It’s seems clear to me that voting to kill WA2 is the best way to get rid of the cancerous influence of the European Union. However, whether it passes or not, the Big Crap Game in town is unchanged: the power of the UK econo-political Establishment has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished. In this essay, The Slog describes the daunting task that lies ahead in a post-Brexit Britain.
To be honest, I didn’t pay much attention to Oliver Letwind’s amendment before yesterday’s latest Parliamentary antics, because I genuinely thought it wouldn’t pass.
It did, by 16 votes. That’s 16 out of 650, a majority of 2.56%.
In 2016, the UK electorate voted to leave the EU by a margin of 3.78%.
Yesterday afternoon in the Commons, Jeremy Corbyn – a man whose hypocrisy on the issue of EU membership has gone from latent to blatant – called the Letwin success “a decisive vote”.
Not many minutes later, SNP Dissembler in Chief Ian Blackford called it “a most decisive vote”.
Both these despicable men – and others of equally amoral self-interest – have variously called the 2016 decision “very narrow”, “unfinished business”, “divisive” and “uninformed”.
One suspects there are two languages in play here: Brexlish, and Staylish. Among users of the latter tongue yesterday was Letwin himself, who referred yet again to “crashing out” – a possibility that remains a fantasy masquerading as a certainty.
I wonder how many of the Lobby drones in today’s vote had read WA2? Passed maths O-Level? Knew what the EIB is, let alone its cost to us after Philip “Fingers” Hammond had finished laying his post-Brexit landmines?
The out-of-control Commons and their rabble-rousing Speaker John Bercow are busy destroying any last vestige of trust in our Parliamentary system….along with almost every meaning in the English language.
‘Liberal’ means ‘intolerant’. They no longer recommend a course of action: they curse action of any and every kind.
They have spent well over three years refusing to accept the Leave vote or prepare for its consequences. And yet they have the brass neck to refer to what faces us as “crashing out” of the EU.
Tomorrow, it is rumoured, Bercow is gung-ho for ruling the first “meaningful vote” out of order, delaying matters a further day. But on Tuesday, the Government will bring forth the WA Bill itself.
Overnight, Johnson has in fact sent three letters – to Tusk, Merkel and Macron – but not signed them, having told EU leaders he must send them these letters about an extension, although he does not agree with them….and thinks further delay is unnecessary. Brussels, Berlin and Paris have, I am told, privately assured the PM that they will not be in a hurry to reply….a feeling backed by Barnier. Donald Tusk is not a happy man, an outcome that inspires little or no compassion in me.
The Revokers are now in a corner: the 19th October has passed, and Johnson has sent letters. He has complied with the law. The Benn Act is null and void from here on. If there is a Scottish High Court action now, the Government will, I understand, appeal any negative decision. It seems likely that the Brussels Commission will either refuse any extension or refuse to recognise the letters as proper requests. From the Government’s viewpoint, the former would be greatly preferred.
Or would it? That’s the line Number 10 is putting out, but there are two further possibilities: that the WA Bill fails to pass, or legal wrangles find a way to block its full passage, and the 31st deadline passes with nothing agreed. For myself – and most Brexiteers who really grasp the enormous flaws in the proposed Agreement – these outcomes would produce the No Deal that Brussels so fears.
A few commentators still feel that Team Boris has further items up the sleeve. More (and I am increasingly in agreement with them) think the Downing Street strategy is to get Brexit done, call an election about it, annihilate the Revokers, and then take a far tougher stance with the EU. The legalities involved in that are so circuitously arranged, they resemble an arterial malformation of the brain. I do not propose to get involved, because I think there are far bigger considerations.
The eternal Fifth Column
This is the second biggest factor driving my view of events at the moment. Without a serious purge of the Treasury, the Foreign Office, Military Intelligence and other redoubts in Whitehall and our media set, not only will Clean Brexit never happen; even the Brino version will be reversed at the first available opportunity.
The Alternative State in Britain is firmly of the view that The People can’t be trusted, that they know better, and it is their job to mould, harden and if necessary overrule the electorate’s feelings as expressed at the ballot box. Anyone walking round on the cuckoo-cloud of “Job Done” after October 31st is going to wind up bitterly disappointed: the reality is that British State sector teachers are crammed to the gills with pc fluffies determined to eradicate all contrarian thinking. The main brainwashing task has been passed to the other legs on the Alt State stool; and any lie, any insane maths, any double standards will do to ram that advantage home.
Whatever happens – and whatever we sign up for this coming week – it will not be enough for the 48%, or indeed Whitehall – and especially not Brussels. The last of these will remain the Prince across the Water scheming his Restoration.
This is why, in recent weeks, I have largely dispensed with the term Remainers, and replaced it with what most of these money-followers really are – Revokers. Almost all of them come from the LibDem and Labour Parties – supposedly anti-Establishment gatherings favouring the People: in reality, they are the leading thinkers (in private) that elections are to be avoided (and or ignored) at all costs. Grieve and Hammond may be terminally nasty pieces of work, but they are aytpical in the Tory ranks.
This screen capture of those for and against the Letwin Delay Amendment makes this crystal clear, and identifies our main Fifth Columnists very clearly:
In order of size, those for nailing BoJo even more firmly onto the cross were Labour, LibDem, DUP and SNP. But in fact, their target was and is No Deal and Article 50.
Just six Labour rebels voted against Letwin. Not a single MP calling himself a Conservative supported him. Oliver Letdown therefore wins the 2019 Parliamentary Traitor of the Year Award at a trot.
This chart should be reproduced at all future times as and when any Labour MP tries to wriggle out of an accusation of setting out to thwart the People. Spookily enough, 450,000 people outside Parliament pretending to be The People were yelling their support for this action.
Globalist reality intervenes
This remains the number one threat to real people – their jobs, savings, pensions, insurance costs and bank deposits – around the world.
Talking and writing to some trusted people in the US, Canada and the City last week, I can hardly report that outlooks for the markets are mixed. They were all predicting a when-not-if stock market correction in the area of 15-25% initially. I blogged four days ago about the globally multivariate debt problem we face; since then, new stats show that global government debt is the highest-ever in peacetime real terms, corporate debt is ‘at the timebomb level of $19.5 trillion’, and personal loans using plastic are $8,400 per American home, with a total US consumer debt mountain of $13.5 trillion.
Three especially vulnerable sovereigns are singled out pretty universally: the US, China and the United Kingdom. The CNNs, Bloombergs and other neoliberal titles are putting out lots of ‘Problem? What Problem?’ bromides, but these aren’t reflected among respected commentators. Muhammed El-Arian advises to take money out of stocks, pointing to “obvious” risks coming from central banks, trade and fiscal policies that are running out of new ideas. Warren Buffet is already sitting on a record cash-pile, quoting stock overvaluations “not seen since the internet bubble of twenty years ago”.
QE is greatly to blame for overvaluation. But the US Fed is cutting rates again – and effectively syphoning liquidity money into the markets….QE by any other name. Draghi is at the same game in the eurozone. Under the BoJo WA deal, the European Investment Bank (EIB) can both bad-debt the UK post Brexit and demand we cough up half a trillion quid to bail it out. This is not a good look.
In this context, what clues do we have about one important UK observer of the markets, UK Chancellor Rajid Javid? This is what he said last week:
“I traded in the bond markets for 20 years, but I never saw anything like this. I have got to assess what that means for the economy. I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t take the situation seriously…..I think ultra-low interest rates are here to stay, and so it makes sense to borrow and spend the money where it can be put to good use – in rock-solid infrastructure and to boost our productivity.”
Hmm. Javid is probably the only Chancellor in my lifetime with the sort of trading floor track record to suggest that, at the very least, he knows technically what he’s doing. My problem with his idea is that it is at least seven years too late. 2011-12 was the time to be borrowing (at the height of Zirp), but Osborne the Little – who clearly didn’t know what he was doing – managed to introduce austerity and double the National Debt.
In truth, the feeling I get from Javid’s ‘infrastructure and productivity’ soundbite is that the Budget (now scheduled for November 6th) will cut mass-tax bills and create work to give the sense, together, of a boom. Every government facing an election needs the feelgood factor.
Whether it will work economically and fiscally is another matter. When Treasury yields fall and markets retreat, investors look for higher-risk options with better returns. One place the Hedge Funds will certainly visit in the near future is Italy. Rising bond rates in the eurozone could quickly spread to a Britain still on the line for ill-conceived EIB loans.
But all this is uncertain when it comes to the total degree of damage likely to be inflicted on a UK economy massively overependent on financial services.
Far more certain is that, unless British voters change the way they behave at elections, the profound reform Britain’s econo-political system requires simply isn’t going to happen.
Lions led by Donkeys
The political establishment’s reaction to the 2016 referendum result is and always has been about far more than Brexit. Setting aside the growing power of the unelected State in our lives – and the decline of legislators from widely-accepted sovereigns to order-taking bumboys – we must at the very least hope the political sphere will in future produce more MPs willing to rebuff influence from the murky shadows.
As this is a process that we can influence via intelligent voting, it is important to reflect on where Britain has gone wrong. In my view, that could be summarised as follows:
i. Too much politically-derived policy is driven by narrow, ideological outlooks held by mediocre legislators. Too much of it is disseminated by media owners in the same bed. The media don’t investigate any more. This is all bad for individual liberty and moral standards.
ii. The situation is exacerbated by education systems obsessed with targets and examinational conformity. Independent thinking is a severely threatened species, & Groupthink is at times terrifying. The greatest cancer here is fanatical pc – which has also invaded most of the mass media.
iii. When it comes to the individual’s self-determination, you can run from the influence of macro ideological fascism, but in the digital world, the chances of hiding are rapidly disappearing.
iv. The very essence of the word ‘State’ has changed. It is now dominated by unelected multinational, banking, pharmco and energy interests who have an unhealthy revolving-doors relationship with equally unelected bureacrats, police forces, judges and regional geopolitical ‘blocs’.
v. Big is bad, lobbying has been perverted, political donations are bribery, ideologies close minds, smaller-scale creativity is struggling to survive the attentions of EU-style process, cultures are easier to create in smaller communities (of every kind).
The lesson from Brexit for thinking voters interested in functional rather than ideological radicalism is this: nothing less than the destruction of major Party whipped MP voting blackmail – alongside lobbying and donation as fronts for naked bribery – will do as the starting point for reform.
Equally, the lower House of Parliament and its Executive are far too powerful, while the Upper House has become a lucrative sinecure for dullards, and a new target for commercial bribery. The House of Lords must go but it should be replaced by something more able to check Party power on the basis of something unrelated to genealogy – not necessarily elected nationally. (Awkward Question: given the elected Chamber we have is riddled with corrupt mediocrity, shouldn’t the Thing balancing it be chosen on a very different, albeit relevant, basis?)
To conclude, the three dysfunctional democratic elements covered above – unelected bureaucratic power, globalist monied influences and ideologically constipated mass Parties – are not about to reform themselves.
Only we the citzenry can apply the kind of pressure – via votes, boycotts, visible expressions of People Power and just being generally awkward – that will increase the level of informed democracy, make élites accountable, and allow personally responsible liberty to triumph over systemic, truth-annihilating catechisms.