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SHOCK HORROR! May to talk to Corbyn

by Frank Schnittger Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 07:40:56 PM EST

Almost three years after the Brexit referendum  and two years after she lost her overall parliamentary majority, Theresa May has decided she needs to talk to opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn in order to forge a consensus on the way forward. Even more shockingly, she is going to abide by "the will of Parliament" if it supports an alternative to her My deal, no deal, or no Brexit approach.

No, this is not a belated April Fools Day story. Apparently, this process is going to be complete by next Wednesday, April 10th., in time for the emergency European Council meeting, where she hopes to get agreement to a further short A.50 notification extension to enable a new deal to be negotiated with the EU, agreed by parliament, and implemented in law.

Apparently this process is to be completed by the 22nd. May so that the UK doesn't have to participate in the European Parliament elections. Good luck with that. For a country which has routinely accused the EU of lacking in democracy, the UK government seems to be absolutely determined to avoid participating in European Parliamentary elections, a second confirmatory public vote, or indeed a general election.


Indeed, if Corbyn were to insist that any deal they might agree must be put to a public confirmatory vote, we could be looking at a 6 months extension being required. Why would he agree any deal with May without one? He needs to inoculate Labour against any complicity in the political chaos and economic downsides the whole Brexit process has precipitated. The only way for him to do so is to pass the ultimate responsibility for any deal onto the people themselves.

So it has to be extremely doubtful that the EU Council will agree to a further A.50 extension which does not involve UK participation in the European Parliament elections. In some ways that vote could also be a useful indicator of how political opinion is shifting among the people of the UK as a whole. No doubt UKIP, Nigel Farage, and perhaps even the BNP will do well. But will Brexiteer parties as a whole outvote parties supporting Remain or a second confirmatory vote?  Perhaps the EU would like to know?

In the meantime, May's premiership limps on. According to BBC correspondent, Laura Kuenssberg, 14 cabinet minsters opposed seeking a further A.50 extension, with only 10 Ministers in favour. More resignations to follow? More Tory leaders more concerned with burnishing their Tory Leadership credentials than dirtying their bibs compromising with Corbyn?

We could arrive at the extraordinary situation where a May/Corbyn compromise deal receives more support from Labour MPs rather than Tory MPs. Certainly the DUP and ERG appear to have overplayed their hands, and forced May into the arms of the political leader they hate and fear most. Apparently 170 Tory MPs have written to Theresa May seeking her immediate resignation - a majority of the Tory parliamentary party.

But of course they shot their bolt last December when they lost a confidence vote in her leadership with party rules forbidding another leadership heave until next December.  So now the only way of getting rid of her would be to vote no confidence in her government and risk a general election. Probably the only thing they fear more right now. So at the moment the May Corbyn talks seem to be the only game in town.

But the May Corbyn talks might also be taken over by events. Opinion in the country seems to be bifurcating between Remainers and no deal Brexiteers who don't want any compromise with the EU whatsoever. Those advocating a negotiated soft Brexit could find themselves being overtaken by the extremes on either side. It will become increasingly difficult for Labour to ride both Remain and Leave horses at once. Again, a second confirmatory public vote may be the only way of squaring that circle.

From the EU's point of view, today's events mark another win. The DUP is about the only party or grouping still holding out hope for changes in the Withdrawal Agreement. All everyone else is talking about is changes to the (non-legally binding) political declaration which the EU has always been willing to consider.

The EU has also been increasingly focused on preparations for a no-deal Brexit, with particular attention being paid to assuring the integrity of the Customs Union and Single Market while also being true to the letter and spirit of the Good Friday Agreement - which is predicated on having an open border between Ireland and N. Ireland. Varadker is meeting Macron today, and Merkel is due to travel to Dublin on Thursday.

Very little has been revealed of the substance of their discussions and the subject is almost taboo in Ireland, for fear of legitimating Brexiteer claims that Brexit need not result in a hard border. There is no good solution here which may cause the EU Council to be quite patient with the UK in the hope that better options will somehow emerge later.

A UK government minister, commenting on the political chaos in Westminster, opined that at least in the UK there were no riots in the street (unlike France) or government shut downs (as in the USA). How much longer can the current crisis continue without even that boast becoming untrue?

Display:
But is it a real offer, or just more shitty tactics to put parliament up against the no-deal brick wall to force her shitty deal through?

https://www.politics.co.uk/blogs/2019/04/02/no-10-statement-look-out-for-theresa-may-s-no-deal-trap

And its hard to escape the feeling that if she was really serious about this, she would have made this offer a year ago.

by IdiotSavant on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 08:11:42 PM EST
She should have arrived at a national consensus position before triggering A.50 in the first place. But NOOOOO it had to be May's way or the high way...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 08:39:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, and history will not be kind to her. She may not have been aided by a Cabinet of some of the most selfish yet incompetent rogues in Parliamentary history, and they will take their fair share of the blame, but her's was the controlling hand and her fingerprints are all over thiss.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 09:15:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's generally believed that this offer is an attempt to solidify breiteer suspicions that the failures of brexit are all Corbyn's fault, or at least to provide some meat for the tabloids to a bone of blame for the tabloids to chew over.

However, the EU have emphasised that, at this stage, there are only 3 outcomes to discuss; No deal, May's deal or No brexit. Any new compromise concocted by Corbyn and May together will not be permitted without the UK's participation in the EU elections.

So, all that's gonna happen is that May will tell Corbyn that, if he wishes to honour the result of the referendum (which he has continually insisted that he does), then it's her deal or no deal. Which means she's basically gonna tell him he MUST push her deal through.

I'm not sure he's gonna buy those beans, however magic they're supposed to be.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 08:57:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The EU won't agree to re-opening the Withdrawal agreement, but the political declaration on the future relationship is fair game. So a re-write to include membership of A customs union, protection of workers rights etc. is entirely possible and even doable in a few weeks.

The problem is that this process, combined with ratification and enactment processes on all sides is unlikely to be completed by May 22nd. So the UK could be in breach of its Treaty obligations to hold elections for quite some time, and a de facto Brexit would occur even before a new deal had been formally agreed and ratified.

The EU can't afford to allow a de facto Brexit, so I doubt the EU would allow that to happen and would insist on the UK holding the EP elections - enraging Brexiteers and giving some hope to campaigners for a second confirmatory public vote who could channel their energies into the election campaign.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 09:29:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The EU has indicated the political declaration could be rewritten over a weekend, given a clear indication of what would likely pass the Commons.

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 Apr 3rd, 2019 at 02:32:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So what May can offer is influence over the political declaration in return for helping the Withdrawal Agreement through parliament? And possibly elections, if she even has that much power over the Tories (if she resigns, the Tories and DUP can appoint someone else, and if she calls for new elections she needs a two thirds majority).

I don't really see why Corbyn would accept that offer of shared blame for her impopular Withdrawal Agreement. Unless he buys the whole "must save Tories from themselves"-thing.

by fjallstrom on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 03:50:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'd say that in order to get Labour support she'll pretty much have to let Corbyn write the political agreement.
After all, she got to negotiate the withdrawal agreement. Fair's fair...

And Labour is the only game in town, if she wants to get Brexit over the line, and nlways was. She's proved that by trying everything else.

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

by eurogreen on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 04:08:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
When only 15 Tories voted for a second referendum, how many would support a deal containing both Corbyn's red lines and a proposal for a second referendum? And could this be passed before the EU Council meeting?

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 08:36:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The only thing that can come out of the meeting that would have majority support in parliament is Corbyn slipping her poisoned jam. Mold optional.
by generic on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 08:56:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's indeed looking that even if May and Corbyn can reach an agreement the Commons would vote it down too.

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 Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 08:11:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Any new compromise concocted by Corbyn and May together will not be permitted without the UK's participation in the EU elections.
Unless the compromise involves swift ratification of May's deal (possibly without the political declaration on the future relationship).

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 Apr 3rd, 2019 at 02:30:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well...

There's no short extension on offer

Speaking to the European parliament, Juncker instead set an "ultimate deadline" of 12 April for the Commons to approve the withdrawal agreement.

So if they get the deal over the line with a Con/Lab whipped vote (not a foregone conclusion) then it's all hunky-dory, the EU will let the UK hand its "political declaration" homework in after the holidays, I reckon.

(But before any referendum which may be part of the deal...)

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

by eurogreen on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 04:17:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Calling the Withdrawal Agreement, negotiated by the Barnier team on the EUI side and whomever was the flavor of the month on the UK side, as "May's deal" (it's not), is granting the hard Brexieers a major victory in allowing them to bend the narrative in their favor: this was the best way to get the deal soundly rejected; after all, everybody hates the woman.
by Bernard on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 06:38:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes and "everyone" hates "her" deal, because it exposes the UK's diminished bargaining power relative to the EU. The Brexiteers refer to it dismissively as May's deal as an argument in favour of their preferred no deal option. Remainers refer to it dismissively as May's deal as clearly inferior to the status quo. Remainers want it to be the alternate option to Remain in a binary referendum choice. Brexiteers are trying to delegitimize it entirely so that the default no deal Brexit comes to pass - or (worst case) becomes the alternate option to Remain in a binary choice referendum. (Apparently the poor people of the UK cannot be trusted to answer a multiple choice question in a referendum...)

We all know the deal was 95% drafted by Barnier's team (and this is reflected in the unanimous support it has received on the EU side). But to have any chance of getting it ratified, May had to take ownership of the deal - something she didn't do initially when she tried to resile from the Irish backstop before the ink was even dry on her agreement. Now, at least, she and almost everyone else have taken ownership of the Withdrawal Agreement. All the fuss is about the political declaration, which isn't even binding on either side...

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 08:55:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Guardian's BREXIT blog was baiting both parties' constituencies with intrigues most of the day. And left the stinkiest insinuation (Labour backbench whipping defections and purges) at the top of scroll going into evening. That's terrible press.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 04:20:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The Guardian, despite being allegedly leftish, is very hostile to Corbyn, and so is always happy to boost anything which looks like Blairite resistance to anything that Corbyn proposes.

I'm sure they'd be all over TInGe if their coup hadn't so obviously failed.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 07:26:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The Guardian is basically neoliberal, and in fact it's always been known as a left-in-name-only paper, all the way back to the Manchester Guardian days.

The absolute fire-spitting hatred it has demonstrated towards Corbyn gives the game away. It has attacked, smeared, and attacked again a politician who would be considered boringly centre-left in much of Europe.

It's true position is rather curious, but seems to be analogous to the Democratic leadership in the US - a for-profit posture that makes some token left-leaning noises, but is primarily dedicated to the privilege and enrichment of the usual select few.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 12:36:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I disagree on the Corbyn bit actually. His economics might not be particularly radical, but his foreign policy seems to be the real deal. And that makes them mad like nothing else. That is just as true over all parts of the continent I know.
by generic on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 12:40:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think they registered as Change UK Independence Group, popularly abbreviated to CUK, for the EU elections.
by generic on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 02:43:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They'll always be TInGe to me. They're essentially a replacement for the LibDems in the ConDem pact.

The blairite neoliberal rump of the Labour party has left to fulfil its true role of supporting a Conservative Govt.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 08:22:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Reality check for the umpth time by the EU negotiator ...

Speech by Michel Barnier at the EPC Breakfast

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 08:20:05 PM EST
It seems to me that the ECB or some other EU agency must have a computer model that compares the various options and their economic effects. For example, the cost of a no-deal Brexit compared to the solidification of the business environment.

I wonder if the recent three week extension was an output from such a model, along the lines of "we have just a few more items to clean up here, give us a few more days and then we will at least be ok from the legal and regulatory viewpoint."

That is a reading of what is suggested by Barnier: "We have also worked with the Member States, and the Commission just completed a tour of the 27 to make sure that no question is left unanswered. The Union will be ready to manage any disruption for the public and businesses in the EU27."

In such a case, there is no reason for the EU to give a further extension. If they do give another, it opens a question about how many additional further small extensions might be on offer...

by asdf on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 11:28:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Some Conservative backbenchers are publicly saying they would vote against May's government on a confidence vote, if Corbyn proposed one. This would be an extraordinary development in British political history.

The last time a significant number of MPs voted against their party's government, to bring it down on a confidence vote, was when the Liberal Party split on Irish Home Rule in 1886.

I do not see Corbyn backing a compromise with May, when a bit of opportunism might make him the next Prime Minister.

by Gary J on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 09:29:07 PM EST
Yep, but he has to go through the motions of appearing to engage and be reasonable during which time he couldn't propose a motion of no confidence.  If the talks break down, he can always blame May's inflexibility and intransigence. Mind you, Labour would be in a right pickle if a motion of no confidence were proposed by another party while the talks were ongoing... they might have to manufacture a talks breakdown sharpish in order not to be seen to be collaborating with a Tory Brexiteer government.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 09:35:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Labour MPs might vote against a deal that the Conservatives agree to, simply because the Conservatives agreed to it. That seems to be politics these days.

Furthermore, what is the magic wand that Labour is supposed to bring to the table that was not available to the Conservative Party in the first place?

If anything, I would expect the votes on a joint Conservative + Labour proposal to be defeated even more clearly than May's proposal.

by asdf on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 11:30:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If anything, it is Tory MPs which have been acting in the more partisan fashion. Just 37 Tory MPs supported the Customs Union plan in the indicative votes. 33 backed the Single Market, and just 15 backed a second referendum. So how many do you expect to support a plan containing Corbyn's red lines...?

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 09:38:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The last time a significant number of MPs voted against their party's government, to bring it down on a confidence vote, was when the Liberal Party split on Irish Home Rule in 1886.
How interesting that this time it's also about Ireland.

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 Apr 3rd, 2019 at 02:24:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Corbyn needs to do a fine balancing act to ensure his rejection of May's opening leads to a no-confidence vote and a general election in the context of a Brexit extension and not a no-deal Brexit.

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 Apr 3rd, 2019 at 02:27:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Shakespearean "The Anguish"

So May wants to talk a compromise deal with Labour and put forward to the EU Council a majority proposal to make adjustments to the Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration of November 2018.

It is well known and many times reiterated by EU leaders and the negotiating team ... there is only one agreed upon Withdrawal Agreement and will not be open for any negotiations. Just kicking a beat-up can down Downing Street Way ... till the EU exasperates and a no-deal is the final outcome. I can barely listen or watch these actors in the House of Commons.

The world is not watching anymore ...

May to ask for short Brexit extension and reaches out to Labour | The Guardian |

"So today I am taking action to break the logjam: I am offering to sit down with the leader of the opposition and to try to agree a plan that we would both stick to, to ensure that we leave the European Union and that we do so with a deal," she said.

"The ideal outcome of this process would be to agree an approach on a future relationship that delivers on the result of the referendum, that both the leader of the opposition and I could put to the house for approval, and which I could then take to next week's European council.

"However, if we cannot agree on a single unified approach, then we would instead agree a number of options for the future relationship that we could put to the house in a series of votes to determine which course to pursue."



Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.
by Oui on Tue Apr 2nd, 2019 at 09:41:33 PM EST
Far too little and far too late. Best hope is that Corbyn has one brief conference and then announces that no acceptable compromise is on offer. If May does not open with a reasonable compromise, why legitimate even more delay?


"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 12:33:52 AM EST
It's called a Tory whitewash or simply the blame-game. Either Corbyn's Labour or preferably the ugly bureaucrats in Brussels. Most likely in polls the EU will be holding the card to success of an "orderly" Brexit. No second referendum and to avoid a snap general election at all cost. Protecting the party - May's self interest. In the digital age of social media it will be considered leadership.

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.
by Oui on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 02:47:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yep, we're talking blame games here, with May desperately trying to spread a little in Corbyn's direction as otherwise the responsibility is all hers. It's like a game of musical chairs where everyone is trying not to be the one holding the Brexit baby when the music stops - as it shortly will.

The EU have to extract a price for another extension, and holding EP elections will be their minimum offer. Can you see the UK refusing an extension for fear of having to hold elections?

Possibly May might, because the Tories could be down to under 20% in an EP election right now, perhaps outvoted by UKIP and the Lib Dems, and certainly by Labour.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 09:49:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]
EP elections aren't a price, they're a legal requirement of continuing membership. The EU don't especially want the UK holding them, they just haven't been able to find a way around it that they believe will hold up under the inevitable court challenges.

You've spent too long reading UK takes on the relationship here. I don't think the EU has tried to extract a price for anything, they've been trying to accommodate the UK crazies as best as they can within the EU legal order despite the utter foolishness of UK commentators.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 10:25:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes but what the UK have been trying to do is to finesse the legal situation by requesting an extension only until May 22nd. as the elections have to be held from May 23rd. onwards.

But this rather ignores the point that the elections have to be organised from April 12th. as candidates need time to be nominated and run their campaigns. So what the UK is effectively saying is that they guarantee to be gone by May 22nd. to avoid a legal problem with the election.

But this rather ignores the fact that these things never run to plan and that more time is likely to be required to negotiate, agree, and ratify a deal. So the UK is trying to pre-empt and pre-judge the outcome of the negotiations by saying they will be finished by May 22nd. one way or the other.

But if this all goes pearshaped, the UK will have "de facto" left the EU even if no "de jure" deal has been agreed - throwing the whole process into a legal mess and discrediting the EU - which is, above all, predicated on a legal order. The Brexiteers would love that - throwing some sand in the EU's eyes.

So why should the EU buy into this? EU citizens have a right to stand in and vote in EP elections and this involves doing stuff from April 12th. onwards. So my argument is that any extension beyond April 12th. must include participation in EP elections.

Call this the "price" of an extension, or call it whatever you like, the outcome and consequence is the same. The EU desires an "orderly" Brexit, and this does not include disrupting the EP elections and interfering in the rights of EU citizens while they are still EU citizens.

More magical thinking on the part of the UK, I agree.

Interestingly, Corbyn has said he has no strong view on this one way or the other. He doesn't want to attract Brexiteer ire by insisting on elections (which BoJo says will cost £109 Million) but will be quite happy to comply if the EU insists on them.

Negotiations are also about putting facts on the ground. Not holding the elections implies Remaining is simply not an option. Holding the elections forces a delay and means Remain is still very much a live possibility.

The elections would also likely result in a complete humiliation for the Tory party. My guess is they would poll under 20%.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 10:50:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't know about that. The legal controversy created by indulging UK intransigence --with recurring "extensions" offers-- has been understated by Council PR. It is not mitigated by further deadline extension; it exacerbates controversy. Council decision to facilitate UK participation up to 22 May, 2019 (by expedient pretext) jeopardizes its responsibility for assuring a reliable EU electoral system. Permitting 24 hours notice of UK admission, or not, to the EP as contingent member is politically counterproductive to decisions already taken.
As regards the UK, given that the time frame for conclusion of a withdrawal agreement is due to end on 29 March 2019, it will no longer be a member of the EU at the time of the elections on 23-26 May 2019, unless the European Council, in agreement with the UK, unanimously decides to extend that period (Article 50(3) TEU). The UK's 73 seats will cease to exist on the date of its departure, and have already partly been redistributed among other Member States by European Council Decision (EU) 2018/937 of 28 June 2018 for the period following the 2019 European elections (1.3.3).
Art.3, ¶1-2 reduces total number of seats to 705. This electoral control, depends not only on UK legal withdrawal before the beginning of this 2019-24 session, it anticipates notice by Council to EU27 of effective conclusion to A.50 action "sufficiently far in advance " to adjust and complete electoral composition before 2024-2029 session [Art.4; European Council Decision of 28 June 2013, Art. 4]. An inconclusive A.50 action, regardless of MEP election in UK, defeats that purpose.

Failing to enforce a conclusion most certainly invites reactionary correctives by EU state, individuals (not UK), and ECJ.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 03:57:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But if this all goes pearshaped, the UK will have "de facto" left the EU even if no "de jure" deal has been agreed - throwing the whole process into a legal mess and discrediting the EU - which is, above all, predicated on a legal order. The Brexiteers would love that - throwing some sand in the EU's eyes.

if this all goes pearshaped, then it will be hard brexit on May 23, and it will be the UK's fault. I can't see why this would reflect badly on the EU.

<cling> The penny drops... I recently decided that I would be visiting Glasgow in the last week of May, to see my daughter's graduation exhibition. I'd better make sure to take cancellation insurance on the tickets.

(Oddly enough my first visit to Glasgow was in the weeks preceding the referendum... Full circle. Subliminal pull of ancestral ties.)

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

by eurogreen on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 06:42:15 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The possibility of unilateral Brexit revocation makes it imperative that the UK prepare to hold EU elections if they remain a member past April 12 (for domestic logistical reasons) and actually hold them if they remain a member past May 22.

The EU is willing to go out of its way to avoid a no-deal Brexit but they won't allow the UK political crisis to infect their institutions. Unfortunately I can't find the quote, but a UK paper quoted an EU diplomat to that effect.

Thinking of this as the EU exacting a price for a concession is the Brexiter confrontational frame. The EU has negotiated like an unfeeling technocratic machine.

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 Apr 3rd, 2019 at 10:50:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I disagree. An unfeeling technocratic machine focused on being as nice as it can be to the UK. Can you imagine a hostile EU here? (Is it even possible for the EU to be hostile here? Does the machine prevent it?)
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 03:00:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Does it take a hostile EU? Or does it only take one EU country with internal political arguments of it own that cause it to vote against whatever mish-mash May and Corbyn might come up with.
by asdf on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 04:06:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]

"Let history record that the Labour Party could have stopped..."

T.May and J.Corbyn agree that emending the "Political Declaration" introduced to the WITHDRAWAL AGREEMENT  could switch a dozen more MPS (any combination), from nay to aye, to support negotiation of some kind of customs union ...

if draft parameters of such EU or EEA customs union (Clarke's hypothetical) are acceptable ...

with or without HoC majority ratification of the WITHDRAWAL AGREEMENT.

There's the risk ultimately: "swing" voters could accept custom union and dismiss the WA.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 05:33:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
EU says it would not open [trade] talks with UK after no-deal Brexit until it agrees to [sign up to the main elements of the withdrawal agreement anyway]
on cross-party "Political Declaration"
"Whatever happens the UK will have to respond to the three main questions of the separation: one, citizens' rights, they must be respected and protected. Two, the UK will have to continue to honour its financial commitments taken as a member state. And three, a solution will have to be found for the island of Ireland, preserving peace and the single market.
equivocation
[Junker] also said member states should approve her request for a short extension until 22 May, but only "if the United Kingdom is in a position [?] to approve the withdrawal agreement with a sustainable majority" before a planned summit next week.
stupidly elects 22 May BREXIT "request"
"If it has not done so by then [12 April], no further short extension will be possible. After 12 April, we risk jeopardising the European parliament elections and so threaten the functioning of the European Union."


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 10:11:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Obvious really, but this is a welcome clarification.

The free-lunch Brexiters need to have their noses rubbed in this stuff.

The only alternative is to go full pirate, like Port Royal or Algiers [aka "WTO rules"]

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

by eurogreen on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 06:47:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Barbados, Bahamas, Bermuda, Jamaica, ..., VANUATU!!

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 01:43:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There were no WTO rules in Port Royal, shipmate. And back then was when we had Henry Morgan as Governor of Jamaica (snigger) and we was making out like bandits.

That was when we got the Empire going!

(Can't take any more Brexshit. Am morphing full swivel-eye).

I used to be afew. I'm still not many.

by john_evans (john(dot)evans(dot)et(at)gmail(dot)com) on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 04:13:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What do you mean, don't you think that when EU forces poor UK to elect well enumerated representatives to participate in the EUs decision making process, it does so only for the evulzs?
by fjallstrom on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 03:12:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Vote for the Greatest Evil

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 03:34:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]

I'm not well versed in the Harry Potters but the Tory compares his party to the cartoon villain Nazi dude here?

by generic on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 11:58:53 AM EST
by generic on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 12:00:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, the undead cartoon villain wizard Nazi dude. That is now apparently using Labour to stay alive.

I am currently reading those books to my kids. They are pretty good children's books. Phantastic scenery, tense story telling, and the kids are always right. Shoddy world building, but the kids don't think about that yet.

by fjallstrom on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 01:01:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I can only recommend to stay away from Rowling's Twitter until you're done. Turning into a billionaire is not good for mental health.
by generic on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 01:28:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Oh, I know that, and the kids doesn't know about Twitter yet.

As many kids books where they turn out to be a secret superhero/wizard/prince etc, it's basically a power fantasy. And Rowling's power fantasy is to find out you are rich, have important (though dead) parents, go to the English boarding school for the elite in a world where the English domination of the world is unquestioned, where Europe is divided in France and German-Nordic-Slavic whatever, the rest of the world is good for exotic characters and looting, and all you need to learn about at school is ordering the world around. Basically, it's being a boarding school Tory but with magic. That is what I meant by shoddy world building.

So I am not surprised that she lets out her inner Tory, now that she is actually rich.

But as kids books go, they are pretty good in what kids care about. I have also read them the Christian Indoctrination books known as the Narnia series. That didn't work on me, so I figure kids care about the story and perhaps a bit about the characters but not really about the world building.

by fjallstrom on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 03:29:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There are tons of classic fantasy novels that are better than Harry Potter. "Rich boy at boarding school repeatedly gets bailed out of trouble by smart girl" is not a very attractive plot line, and the later books in the series try to emulate the Lord of the Rings. Ugh.
by asdf on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 04:14:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You don't just go to the ultimate English boarding school for the elite - you also get to put the nasty racist bigoted elites in their place. And the nasty bigoted working classes. And you win at sports too! What could possibly be better?

I've always been amazed how few people see the political subtext, and think HP is about magic, or the occult, or something.

That subtext has all the subtlety of a car alarm going off at 3am right next to your head.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 05:00:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Umberto Eco has an essay (included in one of his last collections, Pape Satàn Aleppe) Harry Potter fa male agli adulti?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 05:36:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Phillip Pulman's books are a good substitute for Harry Potter. Some of his book actually use Narnia characters to take the piss

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 08:24:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes! I read my daughters all of the above (I would add Madeleine L'Engle's books : A wrinkle in time etc, CS Lewis with added nuclear physics and Episcopalean theology)
None of them did any harm, but Pullman rules them all.

(Oh dear, I just learned they did a film version of Wrinkle. Will consult Younger Daughter as to whether we should see it. Could it be worse than Golden Compass?)

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

by eurogreen on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 06:58:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The Golden Compass

A Wrinkle in Time.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 03:00:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Whoa.

Compass was a bad film in that they "did the book" to within an inch of its life, and was so superficial that the only character with any emotional depth was the CGI polar bear.

Wrinkle is a whole nother dimension of bad, it would seem (appropriately) - they seem to have lost the plot entirely.


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

by eurogreen on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 09:20:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In the sense that a proper steak and some good beer is a good substitute for McDonalds. Harry Potter is good junk food. Pullman is the proper stuff, but probably needs to be left until they're capable of dealing with it.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 10:03:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, everything in its proper order.  Rowling was the "introductory drug" for my kids that led them to L'Engle, Pullman, and all sorts of wild things.  I, on the other hand, got things rather backwards.  Norse sagas and Beowulf led me to Tolkien.  By the time I got to Lewis a few years later, not only was I not interested in such fluff because I'd already read the real deal, but I could easily see that it was all Christian propaganda and apologetics of a slap-across-the-face-with-a-wet-herring level of subtlety.  When I finished them (I always finish.  I even finished Atlas Shrugged.  Ewww.), my predominant thought was, "Well, I can't get THAT time back."  I recovered by reading Frankenstein.  But I didn't recover enough to want to revisit Narnia.
by rifek on Sat Apr 13th, 2019 at 07:56:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I read and re-read Narnia in middle school. Probably several times, enough to remember that I noticed that the books where Aslan was less present were the best ones.

Also I was intrigued by what I perceived as hints at deeper layers. Reading them to my kids I realise that it is simply Lewis borrowing from different mythologies (and not consistently either), with a wink and a nod for the adults. So I wasn't wrong, it was deeper layers, it is just layers of mythology older and outside Christianity.

I also usually always finish books, but I do remember trying to read The Three Musketeers in middle school. The  librarian did warn me that it could be to advanced, but than again it was people fighting with swords on the cover. Don't think I got through the first page, despite several attempts. First book I returned without having read, strange experience. I have doubled back and read it later, but at the time it was very confusing.

by fjallstrom on Sat Apr 13th, 2019 at 11:40:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You guys literary literacy amazes me. Having the start of a possie of grandchildren, 2 so far, one on the way, oldest aged 4, means I am soon going to have to start on this journey. As a child I was too engrossed in my own dreams to be bothered with others, but I have never been able to write in that genre. So what would really be helpful to me is an analysis of what engages kids minds, and what should be avoided. Imagination can be so free form, and often, for me, so pointless. Often with sinister political undertones. You don't want to be trapped in somebody else's imaginary web. So what books would you recommend?

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sun Apr 14th, 2019 at 10:43:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
At that age I read them mostly rhyming, rhythmic stories. Mostly for my own sanity, because when they found something they loved they wanted to hear it again and again and again. My favourites include The Book about Moomin, Mymble and Little My and Who Will Comfort Toffle?, both by Tove Jansson.

Later on, I've read them a lot of Hans Christian Andersen and other fairy tales, often in older, slightly archaic translations, because it was good to get them to fall asleep.

Now that they can read a bit themselves, they have a ton of opinions about what they should read, and my philosophy is mainly to encourage reading. There seems to be lots and lots of new children's books coming out, and I think most of what they read is pretty recently written by Swedish authors. Handbok för superhjältar is such a smash hit that I wouldn't be surprised if it's translated soon, though. Young girl finds a Handbook for Superheroes on a dusty shelf in a library or an old bookstore and through the powers of reading and training, evolves super powers of her own. And then she fights crime and bullying. Cool illustrations and easy text, so good for new readers (if and when they are translated into English).

As to what effect books has on impressionable young minds, I'm not sure. They do have effect, but when I go back and re-read scifi I read as a teen, half the story isn't there. Instead of the rich stories and interesting characters I now find flat stories and cardboard characters. But that means that the story as I read it, and the story that impressed me, was largely constructed in my own imagination.

Then again I wouldn't say the content doesn't matter. The first real book I read was "Small is Beautiful". I think I read that one half a dozen times before reading anything else. It is the story about a small dragon that lives with the lizards, but wants to be big. It doesn't listen when the lizards tells him that "Small is beautiful, lagom is best". So it hunts more and more, and gets other animals to hunt for it, for a share of the meat. Eventually it starts growing more heads, I in particular remember the smooth talking head and the fire breathing head. It becomes so large that it dominated the whole forest and the wolf pack decides it needs to be the avant garde of the animals and attack it. Their attack on the dragon fails though, and the dragon grows larger and larger until it poops so much that it's destroying the forest itself. In the end all the animals unite, from the smallest lizard to the largest bear and only then can they overthrow the industrial capitalistic system, I mean the dragon, and a new era can start in the forest. Though in the final picture a dragon egg is resting among the lizard eggs, but perhaps this time the dragon will listen to the lizards?

Given that I have not read it since, it might not have been as obvious eco anarchistic propaganda as I remember it. Though with that title, it probably was. And maybe it was that I was attracted to the content based on already forming values? Though again, maybe it did have that strong an effect on me. In which case, I really should track down a copy and read it to the kids, just to make sure.

by fjallstrom on Sun Apr 14th, 2019 at 07:24:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thanks! I will look out for it!

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Apr 15th, 2019 at 09:22:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The first real book I read was "Small is Beautiful".

I thought you were talking about the book by E.F. Schumacher... Made a big impression on me. For adolescents :)

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

by eurogreen on Wed Apr 17th, 2019 at 11:03:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
If I had tried that when I just had gotten the hang of reading comics, I doubt I would have gotten through it :)

The children's book Liten är fin, which translates literally to Small is beautiful, is written five years later. Given title and content, I think the inspiration is pretty clear.

by fjallstrom on Wed Apr 17th, 2019 at 05:37:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Picture books, rhymes, good messages : this is old stuff that worked for me, and for my children. Any grandchildren will probably get the same treatment.

Banal, but effective : Dr Seuss.
Brainwashed generations of children into political correctness, right under their unsuspecting parents' noses. ABC and Cat in the Hat, are the entry level ones.

Maurice Sendak : Darker undertones, more moving. The Night Kitchen, Where the Wild things are.

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

by eurogreen on Wed Apr 17th, 2019 at 11:01:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Basically, it's being a boarding school Tory but with magic

For LOTR, read "loyal English yeoman" for "boarding school Tory".

I used to be afew. I'm still not many.

by john_evans (john(dot)evans(dot)et(at)gmail(dot)com) on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 04:23:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That would explain all the Brexiteer magical thinking...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 04:30:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think I read the first two? I certainly remember the phrenology hat. To sort out all the evil people. And then teach them magic anyway.
by generic on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 08:56:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I just recently read through the whole series in sequence. The first book is short and childish, the last couple are long and complicated and scary. I think what happened was a cohort of readers in elementary school got hooked on the first one, and then matured as the series also matured.

But I would go for TH White any day.

by asdf on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 04:28:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
May's bombshell means the Little English nationalist revolution is over
The carefully crafted illusions the May administration were founded on have crumbled into dust. After three years of civil service expertise wasted, billions of pounds of growth lost and two years' worth of legislative time squandered, Theresa May stopped trying to get Brexit through with Tory votes and turned to Jeremy Corbyn.

Corbyn will be asked to co-author a new version of the political declaration acceptable to Labour, or failing that to help engineer a majority in the Commons, either for a Norway-style deal or a customs union.

In effect May has bottled out of a fourth "meaningful vote", ditched the threat of no deal completely and in a desperate attempt to avoid an election has thrown herself on the mercy of parliament. It should show no mercy.

---snip>---

The Tory party's moral collapse is under way. I don't know what new formation will emerge. But even its enemies must acknowledge that Corbyn's Labour party has ground May's project to dust by drawing on the one thing that outsiders to the labour movement can never quite understand: the discipline and solidarity that come from being vilified and ignored - something May could never rely on among the squabbling ranks of entitled Tory MPs.



Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 01:56:44 PM EST
Yeah, sure. More likely is a no-deal Brexit, significant economic and social troubles, and a Little English, populist, nationalist takeover. Democracy depends on economic stability for the middle class, which is exactly what Brexit is not designed to deliver.
by asdf on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 04:16:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You read it here first.

Couple of months ago. I'm too lazy to look up the post where I declared that the only way to get a majority for Brexit was Con/Lab compromise.

Paul Mason declares victory for Labour

like one of those Russian field marshals in Tolstoy's War and Peace, who wins by sitting on his horse and doing nothing, Corbyn's generalship has, for now, caused the enemy to break and panic.


It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 03:44:10 PM EST
(make a good sub-title for a book me thinks)

May is finally doing the one thing that could prevent a No Deal Brexit: coalition building with Labour.

 

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 08:08:50 PM EST
Stephen Barkley, Brexit Secretary has sought to amend Yvette Coopers bill - basically to neuter it so that the government can retain control of any request to the EU for an extension. His amendment has just been defeated by 400 votes to 220 - one of the largest defeats for the government yet.

Many UK leaders and commentators still seem to "think" they can duck out of holding EP elections by leaving on 22nd. May. This ignores the impact of this elsewhere.

Ireland for example is due to get 2 extra seats if the UK leaves. This means that the Dublin constituency increases from 3 to four seats. The dynamics of fighting a 4 seater are quite different from fighting a 3 seater. Some parties may nominate 2 candidates rather than one for example as they might think they have a chance of winning two seats rather than just 1.

A disappointed candidate for a party nomination could take a legal case arguing they would have won a nomination had their party nominated 2 rather than one candidate. So the entire legitimacy of the elections could be thrown into disarray if it is not clear, well in advance, exactly how many seats will be on offer.

This means the EU needs to know, by April 12th., whether the UK is going to be a member and participating in the elections or not. This is not a decision that can be delayed until 22nd. May.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Apr 3rd, 2019 at 09:46:13 PM EST
Yeah. Bloody hell. We "negotiated" ninth place for our lead candidate, she would be elected if by a miracle the list gets 8% and Hamon decides not to sit in EU Parliament, as expected.

But if France loses five seats...

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

by eurogreen on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 07:05:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The House of Commons has just been suspended for the day because of a leaking roof. Water has been seen cascading down from the Press gallery in the latest plot to stop Brexit. John Major used to have problems with his revolting Tory wets, and leaks in Westminster are commonplace. This is not the first time the HOC has been suspended in a flood of recriminations and Enoch Powell warned that immigration would result in rivers of blood. Could it be that Theresa May will have to ask for a further A.50 extension to facilitate repairs to the HOC Chamber? After all, the EU Council has said that she needs to come up with a concrete plan. An extension until Guy Fawkes day (November 5th.) seems appropriate...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 02:45:48 PM EST
There are lots of articles and videos out there about how the entire Parliament building infrastructure is in serious disrepair. One suggestion is that moving to temporary quarters may change the way Parliament works. No sense parading around in wigs and carrying swords and whatnot in a modern building.

Also, given how government contracts work, and the complexity of the work needed, it might be decades before the project is done. Maybe better overall to put up a new government building. Maybe outside of London.

by asdf on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 04:32:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes I was wondering how the antiquated Westminster architecture, archaic proceedings, and arcane customs could influence how Parliament goes about its business. Quite apart from the fact that MPs don't have reserved seats, can't all fit in the room at once, and can't conduct other business while attending some inane debate, the whole structure reeks of subjects doing her majesty a favour, rather than conducting a nation's business in an efficient manner.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 04:56:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
RTE
As a divided government battles a divided parliament over away forward, the chorus of characters who can now influence events has grown.

This is flummoxing news-reading algorithms,  or 'algos', which are designed to parse phrases from recognised speakers before executing a trade.

"The model signals are more quantitative driven and rely on historical data feeds," said Neil Jones, head of hedge fund currency sales at Mizuho in London.

"Brexit headlines have thrown a spanner in their works for the sheer number of characters moving the currency on a daily basis," he said.

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 05:24:45 PM EST
Sucks to be a parasite these days.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Thu Apr 4th, 2019 at 07:33:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Another year to waste?

Theresa May is set to be offered a year-long "flexible" delay to Brexit at next week's emergency summit in Brussels, EU officials have said.
A plan drawn up by Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, would let Britain stay in the bloc until 31 March 2020 - over a year after the original planned exit date.

Brussels is framing the proposal as a "flextension" - to stress that the UK could leave before the final date if MPs agree to implement the negotiated Brexit deal before then.

Ahead of next week's summit the prime minister has formally requested a short extension to 30 June this year - the same date she asked for last month and had rejected.

The 27 other EU presidents and prime ministers will make the final formal decision about the UK's future at the meeting on Wednesday.

This is a very generous offer. It would enable a serious attempt at a cross-party agreement, to be followed by a referendum. Or failing that, new elections (but no renegotiations, so new elections are unlikely to change anything).

Just watch her go to Brussels and fuck it up.

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

by eurogreen on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 10:12:02 AM EST
Political declaration can be adjusted, so if UK ended up looking for (an utterly pointless) softer Brexit then that could be agreed.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 11:04:46 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Jacob Rees-Mogg said on Friday morning: "If [?] a long extension leaves us stuck in the EU [12 mnths] we should be as difficult as possible. We could veto any increase in the budget, obstruct the putative EU army and block Mr Macron's integrationist schemes."
unless the "plan" includes a purge of the HoC

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 12:33:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]


It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 02:35:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This year the EU Council president is facilitating.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 02:58:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If the EU does this they are nuts. All it will do is extend the disarray, the business and regulatory uncertainty, the social stress, and the political quagmire.

They should tell May & Co. to pound sand. Execute no-deal Brexit and let the UK come back in a year with a proposal as to how they would like to rejoin the EU on fair terms, without special Thatcher-era handouts and special cases and exceptions.

by asdf on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 04:36:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There goes the Pound.
by rifek on Sat Apr 13th, 2019 at 08:07:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Speaking of a belated April Fools Day story, how about publishing it on April 3rd?

Downing Street forced to deny `April Fools' story that Theresa May bought Irish holiday home

The Irish local newspaper that reported Theresa and Philip May had bought a holiday home in Ireland have revealed that the story was an April Fool's joke.

The big reveal came after 10 Downing Street was forced to deny the rumour as "totally untrue".

The Munster Express published the story on 3 April, two days after April Fool's Day, but the paper's John O'Connor told Irish radio that the joke remains valid.

The paper publishes weekly and hit newsstands late, catching several UK publications (including this one) off guard with the inaccurate story.

by Bernard on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 07:05:22 PM EST
Turns out it was all a scam to assign blame:
Theresa May's prospects of cobbling together a cross-party majority to convince EU leaders to grant a short Brexit delay next week appear to be slipping away after Labour claimed she had failed to offer "real change or compromise" in talks.

The prime minister made a dramatic pledge to open the door to talks with Labour on Tuesday after a marathon cabinet meeting.

But after two days of negotiations and an exchange of letters on Friday, Labour issued a statement criticising the prime minister for failing to offer "real change or compromise".

"We urge the prime minister to come forward with genuine changes to her deal in an effort to find an alternative that can win support in parliament and bring the country together," a spokesperson said.


Sadly, I am not surprised. So, back to going over a cliff on Friday then.
by IdiotSavant on Fri Apr 5th, 2019 at 08:32:40 PM EST
Agreed, but to be fair, Labour could have arrived with a plan. But they just waited for May to make concessions instead.

They would rather prolong the chaos than carry May over the line. (she would probably mess up the touchdown and have a penalty awarded against her anyway...)

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

by eurogreen on Mon Apr 8th, 2019 at 10:05:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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