The Problem is Still the Euro

As I have written before, my view last June when I voted to ‘Leave’ was that ‘Remain’ would win by at worse 60/40 and more likely 70/30 so I was as surprised as the next person to wake up that Friday morning and find that we had voted for Brexit. However and despite my expectations for being on the losing side, it wouldn’t have troubled me over much because my belief was and still is that the EU as we know it today, will not exist in 5 years time and the reason ?

Simply the existence of the Euro and the fact that it is so poorly constituted that even the countries that are part of the eurozone must question whether it is a good idea. The question today as we gear up for Brexit negotiations is whether the unreality and Alice in Wonderland world created by it, are already spilling over into those negotiations. Continue Reading →

The French Presidential Elections

The Presidential race did at least produce a ‘surprise’ in that the two candidates through to the second round are both outsiders to the mainstream political parties that have been in power for more than 50 almost 60 years. However between Macron and Le Pen in the second round, it must be certain that Macron will win hands down as the supporters of the other failed candidates rally around him just to keep Marine Le Pen out, it is the French way of doing these things. Continue Reading →

Shooting Foxes Too…

The main reason for calling this general election hinges around the Brexit negotiations, Theresa May having a big enough majority to ensure that she has sufficient room for manoeuvre when striking a deal with the EU without being constrained by a minority within her own party much given to back seat driving be they Leavers or Remainers.

But it is also something else too, an opportunity to ditch the 2015 Conservative manifesto which laid far too many constraints on a ‘new’ Tory Government and as a side issue, it also has the effect of shooting the foxes of a few other people in the process. This may not be considered very “sporting” in some circles but, it is rather effective. Continue Reading →

Probably the Right Move

Theresa May’s announcement that she would seek a vote in Parliament to call a snap general election is probably the right move on a number of important levels and especially with regard to the Brexit negotiations. Regardless of the opinion polls which show a huge margin over Labour, if in the end she can increase her majority to 30/40 seats in the House of Commons, she will be far better placed both domestically and in Brussels to deliver a good deal for both sides.

Of course, a landslide victory is unlikely given the partisan nature of politics in the Celtic Nations. Continue Reading →

Quo Vadis President Trump ?

It has been an interesting week in terms of International politics and all centred on one man, the President of the United States, Donald Trump. I must be honest and say that to a large extent, I have felt rather cheered by events if only because he is demonstrating an ability to be a bit unpredictable and far more pragmatic compared with Obama and that has unsettled his adversaries.

But what is perhaps more interesting is the signs that Donald Trump is indeed learning on the job and making some positive ‘adjustments’ as he goes which is no bad thing either. Continue Reading →

The Right Call

As in any negotiation, there are often doubts as to which path to follow, which ‘thing’ to push and which to hold back on but sometimes and once you have taken a decision, you can get confirmation that you were right by the reaction of others. When Boris Johnson announced that he was calling off his trip to Moscow, the voices of minnows such as Tim Farron and Alex Salmon criticising him were just the utterings of a pair of born losers but the amount of noise being generated by the Russians is proof of having made a good call.

Given the situation, like moving a piano, there can only be one voice directing how things are moved, one voice to ensure that there are no misunderstandings because the stakes are far too high to allow for any error and right now that has to be an American voice. Continue Reading →

A Personal Luxury

Whilst it is true that currently I am more focused on my ‘pictures’ website so that I would be concentrating less on blogging here, there is another facet to all of this which is worth stating. This is the sheer luxury afforded to me by being someone who is posting personal opinions on a website they finance for themselves and does not have to answer to an editor or deadlines the way professional journalists have to.

Where this certainly plays out well is when it comes to the current state of Brexit negotiations. Continue Reading →

Brexit Begins

So today is an historic one, it is the day that we formally trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and start the two year process of extricating the UK from the EU as a member state. Obviously there is much speculation both in the UK and within Europe on how this will all go but with one common theme, fear and uncertainty on all sides.

The main reason for this is because following the debacle of the aborted “EU Constitution” which was rejected by both the French and Dutch electorates, a crude rehash became the basis of the Lisbon Treaty with Article 50 tacked on to assuage those fearing a ‘Federalist Agenda’. The problem was that it ( Article 50 ), was never intended to be actually used like some kind of nuclear weapon so frankly exactly how it might work in reality was never fully worked out. Continue Reading →

Is It the Fear of Being Wrong ?

Yesterday we had a big pro EU march in London on the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome and just days before Theresa May launches Article 50 to fire the starting pistol on the UK leaving the EU. Today the Observer newspaper prognosticates all things dire as a consequence of leaving the EU. This is all unrealistic nonsense because one fact alone “rules all” and that is the result of the EU Referendum, was the decision to “Leave”.

Now it has little to do with the “will of the people” although that is important, the main factor is that it was a totally unexpected result that dealt a body blow to the Establishment both in this Country and within Europe and that has consequences because there is no going back, we and the EU can only go forward, there is no choice for either party. Continue Reading →

Total Nonsense in the Westminster Bubble

I cannot say that Laura Kuenssberg of the BBC is one of my favourite political journalists because she isn’t, like the predecessors in her role for the BBC, she too has become far too full of herself, too clever by half and not thoughtful enough. If has always amused me that a corporation funded from taxation, feels the need to be as ‘sensational’ as the commercial media when they have actually been given the opportunity to do a high quality job when it comes to the ‘News’.

The problem and echoed by Nicola Sturgeon this week in Edinburgh is that both the politicians and journalists get so bound up in the minutia of their trade that instead of speaking to the public, they are really talking in a closed room to and among themselves. To us outside of this bubble, it most often sounds like childish nonsense and generates no respect for them, no wonder the public baulk at the idea of paying MPs proper wages. Continue Reading →