Brexit: Plan, Eh?

The Prime Minister is like one of those antibiotic resistant bacteria. The closest thing that she has to a political principle is MSRA. It doesn’t matter what countermeasures you throw at it, it’s still there, giving you stomach cramps and nausea.

On Tuesday, Theresa May went to Northern Ireland to tell Irish people all about Ireland. Ireland is a big island, she told them. It’s got water around it. Blue water, the same colour as the Conservative party, which means that she really cares about it. Ireland has fields. It has roads and houses. It has hedges and trees. No one cares more about Northern Ireland than she does, which is why she’s only speaking to the DUP and no one else.

She told the audience of increasingly bewildered Irish people, because she was being very clear, that she will do whatever it takes to keep the border open apart from keeping the UK in a customs union, keeping Northern Ireland a customs union, or signing up to the backstop. Theresa is committed to doing whatever it takes to keep the border open just as long as it’s not one of those things that can keep the border open. This is because the union is precious, so very precious, as it delivers her the DUP votes that she needs to keep her show on the road. And Ireland has roads too, so they have so much in common.

Seemingly unaware that she was speaking to an audience which had largely voted to remain, Theresa pressed on. Mostly by repeating herself and saying nothing that made any sense. The single political talent that Theresa May possesses is the ability to utter words that have a semblance of meaning, but as soon as they collide together in a sentence all sense vanishes. Her political speeches are to meaning as a cloud is to a hard surface. It looks solid from a distance, but if you try to stand on it you’re doomed.

Faced with people who were obviously not impressed by Theresa’s nebulosity and were demanding some firm and concrete answers to the question of the Irish border, a question which was directly affecting their lives, livelihoods, and businesses, Theresa backtracked on what she’d been saying last week, which itself was backtracking on what she’d been saying the week before. This is a Prime Minister who changes direction more frequently than a Mighty Mouse roller coaster in a 1970s fairground, all the while insisting that she’s going in a straight line and isn’t stuck on an eternal loop to nowhere.

Yesterday Theresa was insisting that there was still going to be a backstop, it’s just that some changes were required to it. That’s the same backstop that she’d told Arlene Foster and the DUP just the previous week that was absolutely, positively, definitely out of the question. The DUP have been very upset by the EU’s refusal to renegotiate the backstop. Arlene Foster called the EU intransigent, which is a bit like a zombie slating you for having too much meat in your diet.

The EU has repeated that the Irish backstop is not up for renegotiation. It only exists in the first place because of the red lines of Theresa May. It is only necessary because the UK has proven that it cannot be trusted. This is a British government which with its exceptionalism and its constant demands to have all its cake after eating it has trashed whatever residual goodwill it once had in Europe. Every change in course from Theresa May, every reversal of a previously held position, and the trust and confidence that the EU has that it’s dealing with a serious negotiating partner vanishes. There’s now no trust left in Britain. Negotiating with the UK is like negotiating with a blancmange. Although even a blancmange is able to hold its shape for longer than ten minutes.

Faced with a UK government which has no clue, no plan, and is plainly just making things up as it goes along and whose political aims consist of getting the Prime Minister through the next ten minutes, Donald Tusk now speaks like a man who has no tosses left to give. He wondered what the special place in hell looked like for those who backed Brexit without so much as the sketch of a plan, he told a press conference on Wednesday.

The Brexists were outraged, which to be fair is their baseline state. What an insult to the British people, they harrumphed. Although here we are over two years after the EU referendum, with less than two months to go until the British government’s own chosen date for Brexit, and they still haven’t come up with a plan. The nearest that they have is unspecified “alternative arrangements” for the Irish border. That’s not a plan, as it encompasses everything from the invention of teleportation to the insistence that goods can be transported across the border on the backs on unicorns, but manages to rule out anything that counts as realistic.

Back in 2014, the constant refrain from supporters of the British state hurled at independence supporters was “Where’s your plan B?”. There was a plan A. It was detailed and comprehensive. You might not have agreed with all its details but it most certainly existed. So British nationalists demanded a plan B instead. And if there was a plan B, they’d have worked their way down through the alphabet.

Even Baldrick’s plans were more cunning. Brexit is almost upon us and the goons of gammonry still don’t have a plan A, because they’re political illiterates. Before you can write a plan you need to know the alphabet. This bunch of clowns would struggle with a unicorn colouring in book and a crayon. It’s not so much a plan A as – plan, Eh?

How’s that safety, security, and stability of the British state working out?

From a Scottish perspective, that special place in hell looks like a Scotland which is silenced and sidelined within a British state which pays not the slightest heed to Scotland’s concerns or needs. A special place in hell is a Scotland that is held hostage to English nationalism wrapped up in a Union fleg. A special place in hell is being told that we are valued partners in a family of nations by a Prime Minister we didn’t vote for who treats us with contempt and who insists that she has a veto over our future. A special place in hell is the loss of our employment and civil rights that awaits us under Tories whose hands are no longer tied by Europe.

A special place in hell is Brexit Britain.

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28 comments on “Brexit: Plan, Eh?

  1. selkie says:

    Great post, WGD, but don’t dis the day soon, I hope they’ll be running free across the Scottish hills.

  2. Dave tewart says:

    The dance for the maybot when she turns up in Brussels is the Hokey Cokey.
    This is the backstop IN, backstop OUT prime minister.

  3. […] Wee Ginger Dug Brexit: Plan, Eh? The Prime Minister is like one of those antibiotic resistant bacteria. The closest […]

  4. Jan Cowan says:

    Looks like the plan was to keep dithering until time runs out then blame the EU members for the UK exit without a deal. Clever Tory trickery, what? Did TM ever want a deal? Doubtful.

  5. Brilliant, Paul.
    Plan A seems to beget pissed in the strangers Bar until the wee sma’ hours then sleep it off through PMQ the following morning.
    Didn’t quite catch Ross Thomson in HoC today.
    Pulled a sickie?
    I commented on Iain McWhirter’s defeatist blog earlier.
    He argues that ‘now is not the time’ for Indyref2; just look at the unprepared Brexit mess.
    He wants us to suffer years of Brexit Imperial destruction for a few years more. well it would keep him in a job for a while,I suppose, as pensioners are denied the Pensions Credit elemenet of UCS, workers with three children who lose their jobs are consigned to live at below the poverty level because of Willie Rennie’s ‘successful Austerity wheeze, and victims of rape are grilled by pen pushers whose bonuses depend on the number of knockbacks they can achieve in the HMG ‘hostile environment’ that is Blue Tory, and Red and Yellow Tory, Britain.
    What an insult.
    Mc Whirter compares the YES Movement to the disgraceful evil racist Farage Johnson Rees Mogg Big Red Bus campaign?
    Of course his tweet is designed to get us all talking about Iain McWhirter, nothing else.
    Grow up, Iain. it’s getting life-threateningly serious now.
    Independence is NOW, not in some mystical future when 1000’s of our citizens are dying of Brexititis.

    In 7 weeks time hundreds of Scottish Police will be quelling riots in supermarket queues and kettling 100,000’s of Scots who take to the streets in protest.
    We did not vote for Brexit; we voted to Remain.
    I refuse to allow an English Oppressor take away my European passport.
    By this act of aggression and colonial imperialism, the English Parliament has dissolved the ‘precious’ Union.
    There is revolution in the air.

    • Jason Smoothpiece says:

      Well said Jack, we were told vote yes and be dragged out of the EU, among other lies.
      Strong stable government was promised. Didn’t happen.

      I have said it before if I may mention it again this is an EMERGENCY for Scotland.

      Even if you are a daft bigot, look about you, stop reading the fecking record, think about your kids and loved ones, support an independent Scotland.

      Don’t leave it any later you have to act now we are almost out of time.

      • A. Bruce says:

        Quite right Jason- the time to call a date is NOW , before March 29th and a possible no deal Brexit, which endangers the very existence of Holyrood. I hope all SNP members will be writing to their MP’s and MSP’s to express their concern about leaving things too late.

  6. Alasdair Macdonald. says:

    It is clear she is running down the clock and, rather than a no deal, at the last moment a huge proportion of the 230 majority rejection of her deal, will switch to supporting it. Labour wants Brexit and backstop or not, Mrs May’s deal keeps the UK in the customs union and Labour is for A (the indefinite article) customs union. The big trade unions are urging Mrs May to indulge in ‘pork barrel’ politics as are a number of Labour MPs, especially in LEAVE voting constituencies.

    As far as Labour is concerned, the Tories will ‘own’ Brexit and, hence the consequences as well as the obscenity that austerity is wreaking on the UK. Mrs May is unchallengeable for a while in her own party and has said – as far as her word can be trusted – that she will not lead her party into the next GE.

    However, on 1, April the whole negotiations farrago begins again with the quest for a trade deal. The Brexiteers will continue to shout for the ending of the ‘backstop’. The Tories will continue to be split. Labour will be split, too. The issue of devolution to England is gaining traction, particularly in the north.

    For two more years, the UK will continue to be in the EU, but have no MEPs and no representation in the Commission. The UK will be a ‘rule taker’, subject to the ECJ.

    Meanwhile, the people of Northern Ireland, who voted Remain, will probably begin to move to a border poll. The demographic in NI is changing gradually and the DUP’s power will wane.

    What will happen to opinion in Scotland? Will the switherers decide to shift to YES, albeit reluctantly. The Tories and Labour are going to reject any request for Indyref 2.

    People will have to vote for Holyrood in 2021, will enough vote for the SNP (and the Greens) who make a very explicit case for independence? In 2022, at the GE (assuming the current Westminster Parliament limps on (and I think it is likely), will Scotland return a huge SNP majority of MPs on an explicitly independence manifesto?
    If Labour is unable to have an overall majority, will it seek a deal with the SNP? I doubt it. So, as England continues to be turbulent will England implode or seek to get shot of those ‘subsidy junkie jocks? In such circumstances will Scottish Labour morph into Scotland’s DUP, boosted by loyalists who have left a uniting Ireland?

    • Weechid says:

      I wonder if the anxiety felt by many is the way our grandparents and parents felt about WWII? I know we can never be sure what the future will hold and I do remember being worried about nuclear war as a youngster but this is much worse. It’s more real because it’s actually happening. I fear for the future of Scotland as a country and for it’s people.

  7. Gavin C Barrie says:

    I have a request – in functional, operative detail, please explain the backstop, and in terms of existing available technology.

    And yes, I’ve heard many pro-Brexit persons talk about applying technology for the backstop but, never do they identify this supposed technology for the backstop.

    I’m a bit of a technocrat, I’m waiting to be convinced.

    • Millsy says:

      …well , you invent this big machine that uses really , really clever science-stuff …and then you push the big red button on the side and ….and ….it WORKS !

    • Andy Anderson says:

      It is not just the fact no one has used technology before, a stumble point is that food, alive or not must be inspected at any E.U. third country border.

      Norway and Sweden use technology up to a point but you still get 4 to 20 minute delays per vehicle depending on whether the cargo is food or not. These countries can do this as there is trust between them which would not apply to the U.K.

  8. benmadigan says:

    “Donald Tusk now speaks like a man who has no tosses left to give. He wondered what the special place in hell looked like for those who backed Brexit without so much as the sketch of a plan”

    Enjoy the conversation that took place afterwards between mr Tusk and Mr UK Britain, retired Empire Builder

  9. Millsy says:

    Paul , I feel your are being rather disrespectful to a well-respected and beloved political heavyweight , Baldrick !
    He is actually the secret weapon that Treezza has been deploying in EU negotiations – hence the EU president’s outburst today when he could take no more – Baldrick suggested replacing the N.I ‘backstop’ with a giant turnip .

  10. chicmac says:

    Could Tusk have been alluding to Hell in Norway near Trondheim i.e. the Norway model?

  11. Craig P says:

    Paul – you need fewer words in your memes… think headlines in The Sun…

  12. Hazel Lewis says:

    Great post, WGD. You’ve absolutely nailed it!

  13. The power of the Brit Establishment over control of the Media:
    No mention of the alleged Ross Thomson ‘sexual touching’ drink fuelled disgrace on News where You Are’s 90 seconds this morning, nor during the 3 1/4 hours of English hegemony at Breakfast.
    The online Dead Tree Scrolls have no follow up.
    By tomorrow it will disappear all together.
    Or perhaps Scoop Hutcheon, Investigations Reporter has time from his cut and paste of May’s ‘will say’ Brussels’ speech to look into the apparent sexual assault of three young male visitors to the HoC bar?
    Your breath, don’t hold, comes to mind.
    One law, well no law, for the Brit Nat Red Blue and Yellow Tories, another for those who campaign for Scotland.
    Time for Monica Lennon to at last make an official complaint?
    Otherwise these sex pests will always get away with it.

    • Millsy says:

      Poor boy was overcome by Brexit fever , according to a colleague . He was explaining how ‘the backstop’ doesn’t work and was demonstrating to these young men his alternative method – honest !

      • Just checked; not covered at all by the Aberdeen and Dundee Dead Tree Scrolls.
        Makes you wonder what they are getting away with all of the time.
        Our MSM is a propaganda tool of the Iron Heel English Oligarchy and their Scotia Nostra Up Here.
        Imagine if it were a SNP MP who was allegedly sticking his hands down the front of a terrified male WM visitor?
        A six week story at the very least.
        Jacob Rees Mogg The Divine Presence will not be pleased that one of his ERG Boys has reportedly been a very naughty boy indeed.
        Drunk and groping in one of the most secure bars in the Western World, and nothing happens?
        Something fishy going on here and it ain’t the Common Fisheries Agreement.
        Surely Thomson must consider his position.

  14. mogabee says:

    Just a quick comment. Should be MRSA in first paragraph!

  15. Gavin C Barrie says:

    A very brief scan of newspapers at Glasgow Central, only the Sun goes lurid on Ross Thomson.

    To hugely misquote some guy – If you can keep calm whilst others are running for shelter, perhaps you have misjudged the situation.

    And so when Donald Tusk – love the Donald bit – muses on a place in hell for the Uk’s political leaders, Scotland staying calm whilst we edge towards the Brexit cliff may need a quick reassessment of our judgement of the situation.

  16. Zorin says:

    I wonder if this is clear enough for Theresa May to finally get the message:

    Powerful words & and a powerful statement! Time is running out for Westminster but instead of coming up with some sensible, realisable solutions the chaos continues as if they have all the time in the world…

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