Well it has started – the end game of Brexit with five days of debates in the House of Commons and a vote on the 11th December whether or not to accept the agreement brokered by Theresa May with the European Union on how we leave the European Club.
Except of course this time next week such is the confusion over what ‘Brexit means Brexit’ actually means it could all have changed.
What the debate has already thrown up on day one (apart that is from three very serious defeats in Parliament for the Government) is just how confused puzzled and disparate the United Kingdom has become.
England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland!!
Great Britain a United Kingdom?
It is difficult given the Brexit debate not only in Westminster but also in the main stream media to see how anyone can say the nations are united beset as they are not only by their own national identity crisis but what is increasingly becoming acute paranoia.
It is a paranoia arising out of fears that they are being short-changed, bullied, held to ransom, driven rough shod over and no end of other phantoms of unfair treatment lurking in the imaginary shadows.
Once upon a time (or at least it was when I was young) we all managed to rub along reasonably nicely as Great Britain symbolised by a stout solid looking dog with the face of Churchill who without a moment’s hesitation would come together to sort out any of the world’s problems by the simple method of banging a few heads together.
And all under the combined Union Flag.
(Cue…Land of Hope and Glory and Heart of Oak and bring on the Royal Marine band)
And when we eventually sorted out the world’s problems we settled back to become the British Isles that was a small group of rocks to the north of mainland Europe content in the knowledge that our independence had been guaranteed by centuries of defeating the continental foreigners in war and trade.
Oh how the Union Flag fluttered proudly over these islands in those halcyon times.
But then came along two world wars and the rapid decline and even more rapid disintegration of the British Empire.
The result was a state of denial and acceptance by the political (public school) class who found (and still do) it difficult to accept that they were no longer the world’s aristocrats who could strut around the globe and expect and in fact insist ‘bloody Johnny foreigner” treat them with reverence and respect.
Worse still for the political class they couldn’t (and still can’t) bring themselves to accept that those they consider the ‘under-class, the proles, the riff-raff here at home on these islands also refuse to be subservient and bow to their every wish.
The truth of the matter (and I know this may upset some who will suggest I f*** of if I don’t like it – well tough I’m staying) is that across the majority of the world we’re seen as a bit of a joke.
Scientists and biologists tell us life started and evolved from the simplest form of the amoeba splitting and then splitting again.
The one achievement of the internal UK Brexit debate (OK it is no longer so much as a debate than a squabble between those who would wish to be in power) isthat just like the amoeba the United Kingdom is now dividing into its constituent parts.
The Union Flag itself is now more than ever before is beginning to split into its constituent parts which is understandable when you consider that only 1% of the population even know which way up to fly it.
I suspect (though I admit to having no evidence for it) the other 99% don’t give a monkeys either way leaving it to people like me who get enraged when we see the flag flying the wrong way up.
The St George flag symbolising England has been politically high-jacked by the far right xenophobes except that is when England are playing football in an international competition when it is seen everywhere.
The Scots have reclaimed (if that is the right word) the Saltire (St Andrew’s Cross to those who don’t know) and none more so than the proud Scots of the Scottish Nationalist Party who want their independence.
(And who can really blame them?)
Wales appear disappointed that they are unable to reclaim their portion of the Union Flag mainly because they don’t appear on it for the simple reason that when in 1606 the Union Flag was created Wales was already ‘United’ with England and as a Principality instead of a Country (now you know why they appear to be permanently angry and aggrieved) they weren’t included in the Union Flag.
However the Welsh being Welsh have their own flag depicting a dragon and whoa betide anyone who has the temerity to say and not acknowledge that Wales is a nation in its own right.
Northern Ireland of all those within the British Isles is the exception wanting ‘no matter what’ to stay within a United Kingdom.
Except that is for the large minority who would prefer to combine with Eire in a United Ireland.
Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland (the last of who when they get around to agreeing with each other) of course now have their own Parliaments devolved as they were from Westminster.
The nub of the Brexit issue for all of them is that those who see the benefits of and want to stay in the European Union don’t want to be dragged out of it by the actions of as they see it the “English Parliament” whilst those who see the benefits and want to leave don’t want the “English Parliament” to tie them into the European Union in any way whatsoever.
Did I say the world sees us as a joke?
I think I may have mentioned it.
Anyway… Whatever the outcome of Brexit the United Kingdom will never be the same again and the Union Flag will be no more than a flag of convenience for its constituent parts.
So what to say (and I don’t pretend to speak for the whole of the nations (or nations) ) but as a proud Englishman and Brit to the rest of the world all I can say is…….
We in the United Kingdom are well and truly up shit creek without a paddle or for that matter even a canoe.
But Hey Ho
“BREXIT MEANS BREXIT”