Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose – “the more it changes, the more it’s the same thing”. Perhaps the most remarkable thing about the post EU Referendum result is the total bollocks being put about by those on the losing side. A petition of over 2 million people to set the result aside is one, a totally dangerous precedent if ever there was. Nicola Sturgeon banging on about Scotland’s essential interests in being part of the EU when economically it is totally bound to the UK, is another example and all sorts of other statements by European politicians with ‘hurt’ feelings.
High time some common sense was injected into the situation and people took notice of the wonderful French phrase above because for now, nothing has changed all that has happened is a signal has been posted to enable all the people involved to manage positive and beneficial changes over the years ahead. So to all whingers who didn’t like the result, “Get Over It and Yourselves !”
The Header Illustration
Is a picture of a dear French friend of mine who jokingly asked whether she would need a visa now to visit the UK. The answer of course is NO and highly unlikely in the future either, as today all that is required is a passport or in her case a French Identity Card. There have been interviews of EU citizens living here say that they felt uncertain or not welcome, why should anything change in the immediate future and many would anyway qualify for residency under the 5 year rule by the time things change.
Eventually immigration will be controlled in some way, an Australian style points system perhaps but that will be some years in the future and only will apply to people wanting to work and settle in the UK not just those visiting it. As of now the situation with regards to EU citizens has not changed which has some perils, you could see a sudden rush of people moving to the UK but that is just something that we will have to deal with. However the point is that controlled immigration doesn’t mean no immigration at all in the future.
As to people visiting and holidaying in Europe from the UK, nothing has changed there and nothing much is likely to either.
The Speed of Negotiations
After a meeting of the Foreign Ministers from the original founding members of the EU, a statement was issued that negotiations should start immediately and not be delayed by the British. This was obviously emotionally motivated stupidity and Angela Merkel’s words are more to the point about the timespan: “No need to be particularly nasty. It shouldn’t take forever, that’s right, but I would not fight for a short timeframe,” she said.
Given that it has been over 40 years since we joined the Common Market, it is going to take some time to negotiate separation in a mutually satisfactory way. The post EU situation within the UK with regard to existing Laws as a result of our membership needs a cross party and both Houses task force which should start work asap. It is not that such a body could or should delay negotiations in Brussels but they could better inform them as they proceed is for sure.
For the EU, measured and structured negotiations could be a tremendous asset in the sense that having to unpick the EU/UK relationship could provide a source of first class material and issues for the EU to consider in thinking about reforms designed to make it more relevant to its citizens that could then be put before them in some kind of poll.
Whilst I do feel some empathy for Nicola Sturgeon in that she is the leader of a political party dedicated to creating an independent Scotland and this referendum result has come at the wrong time so she feels that she must react, but what she is saying is nonsense. She wanted to push for another referendum only when she thought that they might win it and that is not necessarily right now but, as an independent Scotland would want to join the EU, she feels that she must keep her options open but whichever way you look at it, she is just going to have to swallow it. Even with the best will in the world, right now the EU will be very busy and all it could offer is a sympathetic hearing at some time in the future if or when Scotland became independent.
Of course Sinn Fein prattle on about a “Border Poll” which is really all about a reunited Ireland but that isn’t going to happen and is just more of the flags, drums and marches that calibrate Northern Irish politics. The simple fact is that most likely the Republic doesn’t want reunification simply because of the price involved to it both in terms of financial costs and cultural too .
In Wales which like England voted for Leave, Plaid Cymru has quite rightly said little and just as well.
Although Northern Ireland is slightly different because of the ‘living history’ it represents, I always find the nationalist parties to say the least both parochial and distinctly suburban, most certainly depressingly narrow in their ‘vision’ to say the least. The reality is that they need the UK more than England does and it is the Westminster Parliament they should be focusing on because IT matters to them and they have a significant voice were they but to use it for the common good of all the peoples of the UK. Also as Gordon Brown demonstrated, if you are Scottish or anything else, you can get to be Prime Minister, there are no nationalist bars to achieving High Office in the UK.
The following I wrote almost 2 years back, it is still true: http://baldysblog.co.uk/2014/11/29/the-union-matters/
On the Parliamentary Petition, two things have come to light that are quite amusing: The guy who set it up was pro Leave and he launched it when he thought Remain would win, it has since been hijacked. It looks like the numbers are in effect a spam exercise with many being posted from abroad. It is not like it would have got anywhere but in the days of spam, it calls into question the value of social media for anything useful except an outlet for the piss and moan brigade.
I have written much and often on this so rather than repeat, their big unresolved problem remains the same today as it has been for the past 6 years, this is a case of nothing changing so again from a couple of years ago: http://baldysblog.co.uk/2014/10/17/the-worm-at-the-heart-of-the-eu/
Whilst I’m tagging myself (sad git), I might as well point out another consequence which I wrote about some days ago and before the referendum, the political suicide of David Cameron : http://baldysblog.co.uk/2016/05/30/a-political-suicide/