Only alcohol and a Royal Wedding can stay the execution of Brexit – and the pathetic press pack who organised the firing squad.
The Maily Torygraph insisted this morning that the government’s next bid to lasso the ethereal EU would be to suggest that Britain could stay in the customs union after December 2020, and thus avoid Irish hard border syndrome (IHBS).
Nobody was free to comment on whatTF IHBS might be, but the last two initials might well offer a clue. Despite this equivocation, IHBS avoidance re Ireland after Brexit has been agreed by the Cabinet. Brexiteers are anxious that this idea could easily see the UK tied to the customs union past 2021, but government sources Remain (cap R) keen to stress that they “don’t think it will come to this”. Do we care what they think? I doubt that they “think” about anything beyond the next soundbite.
For myself, I am suffering IBS at the thought of the avoidance of IHBS being the new guiding light. Especially as Andrea Leadboots told the Commons this afternoon, “l will return to the Commons with a revised Withdrawal Bill in due course”.
Whaddawewant? Gradual Brexit.
Whendowewannit? In due course.
WillitbeBrexit? Don’t be daft.
Given the surfeit of aching UK brains trying to avoid any further complication of what began in September 2016 as a comparatively simple process, I am not surprised the Government has decided that UK pub hours will be extended this weekend.
The feeble pretext is that the loyal citizens of this our “United” Kingdom will need to ensure their joy is uncontained at the thought of Harry Windrush marrying his sweetheart Meghan Sparkle.
But we Sloggers know better: it is to dull the pain of Blighty falling under the EUNATO steamroller on its way to regional status in the forthcoming United States of Europe.
Are our beloved press pack benefiting from their silence in the face of this creeping inevitability?
Encouragingly, no they are not:
The two biggest losers in percentage terms are the Daily Telegraph (Government line on all things come what may, or even May) and the Daily Mirror (Opposition line on all things Corbyn or High Water). The Guardian lost the lowest number of readers, by dint of having the smallest circulation by miles; another ten months like the last one and its circulation will be just 12,000. In losing just 4%, The Sun lost 45% of the current Guardian circulation. One wonders where they have gone. The Beano perhaps.
Where most of the losses are going, of course, is online. There, one can only hope they might be infected by news analysis and commentary sites doing the jobs that these rusty old titles once did.
For my money, the one title losing readers hand over fist based largely on discernment (one in five a month) is the Maily Barclaygraph. This execrable product of the disgusting Channel Island brothers – twinned with Sodom and Gomorrah, no doubt – is by far the worst offender in the accelerating flight from journalism to mammonism. It will before long go down in flames, but there will be no blaze of glory….and nor would such a thing be deserved. It is and will remain Icarus without the ambition.