Because they are such bullies, aren’t they? Clinging as they do so steadfastly to ‘rules’ and ‘protocols’ and ‘the best interests of an island that so recently tried to rip itself apart.’ I mean, really, the bureaucrats in Brussels are such horrendous squares for not wanting to ride the trend of endless reboots by not wanting to have a hand in The Troubles 2.0.
But there are plenty of ways to get around such truculent obstacles. The arch Brexiteers, that squad of the indignantly righteous, are most certainly on the case. They’ve recognised the steely determination in Theresa’s eyes to cling to the course she’s set no matter what may come. That one will splinter into a thousand spiky shards before she’ll bend the tiniest fraction. So that means the Leavers have to go after the EU negotiators rather than the beleaguered PM.
The plot itself started life as something relatively juvenile. One of the conspirators, Boris probably, suggested the use of itching powder or quite possibly a bucket of glue on top of the door. It would have been a cruel jape and possibly not much more than that. But then they started thinking about the consequences. If they could get some of those damned Brussels bullies to quit then maybe, just maybe the other side will then capitulate to every last whim and demand the Brits can come up with.
What’s certain is that talking won’t get the job done. Admitting one’s naked ambitions (be it finally get your grubby mitts on the top office in the UK or causing economic chaos for your own personal gain) won’t help either. Justing wanting something isn’t enough to make it right or fair. And branding someone a bully simply for doing their job and serving the common interest doesn’t make them what you call them, either. That being said, I’m still calling the no-deal lot total dick weeds.
Lest we forget, this government has been actively making things decidedly worse for the poorest sections of society. Austerity very much bit off more than it could chew, barfed over the lower echelons and spawned a load of things that a developed nation really shouldn’t need. You know, like food banks and that. It turns out that restricting child benefit and handing out tax cuts to the rich actually isn’t a good way to shrink the widening equality gap.
So while assorted rebels circle the wagons and the government disintegrates like cheap toilet paper, maybe we should limit our sympathy. Theresa is clinging to the situation for all she’s worth but she is also the architect of the Windrush scandal. I know it’s not exactly a new perspective from a left-wing moralising hand-wringer but, well, Tories aren’t exactly the greatest.
I suppose one thing that we can definitely say in Theresa’s favour is that she clearly seems to not want a no-deal scenario. The fact that we had at least one Brexit secretary who seems to be gunning for that particular outcome is disingenuous to say the least. Somehow, it’s perfectly fine for members of parliament to have extensive offshore holdings and that. They’re also able to engineer the situation to try and winkle out the most profit for themselves. I don’t really have words for how furious I am that Rees Mogg somehow has credibility by this point.
We’re already in some pretty serious trouble. Even if, by some miracle, Brexit were averted, we’ve already taken a significant financial hit because of it. But… sovereignty? Although apparently we’re going to lose that because of the unparalleled awfulness of the deal that Theresa managed to get. At this point, a more informed choice might not be the worst thing. Even if everyone gets it spectacularly wrong. Again.
It’s one of my worst nightmares: cricket invading a news story I feel compelled to keep up to date with. She hasn’t dropped the ball and won’t be leaving the pitch until they’ve got all the runs they need or whatever. Surely it was a bit of a waste of everyone’s time at a press conference about the PM clinging to power for someone to try and bring cricket into it. Are they that desperate to humanise the Maybot?
Luckily, all the cricket talk has given plotters a stunningly literal idea. Of course, it’s worth examining the motives of the particular plotters in question. Sure, there are those sending in negging letters to the 1922 Committee (and we shall see what happens off the back of that and the hypnotic persuasion of Jacob Rees Mogg). But these shadowy plan executers are actually playing for the other side of the spectrum. They want to keep her in at any cost because there’s just no credible alternative.
And so we come to the sticky wicket. They’ll plop one somewhere in 10 Downing Street, challenge Theresa to a quick game of definitely not suspicious indoor cricket and she’ll wind up trapped to the side of said gluey stumps. How could she be ousted from power when it’s physically impossible for her to leave the building? Got you there, rebels.
Maybe we should have a long hard stare at ourselves that a woman who most people agree is thrusting us all into doom (albeit not as gloomy a doom as it could be but a grim one nonetheless) is the best our current government can offer us. No one else can or really wants to step up to the plate to bat away at those nasty EU negotiators. Because we must remember that it’s so much easier to jeer from the sidelines about unicorns and free trade agreements than to get anything done yourself.
So the deal has landed and no one is happy. Go on, tell me you’re surprised and I’ll ask if I can hide with you in the deluxe hole in the ground you’ve apparently been living in until now. At time of writing we’ve already lost our second Brexit secretary (someone’s getting careless) and there seem to be more resignations hanging about in the ether. But, you know, they did a thing, I think that means it’s time to party.
We’re very much still in a bit of a mess so it can’t be the raucous some people might feel they need for the sake of letting their hair down. But we should probably take into account the fact that some people aren’t sure that now’s quite the right time to celebrate. So I think the natural way to proceed is with a dual approach. And we might as well take that to some kind of extreme.
Down the one side we’ll emulate a wake: sombre looks all round, maybe a stylish veil for those who can pull that look off and eyeing up the snacks wondering when it would be respectful to dig in. The other half of the room will stand as a stark contrast as befits the mood of the nation: everyone will rip off their dark costumes to reveal the carnival colours underneath, getting downright sloppy with all the drinking and not paying the slightest heed to whatever consequences might be coming down the line.
Maybe just ignoring whatever’s happening is the safest way to keep sane. There’s a definite chance that we’re going to get plunged into another general election by lunchtime, sacked the whole thing off before the end of the day and ultimately decide that having laws and that is for squares so we’ll just keep making stuff up as we go along.
If you’re no longer interested in living in the moment, there will be a new post up today on my other blog talking about time travel.
Right. Then. We couldn’t be sure that it was going to happen but it would seem that an actual factual Brexit deal is on the table. Naturally, quite a lot of people are pretty disappointed. There are the hardliners for whom no outcome would have been satisfying barring a complete re-establishment of the historic British empire. I don’t know if we should be surprised but it already sounds like the DUP aren’t impressed so scraping together a majority just got that little bit more difficult for the embattled PM.
Now, as an established remoaner, I’m not completely sure how I feel about this latest development. A deal of some kind, with a hearty dash of luck, might keep us from tumbling over the edge and into unbridled chaos. However, this potential deal does take us that little bit further away from abolishing Brexit once and for all. Like I said, very few people have found much reason to celebrate.
Very few people have had time to read the broad brushstrokes of what’s going on, let alone the fine detail. But of course that hasn’t stopped a hundred and one commentators and interested parties being wheeled out to give opinions and forecasts. Not to mention the rhetoric of various outlets already being dialed up to eleven. It’s a clash, a betrayal, an unmitigated failure. Which would all be well and good if parameters had actually been at all defined at the time of the vote.
So where does that leave us? Well, if this deal can’t get squeezed through the parliamentary process (or gets smacked down from the EU’s side) we’re probably going to get catapulted back into the territory of a general election or, somehow far less likely, another referendum vote. Because if history has shown us anything, it’s that we’re really excellent at choosing the best option available to us.
I’ve honestly forgotten the precise rhetoric they’re trying to peddle today. Sure, there are plenty of scenarios that if we were launched straight into the middle of them we’d feel compelled to plead for the relative mundanity of a no-deal Brexit outcome. Are they going to actually reach the point where, just to get us over the finish line, the government will start threatening kicking off a race war?
With the rise of hate crime following the 2016 vote we might not be as far away from that sort of thing as you might think. But maybe we’ll get lucky and the undesirable endpoint will be something that shafts us all to a similar degree, regardless of the colour of our skin. Someone was mentioning a Mad Max-style setting. If I’m being honest, that’s becoming more appealing by the day. Obviously, I’d be one of the girls frolicking about in wisps of white fabric. Nothing bad happens to them, right?
If you’re prepared to descend far enough into the gutter, no deal will start looking like a good idea. Plenty of people are ahead of us on that already, when it comes to morals at least. Cashing in off the back of nationwide strife wouldn’t exactly be the worst thing that the white upper classes of this country have done over the course of our history. Thank heavens for the empire, it really makes any modern atrocities look downright tame.
We can hold on hope for a second vote to put last-minute brakes on this absolute mess. We must also remember to use our democratic voice any other time the opportunity comes along. Between now and those happy events it doesn’t seem like there’s a whole lot to be done. The People’s Vote march hasn’t exactly yielded results. We’re going to need a bigger bus.
The former London mayor, former minister and former hope for the future of this country (in the eyes of people who resemble him or fall for the fake PG Wodehouse shtick he’s still projecting) is encouraging revolting behaviour. From the safe pages of the Telegraph, Boris’s preferred habitat, he’s trying to mount a mutiny. And yet again, I say, put him in a box and leave him there forever.
Yes, he’s probably not quite as damaging as the perma-tanned President who’s apparently afraid of rain but we really need higher bars for our politicians to clear for the job of leading the country. I know that saying Boris’s name causes him to poke his head out of whatever little hidey-hole he’s squirreled into and hope that he’s relevant again. But I am sick and tired of being told whatever comes out of his face is remotely relevant.
I could stop, I should talk about anything else (the rise of poppies being co-opted by hateful racists screaming at people for not ‘honouring the troops’ while promoting Nazism, for example). And maybe I will. Fine, forget Johnson. Focus instead on the sacrifices former generations have made for us and don’t squander the gift they gave us.
There’s a reason why the people left who actually remember the war, who lived through that time of division, are largely in support of remaining within the European Union. We’re potentially wandering back into a time of strife, flirting with ideas touted by the far right. And why? What is so amazing about ‘sovereignty’ or blue passports or whatever the hell was thought to be at stake that it’s worth risking peace? I know, as a world, we’ve been at war almost continuously ever since the great ones but we seem to be sliding further into outright conflict ever closer to home.