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Imagine… July 22, 2021

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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Imagine a situation ten years from now. Scotland has seen a narrowly won referendum for independence. There’s now a soft border between the rUK and Scotland. The form of political organisation that Scotland takes is a bit hazy – is that the British monarch on currency or is that the Euro, can’t quite make that out. Meanwhile the Republic continues as the Republic does. The rUK retains both Wales, where independence seems still very distant as an achievable project, and Northern Ireland, albeit after the Tory government refused to hold a border poll on the 30th anniversary of the GFA/BA sentiment there has continued to rise for unification driven by demographic and political changes. But the Irish Sea border is now something even more distinct. Scotland hopes to rejoin the EU but the situation on the island of Britain is more complex. Policing that border has implications for the EU and Scotland.

None of this is beyond the bounds of possibility, but it is possible to see constraints that might come into effect – would the form of arrangements in respect of the Irish Sea border be able to function similarly in respect of Scotland/rUK? And all that brings the sense that in some ways everything that is happening at the moment, unintentionally, is in a sense a dynamic experiment and working through of both obstacles and potential solutions to problems that are likely to arise in the future.

Comments»

1. EWI - July 22, 2021

I think England is in a long-term process of becoming a failed state. The question is, what Ireland, Scotland and Wales do to keep ourselves safe from this.

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2. Bagatelle's Unannexed Talismans - July 22, 2021

Earlier this year I saw an article that argued Brexit was an attempt to destroy the EU.

Looking at how the Tories are playing the NIP issue I’m no longer so sure that argument is CT.

I may be missing something but I don’t see the Tories genuinely giving two tosses about NI (Scotland a radically different matter) and whether or not it remains in the Union. So why all the fuss over the NIP, the reasons articulated by the Tories are not consistent with their past or present beliefs and actions.

Is the UK govt trying to use the NIP issue in concert with GATT Article 1 requirement “that any advantage granted by a WTO Member to the goods of another Member must be extended unconditionally to like products of all other Members. This covers not only customs duties, but also “all rules and formalities in connection with importation and exportation” to crack apart the trading bloc?

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WorldbyStorm - July 22, 2021

In some ways I wonder – and agreeing with you that they don’t care at all about NI – is it simply this is one time the rhetoric is caught out by the reality and they’re desperately trying to cover that up? It’s possible there’s a strategy to destroy the EU, but the big problem is that all this stinks of British bad faith in the one area they are seeking to make Brexit work, that of international trade. After all, if they can’t get Ireland right how can they be a trusted partner of other states. So if the idea is to break the EU, something that I think would be all but impossible, it’s not working – they’re trashing their reputation and the US has actually waved the finger at them. Could it be that the problem is that they know that Brexit has further suspended NI between two polities and they haven’t got any real way of covering that up and they hope that the EU will further fudge the issue.

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EWI - July 22, 2021

Or that by finally(!) achieving Brexit they no longer have Europe to blame, so must therefore find new ways to make the EU the external hate figure.

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Bagetell's Underbaked Tamaracks - July 23, 2021

Retaining the EU as a bete noire makes more sense than there’s some cunning plan to unpick the EU. Perhaps if Trump had won re-election it’d be different. But even then it’d be a ridiculous project to attempt because the EU are going to roll over the UK if they try any such shenanigans.

Like most Irish, I’ve a lot of family in England (Tony Cascarino the footballer among them) who left Ireland for there in all decades of the 20th and older cousins who grew up in Dublin and took the boat for work in the 80s & 90s before the Celtic Tiger roared. So there’s no enjoyment derived from the implosion of the “auld enemy”. Even if I didn’t have family there I’d still not wish the shambles befalling Britain on the people there.

The BLP is a shambles and the LibDems are still refusing to learn the lesson taught by Niemöller.

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3. FergusD - July 24, 2021

I wouldn’t be surprised if some Tories think that Brexit plus a fight over the NIP might hurt the EU and at least contribute to its fall. However, I think other factors are more likely to damage the EU. The EU essentially depends on a Franco-German alliance. Strains are appearing in that. What if Le Pen become president? She has questioned that alliance. Germany seems to be growing more assertive and spending more on the military, seeing itself more as a world power. Could old rivalries re-emerge?

This is all too complex for Johnson. He is using the NIP for short term political gain.

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4. Wes Ferry - July 24, 2021

I think this generation of arrogant, self-entitled, Bullingdon Club Tories are happy enough to simply damage the EU to stick it to the French and Germans (the rest of us, including the DUP, are collateral damage) without any real hope of destroying the EU in the immediate future.

Meanwhile, in the fashion of the oligarchs in other countries they claim to despise, they and their cronies will plunder the public coffers and line up future deals for them and their cronies (Exhibits A and B: Covid contracts; Boris Johnson and ex-PM David Cameron in Greensill lobbying cover-up).

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2021/jul/22/lex-greensill-given-extraordinarily-privileged-government-access-inquiry-finds

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