to redeploy people or die, but we’re all just expected to pay up the same as ever for less.

    • NickC
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

      Indeed. I have had to argue the toss to get dental treatment at all. And it’s no use writing to my useless Tory MP because he is a nodding donkey – just nods along with whatever the local NHS management say, without questioning them. It’s time the NHS and teachers got back to work, or are sacked if they refuse.

    • Zorro
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

      Which political party does Susan Michie belong to? Which party did ODL’s chief advisor used to belong to?

      zorro

  19. Bob Dixon
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    What’s this nonsense that retired medical professionals may have to complete 21 forms to help with the immunisation of U.K. citizens ?

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:18 am | Permalink

      Training too it seems. That diversity and anti-discrimnation training could prove problematic when you’re vaccinating folk according to age, a protected characteristic.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:27 am | Permalink

      They have to confirm that they have had Racial Bias Training. This training is not to learn how to be racially biased. It is to detect racial bias. If a person about to be vaccinated is determined to be racially biased, the injection is to be administered as painfully as possible.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:57 am | Permalink

      Why don’t you do your own research and actually learn something, like whether that is true?

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

        It is what a retired doctor, who tried to register, reported. I have no reason to disbelieve him.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

        Like your assertions about China?

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

        Martin

        Oh rest assured its true enough, a couple of friends of ours (ex Nurses) have confirmed all this nonsense is now required.

        One went through all of the procedures required, It took 4 months, and was eventually told she could help out with the feeding of patients.

        A retired Doctor who volunteered to help out the NHS as a vaccinator was advised he could help control the car park, a complete and utter waste of his talent and knowledge, so he politely declined.

        Complete and utter madness which Hancock should get a grip on if mass injections are to reach targets.

        Afraid its the typical management and administration of the NHS again that is letting downntohe front line staff.

        In the meantime the NHS happy to allow thousands ofpatients/general public to self inject their own medication with 10 mins instruction.

        • anon
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 2:29 am | Permalink

          Do NHS staff will get a bonus for each injection.?

          Volunteers presumably unpaid and injecting would reduce the bonus opportunity available?

    • Lynn
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      …but chiropodists can give (indeed they are being told MUST give) the vaccination.

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

        It’s a shame statements such as yours, which sound unlikely, cannot be automatically fact checked. Could you provide a link showing that chiropodists – who would never have administered an injection in their lives – are to be compelled to do so.

        • a-tracy
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

          I would also like Lynn to say where she has heard chiropodists ‘MUST give the vaccinations’.

          Chiropodists do give injections though Mike, they give steroid injections, Corticosteroid injections, they can also inject local anaesthetic when for example you’d have a toe nail removed.

        • Lynn
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

          My chiropodist showed me the letter informing her that she ‘must’ ensure all her patients are vaccinated. I have no reason to think they singled her out. My chiropractor confirmed she had had the same instructions, both felt intimidated.
          So as it’s the truth, you should be able to confirm wherever you please. Apparently it was reported in the press too – the list of ‘health professionals’ required to vaccinate. Google it.

  20. majorfrustration
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    Lets hope that Boris realises that talking about opportunities is not enough – a failing of most politicians – talk and no joined up thinking.

  21. Trev Ess
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    Here’s a suggestion to boost the Uk’s performance. Stop locking us in our homes for a virus that doesn’t kill anybody.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      Well nobody under 60 and few under 80.
      So why lock in 5-15 year olds? It is quite mad.

      • glen cullen
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

        WOKE

    • Andy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:50 am | Permalink

      * expect 74,237 people. (So far).

      • Martyn G
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

        In other words, very closely equivalent to the ONS 5-year average number of deaths from causes such as flu, pneumonia, heart failure etc etc.
        So why worry? We all die at some point and although you may think, as so many do, it won’t happen to me, be assured that it will, hopefully after a long, useful, productive and happy life.

      • NickC
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

        Andy, Actually, 388 dead of covid19, under 60 years without already existing medical problems.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

        Well actually Andy, that total specifically refers to people who died of ANY cause within 28 days of a PCR+ test. You need to be specific.

        zorro

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:00 am | Permalink

      John, why do comments which contain blatant, lethally-dangerous lies pass moderation on your site?

      Reply I let you say what you want as long as it is not making personal; attacks on people or companies.
      You often post things IO thing are wrong

      • Fred H
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

        reply to reply … rather odd Sir John . You almost daily allow criticism of Boris, Ferguson, Corbyn etc. But when I make general disparaging remarks, justified, about the Conservative party, NHS etc you hold them back, and sometimes don’t publish.
        It seems touching a loyalty nerve isn’t tolerated.

      • NickC
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

        Martin, Which “lethally-dangerous lies” are those? Do explain, rather than just demanding censorship to suit your own prejudices.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

        Yes JR, please remember to pass any comments via the truth prism of Comrade MIC.

        zorro

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:12 am | Permalink

      So, this virus – which the conspiracy theorists say was a plot by the Chinese to devastate the West – is pretty harmless then?

      They – or others – could easily have released SARS1 if they really wanted to cause trouble, couldn’t they?

      You’re all over the place.

      • pax
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:25 am | Permalink

        But that’s not what they say though is it.

        They say it’s to crash the world economy
        Bring in a new financial system
        Reduce the population
        Make a beautiful green playground for billionaires

        They also say ( so I understand ) that the best way for the 99% poor people to be free of the 1% is through love, spiritual love.

  22. Fred H
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    Forecasts on EU in 2050? Big assumption that it will exist then! My money would be on some members independent, others satellites of Russia or China, a very few relying on being servants of USA.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      What do you think that the countries of the UK will be doing by then, Fred?

      • Fred H
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

        Hopefully independent and I predict in the shit, excepting England which will be a much better place to live than the others, and I’d like to think much more respectful of my children in their old age!
        Tell me brother, or comrade, what do you think they will be doing?

      • jon livesey
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

        Same as they do today. Wave their little flags, but depend on the UK for their press, best Universities, financial bailouts, military training, naval ship building, Royal Air Force patrols, and on and on.

        We offer the four nations a pretty good deal, and not being fools, they take it.

      • margaret howard
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:24 am | Permalink

        Martin in Cardiff

        “What do you think that the countries of the UK will be doing by then, Fred?”

        Being servants of USA? (but only rump England)

        • Edward2
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:06 am | Permalink

          UK now 5th biggest world economy.
          Some rump.

    • Lynn
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      Which do you think will be independent?

      • Fred H
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

        Italy, Portugal, Poland, Hungary, Czech possibly Spain.

        • rose
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

          Surely France will go first? Macron said they would if they got the chance.

          • Fred H
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:00 am | Permalink

            they won’t get the chance – French leaders dug in, wouldn’t help ‘Dave’ – and looked what happened.

          • margaret howard
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

            rose

            No, that’s not what he said. Read the transcript.

      • jon livesey
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

        My guess, probably none. We were in a unique position, not being members of the euro – thank you Gordon Brown – and the rest of the EU27 is just too dependent on the EU.

    • hefner
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

      ‘Brexit is not an existential concern for the EU, as some’ (in the EU) ‘feared it would become. The EU will enjoy a strained relationship with a neighbour too small to worry much about, but too big to ignore. Given that the EU is seven times the size of Britain, it should be able to handle it as it does the rest of its fragile frontier. But it is a problem the union, surrounded by instability on its borders from North Africa to Turkey to Russia and challenged from within by democratic backsliding in Hungary and Poland, would rather not have. When it comes to Brexit, there is no such thing as a good deal for the EU.’ Economist, 02/01/2021.

      So no need to be apoplectic or apocalyptic?

      • Edward2
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

        Oh the Economist.
        I’m surprised you didn’t have a quote from the Guardian hef.

        • hefner
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:04 am | Permalink

          I’ll try one from ‘Beano’ next time, just for you.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:05 am | Permalink

            Please do.
            At least the Beano is isn’t a remain supporting rag.

  23. BJC
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    Off topic, but I’m genuinely concerned that we have some very powerful proponents of the EU doctrine still displaying a strange and potentially dangerous emotional attachment to the EU, just as cult members do to their charismatic leaders. Both demand total commitment to their cause and spend millions promoting their ideology and building their “churches” of faith. Without calling out their behaviour and reintroducing (much needed, anyway) sedition laws as a support mechanism, those enjoying a combination of power and access to privileged information will find the magnetic pull of the EU irresistible. For example, would the UK government stand by as an unsophisticated, but profligate Scottish Parliament took EU inducements to “prepare for accession” as a legitmate route to obtain “bought and paid for” sensitive information? Just asking.

    Perhaps we should use all those behavioural scientists to de-programme the brainwashed!

    • Hope
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

      Well it is an easy target most are in the Lords. Worse, Johnson just rewarded some of those he took the whip away from and put them there! He is building their army for them and giving them the public finances to do it!

    • jon livesey
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

      There are also Creationists and Flat-Earthers, but they are not a major problem.

  24. DOM
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    Both parties and the British political class to which you belong is a bigger threat to our personal freedoms than the EU and that’s coming from a pure bred Eurosceptic

    I believe we are a breath away from a fascist left State in all but name

    • Zorro
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

      The totalitarian impulses in the media and the clear lies and exaggeration about the hospitals is evidence of that.

      zorro

  25. Jack Falstaff
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    But we won’t be hearing this from the BBC because that is the EU’s propaganda machine.

    I am sick and tired of the daily drip-feed from Lord Haw-Haw numbing my senses everyday so please, Mr Johnson, do something about them now!

    Oh pretty please…….!!!!!!

    • Hope
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

      Johnson U turned and is not going to change criminality for not paying BBC tax! This is the govt propaganda left wing Marxist arm. Fake criticism by govt and no action in ten years says it all.

    • Zorro
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

      Fat chance of ODL doing anything bout the BBC. They are his mouthpiece.

      zorro

  26. None of the Above
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    Insofar as it may affect the UK, I am less interested in what the EU does than what we do.
    We now have the freedom to act and the agility to do so rather more quickly than in the past.
    We need to get on with strengthening our Constitution and our democratic processes.
    Make our future intentions clear to all UK Citizens as quickly as possible and certainly by the Spring in a Budget.

  27. Dave Andrews
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    No one has any idea where things will be in 30 year’s time. Pure guesswork.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

      CCP has worked and does work on these timescales.

  28. Alan Jutson
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    Not really bothered what the EU put on their website, its what our Government does to advise and handle overseas trade and people movement that would concern me.
    As long as our side show all that is needed for any documentation and trade, and it is clear and concise, then that is fine by me.
    When I travel to Europe then I hope I can find easily all of the documentation I may need will be clearly listed, along with any other driver and vehicle requirements, which are getting more complicated every year (even in this Country) due to local congestion, air pollution and emission regulations requirements.
    Each European Country already has differing rules on official documentation requirements which need to be carried, along with a list of spares, alcohol testing kits, triangles etc etc.

  29. Excalibur
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    A brief piece on Sky tv this morning highlighted how, in only fifteen years, China has become the world’s leading producer of caviar. A joint venture between private enterprise and the state has created an industry from a zero base to a world leader.

    I reference this as an illustration of how a visionary government can energize the private sector and how the two working together can produce outstanding results.

    I just wonder if we have the energy and vision here to produce similar results. Certainly JR has, but how do we induce others to get moving ?

    • GilesB
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

      The U.K. needs effective leadership of the fishing industry. Not a few paper-shufflers in the Department of unCommon Agricultural Practices.

      Something along the lines of Fonterra, for the New Zealand Dairy Industry. Leads in innovation, umbrella organisation for marketing, owned by 10,000 farmers.

      Or perhaps the China example.

      Individual fishermen with one trawler don’t have the heft needed.

      It needs to embrace not only catching fish, but also the processing and marketing.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

      caviar – staple diet for us Brits.

  30. Qubus
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    Slightly off-topic, but nevertheless topical.

    Shouldn’t the developing shambles regarding the NHS’s culpable neglect and rejection of retired medical staff and of other perfectly capable people for delivering the COVID-vaccine at last cause this organisation to be put under the microscope and its competence given a thorough investigation and subsequent re-organisation? It is time that the general public were disabused about the almost sacred state of this organisation.
    This is not a complaint about the front-line staff, merely it’s administration and general structure. The British people deserve something better than this. When are the politicians going to be brave enough to do something about it?

    • DOM
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

      Blame the vile Equality Act and the psychotic obsession with the insane diversity agenda which is now nothing more than a divide and conquer strategy of the leftist, unionised political entity that is the public sector

      Merit, value and utility has been sacrificed on the altar of the bullshit of gender and racial identity agenda thanks to the existential threat that is the Labour party and the utterly spineless Tory party whose cowardice in the face of aggressive activism have condemned this nation to a most appalling future

      Expect more oppressive laws to promote this Marxist agenda of divide and rule. McCluskey is now in charge not Johnson

    • None of the Above
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

      “The British people deserve something better than this”.

      Indeed, as do NHS employees!

    • SM
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

      So far, I can only find one media reference (in the Daily Mail) to apparent bureaucratic stupidity blocking retired medical staff being recruited to give vaccinations. Not living in the UK, I have to rely on the internet.

      Does anyone know if the NHS has confirmed or denied that this is happening?

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

        SM

        Yes sadly it is true, ex NHS staff and nurse friends of ours can confirm, see my earlier post above in reply to Martin in Cardiff.

        Only in the NHS and its management and admin system could this happen, although I know other local authority and Government departments where this sort of nonsense is also likely.

        The WOKE thinkers are taking over !

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

        Someone I know over the age of 80 asked our medical centre how long it would be before he received his vaccine. He was told they have no idea as they have runout of the stocks of vaccine.

      • rose
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

        If the 1984 Health Act gives Mr Hancock autocratic power, why can’t he overrule the bureaucracy in the NHS?

    • Everhopeful
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

      It’s almost as if they don’t want the vaccine rolled out!

  31. gregory martin
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    Meanwhile the search for the Excel Nightingale continues. Will it be re-built? At what cost?
    Will MSM continue to show library footage, perhaps photo shopped with snow on the ground? Perhaps Lego can help.

  32. Mike Wilson
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    And, as always, the frankly mindless assumption that we must have endless growth in GDP. Why? Haven’t we enough consumerism? Wouldn’t it be nice if we could revise society so that people worked less. Less work, lower GDP, more leisure – what’s not to like? Why the obsession with growth and more and more work?

    I remember a time where one wage could support a household – leaving a partner free to be a home maker. I remember a time when (my dad) people worked a strict 37.5 hour week – and had every evening and weekend free. No answering emails at 10.00 at night.

    Why the obsession with GDP growth?
    Why the obsession with how we compare with the rest of the world?

    Why not focus on improving life?

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 3, 2021 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

      Lucky you Mike and your Dad on a wage good enough to support two for just 37.5 hours per week. My Dad had to work seven days then take one day off, every seventh week if his day-off fell on a Saturday he got Sunday off too, just two weeks summer holiday and one other week he could choose, he worked all bank holidays including Christmas Day from 7am to 7pm, my Mum had to take on a part-time job too and worked full time once my brother was sixteen. It wasn’t all utopia at ‘that time’.

  33. Andy
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    The European Parliament hasn’t voted on it yet – and won’t until February because they actually want to scrutinise it first. Something our MPs do not have to do.

    Plus, of course, Europeans don’t have any changes to make. The U.K. government has already said it will not enforce any border rules until July.

    Meanwhile our government has published some helpful export guides with flow charts and everything.

    A process which use to involve putting your goods in a van and driving now involves 25 steps – all concerning bureaucracy. I urge you all to read them. It is a pictorial version of Brexiteers’ hubris.

    • NickC
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

      Andy, You don’t know what you’re talking about. There was no free pass for UK goods suppliers just because the UK was a subject state of the EU. We had to conform – and prove conformance – to EU rules whilst in the EU. I have prepared CE conformance and export documentation myself. UK exporters have the same obligations to conform to the same EU rules now we’re out.

  34. Roy Grainger
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    I’m just going shopping. I expect there’ll be lots of food shortages due to Brexit that Andy and his chums have been predicting for four years. I’ll let you know.

    • None of the Above
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

      Don’t forget to note the price of Tampons!

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

      Well I’ve just been and got everything I went for.

    • Andy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

      I’ve told you there will be select shortages of some goods over the coming months – and there will. I have also told you that many prices will increase – and they will. But it is not me that has told you the sky will fall in. That is you lot making stuff up. But we do understand that fantasy is all you have left.

      • a-tracy
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

        Which goods, come on Andy spill a list of goods we are going to be short of please.

        Which goods are prices going to increase on and by how much.

        • Andy
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

          The point is we do not know. Because it depends on which sectors and businesses are unable to adjust to your pointless bureaucracy – imposed with 4 days notice over Christmas.

          If you are lucky the shortages come in non crucial areas like toasters or coffee grinders.

          If you are less lucky they comes in things like tyres or shampoo.

          And if we are unlucky they come in food and medicines. Perhaps even the medicines you need.

          It’s like a lottery where all the prizes are bad and you don’t know what you will win.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

            Wait and see young Andy.
            Every shortage of any product or any price rise at any time in the future will be seized upon by you remain extremists as proof.
            It is your obsession.

          • a-tracy
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

            But you said confidently that there’s will be select shortages of some goods. Thanks for the list of your predictions.

            Toasters
            Coffee Grinders
            Tyres
            Shampoo
            Medicines

            I’m surprised at shampoo I thought we still had a health manufacturing base in soap type products.

            We should never have given away our essential medicine production facilities, we need them back here.

          • Original Richard
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

            Andy,

            The extra bureaucracy of which you speak already exists for those companies that export and import from non-EU countries and hence is well known and understood by many.

            I don’t recall EU supporters worried by the price increases which accompanied the birth of the Euro as they thought that this was a small price to pay for its introduction.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

        There have been select shortages of certain goods whilst we were in the EU.
        And prices rose whilst we were in the EU.

        • Andy
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

          There is inflation which happens because it does. This is why prices are higher now than in 1980. And why they will be higher again in 2040.

          And there are pointless price rises because you have imposed a mass of pointless extra bureaucracy which serves no purpose but adds costs to trade.

          Your Brexit is the latter.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

            Hilarious ranting.

          • NickC
            Posted January 4, 2021 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

            No extra bureaucracy, Andy, we already had to conform to all the EU rules when we were in the EU.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

        I must admit Andy I didn’t check the tampon shelf

      • Mike Durrans
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

        Andy, considering I have boycotted eu goods and farm produce For over four years now, I do not believe there will be shortages of anything vital for our daily lives- maybe strawberries from europe but my life will continue without them

      • matthu
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

        Would one shortage be the COVID vaccine?

  35. Simeon
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    Keeping the flame alive of a WTO exit even now. That’s very sweet.

    I wouldn’t worry about reaching US standards. They will be falling soon enough, and they have further to fall. As a more massive object they may even attain terminal velocity quicker and beat us to to the bottom, where, I’m sure, the EU will join us, if they don’t get there first. Still, stand the world on its head and Blowers will still somehow claim we are world-beating. Happy new year!

  36. Christine
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    I expect it’s because the treaty is currently provisional, as the EU parliament doesn’t vote on it until after 28th February 2021. They wanted to give MEPs sufficient time to scrutinise it, although they can’t make any amendments so what’s the point?

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

      Well they can turn it down, and now Boris is on orders that they may turn it down so get on with protecting the UK in that eventuality no more excuses.

      • Christine
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

        They can but I doubt they will. We can live in hope.

  37. Lynn
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    The EU is wise not to depend on ‘selling us so much’. They have lost the power of compulsion. So we will drink our own milk rather than pour it down the drain and buy theirs. In addition many British individuals see clearly what the EU is even if their Government is blinded by ‘friendship and partnering’. We will be buying no EU produced goods, no Chinese produced goods.
    If that means I have a ‘no spend’ year, so much the better. I will have more to spend in British shops on British goods if ever the doors are allowed to be ajar.

    • None of the Above
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

      +1

    • Nig l
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

      Talking for the many again, I suspect with zero evidence. What a miserable narrow minded Little Englander, big chip on shoulder point of view.

      I am pleased to say in my network people have other things to think about and reach out, makes them have a lot happier outlook as indeed mine is.

      • Hope
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

        Quite horrible remark Nigel.

      • dixie
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

        You are being quite unbalanced – I don’t recall you complaining of the miserable, narrow minded Little Frenchman Macron when he blockaded the channel crossing.

        As for your happy posturing, brexiteers have had to put up with a lot of lies, threats, abuse, interference and betrayal from eurotrash over the years, time for some richly deserved payback.

        If you are lucky it won’t last more than a few years, but don’t bank on it.

      • Lynn
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

        😂😂 you boast of being an unthinking little-Farager. You shouted at anyone who wanted to read or hear the lawyers view of this deal, you were positive that it was a triumph ‘because those your trusted’ (who had read only Boris’ summary) said so.
        The EU itself predicts a drop in exports to the U.K. did that fact not penetrate your ‘happier outlook’?
        Don’t bother me again. I have no interest in your opinion.

    • Hope
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

      +1. Think British and buy British.

      I was disappointed M&S only has Spanish lettuce for sale the other day. Therefore I did not buy any. Before Christmas there was always a British choice from Kent. Think with your feet.

      JR, worry about your Govt and its self-destructing UK policies. We note Johnson agreed, yes agreed, EU (AKA Spain) inspectors checking borders in Gibraltar! Where does this square with taking back control or sovereignty blcks? Surrender agreement unraveling by the day. Discrediting lying Johnson by the hour.

      • PeteS
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

        The constant traffic is 15k Spanish in one direction, and negligible in the other. Spain is bearing the cost of border control, shrewd move by Boris.

      • Iago
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

        Completely agree. I also go through the same procedure in Marks and won’t buy the Chinese frying pans, shiny though they are.
        These Partnership Councils, with our dear friends and partners in the EU, reek of betrayal.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

        Exactly, “build back better” Boris will be showing his true colours. They are not blue…..

        zorro

      • Lynn
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:18 pm | Permalink

        I’m doing same Hope. Flexible buying and looking at ‘origin’. Let’s keep our money in our country.

        • None of the Above
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

          +1

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

      The negotiators have done so much unnecessary damage this past year. I’ve always been quite happy to buy Italian pasta and shoes, German cars and white goods, French vans and cheese, Dutch flowers and bacon although to be honest now I’ve been buying local farm bacon it tastes much better and I’ll probably not be changing that back.

      When they start telling us we won’t be able to get parts quickly and everything will get delayed by the French then you start to think best hold on and see what happens, if there is trouble we may need new suppliers.

      When all you read is the Spanish don’t want you there, all the posters telling Brits to stay away and this was before covid then you start thinking of alternatives why go where you are not wanted, Brits save up all year for their one week or fortnights holiday.

      This is why I would really like UK bashing to stop and concentrate on good work that we can do and should be doing. We should be celebrating the Oxford Vaccine, yesterday I was told it would now be delayed because it is made in Holland, why? Why can’t Britain make a vaccine we developed? People just might start training in STEM if there are decent jobs at the end of it in the UK.

      I’m sick of margaret H, Martin, Andy telling us how rubbish we are at everything, never celebrating the amazing good we do in the World and the very generous nature of our contributions and voluntary contributions from outstanding British charities. We are not crap and I’m sick of people running us down.

      • None of the Above
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

        Well Said!

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 12:10 am | Permalink

        I totally agree with you. I haven’t read one good comment about the UK from these three since starting to read these diaries . Why they are not living in the EU is beyond me. After all, they think it’s so much better there. They had plenty of time to clear off before Brexit.

        • Original Richard
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

          “Why they are not living in the EU is beyond me.”

          We don’t know where they live or their nationality.

          Only that they support the EU and not the UK.

          • Fred H
            Posted January 4, 2021 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

            China, N.Korea, NZ and Senegal refused their applications.

      • dixie
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:44 am | Permalink

        All through my career in computing and telecoms the media, politicians and so-called consultants were claiming we were rubbish. This poisonous attitude is still prevalent with commentators even on this blog and it isn’t just the usual clowns.

    • dixie
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

      Quite right. We have been discriminating against EU goods and services for some time and will continue to do so. A certain supermarket which begins and ends with “A” would be well advised to stop stocking Irish beef and EU pork, British, South American and South African meats would be a much better choice

      After all if the EU really wanted to trade they wouldn’t have blockaded the channel crossing.

      • steve
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:53 am | Permalink

        Dixie

        A certain supermarket around here xxxxx cannot shift french cheese & Irish sausages. People just aint buying it.

        This is where the real power is – consumer choice. Just don’t buy EU stuff. Demand home produce.

        Plenty of us now only buy English produce, and have gone back to seasonal diet.

        I have two tips for anyone contemplating such –

        1) Buy, and make use of a slow cooker.
        2) Search the smaller local retailers for English produce, you’d be surprised there are many English brands that you don’t see in supermarkets, and the quality is often far superior.

      • Original Richard
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

        I have not bought any French agricultural products since 1990 when French farmers set fire to one truckload of live British sheep, killing 219 of them as well as poisoning, slitting throats and dousing others with insecticide.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 4, 2021 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

          such lovely civilised and cultural people.

  38. glen cullen
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    Why isn’t the covid testing between France and the UK bilateral?

    Only one-way testing by the UK

    Why isn’t the document check between the EU and the UK bilateral ?

    We’ve give the EU a 6 month grace period

    Looks like the UK are doing all the adjusting

    • Andy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

      You left. Stop moaning.

      Plus France is right to want to keep out those infected on Plague Island.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

        France cases 2.64 million
        UK cases 2.54 million

        • hefner
          Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

          02/01/2021 worldometers.info
          ……………………. France…………….. UK
          Cases +growth 2,643k. +3,5k…….. 2.600k. +57,7k
          Deaths +growth 64,9k. +156 ………..74.5k + 445

          And only boneheads would be enjoying to play the game of which country is killing more of its people. But obviously Edward2 …

          • Edward2
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:54 am | Permalink

            So you come back with recent growth figures.
            And your usual dollop of abuse.

            I had showed that the UK and France had similar levels of infection.

            After young Andy called the UK “plague island” in comparison to France.

            If I were you hef would just shut up and stop trolling.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

        and we should insist on proof of negative test within 24 hours of boarding to come to UK.

      • Zorro
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

        You are a piece of work, and hopefully karma will do its work…..

        zorro

      • Fred H
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:27 pm | Permalink

        France isn’t an island – did you skip geography?

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

      Well exactly glen and France’s infection rate per test is 17% higher. None of the foreign drivers are being tested to come here and then drive freely all over the UK, and our NHS is being overwhelmed because we can’t identify where new strains are coming in, well duh insist on the same tests that others expect of us.

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

        a -tracy

        First cases in UK found in Kent, it may just be a clue !

        Co-incidence ?

  39. a-tracy
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    Sir John, please let the EU worry about themselves their markets will build and grow especially Germany. It’s time we focused just on our many problems and things we can affect.

    Think like an entrepreneur, this is what the cabinet need to focus on, what we can do. I’ve a suggestion.

    1. Can we encourage private medical hospital investors near the A&E hospitals that have to cope with lots of treatments for people that aren’t from the UK or contributing to the National Health Insurance system. Maybe use these big empty shops/shop land that will need repurposing. Treat the people where charges can be raised and invoices recharged to either their private travel insurance (for those that want private rooms and more private nursing) and ward nurse care for emergencies billed back to respective countries health regimes (Global Medical Card we’ve been hearing about as a replacement for the EHIC) as we are charged for all UK foreigners in Spain, France etc. Just stop treating people for free in our NHS hospitals and release all of these saved funds to spend on social care, NHS hospitals, NHS training and super charge medical training in the UK to fill medical vacancies we’re told we have shortages in with home trained talent – after all we are training thousands on courses with no jobs at the end of it.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

      Well just encourage people to go privately to take pressure of the NHS. Income tax relief for private medical cover but if you use the NHS the insurance pays the NHS too. Abolish medical insurance IPT tax. If people need a hip op or something then get the NHS to offer them perhaps 50% of the cost and ask them to go privately where they can afford to top up. Thus shortening the queue for others, saving the NHS 50% and getting more money into UK medical care overall. Simple but alas we have still have socialist in charge.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

        Encourage company medical insurance schemes too.

      • a-tracy
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

        Lifelogic, the vast majority of people in the UK support a national health service free at the point of use from taxation, they just don’t want to all pay for it equally, PAYE workers pay far more with their combined 25.8% NI payment over the lel £9500.

        Private medical has been a shambles in 2020, they have taken thousands of us in premiums and tax last year and cancelled one of our members treatment, if they continue we will cut the scheme, we are not paying for something we aren’t receiving.

        We need to emulate the other Countries when treating foreigners in their Country and level this playing field up immediately, our NHS hospitals can’t or won’t do it, they don’t take credit card payments, have a pricing scheme for doctors appointments for people without NI numbers, they do all sorts of treatments from full maternity care to ante natal care with no recourse charging putting a loss of stress and strain on some NHS hospitals, we need a redirection of people that we can privately charge for all treatments, unsubsidised medicines and medical equipment provided so that the NHS can recover and more money can be spent on the true members that are paying in.

  40. Iain Gill
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    I am not so worried about the EU, I a more worried about the UK, its ridiculous open doors immigration which has got worse under the cover of Brexit, IR35 nonsense, massive gaps in support for many groups under lockdown, NHS being allowed to spend more than a British man on the moon would cost for sub third world service levels, and the dire quality at the top of public life that is being allowed to get away with all this.

    Please just tell the government and public sector to get out of the way, stop trying to manipulate markets, and get on with protecting the borders and our streets.

  41. PeteS
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

    I watched the Lords discuss the final bill. Full of hard on remainers. They nearly all moaned about the loss of Erasmus. What NONE of them said was the HUGE cost of Erasmus. The numbers shoe that for every £6 we put in, we get £1 back.

    Typical Lords, all high and mighty, but cannot confront the truth.

    • Zorro
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

      Exactly, 90% of travel from EU to UK. We need a scheme to benefit our students.

      zorro

    • Original Richard
      Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

      The Erasmus scheme was a huge loss to the UK taxpayer but an enormous earner for the UK’s educational establishment who have been able to pay themselves very large salaries based on the large number of EU students coming to the UK.

      Hence the educational establishment’s and hence the Lords’ desire to remain in the EU.

  42. Iago
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    I do not call this being out of the EU or leaving.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      Come on, paint us a clear picture of what that would be.

  43. Will in Hampshire
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    Presumably the agreement will be added to the Trade Agreements page when it has been ratified by the European Parliament. At the moment it is provisionally applied by the Council pending ratification. I think our host may be reading a bit too much into its absence today.

    • rose
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

      Sir John is right to say that if this is the case, then the EU should say so, and give details and instructions, or put up details of WTO while waiting. No details at all.

      That is besides our all having to say out loud that theirs is a sham parliament.

      • Will in Hampshire
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

        Maybe you should write to Ms VdL expressing your views, I’m sure she’d be very interested. It’s not clear to me that the website run by the MP for Wokingham is the most effective place to raise a concern like that.

        • dixie
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:05 am | Permalink

          If the “partnership board(S)” are not set up yet isn’t your MP the only logical route to raise concerns at this point. Besides, Rose was commenting on Sir John’s blog.

  44. Ed M
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Dear Sir John,

    Critical now is whether second jab of Pfizer vaccine should be given within days or months. The right or wrong decision could impact our economy in a big way. Thank you.

    • Zorro
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

      Pretty clear that something not right…. Is it deliberate sabotage?

      zorro

      • Fred H
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:58 am | Permalink

        £15 versus £2?

        • Ed M
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

          Money doesn’t matter.

          The cost to the economy is far, far greater than whether we pay 15 or 2 pounds for the vaccine.

          Just need to roll it out as quick as possible.

          • Fred H
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

            £15 – needs a -70C freezer, smaller order, than £2 – home fridge is fine, massive order, fill & finish in Wrexham.
            Which will win the preference stakes?

  45. Lifelogic
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    Can you please tell Boris and the other alarms dopes in parliament that:-

    Contrary to breathless media reporting, climate-related deaths have dropped 96+% over the past century

    1920s average: 485,000
    1910s average: 18,357
    2020: 8,086

    Less climate alarm, please – from a Bjorn Lomborg tweet.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

      climate alarmist dopes.

    • glen cullen
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

      I bet all those people with electric cars are glad they kept their old diesel as a second car in these icy conditions

      • dixie
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:07 am | Permalink

        why? my ev doesn’t have any starting problems and I am not able to travel very far thanks to lockdown.

        • glen cullen
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:40 am | Permalink

          But if you did use it the range would be decrease by 25% and if you broke down a big diesel low loader lorry would have to come to your rescue, as you can’t be towed

          • dixie
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

            I am always aware of remaining range, easy enough as it’s quite prominent on the display, while the sat-nav and phone identify where the nearest charge is available en-route.

            You get used to being range aware very quickly and that minor aspect is outweighed by cost and convenience benefits.

            Range decrease in winter depends on load and temp. Cold weather adversely effects IC vehicle performance as well by the way, the shorter the journey the worse the effect – which is not the case with EVs.

            If you have broken down I’m not sure that needing a low loader rather than a tow would make much difference, the few recoveries I had in ICs involved a low loader anyway.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

          so you don’t really need it?

          • dixie
            Posted January 3, 2021 at 5:22 pm | Permalink

            Given the circumstances it wouldn’t matter if it were petrol, diesel or EV

          • Fred H
            Posted January 4, 2021 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

            petrol and diesel engined you can jumper cable start in freezing conditions.

    • hefner
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

      Yeah right, BL, but based on what? The 1910s/1920s figures are likely/possibly including one way or another some deaths from the WW1/Spanish flu as I doubt very much that climate-related deaths were much of a concern in the 1910s and 1920s. Then who (in their right mind) would consider figures from a tweet without any reference to a proper study?

      So basically meaningless figures. I would have expected a bit more discernment before quoting such figures. Otherwise who’s looking like a dope?

    • Zorro
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

      I see he is using his globalist “build back better” mantra in his tweets. Code words for you know what….

      zorro

    • jon livesey
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

      Good point. In the Fifties and Sixties, smog-related deaths were an annual tragedy. Today?

      • Original Richard
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

        Shouldn’t “smog-related deaths” be classed as deaths from pollution as opposed to deaths from climate change?

        Pollution and climate change are often erroneously mixed up.

    • Ed M
      Posted January 3, 2021 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

      @Lifelogic,

      Careful as you’re now using ‘facts’ like the anarchist greenies.

      The reality is, no-one really knows for sure – either for or against.

      Lots needs to be spent on figuring out what the problem is and how to meet it without damaging both our economy and environment.

      And it’s complete HERESY to think we can’t have both a strong economy and healthy environment. A case of really plugging into science and working things out and persevering.

      True Capitalism (as opposed to Luddite Capitalism or Luddite Socialism) is based on the transformation of technology and lots of money that can be made in this which will inevitably lead to improvements in the environment.

      So real question is: are you (people in general) Luddite Capitalists or True Capitalists (or Luddite Socialists who want to cripple our economy).

      Say NO to both HERESIES.

  46. Newmania
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

    It is a striking “projection ” (OECD outlook) that GDP per capita in the EU is will continue to be as much higher than the global mean and both India and China as it is today .
    The EU27`s population is 446.8 m.It will peak at 449.3 m in 2026 , then decrease to 441.2 million in 2050 ,ie slightly less than today while the global population will grow about 20%
    Allowing for different rates of population growth the US and Europe have a broadly similar outlook in terms of share, and both will continue to be the richest places in the world , per capita by some margin. Furthermore the rate of growth advantage in India , China and South America will reduce.
    Outside the rich club, the UK is predicted to grow less fast, by every reputable authority for very obvious reasons. Furthermore, while European migration has fallen sharply in 2019, estimated net migration of non-EU citizens was 282,000 it averaged around 175,000 from 2012 to 2019.
    The UK can expect to be significantly poorer and( amusingly ) with a much much higher proportion non English ethnicities by 2050 outside the EU. Most of the elderly demographic duped into voting for this will be turning in their graves by then….

    • Richard1
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

      The most recent forecast by a reputable authority has the UK growing faster than the the EU countries and being 25% bigger than France by 2035.

    • Edward2
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

      It is all just predictions into the future NM

      • hefner
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 10:00 am | Permalink

        Ouch, gee, ‘predictions into the future’. They certainly beat ‘predictions into the past’. Do you happen to re-read what you have written before pushing ‘Post comment’?

        • Edward2
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:00 am | Permalink

          You are in a nasty mood again hef.
          Go and have a lie down.

    • Will in Hampshire
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

      Nearly 300,00 non-EU immigrants per year is far too much. I really wonder what this government is thinking.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

        Their friends in business are congratulating them for sending cheaper workers than those from the more developed countries of the European Union, I suppose.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

          which are the more developed ones? Poland, Hungary, Portugal, Ireland, Latvia, Malta, Rumania, Estonia, Lithuania ….?

        • dixie
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

          So how exactly did that work with the unemployed in Spain and Greece not being invited by Germany who preferred to import cheaper people from elsewhere.

          So much for EU solidarity, though I see hypocrisy is clearly alive and well.

    • None of the Above
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

      I heard that the OECD, OBR and UK Treasury were to have a joint meeting to thrash out a common position but it had to be cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances.

      • dixie
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:09 am | Permalink

        +1 🙂

    • Original Richard
      Posted January 3, 2021 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

      “Outside the rich club, the UK is predicted to grow less fast, by every reputable authority for very obvious reasons.”

      Who are the “reputable authorities” and what are the “very obvious resons please”?
      As a result of a reduced immigration figure?

      “Furthermore, while European migration has fallen sharply in 2019, estimated net migration of non-EU citizens was 282,000 it averaged around 175,000 from 2012 to 2019.”

      What about Mrs. Merkel’s illegal invitation to 1m immigrants to come to the EU?
      What will be the levels of EU immigration as the EU expands further eastwards?
      Who will be deciding the EU’s immigration policy?

      At least voters in the UK will now have a chance to influence immigration policy by retaining the ability to elect and remove those who make these decisions.

  47. Mike Wilson
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    Well, it seems my comment about the obsession with GDP did not make it past moderation.

    Is it not permissible to question why endless increase in GDP is desirable (it isn’t) or why comparisons with other countries are relevant (they aren’t).

  48. edwardm
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    Providing our government makes good decisions we can only but do better than the EU, given the euro scheme and over-regulatory nature of the EU. It’s not difficult to understand, but the EU just doesn’t see it.

  49. rose
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

    Ban Supertrawlers from UK waters after leaving the EUs Common Fisheries Policy

    We can make a start straight away by signing the petition to ban supertrawlers from our waters. Then we can ask the Government to increase the size of our fishing fleet asap, not in 5 years time. Lots of sustainable little boats is the way to go.

  50. ChrisS
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:18 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think they care about being competitive in world trade and won’t mind losing a substantial share of World GDP.

    The current leadership in Brussels is focussed only on completing their take-over of political power in Europe from the member states. They are aided and abetted by a few national politicians like Macron who is arrogant and deluded enough to think he can end up as the defacto leader of Europe.

    By the time voters in any of the member states start to notice that the role of the EU is diminishing in the world, the Brussels elite will have put the EU in an unassailable position in running the Continent and retired. No doubt they will be enjoying the generous pensions anyone with any connection with Brussels can claim and will be entirely cushioned from the economic effects of their inaction.

    Just maybe, one or two other enlightened countries will decide to leave the EU before that happens. Whether any of the members of the Euro can escape has to be in doubtful.

  51. hefner
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

    As an addendum, LL should give his reference to allow other people on this blog to make up their own opinion. I would guess that LL’s figures come from reading either ‘False Alarm: How climate change panic costs us trillions, hurts the poor, and fails to fix the planet’, Basic Books (ed.), 2020., or possibly to its review in his favorite Telegraph or Spectator.

    BTW, a good deal of the argument in this book turns around calculations by Nobel Prize William Nordhaus, which are taken as the Good Book by BJ, even though one central assumption of those is the so-called ‘social discount rate’, a parameter thought to be set up to greatly underestimate the cost of climate change. QED. But if you do not care about these things, enjoy Lomborg’s opus and LL’s rantings.

    • Edward2
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

      LL has not quoted any you reference.
      You have presented the classic definition of the red herring.

      • hefner
        Posted January 3, 2021 at 9:58 am | Permalink

        LL had not quoted any reference, indeed, so why should I think that what he has written has any relevance?

        Red herring, maybe, maybe not? or possibly putting the figures back to their real author, Bjorn Lomborg, in his latest book. How is such a little investigative work so condemnable in your eyes? Do you like to be fed information not knowing where it might come from?

        • Edward2
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:03 am | Permalink

          Ll had quoted a reference so I knew where the quote came from.
          Easily found thanks.

          Just so funny that you get all worked up because you disagree with it.

  52. Multi-ID
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

    The EU website has not been up dated so what is the big deal? They are on christmas holidays- am sure they will update when they get back. Also not to be concerned the EU are well able to hold their own and citing that EU world GDP ranking at 9 per cent in 2050 is a nonsense– nobody knows how the world will look in 2050 not even the Pope– only our dear demented host here JR. He knows everything according to himself

    Reply Do not lie. I have not made an economic forecast for 2050. I am citing what I read on the EU website, so you are saying they are wrong.

    • Multi-ID
      Posted January 3, 2021 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

      Ah yes! But what is the point in highlighting some obscure statistic for 2050 unless you have some superior knowledge which in this case I doubt. The world is awash with fake news, spin and downright lies as we can see from the other side of the Atlantic without our own politicans adding to it. Nobody knows, not the Pope, not the EU, about how the world will look in thirty years time so what is the point- doesn’t make sense in repeating trivia from the EU as if it was some important fact

  53. steve
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

    Predictably there are now reports that france and Germany are already bullying smaller states. Allegedly forcing them into a trade deal with China without due process of scrutiny.

    If that’s how they behave less than 48 hours after we left, it’s a safe bet that despots run the EU and it’s demise is sealed.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:16 pm | Permalink

      Twitch, twitch, twitch, go those curtains, eh?

      • Edward2
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

        Like with China you allow no disention from your true path.
        No criticism of your beloved EU may be allowed.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 3, 2021 at 8:57 am | Permalink

          any dissention in China and you are never heard from again.

      • Newmania
        Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

        Nice work Martin,

    • Will in Hampshire
      Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

      Question for you steve: now that we’re out, why do you care?

      • NickC
        Posted January 4, 2021 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

        Question for you Will: now that we’re out, why shouldn’t we take an interest in our nearest neighbours and significant trading partners? And why do you care if we do? Not trying to control what we think, are you?

  54. Mike Wilson
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

    A question, Mr. Redwood, if I may. I appreciate you may not agree with your government but I would be grateful if you could explain; ‘Why does your government allow such high levels of immigration?’

    The government, collectively, seems to manage to dodge this question all the time. But, about 300,000 a year net immigration is an absurdly high number – and, from something I read today, this increase is responsible for 80% of the demand for the huge number of houses you want built each year.

    Why? Why? Why is this allowed by the government? What is the reason?

    Just to get GDP up?

    An honest response would be much appreciated by everyone I think.

    Reply I do not agree with them and have never been given a reason for the policy when I have raised it.I am expecting more action from them soon to stop illegals.

  55. glen cullen
    Posted January 2, 2021 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    The EU and China are about to sign an Investment (trade) Agreement deal, however unlike our deal China does not have to be a signatory of the European Commission on Human Rights ECHR nor the Paris agreement on Climate Change ? Is it because our government is weak ?

  56. Little Englander
    Posted January 3, 2021 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    What the EU does is no longer our business nor our concern and we HAVE TO draw back from concentrating on THEM in the way that we are still doing unfortunately. Lets do what we have to do for our Country in shoring up our business with the rest of the World. The EU no longer plays a part in our Country and if there are /is things in the present agreement with us that we cannot accept or negotiate – we don’t need to spoil for a fight with them – just use the one month ‘get out clause’ and move on without rancour. Too much energy is being used up on nonsense stuff – change this into positivity and lets get going!
    Best
    Little Englander

  57. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted January 4, 2021 at 1:17 am | Permalink

    The EU now has an opportunity to decide what it wants to be. In theory, it wants to become a Federal European superpower of 27 nations. I don’t believe it, for many reasons:

    (1) The drive for Federation is limited to Western Europe, say the original Six plus some of the Irish Republic, Austria, Spain and Portugal.
    (2) Eastern European Member States don’t want to Federate. To take one example, there is no meeting of minds on Islamic immigration. Germany admitted 1.1 million in a single year, whereas Hungary and the other Visigrad countries don’t want to admit any.
    (3) Many of the Member States don’t want the EU to militarise, whereas France and Germany currently do.
    (4) Some Member States either do not want join the EuroZone or are unwilling to implement sufficient central control to make it work.

    Macron is a Federal enthusiast but he is challenged by Madame le Pen who is not. Germany may be losing enthusiasm because it does well out of the current arrangements and “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it”.

  58. Diane
    Posted January 4, 2021 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    Mike W – Immigration: There is an interesting article on the Migration Watch website, dated 10/12/20 which you may have seen already. It refers to the Independent Borders Watchdog report which produced some damning findings on our broken system with many seemingly unacceptable failures ( Also a link to the full report on there )

  59. Nicky Roberts
    Posted January 6, 2021 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

    Sir John, there is an article today in the Express, perhaps you have read it, concerning the fisherman who are awaiting a deal with Norway so that they can continue fishing. I was unaware of this, but they have received funding from foreign investors but fishing now is at a standstill and these trawlermen are in danger of losing their jobs. Can I ask you to ask the government what they are doing about this? Many thanks.

  • 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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