Outside the marginals

A commentary on the politics that followed the UK 2010, 2015 & 2017 elections (and THAT referendum)

Archive for the category “In/Out Referendum”

What if: Stop Brexit or Exit from Brexit

There is a growing demand for either:

  • A people’s vote on the final Brexit Deal. The options not yet clear but could include any permutation of:
    • Deal on Offer,
    • No Deal,
    • Continue Negotiation,
    • Abandon Brexit
  • Just abandoning Brexit as “too difficult”, undesirable or lacking a robust undisputed mandate.

But just calling for either of these options is insufficient. There is a danger of just reversing the current polarisation rather than healing the massive divisions in the country. (Never mind the divisions in the Conservative Party – until they are resolved the country will never have political peace.)

The question has to be asked, “what are the consequences of either of the above actions and how can they be managed?” It was failure to consider the consequences of a Leave vote (two years ago!) that has left us in our current mess. We want to get out of the mess, not just turn it upside down. Read more…

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Parliament and “The Will of The People”

Since the referendum the Government (or the hard Brexit elements of it) have found a new “respect” for “The Will of The People”. A respect so strong that they seem to be completely enslaved to it – provided of course that the “Will” in question is the Will expressed on 23rd June 2016.

It raises some interesting questions about The Primacy of the House of Commons. Read more…

I agree with Tony

It’s worrying when it comes to this. I read an article by Tony Blair and find myself agreeing with it. My unease probably underlines why he is a voice in the dark and why his prescription – even if stated by a more acceptable voice (but who?) will be ignored.

And yet … Read more…

Any leadership to prevent this Brexit?

There was a Labour Party public meeting held this week-end in this Tory safe seat. Whilst in some ways it is heartening to see any political activity in the constituency that is well outside the marginals, it is also a bit worrying to see potential dissipation of effort. Arguably Labour should be putting its efforts into more marginal seats in the region, either defending seats vulnerable to loss or seeking to recapture winnable seats from the Tories.

Local officials seemed very chipper despite accepting that the Council Election results were a “disaster”. It was not quite so unrealistic as saying “one more heave”, but the view seemed to be that a few more heaves would capture the seat.

But by the time that has happened, the country may look very different. Read more…

Theresa’s Dictionary: Brexit

Every empress, or prospective emperor, has to give the appearance of having “the common touch”. In view of the restricted background of our new empress, I offer her a dictionary in the hope that studying it will help her understand the people she wishes to rule.

Brexit

Read more…

Enemies of the People

The country is split; horribly horribly split. This week’s High Court judgement has opened the split even more.

But dig deeper and it is not a Brexit vs Anti-Brexit split. It is a deeper and more dangerous split amongst the people of this country. The split is between those who have given up on the major institutions of the country (Parliament, Judiciary, City, “Mainstream Media”) – as well as the EU and all its institutions – and those who are still trying to have faith in some of the institutions.

Read more…

Trump and Brexit

I would like to write him off, but Trump did win the Republican Nomination even though so many commentators said he was a joke.

Why did he win the nomination?

  • He has plugged into something that most commentators (professional and amateur) don’t understand
  • I suspect that his supporters hold “commentators” in contempt, so either,
    • they are not listening to the commentators saying what a danger he is, or
    • they are listening and what is being said just hardens their support for him

He put together a coalition of support in places where it mattered and won the nomination. To win the presidency (elected by an electoral college) he has to build a coalition of support in places where it matters – the swing states. Outside those marginals it does not matter what people think or vote.

Read more…

Identity post Brexit

The recent vote to leave the EU has had me pondering my identity and how this may guide me in the next few, possibly turbulent, years.

The late Charles Kennedy, used to say

he was “a Highlander, a Scot, a Briton and a European”, in that order.
West Highland Free Press, 5 June 2015 | “The brightest and the best of men”

Following that model I should be “a Southerner, English, British and European”, in that order; but I don’t feel I am. Read more…

Intruding on private grief

As in good grief, what is going on?

Last Thursday’s momentous vote was a vote to begin divorce proceedings. Or, if you like, to move out of the house we share with 27 other countries.

It did not, though, come with any plan – let alone an agreement – as to where we are moving next or what our relationship will be in future with those we used to share our life with.

Asked a few days before the vote whether he had such a plan for the day after if the Leave campaign won Boris Johnson was brutally frank – in private at least. No was his answer.

He and other Leavers declared their hope that David Cameron would have one and would stay in office to implement it.

But Cameron was determined not to be the one tasked with clearing up a mess which, he believes, they created.

Besides he believes he would have no credibility doing so either at home – with the electorate who rejected his pleas to remain in the EU – or in Brussels – with leaders who listened when he assured them that he could and would win the referendum.
BBC News Website, 27 June 2016 | Nick Robinson Comment, UK suffers leadership gap in risky times

So how do we clear up this mess – “Project Farce” – as Nicola Sturgeon as termed it? Read more…

We voted against Elites; the Elites consolidate

It has been said that much of the reason for the Brexit vote was people’s desire to vote against elites. So what has changed?

There are changes in the Conservative party and there are rumblings within the Labour Party. Read more…

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