‘Ze clock eet ees ticking …”
This morning we’re looking at two ‘news’ items: one is the EU, the other is the covid vaccination. Regarding those EU/Brussels news: there have been ‘developments’ which are not just suspicious but also highly delicious. I’ll look at them below. First though, let’s look at the ‘vaccine’ news.
According to the Health Czar and his willing helpers in the covid MSM, today is the day when “we” are finally set free. Oh sorry: no, that’s not at all what’s going to happen! It’s the first day of the largest field trial of a new vaccine undertaken in pharmaceutical history – and “we” must be so happy about the photos of golden oldies queuing up to do their bit to ‘Protect Our Sacred Cow’ by getting the jab.
Being a cynical old so-and-so, I can’t help but think that the latest covid scare news are meant to remind us of who has the power to trample all over our lives, that they are meant to herd – sorry: nudge us into rushing to get the jab. From London which faces being placed into Tier 3 to Wales where the ‘firebreak’ has led to more ‘cases’ to international news about countries succumbing to that 2nd wave we’re again told to be very afraid.
However, it’s very strange that none of the covid MSM dare rise their heads above the parapet and ask why that particular Emperor is nekkid. Haven’t the lockdown variants worked? Why? Why is it that they all denounce us irresponsible people for spreading the virus rather than ask if their ongoing T & T ‘strategy’ might have something to do with it?
The odd thing is that only in China everything is fine – we do believe the news coming from China, do we not! – and that China’s economy is the only one which has recovered, that their export has grown by 21% as the Financial times reports (paywalled link).
There’s one vaccine report which hasn’t got the attention it deserves. We read in The Times that the vaccine ‘authorities’ are planning small trials early next year, when the Oxford vaccine has hopefully received their approval:
“The head of the Vaccine Task Force said yesterday that if, as expected, the Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccine were approved soon for use, small studies would be conducted in the new year to see if the two could be used together. Instead of a first shot of the Pfizer vaccine followed by a booster three weeks later, the trials will look at using Pfizer for the first shot then Oxford for the second . . . or vice versa.” (link, paywalled)
You guessed it: words fail me yet again! Not because this mightn’t be an interesting scientific experiment, but because this experiment will be done while the rest of the population is either covid-infested or vaccinated and cannot possibly be regarded as ‘control’, something which is indispensable in a proper scientific experiment.
If you think that this is only about giving us the best possible protection, here’s the cat jumping out of the bag: “Clive Dix, deputy chairman of the task force, said that […] having a combination of vaccines might make logistics easier.” (link, paywalled). Crikey! But rest assured – the guinea pigs in this experiment will be ‘observed’ for a whole month afterwards. What could possibly go wrong after three or six months or a year …!
And so to these Brussels ‘talks’. The confusion amongst the various political and Brussels correspondents must have been astounding yesterday afternoon – or rather, their fabulous ‘sources’ must have been in total disarray, not knowing what was going to happen, what went on. Yesterday afternoon we heard that BJ would speak to Ms vdLeyen that same evening. Yesterday evening we read that he was flying to Brussels that night. Now we hear that he’ll go to Brussels fersure, perhaps on Wednesday.
Do note though the choice expression in this report in the DT, insinuating again that we are the supplicants, that BJ needs to ‘rescue’ this deal, not the EU, while surreptitiously slagging off Lord Frost in the process:
“Boris Johnson will head to Brussels for last-ditch talks to try personally to salvage a Brexit deal after negotiators failed to make any “tangible progress” on Monday. […] Mr Johnson could travel to Brussels as early as Wednesday, ahead of a summit of EU leaders on Thursday. It would leave open the possibility that he could stay on in Belgium to arrange meetings with key players including Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron in order to appeal to them directly.” (paywalled link)
Next we’re given another sly piece of speculation by EU ‘sources’. It’s rather intriguing – did they perchance read the analysis by our friends at facts4eu which we reported yesterday? See for yourselves:
“EU sources speculated that while Mr Johnson’s trip could end in a deal, it might also be intended purely to show that he tried everything he could to get a deal even if he expects to come home empty-handed.” (paywalled link)
The significance of another piece of news seems to have somehow gone over the heads of all those EU ‘diplomats’ who lustfully speculate what might or might not happen, dripping their gossip into the willing ears of ‘our’ correspondents:
“Mrs von der Leyen, Angela Merkel, Emmanuel Macron and Charles Michel, the European Council president held a videoconference to prepare for Thursday’s EU summit in the afternoon, before the call with the Prime Minister.” (paywalled link)
In other words, Ms vdLeyen had been given her marching orders before she spoke to BJ. Thus the outcome of that phone call – no EU concessions – cannot have been in doubt. Next, RemainCentral’s ‘sources’ say that no date for the BJ trip has been set, that it won’t be today but might take place before or after that EU Summit on Thursday, leading some EU politicians to speculate that the Barnier & Frost show might go on after that summit. Now see this though:
“Lord Frost, Britain’s chief negotiator, and his European counterpart, Michel Barnier, are expected to draw up a paper outlining all the “remaining differences” between the two sides. Downing Street hopes this will concentrate the minds of EU leaders on where further movement might be possible.” (paywalled link)
Since all those sources are clear that the positions haven’t shifted, that the EU demands remain the same as on Friday, from fisheries to ‘level playing fields’, this might be filed under ‘Agreement to Disagree’. Therefore all the flowery talks coming from Brussels should be filed under ‘hogwash’. While our negotiators maintain that nothing has changed since Friday, this ‘source’ is clearly trying to spin the outcome:
“A European source said that the personal meeting would take place in a positive atmosphere. “The feeling is that we are ready to deal. And more importantly, Boris Johnson is feeling ready to deal,” (paywalled link)
I wonder whatever gave him that idea … perhaps some gossip en coulisse from our Remain ‘sources’? I’m sure BJ knows full well that any ‘deal’ he comes up with which smells even remotely like a sell-out will be his death knell, that not even the most capable of his spin masters would be able to convince us that this prospective ‘EU Deal’ will be better than ‘No Deal’.
And finally, RemainCentral’s Brussels correspondent has been busy, using his time productively and his sources to good effect. Their ‘Analysis’ article gives the background to that extraordinary last-minute EU demand, from the 10-year fish robbery to the ‘level playing fields.
It was an ambush, we’re told, a case of ‘cherchez la femme’. Barnier, you recall, had to self-isolate because one of his aides tested covid-positive, thus being forced to lead the talks ‘virtually’. This is what happened next:
“[…] the Frenchman, 69, struggled with computer and IT problems. “You wouldn’t believe the problems we had trying to get him to switch his computer on right or get his camera working for a video conference,” one EU official said.” (link, paywalled)
Allow me to indulge in a brief ‘tee-hee-hee’ here before coming to what happened:
During the time he was isolated, Ursula von der Leyen, his boss […], tightened her grip on the negotiations with Stéphanie Riso, her deputy chief of staff, taking the lead in contacts with the British. In this period, Ms Riso, 44, a gifted French official who had worked with Mr Barnier on the withdrawal treaty, began to make real progress — so much so that alarm bells rang in Paris and some other capitals.” (link, paywalled)
Ah! And so, cher Michel, allegedly being ‘unhappy’ about this turn of events, went to work, clearly not on his PC but probably using the good old telephone. This is how he outplayed those two ladies:
“On the Friday, before talks were to begin again in London, he briefed EU ambassadors and, one diplomatic source said, “guided member states” to areas where he thought too many concessions had been made. “He raised flags. It was masterful and subtle but everyone was aware that Barnier himself was not happy with the Von der Leyen and Riso approach of getting a deal ‘whatever’ it takes,” the source said. This set the scene for a dramatic behind the scenes confrontation between France and Germany over how much to concede to get a deal over the line or whether to stand firm and effectively issue an ultimatum to Mr Johnson to make good his pledge to walk away.” (link, paywalled)
Now we finally know that Barnier, steadfast to the last, has purposefully been wasting time since February when the talks started: his goal was a ‘No Deal’ all along because that is the best outcome for France. He is of course a ‘gifted diplomat’ himself. His other aim, to paint us, i.e. Frosty and BJ, as intransigent fools, was another ‘diplomatic’ necessity.
That’s why we are where we are. I am now certain that Macron, despite all overt claims of wanting a deal because nobody is prepared for a No Deal are and were just piffle. I bet that France is exceedingly well prepared for a No Deal, unlike all those other EU nations, Germany first and foremost.
Is the wannabe Napoleon going to achieve the dream of his predecessor, of uniting ‘Europe’ under the banner of France? We’ll know in a few days.
Until then, I leave you with the immortal Barnier saying: “tick-tock, tick-tock”.