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Archive for the ‘europe’


The letter 278

Posted on September 10, 2019 by

We saw this earlier, and thought “Oh God, what now?”

So we had a look.

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The British sense of fair play 159

Posted on September 07, 2019 by

We’ve talked about this subject before, but a couple of findings in a new poll today by Survation really caught our eye.

And that tells us something quite profound about the UK’s voters.

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Hopeless times 416

Posted on September 06, 2019 by

Sitrep: we’ve given up any hope of turning on the television and seeing a politician – any politician – telling the truth.

Boris Johnson is lying about negotiating a new deal with the EU. Jeremy Corbyn is lying about pretty much everything (in so far as he even knows what he wants the truth to be, let alone what it actually is). Jo Swinson is lying about wanting to meaningfully work with other parties to stop Brexit. Nicola Sturgeon is lying about wanting to stop a no-deal Brexit – she just wants to stop Brexit full stop.

(Unfortunately, this also means she’s lying about having any real intention of holding a second independence referendum before 2021. If she did, she wouldn’t have all her MPs and MSPs frantically running around parliaments and courtrooms trying to destroy her own democratic mandate for it, which would leave her needing to secure a fresh one 20 months from now. And assuming she’d have any more idea how to put it into practice than she has with the ones she’s already got.)

The government is lying about the fact that it doesn’t have confidence in itself, and the opposition is lying about the fact that it does. Everyone now says they want an election, but somehow it isn’t happening because nobody wants it yet, and nobody can agree when they DO want it, and they’re all lying about why.

And absolutely everyone is lying about the fact that whatever they’re trying to do right now has any chance of solving the present shambles. Johnson is just stalling to run the clock down until no-deal, although he swears blind that he isn’t, and the opposition just wants to drag the whole agony out for several more months with not the slightest clue what they’d actually do then.

Grimly, the closest thing that British voters currently have to an honest man is Nigel Farage, who is at least clear about what he wants and what he’s prepared to do to get it. Which is ironic, as he’s only anywhere near getting it because he’s spent his entire political career lying through his teeth about it.

We don’t mind telling you, folks, it’s been pretty hard to get up in the mornings.

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Chaos and conspicuous lounging 441

Posted on September 04, 2019 by

So, British politics, eh? We’re basically on strike until things make at least an iota of sense, because there’s no point in attempting political analysis right now when events can overtake you before you’ve finished typing a sentence.

But let’s just have a quick recap on what we know.

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Coup versus coup 658

Posted on August 28, 2019 by

Today, a collection of UK politicians who were to all intents and purposes attempting to arrange a coup have been complaining that the government has beaten them to it by organising a coup against their coup. The fox has ambushed the chickens.

Boris Johnson’s move to prorogue Parliament for most of September and a chunk of October actually only represents a couple of weeks of extra holiday time for MPs – Westminster would be shut for most of the time in question anyway for party conference season.

The Commons would open for business again on 14 October, in time to debate the outcome of a crucial European Council summit on 17-18 October. If that meeting doesn’t provide any new deal – and it’s vanishingly unlikely that it will – then there’ll be no time for anything other than a no-deal Brexit.

But there wasn’t anyway.

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Grasping the thistle 547

Posted on July 16, 2019 by

Last night, grudgingly, we watched the whole of the final Tory leadership debate, for a contest in which pretty much everyone believes Boris Johnson has already gathered enough votes to comfortably win even though there are several days of voting to go.

The headline outcome the media appears to be focusing on is that both candidates proclaimed the Irish backstop “dead”, to which the EU’s response will without a doubt be “Is it, aye?”

So where does that leave us? Let’s have an update.

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Political Jargon For Dummies 90

Posted on July 01, 2019 by

Prospective new Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson was interviewed on Sky News this morning, where she made the usual honking mess of the admittedly-impossible task that is trying to justify her party’s naked hypocrisy over second referendums.

Swinson indignantly insisted that “the SNP do not have a mandate for [a second indyref]”, a statement which we of course already know is unambiguously false.

The SNP campaigned in 2016 on an explicit pledge to have a new vote if Scotland was dragged out of the EU despite voting to Remain, and they won the election and formed the government, having secured more MSPs than Labour, the Tories and the Lib Dems put together (63-60).

They then put their manifesto pledge to the Parliament, which voted for it by a clear majority of 54% to 46% (almost exactly the reverse of the 2014 referendum, routinely described by Unionists as an “overwhelming” majority).

Finally they campaigned on the same pledge in the 2017 UK general election, where they again won more seats than the three Unionist parties combined (35-24).

So that’s a pretty clear triple democratic and political mandate in any parliamentary democracy: a majority of MSPs, a majority of Scottish MPs and a majority of the Scottish Parliament. But since Jo Swinson doesn’t seem to recognise it, we wondered if she maybe just didn’t know what the word meant.

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The snivelling beggar 252

Posted on June 19, 2019 by

A crude clip of this segment from Shelagh Fogarty’s LBC show yesterday is doing the rounds on Twitter at the moment, and it deserves both better audiovisual quality and a wider audience. If features Regan Morann, a rather confused Tory from Scotland who has quite an opinion of himself.

But for some reason, that swaggering self-confidence deserted him when confronted with the reality that Tories in the rest of the UK would throw Scotland (and Northern Ireland) under the bus in the blink of an eye if doing so was the price of Brexit.

An incredulous Fogarty, speaking for just about everyone listening to the show, asks “Where’s your self-respect?” as Morann burbles about debasing himself desperately in front of his English colleagues who don’t want him or care about him, and his eventual answer was enlightening, in a tragic kind of way.

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Watching the world catch up 258

Posted on June 18, 2019 by

The UK’s political commentariat is afire with shock today over a new poll.

The poll showed that Tory members would by margins of around 2:1 willingly sacrifice Scotland and Northern Ireland – along with the UK economy and their own party – to make sure Brexit happened. Which is all very interesting, unless you read Wings in which case you knew it a year ago.

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Tory leadership update 505

Posted on June 03, 2019 by

We suspect we might be running quite a few of these.

So there’s last August.

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The wrecking ball 288

Posted on June 01, 2019 by

Message received, not understood 103

Posted on May 28, 2019 by

While we’re on the subject of Unionists not listening:

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