Small Nation – Small Minds – “Faint Hearts”
Question… Should I update this now or wait until after the Cabinet resignations have been completed and we have a new Prime Minister and International Trade Secretary?
On the 20 July 2017 Dr Liam Fox MP the United Kingdom Secretary of State for International Trade – appointed by Theresa May – said in a BBC interview that, and I quote,
Coming to a free trade agreement with the European Union should be “one of the easiest in human history” because our rules and laws are already the same.
We’ll blow me down with a feather it now turns out that the rules and laws especially with regard to trade being the same only applies whilst we are a member of the European Union.
Any future rules and laws on trading with the European Union has to be negotiated which required a plan and an objective of what it was the UK wanted in order to bring about an agreement between the UK and EU.
A plan and objectives that the UK Government have now conclusively and indisputably shown they didn’t and still don’t have.
But not worry because later on in 2017 Dr Fox (why does he call himself Dr? He isn’t a practicing medical practitioner anymore as far as I can see and hasn’t been for some time) said that “he will have agreed dozens of international free trade deals within the next eighteen months”.
In other words between 2017 and the U.K. Exit from the EU in March 2019.
He even went on to say that “Britain will simply copy and paste all 40 existing EU external trade deals with third countries the second after midnight on Brexit Day.
Well here we are in November 2018 with no, nil, zilch international free trade deals on the table ready and waiting for ratification and implementation in four months time.
And as for “copy and paste”…. The EU external trading partners have already made it clear that it was never going to happen.
So was Dr Fox lying or is he simply so ignorant of the reality that he thought it was going to be that simple?
Bloody hell even Baldrick of Black Adder fame came up with more ‘cunning plans’ than Dr Fox
So what of his promises?
Well now the claim is that they weren’t really promises – even though they were – or commitments – which they were – or if they were it isn’t his or the Governments fault they cannot be delivered.
So whose fault is it?
Who is to blame?
Well apparently it is all down to the “faint hearts” saying at the time and since that it could not be done because of course by stating what has come to pass is what has caused it to come to pass.
What else according to Dr Fox are the “faint hearts” responsible for?
Well it seems that when he dismissed out of hand claims that a no-deal Brexit would have a negative impact on the British economy it was true at the time but the “faint hearts” continuing to express their doubts – remember how the very good friend of Dr Fox one Andrea Leadsom MP called the “faint hearts” unpatriotic- are now responsible for it coming to pass.
According to Dr Fox it wouldn’t be a problem because if an agreement isn’t reached the United Kingdom would simply make Britain great again and take back its economic control by resorting to WTO trading rules.
Except of course what Dr Fox didn’t do before he made the statement was to check with the WTO if it was possible and as we now know it isn’t that simple – who would have guessed it – and if the UK wants to resort to WTO rules they will have to negotiate with them.
In other words having left a free trade organisation run by, according to Dr Fox, the unscrupulous unelected unaccountable officials of the EU in order to trade under the WTO rules he would have to negotiate with, you guessed it, unelected officials of the WTO.
Perhaps the “faint hearts” and especially the business, banking and economic expert “faint hearts” had a point and should have been listened to rather than raving xenophobes such as Farage, Johnston, Leadsom and Davies.
But of course it isn’t their fault it has all gone wrong it’s the “faint hearts” aided by the media (politicians fall back position when in trouble blame the media) who in giving the “faint hearts” a medium through which to express their doubts also gave succour to the EU negotiators who are now punishing Britain for leaving the EU.
In the next week we in these islands are about to find out if Theresa May has struck a deal with the EU.
We will find out if Parliament will accept any deal that she makes.
We will find out if there is the likelihood of another referendum or even the possibility of a General Election.
Perhaps whilst all this is going on we should heed the words of Peter Praet who is a Member of the Executive Board of the European Central Bank (ECB) when he says
“Britain’s hopes of negotiating preferential international trade deals after Brexit are an “illusion”. It is an illusion to think that small countries can play any role in fixing the rules of the game in this international, global environment. So it’s a big mistake what is happening in the UK now. Really, I think it’s a big mistake.”
Praet said the rise of nationalism, both politically and economically, has underscored the “power of bargaining power” and the need for a united Europe.
I doubt if Dr Fox and his friends in Government will listen because as they have made their contempt of experts very clear.
It is going to be interesting to see what happens as the British Government implodes over Brexit and how the set about blaming the outcome on the “faint hearts” as they scuttle off to enjoy the rewards of their gold plated pensions