Welcome to the new version of European Tribune. It's just a new layout, so everything should work as before - please report bugs here.

Brexit means Breakup

by Frank Schnittger Wed Oct 5th, 2016 at 09:54:35 PM EST

Theresa May made great play at the Conservative Party conference this week-end of the UK leaving the EU as one unit. Well she would say that, wouldn't she? I suspect that many Scots will have a different take on that, and the situation in Northern Ireland could well become unstable all over again. She also seemed to be hinting that the UK would be opting for a "hard Brexit" with very little in the way of special access to the Single market. Perhaps that is only an opening negotiating gambit - signalling to the EU that the UK won't be held to ransom in the Brexit negotiations.  

Brexit politicians seem obsessed with the notion that the EU can't afford to lose its export surplus to the UK and will thus be very anxious to offer the UK a good deal. But the UK receives only 4% of EU exports whilst the EU imports 40% of UK exports. It is easy to see which economy would be harder hit if no free trade deal is negotiated. Perhaps they also underestimate the degree to which the EU is a political project rather than just an economic arrangement. Having more or less declared war on the EU and everything it stands for, they may be surprised at the ferocity with which the EU will fight back.

But that announcement will also have sent shock-waves through the City and leading industrial businesses with complex supply chains and customers spanning many EU countries.  You can't run a just-in-time manufacturing operation with vital components stuck in customs awaiting clearance. Even more worryingly, Ministers have started talking about British jobs for British people, and Irish academics in leading British Universities have been asked to furnish their passports as part of a "nationality audit".


It beggars belief that Ministers can't see how damaging both those announcements are for the long-term health of the British economy.  In common with Krugman I couldn't see why the referendum result would, in itself, be immediately damaging to the UK economy; other than the usual "confidence faery" types of short term reactions and effects. But what of the countless individuals and businesses in the UK with foreign passports or linkages with EU markets who must now be making contingency plans for salvaging their careers or businesses and who will now - at the very least - be putting further investment in the UK on hold.  

Deciding where to locate your next manufacturing facility or replacement plant is a decision businesses generally take years in advance. If vital components need to be sourced in the EU or significant sales are required in EU markets, it seems a no-brainer that locating the new investment within the EU may also become mandatory or at least a safer bet. The economic effects of leading academic researchers or business employees deciding that the UK no longer represents a welcoming location for their talents will take many years to be felt. But there is no upside to making them feel unsure of their future in the UK.

A combination of devaluation and looser monetary and fiscal policies may have staved off an immediate recession in the UK, but they will do nothing to prevent a gradually deepening economic crisis if more and more working individuals and businesses come to feel that their future must lie outside the UK.  And there is no limit to the downside if their departure results in a downward spiral of reduced economic activity leading to reduced government revenues followed by more austere government spending policies.

The UK already has a huge deficit of skilled employees and world leading industries in the manufacturing sector.  The City is where the UK leads the world, and much of that business may have to relocate to the EU if it cannot negotiate pass-porting rights to trade within the EU.  And lest anyone think that that may simply involve setting up "brass plate" operations in Luxembourg, Frankfurt or Dublin, they can think again: the licensing authorities in those states are already making clear that securing banking licenses in those jurisdictions will require that all management, staff and relevant resources required to produces those services will also have to be located in those jurisdictions.

The Tory party is brilliant at reinventing itself and also at marketing the UK's relatively anaemic economic performance as world leading. As several studies have made clear, the UK's medium term economic performance lags all except Italy of the major EU members, and the UK's GDP per capita is now less than the average of the 15 members states who were or became members in 1973. Growth in 2016 is expected to be a hardly stellar 1.8%, and that is before any of the longer term effects of Brexit have had a chance to have a measurable impact. Theresa May's negotiating position will rapidly crumble if the economy takes a downward turn thereafter.

So what of Scotland and Northern Ireland as the reality of a hard Brexit starts to bite? The Scots' can legitimately claim that many of the pledges made at the time of the last Referendum have been broken, and that independent membership of the EU is now a far more realistic and desirable prospect. The timing of any new referendum may be critical, but if it takes place in a post-Brexit economic recession and political gloom it is not hard to see the narrow majority in favour of staying in the UK at the last referendum being overturned.

And that will also have massive implications for Northern Ireland, where the historic links between Unionists and the UK are far more with Scotland than with England and Wales. The Northern Ireland economy has already withered on the vine as part of the UK, moving from twice the GDP per Capita of the Republic of Ireland at independence in 1922 to barely more than half the GDP per capita of the Republic right now. The loss of EU agricultural, regional and structural supports will exacerbate that trend.  The question is whether the Republic will now want the burden of taking on the Governance of Northern Ireland, given the persistence of community divisions, the possibility of violence spreading beyond a few ghettos in Belfast, and the c. €11 Billion p.a. net cost of supporting the Northern Ireland state now borne by the UK exchequer.

So while Theresa May may have captured the mood of the Conservative party and perhaps also the zeitgeist of much current English thinking around the EU, she is also being quite delusional if she thinks that Brexit is also consistent with improving UK living standards and the integrity of the UK as a whole. Any free trade deals that the UK might be able to negotiate outside the EU will take years to negotiate, may not be on as favourable terms as those that the EU can negotiate, and will not make up for the loss of trade with the EU itself. The UK has played a central role in shaping how the EU has developed in recent years (not always for the better) and now all that influence will be lost.

Having lost an empire, and soon perhaps a pre-eminant position in world financial services, the UK elite will have no one left to blame but themselves.  

Alan Shatter is a former Minister for Justice, Equality & Defence who during Ireland's presidency of the EU in 2013 chaired council meetings of EU justice and home affairs ministers and meetings of EU defence ministers. He has this to say of Theresa May and her team:

Theresa May, in my experience, was an unenthusiastic participant in council meetings of EU justice and home affairs ministers. She is one of those who, while nominally for Remain, helped lay the foundations for Brexit and the English electorate's anti-immigrant paranoia.

To date, her only substantive insight into the course her government and the UK is embarked on is: "Brexit means Brexit". This threadbare but politically astute circuitous construct ensured a period of relative calm following her becoming prime minister within the Conservative party prior to this week's Tory conference while creating the illusion that there is a plan, when none to date exists. It sheds no light on the road ahead ,on what Brexit will look like and political turbulence is likely.

Publicly, the British prime minister has delegated responsibility for preparing the Brexit plan to her three cabinet Brexiteers, Boris Johnson, Liam Fox and David Davis and from an Irish perspective somewhere in the undergrowth, there is the Northern Ireland Secretary of State, James Brokenshire. But it is unclear what input he will have to Britain's proposed approach.

The only plus on the horizon is that he could not have less insight into the complexities of Brexit for the island of Ireland, the maintenance of peace and security and economic development than had his predecessor, Theresa Villiers. On occasions when I discussed with her the dangers of the Tories adopting Ukip's political roadmap I had little sense that she had any real insight into what it all meant for Northern Ireland.

The speech last week of Liam Fox, Britain's secretary for trade and arch Eurosceptic gives little scope for optimism that there is any real understanding of the difficulties ahead.

His talk of even freer free trade to result from Brexit and the belief that Britain will ultimately be able to freely trade with the EU while preventing EU nationals residing in Britain is utterly lacking in reality and any basic understanding of the fundamental principles upon which the European Community, now the European Union, was established.

The free movement of goods, services, capital and people is a core principle and the three Brexiteers and May are delusional if they believe Britain will be enabled to fully benefit from the first three to the total exclusion of the latter.

Although defeated at the last general election and out of active politics in consequence, these are not the words normally used by a senior cabinet minister in reference to his former colleagues and counterparts in a closely allied state. I have little doubt his words also reflect the unspoken views of the current Irish Government.

Meanwhile, in Northern Ireland, a cross-party group of politicians and victim advocates have launched a legal challenge to Brexit as being against the provisions of the Good Friday Agreement, which is an International Treaty between The UK and Ireland lodged with the UN.

Northern Ireland has a veto over withdrawal from the EU, lawyers opposed to Brexit have argued at the beginning of a legal bid to try to stop the UK's planned departure from the European Union at Belfast High Court.

An exit would have a catastrophic effect on the peace process, Ronan Lavery QC said.

He claimed people in Northern Ireland have control over constitutional change following the 1998 Good Friday Agreement which largely ended republican and loyalist violence.

A cross-community group of politicians and victims campaigners is challenging the Prime Minister's ability to trigger Article 50 negotiations on an exit at the High Court in Belfast.

Mr Lavery said: "Sovereignty over constitutional affairs has been ceded. It is not the relationship, as it might once have been, between a dominant partner in a relationship and a submissive partner in a relationship.

"The people of Northern Ireland have control over constitutional change, it cannot be imposed upon the people of Northern Ireland.

"If that means that Northern Ireland could exercise a veto over withdrawal then I am (asserting) that is what Britain and Ireland signed up to when they signed the Good Friday Agreement."

Special provision has been made in that agreement governing whether Northern Ireland can become part of a United Ireland if the majority wish it.

Mr Lavery added: "The people of Northern Ireland are the sole entity which has sovereignty over any change in constitutional status and it may be that change in the constitutional status is something which Britain, or England more correctly, wishes to put into effect but it does not mean that it is not a change of constitutional status here."

He said: "Withdrawal from the EU could have a catastrophic effect on the peace process and that delicate constitutional balance which we have reached."

Personally, I doubt that the High Court will find that the Good Friday Agreement prevents the UK Government from pursuing a policy of Brexit, but it may mandate that the people of Northern Ireland should be independently consulted on any such dramatic change of constitutional status, given that many of their laws will then no longer emanate from the EU, a factor which softened nationalist opposition to rule by the "British State".  Northern Ireland voted 56% against Brexit despite the DUP, the largest Unionist party campaigning for it.

So if Brexit has the disastrous longer term consequences I expect, a Court mandated re-run of the referendum in Northern Ireland could well result in a vote for Irish re-unification, especially if the British and Irish Governments have agreed a detailed transitional plan which puts to rest some Unionist fears of domination by the Catholic Nationalist south. Ironically the European Charter of Fundamental rights which the UK has opted out from, in part, may form an important part of the guarantees given to the Unionist population. Although formally titled the Conservative and Unionist Party, I doubt that many Conservative politicians would object to Irish re-unification by consent if it could save them the €11 Billion p.a. Northern Ireland currently costs them to run. After all, they left the EU over a lesser net contribution.

The question is whether the Irish political elite would really want to take up that burden. At a minimum, transitional structural funds from the UK and the EU would be required to make it sustainable. But it is in no ones interest that Northern Ireland should once again become a source of instability in Ireland and the UK. Some solution will have to be found, and it will, in all likelihood result in some further break-up of the UK. Theresa May's catchphrase may be that "Brexit means Brexit": the reality is that it may come to mean the breakup of the UK as well.

Display:
The question is if she is going for hard Brexit or using it as negotiation position. She still hasn't triggered article 50, which I interpret as it being more of a negotiation position.
by fjallstrom on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 08:49:40 AM EST
I think assuming long term rationality is over generous: she doing what she has to do day-to-day to hold Tories together  and keep her position.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 09:08:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The calculation seems to be that if she can bring the 14% of Kipper voters back to the Tories, they'll have an unassailable majority for the next few cycles.

This isn't completely unlikely. The British population has more than its fair share of pig-ignorant racist bigots.

But it's numbers vs money and influence. Tory donors are very, very unhappy, and so is the business community - the traditional Tory heartland. And so are the upper middle classes.

It's a risky game. She's naive to assume there won't be an organised pushback on this.

In the end she may get the far right votes she wants, but still lose power.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 01:49:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's a problem for next week, or the week after.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 02:25:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If there is a UKIP left by next week, what with leaders quitting, and their possible replacements being hospitalised after getting into fights with each othe

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 03:55:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]

@Far_Right_Watch You should see the Spanish report, the guy was practically falling out of his chair laughing.

— IRBF (@IRBFUK) 6 October 2016



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 09:08:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think this episode illustrates the enormous relief that many in the EU, and particularly in the European Parliament, will feel when UKIP and the UK finally exit the Parliament and the EU.  Their attitudes and behaviour are precisely what the EU can do without.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Oct 7th, 2016 at 09:51:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The problem is that business and upper middle classes have no where else to go if they want to retain some semblance of power and control, whereas UKIP votes are up for grabs if their current shenanigans continue.  What is UKIP without Farage? A bunch of loons and proto-fascists? Farage at least gives them a thin veneer of respectability and credibility and the ability to articulate a position - however loathsome.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Oct 7th, 2016 at 09:56:07 AM EST
[ Parent ]

by Bernard on Fri Oct 7th, 2016 at 06:28:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
European Charter of Fundamental rights which Theresa May wants to abrogate

The UK already opted-out of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. It is the European Convention on Human Right Theresa May wants the UK to leave.

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet

by Melanchthon on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 12:38:08 PM EST
And this convention has been drafted by the Council of Europe, which the UK is a founding member of (in 1949), not the European Union. Does Brexit means leaving the Council of Europe too?
by Bernard on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 09:14:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
My bad. Apologies.  This post was written in a bit of a rush without the usual fact checking and links.  To be honest, what Theresa May wants and doesn't want to abrogate isn't at the top of my of my memory retention priority list. The key point remains: the EU, and in particular the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (which is a very simple and well written document) can guarantee the rights and lay to rest many of the concerns some Unionists may have about entering into a closer relationship with the Republic, and if their membership of the EU is retained via a transfer of Sovereignty to the Republic, then the Fundamental Rights Charter will apply.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Oct 7th, 2016 at 09:48:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]

I note that UBS have confirmed yesterday their forecast for end 2017 of £1=€1.
So in effect by #Brexit the UK will after all join the Euro

— Jerry Hogg (@jerryhogg) 5 October 2016


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Thu Oct 6th, 2016 at 08:55:49 PM EST
I imagine that the numbers of Central European migrants to Britain are already falling. If you can't send a reasonable amount of money home, the prospect of crap jobs and cramped accomodation in the UK is a lot less appealing.

£1=€1=40 zlotys, immigration problem solved, they can keep free movement.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Sat Oct 8th, 2016 at 10:52:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
UBS's reasoning is interesting. To simplify, the UK's alleged prosperity these last few years has been fuelled by an influx of foreign capital, going to a large extent into real estate. Brexit is not the cause, but a trigger, of the fall of Sterling (though it will probably accentuate it)

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Sat Oct 8th, 2016 at 02:41:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Foreigners told they can no longer contribute to Brexit work
Leading foreign academics from the LSE acting as expert advisers to the UK government were told they would not be asked to contribute to government work and analysis on Brexit because they are not British nationals.


Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Oct 8th, 2016 at 08:27:41 PM EST
Theresa May joins ranks of delusional Brexiteers
Brexiteers console themselves with their favourite delusion: the EU needs the UK so much that Brussels will inevitably make big concessions. This does not even contain a kernel of truth: UK-EU trade is much more important to the UK; and, in any event, politics, not economics, will drive EU policy.

The focus on immigration is becoming more intense and more illiberal. May seems to want the NHS to employ only British people. The more you think about that sentence, the weirder it becomes. We are told that restrictions on skilled non-EU immigrants are on the way, something that will harm British productivity, growth and employment. Similarly, according to the education secretary, we can look forward to fewer students being allowed into Britain, harming one of the few high-growth, high-productivity sectors.

The single biggest delusion is the idea that it is all going to be simple. Already we hear of negotiations over Britain's share of the EU wine collection stored in Brussels cellars. The list of things to haggle over may take over two years to compile, let alone discuss.



Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sat Oct 8th, 2016 at 08:57:33 PM EST

Massive development. If UK doesn't leave Single Market, whole case for Brexit collapses. https://t.co/37JSVABaiX

— Joshua Livestro (@JoshuaLivestro) October 8, 2016



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sat Oct 8th, 2016 at 10:24:38 PM EST

Interesting that Brexit supporting Sunday Telegraph reporting Cabinet Brexit split is "irreparable" & Brussels playing hardball with UK Biz pic.twitter.com/BImyyimjGx

— Joe Public (@jpublik) October 8, 2016



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 9th, 2016 at 01:01:45 AM EST
Bah, they'll all end up blaming Brussels.
by Bernard on Sun Oct 9th, 2016 at 08:20:55 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A very interesting analysis of the dangers of the WTO option. Published in February 2016 by, guess who? The Leave campaign! The whole paper is worth reading.(h/t the Guardan comments)

What's wrong with the WTO Option?

One can say, unequivocally, that the UK could not survive as a trading nation by relying on the WTO Option. It would be an unmitigated disaster, and no responsible government would allow it. If, on the other hand, the official Leave campaign adopts it, the Remain side will be counting its blessings.


"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Sun Oct 9th, 2016 at 01:05:35 PM EST
And the UK starts the process in a dire economical situation:
Why this is more than a flash crash in sterling
From a currency perspective, the UK has entered this period of uncertainty from a disadvantageous starting point. One key economic variable often overlooked in the public debate is the outsized current account deficit that the UK economy has experienced over the past few years. What is often referred to as the UK's "external deficit" currently stands at around 6% of GDP - a level not seen even in the early 1990s ahead of the UK's exit from the ERM.

A deficit of this magnitude does not just indicate that the UK is earning very little foreign income (from exports, remittances and corporate earnings) while spending a lot (on imports, capital payments, etc.). It also means that the country is currently living well beyond its means. This is because, in economic terms, very high current account deficits equate to deeply negative rates of aggregate savings (i.e. dis-saving).



"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Sun Oct 9th, 2016 at 01:27:40 PM EST
The reality of what a hard brexit will mean for border communities is beginning to strike home:
Border communities protest over Brexit
.  

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sun Oct 9th, 2016 at 06:28:56 PM EST
It's not so much another area where the brexiteers ideas are fantastical as it's quite obviously a complication that never occured to them.

Expecting that the Republic will close its border to retain an open border with the UK prompted a huge belly laugh from me because it's so completely mad.

But then again, so much of what these people say is mad that it's getting hard to tell if there's any hard thinking going on at all.

The problem is that, with ukip imploding, the Tory party have decided to go after their voters by assuming that as immigration was a principle driver of brexit, that closed borders will be prioritised over access to the open market. A decision that will be utterly ruinous to the UK's economy.

If Scotland and Northern Ireland have any sense, they'll run screaming to leave the UK. But NI has a problem, could the Unonists possibly enter into even a loose agreement with the Republic ?

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sun Oct 9th, 2016 at 09:16:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But NI has a problem, could the Unonists possibly enter into even a loose agreement with the Republic ? "

This topic deserves a diary in its own right, but I'm not close enough to unionist thinking to write it.

I think a lot will depend on the circumstances of any proposed change.  Amongst the key factors:

  1. Will there be a hard Brexit?

  2. Will Scotland go independent and be allowed stay in EU?

  3. Will the UK economy implode?  Will the Irish economy continue to do relatively well?

  4. Will EU farm and other subsidies be maintained by UK indefinitely?

  5. Will Ireland/UK negotiate a deal which provides for a slow, gradual, re-unification of Ireland as a means of N. Ireland staying within the EU?  The elements of such a deal could include:  
i) Transfer of formal Sovereignty (Foreign affairs, Defence, & some financial affairs from London to Republic of Ireland
ii)  Maintenance of devolution of most government functions in NI to NI Executive and Assembly.
iii) Maintenance of UK funding for NI for a prolonged transitional period gradually tapering down to be replaced by EU and Irish funding.
iv) Maintenance of UK citizenship for those who want it
v) EU or Joint Irish/UK funding for a wide range of community initiatives designed to reduce inter-communal tensions
vi) Gradual elimination of state funded sectarian education

Much of the above is more likely to happen under a Corbyn government.  I'm not sure how pro-active an Irish Government led by Fine Gael (the least nationalist of the major parties) will in practice push for it.  Possibly they would drag their feet while claiming publicly to be all for it.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 12:28:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Controlling non-EU passengers at the Irish border is doable, and wouldn't bother Ireland much, given the alternatives: don't forget that we had to formalise border control in the last while because it was all too obvious that dark skinned passengers were being targeted. Still remember the black guy with the very clear Dublin accent and Irish passport being stopped while the three white Americans wandered past - and don't forget we, to our eternal shame, passed a constitutional amendment to stop kids born here having automatic citizenship because of scare stories about dark-skinned furriners filling up the maternity wards.

Controlling EU passengers at the border, not possible - but the reports indicated that the UK government doesn't think EU citizens working illegally will be a big problem, and I suspect they're thinking of a visa free arrangement with the EU anyway.

This seems like the only way to avoid either a hard UK/IE border or a hard UK/UK border as part of Brexit.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 09:39:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, the problem is not so much to control the passengers as it is to control the goods that might cross the new border. If, as it seems likely, the UK leaves the Single Market and even the Customs Union, unless strong border controls/posts are set up, Ireland might become a smugglers' paradise. And I doubt the EU would allow it to happen. Colman, you should consider setting up an import-export business...

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 12:10:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Doesn't the same apply to Switzerland?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 12:16:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, Switzerland is a member of EFTA, which means it has access to the Single Market, including freedom of movement. Indeed, in July 2016, the EU has told Switzerland it would lose access to the Single Market if it were to implement controls on the free movement of EU citizens.

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 01:20:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But Switzerland does have customs controls. I've seen them in trains arriving from France. My favourite example is from last year.
Swiss residents prefer to order their pizzas from across the border in Germany and France, because prices are as much as 30 per cent lower there.

But for the past year their double pepperonis and garlic bread have been getting cold waiting at customs to be inspected, since Switzerland scrapped an earlier exception for food deliveries.

Dismayed by the blow to its pizzerias, the local chamber of commerce in the German region of Upper Rhine-Lake Constance, just across the border, lodged a complaint.

The Swiss customs checks amount to an unfair export ban, it argued, because customs offices are closed at night - the peak time for pizza deliveries - meaning the pizzas cannot get through at all.

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 01:31:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Smuggling drove a lot of the conflict in the Troubles, I think: it suited a lot of people to have dangerous border areas. Fuel and tobacco smuggling is still a thing, and all the infrastructure for border areas where smuggling is the least of your law enforcement issues is still there.

But customs is easy enough to deal with: approved crossings for good vehicles and electronic monitoring on the rest, fine the hell out of them. Roughly how it used to work, but with troops on the unapproved crossings.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 04:13:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A friend of mine who had family involved always swore blind that the troubles could be much better understood by which gangs controlled smuggling and sale of goods legal and illegal than religion or politics

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 10:35:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Swedish-Norwegian border sees a lot of smuggling. Alcohol and tobacco from EU (often starting from the Baltics or Poland) but also meat and sugar bought in Sweden. On the way back it appears to be mainly rice.
by fjallstrom on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 04:50:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Rice? Why would people backhaul rice?

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 10:23:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
EU has tariffs on rice from outside EU. So if you want to buy original asian rice on the cheap, you gotta hook up with some smugglers from Norway.

Plus it is pretty safe after some cases in the beginning of the 00ies landed in a pretty high number that you can import for personal consumption.

by fjallstrom on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 01:49:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah, OK. Visa-free for the EU eh. Cognitive dissonance anyone? Brexit means Brexit, subtext : make those EU migrant workers go away...
So, work permits or not, EU migrant workers will be, in practice, free to come and work in the UK. Only change : many of them will be doing it illegally.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 11:58:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You don't need all unionists to be in favor of a compromise. If, say, a third of them break ranks, then you have a solid coalition.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 10:20:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
To an extent, that's been happening anyway, with the Alliance and Unionist parties breaking away from  the pro-Brexit DUP.  However the problem isn't just getting 51% in favour of change. 1% engaging in terrorist action could be enough to scupper it.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 03:24:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Duchess of Cambridge will be 'potent force' in Brexit bridge-building with EU countries
That may now change, however, as Britain contemplates the process of negotiating trade deals with every EU member state.

Former ambassador Oliver Miles, who served in the diplomatic service for 36 years, said: "It's obvious that the Duchess is going to play this part in the future and this is a good way to start because relations with the Netherlands are good, partly because of the friendship between the two royal families."

Someone needs to explain to the British Government, its diplomats, and the Telegraph, that individual member states will not be allowed to negotiate individual trade deals with the UK.

In any case, royal families don't engage in "trade".  It is beneath their station in life.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 07:05:37 PM EST
Can't you even leave them a few straws to grasp at?
by Bernard on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 07:53:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
One of the more enjoyably deranged stories coming from the brexit side.

At this stage this says more about the quality of the hallucinogens available to them than any consideration they might have for a negotiating strategy.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 08:29:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Except that this isn't even coming from the Brexit side, but from "Former ambassador Oliver Miles, who served in the diplomatic service for 36 years"...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 08:41:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
wel, he evidently doesn't know how trade deals are negotiated if he thinks Kate middleton has anything to do with it.

Probably too used to Andrew going to play golf with sundry despicable despots to help grease a few palms to buy UK military hardware. That's not how other trade deals are done.

Again, it helps you understand the quality of the drugs, but the message is gibberish

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 09:25:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]

The campaign to build a new royal yacht is back back back. pic.twitter.com/qCQEZTGWQA

— Jim Waterson (@jimwaterson) October 10, 2016



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 10:39:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
My theory is they want to put Charles on it with the Brexit faction, send it to trade with canada and pray for an iceberg

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 10:40:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Of course not, they trade in engagements.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 09:02:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Then there's the business of comparing an EU member state's exports to the UK with its exports to other individual member states instead of the EU as a whole, to imply that we are such an crucial market that the country will be desperate to secure tariff-free access.
The UK imports £41 billion of goods from the Netherlands every year, making it the third-biggest importer after Germany and China.
by Gag Halfrunt on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 11:08:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But EU member states cannot separately negotiate trade deals with third countries...

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 12:34:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I know. That's why it's stupid...
by Gag Halfrunt on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 01:03:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
 The 3 lead brexiteers keep referring to doing separate deals with EU countries to such an extent that I'm beginning to wonder if the UK Govt actually knows that.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 01:04:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't think they feel bound by the rules, any rules. The referendum has given them the right to wield Royal prerogative as they see fit to bring back the good old days.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:04:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Including, as ever, the rules of physics, economics, history etc.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:04:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Gravity just seems so quaint these days

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:14:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I thought the British invented Gravity?  Or did the EU hijack that through Einstein as well?

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:20:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, of course we invented gravity. We English invented everything, didn't you know? But that was when it was in proper English Imperial units, measured in feet and pounds weight.

But then the Yanks got hold of it, messed it up and crashed a probe on Mars and so the continentals waded in and started using metric units of sausage and strange bread. They're not even proper British sausages. Damn their eyes !!

Take back control and let's have some proper Gravity. British Gravity with beer and gravy.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 04:24:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I hear you prefer heavier gravity beers in any case!

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 06:09:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I like any beers with good flavour. I can quite happily spend my time at a beer fest drinking seesion beers. But a good strong beer with great flavour is great too.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 06:21:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Personally, I don't think the UK appreciates the gravity of Brexit.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 06:34:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Some of us do, but I don't really think it's widely appreciated how deep this hole is

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 06:48:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Not by Kippers and Brexiters, anyway.

Much of the population does understand how dire things are - including quite a few MPs.

If May is still in power by January, things will get very bad indeed. I wouldn't lay odds either way on that still being the case.

I think we'll certainly see some serious attempts to remove her before then, but it's not easy for an outsider to guess how likely they are to succeed.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 09:07:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
My money is on a general election before the end-March deadline for triggering A50 - on the grounds that the Government is seeking an explicit mandate to trigger A50 - but more importantly, to take advantage of the disarray in Labour and UKIP and to give to give Theresa May her own mandate as Prime Minister and the Tories a 5 year clear run at "making a success of Brexit".  This will be especially likely if the various court cases or dissident MP's succeed in forcing a parliamentary vote on triggering A50 which the Government might lose.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 10:23:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Really? I don't think the remain wing feel confident enough to launch an anti-brexit coup against May. Nor do I think they would survive in their local constituency parties.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 12:26:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
No you didn't. We invented gravity here in Italy (Galileo). All you did was apply the concept to picking apples - a technology you will have to revert to when you no longer have cheap foreign labour to do the picking for you.
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 08:21:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, they certainly do not feel bound by the rules of logic...

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:30:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
We could be charitable and assume that what they mean is that all 27 remaining member states will have to ratify any trade deal negotiated between the EU and the UK.  That is a very high hurdle to cross if a deal is to be successfully ratified and perhaps they are conscious that any one EU member state could scupper it.  

So having the Duchess of Cambridge lead a charm offensive may not be a bad thing, although I can't see how that would entice (say) Spain to ratify a trade deal if they are unhappy with (say) the status of Gibraltar.  I also don't think the Duchess would have much influence on (say) Romanian political opinion if the main purpose of Brexit is perceived to be to keep Romanians out of the UK.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:19:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Why should we be charitable with these jerks?

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:33:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 03:38:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
On the sidelining of Parliament: The Brexit Secretary's statement to the Commons - Professor Mark Elliott | Public Law for Everyone

David Davis MP, the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, has made a statement to the House of Commons concerning the Brexit process. He has done so amid mounting cross-party concerns about the involvement of Parliament in that process -- concerns that his statement are likely to do little to assuage.

To the extent that it has any substance, the Secretary of State's statement concentrates on the Great Repeal Bill. I have explained in another post why the title of that Bill is hopelessly misleading. The only thing the Bill will repeal is the European Communities Act 1972. Its repeal, which will only occur once the UK has left the EU, will be legally irrelevant: by the time the UK exits the EU, it will by definition have ceased to have relevant Treaty obligations, and the ECA will therefore not give effect in the UK to any EU law anyway. Meanwhile, far from repealing EU law, the Great Repeal Bill will in fact preserve all EU law (or at least all the EU law whose retention makes sense once the UK has left the EU) by converting it into UK law.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 10:32:31 PM EST
The Great Repeal Bill is extremely misleadingly named.  It is in fact more accurately named the Great Retention Bill as it converts all current EU laws into domestic UK law excepting only the external treaty obligations which will cease in any case once Brexit has taken place.

It is a typical PR ploy no name something the exact opposite of what it in fact means.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:05:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Are we sure of that? Has anybody examined the bill carefully to see what it really does?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 02:19:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Tonight's Times p1 reveals a leak of part of cabinet discussion paper on what would happen to the economy of Brexit on WTO terms. Read here: pic.twitter.com/AVHA762dKA

— Sam Coates Times (@SamCoatesTimes) October 10, 2016



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 10th, 2016 at 11:04:14 PM EST
Hard Brexit could cost £66bn a year
Cabinet ministers are being warned that the Treasury could lose up to £66 billion a year in tax revenues under a "hard Brexit", according to leaked government papers.

GDP could fall by as much as 9.5 per cent if Britain leaves the single market and has to rely on World Trade Organisation rules for trading with the continent, compared with if it stayed within the EU, the forecasts show. Such a steep drop in revenue would force ministers to slash public spending or raise taxes.



"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 10:23:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The good news is that the way the pound is going, that may not be that much money....
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 10:32:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Guardian - Owen Jones - We need to stop calling it hard Brexit. This is chaotic Brexit

Political language matters. The Tories understand this: that's why they repeat the same messages over and over again. We're clearing up Labour's mess; we're balancing the nation's books; long-term economic plan, all repeated ad infinitum. Opponents mock this message discipline, play Tory bingo or are driven to distraction by it: meanwhile, voters can repeat back Tory attack lines verbatim on the doorstep. It works. The Tories excel at defining both themselves and their opponents. They have a frame for the opposition that they stick to with military discipline: "Labour can't be trusted with the nation's finances". Whenever Labour comes up with a policy - however popular - here is the ammunition to shoot it down before it's even taken flight.

That's why the framing of Brexit is so critical. Opponents of the Tories' approach to Britain's withdrawal from the European Union call it a "hard Brexit". This is a mistake. At best, it is abstract. It can simply mean reassuring many of those who voted to leave that Brexit really does mean Brexit, rather than "the Tories' deal will slash your living standards". It sounds tough, determined, unlike the wishy-washy "soft Brexit". Hard Brexit cheerleaders are toying with their own clever frame: a "clean Brexit". No mess, no fuss, no hassle: simple, efficient and pain-free.



keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 01:09:27 PM EST
The Tories and Brexit - Mind your step - Economist
One big problem for Mrs May is the unequal bargaining power between Britain and the EU. ...

The complexity and size of the new deals Mrs May must strike to make Brexit a success is daunting. ... prime minister needs to plan for six broad sets of treaty arrangements. The first is the Article 50 negotiation ... which will cover such matters as pensions for British Eurocrats and MEPs, dividing up EU assets and working out what to do with the European Medicines Agency in London.

Starting, of course, with the wine cellar, the bigger part of the two years will be spent on the pure technicalities of Brexit. Which transforms the other tasks into so much more pressure on the political bladder.
Second is a new trading arrangement with the EU. ... Yet the Canadian agreement does not include all goods, and it excludes financial services. A free-trade deal with the EU is likely to require unanimous approval by all EU members and ratification by national and regional parliaments.

Third are replacements for the EU's existing free-trade pacts with some 53 countries. ... also ... deals with countries like America, China, India and Australia that have none with the EU. But these countries will want to know what trade arrangement Britain has with the EU first. And they will not wish to jeopardise their planned deals with the EU.

free-trade deals ... will take far longer than two years to negotiate. In some cases talks cannot even begin until after Brexit. So the fourth and perhaps most pressing requirement for Mrs May will be an interim ... measure to fill the gap between Britain's exit ... and the entry into force of new trade arrangements. ... But interim deals can be as hard to negotiate as final ones, partly because some fear that they can become near-permanent.

In any event a fifth requirement is for Britain to resume full membership of the WTO, to which it now belongs merely via the EU. That is less simple than it sounds. ... The WTO always proceeds slowly and by consensus among its 163 other members, any one of which could obstruct the British.



Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Tue Oct 11th, 2016 at 08:27:39 PM EST

The #BrexitDebate knocked 1% off the £ in an hour. It's now at it's lowest level since 1848. Yes, 1848.

— Damien Walter (@damiengwalter) October 12, 2016



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 07:08:30 PM EST
There's no such thing as the "exchange rate". If he means the exchange rate to the dollar, it's nonsense. This site gives an exchange rate of $4.87 to the pound in 1848. Who comes up with stuff like this?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 07:17:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Somebody who has only data back to 1848?

They could just as well argued lowest ever, except they would in both cases be wrong.

A quick search gives today's exchange rate as 1.22 USD to the pound and courtesy of BBC comes this graph:

So the correct anguished statement would be that the pound has not been as weak against the dollar since Thatcher was ruining the economy.

by fjallstrom on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 08:16:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The data I gave goes back all the way to 1791. I don't know what business anybody has writing about exchange rates who isn't aware that the exchange rate was always above $4 to the pound until after WWII (I wasn't aware that it reached almost $10 during the Civil War)

As for baskets of currencies: Is there really a plausible definition that goes back all the way to 1848? If so, I presume they would be mainly European currencies, which would probably be very weak in 1848, for obvious reasons, with the pound being relatively strong since not much happened in the UK.

All of which leads to the question who came up with the 1848 idea, and why do so many people take it seriously?

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 06:07:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
European Tribune - Comments - Brexit means Breakup
The data I gave goes back all the way to 1791

Yeah, I know.

I usually figure that if someone states "lowest since X" and X isn't a local minimum, then said someone - in this case Damien Walter - lacks data before X. It is kind of nonsensical with regards to currency exchange rates in the 18th and 19th centuries, but it is otherwise a good rule.

Speaking of your link I am surprised that there is so much year to year variation considering bullion standards. Wars stand out for obvious reasons, but there can hardly been coin redesigns every other year. I can't find that websites sources. Could be rounding errors.

European Tribune - Comments - Brexit means Breakup

All of which leads to the question who came up with the 1848 idea

Maybe this is the source:

The pound just plunged to an 168 year low - thanks again Brexit | Metro News

So when Labour's shadow Brexit secretary, Keir Starmer, stood up and opened the debate at around 1pm, sterling stood at 1.227 US dollars.

However within minutes it began to tumble, and just an hour and a half later - it hit 1.217 US dollars - a drop of 0.8%.

Which is the lowest it has been since 1848 - when revolution was spreading across Europe.

Though when searching for that I got a lot of hits of "Pound falls to 31-Year Low" and "Pound lowest since 1985".

by fjallstrom on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 11:59:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Someone dashed down "lowest since '84 last century", and the person reading it has dyslexia, and is unaware that we are in the 21st century.


I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.
by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Sat Oct 15th, 2016 at 12:57:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There is such a thing as "the exchange rate" - the rate of exchange against a trade-weighted basket of currencies.

Of course, actually tracking that historically gets kind of tricky in practice, and the level doesn't tell you nearly so much as the rate of change. But if one wants to speak meaningfully of "the exchange rate," singular definite, then the trade-weighted basket is the most correct measure.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 08:49:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
As if on cue: Pound hits record trade-weighted low (FT, 12 October 2016)
Sterling was recovering against the dollar on Wednesday, but lost momentum in afternoon trade, as the market assessed the promised parliamentary debate on Brexit proposals.

Theresa May, prime minister, agreed to opposition demands for "a full and transparent" Brexit debate in parliament before activating the Article 50 clause that will start the UK's divorce proceedings with the EU, but stopped short of allowing members of parliament to vote on the strategy.

Furthermore, during exchanges in the House of Commons, subsequent remarks from the UK's cabinet minister in charge of leaving the EU, David Davis, sounded less conciliatory -- and the extent of the pound's recovery waned.

Apparently it's all riding on whether Westminster will get a vote on Article 50.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 09:38:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I can't see the mere fact of a vote making any difference to markets, only if they are factoring in a chance that the vote will be defeated and that Brexit will not happen after all. If the slightest whiff of a chance that Brexit might not happen has the power to move markets, then think of the impact if the policy were actually reversed...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Oct 12th, 2016 at 11:18:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But of course the slightest whiff of reversing Brexit moves markets. Have you not heard of option markets before?

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Oct 22nd, 2016 at 12:23:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Britain, get real: Brexit means whatever the EU says it means

But you have been reading that here from since before the Brexit vote... What is remarkable is the degree to which Tory politicions are still completely delusional.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 08:45:20 AM EST
sadly, one of the comments underneath reveals the scale of the problem

I see you are earning good money from Britain Joris, writing a load of rubbish, we do not need to be told that by an obvious foreigner that has their own financial future to worry about. In Britain here we are told so many lies and untruths by our own mp's but those of us that voted out voted with our hearts and not just the immigration problems, you may have been content to have been walked over by Germans in the past but we British are proud people that will always step up to the mark and don't delude yourself, Europe needs us far more than we need them.

I like the obvious foreigner touch

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 10:36:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
sorry Frank. I thought it was an interesting addition to the discussion

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 06:14:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sorry - the troll rating was a fat finger mistake.  Can somebody PLEASE update Tribex - I really miss it - and Firefox forcibly updated itself and invalidated the old version

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 08:23:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I see Nicola Sturgeon has just thrown a wrench into the works.
by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 06:37:11 PM EST
I hope she's had an informal word or 27 from the Council of ministers about Scotland's ability to retain the UK's position and access.

Cos she'd be be looking pretty silly if she hasn't

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 07:00:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I have been searching the argument here on Scotland's position but haven't found it yet. I recall it wasn't all that easy a matter as they would likely have to leave anyway and be readmitted.

Perhaps it was a white paper produced for the EU.

by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 07:24:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Last time around the EU's formal position was that Scotland would have to re-apply for membership from scratch - I think to satisfy Spanish sensitivities that the EU shouldn't be encouraging the break-up of a member state. However if the UK were to formally leave the EU, a whole new ball game would arise, and Scottish membership could be seen as a consolation prize for losing the UK.  Scotland is already fully compliant with the EU acquis as part of the UK, so any arguments about its suitability would be moot once it has already achieved independence.

There might be an argument about whether it should join the Euro, but that is something the Scots may want to do in any case - now that the Euro has shown itself to be more stable than the Pound. Last time around "England" was intent on driving a hard bargain claiming the £ as exclusively their property, claiming Scotland would have to take on a proportion of the UK national debt, and claiming all defence facilities in Scotland belonged to the rump UK, AKA England...

Having the Euro as a fall-back option would help the Scottish negotiating position in such discussions, if nothing else.  So in summary, I would expect the EU to take an altogether more positive approach to Scottish membership once Brexit has occurred and once Scotland has secured a second independence referendum.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 08:00:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In addition, the latest utterance by Spain's PM on the topic is that Spain won't allow Scotland's re-accession to be fast-tracked.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Oct 22nd, 2016 at 12:26:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Suppose it's all going down in a hard Brexit which will take at least a decade to fully come to fruition. Suppose there will be no real apocalypse but the UK will be a few percent worse off, the pound will be permanently devalued, there will be a hard adjustment because of the current account deficit, problems because of Northern Ireland and Scotland, etc.

Two dangers: first, Brexit will generate so much risky busywork that the polity (and business) in the UK won't have enough energy left to tackle the big stuff to set the UK on a better path. Some people voted Leave so that the UK would finally have to confront its problems without blaming the EU bogeyman. If the UK is weighed down by a chaotic Brexit what are the chances that necessary changes will be made?

Secondly, if Brexit cuts off a few percent people who are doing well won't feel much of a difference. Even if the financial sector loses 100,000 jobs (of 2.2 million) alongside passporting, as PWC predicts, so what? But for those who are already struggling (and coincidentally voted Leave) those few percents could mean everything. That hardship could produce more disillusionment in a self-reinforcing political downward spiral. Again, in a maelstrom it's hard to think clearly and make changes.

One hope is that the process will show up the Brexiteers and Johnson&Co will, as suggested, be as reviled as Blair and Bush. However, their negative legacy is still very much with us. The disaster didn't bring about a 180° turn. Instead democracy was damaged and politics lost a lot of sanity.

It's over. I think the UK will never return to the EU.

Schengen is toast!

by epochepoque on Thu Oct 13th, 2016 at 11:41:34 PM EST
I agree that if A50 is triggered, there is no possibility of return. My expectation is that the UK could become more than a few % poorer in relative terms.  In a 10 year time-frame you could have the EU growing by 15% and the UK declining by 15% - a 30% divergence in (say) $ or relative terms. (devaluation has already achieved much of the UK side of that decline).

The City will take the hardest hit, and as they are also the highest earners, Brexit could actually reduce the UK's GINI index.  Devaluation will also help the manufacturing and export services sectors (incl. tourism) many of which are disproportionately located outside London - reducing regional imbalances.

But a 30% decline relative to the EU in purchasing parity power is massive and will greatly undermine national self-esteem and the legitimacy of the traditional elites deemed responsible.  Foreign holidays will once again become a relative luxury.  Strikes will become rampant as workers seek to keep up with inflation. The public finances will tank and services will be cut.  The English disease all over again.

Many Pension aged UK expats (c. 2 Million in EU) will return when their sterling pensions can no longer provide a good living in the Eurozone, and the EU no longer provides public health care for them. The NHS will be overwhelmed. Foreign workers will no longer be available to do the really shitty jobs for low pay.  If Scotland leaves the "Great" will also leave Great Britain and we will be left with a little England and a provincial Welsh sidekick.  Scapegoats will have to be found.

Maybe England will finally have that social revolution other European countries suffered after the war. The deference to the Crown and aristocracy and middle class snobbery will be overcome by needs must and some genuine entrepreneurialism and innovation will lead to a belated recovery. But it will be off a very much lower base and not without a lot of pain. England in the '70s and early '80s was a byword for dysfunctionality and they never did give the EU any credit for helping to dig them out of that hole.

This time around there will be no rescue mission.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Oct 14th, 2016 at 12:27:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I have a sneaking suspicion the plan is to crash the UK's economy deliberately to force an IMF bail-out. This will finally remove all those irritating remnants of the welfare state.

We've seen what the IMF did in Greece. The same will happen in the UK. Pensions and benefits will disappear, savings will be turned into worthless IOUs, the NHS and all remaining public services will be privatised, property will be sold off to foreign oligarchs investors, corporate taxation will be slashed to "encourage recovery", workers will be desperate for almost any work at all - while the press runs with jingoism and fake plastic patriotism to justify the horror.

Does this sound like a Tory wet dream? I expect that's just a coincidence.

You may wonder about paranoia, but the reality here is that the BBC has become the Brexit Broadcasting Company, and the newspaper comment sections are seething with trolls trying to push Brexit as a fait accompli which will be good for the country. Or at least not so bad, actually. Because freedom and democracy. (Hmm - where I have heard those words before?)

Without a doubt, there are plenty of idiots out there. But I have some difficulty believing most of them care enough about Brexit to make that kind of effort to justify it.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Fri Oct 14th, 2016 at 11:07:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I have a sneaking suspicion the plan is to crash the UK's economy deliberately to force an IMF bail-out. This will finally remove all those irritating remnants of the welfare state.
We've seen what the IMF did in Greece. The same will happen in the UK.

Is there anywhere they won't get around to fixing this way?
Italy is definitely next for the 'cure'.
No prize for guessing which will be Last Economy Standing.

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Fri Oct 14th, 2016 at 09:56:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
China?

Certainly not Germany, as the crippling of Germany's intra-EU markets will undermine the economic benefits which many Germans seem to imagine are theirs because of pure moral superiority.

I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Sat Oct 15th, 2016 at 12:44:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Here's to hoping they learn what not to do with their new empire from the last couple.


'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Oct 19th, 2016 at 08:47:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
European Tribune - Comments - Brexit means Breakup
In a 10 year time-frame you could have the EU growing by 15% and the UK declining by 15% - a 30% divergence in (say) $ or relative terms.  

Not if the last 10 years is any guide.

Eurozone GDP:

For a total increase of 3% over ten years.

The UK has actually - despite self-imposed austeriity - done slightly better:

With a total increase of 10% over ten years.

Of course, this was UK within the EU and what happens outside (or if there will be an actual Brexit) is still to be determined. Still, the importance of a sovereign currency and an elite less able to blame Brussels are important factors.

I don't argue that UK isn't dysfunctional, merely that the Eurozone is so dysfunctional that I don't think it is realistic to prognose a 15% growth over 10 years.

by fjallstrom on Fri Oct 14th, 2016 at 11:44:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well in relative terms, devaluation has already put paid to that UK growth and now they have a hard Brexit to contend with.  As far as the EU is concerned, the last 10 years include the greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression and some totally wrong headed austerity economics since. It's a wonder there has been any net growth at all.

On the somewhat courageous assumption that some lessons have been learned from those debacles, I don't think 15% compound growth over the next 10 years is much of a stretch.  In fact it's pretty anaemic, but you have to factor in some fall-out from Brexit and a deteriorating global economy. The Euro will also probably devalue somewhat against a trade weighted basket of currencies (though not Sterling) and that should help EU exporters to diversify away from he UK.

Yes I know its all finger in the air stuff, but it illustrates the sort of base assumptions I am working from based on what we know now. The range of possible outcomes over a ten year period is huge, but you need a baseline estimate to work from. No doubt that too will mchange!

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Oct 14th, 2016 at 12:19:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well this is mostly showing currency changes in 2014-15. The euro sank against the dollar. But in purchasing power parity the picture is very, very different (Eurozone did better than the UK), even though the Eurozone was clearly self-harming over the period.

Admittedly the recent changes in the UK were just on exchange rates, so the same argument could be made that it's misleading.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi

by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Fri Oct 14th, 2016 at 05:51:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Whitehall's Brexit advice to Theresa May (as imagined by Alan Dukes - former Irish EU Commissioner for Agriculture and leader of Fine Gael)
Prime minister,

As I understand it, your objective is to bring about an end to the UK's membership of the EU while:

retaining free access to the single market for goods and services in the EU;

retaining duty-free and quota-free access to EU markets - in other words, maintaining the advantages of being in the customs union;

restoring the UK's power and right to negotiate trade agreements with non-EU countries on its own behalf; ending the UK contribution to the EU budget;

restoring the UK's right and power to regulate immigration.

Your objective might be characterised as a soft Brexit where trade and commercial relations with the EU are concerned, and a hard Brexit in other areas.

---

Your announcement of the "Great Repeal Bill" and of a date for the triggering of exit negotiations has been a masterly opening move. The transposition of all post-1973 European legislation into sovereign British - not European - law means that the EU will be unable logically to exclude UK exports from the single market benefits, since they will conform with all EU norms and standards unless and until and only to the extent that the UK makes a sovereign decision to depart from these standards and norms in specific cases. Such cases should arise only when the UK sees a concrete economic, trading or commercial advantage in departing from EU norms and standards.

This is a very funny article surely written tongue in cheek.  It omits to mention that the EU regards the four freedoms as indivisible - you cannot have free movement of capital, goods and services without free movement of people. It also presupposes that goods and services produced in the UK in the future will automatically be deemed to conform to EU regulations because the relevant UK regulations have not been changed from prior EU regulations.  

However this implies that the EU will have signed a Mutual recognition agreement whereby the EU and UK will recognise each others regulatory bodies as adequately enforcing those regulations.  Such Mutual recognition agreements are typically included in trade deals which, again typically, take many years to negotiate, and which, in the case of the EU, have to be separately ratified by all EU member states.  Thus any country, for example Spain, could veto such a trade deal if it isn't happy over the status of Gibraltar.

The consequence is that, even with the best will in the world, no EU/UK trade deal may ever be signed.  And without that, we are faced with the prospect to goods stuck in customs awaiting clearance greatly hindering trade.

Finally, Alan makes no mention of Pass-porting rights for financial services, without which no UK based banking institution can offer services within the EU.  That alone would scupper a large part of the UK economy.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Oct 14th, 2016 at 02:41:50 AM EST
Gibraltar wants special arrangement in Brexit treaty
"So when Gibraltar comes to the table through the United Kingdom, what Gibraltar will say is: we accept the four freedoms."

And in view of its particular situation, Gibraltar wants this to continue. "We don't want a deal where we are left out of immigration and we are included in access to the single market."

"Why must I choose between my British identity and my desire to form part of the EU project? In the context of the UK membership, there is already a different level of participation. We are not in goods [not part of the freedom of movement for goods]. Why not in the context of the UK's departure, can't we have a different deal going forward?"

Picardo said the answer was simple. "A solution good for Europe can include Gibraltar to participate in those areas without calling itself a member, in the same way as Andorra, Lichtenstein, San Marino and other territories."



"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Fri Oct 14th, 2016 at 01:41:25 PM EST
I'm sure they can vote to join Spain

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sat Oct 15th, 2016 at 12:07:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That could be a bargaining chip for Spain to allow Scotland's independence...


"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Sat Oct 15th, 2016 at 02:08:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Not gotta happen.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Oct 22nd, 2016 at 12:33:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Not gonna happen.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Oct 22nd, 2016 at 12:33:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
From Fintan O'Toole, the Irish Times columnist:

Why Apple's low-tax deal is no blueprint for Brexit Britain | World news | The Guardian

The Brexiters' fantasy of stealing Ireland's corporate investors relies on a deeply patronising attitude to Ireland. Underlying it is the notion that no foreign company would possibly invest in Ireland for any other reason than its lax attitude to taxation. But there are a lot of other reasons - a highly skilled and productive workforce, cultural vitality, political stability and (oddly enough) membership of the European Union with full access to the world's biggest single market. The obsession of giant corporations with avoiding tax does not blind them to their need for the social, political and cultural resources on which they draw.
And why was the Irish corporate tax regime made tougher? Not because of the EU but because of an organisation the Brexiters seem not to have heard of: the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). It is the OECD, not the EU, that has driven attempts to clean up the worst excesses of corporate tax avoidance. (One way of seeing the severity of the Apple ruling is as an attempt by the EU to regain the initiative on an issue of such global consequence.)

The UK is a member of the OECD and has signed up to these anti-tax avoidance strategies. Unless Britain wants to go completely rogue and leave the OECD as well as the EU, the fantasy of luring companies such as Apple with the virtual impunity from taxation they used to enjoy in Ireland could not be fulfilled.

Possibly related diary: Ireland to appeal Apple Ruling

by Bernard on Sun Oct 16th, 2016 at 06:14:17 PM EST
Martin McGuinness calls for special EU status for Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland should push the EU to grant it special associate or even membership status to avoid the "devastating" consequences of Brexit for Irish people, Martin McGuinness has said.
...
And he added that many unionists were as unhappy as republicans at the outcome of the referendum and the risk posed by the restoration of immigration and customs borders, as well as loss of easy access to EU markets.
...
"There has to be an island of Ireland solution that we can live with, and it is critical that we have an Irish government fighting our corner, so the big challenge in the next few weeks is whether the government in the north and the south can come to a common position. We need to get our act together about what we want to see come out of these negotiations."


"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Sun Oct 16th, 2016 at 09:49:49 PM EST
The right of all Northern Ireland residents to an Irish Republic -- i.e. UE -- passport is one of the key dispositions of the Dublin accords.

There can be no unilateral change to these accords without a return to civil war.

Massive issue of UE passports to non-UE citizens is not something that the UE can allow, without a negotiation on special status. Which is, obviously, not in the UK's gift.

So effectively, Northern Ireland holds a veto over Brexit.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Mon Oct 17th, 2016 at 12:01:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What if the massive issuance has already happened before the negotiations are over?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Mon Oct 17th, 2016 at 12:20:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Huge rise in Britons applying for Irish citizenship after Brexit vote
Applications for both Irish citizenship and passports have soared since Britain voted to leave the European Union in June, as thousands of people seek to mitigate the effects of Brexit on their lives, government figures show.

In all, more than 37,000 people in the UK and Northern Ireland applied for Irish passports in the three months after 23 June - 83% more than for the same months in 2015.

Additionally, in the three months following the referendum, the Irish embassy in London received more than 2,800 applications for citizenship from people on the Foreign Births Register (individuals with Irish ancestry). This compares with 235 applications in the first three months of 2016. In July alone, more cases were handled than in the whole of 2015.



"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Mon Oct 17th, 2016 at 04:27:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I may have said before, but I'm strongly tempted to get my UK passport, for reasons of identity that are surprising, obscure and not well understood to me, so the motivations here may be more complicated than simple convenience.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Mon Oct 17th, 2016 at 04:33:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's a funny thing. I was going to reply "bugger identity, get it for practical reasons". And then I thought about how I ended up getting French nationality. Yes, identity tends to trump practical issues, and yes, it's obscure and somewhat troubling.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Tue Oct 25th, 2016 at 05:30:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They are and will be EU citizens by virtue of a right to IE citizenship - in the same way that I will be, despite being entitled to UK citizenship and a UK passport. This bit isn't a problem.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Mon Oct 17th, 2016 at 04:18:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, I seem to remember that the EU has had things to say about countries (Cyprus? Malta?) who have put citizenship up for sale. There seems to be no particular legal distinction. We're talking about people who, subsequent to Brexit, being citizens of a non-EU nation, may choose (presumably for convenience, for example to go and work in an EU country) to take up IE citizenship. I can certainly see that being a sticking point in Brexit negotiations.

The fact that you are entitled to UK citizenship doesn't affect your IE/EU citizenship, any more than my NZ citizenship does. Not the same.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Oct 25th, 2016 at 05:41:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They were born in Ireland. They're entitled to Irish citizenship.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Oct 26th, 2016 at 06:34:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
UK looks at paying billions into EU budget after Brexit
Plan would let finance sector keep single-market access

Britain would continue to pay billions of pounds into the EU budget after Brexit to maintain cherished single-market access for the City of London and other sectors under plans being discussed by Theresa May's cabinet.
...
But one senior EU diplomat said: "Even before the Brexit vote, the role of the City of London was precarious. They had an issue with the euro's financial centre being outside the eurozone. Now that it is outside the EU, it is game over [for passporting]."



"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Mon Oct 17th, 2016 at 04:21:59 PM EST
The UK can't pay for "regulatory equivalence".

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Oct 22nd, 2016 at 12:35:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Brexit: leading banks set to pull out of UK early next year
Sources close to Davis dismissed speculation that he believed a solution would be for the City to strike an "equivalence" deal with the EU, under which the regulatory systems are recognised by both parties through a one-off agreement. Browne writes that some Brexiters have made such an argument but that such a deal would not be enough to stop banks deserting Britain.


"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Sat Oct 22nd, 2016 at 10:23:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Brexit: leading banks set to pull out of UK early next year
Anthony Browne, head of the British Bankers' Association, warns that major lenders are poised to hit relocate button

Britain's biggest banks are preparing to relocate out of the UK in the first few months of 2017 amid growing fears over the impending Brexit negotiations, while smaller banks are making plans to get out before Christmas.




"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Sat Oct 22nd, 2016 at 10:20:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Uk will probably be able to keep food banks. And sperm banks...

"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet
by Melanchthon on Sun Oct 23rd, 2016 at 12:09:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Brexit regret - The Economist



"Dieu se rit des hommes qui se plaignent des conséquences alors qu'ils en chérissent les causes" Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet

by Melanchthon on Sun Oct 23rd, 2016 at 01:01:17 PM EST
The chart on the right is a bit confusing.  Is it saying that people who voted Leave are more likely to regret their vote, especially if they thought their was little likelihood of Brexit actually happening - i.e. they were more likely to be "protest" voters - while people who voted Remain are much less likely to regret their vote, but that likelihood goes up the more likely they thought Brexit would actually happen?

Why would a Remain voter be more likely to regret their vote if they thought Brexit was actually going to happen?

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Oct 24th, 2016 at 09:56:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, that did seem odd. My guess is that the effect comes from it being a phenomenally small sample. So maybe just one person had a change of heart because the EU appeared to be playing hardball, or because the economy had not tanked yet, and felt, oh, if I'd known I would have voted leave too - not that it would have made a difference.

And because very, very few remainers felt that leave was a guarantee (because to be honest, why would you feel so?) that could be enough to raise the curve - note the unbelievable confidence interval, there were not many of them.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi

by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Tue Oct 25th, 2016 at 10:17:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Part of it is a purely statistical effect: The noisy ends of that graph are basically people going "it won't matter what we vote, the fix will be in anyway." And you're always going to get a lot more buyer's remorse from people who don't believe that elections have consequences than from the ones who understand that they do.

That said, I could tell a plausible story about people who are pro-Leave voting Remain if they believe that the result of a Leave vote will be a lot of harmful woofing in the tabloids, followed by some utterly sleazy deal being cut between the Tories and the EPP, which combines the very worst elements of staying and leaving.

But of course with access only to this high-level aggregate, all I can do is tell stories, not postulate causal relationships.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue Oct 25th, 2016 at 09:40:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]


Display:
Go to: [ European Tribune Homepage : Top of page : Top of comments ]