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Brexit Discussion Thread VI

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  • 13-12-2018 1:27pm
    #1
    Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Politics Moderators Posts: 14,503 Mod ✭✭✭✭


    Hi folks, as Theresa May has won the vote of no confidence and we are heading into Brexit day early next year, I thought for the new thread people might give their summary of their views on Brexit to date before we get into the more day to day discussions.

    So what do you think about what has happened so far? Who has come off well, who has come off badly?

    Where do you think Brexit is going? What is going to be the likely impact on Ireland, Northern Ireland, the rest of the U.K. and the E.U. respectively?

    Both this thread and the Mark V thread will remain open simultaneously for the next day or so and Mark V will be closed as it gets closer to the server busting 10,000 mark. Hopefully we can set down a solid foundation now for a top quality thread to come!


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,569 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how


    hill16bhoy wrote: »
    It would be massively divisive.

    And people shouldn't kid themselves - all the disinformation and hateful rhetoric that was there before would be there again.

    But at least the question would be more defined than before.

    And crucially, it offers a way out of the mess. There would be an almighty mess to clean up at the end of it, but it still offers a legitimate way out of that mess.

    Nothing else does.

    There is a lot more evidence which would refute the claims originally made such as "The day after Brexit we hold all the cards", "Negotiating trade deals will be the easiest thing in the world", "£350M per week can go to the NHS", "We will be talking directly with Berlin, not Brussels" and so on.

    There is a deal on the table, there can be no pipe dreams of what might be under the rainbow.


  • Registered Users Posts: 22,414 ✭✭✭✭Akrasia


    I think the point is that no matter what happens, there already is division, and there is no way of avoiding that.

    Crashing out of the EU will be incredibly divisive when every remainer blames the brexiteers for their loss of livelyhood and the economic crisis that follows. The Brexiteers will still blame everyone else for the crisis that happens, the soft brexiters will blame the hard brexiters, the hard brexiters will blame the remainers and the EU, and remainers will blame everyone except themselves. The Tories will blame Labour for not supporting whatever half baked plan they prefer, Labour will pretend they had their own plan but weren't allowed to implement it. It would be a total sh1tstorm, and then if they decide they want to rejoin the EU later on, or have a deal like EFTA they'll be up against a hostile EU who have every right to blame the UK for the damage to their own economies caused by the UK's utter recklessness these past 3 years.

    Leaving the EU on May's deal will be divisive as there will still be years of infighting and sniping at each other about the terrible deal May negotiated and the backstop and the future relationship and the EU being unfair and vindictive etc

    Remaining in the EU would be divisive but at least not economically destructive and if it was preceded by a referendum where a significant majority of the population voted to remain, at least they can reassure themselves that both sides got a good opportunity to voice their views and debate it before coming to an educated conclusion.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,029 ✭✭✭hill16bhoy


    There is a lot more evidence which would refute the claims originally made such as "The day after Brexit we hold all the cards", "Negotiating trade deals will be the easiest thing in the world", "£350M per week can go to the NHS", "We will be talking directly with Berlin, not Brussels" and so on.

    There is a deal on the table, there can be no pipe dreams of what might be under the rainbow.

    You wouldn't have the exact same lines, but there would be a load of other disinformation. Have no doubt.

    And of course the Leave side's main trump card would be a furious appeal that "the will of the people is being disregarded".

    Even if we still don't know what the will of the Leave voters is, because they're hopelessly divided.

    You'd hear World War II invoked all over the place.

    And God only knows what tactics the Russians would have in store this time.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,753 ✭✭✭✭Inquitus


    Onwards past 50k posts and its still all up in the air!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,029 ✭✭✭hill16bhoy


    Hi folks, as Theresa May has won the vote of no confidence and we are heading into Brexit day early next year, I thought for the new thread people might give their summary of their views on Brexit to date before we get into the more day to day discussions.

    So what do you think about what has happened so far? Who has come off well, who has come off badly?
    Where are we?

    We're at the situation where I keep thinking of the words of The Simpsons' Reverend Lovejoy when Marge and Homer were going through difficulties in their marriage.

    “Marge, as a trained marriage counsellor, this is the first instance where I've ever told one partner that they were 100% right. It's all his fault. And I'm willing to put that on a certificate you can frame.”

    I don't need to tell you which one of Britain or the EU is Homer.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 21,569 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how


    I do have a small, sneaky feeling in the back of my mind that at some point in the future, we in Ireland will be in a situation where we are being told we are expected to pay for the support which Ireland was given by Europe at this time.

    Whether that is in acceptance of a Euro-wide tax scheme, or adjustment of our Corporation tax or military support or whatever (I'm not trying to argue for or against any of these issues here). I hope our government and MEP's are sufficiently strong to hold the argument that Europe's support now was because of a legally signed off Good Friday agreement and not because of any irrational good will towards the Irish people.

    We have been very closely aligned with the UK in our history, we know about the bad stuff but there has been plenty good stuff also and I hope we don't (which we are not doing so far) adopt a gloating position if they do experience difficulties in the case of a hard border.

    I think we have been fine as a government and media so far (Can you imagine what their media would write about us if the roles were reversed?) and I hope it continues this way.


  • Registered Users Posts: 14,371 ✭✭✭✭Professor Moriarty


    More can kicking by May today:

    I don’t expect an immediate breakthrough, but what I do hope is that we can start to work as quickly as possible on the assurances that are necessary.

    What work? What part of "It has been agreed and won't be renegotiated" do you not understand? Of course, she understands but is just playing party politics with international diplomacy and international agreements and treaties.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,569 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how


    More can kicking by May today:

    I don’t expect an immediate breakthrough, but what I do hope is that we can start to work as quickly as possible on the assurances that are necessary.

    What work? What part of "It has been agreed and won't be renegotiated" do you not understand? Of course, she understands but is just playing party politics with international diplomacy and international agreements and treaties.

    She as good as said it last night that she is not expecting changes to the agreement.

    I think the best she is hoping for is the EU to collectively say something along the lines of;
    We needed to put in the backstop because there has to be contingency. However, we are largely confident that we will not need to implement it as we will work with the UK to create and implement solutions which will render it unnecessary

    This would be to try to convince 120-150 non-hardline MP's that her deal is worth voting for. She is never convincing JRM, Davis, Johnson etc.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,758 ✭✭✭Laois_Man


    not because of any irrational good will towards the Irish people.

    This may be the first time we've agreed on anything. One of the reasons why we need a legally binding backstop is not only because we can't trust Teresa May, but I don't believe we can trust the EU either - once we are no longer a useful stick to beat the UK with.


  • Registered Users Posts: 14,371 ✭✭✭✭Professor Moriarty


    She as good as said it last night that she is not expecting changes to the agreement.

    I think the best she is hoping for is the EU to collectively say something along the lines of;



    This would be to try to convince 120-150 non-hardline MP's that her deal is worth voting for. She is never convincing JRM, Davis, Johnson etc.

    They've already said that anyway. The truth of the matter is that Mogg, Johnson, Davis etc. are using the backstop issue to bring the deal down. They actually don't give a crap about NI. If the backstop was removed, they would focus on some other weakness in the agreement. There is no placating the ERG with anything other than Crash Out or Canada+.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 21,569 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how


    Laois_Man wrote: »
    This may be the first time we've agreed on anything. One of the reasons why we need a legally binding backstop is not only because we can't trust Teresa May, but I don't believe we can trust the EU either - once we are no longer a useful stick to beat the UK with.

    First and only time I'd say. :pac:

    I'm not massively sceptical about the EU, I'm just....... a little bit wary.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,272 ✭✭✭fash


    hill16bhoy wrote: »
    You wouldn't have the exact same lines, but there would be a load of other disinformation. Have no doubt..
    "Well I saw remain voter but after seeing how the EU has bullied and mistreated the UK, how could anyone not vote leave?" Etc.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 18,305 CMod ✭✭✭✭Nody


    More can kicking by May today:

    I don’t expect an immediate breakthrough, but what I do hope is that we can start to work as quickly as possible on the assurances that are necessary.

    What work? What part of "It has been agreed and won't be renegotiated" do you not understand? Of course, she understands but is just playing party politics with international diplomacy and international agreements and treaties.
    EU can and will add assurances in the written political statement; the problem is UK has not said what assurances they are seeking (what a surprise).


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,569 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how


    They've already said that anyway. The truth of the matter is that Mogg, Johnson, Davis etc. are using the backstop issue to bring the deal down. They actually don't give a crap about NI. If the backstop was removed, they would focus on some other weakness in the agreement. There is no placating the ERG with anything other than Crash Out or Canada+.

    No. But, these guys don't have massive support either in the HoC.
    Look at their failure to challenge her leadership a few weeks ago.

    The majority of members of the HoC I suspect are still thinking along the lines of what is best for our constituents and country. These are the ones she is trying to convince. She would be perfectly happy to win a vote by a majority of 1.

    But, it is true that the EU have already said this and thus far haven't reacted to her please with any great show of support. Junckers statement that the deal cannot be renegotiated but that they will try to help with it being accepted was probably closest but there has been nothing since.


  • Registered Users Posts: 14,371 ✭✭✭✭Professor Moriarty


    No. But, these guys don't have massive support either in the HoC.
    Look at their failure to challenge her leadership a few weeks ago.

    The majority of members of the HoC I suspect are still thinking along the lines of what is best for our constituents and country. These are the ones she is trying to convince. She would be perfectly happy to win a vote by a majority of 1.

    But, it is true that the EU have already said this and thus far haven't reacted to her please with any great show of support. Junckers statement that the deal cannot be renegotiated but that they will try to help with it being accepted was probably closest but there has been nothing since.

    All of which leaves her very vulnerable though. The DUP and ERG will vote en masse to reject her deal. That's about 40 votes against before you bring Labour/SNP etc. into the picture. She will need cross party support so she's dependent on the kindness of strangers in the HoC. Best of luck with that, Theresa.


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,497 ✭✭✭✭Peregrinus


    Where we are now:

    At this point the story has three possible endings:

    1. Cancel Brexit

    2. Brexit on the terms of May’s deal or something very very like it.

    3. No-deal Brexit.

    Those who fantasise about “renegotiating” the deal are, well, fantasising. This goes both for Tory Brexiters and for Labour. The renegotiated deal they envisage is not attainable, partly because it’s fundamentally unacceptable to the EU and partly because there simply isn’t time to renegotiate so radically.

    The only significant renegotiation that could be possible is if the UK dropped some or many of its red lines and indicated that it wanted a much softer Brexit – Norway+, say. This is possible because (a) the EU would love it, and (b) it doesn’t actually require much in the way of change to the Withdrawal Agreement; it would all be the political declaration, which is a much smaller and less detailed and less legally significant document. But I don’t see any appetite for it in the leadership of either party in the UK, so for the time being I discount it as a possibility.

    There are other things that could intervene – a second referendum, a general election. But they don’t change the fundamentals; they would simply be alternative ways of picking one of the three options outlined above if parliament can’t or won’t do it.

    The choice could be deferred if the UK asked to extend A50 and the EU agreed. But there seems to be no point in that unless extending A50 was going to change something, and remove whatever barrier was preventing parliament from making a choice. It’s unlikely that the EU would agree to a deferral that wasn’t going to change anything, just put off the necessity for making a choice

    It is, basically, parliament’s job to make the choice between the three options though, as noted, they could delegate the that responsibility to the people via a referendum or an election. (Or partly delegate it; they could e.g. rule out one option and invite the people to choose between the other two in a referendum). If parliament refused to make a choice no-deal Brexit is the default which will apply; failing or refusing either to approve May's deal or to cancel Brexit is functionally equivalent to actively choosing no-deal Brexit.

    May says she will put her deal to Parliament no later than 21 January. By then she will probably have obtained some honeyed words from Brussels to the effect that nobody likes the backstop and they are determined that it will not continue permanently, but that will not be enough to get the deal through parliament, given the scale of distaste for the deal and the number of MPs who have nailed their colours publicly to the mast on the need to abolish or strictly limit the backstop, or provide a unilateral exit (none of which is or will ever be acceptable to the EU).

    So the deal will be rejected by parliament at the first time of asking.

    The Labour party will promptly put down a motion of no confidence in the government. But this will not pass. It could only pass if the DUP or the ERG voted against the government, which would mean a general election, and neither of those groups imagine that their position would be strengthened by a general election.

    When Labour’s bid to force a general election fails, the party leadership will come under considerable pressure, both internal and external, to back a second referendum. They won’t be too happy about this, but I can’t see that they will have much choice; what other course is open? And it’s possible that enough Tory rebels will back them to secure the passage of a motion calling for a referendum.

    At this point things get very confused. A motion saying that parliament wants a referendum doesn’t, in itself, result in a referendum. The government needs to introduce a Bill providing for the holding of a referendum which has to tackle such controversial issues as what question is to be asked?, which options are to be put to the people?, how are abuses of the kind that happened last time to be prevented?, etc. This will all be very messy, and while it is happening businesses will be implementing no-deal contingency plans in ways that people will notice (and suffer from) and the markets will be signalling extreme displeasure in ways that will also be very noticeable.

    At this point (or, perhaps, before this point but in anticipation of it) parliament may be minded to give May’s deal a second hearing, and perhaps to approve it. That, at least, is May’s hope, I suspect. Those who have indicated that they would die on the barricades rather than approve the deal will justify their change of position by pointing to the grave national crisis/the risk of losing Brexit altogether/yadda yadda yadda.

    If that doesn’t happen then, to be honest, I don’t know what does. A crash-out no-deal Brexit is a possibility. Cancellation of Brexit by parliament is also a possibility but, honestly, more a theoretical one than a realistic one.

    I state a lot of things above with an air of simple confidence when, in reality, they are not at all simple and my predictions are not at all confident. This is the best roadmap I can come up with at this point but, to be honest, it’s almost certain wrong, particularly as regards what happens after 21 January. I’m just not sure in what way it will prove to be wrong.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,569 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how


    All of which leaves her very vulnerable though. The DUP and ERG will vote en masse to reject her deal. That's 59 votes against before you bring Labour/SNP etc. into the picture. She will need cross party support so she's dependent on the kindness of strangers in the HoC. Best of luck with that, Theresa.

    Absolutely she is walking a tightrope. But, so will anyone. There is literally no question of anyone getting a deal of unanimous support.

    It's not kindness she is looking for. It is people to realise what is in the best interest of their constituents. I think must members are already at the place of ignoring party directions and making up their own minds.

    That is why her not creating a cross party governmental focus group at the outset of starting negotiations was such a bad mistake. The same deal would probably be on the table but less could argue they had nothing to do with it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,367 ✭✭✭✭Water John


    EU should give TM the soft words and platitudes they can give in the next day or two. Along with that they should make it clear, that's it. Thus TM cannot pretend she has ongoing talks to delay the HoC vote.


  • Registered Users Posts: 68,317 ✭✭✭✭seamus


    I do have a small, sneaky feeling in the back of my mind that at some point in the future, we in Ireland will be in a situation where we are being told we are expected to pay for the support which Ireland was given by Europe at this time.
    I understand the wariness, but realistically we already have our red lines with Europe, and they have no leverage to "force" us to do anything to cross them.

    That's not to say there can't be comments made under people's breath, snide insinuations made. But at the end of the day, the EU is not a single country, it is a union of many countries, including us.
    As has been proven continuously over the last two years, it is not a fiefdom of Germany or France, it is a unified entity of all countries. So unless ALL of the other EU countries were to turn on us for "repayment", the concern that we are being protected by the EU in exchange for future favours, I think is misplaced.

    We have enough ammo anyway. Arguably the EU is repaying us right now for saving the union's banking system.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,672 ✭✭✭Enzokk


    Where are we? I am going to try and say where we are but will also quote Marina Hyde as she is infinitely better with words than I am.
    And so to where we stand after a preposterous 24 hours – a midwinter night’s dream after which nothing has changed as far as the Brexit deadlock in parliament goes. But at least the ERG have been aggressively made love to by an ass.

    Finally, some good news: the ERG has been aggressively made love to by an ass

    So we are exactly where we were when they voted for Brexit. They want to leave the EU and take control of their borders, money etc. but due to international treaties they cannot do this without a border in the Irish Sea. They cannot put a border in the Irish Sea because NI depends on the rest of UK trade as much as anything else so the whole UK needs to be in a customs union and in effect the single market to ensure there is no border.

    They cannot do that because then they will not take back control of their borders and laws and money etc. so to take back control they need to leave the EU. They cannot do that because of international treaties...and on and on and on.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 16,686 ✭✭✭✭Zubeneschamali


    All of which leaves her very vulnerable though. The DUP and ERG will vote en masse to reject her deal.
    Perhaps not. She can threaten them with another In/Out referendum if her deal fails, and then they might get no Brexit at all.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,338 ✭✭✭Bit cynical


    Peregrinus wrote: »
    Where we are now:

    The only significant renegotiation that could be possible is if the UK dropped some or many of its red lines and indicated that it wanted a much softer Brexit – Norway+, say. This is possible because (a) the EU would love it, and (b) it doesn’t actually require much in the way of change to the Withdrawal Agreement; it would all be the political declaration, which is a much smaller and less detailed and less legally significant document. But I don’t see any appetite for it in the leadership of either party in the UK, so for the time being I discount it as a possibility.
    I don't think an agreement along the lines of Norway's arrangement is possible with the EU since the Irish border issue, though reduced in the case of the Norway model, still remains. Depends, of course, on what is meant by Norway+.


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,686 ✭✭✭✭Kermit.de.frog


    Sweden and Finland seem to be indicating legally binding assurances on UK ability to exit the backstop are on the table.

    Both have said "it's difficult to see changes" but they are anxious to help.

    That's diplomatic code for not ruling it out.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,831 ✭✭✭RobMc59


    seamus wrote: »
    I understand the wariness, but realistically we already have our red lines with Europe, and they have no leverage to "force" us to do anything to cross them.

    That's not to say there can't be comments made under people's breath, snide insinuations made. But at the end of the day, the EU is not a single country, it is a union of many countries, including us.
    As has been proven continuously over the last two years, it is not a fiefdom of Germany or France, it is a unified entity of all countries. So unless ALL of the other EU countries were to turn on us for "repayment", the concern that we are being protected by the EU in exchange for future favours, I think is misplaced.

    We have enough ammo anyway. Arguably the EU is repaying us right now for saving the union's banking system.

    You are correct that Ireland can't and shouldn't be forced to "repay favours"-but if for example Europe wanted Ireland to be more proactive in its own and the general defence of Europe(troops,air force and navy etc)-that is a reasonable expectation surely?


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,569 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how


    Sweden and Finland seem to be indicating legally binding assurances on UK ability to exit the backstop are on the table.

    Both have said "it's difficult to see changes" but they are anxious to help.

    That's diplomatic code for not ruling it out.

    That's a polite way of saying "there will be no changes".

    Also, the only place I can see that online is on the "Daily Express".
    Care to link a real world source?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    Sweden and Finland seem to be indicating legally binding assurances on UK ability to exit the backstop are on the table.

    Both have said "it's difficult to see changes" but they are anxious to help.

    That's diplomatic code for not ruling it out.

    Of course there are legally binding assurances on the UK's ability to exit the backstop, just not unilaterally.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,771 ✭✭✭✭keane2097


    This is obviously an unrealistic proposition but how would people feel if there was a suggestion of, say, a 50 year time limit on the backstop? Just out of interest...


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 40,061 ✭✭✭✭Harry Palmr


    The amount of political time and energy that Brexit has sucked up like an infinite sponge is criminal really. What's more we're only in phase one, the exit will churn up UK politics for a decade as it's going to set of a chain reaction that could well see the UK cease to be. Scotland isn't going to just sit there and be quiet and a bad Brexit will only give the SNP and others more energy to campaign for a another referendum.

    I'd not be shocked to see the Tories split albeit on a 90/10 basis as the hard right seek to carve out something which can be leveraged against a hung parliament at a future point (though beyond the next election which will surely come too soon for any new party to be fully organised) we could end up with Tories+Hard Right as a post election coalition (or maybe supply and demand arrangement). Labour's failure to take any firm lead on Brexit with regard to alternatives could well cost them - but you could argue they are fecked either way - a lot of ageing, white working class voters already hostile on the one hand and plenty of urban, metropolitan, young voters angry on the other - Corbyn has managed to annoy everyone he is lucky that Prime Minister May has drawn so much fire away from his shocking leadership.


  • Registered Users Posts: 68,317 ✭✭✭✭seamus


    RobMc59 wrote: »
    You are correct that Ireland can't and shouldn't be forced to "repay favours"-but if for example Europe wanted Ireland to be more proactive in its own and the general defence of Europe(troops,air force and navy etc)-that is a reasonable expectation surely?
    Perhaps, but there's nothing Europe can do about it unless we agree to it. We have a permanent opt-out, and there is no legal way we can be sanctioned for exercising it.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 21,569 ✭✭✭✭Tell me how


    Wouldn't you love to have the self-belief/self-confidence of a politician?

    https://twitter.com/Haggis_UK/status/1073135950992195585


This discussion has been closed.
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