The British government has all but failed to fulfil the decision of the British people that the United Kingdom should be taken out of the European Union (aka Brexit). Under the Article 50 process we now have just 50 working days (even fewer Parliament-days, I believe) until the date on which the UK must by law leave the EU, that is 29 March 2019. Our constitutional and political systems are in chaos and nobody has the first idea of the terms under which the UK will leave the EU – known as the Withdrawal Agreement; a sort of divorce settlement. The default position is that if there is no Withdrawal Agreement then, as far as trade between the UK and EU countries is concerned, we shift to World Trade Organisation rules. In all other respects, the UK would no longer be a member of the European Union.

Like one of those scenes in a Mission Impossible movie where the screen is filled with a big, red LCD timer counting down, and you’re biting your nails to know if Tom Cruise will defuse the nuclear weapon in time, we’re all wondering what will happen on 29 March. Will the UK leave the EU with a deal? Will the UK ‘crash out’ of the EU with no deal? Will somebody pause the clock (extend the Article 50 process)? Will somebody stop the clock (terminate the Article 50 process altogether)? Nobody knows – which is an extraordinary failure of government and politics when you think about it.

The EU Referendum June 2016

Sad perhaps, but I had spent seven years before the EU Referendum of June 2016 teaching myself about the history, culture, workings and ambitions of the European Union. I did so after reading a book in 2009 written by Matthew Elliot, the Co-Founder and then Chief Executive of the Taxpayers’ Alliance (of which I’m a member); the book was entitled ‘The Great European Rip-Off: How the Corrupt, Wasteful EU is Taking Control of Our Lives’. I finished the book and was horrified. I resolved to find out as much as I could from multiple sources about the EU. The more I researched, the more horrified I became. Marta Andreasen’s ‘Brussels Laid Bare’ made me shudder, but probably the definitive work on the story of the European Union is a book written and published in 2003 by Christopher Booker and Richard North entitled, ‘The Great Deception: Can the European Union Survive?’ I read all 615 pages of the tome and by the end of it had decided that not only was the European Union a pernicious political construct, but also likely eventually – and ironically – to become the cause of the next serious conflict in mainland Europe.

I realised that the European Union was not some kind of benign group-hug which existed for the pursuit of children’s happiness, animal welfare and world peace; rather, my research told me that the European Union was in fact the mother-of-all rackets, heavily disguised and cleverly promoted as nirvana. It won’t surprise you to learn, therefore, that come the EU Referendum I voted Leave.

The Power of the European Union

The impressive thing about the European Union is that over a generation or so it has seduced member nations through their ruling political and societal elites, establishment institutions, academia, press and media organisations, big business and so on into believing that ceding national sovereignty is synonymous with prosperity. The originators of the European Union founded the institution on the basis that if you play on people’s economic hopes and fears, you can do pretty much as you like with them politically.

We shouldn’t have been surprised, therefore, that the thrust of the Remain campaign in the EU Referendum was not to espouse the untold cultural, political and societal benefits of EU membership, but rather to argue that leaving the European Union would result in economic ruin. Indeed, even now as we approach the 29 March, the British government, the political class, the BBC and much of the mainstream media, big business, Uncle Tom Cobley and all are telling us that without a Brexit-In-Name-Only (BRINO) Withdrawal Agreement, the United Kingdom is without doubt doomed. Such is the power of the European Union marketing machine; such is its hold on our society after 40-odd years of subservience to its political and legal institutions. Please don’t accuse me of making biased, unfounded assertions here, by the way. Just spend a few years like I did studying the history and workings of the EU for yourself.

What Next?

A couple of years ago, naively perhaps, I thought that the UK would indeed leave the European Union, unfettered, on 29 March 2019. Today, I’m not so sure. Indeed, I’m rapidly coming around to the notion that there’s a very real chance that the UK will remain tethered to the European Union in some shape or form: either as a full member (Brexit is cancelled), or with some half-baked associate status, ie BRINO. In this context, I fear that our politicians are right now scheming to put EU Referendum II to the electorate. It would sicken me if this came to pass, but I’m what’s known in psychology circles as a ‘Defensive Pessimist’. I look at every situation in which I find myself and ask two questions: ‘What could possibly go wrong here, and how do I mitigate the effects of things going wrong?

From my Leave perspective, EU Referendum II would mean that things had gone horribly wrong. A second referendum would signal above all else that democracy was collapsing in the UK, if it hasn’t collapsed already looking at the extraordinary antics of our ruling elites this past 2 years and more. A second referendum would signal that the culture of the European Union had indeed infected totally our British political institutions. The EU way is to arrange matters such that if a member nation conducts a referendum and comes up with the wrong result, the people must vote again. Denmark was required to vote again on the Maastricht Treaty; Ireland was required to vote again twice: first on the Nice Treaty and then again on the Lisbon Treaty. As José Manuel Barosso, erstwhile President of the European Commission once said, ‘They must go on voting until they get it right’.

An Appeal to Remain Voters

The point is that if our politicians succeed in engineering EU Referendum II, what are we supposed to do? Regardless of which way you voted in the EU Referendum, how would you react to being invited to vote again? For you can be sure that EU Referendum II would be constructed to make a Remain outcome a racing certainty, either in the way that the question was framed, or how the debate was controlled (rigged), or both. This is the way that the European Union works, bearing in mind that the overwhelming majorities of the British political class and the establishment are, to all intents and purposes, agents of the European Union; they make no secret of this fact for much of the time. If you throw in the state broadcaster’s bias towards the joys of EU membership (check out News-watch if you’re sceptical about the BBC’s pro-EU bias) then those of us who would like to see the UK leave the European Union would be heavily outgunned in EU Referendum II.

Reflecting the overall profile of voting in the EU Referendum, I would say that roughly half of my wider family and friends voted Leave, whilst the other half voted Remain. That said, recently a number of my Remain-voting acquaintances have let it be known to me that perhaps being in favour of having the UK governed by a foreign power wasn’t such a great idea after all. We’ve come to see the EU’s true colours over the past couple of years and we’ve discovered that those colours are more pirate-like Jolly Roger than United Colours of Benetton.

So, here’s my appeal. If you voted Remain in the EU Referendum and are invited to vote again in EU Referendum II, please give serious consideration to placing your cross in whichever box is most likely to result in the UK regaining its sovereignty.

Bear in mind that the power brokers in the European Union are on an avowed mission to create a United States of Europe (‘ever closer union’); to emasculate member states and centralise EU power in the European Commission; to have EU foreign policy take precedence over member nations’ foreign policies; following on from that, to form a European Union Army to enforce EU foreign policy, inimical to NATO, the preserver of peace in Europe since NATO was formed in 1949; to set tax policies across all member states – a policy of taxation without representation; generally to convert sovereign nation states into regions of the United States of Europe. It was the Conservative MP Ken Clarke who said, ‘I look forward to the day when the Westminster Parliament is just a council chamber in Europe’.

Existential Crisis

I hope you can you see that the apparently simple question of whether or not the UK should be a member of what is purported to be a trading bloc, is now in fact an existential crisis for the British people. The European Union absolutely is not a trading bloc. That may have been the original, goodwill intention when the European Coal and Steel Community was formed in 1951. However, today the European Union is a nascent empire without a demos. In other words, the 500 million people who make up the European Union have no allegiance to the European Union at all. They buy into it primarily, if not solely for economic reasons. That was always the intention of the founding fathers, led by the Frenchman Jean Monnet who said, ‘The fusion of economic functions [will] compel nations to fuse their sovereignty into that of a single European state’.

If you want your country, the United Kingdom, to become a region of a single European state governed by unelected, unaccountable people like Jean-Claude Juncker and Donald Tusk, then if EU Referendum II comes to pass by all means vote Remain. However, if you value everything that the United Kingdom stands for, I appeal to you to vote for the option which will ensure the recovery of our national sovereignty – a precious gem bequeathed to us by generations of blood, treasure and sacrifice.

In my next post I shall explain why we should not fear the impact of the UK leaving the European Union on World Trade Organisation terms.

If you agree or disagree with my opinion, please comment below.

To stimulate discussion on this topic, click on one or more of the buttons below to share this post on social media.

In any case, thank you for reading my post above and thank goodness that we still have freedom of speech in the United Kingdom.





  1. Henry Alder · ·

    Pray for a miracle we actually leave, although the way the Government and Parliament is
    carrying on, and the extreme cut back of police; I can see civil unrest from various factions.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Richard Young · ·

    A good read…thank where’s my yellow jacket.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great piece, Moraymint. I’ll be a regular visitor in future. Could I recommend to all like minded readers, especially any tax professionals, an E.U. Commission paper published on 15th Jan 2019 (the day of May’s great defeat – ha). This is the link:

    This is technical, but not too unreadable, and sets out quite openly their intention to work towards the removal of the existing national veto in E.U. tax law proposals. The significance of this is that without the veto, EU tax law will be decided in the Council of Ministers by ‘qualified majority voting’ and the losing states in any vote will have to apply laws that they did not vote for (what the Lisbon treaty subtly recategorised as the”normal legislative procedure”). E.U. competence on tax matters is complex, but for instance is very extensive on consumption taxes like VAT and excise. If they succeed in their objective, they could eg seek to abolish our VAT zero-rates which are hardly used by other Member States. They will also be after things like Ireland’s low corporation tax rates, and possibly want to impose punitive taxes on financial services – no other Member States have an industry remotely the size of ours, and they will have no interest in blocking any such tax proposals.

    It will be a long journey for the Commission to push this through, but in these dire days for Brexit it needs to get out there as a perfect example of the slow but unstoppable juggernaut of the EU’s attack on the independence of Member states.

    They are coming after our freedom to set our own taxes!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. moraymint · ·

      Thanks Alan; useful stuff; I’ll take a look, but I’m not at all surprised …


  4. Octavious · ·

    Direct action is needed. Close down London by – blocking the M25, Heathrow tunnel including the ramp to the Departure Level Terminal 5 and Gatwick. The Left take similar action regularly but you are appealing to people that find it difficult to get off their arses.

    The IRA were given a settlement when they set off a huge car bomb in the City of London. I do not advocate violence but unless the government feels threatened they will do nothing to address any grievance.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. moraymint · ·

      Yes, I do wonder about whether we’ll see a certain level of civil disobedience in the coming months if our politicians persist in screwing us over …


  5. Great article moraymint as per old goat you should consider sending your article to be published on the Going Postal blog where you would no doubt find a very appreciative and receptive audience.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. moraymint · ·

      Thanks Kent; will investigate …


  6. Douglas Brodie · ·

    Oops, I meant “an untarnished Leave supporter like Owen Paterson”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. moraymint · ·

      Thought you did!


  7. Douglas Brodie · ·

    A gerrymandering second referendum with a choice between May’s deal and Remain would be massively boycotted by Leave voters and would have no legitimacy.

    The Conservative party could unite itself and resolve Brexit if it replaced Theresa May with an untarnished Remainer like Owen Paterson and called an election on a manifesto backing the majority leave vote of the electorate, dropping May’s “deep and special relationship” with the EU. The new prime minister could replace all the diehard Remainers in the cabinet and instead of the old Project Fear it could exalt the brave optimism of the electorate who voted to leave in the face of all the outrageous Project Fear propaganda. It might also warn of the risks and unknowns of remaining shackled to the failing, imploding EU.

    Otherwise the Conservatives are toast at the next general election and Jeremy Corbyn will probably be prime minister.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Felicity Stroud · ·

    Thank you Moraymint, fully support your views.
    Let us hope that against all odds your views will prevail

    Liked by 1 person

    1. moraymint · ·

      No, thank YOU Felicity for taking the trouble to read my views. Never give up, I say. Never, ever give up. You’ll know who said that the first time around, I’m sure …


  9. Boyd Stokes. · ·

    Agreed with vigour, well said.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Agree, agree, Agree!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. moraymint · ·

      I take it that you agree then, Annie. Great, thanks …


  11. Great post Moraymint.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. moraymint · ·

      Thanks Gordon. Per Ardua …


  12. Great glass half full article:

    “Let’s show Europe there is another way: a global, ambitious, free-trading future”

    Almost daily, we are treated to stories and predictions of the future laced with fear and designed to intimidate the British people. We are told, on news programmes, in the papers, and by certain political figures that sandwiches could be unavailable, that’s if we don’t run out of food entirely, that there could be civil unrest, and that super-gonorrhoea will plague the nation.

    It is clear that project fear has returned, and is attempting to scare the British people into submission. The last time project fear was in full swing, the British people were subjected to the same treatment. We were told a vote to leave will, immediately after the referendum, push our economy into recession making our GDP at least 3% smaller. We were told that a direct consequence of a vote to leave would be 820,000 jobs lost, and that Government borrowing will go up.

    In reality, the unemployment rate has not been lower since the mid 1970’s, GDP has grown by 3.2%, and Government borrowing has fallen to a 13 year low. The people of Britain know when they are being lied to. They didn’t believe the scare stories in 2016, and they have been proved right. They will not believe the wild claims being made now and they will be proven right again.

    The people of the United Kingdom will never be bullied into submission, not by the media and political elite, and certainly not by political bodies on the continent. I want to contrast the above with the positive vision I have for Brexit Britain, one that I believe is shared by the majority of people in this great country of ours. A vision that in some way has been imbedded in our national consciousness for generations, but also one that can become reality through new and exciting policy directions that will bring prosperity to people here at home.

    The British live on a geographically small island on the North West of the European continent, but over centuries turned this island home of ours into a powerhouse of the globe. We sparked the industrial revolution and exported parliamentary democracy, the rule of law, railways, television, computers, and the World Wide Web to the rest of the world. We make up just 1% of the human population, yet our language is the most widely spoken on the planet. It is the language of entertainment and of business. We have one of the most highly performing economies in the world, we are one of the five permanent 20 members of the UN Security Council, and we sit at the centre of the Commonwealth, made up of 53 countries and 2.4 billion people across the world. We are the country that initially stood alone against tyranny and fought on through impossible odds to free the people of Europe. We built this country we love through the virtue of being an island nation, protective of our shores, but entirely global in outlook. So in many ways, the Brexit dream has always been a part of our national history, and our national destiny.

    However, Brexit is not simply routed in our history, grand and full of pride though we should be about it. Brexit is an opportunity to utilise this British state of mind that has brought us so much success to improve our country further. We need to implement bold, exciting policies that seize the opportunities Brexit provides to benefit the people of Britain. An obvious benefit for Britain going forward is the revival and renewal of our fishing and farming industries. There are few other countries with so many coastal communities, many of whom relied on fishing as their primary source of jobs and prosperity for generations.

    My grandfather was a fisherman in Hull, so this is a matter close to my heart. Currently, due to the principle of equal access to Britain’s rich fishing grounds with the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), trawlers from other EU member states catch 60% of the fish caught in our Exclusive Economic Zone, this has led to 60% of the UK fishing fleet being scrapped due to lack of resources and the destruction of our fishing communities. Not only this, but despite the CFP intending to protect fish stocks, the EU actually forces fishermen to dump billions of dead fish back into the sea due to EU quotas. This absurd waste of fish, that cannot be considered part of fish stocks, but could be a perfectly good meal, only drives up the cost of food whilst simultaneously damaging the marine eco-system.

    Following Brexit, Britain should leave the CFP, take back control of her territorial waters and fish them responsibly. This would revitalise coastal communities, reduce waste, and enable Britain to protect the fish stocks for future generations. Similarly, the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) causes untold damage. By ignoring the free market indicators of supply and demand, the CAP leads to wasteful overproduction that leads to mountains of surplus food being destroyed. Furthermore, the CAP defends farmers from competition, at great expense to hardworking people who not only pay for the CAP subsidies, but also have to fork out inflated food prices due to a lack of competition. I see a future for Britain where we are free to trade with the world, growing our own food but also importing food from across the world, taking advantage of efficient producers from across the planet and helping to lower prices for the hardworking taxpayer at the supermarket.

    A Britain in which wages go further, inflation is lower and the least well off in society don’t need to worry about grocery bills is a Britain we should all strive for. Not only will this benefit people here at home, it has the potential to benefit the developing world also. In Africa, roughly 60% of people live in rural areas and are inherently dependent on agriculture. By being global in outlook and becoming a free trading nation once again, Britain can buy more from Africa’s harvests, pumping money into the least developed regions of the world. In many ways this will be more beneficial than foreign aid, as much of the money will go directly into the hands of hardworking families in Africa, rather than through Governments and other large bodies.

    Free trade will bring lower food prices, and help to enrich people across the developing world. I think that is a benefit of Brexit we can all get behind. Domestically, another exciting idea open to post-Brexit Britain is that of Free Ports. The House of Commons library defines these as “areas inside a country geographically, but outside of that country’s established customs area, thus allowing components and goods to be imported, manufactured and exported without being subject to the host country’s standard tariffs and export/import procedures.” The establishment of Free Ports across the country can bring huge benefits, including an increase of manufacturing output, increasing employment for our coastal regions, and promoting trade across the world.

    In Britain we already have world class infrastructure at our ports, capable of capitalising on the Free Port opportunities. Free Ports offer both economic growth and prosperity for people here at home, and will also reconnect Britain with its proud history as a maritime trading nation. Free ports can also help to rebalance the economy, as an island nation Britain is fortunate to have ports right across our country, rather than one super port like many other countries. The North of England in particular punches above its weight in this sector and would benefit disproportionately from these proposals, helping to make the ‘Northern Powerhouse’ a genuine success.

    Old friends and new partners are already eager to establish new trade deals with the UK. Australia, the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, the UAE, and more have indicated strongly that they want to strike new trade deals with an independent United Kingdom, and increase trade with us. Not being able to do so would not only let our friends and partners across the world down, but also prevent Britain from seizing one of the chief benefits that Brexit provides. Last year, our exports reached a record high of £616 billion, just imagine what can be achieved with increased and enhanced trading arrangements across the globe. It is unthinkable that we should not rise to the task of obtaining the ability to strike exciting new trade deals across the world, given the obvious and immediate benefits to the UK economy, and jobs market.

    Finally, there will be substantial and very real savings made by not sending huge sums of money each year to the European Union. A key part of the Brexit message was ‘Take Back Control’, and as we take back control of our money we can spend it on our priorities here in the UK. We could invest in the front line services of our NHS, in the military and defence technologies, in our fishing and farming industries, in our transport infrastructure, or give tax cuts to working people and enable them to spend their money in any way they choose. These are just the first ideas that sprang to mind, the possibilities really are endless and we should seize them with open arms. Brexit’s benefits are numerous and must be reported.

    The British people chose to leave the European Union and know in their hearts that the better Britain I believe in is possible if we take back control of our money, borders, and laws. If we leave the Single Market and Customs Union, if we are able to strike bold free trade deals to the benefit of both Britain and her allies, we island people will have fuelled our next golden age by making that bold step forward in June 2016; forward into the world free from the shackles of bureaucratic institutions and unelected commissioners. If we seize the opportunities available to us, we cannot fail, and others will follow us into the new prosperous free trading era of growth. It falls to us, our great country and its island people, as it has so many times in history, to show Europe that there is another way.

    We want to see a Britain that is global, ambitious, outward-looking, and free-trading. A Britain that supports business, jobs and prosperity for its people. A Britain that is in control of its destiny, able to grasp opportunities, and offers the chance for every one of its island people to succeed and flourish. This is the Brexit vision for Britain that I believe we should be striving towards, and one that we can achieve. To quote Sir Winston Churchill: “Now we are the masters of our fate; the task which has been set us is not above our strength; its pangs and toils are not beyond our endurance”.

    Andrea Jenkyns’ piece is part of a series of essays: “Clean Break, Bright Future: Leaving the EU, rejoining the World” published by the Freedom Association’s Better off Out campaign

    Liked by 3 people

  13. “Leavers must accept that the Brexit betrayal is happening now”

    “My new year resolution was to hope for the best but to prepare for the worst. It is the only one that I have kept in my entire adult life and I am sticking to it rigidly. This is why.

    Throughout the torturous EU negotiation process, I have warned repeatedly that Theresa May is engaged in the betrayal of Brexit. Many Brexiteers have tried to tell me I am wrong.

    But ever since September 2017, when Theresa May delivered her EU speech in Florence, I have been convinced of my position: Brexit has undergone a slow strangulation.

    In that speech, Mrs May indicated that, after decades of Britain opting out of the EU’s structures, our withdrawal from the EU would see Britain opting into them. In effect, she said she desired a close relationship with the EU, rather than a clean break.

    It was this attitude which led ultimately to the appalling Withdrawal Agreement that was kicked out of the Commons on Tuesday. Looking more like a surrender document signed by a nation defeated in war than a confident vision for our future, it is not surprising that the PM went down to a historic defeat.

    The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, commented afterwards that there would be no concessions from his side. This means the agreement is politically dead.

    The EU’s stance should present no problem for the UK. Not only did the British people decide to leave the EU by a majority of 1.3 million votes in the referendum, but 80 per cent of voters cemented that decision at the 2017 general election by backing Labour or the Conservatives. Both parties’ manifestos promised to deliver Brexit. Moreover, in 2017, some 498 MPs voted to trigger Article 50.

    Article 50’s terms are clear. The UK will leave the EU with a “withdrawal agreement or, failing that, two years after the notification”.

    So, UK law now states that we are leaving on March 29, deal or no deal. Although I have hoped and prayed that this law would be obeyed, I can see this is now highly unlikely. There is no will among the Government, most MPs or Speaker Bercow for this to happen.

    Having voted for legislation that lets Britain leave the EU on World Trade Organisation (WTO) terms, this group has decided to do its damnedest to change it. Our politicians believe that a bad deal is better than no deal, and to hell with what the people think.

    Now, in Mrs May’s desperation to deliver “Brexit in name only”, she has appealed to her political opponents. Jeremy Corbyn has so far snubbed the offer of talks. But the Lib Dems, SNP and Plaid Cymru have already visited her in Downing Street. They all supported Remain. Logically, any consensus reached with their help will surely be a watered-down Brexit.

    Mrs May’s long-standing friend, Damian Green MP, has given a strong clue as to what lies ahead. He has cited Norway, saying it is not in the Common Agricultural Policy, the Common Fisheries Policy or under the European Court of Justice.

    But remember, Norway voted twice not to join the EU and its politicians signed it up the European Economic Area anyway. This supposedly independent country must accept free movement of people, obey EU single market laws and pay EU financial contributions. Norway’s political class overrode the will of its people. Much the same is happening here.

    By far the likeliest outcome now is the activation of the Article 50 clause allowing for an extension, there being no Commons majority for anything else. Indeed, I have already been told by the Secretariat of the European Parliament that Brexit is dead. My arch-opponent in Strasbourg, Guy Verhofstadt, has even joked that the worst part of the UK staying in the EU is that Farage will come back.

    Brexiteers must accept that the Brexit betrayal is happening. In line with my new year resolution, I am preparing to fight the European elections on May 23 and working with Leave Means Leave to assemble a cross-party campaign to fight a second referendum, should one occur.

    Not to do so would be negligent. It would also betray the 17.4 million people who voted for the UK’s independence.

    After dedicating 25 years to getting Britain out of the EU, I shall return to the battle lines if I must. And I will do so with more determination than I have ever shown before”.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. reallyoldbill · ·

    As usual, an erudite and persuasive article, MM, for which I thank you.

    Like you I have been following the twists and turns of our membership of the European Project in its various incarnations for many years. In fact ever since we signed up to the Single European Act in the mid eighties which removed our veto in several areas and introduced the concept of QMV whereby our national interests could be, and inevitably were, subordinated by a coalition of other member states. Like all the other developments in the Project this was deliberately not the subject of public debate and consequently not properly scrutinised by politicians in our parliament. The betrayal at Maastricht, a treaty which was as divisive in the country at the time as the question of Brexit is today, but despite this was not put to a public vote by John Major, served only to deepen my opposition to membership. Ironically, of course, in another display of the sheer hypocrisy of our political class, the same Major who said that he wouldn’t call a referendum on Maastricht because “they are not consistent with a parliamentary democracy” is today calling for a second one on the question of Brexit because the first one didn’t go his way.

    However, tempting as it is to revisit the history, we are where we are, and it is worth briefly asking how and why.

    Firstly, despite the soothing words by politicians on all sides in the immediate period after the unexpected result backing Leave, very few of the political or establishment classes have ever reconciled themselves to the result and have steadily used the passage of time to actively undermine it. The blatant calls for a second referendum by many who publicly dismissed the idea in 2016 serve to display their growing confidence that they are winning. They assess that the weary public at large are so tired of the whole saga that they will accept such a development and Remain will win; I am not so sure. I have seen no evidence that many Leave voters have changes their minds and if anything the political duplicity on display has hardened attitudes.

    Secondly, once Cameron ran away, the Conservative Parliamentary Party were determined that none of the obvious candidates from the Leave campaign should succeed him. The CPP is overwhelmingly comprised of Remainers, itself an interesting situation when the party grassroots is the opposite and something that is for another debate; candidate selection being so heavily controlled from CCHQ is a large part of the problem with today’s political disconnect between parliament and the people.

    Thirdly, of all the candidates that the CPP could have anointed, May was almost certainly the least able as her time at the home office proved. She is not the most mentally agile; is too in thrall to her close advisors; is a control freak who is not a team player; will not listen to advice from professionals or colleagues and above all never really saw the opportunities offered by Brexit. She never understood why people voted the way they did, convinced herself or was convinced that it was all about immigration and focused too intently on that to the exclusion of the underlying question of sovereignty. She set out from day one to treat the exercise as one of damage limitation rather than one of national renewal and was determined to remain as close to the EU as possible, which by definition would exclude closer and new partnerships with non-EU nations, including some of the most economically dynamic on the planet, as well as renewing ones with long established partners that have been allowed to wither through EU membership. Adopting a common rule book with the EU and creation of a level playing field on legislation are diametrically opposed to what most of the 17.4 million Brexiteers voted for. Her idea that there could, or should, be some concession to the 48% who voted to remain in the EU is not only idiotic but, if Brexit is to be achieved in more than name, a practical impossibility. As someone imaginatively pointed out: you can’t be a little bit pregnant, you either are you or you aren’t, and it is no different with EU membership. The inevitable result was the outrageous Withdrawal Agreement that resembled a document of surrender by a vanquished nation more than the fruits of international negotiation.

    Fourthly, a parliament which is almost certainly the least impressive of modern times, heavily biased in favour of no Brexit, and if it can’t achieve that then the least beneficial one that they can get away with while still claiming to have honoured the referendum result and manifesto promises, aided and abetted by a speaker who has shown himself willing to ride roughshod over long-standing parliamentary conventions that exist for very good reason and who in doing so brings the office that he holds into disrepute. If this parliament hasn’t yet convinced sufficient people that our constitutional arrangements are not fit for purpose and in need of wholesale reform then it will certainly have done so by the end of this tortured process.

    So will we actually get Brexit? Who can truly say, but the default position is still, thanks to a law passed overwhelmingly by parliament, that the UK leaves the EU on 29th March 2019, deal or no deal. Efforts by parliament to assume the role of the executive and reverse or amend that position may or may not succeed, but the fact it will try proves beyond doubt that the attachment to EU membership transcends parliament’s attachment to our ancient democracy and its carefully crafted checks and balances, which may go a long way to explaining why we find ourselves where we do. Whether the people at large will actually accept this perversion of our sovereign democracy still remains to be seen, but speaking personally, I never will, and if they do succeed in denying what I not just voted for, but waited patiently to do for decades, then I will do everything legally permissible to destroy our present complacent and arrogant political class. I fear that others may not feel so constrained and will express their anger and disgust in less acceptable fashion. Our unremarkable politicians really are playing a very dangerous game and if they think that 17.4 million people and more will simply allow this coup to go unpunished they will be disabused of that notion very soon I suspect.

    Sorry for the long post, moraymint, something are difficult to abridge; I didn’t mean to hijack your blog.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. moraymint · ·

      Excellent, thanks very much Bill …


    2. Bill, I agree with you, and would like to comment about candidate selection and the clash with most members about the EU. As a former Party Officer in London, I had a lot to do with such matters at varying levels. Without breaking too many confidences, may I say the following:

      some candidates can, and do, lie.

      Remember, Hague, Major, Cameron and Osborn all painted themselves as Eurosceptics at first.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. moraymint · ·

        Thanks SM. The more one sees and learns about our political class as it exists today, the more one could be tempted to despair. Perhaps ’twas ever thus as far as politicians are concerned. The key, I suppose, is to take every and all possible peaceful and legal steps to hold them to account. I’m sure that there are decent and honourable individual politicians, of course. However, something bad seems to happen to them collectively, as a herd. Like I say, we must always keep their feet to the fire, otherwise our democracy and our quality of life will inevitably regress. Right now, as a herd, our political class is skating on very thin ice indeed …


      2. reallyoldbill · ·

        Thanks for that insight. I have no doubt that a good many candidates, both sitting and prospective MPs, lied about their commitment to the party’s 2017 manifesto promises; they have after all campaigned openly and actively in some cases to reverse them from the moment they were elected. I feel very strongly that in such cases the power of recall by constituency associations and the calling of a bye election would be a solution to this dishonesty. Lying to obtain employment is a criminal offence in every walk of life bar politics and there needs to be something to balance that out.

        Liked by 1 person

    3. elcnutador · ·

      Nice one, bill. That was magisterial.
      You may like the Going Postal blog. Many similar minded folk there.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. arfurbryant · ·

    And if anyone should doubt that the EU as a body is inherently undemocratic, just read what this bunch of charlatans put into a Treaty in their name:

    The European Stability Mechanism Treaty (c.2012)

    Article 32: (Legal status, privileges and immunities) [my bold]

    3. The ESM, its property, funding and assets, wherever located and by whomsoever held, shall
    enjoy immunity from every form of judicial process
    except to the extent that the ESM expressly
    waives its immunity for the purpose of any proceedings or by the terms of any contract, including
    the documentation of the funding instruments.
    4. The property, funding and assets of the ESM shall, wherever located and by whomsoever
    held, be immune from search, requisition, confiscation, expropriation or any other form of seizure,
    taking or foreclosure by executive, judicial, administrative or legislative action.
    5. The archives of the ESM and all documents belonging to the ESM or held by it, shall
    be inviolable.

    How can any group of people put that in an official document and claim they are democratic?

    Time for a cup of tea, I think…!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. moraymint · ·

      Yes, immunity from the law for certain EU employees is shocking and not well known at all …


      1. reallyoldbill · ·

        This legal immunity was first brought to my intention in the treaty that set up Europol. How anybody could imagine that giving legal immunity from prosecution to officers of a police agency could be a good idea is beyond me, but does betray the dangerous mindset of those who draft these documents. The enthusiastic, almost Messianic, trumpeting of the supposed benefits of EU membership by the hard-core Remainer faction despite this sort of clear evidence of its Orwellian underpinnings is at complete odds with the almost inevitable reaction they would display should a UK government propose exactly the same legal immunity for officers of domestic police forces in this country. It is the same sort of double-think that allows them to claim respect for and of democracy while at the same time demanding a second referendum on a matter that should already have been settled by a democratic vote on the same question. Whatever happens with Brexit from here, the idea that we are a democracy in anything but name has been cruelly exposed as a sham.

        Liked by 3 people

  16. I posted a piece on the effects of the Lisbon Treaty on my own wordpress blogspot – jayengee today which I had seen on Facebook. I then checked it out on a known EU sympathising site – the BBC.. The effects of that Treaty are frightening yet nothing has been made of it that I can remember.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. arfurbryant · ·

    Yes, you nailed it this time Moraymint.

    The Politico/Media bandwagon is in full swing.

    The BBC is an utter disgrace with its biased and manipulative coverage.

    The government has utterly failed to carry out the referendum vote.

    Nobody voted for a deal, in any form. I certainly didn’t. Who came up with the smoke and mirror idea that a deal was necessary? I don’t need a deal in order to leave a club.

    Out of interest, what would the question be for a second referendum? I thought the first question was both reasonable and clear. Are they going to ask the same question again? Are they going to keep asking it until they get what they want? I wouldn’t mind betting that a second referendum with the same question would give the same result (and maybe a greater percentage to Leave)!

    Democracy is the loser here, which is EXACTLY what the politburo of the Council of the EU wishes…

    Liked by 3 people



  19. Mike Allen · ·

    Hi. Interesting article. Did you also read about the many advantages (nowadays mostly taken for granted) of EU membership, for balance?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. moraymint · ·

      Thanks Mike. Yes, my research made clear the advantages of EU membership; some economic, some social. But, in my everyday life whether at home or at work I’m always weighing up pros and cons, costs and benefits. After 7 years of looking at the workings of the EU in detail, what comes through strongest and most consistently to me is the degree to which the institution is anti-democratic. I wrote previously about the EU’s governance and political shortcomings here:

      In the end, all of life comes down to an appraisal of what, on balance, is best for you/me. As far as the UK’s membership of the EU is concerned, I concluded that on balance UK independence beats UK membership of the EU. It’s a choice.

      Finally, I could also see that there was no reason at all why many of the benefits of EU membership could not be achieved by the UK (or any nation) alone – without our nation (or any nation) being governed by an unelected, unaccountable oligarchy based on foreign soil.


  20. Andrew Gilbert · ·

    An excellent appeal to those that want to remain in the EU. The biggest fear pumped by the media if we leave with a no deal is the economic collapse (the fear factor). However if you look at the evidence and data the world economy is in an everything bubble (credit, housing, car , stocks) and these markets will crash (great depression 2.0) in 2019 / 2020. Equally the noise that banking and finance will move to EU isn’t going to happen as I doubt Germany / France or Netherlands will want these high risk casino banks on their shores. We were told that day one after voting to leave there would be a meltdown (didn’t happen) yes the pound fell in value, but this helped exports. I’m not a genius (working class) so how did the clever people get it so wrong then ? so why are they so confident and so sure that a financial collapse will happen in March 2019 ??

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Thanks, another great summary.

    I wonder whether both sides could get what they want? Why don’t we leave on WTO terms at the end of March, which suits leavers and fulfills the result of the Referendum, but with a Govt promise in law to hold a 2nd Referendum to Rejoin or not, in say 3 or 4 years time. That should satisfy Remainers. If, as I suspect, life outside the EU is bright and predictions of doom unfounded, the people would no doubt vote to stay outside. But if not, remainers get their chance to prove everyone they were right and take us back in.

    Liked by 3 people

  22. Michael stewart · ·

    Moraymint, a good well argued piece, of course. I share your concern having had to deal with the EU/EC machine up close over the years. Its the lack of effective political leadership, which is so lacking in our political class that is of concern to me. The result of years of EU engagement? How are the current leaders going to deal with the world post the current self made challenges? When a leader loses the trust and confidence of those he is asked to lead, the only way ahead is change.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Dover Sentry · ·

    An excellent article. Many thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Like you I am annoyed by the continuing Pro-EU bias of the BBC, CBI and Parliament. However, 17.4 million of us voted to leave the EU. It seems that Parliament is absolutely determined to remain attached to the EU by hook or by crook or any crooked way they can fix it. Thus defying democracy.

    The BBC warns against ‘No Deal’, ‘falling off a cliff’. Other mainstream media by and large echoes that viewpoint.

    The EU is determined not to negotiate, but that has been their attitude from day one.
    I don’t believe that Theresa May is capable of changing anything. She says that she is listening, but it is quite clear that she won’t listen to anything that is said to her except by her advisers, and they apparently have the same one track mindset.

    I fear that we will never leave as all that Parliament is doing is playing games and that if they decide to have a second referendum they will try to split the leave vote by offering the Withdrawal Agreement (also known as the ghastly Chequers Agreement) or ‘No Deal’. They might even include Leaving on WTO Terms – to split it three ways.

    Part of the problem is that most people have never known life before the EU. Those of us that have that experience wouldn’t touch the EU with a bargepole except that those like Heseltine, the Kinnocks, Patten and others have personally benefitted from it.

    Liked by 3 people

  25. Stuart Tyson · ·

    Completely agree with your article. I am and always have been of the same view as yourself, without the need to delve into the finer points of EU history.
    Like Mark 8023 above (below?) I suspect at this late stage minds are made up.
    I subscribe to the DT and for the most part agree with a lot of their writers and editorial stance. I regularly look on the Guardian website, but do not subscribe, to get an alternative view. The typical Guardian writer has, shall I say, a truly alternative view! Those kind of people if expressing their views of the world with honesty are genuinely EU supporters, often to the point of blindness that the EU is perhaps in some trouble.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Reblogged this on Wolsten.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Excellent post as usual, I look forward to and will be sharing your next WTO post.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Good stuff again Moraymint …..

    But I fear minds are made up, trenches are dug, and a consensus outcome vanishingly likely…..

    Not sure where we go from here TBH…..

    Sent from my iPad

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Lee Taylor · ·

    I have followed your postings originally on the Telegraph and now here for a few years Moraymint and you have always been right on the money. What has happened in the past six months has been an utter shambles, but I think most of us felt this was likely to be the outcome the moment Mrs May was parachuted into the role as Remainiac in Chief.

    The warnings were there for a long time. Her absurd act of betrayal in “we seek no competitive advantage” the whole charade of employing David Davis and then Dominic Raab and undermining all their work. It has been an outrage. Now we have the disgraceful prospect of parliament dictating to the executive about having Brexit on their terms. It’s beyond parody.

    One thing that has come out of this is that the likes of you and I will not be changing our view on the EU. We have long seen it as a sinister organisation, but for many of the people who voted to remain the scales have fallen from their eyes and they have seen just what a bullying bunch of shysters the EU are. In the unlikely event they attempt to foist another referendum on us they are going to come badly unstuck no matter how much they attempt to gerrymander the result. A lot of people who voted to remains are sickened by the EU and its treatment of us and people like us who already detested the EU have only hardened our resolve.

    For me the most baffling aspect is how May could conceive that the rubbish she attempt to foist on us by way of a withdrawal agreement could ever get through Parliament. I am no conspiracy theorist, but you have to wonder what kind of leverage the EU have over her. That or she is an utter half-wit. It is completely baffling. One thing is for sure if the Tories push on and force through some slightly tweaked version of this nonsense they are likely to be wiped out at the next GE.

    I fear we live in very dangerous times. Our current crop of politicians have utterly failed us. I pray that we escape on WTO terms. My view on this is that yes there are likely to be some difficulties associated with this, but ultimately WTO is the only real leave option, anything else is remaining in one form or another. The only other glimmer of hope is that the EU will implode which I still think could happen and could happen very quickly. We would do well to be distanced from this when it does occur.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Old Goat · ·

    Brilliant piece, as always, sir.

    Reposted on Going Postal, and biased BBC.

    Liked by 2 people


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