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Cheers for Hard Brexit
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The fuss about Brexit over in the U.K. is of only indirect interest to us Americans, but it does show another aspect of the slow political revolution taking place all over the Western world.

As our own correspondent Robert Henderson posted here at on Thursday, the Brexit vote of June 2016—the vote by British people to leave the European Union—was of a piece with the election of Donald Trump five months later. Both events represented a revolt by ordinary citizens against entrenched Deep State elites and their media, corporate, and academic shills.

Two-plus years on, it’s clear on both sides of the Atlantic that those entrenched elites were more entrenched than the revolutionaries supposed. Both in the U.S.A. and Britain, they have put up a mighty resistance to the loss of their power and influence.

So which revolution is doing better, ours or theirs? On the evidence of this week, I’d have to say Britain’s is ahead.

British Prime Minister Theresa May had negotiated a deal with the EU, a package of conditions under which Britain could finally leave the EU on March 29th. It was a lousy deal for the Brits, keeping the nation chained to the EU bureaucracy in a hundred ways. “BINO” I called it back in December—Brexit in Name Only. Robert Henderson prefers BRINO, and I’m okay with that: the perception is the same.

Tuesday this week Britain’s parliament finally got to vote on Mrs May’s deal. They voted it down. That generated a mini-crisis as the opposition party in parliament called a vote of no confidence in the Prime Minister. That vote, however, went Mrs May’s way, so she remains in power.

But since parliament’s rejected her deal, what are the terms under which Britain will leave the EU on March 29th?

A strong possibility now is: no terms. This is the so-called “hard Brexit.” Britain just walks out, leaving the bureaucrats and businessmen to sort things out among themselves as best they can.

There would be chaos and confusion; but, as Adam Smith said, there’s a deal of ruin in a nation. The Brits have faced far worse within living memory. When the dust settled they’d have their sovereignty back, and could set their own laws in their own parliament for their own people again. That would be worth a bit of chaos.

A great many Brits agree. Here’s a sound clip from last week. It’s from a weekly show on BBC-TV called Question Time, in which a panel of pundits and politicians takes questions from a studio audience. This being the BBC the panels are slanted left-liberal, making it usually a pretty dull show.

This Thursday’s Question Time panel, however, included political journalist Isabel Oakeshott. Following those earlier events of the week, the question of course came up: Is there now any alternative to a “hard Brexit”? Ms Oakeshott took the question. Here’s what she said:

Oakeshott: Well, the answer … look, I can save everybody a lot of time here …

Emcee: Oh, do! Because it’s been two years, so, so, …


Oakeshott: The short answer is: No, there isn’t. And that is why it seems to me the only option for Theresa May now—and I’m going to admit that it is a sub-optimal position—is to walk away. That is all she can do.

Emcee: So to leave with no deal.

Oakeshott: Yes, absolutely, because that isn’t … (Drowned out by prolonged cheering and applause from the studio audience.)]

Just listen to that studio audience! Hard Brexit? They love it! The TV coverage is even more telling. They’re happy, with the happiness of people who just heard an authority figure—Ms Oakeshott is the privately-educated offspring of an upper-class family—an authority figure taking their side against the elites.

I can’t forbear adding that Question Time is a peripatetic show, set in a different city each week. Thursday’s show was set in Derby, which is of course the capital city of Derbyshire …

It’s worth adding also that the Brits seem still to have some of their resourcefulness in the face of impending chaos. The London Daily Mail, January 18th, reports a severe shortage of warehouse space in Britain on account of British firms stockpiling all kinds of goods, including food. The firms fear that chaos over the absence of customs rules at ports of entry following a hard Brexit will slow down or stop entry of goods.

That’s private action, not government action; but I’m reminded of Margaret Thatcher and the crisis with Britain’s coal miners in the early 1980s. When the miners’ union leaders first started acting up, Thatcher appeased them with soft talk. Meanwhile, behind the scenes, she called in her Energy Secretary Nigel Lawson and told him to start stockpiling coal.

When the stockpile was big enough, Thatcher turned on the miners and confronted them boldly, from a position of strength. She was a smart lady, and that’s smart government. You listening, Mr President?

(Republished from VDare by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Brexit, Britain, EU 
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  1. there will be no Brexit,

    hard, soft, or otherwise.

    it is all theatre,

    same as Trump’s fake-populist play-acting.


    the Jews own them all.

    • Replies: @Logan
  2. For those of us who are ignorant of European politics, what are the concrete issues involved in a Brexit deal? If whoever has the authority (Parliament? The Prime Minister?) simply declares that Britain is no longer part of the EU, what happens as a result?

  3. Logan says:
    @Haxo Angmark

    So I assume that if UK does a hard Brexit on March 29 it will be evidence the Jews don’t own them all?

    • Replies: @Wilkey
  4. Art Deco says:

    If they make it through a hard Brexit with no damage or just a mild recession, the negotiating position of the twits in Brussels is ruined in any future encounter with a nationalist government in Europe. The capacity to bully EU governments outside the Eurozone will largely evaporate. The next thing to hope for would be a successful departure from the Eurozone by Italy.

    • Agree: Johann Ricke
  5. Wilkey says:

    It’s worth noting that the responses of the visible “ethnic types” – four right down in front, Asian guy in the back middle, and two blacks right behind him – are almost unanimously, uh, unenthusiastic for Oakeshott’s answer (the black lady in the back, God bless her, appears to be clapping).

    That is only to point out what we already knew: immigrants who don’t share the ethnic background of the natives have zero interest in the cultural survival of the country they have moved to, and they are completely unembarrassed about admitting it. As an American of almost entirely British ancestry I have more interest in the survival of a British Britain than all or nearly all of the visibly non-British people seen in that video. They would gladly spit on (or rape the daughters of) the people who welcomed them.

    On another note, it’s important to point out that many Remoaners have now officially made the decision to dance on the graves of elderly Britons. Polly Toynbee had an article in The Grauniad last weekend literally celebrating the deaths of elderly Britons (World War II vets emphatically included) because it means that Britain is now officially, demographically anti-Brexit, since the elderly voted for Brexit in disproportionate numbers.

    Personally I suspect that “Hard Brexit” will be bad for Britain, but it will also be bad for the EU. But one never walks into negotiations on, say, a house by proclaiming “I have to have this house!” In order to get the best deal from the EU the UK’s leaders need to show the willingness to walk away. And if that is what it ends up coming to they’ll soon be able to meet at the table and settle on a reasonable arrangement that benefits them economically while preserving the sovereignty (esp. controls on immigration) that the people of Britain deserve and insist on.

    The reality is this: Britain is an advanced country filled with highly skilled workers. It will manage just find as an independent nation. And the problems it does have are more likely to be fixed if it owns up to the responsibilities of independence than if it remains locked in political union with its frenemies.

  6. Wilkey says:

    Having seen how willing greedy gentiles are to betray their co-ethnics, I have never been one to blame everything on “teh Jews,” but it may be useful to point out the ethnicity of a certain Speaker of the House of Commons who has been happy to bend the rules in order to favor MPs trying to betray British voters and keep Britain in the EU.

  7. Anonymous [AKA "GeoffJones"] says:

    On 29 March 2017 the PM exercised article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty triggering automatic departure from the EU in 2 years time. We know when but we don’t know what.

    Without an agreement on trade tariffs, customs checks, goods norms, aviation rights, visas for travel, international taxes such as VAT, police cooperation, judicial cooperation (all the things we took for granted for more than 40 years), the UK crashes out of the EU and seeks to trade on WTO rules. But we’ll still have to negotiate those WTO tariffs with all other WTO members which include the EU.

    The winners? Internationally mobile industrialists and investors who can benefit from a far weaker currency and can off shore (prominent examples from the Brexiteer camp are James Dyson and Jacob Rees-Mogg).

    The losers? Those in the high unemployment areas of the north and west who believed the lies about how Brexit would make the UK great but whose groceries will cost far more, whose pound abroad will be worth far less and whose hospitals and other social services will be poorer for the loss of key EU workers. If the current government continues with its austerity measures, those areas of the

    Ironically the farmers and fishermen of the UK who were very anti Europe received the greatest EU subsidies and they, unless the UK government steps in to continue that financial support, will be worse off. Farmers and fishermen also greatly relied on EU nationals to do jobs which the British didn’t want to do (fruit and vegetable picking, fish factory sorting etc).

    I live in a DisUnited Kingdom.

    If you thought based on the evidence of applause in the TV clip that the British people backed a no deal so strongly, that is because the Question Time show was filmed in Derby in north west England where 60% of voters in 2016 chose leave. Where I live in London 70% voted to remain.

    Remember that the current UK government is choosing to listen to 51.9% of the 2016 electorate on a 72% turnout (13 million people who could have voted, didn’t). The sense of division and drifting without aim or clear future is dreadful. Oh for a end to the last two and a half years of anger and uncertainty.

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