It’s April’s Fool Day and one has to be wary not to fall for joke stories in our beloved MSM. I thought at first that the story of Tony Blair – remember him? – declaring that BoJo would beat Corbyn in an election was one such fool story, but no: it’s in all the papers …
Perhaps the story about a new ‘grouplet’ forming in the Tory Party is a fool story? Amber Rudd and colleagues want to stop Michael Gove from succeeding Ms May because he would ‘drag the Party to the right’ (paywalled, here) …really? That has to be a joke, right?
To round up reports on ‘candidates’, there’s one (paywalled, here) on Dominic Raab ‘hitting back’ at those who claim he’s a bully, and there are articles by Michael Fabricant (DT, paywalled) and of course BoJo himself (paywalled, DT) who gets beaten up in the comments for his turncoatery.
Perhaps all of these are April Fool stories? Personally, I’m more minded of ‘fiddling while Rome burns’ …
But enough of Tories coming out of the woodworks, telling us about Customs Union and all that jazz. Here are two things you need to know:
Firstly, “That Vote” on whatever amendments Oliver Letwin is presenting the HoC with will take place around 8pm tonight.
Secondly, the question of the EU. It’s odd but unsurprising that our Remain MSM so diligently overlook what that entity has planned for all member states which we would be obliged to implement without having a say. Why the Remainers never speak about that remains their nasty secret.
In the DT (paywalled) Roger Bootle lays it out:
“To resolve the contradiction at the heart of it [the eurozone], the European elites have believed that something would turn up – or down. Now it is decision time. Its members must now press on to full fiscal and political union or the union must break up. The euro is one recession away from an existential crisis.”
Why does that little fact play no role in the Remainers’ arguments? No answer … Moving on:
“If we were somehow allowed to remain outside the euro, we would find ourselves in a weak position, forced by the powerful euro bloc to toe the line on everything without having much of a say on anything. If we stay in the EU and the euro splits, there would be severe financial dislocation, with heavy bills to be paid by all EU members, including us.” (paywalled link)
Mightn’t that be the secret reason for Labour’s attempts to keep us in? There’s more:
“I have repeatedly stated that the EU is a zone of comparatively low growth and argued that this is related to the EU’s misguided policy obsessions, deriving from its essential nature. But still the Europhile establishment from Tony Blair downwards seems to presume that the EU is a stonking economic success. Perhaps arid economic statistics don’t cut any ice with them (they never did with Tony Blair).” (paywalled link)
Indeed – and that’s astonishing because the Remainers in Parliament and elsewhere keep telling us harrowing stories of our economic downfall should we leave without ‘a deal’. More:
“In that case, perhaps they should reflect on the continent’s terrible demographic prospects? Or on why it is that, outside the UK, so few tech companies have started up in Europe? Or on why, outside the UK, there are no internationally ranked top universities in Europe? Interestingly, the highest-ranked continental university is Zurich which, of course, is in non-EU Switzerland.” (paywalled link)
That must be too arid for Remainers, drunk on their own imaginary power in the HoC!
Next, look at the latest article by Martin Howe QC in “Lawyers for Britain” (here). He explains in learned detail why it was right to vote against the WA on Friday and why voting for it this week will be a huge error. Here are three important points from his summary:
The Political Declaration has legal effects because the WA requires the UK as well as the EU to negotiate an agreement in line with it. It will not be possible for the UK to insist on negotiating a future relationship deal which contradicts the PD.
Even Superleader would not be able to escape from the fatal undermining of the UK’s negotiating position once the deal becomes legally binding. We would be led into a false Brexit in which the benefits of leaving the EU would be sacrificed.
Those who resisted and defeated the deal for the third time were right in principle, but importantly they were also right pragmatically. If it is brought back again, it should be defeated again, in the national interest.
You should read the whole, brilliantly argued article and use these points to teach your MPs in the emails you’ll be sending them.
Also, read the inimitable Sir John Redwood’s entry in today’s diary! He describes the astoundingly hollow arguments of those who tried to make him toe the line and vote for the WA on Friday. Their blissful ignorance on display is astounding.
Meanwhile the EU is preparing for ‘the worst’, according to The Times (paywalled):
“EU governments have crossed a psychological threshold and are preparing for a disorderly Brexit. They are testing how to handle British requests for market access in the event of a no-deal — an outcome once viewed as a far-fetched nightmare. But what used to be “a possibility” is seen by some EU diplomats as the most probable outcome of the Brexit debacle. “A no-deal scenario on April 12 is now a likely scenario,” a European Commission spokesman said. “The EU is fully prepared for a no-deal scenario at midnight on April 12.”
That our ‘friends’ in the EU are preparing for the – in their eyes – worst, is also underlined in this (paywalled, DT) report:
“The crux of that conversation [on a No deal scenario] is how to manage the Irish border in the event of a ‘no deal’, which is why Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron will this week hold face-to-face meetings with the Irish Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar. Mr Varadkar will travel to Paris for talks with the French president on Tuesday, while on Thursday the German chancellor will make her first visit to Ireland since 2014.”
I do wonder if M Macron will counsel Mr Varadkar about how best to deploy armed forces in case of ’unrest’ …continuing:
“Anyone in the UK who assumes that a ‘no deal’ Brexit is now off the table, should ask themselves why Europe’s two most powerful leaders are both making time in their schedules for Mr Varadkar in the same week. Europe has no appetite for a ‘no deal’, but equally has fast-diminishing confidence that a moribund British political system will be able to prevent it happening.” (link, paywalled)
It’s a given that this has completely passed by our ignorant MPs. Our not-so ignorant Whitehell civil serpents however surely are aware of these developments and will have read Martin Howe QC’s article. Why they are still insisting on Ms May’s WA – that, surely is worthy of a judiciary inquiry!