Bristling Brock speaks out...


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Mrs May is not budging on her obsessive belief in her Chequers Plan for Brexit.   What is being mooted is the likelihood that she will offer the EU the further concession of remaining in the customs union for an indefinite period whilst the Irish border issue is resolved to "everyone's" satisfaction in order to get the EU's approval of Chequers.   This will be contrary to the referendum mandate as remaining in the customs union will require Britain to continue paying into the Brussels coffers, will still mean the ECJ has jurisdiction over British law and will effectively deny us the opportunity to broker trade deals elsewhere.  Add to this the extraordinary terms of Chequers and the result will be vassal status to Europe.   Nobody voted for that.  But we have a PM who seldom listens to either wise counsel or public opinion - she is infinitely wiser than the rest of us put together, she would have us believe.  Unfortunately, nobody else believes that and if this is all proven to be the PM's game-plan then we might reasonably expect more resignations from cabinet and committee alike.

The only apparent means of blocking this nonsense is the parliamentary vote on its acceptability.  Much hinges on the DUP and whether they view the continuance of a customs union as being a satisfactory solution to 'where the Irish border sits' and the clutch of MP's who rail against the PM's plan and wish to see something along the lines of a Canada Plus agreement instead.  The vocal dissenters of yesterday have gone remarkably quiet and it is concerning that whatever move they may now initiate to uphold the principle of Brexit may come too late.   Politics is a strange game, but at the moment the stakes are too high to get it wrong.

The government is also under fire on its Universal Credit scheme.   The opposition to it is wide and varied in motive but the underlying issue of it penalising low income families seems to be the common denominator in all the arguments.  The government remains oafishly committed to rolling the scheme out on a larger, national scale with an attitude of steamrollering the process forward without any review of exactly what it is doing.   Sounds familiar. 

Trumpy is still warring with the Chinese on trade and tariffs.  At the moment they are playing tit-for-tat but at some point there will have to be a break in that process - by whom we need to wait and see.   Trumpy's rhetoric is ignorant, ill mannered and wild - glorying in the damage he is doing to the Chinese economy.  What he is not factoring in is that that damage impacts on the rest of the world as well - but, hey, he's the super-president, isn't he ?  He can do what he likes.   Maybe so, for now.   The time will come when he can't.   Let us all be patient until that moment is reached.  In the meantime, Melania is travelling around Africa on some sort of mission.   I've not heard exactly what it is for.   I don't criticise her desire to be away from the White House - that must be, even for her, a surreal experience of bizarre and unpredictable goings-on - but she needs to latch onto a meaningful purpose and mission to gain any independent credibility.   In the past this blog has questioned whether Melania really is Melania - such is her very low profile when compared to, say, Ivanka - and the speculations over the authenticity of the First Lady's identity.  Whether she is real or merely a contracted actress, the desire to be free of White House politics must be immense.  Whoever she is, she should find a cause and run with it.   Sooner or later Trumpy will be history - but she might have a further life yet to live.  

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