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But as an opposition they don't have to spell out their negotiating strategy. They remain free to criticize the May government even if they know they wouldn't get any different deal themselves. That's politics.
As for taking back the railway's, the railway's in Ireland - as well as many other infrastructural utilities - are run by semi-state organization (read nationalised entities). I'm not sure there is any specific EU directive or Treaty outlawing this. EU directives are mainly aimed at preventing "unfair competition" whereby one state backed company in one country puts a private enterprise out of business by leveraging it's state subsidies.
I don't think the UK, and in this instance the Labour party, has ever fully explored the potential scope of implementing their policies within an EU context, even where this might involve putting their own private companies out of business. The point of EU "state aid" restrictions is to prevent a company in country A putting a company in country B out of business by utilizing its state backing.
To me, that seems a fair restriction, even if I am in favour of public utilities being run by state companies, especially where they involve "natural monopolies" like electricity, telecommunications, public broadcasting, water, gas, and even broadband.
Index of Frank's Diaries
That said, the EU directives are framed in such a way as to favour this "solution", by demanding that utilities be run like a business... And what business does government have running businesses? Eh?
It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue
- Queen Elizabeth II
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