In These New Times

A new paradigm for a post-imperial world

Posts Tagged ‘brexit fiasco’

May’s post-Brexit trade policy unravels in Japan

Posted by seumasach on September 2, 2017

Politics

31st August, 2017

One of the core Brexit arguments was that outside of the EU we could negotiate our own trade deals. We wouldn’t have to sit with 27 other nations anymore, trying to construct a uniform trade policy between such disparate economies. We wouldn’t have to be hobbled by the political need to protect things like oranges, which we don’t care about, and could focus on things like financial services, which we do. Britain would be unleashed, a roaming imperial tiger on the global stage.

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Hague despairs of Brexit

Posted by seumasach on August 31, 2017

Cailean Bochanan

31st August, 2017

In 2011 William Hague described the Euro “as a burning building with no exits”. But it appears to still be standing as the pound sinks to parity and , no doubt, beyond. And now he despairs of the Brexit process blaming the British people for their “mistake” in not giving their full backing to the government in the recent general election:

“I think the result was a mistake. Collectively, by the people of this country.”

One cannot help but recall Hague’s denunciation of the then Labour government in 2001:

“We have a Government that has contempt for the views of the people it governs.”

But I suppose we must concede that the electorate can make mistakes- after all they voted for Brexit in 2016, a decision whose catastrophic consequences have since become ever clearer. Indeed, one could argue that two wrongs make a right and that the British people corrected, to some extent, that fateful vote by failing to follow it up with a rounding endorsement of the Brexit Junta.

Would it have made any difference had they given May the thumbs up? According to Hague:

“Britain will get a worse deal as a result of the election.”

But what was the deal anyway given that Britain is totally dependent on inward investment and incoming labour to keep a wasteland created by forty years of Thatcherism afloat? Well, the hope was that the “burning building” could be brought to the ground. Hague’s despair is simply the realization that that is not going to happen.

The election has contributed to that conclusion. Britain needed a united front of the entire political class to apply maximum pressure. They appeared to have it but Labour was waiting to see which way the wind was blowing and have seen that it is still the prevailing westerly, blowing the ship of state back towards Europe where it now belongs if it belongs anywhere. They have adopted a de facto remain position after discussions with the Europeans. Oh, the treachery of it all!

But a more significant factor was the need for a united front with Washington led by a politician with the left-liberal credentials capable of influence in Europe. Someone like Hilary Clinton. Instead the have a man who opportunistically used the Brexit vote to advance his own nationalist credentials in order to win an election but who has since purged his team of ideologues of this hue. What remains is a realist administration based on the military which has no interest in either exporting a nationalist revolution or the neocon obsession with bringing down the EU. Indeed, Trump has, wittingly or unwittingly, advanced the cause of European integration and independence from US tutelage. The disarray in London following his election contributed mightily to discrediting European eurosceptic movements as well as these latter being tarred by association with the Beast in the White House.

And so we come to the “negotiations” with Brussels. As I predicted on the 26th June, 2016:

“The fact that Brexit is only a trigger for “more exciting” perspectives[the destabilization of Europe] explains many of the peculiarities of the Brexit campaign. They have done nothing to elaborate a clear alternative to EU membership, they don’t want to leave any time soon and many of their promises over the NHS and immigration have already been shown to be worthless.These things are beside the point and there will be no attempt to negotiate in good faith.

I rest on my laurels.

It remains only say that Hague has effectively announced the end of the Brexit neocon project. Europe will not fall but this government, and likely a whole lot else, will.

 

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Australian firms ‘very interested’ in Ireland as EU bridge post-Brexit

Posted by seumasach on February 25, 2017

With the election of Trump and the Brexit vote we will see the fate of economic nationalism in a world globalized as never before. Trump, I suspect, is perfectly aware of the need to do deals with China and others but the UK has manoeuvered itself into a corner: such deals are contingent on the UK being the gateway into the EU. That is why so much is going into a big push in 2017 to bring down the EU. Let’s hope, for all our sakes, that it fails.

RTE

24th February

Australia’s Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has said Britain leaving the European Union represents an opportunity for Ireland.

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China will drive a hard bargain with post-Brexit UK

Posted by seumasach on January 25, 2017

It’s sad to think back on how I covered in these pages the emerging strategic partnership between the UK and China and how we spurned the whole thing in favor of Brexit. That was a highpoint in UK diplomacy which will never again be attained not only because a coherent UK state will likely no longer exist but also because our being a gateway into Europe would have been  the key element in that partnership.

Emanuele Scimia

Asia Times

23rd January, 2017

In her January 17 speech outlining Britain’s rough plan for exiting the European Union (EU), British Prime Minister Theresa May hailed Brexit as an opportunity to advance a “truly Global Britain” that “goes out into the world to build relationships with old friends and new allies alike.”

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Supreme Court ruling heralds constitutional chaos

Posted by seumasach on January 24, 2017

Cailean Bochanan

24th January, 2017

It is not necessary to read beyond the first sentence of today’s Supreme Court Ruling to arrive at the heart of the matter

“The devolution Acts were passed by Parliament on the assumption that the UK would be a member of the EU, but they do not require the UK to remain a member.”

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Fallon tells Trump: Freedom cannot be traded in Ukraine

Posted by seumasach on January 22, 2017

The divergence between the UK government and the new US president couldn’t be more stark. But Britain will stand alone with it’s policy of confrontation with Russia.

Telegraph

20th January, 2017

Britain will stand alongside Ukraine in its confrontation with Russia because freedom cannot be “traded”, the Defence Secretary has said, amid fears Donald Trump may scale back support to Kiev in a deal with Moscow.

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May takes Britain on journey to nowhere

Posted by seumasach on January 18, 2017

Cailean Bochanan

18th January, 2017

The most striking feature of May’s latest attempt to clarify Brexit is that “global” Britain will remain focused on Europe. We our leaving Europe only in order to reengage with Europe, except this time without free movement: Europe without Europeans.

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Brexit and the flash crash mystery

Posted by seumasach on October 9, 2016

Cailean Bochanan

9th October, 2016

Friday’s flash crash may remain a mystery but it should be no mystery that the pound is in freefall and that it could become the focus of hostile trading.

This is not just about Brexit itself but what is behind Brexit. If we want to destroy our own economy by leaving the single market that it is our business. But if we want to use Brexit to turn the UK into a base for hostile operations against our creditors and closest trading partners that is their business.

Incredibly, that is exactly what has happened. We have appointed negotiators who delight in the prospect of the implosion of the EU. Boris Johnson has endorsed Change Britain whose neo-conservative leadership sees the end of the EU as inevitable and desirable. His clowning has taken him as far as putting a good word in for Erdogan regarding EU membership for Turkey. This is our foreign secretary. Liam Fox’s ultra-atlanticist views and his visceral animosity to the EU are well known. Defense secretary Fallon has seen fit to launch the amazing provocation of vetoing EU security arrangements.Much is being made of supposed European hostility towards us but with this crowd it looks more the other way round.

The May government wasted no time at all in reversing our growing ties with China. Obviously we weren’t going to be entering into a strategic partnership with a”security threat”. Wrecking out rapport with our biggest creditor and supplier was simply destructive. You either enter negotiations with your creditors or you wait for the bailiffs to come in. Jumping on the “isolate China” bandwagon only made sense if you were thinking in terms of “taking them out”. The dramatic developments in the USA where the Pentagon has effectively marginalized the White House on foreign policy were our cue to enter into just such a hostile posture towards both Russia and China. So at the first key test of our supposed new-found sovereignty and independence we chose to align ourselves with the Pentagon.

So “Global Britain” now has a hostile stance towards most of the Eurasian land mass. Meaningful negotiations with the EU, Russia or China are precluded. At the same time the dreadful reality of our economic plight cannot be hidden by the massaging of statistics. You only have to walk down any high street to see that Britain’s consumer economy model is dead. We are not a great trading nation. Out deficits and debts only get worse. If we were a business we would have closed down years ago. We are a bankrupt country that has chosen to go down hitting out wildly just so that the military industrial complex can keep itself afloat. We cannot of course afford Trident but will press on with it regardless. Everyone else will have to pay the price. It is an astonishing fact that the opposition of virtually the entire legally operating business community is as vehemently opposed to this whole unfolding scenario as it is marginalized by it. It seems we are to be taught a lesson in where the real power in this country lies.

A few months after the Brexit referendum we have made clear our indifference to our economic future and instead are intent on bringing the world to the brink of WW3. And then we wonder about the “mysterious” sinking of the pound.

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While the media whines on about Labour, the Conservative government descends into chaos

Posted by seumasach on September 26, 2016

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Britain will veto EU army

Posted by seumasach on September 19, 2016

This is simply astonishing. No government seriously engaged in talks aimed at an amicable parting of ways with the EU would have its top level spokesmen engage in provocations of this kind. Neo-conservative elements continue to push for the destabilisation of the EU rather than separation from it. This does not bode well for Brexit talks if they are ever to happen.

Independent

17th September, 2016

The UK would exercise its power of veto to block the creation of an EU army while it remains a member of the European Union, according to Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon.

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Boris Johnson backs Brexit pressure campaign Change Britain

Posted by seumasach on September 13, 2016

So Boris Johnson, who is the Foreign Secretary, rather than speaking for the government is speaking for those elements who were sidelined by Theresa May subsequent to her taking office. What makes it more incredible is that May had every reason to sideline the likes of Michael Gove who openly calls for the dismantling of the EU:

“For Europe, Britain voting to leave will be the beginning of something potentially even more exciting — the democratic liberation of a whole continent”.

The same goes for Gisella Stuart, who leads Change Britain, whose perspectives for the EU were outlined recently:

And the UK would have been forced to change its relationship with the EU eventually – because the Eurozone will one day collapse, she predicted.

“We either do that in a planned way now or if we’d stayed in the EU and waited for the inevitable, I think, collapse of part of the Eurozone or that structure, [we] would have had to do it under conditions of panic.

Both Gove and Stuart, leaders of the “Leave” campaign, are signatories to the Henry Jackson Society, a neoconservative group.

According to the blog Greater Surbiton:

“The HJS’s Associate Director, Douglas Murray, appointed in April 2011, is on record as having stated that ‘the EU is a monstrosity – no good can come of it… The best thing could just simply be for it to be razed to the ground and don’t start again [sic]‘).”

Johnson’s endorsement of Change Britain is a simply unbelievable development even although he is not meant to play a role as a negotiator in the event of article 50 being triggered. He is after all the Foreign Secretary.

The HJS held a discussion in July after the referendum on the theme: ‘The Aftermath of Brexit: “Could the EU and UK both die?”. Very reassuring.

Guardian

11th September, 2016

Boris Johnson has endorsed a new cross-party campaign created by prominent pro-Brexit politicians aimed at pressuring Theresa May into fully delivering on the promise that Britain will leave the EU.

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