Hands up if you, like me, are enjoying the Easter Brexit break? I would be very surprised if anyone, except an actual Class A lunatic, isn’t preferring a world where the media is talking about something else. It would be so much better if things could always like this. Here’s how.
We know that if we proceed with Brexit, we have another decade at least of it dominating the news. The withdrawal agreement is supposed to be the easy bit. Once we get that out of the way, there’s the small matter of unpicking 40-odd years of agreements and deals with the rest of Europe and then negotiating brand new deals with the entire world to replace the ones we already have. If we take a moment, or preferably a much longer period, of refection we might be able to put these three pointless, wasted, ugly, divided years behind us.
The liars, shysters and hucksters sold the lie that Brexit would be easy and pain free. They avoided telling us that leaving Europe would in fact get us in such a mess that Britain became a laughing stock around the world. And all to fulfil the myth that by losing control of our destiny and our seat at the top table we would take back control of things we never lost control of in the first place.
We now have a six month period to take a breath and consider where Brexit is leading us. It is now clear that we never lost our sovereignty and by remaining outside Schengen we never lost control of our borders. Added to that, remember Boris Johnson’s lie that there would be an additional £350 million a week for the NHS? Or that instead of bleating about “uncontrolled migration” we could have applied a break to EU migration at any time but chose never to do so because the government realised it was good for the economy. Now is the time for a sensible debate.
Remoaners like me must look beyond David Cameron’s pathetic ‘Project Fear’ campaign where all the remain campaign did was to say how awful things would be outside the EU, even thought it’s true, and not what a wonderful thing the EU has been and is for our people. In my view, the remain campaign alienated large swathes of the electorate during the referendum by trying to put the fear of God up voters instead of saying something positive about Europe. Not qualified with lines like “The EU isn’t perfect, but…” Just saying it like it is.
I want my children, and being a cuddly, left leaning pussycat, your children to enjoy all the freedoms I perhaps didn’t enjoy as much as I should have. We know the schtick by now: the opportunity to live, love, travel, study, work and retire abroad, something our government and opposition is desperate to end. And with the world in serious trouble due to climate change, pollution, over-population, an unstable lunatic in the White House, an ex KGB thug in the Kremlin and a middle east powder keg just waiting to explode, what sort of legacy to we wish to leave for the next generation?
As a collectivist by nature, I firmly believe that the world’s problems can only be addressed by independent nations working closely together. A framework like the EU, for example. We are now approaching a fork in the road.
One way forward is that the country either goes ahead with Brexit and the country remains divided and broken for years, possibly decades to come. The victors will be far right English nationalists who wish to bring about a deregulated low tax small state economy or the hard left disaster socialists like Jeremy Corbyn who see Brexit as a golden opportunity to bring about socialism in one country. The other way forward is that we take a well-earned breather and enter into a national debate about the type of Brexit we want or whether, given we know that all forms of Brexit will make the country worse off, Brexit goes ahead at all in view of everything we have learned since the 2016 referendum.
The only certain way to get back to normal is an exit from Brexit, temporary or permanent. That way we maintain all the benefits we get as part of our membership and Britain remains a powerful influence throughout Europe and the rest of the world.
The voices of the extremes, including Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, Nigel Farage, the DUP, Britain First, Vladimir Putin, George Galloway, the Socialist Party (Militant), Jeremy Corbyn, Donald Trump, the BNP, Ukip, Boris Johnson and every other crackpot on the extremes of politics wants to take us out of Europe. That alone should surely give us pause for thought. I hope we take it.