A guest post by Samuel Miller
A few articles this week have caught my eye and more than one have a hint of irony about them, not to mention a soupçon of ‘who knew?’
First up was a piece on Fishing grouds/rights which is apparently causing a bit of a fallout between Messrs Hammond and Gove and most definitely falls squarely into the ‘who knew’ category. Aye, it appears that running true to form, a Tory chancellor, in a Tory government is (wait for it), planning on using ‘UK’ fishing grounds as a Brexit bargaining chip to secure whatever concessions are possible in ongoing EU talks.
You’re shocked… I can tell.
Who indeed knew that Tories having a pissing contest over party leadership, power politics and right wing ideologies might be telling fibs over the return of sovereignty, powers and access to resources? Who knew, that as soon as cunning plans went south for the winter and sphincters started to tighten, they’d instantly renege on any promise they made in favour of using those resources to their own best advantage? What those who chose to vote Tory at the last election, vote leave in the EU referendum and vote no in Scotland’s indyref now have to consider, is just what kind of a deal would Mr Hammond cut on those rights from being outside the EU? Will it be the same deal? A better deal? A worse deal? Newsflash! A Westminster government WILL use any and all resources, any and all means to secure what is best for Westminster government. Something to consider for the future.
Next up is a bit of an update to an excellent post by this site’s host last week. It appears Ms Davidson has gone AWOL from the day job (or it may have something to do with the fetching camouflage overalls). Cue wobbly lines and flashback for a quick reminder. This event has spookily occurred on the back of a tweet from the Scottish Conservative and Unionist leader which stated quite unequivocally: – “The President of the United States has just turned his face to the world to defend Nazis, fascists and racists. For shame.” So far, well said, you’d think. Right up until THIS came to light. The reinstatement to the Tory party of two councilors who had been suspended for… you guessed it, a record of racist and sectarian tweets.
Wobbly lines and back to present day. The real story is of course, as noted at the beginning, the apparent reluctance of the Scottish Conservative leader to defend this decision, do ‘the day job’ of leadership and face some admittedly uncomfortable questions on the subject. At some point I have no doubt Ms Davidson will resurface. There’s bound to be a camera op with costumes and flegs involved sometime soon and you’d have thought GERS day to be that very day. How and ever, it’s worth pointing out that the longer it takes for Ms Davidson to surface and face some questioning on this decision and the reasoning behind it (though you wouldn’t have to struggle much for an educated guess), the worse it looks.
On to some irony, not to mention some comedic farce. The most recent update to the UK negotiating position on Brexit. It appears the EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier is somewhat frustrated with the UKs continued efforts to parallel trade negotiations with exit/settlement negotiations. Mr Barnier and indeed the EU in general have been entirely consistent on the issue from day one. The settlement and exit strategy of the UK from the EU must come before any negotiations on future trade agreements.
As the linked article states, top of the EU’s to do list will be settlement of financial obligations, citizens rights, Ireland’s border and so on. Mind you, Mr Barnier’s frustration is entirely understandable when UK gov. keep attempting to negotiate via media statement and seemingly undeliverable and unagreed upon demands. Statements such as the UK demanding that no extra cost/charges be levied on UK goods (already meeting EU standards) sold to the EU after Brexit has been concluded.
I’m not exactly sure the UK government have entirely grasped the concept of Brexit meaning Brexit at this point. The concept that you cannot enjoy the advantages of a club if you leave the club (just a smidge of irony there). I’d say you either knew what leaving meant before you made your choice to do so, or you didn’t. I suppose you could also see where other non EU nations, who follow regulations when selling their products to the EU, might get a bit grumpy if the UK were granted such exceptional status.
Anyroads, back to the meat. It would seem the EU are not willing to pre negotiate future trade relations till a Brexit settlement has been reached and concluded. So no pre negotiation then.
All together now… OHHHHHH THE IRONY!
Finally a word about GERS. A subject well covered by some weel kent faces on this day pretty much every year and from all over the political spectrum. You’ll also find pub experts, club bores, metrosplaining broadcast and meeja pundits, all of whom have their views (cough). I won’t insult the readership of this site by going over what most of us believe to be the reality of GERS and I won’t pretend to be an expert on national and international macro economics. No, I won’t do that.
I’ll merely provide a link to someone who is:- HERE
Worth going over the author’s CV when you get there, though some folk will already have encountered the gentleman’s work and views on economics.
The point of these examples? Is simply to show a pattern. A pattern of government, practice of politics and abuse of trust. The week isn’t over yet readers. Think on that.