Brexit! Part 5

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Brexit! Part 5

maig 18, 2020, 4:45am

‘They can effectively blame Covid for everything’: What coronavirus means for Brexit talks
Jon Stone | May 12, 2020

As discussions over an EU-UK trade deal resume, negotiators are being forced to adapt to new political realities and practicalities...

...How coronavirus affects the question of an extension is politically complicated. A simple reading is that a pandemic is exactly the kind of reasonable excuse for a delay a pragmatic government, seeing talks stuck, might be searching for. Poll after poll has shown the public firmly supportive of and totally understanding of an extension, given the pandemic situation: the latest survey from pollster Focaldata has 66 per cent of voters supporting a delay, including 48 per cent of Conservative voters and 45 per cent of Brexit Party supporters...

Editat: juny 3, 2020, 12:31am

Do ministers realise the brewing constitutional crisis at the heart of the Brexit deal? (Telegraph)

The UK can only be sure it is leaving the EU whole in control of its borders, its laws and its cash by ripping up the Irish protocol...

That is, by reneging on ("ripping up") an international peace agreement signed by two sovereign governments (UK and Ireland) and accepted by the main warring parties on the ground, a peace deal which has held for more than 20 years now and brought a measure of normality, stability and economic prosperity to a poor and depressed part of the United Kingdom, namely Northern Ireland, a part which, like Scotland, did not vote for Brexit.

Boris Johnson lays out visa offer to nearly 3m Hong Kong citizens (Guardian)

Boris Johnson has opened the path to what he called one of the “biggest changes” ever to the British visa system, stating he was ready to offer a right to live and work in the UK to any of the nearly 3 million Hong Kong citizens eligible for a British National Overseas passport...

So now, following a Brexit which was largely supported by people who wanted to limit immigration into UK, Boris is allowing up to three million more people to come. I think that's a good thing, of course, as Britain does have a responsibility to its former colonial subjects, but then I'm not one of the slim majority who voted for Brexit and, as a migrant myself, I've always been in favour of immigration.

juny 3, 2020, 11:48pm

The pandemic is being used as cover for a no-deal Brexit (Guardian)

The Vote Leavers at the heart of government think the coronavirus crash will disguise the pain caused by a rupture with the EU...

juny 14, 2020, 11:48pm

Battered Britain is in no state to withstand a no-deal Brexit (Guardian)

Even as border controls with the EU are relaxed – by necessity – the prospect of crippling isolation still looms...

Editat: jul. 15, 2020, 11:03am


British travellers face the worst possible outcome once the Brexit transition period ends, the government has confirmed.

Promises that the European Health Insurance Card (Ehic) scheme would continue have been dashed, meaning travellers to the EU will face sharply increased travel insurance premiums.

UK visitors to the European Union are being urged to check their passport expiry dates.

Motorists are told they “may” require an international driving permit, as well as complying with additional insurance.

Pet owners who intend to take their dog or cat abroad from the start of 2021 must begin preparations by 1 September this year. And free mobile-phone roaming may end.

The government has launched an information campaign that reveals previous assurances have been abandoned...

Brexit was meant to make Britain global. It has made us friendless (Guardian)

It is not a secret that Britain is leaving the EU. The coronavirus crisis has dominated 2020 but not obliterated memory of the years before. Still, to be on the safe side, the government is spending £93m on a Brexit refresher campaign with the slogan “check, change, go”.

This is aimed at people who have dealings with Europe and might be under the illusion that it will be as easy in the future as it has been in the past. No one has done more to cultivate that misapprehension than Boris Johnson. The government’s new message on Brexit is to disregard what the prime minister used to say on the subject.

The essential issue here is that Brexit can make EU membership go away, but not the EU itself...

EU citizens will be deported for minor offences under Priti Patel’s post-Brexit immigration crackdown, lawyer warns (Independent)

EU citizens will be deported for minor offences under Priti Patel’s post-Brexit immigration crackdown, despite having permission to stay, a leading lawyer has warned.

Rules that allow foreign offenders to be expelled only if they represent a threat to the UK will be beefed up to target persistent pickpockets and shoplifters, from January.

Crucially, the home secretary announced the change would apply to the 3 million-plus EU citizens in the UK in the process of being awarded settled status, which supposedly guarantees their right to stay...

jul. 21, 2020, 5:44am

Russia report reveals UK government failed to address Kremlin interference (Guardian)

British government and British intelligence failed to prepare or conduct any proper assessment of Kremlin attempts to interfere with the 2016 Brexit referendum, according to the long-delayed Russia report...

Committee members said they could not definitively conclude whether the Kremlin had or had not successfully interfered in the Brexit vote because no effort had been made to find out...

jul. 24, 2020, 11:57pm

Boris Johnson's dream of a 'Global Britain' is turning into a nightmare (CNN)

Six months ago, Prime Minister Boris Johnson celebrated Brexit by describing Britain as the Superman of global trade.

Now, the country risks becoming an also-ran, losing its easy access to the huge EU common market, unable to strike a groundbreaking deal with the United States and on the brink of a trade fight with China.

Trade experts fear this will leave the United Kingdom more isolated than it has been for decades as it fights an unprecedented health and economic crisis. It's already on course for the deepest downturn of any major economy, in part a result of persistent uncertainty tied to Brexit.

Johnson and other proponents of leaving the European Union made much of the ability of a "global Britain," once liberated by Brexit, to strike out and forge lucrative trade agreements on its own terms. However, one year since Johnson took office, such game-changing trade deals haven't materialized — muddying the country's future at a precarious moment...

jul. 25, 2020, 12:35am

>7 John5918: Gee, who could have seen any of that coming?

Editat: jul. 25, 2020, 12:36am

>8 kiparsky:

Indeed. The level of self-delusion amongst the Brexiteers was really quite stunning to behold.

jul. 25, 2020, 1:40pm

lol @ "gobal Britain"... hard to let go of that imperial wet dream for the generations fed the bullshit myths...

But I wish they didn't make it sound as if countries were engaged in some sort of Olympics-- "also ran"s, "winners" etc.

It's Tory politics that's an "also ran" in the big picture. Like the American Republicans and the right wing everywhere, they have been shown up for the useless garbage they are by... sheer reality.

jul. 26, 2020, 2:09pm

>8 kiparsky: but what about all the money they'll save on payments to the EU? How can they possibly spend all that? :-)

jul. 27, 2020, 1:56pm

set. 9, 2020, 11:49pm

Brexit bill criticised as 'eye-watering' breach of international law )Guardian)

Downing Street defends bill after outcry from Brussels, legal experts and some Tory MPs

The government has unveiled plans to give ministers sweeping powers to “disapply” part of the Brexit deal that Boris Johnson signed in January, in a move that has shocked Brussels, threatens to provoke a rebellion by Conservative MPs and caused Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the US House of Representatives, to warn there will be “absolutely no chance” of a US-UK trade deal if it presses ahead with the move...

Cabinet ministers have admitted the bill breaks international law...

set. 10, 2020, 12:53am

>13 John5918: I knew that all this was really inspired by "The Crimson Permanent Assurance" ;-)

But seriously! How do they believe that anyone will ever make a deal with them again if they do this?

set. 10, 2020, 7:51am

>14 bnielsen:

Incredible short-termism and inability to see the implications of their actions, perhaps? Or simply that Boris and many of his merry Brexiteers think we're going back to the days of Empire when if any of those dam' foreigners dared to trifle with us we just sent a gunboat to put them in their place, what?

Editat: set. 17, 2020, 11:47pm

Joe Biden reminds Boris Johnson the world is watching Brexit -- and some are not impressed (CNN)

Joe Biden has provided UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson with the latest reminder that the world is watching how his government is handling Brexit.

The Democratic Presidential candidate tweeted on Wednesday: "We can't allow the Good Friday Agreement that brought peace to Northern Ireland to become a casualty of Brexit. Any trade deal between the U.S. and U.K. must be contingent upon respect for the Agreement and preventing the return of a hard border. Period"...

Biden's comments will serve as an uncomfortable reminder for the UK that despite the British perception it has a special relationship with the US, the Irish lobby in DC is strong. The Democrats have a particular interest in this, as former President Bill Clinton took a leading role in the negotiations which led to the Good Friday Agreement.

It might also open the UK's eyes to the fact that, despite President Donald Trump's warm words about Johnson and Brexit, lots of politicians across the divide in DC opposed Brexit and are under no illusions about the fact that a trade deal with the UK is not as high a priority to the US as it is in London...

Editat: set. 19, 2020, 12:31am

Why Biden's intervention on Brexit matters (BBC)

For two years British cabinet ministers have privately warned about the impact of a third party in the Brexit talks - the US Congress.

On the face of it, arms of the US government should have little impact or influence on UK decisions. But US politicians have always maintained a keen interest in anything that might impact on the Good Friday Agreement, as the US was one of the guarantors of peace in Northern Ireland.

For its part, the UK has made reaching a trade deal with the US a top priority. The freedom to do such a deal with the US was one of the motivating forces behind Brexit...

The US House of Representatives turning majority Democrat in 2018 was the trigger for concern among members of the British cabinet. Key figures in the Congressional Irish lobby, who had hosted Sinn Fein's Gerry Adams in DC for example, were appointed to important positions overseeing US trade deals. Since then, Irish diplomats in the US have cultivated the cross-party Irish lobby in Congress, and persuaded them to see the Brexit "backstop" provisions as essential for the protection of peace in Ireland...

This is not to say that the Trump administration would acquiesce in damaging the Good Friday Agreement. The President's trade representative, Robert Lighthizer, made clear over the summer, that there would be "no point" negotiating a US-UK trade deal that led to borders going up in Ireland, because it would not pass in Congress.,,

set. 22, 2020, 12:07am

Theresa May says 'reckless' Brexit bill risks UK's reputation (Guardian)

Theresa May has launched a blistering attack on the government’s plan to give itself powers to renege on the special arrangements for Northern Ireland in the Brexit deal.

She described the plans as “reckless” and “irresponsible” and said they “risked the integrity of the United Kingdom”, as they would not only tarnish Britain’s reputation globally as an upholder of the law but could contribute to a reunited Ireland.

In a strongly worded speech in the House of Commons, she said: “I cannot emphasise enough how concerned I am {that} the Conservative government is willing to go back on its word to break an international agreement signed in good faith, and to break international law”...

she said there could never be a time a minister could walk through the voting lobbies and say yes to breaking the law. May said the bill would also mean trust would be undermined in future negotiations with other countries. “So much for global Britain,” she quipped.

The Belfast South MP, the SDLP’s Claire Hanna, said Boris Johnson’s government had to own the consequences of the type of Brexit it agreed and should not “feign shock” when nine months later it emerged there would be trade barriers...

set. 28, 2020, 12:00am

Not directly related to Brexit, but indicative of how out on a limb the UK is in wishing to end freedom of movement with the EU. Switzerland of course is a non-EU member, but recognises that we are all part of Europe whether we are EU members or not. 62% is a pretty solid majority, unlike the tiny majority in the UK which voted to leave the EU.

Switzerland referendum: Voters reject end to free movement with EU (BBC)

Swiss voters have rejected a proposal to end an accord with the EU allowing the free movement of people. With all referendum votes counted, nearly 62% said they wanted to keep free movement, while 38% were against. Switzerland is not a member of the EU but has a series of interdependent treaties with Brussels which allow it to access to Europe's free trade area...

set. 28, 2020, 12:18am

>19 John5918: Most of the Swiss that I know* are pretty sane. They understand that the free movement of peoples is a winning proposition. I wonder how it is that so many Americans and British have failed to see this. I could come up with a few theories, but so far, none that I'd be inclined to defend.

* Since my company has a branch in Lausanne, this is more than a few

set. 28, 2020, 12:35am

>20 kiparsky:.

Yes, I've spent a fair bit of tme in Switzerland as it is the headquarters of the World Council of Churches, the Red Cross, and some UN agencies, and I share your opinion of Swiss sanity. In what other country in the world could the government give automatic weapons to every male in a certain age group and not have daily murders and gunfights (as you do in the USA, for example)? I remember once staying in a small village outside Geneva and being woken up on Sunday morning by heavy automatic gunfire. If I'd been at home in Sudan that would have signalled a coup d'etat or a rebel attack. In Switzerland my hosts assured me it was just the local army reserve doing their training.

set. 28, 2020, 12:54am

>21 John5918: Just to clear up one point, I can assure you that I do not have daily murders and gunfights. My town is extremely quiet, and the surrounding communities, are also very low on murders. Boston, which is a short bicycle ride away, has a higher rate, but still not daily.

That being said I take your point: the idea of arming all Americans of "a certain age group" with automatic weapons is not one that sets my mind at ease, whereas I would happily spend arbitrary amounts of time in heavily-armed Switzerland.

Editat: set. 28, 2020, 1:29am

>22 kiparsky:

Fair comment, although I believe annual gun-related deaths in the USA are in the tens of thousands, so on a national basis it is certainly occurring daily. If it were in UK there would likely be shoot outs after football (soccer) matches on a weekly basis, and probably most nights when it was kicking out time at the pubs.

* CDC figure for 2017 is 39,773 deaths from gun-related injuries, quoted here.

set. 28, 2020, 9:15am

>23 John5918: ah, if you mean "you" in the plural, then yes, certainly. I wish "y'all" were more standard, it would help disambiguate...

set. 28, 2020, 10:05am

>24 kiparsky:

Yes, one of the weaknesses of the current English language is that it doesn't distinguish between the singular and plural "you", as many other languages do, such as French or Arabic. I'd love to see "thou" come back into common usage, but I think the trend is for languages to get simpler rather than more complex. French also has "on", which is useful for talking in generalities, probably best translated into English as "one", but even that is not so common these days, at least in British English, and tends to be viewed as being pretentiously upper class. The royal family reputedly uses "one" instead of "I" and "we".

set. 28, 2020, 10:16am

>25 John5918: The royal family reputedly uses "one" instead of "I" and "we".
Yes, one thinks that's sort of douchey.

set. 29, 2020, 1:05am

>25 John5918: Yes, English is dumb. (Sorry for the commercial for Skillshare, but the video still cracks me up)

set. 29, 2020, 1:18am

>27 bnielsen:

Thanks! How about the Two Ronnies, Four Candles?

set. 29, 2020, 2:05am

>28 John5918:. "What kind of knockers are you looking for?" Nice!

oct. 1, 2020, 8:33am

Brexit: EU launches legal action against UK for breaching withdrawal agreement (Guardian)

UK put on formal notice over internal market bill, which ministers admit breaks international law...

oct. 1, 2020, 6:21pm

I don't think there's another thread about the UK, and this can be seen in relation to Brexit as another symptom of the conservative takeover...

They compare the situation and this measure to Hungary, but I thought of Trump and his attack on the initiative to teach American history with reference to its white supremacist framework (The 1619 Project).

The Tories' ban on anti-capitalist resources in schools is an attempt to stifle dissent

Editat: nov. 10, 2020, 12:50am

Boris Johnson to press on with Brexit bill despite Lords defeat (Guardian)

Boris Johnson has put himself on a collision course with the Joe Biden administration in the US after Downing Street said it would press ahead with legislation designed to override the Brexit deal on Northern Ireland.

Peers inflicted a huge defeat on the government after voting overwhelmingly to remove measures that seek to “disapply” parts of the Northern Ireland protocol – measures that Biden has said would put the Good Friday agreement at risk...

It cannot be emphasised too strongly that there is an international peace treaty, the "Good Friday agreement", in force since 1999, which has nothing to do with the EU or Brexit and which is now at risk due to the type of Brexit being pushed by the current UK government. Both the House of Lords and Joe Biden are concerned about this, but sadly Boris and his chums apparently aren't.

nov. 24, 2020, 10:48pm

Brexit talks: Joe Biden says UK and Ireland must not have hard border

US president-elect’s renewed call for Good Friday peace deal to be honoured could complicate Britain’s negotiations with EU...

Brexit stems from a civil war in capitalism – we are all just collateral damage

To one sort of capitalist, the insecurity and chaos that Brexit will bring is horrifying. To the other, it is highly profitable...

So it is worth repeating the big question: why are we doing this to ourselves? I believe the answer is that Brexit is the outcome of a civil war within capitalism.

Broadly speaking, there are two dominant forms of capitalist enterprise. The first could be described as housetrained capitalism. It seeks an accommodation with the administrative state, and benefits from stability, predictability and the regulations that exclude dirtier and rougher competitors. It can coexist with a tame and feeble form of democracy.

The second could be described as warlord capitalism. This sees all restraints on accumulation – including taxes, regulations and the public ownership of essential services – as illegitimate. Nothing should be allowed to stand in the way of profit-making. Its justifying ideology was formulated by Friedrich Hayek in The Constitution of Liberty and by Ayn Rand in Atlas Shrugged. These books sweep away social complexity and other people’s interests. They fetishise something they call “liberty”, which turns out to mean total freedom for plutocrats, at society’s expense...

Both from the Guardian.

nov. 25, 2020, 10:03am

Biden piles pressure on Boris Johnson at Brexit crunch time (CNN)

US President-elect Joe Biden has cranked up the pressure on Boris Johnson to strike a post-Brexit trade deal with the European Union, as negotiations between the UK and Brussels enter what could be their final few days. Speaking with reporters in Delaware, Biden said he had talked to the UK Prime Minister, the Irish Taoiseach and the government of France among others and made clear his opposition to a guarded border between the Republic of Ireland, an EU member state, and Northern Ireland, which, as part of the UK, has left the EU...

nov. 30, 2020, 2:15pm

This is a 50-minute lecture from May 2019 by Prof. Danny Dorling (U of Oxford), which I found fascinating and illuminating not just in regard to Brexit and Britain but more generally in regard to Trumpism--even down to the mechanics of the vote (while the electoral systems are different, the resulting complexities of the vote have similar patterns, explanations and consequences). Note that Dorling doesn't discuss the US, that's just what I couldn't help referring to mentally as he spoke. Highly recommended and I hope you don't quit in the middle section with all the regional patterns because the second part is superb.

Prof Dorling (Uni of Oxford) - Brexit and the End of the British Empire

nov. 30, 2020, 2:19pm

des. 9, 2020, 11:00pm

Brexit was never a grassroots movement, but an elitist political takeover (Guardian)

The 2016 referendum was won by rightwing millionaires using the poor and ignored as political cover...

Editat: des. 25, 2020, 3:49am

Boris Johnson has 'got Brexit done'. With a deal that will please no one (Guardian)

Britain leaves the EU with its sovereignty compromised, its economy weakened – and its leader walking a tightrope...

des. 28, 2020, 11:01pm

The Guardian view on Britain’s global role: shrinking around Brexit (Guardian)

In a world of superpower rivalry, the UK must urgently rebuild the strategic alliances that were sabotaged by its departure from the EU...

Editat: des. 31, 2020, 8:09pm

Aquest missatge ha estat suprimit pel seu autor.

gen. 18, 10:16pm

Brexiters are waking up to the damage they've done (Guardian)

From horse racing to fishing to road haulage, British industry is in chaos. No wonder leavers are turning on each other...

feb. 10, 10:21am

Colin Greenwood on Brexit's effect on touring musicians

Spoiler: it's not good.