Brexit: Claim and counter claim May 31, 2016Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
I’m following the Brexit issue fairly closely now and what seems most striking is how unmoored from reality so much of the discourse is. In part, I think, this is due to the Exit side being so disparate, albeit numerically tilted hugely to the right. Even in that cohort there are different views – though it is particularly irritating to hear some of them shed crocodile tears for the NHS, etc. Indeed the dissonance between what they say and what one knows they actually believe in relation to social and economic issues is so great that for any with any familiarity with them their current stances seem both cosmetic, hypocritical and self-serving. Not, that the Remain side are tribunes of passionate intensity, it has to be said.
But the lack of an actual plan for what happens on Day One following a Brexit vote is so noticeable that it undercuts most of what is said from those championing that cause. And here’s another example of same – following on from yesterdays post on Brexit and border controls:
Pledges by Northern Ireland secretary Theresa Villiers that a British vote to leave the EU will not lead to Border controls have been rejected as “untenable” by the former PSNI chief constable, Hugh Orde.
Dismissing the need for any changes if the UK votes to quit the European Union on June 23rd, Ms Villiers last month said that she could see “no reason” why the Irish/UK Common Travel Area, allowing free movement for Irish citizens, would not continue.
Well, it doesn’t take any great insight to recognise that in the event of a Brexit something – and probably something very fundamental – would change. The status quo ante will be replaced with something new, possibly better, possibly worse. Orde is simply stating the obvious. And he goes further:
Rejecting Mrs Villiers’s view that a Brexit vote would have no impact on the peace process, Mr Orde writes: “The vision of Border controls plays into the hands of those who are yet to realise the armed struggle is over. “The removal of the towers along the Border was a significant event in the history of Northern Ireland. It represented a shift to civilian policing, and a recognition that significant political achievements had created the conditions that allowed it to happen.
“Any step backwards is a really bad idea, which is why Villiers’s position on this critical issue is close to untenable.”
That’s a central issue for this island and these islands.
But again, it’s this sense that those on the Brexit side will say any old guff that comes across most clearly. It is certainly revealing as to their attitudes to the British (and indirectly the Irish) electorate.